Anne Gracie and a Sparkling Spring Bride

Cat 243 Doverby Mary Jo

Due to stealth and cunning, I was able to acquire an early copy of Word Wench Anne Gracie's The Spring Bride, third in her Chance Sisters series.  I volunteered to interview her about the book, which gives me an opportunity to gush about it.  <G>

I love the Chance Sisters, and I'm not alone in that. The first book, The Spring Bride US versionAutumn Bride, made several "best of the year" lists including Library Journal and NPR, and was also a RITA finalist.  The Winter Bride received several starred reviews, an RT top pick, and was voted Favourite Historical by members of the Australian Romance readers Association. The Spring Bride received 4 1/2 stars from Romantic Times, and I think it may be the best Chance sister book yet.

MJP: Anne, could you tell us how the Chance Sisters came to be?   

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The Winter Bride: an interview with Anne Gracie

Cat 243 Doverby Mary Jo

TWO Word Wenches releases are due on April 1st!  An abundance of good reading.  I waved my hand first to claim an ARC for Anne's The Winter Bride. This second book of her Chance Sisters Quartet is another delight.  (Abby's story, The Autumn Bride () was first in the series, and chosen by Library Journal as one of the Top Ten Romances of 2013.  AND has just been listed as an RWA RITA finalist!)

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A quiz with a difference

Anne here, posting another quiz for you, one with a small difference. Here I'm quizzing you on a book you haven't yet readThe Winter Bride, which comes out on April 1st. Perhaps a handful of people have read it — reviewers and people like that. So it's not testing knowledge as such — it's not testing anything. It's just for a bit of fun, guessing at the answers. 2WinterBride_2

Don't worry, there are no spoilers here; the questions relate to minor occurrences, and are more about the characters, who some readers will have met in the previous book, The Autumn Bride. It's  intended to give you a little taste of the book to come, something a bit different from an excerpt or a blurb.

So here it is, a fun little quiz on a book you haven't read. Make a note of your answers, check them on the link at the bottom and come back and tell us how you went, and whether you enjoyed it or hated doing a quiz on something you can't know. I'll be giving a copy of The Winter Bride to someone who leaves a comment.

1) Max asks Freddy to keep an eye on Lady Beatrice and the three girls because:
        a) Freddy is a reliable chaperone
        b) Freddy wants to get closer to the girls   
        c) Max doesn't trust his aunt to behave herself
        d) Max thinks the girls are in danger

2) Lady Beatrice's favorite form of exercise is:
        a) riding in a carriage
        b) being read to   
        c) gossiping with friends
        d) all of the above

3) Lady Beatrice says:
        a) "A lady should never keep a man waiting."
        b) "Punctuality is a virtue."   
        c) "Punctuality is quite unnecessary."
        d) "It is good for men to be kept waiting."

4) Freddy attends Lady Beatrice's literary society because:
        a) Max made him promise to go
        b) there's nothing else interesting on   
        c) it's a good place to meet women
        d) he adores poetry and good literature

5) Damaris grew up in:
        a) Italy
        b) Venice   
        c) China
        d) Scotland

6) Freddy says muffins:
        a) are food for the lower classes
        b) make a delicious snack   
        c) are the perfect breakfast food
        d) follow him around and are a dratted nuisance

7) Damaris needs money. Freddy thinks it's because:
        a) she's a spendthrift
        b) she's got gambling debts   
        c) she's being blackmailed
        d) she buys too many hats

8) Freddy knows his valet is displeased with him when:
        a) he serves Freddy tea that is cold
        b) he sniffs meaningfully and often
        c) Freddy's shirts are presented with a crease in the wrong place
        d) he whistles loud and long

9) When Freddy and Flynn first meet
        a) Freddy is impressed with Flynn's sartorial elegance
        b) Freddy admires Flynn's earring   
        c) Flynn is impressed with Freddy's sartorial elegance
        d) None of the above

10) Freddy teaches Damaris to drive a carriage because:
        a)  he has entered her in a ladies' race.
        b)  he wants to get her alone.    
        c)  he plans to kidnap her. 
        d)  he thinks scaring her will make her feel better.

11) Lady Beatrice's beloved half sister Griselda is:
        a) living in Venice
        b) a terrible woman
        c) completely imaginary
        d) a very rich woman

12) Freddy claims the novel Pride and Prejudice is a horror story because
        a) it's all about girls catching a husband
        b) every single man in it ends up married
        c) it gives him nightmares
        d) all of the above

Now you have guessed the answers, click here and find out the results. Then come back and tell us how you went. Did you have fun with this, or was it annoying to be quizzed on a book you can't yet have read? (Be honest, I won't mind.) I'll be giving a copy of The Winter Bride to someone who leaves a comment.

What We’re Reading in February

Hi Folks. 

Joanna here with a round up of the great reads that got us through a blustery cold February.

Wenches discovery witchesMy own wonderful read was Deborah Harkness' A Discovery of Witches, Book One in the All Soul's Trilogy.  The elements of this story — withces and vampires living among us, ancient manuscripts, conspiracies, ancient secrets — are familiar.  They seem almost hackneyed.  What lifts this book above the ordinary is Harkness' beautiful writing. 

And … well … the first book of the trilogy is set mostly in Oxford.  I'm a sucker for Oxford. 

I've already acquired Book Two in the trilogy, Shadow of Night, and look forward to settling down in a comfy chair with it.  Maybe when we get this next wave of snow that's coming in. 

Cara/Andrea saying:Wenches heir apparent

I’m very interested in the Edwardian era, so when I read the great reviews for The Heir Apparent, Jane Ridley’s new biography of “Bertie,” King Edward VII, I immediately grabbed it.

It’s an absolutely fascinating read. Ridley had access to extensive Royal archives and private family correspondence—and the picture painted of Queen Victoria, Albert and their extensive brood and relatives is  . . .well, I’m not quite sure of the adjective to use. Chilling might be one of them. Talk about a dysfunctional family! It’s a wonder poor Bertie wasn’t committed to Bedlam. He actually comes off as a very sympathetic character, far brighter and more interested in the welfare of his country than he is given credit for.

On the other hand, the Queen and her consort come across as cold, manipulative people who had absolutely no emotional interest in their children. It also gives a wonderful look at the social whirl of the Victorian age, with descriptions of the house parties, the foreign travel, the royalty of Europe. I highly recommend it for anyone interested in the time period.


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