Thursday, 19 June 2014

Two Weddings and a Baby by Scarlett Bailey

Tamsyn Thorne has not been back to her home town of Poldore for five long years. But now her brother, Ruan, is about to get married and she has no excuses left. Her plans to arrive in Cornwall looking chic and successful are dashed when a huge storm turns her from fashion goddess to a drowned rat. Worse, she ends up insulting the local hunky vicar - and then finds a tiny baby abandoned in his churchyard.

I was so excited to hear that Scarlett Bailey was releasing another book set in Poldore and not only that it is another wedding themed book yippee!!
Tamsyn is living the high life, she lives in Paris works in fashion and is primed to within an inch of her life. She is about to return to her home town of Poldore for her brother Ruan’s wedding but she is far from excited.

On arrival a disruptive storm breaks out and little does Tamsyn know this storm is about to move her life in a new direction.

I was so excited to start this book as I am a massive fan of Scarlett Bailey ( Rowan Coleman) and it sees the first book by Bailey that isn’t a Christmas themed book so I was looking forward to seeing a different setting for her writing even if it wasn’t a nice sunny one! The book is set back in the town of Poldore which I fell in love with in Just for Christmas and it also features many of the characters so it was great to fast forward and see what is going on with the characters now.

Tamsyn goes through a transformation for me when we first met her I really didn’t like her which I was a bit worried about with her being the main character but she seems to find her true self through this book and so I did eventually warm to her. I really enjoyed the storyline it wasn’t what I was expecting at all and the shock find at the beginning ( sorry that’s all your going to get from me because I don’t want to be a SPOILER!) I didn’t expect that. I did find the book a little predictable in parts but that really didn’t but any downer on the book I was still intrigued to see how it reached the outcome.

I love the romance in this book, in true Scarlett Bailey form it is a very bumpy ride but that is something I love about her writing nothing is ever straight forward! The book sees the locals working as a community and it gives a cosy and friendly feeling to the book.

This is another winner for me from Scarlett Bailey I can’t wait for her next release.

Kindle      Paperback

Tuesday, 10 June 2014

One Night In Italy by Lucy Diamond

If journalist Anna had to write up the story of her own life, it wouldn’t make for a great headline: Dull Journo Has Dull Boyfriend! The only mystery in Anna’s life is that she’s never known who her dad is but with her mum refusing to tell her more she’s at a dead end. When she accidentally comes across a clue that her father is Italian, it opens up a burning curiosity in Anna. Soon she’s cooking Italian food, signing up for an Italian class and even considering dusting off her passport to go and find her dad in person… 
Sophie is serving gelato to tourists in Italy when she gets the call that her father has had a serious heart attack. In a rush, she grabs her well-worn backpack and heads back to the one place she’s been avoiding for so long – home. Living with her mum again while her dad recuperates, and taking a job teaching Italian to make ends meet, Sophie has to face up to the secrets she’s kept buried in the past. 
Catherine has no idea what the future holds. Her children have left for university, her husband has left her for another woman and her bank account is left empty after dedicating her life to raising her family. She needs a job and an identity all of a sudden. At an Italian evening class she makes a start in finding new friends Anna and Sophie. And she’s going to need good friends when she discovers her husband’s lies run even deeper than his infidelity… As Anna embarks on the trip to Italy that could answer all of her questions, will the truth live up to her dreams?

I have been looking forward to reading Lucy Diamonds new book One Night In Italy, I love the authors books and I also have a great interest in anything Italian be it the language of love the delicious food and the stunning sights so I couldn’t wait to begin.

Anna has never known anything about her father until now when she is visiting her nan and she lets slip that her dad is called Gino the Italian, with not much to go on Anna is determined to find her dad and on her search for him she begins to do all she can to embrace her inner Italian side she never knew she had.
Catherine’s world is crashing down around her as her two children are off to uni and on the same day her husband leaves her. Suddenly she finds she has time on her hands and so she decides to enrol on an Italian language course.

Sophie has been living in Italy for the last 2 years but after her dad falls ill she has to return home. Back in Sheffield she is desperate for work and when an opportunity to teach Italian for 10 weeks came up she jumped at the chance.

The three ladies are joined at the language class and along with the rest of the class they all soon become great friends and help each other with their problems.

What a great read this was, it wasn’t what I was expecting at all I had assumed that the book would be set in Italy but actually it is set in Sheffield but yet the storyline wasn’t short of an Italian theme. It took me a while to distinguish between the three main characters but once I got used to who was who I soon became swept away in the storyline. All of the three women have completely different personalities and problems so they all bring something to the book and because the story is told from each of their points of views we really feel like we can connect to each of the characters. It is unusual for me but I didn’t actually have a favourite I loved all three of the ladies.

Although the book had a light feel to it, it did cover some serious issues too which gave the book more depth and also gave the book a more realistic feel to it. I have never attempted any Italian but reading this book watching the characters learning the language of love and also with each chapter title is written in Italian ( with an English translation) it did spark my interest and I still remember some of the phrases now so as well as enjoying this book it has educated me to!

This author always manages to create a busy book with lots of storylines going on but she also manages to weave them together beautifully and this book is no exception.  The ending to this fabulous book is tied up perfectly to so we are not left on a cliff hanger or with questions still in our heads waiting to be answered.

I really enjoyed this book, although not the holiday read I was expecting it was still an enjoyable read that I was actually quite disappointed to finish it!

Kindle                   Paperback

Monday, 9 June 2014

Ice Creams at Carrington's by Alexandra Brown

Georgie Hart and Carrington’s Department Store have got the world at their feet. Since a reality TV series put them both on the map, life has been amazing! Carrington’s profits are in the pink, Georgie has carved herself a place in the nation’s heart and even better, her romance with Tom, the store’s boss, has finally blossomed after a shaky start. Now summertime has come to Mulberry-on-Sea and Georgie is in great demand. The town is holding a big summer festival and she and her mates from Carrington’s are planning on making sure that Mulberry puts on the show of its life! But Georgie is about to get the offer of a lifetime – one that is just too good to turn down and something that will test her loyalties to their limits… Will Georgie be able to pull off it off once again, or has her luck finally run out?

This is a stunning cover to a superb book. I have read all of the Carrington’s books and loved each one so I have been looking forward to the next release.

Summertime is coming to Mulberry on Sea and the town is planning a big Regatta and they have asked for Georgie and the team at Carrington’s to help make this an event to remember. As Georgie begins to make plans for the big event things are looking great until she is called away for a chance of a life time that will make timings tight for the regatta but this is Georgie she can pull this off can’t she?

I love meeting back with this group of characters. Georgie and Tom have moved forward with their relationship and it is clear from the start that Tom wants to take things further they really are becoming the power couple of the book world! I did miss Eddie in this book though as although he was featured I just wanted him in every chapter ( I know I am addicted to Eddie).

The storyline was very light and the book has a gentle pace to it and the witty humour that was in the previous books is back in this one and I think this is why I love Eddie so much because when he is around this is when there is plenty of mischief and humour. I loved catching up with all of the characters again to see what they were all upto from previous staff and also from characters who worked on the Tv series and of course not forgetting the gorgeous Dan!

Alexandra Brown has such an easy style of writing that just manages to wrap you up in this comfortable cosy and exciting town and yet it has a very modern feel to it too. I am a massive fan of all the Carrington’s books and this one is no exception so treat yourself to these books today.

Kindle            Paperback

Saturday, 7 June 2014

By My Side by Wendy Lou Jones


Betrayed by her boyfriend and best friend, Lena is left empty; trapped under a weight of guilt and loneliness. Then, at her lowest point and when she needs it most, a mysterious stranger comes into her life with a tale of friendship, family, and finding love in the most unexpected of places… Katy Heath is definitely not thinking of love when she comes across consultant, Adam Elliot, berating some poor patient on the ward one day. In fact it is Dr Peter Florin who quickly has everyone’s hearts aflutter with his easy smiles and practised charm. Yet Katy comes to realise that there’s more to Adam than his determination to push everyone away and it’s not long before she finds herself longing to reach out to touch the man within, healing the pain of his past. As Lena is drawn into Katy’s story, she begins to learn – just as Katy does- that the course of true love never did run smooth.

By My Side is the first book I have read by Wendy Lou Jones, I was looking online for a new book and the cover of this one drew me in.

The story begins with Lena who has reached a point in life where she doesn’t want to carry on. After her partner and her bestfriend make her world around her fall apart leaving her feeling so low and alone she tries to take her own life but luckily she fails.

She then meets a stranger at a funeral who begins to tell her a story about a girl named Kate  who works in A&E and when at work one day she has a run in with a doctor because of his attitude to a patient. Dr Elliott is clearly down about something that is making him push everyone away and Kate doesn’t seem to know if she wants to stay away from his brusque attitude after the way he spoke to her or if she wants to comfort him.

What a beautiful storyline this was. This is the first time I have read a book about a story within a story and at first I wasn’t sure if it was going to work but I soon became wrapped up in the story of Kate and Adam. It is full of emotion and romance and is very delicately written it was a very moving read. A lot of the story took place in the hospital which was a new setting for me and it held my interest the whole way through.
There is a twist in the book that I didn’t see coming at all and I love it when that happens, a book that manages to pull the wool over my eyes is always a winner for me! I have to admit to having a lump in my throat whilst reading this book it is a very emotional book and I won’t forget the ending of this book in a hurry.

This book was both heartbreaking and at the same time an uplifting read it really is a thought provoking book. Pop this one on your TBR lists but have a box of Kleenex at the ready.


Friday, 6 June 2014

OMG Baby by Emma Garcia

This ISN'T a book about babies. It's not about sleepless nights, nappies or nurseries.
It IS about two people, one unexpected pregnancy and a question . . . Viv and Max were best friends for years, then they were lovers and then it all went wrong. Now finally they are to be reunited. Viv feels sick. Not just with nerves at seeing Max again, but because there's a small chance she might . . . quite possibly . . . most definitely . . . be pregnant. It's thrilling. But also terrifying. Most of the time they can hardly look after themselves, let alone a baby. And then Viv's estranged mother reappears on the scene and they all end up sharing a bedsit . . . and hell breaks loose.

I love reading sequels because it is great to see what the characters we already know and love are upto next and so this was why I was looking forward to reading OMG Baby which follows Viv from Never Google Heartbreak.

Viv and Max are now reunited but they have some unexpected news…… Viv is pregnant ! With both of them not in a job where they have a regular wage they begin to worry how on earth they are going to cope, as if the worry of bringing a child into the world isn’t enough then through Viv’s unreliable and useless mother into the mix and things are really starting to get too much. Will Viv and Max’s relationship be able to stand the test of time?

If you liked Never Google Heartbreak then you will love this one. The same down to earth humour is back in this book which makes this an entertaining read. Although it is a light plot the storyline does contain some more emotional parts to it from miscarriage to fertility and financial pressure and family problems so there is a deeper side to the humorous storyline.

I love Viv she is such a witty and fun character. In some ways she is a very strong woman but she is equally just as ditsy! I did find myself wanting to bang her head against a brick wall when it came to her mother Rainey that woman is just unbelievable.

I fully expect there to be another book for Viv as although we wasn’t left on a cliff hanger there is still more that can be done with her character and some lose ends that have been left so I am putting my bets on another release next year!

I do think it is best for you to read Never Google Heartbreak before you read this one, I think you would still enjoy the book and understand it without but it is nice to have the background on the characters so you have a familiar feel when reading this one. So treat yourself and add both of these books to your To Be Read Piles.

Thursday, 5 June 2014

A Proper Family Holiday by Chrissie Manby

Could you survive a week-long holiday with your entire family? Newly single magazine journalist Chelsea Benson can't think of anything worse. Your grubby small nephew torpedoing any chance of romance with the dishy guy you met on the plane . . . Your eighty-five-year-old granddad chatting up ladies at the hotel bar . . . Getting nothing but sarcastic comments from your older sister, who's always been the family favourite . . . And all this is before your parents drop their bombshell. Is a week enough time for the Bensons to put their differences aside and have some fun? Or is this their last ever proper family holiday?

I have just finished reading A Proper Family Holiday by Chris Manby and couldn't wait to do my review to get all my thoughts about this book down as I feel like I am going to burst!

The Benson family are off on holiday to Lanzarote to celebrate mum Jacqui's 60th birthday. Wanting all of her family to be together for this milestone she has treated her daughters Chelsie and Ronnie to the holiday along with Ronnie's husband Mark and their children Jack and Sophie and not forgetting grandad Bill too!

This holiday will be the first time the sisters have seen each other in two years after a rift, will they be able to put the past behind them and be able to help each other when they find out the real reason behind this Proper Family Holiday?

What a superb holiday read. I really don't know where to start with this review  as it is one of those books where you are really disappointed when you finish because you don't want to leave the characters behind. I am really hoping that the author is tucked away at home busy writing a follow up to this book because there is still so much that can be done with each and everyone of the character in this book my mind is in overdrive!

I loved the bond between Chelsea and her nephew Jack, he seems to be able to break down her barriers and touch the more vulnerable side to her it was like watching the ice queen melt! When their characters were together you knew that there were going to be troublesome and comical events ahead! I did feel a little evil though when it came to Lily who is a spoilt little madam, each time little Jack wanted to seek revenge I was  100% behind him I would have loved to have "accidentally" tripped her up!

The book really covers a lot of content there is fun and romance but there are also secrets, eating disorders, family rows and a coupe of shocking twists and turns that really had me gripped.
I found this to be such a compelling read I was quite anti-social for the day as I just couldn't put it down.

This as the title suggests would be a perfect holiday read, I really found myself being swept away with the storyline, this is easily my favourite read by Chris Manby and it has definitely got me in the holiday mood!

Kindle               Paperback

In The Summer Time Giveaway

I read my first book by Judy Astley last August and I thoroughly enjoyed it and it has been one that has stayed in my mind since.

In The Summer Time is released in paperback today and the publishers have kindly given me 3 copies to give away!

Please note that this is a UK only giveaway this time.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

My Review

In the Summertime is the first Judy Astley book I've read, although I have heard of this author before I have never picked one up but I do love to try new authors so I was looking forward to trying In The Summer Time. Our main character is Miranda who is a single mother, returning to her roots in Cornwall on holiday but this isn’t just a family holiday, it is also the place where they will be scattering her stepfathers Ashes. During her stay in Cornwall, her past creeps up on her when she reconnects with her friends and also her ex lover Steve. Could changes lay ahead for Miranda.

 I never knew until I mentioned to a client of mine that I was reading In The Summer Time that this is actually a sequel to Just for Summer, although this is a sequel I had no trouble what so ever reading this book and getting to know the characters so this can be read as a stand alone book, you don’t feel like you are missing something at any point during the book. I can only assume that we would have known more about an incident that happened to Miranda and also about the previous relationship that Miranda and Steve had.

The cover of this book gives a true summery feel and luckily the storyline is a very Summer friendly feel to. It is a very light, breezy read that you can easily pick up and put down making it an ideal holiday read. The author has a brilliant writing style especially in setting the perfect scene. She describes the setting so well that you feel as though you have visited the same places because they feel so life like. I loved how both the storyline and the characters were very realistic and I even liked the characters of Bo and Silva who are Miranda's children, which is a rarity for me as I do find younger characters are often not written very well but this wasn’t the case here.

I really enjoyed this book there was no big shocking twists or big dramas but I think that was what made this book work it was just a very gentle, warm enjoyable read and I will be sure to read another book by Judy Astley.