Book Review: Freckles by Cecelia Ahern

It’s been a while since I’ve read a Cecelia Ahern novel and have several one my TBR pile, but I was excited to be invited to this tour for Freckles not only because the cover is stunning and the blurb sounded different but relatable. Scroll down to see if they lived up to my expectations.

Book Review: Freckles by Cecelia Ahern

Book cover of Freckles by Cecelia Ahern
Freckles by Cecelia Ahern

Title: Freckles

Author: Cecelia Ahern

Publisher: Harper Collins

Genre: Fiction, women’s fiction

Release Date: 2nd September 2021

Blurb

‘Freckles is a beautiful, hopeful book when the world needs hope most. Cecelia has written a novel about our search for our authentic selves in a crazy world. Like all her novels, it’s inspiring, life-affirming and full of insight’ CATHY KELLY


You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with…


When a stranger utters these words to Allegra Bird, nicknamed Freckles, it turns her highly ordered life upside down. In her current life as a parking warden, she has left her eccentric father and unconventional childhood behind for a bold new life in the city. But a single encounter leads her to ask the question she’s been avoiding for so long: who are
the people who made her the way she is? And who are the five people who can shape and determine her future? Just as she once joined the freckles on her skin to mirror the constellations in the night sky, she must once again look for connections.

Told in Allegra’s vivid, original voice, moving from Dublin to the fierce Atlantic coast, this is an unforgettable story of human connection, of friendship, and growing into your own skin.


Five people. Five stars. Freckle to freckle. Star to star.

My Thoughts

Freckles is unlike the other Cecelia Ahern’s novels I’ve read for its lack of the signature quirky otherworldly elements, but it grabbed me from the beginning with Allegra connecting her freckles on her arms to form constellations. This simple image connected me to her despite her character being someone who is hard to get close to initially. Feeling disconnected from everyone including her beloved father, Freckles as she is known has been hurt multiple times and keeps everyone at arms length including the reader. Her chosen career choice as a traffic warden which she loves for its rules and routine she follows with precisely was guaranteed to put a barrier between those in her new town and any relationships she may have. Freckles is a complex and authentic personality with many traits to indicate that she is neurodivergent, making her feel out of step with those around her. She says things as they are and sometimes cause offence without meaning to. As a neurotypical reader, I felt this was a good representation of a neurodivergency and gave an accurate glimpse into her world but with all books with neurodivergent characters the true test is how those with autism feel.

When she hears the quote telling her people’s personalities are made up of five people around them, she longs to meet those who will improve her lot. Her innocence in how she sees the world is refreshing and tugged at my heart especially when it leads her to situation you know she may get hurt. I felt a maternal love for her and longed to jump in and steer her in the right direction with some of the choices she makes on her pursuit to find herself and happiness. It made me reflect on my own life and pinpoint my five, while reading her emotional but uplifting journey.

All the characters around her are well developed and have interesting backstories to help push this character driven story forward. It tackles some heavy topics including self-harm and dementia in a sensitive manner.

Would I recommend?

Yes, behind this beautiful cover is a beautiful, warm and thought provoking book which may have a slow pace but it has depth and introduced me to Freckles who on her quest to find her five slipped into my heart and on to my forever shelf for a reread.

Author Biography

Photo of Cecelia Ahern
Cecelia Ahern

Cecelia Ahern is one of the biggest selling authors to emerge in the past fifteen years, having sold more than 25 million copies worldwide in over 50 countries. Two of her books have been adapted as major films and she has created several TV series in the US and Germany. Her novel PS I Love You was a New York Times bestseller and huge #1 bestseller in Ireland and the UK. In 2007, it was made into a major film starring Hilary Swank and Gerard Butler and most recently, Cecelia wrote the sequel- Postscript which was an instant bestseller. Cecelia has written13 bestselling novels including two YA novels and a critically acclaimed collection of short stories, ROAR which is being produced by and starring Nicole Kidman. Her novels have resonated with readers everywhere through their thoughtful, unique and inspiring storytelling and have won numerous awards.


Cecelia lives in Dublin with her family. To find out more please visit www.cecelia-ahern.com


Thank you Random Thing Tours for inviting me to this tour and providing an advanced copy for me to review and give my honest and unbiased opinion.

A quick Dystonia Around the World challenge update, dystonia attacks and migraines have slowed down the reading but currently on book five. To find out more about the challenge click here.

Take care and happy reading!

Love

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Why not pop over to other blogs on this tour.

Book Review: Matilda Windsor is Coming Home by Anne Goodwin

Happy bank holiday Monday! I hope the sun is shining where you are and you can take the exxtra time to relax and read. Today I am pleased to share my review for Matilda Windsor is Coming Home by Anne Goodwin. The blurb intrigued me because I remember overhearing a conversation as a child about a friend of the family discovering they had an aunt in an asylum after being forced there because of an out of wedlock pregnancy. It horrified me this could happen. I wanted to know how the topic would be discussed.

Book Review: Matilda Windsor is Coming Home by Anne Goodwin

Matilda Windsor is Coming Home by Anne Goodwin

Title: Matilda Windsor is Coming Home

Author: Anne Goodwin

Publisher: Inspired Quill

Genre: Saga, historical fiction

Release date: 29th May 2021

Blurb

In the dying days of the old asylums, three paths intersect.

Henry was only a boy when he waved goodbye to his glamorous grown-up sister; approaching sixty, his life is still on hold as he awaits her return.

As a high-society hostess renowned for her recitals, Matty’s burden weighs heavily upon her, but she bears it with fortitude and grace.

Janice, a young social worker, wants to set the world to rights, but she needs to tackle challenges closer to home.

A brother and sister separated by decades of deceit. Will truth prevail over bigotry, or will the buried secret keep family apart?

In this, her third novel, Anne Goodwin has drawn on the language and landscapes of her native Cumbria and on the culture of long-stay psychiatric hospitals where she began her clinical psychology career.

Find out more on Matilda Windsor’s webpage

My Thoughts

There are three main voices in this novel, Matilda/Matty, Henry and Janice but it is Matilda who shines and made me keep turning the page. She is an unreliable protagonist because the years in the asylum has affected her mental health making her confused, and living in the past but I adored her. She is honest to herself, eccentric and adds humour to this emotional novel. Her confusion is shown in those chapters effectively by making the reader see things through her eyes. It took a while for me to realise who was who because she does muddle names up. She made me care and want her to have the happy ending she deserved.

Henry also came across as an unreliable protagonist but I struggled to connect with him despite his obvious love for his sister. Janice is the thread linking them together and I admired her integrity and ideological way of thinking which is important to make things happen and fight against nimbyism and bureaucracy.

This majority of the novel is set in the late 1980s and early 90s. I grew up in the 80s and it highlighted how much opinions on mental health and events have changed, even in my lifetime. Never mind the stigma attached to mental health in the war years.  The past stories are heart breaking but the topics are dealt with sensitively and highlight the cruelty of the past and the control men had over women’s mental health.

Would I recommend?

Stories like Matilda’s need a voice so we can learn. The topic and range of characters makes this an ideal book to read in a book club setting. There are plenty of characters to love and hate and much to discuss. I imagine they could be some lively conversations triggered by the story.

Author Biography

Author Anne Goodwin

Anne Goodwin grew up in the non-touristy part of Cumbria, where this novel is set. When she went to university ninety miles away, no-one could understand her accent. After nine years of studying, her first post on qualifying as a clinical psychologist was in a long-stay psychiatric hospital in the process of closing.

Her debut novel, Sugar and Snails, about a woman who has kept her past identity a secret for thirty years, was shortlisted for the 2016 Polari First Book Prize. Her second novel, Underneath, about a man who keeps a woman captive in his cellar, was published in 2017. Her short story collection, Becoming Someone, on the theme of identity, was published in November 2018. Subscribers to her newsletter can download a free e-book of prize-winning short stories.

Author links

Website: annegoodwin.weebly.com

Twitter @Annecdotist.

Link tree https://linktr.ee/annecdotist

YouTube: Anne Goodwin’s YouTube channel

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/Annecdotist

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Anne-Goodwin/e/B0156O8PMO/

Amazon US: https://www.amazon.com/Anne-Goodwin/e/B0156O8PMO/

Inspired Quill: https://www.inspired-quill.com/blog/anne-goodwin/

Newsletter signup https://bit.ly/daughtershorts

Book links

Matilda Windsor webpage https://annegoodwin.weebly.com/matilda-windsor.html

Matilda Windsor link tree https://linktr.ee/matildawindsor

Goodreads https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/57764021-matilda-windsor-is-coming-home

Matilda Windsor’s Twitter @MWiscominghome

Matilda Windsor at Inspired Quill: https://www.inspired-quill.com/product/matilda-windsor-is-coming-home/

Amazon UK https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1913117057/

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/dp/1913117057/

Thank you Random Things Tour for inviting me to this tour and the advanced copy for read so I could give my honest and unbiased opinion.

Happy reading!

Love

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Book Review: Son of Secrets by N J Simmonds

Nearly three years ago, I shared my review for an amazing book, The Path Keeper by NJ Simmonds.  The new adult novel blew me away with the pace, plot and characters. It was the beginning of a series; I longed to read more. I waited and, like many others, reread my treasured copy while we waited for news about the sequel’s release. The release was delayed but I am excited to say the waiting is over. The second book of the Indigo Chronicles, Son of Secrets is here! I was lucky to receive an advanced copy to review and it was one of those books I have been desperate to shout about ever since. Scroll down to see why. 

Book Review: Son of Secrets by NJ Simmonds

The Indigo Chronicles Book Covers

Son of Secrets by NJ Simmonds


SON OF SECRETS BLURB:

Ella has been waiting for Zac for three years. She’s convinced he’ll return for her, but fate has other plans. When Josh is thrown back into her life, Ella has a choice: step back on to her rightful path, or wait for the one who dared her to rebel.

But Ella’s not the only one missing Zac. Luci has been searching for her blue-eyed boy over two millennia and will stop at nothing to get him back. Even if that means hunting down the only girl he ever loved.

From Tuscany 5BC to 17th century witch hunts, Ella, Zac, Luci and Sebastian’s lives have been forever intertwined. The time has finally come to complete the circle.

In a fight against destiny – who will win?

LINKS:

njsimmonds.com
Facebook 
Instagram 
Twitter   
Goodreads
Amazon pre-order

My Thoughts

Oh, my! My love of the first novel in the Indigo Chronicles, The Path Keeper, is immense. I’m lucky enough to own a physical copy of the original run and it holds a treasured spot on my forever shelf. The wait to read this second instalment has been excruciatingly long, but it was worth every second.

Fate is battling to right itself after the heart stopping conclusion of The Path Keeper and the characters are reintroduced along with new ones. Ella is as feisty as always and handles her pain in her own way. She was never going to be a weeping damsel in distress and I respect and love her for it. The sorrow she and Zac feel leaps off the page and her step-brother’s hatred gave me goosebumps. It is an emotional, soul ripping read and the writing is more developed than before which I did not think was possible.

The introduction of Luci is inspired and is a character I will always remember and aspire to be for her strength and clarity. The novel blends historical events, fantasy and emotions perfectly to produce a study of the treatment of women in the past and present as well as exploring how the fear of strong women and those who refused to fit to the constraints set by stereotypes triggered the hysteria surrounding witchcraft. 

With angels galore, and passion sizzling between characters, it is definitely not a YA book. The central theme of reincarnation is captivating and with the well-developed characters and many twists and turns it kept me reading through the night. NJ Simmonds  has cast a spell on an idea to create something amazing.  I’m going to struggle to find a better book to read this year and a reading hangover is looming.

Would I recommend?

Yes, get it now and if you have not read The Path Keeper, you need to add it to your shopping basket. This is a series you can not read out of sequence. Son of Secrets is an emotional, thrilling novel of empowerment, grief, magic and eternal love.
I will be counting the days to read the sequel. It is one for my forever shelf. In fact I can not wait to get a hard copy of the series to admire.

Author Biography

Nat_PR_0253

N J Simmonds

N J Simmonds is the author of the fantasy series The Indigo Chronicles – she also writes Manga comics and is one half of Caedis Knight. Her stories are magical, historical and full of complex women. page-turning twists and plenty of romance. Originally from London, she now lives with her family in the Netherlands.

Thank you NJ Simmonds for inviting me to this tour and the advanced copy. If you would like to know more about the book or author visit other blogs on this tour for extracts, interviews and discussions on the characters. 

Love 

 

SON OF SECRETS blog

Book Review: Natural Born Readers by Victoria Connelly

I am pleased to share my review for the third book in the Book Lovers Series by Victoria Connelly, Natural Born Readers. If you have read my previous reviews for the first two books, The Book Lovers and Rules for a Successful Book Club, you will know I binge read these in a few days. This one was no different. Scroll down to find out more.

Book Review: Natural Born Readers by Victoria Connelly

Natural Born Readers - Victoria Connelly

Natural Born Readers by Victoria Connelly

 

Title: Natural Born Readers

Author: Victoria Connelly

Publisher: Notting Hill Press

Release Date: 26th Sept 2017

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance

Purchase: Amazon

BLURB

Can the past always be forgiven?

Ben Stratton and Bryony Nightingale. Everybody thought they’d be together forever. But, when Ben leaves the small market town of Castle Clare to travel the world, Bryony is heartbroken, seeing his departure as the ultimate betrayal.

Throwing herself into her work running the much-loved children’s bookshop, Bryony determines to forget Ben and to start dating again. But Ben doesn’t make it easy for her, sending her postcards filled with his love and posting her foreign editions of all the great romantic novels from the countries he’s travelling through.

Then, after six long years, the unexpected happens and Ben returns, determined to win Bryony back. But will she forgive him and does he have the courage to tell her the truth about why he left her?

Natural Born Readers is the third book in the warm-hearted Book Lovers series by the bestselling author of The Rose Girls and A Weekend with Mr Darcy.

MY THOUGHTS

There are five Nightingale siblings and this book focuses on Bryony. Of all of them, she is the character  I relate to most from her love and philosophy about colour to her delightful children’s book shop. If I ever fulfilled my dream it would be this. There were times, I thought Victoria Connelly had borrowed my fantasy place and written it into her novel. The descriptions of setting are immersive making it a wonderful place to escape to.

Whereas The Book Lovers largely focuses on the passion of books, and second novel is dedicated to music,  the passion in Natural Born Readers is between the characters. The adoration of books is still threaded throughout as it delves into whether the childhood sweethearts, Bryony and Ben can become lovers as adults. The joy of gardening encouraged me into the garden and luckily the tantalising descriptions of baked products are few, otherwise I would have needed a new wardrobe in a bigger size.

WOULD I RECOMMEND?

Yes! Like the other book in the series, this is a gentle, compelling romance which is an ideal escape during lockdown. The warmth of the Nightingale family shines on every page making it is a beautiful read.

AUTHOR BIOGRAPHY

Victoria Connelly Author Photo

 

Thank you for Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to this tour and providing me with a copy so I could give my honest, unbiased review.

Happy reading and stay safe!

Love

The Book Lovers Series Full Tour Banner

Book Review: Rules for a Successful Book Club by Victoria Connelly

Today the sun is shining and I am thrilled to bring you the second book in the Book Lovers Series,  Rules for a Successful Book Club by Victoria Connelly. My review for the beautiful first book The Book Lovers can be found here.

Book Review: Rules for a Successful Book Club by Victoria Connelly

Rules for a Successful Book Club - Victoria Connelly

Rules for a Successful Book Club by Victoria Connelly

Title:Rules for a Successful Book Club

Author: Victoria Connelly

Publisher: Notting Hill Press

Release Date: 14th Feb 2016

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance

Purchase: Amazon

Blurb

Everyone deserves a second chance at love, don’t they?

Polly Nightingale never meant to fall in love again especially not with a biker thirteen years her junior. But then Jago Solomon enters her life with a guitar strapped to his back, and Polly and her six-year-old son, Archie, know that they’ve never been happier.

But what happened three years ago when Polly’s husband, Sean, went missing? And what will it mean for Polly and Jago if her past ever catches up with them?

Join the Nightingale family once again for the second in The Book Lovers series by the bestselling author of The Rose Girls.

My Thoughts

I was eager to start this book after reading the Book Lovers, and I was not disappointed. All the favourites from book one including Sam and Callie return to provide another few beautiful and calm hours in Castle Clare. Polly Nightingale and her son, Archie is the main focus as the cope with the turmoil of her missing husband. The love of books still shone through to my delight but so does the the evocative sounds of music. The author has an ability to describe the senses that make them tingle. The scenes of Jago teaching Archie the guitar are moving, realistic and shows the depth and talent of writer to get into the character completely.

Would I recommend?

Yes! Like the first book in the series, this is the ideal escapism for these turbulent times. It is calm, gentle romance and a delight to read.

Author Biography

Victoria Connelly Author Photo

Victoria Connelly

Thank you for Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to this tour and providing me with a copy so I could give my honest, unbiased review.

Happy reading and stay safe!

Love

Book Review:The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable

Today I am pleased to share with you The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable. As some of you may know, I love folklore and fairies so I was instantly intrigued by this book by the title alone. It was inspired by a real oak tree in Curbridge, Oxfordshire where locals and visitors write to and place for offerings for the faerie folk. The idea grabbed my attention and I was eager to discover more about this book.

Thank you Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to this tour and the copy of The Faerie Tree so I could give my honest, unbiased review.

Book Review:The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable

The Faerie Tree Cover

The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable

Title: The Faerie Tree

Author: Jane Cable

Publisher: Matador

Release date: 16th March 2015

Genre: Fiction

Blurb:

HOW CAN A MEMORY SO VIVID BE WRONG?
In the summer of 1986 Robin and Izzie hold hands under The Faerie Tree and wish for a future together. Within hours tragedy rips their dreams apart.

In the winter of 2006, each carrying their own burden of grief, they stumble back into each other’s lives and try to create a second chance. But why are their memories of 1986 so different? And which one of them is right?

With strong themes of memory, love and grief, The Faerie Tree is a novel as gripping and unputdownable as Jane Cables first book, The Cheesemaker’s House, which won the Suspense & Crime category of The Alan Titchmarsh Shows Peoples Novelist competition. It is a story that will resonate with fans of romance, suspense, and folklore.

Purchase Link

http://viewbook.at/TheFaerieTree

My Thoughts

The fictional Faerie Tree in this novel holds the story together and the mystery surrounding Robin and Izzie first visit kept my attention throughout. I needed to know what happened and the twists in the plot kept me guessing. Robin and Izzie’s lives go in different directions and the dual time line show how their past relationship and experiences affects the one in their present day. The descriptions of the landscapes, especially Cornwall made me long to be there walking along the beach or through the woodland to give my own letter to the tree.

The use of folklore and magic is subtle and cleverly woven into the plot so if you are expecting it to be full of faeries scurrying through the countryside weaving magic then you will be disappointed, but you will not be if you are wanting an emotional read about relationships in all it’s forms – first love, marriage, friends and the bond between mother and daughter. It discusses several difficult topics, such as grief and mental health issues, and false memories in a sensitive, unique way and leaves you questioning your own memories and how they may deviate from the truth.

Would I recommend?

Yes, it is a unusual gentle romance with depth and mystery. All the characters and their flaws will stay with me for a long time.

Author Biography

The Faerie Tree - Jane Cable 2019

Jane Cable

Jane Cable writes romantic fiction with the over-riding theme that the past is never dead. She published her first two books independently (the multi award winning The Cheesemaker’s House and The Faerie Tree) and is now signed by Sapere Books. Two years ago she moved to Cornwall to concentrate on her writing full time, but struggles a little in such a beautiful location. Luckily she’s discovered the joys of the plot walk.

Social Media Links

Twitter: @JaneCable
Facebook: Jane Cable, Author (https://www.facebook.com/romanticsuspensenovels/ )

Giveaway to Win PB copies of The Faerie Tree and The Cheesemaker’s House (UK Only)*

I am excited to share with you the chance to win a copy of The Faerie Tree and The Cheesemaker’s House.

Click here to enter.

Good luck!

Happy reading and stay safe.

Love

*Terms and Conditions –UK 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 Rachel’s Random Resources reserves 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 passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for dispatch or delivery of the prize.

Meet the Author: KT King

Autumn is here which is an ideal time to curl up under the duvet and read a good book.  My TBR pile is on the edge of falling over but one of the books I am eager to read is Little Eden.  I have the pleasure to introduce its author, KT King to my blog today to discuss this novel, her favourite reads and her experience of writing with ME/CFS.

Little Eden by KT King

9781916429604

Little Eden by KT King

Book Blurb

  1. Little Eden, London, England.

In the heart of the city lies the beautiful sanctuary of Little Eden. In the time of King Alfred, this sacred site was surrounded by stone walls and within their protection has grown a tranquil town of historic buildings, parks and gardens, and tree-lined streets.

But, Little Eden and the last 1,000 years of community, compassion and refuge are under threat. Human greed, selfishness and disregard are about to turn everything Little Eden stands for to dust.

Robert Bartlett-Hart must make a choice.

With the help of his friends – plus plenty of tea and cake – Robert learns that there is more at stake than just Little Eden. Something lies at the heart of the Abbey; something that stands between the future of mankind and Armageddon.

Robert sets out on a journey of self-discovery, through past lives, other dimensions, and even through Heaven itself, but where do his loyalties lie?

Will Little Eden survive to usher in a new age or will humanity perish with it?

https://linktr.ee/ktkingbooks

The paperback will be available shortly.

Welcome to From Under the Duvet, KT King. Please tell us a bit about yourself.

_MG_0566 - Copy

KT King

KT:  I love afternoon tea, investigating all things spiritual and work as a complimentary therapist (when my health allows). I try to help others as much as I can. Making a contribution to someone else’s happiness or healing is the only thing that keeps me going! I also love crafting, up-cycling and a bit of shabby chic! I sell some of my handmade jewellery in my Little Eden Etsy shop where all the gifts inspired by Little Eden. I meditate daily and I eat way too much chocolate! I can’t read a lot these days but I chill out by watching TV adaptations of cosy crime novels.

I hope to help raise awareness for ME/CFS through my writing. I have suffered with this little known but chronic illness for over 25 years. My heroine, Sophie Lawrence, represents all of us with this illness. I hope that she inspires others as well as helping raise awareness for the millions of us worldwide who are currently ignored by the medical profession and society. There are so many people now suffering with this debilitating illness that it has been suggested that it is becoming a humanitarian crisis. If you would like to learn more about ME/CFS just click here: https://www.meaction.net/

What is your favourite book?

KT:  This is always a hard question to answer as I think we all have a few books which we turn to over and over for comfort or enlightenment. One book I have read many times is Maurice by E.M Forster, I remember reading it aged seventeen in one sitting.

Who is your favourite author?

KT: Again, a tricky question to pin down to one author but I would have to say Jane Austen, as I always dip into her books when I am feeling down.

Is your writing influenced by the books you have read?

I studied English and French at University and am influenced by French authors such as Andre Gide but also by English Gothic writers such Edgar Allen Poe and Shirley Jackson. I like to mix up my genres so you’ll notice a splash of all sorts in my writing. I’m very influenced by TV and Film as well. I see my scenes in pictures before I write them down. I love the cinematography of Hitchcock, Baz Lurhmann and Tim Burton for example, and I weave music into my novels just as they do in the movies!

Where is your favourite place to write?

KT: I have a therapy room where my desk is actually my treatment couch, I love it in there as it’s so peaceful, tranquil and calming. Sometimes I write in our ‘fancy shed’ if the weather is warm. My dream place to write would be by a lake somewhere in Canada or Scandinavia.

When did you begin writing?

KT: I used to play at being Enid Blyton when I was six years old and invent stories for my friends to act out and I loved Anne of Green Gables and Little Women – wanting to be Anne or Jo. I wrote the sixth form play but then all my writing after that was essays, newsletters or course manuals. Due to the CFS I didn’t have the energy to do anything outside my part-time work as a healer/psychic.

When I had a massive relapse of the CFS aged forty, I was in bed for two years and began to write Little Eden in my head. It took me four years to type it up as I had long periods of not being able to function. But, I feel I’ve been writing in my head my whole life long!

Katie: Jo and Anne are tow of my childhood heroines and both encouraged me to dream about being an author.

How did you become published?

KT: I finally self-published in November 2018 taking a leap of faith that my writing was good enough to be out there in the ocean of books but also because I didn’t want the ‘what if’ following me around for the next forty years. Due to the CFS a publishing deal would not really work for me as I can’t meet deadlines and my writing days are short and erratic. Self-publishing offers the challenge of how to promote my books because I don’t have the energy or the time for major marketing. It is thanks to wonderful, generous bloggers like Katie that you are reading about me and Little Eden right now.

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

KT: Little Eden can’t be pinned down to one genre because I’m too curious to stick to one style. I like to have fun and mix it up! I guess you could say Little Eden is part supernatural thriller, part cosy crime, part women’s fiction with some mind, body, spirit, someone once said it was like Jane Austen meets Gothic thriller and I like that because one of my favourite books is Northanger Abbey which is a satirical Gothic romance!

Social Media links for KT King:

Blog: http://bit.ly/KTKingBlog

Website: http://bit.ly/KTKingWebsite

Instagram:  http://bit.ly/KTKingInstagram

Facebook: http://bit.ly/KTKingFacebook

Twitter:  http://bit.ly/KTKingTwitter

Etsy: http://bit.ly/KTKingShop

Thanks KT King for joining us today. It is always nice to meet fellow duvet dwellers and discover new books too. Good luck with the novel and your future writing.

Happy reading.

Love

 

 

 

Book Review: I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella

I have been a fan of Sophie Kinsella since I read The Undomestic Goddess so was excited to see the news she was releasing a new book, I Owe You One. I signed up for a chance to read it on The Pigeonhole but I was offered the chance to read an arc by Netgalley. Scroll down to see if it lived up to my expectations.

Book Review: I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella

Book Review: I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella

Book Cover for I Owe You One

Title: I Owe You One

Author: Sophie Kinsella

Genre: Adult fiction, romance

Publisher: Random House UK

Release date: 15th February 2019

Blurb

‘A gem of a novel’ JODI PICOULT

The irresistible new standalone from Sophie Kinsella is a story of love, empowerment and an IOU that changes everything . . .

Fixie Farr can’t help herself. Straightening a crooked object, removing a barely-there stain, helping out a friend . . . she just has to put things right. It’s how she got her nickname, after all.

So when a handsome stranger in a coffee shop asks her to watch his laptop for a moment, Fixie not only agrees, she ends up saving it from certain disaster. To thank her, the computer’s owner, Sebastian, scribbles her an IOU – but of course Fixie never intends to call in the favour.

That is, until her teenage crush, Ryan, comes back into her life and needs her help – and Fixie turns to Seb. But things don’t go according to plan, and now Fixie owes Seb: big time.

Soon the pair are caught up in a series of IOUs – from small favours to life-changing debts – and Fixie is torn between the past she’s used to and the future she deserves.

Does she have the courage to fix things for herself and fight for the life, and love, she really wants?

My Thoughts

This book is one of Sophie Kinsella’s best novels. I made the mistake of thinking I could read only one chapter before getting out of bed; nineteen chapters later I was still under the duvet and accepted I would be there until I reached the end. It has been a long time since I binge read a book in one sitting but when it happens it is glorious and very decadent.

Family always come first for Fixie Farr even if her siblings make her feel inferior and has a strong compulsion to fix things if she sees a problem which can have chaotic  consequences. As the youngest child, I instantly connected with her and understood her emotional journey dealing with her family.  Sophie Kinsella has a talent of combining a likeable character and an unusual situation to create something magical and believable. It made me laugh and cry. All the characters are memorable and will be revisited again.

Would I recommend?

Yes, it is a joy to read and perfect for a few hours of me time. Since writing this, I have reread it and enjoyed it more the second time. This is definitely one for my forever shelf next to Twenties Girl which is also a well read book by Sophie Kinsella.

Have you read this or other books by Sophie Kinsella? I would love to know your thoughts below

Love

Book review and cover for The Forgotten Secret by Kathleen McGurl

Book Review and Blog Tour: The Forgotten Secret by Kathleen McGurl

March has arrived with the daffodils, some gorgeous days interspersed with storms. With the rain and wind outside, I have been enjoying snuggling in the warm reading. I am pleased to share my review for The Forgotten Secret by Kathleen McGurl. When I am out I love seeing old doors, the quirkier or unusual the better and always wonder about the secrets that lie behind them. The image on this cover with the protagonist standing in the entrance of green weather beaten door caught my imagination making me want to follow her so I was thrilled to be offered a place on this tour with Rachel Random Resources.

Book Review: The Forgotten Secret by Kathleen McGurl

cover from fb

Title: The Forgotten Secret

Author: Kathleen McGurl

Genre: Women’s Fiction, historical

Publisher: HQ Digital

Release date: 1st March 2019

Purchase Links

UK  – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Forgotten-Secret-heartbreaking-gripping-historical-ebook/dp/B07H2PMPR3

US  – https://www.amazon.com/Forgotten-Secret-heartbreaking-gripping-historical-ebook/dp/B07H2PMPR3  

Blurb

A country at war

It’s the summer of 1919 and Ellen O’Brien has her whole life ahead of her. Young, in love and leaving home for her first job, the future seems full of shining possibility. But war is brewing and before long Ellen and everyone around her are swept up by it. As Ireland is torn apart by the turmoil, Ellen finds herself facing the ultimate test of love and loyalty.

And a long-buried secret

A hundred years later and Clare Farrell has inherited a dilapidated old farmhouse in County Meath. Seizing the chance to escape her unhappy marriage she strikes out on her own for the first time, hoping the old building might also provide clues to her family’s shadowy history. As she sets out to put the place – and herself – back to rights, she stumbles across a long-forgotten hiding place, with a clue to a secret that has lain buried for decades.

For fans of Kate Morton and Gill Paul comes an unforgettable novel about two women fighting for independence.

My Thoughts

I do not know much about Irish history, the formation of Northern Ireland and its complex relationship with Britain except from the odd bits I have picked up from the news and books. In the present day political climate it has never been more important to learn and I’m grateful for the insight this book gave me into the War of Independence and beyond. I appreciated the summary of events at the beginning which helped in the understanding Ellen’s story.

The Forgotten Secret has a dual timeline. One story is set in 1996 with Clare finding her feet as she claims her independence from her overbearing husband after she inherits a tumbling down cottage in Ireland. The other follows Ellen as she gets a job as a maid in 1919.  Clashes between the Irish volunteers and the Royal Irish Constabulary (RIC) turn her life turned upside down. Loyalties between family and friends are stretched to the limits. Reading about the past events and people’s lives in Ireland was shocking and left me reeling.  It started many conversations which is always a good by-product of a well researched novel.

Both characters intrigued me; they were both stronger than they thought they could be and working towards independence but it was Ellen and the increased tension building in her life which drove the novel forward. From the beginning, I needed to know what happened to her and her childhood sweetheart. Kathleen McGurl captured the fear of the time with her words. It was only as Clare’s story unfolded and the farmhouse revealed the keys to the mystery in her family I formed a solid connection to her. By the end, I was hooked on both timelines.

Would I recommend?

Yes, it is an emotional, thought-provoking read with strong women finding their own way. The blend of history, love and mystery makes it a good book for reading under the duvet or in the garden enjoying the sun. I have never read any of the author’s book before so I am delighted to add some more books to my TBR.

Author Biography

 

Kathleen McGurl author of The Forgotten Secret

Kathleen McGurl

Kathleen McGurl lives near the sea in Bournemouth, UK, with her husband and elderly tabby cat. She has two sons who are now grown-up and have left home. She began her writing career creating short stories, and sold dozens to women’s magazines in the UK and Australia. Then she got side-tracked onto family history research – which led eventually to writing novels with genealogy themes. She has always been fascinated by the past, and the ways in which the past can influence the present, and enjoys exploring these links in her novels.

Social Media Links –

Website:  https://kathleenmcgurl.com/

Twitter: @KathMcGurl  https://twitter.com/KathMcGurl

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/KathleenMcGurl/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/kathleenmcgurl/

Thank you Rachel Random Resources for inviting me to this tour and Kathleen McGurl and HQ Digital for giving me to read an advanced copy so I could give an unbiased, honest review.

Have you read any books based in Ireland about the Troubles? Let me know in the comments below as I would love to know more about this subject.

Happy reading!

Love

Katie signature pink

 

P.S If you would like to know more about the book and author, why not pop over to the other blogs on the tour. Info given below.

The Forgotten Secret Full Tour Banner

Blog Tour and Book Review: The Secret to Falling in Love by Victoria Cooke

Welcome to a birthday post for The Secret to Falling in Love by Victoria Cooke. Thank you @raresources for inviting me to this celebratory blog tour and the free book to read so I could review. Scroll down for my thoughts on this romance novel and the giveaway.

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Book Review for The Secret to Falling in Love by Victoria Cooke.

TheSecretToFallingInLove_V2 copy

The Secret to Falling in Love by Victoria Cooke

Title: The Secret to Falling in Love

Author: Victoria Cooke

Publisher: HQ Digital

Genre: Romance

Release Date: 9th February 2017

Blurb

Lifestyle journalist and thirty-something singleton Melissa hashtags, insta’s and snapchats her supposedly fabulous life on every social media platform there is.

That is until she wakes up on her birthday, another year older and still alone, wondering if for all her internet dates, love really can be found online? The challenge: go technology free for a whole month!

Forced to confront the reality of her life without its perfect filters, Melissa knows she needs to make some changes. But when she bumps into not one, but two gorgeous men, without the use of an app, she believes there could be hope for love offline.

If only there was a way to choose the right guy for her…

Purchase Link – getBook.at/TheSecrettoFallinginLove

My Thoughts

I have a confession I am addicted to my phone. It is my constant companion and I find it difficult not to scroll through the social media apps. The premise of this novel struck a cord and I was intrigued how the story would evolve.

Melissa was instantly likeable as she struggles to find the man of her dreams when everyone around her is settling down and I could relate to her. She doesn’t plan for her sabbatical from technology so with no preparation it instantly shows how reliant we are on it for our social interaction even on the simplest level. The world opened up to her as she saw the activity around her, new relationships formed and she began to live. This thought-provoking novel is humorous and uplifting. It made me remember the time before I had access to the internet. I would be unable to last month without my phone but it made me consider whether I need to use it as much as I do.

Would I recommend?

Yes it is an enjoyable, entertaining read which makes you leave the phone alone and appreciate the world around you. This was her debut; I am pleased there is a back catalogue of her books to catch up on.

 Author Biography

Victoria Cooke Image

Victoria Cooke

 

Victoria Cooke grew up in the city of Manchester before crossing the Pennines in pursuit of a career in education. She now lives in Huddersfield with her husband and two young daughters and when she’s not at home writing by the fire with a cup of coffee in hand, she loves working out in the gym and travelling. Victoria was first published at the tender age of eight by her classroom teacher who saw potential in a six-page story about an invisible man. Since then she’s always had a passion for reading and writing, undertaking several writers’ courses before completing her first novel, ‘The Secret to Falling in Love,’ in 2016.

 

 

 

 

Social Media Links 

https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaCookeAuthor

https://twitter.com/victoriacooke10

https://www.instagram.com/victoriacookewriter

Giveaway – Win an ARC of The Secret to Falling in Love and a box of Belgian Truffles (UK Only)

I am pleased to share a chance to win your own advanced copy of The Secret to Falling in Love and chocolate. Good luck!

Click here to enter

I hope you have a good weekend with time to read. What is your current book? Feel free to share below.

Happy reading!

Love

 

 

*Terms and Conditions –UK 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 Rachel’s Random Resources reserves 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 passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.