Navigating Legends: The Thrilling Tales of Sea Captains in Regency England

Ah, the Regency era! Among the glittering balls and society’s norms, a group of extraordinary men emerged—sea captains. These dashing men sailed the oceans, braving storms and conquering uncharted territories.

Sea Captains

  1. Masters of the Deep: Picture a world without GPS or satellite navigation. That’s the challenge sea captains faced during Regency England. With their trusty compasses and astrolabes, they relied on their innate sense of direction and expert seamanship.
  2. Conquerors of the Unknown: Regency England was a time of exploration. Think of James Cook, whose expeditions to the Pacific expanded our understanding of distant lands. These explorations opened doors to new trade routes.
  3. Legends of Adventure: Sea captains faced pirates and battled raging storms. Horatio Nelson, a revered figure in British naval history, led his fleet to victory in dramatic battles.
  4. Pioneers of National Pride: During the Regency period, Britain was a dominant naval power. Sea captains ensured safe passage for merchant ships, and protected national interests. Their bravery and strategic brilliance in decisive naval conflicts, such as the Battle of Trafalgar, not only secured victory but instilled a sense of pride and unity among the people.
  5. Romantic Figures: Let’s not forget the romance! Sea captains held a certain allure that captivated the hearts of Regency society. Their dashing uniforms made them irresistible to admirers. Jane Austen, the celebrated author, incorporated naval officers in her novels, adding an air of excitement and intrigue.

I have a sweet inspirational Regency romance on a 99 cent Kindle countdown, October 17-24. (US Resident only.)

Seeking Rachel

Seeking Rachel Josie Riviera

When faith is adrift, the heart is the compass leading the way home.

Rachel Lockhart grew up running wild and free with nomadic Gypsy children on her father’s estate. Craving adventure, her imagination conjured up an impossibly perfect, grey-eyed man to share it with.

Now grown, her outspoken ways are about to send her home from London in disgrace. Until she unexpectedly clashes with an impossibly perfect, grey-eyed man. And the back of her mind echoes with God’s promise: I will not leave you comfortless. As if she’d find comfort with a man as arrogant as Nash Browning.

Broken by too many sea battles, soul-sick from recent loss, Nash doesn’t even know where to begin to search for his lost faith. It certainly isn’t among the addle-brained females of the ton. But when he stumbles upon an enticing masterwork of contrasts named Rachel, his weary heart sparks with life.

Is it possible the way back to his faith is with a woman who is honest to a fault, yet fiercely loyal to a shunned people? Can he set a course for a future with her, and trust that God has prepared the way?

Grab your copy today before price goes up.

Available in ebook, paperback, large print paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited.

Visit Sweden with Mona

We spent a week in Sweden in the nineties and more recently, a Baltic Cruise allowed us to pay a new visit to Stockholm with a bus tour of the city, followed by a boat ride in the Baltic Sea.

Stockholm, the capital of Sweden, encompasses 14 islands and more than 50 bridges on an extensive Baltic Sea archipelago. Ferries and sightseeing boats shuttle passengers between the islands.

Stockholm has a mix of opulent, traditional architecture in the form of royal palaces and state buildings, as well as the sleek minimalism the country is famous for today.

The City Hall Tower is 106 meters tall, with a beautiful panoramic view of central Stockholm

Stockholm City Hall became famous for its grand ceremonial halls and unique art pieces, but especially for being the venue of the Nobel Prize banquet which is held each year in the Blue Hall on December 10, the anniversary of Alfred Nobel’s death.

 Parliament House (Riksdag) was constructed between 1897 and 1905. n 1889, a competition had been held to select a design for the new Parliament building, that Johansson won. Upon opening, it replaced the Old Riksdag Building. The two buildings of the complex were originally constructed to house the Riksdag in one, and the Sveriges Riksbank (Swedish National Bank) in the second, of a semicircular shape.
In this picture taken from the boat, we can see the Storkyrkan Church, the oldest church in Stockholm that lies in the center of Stockholm in Gamla stan, between Stockholm Palace (on the right) and Stortorget, the old main square of Stockholm (on the left). 

The cobblestone streets and ochre-colored buildings of Gamla Stan (the old town) are home to the 13th-century Storkyrkan Cathedral, the Kungliga Slottet Royal Palace and the Nobel Museum, which focuses on the Nobel Prize.

Stortorget is the main square in Stockholm’s old town, and the oldest square in the city. It was mentioned as early as 1420.

Stortorget (“Grand Square”) in Gamla Stan was created gradually, with buildings and blocks surrounding the square, still sloping west, occasionally added
haphazardly. The old square is an
artistic and shopping hub, renowned for its annual Christmas market, traditional handicrafts and culinary delights.
In this picture taken from a bus, we can locate a plaque on the royal palace with the name of King Carl XI.

Riddarholmen Church is located on the island of Riddarholmen, close to the Royal Palace. Initially, the church was the former medieval Greyfriars Monastery in Stockholm. Now it serves as the final resting place of most Swedish monarchs.

The historic Riddarholmen Church dates back to the 13th century. Since 1807, it has been used as a funeral and memorial church, with several chapels dedicated to the various kings of Sweden.

An interesting contrast between old architecture and modern one in Stockholm.

What is special about Stockholm, Sweden?

The city is built on 14 islands, connected by 57 bridges. It has 96 beaches, and the people of Stockholm own around 200,000 boats. This earned the Swedish capital the nickname ‘Beauty on the Water’. Although the weather is relatively cold and the place quite expensive, if you have a chance, don’t hesitate to visit Sweden.

And don’t forget to download my latest published contemporary novels.

New Release — WE’RE ALL HEROES

They’re all heroes who pay a big price for freedom—The Ukrainian mom who spies for her country; her three small kids who struggle to survive; the wounded major who gets them out of a war-zone; Lauren, the flight attendant who brings them to the U.S.A. ; her parents who receive them in their home; and her ex-fiancé, Dr. Jake, who operates on the injured. And let’s not forget the two German shepherd puppies that dive in a pool to save a two-year old. Will the many crises they face head-on strengthen or destroy Lauren and Jake’s relationship?

We’re All Heroes is book 12 of the Love Plans Series.

New Release — WE’RE ALL WINNERS

Handsome doctors are lying, cheating, self-centered bastards, particularly Vince Cooper, the charming resident, Casey Benton had the misfortune to fall in love with in medical school. Fate protected her by sending him to the other side of the country for a fellowship. Three years later, he’s standing in her parents’ living room, and she curses her bad luck.

Vince Cooper blesses his good luck when his dog finds a lost toddler in the park and allows him to reconnect with the woman he could never forget. After Casey reveals she adopted her son–a patient’s baby—attraction sizzles between them and romance blooms. But Casey doesn’t trust him completely, and Vince has a feeling she’s hiding something. When the truth explodes and nasty secrets pop out, will there be room for love and a happy future together?

We’re All Winners is book 14 of the Love Plans Series.

Romany Gypsies in Regency England: A Vibrant, Misunderstood Community

In Regency England, there existed a community of mystery and intrigue—The Romany Gypsies. These nomadic people, known for their colorful wagons, lively traditions, and vibrant culture, played a significant yet often misunderstood role.

Romany Gypsies

Here, I hope to shed some light on their customs, challenges, and enduring spirit.

The Romany Gypsies are a nomadic community, moving from place to place in their caravans, seeking their livelihood and adventure. Their wagons, decorated with bright colors and intricate designs, captured the imagination of onlookers, and added a touch of wanderlust to the English countryside. Their nomadic lifestyle allows them to forge unique connections with different regions and people, preserving their rich cultural heritage.

The Romany have their own language, Romani, which conveys their history, values, and stories. Their vibrant music, dances, and storytelling captivated audiences and provides a glimpse into their unique way of life. Their strong sense of community, extended family ties, and unwavering loyalty are important to their identity.

Regrettably, they faced social exclusion, significant prejudice, and discrimination because of their different customs and distinct appearance. Often in literature, they are portrayed with independence and a free-spirited nature.

It’s a 99 cent Kindle Countdown for my sweet inspirational romance, Seeking Patience.

Seeking Patience Josie Riviera

Often, I call this book “the book of my heart,” and I hope you love the story as much as I loved writing it.

★★ Do you love British inspirational Regency romance? Seeking Patience is a faith-filled, clean, sweet, and wholesome story. Fall in love with heartwarming romance filled with delightful characters, Romany Gypsies, faith in God, and the promise of a second chance. ★★

Do people prove their worth by strength, or by character?

Half-Romany, half-English lord, he lives a perilous Gypsy life … until a sweet English rose saves his life, and perhaps his soul. Widowed by a cruel husband, she’s given up all hope of love. Brought together in peril, they dare to reach for a brighter future together. Luca Boldor, Romany leader, lives a nomad’s life in Regency England with his Gypsy caravan. Believing his noble father abandoned him at birth, he refuses to acknowledge his English blood, or live a settled life.

But when a vicious attack by a rival leaves him bleeding on an English lady’s doorstep, he has no choice but to accept her help. Her gentle faith stirs his heart in a way he has long denied. Lady Patience Blakwell, widowed countess, lives in near poverty. Her husband’s heir uses threats to keep her from demanding her rightful inheritance. With a few faithful servants, she exists quietly in the country, only her faith keeping her strong … until the day a bold, handsome Gypsy collapses in her hall. He’s unlike any man she’s ever known, and she’ll confront any subterfuge to keep him safe. But when a secret from Lady Patience’s past emerges, Luca must face his own past, or lose her and all hope of love.

Will this strong man humble himself to open his heart for his lady?

Grab your copy today before the price goes up.

Available in ebook, paperback, large print paperback, hardcover, and audiobook.

FREE on Kindle Unlimited.

Travel with Mona to Estonia

We visited Tallinn, the capital of Estonia, during a cruise on the Baltic Sea. I was particularly interested in this country that is quite similar to Latvia, my daughter-in-law’s country of origin.

I took this picture from the top of a hill. We can see the red tile roofs of old buildings and the tower — with its dark bell chamber– of the oldest intact gothic Town Hall in Northern Europe. Dating from the late 13th century, it is used now for festive ceremonies and public concerts.

After centuries of Danish, Swedish, German, and Russian rule, Estonia attained independence in 1918. Forcibly incorporated into the USSR in 1940, it regained its freedom in 1991 with the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Estonia is located in Eastern Europe, bordering the Baltic Sea and Gulf of Finland, between Latvia and Russia.

A cobbled street in the Old Town
The oldest parts of the walls of Tallinn were actually built in the 13th century,
Toompea Castle is no longer a castle but it’s used as the Estonia Parliament. It was under renovation and we couldn’t visit the interior.

Estonia shares a similar geography and history with Latvia and Lithuania, but is culturally different. Its closest ethnic and linguistic buddy is Finland.

For 50 years, Soviet ruled Estonia and many people moved in from Russia or Belarus. Around a quarter of Estonians are native Russian speakers such as my son’s in-laws. Apparently, almost everyone is comfortable speaking Russian as a second language.

I think it’s the statue of a famous artist or philosopher– Not sure!
Russalka: a monument celebrating Estonia’s independence
The Alexander Nevsky Cathedral is an orthodox cathedral in central Tallinn. It was built in a typical Russian Revival style in 1894–1900, when the country was part of the Russian Empire. 
A wedding taking place in the cathedral while we were visiting. The bride wore a red dress–she was gorgeous!!!

A market area in Tallinn
The Viking Age was part of Estonia’s history.

If you have a chance to visit Estonia do not hesitate to go. You’ll enjoy it.

MESSY PLANS (Love Plans, book 11) was just released two days ago,

Dr. Matt Lopez is perfectly happy with his medical career until the new nurse practitioner turns his life upside down with her lovely smile and crazy ideas. When Cathy takes Tommy, a young patient under her wing, gets involved in his home situation, and discovers the truth, trouble follows. Life will never be the same for Cathy, her boss, or Tommy as they try to repair the mistakes of their pasts.

Two books on pre-order We’re All Heroes (Love Pans, book 12) We’re No Saints (Love Pans, book 12)
They’re all heroes who pay a big price for freedom—The Ukrainian mom who spies for her country; her three small kids who struggle to survive; the wounded major who gets them out of a war-zone; Lauren, the flight attendant who brings them to the U.S.A. ; her parents who receive them in their home; and her ex-fiancé, Dr. Jake, who operates on the injured. And let’s not forget the two German shepherd puppies that dive in a pool to save a two-year old. Will the many crises they face head-on strengthen or destroy Lauren and Jake’s relationship?
She’s a young widow with difficult teenagers and a company to manage. He’s a charming lawyer hiding secrets that could hurt her. He claims he loves her, but can she trust him?