This is one of the books I had on my "go and buy as soon as I have book money" lists and I'm so glad. Victorian. Romance. Mystery. Love. :)
From Amazon: In Heather B. Moore’s enthralling 1840’s historical romance, Heart of the Ocean, Eliza Robinson has turned down the very pretentious Mr. Thomas Beesley’s marriage proposal. As a business partner of Eliza’s father, Thomas quickly discredits the family and brings disgrace to the Robinson name.
While her father scrambles to restore his good name in New York City, Eliza flees to the remote Puritan town of Maybrook to stay with her Aunt Maeve. Although relieved to be away from all- things-male and unforgiving gossip columns, odd things start to happen to Eliza, and she is plagued by a ghostly voice. Her aunt’s explanation? That Eliza is being haunted by a woman who died of a broken heart twenty years ago.
After Aunt Maeve is tragically killed, Eliza's life is put in danger as she tries to uncover the mystery of her aunt's death. She encounters Jonathan Porter in Maybrook, whose presence in the town seems suspicious, yet she finds herself drawn to him. When she discovers that Jonathan’s dark secrets may be the link between the dead woman who haunts her and her aunt’s murderer, Eliza realizes that Jonathan is the one man she should never trust.
Audience: Adult (Clean)
Genre: Historical Romance, Mystery
Length: 288 pages
Review: Although I've read a ton of Regency romance books, I'll be honest, I like Victorian stuff more. It spans so much time and change and I just like the dresses better. (Empire waist would have never flattered these hips. Seriously.) So HEART OF THE OCEAN appealed to me immediately. I love Jon as the hero and the legitimate reasons he has for staying with his fiancee, Apryl. I love the mystery that unfolds as the story goes on. I love the change we see in Eliza and her family and the way they work together. I love how deep Jon, Eliza, and Apryl are as characters -- there's so much to explore about them and their lives. For me the story slowed a bit in the middle and I wondered why at one point Eliza had told Jon that she was not engaged to Nathaniel, yet he still believed it.
He Said/She said: A description of the two love interests in Jon's life from his point of view, that I just LOVED. "Eliza was like an innocent spring day compared to Apryl's full summer flirtatious ways." Perfect. I could see it so clearly.
Disclaimer: Some mild sensuality.
Try this: Do you like Romance mysteries/thrillers? Try THE GUY NEXT DOOR by Kate Palmer or THE ALIAS by Mandi Tucker Slack.
Buy HEART OF THE OCEAN on Amazon.
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I've been writing since I was old enough to grasp a crayon--my grandma even has an early copy of a "book" I made her. I have a bachelor's degree in history from the University of Wyoming and will (hopefully) soon be starting a graduate program in English. When I'm not breaking up impromptu UFC fights in the living room or losing miserably to my boys at Uno, I'm ... well, writing or editing, of course! I'm married to my best friend, and we have three rambunctious but simply amazing little boys.