An enchanting blend of Victorian gothic romance, romantic comedy, and ghost story from the author of the Daphne du Maurier Award-winning With This Curse!
The year is 1873, and Sybil Ingram has come to a crossroads. Once she was the toast of the London stage, but now that she's 28 years old - very well, nearly 30 - her draw isn't what it used to be, and her theater troupe is foundering. When her trusted mentor asks her to take the blame for his financial misdeeds, Sybil sees no choice but to retire from the life she loves and move to America to marry New York City hotel magnate Alcott Lammle. But her path to happiness is cut short when Lammle dies suddenly - and in financial ruin.
Widowed, nearly penniless, and unable to return to England, the determined diva sets out to stake a claim on Brooke House, an eccentric neo-Gothic manor in the wilds of the Hudson River Valley. She soon finds, however, that a ghostly presence wants her gone. Even worse, her claim is challenged by the most insolent, temperamental, maddeningly gorgeous man she's ever met: Roderick Brooke, a once-famous former violinist whose career ended in a dark scandal.
Soon it's a battle of wills as Sybil matches wits - and trades barbs - with Roderick, finding herself increasingly drawn to him despite her growing suspicion that there is a connection between him and the entity that haunts Brooke House. But an even greater threat arises in the form of the mysterious, powerful queen of local society, Mrs. Lavinia Dove. For reasons that Sybil can't imagine, Mrs. Dove is determined to oust Sybil from her sphere...and the lengths to which she will go are chilling indeed.
By turns mysterious and moving, sparkling and spooky, Nocturne for a Widow follows a spirited heroine through adventures in life, love, and death. From the colorful theatrical world of late-Victorian London to the American wilderness, Sybil's travels will test her mettle - and her heart.
©2014 Amanda DeWees (P)2016 Amanda DeWees
"Nocturne for a Widow" is a gothic romance by Amanda DeWees following the footsteps of her Curse series. In this book, Sybil Ingram leaves the Victorian stages in London to marry an American admirer and begin a new life in New Your City. Of course, all her plans go sour and she finds herself in a haunted house disputing its ownership with her stepson, besides dealing with colorful neighbors and a possible ghost. The main female character had actually appeared briefly in “With this Curse” as Clara’s actress employer, and it was a nice nod to her previous books. The atmosphere of this book, however, is a bit lighter and funnier – but without stepping out of the gothic genre, what is quite an accomplishment. The main characters, Sybil and Roderick, are mainly responsible for that because they are strong and colorful and their relationship has a comedic flavor that blends with the mystery inherent in the story with dexterity.
I believe DeWees is really good at creating interesting characters and has a superior writing, and her stories are quite stimulating, but without giving up the details of the plot, I found the ending lacking somehow, as the conflicts and mysteries are easily resolved. Maybe it’s because this book is the beginning of a series, some of the conflicts are going to be dragged to the next one. It’s an amusing tale nevertheless, and I look forward to the next one.
I was given a copy of the audio book to review and I would recommend it to everyone who enjoys romance and the gothic genre. The narration is outstanding with an excellent range of voice and tone, greatly improving the listener experience. Elizabeth Klett has a way of bringing the characters to life, and being a first person narrative, she excelled as Sybil Ingram.
If you like old-fashioned gothic romance in the style of Mary Stewart or Victoria Holt them Amanda DeWees is the author for you. Nocturne for a Widow is a sort of spin-off from With This Curse, in which we briefly met Sybil Ingram. Sybil is the toast of the London stage but is rapidly aging out of the sort of ingenue roles she is famous for; at the age of 29, no less. The troupe she has been with throughout her career is not doing well and when she meets with the manager she gets very bad news indeed. The manager, who has been her mentor, has been cooking the books. He has an investor but is afraid of discovery. Sybil agrees to take the blame for the embezzlement and accept the proposal of a rich American, Atticus Lammle. Upon her arrival in America though she finds Lammle on his deathbed and his hotel empire in shambles. Sybil does marry him but he dies almost immediately. The only piece of property that she might be able to hang on to is an upstate NY estate with a murky past and a stepson she knows nothing about. Assuming that the stepson could only be a small boy, Sybil hopes that she can become a real stepmother and mentor to him. What follows is a humorous mixture of ghost story, romance and mystery: Roderick Brooke turns out to be a full grown man who thinks she is a gold digger. The two trade barbs, get to know each other and have an undeniable attraction. But there is a villainess, Mrs. Dove, who seems to hold the entire village in thrall and is willing to stop at nothing to get her hands on both Roderick and the estate.
This audiobook was provided by the narrator, Elizabeth Klett, at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review. She does a great job voicing the characters, both male and female, as she has for earlier Amanda DeWees titles. I highly recommend Nocturne for a Widow to Gothic fans looking for a light and quite humorous listening experience.
I really enjoyed the paranormal twist to this historical romance. I love mysteries and romance but the ghostly element added something different.
Elizabeth Klett brings a polished and elegant voice to a story that demands she perform a variety characters from all walks of life and with varying accents. She does this in such a subtle way as to not distract the listener. The American accents she performs are understated and the whole performance is very easy to listen to.
I couldn't wait to listen to this book after reading and listening to other titles by Amanda DeWees. It didn't disappoint and I was hooked right from the beginning. I had my MP3 player attached to me all day so I could squeeze in as much listening time as possible.
I received the audio book in exchange for an honest review.
Avid reader who is also a mommy. Audible saved my reading time!
This was a fun, fun listen. Sybil has the best spirit and it is an enjoyable ride to see her at her worst and at her best. She goes from disaster to disaster, beginning with her once father-like mentor talking her into quitting the theater she loves and covering for his gambling debts. Then the man she goes to America to marry dies on their wedding night. Then the young stepson she hopes to take care of in order to secure a place to live in the US turns out to be a full grown man. Finally, the village socialite with near total control over whether or not she will accepted appears to hate her on first sight. Sybil just can't catch a break! She gradually makes allies and works to solve the mystery of Brooke House.
Elizabeth Klett's narration was perfect for this book and she did an excellent job throughout. I particularly enjoyed how she voiced Sybil.
I received this book for free from Audiobook Boom! in exchange for an honest review.
Ghost, dishonest lawyers, deathbed marriages, misplaced loyalties, deceit, murder, loss of jobs, duels, hidden passages and more all combine to make this ten hour listen worth the credit. The first two chapters almost made me stop listening but I endeavored to persevere and was rewarded with a charming story that ended well. Sybil was the toast of London actress but was past her prime. She practically ran her theater company but the owner was seeking a way to expand the company or lose it. Sybil leaves and journeys to America to wed a man who has pursued her for a year. What happens after this is a twisted tale of discovery of how strong Sybil is and how much she can influence the lives of the people around her. She encounters a woman who controls the small village that she ends up in and they immediately dislike each other. It takes a while for Sybil to discover why. She also meets her step son whom she thinks is a young boy but proves to be something different. Don’t forget the ghost and moving objects as well as poisoned dress and hidden passages and people trying to commune with the dead. Lots of humor throughout.
"This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast."
This book came alive for me right from the beginning. I thought at first Sybil was going to be a selfish woman. After she moved to Brooke House, I fell in love with her character. I enjoyed the banter between her and Roderick. I also loved the interactions between Sybil and Mrs. Dove. I felt everything in this book. Amanda DeWees did an incredible job describing the moments, clothing and gestures without going over the top. Elizabeth Klett was a perfect narrator. Her voice is one I could listen to all day.
This audiobook was provided by the author, narrator, or publisher at no cost in exchange for an unbiased review courtesy of Audiobook Blast.
Sci-Fi, Fantasy, historical fiction, mystery, thrillers with sarcasm are my favorites with some Romance thrown in for fun.
Amanda DeWees has penned a well written story with entertaining characters. At its heart Nocturne for a Widow is a romance with a dash of mystery, deceit, and humor. It can be read as a standalone or as part of the With This Curse series.
As much as I enjoyed the book I was so disgusted with the deceit, disdain and heartlessness coming from some of the characters at the beginning of the book that I almost did not continue BUT that would have been a huge mistake. After Sybil’s arrival at Brooke House the story changes into something very entertaining and enjoyable. The interactions between Sybil and Roderick are priceless, even thought I did want to throw something sharp at Roderick from time to time. I definitely hope there is more about the spunky Sybil in the series.
Narrator Elizabeth Klett does this book proud. She provides the listener with lovely accents as well as a wide variety of voices and inflections. I will definitely be on the lookout for additional books narrated by her.
I am addicted to books. Nothing makes me happier than crawling inside a good book.
I really enjoyed her adaptation of the different accents from Brittish to American. I enjoy listening to this narrator while she brings the characters to life.
I was provided this audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator in exchange for an unbiased review via Audiobook Boom.
This book was very interesting to read. I at once was interested in the female character, who was an aging actress that was forced out of her acting company by no fault of her own. She decides to marry a wealthy man, but soon after their vows, he dies suddenly and in debt. She then has to go to an old estate and live with the man and ghost that inhabit it. I found this book to be exciting and fun. I got this book in exchange for a review.
Rabid Listener/Reader and Shopper!
Narration, Elizabeth Klett, Really good. The Heroine is British and the majority of the book is narrated with a British accent, but she also handles all of the other characters in an American accent quite nicely. Good storyteller, nice flow, lovely to listen to.
Honestly, the blurb pretty much gives you what I would tell you were I to summarize the story, so start there. The ghostly part of the story was most enjoyable. Quite a proficient and active ghost. The story flows nicely and actually flew by. I was a little disappointed with what Mrs. Dove was actually after, but that's pretty minor. I was expecting her to be a legitimate witch with a deep involved story involving how really old she actually was and all the crazy that she was doing to keep herself young, but it didn't go there. It led my imagination is several different directions so ultimately I was surprised with how it all panned out.
Really nice book, excellent narration, completely enjoyable, would definitely listen to more by this narrator and this author.
I received a copy of this audiobook free of charge from audiobookblast in exchange for an unbiased review
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