If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all. - Oscar Wilde
We shouldn't teach great books; we should teach a love of reading. - B. F. Skinner
No entertainment is so cheap as reading, nor any pleasure so lasting. - Mary Wortley Montagu

Sunday, November 8, 2015

Review: Lily in Bloom by Tammy Andresen / @Bookenthupromo @TammyAndresen

Title: Lily in Bloom
Author: Tammy Andresen
Publisher: Booktrope Editions
Release Date: September 29, 2015
Genre: Historical, Romance
ARC Received From: NetGalley
Reviewed For: Book Enthusiast Promotions 

Lily Carter has one chance to save her family from destitution. She must marry.

The real question now is who? Lily longs for one man, but her attempts to attract Eric Sampson are foiled at every turn. Eric can’t see a future when he’s still tangled in his past, and Lily is forced to consider other suitors despite loving Eric.

When one suitor comes forward who could threaten Lily’s well-being, Eric must set his doubts about marriage aside to protect her. But events have been set in motion neither of them can stop. Will his past destroy both their futures?

Lily is an heiress but needs to marry to receive an inheritance that will keep her family's ship-building business afloat. She has until the end of the season to choose a suitable husband or her brother will do it for her. It wasn't until she ran into Eric that she knew who her husband would have to be. Convincing Eric of that fact though... That was going to take some work.

Not much was known about Eric's past at first. A great deal of what was said was hearsay. Rumors. Manufactured "truths" that acted as warnings for Lily. The mystery surrounding his wife's death was beautifully done. Not only did I want to know the man himself, I wanted to know his late wife. Weird, lol. But with Eric's past so heavily entwined with his present, it's hard for me to not want to know the woman he loved, bore him a son, and (seemingly) still has his heart.

The attraction between Lily and Eric was, for me, a little muted. Perhaps that was Ms. Andresen's plan, to keep it low key so the rest of the story could play out. You know, give Eric that shining moment to prove his attraction and love her were there all along. And, I will say, Ms. Andresen did a marvelous job of setting aside their romance and building up the suspense in this story. This fast-paced love story quickly became one of intrigue and action, mystery and suspense that made the ending a hundred times better than I thought it'd be.

I rarely read American historical romances. My heart lies across the water in Regency England. But I was surprised by how much I wanted to read this story, and surprised again when I discovered how much I enjoyed it. Well-written with well-developed primary and secondary characters, this is a love story that will appeal to historical romance readers, and maybe (just maybe) turn someone else into a lover of American historical romances like it did me.

Tammy Andresen lives with her husband and three children just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. She grew up on the Seacoast of Maine, where she spent countless days dreaming up stories in blueberry fields and among the scrub pines that line the coast. Her mother loved to spin a yarn and Tammy filled many hours listening to her mother retell the classics. It was inevitable that at the age of 18, she headed off to Simmons College, where she studied English literature and education. She never left Massachusetts but some of her heart still resides in Maine and her family visits often.