Member Reviews

I lost sleep to read this book. I couldn't help it. Arlem Hawks knows how to suck a reader in.

The French Revolution is a time I have little knowledge of. Nepolean, I know a fairly good amount of, but the actual events of the revolution are not as well known to me. It has been fun to find myself wanting to go and look up the history that is talked about.

I enjoyed the theme of finding ones self in Maxence and seeing Armelle so confident. Watching them go from enemies to friends and then fall in love was a soft transition. Readers can appreciate the hard conversations they have. This isn't a romanticized relationship. It has truth to a real relationship. Arguments are real and you don't always see eye to eye. But respect and care can always bring these two characters together.

Arlem Hawks is going to make readers fall in love with these characters and their lives. We already love them and I can't wait to see more from her. Especially if that is Lina's story. 😉

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Arlem Hawks' "Along a Breton Shore" is a captivating historical romance set during the French Revolution. The novel masterfully combines elements of adventure, romance, and suspense, transporting readers to a tumultuous time in history. The story revolves around Maxence Étienne, a soldier torn between his loyalty to his country and his desire for love and freedom. When he saves Armelle Bernard from execution, their lives become intertwined as they navigate the treacherous landscape of a war-torn nation. Their journey is not only a fight for survival but also an exploration of love, forgiveness, and personal convictions. The book's engaging writing style, attention to historical detail, and compelling character development make it a truly immersive and unforgettable read.

"Along a Breton Shore" skillfully continues the story from the previous book while also standing strongly on its own. The protagonist, Maxence, undergoes a remarkable transformation as he questions his own beliefs and fights for his redemption. Armelle, the spirited and strong-willed young woman he saves, brings a delightful energy to the narrative and their gradual emotional connection adds depth and complexity to their relationship. The author's vivid descriptions and meticulous attention to historical detail bring the French Revolution to life, allowing readers to fully immerse themselves in the setting and time period. The novel strikes a perfect balance between romance, adventure, and suspense, keeping readers captivated until the very end. With its compelling characters, rich historical backdrop, and poignant love story, "Along a Breton Shore" is a must-read for anyone seeking an enchanting historical romance experience.

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This is a clean, historical romance with some heavier themes. Since it is set during the French Revolution, there is obviously war in the background. There is also other violence and death. None is descriptive but it isn't your happy-go-lucky romance. There is witty banter and humor though. I enjoyed it much more than I thought I would.

The beginning of this book has pages of names and terms to help the reader. That was a little intimidating to me. I thought I was going to be so lost if I didn't know all of them but I felt like I'd be back in French class. To be honest, I skipped that part and did just fine.

I was a little nervous about this one and kept putting off reading it. Now I'm upset with myself for doing that! I wish I had read it closer to having read Beyond the Lavender Fields. That is the first book in this series, and while not absolutely necessary, I think it is good to read them in order. Many of the events that Maxence deals with throughout this story happened in Beyond the Lavender Fields.

Thank you to Shadow Moutain Publishing and Netgalley for the digital advanced copy. I am happy to leave my honest review.

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Along a Breton Shore is as good as the first book in this series! Maxence Etienne is dedicated to the army, but when he's ordered to end the short life of a pretty Breton girl, his conscience cannot agree to it. Saving her instead, he dooms himself to a life on the run from the cause he so greatly supported. Armelle is feisty, strong-willed, and yet sweet all at once. She has seen the pain the "cause for liberty" has cost herself and her family, and her opinion of that cause is not nearly as staunch as Maxence's convictions. Can they have a meeting of the minds?

I very much enjoyed seeing Maxence's character fully fleshed out in this story, since he and Gilles' relationship was strained in the first book. Armelle's sweet and sassy nature is a perfect foil for Maxence's grumpiness--and can I just say that I love grumpy/sunshine couples! As always, there is great dialogue, a realistic view of yet another side of the French Revolution, and a happily ever after. I will say that there is one part of this story that breaks my heart, but I can't give it away here!

Rated PG for violence
--some violence, mild gore
--little to no language
--clean romance without explicit sexual content
--little to no torture

I received this ebook free from NetGalley. My opinions are my own and voluntarily given.

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If you enjoy historical fiction with elements of romance and intrigue, Along a Breton Shore definitely needs to be added to your TBR. I have always been intrigued by the French Revolution and although I have studied it, I learned a LOT from this book. It’s definitely a heavy read, but I honestly couldn’t put it down. I have included some other thoughts below, but beware of spoilers! 4/5 stars


SPOILERS BELOW

SPOILERS BELOW


I almost wish I hadn’t read Beyond the Lavender Fields (Gilles’ book) before Along a Breton Shore. The female MC of BTLF, Caroline, is revealed to have passed away between the events of the two books, which was really shocking to me. It’s not something I expect in historical romance novels, although Arlem Hawks did tell readers that these books are more in the histfic genre. If I had read Along a Breton Shore first, I would have viewed BTLF as more of a prequel and been prepared for the loss of a main character, which isn’t something I anticipated in Hawks’ books. Caroline’s death was also revealed too close to the end of AABS in my opinion; I was too preoccupied with that revelation to remain as invested in the climax of Maxence and Armelle’s story. On another note, I think the situation with Armelle’s dad and brother was built up a lot and then just kind of crested, which could have been intentional but it made the ending fall a little flat for me.

I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

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Absolutely beautiful, brilliant, stunning!
Loved every moment, all the hearts and stars from me!!

I stayed up till 2AM to finish this one because I couldn't put it down and I needed to know how things ended!!

This is definitely my new favorite from Hawkes!

I loved:
•both lead characters
•the grumpy-sunshine trope
•the forced proximity!!!!
•fake relationship!!
•danger and peril and adventure!
•the French history!
•the slow-burn romance was 👌👌👌 so well done!
•witty banter
•the redemption arc
•Maxence and Armelle's chemistry and emotional connection was everything!
•EVERYTHING

I tabbed so many moments in this book, ITS JUST SO AMAZING.
I'm not eloquent okay? Haha, I don't know how to even describe how amazing this historical, romantic, journey was, but it really, really was! It checked all the boxes for me!


NOTE - this could be read as a stand-alone HOWEVER, I would HIGHLY SUGGEST that you read Beyond the Lavender Fields FIRST!!!
There will be HUGE, MAJOR, HEARTBREAKING spoilers if you read this book first! So there's your warning!!

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Another great romance set in the midst of the French Revolution. It’s the perfect enemies to lovers, grumpy/sunshine, and forced proximity. Armelle is a little rebellious and Maxence is meant to execute her. When he refuses and a fellow soldier is accidentally killed instead they have to flee. I love the journey that they go on and learn more about the other. Their character arcs are great and I loved watching Maxence grow and learn forgiveness. Their romance was beautiful along with the setting and the whole story.

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If this is too long and you're not going to read it in its entirety, please note that this is an ALL OF THE STARS kind of book!

'Nicole had told her her plan was idiocy. Oncle Yanick had told her. Heavens, she'd told herself. Someday she would listen to reason.'

I love a headstrong female protagonist who tends to jump in head first without looking. Armelle is just this kind of character and I knew right from the first few chapters she was going to bring a lot of fun energy to this book!

I loved the grumpy/sunshine, opposites attract trope with our two main characters.

Having met Maxence in Beyond the Lavender Fields I was excited to get his story and see where he would end up. This book has major redemption vibes!! I also loved that this picked up where it left off in a major scene from book 1 and allowed the reader to jump right back in to a war torn France and all the suspense and worry that came along with it.

This book was historically rich, which was an added bonus to the reader. I felt completely immersed into the setting and time period. I loved that this book was a journey both physically for our main characters as well as emotionally. I loved the forced proximity. I loved the push and pull tension in the romance and I loved the added suspense.

'With the world as it was, would they ever be rid of it, this feeling of always being just one step ahead of their demise?'

This book brought with it all of the feels in true Arlem Hawks fashion. I love that moment when I close the cover and immediately want to do better and be better. Another huge success from this author and one more reason why she will always be an auto-buy author for me!

Thanks to the author and publisher for the copy. All thoughts in this review are my own.

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France 1794

Such fabulous chemistry between Armelle and Maxence! Maxence is brooding and grumpy while Armelle is spontaneous and positive. After meeting in a most unconventional way, their travels lead to hours upon hours together. Armelle presses and presses to get to know her traveling companion better. Maxence is relucant to share about anything that isn't surface.

Maxence's passion is the cause he is fighting for. Armelle cares little for politics and just wants her family to be together again.

The backdrop of the French Revolution was an integral part of their tale. The cover is lovely.

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Arlem Hawks did an amazing job on this story! The historical details were rich and interesting, and the love story was beautiful. A good love story makes or breaks a book for me, and this was exactly what I was looking for in a romance. Some may feel that the plot was a little slow at times, but I love a good slow-burn and slower-paced story as I read to unwind at the end of a long day. I'd recommend this book to anyone looking for a lovely historical romance or a relaxing night-time read. I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion and review.

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Such a good sequel. I think you could read this as a stand alone. Though I think it's best enjoyed in order because of a few spoilers. I thought this was so thoughtfully written with the varying persepctives of the people and their whys. This story held my attention. It was great fiction with well researched historical fact woven in and shown thorugh the people and scenes. Nothing was ever just told. Readers were shown and I felt I could feel alongside the characters very much so. I loved the back in forth of Max and Armella with their banter and serious discussions. I think the pace and manner for the couple in coming together was perfect with their personalities and who Max was in the previous story and she with her background. I loved the priest the two met on their trek. There was tragedy for some characters and that was hard because it was so easy to come to care. There was also hope and closure. The ending was beautiful.
*thank you to netgalley and the publisher for this ARC. Opinions are 100% my own

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Thank you for letting me read this book. I was disappointed in that I had expected to become involved in the characters and care about their difficulties. I did not find that to be the case. I will not be blogging about this book because another person may react entirely differently, and I don’t want to take away their pleasure.

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This book was excellently researched. Arlem does a fantastic job weaving an interesting story inspired by factual circumstances. I was invested in the main characters and intrigued by the circumstances they found themselves in. A wonderful follow up to Beyond Lavender Fields, this is an excellent story for anyone interested in learning more about history while losing themselves in a beautiful love story.

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This was a beautiful read set in the French Revolution . All the characters in the book believe in their country and all have a different view of how they should support their country .
Within this tug of beliefs comes Armelle & Max . I love the beginning of the story when Max gives up something in order to protect Armelle who he doesn’t even know . He shows that’s no matter what side of the battle you are on ethics and integrity still matter .
Armelle is a heroine with strong beliefs and belief in protecting her family about everything . Both Max and Armelle change in the book from people who do everything for what they believe in to believing that maybe their beliefs weren’t 100% accurate . I love their love story and the gradual realization that life is not anything without the one you love . I really enjoyed this story I have to say that at times it was a bit slow but it quickly picked up again on the journey of Max and Armelle . It was a wonderful clean romance !
I’d like to thank Shadow Mountain publishing and Netgalley for providing me a copy in return for an unbiased review.

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I'm pretty sure I like this book more than it's predecessor. I enjoyed that one very much. This book continues the events of Beyond the Lavender Fields. The French revolution has left a void in the government. Different factions are trying to take control and bring France out of the chaos. I don't usually get so involved as emotion, other than laughing at funny parts. This story was so well done, I actually shed more than one tear at sad parts. One in particular. I was upset with Arlem for writing that part of the story. But I can see why she did.

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I found Along a Breton Shore to be a great read and highly recommend it. I am giving it five plus stars.

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Thank you to Arlem Hawks, Shadow Mountain Publishing , and NetGalley for the eARC of Along a Breton Shore!
Oh, man, I loved this book. Although the writing is a little slower paced than what I am used to, it is such a delight to savor each little bit. I didn’t realize that it would build off of the story in Beyond the Lavender Fields (which I also adored) and seeing how Giles and Maxence both moved forward (😭😭🥰🥰) was better than I could have imagined. I LOVED Armelle and I loved the new insights from the details of the history of this time frame that I had NO CLUE about beforehand. I loved this one even more than book 1, which I also gave 5 stars to. I loved that there was growth in the characters. I loved the grumpy/sunshine trope. I loved the down-to-earch feel of both Armelle and Maxence. I loved the priest 😭😭🥰🥰. I loved seeing the love conquering all and familial forgiveness. Just so good. Everyone please read.

Instagram post on @laurensturningpages will go up on May 30, 2023

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A tale based in choosing what is right regardless
This book is set during the French Revolution and so does have some violent scenes but there is enough humor and lightness to keep it from becoming too dark. In fact, it is a very compelling story that I had trouble putting down. Armelle and Maxence flee a death sentence of the revolutionary army during the French Revolutionary war. He, because of the accidental death of another soldier, that he is accused of murdering. She, because she harassed a priest and threw a bucket that hits one of the army’s officers. The story begins there, first with Maxence rescuing her from an execution and then Armelle rescuing with him from a prison cell. As the book progresses, they save each other in many ways, while they journey together to escape and find safety. Can they make it all the way to where her brother can help and protect her, and to his uncle that can do the same for him. A very compelling read that will keep you engaged. Thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the copy. This is my review and all thoughts are my own.

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Oh my goodness, this book was just so good. But I have to warn you that it is a little sad. Along a Breton Shore by Arlem Hawks is set in the same world as Beyond Lavender Fields. This was a stunning book!
Boy were these characters complicated. Maxence Étienne definitely deserved his own book and it was interesting to get to know him. He was bitter and hardened by the revolution and yet he never lost his humanity. He valued others and beneath his grumpiness, he was kind. It was fun to read about Maxence falling for Armelle and reconsidering life. She had a way of shaking things up. Maxence had to figure out if the revolution was worth all of the sacrifices and pain that it had caused him and others.
Amrelle Bernand was a spitfire and I loved her. She was honestly a bit of trouble at the beginning, but I loved her kind heart. She was impulsive but she was just trying her best to do what was right in a hard time. I loved getting to know her better and reading about her interacting with Maxence. Amrelle had to learn to fight for what she wanted and what it meant to care for Maxence.
The storyline and the characters drew me in from the beginning. These characters felt real and I was connected to them as I read their story. I was on the edge of my seat while reading this book, I did not know how it was going to end. I just have to say that I loved it! It was the perfect blend of serious, exciting, romantic, and adventure.
Along a Breton Shore is a must read! You don’t have to read Beyond Lavender Fields first but it does add to the story. I would definitely recommend this book if you like historical romances.

I voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from the author. All views expressed are only my honest opinion, I was not required to write a positive review.

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France, 1794

Maxence Etienne is soldier for the Republique and he believes strongly in the changes that are bringing liberty to France, but despite that he is still lost and looking for a place to belong.

He meets a young woman from Breton who has decided to confront the priest who betrayed her father, and she herself is ordered to be executed, an order to be carried out by Maxence.

This was definitely the opposites attract, but in the end, they were better together than apart. I didn’t really like Maxence’s character in Beyond the Lavender Field but by reading Along a Breton Shore, it was decidedly changed for the better! Armelle was so spirited, strong, and beautiful in spirit and I loved she didn’t let Maxence get away with anything! I really enjoyed reading this! It was nice to see the other character from the first book.

A word of caution while this can definitely be read as a stand-alone, I recommend reading Caroline’s and Gilles's story first, and then you’ll get a much more balanced story from Beyond the Lavender Field, and just segway into Along a Breton Shore, and I promise you you’ll feel a part of the family, I know I did!

My gratitude to Netgalley and Shadow Mountain. All opinions expressed are mine and honest.

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