Book Reviews

Mini Review Monday: The Darkest Lies and What Regency Women Did for Us

mini reiew monday

I’m sharing two mini reviews this week. The first is for The Darkest Lies by Barbara Copperthwaite, a gripping psychological thriller published by Bookouture on May 12, 2017. The second review is for What Regency Women Did for Us by Rachel Knowles, a women’s history book focusing on select Regency women published by Pen & Sword Books on April 30, 2017.

The Darkest Lies by Barbara Copperthwaite

The Darkest Lies cover

A mother desperate for the truth. A daughter hiding a terrible secret.

Melanie Oak appeared to have the perfect life. Married to her childhood sweetheart, Jacob, the couple live with their beautiful, loving, teenage daughter, Beth, in a pretty village.

Nothing can shake her happiness – until the day that Beth goes missing and is discovered beaten almost to the point of death, her broken body lying in a freezing creek on the marshes near their home.

Consumed with grief, Melanie is determined to find her daughter’s attacker. Someone in the village must have seen something. Why won’t they talk?

As Melanie tries to piece together what happened to Beth, she discovers that her innocent teenager has been harbouring some dark secrets of her own. The truth may lie closer to home and put Melanie’s life in terrible danger…

A completely gripping psychological thriller with a twist you won’t see coming.

Every parent’s greatest fear is that something terrible with happen to their child, and in The Darkest Lies, this becomes reality for Jacob and Melanie Oak when their daughter, Beth, goes missing. Their nightmare is only just beginning, however, because when Beth is found, she has been beaten nearly to death. Melanie is determined to find out who hurt her daughter, not realizing her search is putting her own life in jeopardy.

What an intense read this was! It kept me guessing from start to finish, and I think I suspected pretty much everyone that was mentioned in the story, except Melanie. Copperthwaite did an excellent job of making everyone seem guilty at one point or another in this fast-paced thriller. I’m happy to report that I didn’t have a clue about the attacker’s identity until it was revealed. And what a reveal it was! I never saw it coming… totally blew me away!

This is the first novel I’ve read by Copperthwaite, but it definitely won’t be the last! Definitely recommending this one… such a great read!

Rating: 4 stars

I received an advance review copy of this book courtesy of Bookouture via Netgalley.

What Regency Women Did For Us by Rachel Knowles

What Regency Women Did for Us coverRegency women inhabited a very different world from the one in which we live today. Considered intellectually inferior to men, they received little education and had very few rights. This book tells the inspirational stories of twelve women, from very different backgrounds, who overcame often huge obstacles to achieve success. These women were pioneers, philanthropists and entrepreneurs, authors, scientists and actresses women who made an impact on their world and ours. In her debut non-fiction work, popular history blogger Rachel Knowles tells how each of these remarkable ladies helped change the world they lived in and whose legacy is still evident today. Two hundred years later, their stories are still inspirational.

What Regency Women Did for Us focuses on the lives of twelve Regency era whose notable contributions to the world (with only a few exceptions) have been largely forgotten today. Thanks to Knowles, their accomplishments—which were made during a time when women were thought to be lesser than men and were expected only to marry and raise children—are acknowledged and celebrated even more so for having been done during a restrictive era for women.

The women discussed in this book were authors (Jane Austen and Maria Edgeworth), scientists (Jane Marcet, Mary Anning, and Caroline Herschel), an engineer and inventor (Sarah Guppy), businesswomen (Marie Tussaud and Eleanor Coade), actresses (Sarah Siddons and Harriot Mellon), a mountaineer and philanthropist for women (Mary Parminter), and a prison reformer (Elizabeth Fry).

I was unfamiliar with many of the women discussed in this book. The only names I was familiar with were Jane Austen,  Marie Tussaud, and Maria Edgeworth. Although I was aware Maria Edgeworth was an author, something I  didn’t know is she created the historical fiction genre. (And I’m so thankful she did, because I love historical fiction!)

I love learning about women’s history, so this was an enjoyable read for me. I would recommend this book to others who enjoy reading about women’s history.

Rating: 3 stars

I received an advance review copy of this book courtesy of Pen & Sword Books via Netgalley.


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