Blog Tours, Book review

Book Review: If I want you by Rachel Brimble

If I want you by Rachel Brimble is a romance/crime novel and I was instantly drawn to it because of its blurb. Thank you Rachel Random Resources for inviting me to take part in this blog tour.

 

Cover (med)

 

Title: If I want you.

Author: Rachel Brimble

Publisher: The Wild Rose Press, Inc

Release Date: 8th Nov 2017

 

Blurb

When local journalist, Tori Peterson, fails to prevent a child abduction outside her niece’s school, her horror and guilt sparks a vow to do whatever it takes to get little Abby Brady home to her parents.

While Tori battles the vile memories of her own kidnapping as a child, she accepts the help of widowed father, Mark Bolton. As he and Tori join forces with the local police, their attraction and intimacy grows…along with their fears for Abby.

Links are uncovered between Abby’s disappearance and Tori’s kidnapping, and Tori is forced to accept the monster who held her captive is back. But this time, Tori is all grown up, and there is no way she will let him hurt another little girl.

 

Purchase Links–

Amazon UK: http://amzn.eu/190CYmx

Amazon US: http://a.co/c5O5R7s

Barnes & Noble: https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/if-i-want-you-rachel-brimble/1127157672?ean=2940158911118

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/if-i-want-you

Google Play – https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Rachel_Brimble_If_I_Want_You?id=E-g7DwAAQBAJ

My Thoughts

The suggestion by the blurb that this is a psychological thriller is in contrast to the cover with its predominantly sultry male protecting the heroine which gives away its romantic nature; though fiercely, independent Tori is not your damsel in distress who needs a knight in shining armour to rescue her.  It is a high tension romance entwined with a gripping crime.

Rachel Brimble throw you into the action from the first page when Tori witnesses an abduction that takes her back to own kidnapping as a child. Despite her traumatic experience, she is a strong, feisty character who is prepared to fight when she realizes the two events may be linked rather than cower away. This trait means it is a shock when she discovers her attraction to the overprotective father, Mark Bolton. There are twists and turns as the story unfolds and as a reader, like Tori, you are unsure who to trust.

This is a highly enjoyable, page-turning romance with the added excitement of its unusual thrilling premise. It is set in the UK. I had to double check because it has many Americanisms and I assumed it was set in America. In a way, this would have made more sense because in the UK with its smaller population, everyone would remember the name of a kidnapped child – my only gripe but it is easily overlooked as the suspense grows.

I look forward to reading more from this author. For one lucky winner, her backlist can be won – see giveaway below.

Would I recommend?

Yes, if you are looking for a high tension, steamy romance with a unique edge

Author Bio 

Author pic - Dec 2017
Rachel Brimble

Rachel lives with her husband and two teenage daughters in a small town near Bath in the UK. After having several novels published by small US presses, she secured agent representation in 2011. Since 2013, she has had seven books published by Harlequin Superromance (Templeton Cove Stories) and an eighth coming in Jan 2018. She also has four Victorian romances with eKensington/Lyrical Press as well as writing several single titles for the Wild Rose Press.

Rachel is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and Romance Writers of America and was selected to mentor the Superromance finalist of So You Think You Can Write 2014 contest. When she isn’t writing, you’ll find Rachel with her head in a book or walking the beautiful English countryside with her family. Her dream place to live is Bourton-on-the-Water in South West England.

Social Media Links 

Website

Blog

Twitter

Facebook

Facebook Street Team – Rachel’s Readers

Amazon Author Page:

https://www.amazon.com/Rachel-Brimble/e/B007829ZRM/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1490948101&sr=8-1

Goodreads:

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/1806411.Rachel_Brimble

Giveaway

Giveaway to win a PDF of any book from Rachel Brimble’s Back List (Open Internationally)

Rachel Brimble has a rather varied and extensive backlist,  and one lucky winner can win a PDF of a book of their choice from it.  Full backlist can be viewed here – https://www.amazon.com/Rachel-Brimble/e/B007829ZRM/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1490948101&sr=8-1

http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/33c6949478/

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfillment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

 

If I Want You Full Tour Banner

 

Happy reading and good luck in the competition!

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Meet the Author S J Grigg
Meet the Author

Meet the Author: S L Grigg

I am currently reading Coffee Break Companion, a collection of short stories, poems, and work by S L Grigg. The title says it all – this book is ideal to read on a coffee break or those moments in the day when you can snatch a few moments to read.

Meet the Author S J Grigg

 

 

Author Biography

Meet the Author S J Grigg
Author S J Grigg

Sharon Grigg, who writes under the pen name S.L Grigg, made it her new year’s resolution to publish her book ‘Coffee Break Companion’ during 2018. After bouncing back from mental health problems following the death of her husband from a brain tumour in 2009, Sharon was struck down with kidney and other health problems, believed to be linked to having the Essure sterilisation device she had implanted back in 2008. In September 2017 she underwent major surgery to have a non-functioning hydronephrotic kidney removed at the same time as a full hysterectomy to remove the essure device.

Just two months after setting her goal Sharon launched the collection of dark, short stories and poetry on Amazon. Many of the stories were written during Sharon’s battle with mental health.

41-year-old mother of two, Sharon says “For me publishing was never about, money or fame. I just wanted to be able to hold a copy of my book and say, ‘I wrote this’ and now I can.”

Meet S L Grigg

I am pleased to say Sharon has joined me today for a natter and a coffee today to discuss her book, writing among other things.

Welcome to Duvet Dwellers Books.

What is your favourite book?

Oh, so many to choose from, I’m sure it changes all the time depending on what is my favourite of the things I have read recently. I don’t think I could choose just one all-time favourite. In that respect I kind of envy those who have a clear favourite like Harry Potter fans, or something. I have a few favourite series, like the OtherWorld Series by Kelley Armstrong and The Hollows series by Kim Harrison. I guess my current favourite book would be Big Little Lies by Lianne Moriarty, loved it and the show, and the soundtrack! Can’t wait for Season two of the show!

Who is your favourite author?

As above really, so many in addition to those mentioned I also love James Patterson, Adam Baker, Dean Koontz and many more

What is your favourite drink to have next to you while you write?

Whilst I am writing I will usually have water or tea (white, two sweeteners, must be the colour of He-Man to be right, don’t leave the teabag in too long, I don’t like it mashed!)

Is your writing influenced by the books you have read?

I guess it is a little, I like to write quite dark, thriller type stories with a hint of fantasy or sci-fi and I do read a lot of books with those types of themes. You would be hard pushed to catch me writing or reading and enjoying romance/chick-lit or historical, even the classics, I’m not a fan of overly elaborate writing, long flowery words and excessively heavy description put me off, so I wouldn’t write that way either.

Where is your favourite place to read or write?

Curled up on the sofa, with the family around, we might not be talking as we will often all be buried in our own reading, writing or laptops, but it’s nice to just be together 😊

When did you begin writing and how did being published come about?

I started writing as a child, at 11 I wrote my first full story (which features in Coffee Break Companion) and I also wrote a collection of illustrated stories based on the Puffalumps back then. Being published cam about as it had always been my dream to be able to hold an actual book and say ‘I wrote this’ so I set it as my New Year Resolution for 2018 (I don’t’ normally do resolutions) and within 2 months I had made it happen!

If you have a genre you write, how did you begin writing in this style?

As above, I write in a few and I think they are influenced by what I enjoy reading myself. I think if I would enjoy reading it, I can write it, and that’s generally what I do, write things I would enjoy reading.

Has being chronically ill influenced your writing and changed its direction?

When I was suffering with my mental health writing was like therapy for me, I blogged like crazy at that time and wrote a huge amount about my personal experiences and understanding of Borderline Personality Disorder, it helped a lot in my recovery. I needed to understand my condition to overcome it. Many of my other health problems I’ve not written about much, but I think I will probably write more eventually. I have put much of my BPD writing together so I could publish that as a book if I can get round to tidying it up and finishing it off!

Book and contact  details

received_1923391161004774.jpeg

https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07B4F4261

https://www.facebook.com/SLGRIGG76/

http://www.slgrigg76.wordpress.com

 

 

 

 

 

Thank you Sharon, for joining me today. I look forward to reading more from you in the future.

 

For more information about topics talked about today

BPD – https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/borderline-personality-disorder-bpd/#.Wr4o5KjwbIU

EDS-Hypermobility – https://www.ehlers-danlos.org/what-is-eds/information-on-eds/hypermobile-eds-and-hypermobility-spectrum-disorders/

Essure – https://essureproblems.co.uk/

Hydronephrosis – https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/Hydronephrosis/

 

 

Book review

Book Review: The Brighton Mermaid by Dorothy Koomson

I have been a fan of Dorothy Koomson ever since I read My Best Friend’s Girl so I was excited to receive an ARC from NetGalley and in exchange for an honest review. Thank you.

The Brighton Mermaid book cover
The Brighton Mermaid

 

Title: The Brighton Mermaid

Author: Dorothy Koomson

Release Date: 17th May 2018

Publisher: Random House UK

 

Blurb

Brighton Beach, 1993

Teenagers Nell and Jude find the body of a young woman and when no one comes to claim her, she becomes known as the Brighton Mermaid. Nell is still struggling to move on when, three weeks later, Jude disappears.

Twenty-five years on, Nell is forced to quit her job to find out who the Brighton Mermaid really was – and what happened to her best friend that summer.

But as Nell edges closer to the truth, dangerous things start to happen. Someone seems to be watching her every move, and soon she starts to wonder who in her life she can actually trust…

Fast-paced and thrilling, The Brighton Mermaid explores the deadly secrets of those closest to you.

My Thoughts

Dorothy Koomson’s books have become darker, deeper and more emotional books than her earlier ones The Chocolate Run and Best Friend’s Girl.  I love her style, ability to weave a story and her capability of making you feel the character’s emotions. With the location of Brighton, her books have always guaranteed a good read. The Brighton’s Mermaid does not disappoint.

I have only read one book that has touched me as deeply as this one. It is a story of secrets, fear and the complex relationships between sisters. The unexpected conclusion slammed my emotions and left me sobbing.

Would I recommend?

Yes. Yes. Yes. Throughout it was a strong 5-star rating but the depth of emotion and drama as it raced to the end will leave me reeling for days.

A physical copy will definitely be on my bookshelf to revisit.

 

Happy Reading!

Book review

Book review: The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland.

Duvet days are continuing so I was appreciative to receive a copy of The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland to read. I loved her previous book Lost for Words so I settled down with a cuppa, jelly beans — my new favourite thing thanks to Sunflowers in February,  and Nigel snuggled next to me hoping to be equally impressed.

Book review for The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae
The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae

 

Title The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae

Author Stephanie Butland

Publisher Bonnier Zaffre

Release date 19th April 2018

Blurb

Loveday Cardew won everyone’s heart in Lost for Words, now it’s time for Ailsa Rae to live, love and be loved . . .

Ailsa Rae is learning how to live.

She’s only a few months past the heart transplant that – just in time – saved her life. Life should be a joyful adventure. But . . .

Her relationship with her mother is at breaking point and she wants to find her father.

Have her friends left her behind?

And she’s felt so helpless for so long that she’s let polls on her blog make her decisions for her.

She barely knows where to start on her own.

Then there’s Lennox. Her best friend and one time lover. He was sick too. He didn’t make it. And now she’s supposed to face all of this without him.
But her new heart is a bold heart. 

She just needs to learn to listen to it . . .

My Thoughts

As a duvet dweller AKA Spoonie or someone with a chronic illness I  relate much to Ailsa thoughts and the emotions she expresses in her blog before her transplant and after as her health improves. She uses her blog to connect with people outside hospital bed as many do, raise awareness of the ability of transplants to change someone’s life and help make decisions with her life. I enjoyed the pleasant mixture of blog posts, email, and narration.

It follows Ailsa as she ventures into the new world of wellness, which means negotiating her close relationship with her mum and discover her well self. The book comes across as well researched and makes you connect with Ailsa. It is uplifting and made me want to get my dancing shoes on and dance. Or at least put the music on loud and sway imagining I was on strictly come dancing. As with her previous book Lost for Words Stephanie Butland has given me another character to love and remember.

Would I recommend?

Yes, for its humour, insight into the life of someone dealing with chronic illness and beyond as well as its delightful characters. This is one of those books I want a physical copy of for my bookshelf so I can indulge again in the future.

Thank you Netgalley and for sending me an advanced copy of The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae in exchange for an honest review.

 

Happy reading!

Blog Tours, Book review, Giveaway

Blog Tour: The Corner Shop in Cockleberry #Bookreview #Giveaway

The weather has been miserable this spring so I was happy to be invited by Rachel’s Random Resources to escape to The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May in exchange for an honest review.

 

 

The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay Cover
The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay 

 

 

Title: The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay

Author: Nicola May

Publisher: Nowell Publishing

Release date: 9th April 2018

 

Blurb

Praise for Nicola May’s books

‘This book will twang your funny bone & your heartstrings’ – Milly Johnson

‘A fun and flighty read’ the Sun

‘A funny and fast-paced romp – thoroughly enjoyable!’  WOMAN Magazine

 

Rosa Larkin is down on her luck in London, so when she inherits a near-derelict corner shop in a quaint Devon village, her first thought is to sell it for cash and sort out her life. But nothing is straightforward about this legacy.  While the identity of her benefactor remains a mystery, he – or she – has left one important legal proviso: that the shop cannot be sold, only passed on to somebody who really deserves it.

     Rosa makes up her mind to give it a go: to put everything she has into getting the shop up and running again in the small seaside community of Cockleberry Bay. But can she do it all on her own? And if not, who will help her succeed – and who among the following will work secretly to see her fail?

     There is a handsome rugby player, a sexy plumber, a charlatan reporter and a selection of meddling locals. Add in a hit and run incident and the disappearance of a valuable engraved necklace – and what you get is a journey of self-discovery and unpredictable events.

With surprising and heartfelt results, Rosa, accompanied at all times by her little sausage dog Hot, will slowly unravel the shadowy secrets of the inheritance, and also bring her own, long-hidden heritage into the light.

My Thoughts

This is women’s fiction with a touch of realism to the main character, Rosa. It starts in a common way for chick lit with Rosa gaining an inheritance that could be life changing but from the first page,  I found she was different to many protagonists of these stories. Yes she is naive in how real life works when it comes to living alone and running a business but beyond that, she is straight talking, rude at times and broken; she is very real. She remains true to that throughout and her personality carries the story forward as she tackles the locals and digs into the shop’s secrets with Hot, her adorable dachshund at her side.
This book is an enjoyable, refreshing, light-hearted read for sunny days and dreaming of warmer weather.

 

Purchase from –

Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07B8KML35/

 

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07B8KML35/

 

Amazon CA – https://www.amazon.ca/dp/B07B8KML35/

 

Amazon AU – https://www.amazon.com.au/dp/B07B8KML35/

 

About Nicola May

 

 

The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay - nicola may portrait
Nicola May

 

Award-winning author Nicola May lives in Ascot in Berkshire with her rescue cat Stanley. Her hobbies include watching films that involve a lot of swooning, crabbing in South Devon, eating flapjacks and enjoying a flutter on the horses. Inspired by her favourite authors Milly Johnson and Carole Matthews, Nicola writes what she describes as chicklit with a kick.

Follow Nicola May

Website – www.nicolamay.com

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/NicolaMayAuthor

Twitter – https://twitter.com/nicolamay1

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/author_nicola/

 

Giveaway – Win x 3 Paperback copies of The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay (Open Internationally)

For a chance to win – click here

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfillment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

 

Happy reading and good luck!

 

 

The Joy of Robert Dinsdale's The Toymakers
Book review, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Toymakers by Robert Dinsdale

The Toymakers by Robert Dinsdale caught my eye before it was published because the blurb instantly reminding me of my favourite film,  Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium.
I had high expectations as I placed a reservation on it at the library and that was before my friends who were lucky to receive an ARC raved about it including Mai Musings. A copy is now in my hands and the last page has been turned — blimely what a book!
The Toymakers
The Toymakers

 

Title: The Toymakers

Author: Robert Dinsdale

Publisher: Del Ray

Release date: 8th Feb 2018

Blurb:

Do you remember when you believed in magic?

The Emporium opens with the first frost of winter. It is the same every year. Across the city, when children wake to see ferns of white stretched across their windows, or walk to school to hear ice crackling underfoot, the whispers begin: the Emporium is open! 

It is 1917, and London has spent years in the shadow of the First World War. In the heart of Mayfair, though, there is a place of hope. A place where children’s dreams can come true, where the impossible becomes possible – that place is Papa Jack’s Toy Emporium.

For years Papa Jack has created and sold his famous magical toys: hobby horses, patchwork dogs and bears that seem alive, toy boxes bigger on the inside than out, ‘instant trees’ that sprout from boxes, tin soldiers that can fight battles on their own. Now his sons, Kaspar and Emil, are just old enough to join the family trade. Into this family comes a young Cathy Wray – homeless and vulnerable. The Emporium takes her in, makes her one of its own. But Cathy is about to discover that while all toy shops are places of wonder, only one is truly magical…

My thoughts

This book was magical, stunning, and beyond my high expectations. The premise of a magical toyshop where toys are brought to life is one of childhood stories and movies but Robert Dinsdale with his superb imagination, writing style and the backdrop of the first World War has turned it into an amazing work of adult fantasy fiction.

From the moment I entered the shop with Cathy Wray, I was enchanted and captivated by the store, toys, and the relationship that evolves between herself and the two brothers, Kaspar and Emil. It is hard to say anything about the book without giving any of the magic away because discovering it for yourself part of the joy of this book but it takes you on a journey of emotions from childish delight and wonder to heartbreaking sobs. The main characters and toys will stay with me forever.

Would I recommend?

Yes! This is a book that I could get passionate about, demanding all my friends read so I can talk about it for hours. It is on my Kindle and will soon be on my forever shelf so I can dip into it at any time. Buy it (no excuse as this month it is 99p on Kindle Monthly), borrow it and delve into its magic then let me know what you think.

Kindle version available now: https://amzn.to/2GJBzoG

Happy reading!

 

Book review

Book review: The Unquiet Mist by Mark McGahan

Sometimes while hiding under the duvet, I  need to read something spooky to make the back of my neck tingle. I had heard good things about this book so quickly downloaded it.

The Unquiet Mist
The Unquiet Mist by Mark McGahan

Title: The Unquiet Mist

Author: Mark McGahan

Blurb

1991, Sedgley, UK. The Lawsons move into their new house.
What starts off as a perfect beginning for them, slowly descends into a darkness beyond their wildest fears.
Matty, their four-year-old, starts interacting with someone that isn’t there, while Emily, their eleven-year-old encounters a darkness that stays with her throughout the house.
What starts as strange, escalates to an evil so horrific, it threatens to tear the family apart.
“There are times when the dead want to be heard.”

My Thoughts

For me, the sign of a good ghost story is the ability to make you think twice about getting up in the middle of the night and this debut definitely made me wary of venturing into a dark hallway.

The Unquiet Mist takes you back to 1991 and has all the elements you want of a classic ghost story which you don’t see often anymore. It’s spine-tinglingly creepy and made me want to keep the light on all night. Its ability to give me more than a few nightmares means I can not wait to read more from this author.

Would I recommend?

If you are a fan of ghost stories give it ago. In hindsight, I would read it during the day but that may not have been as much fun. It would be perfect for a Halloween read.

Have you read it? Let me know your thoughts below.

Happy reading!

Book review

Book Review: The Coven by Lissy

For those who know me and read my other blog, it is no surprise I was excited to receive this in my NetGalley shelf. I love books about witches and the blurb for this first installment sounded ideal.

 

The Coven book cover
The Coven book cover

 

Title: The Coven

Author: Chrissy Lessey

Publisher: BooksGoSocial

Release date: 27th June 2017

Blurb

The future queen awakens…

Newly single mother Stevie Lewis divides her time between raising Charlie, running a store with her best friend, and avoiding the meetings of her mother’s Beaufort Historic Society. Although her life has its challenges, it’s altogether average. Just the way she likes it.

When Vanessa, a ruthless dark witch, launches an attack against young Charlie, Stevie’s simple life derails, and her long-dormant powers awaken. A 300-year-old secret is exposed, revealing her destiny to one day rule the clandestine community of witches who hide in plain sight.

Now she must master her own magical powers before it’s too late. Because Vanessa’s on the warpath, and only Stevie can stop her.

My Thoughts

This was an enjoyable, easy read which delivered a sprinkle of magic on a dreary day. I love the illustration on the cover which would attract me instantly if I saw it on a shelf.

The town of Beaufort is full of magical secrets, known only to a select few.  When a stranger arrives Stevie’s life is turned upside down. She is a likable protagonist and I instantly felt a connection as she struggled to bring up son with autism. The book is littered with quirky characters with imaginative gifts that I loved.  It is part of a trilogy but it could easily become a bigger series by delving into the other older members of the coven. They must all have their own tales to tell. I am looking forward to reading the second installment of The Crystal Coast Series.

Would I recommend?

Yes. it is perfect for light, magical escapism.

 

Happy reading!

Blog Tours, Book review

Publication Day: The Haunting of Hattie Hastings Part 2 by Audrey Davis

Hattie Hastings along with her ghost husband, Gary are back in part two of this series. Thank you Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting back to review this book and congratulations to Audrey Davis on the publication of this new release.

 

HHPt2image
Book cover for The Haunting of Hattie Hastings Part two.

 

 

Title:  The Haunting of Hattie Hastings Part two

Author:  Audrey Davis

Release date: 21st March 2018

Purchase from Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Haunting-Hattie-Hastings-Part-Two-ebook/dp/B079WN5F5G

Blurb

The story continues … Hattie is used to her deceased husband Gary dropping in and out of her life. His timing might not always be great, but at least he’s still around. Although – when Hattie tentatively tries a spot of dating – his interference isn’t entirely welcome.
Best friend Cat is lapping up her new relationship with teacher Jamie, but ex-husband Stewart isn’t prepared to fade into the background.
Hattie’s mother Rachel faces a daunting battle, one she doesn’t want to burden family and friends with. But there’s someone waiting in the wings who might be more than a shoulder to cry on.
Gary still doesn’t know what his mission on earth is, and spirit guide Clarence isn’t offering any clues? Will an encounter with another provide him with answers, or put Hattie in an impossible situation?
Prepare for more laughs and tears in the second installment of a trilogy which takes a darkly comic look at life … and the afterlife.
Warning: Cliffhanger ending

My Thoughts

This book continues immediately from Part One so if you haven’t already it is wise to start there. The review of The Haunting of Hattie Hastings Part One can be found here.

The story follows Hattie, Gary, and Cat and the plot becomes more complicated with the arrival of another ghost as well Hattie starting the dating game. This is a quick, enjoyable, light-hearted read with the gentle humour from Part One threaded throughout. With the last page ending as it did, I am eager to learn what happens next in part three.

Would I recommend?

Yes, it is ideal to curl up under the duvet or on a beach for a light, humourous read. When part three is released I will reread them in a Hattie Hastings binge.

About Audrey Davis

 

2017-04-13 19.43.40
Author Audrey Davis

Audrey Davis survived secondary school on the West coast of Scotland. Rubbish at science but not too bad at English, she originally wanted to be an actress but was persuaded that journalism was a safer option. Probably wise. She studied at Napier College in Edinburgh, the only place in Scotland at that time to offer a journalism course.
Her first foray into the hard-nosed newspaper world was as a junior reporter in Dumfriesshire. Duties included interviewing farmers about the prize-winning heifers to reporting on family tragedies. She persuaded her editor to let her launch an entertainment column which meant meeting the odd celebrity – or just the downright odd. From there, she moved to the loftier rank of senior reporter back in her home patch. Slightly more money, less farm animals but a higher crime rate. As Taggart would say: ‘There’s been a murrrrder!’
After a stint in London on a video magazine – yes, she is that old – Audrey moved to Singapore with her fiancé. She tried valiantly to embrace the stinking heat, humidity and lack of jobs, although she did work briefly on a magazine which was banned by the government for ‘artistic’ use of naked men’s bottoms.
Next on her adventures was a land Down Under where her main focus was raising Cost Centre One (aka firstborn) and coming to terms with the imminent arrival of Number Two. Still, she loved the Aussie way of life – BBQs, beaches and bring your own booze to restaurants – so it came as a blow when OH announced a move back to the UK. Not a job between them, the climate a possible deal breaker and an Exorcist-style vomiting infant on the flight home didn’t bode well …
Always a survivor, Audrey sought out similar-minded friends (i.e. slightly bonkers), got the children into a good school and thought about taking up writing again. Sadly, thinking about it was as far as she got, unless you count shopping lists. Then, hubby drops another bombshell. Switzerland. As in – it’s packing time again. Off to the land of cheese, chocolate, scarily efficient trains and a couple of teeny, tiny issues. Like driving on the ‘wrong’ side of the road and speaking a foreign language (French). The former was conquered fairly quickly (we’ll skip over the wall demolition in week two), the latter remains an ongoing battle of the hopeful against the hopeless. At least she provides amusement for the local workforce.
It wasn’t until 2016 that Audrey rediscovered her writing mojo with an online Writing Fiction course. From there, her first novel – A Clean Sweep – was born, although it took a bit longer than nine months from conception. A short, darker prequel – A Clean Break – followed, and in November 2017 she published the first in a novella trilogy, The Haunting of Hattie Hastings Part One. Part Two is published on 21 March 2018, with the conclusion following in May/June. After which she might have a wee lie down …

 

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Twitter- https://twitter.com/audbyname

 

Happy reading!

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Book review

Book review: Surprise Me by Sophie Kinsella

Health has made the call of the duvet irresistible so luckily I had Sophie Kinsella’s new book Surprise Me keep me company. Thank you to the mobile library service for getting it to me so quick!

 

Title: Surprise Me

Author: Sophie Kinsella

Publisher: Bantam Press

Release date: 8th Feb 2018

Blurb

NUMBER ONE BESTSELLING AUTHOR Sophie Kinsella’s emotionally charged, witty new standalone novel about love and long-term relationship survival – and how those we think we know best can sometimes surprise us the most . . .

After being together for ten years, Sylvie and Dan have a comfortable home, fulfilling jobs, beautiful twin girls, and communicate so seamlessly, they finish each other’s sentences. They have a happy marriage and believe they know everything there is to know about each other. Until it’s casually mentioned to them that they could be together for another sixty-eight years… and panic sets in.

They quickly decide to create little surprises for each other, to keep their relationship fresh and fun. But in their pursuit of Project Surprise Me – anything from unexpected gifts to restaurant dates to photo shoots – mishaps arise with disastrous and comical results.

Gradually, the surprises turn to shocking discoveries. And when a scandal from the past is uncovered, they begin to wonder if they ever really knew each other after all…

My thoughts

This book did surprise me but not in the way I hoped. I love Sophie Kinsella’s books for their humour, relatable characters and her ability to make absurd situations believable; some of her books especially Remember Me and Twenties Girl are on my go-to shelf when I need a lift and visit an old friend. This book, however, will not be.

It is an enjoyable read and I love that Sylvie is a married woman instead of singles looking for love. The premise is very relatable and the emotions as they are hit with realisation they are together for another 68 years hit home. Some of the surprises are pure Sophie Kinsella magic and made me chuckle but Sylvie annoyed me with the utter idolization of her dad and I found myself drifting off wanting to read something else that wasn’t about her. Dan, her husband is lovely though.

I am left wondering as I finished it,  how much of my disappointment is just me as I know many fans love her Shopaholic series while I found Rebecca annoying to the point I could not read them,  rather than the book. It feels more a personality clash and having too high expectations than anything so I would hate to put people off trying it.

Would I recommend?

It is an ok book and many will love it but I prefer her previous one A Not So Perfect Life and older standalone novels.

Please let me know your opinions below and I  hope I am the only one with this personality clash.

Happy reading!