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Blog Tour: The Silent Girls by Ann Troup..

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I’m very excited to have the pleasure of being the last stop for the The Silent Girls blog tour. A fantastic book written by an equally fantastic writer.  This is my first Ann Troup read so without further ado,let’s find out more about this new and vibrant author. 

Author Bio:

  

Ann Troup tells tales and can always make something out of nothing (which means she writes books and can create unique things from stuff other people might not glance twice at). She was once awarded 11 out of 10 for a piece of poetry at school – she now holds that teacher entirely responsible for her inclination to write.

Her writing space is known as ‘the empty nest’, having formerly been her daughters bedroom. She shares this space with ten tons of junk and an elderly Westie, named Rooney, who is her constant companion whether she likes it or not. He likes to contribute to the creative process by going to sleep on top of her paperwork and running away with crucial post-it notes, which have inadvertently become stuck to his fur. She is thinking of renaming him Gremlin.
She lives by the sea in Devon with her husband and said dog. Two children have been known to remember the place that they call home, but mainly when they are in need of a decent roast dinner, it’s Christmas or when only Mum will do. She also has extremely decent stepchildren.
In a former incarnation she was psychiatric nurse, an experience which frequently informs her writing. She has also owned a cafe and an art/craft gallery. Now she only makes bacon sandwiches as a sideline, but does continue to dabble with clay, paint, paper, textiles, glue…you name it. Occasionally she may decide to give away some of these creations (you have been warned!).
More about Ann and her books can be found in the following places:

WebsiteTwitterFacebookGoodreads 


Blurb:

What if everything you knew was a lie…

This house has a past that won’t stay hidden, and it is time for the dead to speak.

Returning to Number 17, Coronation Square, Edie is shocked to find the place she remembers from childhood reeks of mould and decay. After her aunt Dolly’s death Edie must clear out the home on a street known for five vicious murders many years ago, but under the dirt and grime of years of neglect lurk dangerous truths.

For in this dark house there is misery, sin and dark secrets that can no longer stay hidden. The truth must come out.

Finding herself dragged back into the horrific murders of the past, Edie must find out what really happened all those years ago. But as Edie uncovers the history of the family she had all but forgotten, she begins to wonder if sometimes it isn’t best to leave them buried.

An unforgettable and addictive story, perfect for fans of Lesley Thomson, Diane Chamberlain and Tracy Buchanan. 


Review:

When I first came across came this book, I was intrigued by the cover and title, somehow a part of me knew straight away that there’s going to be something special about this book and I as I finished the last page, I was happy that my initial perspective was spot on. 

The story revolves around our protagonist Edie, who returns to Coronation Sqaure only to find herself tangled in a web of deceit that started long before. 5 murders, solved and forgotten. Or were they? As the plot unfolds, it becomes clear that there’s much more to the stories behind the murders than what has been told and we join Edie as she searches for answers no one seems to know. 

As the lead, Edie was near enough perfect. She was full of strength, responsibility, leadership and love that allowed her character to be three dimensional. Her character growth was a joy to read. The decisions she makes and conclusions she came to highlighted the realism in this novel. Obviously it’s fiction, but that added element of realism really made the suspense that much better. I also enjoyed her interactions with the secondary characters, good and bad. 

I was pleasantly surprised with her writing style. I admit the first few chapters were a bit slow for me but after that Ann’s writing really picked up and the story began to flow seamlessly. Ann excelled in her setting. The descriptions were so vivid and I enjoyed learning about Coronation Square and everything that was weird and wonderful about it.

Overall, I found the novel a good suspense read that grips you from beginning to end.  There were enough twists and turns to keep me hooked and I found the plot to be very strong and it held the book together. I look forward to more from Ann and I will definitely go back and read her debut. 

Overall Rating: 8/10
Thank you for stopping by my blog today, be sure to check out the previous stops on what was an incredible blog tour! 

  

BLOG TOUR: Wish Upon a Christmas Cake by Darcie Boleyn..

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Today my blog hosts the first review stop for the wonderful new novel by Darcie Boleyn, Wish Upon a Christmas Cake. There’s also a fab giveaway for all you lucky readers but before kick-starting the review, let’s find out more about our author and her debut novel.


Author Bio:

darcie

Darcie Boleyn has a huge heart and is a real softy. She never fails to cry at books and movies, whether the ending is happy or not. Darcie is in possession of an overactive imagination that often keeps her awake at night. Her childhood dream was to become a Jedi but she hasn’t yet found suitable transport to take her to a galaxy far, far away. She also has reservations about how she’d look in a gold bikini, as she rather enjoys red wine, cheese and loves anything with ginger or cherries in it – especially chocolate. Darcie fell in love in New York, got married in the snow, rescues uncoordinated greyhounds and can usually be found reading or typing away on her laptop.

More information about Darcie and her debut book can be found in the following places:

Official WebsiteFacebookTwitter

Wish Upon a Christmas Cake can be purchased from the following places:

Amazon U.K.Amazon U.S.


Blurb:

The most wonderful time of the year?

Katie Warham has just one wish this year…to have the best Christmas ever!

If only she could lock herself away in a cloud of flour and sugar at her cosy little tearoom, Crumbtious Cakes, instead of spending the festive season trapped with her judgemental mother, crazy Aunt Gina and loved-up celebrity brother Carl…

But Katie never expected her ex-boyfriend, widower Sam – and his two adorable children – to turn up on her doorstep. She didn’t think that any man could tempt her under the mistletoe this year, but Sam might just prove the exception! And as the snow begins to fall and Katie puts the final touches to her famous Christmas cake, she begins to wonder, could her Christmas wish actually come true?

Review:

We’re hurtling towards that time of year where the festive novels are releasing and taking us on a fun-filled journey of love, family and friendship. Wish Upon a Christmas Cake is one such novel that gives us that in spades, and more.

The story revolves around our protagonist Katie, who like most people during this time of year, is really hoping to have at least one Christmas wish come true. Of course, you have to factor in that being a romance novel, happy endings are expected but the road to that dream being fulfilled is a slippery one for Katie as she turns and tumbles her way through her over-bearing mother, hilarious (in my eyes) Aunt and brother and the unexpected but most welcome surprise of seeing her ex-boyfriend again.

Katie is my favourite type of heroine; equal parts strength and vulnerability. She doesn’t let her vulnerability trample over her festive cheer and charges on with her life with a can-do, will-do attitude. It was a delight to get inside her head and see how everything in the past has had an impact on her future. Our hero Sam is just as wonderful and really brings out the best in Katie. The supporting characters add a great mix into this story and entertain you from start to finish, my favourite is definitely Katie’s brother Carl and seeing their bond flourish was one of the great highlights of this book.

The romance itself was perfect for a warm winter’s (or in this case autumn’s) night. I was pleasantly surprised by how sentimental the novel actually was. I had expected the romance to be warm but the emotional side of the story really tugs on the heart strings and is perfect for die-hard romance readers. Darcie does a brilliant job of interweaving the lives of both Katie and Sam and the Christmas season is just the added bonus in this festive romance.

Although there are a lot of Christmas romance novels now being released, I would definitely recommend readers to pick up Wish Upon a Christmas Cake as it gives you the perfect excuse to step into and enjoy the holiday season with a feel good romance novel. Darcie Boleyn’s debut novel is elegantly written and draws you in page after page and leaves you feeling warm and fuzzy inside. Definitely pick up a copy this Christmas season!

Overall Rating: 8/10  


Giveaway: 

This giveaway could be the perfect gift for you or a friend. All you have to do is click on the following link to enter a draw to win a £20 Amazon giftcard!

https://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/bf63305746/

Good luck and thank you for stopping by my blog today, be sure to check out all the other stops on this tour!

Tour banner Christmas for JENNY

BLOG TOUR: The Broken Hearts Book Club by Lynsey James..

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Today my blog hosts a review stop for the wonderful new novel by Lynsey James, The Broken Hearts Book Club. Before kick-starting the review, let’s find out more about our author and her latest novel.


lynsey

 Author Bio:

Lynsey James was born in Fife in 1991 and has been telling people how to spell her name ever since. She’s an incurable bookworm who loves nothing more than getting lost in a good story with memorable characters. She started writing when she was really young and credits her lovely Grandad- and possibly a bump on the head from a Mr Frosty machine- with her love of telling stories. She used to write her own episodes of Friends and act them out in front of her family (in fact she’s sure she put Ross and Rachel together first!)

A careers adviser at school once told Lynsey writing wasn’t a “good option” and for a few years, she believed her. She tried a little bit of everything, including make-up artistry, teaching and doing admin for a chocolate fountain company. The free chocolate was brilliant. When Lynsey left her job a couple of years ago, she started writing full-time while she looked for another one. As soon as she started working on her story, Lynsey fell in love and decided to finally pursue her dream. She haven’t looked back since.

When Lynsey’s not writing, eating cake or drinking tea, she’s daydreaming about the day Dylan O’Brien FINALLY realises they’re meant to be together. It’ll happen one day…

More information on Lynsey and her novels can be found in the following places:

Official WebsiteTwitterFacebookAmazon UKAmazon USGoodreads


Blurb:

Secrets never stay buried for long…

Lucy Harper has always been good at one thing: running from her past. But when her beloved Nana Lily passes away she has no choice except to return to the one place in the world she most wants to avoid…

Luna Bay hasn’t changed much in the eight years she has spent in London. The little Yorkshire village is still just as beautiful, but the new pub landlord is a gorgeous addition to the scenery!

Lucy only intended to stay for a day, yet when she discovers that Nana Lily has not only left her a cottage but also ‘The Broken Hearts Book Club’, Lucy is intrigued. Her Nana never have mentioned the club and Lucy can’t wait to get started, but walking into her first meeting she is more aware than ever that her past is finally catching up with her.

One way or another, Lucy must finally face the secrets she’s kept buried for so long – or spend the rest of her life on the run…

Review:

I usually don’t let book covers form my opinion on a book but from the very beginning I was hooked by this gorgeous cover and I knew instantly that I had to absolutely have a read of this book. I’m so glad I did because I thoroughly enjoyed Lynsey’s novel.

This is my second James novel and  I was delighted by the way in which Lynsey created a warm and wonderful world that allowed me to escape for a few hours.

The plot of the novel revolves around our protagonist, Lucy Harper, who is returning home to Luna Bay, after a very long time to fulfill her late grandmother’s wishes. Lucy has been running from her past her whole life but when she arrives back home, her past finds a way of catching up with her. With lots of love, laughter and warmth, Lynsey unravels a story that brings you so much joy.

Although the initial premise is quite similar to a lot of romance novels, I really liked Lynsey’s take on it. She has a way with words that entrances the reader and forces them to keep reading on. Her writing is quite reminiscent of some popular American romance authors that I love and I would definitely recommend this book to fans of Debbie Macomber and Robyn Carr.

The characters in this novel are all vibrant and relatable. Lucy makes for a charismatic protagonist who’s dealt with life as she thought best. I admired her and found her to be a wonderful character who blossoms as the story goes by. Having a strong protagonist is a plus but the supporting characters within the story are the perfect icing on the cake. Lynsey’s done a good job of creating a cast of characters that enlighten this tale of romance and intrigue.

I’ve been reading a lot of books where I’ve had to analyse every page in depth, so it was nice to break out of that to enjoy an easy read that allows you to relax and unwind. Although the ending is predictable I liked knowing that this was a no fuss, solid romance that would make me smile and that’s exactly what I got. Perfect for a cold rainy day and to curl up in front of the fire type book, that romance fans will enjoy. Lynsey writes wonderfully entertaining books and I very much look forward to her next.

Overall Rating: 8/10

Thank you for stopping by my blog today, be sure to check out all the other stops on this tour!

Tour banner broken hearts for JIN

 

A Place to Call Home by Carole Matthews..

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a place to call home

Blurb:

All it takes is one life-changing decision …

Ayesha leaves behind a life of pain and heartache and boards a coach to London with her sights set on a new life for herself and her little girl, Sabina.

Hayden, a former pop star, has kept himself hidden away for years. In all that time, he’s opened up his home to just two people – Crystal, a professional dancer with a heart of gold, and Joy, an ill-tempered pensioner with a soft spot for waifs and strays. But he reluctantly agrees to take in Ayesha and Sabina.

As different as they may be, all these damaged people quickly form a loving bond. So when enemies from their past threaten their peaceful life, they will do whatever it takes to save their home and each other.

Review:

I’m a huge Carole Matthews fan and I had heard so many amazing things about this book from fellow book bloggers and as such I was dying to get myself a copy. It took me forever to get my hands on this book but once I did, I finished it one sitting. Carole Matthews does not disappoint with another incredible novel.

The story revolves around the lives of five main characters: Ayesha, Sabina, Hayden, Crystal and Joy. Fate works in mysterious ways and brings these polar opposite individuals together in extraordinary ways and takes them on a journey where they realise the true meaning of home. I particularly enjoyed this book because it was so different from the other books by Carole. It definitely had Carole’s trademark humour and wit but as well as that it dealt with sensitive subjects such as domestic violence.

Domestic violence is not uncommon in this day and age and Matthew’s portrayal of it is realistic. How a woman who has suffered abuse her whole life longs to be free and to live a safer life for that of her child and herself was depicted beautifully and definitely tugs at your emotions. Ayesha is an incredible character. Having suffered what she has, she still starts the day with a smile and never lets her daughter, Sabina feel what she has been through. She steps into Hayden’s household like a ray of sunshine, basking in all of the occupants into her warmth. Without a doubt she was my favourite after little Sabina, of course.

Ayesha’s not the only one who’s had to live a difficult life. Crystal and Joy have suffered problems of their own whilst Hayden has suffered following the death of his girlfriend. Their grief, in many ways, is what unites them but it’s their gradual love for one another that binds them together and makes each of them realise what it means to be a family. The novel shows how family isn’t just made of blood; it’s made of love, warmth and affection.

If you are a Carole Matthews fan and haven’t yet read this, I urge you to do so as soon as possible. This is by far Carole’s best book yet and I can guarantee you that it will leave you with a big smile on your face. An uplifting, emotional novel that will have you rooting for each and every character in this book and will leave you feeling all warm and fuzzy for sure!

Overall Rating: 9/10

If you would like to find out more about Carole’s novels, you can do so on her official website. You can also follow Carole on twitter and facebook.