RSS

Author Archives: chocolatepages

About chocolatepages

Just a girl loving books, crafting, baking and new things...... hence this blogging experience!!!!!..........

Book Review: Where the Dead Fall by M J Lee.

Book Review: Where the Dead Fall by M J Lee.

I was sent an advanced copy of Where the Dead Fall by M J Lee. With thanks to Author M J Lee and publishers Canelo . This is book 2 in the detective Ridpath series, but it did not matter at all that I had not read book 1. Crime thrillers are my thing, so I was looking forward to getting stuck in to this book.

Description:

One chance encounter, one street side murder, will change everything… The extraordinary new Ridpath crime thriller
Manchester has been at peace for twenty years. Not any more.

DI Ridpath is in the process of getting his life back together when everything goes wrong.

Driving to meet his daughter, he his caught in a horrific motorway accident, in which a near-naked man is rundown by a lorry, while fleeing from a lone gunman. As Ridpath closes Manchester’s road network in search of the assailant, one question remains: why did nobody else see him?

Ridpath’s investigations, which at first seem to follow protocol, soon unearth a number of inconsistencies, which pulls the police force itself into question, and hint at something sinister to come…

For Manchester is on the brink of a fresh surge of violence unlike anything it has seen in decades. As Ridpath battles this unprecedented conflict, he must battle his own demons. One thing is for sure. There will be blood on the streets…

The nail-biting sequel to Where the Truth Lies, M J Lee’s Where the Dead Fall is an absolute must read, perfect for fans of Mark Billingham, Faith Martin and Peter James

My Thoughts:

This is the second book in the DI Ridpath series. I haven’t read the first one and it didn’t matter. In this book, Ridpath is recovering after cancer treatment and so is on lighter duties and has been asked to work at the coroners office instead, much to his dismay. However, the determined detective that he is, can’t stay away from the Major Incident Team. Plus when he is the only witness to see a man with a gun, he is involved automatically.

This book is current and I love that it was based in Manchester and talked about daily conversational things, like the football league talk and Theresa May. Although I enjoy the murders, detective work and the twists and guessing work of thriller novels. In order to bring a book to life, in my opinion the characters need to seem real, and for me that includes life talk, like who will win the football game that the two detectives support. Of course, this also brings major hassles to DI Ridpath, as his decisions involve holding up a traffic jam for 3 hours prior to a major football match! This is also the time when he sees what no one else sees, and brings him slap bang into the middle of a murder….. the problem is, he is the only one that thinks its murder!

DI Ridpath is likeable and a very good detective, but also so infuriating to, as he puts his work before everything which includes his family and his own health. Of course that makes him a great detective but also one full of personal problems.

As the book is based in Manchester, it talks a lot about the gang wars that occured there in the past. The police are majorly concerned that these murders are going to re start what was dubbed as ‘Gunchester’. The detectives talk about finding out the Who, Where and Why of the murders in order to solve the case. I liked that we were totally involved in the way the police worked and attempted to solve and bring to justice the criminals. However what was interesting in the book was the politics and sometimes division between the different branches and levels of police. I think the Author M J Lee has done real and thorough research in order to make this book as realistic but obviously fictional as possible. A talented, clever and imaginative Author. I recommend Where the Dead Fall to all fans of crime thrillers, and especially those who prefer British crime books.


Links:

www.writermjlee.com

Twitter/WriterMJLee

Amazon.co.uk

Advertisements
 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 17, 2019 in Books, Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , ,

A Cosy Mystery in Cambridge. Book Review: Death Comes To Call. ( Detective Tara Thorpe). By Clare Chase.

A Cosy Mystery in Cambridge. Book Review: Death Comes To Call. ( Detective Tara Thorpe). By Clare Chase.

Death Comes To Call is book 3 in the Detective Tara Thorpe mysteries written by Clare Chase. Although I have read and enjoyed other books by Clare, I somehow missed the first in this series. However it did not matter that I hadn’t read the previous books. Death Comes to Call was great as a standalone. I could however tell when there were bits in the book that had come from previous books, which only made me wish I had read them first.

Description:
When a promising local artist disappears, the victim’s brother begs Detective Tara Thorpe to take the case. It seems there’s no evidence of foul play… he simply disappeared without a trace.
Tara agrees to do some digging… never mind that her unorthodox approach to policing has got a few of her colleagues’ backs up. Amongst them is her former supervisor Detective Patrick Wilkins… he’s had enough of Tara calling the shots and will do anything to knock her down. She must be careful.
At least she has an ally in their boss, Detective Garstin Blake. He’ll always back her hunches. If anything, they work together too well… at least, that’s the rumour around the station these days.

When a body of a young woman is found frozen near the fens, Tara’s evidence suddenly becomes key to solving a high-profile murder. Is their missing artist still a victim… or in fact a clever murderer with a deadly plan?

An unputdownable page-turner that will keep you hooked until the very last page! Can be read as a standalone.


These are the books in the series. As you can see there is another Tara Thorpe book published since I read this one.
The Tara Thorpe Mystery Series:
Book 1 – Murder on the Marshes
Book 2Death on the River
Book 3Death Comes to Call
Book 4Murder in the Fenswithout a trace.

My Thoughts on Book 3 Death Comes to Call.

If you like cosy mysteries, then this is a book for you. Tara Thorpe is a detective with a journalistic instinct. That’s because she used to be a journalist! I knew from the start that was going to spell trouble, but also that it would make Tara a great detective.

The case Tara looks at initially seems to be quite open and shut! But Tara is not so sure and keeps digging. Her journalistic nose is correct and soon she has 2 dead bodies to investigate. Whilst the investigation continues to question work colleagues, friends and family of the dead,Tara continues to rub some of her colleagues up the wrong way. This never stopped a journalist before and I think Tara maybe forgets she is now a detective not a journalist. Tara is likeable and clever. When she has a bit between her teeth she will not let go.

I enjoyed this book because of the good range of characters, each with their own depth of personality. It’s not often I read cosy mysteries, I tend to go more for the dark or psychological thrillers so it was a good change to be transported to Cambridge which sounds like a beautiful arty place with many chameleon type people and places. I got the impression from this book that the area where that the Author wrote of could come across as idyllic until you look more closely to see the underbelly of deceit amongst some of the inhabitants. ( always a good premise for a murder or two!)

Death Comes to Call is a fictional cosy mystery which is so well written that the words flow enough to transport you to Cambridge in the snow. Where with each chapter you get to know Tara better, and while getting a feel for her, I got a suspicion and dislike for many of the other characters, while never guessing whodunit!

Clare Chase is a fantastic Author and I highly recommend her books to all lovers of cosy mysteries and to anyone who has been to Cambridge!


Links:

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

Goodreads

www.clarechase.com

 
4 Comments

Posted by on August 10, 2019 in Books

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Creative Ways to Decorate your Envelopes. #snailmail #paperlove.

Creative Ways to Decorate your Envelopes. #snailmail #paperlove.

In my previous posts, I have shared with you reasons why writing letters is a good thing. See my 10 reasons to write a letter HERE! .

Today I will be sharing some ways that you can easily and very effectively decorate the envelopes of the letters that you write and post. Happy mail becomes happy to the receiver right from the moment they see it fall through the letter box. So for maximum joy, you could make your envelopes look pretty with easy to find materials.

You don’t have to have a big supply of crafting materials to decorate your envelopes. This one was done using wrapping paper.

Just stick it around the outside of the envelope while leaving space to write the address and it’s done. Easy but so effective. All it took was a little bit of wrapping paper. There are loads of designs for paper, so when you wrap your gifts consider keeping the edges for your envelopes.


Another easy way to make your envelopes look pretty is to use stickers. These are on sale in many bargain shops. ( The Pound Shop, Home Bargains, The Dollar Store or whatever your countries equivalent). Super cheap but immediately brightens your envelope and therefore bringing attention straight ways to the recipients happymail among the bills and junk.


If you want to be more creative, you could use twine or string and wrap it around the letter. Obviously make sure it doesn’t go over the address. ( Postie needs to see where it’s going 😉). You would be surprised how many things make it through the post in one piece. I got creative and tried different options.


Aside from wrapping paper you could use patterned paper. If you have stamps, you could stamp on your envelope. Stamps are very cheap and again available from the bargain stores. Use your imagination and the creativity will flow.


Ok for the next one, my bookish friends may be a little aghast at me…..but look how pretty. You can find cheap old books from charity shops /thrift stores. Tear a few pages put and stick them in a creative way. The outcome always looks great and you don’t need to be precise at all. I love this effect.


An idea that I came across recently from a youtuber video was to use napkins in your decoration. I was unsure if this would make it in one piece through the mail. So I tried it to see. My advice would be to take the layers apart and just stick down the patterned piece. I had a envelope travel from UK to France in one piece…. and the UK to New Zealand in one piece!

Just stick an address label on top and it looks amazing. There are so many cheap napkin designs and you can make them appropriate to the season or occasion too. ( birthday/ Christmas or interest design).


Another very cheap and effective option is to use cuts from magazines. This is a particular favourite of mine. It could be a picture of food, a view or words. Whatever you think your recipient would like.

As you can see you can mix up and use the ideas in combination for great effects.


Here are a few more examples of how I have decorated my envelopes. I hope I have inspired you to make your mail look attractive. Let me know if you already decorate your mail, if you have any tips or ideas to share with me. And which idea you might try yourself.

 
10 Comments

Posted by on August 4, 2019 in crafts and paperlove, love

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Time of my Life, by Laura Heffernan. (Oceanic Dreams #2) A Summer Reads book review.

Time of my Life, by Laura Heffernan. (Oceanic Dreams #2)  A Summer Reads book review.

This lovely summer novella, Time of My Life by Laura Heffernan is book 2 in a sequence of novellas all written by a variety of Authors, with a common theme of being set on a Cruise Ship. When the Author contacted me describing this book as a gender swapped dirty dancing based novella, but it was based on a cruise ship, well I was intrigued. After having a browse at the book in question, I came across other books which have been written and are in the process of being published by Laura Heffernan, and I think I am onto a winner here!…….. Her books sound exciting, and some are based on reality shows! I love these. Anyway, back to Time of My Life….

  • Print Length: 142 pages

  • Publisher: Wild Rose Creative Content (June 3, 2019)

  • Publication Date: June 3, 2019

Description:

Janey’s never felt this way before, but staff is forbidden from dating passengers. It’s only one dirty dance....what could go wrong?

Legend says everyone who boards the Oceanic Aphrodite will meet their true love within a day. Of course, staff like Janey know that’s a crock. She’s on the ship to teach pole fitness and earn her paycheck, not for romance. Then she runs into Frank in the boarding area. He’s everything Janey isn’t–refined, classy, rich, privileged–but his good looks and charm also make him undeniably appealing. Unfortunately, he’s a passenger, which means nothing can happen.

When Janey’s partner becomes too ill to perform in the end-of-cruise talent show, Frank offers to fill in. He’s never done pole fitness, but his ballet background makes him the perfect choice. Not to mention their only option. For the first time, Janey hopes the legend is real–but if she gives into temptation, she could be out of a job.

My Thoughts:

Janey and her dance partner Penny are boarding their Cruise Ship ready for a summer of sun, dancing and teaching dance. Right from the very first few pages, there is problems for the girls. Penny has personal and relationship (or lack there of) problems. And Janey falls over and hurts her ankle before even getting on board. The whole of this novella is based on the Cruise ship, and while previously I might have thought, that is a small setting for a book, actually it was perfect. The setting was made clear to us almost straight away, (The rich area, and the staff area!). Because the setting was laid out, the reader can focus on the plot and the characters. 

From the start I did not like Janey. Perhaps I was guilty of judging on first appearances, just as I blamed Janey for. She meets Frank, a doctor who wants to help her with her hurt ankle. But Frank is a passenger and seemingly quite a rich and important passenger! Now the staff and the passengers are not allowed to mix! Boss Rules! I have to say, if I ever had any thoughts of working on a cruise ship, this would not be the one for me. The management there were awful. The trip for the passengers sounds great, but not for the workers.

The plot does follow the idea of Dirty Dancing. Janey is teaching and showing Pole Dancing, but her partner Penny is unable to dance. The final dance means a lot to both girls, so they need to find a way to make it work! There is a lot of ducking and diving, and swirling and whirling to make their plan work. Always on the watch out for people wanting to catch them out, Janey had to be super careful with all her moves. 

The idea of pole dancing has never appealed to me, and I probably like many others I think could have got the wrong impression of it. The lessons that Janey gives shows that pole dancing teaches strength, technique and confidence and if you wish it to be, sexiness.

This short read was the perfect length for the story. I enjoyed my fictional trip on the cruise ship. I liked being proved wrong from my first thoughts of Janey. Mostly I liked escaping to the ocean, meeting different people and dancing away the stresses. A great summer read.

 

.

 

.

About the Author Laura Heffernan

Laura Heffernan is the author of the Reality Star series (available now) and the upcoming Gamer Girls series (2019). When not watching total strangers get married, drag racing queens, or cooking competitions, Laura enjoys travel, baking, board games, and new experiences. She lives in the northeast with her husband and two furry little beasts.

Some of Laura’s favorite things include goat cheese, Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Battlestar Galactica, the Oxford comma, and ice cream. Not all together. The best place to find her is usually on Twitter, where she spends far too much time tweeting about writing, Canadian chocolate, board games and reality TV.


Where to find Time of My Life and Links for the Author:

 lauraheffernan.com

Amazon.com

Amazon.co.uk

Goodreads

Twitter@LH_Writes

Facebook

BookBub

 
3 Comments

Posted by on July 27, 2019 in Books

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Blog Tour, Book Review: Fixed Odds by William McIntyre. #FixedOdds

Blog Tour, Book Review: Fixed Odds by William McIntyre. #FixedOdds

I am most delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for Fixed Odds by William McIntyre. My most favourite genre at the moment is legal thrillers, when I saw that this was a legal thriller based in Scotland, I knew it was a book for me.

Thank you to Ceris at Sandstone Press for my early copy of the book and for organising this blog tour. They must know my weak spots as I got sent special chocolate with the book! Delicious.   * Those who really know me, will know why I had the book open on this particular page!

Description:

George ‘Genghis’ McCann has stolen – and lost – a priceless masterpiece. Snooker
champion Oscar ‘The Showman’ Bowman is charged with betting fraud. With a second baby on the way, and promises of great rewards if he wins Bowman’s case and recovers the painting, defence lawyer Robbie Munro has never been so tempted to fix the odds in his favour.

9781912240722.MAIN.jpg

Publisher: Sandstone Press
Date of publication: 4 July 2019

My Thoughts:

Robbie Munro is a defence lawyer and main character of this book and previous books. This is the first book I have read starring Robbie Munro. It is great to read as a standalone, though if I had found this author earlier, I would have read the previous books first. ( because it is so good).

Robbie is unlike any other defence lawyer I have read about before. He is funny and makes time for his family! Most other defence lawyers I have read about don’t have time for any of that. But Robbie’s firm is suffering. Not enough business and with a wife, a daughter and another child on the way, Robbie needs.to find more work. Maybe this legal aid marlarky is just not cutting it.

The legal aid storylines with the “criminals” he defends was excellent. This was my favourite part of the book as you really got a taste of Scotland, how people talk, survive and some of the many problems surrounding us.

“Not a hunner an’ fifty quid, A hunner an’ fifty skoobies “

Robbie feels like his luck is in when he gets handed a professional snooker player to defend. Its not a legal aid case and could be big bucks …. but can he win? I know nothing about snooker, but this didn’t matter. I loved the legal mind of Robbie. Though he doesn’t seem to be overly hard working or giving his clients needs deep thoughts. The way he works was amusing. Whether or not this works for his clients, I can’t say. For that would be a spoiler! But read yourself to find out.

The surrounding characters in the book are great. Robbie’ s Wife and daughter are brilliant and I took plenty of amusement from them and their relationship with Robbie.

I went into this book with hopes of legal thrills and some talk of Scotland. I got way more. The dark Scottish humour that I know came across brilliantly. There was even a mention of my town in the book. 🤗. The legal talk was accurate and explained well enough so that American readers would understand the difference between the two legal ways, but we aren’t bombarded with any legal jargon.

The storyline was a mixture of a legal defence plot, unsavoury Scottish characters and this was all stirred up with dark Scottish humour and great characters.

My only regret is that I didn’t find William McIntyre’s books earlier! But on the bright side, I have plenty of Robbie Munro catch up to do. And I am hopeful that this Author will bring me more tales of Scottish legal defence and dark humour.

Highly recommended.


There are some amazing bloggers with fab reviews of this book on this tour, be sure to support them and read their reviews to. If you aren’t convinced by my review, you will be by theirs.

Fixed Odds Blog tour banner.jpg

About the Author:

WHSMcmyk1.jpg

William McIntyre is a partner in Scotland’s oldest law firm Russel + Aitken, specialising in criminal defence. He has been instructed in many interesting and high-profile cases over the years and now turns fact into fiction with his Robbie Munro legal thrillers. He is married with four sons.

Links:

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

Goodreads

Twitter/@Best_Defence

Authors website: bestdefence.biz

 
3 Comments

Posted by on July 20, 2019 in Books

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Book Review: Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May. #BlogTour #MMICB #Giveaway

Book Review: Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May. #BlogTour #MMICB #Giveaway

I am very happy to be hosting my stop on the blog tour for Nicola May’s latest book, Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay. Thank you to Author Nicola May for my advanced copy. I was honoured and excited to read this before it was published. And thank you to the brilliant Rachel from RachelsRandomResources.com for organising this blog tour. I don’t take part in many blog tours now, but for Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay, I most definitely was very keen to get my place.

Description:

The cast of the runaway bestseller, The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay, are back – including Rosa, Josh, Mary, Jacob, Sheila, new mum Titch and, last but by no means least, Hot, the adorable dachshund.

Newly wed, and with her inherited corner shop successfully up and running, Rosa Smith seems to have all that anyone could wish for. But the course of true love never did run smooth and Rosa’s suspicions that her husband is having an affair have dire consequences.
Reaching rock bottom before she can climb back up to the top, fragile Rosa is forced to face her fears, addiction and jealousy head on.
With a selection of meddling locals still at large, a mystery fire and Titch’s frantic search for the real father of her sick baby, the second book in this enchanting series will take you on a further unpredictable journey of self-discovery.

My Thoughts:

Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay is the sequel to The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay. I loved the first book as much as I enjoyed this one. You can read book 2 as a standalone, but reading the first book would give you a better introduction to Cockleberry Bay and the characters you will meet. I found myself getting a good reminder of the residents of the Bay and a short recap of some of what happened in book 1. So as I said you can read as a standalone if you wish.

Coming back to Cockleberry Bay was like coming back to a place I know and love. Catching up with Rosa, Titch, Mary and the boys from The Lobster Pot was great. I felt comfortable that I knew their characters and was looking forward to seeing what everyone had been up to. Of course it was great to hear from Hot the little sausage dog too. Hot also got up to his own escapades.

Rosa is now married and running the corner shop in Cockleberry Bay. But is she happy? Is she content with her life? Come along on Rosa’s journey of self discovery. Along the way I shared Rosa’s pain, joy, laughter, friendships and much more.

The character development of Rosa in this book is fantastic. You can tell from the writing that Author Nicola May knows ‘life’. Life is not easy, you find love, get married find a job…. and et voila …happy ever after. No! life has bumps and some of them are mountains. Yet the author writes with emotion, care and humour.

“No, Ed Sheeran hasn’t moved to Cockleberry Bay.”

The writing is current with even a mention of Meghan and baby Archie (British Royals).

When I finished book 1 and read some reviews, many readers were asking the author to write book 2. I am embarrassed to admit that I was hesitant because book 1 was so good. But I was a fool, I know and love Nicola May’s writing and her books so I should have known and have had faith that book 2 would smash it. …….and it did. Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay is as good as The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay. I loved Rosa’s story. The author has the ability in her writing to make us care for her characters. When Nicola May describes her books as “chick lit with a kick”, she describes this book better than any reviewer could. Nicola May has smashed it again with another amazing brilliant book. Great characters, perfectly descriptive location and a plot that has humour, romance, friendship and unexpected escapades. Highly recommended and I predict like book 1, this too will become an Amazon bestseller.


About the Author:

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


Giveaway

Yes, you lucky folk! There is a giveaway here too. You could win a signed copy of the first book in the series . The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay. You can read my review of it HERE! But based on the reviews of this book, you know you want it. Plus its signed! So enter the rafflecopter below. Just press the link and fill it in. Easy. Good luck.

RAFFLECOPTER – CLICK HERE

Win a signed copy of The Corner Shop on Cockleberry Bay (Open INT)

*Terms and ConditionsWorldwide 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 be 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.


Check out the rest of this blog tour. There are some amazing bloggers sharing their thoughts on Meet Me in Cockleberry Bay.


Links:

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

www.nicolamay.com

facebook/NicolaMayAuthor

Twitter/nicolamay1

Instagram/author_nicola

 
5 Comments

Posted by on July 15, 2019 in Books, Giveaways

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Book Review: In the Swim of Things, by Tracie Banister.

Book Review: In the Swim of Things, by Tracie Banister.

In the Swim of Things is Tracie Banister’s latest book, published May 2019. I have previously, read, reviewed and thoroughly enjoyed Tracie’s books. Therefore I was very happy when Tracie gifted me an advanced copy of her newest book.

Description:

A sexy, sun-soaked tale about a tail-wearing girl who makes a lot of waves—perfect for fans of Lauren Layne, Meghan Quinn, and Christina Lauren.

Ocean-loving Kyra Goodwin had to give up her dream of becoming the female Jacques Cousteau in order to take care of her father and brother, but being a mermaid at the Cape Cod Aquarium is pretty fintastic as far as alternative careers go.
Of course, life as a half-fish/half-woman isn’t all sunken treasure and Ariel twirls. Kyra has to deal with perpetually pruney fingers, eyes irritated by saltwater, and bratty kids on the daily, plus her glam alter ego can make dating really weird. (So many men have pervy siren-of-the-sea fantasies!) When she meets hunky surfer Cade, and he’s into her without knowing what she does for a living, Kyra thinks she’s finally won the romance lottery.
Unfortunately, Kyra’s plans for a carefree summer of catching waves with her new boyfriend run aground when Sea Star Beach, a place that holds great sentimental value for her, is taken over by a big-city developer who wants to build an exclusive resort. Kyra’s crusade to save her beloved beach threatens both her job and her relationship with Cade as does her growing closeness with her irresistibly broody merwrangler, Declan, whose precocious daughter is intent on playing matchmaker.
When a new family drama arises just as Kyra receives an offer that would turn her greatest desire into reality, she’s torn. Will she do what’s expected of her, or dive in and follow her heart?

45446714

Published May 15th 2019

My Thoughts:

Have you ever dreamed of being a mermaid? Kyra has the dream job, whereby she works as a performing mermaid at a local aquarium. She lives near a beautiful beach which holds dear memories for her. And she meets a hunky surfer dude who finds Kyra irresistible. What could go wrong?????

Well this is chick lit, so plenty……..

Before I tell you my thoughts on the words, lets take a moment to appreciate the a-mer-mazing cover of In The Swim Of Things. Illustrator Lyndsay Lewellen has done a brilliant job of designing and bringing us the perfect cover for this book. You can see from the cover that Kyra is made to be a rather fit mermaid. (It is a costume that she wears, this is not a fantasy book). She is holding a sign to say ‘Save Sea Star Beach’ . What a great name for a beach, it makes me want to save it based just on the name. The beach holds so many memories for Kyra and the many other people who know of and live by the beach. Also, we can see in the book cover, 2 men. So, being chick lit, we know that there will probably be some romance. And there is…..

Kyra is a great character, there may be many women reading this who once dreampt of being a mermaid, Now Kyra’s reality is being a mermaid at the local aquarium. It sounds like a really fun job. Swimming in a tail, doing tricks in a tail and with glamorous make up and costumes on, teaching children to swim in a tail and being asked questions by lots of children, like “have you met Aerial?” , while she sits on her Mermaid throne at Poseidon Palace. You may think the way I have described Kyra so far is that she is breezy, princessy and flakey? No! not at all, she is fun, sexy and feisty. She is fighting for her beach after all. Kyra gets up to lots of mischief, fun and gets herself in a few sticky situations. Not only is she gorgeous, she is clever too, having studied marine science.  When Kyra was asked an awkward question, she replied:

“I’m going to plead the Fifth on that question…”       ( I might need to borrow that response, despite not being American!)

Kyra is a wonderful character that I felt like I knew from the way that Tracie Banister wrote her. I would love to see Kyra portrayed in a movie.

I have spoke a lot of Kyra, so obviously she is the main character that impressed me. There are plenty of great sideline characters too, that the Author wrote well and brought to life through the pages. Tracie Banister describes Sea Star Beach and Cape Cod in a way that brings the place to life in the readers head. This book has humour, romance, atmosphere, and a real sense of ‘going for what you believe is right’. There is also a really funny, cheeky and very messy little bird that features in this book. 

In the Swim of Things is the perfect summer read. Whether you are away on holiday, or just taking an imaginary one from your reading spot, In the Swim of Things will have you chuckling away and rooting for Kyra and Sea Star Beach. You may even start dreaming of being a mermaid again.  

Links:

Amazon.co.uk

Goodreads

Twitter/@traciebanister

traciebanister.blogspot.com

 
4 Comments

Posted by on July 6, 2019 in Uncategorized

 

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

When was the last time you wrote or received a letter ( that wasn’t a bill or junk)? 10 reasons why you should write a letter. #snailmail #happymail

When was the last time you wrote or received a letter ( that wasn’t a bill or junk)? 10 reasons why you should write a letter. #snailmail #happymail

When I was younger I used to regularly write letters, cards and postcards to friends and family. Especially my Grandparents who loved to get mail from me. Now my Grandparents are not here to write to anymore. I decided to take back up my enjoyment of snailmail. 🐌✉.

So when was the last time you wrote or received a hand written letter? Do you even send postcards anymore?

Now that we can communicate via social media, text and whats app, I think many people don’t see the point of writing letters.

Here are some reasons why I think we should keep this method of communication alive.

10 Reasons Why You Should Write Letters.

1. It will brighten someone’s day to receive mail that is not a bill or junk mail.

2. You have to sit down and think about what you want to say to the person. This is calming and gives you time to focus on your relationship with this person.

3. If you don’t want to make the time for a letter, send a simple post card, just to say hi. The person receiving it will have a nice surprise and your card could be a picture of the area where you are. Or it could have a joke on the front. Either way, you will brighten their day. That in turn will make you feel good

4. There is such beautiful and cheap writing paper and cards available to buy. I got this cupcake paper from eBay. I made the stamp to go along with the letter as a matching theme.

5. If you are creative, you can design your own paper or card.

I made these papers with ink pads, water paints and stamps. Be creative and find your own ways. You will be surprised how relaxing it is. Plus you have a lovely blank canvas to write your letter on. The recipient will appreciate the effort you went to for them.

6. If you write to someone, chances are they will write back. Then you get a nice surprise through the post too. ( mail I sent out last week. I used a napkin to decorate the envelope. Don’t you think it would be lovely to receive this through the post as a surprise?).

7. It’s good manners to thank people for gifts. So why not write a thank you card instead of a text. It’s so much nicer to receive. I wish parents would encourage their children to do this. I always wrote thank you letters for my gifts as a child. I almost never get one back now if I send a child a gift. But thank you letters are not just for kids, adults could send them too. Wouldn’t you appreciate a letter to say thanks rather than a text or facebook message?

8. Sometimes you want to express yourself and it’s easier to do it in writing. A letter is so much more personal than an email.

9. Receiving a letter from abroad is special. If you chat to someone online who lives abroad, why not swap addresses and send each other a letter and something nice from your country.

My lovely friend Irena sent me these gorgeous goodies from Croatia and it really made my day to know she went out of her way to think about me and what I would like. Obviously you don’t need to send this much. A simple bar of chocolate or a bookmark with a little note would be amazing to receive.

10. It’s not called happymail for no reason. Letters are good to receive, so go on, brighten someone’s day.

Let me know if you write letters, cards or postcards. If you don’t, have I convinced you to send a letter. I hope so.

 
14 Comments

Posted by on June 29, 2019 in crafts and paperlove

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Book review: Broken Humanity by Karine Vivier.

Book review: Broken Humanity by Karine Vivier.

Broken Humanity is the first novella of Author Karine Vivier that has been translated from French to English. I like reading novellas every so often for a quick beginning middle and end. So I was happy when the author asked me to read and review Broken Humanity.

Description:

What do a young girl, an ex-convict and a mother have in common? “Broken Humanity” tells the story of three characters who, somewhere along the way, have lost touch with humanity in the eyes of society. Three characters, three parallel stories, a common thread. A debut thriller.

My Thoughts:

Broken Humanity is a short novella published first in French, then translated to English by Kirsty Olivant. Firstly the translation is excellent. If I hadn’t known it was originally in French, I would totally assume it was written by a native English speaker. Of course the names and places are based in France, but that fits in with how the book was originally written. It was quite nice to read a book based somewhere other than UK or USA.

The book has three different parts, where each character has an element of ‘broken humanity’ about them. The book made me feel tense the majority of the way through! which shows that the author has a talent for writing. Personally I found that the three parts could have been made longer and the novella could have been a book. I hesitate to say this because novellas are supposed to be short and that is the authors intention. In my opinion, I would have preferred this particular plot to be lengthened.

This was a strange read for me because there wasn’t any part ( for me) that I found satisfying. The plot was full of broken souls and it was a little depressing. With the title being ‘Broken Humanity‘, I can assume that this was the authors intention and she did it well because it gave me all the feels that a well written book can give a reader.

I would recommend this book to readers who want a short tense read. It is a book that makes you realise that the quick decisions you make may have life changing effects.

Links:

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

Goodreads.

 
4 Comments

Posted by on June 22, 2019 in Books

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Wax Seals, What a Way to finish a Letter. #Papercraft.

Wax Seals, What a Way to finish a Letter. #Papercraft.

Writing and receiving hand written letters is now considered an old fashioned thing by many. What with social media being so popular and used by practically everybody, people rarely seem to write letters anymore. Its all texts, messenger, facebook and all the other many ways to virtually contact people.

But receiving a hand written letter from a friend or family member could really brighten someone’s day. Especially with all the bills and junk mail that comes through the post box.

I have been writing letters forever and I think it’s a lovely way to communicate with those that we are apart from.

At Christmas time I discovered that I could get a wax sealing kit. Since I got my kit, I have used it so much.

I got my kit from eBay, but they are available from loads of places, Amazon, Wish, Alli Express to name just a few.

The lot I have contains 1 stamp, a spoon to melt the wax and it came with three sticks of wax.

I have since bought lots more wax and another stamp so that I can have different designs.

It is so easy, relaxing and makes great results for sealing your envelopes.

Melt the wax in the spoon, pour the wax onto your envelope and press down with your stamp! Easy.

There are so many different ways you can accentuate the envelopes with these wax seals. Here are some of the ways I have used them.

Simple on its own stamps. You can use one colour or mix them up.

Wrap your envelope in string, ribbon or twine and put the wax over the tie.

Add a shiny stone, pearl or similar. I love this effect.

Look how pretty it makes the envelope look.

Add some sparkle to the stamp, either glitter while it’s still wet. Or eye shadow or similar sparkle when it’s dry.

You can add different colours of wax on the spoon for this lovely effect. I’m still experimenting to see which colours go best together.

Or just plain simple and lovely on their own.

What’s your favourite? Have you used wax seals before?

 
 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,