The Blurb (from Goodreads):
Fiercely independent Daisy Chance has a dream—and it doesn’t involve marriage or babies (or being under any man’s thumb). Raised in poverty, she has a passion—and a talent—for making beautiful clothes. Daisy aims to become the finest dressmaker in London.
Dashing Irishman Patrick Flynn is wealthy and ambitious, and has entered society to find an aristocratic bride. Instead, he finds himself growing increasingly attracted to the headstrong, clever and outspoken Daisy. She’s wrong in every way—except the way she sets his heart racing.
However, when Flynn proposes marriage, Daisy refuses. She won't give up her hard-won independence. Besides, she doesn't want to join the fine ladies of society—she wants to dress them. She might, however, consider becoming Flynn's secret mistress. . .
But Flynn wants a wife, not a mistress, and when Flynn sets his heart on something, nothing can stand in his way. . .
I’ve been eagerly awaiting the last book in Anne Gracie’s ‘Chance Sisters’ quartet, and now I’m all sad that the series is over. All four books have been delightful, full of wit and romance and poignancy, with each of the four young women so distinctly different in their personalities and each travelling a very different route towards happiness. If you love sparkling Regency romances, Anne Gracie is a must-read! Start with The Autumn Bride, which introduces the characters and situation, and then read them in order.
‘Down a cobbled street in Paris, a long-forgotten apartment is found. Thick with dust and secrets, it is full of priceless artworks that have been hidden away for decades.’
It was these words – the opening sentence of the blurb on the back of the book – that sold me on this book. It’s just such a fascinating premise. I would love to find such an apartment myself – just imagine the forgotten stories hidden within.
The Paris Secret is probably best described as a contemporary romance, and so it’s full of descriptions of gorgeous designer clothes and handbags, and has a brooding French bad-boy millionaire as the romantic interest. It’s not my usual kind of book at all, but it was perfect for a plane trip of a few hours (I bought it in the airport bookshop). I ripped through it in a few hours, and enjoyed it immensely. I loved the Bindinside view of the international art world, and the scenes set in Paris, one of my favourite cities in the world. I enjoyed the romance too, which was deftly done. All in all, it was a great light read, perfect for a beach holiday.
I met Lexi Landsman at the Melbourne Jewish Writers Festival, and bought her book there (I always come home from a festival with a suitcase laden with books!) The Ties That Bind is her first novel, but I can guarantee it won’t be her last. From the heart-rending opening scene, when a child is stolen from her pram, to the emotional lump-in-the-throat ending, the story unspools swiftly and surely, the pages seemingly turning themselves.
It’s the story of a young mother, Courtney, who discovers that her ten-year-old desperately son needs a bone marrow transplant. His best chance of surviving is to find a familial match – but Courtenay is adopted and knows nothing about her birth family. She sets out on a quest to discover her origins, and uncovers all sorts of dark secrets. A really engaging and heart-warming read.
You might also like to read my review of The Winter Bride by Anne Gracie: