Friday, April 25, 2014

Review: Love by Secrets by Debra Elizabeth

Series: Age of Innocence #1
Release date: March 25th 2013
Purchase: Amazon | B&N

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Two men: one wants to love her, the other wants to use her. Which will she choose?

Eighteen-year-old Emily Stanton is excited to attend this season's society balls and begin her search for a husband. She is thrilled when the dashing and handsome Connor Preston begins to show her more attention. After each ball, Emily finds a love note in her drawstring reticule, and she expects a marriage proposal from Connor any day.

When her father objects and forces Emily to accept the proposal from Lady Tisbury's shy nephew, Ethan Richardson instead, her heart is broken. How can she love her new husband when her heart belongs to the man who wrote her such beautiful love letters?

*Received kindle book from the author in exchange of an honest review.

Love by Secrets was a short and sweet novel. I enjoy reading historical romance so this one was right up my alley. The story was captivating, truly well-written. It was also very fast-paced and while I like that aspect of it, I felt I would have given the book five stars had it been a tad longer, depicting more of Connor, as well as allowed for Emily and Ethan to spend more time developing a closeness. 
Aside from that, I enjoyed reading about the characters, and those balls; how exquisite the ladies were when dressing up. The descriptive rudiments convinced me and pulled me deeper into the story. I felt like I was in that period of time and attending these lavish events as well. 

Now, Emily's character irked me at first. I wanted to slap the living daylights out of her for such naivety in regards to falling for appearance and silly winks, and even making a rather impulsive assumption as to who the love letters came from. However, I feel Ethan should have done more in trying to appeal to her. There wasn't much he did, for conversation or charm, so I could see how Emily would be taken by Connor in the beginning even if that man had his hidden agenda. Like I said before though,  there should have been more about him and his activities.

As for Ethan, aside from not being more out there, I liked his kindness and the way he respected Emily and her family. He was also very selfless in the way he treated his relatives and more particularly, his cousin Colby. My oh my, his gambling had some serious conclusion before he finally opened his eyes and saw what his life was becoming. Thankfully he sorted himself out toward the end. I also just discovered his character would be the main focus in book two so I'm actually looking forward to reading more into his story.

Overall, Love by Secrets was an enjoyable, quick read. The author did a good job in conveying all the right elements of a sweet historical romance and I look forward to continuing the series, as well as read her other works. I recommend giving this one a try.

Love by Deception (Age of Innocence, #2)Love by Deception #2
Release date: October 22nd 2013
Purchase: Amazon

Synopsis via Goodreads:
Content with her life as a lady's maid, Isabel Knott learns the father she never knew has left her a fortune. The news comes with one restriction--she can never reveal his name. Isabel falls in love with Colby Tisbury, but with her nonexistent pedigree his father, Lord Tisbury, will never accept her as his daughter-in-law.

Colby Tisbury must marry, and soon. If he doesn't find a bride before the end of the Season, his father will supply one. Then Colby meets sassy Isabel Knott, and everything changes--but can he go against his father's wishes and marry a girl utterly lacking in family and connections? Isabel is forced to make an impossible choice - reveal her secret identity and bring shame to her true father or lose Colby forever.

About the Author
Debra L. MartinI write fantasy and science fiction stories with my co-author, David W Small. We're a brother and sister writing team and have been writing together since 2006.
Our newest book is THE SILVER CROSS, Book 1 in The Vampire Nightlife series. The sequel SILVER DOUBLE CROSS is forthcoming.
We have published a new fantasy series, ASSASSIN'S CURSE is Book 1 of The Witch Stone Prophecy. We are currently working on WITCH'S CURSE. Book 2 in the Witch Stone series. It will be published in Spring/Summer 2014.
We have published 2 novels, QUEST FOR NOBILITY and THE CRYSTAL FACADE in the Rule of Otharia series. The third and final volume, THE KING'S LAST WORD is forthcoming. 
We also have a post-apocalyptic series of short stories, Dark Future Series, which includes PATH TO DESTRUCTION THE RIGHT PATH and ZIA'S PATH. You can now buy all 3 titles in one volume, THE PATH.


  1. Sounds like a great novel! I especially like how you mentioned the love interests' flaws- alas, things that tend to disappear in a lot of YA and NA. Great review!

  2. It's always so nice when an author can set the scene so well that you feel immersed in the story. Thanks for the review!

  3. Hmmm. I think Emily would irked me as well. I don't know if I would have the patience. I'm glad you eventually liked this overall. :)

  4. i really want to get into historical romance, this looks like a good starting point!

    em @ x

    1. Yeah you should read them. The way they're written is so different from modern books :)


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