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I See You, by Clare Mackintosh. Guest Review.

I See You, by Clare Mackintosh. Guest Review.

Today, I have the pleasure of hosting a brilliant review from a beautiful lady who has been an amazing support to me over the last few months. And the bonus is, she loves all the same books as me! Here is Lynne’s review of I See You, by Clare Mackintosh.

book friend

Description:

You do the same thing every day.

You know exactly where you’re going.

You’re not alone.

When Zoe Walker sees her photo in the classifieds section of a London newspaper, she is determined to find out why it’s there. There’s no explanation: just a website, a grainy image and a phone number. She takes it home to her family, who are convinced it’s just someone who looks like Zoe. But the next day the advert shows a photo of a different woman, and another the day after that.

Is it a mistake? A coincidence? Or is someone keeping track of every move they make . . .

 

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4 Comments

Posted by on November 30, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Review: Daisy in Chains, by Sharon Bolton.

Book Review: Daisy in Chains, by Sharon Bolton.

After hearing some great reviews and tweets about this book, I was excited to start this thriller of a book. Daisy in Chains is the first book I have read by Sharon Bolton, but I am quite sure it won’t be the last. I loved it.

dichains

 

Description:

Famous killers have fan clubs.

Hamish Wolfe is no different. Locked up for the rest of his life for the abduction and murder of three young women, he gets countless adoring letters every day. He’s handsome, charismatic and very persuasive. His admirers are convinced he’s innocent, and that he’s the man of their dreams.

Who would join such a club?

Maggie Rose is different. Reclusive and enigmatic; a successful lawyer and bestselling true-crime writer, she only takes on cases that she can win.

Hamish wants her as his lawyer, he wants her to change his fate. She thinks she’s immune to the charms of a man like this. But maybe not this time . . .

daisy

 

Published June 2nd 2016 by Transworld Digital

 

My Thoughts:

This book is an intense and very gripping psychological thriller. It is a page turner of a book that made me read later and longer than I should have. 

Usually in my book reviews, I will comment on whether the characters were relate-able or fully developed. Well, in this book there are two main characters, true crime writer and lawyer Maggie Rose.  Also Hamish Wolfe who is in prison for murder. I was curious and suspicious of both characters throughout, as the reader is made to wonder about the relationship between the two.  Rose is asked to look at Wolfe’s case and to try to fight for his innocence, and we are led to wonder who is gaining most from this relationship, and which of them is playing games.

An interesting point of this book is the women who fall in love with prisoners, those who become prison wives. The Author seems to have done her research and comes up with interesting reasons and explanations about what others may find strange and struggle to understand. As we can see from the blurb of the book, “Wolfe has a fan club”! 

Maggie Rose has blue hair, therefore as a lawyer this immediately brings attention to her personality and how she wants to be portrayed by others. I read on the Author’s website that she had this photo up to inspire her about Maggie Rose. Weirdly the Author didn’t notice the daisy brooch until later on. We do not know who this lady is, but I feel grateful that she was an inspiration for Sharon Bolton to write a brilliant character such as Maggie Rose.

maggie-rose

The twist at the end of the book is amazing. About two thirds of the way through the book, you are given an idea of where the plot is heading. But the twist is a roller coaster of excitement until the final page whereby I took a gasp and a sigh as everything made sense. This book made me think for days after finishing it. I thought back to all the bits I had read earlier on and each time saying, ah yes! I loved it, and if you like psychological thrillers, I truly recommend Daisy in Chains.

swirl

Links:

Twitter/@AuthorSJBolton

www.sharonbolton.com

Goodreads

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

 
10 Comments

Posted by on November 22, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Review: Chances, by Jaime Scarfuto.

Book Review: Chances, by Jaime Scarfuto.

This book was given to me to read and review. I read it and had to have a good think before I wrote this review. This is not the kind of review I usually write, but it is written and I hope I have written it fairly and clearly. I would be interested, as always if anyone else has read this book and what their thoughts are on it. 

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Description:

In high school, I thought I’d end up with James. In college, I thought I’d end up with Alex. As the years went on being with Alex wasn’t what I wanted anymore. I wasn’t being loved and cared for, I was being neglected and forgotten. After the final straw I had enough and started my life over. Being alone for the first time in almost six years. Little did I know, my high school reunion was right around the corner and maybe a second chance to be with James too. But was that what i wanted? Who doesn’t want to end up with their high school sweetheart? or is there someone else out there for me?

chances

Published March 13th 2016 by Jaime Scarfuto

 

My Thoughts:

This was a very  easy reading book. It follows the main character Jeanie as she decides she no longer wants to be with live in boyfriend Alex, so breaks up with him. Soon after she finds out its her ten year school reunion and we learn about her past ‘relationship’ with James.

This was not a favourite read of mine, and the reason for that is I found it very hard to relate to the main character. She seemed to me to be so self absorbed and extremely naive. When reading books, even books with bad guys, killers etc, I always feel I can understand why they do things a bit. I feel that takes a talented Author who knows people. 

I found Jeanie to be annoying and a bit selfish. Although this spoiled it for me, as credit to the Author, she did make me feel this.

At many points, I was tempted to not finish this book, but I did as I wanted to see what happened, if Jeanie got less self absorbed and to see what happens to her and her friend.

Although, I didn’t much enjoy this book, it is easy reading and if you like books about friendships, relationships and taking ‘Chances’, then you might enjoy this book. 

 

Links:

GOODREADS

AMAZON.CO.UK

AMAZON.COM

Twitter/Jaime_Scarfuto

 
13 Comments

Posted by on November 20, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Review: Never Again, by Nicky Clifford

Book Review: Never Again, by Nicky Clifford

Today is my stop on the wonderful blog tour for Nicky Clifford‘s debut book ‘Never Again’.  I have been following the tour and visiting all the wonderful blogs along the way. Reviews have been amazing for this book, and their were also some fantastic interviews with Author Nicky Clifford. You can see the bloggers that took part below.

never-again-by-nicky-clifford-blog-tour

Description:

Mountains, Mystery, Romance: Can you run from your past?
Harriet Anderson’s life is spiralling out of control. Unused to such mayhem, she ditches her high-powered job to take refuge in the Swiss Alps where she meets Philippe Smith, a crime writer with a dark and shadowy past. Thrown together by chance, is their fate intertwined? Will the karma and romance of the mountains and the quaintness of the Alps soothe their troubled souls?
Or will their rocky paths create avalanches that cannot be avoided…

never-again

Self-published via Amazon Kindle and CreateSpace

My Thoughts:

For an Author’s first published book, this is an exceptional one. Nicky Clifford has given us beautifully serene setting in the mountains of the Alps. She brought to life an array of different but fully developed characters, some we grow to love and root for, and some we want to accidentally have a little slip down those beautiful Alps!😉

The book includes many things that I love, great descriptions which is perfect for imaginative travelling, I have spent many an hour sitting in a cafe besides the wonderful mountains drinking the most amazing hot chocolates filled with piles of whipped cream and marshmallows. (In reality, I was on the sofa with my huge hot chocolates). But a talented Author can transport you, and Nicky Clifford did just that. 

Never Again is a great title, as the 2 main characters have been through tough times and both think to themselves, ‘Never Again’ will I let someone in. This is not your traditional boy meets girl, fall in love, happily ever after. Clifford has used great imagination and filled the story with ups, downs, will they – won’t they moments. There is so much drama, and not only from the 2 main characters, but from the brilliant side line characters too. I loved Elspeth best. Have you ever met a ‘Granny’ who gives great advice and who eats more ice cream than real meals! She is brilliant.

“Life is rarely simple…….the bumps make us stronger”, to which quite rightly she got the reply “I’ve had enough bumps for now. Can’t it be someone else’s turn?”

I felt that Nicky has a good insight into people, and to write a believable novel (of this kind), you need to know people. 

There are many amusing parts to this narrative where the Author made me chuckle quite a few times with her quiet humour. There are a few characters from Wales visiting the hotel. When questioned on their ‘Welshness‘, one of them says:

“What d’you want us to say ‘boyo’ and ‘valleys’ in every second sentence?”

Never Again is a book that I really enjoyed. I recommend reading it with plenty of hot chocolate ingredients at hand, whipped cream, marshmallows and also a cake or two…or three. There will be more to come from Nicky Clifford, and its going to be fantastic. 

hot-choc

Nicky is generously donating some of the royalties from the sale of Never Again to charities which are close to her heart.

 Auticulateh – which helps support children and young people to improve their social, communication and independence skills.

Childhood Tumour Trust – which supports children and young people who have the genetic condition Neurofibromatosis 1 where tumours grow on nerves in the bodies and on .

So aside from getting yourself a brilliant book, you will also be helping out some wonderful charities.

Links:

Facebook/NickyCliffordWriter

Twitter/NickyNovelist

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

NickyClifford.com

 
3 Comments

Posted by on November 2, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Blitz: Mixing it Up, By Tracie Bannister.

Book Blitz: Mixing it Up, By Tracie Bannister.

There have been shouts of glee and excitement that Tracie Bannister has brought out another fabulous new book. I, for one can’t wait to read it. It sounds amazing.

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Mixing it Up, by Tracie Bannister.

Born with a silver spoon in her mouth, Manhattan upper-cruster Cecily Sinclair now uses that pricey utensil to dish up fancy French fare on her cooking show, Serving Romance. When there’s an executive shake-up at the network, she’s not worried. Not much anyway. Her show’s a hit after all. Why would the new CEO want to mess with success?

The driving force behind several buzzed-about networks, Devlin Hayes is considered to be a wunderkind in the television industry. Although his plans to rebrand CuisineTV and make Serving Romance more Millennial-friendly don’t thrill Cecily, her charming, blue-eyed boss is a hard man to say “no” to and she really wants to keep her job—even if that means sharing screen time with a loathsome blast from her past.

Mercurial Italian chef Dante Marchetti a.k.a. “Il Duce” was once Cecily’s boss, and she has the PTSD to prove it. Now the owner of one of the hottest restaurants in town, Dante’s egomania knows no bounds and his constant attempts to provoke and upstage Cecily make her want to conk him on the head with a saute pan. She thinks they’re toxic together, but viewers love their chemistry and clamour for more.

As Cecily battles to maintain the integrity of her show, she finds herself scheming and manipulating right along with Dante and Devlin. Is she fighting a lost cause? Does she really belong on TV, or would her culinary talent be better served elsewhere? And could one of the men who makes Cecily’s blood boil ignite a passion in her for something other than food?

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Isn’t that the best cover, you can just tell its going to be food, drama and laughter! Brilliant. ♥ ♥ ♥    Tracie is also hosting a fantastic giveaway, see the details below!

RELEASE WEEK GIVEAWAY

Purchase a copy of Mixing It Up between October 19th, 2016 and October 25th, 2016 and you could win this fantastic prize pack inspired by the book’s heroine and her love of French food!

This prize pack includes:

Garnier-Thiebaut Oh, La La, Chéri French-themed 4-piece Kitchen Linens Set

(Apron, kitchen towel, pot holder, and oven mitt.)

 Kate Spade Deco Dot Recipe Box with 8 tabbed dividers and 40 recipe cards

 The French Women Don’t Get Fat Cookbook by Mireille Guiliano

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Pretty good stuff eh? ! And here is how you could win it all….

To enter this giveaway, simply e-mail the author at traciebanister@gmail.com with your proof of purchase. Entries will be accepted until midnight on October 26th, 2016 when a winner will be selected via random drawing. This is an international giveaway, so anyone who buys Mixing It Up within the allotted time frame is eligible to win. Good luck!

traciebanister-mixingitup-newrelease

I am reading Mixing it Up at the moment and I am loving it, its just my kind of book. Food, fun and comedy. There will be plenty of raving reviews out very soon for Tracie’s book. Mine will be among them. I have read Tracie’s books before and loved them. If you want a fun foodie book, this is the one for you. Tracie has a talent, and it is one for us to enjoy. 

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Author Bio.

An avid reader and writer, Tracie Banister has been scribbling stories since she was a child, most of them featuring feisty heroines with complicated love lives like her favourite fictional protagonist Scarlett O’Hara. Her work was first seen on the stage of her elementary school, where her 4th grade class performed an original holiday play she penned. (Like all good divas-in-the-making, she also starred in and tried to direct the production.)

Tracie’s dreams of authorial success were put on the backburner when she reached adulthood and discovered that she needed a “real” job in order to pay her bills. Her career as personal assistant to a local entrepreneur lasted for 12 years. When it ended, she decided to follow her bliss and dedicate herself to writing full-time. Mixing It Up is her fourth Chick Lit release, and in it Tracie finally got to live out her fantasy of being a Cordon Bleu-trained chef.

tracie-b

CONNECT WITH TRACIE

Author Newsletter – The Banister Buzz

TracieBanister.Blogspot.com

Facebook/tracie.banister

Instagram/traciebanister

Goodreads.

AMAZON.CO.UK

AMAZON.COM

Twitter/traciebanister

 
10 Comments

Posted by on October 24, 2016 in Book Spotlights., Giveaways

 

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Book Review: Cut-Throat Defence, by Olly Jarvis.

Book Review: Cut-Throat Defence, by Olly Jarvis.

You may have noticed last week, I posted about a brilliant new book just released by one of my favourite Authors Olly Jarvis. Last week, I published a short interview with the Author as part of his blog tour. You can read the interview HERE!

I mentioned in that post that this was my top book of 2016 so far, well today I’m sharing with you my review and why I loved Cut-Throat Defence so much. 

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Description:

There is no man richer than a man without a price.

Jack Kowalski is a young and newly qualified barrister, who finds himself working on the biggest drugs importation trial ever played out on English soil. With the assistance of his equally inexperienced instructing solicitor, Lara Panassai, Jack argues a savage ‘cut-throat’ defence – a risky tactic where the defendants blame each other – and quickly embroils some of the most eminent QCs in the land.

As the son of Polish immigrants, the sensitive Kowalski has always found it hard to fit in, with a sense of inferiority and constant nervousness in Court. Now he must face his demons and fight not only for his clients, but for his very future at the Bar.

But when the defendant then unexpectedly absconds, Jack and Lara must fight on regardless, following a tip that leads them out of the courtroom and into Manchester’s seedy underworld – crime bosses, strip clubs, corrupt lawyers and all manner of hidden sins.

As the case grows darker with each new discovery, who in this viper pit of deception can Jack and Lara trust?

Ingeniously plotted and embellished with real-life insider expertise, Cut-Throat Defence is a story of rivalry, ruthlessness and – above all – survival.

 

hi-res-jacket

Published October 3rd 2016 by Canelo

 

My Thoughts:

In Olly Jarvis’ interview last week, he told me that he wanted to show that a Barrister’s life is not an easy one. He said that the media can portray “Barrister’s as champagne quaffing oafs“. Olly wanted this book to portray what it is really like to work in a high pressured job i.e  no champagne, but maybe you will meet a few oafs along the way! Well, mixed in with Olly’s legal knowledge and experience, his amazing talent for fictional words and characters, we are lucky enough to enjoy his second fantastic novel Cut-Throat Defence. To put it simply, I loved it, I devoured all the pages, all the characters and it is ……….my top book of 2016 so far.

The characters were perfectly developed, especially the two main characters Jack and Lara. Jack being the Underdog that we root for, and Lara giving us that slightly mysterious hardened outside but soft hearted soul. Jarvis’ knowledge and experience of ‘people’ shines through, especially through Lara’s eyes:

“..Scared people behave unpredictably”.

One of my favourite side line characters was Jack’s father – Tata, he has a good mindset, is so positive and gives some great advice to Jack, but also advice we can take as a reader.

“Don’t worry, you have a lifetime to be a better man”.

As with Jarvis’ first book, I loved that it was a legal thriller set in Manchester. A lot of these types of books are based in America. For the British readers amongst us, you will know that when Jack enters the criminal underbelly of Moss Side, he is into hardened territory. 

This book is filled with excitement, anticipation, twists and tension. I read it with eagerness and thoroughly enjoyed it. 

Jarvis certainly showed us through this book that a barristers life does not include “being a champagne quaffing oaf”, most certainly these ones are not anyway. I wait in eager anticipation for the next book by Olly Jarvis. For all you lucky ones that have still to read it, I can’t recommend it highly enough. The links are below for you to get yourself a copy.

 

Links:

GOODREADS.

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

OllyJarvis.com

Twitter/OllyJarviso

 

 
9 Comments

Posted by on October 17, 2016 in Books

 

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Cut Throat Defence by Olly Jarvis.

Cut Throat Defence by Olly Jarvis.

Today, I am very excited to bring you the newest book out from one of my very favourite Authors Olly Jarvis. Olly wrote ‘Death By Dangerous’ last year and it was one of my top books of the year. You can read my review of ‘Death By Dangerous’ – HERE!

I was so excited and pleased when I got the email asking me to read and review his latest book ‘Cut Throat Defence’  And, I was able to ask Olly a few questions. 

‘Cut Throat Defence’ is out now, so read below and prepare for another fantastic read from the very talented Olly Jarvis.

You can also follow the rest of this blog tour with these lovely bloggers below. 

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Description:

There is no man richer than a man without a price
Jack Kowalski is a young and newly qualified barrister, who finds himself working on the biggest drugs importation trial ever played out on English soil. With the assistance of his equally inexperienced instructing solicitor, Lara Panassai, Jack argues a savage ‘cut-throat’ defence – a risky tactic where the defendants blame each other – and quickly embroils some of the most eminent QCs in the land.

As the son of Polish immigrants, the sensitive Kowalski has always found it hard to fit in, with a sense of inferiority and constant nervousness in Court. Now he must face his demons and fight not only for his clients, but for his very future at the Bar.

But when the defendant then unexpectedly absconds, Jack and Lara must fight on regardless, following a tip that leads them out of the courtroom and into Manchester’s seedy underworld – crime bosses, strip clubs, corrupt lawyers and all manner of hidden sins.

As the case grows darker with each new discovery, who in this viper pit of deception can Jack and Lara trust?

Ingeniously plotted and embellished with real-life insider expertise, Cut-Throat Defence is a story of rivalry, ruthlessness and – above all – survival.

hi-res-jacket

Published: October 3rd 2016 by Canelo.

I have just finished this book and am giving it a great big 5 wonderful stars. I love Olly’s writing, his knowledge and this book is my top book of 2016 so far. My official review will be up at the weekend. But until then, have a look at what Olly says below. 

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I was very pleased to be able to ask Olly a few questions for this post, and here is what he said.

Can you tell us a little about yourself?

I grew up in London and after scraping a law degree, travelled the world for a few years, teaching English to pay my way. When I came back to the UK, I qualified as a barrister and managed to find a pupillage in Manchester where I have lived for more than twenty years, defending clients in the crown courts across the north of England. Right from the start I specialised in criminal defence. Its been an incredible eye opening journey!

I started my writing career by doing a few things for Radio 4, before finally taking the plunge and penning my first novel.

What inspires your writing and characters?

My greatest driving force has been a desire to show readers what it’s really like working in the criminal justice system. There’s been so much government spin in recent times, portraying barristers as champagne quaffing oafs on huge incomes. Truth is those who choose a career today in this under funded area of law, see it as a vocation. Starting a career with an enormous student debt and expecting little financial reward, new recruits face eighteen hour days, unbearable stress and exhaustion.

This daily challenge and fear of failure was something I wanted to get across in this book. The two courageous central characters in Cut Throat Defence, a newly qualified barrister and a solicitor, are clinging onto their careers by their fingernails.

Conversely, these pressures can bring  fantastic highs, as well as lows, and just occasionally, a huge sense of pride in seeing justice done.

Tell us about your writing process? 

I like to map out the story first, the plot is key, and very detailed. Once I have the structure, I plan out the chapters. When I’ve finished the first draft, I go back again and again, weaving the story together and tightening the strands.

 Finding time to write is a constant battle, confined mostly to weekends and early mornings. Much of Cut-Throat Defence and Death By Dangerous were created on trains. I often defend in the courts of Bradford and Leeds – the one hour journey over the Pennines and back is a great time to write. A reviewer very kindly once said that my style of writing with short chapters has a pace and rhythm like a train rattling along the track. Maybe that’s why!

 

Here are the links if you want to get in touch with Olly Jarvis and want to get the amazing book. 

Links:

AMAZON.CO.UK

AMAZON.COM

GOODREADS

Twitter/OllyJarviso

OllyJarvis.com

 

 
13 Comments

Posted by on October 4, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Review: Gamer Girl, by Glynis Astie.

Book Review: Gamer Girl, by Glynis Astie.

Thank you to Author Glynis Astie for inviting me to read and review her new book ‘Gamer Girl’. Glynis told me that another Author Tracie Bannister had recommended me as a good bookblogger, which I was very flattered by. So, thank you to both Tracie and Glynis. Now for the book….

Description:

Struck by tragedy at an early age, Meri Palmer escaped into the only world she understood. Within the virtual realm of online gaming, she lived a life filled with mythical creatures and thrilling adventures, where she was strong, powerful, clever, and beautiful—everything she believed she wasn’t in real life. As the years went by, her desire to cling to her cherished fantasyland only grew stronger.

But when Meri meets Morgan, equal parts gorgeous and goofball, she begins to wonder if the time has finally come to rejoin the so-called real world. Channeling the bravery of her fairy warrior alter ego, Meri slowly lets Morgan beyond the protective walls she’s built around her heart. Just as she finds a comfortable groove in an uncertain world, Morgan succumbs to insecurities of his own, leaving her lost and confused. Through her battle to regain her equilibrium, Meri will discover that even in reality, things aren’t always what they seem.

Will Meri win the battle raging in her heart and summon the will to rescue her knight in shining armor? Or will she give in to the fear and find her game over?

 

Tikinou Publishing (31 May 2016)

gamer girl

 

My Thoughts:

I liked the initial blurb when I was offered to read and review Gamer Girl. It actually reminded me a little of Sophie Kinsella’s ‘Finding Audrey’. I think that this idea of mine mixed up my thought processes of the book initially, as I was imaging Meri as a teenager. However, she is actually in her 20’s. So my ideas of what to expect were wrong. 

Once I got into the book, I grew to love the main character Meri. She has had a tough time growing up, and now living with her Grams. (brilliant character, funny, caring, the kind of Grams I’d like to have myself!). The story follows Meri as she alternates between her virtual fairy world and her reality of work, life and the struggles that it always brings.

I am not a gamer, I don’t know anything about the gaming world and don’t have an interest in it. It didn’t matter in this book. The gaming part of the book is the way that Meri is showing her fears and insecurities. It was very cleverly done.

I liked how it’s not only the female character that has insecurities. When we meet Morgan, he seems pretty perfect for Meri. He gets her Yoda obsession. (Something I think is close to the Author’s heart too, I suspect?!)  ;-)     But as Morgan’s character develops, we learn he is not so perfect, and he has secrets and insecurities too.

He is cute at the beginning when he comes to Meri’s birthday party, Morgan gives her a Yoda pendant necklace, and says:

“This Yoda can stay with you through all kinds of weather. Not just the bad stuff.” 

Meri as a character is so relate-able, she is insecure, but despite her insecurities she has a passion and as we read we see how Meri strives for her passions. She is stronger than she thinks. Meri is also very funny in a relate-able way too. Between Meri and her best friend Declan, there are certainly quite a few chuckle worthy moments in this book. Before an upcoming tennis match, Declan tells Meri:

“Besides the catastrophic danger you face in these situations – of injuring both your pride and your body – you do realise you’re going to sweat.”

Sometimes in a book its the small things that are not really hugely relevant in the story line, but these small things make the story so much more real and pull the reader in to the involvement of the characters lives. For the first half of the book, we don’t know what ‘Meri’ is short for. She doesn’t tell Morgan, as she thinks its a weird name. I didn’t guess the name, but it kept me wondering. That’s what I mean by the smallest parts of a story line. Her name is very fitting by the way. You will have to read to find out what it is!

I love how Authors can bring to live imaginary characters that you can’t help but fall in love with, and are so memorable and distinct that they stay with you, almost as friends you are waiting for your next catch up with. I really enjoyed Astie’s smooth writing style.She developed amazing characters in Meri, Declan, Grams and a couple of other brilliant sideline characters. I recommend this book, and I look forward to more from Glynis Astie.

Overall, this is an enjoyable book, with love, friendship, laughter and a good old bit of Gram’s ‘phelgm speak!’. This is funny not disgusting! You will need to read it to find out what I mean by this! 

Links:

Goodreads.

AMAZON.CO.UK

AMAZON.COM

Twitter/GlynisAstie

Facebook/glynisastieauthor

www.glynisastie.com

 

 

Glynis never expected in her wildest dreams to be a writer. After thirteen years in the Human Resources Industry, she decided to stay at home with her two amazing sons. Ever in search of a project, she was inspired to write the story of how, in only six short months, she met and married her wonderfully romantic French husband, Sebastien. The end result became her first novel, French Twist. As this was just the beginning of their epic love story, Glynis continued to chronicle their adventures in the sequel, French Toast, and the final installment in the series, French Fry. After she finished milking her life story for all it was worth, she decided to write straight-up fiction with Gamer Girl, which infuses her beloved chick lit with a hint of fantasy. When Glynis is not writing, she is trying to keep the peace amongst the three men and two cats in her life, finding missing body parts (Lego pieces are small!), supervising a myriad of homework assignments and keeping a tenuous hold on her sanity by consuming whatever chocolate is in the vicinity.

waiting to read

 

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15 Comments

Posted by on August 20, 2016 in Books

 

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Book Review: The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis. #Giveaway

Book Review: The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis. #Giveaway

I am very happy today to bring you my stop on the blog tour for the brilliant new Susan Lewis book ‘The Moment She Left’. Thank you to Louise Page for gifting me a copy of the book  which I very much enjoyed. Below I will tell you why I loved it and also I am thrilled to be able to offer one of my lovely readers a free copy of this wonderful book. See the rafflecopter section at the bottom of the post, and if you love the sound of this book then enter away.

The Moment She Left, by Susan Lewis.The Moment She Left hb jacket

 

Description:

Kesterly-on-Sea is full of secrets.

Some are darker than others; many are shameful. One is even deadly.

Andee is an ex-detective whose marriage is breaking up. So when a young female student disappears without trace, she throws herself into the search.

Meanwhile, the town’s beloved Rowzee Cayne has just discovered that she is terminally ill, and doesn’t want to burden her family and friends with the news.

Andee and Rowzee don’t know it yet, but their journeys are going to help them uncover a secret. One that is going to affect them more than they could ever imagine.

Blog-tour-banner1

 

Published July 28th 2016 by Cornerstone Digital

 

My Thoughts:

This is actually the first Susan Lewis book that I have read, and now knowing that she has written over 30 novels, I am very happy to say that my ‘want to read pile’ has just grown a lot bigger! My Mum and my lovely bookblogger friend Irena both recommended Susan Lewis to me, so when the opportunity came up to take part in this blog tour, I jumped at the chance. (You can read Irena’s review of this book  HERE!

The first chapter is the setting of this book, where we hear about the girl who has gone missing Jessica. After that first chapter, we hear from all the other characters who all have their own separate stories but as the book continues, you see how they become linked up.

From the description on the front cover of this book, you read “Sometimes the truth is best kept secret”. This book is a lot about secrets and should we keep things to ourselves, is that the best way to protect others or protect ourselves. It is a book that makes you think. In a way the book kind of reminds a little bit like Jodi Picoult books. And I am a big fan of Picoult, so this is indeed a compliment to Lewis.

The book tells the story of Jessica’s family and those who love her, their grief and need to know what has happened to her. Then we have Andee, who is having family problems, but is the detective who has been asked to try to find Jessica. Then we have Rowzee and her sister Pamela. They both have secrets of their own. So with this big mix up of characters, secrets, lies and loss, Lewis has developed a brilliant novel which will keep you up late reading, and intrigued as to what happened to Jessica, what about the other secrets, will they come out or will they stay with the owner until death parts them?!!

Rowzee was definitely my very favourite character in this book, she is kind and generous to a fault. Even when she finds out terrible things about people she is still the person who says they should be given chances and understanding. Is she generous and caring to a fault? You will have to read and see for yourself. 

A quote that is quite prevalent to this whole story is said by one character who shall remain nameless until you read it yourself:

“It goes to show that you never know anyone as well as you think you do….”

 

 

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Links:

Twitter/@susandlewis

SusanLewis.com

AMAZON.CO.UK

AMAZON.COM

GOODREADS.

 

Also published in paperback on July 28th was another of Susan Lewis’s best sellers, ‘The Girl Who Came Back’. This already has over 50 fantastic reviews on Goodreads, which you can read HERE!

The Girl Who Came Back pb jacket

 

But now for the much awaited giveaway! You know what to do, follow the rafflecopter link and do what it tells you too. Good luck, and I hope to hear your thoughts on this Susan Lewis book and any others of hers you have read and can recommend to me. 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 


susan

Susan Lewis was born in Bristol in 1956. Her father Eddie, was a Welsh miner, a poet, an engineer and an unashamed communist who loved to write. Her mother, Eddress, one of thirteen children, was a fiery, indomitable woman with great aspirations for her young family. Susan and her younger brother were brought up in a spanking new council house on the outskirts of town; money was tight, but they were a happy, lively family.

Susan was nine and her brother five when her mother died of breast cancer at thirty-three; Susan’s father was thirty-seven and he never married again. Sending Susan to boarding school was thought to be ‘for the best’ but Susan disagreed. No one listened to her pleas for freedom, so after a while she took it upon herself to get expelled. By the time she was thirteen, she was back in the little council house with her father and brother.

At eighteen, Susan got a job at HTV in Bristol and at twenty-two moved to London to work for Thames Television. She moved up the ranks; from a secretary in news and current affairs, to a production assistant in light entertainment and drama. It was whilst she was at Thames that she started writing fiction. Thirty-six novels later, Susan is one of the UK’s bestselling fiction writers. As well as fiction, Susan has written two moving memoirs about her childhood in Bristol: Just One More Day and the sequel One Day at a Time.

Losing her mother at such an early age had a profound effect on Susan’s life, which is why she is a long-term supporter of Breast Cancer Care, the only UK-wide charity providing specialist support and tailored information to anyone affected by breast cancer, and Winston’s Wish the charity for bereaved children.

After years living abroad in LA and France, Susan returned to England in 2009 and now lives in a beautiful converted barn in Gloucestershire with her husband and two dogs.

For further information about Susan Lewis visit www.susanlewis.comSusan Lewis is available for interview and feature writing. Contact Louise Page PR on 020 8741 5663 or email louise@lpagepr.co.uk .

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26 Comments

Posted by on August 12, 2016 in Books, Giveaways

 

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My Favourite BookBloggers.

My Favourite BookBloggers.

Today I am going to share with you some of my favourite bookbloggers. I started ChocolatePages after reading many other bookblogs, until I decided that I could and wanted to write one too. I love sharing my thoughts about what I’ve read, what I’m going to read and many other bookish thoughts. But I also love reading other people’s thoughts too. So, here are ten of my favourite bookbloggers. Not in any particular order, they are all amazing. 

book friend

 

So, lets get started:  

*Each picture belongs to the blogger I speak about.

Irena from BookDustMagic.Wordpress.com is fantastic.

irena

Irena and I did a buddy read when we first ‘met’, and I have been a firm fan of hers ever since. Irena enjoys the same kind of books as me, and I find her reviews brilliant. Irena is a blogger that I will easily take book recommendations from. Plus she regularly has excellent giveaways on her site. 

 

Kat from perksofabooknerd.com is a really charismatic blogger.

kat

Kat tends to review more fantasy and YA books, but there is a variety of genres there too. Kat has a brilliant youtube channel, and I am subscribed so that I can watch all the vlogs that she makes. I love hearing about her travels to all the book conventions. Her youtube channel is kat TheBookNerd

 

 

Rayna from  ReaderRayna.com is so talented and imaginative.

rayna

Rayna has a fantastic blog, my favourite part of her blog is her many discussions. There is so much to read on Rayna’s blog, from her weekly meme’s to book hauls, to of course her fabulous reviews. Rayna has a wide variety of genres that she reviews, so there is always a good recommendation coming from her corner of the net.

 

 

Donna from Chocolatenwafflesblog.wordpress.com  is brilliant.

 

I immediately knew I would love Donna’s site, when I read her name. Chocolate and waffles! Now she and I have a lot in common, chocolate and books, and I can always go a waffle or two. Her blog is so beautiful, and I love that she does ‘This Week in Books’ nearly every week, so there are always great books to learn about, and what Donna thinks of them. 

 

 

Claire from ClaireHuston.Wordpress.com puts all my favourite things together, books, chocolate and cake!

CLAIRE

I love Claire’s blog. There is a always a delicious new recipe to try, and a brilliant book review to read. Claire has also written her own novel which sounds like a great read to me, so publishers – look out for this talented lady! Claire’s blog is a fabulous place to go to enjoy some indulgent ‘me time’.

 

Rachel from ConfessionsofaBookGeek.com is amazing.

Rachel’s site is brilliant. She has great bookish discussions always giving thoughtful points of view and welcoming conversational discussion points in her comment section. Rachel regularly gives us her ‘stacking the shelves’ round up of all her posts and reads, but she also tells us about lots of other blogger’s interesting posts she has read over the weeks. I always find new bloggers to follow and interesting posts through Rachel’s ‘Stacking the Shelves’ posts. And of course Rachel gives us great book reviews.

 

Suze and Anniek from WithLoveForBooks.com are lovely girls.

suze

WithLoveForBooks is an amazing site. Suze and Anniek can read so many books and write reviews at a fantastic speed. They have Author interviews and so many brilliant bookish giveaways. I was lucky enough to win a package of 8 amazing summer books a few months ago. They have new reviews and giveaways almost daily on their site. Plus the giveaways are usually international. 

 

 

Sharon from ShazsBookBlog.Blogspot.co.uk is inspiring.

shaz

Sharon has very similar taste in books to me. We both like chick lit and crime thrillers, so I am always keen to see what Sharon is reading and what she thinks of the books. Shaz reads way faster than me, so my ‘want to read’ pile grows ever bigger after reading her reviews. Shaz has just done a ‘food and drink in books’ month. I love foodie books, so I really enjoyed this theme.

 

Jo from MyChestnutReadingTree.wordpress.com always give a thrilling read.

jo chestnut

Jo’s blog is the blog that makes my ‘want to read’ pile grow daily! She mainly reviews psychological or crime thrillers, just the kind of books that I love. The way Jo writes her reviews is fantastic, she tells us how the books make her feel, along with all the other reviewing skills. She certainly knows how to make me want to read read read.

 

AJ from ajbookreviewclub.wordpress.com, I loved her from the very start.

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AJ started her blog the same time as me, and ever since we have become firm bookblogging buddies. We love all the same books, I can always take great recommendations from her. Plus AJ does her unique #AJsCoolCoverChallenge, whereby each week she chooses a different topic of book, and a group of bloggers use her # to reveal what we are reading and their covers. I love AJ’s blog.

 

books and tea

So, be sure to check out these lovely bloggers, all their sites are linked into their names, so you can easily find them. Of course there are many many more fantastic bloggers out there, and I always like to hear great recommendations of new ones to read. So, if you can recommend some to me, or you know and agree with the bloggers I love, let me know in the comments below.

 

 

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35 Comments

Posted by on August 7, 2016 in Books, Uncategorized

 

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