ROMANTIC PICKS Review of #Netflix #Bridgerton

The holidays are a perfect time to binge watch. I’ll admit I was excited to watch Bridgerton. I finished it yesterday and thought it would be perfect to review here on Romantic Picks. I do recommend romances. Matter of fact, I have recommended Julia Quinn’s books before. The difference here is that its a TV series and not her books.

I have met Julia Quinn at a Romance Conference years and years ago. There couldn’t have been a nicer person. She was extremely personable and likable. I have found that to be the case with most of the authors I have met. I have come up with a theory its because they are happy with their job. They are doing what they love.

A surprising fact you might not realize is that Julia Quinn is extremely smart. She graduated from Harvard and was even a winner on The Weakest Link. Julia isn’t the only smart Romance author. I know both bestselling authors Sarah MacLean and Eloisa James have graduated from Ivy League schools. Eloisa James also has a PHD. Interesting tid-bit, Yale graduate politician, Stacy Abrams is also a romance novelist who writes under the name Selena Montgomery.

Now to get back on topic, Bridgerton. I have read the first book and a couple of others in the series. I loved them. Awesome historical romances. Julia Quinn is a fabulous writer…but how does that transform to a TV series. As it turns out, pretty well.

Watching the series, I felt as though I was reading a romance. I thought the hero, Simon, and heroine, Daphne, were right on mark. There was immediate attraction, obstacles to overcome, and the most important ingredient— a happily ever after.

Issues that I have read about the Netflix series have included a problem that some of the main roles are played by black actors. It is widely known that British Aristocracy is notoriously white and the poster child for white privilege. It also gave credit to Lord Dunmore for giving blacks an opportunity. The reference is when Lord Dunmore made a proclamation in 1775 to free slaves. But don’t give Dunmore too much credit. He made the proclamation for purely selfish reasons…to cause trouble for the colonists because they ran him out of Virginia. Dunmore himself was a slave owner.

So you might ask, having blacks play roles that could never have been theirs take away from the series. My answer is a simple no.

As in the musical Hamilton, the issue of skin color wasn’t a problem.

Skin color wasn’t the only other differences between Bridgerton and the real world. I doubt seriously that an Earl would try to bring his mistress to a ball…but it is a romance. Romance can take certain liberties. We are in fact creating a fantasy. Romance is written and popular because of that fact. A Romance novel is an escape…its supposed to be a brief escape from the world around us.

Shonda Rhimes has taken the books and captured the essence of a true romance story onto the screen. I found what Shonda Rhimes did by adding blacks into the story was to allow us to see what could happen if we treat people of color fairly.

I absolutely loved the chemistry between Rege-Jean Page and Phoebe Dynevor. As in romance novels, the sex scenes were passionate. I felt drawn to the characters. The storyline wasn’t overwhelming, but okay. I would definitely recommend watching this series. I’m looking forward to next season and am hoping to see more shows like this.

Check out some more must read romances.

A Rogue by Any Other Name– Bargain $1.99

ROMANTIC PICKS Recommends Romance! #EscapeIntoThePast #LiveForRomance

51RYl8lYjtLTHE GIRL WITH THE MAKE-BELIEVE HUSBAND

While you were sleeping…

With her brother Thomas injured on the battlefront in the Colonies, orphaned Cecilia Harcourt has two unbearable choices: move in with a maiden aunt or marry a scheming cousin. Instead, she chooses option three and travels across the Atlantic, determined to nurse her brother back to health. But after a week of searching, she finds not her brother but his best friend, the handsome officer Edward Rokesby. He’s unconscious and in desperate need of her care, and Cecilia vows that she will save this soldier’s life, even if staying by his side means telling one little lie…

I told everyone I was your wife

When Edward comes to, he’s more than a little confused. The blow to his head knocked out three months of his memory, but surely he would recall getting married. He knows who Cecilia Harcourt is—even if he does not recall her face—and with everyone calling her his wife, he decides it must be true, even though he’d always assumed he’d marry his neighbor back in England.

If only it were true…

Cecilia risks her entire future by giving herself—completely—to the man she loves. But when the truth comes out, Edward may have a few surprises of his own for the new Mrs. Rokesby.

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Someone wants Alyce Hythe dead…

Shunned from London society for being the daughter of England’s most notorious spy, Alyce Hythe desires only to clear her father’s name. For years, she has been hidden away from prying eyes, given a new identity and told to forget who she was. But strange things have been happening causing old rumors to once more be whispered.

Long has Lord Julian Casvelyn lived with guilt brought on when his brother was murdered by England’s most infamous traitor. But one eventful night has changed everything Lord Julian believed about his brother’s death. Never did he suspect the woman he has just saved from certain harm is the daughter of that man.

Now Julian is caught in midst of a conspiracy and desire for that woman. Thrown together by fate, the two search for answers long denied them and along the way discover a love that can free them both.

51FTJHEjzjLA MATCHMAKER FOR A MARQUESS

Be prepared to smile, swoon, and sigh in Christi Caldwell’s latest ‘Heart of a Scandal’ installment where a matchmaker firmly on the shelf is about to fall head over heels for her best friend’s younger brother.

She lived by a strict set of rules…
Meredith Durant believes those who won’t marry, matchmake, and she’s made a notable career for herself helping young women find the perfect mate. Having suffered a broken heart years before, she’s quite content in her work and determined to never fall prey to love again. Her most recent job finds her working for the unlikeliest of households, never expecting her assignment would be her best friend’s younger brother, Barry—who’s not so little anymore. He’s a grown man who leaves her breathless and wishing just maybe this time she could have a happy ending. But how can that happen when, once her job is done, she must watch him wed another?

He’s decided to break her rules:
Barry Aberdeen, the future Duke of Gayle, knew his days of freedom were numbered. With his sister recently married, his mother turned her marital aspirations to him. She’s even gone as far as to hire a matchmaker. Worse, the matchmaker is a childhood friend–Meredith Durant. Only the rigid, serious creature is not the carefree girl he remembered. If he’s going to be saddled with a matchmaker, he’s going to have fun loosening Meredith’s too-tight chignon. What he doesn’t expect is how entranced he’ll be when those strands come falling down around her shoulders.

51AVs1HlZ7LMY FAIR GUARDIAN

When Bethany is saddled with an unwanted, unrefined, and decidedly common guardian, she must polish him up before he’s fit for good society. As for Willoughby Winter, all that stands between him and his inheritance is to marry Bethany off. Can he succeed in his efforts before his past becomes known or will she manage to distract him from his goal—by hook or by crook?

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ROMANTIC PICKS #HISTORICAL #ROMANCE The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn

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Wise, lovely, and kind, Kate Sheffield is determined that her beautiful half-sister, Edwina, marry a reputable man. Unfortunately for Kate, Viscount Anthony Bridgerton–London’s most eligible bachelor and a notorious rake to boot–sets his sights on Edwina, and what the viscount wants, the viscount gets.

Hardly a problem for the impossibly handsome viscount, that is until the determined Kate, whose deep, dark eyes and lush mouth send his senses racing, presents a challenge that Anthony cannot refuse. Worse yet, Kate’s response to his playful advances only confirms the ardent attraction that both seem desperate to deny. Anthony is faced with a dilemma. On the one hand, the perfectly amiable Edwina, while on the other, the most stubborn, single-minded–yet confoundedly desirable–female ever to grace a London ballroom. Anthony’s quandary comes to a fast and fateful conclusion when he and Kate are caught in an innocent but compromising position.

It’s no surprise that Julia Quinn’s setting, characterization, and plot are flawless. Add to this masterful mix deeper emotional issues offset by the trademark Quinn wit, and you truly do have romance at it’s best. Nobody does Regency quite like the mighty Quinn. –Lois Faye Dyer

 

Review

“Praise for Julia Quinn: ‘Writers like Quinn are reinventing the romance novel for the post-feminist generation’ TIME MAGAZINE ‘Captivating and ailuring, THE VISCOUNT WHO LOVED ME is vintage Julia Quinn.’ ROMANTIC TIMES ‘Julia Quinn’s setting, characterisation, and plot are flawless. Add to this masterful mix deeper emotional issues offset by the trademark Quinn wit, and you truly do have romance at its best. Nobody does Regency quite like the mighty Quinn’ AMAZON.COM”

 

 

 

 

ROMANTIC PICKS LOOK AT WHAT’S COMING—The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy by Julia Quinn

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AMAZON LINK: The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy (Smythe-Smith Quartet)

COMING TUESDAY, January 27!

Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can’t be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family’s infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She’s the type of girl you don’t notice until the second—or third—look, but there’s something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he knows she’s the one.

Iris Smythe–Smith is used to being underestimated. With her pale hair and quiet, sly wit she tends to blend into the background, and she likes it that way. So when Richard Kenworthy demands an introduction, she is suspicious. He flirts, he charms, he gives every impression of a man falling in love, but she can’t quite believe it’s all true. When his proposal of marriage turns into a compromising position that forces the issue, she can’t help thinking that he’s hiding something . . . even as her heart tells her to say yes.

ROMANTIC PICKS #HISTORICAL #REGENCY The Viscount Who Loved Me by Julia Quinn

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AMAZON LINK:The Viscount Who Loved Me (Bridgerton Family)

1814 promises to be another eventful season, but not, This Author believes, for Anthony Bridgerton, London’s most elusive bachelor, who has shown no indication that he plans to marry. And in all truth, why should he? When it comes to playing the consummate rake, nobody does it better…

–Lady Whistledown’s Society Papers, April 1814

But this time the gossip columnists have it wrong. Anthony Bridgerton hasn’t just decided to marry–he’s even chosen a wife! The only obstacle is his intended’s older sister, Kate Sheffield–the most meddlesome woman ever to grace a London ballroom. The spirited schemer is driving Anthony mad with her determination to stop the betrothal, but when he closes his eyes at night, Kate’s the woman haunting his increasingly erotic dreams…

Contrary to popular belief, Kate is quite sure that reformed rakes to not make the best husbands–and Anthony Bridgerton is the most wicked rogue of them all. Kate’s determined to protect her sister–but she fears her own heart is vulnerable. And when Anthony’s lips touch hers, she’s suddenly afraid she might not be able to resist the reprehensible rake herself…

HAPPY READING 2015!

I hope everyone has a wonderful New Year! Looking for a good read coming up in 2015! Here’s a few coming up in January!

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COMING JANUARY 13!

AMAZON LINK:Fatal Scandal: Book Eight of The Fatal Series

Book 8 of the Fatal series from New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author Marie Force

As a new year dawns in the capital city, dual scandals rock the Metropolitan Police Department—and Lieutenant Sam Holland is right in the middle of them. Chief Farnsworth is catching heat for the way he handled a recent homicide investigation, and Detective Gonzales is accused of failing to disclose an earlier connection to the judge who decided his custody hearing.

When Gonzo’s fight for his child turns deadly and he has a shaky alibi, Sam must defend two of her closest colleagues. All while her husband, Vice President Nick Cappuano, settles into his new office at the White House.

Nick begins to wonder if the president is using him for a political boost, and his worries mount over a complication in the plans to adopt Scotty at a time when Sam is being put through the wringer by the always-rabid DC press corps. As the evidence against Gonzo piles up, Sam suspects someone is gunning for her—and her team.

Read how Nick and Sam’s relationship began in Fatal Affair

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COMING JANUARY 15!

AMAZON LINK:Growl

My name is Sheryl Ilene Newcomb. And yes, my initials are S.I.N. A funny little piece of whimsical humor my parents found amusing when I arrived.

Then, it turned out to be true. Looking back with wiser eyes now, my family and I concluded that the events leading up to my transformation started the summer I turned nine. But the day we realized there was a problem, and no turning back, was a week before I started my senior year at Junction City High. The day the fangs and claws appeared and the monster inside of me emerged.

When mutilated corpses appeared near a pile of brush down by Caney Creek, everything changed. Because evil woke up and growled, its ominous rumblings heard by every living thing in Locasia County, Mississippi.

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COMING JANUARY 27!

AMAZON LINK:The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy (Smythe-Smith Quartet)

Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can’t be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family’s infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She’s the type of girl you don’t notice until the second—or third—look, but there’s something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he knows she’s the one.

Iris Smythe–Smith is used to being underestimated. With her pale hair and quiet, sly wit she tends to blend into the background, and she likes it that way. So when Richard Kenworthy demands an introduction, she is suspicious. He flirts, he charms, he gives every impression of a man falling in love, but she can’t quite believe it’s all true. When his proposal of marriage turns into a compromising position that forces the issue, she can’t help thinking that he’s hiding something . . . even as her heart tells her to say yes.

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COMING JANUARY 26!

AMAZON LINK:Shadows of Magnolia (Southern Legacy Book 2)

BOOK TWO SOUTHERN LEGACY SERIES… It is a serial and needs to be read in order! Belle of Charleston, Book One!

Set against the backdrop of Antebellum Charleston with the martial clash of brother against brother looming on the horizon—here is an absorbing, tantalizing saga of life during one of our country’s most turbulent times—Southern Legacy Series.

Shadows of Magnolia, Book Two

Somewhere between love and tomorrow is forever!

Josephine Buchanan Wright is forced apart from the man she loves. She has chosen the path of honor and duty, denying her heart its desire. Unaware of a growing threat against her, she strives to make her dying father’s wish a reality.

Cullen Smythe returns to Philadelphia and tries to pick up the pieces of his shattered heart…forget her and make a life for himself—alone. But fate has other plans for once more Josephine enters his world.

Can their love be rekindled against the forces against them? Love and betrayal; jealousy and violence—all with a war looming on the horizon, bidding brother against brother.

Wednesday’s Romantic Picks Bargain Spotlight- Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn

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Once again, #1 New York Times bestselling author Julia Quinn transports her readers to historical romance heaven! Quinn’s Just Like Heaven is the dazzling first installment of a delightful quartet of Regency Era-set tales featuring the romantic exploits of the well-meaning but less-than-accomplished Smythe-Smith musicians—in this case, a beautiful violinist in the pitiful group who has her sights set on marrying the last unwed Bridgerton…unless her handsome, love-struck guardian has anything to say about it. Bridgerton fans will cry, “Encore!”—as will every reader who adores England’s Regency period and great love stories that are smart, witty, and lighthearted.

From the Back Cover

Honoria Smythe-Smith is:

A) a really bad violinist
B) still miffed at being nicknamed “Bug” as a child
C) not in love with her older brother’s best friend
D) all of the aboveMarcus Holroyd is:

A) the Earl of Chatteris
B) regrettably prone to sprained ankles
C) not in love with his best friend’s younger sister
D) all of the aboveTogether they:

A) eat quite a bit of chocolate cake
B) survive a deadly fever and the world’s worst musical performance
C) fall quite desperately in love
It’s Julia Quinn at her best, so you know the answer is . . .

D) all of the above

Monday’s Historical Romantic Picks-A Night Like This by Julia Quinn

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Review

Romantic, funny and heart melting, the second book in Quinn’s Smythe-Smith quartet is simply enchanting. Lancashire Evening Post (Preston)

From the Back Cover

Anne Wynter might not be who she says she is . . .

But she’s managing quite well as a governess to three highborn young ladies. Her job can be a challenge—in a single week she finds herself hiding in a closet full of tubas, playing an evil queen in a play that might be a tragedy (or might be a comedy—no one is sure), and tending to the wounds of the oh-so-dashing Earl of Winstead. After years of dodging unwanted advances, he’s the first man who has truly tempted her, and it’s getting harder and harder to remind herself that a governess has no business flirting with a nobleman.

Daniel Smythe-Smith might be

But that’s not going to stop the young earl from falling in love. And when he spies a mysterious woman at his family’s annual musicale, he vows to pursue her, even if that means spending his days with a ten year old who thinks she’s a unicorn. But Daniel has an enemy, one who has vowed to see him dead. And when Anne is thrown into peril, he will stop at nothing to ensure their happy ending . . .

Friday’s Historical Romantic Picks The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After by Julia Quinn

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Once upon a time, a historical romance author created a family . . .

But not just any family. Eight brothers and sisters, assorted in-laws, sons and daughters, nieces and nephews (not to mention an overweight corgi) plus an irrepressible matriarch who’s a match for any of them . . . These are the Bridgertons: less a family than a force of nature. Through eight bestselling novels, readers laughed, cried, and fell in love. But they wanted more.

And so the readers asked the author . . .

What happens next? Does Simon ever read his father’s letters? Do Francesca and Michael become parents? Who would win in a Pall Mall grudge match?

Does “The End” really have to be the end?

Now, with The Bridgertons: Happily Ever After, Julia Quinn delivers eight sexy, funny, and heartwarming “2nd Epilogues” plus a bonus story about none other than the wise and witty matriarch Violet Bridgerton herself. So get to know the Bridgertons all over again—because Happily Ever After is a whole lot of fun.

About the Author

New York Times bestselling author of twenty-two novels for Avon Books, Julia Quinn is a graduate of Harvard and Radcliffe Colleges and lives with her family in the Pacific Northwest.

New York Times bestselling author Eloisa James is a professor of English literature who lives with her family in New York but can sometimes be found in Italy.

Connie Brockway, the New York Times bestselling author of twenty-two books, is an eight-time finalist and two-time winner of the RITA® Award. She lives in Minnesota with her husband and two spoiled mutts.

Friday’s Historical Romantic Picks- Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn

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Honoria Smythe-Smith is:

A) a really bad violinist
B) still miffed at being nicknamed “Bug” as a child
C) not in love with her older brother’s best friend
D) all of the above

Marcus Holroyd is:

A) the Earl of Chatteris
B) regrettably prone to sprained ankles
C) not in love with his best friend’s younger sister
D) all of the above

Together they:

A) eat quite a bit of chocolate cake
B) survive a deadly fever and the world’s worst musical performance
C) fall quite desperately in love

It’s Julia Quinn at her best, so you know the answer is . . .

D) all of the above