blog tour · book blogger · Book Review · real life

Blog Tour! Review of ‘Something Inbetween’ – @MelissadelaCruz #SomethingInbetween@HQYoungAdult

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Blurb.

When your country doesn’t want you there, how do you know where you belong?

Jasmine de los Santos has been pushed by her Filipino immigrant parents to over-achieve, be the best she can be, work as hard as she can at school and reach for the American Dream. She’s thrilled to be named a finalist for the National Scholarship Award and prepares to go to Washington, D. C. to receive it. But when she brings home the paperwork, she learns that she and all her family are in the country illegally.

As Jasmine’s world shatters around her, she rebels, trying to make sense of herself—who is she? Is she American? Illegal? Something in between? Jasmine decides to accept the award anyway and goes to D.C., where she meets Royce Blakely, the handsome son of a Republican congressman. As she fights for her very identity, will Jasmine find help in unexpected places, and will she ever figure out where she belongs?

What does TWG think?

There are a lot of topics frequenting the media at the moment, some more than others and ‘Something Inbetween’ highlights one of those. Immigration. Jasmine de los Santos is a grade A student and has the chance to go to Washington for her all important scholarship. In no time at all, Jasmine’s life, dreams and everything she has worked for becomes null and void. Where does that leave her? Jasmine has no idea where she belongs or which country she can call her own, legally, but she is definitely determined to find that out.

YA books have come a long way since I was younger and I find that nowadays the content of the books highlight a wider range of important topics. Whilst I found the overall message of this particular storyline very real and of high importance, I did find myself sitting on the fence a lot of the time. Sometimes I felt as though the focus was lost and the true meaning of the book became a little foggy.

That said, it was truly refreshing to read Jasmine’s story and learn about what she had to go through. It opened my eyes to the topic from a different angle which was far better than the angle the media portrays. Jasmine’s story was an emotional one and I feel as though Melissa de la Cruz conveyed that with such intensity, all the way through.

Thank you to HQYoungAdult for the ARC!

Today is the final stop of the tour and if you have missed any of the other previous stops, you can find them all here:
Buy the book from Amazon
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blog tour · book blogger · Book Review

Blog Tour! Review – ‘I Know Your Secret’ by Graham Smith(@GrahamSmith1972) @caffeinenights

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It’s my turn on the fiercely popular blog tour for Mr Graham Smith and ‘I Know Your Secret’! I personally think that he should go whispering that in people’s ears…I mean, how scary would that be?

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Blurb.

“What would you do if your most intimate secrets got into the wrong hands?”

Set in modern day Cumbria, I Know Your Secret is a police thriller in which a priest is found crucified to the stone floor of his church. Fearing more attacks on the clergy, DI John Campbell and his team of misfits race to find the killer before he strikes again.

Meanwhile, DI Harry Evans, spends his days attending the trial of his wife’s rapist and his nights interfering in the investigation.

Can they catch the killer before he strikes again?

What does TWG think?

Wowza, what an opening! How can you NOT want to read on after that? As you’re already aware, I am a bit of a wuss when it comes to books like this, but I do enjoy stepping into another genre. A bit like Narnia really; everyone knows of it, but nobody knows the truth depth of what lies beneath the surface.

Well, I thought they didn’t…until this book. I decided to read the book at night time, whilst eating..it’s not advisable, trust me. I felt as though I was on a rollercoaster ride the whole way through as I was digging my nails into the edge of my sofa, my eyes unable to move from the story.

A lot of unfortunate and eye opening events happen all the way through, as well as re-living certain terrifying tales in the courtroom. But, the crime team involved in finding out ‘whodunnit’ is a team that you most certainly will not find anywhere else. Think of the team in Life on Mars, but add extra guts and more meaty crimes and you’ll have Graham’s team. They kept the momentum of the story level enough for me to continue reading without being too much of a wuss.

Don’t get me wrong, I still read some of the book between my fingers but after a while of feeling as though I was missing out on vital information being a wuss, I thought stuff it. Curiosity killed the cat (or priest in this instance, although I reckon he was more than curious!), I wanted to know EVERYTHING.

Graham Smith most certainly kept me on my toes the whole way through as there was SO much information to take in but it all came together rather well! Nail biting, sofa gripping, whirlwind of a storyline; thanks to Graham Smith I am now on the dark side!

Thank you to Caffeine Nights & co for my ARC.

Buy from Amazon!

About the author.

Graham Smith is married with a young son. A time served joiner he has built bridges, houses, dug drains and slated roofs to make ends meet. Since Christmas 2000 he has been manager of a busy hotel and wedding venue near Gretna Green, Scotland.
An avid fan of crime fiction since being given one of Enid Blyton’s Famous Five books at the age of eight, he has also been a regular reviewer and interviewer for the well-respected
website Crimesquad.com since 2009.

He is the author of four books featuring DI harry Evans and the Cumbrian Major Crimes
Team.
Matching the Evidence
Snatched from Home
Lines of Enquiry
I Know Your Secret – Out October 2016
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Twitter
Website

blog tour · book blogger · guest spotlight · Uncategorized

Guest Post & Giveaway courtesy of author Jo Lambert (@JoLambertwriter) @BrookCottagebks

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Thrilled to be the stop on Jo Lambert’s blog tour today for Watercolours in the Rain! I am hosting a guest post from Jo where she talks about book covers and the importance of them! Not only that, there is also a fantastic giveaway too! Enjoy!

A COVER SPEAKS A THOUSAND WORDS – GETTING THE BOOK COVER RIGHT…

You’ve completed your book. It’s been edited and polished until it’s the best it can be. And now it’s all about the cover. In 2009 when I completed my first book When Tomorrow Comes I self-published with a company who organised the cover but gave me the freedom to choose my own design. Of course it was basic stuff, one photo to which they added the title and my name plus blurb and ISBN number on the back. The covers for my next two books were designed in the same way. It was only when I met up with a fellow author for lunch that the issue of branding was raised: creating covers whose style and format would instantly identify the books as mine. My colleague suggested I contact Jane Dixon Smith who had worked on her covers. Jane, I was to discover is a multi-talented individual who is not only a designer but a writer as well.

Before I contacted her I spent time thinking about how I wanted what was now a trilogy, to look. I liked the idea of having one of the main characters on each of the covers. With this in mind I contacted her and although we were several hundred miles apart, everything went so smoothly it was if we were in the same room discussing options. She gave me some website addresses for royalty free images and I sent her samples of what I thought would work. The result was three covers which not only completely changed the look of my books but gave them a connection to me. Two covers for sequels followed. One – Between Today and Yesterday – became my favourite cover of all time. I absolutely loved the photo but it was black and white. I was about to dismiss it as a non-contender but Jane explained she could add colour. She did and this

amazingly atmospheric cover was born.

The five books became my Little Court Series, set in West Somerset. Once I felt the stories had run their course, I moved over the border into Devon for my next book. On this occasion I decided new project , new designer. I wanted this book (or as it turned out, two books) to look slightly different. This time I chose my good friend designer Cathy Helms, who lives in the States, to design the cover for Summer Moved On. I trawled the royalty free photo sites and came up with the picture of the girl holding the poppy and the result was exactly what I wanted. My new novel, Watercolours in the Rain, saw me returning to Jane and her design beautifully mirrored Cathy’s for this, the sequel.

So what are my thoughts on covers? Well as far as I’m concerned, they are every bit as important as the book itself. They are the shop window for your work, the advertisement that says to readers ‘Come in, take a look.’ Of course if you are with a publisher you will automatically have a support team behind you for this. However, speaking as an indie author, I feel as it takes a whole lot of hard work to produce a book, why cut corners? Cover designers are a fraction of the cost of a good editor. You’ve spent money on getting the contents professionally polished, why skimp on something as important as the cover? And believe me, there’s a great deal of difference between DIY and using a professional.

In a very competitive market if you hope to sell (which is what all that hard work and burning the midnight oil has been about) your book needs to be given the best chance to succeed, doesn’t it?

I think a lot of us will be agreeing with Jo’s thoughts on book covers, I know that I agree with them. I do get enticed by a book based on the cover, they are so important! And Jo, your cover is beautiful!

How do you fancy a chance of winning some prizes?

The 1st prize is this beautiful necklace!
jlw2Please note this prize is for UK residents only.

The 2nd prize is 2 e-book copies of Jo’s book, and it is also open internationally too!

If you fancy either of those prizes, click on the following link to get yourself in with a chance! Good luck!
Enter the giveaway!

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Blurb.

What happens to the future when past and present collide?

JESS: Six years ago Jess’s relationship with Talún Hansen was torn apart by one
night of deception. He disappeared from Lynbrook village and she headed for
university vowing never to let anyone break her heart again. Now a teacher, Jess
returns from holiday to an unexpected phone call and life changing news which will
eventually bring her back home once more.

TALUN: Six years on Talún Hawkeswood, as he is now known, is heir to his
grandfather’s Norfolk farming empire. When he hears of trouble in the village due to
Lynbrook Hall being put up for sale, going back is the last thing on his mind. But
staying away is not an option either, not when someone he owes so much to is about
to lose their home and their livelihood.

LILY: Splitting with her husband after her son Josh’s birth, Lily now works as part of
an estate agency sales team.  She has always held onto her dream of finding a wealthy
husband and a life of self-indulgence. When the sale of an important property brings
her face to face with Talún once more, she realises despite the risks involved, the
night they spent together six years ago may be the key to making those dreams come
true.

As Jess, Talún and Lily return to Lynbrook and the truth about what happened that
summer is gradually revealed, Talun finds himself in an impossible situation. Still in
love with Jess he is tied into to a trade off with Lily: his name and the lifestyle she
craves in exchange for his son. And when a child is involved there is only one choice
he can make…

Buy the book.

Amazon UK
Amazon US

About the author.

Born and raised in rural Wiltshire, Jo Lambert grew up with a love of books and a vivid imagination. As a child she enjoyed creating her own adventure stories similar to Enid Blyton’s Famous Five. Writing always stayed with her, but college, work and eventually marriage found it was kept very much in the background. However in 2009 she finally had her first novel – When Tomorrow Comes – published. Three other connected books – Love Lies and Promises, The Ghost of You and Me and Between Today and Yesterday followed. They became collectively known as the Little Court Series.

In 2013 she decided to give up full time work to concentrate fully on her writing. Two other books have been written since – The Other Side of Morning which is the final book of the Little Court Series and Summer Moved On, a love story set in South Devon. Jo is about to publish, Watercolours in the Rain, and plans to begin work on her new book in early November 2016. She describes her writing style as drama driven romance. Jo is married and lives in a village on the eastern edge of Bath with her husband, one small grey feline called Mollie and a green MGB GT. She loves travel, red wine, rock music and has a passion


book blogger · Book Review · Uncategorized

#review! The Christmas Cake Café by Sue Watson (@suewatsonwriter) @Bookouture

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Blurb.

Heart-warming and hilarious, a story that will make you laugh, cry and bring a smile to your face.  Get ready for another deliciously amazing Christmas treat from Sue Watson….

As the Prosecco chills and Bing Crosby croons, Jen Barker just knows that her long-term boyfriend is about to propose.  But instead of a diamond ring nestled in her champagne flute, Jen finds cold flat rejection.  Her once perfect life and dreams of a husband and family seem even further from reach.

A working holiday to the Swiss Alps with her younger sister Jody might not be the Christmas Jen had it mind, but it offers her the chance to recharge her batteries and recover from heartbreak.

When Jen meets handsome ski instructor Jon Zutter her hopes for a happy-ever-after seem within her grasp again. Jon is kind and gorgeous and as they bond over Sachetorte at the picturesque Cake Café, Jen thinks he might just be her perfect man. But a relationship with him comes with a catch – and there are some things even cake can’t fix.

As the snow falls and Christmas approaches, could this be the place that restores Jen Barker’s faith in love? 

What does TWG think?

Those who know me well know that I absolutely adore Sue Watson’s books, she is one of my most favourite authors. As soon as I found out that she had another Christmas book coming out, I just HAD to read it! Her first Christmas book, Bella’s Christmas Bake Off, was one of the first books that I reviewed on my blog back in April, so I am absolutely thrilled to be reviewing her second festive treat!

Oh my word, I could literally feel Jen’s excitement as she got ready to go out, especially given the fact that she thought that her long-term boyfriend was going to propose to her! I didn’t quite realise that I had stopped breathing in shock as the events unfolded; that was until I tried to shout ‘BARSTEWARD’, and realised that breathing first might be the most logical next step. Ahem.

Heartbreak can be as horrible as finding out that you picked up a roasted parsnip instead of a roast potato during your Christmas meal. Seriously uncalled for!

Luckily for Jen, her younger sister comes to her rescue and tries to persuade Jen that a working holiday to the Swiss Alps will be the perfect remedy. Ladies an gentleman, notice that I said TRIES.

During the story, I soon realised that Jen doesn’t exactly ooze good luck and I am sorry to say that I found it absolutely hilarious. Obviously, if I found myself in the situations that she found herself in once or twice…or thrice, I probably wouldn’t be laughing. But I couldn’t help myself and decided that laughing like a seal would be my ‘go to’ action of the book!

Once again Sue Watson has completely outdone herself as she has written another fantastic book which oozes her trademark humour and huggable writing. Despite the moments of hilarity; the storyline covers a few moments of heartbreak and re-building relationships which I felt added another dimension to the storyline and showed another side to each of the characters involved. One of the topics that Sue has covered in the story is quite complex and unfortunately quite popular in todays society. However, Sue has written about it so beautifully and in such a sensitive manner, it made the topic come across as ‘the norm’ instead of possibly frowned upon.

Whenever Sue writes a book I always want to give her a huge hug after reading it as it’s very clear that the book has been written from her heart and filled with love. ‘The  Christmas Cake Cafe’ is the home away from home; a truly magical book that is filled with intense emotion and a lot of love. Such a hug in a book that showcases Sue’s fabulous writing, one of her best books to date!

Thanks to Bookouture for my ARC.

Happy publication day Sue! ‘The Christmas Cafe’ by Sue Watson, published by Bookouture,  is available to buy from today (14th October) from Amazon UK.

book blogger · Book Review · real life

#Review! Perfect Mishap by Aimee Horton(@AimeeHorton) @V_Mpress

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Blurb.

When Dottie and her husband move to a tiny village, she’s excited to make new friends. But when the neighbours uncover a scandalous incident, all fingers point to Dottie… Can she clear her name before her reputation is permanently ruined?

In this humorous blend of chick lit and cozy mystery, you’ll be laughing right along with gin-drinking amateur sleuth Dottie. A delightfully funny romp!

What does TWG think?

I am rather angry with myself right now! ‘Perfect Mishap’ got revamped not so long ago (was previously titled Mothers Ruined), and I know that because I was one of the bloggers to reveal the brand new covers and titles. Bear in mind that that was a couple of months ago and I have only just gotten round to reading the first book in the Disaster Series. I mean, what the actual vodka martini! After stalking, sorry, following,  Aimee over on Twitter and Facebook since the reveal, I have learnt that she is indeed, HILARIOUS. Her status updates and posts are so real and relatable that they make a kid covered in sudocreme come across like an artist that needs a bath. If you don’t follow her, you need to.

Okay, back to the book. Due to the fact that I was well aware of her hilarity (and favouritism towards gin) well before I read the book, I kept my fingers crossed that she had put her humour into the story.

She did! I wasn’t expecting to snort like a pig whilst also laughing like a seal….two sentences in. I mean really, either I’m easily amused or she’s absolutely hilarious. I’m going to say both! I LOVED meeting Dottie! She even lives up to her name with her actions as well as having such a big heart. It is quite clear that Dottie’s everyday life is based on everyday people, and not the people who spend more time in Hollywood than in Parenthood (just a guess). I found that quite refreshing and I’ll be honest, I would have loved to find this book before I had had my little girl; One Born Every Minute has nothing on Dottie!

Every scenario, emotion and baby moment will no doubt have A LOT of readers nodding their heads to. Nothing in the book is sugar coated, it’s relatable and Aimee shows that its okay to look like you’ve been dragged through a hedge backwards after having a baby. That it’s okay to do things differently to anyone else. More importantly, Aimee shows that its okay to be YOU and laugh about things when they aren’t going how you thought they would (within reason).

‘Perfect Mishap’ is such a refreshing and hilarious read, I may even go as far to say that it’s like confidence in a book. Even when the storyline took an unexpected turn, it didn’t lose any of its flow or credibility. I thoroughly enjoyed every moment of this book, it is GENIUS! I cannot wait to get stuck into the next book in the series!

Perfect Mishap by Aimee Horton, published by Velvet Morning Press, is available to buy now from Amazon UK

book blogger · Book Review · Uncategorized

#Review! All She Ever Wished For by Claudia Carroll(@carrollclaudia) @AvonBooksUK #Tuesnews

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Blurb.

A gorgeous story of chance meetings and unexpected friendships . . . because sometimes what you’ve always wished for isn’t necessarily what life has in store . . .

Marriage. It’s a dream come true. Isn’t it?

One wet winter night, two women meet on a bridge. One is Tess Taylor, a personal trainer on the way to meet her boyfriend for date night. The other is Kate King, a celebrity married to a handsome billionaire who just happens to make her cry. In the cold dark evening, there is nothing to link them together but the bridge they shiver on. Little do they know they’ll both hold the key to each other’s future marriage…

All She Ever Wished For tells the story of what happens when your dream is about to come true. And what happens when that dream turns into a bit of a nightmare…

What does TWG think?

Planning your wedding is supposed to be an exciting experience isn’t it? Well, stressful too, but you would think that when your upcoming wedding was being spoken about, you would show more happiness as opposed to….nothing, right? I have watched many episodes of Say Yes To The Dress and Don’t tell the Bride to understand that anger or uncertainty, are two feelings that would only appear if your other half has annoyed you…and NOT because of someone asking you whether you’re excited to be getting married.

Meet Tess, a personal trainer who is planning her wedding to a man that is her polar opposite who thinks his reputation is far more important than anything else.
Meet Kate, a celebrity who is married to a man she thought would be her ‘one’, her ‘happily ever after’, funny how things can change isn’t it?

I revealed the cover of this book on my blog the other month, so when I realised that I was able to review it too, I became rather excited! I didn’t know what to expect at all but I rather looking forward to finding out.

As soon as the story begins it seems as though we’re gaining a puzzle piece because of the first scenario we come across. To what that puzzle piece represented, I didn’t know, yet, but it seemed as though that first puzzle piece was a vital piece of information for the story.

The storyline itself switches between Tess’ and Kate’s lives and how they got to where they are now, and more I read, the more puzzle pieces I collected. I gave up trying to work out where the storyline was heading as there was so much information and enjoyable situations, I didn’t want my mind to be taken away from the overall story. I wanted to enjoy it for what it was instead of trying to be Sherlock. Both Tess and Kate were brilliant characters to follow as their personalities were so very different yet they were still quite similar ladies. I found the storyline to be quite complex as there was a lot going on and I was taken on such an emotional journey, absolutely loved it.

‘All She Ever Wished For’ is such a powerful and poignant read, it truly opened my eyes to the bigger picture in general. I thoroughly enjoyed going with the flow with this book and letting myself enjoy every single moment of Claudia’s enchanting words. I couldn’t believe where the storyline headed as it was totally unexpected, that said, it made for an even better read.

Such a wonderful book that will have you siding with a heroine or two. I got lost in Claudia’s majestic storyline and was rather disappointed when the book had to end. I absolutely cannot wait to see what Claudia has up her sleeve for her next book!

Thank you to Avon for my ARC.

All She Ever Wished For by Claudia Carroll, published by Avon Books UK, is available to buy now in both e-book and paperback from Amazon UK! The paperback is also available to buy in the wild as I spotted it in Tesco and Asda!

book blogger · Book Review · Uncategorized

Publication day #review! A Winter’s Wish by Alice Ross (@AliceRoss22) @UKCarina #bookboost

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Blurb.

Tis the season to be jolly…isn’t it?

Amelia is at breaking point. She’s just lost her job and Doug, the love of her life, still hasn’t broken up with his girlfriend. Surely a trip to the quiet countryside is just what she needs?

Phil is about to leave beautiful Buttersley for the other side of the world! The sunny shores of Australia will mean a new life with his girlfriend, but something is holding him back…

Ella has never felt this way before – Jake O’Donnell is the most gorgeous man she’s ever seen. And the more time she spends babysitting his kids, the more her feelings grow!

Stan should be happy. He loves his wife and their adorable baby girl more than anything! So why, when everything’s finally going right, are they arguing more than ever?

One thing’s for sure, even when Buttersley’s first snowflakes begin to fall, it’s never too cold for love to blossom…

What does TWG think?

I feel a little bit sad writing this review as it is a little bittersweet. ‘A Winter’s Wish’ is the third and final instalment of the Countryside Dreams series. We first took a trip to Buttersley with the first book ‘An Autumn Affair’, we went back to Buttersley in the summer with ‘A Summer of Secrets’ and now we return to Buttersley one last time. Along the way we have met some very colourful characters with some being more memorable than others, and ‘A Winter’s Wish’ is no different.

Amelia, Stan, Phil and Ella are the focal points in this storyline as they try to deal with their own consciences and drama’s. However, one thing in particular brings them all together; Buttersley. Will they be able to put their lives back on the straight and narrow? Or will they soon realise the charms of Buttersley are stronger than the residents give them credit for?

I squealed ever so loudly when I read this book as both myself and my daughter, Eva, are in the acknowledgements and dedication of the book! I am truly honoured and thankful to Alice for doing that, it was such a lovely surprise. I do enjoy reading Alice’s stories as they’re always cosy reads and have the essence of speaking to a good friend through the words. I was hopeful that this particular book would feel like that too, especially with it being the last book. I needn’t have worried, straight away we are pushed into drama that gives The Real Housewives of New Jersey a run for their money! I couldn’t seem to work out why Amelia wasn’t liked by many people, she wasn’t exactly the most bubbly of people, but is that always a bad thing?

When the story delved into Phil’s life and his new journey, I couldn’t help buy think ‘oh just grow a pair!’, you’ll see why I am sure! As for Ella, definitely playing with fire as a character but I feel that the situation was written brilliantly and highlights a situation that is more common than people realise. Finally, there is Stan. Stan the man…except he was being more of a mouse than a man! I quite enjoyed reading Stan’s story as it was extremely unexpected and made for juicy reading!

It was lovely returning to Buttersley and trying to see if any old favourites reappeared in the storyline. Alice Ross has been very clever in writing the three books as even though they’re a brand new story overall, every time, there is something so comfortable about reading the books as it’s like visiting an old friend. I became curious about the other characters and what they were doing now, especially when their houses or workplaces got mentioned. Part of me was thinking ‘stop the book, I need to pop in and see them!’, but of course I couldn’t, because it was a book…ahem.

Another funny, warm and real read from author Alice Ross, one that I am going to be rather sad to see the back of. I hope that Alice decides to return to Buttersley in the not too distant future!

Thank you Netgalley/Carina for my copy of the book.

A Winter’s Wish by Alice Ross, published by Carina, is out to buy from today from Amazon UK



blog tour · book blogger · Book Review

Blog Tour! Review of Losing it by Emma Rathbone (@EmmaRathbone) @HQStories #LosingIt

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TWG is back with yet another blog tour today, this time it is for Emma Rathbone’s ‘Losing It’ which is published by HQStories!

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Blurb.

Twenty-six year old Julia Greenfield has long suspected that everyone is having fun without her.

It’s not that she’s unhappy, per se. It’s just that she’s not exactly happy either.

She hasn’t done anything spontaneous since about 2003. Shouldn’t she be running a start up? Going backpacking? Exploring uncharted erogenous zones with inappropriate men?

Trapped between news of her mother’s latent sexual awakening and her spinster aunt’s odd behaviour, Julia has finally snapped. It’s time to take some risks, and get a life.

After all – what has she got to lose?

What does TWG think?

‘Losing It’ puts a whole new spin on the well-known phrase ’40 year old virgin’! Except none of the characters in the book are 40..although the last part is true! I’m sure many of us when we were at the age of wanting to explore sexually, were forever listening to the detailed tales of friends ‘losing IT’, or having friends that were getting geared up to. It always seemed to be a competition of who could lose IT before others in the group, regardless of the circumstances in doing so. Let’s think of that from another side, what if that competition turned into pressure? Maybe pressure from other girls with ‘omg why haven’t you lost it yet?’

That’s where Julia comes in, a 26-year-old virgin that seems to focus on the concept of ‘losing it’ day in, day out. By focus, I mean obsessed. She goes on the AWKWARD dates to try to find THE ONE, the one who she can settle down with and lose her virginity to. Julia stays with her Aunt Viv whilst she is on her mission to lose it, the thing with that though is that Aunt Viv is very similar to Julia..in more ways than one.

I think Emma Rathbone is rather brave in writing about such an important topic, even though some readers may find it all a bit too ‘cringy’. The topic of virginity and losing it is one that needs to be highlighted because some people DO get pressured to lose it just because their friends sisters boyfriends cousin did. But on the other side of the coin, you get people like Julia that feel as though it is the be all and end all to lose their virginity. Why is that though? Unfortunately, it does come down to one thing, media. Whilst I do feel that Emma has done such a brilliant thing by highlighting the topic, I did find Julia’s obsession with the whole thing a bit too much.

I also feel that there was much more to Julia’s personality that wasn’t explored fully, she is definitely character who will have a marmite reaction. The conversations she was having with her friends along the way were a mixture of hilarity and ‘omg you didn’t?’, and I found that to be rather refreshing and on point with today’s society. Everyone will have their own cringeworthy story when it comes down to sexual intercourse and virginity, and Emma’s book has shown that is okay to have those embarrassing moments, even if you don’t think so at the time.

Overall, I thought that the storyline in general was very different to the books that are out there just now, but also a funny read. However, I am sitting on the fence with this book as I didn’t gel with the characters at all, but I gelled with the basis of the storyline in general. Hats off to Emma Rathbone though for bringing out a book that will most certainly get people talking and hopefully more comfortable with the topic of virginity. Own it!

I received a complimentary copy of the book from the publishers, thank you.

Losing it by Emma Rathbone, published by HQStories, is available to buy now from Amazon UK

About the author.

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Emma Rathbone is the author of the novel The Patterns of Paper Monsters. She is the recipient of a Christopher Isherwood Grant in Fiction, and her work can also be seen in the New Yorker, the New York Times, and the Virginia Quarterly Review. She is also a writer for the upcoming Netflix comedy, G.L.O.W. She lives in Los Angeles.

blog tour · book blogger · Book Review · Uncategorized

Blog Tour! Review of ‘The Christmas Promise’ by Sue Moorcroft (@SueMoorcroft) @AvonbooksUK

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Blurb.

Countdown to Christmas with your new must-have author, as you step into the wonderful world of bespoke hat-maker Ava Bliss…

For Ava Bliss, it’s going to be a Christmas to remember…

On a snowy December evening, Sam Jermyn steps into the life of bespoke hat maker Ava. Sparks fly, and not necessarily the good ones.

Times are tough for Ava – she’s struggling to make ends meet, her ex-boyfriend is a bully, and worst of all, it’s nearly Christmas.

So when Sam commissions Ava to make a hat for someone special, she makes a promise that will change her life. She just doesn’t know it yet…

What does TWG think?

Absolutely thrilled to be today’s stop on Sue Moorcroft’s blog tour for #MyPromise!!
‘The Christmas Promise’ is definitely a book that shouldn’t be judged by its cover this Christmas. Whilst the cover is very beautiful, the storyline has incredible depth to it and it managed to change my original perception of the book as a whole. Why? Because I did what I’ve just said that shouldn’t be done; I judged the book by its cover. I thought it was going to be a twinkly, dancing in the snow type of read. But, even though it has the Christmas magic element perfected, Sue’s story tells a shockingly honest tale.

Ava’s working life hasn’t been going to plan if her dreams are anything to go by. Unfortunately she finds herself in the position of worrying about money and ensuring she can keep a roof over her head. That in itself is enough to stress anyone out. Ava’s bad luck doesn’t stop there though. Her ex-boyfriend thinks he is being big and clever, when in reality, he’s being a bully. An evil, repulsive bully that could cost Ava everything that she has worked hard for, and more. The bully’s actions are the basis of the shockingly honest tale. One that even made me stop and think, as well as being outraged at his actions, obviously.

I am sure that the tale will make a lot of people stop and think. Hats off to Sue for writing about a very important topic in a truly honest, yet sensitive way. Speaking of hats, oh my gosh!!! Finding out about how hats are made, was absolutely incredible! The way that Ava managed to create a ‘basic’ hat so simply blew my mind, and I wasn’t even there. Until now, hats had been off my radar and I thought of them to be just that, hats. However, after ‘watching’ Ava at work, I see hats in a completely different light. To be fair, it was all in Sue’s writing as the way she described all of the intricate details was outstanding. I hope that if I decide to get a hat made, that I can just take Sue’s description of one in the book with me and say ‘make that’!

For me, the storyline got better and better the more of it I read; characters became stronger and there was even more things popping up to keep me hooked. ‘The Christmas Promise’ is definitely a book that gets top marks for holding my attention, as just when I thought a situation was on the up, something else swooped in and made me think ‘where the hell did that come from?’. The whole book caught me by surprise on more than one occasion, even when I had, cough, something in my eye, cough.

I cannot fault ‘The Christmas Promise’ at all, even though it was a rollercoaster of emotion, it was a magnificent one. An enticing, shocking and loveable read that managed to keep my attention from chapter to chapter. A true Christmas work of art and hats off to Sue Moorcroft for writing her best book yet!

Thank you to the publishers for my copy of the book.

The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft, published by Avon, is available to buy now from Amazon UK. The paperback will be available to buy from the 1st December but can be pre-ordered here.

smx


blog tour · book blogger · guest spotlight · Uncategorized

34 Days by Anita Waller (@anitamayw) Blog Tour! #Guestpost @bloodhoundbook

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Absolutely thrilled to be a part of the blog tour for a book that seems to be running up the book charts just now! Thank you to Helen from Bloodhound Books for inviting me on the tour, my first one for you guys, exciting!

Author of 34 Days, Anita Waller, has written a guest post for me to share with you all today. Enjoy!

Guest Post by Anita Waller.

I can remember being around eight years old and going to the Headmaster’s office daily to read a list of twenty words to him, then going back in the afternoon and spelling them. Mr. Ellis is my hero. He instilled in me a love of the English language; Mrs. Heyworth, my class teacher, compounded it by ‘compositions’. My composition was never a short story, it always had chapters. I am also gifted with a photographic memory, which I suppose was the main thing that saw me never misspell in my daily spelling lessons with Mr. Ellis!

            From being that age, I never stopped writing; I began novel writing in my thirties by taking what I thought of as the easy option and writing for Mills and Boon. Soppy love stories? Dead easy. I now have six novels sitting on a shelf, all hard copy because I wrote on an Amstrad 8256, that I will never use, because writing for Mills and Boon is anything but ‘dead easy’. It was only when murder crept into my mind that I began to change.

            In 1995 I wrote a novel called Beautiful. I never saw it as belonging to any specific genre, it was just a novel. I sent it to a couple of publishers who gave me excellent feedback while saying it wasn’t for them, and then I sent it to a publisher called Ringpull Press. They accepted it immediately, and we were within a day of meeting to sign the contract when they went into liquidation. They returned my manuscript; I bundled it up and stuck it in the attic. I stopped sending anything to publishers, decided they were all rubbish, and began to teach creative writing instead.

            In 2014, at the ripe old age of 68, I decided Beautiful had to be typed into my computer at the very least. I am not a copy typist and had to look at every word; it took me eighteen months. I finished on the Saturday morning. The previous day I had seen a publisher called Bloodhound Books were looking for submissions. I did no homework on them, had no idea what they published, but sent them the first twenty pages, as requested, on that Saturday morning. By Wednesday we had signed the contract. Six weeks later it was published.

            I am now 70 years old, my third book is due for launch any day, and I followed my dream. It took a long time and I wish I could personally thank Mr. Ellis and Mrs. Heyworth but I can’t, they are long gone. My best advice to any aspiring writer? Never, ever give up. The dream will keep you going. That’s what dreams are for.

Thank you Anita for the kick up the backside; listen to her folks, NEVER give up on your dreams. Lovely Anita is proof that you shouldn’t!

34-days
Blurb.

How much can your life change in just 34 days?

Anna and Ray have been married for thirty-five years. They are parents and grandparents and appear to be a normal couple. But behind closed doors something isn’t right.

On the day of their wedding anniversary Anna makes a decision that changes everything and throws her family into turmoil. Anna will discover that she is not the only one who has suffered and by leaving Ray she sparks a series of events so awful that it might just end in murder…

34 Days by Anita Waller, published by Bloodhound Books, is available to buy now from Amazon UK