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A Respectable Actress

3.92  ·  Rating details ·  333 ratings  ·  162 reviews
When the illustrious India Hartley is accused of murder, she has to uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.

India Hartley, the famous and beautiful actress, is now alone in the world after her father’s death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah’s Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night’s performance, something go
Paperback, 384 pages
Published October 2015 by Thomas Nelson
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3.92  · 
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 ·  333 ratings  ·  162 reviews

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Nov 04, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2015
Is historical romance mystery a category? That is how I'd classify A Respectable Actress.

This novel is set in 1870 Georgia. Actress India Hartley finds herself accused of murder and trying to unravel that mystery as well as others. The other main character is Philip Sinclair. He's an attorney representing India. I didn't find their romance particularly strong. While I respected India's character, I wasn't as enamored with Philip.

The first few pages drew me in. Then I felt the story waned for abo
I've only read one other book by Dorothy Love, and I really enjoyed it, so was glad to get the opportunity to read A Respectable Actress. While I wasn't completely enamored, I still found the story to have some very compelling parts and worth the read.

The story has a great mysterious overtone throughout the story. I really enjoyed that quality in Dorothy's writing. I also found the details about India's life as an actress, in a time when it wasn't a dignified profession, especially for women, to
Jun 23, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2015
When there’s a book about a murder mystery that’s a historical fiction, you can count me in. Mysteries are some of my favorite books to read. I love trying to find all the clues and hints and who did what. Lucky for me, the latest from Dorothy Love combines all of those elements!

I really enjoyed trying to figure out who was responsible for the murder. There were some plot twists to the murder and mystery as well, and it was enough to keep me guessing. Sometimes too many twists can pull down a n
Charity Andrews
Nov 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I have been looking forward to reading this book because so many people told me it was amazing. Not only that, but it’s one of Amazon’s “best of the month”. AM So, I was ready!!

India Hartley is an actress who is accused of murder. Because of the reputation of actresses, the residents of Savannah, Georgia have prematurely made up their minds about her guilt. Proving her innocence is up to famed lawyer, Phillip Sinclair.

This book was pretty well done. It is a historic novel and she definitely know
Heidi Robbins (Heidi Reads...)
I have mixed feelings about this one- there are a lot of things I liked and enjoyed, but also a handful of things that didn't work for me. The Southern setting and history of the era was well-described and fascinating, I really liked India's character and personality, and the plot was intriguing. I had a difficult time with Phillip- he was so likeable and quite heroic, but at times he pulled back and there was a lack of emotion. The story is told from India's point of view, and I think more cues ...more
Lindsey (Books for Christian Girls)
About this book:

“When the illustrious India Hartley is accused of murder, she has to uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.
India Hartley, the famous and beautiful actress, is now alone in the world after her father’s death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah’s Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night’s performance, something goes horribly wrong. Her co-star, Arthur Sterling, is shot dead on stage in front of a packed house, and Indi
Carole Jarvis
Oct 29, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: historical, southern
Reviewed at The Power of Words:

I thoroughly enjoyed A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love, an impressively well-written story that features romance, mystery, suspense, and even some gothic overtones. I’ve always been a fan of gothic romances, so this was an added delight, as was the blend of murder mystery with the historical setting of Georgia’s St. Simons Island. Although this story stands alone, those who have read The Bracelet will enjoy Celia Mackay’s involvement with
Oct 22, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a pretty good historical fiction for the most part. I enjoyed it for the most part. However, there were times that questions were answered and then all of a sudden a new surprise arises and then the quest is on for that answer. Not that that is a bad thing. It was just kind of funny, it was like, "oh by the way".

I really enjoyed the book though. I hadn't really read anything from the time period right after the civil war where this takes place. You have all these beautiful mansions and
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed the pacing of A Respectable Actress. It flowed very smoothly as I read it. I also enjoyed the mysterious, deep-south feeling of this book. The author did a very good job at describing the scenery and making me feel that I was really back in early 1870’s Georgia. This time period and the setting of post war St. Simons Island, with its wide variety of residents, added a mysterious quality to the story that enhanced the feeling of restlessness that flowed throughout the book.

The ma
Sam B
This was my first book from Dorothy Love and I was not deceived!

I really wasn't expecting such an intrigue and the suspense really drew me into the book from the very beginning. The author really made sure the plot unfolds in such a way that every time you feel you got it figured out, you find out one more piece of information that keeps you wondering.

I have to say that I haven't read many book that were able to keep the suspense throughout the whole book, but it was the case with A Respectable
Oct 25, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: books-for-review
Actress India Hartley is in heaps of trouble when it appears that she has shot and killed her co-star on stage during a performance. She cries innocence, but will anyone believe her?

I found this book to be mysterious and intriguing. India’s plight to prove her innocence is no easy feat. With such a public case, how can her lawyer possibly prove that the blame does not lie with his client? Philip’s story is more of a secondary role in the novel, but I found myself more interested in what made him
Jun 12, 2016 rated it it was ok
While I have enjoyed Love's previous reads this one was my least favorite. I didn't care for India or the story line. I'm still a fan of Dorothy Love though. Romance in a book is not always my favorite and it's all actually in the delivery of it. I prefer a subtle, modest and light approach which doesn't actually consume the plot. India from the very beginning noticed Philip's warm honey eyes, his touch, his nearness, his lush eyelashes without knowing this man; and it came across a little more ...more
Sierra Faith
Oct 24, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: got-for-review

Full review up soon.
Carrie Schmidt (Reading is My SuperPower)
This wonderful Southern/Gothic mystery will intrigue and captivate readers from the very first sentence - "Gunfire exploded to the right of the stage, a burst of sound that temporarily deafened her." And just like that, we're in the middle of the action and stunned by the unexpected turn of events. Almost before we know it, India has been whisked away for her protection to St. Simon's Island by a mysterious and handsome lawyer who says he's been paid to represent her. We aren't with her long at ...more
Debi Lantzer
Oct 28, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: fiction-guild
I'm not going to lie to you - I'm not a fan of historical reading. When I first received this book, I wasn't really sure how much I was expecting to enjoy it. First, I had never read anything by Dorothy Love before and the title really made me unsure what the book might be about; and second, it looked like one of those "period pieces". I'm very happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised.

This novel is set in 1870 Georgia. Accused of the shooting death of her leading man on the stage of Sava
Maureen Timerman
Oct 25, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2015
India Hartley has spent most of her life on stage, being raised by her father, he taught her all aspects of thespian living.
Now she is all alone after her father’s death, and continues to do what she knows, by being an actress. What she doesn’t know that her life is about to change forever, this job in Savannah, Georgia may well be her last. Her life is changed by an alternation in the script, that she doesn’t approve of, but has no choice but to preform.
The results are the death of one of the
May 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
"Respectable" hardly describes the lovely India Hartley as she faces her accusers; the nationally acclaimed young actress has just experienced the horrible misfortune of a delivering a fatal wound upon a beloved local thespian, Arthur Sterling, during a crowded stage performance at Savannah's Southern Palace. Whisked away by law enforcement, she finds her very life in the hands of a talented young lawyer, Philip Sinclair, who has been hired by a kind and gracious theater patron, who staunchly be ...more
Oct 29, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Sheer brilliance! I love the mix of historical romance and suspense and Dorothy Love has done a superb job of blending the two. The plot twists have plot twists and the surprises don't stop until the very end. A breathtaking tale of intrigue -- both past and present -- kept me riveted the whole read through. There are even some Gothic elements to this story. Definitely an abundance of delight for suspense lovers.

Fascinating historical details make the read all the richer -- many of them inspire
Nov 05, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: historical
This was my first time reading a book by Dorothy Love. I wasn't sure what to expect, but the synopsis intrigued me. I mean, a protagonist who's a popular actress in the 1870s? Not your usual type of heroine! Especially in Christian Fiction. So I opened to page one and started in, only to get sucked into a murder mystery unlike any I'd read before.

Miss India Hartley is quite the lady. Accused of a crime she didn't commit, she struggles with the desire to defend herself, yet is limited by the law
Galaxy Adventurer
Nov 18, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: got-for-review, 2015
This book was interesting but got boring pretty quickly. When I was close to finishing it I just wanted it to be over. While I was reading it, it seemed like India would be thinking about something and then suddenly jump to somewhere else and thinking about something else without anything separating the two. Once India found some things out, I figured most of it out pretty quickly so there wasn't much that surprised me. The things that I didn't see coming weren't shocking. The romance didn't fee ...more
Robin Hatcher
A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love begins with a bang (almost literally), and the story holds a reader's interest right through to the final curtain call. Grab your favorite beverage, sit in your favorite chair, and be prepared to fall in love.
— Robin Lee Hatcher, best-selling author of Whenever You Come Around and Keeper of the Stars
Jalynn Patterson
Oct 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
About the Book:
When the illustrious India Hartley is accused of murder, she has to uncover the deceptions of others to save herself.

India Hartley, the famous and beautiful actress, is now alone in the world after her father’s death and embarks upon a tour of theaters across the South. Her first stop is Savannah’s Southern Palace. On the eve of the second night’s performance, something goes horribly wrong. Her co-star, Arthur Sterling, is shot dead on stage in front of a packed house, and India i
Oct 31, 2015 rated it it was amazing
India Hartley is a well-known actress who is visiting Savannah, Georgia, and working at the Southern Palace Theater. When a change is made in the script that leads to India being arrested for murder, she has no one to turn to. That is until Celia Mackay hires Phillip Sinclair to defend India. Phillip does his best to prove India's innocence but does anyone really believe the actress is innocent or do they believe her guilty because she's an outsider?

This book was superbly written. The characters
Jul 14, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I was going to use my notes to write on how I felt about this book but I don't think that I will need them.
I gave this book 5 stars because the author Dorothy Love has kept me on the edge of my seat waiting to see what happens next!
I love a good book that has action packed and this book definitely has all that.
I admired India from the start. She has a lot of confidence (something I lack) and curiousity (something I have a lot of) lol! Curiousity kills a cat they say. In India's case it almost
Tressa (Wishful Endings)
A RESPECTABLE ACTRESS was so much more than I was expecting. The feel of the characters, setting, and writing immersed me in post Civil War Georgia. The dialogue was accurate and even humorous at spots. The descriptions of the run-down and destroyed buildings as well as the unfortunate circumstances of the people brought the story to life. In the middle of this all was the story of India, an actress framed for murder, and Philip, an attorney who defends her. Add some suspense and a little romanc ...more
Oct 07, 2015 rated it it was amazing
A Respectable Actress by Dorothy Love has something for everyone. It is a historical thriller with a gentle love story building in the background.
India Hartley is an actress in America in the middle of the nineteenth century. At this time, acting is not seen as a respectable career. A tragic event on stage sees India, at the start of the novel, suspected of murder. Now she has a reason to be twice shunned by society. Philip Sinclair offers his services to India, as her lawyer. It is up to him to
Callie Domingues
Jan 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is the first book I have read by Dorothy Love and I have to say that I am now a fan. This story was full of twists and turns that kept the story running at a fairly good pace for me. I enjoyed the mystery surrounding the characters and I was impressed at the details that were provided, they were well laid out and exact.

As a fan of historical fiction I am always on the lookout for precise information about the era and the location that is being spoken of. I believe that this story held as mu
Nov 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
In 1870 acting was not considered a proper form of employment for women, but India Hartley was raised in the theatre by her father. Famous but now alone after her father's death, India's tour of the southern states is cut short when the leading man in her play dies on stage - and India is arrested for his murder!

A kind patron pays for handsome attorney Philip Sinclair to take on India's case, and Philip is kind enough to take India out of the spotlight in Savannah and to his family's home on St.
Nov 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
An explosion takes place while India is on stage, the leading man dies and all eyes are on her. Thankfully her lawyer removes her from the spotlight while his investigation and defense plan takes place. I found this to be an intriguing mystery and thoroughly enjoyed every twist and turn in the book. Enjoyed reading how a murder investigation was done back in th the 19th century, found it very interesting. This was just a great book!

I received a copy of this book free from the publisher in excha
Rachel McMillan
Nov 07, 2015 rated it liked it
Quick take: I sometimes find that Love's narrative is at odds with the time period she writes in but I love the unique setting and characterization. A really clever and taut mystery lies at the heart of this book
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Before returning to her writing roots in historical fiction, Dorothy Love published twelve novels for young adults. Her work has garnered numerous honors from the American Library Association, the Friends of American Writers, the International Reading Association, the New York Public Library, and many others.