Well, Laura Briggs has done it again! Today is publication day for ‘The Bronte BookClub for Hopeless Romantics’, and what a book it is. I have read it already, lucky me! I was generously given a copy to read before publication day, so watch out for my review of it coming very soon. Today, I am doing a spotlight on the brilliant book just to let you all know, its PUBLISHED TODAY!
Quaint Lewis Cove is home to the charming three-story Victorian manor known as the Alice Wilshire Lending Library and its plucky librarian Peg Turner: the current hostess of the weekly Bronte Book Club, better known as the ‘Hopeless Romantics’ of all ages. Nurse Annette has been too busy working for love; mechanic Tim has missed the boat somewhere in his past; art student Sophie comes off as too unique, while tech geek C.J. has fallen—hopelessly—for the too-cool-to-care Llourdes.
With her vacation plans indefinitely on hold for the summer, Peg has decided to transform the ‘Hopeless Romantics’ into hopeful ones. But while she’s trying to help her fellow readers find romance, she’s avoiding her matchmaker friend Caroline’s latest blind date—only to see her best friend Cam, the ruggedly-cute-but-sometimes-curmudgeonly coffee shop owner fixed up instead. And that’s something Peg isn’t sure she likes.
Questions about love and last chances on her mind, and way too many books piled on her desk, will Peg succeed in finding romantic hope for anyone, including herself?
Isn’t the cover just beautiful?! The book is as the cover and title suggests, based around books and romance. Its a lovely quick read that is perfect for summer afternoons.
Laura Briggs is the author of several women’s fiction and chick lit novels, with themes that range from wedding planning to modern Jane Austen. Even though she tends to write stories with a romance theme, as a reader she has a soft spot for mysteries, including those by Agatha Christie and Mary Roberts Rinehart. She also enjoys books by Jane Austen, Anne Tyler, Amy Tan, and too many others to name. In her free time, she likes to experiment with new recipes and tries to landscape her yard (a never-ending project).
I watched the group file out the library’s front door, Annette adjusting her sweater around her shoulders as Sophy chatted to her about a television version of the book, Tim opening the door for both of them. Llourdes was on the phone with a friend, and C.J. was shuffling off in the dark towards the little place I knew he lived and worked from.They all went their separate ways once they were beneath Gull Avenue’s streetlamps, most of them having no other plans except to go home to dark and quiet houses.
Instead of following their example and climbing the stairs to my dark and quiet apartment, I locked the door behind me and walked down the street and across the sidewalk that divided Main Street. The neon lights of Hill o’ Beans window sign glowed brightly, animating a coffee bean tumbling above a sack full of them and the shop name.
I pushed open the door. The rich smell of coffee and cacao beans warmed the air and tempted the taste buds all at once. Florence + the Machine’s “Third Eye” was playing over the shop’s stereo system, proving that Cam’s barista Mallory was working tonight. Behind the gleaming pastry case stocked with strawberry tarts, mango coconut lime bars, and lemon custard drops, Cam himself was wiping down the counter.
“One half-fat mocha latte, please,” I said.
“You sure you trust me to make one?” he asked. “No cutting back on the milk? No substituting inferior beans?”
“You should knock it off now. Mallory will think we’re really having a fight. And if I didn’t come in here, who would defend the music choices that serenade your customers?”
“I’ve told him before, people love modern and upbeat,” said Mallory, appearing from the shop’s kitchen, her long dark ponytail swinging against her shoulders. “Just today, I had someone ask me to replay the Jack Johnson CD.”
“Whatever. All I’m saying is, music clutters the atmosphere,” said Cam. “Unless it’s good rock and roll, in which case it fits in everywhere.”
“Try making that case to the symphony crowd,” I said, accepting my coffee cup from him. “Besides, the friends I was hanging out with tonight would’ve liked this song.” Sophy and Annette would, probably.
“Who were you hanging out with?” he asked.
“You know. It’s Friday night. The book club.” I sat down at a table.
“Oh, those guys.” He wiped an extra-sticky spot on the counter’s surface. “Any new members? Closer to your age, for instance?”
“Same old crowd,” I answered, shaking my head. “I’m not that much younger than Annette and Tim. Or older than the rest.” Then again, maybe I wasn’t young enough for the college crowd anymore, I reflected. Wasn’t I too young for the forty-something scene, though?
“I was just asking,” said Cam. “I wasn’t implying anything by it.”
“I thought maybe you were thinking about joining us,” I said. “Checking out a copy of Jane Eyre or maybe Wuthering Heights.” I took a sip of coffee.
“You know that’s not exactly my thing,” said Cam. “I’m more of a hands-on project person.”
“We could use some new blood,” I said. “It’s been the same five people forever. Well, six.” I included Llourdes, although she was only coming to the book club to fulfill a community college credit. “Nobody ever invites any friends, or — or anybody else to join.” No one had a ‘significant other’ to add to the mix on Friday nights — and nobody’s coworkers or friends seemed interested in discussing the glorious collective works of the Brontes.
“If you’re planning to build a bookshelf next meeting, I’ll join you. Otherwise, I’ll be right here, steaming milk and listening to Mallory’s weird CD collection.”
So, if you are hooked already, then get downloading and read some more about these Hopeless Romantics. Grab your copy today.
This is a post I have been thinking about for a few weeks. I have read a lot of good books over the past year, and to list my top ten is a good reminder to me how much I enjoyed them. It is also a nice way to thank the Authors for their talent.
I met my Goodreads challenge of reading 40 books this year. I know this is not a huge amount compared to other bookbloggers, but its good for me. I prefer to read my books slower and more thoroughly so I really enjoy them and soak up the story that it is telling me.
These books are in no particular order, but all are 5 stars worth brilliant. I have linked my review to each one, incase you want to read my thoughts on them. The links for each book will be in the review post.
TOP TEN BOOKS OF 2016 BY CHOCOLATEPAGES.
Cut Throat Defence by Olly Jarvis. A brilliant gripping crime thriller based in the UK. Olly Jarvis is my favourite legal thriller Author as his knowledge flows brilliantly into his fictional characters drawing me right into the gritty underground and clever legal cases. You can read my review and more about itHERE!
Out of the Darkness by Katy Hogan, was a wonderful uplifting spiritual story. This book has stayed with me and brings hope and appreciation to its readers. I always think of this book as I go on my walks and pass the boats. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
The SW19 Club by Nicola May. I only discovered this Author this year and have been missing out. I have read 3 of her books, but The SW19 Club was my favourite as it was therapeutic, brilliant and made me laugh and cry. You can read more about it HERE!
A Stranger’s House by Clare Chase. This was a twisty turny suspence which is just the kind of book I love. Clare Chase is a wonder at writing these kinds of novels. I have her next one on my kindle ready to go. You can read more about A Stranger’s House and my thoughts HERE!
Coffee, Tea, The Caribbean and Me by Caroline James. I have read all of the Coffee, Tea books that Caroline has written and I just love her main characters Jo and Hattie. The tales are heartwarming while making me laugh, feel hungry for the delicious cakes they eat and go into a whole bookish world of Caroline’s imagination. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
Novelista Girl by Meredith Schorr. In my review of this book, I gave the Author the huge compliment of saying that I loved the main character Kim Long as much as I love Sophie Kinsella’s Becky Brandon. This book was pure chick lit at its very best. It was perfect! You can read more about my thoughtsHERE!
Daisy In Chains by Sharon Bolton was a brilliant book with a really interesting storyline. It spoke of prison wives and fan clubs of convicted murderers. The end was so fantastic and so much of a twist, I loved it. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
Boyfriend by the Book by Laura Briggs. This was an indulgent chick lit easy read. It was frivolous and complete fun. Perfect for cosy days where you want to go to a bookish world of imagination. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
The Death of Anyone by DJ Swykert. This was another gripping crime thriller and it had the unique points within the tale about ethics of using familial DNA as evidence. Really interesting while being a fantastic crime thriller. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
Before Green Gables by Budge Wilson. This was a wonderful surprise of a book, as I didn’t know there was an Anne Shirley book that I hadn’t read, then I got this! It is a really nice prequel where we can see how Anne got to Green Gables. Although it is by a different Author to the original Green Gables books, it was written with a real insight into the original books by LM Montgomery to celebrate 100 years of Green Gables. You can read more about my thoughts HERE!
So, there are my Top Ten Books of 2016. I hope that 2017 will be full of plenty more, I’m quite sure it will be as I already have a full ‘to be read’ pile.
Have you read any of these? What were your best reads of the year, link your posts here and I will take a look at yours too.
Thank you to Author Laura Briggs for my copy of Boyfriend by the Book. The novel is a self-published contemporary romance novel.
Jodi Nichols isn’t the most romantic girl on the planet. She doesn’t get mushy over fictional love stories, or picture herself getting swept away by a handsome hero. She’s much too grounded in reality—and much too busy working as a concierge at the luxurious Regent hotel. Helping customers is Jodi’s passion in life, and while romance may be on the back burner for now, she is nursing a little crush on Levi, the cute and friendly deliveryman for the hotel packages. And unless she’s imagining things, Levi feels the same way about her.
But Jodi’s friends think she’s turning into a lonely workaholic. They try to fix her love life, buying her a copy of the bestselling relationship guide that claims women can find true love by channelling the wisdom of famous storybook heroines. Jodi thinks it sounds crazy—no way is she acting like Jane Eyre or Lizzie Bennet to find a man! But when Levi suddenly grows distant and Jodi’s chances with him seem to fizzle before her eyes, she wonders if her friends might have a point after all. Disheartened and lonely, she decides to give the so-called relationship guide a whirl, with unexpected consequences.
Before you can say ‘Pride and Prejudice’, Jodi is up to her neck in handsome, brooding men that seem too much like fictional heroes to be true. Her attempts to think like the greatest heroines in romance lead her to meet everything from a modern Mr. Rochester to an angsty Heathcliff, and even a Darcy-esque novelist. But when a former crush re-enters her life in the form of a modern day Romeo, Jodi wonders if there might be something to this ‘inner heroine’ thing after all. Now, if she could just stop thinking about Levi, then maybe her happy-ever-after will fall into place…or is something still missing from Jodi’s storybook romance?
Boyfriend by the Book is a perfect feel good read for curling up with on a rainy day or a summer afternoon, with lots of laughs and surprises to keep the reader turning pages!
Indie Published July 19th 2016
This book captivated my attention from the first page to the very last, I loved it. It is the cutest story I have read in a while. With the good influence of classic books mixed in with good old easy read chick lit, its perfect for an lazy day feel good read.
Jodi is single, and all her friends are happily coupled up. So when one of her friends who works in a bookshop finds a book, which all the friends agree will help Jodi find love, the fun begins. They describe her as ‘romantically challenged”. So Jodi has to find her inner Heroine in order to find her beloved Hero and happily ever after.
I liked Jodi straight off, she describes her home as:
“…a jumble of books, magazine collages……..big stuffed armchairs and my chintz sofa with its brightly coloured pillows..”.
And then later on in the book, Jodi mentions that she is reading ‘Anne of GreenGables‘!! Then I really wanted to be her BFF!
I really enjoyed reading how Laura and her friends try to encourage Jodi’s inner Jane Eyre so that she can capture the heart of her very own Mr Rochester or Mr Darcy The book is funny, sweet, cute and thoroughly enjoyable. This is easy reading chick lit at its very best.
This is the first book I have read of Laura Briggs, but I will now be looking out for more. This book was self published and is brilliant. A five pink stars read for me!
The links below show you where to find the book, the Author, and there is also a link whereby you can read the first chapter. I absolutely recommend this book to all chick lit lovers and especially those that enjoy a bit of light classical book talk.
Laura Briggs’ first stories were written in crayon about a rooster named Henry–but she was pretty young at the time, so it’s understandable. She eventually graduated to writing more complex plot lines and characters and writing her stories on a laptop. She tends to write stories with a romance theme, but as a reader she has a soft spot for mysteries, including those by Agatha Christie and Mary Roberts Rinehart. She also enjoys books by Jane Austen, Anne Tyler, Amy Tan, and too many others to name. In her free time, she likes to experiment with new recipes and tries to landscape her yard (a never-ending project).