#BlogBlitz! #Review – The Warning by Kathryn Croft (@katcroft) @Bookouture

The only warning I would give you for this book is ‘the warning’ that is is highly addictive! I am super excited to be sharing my review of Kathryn Croft’s latest novel today as part of the blog blitz. Many thanks to Bookouture for the blitz invite and the ARC.

My little boy’s room was empty, his bed neatly made. Alarm bells should have rung immediately. Then the knock on the door came. All I remember is a thick fog wrapping itself tightly around me. This couldn’t be happening to us.

Three years ago, nurse Zoe’s son Ethan was found drowned in a muddy river by their home, along with his best friend Josh. With no witnesses, their deaths were ruled a tragic accident.

Heartbroken, Zoe and her family, move away from her home. They’re just beginning to get back to some kind of normality, when, out of the blue, Zoe receives an anonymous email: 

You need to find out the truth about what happened to your son. Don’t let this rest. Don’t believe the lie.

Shaken, Zoe starts an obsessive hunt for the truth. But why is her husband so reluctant to help?
And why is Josh’s mother so determined not to believe her?

What does TWG think?

Oh my bleeping goodness!!! I have waiting for a psychological thriller like this to come along!!

Addictive – check.

Intense – check.

Twisted – check.

Thrilling – check.

Absolutely brilliant? Triple check!!!

The more of ‘The Warning’ I read, the more the storyline filtered under my skin, bringing my mind to a standstill thanks to the head funk of brilliance.

Three years ago, Zoe and Jake’s lives were turned upside down when their youngest son died. Three years later and someone seems to want to stir up the devastation the family have tried hard to move on from. Who would want to cause the family more upset? Why are they coming forward now and not when it happened? With so many questions running through Zoe’s mind, she has to choose whether to go with her gut instinct and get to the bottom of that night, or to do what everyone keeps telling her to do and leave it alone. What would you do if that was your son?

I have no idea what I would do, but I would like to think I would follow Zoe’s example to find out the truth, even if it does end up a dead end. I mean, isn’t that the chance you take?

Kathryn Croft’s storytelling went above and beyond in this book, and the entire novel blew me away with its addictive tension and rollercoaster ride of suspense. If you like reading novels where you end up questioning the slightest detail, you will adore this book!

I had no idea how everything was going to conclude, and I thought that the way in which the author kept me guessing was fantastic as, even though it made my mind turn in circles many times, the thrill of the unknown had me flying through the pages like a young child on Christmas morning.

A unique, heart in mouth novel which ticked every single box for me and more – I have been waiting for a novel like this to come along and boy, it certainly didn’t disappoint!!

Buy now!

About the author.

Kathryn Croft is the bestselling author of six 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.

Her seventh psychological thriller is due to be released in October 2018. 

After six years teaching secondary school English, Kathryn now writes full time and lives in Guildford, Surrey with her husband and young family.  

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!

www.kathryncroft.com

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#BlogBlitz! #Review – Our Little Lies by Sue Watson (@suewatsonwriter) @Bookouture

Sue Watson has turned to the dark side! Today I have the pleasure of reviewing Sue’s first novel in the dark world, Our Little Lies. Many thanks to Bookouture for both the blitz invite and the ARC. Here is my review:

Marianne has a life others dream of. A beautiful townhouse on the best street in the neighbourhood. Three bright children who are her pride and joy.

Sometimes her past still hurts: losing her mother, growing up in foster care. But her husband Simon is always there. A successful surgeon, he’s the envy of every woman they’ve ever met. Flowers, gifts, trips to France – nothing is too good for his family.

Then Simon says another woman’s name. The way he lingers on it, Caroline, gives Marianne a shudder of suspicion, but she knows she can’t entertain this flash of paranoia.

In the old days, she’d have distracted herself at work, but Marianne left her glamorous career behind when she got married. She’d speak to a friend, but she’s too busy with her children and besides, Simon doesn’t approve of the few she has left.

It’s almost by accident that Marianne begins to learn more about Caroline. But once she starts, she can’t stop. Because what she finds makes her wonder whether the question she should be asking is not ‘should she be jealous’, but… ‘should she be scared’?

What does TWG think?

I have been a fan of Sue Watson for a long time, so when it became public knowledge that the author would be taking a walk on the dark side by releasing a ‘psychological thriller’, I was a little bit apprehensive. Not because I didn’t think the author could do it, just to clarify, but because I wasn’t sure whether I would be able to read the novel without thinking of her previous books in a different genre.

As soon as I started ‘Our Little Lies’, i could tell straight away that the authors trademark, cleverly written characters with their detailed personalities and lives would be evident for the duration of the book. Sue Watson doesn’t just write the basic information for her characters, instead writing them as though their information is the most important piece to know at that very moment.

Marianne has a lifestyle which many people would love – a wonderful home, the life of Riley, anything and everything at her fingertips, children, and a husband who thinks the sun shines out of her youknowwhat…..or does he? Marianne’s husband, Simon, thinks that her mentality is verging on worrying, and he continues to ensure that she knows his concerns. By that I mean he constantly pick holes and gives Marianne reason to feel slightly off kilter.

I have seen the theme of this book in several other books before, so the skeleton of the storyline was a bit predictable, however, the way in which Sue Watson combined her characters flaws into the dark theme of the book was extremely well done! I didn’t know what to believe at times, I even thought I was going stir crazy!

I thought the grit was on point and brilliantly executed, making Marianne’s issue have more sides to it than a rubix cube. Impressive, there is no doubt about that.

Now, I thought that ‘Our Little Lies’ was more domestic noir with a brilliant psychological element to it. I have to say that whilst I am very used to this author producing contemporary fiction/romantic comedies, I was impressed by her change in direction with this book. That said, I will need to hold my hands up and say that this isn’t my favourite book from the author, but I do admire her just going for it.

‘Our Little Lies’ is a gritty, psychologically twisted novel where the flaws of the characters steal the show.

Buy now!

About the author.

Sue Watson was a journalist then TV Producer at the BBC until she wrote her first book and was hooked. 

She’s now written thirteen novels – many involving cake – and her books have been translated into Italian, German and Portuguese. Originally from Manchester, Sue now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in Worcestershire where much of her day is spent procrastinating while eating cake (for research purposes), and watching ‘My 600lb Life,’ on the sofa.

Sue explored the darker side of life for her latest book ‘Our Little Lies,’ a dark, psychological thriller completely devoid of cake. She’s hoping this change in direction will be reflected on the weighing scales.

For more info visit Sue’s website; http://www.suewatsonbooks.com/

Sue would love to meet you on FaceBook at https://www.facebook.com/suewatsonbooks

Follow Sue on Twitter @suewatsonwriter

#Blogblitz! #Review – One Winter’s Day by Laura Briggs (@paperdollwrites) @Bookouture

Happy publication day, Laura Briggs! I have the pleasure of kicking off the blog blitz today with a review – thank you to Bookouture for the ARC to allow me to do so. Here is my review:

If only falling in love was as easy as baking a cake… 

 Ama’s loved baking ever since she can remember. Desserts, cakes, cookies – anything sweet, delicious and sinful. The kitchen is the only place where she can be truly herself.

 But – as she starts work on the biggest cake she has ever made – for a couple’s magical winter wedding – she realises just how much she secretly dreams of falling in love too.

 Then she meets a handsome man on a motorbike who sets her pulse racing. But Ama knows it can never be. Because he’s her very traditional parents’ absolute worst nightmare… And she knows she can never let them down.

 Do her family know best? Or can she trust her heart? And, as the snow begins to fall, will she ever find out what really does go into the recipe for true love?

What does TWG think?

Can I just take a moment to say how stunning that cover is? Wow! Such an eye catching and enchanting cover – definitely the reason why I chose to read this book, that’s for sure!

Ama’s family like to think that they have her best interests at heart, whilst she on the other hand, can’t help but think that they’re sticking their noses into her business. With Ama and her family very cultural, her father wishes that she would find a partner in keeping with their tradition. Is it up to them to decide who she falls in love with? Hell, is it even up to Ama to decide who she falls in love with?

‘One Winter’s Day’ is split into the different outlooks of Ama, Tessa, and Natalie – three women who are completely different not only in personality, but their beliefs as well. You would have thought that working as wedding planners/designer/Baker together, that love would fall at their feet as quickly as it did for their clients. Ha….yeah right!

I must admit that I do like a novel with a wedding planner in it, as I like to be nosy and watch it all come together. This book was no different! That said, whilst I did enjoy the cultural differences where romance was concerned, I didn’t end up falling head over heels with it as I felt as though something was missing. Don’t get me wrong, the characters were brilliantly written separately, and I loved delving into their own journeys, but I felt as though things could have been a bit more energetic when it all came together.

Please don’t take the above as a negative as I did enjoy the book, and of course that is my own personal opinion!

Laura Briggs is very talented, and it’s clear that she writes with her heart and probably via her own experiences as they seemed naturally written rather than forced by Google. I thought that the book was very tender, humorous, and free spirited – I am really looking forward to reading more from this author!

Buy now!

About the author.

Laura Briggs is the author of several lighthearted romance novels and novellas, including the bestselling Amazon UK series A Wedding in Cornwall. She has a fondness for vintage-style dresses (especially ones with polka dots) and reads everything from Jane Austen to modern day mysteries. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with family, caring for her pets, going to movies and plays, and trying new restaurants.

 

 Author Social Media Links: 

Website: https://paperdollwrites.blogspot.com/

 Twitter: https://twitter.com/PaperDollWrites

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

 Goodreads: 

 https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/230209.Laura_Briggs?from_search=true

#BlogTour! #Review – The Christmas Cafe at Seashell Cove by Karen Clarke (@karenclarke123)

After seeing loads of pretty Christmas decorations in a shop today, I am very much in the Christmas spirit, just in time to review Karen Clarke’s newest novel. Thank you to Bookouture for the blog tour invite and the ARC. Here is my review:

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the café at Seashell Cove, where there’s hot chocolate to keep you warm – and the man of your dreams could be waiting…

Interior designer Tilly Campbell loves being carefree and single. But her latest job is redecorating the cosy local café for a Christmas party, and when her friends confess their plans for the big night – including a proposal, a declaration of love and a pregnancy announcement – Tilly starts to wonder if she might be missing out…

Transforming the café into a winter wonderland is more of a challenge than she thought, so when she bumps into gorgeous newcomer Seth, Tilly welcomes the distraction. Seth is a single father, struggling to settle his son Jack into their new cottage, and Tilly is determined to help them make their house into a home in time for Christmas.

But with the café still in chaos just days before the party it looks like it’s going to be a Christmas to remember for all the wrong reasons… With friends old and new relying on her, can Tilly save the Christmas party?

And could she finally find love waiting for her under the mistletoe?

What does TWG think?

It feels like ages since I was last in Seashell Cove! I was so excited to catch up with all of the characters and find out what they have been up to since I last ‘saw’ them. At first I didn’t recognise the place, probably because I half expected to be back with Meg as the main character. It was wonderful to see snippets of her story live on in this one though, that’s for sure.

I did find the book to be a little of a slow starter as I took a while to warm up to Tilly, but that didn’t stop me from enjoying the overall vibe of the book. Once I got further into the storyline, my opinion of Tilly changed and I found myself warming to her like marshmallows to a fire. How the hell she put up with her sister, Bridget, without committing a murder is beyond me!! Romy, Bridget’s little girl, had me in hysterics! She reminded so much of my own little girl. If only we all went through life without a care in the world like children!!

Tilly is a very independent character who is so set on doing things for other people, she sometimes forgets just how much one person can hold on their shoulders. Fortunately for her, newcomer, Seth, helps her see otherwise. As for his mother though, geezzzzzz!!!!!! I don’t get why he didn’t stand up to his mother! I know that Felicity wanted to do right by her grandson, but surely she must have realised that alienating him wouldn’t be the answer?

Even though this is a Christmassy book, the festive theme isn’t overpowering for those who dislike Christmas in October. I do think that as festivities were an apparent part of the book, that there should have been more oomph with it. That said, Gwen’s antics with the Christmas pudding kept Christmas on the map.

All in all, The Christmas Cafe at Seashell Cove kept me thoroughly entertained from start to finish, with Romy being my star at the top of the Christmas tree. I really do hope we get to see more from the gang in Seashell Cove, as I can’t wait to find out what else others are hiding! A fun, light hearted and addictive read – a great follow up novel in an already fabulous series.

Buy now!

About the author.

Karen is the author of the popular BEACHSIDE and SEASHELL COVE series of romantic comedies, published by Bookouture. 

She’s also written three romcoms with a paranormal twist, all available to download

When she’s not working on her novels, Karen writes short stories for women’s magazines and has had over three hundred published globally. Some of them can be read in her short story collection ‘BEHIND CLOSED DOORS…and other Tales with a Twist’ 

Karen lives in Buckinghamshire with her husband and three grown-up children, and when she’s not writing loves reading, walking, baking and eating cake.

 

Author Social Media Links: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/karen.clarke.5682

Twitter:     https://twitter.com/karenclarke123

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/dashboard

Website: http://writewritingwritten.blogspot.co.uk/

#BlogTour! #Review – The Little Christmas Teashop of Second Chances by Donna Ashcroft (@donnashc) @Bookouture

I am thrilled to be able to share my thoughts of Donna Ashcroft’s latest novel with you all today, as I host today’s stop on the blog tour! Huge thanks, as always, to bookouture for the blog tour invite and the ARC. Here is my review:

Snow is beginning to fall around the cosy Castle Teashop, with its toasty log fire, scrumptious mince pies and delicious hot chocolates. Romance is in the air and Lily King is hoping some winter magic will help to make her dreams come true…

Twenty-five-year-old Lily King is wondering when her life is going to start. She adores working at the much-loved Castle Teashop, surrounded by familiar faces and delicious cakes. But she’s stuck in a rut. She’s just been dumped by her boyfriend and her dream job seems to be slipping through her fingers.

When her best friend Emily Campbell needs urgent help to organise her enchanting Christmas wedding, Lily realises it’s finally her moment to shine and reach for the opportunities she’s been wishing for. Can she pull off the biggest celebration Castle Cove has ever seen or will something – or someone – make things more complicated than she imagined?

Rebellious and handsome photographer Josh Havellin-Scott has always felt like an outsider, especially next to his perfect older brother, who is about to get married. At the last minute, Josh finds himself roped into plans for the Big Day, the very last thing he wants to do, until he is meets creative and quirky Lily King…

When Lily and Josh are thrown together, it’s clear they couldn’t be more different. But they begin to realise that opposites can attract – and sometimes when you’re not looking for love, it comes and finds you when you least expect it. With some festive magic, will they manage to work together and save the day?

And could they discover a winter romance of their very own along the way?

What does TWG think?

Oh my mince pies, could this book BE anymore fabulous?!?! I really did enjoy the first book in the series, but I have to say that this festive delight is something else! I was hooked from the very beginning, intrigued about Lily’s personal past as well as what made Josh tick. Yes, Josh is one of those characters who you should instantly dislike due to his arrogant nature, however I couldn’t help but be taken under his spell almost straight away. How the holly and ivy Lily managed to be immune to his charms for a little while was beyond me!

Even though this story is full of tantalising, stomach rumbling treats and friendships to last a life time, the thing that got right under my skin in such a beautiful manner , was the cleverly incorporated ‘hidden’ theme which made me relate to Lily on such a deep level. Take it from me, we have all felt as though we aren’t good enough, and I am sure we have always ensured other people were happy before ourselves. And, I am also sure that a lot of us have put our emotions aside and done something because of someone else, ignoring our own personal feelings about the situation. Yes? Of course we have – we are human. It’s not until you sit back and think about it or, in this case, read it in black and white, that you realise you have been living your life in the way that other people would prefer you to. Before anyone says anything, I know that it is our choice as to how we live our own life, but sometimes emotions get the better of us, just like Lily’s in this book.

Lily’s situation caught me off guard, despite seeing some of myself in the character. Weirdly, it was quite emotional. I also think that a certain family member of Lily’s needs to get caught by some holly and ivy. What a bleeping bleep bleep they are!!

I absolutely loved this book from reading about the yummy treats, to following the characters around as they plan nuptials, to watching Lily and Josh’s journey play out. Donna Ashcroft’s novel is such a feel good, life affirming, huggable and touching novel which will leave you wanting to plan your own nuptials to Josh. He’s definitely my sort of guy! Why are all the good ones fictional?!?! Pfft.

Honestly though, this book gave me the feels and I couldn’t have wished for anything more as Donna Ashcroft ticked every single box. In my eyes, she is now the Mrs Claus of Christmas reads.

Buy now!

About the author.

Donna Ashcroft was born in London and grew up in Buckinghamshire. She went to university in Lancashire and, among other things, worked as a copywriter, buyer, waitress, secretary and marketing manager. 

Donna wrote novels for over ten years before being published. She is a member of the Romantic Novelists Association and was a joint winner of the Katie Fforde Bursary in 2017. 
Donna loves a happy ending and is never happier than when she’s escaping into a romance novel or movie. When she’s not reading or writing she’ll probably be found hoovering … or negotiating with her teenagers about who is doing the washing up.

Author Social Media Links: 

Website: www.donna-writes.co.uk

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

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Donnashc

#BlogBlitz! #Review – The Paris Secret by Lily Graham (@lilygrahambooks) @Bookouture

The Paris Secret - Blog Tour

Happy publication day, Lily Graham! I am delighted to be kicking off the blog blitz with a review of Lily’s new novel, The Paris Secret. Huge thanks to Bookouture for the blitz invite and the ARC. Here is my review:
The-Paris-Secret-Kindle

The last time Valerie was in Paris, she was three years old, running from the Nazis, away from the only home she had ever known.

Now as a young woman all alone in the world, Valerie must return to Paris, to the bookshop and her sole surviving relative, her grandfather Vincent, the only person who knows the truth about what happened to her parents. As she gets to know grumpy, taciturn Vincent again, she hears a tragic story of Nazi-occupied Paris, a doomed love affair and a mother willing to sacrifice everything for her beloved daughter.

Can Valerie and Vincent help each other to mend the wounds of the past? Valerie isn’t after a fairytale ending, she only wants the truth. But what is the one devastating secret that Vincent is determined to keep from his granddaughter?

What does TWG think?
Wow, what can I say? I really don’t think that my review would do this book justice at all, but I can only try my best.
I am so glad that Lily Graham decided to make her novels a bit more historical fiction, as she certainly has the tender writing style which makes the history become less in the past and more in the present…if that makes sense. This book isn’t a story which can be taken lightly. Instead, it’s a book which deserves to be read and appreciated from the reader’s heart, just like the story has been written from the authors heart.
‘The Paris Secret’ is written in both the present, and the past, switching between two different years in the past to allow Valerie’s life story to come alive. Poor Valerie has a family history she never knew existed but, with the chance of being heart-broken incredibly high, Valerie is still determined to find out the truth before it’s too late. Nothing could have prepared her for what she did find out, and my heart broke for her many times. Hell, my heart even broke for several of her family members because they were living in Paris during the time of the Nazis. I can’t even begin to imagine how frightening that must have been, although Lily Graham gave me an insight into history which I never thought was possible. Eye-opening and so emotional, I’m surprised the tears stayed in my eyes to be honest!
I have to hold my hands up and say that I probably underestimated this book to begin with. I didn’t know the situation, nor did I know the characters so my assumptions were made on my first impressions. Don’t be like me and assume. This story is utterly beautiful in both a devastating way, and a heart warming way, so read it like you’re holding onto something fragile. Read it as though you have someone’s precious item in your hands. Read it with your heart and mind wide open as it truly deserves it. Honestly.
‘The Paris Secret’ took my breath away – what a humbling, magical and powerful novel. I have to say that this is Lily Graham’s best book yet, and I truly feel as though the author has found her calling with this niche.
 About the author:

Former journalist, Lily Graham grew up in South Africa, and spent much of her childhood buried inside the covers of a book. Her adulthood has passed no differently. Except that now she occasionally gets to make up some of the stories for a living. She is happy to report that most of her neighbours think of her as a cheerful layabout and no amount of protesting that lazing about in her pyjamas is actually ‘work’ she is never taken seriously. She lives in West Sussex with her husband and her beloved bulldog, Fudge.

Lily is the author of five novels, including THE ISLAND VILLA. All her books have entered the Amazon Top 100 bestseller list.  THE PARIS SECRET is published on 4th October 2018.

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Tell Nobody by Patricia Gibney (@Trisha460) @Bookouture

gibney
I would like to wish Patricia Gibney a happy publication day as her latest novel, ‘Tell Nobody’ is published today! Many congratulations! This is the fifth book in the ‘D.I. Lottie Parker’ series, and what a belter it is. Many thanks to Bookouture for the blog blitz invite and ARC. Here is my review:

gibney1
The boy’s body was so white it was almost transparent. But that’s not what caused the nausea to rise up her throat. He was so young. His body was unmarked, surrounded by a halo of plucked wildflowers.

One hot summer evening, eleven-year-old Mikey Driscoll is on the way home from playing with friends. Two days later, his body is discovered on a bed of wildflowers by some local teenagers.

The case is assigned to Detective Lottie Parker and this time it’s personal. The victim was a close friend of her son, Sean, from the run-down Munbally estate on the other side of town. Sean tells his mother Mikey was behaving normally before he died, but Lottie can’t help but feel that her son is keeping something from her…

Then days later, another boy is found dead, surrounded by wild flowers next to beautiful Ladystown Lake.

On the hunt for a twisted individual with a terrifying calling card, Lottie must uncover the web of secrets within Mikey’s circle of friends. Someone is hiding something but who are they protecting and can Lottie find out before it’s too late? Lottie is desperate to catch the killer before he strikes again because this time her own child could be in terrible danger…

What does TWG think?

Geezus!!!!!!! I don’t even know where to begin! Wow…I mean, wow – the D.I. Lottie Parker series just keeps getting better and better!

‘Tell Nobody’ has a theme which is extremely dark, with the overall vibe of the book becoming quite uncomfortable as the storyline progressed. Now usually, if a storyline made me feel extremely uncomfortable, I would give it a thumbs down and cut my losses, but, because ‘Tell Nobody’ is a thriller, the book has got to make readers feel discomfort otherwise it wouldn’t be doing its job properly now would it?

Patricia Gibney had me hooked from the get go, keep me hostage until the very last page. I really don’t know how this author manages to keep this series on the rise with every single book, but she does, and my goodness she does it well. Honestly, each book gets better and better, and the strength of the authors writing becomes apparent with each new book as well.

In this instalment, I felt that Lottie Parker was flagging because of how much rubbish she has had land on her in previous books. The character didn’t seem herself at all and weirdly, I found that endearing as it made her come across as more of a relatable and ‘real’ character. I can’t stick her boss though! He really needs to remove that stick from his youknowwhat!

I won’t delve into the ‘omg I loved the part when…’ as Gibney has written an incredibly complex and detailed storyline which involves every nook and cranny of every situation with the book, therefore me writing spoilers unintentionally would be likely and I don’t wish to ruin the book for anyone.

Like I said at the beginning, the content within the storyline makes for highly uncomfortable reading which often made my stomach turn. That said, I thought that the author delivered it very sensitively whilst also keeping the suspense there the whole time.

‘Tell Nobody’ is a truly fantastic, insanely gripping, dark as the night sky type of read which in my eyes, just screams ‘WINNER!!!’. I sped through the pages of this book and I think you will too. I genuinely cannot recommend this book enough! More Lottie Parker please!!!!

Buy now!

About the author.

Patricia lives in the midlands of Ireland. She is an avid crime reader so naturally she found herself writing in the crime genre. To date, (July 2018) Patricia has sold over ONE MILLION COPIES in the LOTTIE PARKER series.

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.
Book 4, NO SAFE PLACE was published in March 2018
Book 5, TELL NOBODY is published on 3rd October 2018 

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Coming Home to Maple Cottage by Holly Martin (@HollyMAuthor) @Bookouture


A late one this evening, sorry! Feel free to blame Strictly Come Dancing! Anyway, I am excited to be reviewing Holly Martin’s stunning new novel, ‘Coming Home to Maple Cottage’. Many thanks to Bookouture for the blog tour invite and the ARC. Here is my review:


Isla Rosewood is creating a new life for herself and her sweet nephew Elliot in their cosy, yellow-brick family cottage, brimming with special memories. Living in Sandcastle Bay was never part of Isla’s plan but, after her brother Matthew’s tragic accident, her whole world changed as she unexpectedly became a mother to the little boy she adores so much.

Leo Jackson was always known as Matthew’s fun-loving and wild best friend. But now Matthew is gone, it’s time to put his colourful past behind him. His role as Elliot’s godfather is the most important thing to him. And even though Leo and Isla are two very different people, they both want to give Elliot the childhood he deserves.

As the three of them enjoy time together watching fireworks, baking cakes and collecting conkers, Isla begins to see a softer side to charming Leo, with his twinkling eyes and mischievous sense of humour. And, despite herself, she begins to fall for him.

But does Leo feel the same way? Isla knows their situation is complicated but is it too complicated for true love… or will the year end with a happy new beginning for them all?

What does TWG think?

Oh Elliot, what a boy! My poor ovaries! That boy is my favourite character for sure – his personality is like sunshine on a rainy day. I just want to cuddle him!! If you’ve read any of the books in the series, you’ll know exactly what I am talking about! I have absolutely no idea how I managed to miss the second book, but I did. However, despite only having read the first book and then the third, I was able to slot back into Sandcastle Bay as though I had been there all along. In simple terms – you CAN read the books as a standalone with no problem at all. Although if you’re the type of reader who likes getting the background information on most of the characters, you might find it easier if you did read the books in order!

‘Coming Home to Maple Cottage’ focuses on Isla’s life with her little nephew, Elliot; a little boy who lost his dad at such a young age, and his mother even younger. But, with Isla having his back and loving him like he was her own child, little Elliot’s future is looking rosy. Well, as long as people stop sticking their noses into Isla and Leo’s business that is!

Be still my beating heart!!!! What a gorgeous, gorgeous book this is! Holly Martin never fails to capture my heart with her storylines and her well-rounded, colourful and beautifully written characters. Of course not all of the characters are lovely, as just like any place, there is always at least one person who is determined to stuff things up for other people. Why couldn’t people just leave Isla and Leo alone? What exactly would they benefit from watching the little family crumble before their eyes? It wasn’t fair and actually made me quite emotional as I just wanted Elliot to be settled and happy. Surely for a little boy of his age, that isn’t too much to ask?

The humour in this book was on point, as always, and I found myself holding my belly and crossing my legs whilst I laughed. I found that the giggles were just so natural and unforced, I couldn’t help but laugh with the characters. Hell, my face certainly got some exercise as my cheeks were aching from grinning so much! Not that I’m complaining obviously!

For me, ‘Coming Home to Maple Cottage’ is everything a romantic comedy/’chick lit’ should be and more, and that is down to Holly Martin engaging with her readers and making them believe that love is in the air. Like I have said many times, I’m not really a romantic person, yet I could feel the love between two of the characters and I believed it as though it was coming from my own heart and not theirs. I could feel the tenderness between the two characters, I don’t think that anyone would be able to miss it!

I adored every single word, every single joke, every single flutter of the heart, and every single line that Elliott came out with. I just loved this book from start to finish and I have everything crossed that the author doesn’t end the series with this book as I need to find out more. What happens to Isla and Leo afterwards?

‘Coming Home to Maple Cottage’ made my heart flutter, my belly laugh, my mind dream, and my cheeks ache – all the signs of an absolutely perfect, beautifully written, tender, and utterly divine read. I could read it over and over again and not get bored – more please!!

Buy now!

#BlogBlitz! #Review – The Birthday by Carol Wyer (@carolewyer) @Bookouture


Happy publication day to a woman who never fails to amaze me, the rather lovely Carol Wyer! Many congratulations!! I am absolutely delighted to be kicking off the blog blitz for Carol’s brand new novel, ‘The Birthday’. I started and finished this book last night (nothing like cutting it fine), and I have to say that you’re all in for a treat! Huge thanks, as always, to Bookouture for the blitz invite and the ARC. Here is my review:


One hot summer’s afternoon, five-year-old Ava Sawyer went to a party. She never came home… 

When five-year-old Ava Sawyer goes missing from a birthday party at a local garden centre, the police are bewildered by the lack of leads. That is until two years later, when Ava’s body is found and another little girl, Audrey Briggs, goes missing. Audrey also attended that party …

Leading the investigation is Detective Natalie Ward. A mother of two teenagers, this case chills her to the bone, and is a disturbing reminder of the last job she worked on. One that still keeps her awake at night…

Natalie soon discovers that Ava’s mother has some worrying gaps in her alibi and as she digs deeper, she’s sure Ava’s father is not telling the full story. And what did the owner of the garden centre Elsa see that day? Something that she’s not telling Natalie …

Just as Natalie is facing up to the grim possibility that Ava and Audrey were killed by someone close to home, another little girl from the party doesn’t come home from her ballet lesson. Can Natalie find a way to stop this killer before more innocent lives are taken?

What does TWG think?

With a five year old daughter of my own, the theme of ‘The Birthday’ felt very close to home in terms of the children and their ages. But, without sounding too weird, it was also that theme which made me dig my nails into the book to ensure that my hands never let go. How did I end up finding myself gripped by a devastating situation? It wasn’t as though I found the fact that a little girl went missing, highly entertaining, it was more to do with wanting answers for the missing girl and staying right to the end to get those answers so that her family and loved ones (and I), could let the girl rest in peace without any question marks looming overhead.

‘The Birthday’ is the first book in a brand new series, with Detective Natalie Ward as the ‘go to’ person. I thought she was absolutely brilliant. She refused to take any rubbish from her team, nor did she allow her superior to ignore her gut instinct regarding the investigation. Maybe it was a mother’s intuition, but Natalie Ward knew that something wasn’t quite right when the first body was found, and she knew that things were about to blow when another little girl ends up being put onto the police radar. Either way, Natalie refused to give up.

The storyline switches between the present, the past involving the person behind the first disappearance, as well as the ‘voices’ if you will, of the girls involved in the situation. It isn’t confusing at all, in fact it adds another thrilling dimension to an already highly intense read.

I did end up working out who was involved before it was known and revealed by Natalie and her team, but due to the fast paced, twisty nature of the storyline, it didn’t frustrate me as much as it usually would. Put it this way, I was obviously highly invested in the storyline because when I reached the end of the book, I hadn’t prepared myself and felt like there should have been more. I wanted more!

‘The Birthday’ is an incredible, incredible start to a series I cannot wait to read more of. Carol Wyer has raised the bar once again with this book and, whilst I do have faith in her to raise it again with the next book, I have absolutely no idea how she is going to beat this book.

A jaw dropping, highly anticipated, thrilling, addictive, and incredibly dark novel which left my body covered in goosebumps – fantastic, fantastic read!

Buy now!

About the author.

Carol Wyer garnered a loyal following as an author of romantic comedies, and won The People’s Book Prize Award for non-fiction (2015). In 2017 she stepped from comedy to the “dark side” and embarked on a series of thrillers, featuring the popular DI Robyn Carter, which earned her recognition as a crime writer.

The Staffordshire-based writer now has more crime novels in the pipeline, although she can still sometimes be found performing her stand-up comedy routine Laugh While You Still Have Teeth.

www.carolewyer.co.uk

https://www.facebook.com/AuthorCarolEWyer

#BlogTour! #Review – The Little Orphan Girl by Sandy Taylor (@SandyTaylorAuth) @Bookouture

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Many thanks to Bookouture for the blog tour invite and the ARC, here is my review of Sandy Taylor’s, ‘The Little Orphan Girl’.

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Ireland, 1901: The work house gates clanged shut behind us, as me and the mammy walked down the hill towards the town. I was six years old and leaving the only home I had ever known…

When Cissy Ryan’s real mother comes to claim her from the workhouse, it’s not how she imagined. Her family’s tumbledown cottage has ice on the inside of its windows and is in an isolated, poverty-stricken village in the muddy Irish countryside. But when Cissy is allowed to help neighbour Colm Doyle and his horse named Blue on their milk round one morning, Cissy starts to feel as though friendship could get her through anything.

It’s Colm who looks in on Cissy’s grandfather when she starts at the village school, and Colm who tells her to hold her chin high when she interviews for a position at the grand Bretton House. But in the vast mansion with its shining floors and sweeping staircase, it’s Master Peter Bretton who captures Cissy’s heart with his dark curls and easy laugh.

As Cissy blossoms from a skinny orphan into a confident young girl, Colm tells her she’s as good as anyone and she begins to believe anything is possible. But not everyone with a kind smile has a kind heart, and Cissy doesn’t know that further sorrow lies in store for her.

When Cissy finds herself desperate, alone, and faced with a devastating choice, can she find the strength to survive?

What does TWG think?

What a beautiful, emotional and poignant read this is! Set in the early 1900’s, at a time where children worked from a very young age. Not only that, the amount of orphaned children was very high. I couldn’t even begin to imagine what it must have been like to be a child who had to grow up in those conditions, even if I am aware that they would have known no different. It’s a shame that they had to know it at all, in my opinion.

‘The Little Orphan Girl’ follows the life of Cissy, a young girl who has to work her fingers to the bone to live. With no ‘mammy’ fighting her corner, Cissy soon learns that she can only rely on herself, yet she can’t help but see the best in people.

My heart went out to Cissy on more than one occasion. It broke my heart that she had to live in those conditions, and it broke my heart that children actually DID live in those conditions back in the day. Like I said above, I know they know no different, but when innocent, young children are involved, it certainly makes you open your eyes and look at the bigger picture.

Sandy Taylor, whilst portraying an emotional scenario when Cissy is a young girl, has written a book which not only captivated my heart, it tugged on my heart strings as though someone was ringing a bell. I cannot fault this author for the delivery of such a touching , rollercoaster ride of a read which took me on an inspiring journey of self discovery, right until the very last page.

A heart-warming, poignant and captivating novel, written with the best intentions. Beautiful.

Buy now!

About the author.

Sandy Taylor grew up on a council estate near Brighton. There were no books in the house, so Sandy’s love of the written word was nurtured in the little local library.

Leaving school at fifteen, Sandy worked in a series of factories before landing a job at Butlins in Minehead. This career change led her to becoming a singer, a stand-up comic and eventually a playwright and novelist.

Author Social Media Links:

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

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/SandyTaylorAuth