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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.

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4 Comments

Posted by on June 22, 2019 in Books

 

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Book Review: Nowhere Child, by Rachel Abbott (Novella).

Book Review: Nowhere Child, by Rachel Abbott (Novella).

I found this book by a bit of a fluke. I took out an Amazon Prime trial, (for purposes only of free delivery) Then I discovered that could borrow books for free! ….I know, a bit behind on these things 😉

However, I had a little browse on what was available and came across Nowhere Child by Rachel Abbott. It sounded like my kind of read, so I gave it a go.

And my conclusion?………Why have I not read Rachel Abbott’s books before?

Tip: If you have Amazon Prime, download this book, if you don’t, find it another way.

Nowhere Child (DCI Tom Douglas 4.5#)

Nowhere Child (DCI Douglas 4.5) by Rachel Abbott.

Description:

A stand-alone novella featuring the same characters as Rachel Abbott’s bestselling novel Stranger Child

Someone is looking for Tasha. But does she want to be found?

Eight months ago Tasha Joseph ran away, and her stepmother, Emma, has been searching for her ever since. She is desperate to give Tasha the home and security she deserves.

The problem is, Emma isn’t the only one looking for Tasha. The police are keen to find her too. She could be a vital witness in a criminal trial, and DCI Tom Douglas has a team constantly on the lookout for her. But Tasha remains hidden, and nobody appears to have seen her.

Suddenly, the stakes are raised. Somebody is offering money – a lot of money – for information about Tasha’s whereabouts.

Tom and Emma know they have never been closer to finding the young girl. But they also recognise that she has never been closer to danger. Can they find her first?

She can run – but for how long can she hide?

nowhere child

Published October 14th 2015 by Black Dot Publishing Ltd

 

My Thoughts:

Nowhere Child is a novella and stand alone novel. It is also a follow on book from Stranger Child. I haven’t read Stranger Child and it did not matter at all. There are enough details that you don’t need any extra background reading.

Tasha is a runaway child, living on the streets of Manchester (UK). I do enjoy crime thriller books based in places close to me. American and Scandi ones are fab too, but it makes a difference when you have a knowledge of the area and the law where the book is based. Tasha has a lot of people looking for her, but she doesn’t know what they will do to her if they find her. With the help of her friend Andy from the streets, she tries to survive and hide.

This is a novella with plenty of plot, characterisation and tension packed into 179 pages. Although Tasha is the main character, the book is labeled as a DCI Douglas book. It took me a while to get an impression of DCI Douglas (Tom), at first I wasn’t sure whether or not to trust him. As a serial crime thriller reader, I have learnt not to trust anybody in fiction at first! You know what I mean crime lovers? However, since reading other reviews of this Author’s books, it seems that Detective Tom is a very likeable character. I’m sure when I read more books with him in, I will feel foolish for doubting his intent.

Nowhere Child read easily, with constant tension and concern for Tasha’s safety. It is very obvious that the Author knows the vast difference between the classes in Manchester, how the middle class see “dirty runaways”. This is no more clear than when Tasha needs help in a street of ‘regular’ people, but needs to take what should be unneccesssary action in order to be listened to. 

I really enjoyed this read. Although I don’t feel inclined to go back to read Stranger Child, as it feels like I would already know the end, I do feel excited to read more of Rachel Abbott’s books. While looking into this Author and her books, I see she has a new book coming out in November called ‘And So It Begins’.

Links:

Goodreads.

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

Twitter/@RachelAbbott

www.rachel-abbott.com

 
7 Comments

Posted by on September 9, 2018 in Books

 

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Happy Publication Day! The Bronte Book Club for Hopeless Romantics, by Laura Briggs.

Happy Publication Day! The Bronte Book Club for Hopeless Romantics, by Laura Briggs.

Well, Laura Briggs has done it again! Today is publication day for ‘The Bronte Book Club 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!

best book gif

Description:

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?

Bronte Book Club Cover Image (1)

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.  

 

Author Bio:

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).

Short Extract:

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.”

 

five pink starsSo, if you are hooked already, then get downloading and read some more about these Hopeless Romantics. Grab your copy today. 

Amazon.com        AND     Amazon.co.uk

My review will be up next week, but just to give you the heads up….. I loved it! 

 
5 Comments

Posted by on June 21, 2017 in Book Spotlights., Books

 

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Book Review:Christmas at The Gingerbread Cafe, by Rebecca Raisin. And Recipe.

Book Review:Christmas at The Gingerbread Cafe, by Rebecca Raisin. And Recipe.

Firstly a very Merry Christmas to all my book loving readers. I hope you are having a wonderful time.

Today, I am going to share with you a fabulously festive read that I have enjoyed. This was a fantastic one, and it was free from Amazon when I downloaded it! Rebecca Raisin is one of my favourite Authors, and after finishing this book I was straight away looking for more of her books to read.

This is another short novella, which is perfect for a quick festive read accompanied by a gingerbread latte and a chocolate biscuit.

costa ginger

Costa Gingerbread Latte is similar to how I imagine them to be at The Gingerbread Cafe.

Description:

Christmas is the season the Gingerbread Café was made for…but owner Lily couldn’t be feeling less merry if she tried. She’s spent another year dreaming of being whisked away on a sleigh-ride for two, but she’s facing festive season alone – again. And, just to give her another reason to feel anything other than candy-cane perky, a new shop across the road has opened… Not only is it selling baked goods, but the owner, with his seriously charming smile, has every girl in town swooning.

But Lily isn’t about to let her business crumble — the Gingerbread Café is the heart of the community, and she’s going to fight for it! This could be the Christmas that maybe, just maybe, all her dreams – even the someone-to-decorate-the-Christmas-tree-with ones – really do come true!

christmas at gingerbread

My Thoughts:

This book is perfect for this festive time of year. Rebecca Raisin is already one of my favourite Authors, so I was sure this book would fill me with Christmas warmth, festivity and some craving for gingerbread coffee and hot chocolates! 

Like Rebecca’s other books I have read, The Gingerbread Cafe is set in a small cosy village called Ashford. The characters and the whole atmosphere in this book just calls out: ‘Come and stay here!’ The characters are mostly so lovely and friendly, a place where everyone knows each other and is willing to help a friend or neighbour when they need it.

The Cafe at Christmas time has the most delicious sounding food and drinks. After reading this book, I decided to make my own gingerbread syrup! (I will share the recipe with you later). The Cafe has a gingerbread house in its window:

“In pride of place, sitting squarely in the bay window, is our gingerbread house. It’s four feet high with red and white candy cane pillars holding up the thatched roof. There’s a wide chimney, decorated with green andred jelly beans, ready for Santa to climb down…”  …..doesn’t it sound perfect?

The story revolves around Cafe owner Lily, her assistant and best friend CeeCee and new comer to the village Damon. The book is predictable is a delicious way. This is comfort reading at its best. 

Christmas, a Christmas book by a great Author and a few gingerbread coffees, hot chocolates and biscuits. All perfect while snuggled up on the sofa with festive candles burning. I loved it.

Find it here:

GOODREADS

AMAZON UK

Rebecca Raisin’s Twitter

 


 

My Recipe for Gingerbread syrup:

150g of golden caster sugar.

1 tbsp of ground ginger

1 tbsp of cinnamon.

Boil it gently all together in 100 ml of water, until it is all dissolved and a little thicker.

Leave to cool, the add it to a bottle.

This will keep for months if you can make it last! But if like me you add it to ice cream, coffee, hot chocolate, then it won’t last very long at all.

Enjoy, and a very happy Christmas to you all.

 
2 Comments

Posted by on December 27, 2015 in Books

 

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Book Review: The Little Things by Jane Costello (mini review)

Book Review: The Little Things by Jane Costello (mini review)

I love to read a short story or a novella every once in a while. I like to have a beginning, a middle and an end that I can finish in a day or two. I can’t have that with a full length book. So when I found The Little Things, (at the time it was free on Amazon) I was rather happy to download it straight away. I have just written a mini review on this book, as its a novella and sometimes a mini review is just enough.  😉

havent found the right book

Description:

At twenty-eight, Hannah MacFarlane’s career is on course to smash the glass ceiling and beat it into submission.

Then a shock company reshuffle leaves her sacked and bewildered, while her fiancé is promoted into a job nearly 5,000 miles away in Dubai.

Five months later, she is jobless, broke and worryingly addicted to Loose Women. Then her older sister Suzy intervenes after her child minder left them in the lurch and offers Hannah the job of looking after her FOUR young children.

Hannah has no other option but to accept. But while she was great at playing ‘Cool Auntie’, she soon discovers – with riotous consequences – that she is no Mary Poppins . . .

the little things

My Thoughts:

This was a great little novella, I read it whilst traveling down to see my Mum on the train. So my journey passed very pleasantly with this to keep me amused.

I found this book to be packed full of great characters and a mix of emotions. The main character Hannah is relateable, funny and a great character. 

From my experiences of working with Autistic children, I found it so funny and could really imagine myself in Hannah’s position. For example, when she is strapping her nephew into the car and he screams:

“HELLLLPPPP! which must give passers-by the strong impression that he’s being kidnapped” 

The book often gave me thoughts of the saying ‘from the mouths of babes’. The Author was great at getting each character just right, from the lovely main character Hannah, to her dubious boyfriend, right down to her boisterous nephews. Leo says:

“If you die……, will you leave me your ipad?” 

Overall, I enjoyed this quick read, it made me laugh, emphathise with Hannah, and passed my train journey pleasantly. I recommend it to you.


Have you read this book, do you want to? Have you read other books from Jane Costello, let me know any recommendations you have of this Author or of other short stories or novellas. I’d love to hear from you, so please leave your thoughts below, or find me on Twitter @chocolate_pages

Thanks for reading! 

imagination

Keep Calm and Carry On Linking Sunday
Stopping at two
 
26 Comments

Posted by on November 21, 2015 in Books

 

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Book Review: When Implausible Events Occur. by Lucia Morosanu

Book Review: When Implausible Events Occur. by Lucia Morosanu

I’m really enjoying short stories at the moment, so when Author Lucia Morosanu approached me and asked if I would like to read and review her book, I jumped at the chance. I read her synopsis and a few other reviews of this book, and just knew that I would like this book.

If you like the sound of it, you will see the links at the bottom of this post showing the links for the book. It is FREE on Amazon at the moment, so grab it while you can!

Description:

Love… What is it all about? Nobody really knows, but everybody has an opinion and a story. And this is the story of a boy named Alex and a girl named Diana and how a series of highly implausible events changed their relationship forever: and made for an interesting self-discovery journey.

when implausible events occur

My Thoughts:

I read this book quite quickly, its a short story and a good one. My thoughts as I was reading this book were that the thought process and emotional parts were so well written that it seemed to come from personal experience. I don’t know if the Author has been on a personal journey of love and self discovery, but this book was so well written that I could really feel like I was there with Die, (Diana). It is a beautifully written book by a talented Author.

The story follows Die after her live in long term boyfriend just ups and walks out one day. The story tells us how Die copes, what she thinks and what she does. If you have recently been through a break up this book would be perfect for you. If not, then it is still a very eloquently written story that drew me right into the characters thought processes.

The book is heartfelt, emotional and also has amusing parts too….

A friend visits to see how Die is and says….

“Do you want some chocolate?”

The main character Die is a writer, and the language that Die uses is just like the language of an inspiring writer. I felt that the book was about writing aswell as the story, which was great. I took pleasure in the way the words were used in this story, it was just so beautifully written.

“Its futile to pretend that linguistic grandiosity can explain life”…………..”That’s why I want to be a writer”

I would give this book 5 stars, I loved it and will definitely be looking out for more work from this talented Author! Even better that the book was free at the time from Amazon! See the links below and grab it while you can.

If you read this book, please let me know below what you thought of it. If you don’t read it, I would still love to hear from you!  😉

Thank you.

Free on Amazon today!


UK – Amazon UK

US – Amazon USA

Everything Mummy

Summer Days
 
8 Comments

Posted by on June 27, 2015 in Books

 

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