Book Feature & Giveaway: A Holiday by Gaslight by Mimi Matthews

a holiday by gaslight mimi matthews spotlight

A Holiday By Gaslight Blog Tour

I am so excited to feature Mimi Matthews’ holiday release, A Holiday by Gaslight. If you love reading a Victorian Christmas Romance novel - you will throughly enjoy this one! And how gorgeous is this cover?! It gets me so excited for all the Christmas festivities!

Below you will find more about the book and enter to win a copy of the book.

The synopsis:

A Courtship of Convenience

Sophie Appersett is quite willing to marry outside of her class to ensure the survival of her family. But the darkly handsome Mr. Edward Sharpe is no run-of-the-mill London merchant. He’s grim and silent. A man of little emotion–or perhaps no emotion at all. After two months of courtship, she’s ready to put an end to things.

A Last Chance for Love

But severing ties with her taciturn suitor isn’t as straightforward as Sophie envisioned. Her parents are outraged. And then there’s Charles Darwin, Prince Albert, and that dratted gaslight. What’s a girl to do except invite Mr. Sharpe to Appersett House for Christmas and give him one last chance to win her? Only this time there’ll be no false formality. This time they’ll get to know each other for who they really are.

  • Publication Date: November 13, 2018

  • Perfectly Proper Press

  • eBook & Paperback; 172 Pages

  • Genre: Historical Romance/Christmas/Novella

Praise for A Holiday by Gaslight

“Matthews includes all the required elements of a cozy English Christmas and a classic Victorian love story. Matthews’ novella is full of comfort and joy—a sweet treat for romance readers that’s just in time for Christmas. A very merry tale of romance that’s perfect for the holiday season.” -Kirkus Reviews

“Matthews (The Matrimonial Advertisement) pays homage to Elizabeth Gaskell’s North and South with her admirable portrayal of the Victorian era’s historic advancements in addition to courtship struggles arising from societal castes. Revealed incrementally throughout are family circumstances molding the characters of both Sophie and Ned, allowing their genuine identities to evolve naturally, just like their sincere and sweet romance…Readers will easily fall for Sophie and Ned in their gaslit surroundings.” -Library Journal, starred review

“A Holiday by Gaslight is a real delight. Completely satisfying as a graceful love story, it also doubles as a family drama and an authentic presentation of the 1860s that reads with the simplicity and visual gusto of a period movie…It’s a sweet tale filled with believable characters…Fun to read and fun to read again, this book is one of my favorites now.” -Readers’ Favorite

“This is magical, it beautifully entwines a gorgeous Victorian Christmas, social prejudices of the era and the most marvellously different cast of characters that you would ever want in a historical romance…[A] wonderfully charming and vividly rich romance, that will have the readers swooning with absolute delight. Perfect!” -Chicks, Rogues and Scandals

“A perfect holiday treat for Victorian-loving romantics. Sophie and Ned’s sweet romance is sure to steal your heart.” -Lena Goldfinch, bestselling author of The Unexpected Bride

“This is the epitome of what historical romance is all about. Like all of Mimi Matthews’ books, her characters are full-bodied and evenly matched; the details are historically accurate, coloring the pages with vibrancy. Sure to warm your heart–perfect read for the holiday season!” -Christina Boyd, The Quill Ink

About the Author

Mimi Matthews (A Victorian Lady’s Guide to Fashion and Beauty, The Lost Letter) writes both historical non-fiction and traditional historical romances set in Victorian England. Her articles on nineteenth century history have been published on various academic and history sites, including the Victorian Web and the Journal of Victorian Culture, and are also syndicated weekly at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes an Andalusian dressage horse, two Shelties, and two Siamese cats.

For more information, please visit Mimi Matthews’ website and blog. You can also connect with her on FacebookTwitterBookBubPinterestGoogle+, and Goodreads

Giveaway Time!

During the Blog Tour we will be giving away a signed copy of A Holiday By Gaslight! To enter, please enter via the Gleam form below.

Giveaway Rules

– Giveaway ends at 11:59pm EST on November 30th. You must be 18 or older to enter.
– Giveaway is open to US residents only.
– Only one entry per household.
– All giveaway entrants agree to be honest and not cheat the systems; any suspect of fraud is decided upon by blog/site owner and the sponsor, and entrants may be disqualified at our discretion.
– Winner has 48 hours to claim prize or new winner is chosen.

I hope you enjoyed learning about Mimi’s holiday novella! And good luck if you entered the giveaway!

the caffeinated bibliophile
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Christian Subscription Boxes To Subscribe To

Christian subscription boxes to subscribe to

Subscription boxes are the best way to try out products you may have not heard of. I also just love getting a box full of surprising goodies! Also, most of these subscription boxes have books included. There are not too many Christian book boxes on the market, so I appreciate it when subscription box owners include them.

These would also make wonderful gifts for the holidays! Many of them I believe have 3, 6, or 12 month subscription options as well as their monthly option. I would encourage to opt for the 3 or 6 month subscription options if they have them. For one, it’s often cheaper (most offer discounts), and two, you won’t have to worry about remembering to budget that box every month.

Without further ado, here are 8 Christian Subscription Boxes to check out!:

Saint of the Month

saint of the month

Saint of the Month subscription box is for those who want to learn more about the Saints of the past. Each box comes with gifts which will be opened each week during the time you are waiting for your next one. You receive a set of goals with each gift, which can only be opened on completion! Each box comes with 4 to 5 items. There are male and female boxes available.

There are two subscription options. For $8 you will get the Little Way bag which comprises of two items. The other option is their regular full sized box for $31.99.

The Delilah Box

the delilah box

The Delilah Box is a monthly Christian Book club created to highlight and uncover the lesser known, lesser liked and more questionable women of the Bible. Each month we choose a "bad girl" of the bible. You will receive a minimum of 2 books, study brochure & 2-3 additional items. 

The subscription is $29 a month.

Agape Love Box

agape love box

This is for the married woman out there!

Agape Love Box is a fun new subscription box designed to strengthen unity, intimacy, and build memories together while keeping God in the center of your marriage. Delivered straight to your door every month. Main items are a surprise, but every box includes biblical material and a "spice it up" item!

The subscription is $29.95 a month.

Courage Crate

courage crate

Christian based books and materials to help you stay motivated and inspired to run towards your calling. Our Standard Courage Crates include: 2 Christian books for personal development, Faith based gifts and tools, podcasts, and more.

Courage crate promises that every box is worth a $80 value. One of the books will be a new release and the other book will be a previously released book. These boxes can be customized to men, women, teens, and preteens.

I have a full review of this box on my blog - click here for more info!

Four Anchors

anchor chest

The AnchorChest is a clean monthly young adult book subscription box with a Christian twist. Boxes are designed to bring passionate YA readers amazing stories that would earn a PG rating in the movie theater. Items in each box are carefully chosen to immerse readers in each story and to bring faith and fiction closer together.

Each box will have 5-8 items along with a box. There are two subscription options. For $19.99 you will get one book and one item. For $29.99 you will get the full Anchor Chest box.

Bette’s Box of Blessings

Bette's box of blessings

“LOVE ONE ANOTHER.” Three simple words that Jesus commanded us to do. Bette’s Box of Blessings can help you share your love, faith and God’s Word with premium Christian gifts delivered every month. Each Box is bursting at the seams with gifts that are a great value – not only dollar value – but more importantly, spiritual value. Each box will contain Christian books, music, greeting cards, and more!

Each box will have a $60 - $80 value for only $29.99 a month.



We all have at least heard of or know the subscription box, Faithbox. It was one of the first Christian subscription boxes out there.

Faithbox inspires positive Christian living by helping people grow in their faith journey! This subscription is a wonderfully simple way to build your relationship with Christ. There are 2 subscriptions: Everyday Faith and Faithbox (for that something extra). We ensure that the companies we partner with for our Faithbox create ethical, eco-friendly products.

Each box contains a daily devotional and a variety of items including Christian jewelry, faith guides, and books. It is $25 a month.

Christian Kid’s Book Box

christian kids book box

For all you moms out there!

Christian Kids Book Box is a monthly subscription that sends two beautiful Christian themed books and fun crafts/activity book that will nurture a love of reading in your children, while teaching them Christian principles.

Each box will have two age appropriate books or an activity book for children to learn and grow in their Christian faith. This box is $19.95 a month.

Do you subscribe to any subscription boxes? If so share which ones, and what you think of the box!

the caffeinated bibliophile
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9 Christian Books To Read To Help Overcome Addiction

9 christian books to read to help overcome addiction

Did you know that 21.5 million Americans suffer from some sort of substance abuse? (American Addiction Centers)

Addiction is a deadly disease that takes over your whole body and mind. It ruins relationships, jobs, finances, and even sometimes takes the life of the person who is addicted. We all have heard stories of those addicted to drugs and alcohol, and how extremely hard it was for them to recover. There are also other addictions such as overeating, gambling, shopping, pornography, and sexual addiction that are not often discussed.

God can heal those afflicted from this horrible disease, addiction. When you commit to Christ as your savior, he will take away your burdens. There are so many wonderful stories of people who have experienced finding God while being addicted to alcohol, drugs, etc. These stories can provide hope for those that are looking for help.

Books can also help. I love a good self help book, especially when it’s a Christian self help book. They always provide inspiration and hope. They also just make me feel good!

However, please note that while I encourage reading, I encourage those that have an addiction seek professional help. Please, please seek help! There should be no shame in doing so. You can find resources on how to get help —-> HERE, and HERE.

Without further ado, here are 9 books to read to help overcome addiction:

Just Breathe by Keith Repult

Keith Repult spent his life looking for love and running from God. After growing up bouncing between parents, grandparents, and foster homes, Keith ended up in California in his early twenties—homeless, addicted, and broken.

One night he met the owner of a local adult bookstore and soon became a worldwide leader in the porn industry. As a self-made multimillionaire, “King Keith” was living a life of luxury, but was completely empty and addicted to alcohol, drugs, and pornography. Still trying to find the answers, Keith and his wife bought a vacation house at the beach and opened a yogurt shop. That shop opened the door for them to encounter the grace of Jesus Christ.

Using the acronym BREATHE, Just Breathe provides practical tools for reflection, hope, and help for those drowning in the pain of addiction. It is also a powerful ministry resource, using the steps Keith took to find freedom from addiction.

Not only does God know everything about us, He also relentlessly pursues us with an unfailing love. Keith’s story reminds us that we’ve never gone too far to be made new by the big grace of God.

Sober Mercies by Heather Kopp

alcoholic who kept private stashes of booze all over the place--tucked behind books in her study, zipped into a special compartment in her oversized purse, at the back of her closet stuffed inside her boots. 

Even as her career and marriage teetered on the brink, Kopp couldn't get a grip, desperately hiding the true extent of her drinking from the rest of the world--her husband included. During the day she wrote books about God and prayer and family. At night she'd locked herself in her bathroom to guzzle chardonnay.

For her, as for many Christians who struggle with addiction, overwhelming shame and confusion only made things worse. Why wasn't her faith enough to save her? Why didn't repentance, Bible reading and prayer work? Where was God?

Engaging, funny and bracingly honest, Kopp shares her remarkable journey into darkness...and back to the light again. Her story reveals the unique challenges and spiritual conundrums Christians face when they become ensnared in an addiction, and the redemption that's possible when we finally reach the end of ourselves. 

Holy Hunger by Margaret Bullitt-Jonas

In this wrenchingly honest, eloquent memoir, Bullitt-Jonas describes a childhood darkened by the repressive shadows of her alcoholic father and her emotionally reclusive mother, whose demands for excellence, poise, and self-control drove Bullitt-Jonas to develop an insatiable hunger. 

What began with pilfering extra slices of bread at her parents' dinner table turned into binges with cream pies and pancakes, sometimes gaining as much as eleven pounds in four days. When the family urged her father into treatment, the author recognized her own addiction and embarked on the path to recovery by discovering the spiritual hunger beneath her craving for food. Holy Hunger is a brave and perceptive account of compulsion and the healing process.

Healing Wounds of Sexual Addiction by Mark Laaser

With today’s rampant availability of Internet pornography, sexual addiction has become a national epidemic that affects up to 10 percent of Christians. As devastating as any drug habit, it brings heartbreak and despair to those it entangles. But there is help for men and women caught in sexual addiction’s downward spiral.This book offers a path that leads beyond compulsive thoughts and behaviors to healing and transformation. Sensitive to the shame of sexual addiction without minimizing its sinfulness, Dr. Mark Laaser traces the roots of the problem, discusses its patterns and impact, and maps out a biblical approach to self-control and sexual integrity. Previously titled Faithful and True, this revision includes an all-new section that deals with sexual addiction in the church. Other important changes reflect cultural trends, incorporate current research, and place a greater emphasis on spiritual growth. This book also addresses the unique needs and issues of female sex addicts. Whether you know someone with a sexual addiction or struggle yourself, Healing the Wounds of Sexual Addiction points the way to understanding, wholeness, and holiness.

Healing The Scars of Addiction by Gregory Jantz

The wreckage of addiction lies scattered around too many people--from the one who is or was addicted to those in relationship with that person. Age-old culprits of drugs, alcohol, and gambling are joined by newer addictions, such as food, prescription medication, shopping, pornography, and technology. Left unaddressed, addiction devastates lives now and makes it difficult to see a positive way forward.

For anyone struggling with an addiction, attempting to live in recovery, or seeking to understand the mind of an addict they love, Dr. Jantz's newest book is a lifeline. In it he helps readers answer tough questions, such as

- Am I an addict?
- Why is the first step so hard?
- How can I put my life back together?
- Where do I go from here?

Addiction doesn't have to have the last word. Healing the Scars of Addiction offers a holistic approach to healing so that readers can reclaim their lives and move forward in hope.

Save Me From Myself by Brian Welch

The incredible story of a controversial rock star, his secret addiction to methamphetamines, and his miraculous salvation through Jesus Christ. Candid and inspiring, Save Me from Myself is a rock 'n' roll journey unlike any other.

Addiction and Grace by Gerald May

Addiction and Grace offers an inspiring and hope–filled vision for those who desire to explore the mystery of who and what they really are. May examines the "processes of attachment" that lead to addiction and describes the relationship between addiction and spiritual awareness. He also details the various addictions from which we can suffer, not only to substances like alcohol and drugs, but to work, sex, performance, responsibility, and intimacy.

Drawing on his experience as a psychiatrist working with the chemically dependent, May emphasizes that addiction represents an attempt to assert complete control over our lives. Addiction and Grace is a compassionate and wise treatment of a topic of major concern in these most addictive of times, one that can provide a critical yet hopeful guide to a place of freedom based on contemplative spirituality.

Breathe Under Water by Richard Rohr

The Twelve Steps of Alcoholics Anonymous is America's most significant and authentic contribution to the history of spirituality, says Richard Rohr. He makes a case that the Twelve Steps relate well to Christian teaching and can rescue people who are drowning in addiction and may not even realize it. To survive the tidal wave of compulsive behavior and addiction, Christians must learn to breathe under water and discover God s love and compassion. In this exploration of Twelve Step spirituality, Rohr identifies the Christian principles in the Twelve Steps, connecting The Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous with the gospel. He draws on talks he has given for over twenty years to people in recovery and those who counsel and live with people with addictive behavior. Rohr offers encouragement for becoming interiorly alive and inspiration for making one s life manageable for dealing with the codependence and dysfunction (sin) rampant in our society

Last Addiction by Sharon Hersh

In an age of tell-all addiction memoirs and reality television programs, we gulp down the stories of others in the hope that we, too, can be overcomers–even as we continue to love a person, substance, activity, or ideology too much. 

As Sharon Hersh writes, “We all suffer from the same condition.” In The Last Addiction, she explores why we are prone to addiction–to make one thing in our lives more central than it should be–and how we can break free of our compulsions.

This is not a book of “self-help” answers or “how-to” steps. It is a book about falling down and getting up again, about realizing that we need more than ourselves to be saved. The truth is, we’re not as bad as we think we are–and we are worse than we ever dreamed. When we live between those two realities, we are ready to let go of the last idol: the belief that we can save ourselves.

I hope this has helped! Please share this resource with your friends and family!

If you or anyone you know have an addiction, I pray that you/they find the courage to overcome and heal from that addiction. I pray that God heals your/their heart and takes away your/their burdens and fears.

the caffeinated bibliophile

Book Review: The Promise of Tomorrow by AnnMarie Brear

the promise of tomorrow anne marie brear book review

The Promise of Tomorrow annemarie brear blog tour

The synopsis on the back of the book:

Charlotte Brookes flees her lecherous guardian, McBride, taking her younger sister with her. After a year on the road, they stumble into a Yorkshire village. There, they are taken in by the Wheelers, owners of the village shop. This new life is strange for Charlotte, but preferable to living with McBride or surviving on the roads. 
Harry Belmont is an important man in the village, but he’s missing something in his life. His budding friendship with Charlotte gives him hope she will feel more for him one day, and he will have the woman he needs. 
However, when McBride finds out where Charlotte lives, his threats begin, and Harry takes it upon himself to keep Charlotte safe. Only, World War I erupts and Harry enlists. 
Left to face a world of new responsibilities, and Harry’s difficult sister, Charlotte must run the gauntlet of family disputes, McBride's constant harassment and the possibility of the man she loves being killed. 
Can Charlotte find the happiness that always seems under threat, and will Harry return home to her?

  • Genre: Historical Fiction

  • Publisher: Self Published

  • Published: 9/2018

  • Goodreads Rating: 4.52

the promise of tomorrow annemarie brear book review

Why I Chose This Book

I am taking part of the blog tour for this book. You all know I can’t say no to a Historical Fiction novel!

First Initial Thoughts

Charlotte and Hannah are two sisters who’s grandparents and parents passed away within the last 5 years. They were living on the streets when they are in Yorkshire village. With only a few shillings left she hopes that she can get a room for the night at Wheeler’s shop. However, when the Wheeler’s meet Charlotte and Hannah, Stan especially doesn’t want them to go. For years they have wanted to have children of their own. He believes that it’s their second chance. So they hire on Charlotte as a shop keeper and Hannah goes back to school.

The Wheeler’s remind me of the couple from the movie, UP - if they had a chance to have children. They are just that sweet old couple. I love that they took a chance in taking in Charlotte and Hannah when they had nowhere to go.

However, as soon as things are going well with the Wheeler’s McBride returns back to her life. McBride is a cousin of her Father’s. Her Father put McBride as her guardian in his will. McBride - ugh he was not a good man. Let’s just say he was an old creep that was disgusting and cruel. And not only that, he wants to marry Charlotte. After Charlotte fled his home with Hannah a few months prior, he finds out where Charlotte lives and starts harassing her to come back.

Harry Belmont is an owner of a coal mine in town and is a wealthy individual. He lives on the Belmont estate. Once he meets Charlotte he is smitten with her. I really liked Harry. He is a good man that cared not only for his class, but others as well. I loved how Charlotte and Harry met. It was so sweet (and a little romantic). Charlotte was hesitant in letting Harry in but she also secretly liked him.


I love an English countryside setting. From the old village to rolling green hills, it just sounds romantic and dreamy. It makes me miss the UK very much! I also found it interesting how she wrote about England during the time of WWI. In the beginning of the story she emphasized how England was happy and prosperous but as WWI started, you read how the English countryside faired during such a time.

Final Thoughts

To protect Charlotte Harry proposes marriage. Marriage would protect Charlotte from the hands of McBride. Charlotte agrees. Even though it was a marriage of convenience, there was a spark between them that they could not deny. I loved how they both had a secret crush on the other before marrying. Their strength and loyalty was definitely something they both had in common and could share.

The other half of the story was about WWI. Just as soon as they married WWI began and their life was turned upside down. Harry enlisted in the war. Charlotte is devastated and is afraid that Harry may never come back home. While he is away Charlotte has to run the household and still deal with the harassing letters from McBride. Speaking of letters, the letters between Charlotte and Harry during the war were so sweet and beautiful. Through those letters their love blossomed and grew. I think it also helped Harry stay alive and hopeful through those dreadful times.

Promise of Tomorrow is an emotional story that reminds that there is no promise of tomorrow. But what we can do is cherish the now. Stand for what you have and protect your family. And family is what you make of it, it doesn’t have to be by blood.

I have never read AnnMarie’s books before but this one did not disappoint and I was staying up late into the hours reading this story. I loved this story of a strong female character who took it upon herself to make sure her sister was taken care for and would do anything for. Charlotte really grew as a character in this novel. In the beginning she was a little timid and frightened but by the end she became a strong and assertive (in a good way) woman.

Would I Recommend?

Yes! If you love the English countryside you will throughly enjoy this story. Even though it’s not a Christian book, it is still a clean read. It does have some parts with offensive language, but that is about it.

About AnneMarie Briar

The Promise of Tomorrow AnneMarie Brear

Australian born AnneMarie Brear writes historical novels and modern romances and sometimes the odd short story, too. Her passions, apart from writing, are travelling, reading, researching historical eras and looking for inspiration for her next book.

Social Media Links  

Purchase Links:

Thank you for stopping by and I hope you enjoyed the review! Have you ever visited Yorkshire in England?

the caffeinated bibliophile

Note: I was sent a copy of this book to review from Rachel Random Resources Blog Tours. All opinions are my own.

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