book blogger

#ListeningStill by @AnneGriffin_ @SceptreBooks #bookreview

It gives me great pleasure to host Anne Griffin and ‘Listening Still’ on my blog today, as I share a review for day two of the blog tour. Many thanks to the lovely, Kate, and the Sceptre Books team, for inviting me to take part and for supplying me with an advanced copy.

Jeanie Masterson has a gift: she can hear the recently dead and give voice to their final wishes and revelations. Inherited from her father, this gift has enabled the family undertakers to flourish in their small Irish town. Yet she has always been uneasy about censoring some of the dead’s last messages to the living. Unsure, too, about the choice she made when she left school seventeen years ago: to stay or leave for a new life in London with her charismatic teenage sweetheart.

So when Jeanie’s parents unexpectedly announce their plan to retire, she is jolted out of her limbo. In this captivating successor to her bestselling debut, Anne Griffin portrays a young woman who is torn between duty, a comfortable marriage and a role she both loves and hates and her last chance to break free, unaware she has not been alone in softening the truth for a long while.

What does TWG think?

‘Listening Still’, in my opinion, is a unique story which is centred around life in a family run undertakers in Ireland. To some, reading a book set in a funeral home might not be so unique, however for me, it really was which meant that I was able to find out more about the process after life and what not. With that in mind, I was not expecting the story to focus on Jeanie being able to hear the wishes of the deceased person in front of her. No, seriously, thats what she can do. Is it something that can be deemed farfetched? Oh most definitely. Do readers need to believe that its something that happens in reality? Most definitely not! All readers need to believe is that Jeanie is capable of doing so, and once you get past the ‘hang on a minute….’ uncertainty, you’ll open your mind to the beauty of the book.

How do I know this?

Well, I was just like that to begin with, but once I ran with the authors words and let myself be led by Jeanie’s gift, her relationship with her husband, her father etc, I allowed myself to be consumed by this poignant, tender story that was not just about life vs death, but was also about regrets and making every last second count. For me, probably the biggest lesson that this book taught me was the art of listening. To know something you have to feel it, but to feel it you need to listen.

Anne Griffin is such a descriptive, tender storytelling who, no pun intended, gave this book life, and I absolutely adored reading every single word of this novel. Truly a beautifully crafted, magnificent read.

Purchase from Amazon

book blogger

#Amalie – Blog Tour! #Extract @E_J_Wood @Zooloo2008 @QuestionPress #QuestionMarkPress #ZooLoosBookTours

Today I am delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for ‘Amalie’ by E.J.Wood, published by Question Mark Press. Many thanks to Zoe for inviting me to take part in the tour! If you have yet to read the book and fancy a little snippet to whet your appetite then look no further as I have JUST the thing for you!

But first, here is a little bit more about the book:


It’s not wise to murder the family of a budding assassin. Created by Auschwitz, her skill is honed by revenge.

A very different type of serial killer is loose in 1950s Europe. In Britain, a Brotherhood of powerful men takes notice and enhances the expertise and artistry of a killer.

DCI John Owen was born to serve. Recruited by MI6, he tracks an accomplished executioner whose love of luxury and the arts is second only to the love of watching an early death come to those who truly deserve it.

Join the chase. Then ask yourself…
Can there ever be only one winner?


The toffs found it entertaining and dangerous all at the same time, hanging around with known criminals and being sworn at by the landlord regardless of who they were. The audacity of Paddy shocked his clients. He had no regard for his client’s status or wealth – he treated everyone the same.

It hadn’t been long since Belfast boy Peter Scott had robbed Sophia Loren, giving her what he described “what she deserved”, and he was still the talk of the tavern. Other customers joked that Scott would call himself a modern-day Robin Hood and would describe how he eluded capture by donning a new suit and creep into the homes of some of London’s richest.

Even if he were interrupted he’d shout, “It’s only me!” It meant he got away with his crimes. One of his victims was gambling club owner John Aspinall, of whom he recalled, “robbing that bastard Aspinall was one of my favourites”. He’d joke at the bar “I hear poor Sophia has been robbed” whilst pulling out a wad of cash.

Order now from Amazon.

#suspense · arc · blog tour · book blogger · Book Review · contemporary fiction · historical fiction

#APostcardFromParis – Alex Brown (@alexbrownbooks @fictionpubteam @harperfiction) #review

Many thanks to the lovely Jen and the Harper Fiction team for asking me to be involved in Alex Brown’s blog tour for ‘A Postcard From Paris’. I am delighted to be hosting day two of the tour, sharing my review of this picturesque novel. Thanks to the publisher for also supplying me with an advanced copy.

Annie Lovell is keen to put the spark back into her life and when her elderly neighbour inherits an abandoned Parisian apartment she goes to Paris to discover more. Her curiosity takes an unexpected turn on discovering a bundle of secret diaries hidden within the walls, detailing the life of a young English woman, Beatrice Crawford, who volunteered in 1916 to nurse the soldiers in the fields of France.
Captivated by the romantic City of Light, Annie realises first appearances are not always as they seem. Following Beatrice’s journey from the Great War, through the Roaring Twenties and to a very different life in Nazi-occupied Paris, Annie must piece together the events from the past, if she is to fulfil the legacy that Beatrice left for her to find…

What does TWG think?

A book by Alex Brown which also contains historical elements? What’s not to love?

I adore losing myself in anything that Alex Brown has written, and this novel was no exception. There was quite a mysterious vibe to the story as main character, Annie Lovell, finds old diaries dating back to 1916 during the war in France. Having moved to a new country to add some variety to her life, Annie didn’t expect to become Miss Marple almost instantly, and neither did I for that matter. I was genuinely surprised by the direction the story took because of the diaries – which certainly was not a bad thing! Finding out about Beatrice and the volunteer work she was involved in, was both astounding and intriguing. I can’t even begin to imagine what Beatrice must have seen in those fields with the soldiers, nor can I even begin to imagine the pain and anguish that they must have felt in battle.

I thought that Alex Brown approached the historically emotional subject with extreme grace. It was evident just how much research the author put in to keep the events and descriptions as close to reality as possible. As a history lover, I appreciated the dedication from the author, but on the other side of the coin as a fiction lover, I also appreciated the way that Alex Brown incorporated facts alongside fiction without making them stand out like a sore thumb. I loved how seamless the entire thing was, and the flow of the story was on point. I was gutted to reach the end as I was captivated by every word I was reading.

Alex Brown exceeded my expectations with ‘A Postcard From Paris’, from the characterisation to the factual information, to the emotional turmoil to the sense of belonging. Everything worked and it blew me away. I would read it all over again in a heartbeat.

Purchase from Amazon.