Wednesday, December 3, 2014

REVIEW: The Faberge Secret Blog Tour! (+$25 Amazon GC Giveaway!)

Title: The Faberge Secret
Author: Stephanie Burkhart
Series:  N/A
Pages: 114
Date Published: November 1st, 2013
Publisher: Desert Breeze Publishing
Format: Paperback
Source:Goddess Fish Blog Tour

Elise Goodwin operates a heritage museum in Brattleboro, Vermont. Needing to buy some items for her museum, she travels to Boston and acquires a delicious surprise that would excite any curator - a Faberge Egg.

Enter Russian businessman Dimitri Romanov, the true owner of the jewel. He's following a lead hoping to reacquire his stolen egg when he bumps into Elise. He can't hide his attraction to the petite brunette with doe-like eyes. 

Dimitri's rival, Gustav Kelch, wants the rare Faberge jewel and will do anything to find it, including destroying Dimitri's life. Can Dimitri keep Elise and his Faberge heirloom safe or will his attraction place their lives in jeopardy?
~My Thoughts~
First of all, how amazing is that cover? It's the perfect blend of Christmassy with a little hint of mystery and suspense. Or is that just me? Either way, it was one of the reasons I chose to review this book so Thank God I chose to judge this book by it's cover!

Stephanie Burkhart is a great author. She writes about a lot of different subjects and genres so I was really excited to see what she could bring to the table in terms of a romantic thriller without paranormal elements to distract from the main plot. I was NOT unhappy with the results! Faberge eggs (and other ornamental decorations) are very Russian things. So imagine my excitement when the plot of the story took us to the freezing reaches of Russia! I'm a fan of travel/settings in other countries in general, but this was just so fitting. I was thrilled with where both the plot and the characters took us!

The two main characters Elise and Dimitri have just about the cutest "Meet-cute" by literally bumping into each other.  The attraction is immediate for both parties, and that's all that it takes! Dinner continues the passionate tread towards...well...passion! The heat is palpable and enjoyable and it's just one of those feel good moments when Elise and Dimitri both let their guards down enough to let each other in. (Side note...WHY is every Russian male character named Dimitri? It's like Russians have only 3-4 names...Natalia, Dimitri, Svetlana, and Vladimir are like the ONLY names ever used when main characters have Russian backgrounds! Okay...rant over)

The story was a good one, though I frequently caught myself yelling at the MC's for being dumb. There were just a few decisions that I was just like...slapping myself on the forehead and asking myself what the heck were they  thinking. However, these really dumb choices led to a lot of chaos and danger so I guess in the end it was alright. The book rounded itself out nicely and I really appreciated the care that Stephanie seems to have taken on the details-both in research and in tying up loose ends by the final chapter of the story.

One thing of note, this book could easily become dated. It mentions the Sochi Olympic Games, and because this is contemporary and not historical, that really dates the book (Sochi is already in my distant distant memory banks!). isn't quite dated yet. 
~Try an Excerpt!~
His gaze was as soft as a caress. He reached out and tucked a stray tendril of hair behind her ear. Then slowly, he curved his hand around the nape of her neck and moved closer so there was no space between them.

Their lips skirted each other's, teasing, tempting... until Dimitri's mouth finally captured hers in a drugging kiss.

His lips were firm and persuasive. He smelled of soap and sandalwood. Something intense flared within her, and she fisted her hands around the lapels of his coat. Her body betrayed her desire. His erection pressed against her thigh.

All of a sudden, an all-crushing fear consumed her. He was hard for her. It was too soon, too fast. She broke the kiss and pushed him away.

"Elise--" Dimitri began.


Elise's heart jumped. She swung around and looked at the door.

It stood ajar.

"Lucy!" Elise forgot all about Dimitri's kiss and rushed inside with him right behind her. Concern spiked within her the second she saw Lucy.

Her friend's hands and feet were tied to a chair, and a gag was in her mouth. The room had been trashed. Their suitcases had been turned over; their clothes and books tossed haphazardly about.

Fear knotted inside Elise. She rushed to the chair and took off Lucy's gag. Dimitri untied the knots at Lucy's feet, concern for her friend evident in his eyes. Elise was thrilled that Dimitri had helped her with no hesitation or reservations.

"What happened?" Elise asked. "Who did this?"

"They were looking for the egg," Lucy said. She glanced at Dimitri, but instead of her earlier resistance to him, gratefulness filled her gaze.

Dimitri froze and glanced up, his stare drilling into Elise. "Egg? A Faberge egg?"

Elise loosened one of the ropes around Lucy's hand and looked at Dimitri, perplexed. "What do you know about Faberge eggs?"

He muttered something in Russian, finished untying the knot around Lucy's other ankle, and stood, straightening his shoulders.

"That's what I lost. What I've been looking for -- my Faberge egg."
~Meet Stephanie!~ 
Stephanie Burkhart is a 911 dispatcher for LAPD.  She was born and raised in Manchester, New Hampshire.  After serving 11 years in the US Army she currently calls Castaic, California her home. Stephanie was married in Denmark in 1991 and has two young sons. She adores chocolate, is addicted to coffee and enjoys early morning walks.  She's also an assistant den leader for her son's Cub Scout den and is a Boy Scout mom. She writes paranormal, contemporary, and steampunk romance and has two children's books published with 4RV Publishing.












Stephanie will be awarding a $25 Amazon GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour, and a $10 Starbucks GC to a randomly drawn host.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. i loved the excerpt

  2. Thank you so much for having me here today. I'm glad you enjoyed the story! It was something definately different from me. Here' a link to the Book Trailer, perfect for this time of year!

    Happy Holidays
    Steph Burkhart
    Romance Under the Moonlight

  3. I love this cover! The color makes this pop! Wow

  4. I enjoyed the excerpt.