#BlogTour! #Extract from ‘Shadows’ by Paul Finch (@paulfinchauthor) @AvonBooksUK

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Thrilled to be taking part in Paul Finch’s blog tour today! I am delighted to be able to share with you an extract from his new novel; ‘Shadows’. Enjoy!

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[Extract 7 from Chapter 8, pp.66-67]

‘He attacks late at night, and not many people are likely to go out to a cashpoint late at night unless they feel relatively safe. These particular cashpoints, because they’re out in the open, will probably be deemed safer than most.’
‘So, if he hangs around these, there’s basically more chance he’ll get lucky,’ Blake said.
‘That’s my reading of it, ma’am, yes.’ Lucy’s finger roved further across the street map. ‘These points also benefit from having getaway routes everywhere. A side passage through to a pedestrianised shopping mall, from where there are half a dozen other points of egress. A subway . . . An overpass that leads to a housing estate. Plus, and this could be very important, they’re all in close proximity to free on-street parking.’
‘You think he’s mobile?’ Blake said.
Lucy shook her head. ‘I don’t know, ma’am. You dress up like a lunatic, pick someone at random, cut them down with a sword and just run off into the night, in most cases leaving them alive to shout for help. . . you’d normally be asking for trouble. I mean that wouldn’t just draw attention to the scene of the
crime, but to you and to whichever route you’ve used to get away. That would normally be the trademark of a disorganised attacker who’s doomed to get nicked pretty quickly. Unless, as we’ve already said, it’s a part of an act, the purpose of which is to conceal the fact he’s actually a very organised offender indeed. I mean, while the cops are running around looking for a grinning maniac, he’s removed his disguise and miraculously become an ordinary citizen again, happily driving home to his house in the
suburbs . . . or something like that.’
Blake contemplated this.
‘Of course, he’s not going to leave his motor on an actual car park,’ Lucy added. ‘I mean, they’re covered much more intensively by security cameras than on-street, and that would reveal his VRM.’
‘You’ve really done your homework on this, haven’t you?’

‘Shadows’ by Paul Finch is available to buy now from Amazon UK

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#BlogTour! #Review – The Bitches of Suburbia by @JaneOwenauthor @rararesources

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Nothing much ever happened on Horseshoe Lane – why should it? It was, after all, just a normal suburban backwater with the usual cross section of growing families, ageing pensioners, the occasional singleton and a brace of curtain twitchers. The arrival of celebrity couple, Heavenly and Travis, however, changes all that. This glamorous pair bring about a summer of competitive party throwing and ambitious home improvement projects that will have disastrous and completely unforeseen consequences.  

 Neighbours who’ve got by for years with just the occasional chat over a garden fence about the unseasonable amount of rain or the state of next door’s garden are slowly united by suspicion as a husband goes missing, a much loved cat turns up dead on a doorstep and Enid from Number Seven is found badly injured at the foot of the cliff.   

 Could one person be responsible for all of this? Could that person be the strange and unlikeable Hilary Jones from Number Nine? There was only going to be one way to find out and it was going to involve a lot of whiskey….

 In this her wonderful follow up to ‘The Rock Star Known as Horse’, Owen’s riveting new story finds a murky side to the suburbs, a side where petty jealousies and neighbourly rivalries can escalate out of all control with calamitous results, all intricately observed with her usual dark humour firmly to the fore.

What does TWG think?

If I had to sum up this book in two words it would have to be – ‘Desperate Housewives’ the sitcom. Anyone remember that? That’s a compliment by the way! Jane Owen’s novel has the same sort of gossipy, snooty and bitchy characters as the sitcom does. Sometimes you just need to lose yourself in a novel full of everything that’s wrong about people, yet so flipping addictive.

Plus, with a book title like this one, how can you NOT decide to read it on that alone? I don’t want to give any of the gossipy, ‘keeping up with the Jones’ ‘ type storyline anyway, so this review will be brief. That said, it is almost guaranteed that you will have met at least one of these characters before in real life.

The author sets the scene for the upcoming storyline absolutely fantastically. It was as though she is gearing up her readers ready for drama central, yet still wanted to paint a picture of an idyllic place to live….BEFORE she introduced her character. Trust me, there is probably a slim chance that you would want to live right next door to these characters if you had to choose. Well, unless you enjoy drama and bitches then you’ll find it heaven.

‘Bitches of Suburbia’ had me laughing out loud, nodding along and generally enjoying the overall storyline. This book is such a change from the usually serious sort of characters I usually come across. A breath of fresh air on every page, alongside many laugh out loud anecdotes and memorable characters. Seriously, what’s not to like about that?

Thanks RaRaResources.

Buy now from Amazon

About Jane Owen

Jane’s first novel, Camden Girls, was published by Penguin twenty years ago and quickly became an international cult bestseller published in many languages including Japanese, Spanish,German, Hebrew, Italian and Dutch.  She’d already spent many years working in the film business working alongside stars such as Christophe Lambert, Andi McDowell, Daryl Hannah and James Remar before switching to the music business and working for bands such as The Who, Robert Plant, ZZTop and many more.  Eventually, even that got boring and that’s when she wrote Camden Girls.

 After publication, life became interrupted by an unfortunate traffic accident and Jane moved out of London to Sussex and slowly returned to writing.  Her novels don’t fit into any specific category and, frustrated by endless rejections along the lines of ‘You write beautifully but we don’t know how to sell this book’ she started self publishing.  Rave reviews gave her the confidence to keep going and believe in what she was writing.

 She’s still in Sussex, sharing her life with her musician partner, three horses and a dog and divides her day between writing and riding.

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/JaneOwenAuthor/

Twitter – https://twitter.com/janeowenauthor

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/janeowenauthor/

 

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Skeletal by Emma Pullar (@EmmaStoryteller) @Bloodhoundbook

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Gale City is the last city in the world and under the strict control of the illusive Centrals.

When females reach adulthood, they’re given the chance to compete at Showcase for the honour of becoming surrogates for the Morbihan – a highly intelligent, obese race of people, unable to procreate naturally. All the other girls are excited to become hosts, all except Megan Skyla.

Convinced there’s more to life, Skyla teams up with an unlikely friend and they go in search of a cure for the Morbihan condition. Things don’t go to plan and their journey becomes a harrowing quest fraught with danger and deceit.

How can Skyla discover the truth when everything she’s been told is a lie? Can anyone in Gale City ever really be free?

Skyla is about to discover that freedom has a price and she’s going have the fight to survive.

Skeletal is a disturbing vision of the future and a literary thriller unlike any other.

What does TWG think?

I have to admit that curiosity got the better of me where ‘Skeletal’ was concerned as any other time, I probably wouldn’t pick up a novel like this myself. That’s nothing against the author, don’t get me wrong. It’s just that usually, Dystopian novels are so far out of my comfort zone, it’s as though they’re in a different country. But, because I actually read the blurb on Emma Pullar’s novel, my intrigue level skyrocketed and I knew that I would have to go out of my comfort zone to settle my curiosity.

At first i wasn’t overly convinced as the storyline seemed a little too far-fetched for me. However, i surprised myself by getting stuck into the storyline and the hurdles each of the characters faced.

What stayed with my most out of the entire novel was the jump to the future by seeing what things could be like. I’m not going to lie, the theme of the novel wasn’t 100% my cup of tea but I still managed to enjoy the overall concept. Emma Pullar certainly has a way with words and I am impressed at how fine tuned her storytelling is, especially seeing as she made me go from ‘unimpressed’ to ‘nose in novel’ in the matter of seconds. Getting me to change my mind like that, let alone reading this type of novel full stop, certainly speaks volumes at how much I enjoyed the authors writing.

Unique, thrilling and rather intriguing – I am glad I stepped out of my comfort zone by reading ‘Skeletal’.

Thanks BloodhoundBooks.

Buy now from Amazon UK

Author Bio:

Emma Pullar is a writer of dark fiction and children’s books. Her picture book, Curly from Shirley, went to number four on the national bestseller list and was named best opening lines by NZ Post. You can read her SJV Award shortlisted horror story, London’s Crawling, in the Dark Minds charity collection and her dystopian sci-fi story, Old Trees Don’t Bend, in The Anthropocene Chronicles. Emma has also written three shortlisted stories for Create50 which are awaiting the winner announcement. Her debut novel SKELETAL published by Bloodhound Books is due for release 27th October 2017. 

Links:

 Twitter: @EmmaStoryteller
FB Page: Emma Pullar Storyteller
Instagram: @emmapullar_storyteller

#BlogTour! #Review – The Lost Child by Patricia Gibney (@Trisha460) @Bookouture

The Lost Child - Blog Tour
Joining me on the blog today is Patricia Gibney and book 3 of the DI Lottie Parker novels, ‘The Lost Child’. I am thrilled to be sharing my review with you all today! Thank you to Bookouture for the invite on the tour as well as the ARC.

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They placed me in here and threw away the key. I look down at the gown they’ve put on me. I want my own clothes. I don’t know how long I’ve been here.

An elderly woman is found murdered in her own home, and Detective Lottie Parker and her partner Detective Boyd are called in to investigate. When they discover that the victim’s daughter is missing as well, they start to fear for the safety of the whole family…

Two days later as a nearby house is set on fire and with the body count rising, Lottie and her team begin to unpick a web of secrets and lies, as the murders seem to link back to a case investigated by Lottie’s father before he took his own life. 

With little knowledge of what really happened to her father, Lottie knows this is a case that could give her some answers. But how much does she want to know? And how far is Lottie prepared to dig to uncover the truth?

The Lost Child is a thrilling page-turner from the bestselling author of The Missing Ones and The Stolen Girls that will have you guessing right to the very last page. Perfect for fans of Rachel Abbott, Angela Marsons and Robert Dugoni.

What does TWG think?

Lets give you a rough idea as to how addictive this book is, yes? Well, I started reading ‘The Lost Child’ late last night and within an hour and half (ish), I begrudgingly left the book sitting at 51% read. I am a fast reader, but it doesn’t matter how fast someone reads if the book is just pants as you’re not going to fly through the pages as quickly as if it was a good book, right? Luckily, Patricia Gibney’s book was FAR from being pants. Put it this way…I quickly became a Rottweiler when disturbed whilst reading it. Bared my gnashers and everything…

We are catching up with Detective Lottie Parker as she begins to investigate a death. Of course an investigation into a death isn’t as plain sailing as DI’s would like, especially if the death was due to a murder and the culprit wasn’t ready and waiting to be caught of course!

The storyline of ‘The Lost Child’ quite complex and every little detail is linked to another situation within the book. Obviously a lot of those situations don’t become clear until later on, but I seemed to ponder every piece of information that was given, just in case it was somehow linked to the investigation. Because of that, I would hate to go too in-depth with my review in case I accidentally threw in a spoiler. All I will say is that you need to ignore everybody around you as soon as you start reading. Why? Because once you start, it will be a challenge to stop. Believe me.

Patricia Gibney has written an absolute corker of a novel where ‘The Lost Child’ is concerned. From start to finish I found myself completely engrossed in every situation I came up against. I attempted to sieve through the information to form my own conclusion and for the first time ever, I wasn’t 100% wrong! To be fair, I wasn’t 100% right either but y’know! Even though I had a hunch regarding the culprit, the author still managed to surprise me with the overall conclusion.

To say that this book is as simple as just finding a culprit would be an insult. To say that this book is a head funk, spine tingling, and severely addictive read, would be a complete understatement. In all honesty, I don’t think I have enough words to do ‘The Lost Child’ justice. The storyline reeled me in, kept me in suspense, made me feel as though I was losing my mind, whilst also leaving me wanting more. I cannot wait to read the next instalment from Detective Lottie Parker, but due to how much of a cracking read this book was, the author certainly has raised the bar high for herself where the next book is concerned.

Cleverly written, more-ish, suspenseful and highly intense – ‘The Lost Child’ is a definite must read. Absolutely brilliant.

Thanks Bookouture.

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon US

Author Bio.

Patricia lives in the midlands of Ireland. She is an avid crime reader so naturally she found herself writing in the crime genre.  
A life changing experience in 2009, with the death of her 49 year old husband, meant she had to give up her career, and over the following few years, she rekindled her love of art and writing. 
Initially Patricia wrote and illustrated a children’s book, but her real ambition was to write a novel. And she did!
In January 2016, she joined with Ger Nichol of The Book Bureau Literary Agency. In July 2016, Patricia signed with Bookouture for four DI Lottie Parker crime novels. 

The Missing Ones (Book 1) published in March 2017 and to date has reached a high of number 2 in Amazon UK Kindle charts and number 6 in the US. It also achieved number 1 in all its categories. It is a bestseller in UK, US, Canada and Australia.
Book 2 in the series, The Stolen Girls, published on July 6th, 2017.
Book 3, The Lost Child, is on pre-order and is published on October 27th, 2017.

 Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/patricia.gibney1

Twitter: https://twitter.com/trisha460

Website: http://patriciagibney.com/

#BlogBlitz #Review – A Cosy Candlelit Christmas by Tilly Tennant (@TillyTenWriter) @Bookouture

A Cosy Candlelit Christmas - Blog Blitz
So excited to be taking part in yet another blog blitz for one of my most favourite authors of all time, Tilly Tennant! Big thank you to Bookouture for inviting me on the tour as well as an ARC of the book. Here is my review:

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All singleton Isla wants for Christmas is to be left in peace, but a surprise trip to the Alps means there’s a chance for romance in every snowflake that falls…

It’s the week before Christmas and Isla McCoy has just received an unexpected gift: a letter announcing she is due a life-changing inheritance, but only if she’s willing to make amends with the father who abandoned her.

She has absolutely no intention of forgiving him, but who could resist an all-expenses-paid trip to the French resort of St Martin-de-Belleville?

There she meets smooth-talking Justin and nerdy glaciologist Sebastian; two very different men, with two very different agendas. Torn between her head and her heart, Isla finds herself utterly lost in a winter wonderland of her own feelings.

Surrounded by twinkling candles and roaring log-fires, Isla’s resolve finally begins to melt. But will she learn how to reconnect, not only with a whole new family, but with herself and her heart?

A gorgeously heart-warming festive read to help spark a little romance in those long winter nights. Perfect for fans of Jane Linfoot, Debbie Johnson and Jenny Colgan.

What does TWG think?

You know what would be easier? Me copying and pasting* all the compliments I write for Tilly Tennant in each review, into this one! It’s as though I am a worn out record by saying the same sort of stuff!
(*Please note that I would never do that. It would be easier, but I wouldn’t. Just to clarify!)

I had the pleasure of ignoring everybody by indulging in yet another Tilly Tennant novel. A Tilly Tennant novel to me is like chocolate chip cookies to Cookie Monster, although I wouldn’t say no to several of those whilst reading Tilly’s novel, that’s for sure!

I’m just going to come straight out and say it. I feel I owe it to the author to be open and honest…

OOOOOOOOOHHHHHHH I LOVEEEEEEED IT! I have absolutely NO idea how this author does it, but she knocks it out of the park every.single.time! Just when I thought she had done good with a previous novel, the author then brings out a book which lands itself in the ‘Tilly Tennant’s Best Book Yet’ section. Seriously. It’s not even the odd book…it’s EVERY SINGLE BOOK which the author reduces me to a gabbling, stalkerish type reviewer who pining after the authors words once again!

Most of Isla’s life has been with her mother, that really is all she has even known. Until the day her estranged father makes contact that is. Personally, I thought Isla was incredibly brave for doing what she did despite knowing full well what the repercussions could have been not only for her, but everyone else involved. Just like Isla, my father abandoned us at a young age and I spent many years angry with someone who I hadn’t heard their side of the story from. A mother, just like Glory, who had their own version of events and refused to let anything else become an option. If I had the chance would I do what Isla did? Yes, I would. Unfortunately I won’t ever get that chance, but I am so glad that Isla listened with her own heart for once, instead of going along with what her mother wanted.

The way Isla comes across in a lot of the storyline is guarded and emotionally broken. Whether she would openly admit to that is a whole other ball game. Of course she is going to be guarded, so for that I appreciated how realistic the author made her character’s feelings come across throughout the storyline. I felt as though I wasn’t reading about a fictional character – I felt as though I was reading a book about a real life person and their true story. Hats off to Tilly Tennant for being able to dissect such a raw and emotional topic, in such a heart-felt and poignant manner. Fantastic.

As for Justin. Well. If I ever were to find myself in a snowball fight with him, I would ensure my snowball contained a surprise. What a pleb! As soon as he came on the scene I disliked him straight away. People say I am judgemental. I say that I am a good judge of character!

I fell in love with every single thing within ‘A Cosy Candlelit Christmas’ from the setting to the main characters, to the humour to the hotel, to the romance to the thought-provoking message. Everything. Because I could relate to Isla a lot, this novel did make me feel quite emotional and hit me in a completely different way to any of Tilly Tennant’s other novels. Daft eh? Don’t worry though, despite my emotional undertone, I did laugh a heck of a lot. That is another thing I love about this authors writing; she never fails to make me feel.

In my eyes, ‘A Cosy Candlelit Christmas’ is Tilly Tennant’s best book to date. She really has outdone herself with her character building, setting descriptions and overall plot. Once again I was able to let myself fall into Tilly’s ingenious and magical words (a bit like when Joey from Friends steps into the map…ish), knowing that I will forever be cushioned by such an enchanting and heart-warming novel. Hand on heart, I could read a Tilly Tennant novel every single day and not get bored with the magic which lies under every cover.

Spell-binding, beautifully written and 100% memorable – Tilly Tennant has blown me away. If I were given the chance to disappear into a fictional life for a day, I would pick one of Tilly Tennant’s novels, that’s for sure.

A hug in a book from start to finish, I could not recommend ‘A Cosy Candlelit Christmas’ more if I tried.

Thanks Bookouture.

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon US

Author Bio:

Tilly Tennant was born in Dorset, the oldest of four children, but now lives in Staffordshire with a family of her own. After years of dismal and disastrous jobs, including paper plate stacking, shop girl, newspaper promotions and waitressing (she never could carry a bowl of soup without spilling a bit), she decided to indulge her passion for the written word by embarking on a degree in English and creative writing. She wrote a novel in 2007 during her first summer break at university and has not stopped writing since. She also works as a freelance fiction editor, and considers herself very lucky that this enables her to read many wonderful books before the rest of the world gets them.

Hopelessly Devoted to Holden Finn was her debut novel; published in 2014 it was an Amazon bestseller in both the UK and Australia. In 2016 she signed to the hugely successful Bookouture and is currently working on her tenth Tilly Tennant novel. She also writes as Sharon Sant, where she explores the darker side of life, and Poppy Galbraith, where things get a little crazier. Find out more about Tilly and how to join her mailing list for news and exclusives at www.tillytennant.com

 Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TillyTennant/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/TillyTenWriter

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/tillytennant6000/

Website: www.tillytennant.com

 

#BlogBlitz! #Review – No-One Ever Has Sex on Xmas Day by @TracyBBloom @Bookouture

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A dream family Christmas or a total nightmare? Katy and Ben are about to find out…

Katy’s been stuck in the office away from her family so she wants it all: snow (fake or real), the Michael Bublé Christmas album, whatever it takes. 

There’s only one thing missing as far as her husband Ben is concerned: another baby to complete their family. But Katy isn’t so sure she’s ready yet…

Ben may be playing the role of Master Elf in the pre-school nativity but he is struggling to master his own family life. With romantically-challenged friends, an ex who refuses to go away and Katy’s mum’s 64-year-old toy boy thrown into the mix, Christmas looks like it could be going off the rails… Never mind family planning, can Katy and Ben even plan to make it to the end of Christmas Day? 

From the no. 1 bestselling author of No-one Ever Has Sex on a Tuesday, this book will make you cry with laughter, and then book your flights abroad for the festive season. Perfect for fans of Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella and Milly Johnson. 

What does TWG think?

For a book with such an intriguing book title as this one, I really had my fingers crossed that the storyline was going to make me laugh. A lot. I have to admit, I hadn’t really taken the time to ponder whether anyone had sex on Christmas Day if I’m perfectly honest! I guess the well used excuse of ‘I’m too tired’ is completely genuine on that day only. I wouldn’t know though….naturally.

Katy is a workaholic. She has the new house, the ‘perfect’ husband and a wonderful daughter – so why isn’t she biting off her husband’s hand to have another baby? Aside from being a workaholic I mean. With a rocky history to their relationship, Katy and Ben are head over heels in love with one another, yet little do they know that a couple of familiar (and unwelcome) faces will threaten to shake up their harmonious life. Well, either that or the 20 odd children set to star in the nativity for the first time will…

I know a lot of people have laughed out loud where Tracy Bloom’s book is concerned, so of course after seeing all of that on social media, I seemed to be on the constant look out for ‘laugh out loud’ moments throughout the story. Don’t get me wrong, there were times where I chuckled where Braindead and the nativity were concerned, but I ended up feeling a little bit annoyed with myself for not finding this book as funny as everyone else claims to have done.

Whilst I enjoyed Katy’s sassiness, I found her selfishness grating on me quite a bit. Something that didn’t seem to shake until the very last minute. Literally.

My favourite character has got to be Braindead – he’s such a relaxed and refreshing character amongst other ‘on the fence’ type characters. He certainly caused a stir in this storyline, that’s for sure!

Overall ‘No-one Ever Has Sex on Christmas Day’ kept me entertained – even if I did get a little emotional towards the nativity. Whoops. Tracy Bloom’s novel certainly was a pleasant enough read which allowed me to just sit back and relax without thinking too much. Sometimes a book like that is all you need.

Thanks Bookouture.

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon US

Author Bio:

Tracy started writing when her cruel, heartless husband ripped her away from her dream job shopping for rollercoasters for the UK’s leading theme parks, to live in America with a brand new baby and no mates. In a cunning plan to avoid domestic duties and people who didn’t understand her Derbyshire accent, she wrote her romantic comedy, NO-ONE EVER HAS SEX ON A TUESDAY. This debut novel went on to be successfully published internationally and became a #1 Best Seller.

Back in the UK she has continued her writing career and has just launched her sixth book.

Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: www.facebook.com/tracybloomwrites

Twitter: www.twitter.com/TracyBBloom

Website: www.tracybloom.com

#BlogTour! #Review – The Holiday Cruise by Victoria Cooke (@VictoriaCooke10) @HQDigitalUK

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Huge thanks to the team at HQDigitalUK for the ARC of Victoria Cooke’s novel, ‘The Holiday Cruise’. Also, thank you to Anna for asking me to take part in the blog tour. I am excited to be able to share my thoughts with you all. Here is my review:

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The high seas are calling!

As if it weren’t enough to be cheated on by her husband of ten years, Yorkshire lass Hannah Davis is losing her beauty salon business too. Luckily, her big sister is there to pick up the pieces, but Hannah is desperate to find some independence.

Impulsively, Hannah applies for a spa job…on a cruise ship! Christmas in the Caribbean, springtime in the Mediterranean, what’s not to like? But, despite being in her thirties, Hannah has never done anything on her own before, and she’s terrified.

As the ship sets sail, Hannah has never been further from home…or closer to discovering who she is and who she wants to be.

What does TWG think?

Take me back to this cruise ship!! Have you ever been so caught up in a storyline and its characters that when the story does come to and end, it’s as though you have lost one of your arms, whilst also wanting to run back to the book with your arms wide open screaming; ‘I’m sorry I left youuuuuuu. I’m sorry I had to finish youuuuu’? For those of you who have read Victoria Cooke’s novel, I am sure you’ll be nodding your heads in agreement right now. For those who haven’t read Victoria Cooke’s novel, your answer to my question will also be a yes once you pick up this book and read it!

I’m not even joking. Finishing ‘The Holiday Cruise’ was like having to leave my mum at the school gates when I was little! All I wanted to do was run back! I wholeheartedly agree with reviewer Rachel Gilbey – there has to be a sequel for this! Even though the main situation in this book reached its natural conclusion, there is oodles amounts of ways for old characters to reappear and new ones to make their presence known when it comes to a follow on book. I would be utterly devastated if we didn’t go back to visit some of these characters, I really would.

It’s clear from the onset that Hannah is pretty much sitting with her whole life broken around her. Not only has her husband decided to cheat on her, she’s also losing her business to a rival company after her so-called friend decided to be a loofah. Charming eh! With the list of people she can trust safely on the back of a stamp, Hannah decides to jump ship (literally) by working on a cruise ship. Lucky beggar…

I wanted to squish Hannah almost straight away! So much rubbish for one person, how can those people live with themselves after such betrayal? I loved how a person who loved routine, decided to do something completely against her usual values, and went to work in a spa on a cruise ship. I mean, there’s grabbing life by the starboard, and then there’s grabbing life for the starboard! I think…(yes, THINK), I may have maybe (ahem) yelped out loud ‘YOU GO GIRL!!!!’ whilst reading this book. Take away the ‘think’ and the ‘maybe’ and there is a definite chance that I did just that. Luckily my daughter was in bed at the time so I didn’t have to face the Spanish Inquisition from a four-year old. Those things are brutal!!

I have never, ever been on a cruise ship before but I can tell you now, after reading ‘The Holiday Cruise’ I would book a cruise holiday in a jiffy if I had the money. I never realised just how much there was on a cruise ship, as well as being able to stop in certain countries along the way for a bit of sightseeing. To be honest, it felt like the author was on a cruise whilst writing the novel as everything came across so realistic, pristine and pretty amazing.

I also loved how, despite Hannah’s earlier personality reservations, as soon as she found her feet on the ship, she got stuck in like a woman on a mission. To see such a broken character come out of their shell in such a short space of time was pretty emotional. It was as though Hannah was being given a second chance in life to find happiness, yet it was the first chance to do something for herself. Certainly makes you think eh?

Obviously I’m not going to go into detail about everything I loved about the book as I will end up giving spoilers, and I like to pride myself in not ruining an authors work by giving spoilers! However, I’m just going to say…..

I LOVED THIS BOOK
I LOVED THIS BOOK
I LOVED THIS BOOK
I LOVED THIS BOOK
VICTORIA COOKE COME READ ME A BED TIME STORY!

I fell in love with ‘The Holiday Cruise’ the moment Hannah stepped onto the ship. Everything about this book blew me away whilst also making me feel emotional at the same time. Throughout the book I witnessed a character find herself, new-found friends finding the courage to come out of their shells and start afresh, as well as taking notice of the underlying message the storyline contained; there are good and bad times in life, but through the bad times you must always do what is right for YOU and nobody else. Life your life YOUR way and not the way someone else wishes you would live your life. Find the courage to do things you wouldn’t usually do. Take the time out to just be, without feeling guilty. Most of all, just live…

Victoria Cooke has written such a stunning, thought-provoking and loveable read. I genuinely wish that I could read ‘The Holiday Cruise’ for the first time, every time. It’s clear that I found parts of the storyline quite emotional, but I also managed to laugh out loud multiple times. ‘The Holiday Cruise’ truly is one of the best books I have read so far this year, with author Victoria Cooke, cruising her way into my all time favourite authors list.

A majestic, inspiring, heart-warming and confidence boosting storyline – which is guaranteed to put a smile on your face, tears in your eyes, fire in your belly and love in your heart. Absolutely fantastic. From the bottom of my heart, thank you Victoria Cooke for writing a book I didn’t know I needed to read, but for also being one I know that I could never be without.

Thanks HQDigitalUK.

Buy now from Amazon UK

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Silent Lies by Kathryn Croft (@KatCroft) @Bookouture

Silent Lies - Blog Blitz
Super excited to be alongside some fabulous blogs today as part of Bookouture’s blog blitz for Kathryn Croft and ‘Silent Lies’! Thank you to Bookouture for the ARC, as well as inviting me to take part in the blog blitz. Here is my review:

kathryn_croft_d_1024 FINAL COVER

‘Your husband didn’t kill himself.’

Five years rebuilding your life. Five words will destroy it again.

Mia Hamilton lived the perfect life with her husband, university teacher Zach, and their two-year-old daughter. But everything changed when Zach committed suicide on the same night one of his students vanished.

Five years later, just when Mia is beginning to heal, stranger Alison walks into her life, saying her husband didn’t kill himself.

Fragile, slight Alison leads Mia on a path into Zach’s past, and Mia begins to think she never really knew her own husband. As the secrets revealed get darker, Alison becomes harder to read, and Mia starts to wonder – why is Alison so keen to help?

And then a piece of the puzzle appears in an impossible place, and Mia has to ask, is she losing her mind, or should she be afraid for her life?

An absolutely unputdownable psychological thriller about obsession and buried secrets, with a brilliant twist. Fans of The Girl on the TrainBehind Closed Doors, and Gone Girl will be hooked from the very first page.

What does TWG think?

Once again, I am so pleased that I don’t read the blurbs of books before I start reading them as I probably wouldn’t have been so stunned by this storyline if I had read it beforehand.

Anywhoo, what an addictive read! The storyline is split between then and now, as well as two different characters. I must have been exceptionally slow but I couldn’t work out what the connection was to the two females at first! What a numpty. It didn’t take me too long to figure out the connection….luckily. Funnily enough, things started to make more sense once I had!

As soon as Alison was introduced to the storyline, something about her made me extremely uncomfortable and I couldn’t work out why. All I know was that I marked her card straight away. Just in case.

There was also another character who at times I felt incredibly sorry for, even though I didn’t feel as though they fit into the storyline as well as the others. Which, once you’ve read it, you might understand where I am coming from. For such a prominent character in the book, I felt as though the they were a last-minute addition to the storyline instead of being immersed into the situation like the others.

Apart from that, I was absolutely hooked whilst reading ‘Silent Lies’. The storyline reeled me in straight away, leaving me guessing until the very last page – literally! I formed my own opinions along the way, trying to put the pieces of the jigsaw back together again. Whether my opinion was correct or incorrect, I won’t divulge. Let’s just say that ‘Silent Lies’ left me with my mouth hanging wide open.

Overall, ‘Silent Lies’ kept me on the edge of my seat for most of the book – there were times where I didn’t know who or what to believe! Hell, I even struggled to believe my own name!

‘Silent Lies’ is a well crafted, addictive, and fast paced read which will leave you questioning absolutely everything. So many interesting and secretive characters make up this suspenseful storyline…but which one is telling the truth? Never mind Jeremy Kyle and a lie detector test – the lies in this book are far too powerful for good ol’ Jezza to take on.

I am rather looking forward to reading what Kathryn Croft comes out with next. After reading ‘Silent Lies’, it’s safe to say that the author now has a fan for life….and no that’s not a Silent Lie.

Thanks Bookouture.

Buy: Buy now from Amazon UK // Buy now from Amazon UK

Author Bio:

Kathryn Croft is the bestselling author of five psychological thrillers, and to date has sold over one million copies of her books. The Girl With No Past spent over four weeks at number one in the Amazon UK chart and her other novels, Behind Closed Doors, The Stranger Within and The Girl You Lost all reached number one in the psychological thriller charts.

She has just completed her sixth psychological thriller, which is due for publication on 25th October 2017.

After six years teaching secondary school English, Kathryn now writes full time and has a publishing deal with Bookouture, as well as foreign rights deals in thirteen different countries.

Having always been an avid reader, Kathryn believes in the power of words to entertain, teach and transform lives. She is also a firm believer in following your dreams and says anything is possible if you work hard enough and never give up!

Kathryn lives in Guildford, Surrey with her husband, their little boy and two cats.

 Author Social Media Links:

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/authorkathryncroft/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/KatCroft

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/authorkatcroft/

Website: www.kathryncroft.com

#BlogTour! #Review – The Duke’s Temptation by @RavenMcAllan @NeverlandBT

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Book Cover
Tortured duke Gibb Alford has vowed never to love again… until a beautiful French knife thrower brings him to his knees

When Gibb Alford, Duke of Menteith, saves a beautiful French knife thrower
from the unwanted attentions of a fellow aristocrat he is ill-prepared for the
immediate tug of attraction to the beautiful Evangeline. Widowed, he has sworn off
love forever, so he can well do without this temptation.
Evangeline certainly doesn’t want the complication of being in the sights of
one smoky-eyed Scottish Duke. She’s a lady on a mission, with no time for love or
dalliance.

However, fate and life have other plans and gradually Gibb and Evangeline
become a couple.

As each struggle with the demons of their pasts, Evangeline finds life in the
ton difficult. The spurned aristocrat Gibb saved her from, is not prepared to give in
and retire gracefully. And while Gibb fights the man, he also declares war on his own
emotions. When Evangeline’s past is revealed to her, everything changes. She has a
decision to make.

Fight for Gibb—or flee to a safe but unfulfilled future.
As for her Duke… All is fair in love and war—right?

What does TWG think?

In all honesty, I don’t think I have ever read a book like this before. I have always admired the covers of regency romances from afar, yet I, for some unknown reason, kept putting off trying to read one. I knew that when I started reading ‘The Duke’s Temptation’ that it would be a long way away from my comfort zone, but I still had to give the type of book a chance and find out what really happened in storylines under such beautiful covers.

First of all, Raven McAllan should get a round of applause for such a sassy, exuberant and lively main(ish) character, Evangeline. A woman who certainly knows her own mind and who isn’t afraid to voice her thoughts. Seeing as the men used to dominate a lot of things where history was concerned, it was extremely refreshing to have a character who pretty much turned round and stuck her middle fingers up at everything that wasn’t right. With that in mind, I did find myself becoming a little surprised when Evangeline’s reaction to Gibb, became more prominent. As such an independent character who enjoyed showing everyone that she could survive without a man, watching her persona change due to a man was a bit intriguing.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not against the whole idea of love and relationships, but when someone comes across so fine tuned in their opinions and actions, watching them change their ways due to a member of the opposite gender made me go ‘hmmmm’.

As for the storyline itself, a lot of it did keep me hooked and interested, but I couldn’t warm to every single thing I read. I enjoyed the burst of energy from Evangeline and Gibb, whilst also finding their infatuation with each other romantic yet somewhat predictable.

Raven McAllan clearly has put her heart and soul into her characters, whilst also writing from the heart in regards to the overall storyline. Despite not loving the book as much as I would have hoped, I cannot fault the author on her majestic and enchanting writing style.

Thanks NeverlandBT.

Details of how to buy the book can be found here.

Raven’s bio and nosy links

Well what can I say?
I’m growing old disgracefully and loving it.
Dh and I live on the edge of a Scottish forest, and rattle around in a house
much too big for us.
Our kids have grown up and flown the nest, but roll back up when they want
to take a deep breath and smell the daisies so to speak.
I write in my study, which overlooks the garden and the lane. I’m often seen
procrastinating, by checking out the wild life, looking—only looking—at the ironing
basket and assuring tourists that indeed, I’m not the bed and breakfast. That would
mean cooking fried eggs without breaking the yolks, and disturbing the dust bunnies
as they procreate under the beds. Not to be thought of.
Being able to do what I love, and knowing people get pleasure from my
writing is fantastic. Long may it last.

http://www.ravenmcallan.com
http:/ /www.ravenmcallan.blogspot.com
https://www.facebook.com/ravenandkera (my page)
https://www.facebook.com/ravenmcallanandkerafaire (author page)
https://twitter.com/RavenMcAllan
http://amzn.to/2r3i55e (Amazon. com page)
http://amzn.to/2r32baI (Amazon UK)

#BlogTour! #Review – December Girl by Nicola Cassidy (@LadyNicci) @BombshellBooks

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Molly Thomas is a feisty, independent soul, born on the Winter Solstice. At every stage of her life she has faced troubles. As a young woman her family are evicted from their home at Christmas. Molly swears vengeance on the jealous neighbour and land agent responsible, Flann Montgomery. Then in 1896 her baby son is taken from his pram. Molly searches the streets for Oliver. The police are called but her baby is gone. Why does trouble seem to follow Molly? And will she ever find out what happened to her child?

December Girl is a tale of family bonds, love, revenge and murder.

What does TWG think?

I have absolutely no idea how I am going to get my opinion of ‘December Girl’ from my head onto this page, without sounding like a tool. Now, I finished Nicola Cassidy’s novel a couple of days ago, yet it is still setting up camp in my head.

I have to be honest; there were times whilst reading the book where I felt like putting it down and not picking it back up again, due to several situations within the storyline which came out of the blue, leaving me quite speechless and feeling a bit uncomfortable. The storyline was raw and brutally shocking. I didn’t know whether I felt uncomfortable for myself, or whether I was feeling uncomfortable for the fictional character.

Please be aware that my honesty above is in no way nasty, I just felt like I had to be honest and explain how I felt whilst reading the book. I’m sure you can guess by now that I didn’t put the book down and stop reading it – especially seeing as I am writing a review for it!

Despite the earlier feelings of ‘running’, the addictiveness of the storyline meant that I was unable to stop reading the book until I reached the end and had found out what had happened. It was as though the authors words had handcuffed me to the book, the characters and the overall vibe of ‘December Girl’. Yes there were nauseating moments, brutal moments, and severely emotional moments throughout this book, yet without those, I truly don’t think that “December Girl’ would have ended up being as strong as it was. There was always something happening, something shocking to render me speechless or prick my eyes with tears. Molly’s mindset took over every single thing about this book and there were times where I didn’t know whether to sympathise, empathise, or feel slightly annoyed towards her. Put it this way, Molly Thomas certainly isn’t a force to be reckoned with and, despite what that character endured, I am incredibly surprised that she didn’t give up the ghost at the time.

‘December Girl’ took me miles and miles out of my comfort zone, I’m not going to lie. Do I regret reading it? Hell no. Do I wish I had stopped reading it? Hell no!! At the end of the day, my emotions got the better of me which caused my initial reaction at first. I could empathise with Molly. I could understand, and I feel that the author’s way of laying such a heart-breaking topic out in black and white was shockingly genius. It made me take notice. It made me think about every single word in front of me, wondering whether there was more to Molly’s words at the time.

Nicola Cassidy, quite clearly, is a brilliant, brilliant story-teller, writing words which have the depth to stay by you for a very long time after reading them. I am so glad that I didn’t stop reading the book as I would have missed out on the closure, as well as the rest of the devastatingly beautiful story of ‘December Girl’.

Raw, shocking, emotional and highly addictive, ‘December Girl’ will leave you in such a trance, it might even be December when you wake. The themes throughout the novel may be uncomfortable, yet the underlying message is worth its weight in gold.

Thanks BombshellBooks.

December Girl will be published on the 26th October 2017, but is available to pre-order now from Amazon UK

About the author.

Nicola Cassidy is a writer and blogger from Co. Louth, Ireland. She started
her writing career early, entering short story competitions, penning protest
letters to magazines and making up characters in her head. These
scribblings saw her place in a number of competitions as a child and
encouraged by her English teachers, she chose to study journalism at
Dublin City University.

While working in political PR and marketing, Nicola studied a series of
advanced creative writing courses atthe Irish Writers’ Centre and set up a
lifestyle and literary blog at http://www.LadyNicci.com, which was nominated in
the Ireland Blog Awards in 2015 and 2016.

During her maternity leave for her first daughter, Nicola set about
researching and writing a historical fiction novel, December Girl, inspired
by true events and setin the mystical and ancient Boyne Valley, famed for
its stone age passage tombs, nearto where she grew up.

Nicola signed with US based Trace Literary Agency in 2016. December Girl
was picked up by Betsy Reavley at UK digital publisher Bombshell Books
in June 2017 and will be published 26 October 2017.

She is an avid reader, inspired by the likes of Anais Nin, Joan Didion and
Jessie Burton and is currently working on her second novel, also inspired
by true events. She lives with her husband and two young daughters in
Termonfeckin, Co. Louth.

www.nicolacassidy.com

www.facebook.com/ladynicciblog