Completely unexpected, this redemption story brings together two estranged loves with a story that feels both real and possible With lovely historic detail in terms of society expectations and judgments, Cathy Maxwell brings us Jemma and Dane, and their love story When Jemma s brother, a renowned drunkard and hothead in the footsteps of his father, challenges Dane to a duel, there will be dire consequences for all concerned This is where we join the story, as Dane is taking a quiet moment to arrange his affairs the evening before the duel, as he looks back on his life, on his relationship with Jemma, and trying to settle his mind Jemma, with considerable prodding from her overbearing mother, is again left to be the family savior A drunken brother with no concept of thrift, a grasping mother, a dead husband who left her with title but little else, she is facing the man she has dreamed of, desired and even feared for the last years Their negotiations are filled with tension and remembered feelings even as Jemma is there to beg for her brother s life, she is hoping to appeal to Dane s better nature Against Dane s instincts, he is barely reining in his temper and anger all from hurt feelings and Jemma s rejection of him years ago Their consummation of their bargain held such potential for cleansing moments for them both, until Jemma went to run away Her mother s appearance, Dane s loss of control and their final willingness to be honest and open with one another gave them both a new lease on life and love Cathy Maxwell penned a lovely short historical novella with heart, heat and two characters who showed a palpable connection even when they were sniping at each other Dane s self assured manner and growth from the young man who initially courted Jemma, and Jemma s realization that her family needs limits and she wasn t ready to be the woman Dane needed years ago are wonderful touches to add depth to the story I received an eArc copy of the title from the publisher via Edelweiss for purpose of honest review I was not compensated for this review all conclusions are my own responsibility. Disclosure I received this review copy for this event Thank you to Avon Impulse, Cathy Maxwell, and Tasty Book Tours for the opportunity Yes, this is an honest review. The first question that came to mind when I finished reading this e novella was, Why a Nightingale so I looked online to see what the bird symbolised in literature and art, and I also looked at the etymology of the word The name of the bird translates to night song and the common thread in how it has been used in literature is sadness And there s a lot of sadness and sacrifice that happens in Jemma and Dane s story They were young lovers with very simple dreams of being together, but family and a lack of fortune forces them apart Jemma chooses to marry a titled, wealthy man and Dane decides to forego his dreams of being a vicar and travels to India to seek his fortune.The tale of star crossed lovers is age old, and often ends in tragedy our hero and heroine s story seems to be heading in that direction, with a duel looming between Dane and Jemma s brother It is up to Jemma to change the course of their lives, but it would mean confronting Dane for the first time in years It is a painful confrontation, where Dane and Jemma learn some truths about each other, and there is a silent sadness to their story and one question hanging between them What If She wondered if the many mistresses he was rumoured to keep found him as loving and adoring as she once had She felt a stab of jealousy, coupled with the bile of regret.He could have been hers loc 105The night she visits Dane is a critical point in her life, though she doesn t realise it at the beginning it took a lot of courage for Jemma to go to Dane, and Cathy Maxwell shows what she had to give up for the sake of her family she gave up a chance at happiness with Dane, in exchange for security and a title Here she is, given another chance and another choice I held my breath as Jemma considered her situation, and I wondered will she take the chance and make the right choice this time I felt very sad for Dane s lost dreams he had wanted to be a vicar, marry Jemma and live quietly in the village, but, because he felt he needed to prove something to Jemma and himself, he traveled to India and has returned a rich man Now what Dane had accomplished what he had set out to do, but he still feels discontent, because he still doesn t have the one person that he wanted and loved Dane is also standing at the precipice and Jemma is there challenging him to make a choice life and love or death What I enjoyed most was how the author didn t allow her characters to regret their past choices, but gave them the realisation that all those choices, all those years, shaped them to be the people they are While the poignancy of what if continues to linger, I think the excitement of the what now is the greater force This is a very sweet and sentimental story about two people who are given a second chance. 3.5I don t know if I wasn t in the mood for this or what my problem was This sounded really good And I was able to make it through in one sitting I was intrigued by the set up, that she showed up at his home to beg him not to fight her brother The author did a good job of including enough backstory to show the history the characters had and while I felt their connection to the past and their past feelings, I wasn t as connected to their current attraction It just fell a little flat for me But, this was a quick read and it had some steam I would definitely recommend it for those reasons alone. This is one of those stories that is easy to get through and you ll be able to read it in one sitting, yet it was well written and paced so that it actually felt longer than it really is.Characters are all three dimensional and plot is plausible and entertaining, and I thoroughly enjoyed the complexity of Jemma and Dane s relationship.If you re into complex relationship stories, and especially second chance tropes, I am sure you ll really enjoy this angst, loss and redemption filled tale.Also, if you ve never read this author before, this short novella is perfect for you because it will only whet your appetite for this author.Melanie for b2bComplimentary copy provided by the publisher Nicely written, lovely story, beautiful cover 3.5 rounded up to 4 Lindsay So, today we re stepping back in time with Nightingale by Cathy Maxwell Personally, I love historicals The women are always kick and tough and don t take any crap from anybody So going into this one, I was excited It was going to be a second chance at love with some lingering hurt feelings and all that good stuff Nikki I was excited too I m still fairly new to the world of Historical Romance, but this one sounded really interesting and I was looking forward to reading it Lindsay Now for the other shoe to dropThe book wasn t awful but it wasn t the best we ve read either Going into it, I wasn t aware that it was a novella I did see that it had been previously published but with the way some authors are putting full length novels in anthologies now, seeing previously published in didn t mean a whole lot And I didn t go do research Because of the shortness of the story, I had a hard time connecting with the current day characters I loved the flash backs and felt the connection they had but the current attraction and feelings weren t there for me Nikki I know exactly what you mean I enjoyed the flashbacks, but the way Jemma and Dane acted in present day just didn t vibe I wasn t too fond of Jemma Lindsay Me either I think the author could have done a lotwith her had this been a full length novel If she were fleshed outand you sawof her life beyond what she told Dane then maybe I would have felt some sympathy for her But as it stands, I didn t Nikki I agree Her actions and the way she treated the whole situation with Dane was just not cool Lindsay I concur So, what s our final rating Nikki I say a 3 It was well written, just neededto flesh out some of it. Short, second chance romance Easy read, no surprises. I always find reviewing shorter works difficult simply because my initial reaction most of the time concerns the length I really enjoyed Nightingale by Cathy Maxwell The characters grew on me, their chemistry was intense, their banter believable, the setting realistic for the time period, but I did find myself wantingDane has returned as a successful businessman to the town where his heart was broken Jemma has returned to the man she jilted, now begging him to spare the life of her alcoholic brother From their very first look, the tension between them is palpable Old hurts quickly resurface and raw emotions dampen the air Their backstory is revealed through their dialogue and yet I knew there had to beto their childhood, to their growing up, their relationship and his subsequent marriage proposal than what is given to the reader These two characters already had an established relationship, they shared a past, and these parts would have helped given Jemma and Danedepth and cemented my connection to them As a short work, I felt robbed of knowing but not really seeing that connection flashbacks, while effective, don t fill the void My frustration is a testament to the ability of Cathy Maxwell s talent to spin a tale and hook readers in The romantic aspect of Nightingale is just about perfect Each look, each movement, every touch has a reason and the tension between these two is profound They are so hard on themselves and don t believe they are worthy of the true love they felt for each other as teens Their reunion is something else.I admit I loved the spin the author gave the story Jemma s reason for marrying someone else was surprising but actually made a lot of sense and said a lot about her character too bad her scene with her mother wasn t longer When Dane thinks about it, his consensus is welcome since the reader reaches the same decision when he does Very cool I zoomed through Nightingale As a short story, it is tight, grabs the reader and leaves them wantingI know I did.Blog tour Nightingale by Cathy Maxwell is a 2014 Avon Impulse publication I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.This novella was originally a part of a collection or omnibus release along with a 3 or 4 other short stories by various authors This book will now be available in digital format as a stand alone.Years ago, Jemma and Dane were in love and planned to spend their lives together But, when Jemma received an offer from another man who had a title, her parents urged her accept and she did Now she finds herself widowed and near destitution Her brother is all that keeps her and her mother from a life on the streets But, he has now put them all in jeopardy by getting drunk and challenging Dane to a duel Jemma s only hope will be to approach Dane after all these years and hope he will find it in his heart to call off the duel I have always been a fan of Cathy Maxwell Her historical romance novels are always delightful and I never pass the opportunity to read one I do remember this book from when it was part of the paperback edition But, it has been years since I read it I m not sure what to think to be honest Dane took his lumps, began an entirely different life than what he had planned, became a strong man, made sure to keep his romantic interludes as pleasant as possible without strings being attached Jemma is his sole weakness, but will he help her I did like Jemma s admissions to Dane She could have lied and made others responsible for her choices but she owned up to her girlish mistakes and there is nothingdifficult than admitting you have been wrong and you made a mistake that you have regretted ever since It can be equally difficult to forgive someone who broke your heart and give them a second chance Thankfully, Dane and Jemma are adults now and have the maturity to put the past behind them Overall not a bad story This novella just suffers from the same thing many short stories or novellas suffer from when they are packaged together as a collection There just wasn t enough time for the proper details to emerge and things had to be rushed which deprived us of a good build up I m not sure how this one will fare as a stand alone But, it s a lot better than most teaser novellas out there at the moment This one will fall into the take it or leave it file for me I m giving this one a 3. Fate Has Brought Them Together Again At One Time, Jemma Meant The World To Dane Pendleton, But Then She Betrayed Their Young LoveNow Time Has Turned The Tables Dane Is Wealthy, Respected, And Knighted, While Jemma Has Nothing But Her PrideHis Honor For Hers Dane S Name Is On The Lips Of Every Beauty In London They Whisper That He Learned Tricks While He Was In The Orient But Has He Forgotten Jemma And What They Once Meant To Each Other And Will He Accept Her Devil S Bargain In Every Woman S Life, There Is That One Flame Who Slipped Away The Man Who Makes Her Wonder What If But Is This A Momentary Madness Or A Chance To Rekindle A Love That Could Last A Lifetime
CATHY MAXWELL spends hours in front of her computer pondering the question, Why do people fall in love It remains for her the mystery of life and the secret to happiness.She lives in beautiful Virginia with her children, horses, dogs, and cats.
- 96 pages
- Cathy Maxwell
- 14 March 2017 Cathy Maxwell