Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Blog Tour: Once Upon a Wallflower by Wendy Lyn Watson (Review + Giveaway!)

Love Saves the World welcomes Wendy Lyn Watson and her book, Once Upon a Wallflower!

Wendy has previously published contemporary mysteries and Once Upon a Wallflower is her debut historical romance so I am delighted to have her stop by my blog today.

There is a tour-wide giveaway for a $50 gift card to either Amazon or B&N. (Enter through the Rafflecopter below.) To visit Wendy's other stops, click here.

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About the book --

Once Upon a Wallflower by Wendy Lyn Watson

Genre: Historical Romance
Publisher: Entangled Publishing, LLC
Date of Publication: 8-12-13
ISBN: 978-1-62266-235-7
Number of pages: 178


A Perennial Wallflower ...

When Mira Fitzhenry’s guardian arranges her engagement to one of the most scandalous lords to ever grace the peerage, all of society is abuzz. After all, the man has left a trio of dead young women in his wake, including his first fiancĂ©e. But Mira doesn’t see a killer in Nicholas’s moonlight eyes, and she resolves to find the real murderer before the wedding.

A Gothic Villain ...

Expecting to scare the chit away within five minutes of meeting him, scarred and brooding Nicholas, the Viscount Ashfield, is intrigued by Mira’s tenacious resolve to prove his innocence. She’s not put off by his imposing appearance, but his family’s dark secrets mean he cannot let her get close.

As the wedding approaches, Nicholas and Mira grow ever closer, yet so does the danger.Will the truth bring Nicholas and Mira together or tear their love apart?

Buy Links for the book:

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My Review --

The announcement in the newspapers was clear and straightforward: Miss Mirabelle Fitzhenry is engaged to Nicholas Ellerby, Viscount Ashfield in an alliance brokered by Nicholas's father and George Fitzhenry. What isn't clear is which Mirabelle Fitzhenry Nicholas is engaged to? There is Mira, George's niece, only daughter of his late brother, who is penniless and plain. And there is Bella, George's beautiful golden daughter, who had a successful season and is her family's golden ticket to a better life.

This is the type of confusion George Fitzhenry wants to capitalize on as he fobs off his niece to Nicholas and his father. Mira has no choice but to go along with her uncle's scheme to trick the Ellerbys in order to save Bella from having to marry a man rumored to have murdered his first fiancee. Mira is hoping her plainness and lack of wealth will push Nicholas to cry off and end their engagement.

And Nicholas is hoping his reputation scares off Miss Fitzhenry and ends their unwanted engagement.

What neither one expected was to like each other -- but, after their first meeting, Mira and Nicholas slowly change their mindset: this engagement might not best bad, after all. But the specter of past accusations shadows over Nicholas and Mira races to prove her fiance's innocence as the date of their wedding draws closer and closer.

This is Wendy Lyn Watson's first foray into writing a historical romance, but her experience writing contemporary mystery shines through as she mixes in a very intriguing mystery into Nicholas and Mira's story: three girls dead, all found near Blackwell Hall, with the third girl being engaged to Nicholas and found dead on the steps going up to his rooms.

Nicholas has never bothered to defend himself and no charges were ever made. In the beginning, Mira's motive for investigating was selfish: she wanted to make sure she wasn't marrying a murderer (or, if proven true, it would give Mira an excuse to end the engagement). But, as she gets to know Nicholas, and appreciate his kindness and gentleness, Mira is convinced he is innocent and wants to find the true killer to save Nicholas's reputation.

The bulk of the mystery is set at Nicholas's family's country estate in Cornwall -- and this is the most interesting part of Watson's story.

"Every summer, right near Midsummer's Eve in fact, for three years in a row, a young girl is killed within spitting distance of Blackwell Hall."
- p. 66

A country estate, three dead girls, and one name linked to all three -- Mira's efforts at investigating are a bit clumsy and amateurish (read Chapter 9), but she is also earnest and determined. When she convinces Nicholas to help her, they gain more ground and discover more clues on the deaths of Tegen Quick and Bridget Collins. But what about Olivia Linworth's death?

I love murder mysteries. I enjoy following the clues and making my own guess. That the murders happened in a small town and there is only a short list of suspects makes this even more exciting. Who murdered those girls? The author presents her suspects well and hints that each one has a motive. There was a point when I thought I knew who the real killer was -- but Watson is very good at keeping it a secret until the very end. (My guess was wrong, by the way.)

Romance readers who love a bit of mystery will enjoy Watson's Once Upon a Wallflower. The twist on the two Mirabelle's, the twist on the murder mystery coupled with likable protagonists makes for a very entertaining read.

I have one small question: How should we address Jeremy, who is the son of the Earl of Blackwell with his second wife? Nicholas assumed the title of Viscount as his father's heir so is Jeremy "Mr. Ellerby" or Lord Jeremy? (Both are used in the book.)

Disclosure: I received this book from the tour organizer as part of the book tour. Thank you to Bewitching Book Tours and to Wendy Lyn Watson for the opportunity. Yes, this is an honest review.

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About the author --

Wendy Lyn Watson writes mysteries of all types: contemporary, historical, and cozy. Whatever the time or the tone, her mysteries always feature a dose of humor and a dollop of romance. Her first cozy series, the Mysteries a la Mode, feature the owner of an ice cream parlor in a small Texas town.

Once Upon a Wallflower, due to be released in August of 2013, is a Regency-set romantic mystery. While Wendy does not commit (or solve) mysteries in real life, she can kill a pint of ice cream in nothing flat. She also enjoys 80s music, Asian horror films, quilting, and vegetarian cooking.

While she was born in Ohio and has called half a dozen states home, she currently lives in a college town in North Texas along with her husband and their three cats (Iphy, Squeak-a-Doodle, and Todd Baryshnikov).

She loves to hear from readers, so find her on Facebook at @wendylynwatsonauthor.

Author Links:


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There is a tour-wide giveaway for a $50 gift card to either Amazon or Barnes and Noble (Winner's choice). To visit Wendy's other stops, click here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. Hi, Tin! I recently discovered this novel online and added it to my Wish List. I’m so looking forward to reading it. It sounds like a novel that is just what I love to read.

  2. Thanks for sharing your review and the giveaway. Sounds like a really good book and I am looking forward to reading it. evamillien at gmail dot com

  3. What an intriguing book! I love the combination of historical romance and mystery and have added Once Upon a Wallflower to my TBR list. Thanks for sharing the great review.

  4. I always love HR novels starring a wallflower. After all. we few, we bookish few, we bonds book worms, grew up feeling like faded roses which will never be plucked! That's why we love romance. We're all waiting, however long, to be asked to dance!

    Please enter me. Thank you!


  5. Hi, Ann! (Make sure you enter through the Rafflecopter *points up*)

    Hi, BookLady! Yes, it's what drew me to the book as well. Would love to hear your thoughts on the book once you've read it.

    Hi, Eva! Many thanks for dropping by and for your comment about my review.

    Hi, Connie! Our TBR lists are getting longer and longer, aren't they? But it's fun to know that there are so many good reads out there. Now to find the time. ^_^

    Good luck in the giveaway everybody!

  6. New author to me thanks for the intro. The book looks good.
    Lorimeehan 1 at aol dot com

  7. Terrific looking book.. Will have to try this one out. Good luck everyone!

    erikalrhodes at gmail dot com

  8. New author to me always excited to learn and read .. Hope I can be a long time fan. ;)

    vals_hemi at yahoo dot com

  9. Crazy good book!! Wish you lots of success~! Thanks for giveaway

  10. I see more and more mysteries set in the Regency era and it is becoming my reading passion. I'm always pleased to find a new-to-me author writing in this sub-genre. Thanks for the giveaway too.

    kareninnc at gmail dot com

  11. sounds like a great book! Thanks for the giveaway.


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