Out of the Ordinary by Jen Turano (Review, Guest Post & Giveaway)

Out of the Ordinary Jen Turano

About the Book

Out of the Ordinary Jen Turano

Name of book: Out of the Ordinary

Author: Jen Turano

Genre: Christian historical

Release Date: November 7, 2017

”With all the charm of a Regency romance, the humor of a drawing room farce, and the swoonworthy delight of a fairy tale, Turano’s first Apart from the Crowd historical absolutely sparkles.”–Publishers Weekly on Behind the Scenes

Working as a paid companion may be quite commonplace, but Miss Gertrude Cadwalader’s eccentric employer makes her job unpredictable, to say the least. She finds herself carrying out an array of highly unusual tasks, including wearing peculiar outfits and returning items the woman pilfered. But when the wealthy Mrs. Sinclair catches Gertrude sneaking around the Sinclair yacht with some of the missing items in her possession, she immediately jumps to the wrong conclusion.

Shipping magnate Harrison Sinclair is caught in the middle of a misunderstanding between his mother and Gertrude, but he can’t help coming to his friend’s defense. Even as he hopes their friendship might become something more, Harrison is unprepared for the outlandish escapades that seem to follow the lovely, anything-but-ordinary Gertrude at every turn.

“The second installment of Turano’s Apart from the Crowd series is laugh-out-loud enjoyable. The foibles of the characters, balanced out with a light-hearted yet meaningful love story, is a true treat. . . . All of the threads are tied together in the end, even the small mysteries and side stories. It makes for a very satisfying read when the last page is turned.”–RT Book Reviews

Click here to purchase your copy!

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Book Convention Survival Tips (with book giveaway)

Jesus calls His followers to be lights in the midst of darkness. If you’ve ever been to (or thought of going to an ABA book conference), the darkness is rampant.

During the first week of May, I got to hang with other readers at the RT Booklovers’ Convention in Atlanta, GA. This convention moves every year, and in 2018 it will be in Reno, NV. But despite the ever-changing city, the crowds flock to this convention for the parties and opportunities to meet with their favorite authors.

 

I’m by no means an expert at book conventions but this was my second RT (I went to Vegas for my first RT in 2016) and I thought I’d pass along some tips and hints to make the trip more enjoyable and worthwhile.

And if you hang with me until the end of the post, I’m doing a BIG giveaway for fans of Christian fiction (with multiple winners)!! Believe me, you’ll want to stick around and enter!!

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Behind the Scenes by Jen Turano Review

 

 

 

Miss Permilia Griswold may have been given the opportunity of a debut into New York high society, but no one warned her she wasn’t guaranteed to “take.” After spending the last six years banished to the wallflower section of the ballroom, she’s finally putting her status on the fringes of society to good use by penning anonymous society gossip columns under the pseudonym “Miss Quill.”

Mr. Asher Rutherford has managed to maintain his status as a reputable gentleman of society despite opening his own department store. While pretending it’s simply a lark to fill his time, he has quite legitimate reasons for needing to make his store the most successful in the country.
When Permilia overhears a threat against the estimable Mr. Rutherford, she’s determined to find and warn the man. Disgruntled at a first meeting that goes quite poorly and results in Asher not believing her, she decides to take matters into her own hands, never realizing she’ll end up at risk as well.

As Asher and Permilia are forced to work together and spend time away from the spotlight of society, perhaps there’s more going on behind the scenes than they ever could have anticipated. . . .

Available 4/4/17 (eBook) and 4/18/17 (print)

 

 

 

Throughout this entire book, I found myself smiling, giggling, and even laughing out loud once or twice. Permilia and Asher play off each other and navigate the perfect comedic dance. From the first pages of Behind the Scenes, I liked Permilia. Snubbed by society but unwilling to let that determine her worth, she finds other occupations to keep her entertained during the many times she’s not asked to dance. While she’s a strong woman, she also has a shy side with most men that is endearing.

The one man she has no problem speaking…her mind…with is Asher Rutherford. A business man with whom her previous interactions would cause her stepmother palpitations if she knew the entire tale. Yet Asher’s attentiveness and kind words cause her to view him in a different light.

 

As she and Asher try to unravel the murder plot against him, and the threat to her now as well, will spending more time together make them appreciate the other more or will Permilia’s headstrong willfulness and Asher’s stodgy opinions tear their budding relationship apart?

The first full-length book in the Apart from the Crowd series, Behind the Scenes delivers Turano’s spot on humor, a peek inside high society during the gilded age, and the fashions of the time. A truly delightful read.

My Rating:

 

Disclosure statement:

I receive complimentary books for review from publishers, publicists, and/or authors, including Netgalley. I am not required to write positive reviews. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

 

If you love this book, check out others by Jen Turano: After a Fashion, In Good Company, Playing the Part

 

Removing the Masks: Playing the Part by Jen Turano

Jen Turano has become a must-read author for me. Her ability to set up humorous situations and fun side characters draw me into her stories, but the poignant messages her characters comprehend on their journey are what bring me back every time.

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Readers of the first two books in the A Class of Their Own series have met Lucetta Plum, the popular actress in theaters around New York City. When one of her fans insists on winning her anyway he can, she’s forced to leave the theater (and her starring role which the playwright insisted she take) and New York. Abigail Hart, the woman who has taken Lucetta under her wing, insists they hide at her grandson’s home (er, castle).

Bram Haverstein is an enigma. Rumors spread amongst the townspeople add to the mystery of what exactly goes on at Ravenswood. Add in a second rumor hinting the man would like to be married within months, and there are now unwanted visitors to his home from the outside in addition to the strange happenings inside the walls.

After a memorable (and hilarious) meet-cute, Lucetta and Bram form an odd friendship. The actress isn’t the genteel, wilting flower Bram imagined her to be, and Lucetta’s intrigued by Bram but unwilling to depend on a man for anything.

As the two spend time together and the mysterious incidents keep building up within Ravenswood, will Bram learn that the Lucetta’s true character is much better than the one he’s imagined? And will Lucetta realize that giving her heart to another does not mean she loses her independence?

Not only are the interactions between Lucetta and Bram delightfully enchanting but Bram’s staff with all of their past baggage and different backgrounds a breath of fresh air. Their actions and attitudes kept me guessing as to which employees were loyal and which may have something to hide. Add in Abigail and her matchmaking schemes and Bram’s mother (Abigail’s estranged daughter) and sister along with Lucetta’s bodyguard, and memorable characters abound.

Several scenes in Playing the Part are lighthearted and fun while the conversations between Lucetta and Bram are revealing and meaningful. The chemistry between these two is almost immediate and readers will cheer these two (and maybe some other couples in the book) on to their happily ever after.

While we wait to see what Turano has up her sleeve for readers next, Playing the Part is available online and in stores now.

***Bethany House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. All opinions expressed are my own.

In Good Company by Jen Turano

I’ve had this book for a couple of weeks but decided if I was going to get anything done, I’d better not pick it up yet. As I guessed, once I started this book, I didn’t want to put it down. If you read, After a Fashion, you will remember Millie Longfellow. The quirky character who had a penchant for using the wrong word and looking up words she didn’t know in her ever present dictionary. For those who have not yet had the pleasure of reading this book, don’t worry, you won’t get lost in the new one. While the characters in the previous book are mentioned, they aren’t present.

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After getting fired from another nanny position, Millie Longfellow returns to the hiring service. Parents misunderstand her unique way of watching children. She is not of the opinion children should be seen and not heard. They should be allowed to play and express themselves. Everett Mulberry’s nanny has quit (or another nanny has quit). Exasperated with the two of them, the employment agency makes them work together. Everett’s uncomfortable with this quirky woman who seems to get herself into mischief keeping the children he has been assigned as guardian but what choice does he have? The woman he plans to spend his future with is frustrated with his lack of success in this area, he is leaving for Newport for the summer, and the children need supervision. While the children attempt to run the Millie off, they endear themselves to her, as does Everett to her chagrin. Will Everett come to realize what (or more precisely who) is most important in life? And was there more behind the deaths of the children’s parents than meets the eyes?

Jen Turano is a master at writing humorous yet lovable characters. Millie’s escapades brought laughter (even to Everett a few times). While her misuse of words had the potential to become a running gag, Turano used them just enough to humor the reader and not make them roll their eyes that it was happening one more time. Add in the meddling elderly matron Abigail Hart, actress and Millie’s friend Lucetta Plum, a scheming girlfriend, a flock of peacocks, a trio of puppies, and Everett’s mother (along with a few members of the staff), and there is no end to the amusement as Everett and Millie realize and admit their attraction. If you are looking for some laughter with your humor—and a few references to our dear Jane Austen—then don’t miss In Good Company.

***Bethany House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest and fair review. All opinions expressed are my own.