Ebook Review: When Calls the Heart

When Calls the Heart (Canadian West #1)

When Calls the Heart by Janette Oke

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The blurb: Nothing in her cultured East Coast upbringing prepared Elizabeth for a teaching position on the Canadian frontier. Yet, despite the constant hardships, she loves the children in her care. Determined to do the best job she can and fighting to survive the harsh land, Elizabeth is surprised to find her heart softening towards a certain member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police. Book 1 of the bestselling Canadian West series.

My review: Firstly, I must state that I watched the Canadian TV series. In Australia, we have access to five seasons. I watched every episode and fell in love with Elizabeth and Jack. I loved their relationship. I was on the Elizabeth and Jack team. And I cried from heartache… (but that was the TV series).

When I discovered the series was based on books, naturally I set out to discover if my local library had any. To my delight, I found the first four of six ebooks available for borrowing. I couldn’t start reading fast enough.

I was a little put out that Jack was replaced with Wynn and that much of the TV series was not to be found in this first book of the series. Basically, a wealthy girl goes to out west to teach in a tiny town. Sound familiar? Yes, that’s the premise of the TV series and the books, but that’s where the similarities stop. The rest is totally different!

Yet, once I let go of what I expected to read and accepted this new story line, I also fell in love with the Elizabeth and Wynn romance. In my opinion, the book is grittier. I feel it probably portrays a truer account of how the people lived and interacted in those days. Life would have been difficult at best then.

I do not regret reading the book and would recommend it to anyone. 100% recommended.

Grammar: Things to Remember


  • All numbers between 21 and 99 (except 30, 40, 50, etc) should be hyphenated. Examples: Twenty-three and two hundred and eighty-nine.
  • Numbers should be written in full at the start of a sentence.

One or Two Words:

anyone = any person
Hint: Try replacing the word anyone with any person. If it sounds right, it’s the correct word. If it does not sound right, use any one.

everyday = normal
Hint: Try replacing the word everyday with normal. If it sounds right, it’s the correct word. If it does not sound right, use every day.

everyone = every person
Hint: Try replacing the word everyone with every person. If it sounds right, it’s the correct word. If it does not sound right, use every one.

maybe = perhaps
Hint: Try replacing the word maybe with perhaps. If it sounds right, it’s the correct word. If it does not sound right, use may be.

Okay, I think you get the gist of it. Do the same thing for the following words:

nobody = no person (if it doesn’t sound right use no body)
everybody = every person (if it doesn’t sound right use every body)
sometimes = occasionally (if it doesn’t sound right use some times)

Confusing Words:

Affect = to change (Hint: Try using to transform instead of affect.)
Effect = outcome, consequence or appearance (Hint: Try using either outcome, consequence or appearance instead of effect.)

Allude = refer to indirectly
Elude = to avoid

Already = prior to a specified time
All ready = completely prepared
Hint: The word ready can replace all ready but not already.

Alright = is a nonstandard variant of all right and all use of the word should be avoided.

Bare = exposed
Bear = for every other use except when the meaning is exposed

Breathe (rhymes with seethe) = inhale and expel air from the lungs
Breath (rhymes with death) = the air inhaled or exhaled during breathing

Fewer = not as many, when there is more than one item (i.e. fewer animals)
Less = not as much, when there is one item (i.e. less time)

Lead (rhymes with seed) = to lead, being in charge
Lead (rhymes with bed) = a metallic element
Led (rhymes with bed) = past tense of to lead

Licence = UK/Aus use this word, relates to card/papers
License = US only use this word, relates to allow
Hint: Try using card or papers. If it sounds right use licence. If it doesn’t, use license.

Passed = past tense of to pass
Past = used at all other times
Hint: Try using went past. If it sounds right use passed. If it doesn’t, use past.
But: If the word has is before passed (might be a word or two before), try using gone past instead. If it sounds right use passed. If not, use past.

Audiobook Review: The Mummy Case

The Mummy Case

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The Mummy Case by Elizabeth Peters

The blurb: Join our plucky Victorian Egyptologist , together with her devastatingly handsome and brilliant husband Radcliffe, in another exciting escapade.

The irascible husband of Victorian Egyptologist Amelia Peabody is living up to his reputation as ‘The Father of Curses’. Denied permission to dig at the pyramids of Dahshoor, Emerson is awarded instead the ‘pyramids’ of Mazghunah – countless mounds of rubble in the middle of nowhere. Nothing in this barren spot seems of any interest but then a murder in Cairo changes all of that.

The dead man was an antiques dealer, killed in his shop, so when a sinister-looking Egyptian spotted at the crime scene turns up in Mazghunah, Amelia can’t resist following his trail. At the same time she has to keep an eagle eye on her wayward son Rameses and his elegant and calculating cat and look into the mysterious disappearance of a mummy case…

My review: Book 3 of the series. Enter Ramses, Amelia and Emerson’s son. He’s a totally different character who blends nicely with his mum and dad’s personalities. A chip off the old block? Not sure about that, but he seems to be a quieter version of his parents. However, his knowledge is great and he tends to follow trouble, or does it follow him?

I listened to the first three books in the series between May and June 2019 and I’m only just getting around to writing the review. I notice I gave this one three stars. Seems a bit nasty of me now, but I must of had good reasons at the time. Although I can’t remember them now. Maybe listening to three in a row was a bit much. Not sure.

The mystery side of the book is where, I felt, it was let down. I guess I noticed a bit of a formula happening (that’s what happens when you read them one after the other, and within quick succession). Anyway, the formula made the mystery predictable.

Don’t get me wrong, the book is good. The characters are the main draw card. Still love them to bits. And I would still recommend them to avid readers.

Audiobook Review: Curse of the Pharaohs

Curse of the Pharaohs (Amelia Peabody #2)

Curse of the Pharaohs by Elizabeth Peters

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

The review: Join our plucky Victorian Egyptologist, together with her devastatingly handsome and brilliant husband Radcliffe, in another exciting escapade.When Lady Baskerville’s husband Sir Henry dies after discovering what may have been an undisturbed royal tomb in Luxor, she appeals to eminent archaeologist Radcliffe Emerson and his wife Amelia to take over the excavation. Amid rumours of a curse haunting all those involved with the dig, the intrepid couple proceeds to Egypt, where they begin to suspect that Sir Henry did not die a natural death, and they are confident that the accidents that plague the dig are caused by a sinister human element, not a pharoah’s curse

My review: This is book 2 in an Egyptian themed mystery. We return to Egypt and walk into a new mystery. Except this time there’s one big difference, Amelia is married. Emerson is just as stubborn and just as headstrong as his new wife. He wants take Amelia under his wing, but that’s never going to happen.

The main story line in this one wasn’t as exciting as the first book (hence the lower star rating). I felt it took too long to get going, but when it did things hotted up and I was happy to go with the flow. And, of course, the main characters are feisty and have heaps of personality so how could I stop reading (or listening in my case).

Something I didn’t mention in the review for the first book is the humour. I like the dry humour, the catchy come-backs, and the general banter in these books. It gives the characters charm and substance. What lacked in the mystery, was replaced in abundance with information in Egyptology and the witty characters.

Still love the books. Recommended.

Audiobook Review: Crocodile on the Sandbank

Crocodile on the Sandbank (Amelia Peabody #1)

Crocodile on the Sandbank by Elizabeth Peters

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

The blurb: Amelia Peabody is Elizabeth Peters’ most brilliant and best-loved creation, a thoroughly Victorian feminist who takes the stuffy world of archaeology by storm with her shocking men’s pants and no-nonsense attitude!

In this first adventure, our headstrong heroine decides to use her substantial inheritance to see the world. On her travels, she rescues a gentlewoman in distress – Evelyn Barton-Forbes – and the two become friends. The two companions continue to Egypt where they face mysteries, mummies and the redoubtable Radcliffe Emerson, an outspoken archaeologist, who doesn’t need women to help him solve mysteries — at least that’s what he thinks!

My review: I wanted to read something different. When I found out this book had an Egyptian theme and was a mystery, I decided to give it a try. Besides, my local library had the first three books so it wasn’t much of a gamble as I could just return the book if I did’t like it.

I listened to the audio book. It was brilliant!

I loved the main character, Amelia, and her bossy attitude. She is the type of person who knows what she wants and makes sure she gets it. And she “knows” she is better than every single other person in the world, but she’s much too sophisticated to say so.

For me, the mystery itself took second place to the Egyptian content — mummies, pyramids, scarabs, tomb robbers, Pharaohs. All deliciously wonderful.

Loved this book. Recommended.