#BarefootOnTheBeach by Katlyn Duncan (@Katlyn_Duncan) @RaRaResources #blogtour #review @HQDigitalUK

Next up is a review of ‘Barefoot On The Beach’ by Katlyn Duncan – many thanks to HQ for the ARC, and thank you to Rachel for the tour invite.

I know we all wish we could walk barefoot on the beach just now, but please do hold off a bit longer by staying at home and enjoy this read about a beach instead.

Renee Clarke is perfectly happy just the way she is…

Renee may be thrilled to be planning her sister’s wedding, but after witnessing her mother’s two failed marriages, she has always vowed that she is better off on her own.

But when Renee discovers that Luc Hardy has moved next door, her world is knocked off kilter. Luc was her whirlwind summer romance as a teen and, more importantly, her first love. Now he’s back in West Cove, looking more handsome than ever. There is no escaping the romance in the air this summer. With the wedding planning in full swing, Renee begins to believe that she might be able to put her childhood reservations about marriage aside.

Yet when her mother arrives, she stirs a torrent of emotions in Renee’s heart. She’s up to her old tricks again – boasting about her latest conquests – reaffirming Renee’s lack of faith in love.

As Renee’s happily-ever-after hangs in the balance, will Luc be able to convince her that true love can last forever?

What does TWG think?

If you’re after a gentle, easy read with all the nods to romance, then this novel will be right up your street.

When I say ‘easy read’, I mean that as a complimentary phrase, just to clarify. I’m finding reading quite difficult just now and heavy novels are avoided wherever possible. I need books which aren’t too heavy, too serious, or too taxing, and I really feel that ‘Barefoot on the Beach’ ticked those boxes for me.

The only similarity between Renee and Cait is that they’re related. That’s it. They really are like chalk and cheese as Renee is more organised and sees things through, whereas Cait expects things to be done for her as and when she chooses. It’s safe to say that she comes across quite spoilt, whilst also having a really unapproachable personality – i didnt gel with her much at all.

Whilst I could see how obligated to do what her sister asked of her, I wish Renee put her foot down. Yes, she may have been a motherly figure for her growing up, but that was then. It annoyed me that whenever Cait clicked her fingers Renee would come running, putting her own happiness on the back burner.

I did enjoy reading this book. I loved the setting, the doggy antics and the sweet romance that was gently interwoven into the story, however I felt like certain situations went on for much longer than they should have. For example, the row the sisters had just kept going backwards and forwards, not really adding much content to what the author had already built up. I felt like the delivery on some things could have been a bit more punchy than it was. That is only my opinion though, and I still really enjoyed the book despite that.

During an uncertain time in our own lives, one thing we can count on is the certainty of a happily ever after; something which Katlyn Duncan delivered on greatly.

Buy now.

#GuestPost from author of #MarrowJam, Susan A.King (@SusanKing63) @rararesources #blogtour

First of two tours this evening is a guest post written by the author of ‘Marrow Jam’, Susan A.King. Before I share the post, here is a little bit more about the book:

MURDER, MYSTERY…AND MARROWS

Some people would describe Beattie Bramshaw as a pillar of the community. Many would applaud her numerous successes in the bakery competition at the annual village show. A small number might say, if pushed, that they find her a little on the bossy side. And one or two might just whisper the words ‘interfering’ and ‘busybody’ behind her back.

But no-one would have her down as a murderer.

So why is she being questioned in Dreighton police station after being found in the local allotments, at the dead of night, wielding a kitchen knife just yards away from where local lottery winner, Yvonne Richards, was found stabbed to death? And what does all of this have to do with Doug Sparrow’s prize marrows?

Marrow Jam is a comedy crime caper in the spirit of Agatha Raisin. It will have you chuckling all the way through many a cup of tea.

Buy now.

Ever wondered why someone would write a book about marrows? Now is your chance to find out as I share the guest post written by Susan A.King – enjoy!

What, you may wonder, would compel someone to a write a story about murder and marrows? I can assure you, it started innocently enough.

On leaving secretarial college, and with a slump in the job market for office clerks, I unexpectedly found myself employed as a trainee florist – a job I grew to love. A year later, and having finally landed myself a job as a secretary, I was approached by a friend of the family who suggested I join her in entering the floral competition at the local show. I did question if it was entirely fair. I mean, after all, 12 months working as an apprentice in the floristry industry surely made me over-qualified. With her assurance all would be fine, I duly completed the application form and planned my submission.

The evening before the show, having chosen a category where the arrangement could be delivered in its finished form, I arrived at the entrance to the floral marquee with a not unsubstantial amount of confidence. I made my entrance, the small masterpiece I had created on full view. The first thing to hit me when I walked inside was the scent of sphagnum moss, the second thing, and right between the eyes, was the industry occurring at the centre of the marquee. Armpit deep in florist foam, a mountain of flowers at their feet, a platoon of ladies were mid-task assembling the largest displays of floral art I had ever seen. With a snip of twig here, a trim of stem there, they worked with precision and skill to create what can only be described as perfection. I looked again (with quickly diminishing self-assurance) at my own entry, wondering if a swift exit wasn’t an entirely unsound decision, when the competition adjudicator sidled alongside. Taking me by the arm, she escorted me to the signing-in desk. “Is it your first competition?” she asked. “Yes”, I mumbled, only too aware the calibre of the creation in my arms had drawn her to this conclusion. To my utter shame, I realised that the people present not only had considerably more years experience over my own, they were possessed of an ingenuity and flair I could only dream of.

Not without a certain degree of envy, I inspected each and every submission, taking time to congratulate their creators on their interpretation of the class title and infinite talent. During this unhurried amble, it became clear that everyone present was striving for a personal best and their tireless preparation had been rewarded with the panorama of flawless entries now filling the marquee.

It was at the prize-giving ceremony the next day, when my friend received the award for Best in Show, that a thought crossed my mind. Everyone was smiling but, I was sure, like myself, questioning what they needed to do to find themselves on the winner’s podium. What lengths, I wondered, would someone go to in order to win the coveted trophy?

My first novel, Marrow Jam, is a story based on competition rivalry and the not-so-smooth road travelled to achieve Best in Show.

Susan A King

#WillowsWeddingVows @DebbieViggiano @rararesources #blogtour #romcom

Many thanks to RaRaResources for the tour invite and ARC of ‘Willow’s Wedding Vows’ by Debbie Viggiano – it’s a delight to be a part of the blog tour today.

Willow has been living with marriage-shy Charlie for more years than she cares to remember and is old-fashioned enough to want a wedding band and a loads-of-sex honeymoon before stretchmarks and nipple shields.

So when the once-wary Charlie surprisingly goes down on one knee, Willow doesn’t question why her boyfriend is suddenly so keen to rush her into saying “I do”.

The first clue comes as Willow is zipped into her Cinderella dress, the second as she bobs into the wedding car, and the third as the Roller swings towards its fairy-tale destination… leaving a shell-shocked Willow desperately trying to figure out what to do next.

What does TWG think?

Sorry to be so ruthless right at the very beginning, but WOW, Charlie is such a twat!!! He doesn’t half think that hes gods gift, what with his self inflated ego and all that! I could not stick the bloke! I think I spent most of the story urging Willow to dump his sorry ass!

Obviously the above will only make sense for those who have read the book already and, if you haven’t, please do! I want to know if I’m the only one who thinks hes a turd!

Willow on the other hand, well, aside from being incredibly naive, I did quite like her! I wouldn’t have put her age in her thirties though if I had to guess, she didnt fit that age bracket at all as she came across like such a young minded person.

I, despite my aversion to Charlie, was hooked by this drama filled novel. Seriously, the author kept on giving the drama until the very last second, completely pulling the rug from under my feet whilst causing my jaw to drop the floor. I was NOT expecting the bombshell at all! I didn’t even have a inkling despite it staring me straight in the face!

My only real irk about the book was how there seemed to be quite a bit of padding in and around the vital aspects of the book, which at times didn’t work well with the overall flow. I could spot the parts that were padded out a mile off, and I found it to be a little unnatural which made the storyline judder instead of seamlessly moving from one situation to another.

All in all though, ‘Willow’s Wedding Vows’ was a great read which allowed me to temporarily forget about the current situation. What I loved most was the fact that it was predominantly an easy read which meant that I was able to lose myself in the drama without having to google the definition of words and what not haha. Plus, it was pretty darn funny and wouldnt look out of place in ‘Take a Break’ magazine!

Buy now.