Review – The Lady’s Guide to Celestial Mechanics

ladies-guide

From the publisher:

As Lucy Muchelney watches her ex-lover’s sham of a wedding, she wishes herself anywhere else. It isn’t until she finds a letter from the Countess of Moth, looking for someone to translate a groundbreaking French astronomy text, that she knows where to go. Showing up at the Countess’ London home, she hoped to find a challenge, not a woman who takes her breath away.
As Lucy Muchelney watches her ex-lover’s sham of a wedding, she wishes herself anywhere else. It isn’t until she finds a letter from the Countess of Moth, looking for someone to translate a groundbreaking French astronomy text, that she knows where to go. Showing up at the Countess’ London home, she hoped to find a challenge, not a woman who takes her breath away.

Catherine St Day looks forward to a quiet widowhood once her late husband’s scientific legacy is fulfilled. She expected to hand off the translation and wash her hands of the project—instead, she is intrigued by the young woman who turns up at her door, begging to be allowed to do the work, and she agrees to let Lucy stay. But as Catherine finds herself longing for Lucy, everything she believes about herself and her life is tested.

While Lucy spends her days interpreting the complicated French text, she spends her nights falling in love with the alluring Catherine. But sabotage and old wounds threaten to sever the threads that bind them. Can Lucy and Catherine find the strength to stay together or are they doomed to be star-crossed lovers?

Review:

I read this novel over the summer, picking it up for several reasons, but primarily because of the lavish cover and the promise of a fascinating f/f romance. Rich and passionate, the novel delivers on the promise of its cover. It is a particular delightful read because it is smart, gets the science right and captures the concerns of scientists of the time. But more importantly, and central to the primary romance, is the depiction of the way women were relegated to supporting roles in the lives of male scientists, even when their contributions and insight were far more significant than their spouse’s. Or in the case of Lucy Muchelney, that of her recently deceased father.

I’ve read a few ff romances and I find they are either euphemistic in their approach to feminine passion or they emphasize the sweetness of the affection of the characters and not the passionate nature of their love. While there is a great deal of affection and respect between Lucy and Catherine, their physical passion is also powerful and the author does not hesitate to show that. Each love scene increases in intensity as they give themselves over to their mutual attraction, giving both women their due agency and sexual expression.

Excellent novel – I enthusiastically recommend it.

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Review – Weird & Wonderful Holiday Romance

Weird

Booksellers

From the publisher:

Helmed by USAT Bestselling Author Caitlyn Lynch, 18 authors explore several lesser-known holidays. Featuring sweet country romance and sex in the big city, there’s something for all romance readers. Polar bear plunges. Sexy neighbors. Even a cute shifter or two. This anthology has it all!

Come celebrate the year with us!

Review:

I had the pleasure of reading this collection this week and was satisfied with both the quality of the stories as well as the variety. The anthology features both USA Today bestsellers as well as fresh, new writers and the result is a collection that will have something for everyone. The organizing theme – that of unconventional holidays – is a unique one and results in some interesting entries. For example, there is one of my favorite days, Pi Day, offered as the context for a lovely m/m romance, National Pride Day, the holiday for a Latinx F/F coupling, and an absolutely bonkers and delightful entry for Pins and Needles Day that features an M/M/F pairing that is as witty as it is sexy.

The anthology itself is very reader friendly, listing the Holiday, the day, a well-defined heat rating and, most importantly, extensive trigger warnings. It’s one of the most comprehensive I’ve seen in a collection of this type and, as a reader who may want to avoid certain topics, the listings are very considerate. I would highly recommend this anthology as an entry point for getting to know new writer as well as established ones in a way that is very accommodating to readers.

I was provided an ARC by the publisher.