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Love on a Dime (Ladies of Summerhill #1)

3.58  ·  Rating Details ·  1,821 Ratings  ·  182 Reviews
In age of elegance and excess, Lilly Westbrook longs for a love both true and eternal. Newport, Rhode Island, 1899, is a place of shimmering waves, sleek yachts, and ladies of leisure. Of opulent mansions that serve as summer cottages for the rich and famous. Home of railroad magnates and banking tycoons--dashing young men and the women who aspire to marry them. But it's n ...more
Paperback, 310 pages
Published May 31st 2010 by Thomas Nelson (first published May 8th 2010)
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Jul 16, 2015 Loraine rated it really liked it
SUMMARY: In age of elegance and excess, Lilly Westbrook longs for a love both true and eternal.

Newport, Rhode Island, 1899, is a place of shimmering waves, sleek yachts, and ladies of leisure. Of opulent mansions that serve as summer cottages for the rich and famous. Home of railroad magnates and banking tycoons--dashing young men and the women who aspire to marry them.

But it's not the place for lady novelists. Especially not those who pen disreputable dime novels. This poses a problem for Lilly
I SO looked forward to reading this, but I was pretty disappointed in it. The main reasons are:

1) The writing style (dialogue especially) was choppy and clipped, as if the words to make the sentences smooth were taken out. It just threw me off.

2) The character changes made no sense. (view spoiler)
Feb 03, 2011 Amy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Though the plot of Love on a Dime sounded promising, I didn't feel like it lived up to my expectations. It is one of those books I finished out of pure stuborness, because I really didn't care a fiddle for any of the characters and the ending was predictable. (view spoiler)
Two, okay three, things bugged me about this book. The first is how Harlan, Lilly's beau, is pe
Jul 22, 2010 Kristina rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2010, booksneeze
At first glance, Love on a Dime looks intriguing and inviting, but unfortunately the story is a big let down from the cover. This book does have the makings of a good story—mystery, intrigue, romance, but I think the error was in the execution of the plot. Unfortunately, it left something to be desired. Even with its downfalls, this book was not a horrible read. It had some decent character development with Lilly, the heroine and Jackson, the long lost love. The main plot revolves around these t ...more
Jun 03, 2010 Christina rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: yes
With social rules to follow and the threat of being ostracized, Lily Westbrook walks a fine line between truth and lies. By keeping her secret from her family, she deceives them. But in her heart she believes she is doing the Lord’s will by helping those in need.

Lily’s conflict is realistic and one that crosses the ages. Remember how Michal chastised David for dancing before the Ark? In her eyes it wasn’t proper and she felt embarassed. Her eyes weren’t necessarily upon the Lord. Love on a Dime
Jun 11, 2010 Amanda rated it it was amazing
Cara Lynn James is officially on my favorite author's list!!! What first drew me to this book was the cover- LOOK at it, it's GORGEOUS! Then, the fact that it's set in my home state (RI) well, I just had to read it! But gorgeous cover and state pride aside, this book was WONDERFUL! I normally tear right through a book in one day, but I chose instead to savor this one and join the Westbrook's for a leisurely summer season in beautiful Newport. Taking my time seemed like the right ap
I ADORE the cover on this one but the content wasn't to my taste. I found it boring and overly centered on the romance. The main premise of the book, the fact that she is a rich society lady who is secretly an author in the Gilded Age, barely seems to have a part in the book... It's entirely focused on overdone descriptions of parties and gowns and a cheesy, underdeveloped romance between Lilly Westbrook and Jackson Grail. It wasn't the worst book I've ever read, but it certainly wasn't very goo ...more
Love on a Dime
By Cara Lynn James
I bought this book so long ago but kept avoiding reading it..don't know why but I certainly regret doing so. Now that I have had so many contemporary books to read I missed historical old fashioned romance so I got around to Miss James novel. It is so lovely. True love never dies it keeps going deep inside our hearts like little ambers hoping to be rekindled back into a full fire. Jack's and Lilly's love has weathered so much hardships and pressure--personal shyne
Aug 18, 2014 Victoria rated it liked it
Shelves: books-i-ve-read
I thought this book was really cute but while reading it I felt like the story was going around and around in circles over and over again with me saying to myself, "Didn't they already had this conversation before?" The plot and the characters were great and I like how things tied together but it was predictable, though it never bored me at all (to where I kept reading and reading without wanting to put it down - so I barely did).

Lilly felt called by God to write Dime novels in order to portray
Jun 02, 2014 Chloé rated it really liked it
This book was like a sweet, slightly cheesy Hallmark movie. I enjoyed it, though it did have its flaws. All the characters in this book, including Lillian and Jack, were very pigheaded - to the point that I felt it wasn't justifiable. I also think that Harlan was set up to be the villain in such a way that was a tad too obvious and a bit over the top. The book really didn't pick up until the second half. I enjoyed the last half greatly... except for the last chapter. The book ended way too sudde ...more
Jan 06, 2011 Emily rated it liked it
Not bad, worth the price (free.)
Love On A Dime by Cara Lynn James

Love On A Dime is the first book in Cara Lynn James' series, the Ladies of Summerhill.

I was fortunate enough to get his book free for my Kindle on Amazon a few months back and I finally got around to reading it!

Love On A Dime is historical Christian fiction set in 1899 in Newport, Rhode Island.

Lilly Westbrook has survived a broken heart and remains unmarried and living with her parents. She spends her time writing fiction, but the type society looks down upon, di
Love on a Dime by Cara Lynn James
Thomas Nelson, 2010
310 pages
Inspirational; Historical; Romance
3.5/5 stars

Source: Received a complimentary copy from Thomas Nelson in exchange for an honest review

Summary: Lilly and Jack were in love or so she thought until he left her with no indication of returning. Now it's 1899 and six years later and she is secretly a successful author of dime novels at the publishing company the newly wealthy Jack hopes to acquire. She's also on the verge of being engaged an
Nov 04, 2011 Cara rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 17, 2014 Elaine rated it did not like it
Title: Love on a Dime.

Author: Cara Lynn James.

Genre: Christian, Romance, Historical Setting, Rhode Island.

Plot: Lilly Westbrook is a lady of society, keeping up with the latest fashions and attending numerous parties hosted by the elite of society in bustling Newport, Rhode Island in 1899. But secretly, Lilly earns her own income by shutting herself away in her bedroom and furiously typing out dime novels under the name of Fannie Cole. Little did she know when she first set pen to paper that her
Nov 24, 2009 Lori added it
Recommended to Lori by: Compliments of FIRST Wild Card Tours -- for review
I was so excited to read this book when I first saw the premise -- finally, something a little different! It was interesting to read about a "famous" author, who kept her identity a secret, but there were some slow parts as well. Overall, I would still recommend you give it a try. :)

Lilly Westbrook has always loved to write, whether it was poems, short stories, or her surprisingly popular dime novels. Her competition has upped the ante by holding public signing for her books, and Lilly's publish
Valerie (Val's Vicinity)
I don't often contemplate not finishing a book, but I have to admit that several times I considered giving up on this one. The story simply failed to engage me, and the characters didn't pull me in either. The descriptions and dialogue often struck me as feeling somewhat stiff and matter of fact, which admittedly could partially be due to the time period that it's set in...however, I don't normally have this issue with other books in the genre.

Though I really like the premise of being a closet d
Victor Gentile
Jun 02, 2010 Victor Gentile rated it it was amazing
Cara Lynn James in her new book, "Love On A Dime" Book One in her Ladies Of Summerhill series published by Thomas Nelson takes us to 1899 Newport, Rhode Island.

Lilly Westbrook has a secret identity: she writes dime novels under the nom de plume (pen name) of Fannie Cole. This may not shock us now, women write about anything now without society hindrances but in 1899 this was a definite no-no for a young lady of upper class society. So she cannot share her identity with her friends or family and
Susan Hollaway
Jul 06, 2010 Susan Hollaway rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: anyone
In Newport, Rhode Island, in 1899, proper young ladies in wealthy society were ladies of leisure. They did not work, and they most certainly did not write dime novels. Lilly Westbrook has more worries than deciding which tea or ball to attend. The young man who is about to propose to her has opened up doors to the social elite increasing her family’s social status; and although Lilly doesn’t particularly care about mingling with society, her family does. If anyone finds out she writes dime novel ...more
Jun 01, 2010 WifeMomKnitter rated it liked it
Shelves: booksneeze
From the Goodreads' synopsis:

"Turn of the century novelist Lilly Westbrook learns that being faithful to her calling means more than just putting pen to paper.

It's the summer of 1899 in Newport, Rhode Island, and Lilly Westbrook is struggling to conceal her career from family and friends because of the stigma attached to dime novels. Lilly feels good about her secret-after all, she's enlightening working class girls with her books and honoring God by using her talents to His glory.

But her secr
Katie Casey
Jan 10, 2011 Katie Casey rated it really liked it
This historical fiction piece is set in 19th Century New England where the main character, Lilly Westbrook, is a romance “dime novel” novelist – a profession that is considered scandalous amongst her fellow “society” families – so she writes in secret using the alias Fannie Cole. Besides trying to keep her writing career secret, Lilly must also contend with two men dueling for her love. The wealthy society catch, Harlan S., is about to propose to her, when her first sweetheart, Jackson Grail, ap ...more
Christy Lockstein
May 05, 2010 Christy Lockstein rated it really liked it

Love on a Dime by Cara Lynn James is the first book in the Ladies of Summerhill series about a summer home in Newport, Rhode Island during the Gilded Age. Lilly Westbrook secretly writes dime novels for fear of her family's disapproval, using the proceeds to help support a school for poor women, and is certain that it is her ministry for the Lord. Jackson Grail has spent most of his life trying to be a successful business man, to have the kind of money that would allow him mingle with the elite
Margaret Metz
Dec 06, 2010 Margaret Metz rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was such a wonderfully fun book for me to read. As I sat down to write the review and thought about trying to be objective and look at writing style and character development and all those lovely things I ought to measure ~ well I just kept going back to how good I felt as I was reading it and how much I personally related to the story. It's my favorite kind of book ~ historical romance. It's one of my favorite time periods, it has an awesome cover... Plus I write in secret as well. I know ...more
Jennifer Taylor
Jan 05, 2011 Jennifer Taylor rated it really liked it
This is a charming and elegant novel with an air of romance and intrigue on the brink of secrets about to be revealed. Lily Westbrook turned to writing dime novels when Jackson Grail broke her heart six years ago, so it's understandable why she wouldn't want to turn to him for help when she's being blackmailed--even if he is her new publisher and the one person who could help. While the rest of her family seems to be playing Christian to the tune of Society's standards, Lily is really living out ...more
Jan 19, 2012 Paula-O rated it really liked it
This is a Ladies of Summerhill novel "Love on a Dime" by Cara Lynn James. The time period is almost 1900 and the setting is Newport Rhode Island. Many in this area are well to do folks and they live by certain codes and if you are wealthy it is not the thing to have a job and work, Lilly Westbrook fell in love at a young age with a young fella , not of the elite..He proposed and she accepted but when he went to ask papa's permission he overheard a conversation leading him to believe that Lilly's ...more
Trinity Rose
Jun 06, 2010 Trinity Rose rated it liked it
“Love on a Dime” by Cara Lynn James was an O.K. book.
I really liked the cover of this book and the story is a light summer read. I thought this book is good to read, but not great.
The characters are learning to put faith and trust in the Lord and that helps them to fulfill their heart's desire.
I really didn’t care for how Lilly sometimes liked her former beau and sometimes she didn’t. Also she couldn’t come to a decision about reveling her writing dime novels or not.
This isn't deeply theore
May 20, 2010 Casey rated it liked it
I really like the title of this novel, it sums up the book well.

The story is of a secret dime novelist, a young woman who is writing dime novels behind her families’ back. With the advent of an old lover and a conniving man on her trail to expose her identity, will her secret be uncovered?

Aside from the three star rating, I did find enjoyment and the story was a premise that I enjoy in today’s fiction.

But I also really couldn’t get into the book. The characters didn’t draw me personally as much
Apr 26, 2010 Renee rated it really liked it
Love on a Dime is a debut novel for author Cara Lynn James. While not the best debut I've read this year, it's definitely one of the better ones, and I look forward to reading her work in the future. The premise of the novel was original and I immediatley wanted to read it as soon as I saw the beautiful cover. I especially liked that although it was set during the Gilded Age it was not set in New York City or Boston like most novels featuring the upper class of the time.

For some reason however I
Jun 08, 2010 Carly rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2010-favorites
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. I must just really like debut novels for some reason. Love on a Dime is Cara Lynn James’ debut novel and it is fantastic. I enjoyed this book right from the start. I think the main reason I liked it right away was because I can relate with Lilly. She loves her books and she loves her solitude, although I am not a writer, but we still had a lot in common. Lilly was a delightful character whose heart was in the right place.

I also loved the setting. Newpor
Amber Stokes
May 21, 2010 Amber Stokes rated it liked it
Lilly Westbrook is a dime novelist—but it’s a secret she’ll keep as long as possible to protect her family’s reputation and maintain her secluded lifestyle. Conflict abounds for Lilly as she must choose between two men and fend off those who would expose her secret to society.

The tension of Lilly’s secret, along with the decision she must make between the two potential suitors, are what keep the story going and are what kept me interested in the outcome. I confess that after having recently read
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Sinopsis en Español // Synopsis in Spanish 1 2 Dec 27, 2014 02:57PM  
Christian Fiction...: ❀Abbi and Megan❀ Love on a Dime by Cara Lynn James 19 7 May 14, 2013 11:23AM  
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Award-winning writer Cara Slaughter, who writes under the name Cara Lynn James, is a current Golden Heart® finalist in the Inspirational category. Finaling and placing in contests is not new to her, however. She has finaled in twelve contests and won five with three different stories and is a member of the active group of contest-oriented bloggers known as The Seekers.

Cara writes both contemporary
More about Cara Lynn James...

Other Books in the Series

Ladies of Summerhill (3 books)
  • Love on Assignment (Ladies of Summerhill, #2)
  • Love by the Book (Ladies of Summerhill, #3)

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“Only a short time ago hed envied these brightly plumed birds[ladies in pastel dresses]. They possessed everything money could buy and most had the leisure to enjoy it. Yet their needs were greater than his own. They required a flock of admirers, dozens of servants, expensive clothes, and showy carriages to incite envy among their friends and foes.” 2 likes
“No one, especially the nouveau riche, turned down the interest of a Knickerbocker, a group of old money New Yorkers with cache, if not cash.” 2 likes
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