Stuff cooking this year, I’m having #ChristmasatRachelsPuddingPantry! Who’s joining me?! @_caroroberts @fictionpubteam @HarperFiction @JenRHarlow

Wahey, it’s the second book in the #PuddingPantry series, and I am delighted to be on the blog tour for it today! Thank you so much to the Harper Fiction team for the tour invite and the ARC.

Cosy up with the new novel in the Pudding Pantry series, full of love, laughter, kisses under the mistletoe, and plenty of delicious pudding!

The first snow is falling over Primrose Farm, the mince pies are warming, and Rachel can’t wait to share a kiss under the mistletoe with her gorgeous new flame, Tom.

If only it was all comfort and joy . . . The arrival of Tom’s ex brings an unwelcome chill to the farm. And despite Master Baker Mum Jill’s valiant efforts, the new pudding pantry business is feeling the pinch.

With a spoonful of festive spirit, a cupful of goodwill with friends, and her messy, wonderful family by her side, can Rachel make this a Christmas to remember?

What does TWG think?

There needs to be a pudding pantry in every single town! Please don’t burst my bubble and tell me that I can’t have Christmas at Rachel’s pudding pantry this year – I’m just going to pretend that i can! Can you blame me?!

Caroline Roberts is an absolute GENIUS for creating Rachel’s pudding pantry and, after devouring the first book in one sitting, I had very high hopes for this installment. Was it going to live up to my expectations? Would the addition of a sequel make the series stronger, or weaker? Would I enjoy it as much the second time round?

In answer to those questions;

YES, it more than lived up to my expectations, in fact it went above and beyond.

NO, the addition of the sequel made the series even stronger as we got to see different sides to the characters.

And YES, I definitely enjoyed popping in to visit the gang in the pudding pantry again. I don’t think I would ever get bored of the characters or the delectable treats which have caused me to drool whilst reading!

Maisy reminds me so much of my little girl because of the ‘out of the mouth of babes’ comments, and her sassy personality. I love her character and the way that she adds so much energy to the story. Such a breath of fresh air.

It was great to see a different side to Rachel, although I did find all of her conversations very stilted and very ‘she said’. I found it to be a little awkward at times and felt that it was missing the conversational flow like the previous book.

That said, the emotions were rife again and the way in which Rachel spoke about her dad, was incredibly moving. I could tell that all she wanted to do was make him proud, even if that meant running herself down to the ground.

If you have read any of Caroline Roberts’ previous books, you will be happy to know that a couple of characters from other stories pop up in this book! A lovely surprise I must add! It was honestly like catching up with some old friends.

That’s what I love most about Caroline Roberts’ novels – the way that her storylines welcome readers with open arms each and every time, like you’re a long lost friend popping round for a cuppa. Going back to the Pudding Pantry certainly gave me that cosy and welcoming feel I didn’t quite realise I was needing.

With so much food for thought (literally) filling the pages of this book, ‘Christmas at Rachel’s Pudding Pantry’ is a genuinely warm, entertaining read which tickled my tastebuds and left me hungry for more. I thoroughly enjoyed spending time with Rachel, Jill, Maisy, and the rest of the gang, although I would have to say that this book should come with free cake! I’m salivating!!!

A touching, emotive, cosy, and delectable novel that is PERFECT for losing yourself in and devouring each and every morsel. Sorry, ahem, I mean pages. I loved it.

Buy now.

I cannot believe I am kicking off the #blogtour for Dawn O-Porter! I am #SoLucky @hotpatooties @fictionpubteam

so lucky blog tour MASTER
It is an absolute honour to be kicking off Dawn O’Porter’s blog tour today for her brand new novel, ‘So Lucky’. Hugest of thanks to the publisher for giving me the opportunity today, and for my copy of the book. Here is my review:

SO LUCKY BOOK JACKET

IS ANYONE’S LIFE . . .

Beth shows that women really can have it all.
Ruby lives life by her own rules.
And then there’s Lauren, living the dream.

AS PERFECT AS IT LOOKS?

Beth hasn’t had sex in a year.
Ruby feels like she’s failing.
Lauren’s happiness is fake news.

And it just takes one shocking event to make the truth come tumbling out…

What does TWG think?

What a good question; is anyone’s life as perfect as it looks?

As I am sure a lot of you are aware, social media is the haven for people to show their lives as more than what it is. Granted there are a lot of people who are honest about their lives, and post pictures to cement that fact, but then again there are also a large number of people on social media who refuse to show themselves as anything other than ‘perfect’. The thing is, what IS perfect? We all have our own definitions of the word. We all think that something is perfect when, oh I don’t know, our next door neighbour might think that it is utter tripe. So where does it stop? How far would someone go to make their life seem as perfect as possible?

Take Beth for example; a new mum, her own business, and married. On the outside, people think that her life is the ultimate goal. That she has the marriage of all marriages. That she is inspirational for going to work whilst she has a newborn baby.

And then there’s Ruby; a mum who has no confidence, a life she cannot grip hold of, and a daughter who she wants to make proud yet her insecurities are stopping her from taking that leap.

And finally, there’s Lauren. Lauren is the person who is no longer in touch with her true identity due to the amount of times her thighs have been retouched, her moles have been removed, and her online presence has had a personality transplant because of what she is or isn’t allowed to post.

Now, all three of those women do not think of their lives as perfect. Instead, they can’t help but compare their own lives to the strangers they see walking down the street, the lives of the people who comment on their social media posts, and the lives of the other parents at the nursery.

Isn’t that normal though? Don’t we all compare ourselves to other people?

We do. Well, I certainly know I do, but in all honesty, I am tired of it! Why do we have to show ourselves in a certain way for people to accept us? Why can’t they accept us for who we are, stretch marks, warts, excessive body hair, mental health issues….everything!

If you follow Dawn O’Porter on social media, you will already know that she is incredibly forthcoming with her posts. She’s honest. She’s blunt. She’s hilarious and, seeing as I have never met her in person, I like to assume that she is completely genuine. Hell, it would take a lot of time to fake half of the stuff she does on social media! With that in mind, ‘So Lucky’ is like the extended cut of Dawn O’Porter’s personality. Instead of shying away from real life concerns such as libido after having a baby, different ways of having sex, the realisation that marriage is actually hard work; Dawn O’Porter takes those thoughts and turns them into something which people will relate to and punch the air with gratification.

If you’re not a fan of sex in books then this isn’t for you as ‘So Lucky’ doesn’t just glance over the subject, it dissects it in a bold way which will either make you turn your nose up in disgust or, if you’re like Beth, make you extremely hot under the collar. Now, seeing as a large portion of the first part of the book is governed by sexual thoughts and what not, I really wasn’t sure where the storyline was heading, nor was I sure on what the authors train of thought actually was (apart from the obvious). However, once I began to learn more about each individual characters and their insecurities, the true heart of the storyline became more apparent and I nearly blinded myself with the lightbulb moment I had.

Learning to love yourself takes a lot of time. Learning to appreciate yourself can happen a lot quicker if you have the right support behind you, What I loved most about ‘So Lucky’ was the fact that each of the three women were perfectly flawed. They knew they were a little rough around the edges, but they also knew that they were themselves and that no other person would ever come close. I loved the realistic notion of the storyline and the message of perfect imperfections that Dawn O’Porter shouted loud and proud about. I adored the sarcasm, the witty one liners, the sexual innuendos which made bold sexual thoughts be deemed as ‘the norm’. I also thought the friendships which occurred in the book were so genuine and so tender, the level of empowerment between the women was so powerful and so poignant, I honestly which that feeling could be bottled – Dawn O’Porter would make a killing!!

‘So Lucky’ is a book which makes you look at life from an entirely different perspective, and it teaches you, in a roundabout way, that being true to you and yours, is the best gift you could ever give yourself. This is an extremely bold, extremely blunt, and extremely poignant novel about life and being proud of your own imperfections.

Dawn O’Porter should be incredibly proud of what she has achieved with this book – I flipping loved every aspect, every minute detail, every shocking situation. This truly is a book everyone should be ‘So Lucky’ to read, I know I am!

Outstanding x a million!

‘So Lucky’ is due to be published on the 31st October, but can be pre-ordered now via the link below:
Pre-order now from Amazon

A little birdy told me that you should visit #NottingHillInTheSnow! @JulesWake @0nemorechapter_ @RaRaResources

I am absolutely delighted to be taking part in the blog tour for ‘Notting Hill In The Snow’ by Jules Wake – thanks for the invite RaRaResources, and thank you to the publisher for the ARC.

A Notting Hill nativity… what could go wrong?

Viola Smith plays the viola in an orchestra (yes really!) but this year she’s been asked to stretch her musical talents to organising Notting Hill’s local nativity.

Nate Williams isn’t looking forward to Christmas but as his small daughter, Grace, has the starring role in the show, he’s forced to stop being a Grinch and volunteer with Viola.

With the sparks between them hotter than the chestnuts roasting in Portobello market, Nate and Viola can’t deny their feelings. And as the snow starts to fall over London, they find themselves trapped together in more ways than one…

What does TWG think?

I’m just going to come right out and say it – ‘Notting Hill In The Snow’ is by far, THE best festive book I have ever read. Not only did the storyline contain snow, Christmas presents, the magic of Christmas, and of course the unforgettable Christmas armadillo (obvs!), it also had enough warmth to light a mansion and a plot which brought tears to my eyes.

Whenever someone says that they NEED Viola, she goes and helps them. Whenever Viola says she needs someone, what do they do? They try to ignore the fact that she even spoke. She is such a selfless character, and it was evident that a lot of people around her took that for granted. Yes, she could have said ‘no’ to them, but the fact that her family could be disappointed with her was enough to make her say yes to whatever they needed help with. God, I so badly wanted her to tell her family, especially her mother, to go and fornicate themselves!!

Naturally, like many of Jules Wake’s novels, a gentleman was involved in a large portion of this book. A gentleman who shared Viola’s love of mince pies (my dream man!), but also a man who was afraid. Viola ends up supporting Nate’s daughter, Grace, and oh my goodness, that was when the tears pricked at my eyes. I wont give anything away by telling you too much, but Grace was a child who was losing her way. She was afraid to be a child in fear of getting told off and, in all honesty, her reaction to Christmas broke my heart. In many ways she reminded me of my little girl due to the similar ages and interests, so my maternal instinct was on high alert whenever Grace was mentioned. I just wanted to take her under my wing and show her that it was okay to be a child, that it was okay to make a mess. Thankfully she had Viola in her corner though.

‘Notting Hill in the Snow’ has the type of storyline that you want to devour, yet it also has a storyline that you dont want to devour because you know that when you do, the feelings of elation, beautiful emotional, and cosiness will go because the book would have ended. I was absolutely gutted saying goodbye to Nate, Viola and Grace – I would love it if they came back again in another story, but who knows.

There is more than just warmth at the heart of the storyline, there is also hope, passion, magic, selflessness. Most importantly though, the storyline reminded me about the importance of being true to yourself and live life for you, and not by the way anyone else wishes you to.

I really couldnt have wished for anything more where this book was concerned – I absolutely loved everything about it, especially the way that Jules Wake made her characters come alive from her heart, to ours.

An undeniably beautiful, hilarious, and magical novel – this is the definition of perfection in my eyes.

Buy now.

I will #RewriteTheStars for you, Emma Heatherington…@emmalou13 @fictionpubteam

This was a blog tour I was so eager to be on! Thank you SO much to the Harperfiction team for inviting me to take part, and for the ARC. Here is my review:

From the moment they meet one December day there’s something between Charlotte Taylor and her brother’s best friend, Tom Farley. But Tom’s already taken and Charlie has to let him go…

It’s another five years before their paths cross again only a secret from the past forces Charlie to make a choice. She promises herself she’ll never look back…

The years pass and Charlie moves on with her life but she can never forget Tom. He’s always there whispering ‘What if?’.

Can Charlie leave the life she has built for one last chance with Tom? Or is the one that got away not really the one at all…?

What does TWG think?

Wow, wow, WOW! I don’t usually do this as I believe that every book shouldn’t be compared to another as they’re all individual in their own right. However, I’m breaking my rule here as, if I had to liken ‘Rewrite the Stars’ to another book, the book which instantly comes to mind is ‘P.S. I Love You’. Whilst each storyline contain their own unique premise, both stories share similarities in the way that they each contain such deep rooted passion which could be deemed a fire hazard, and such earth shattering emotion that cannot be taught.

‘Rewrite the Stars’ tells the story of Charlie, a twenty something female who has the drive to do what she chooses with her life, yet also has the selfless nature to put her loved ones before her dreams. As the story progresses, we get to watch Charlie grow up and attempt to find her own to feet, whilst also watching heartbreak visit her doorstep various times over the years.

Charlie’s outlook on life, always wondering ‘what if?’, is one that I certainly related to, and I’m sure others will too. We have no idea what outcome our decisions will have on our futures, yet we embark on those decisions day in, day out, hoping that we have chosen to take a path we wont later regret. Of course, we may find that we regret the choices we made, or the routes we didn’t take, in turn beating ourselves up because we constantly wonder ‘what if?’. Charlie had to make a decision based on what someone else needed rather than what she wanted, and ends up spending many years being unable to live with the life she chose in case she has made the wrong decision. But how would you ever know?

I adore Emma Heatherington’s writing. In every book she produces, she always manages to get to the root cause of her characters emotions, their personalities, as well as maintaining the true heart of the storyline and the message she was aiming to convey. Personally, I think that ‘Rewrite the Stars’ highlights just how incredible Heatherington’s talent is, whilst also highlighting the intense depths of mental health and the feelings of regret.

This book blew my mind in more ways than one. I adored the sheer honesty of the mental health elements. I thought the characters were people I would love to know in real life, which is rare of me to say!

Yes, it’s safe to say that I absolutely adored every single thing of this book and what it stood for, from the heartache to the passion, from the family uncertainty to the lacking of self worth. ‘Rewrite the Stars’ is such a beautiful, beautiful book that I will remember forever. Watch out Cecelia Ahern is all I can say!

Buy now.

Welcome to the jungle, we’ve got fun and games…SORRY! Wrong one – #WelcomeToTheFamily @fab_fiction @HQStories #Review

Many thanks to HQ for the ARC of ‘The Family’ by Louise Jensen – I am excited to be kicking off the blog tour today.

ONCE YOU’RE IN, THEY’LL NEVER LET YOU LEAVE.

Laura is grieving after the sudden death of her husband. Struggling to cope emotionally and financially, Laura is grateful when a local community, Oak Leaf Organics, offer her and her 17-year-old daughter Tilly a home.

But as Laura and Tilly settle into life with their new ‘family’, sinister things begin to happen. When one of the community dies in suspicious circumstances Laura wants to leave but Tilly, enthralled by the charismatic leader, Alex, refuses to go.

Desperately searching for a way to save her daughter, Laura uncovers a horrifying secret but Alex and his family aren’t the only ones with something to hide. Just as Laura has been digging into their past, they’ve been digging into hers and she discovers the terrifying reason they invited her and Tilly in, and why they’ll never let them leave…

What does TWG think?

You know when you’re caught up in a bad nightmare, feeling as though you cannot escape from the terror that’s pulsing through your veins due to your own subconscious? Imagine that but in book form…the telling of a similar thing mind, not YOUR actual nightmare or that would put you off reading it now wouldn’t it?

‘The Family’ is one of those types of reads which ends up getting right under your skin and, even though the storyline was brilliant at making me feel uncomfortable and quite nervous, it also had me at its beck and call. A bit like pringles – once you pop open the book, you literally cannot stop reading!

Laura has her daughters best interests at heart and would do ANYTHING to protect her, however I dont think she knew that her mummabear instincts would end up kicking in sooner than she thought. A fight for survival if you will.

The twisted nature of the storyline kept me hooked until the very last page. I felt that the uncertainty of the characters actions were brilliantly written and allowed the reader to carve their own picture in their minds about what might happen, and when. There were a lot of things in the book which left me reeling (in a good way), and I absolutely loved the sinister, secretive elements which left me in a total head funk!

Louise Jensen is an author who is outstanding at what she does, and is certainly one to watch in the genre she writes.

Such a compelling, addictive and sinister read – brilliant! Although, please don’t take offence when I say that I would rather not be welcomed into this family….if you don’t mind!

Buy now!

Grab some paper, it’s time to get #WrappedUpForChristmas! @katlyn_duncan @HQDigitalUK @RaRaResources

I don’t think anyone is thinking about wrapping up their Christmas presents just yet, but if you are, what better book to get you in the mood than one titled ‘Wrapped Up For Christmas’. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite, and thank you to HQ for the ARC. Here is my review:

It’s the most wonderful time of the year… but not for Angie Martinelli…

Having lost her boyfriend, job, and apartment all in the space of a week, Angie has no choice but to leave California and return to her family in New England.

Determined not to let life weigh her down, Angie finds work at the local mall where she worked as a teenager. After an embarrassing run-in with a handsome stranger, Nick, she’s convinced her luck is about to change.

But Nick has secrets of his own… and as the first flakes of snow begin to fall, Angie can’t help but wonder if she’ll ever find love.

What does TWG think?

Cute dog? CHECK.

Strong female lead? CHECK.

Ideal person to tickle the main characters fancy? CHECK.

Heartwarming and full of festive cheer? DOUBLE CHECK!

You know the TV channel that’s dedicated to Christmas movies? ‘Wrapped Up For Christmas’ needs to be put on there! It screamed ‘Hallmark’ movie to me after the first couple of chapters!

Angie has had to reboot her life after things went disastrously wrong. She would have preferred not to move back into her family home, but due to the lack of funds and employment, it was the only option Angie had. With her best friend, Reese, being close to popping, the thought of leaving home yet again filled Angie with dread. Could she really make a new life in the place that she was so desperate to leave?

The romantic elements to this story were absolutely spot on, if somewhat frustrating at times! I just wanted to bang the heads of Angie and her love interest! Seriously! Communication clearly wasnt their strong point at all. Despite that, I was rooting for both of their happiness and had everything crossed that they crossed find themselves on the paths that they needed to be on.

As for the festive cheer, Katlyn Duncan sprinkled it throughout the book like snowflakes. It wasn’t too much, nor was it too little, in fact it was just right.

I adored Reese’s character and ended up laughing out loud at her antics involving her stomach – oh I remember it well!

‘Wrapped Up For Christmas’ is a book version of the candy cane – significant, festive, and the ideal thing to get you feeling christmassy. I thoroughly enjoyed following Angie’s journey; it really is a cushty, snugfest of a Christmas treat.

Buy now!

#BlogTour! #Review – Four Christmases and a Secret by Zara Stoneley (@ZaraStoneley) @0neMoreChapter_ @RaRaresources

Four Christmases and a Secret Full Tour Banner
Happy publication day to Zara Stoneley and ‘Four Christmases and a Secret’! I’m excited to be kicking off the blog tour today – thank you to Rachel for inviting me to take part, and of course to the publisher for the ARC. Here is my review:

Four Christmases and a Secret Cover

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

Except for Daisy Christmas means another of Uncle T’s dreaded Christmas parties, complete with Christmas jumper and flashing antlers.  And Oliver Cartwright.  Gorgeous Oliver Cartwright. Who she hates.

Every year Daisy has to face insufferable Ollie and hear all about how BRILLIANT he is.  Whereas Daisy has no job, no man and no idea how to fix things.

This Christmas however Daisy is determined things will be different.  There will be no snogging Ollie under the mistletoe like when they were teenagers.  No, this year she’ll show Ollie that she’s a Responsible Adult too.

But as the champagne corks pop, and the tinsel sparkles, Uncle T has news of his own to share…and it could change Daisy’s life forever…

What does TWG think?

If you’re not getting ready for Christmas now….I want to know why! Surely Zara Stoneley’s new book has put you in the Christmas spirit in erm….September?! By the way, this cover is SO pretty!!! Simple yet extremely effective – I love it!

Now, I am a massive fan of Zara Stoneley’s books, so it absolutely pains me to say that I really struggled with 30-40% of this book. I thought the stepping stones to the story were there from the beginning, however I felt that the connection was very thin and the storyline didn’t have the same flawless, continuous vibe like many of her other books. I am well aware that there is a lot happening in the book, and often that can make things feel a little bit up in the air at times, that wasn’t the issue at all. In fact, I loved the randomness of Daisy’s character and the fact that she just dived head first into literally everything about her life. For me, it was the fact that there were snippets of events, issues, relationship drama etc, yet they seemed to lay there dormant and unconnected to the main storyline. That’s what I struggled with…..however….

wait for it……

Once I hit like 40% of the book, everything fell into place and I ended up falling head over heels in love with the book and what Zara Stoneley was trying to achieve. At the end of the book my cheeks were aching something chronic, and it turned out I was grinning like an absolute loon. I didn’t want Daisy’s story to end! I am so pleased that the jigsaw pieces came together eventually.

Daisy is such a bonkers character and I thought she was absolutely brilliant. She gave the book the element of surprise, the element of uniqueness, and ended up becoming a character I would love to meet again in another book. Honestly, she is hysterical and made ‘Four Christmases’ what it was. Well, her and Stanley….oh, and Uncle T. Oh my heart! Uncle T, what a legend! He reminded me of my Great Uncle Ted – a gentle giant who would do anything for anyone, yet also the type of person who would stand their ground if need be. I will hold my hands up and say that my eyes did leak a bit where he was concerned…..that’s all I’m saying on that matter though!

Back to Stanley. Another legend of the four legged variety! I love how Zara Stoneley always puts a doggy character in her books, and the way that she gives them such a memorable personality instead of being just a background ornament as it were. Stanley was as much of a character in the book as Daisy and Ollie were.

Daisy’s mum was a belter too – absolutely hilarious, cringeworthy and simply perfect! Even though there is a lot of hilarity in this book, there are also several discussions of topics on a deeper scale. That said, they are also written with a hint of hilarity….just to even things up a bit.

By the time I got to the end of the book, I couldn’t believe my reaction to the first part of it, but I am so glad that I trusted my judgement and Zara Stoneley’s writing as I ended up absolutely loving this book.

Zara Stoneley creates such hilarious, heartwarming storylines which are both memorable and unique; ‘Four Christmases and a Secret’ is no different. If you’re after a book which puts a unique spin on the festive season, bereavement and relationships, I would urge you to read this in a heartbeat. Another brilliant, brilliant book by an author who certainly knows her way around a pen and paper!

Buy now from Amazon UK
Buy now from Amazon US

About the author.

Zara Stoneley is the USA Today bestselling author of ‘The Wedding Date’.

She lives in a Cheshire village with her family, a lively cockapoo called Harry, and a very bossy (and slightly evil) cat called Saffron.

Born in a small village in the UK, Zara wanted to be a female James Herriot, a spy, or an author when she grew up. After many (many) years, and many different jobs, her dream of writing a bestseller came true. She now writes about friendship, dreams, love, and happy ever afters, and hopes that her tales make you laugh a lot, cry a little, and occasionally say ‘ahhh’.

Zara’s bestselling novels include ‘Bridesmaids’, ‘No One Cancels Christmas’, ‘The Wedding Date’, ‘The Holiday Swap’, ‘Summer with the Country Village Vet’, ‘Blackberry Picking at Jasmine Cottage’ and the popular Tippermere series – ‘Stable Mates’, ‘Country Affairs’ and ‘Country Rivals’.

Visit Zara’s Website.

I cannot believe I’m on the blog tour for THE @Cecelia_Ahern and #Postscript! Check out my review here! @HCinIreland @fictionpubteam #PSILoveYou

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I cannot believe that I am today’s stop on the blog tour for THE Cecelia Ahern! Wow, it is such an honour to be involved in the tour – thank you so much to FictionPubTeam for the blog tour invite, and for the utterly beautiful proof copy (I even ordered myself a signed copy from Waterstones!! Order your own signed copy here.). I have no idea whether I will be able to do this book justice, but here is my review of the sequel to PS.I Love You, Postscript:

Postscript
It’s been seven years since Holly Kennedy’s husband died – six since she read his final letter, urging Holly to find the courage to forge a new life.
 
She’s proud of all the ways in which she has grown and evolved. But when a group inspired by Gerry’s letters, calling themselves the PS, I Love You Club, approaches Holly asking for help, she finds herself drawn back into a world that she worked so hard to leave behind.
 
Reluctantly, Holly beings a relationship with the club, even as their friendship threatens to destroy the peace she believes she has achieved. As each of these people calls upon Holly to help them leave something meaningful behind for their loved ones, Holly will embark on a remarkable journey – one that will challenge her to ask whether embracing the future means betraying the past, and what it means to love someone forever…

What does TWG think?

Oh my goodness me. It’s been fifteen years since ‘PS.I Love You’ was originally published. Never in a million years did I think that fifteen years down the line, Cecelia Ahern would write a sequel to the book that became a number one bestseller in multiple countries, AND end up being made into a major film starring Hilary Swank, Gerard Butler, Harry Connick JR, and Kathy Bates…to name a few. I cannot even remember when I first sat down to read ‘Ps.I Love You’, however it is one of the few books that I have read more than twice.

When it became public knowledge that a sequel was in the works, I literally could no contain my excitement! I mean, the first book broke my heart – how could Cecelia Ahern up the ante on that? Plus, with sequels, it’s often a worry that they can end up ruining the vibe of the serial – Postscript did not ruin anything. In fact, I would even go as far to say that it was even more incredible than its predecessor.

If you haven’t read ‘Ps.I Love You’, I would highly recommend reading it before you get stuck into ‘Postscript’ as a lot of things will not make sense if you just go into the second book blind.

So, to ‘Postscript’….

I was advised to keep tissues by my side whilst I read the book. I ignored the advice.
I was told that I would probably cry. I shrugged my shoulders and thought ‘no way’.
I was told to be prepared for an emotional read. Again, I ignored that.
Again, I was told to have a pack of tissues handy because I would be needing them. I didn’t think that I would need them…

I bloody needed them. I needed a gigantic pack of tissues and then some. I honestly thought that I would be able to read the entire book unscathed – how wrong was I! By the time I had 56 pages of the book left, I had sobbed my heart out FOUR TIMES, yet I had also burst out laughing several times too. Yes, ‘Postscript’ is an extremely emotional read. Yes, it’s devastating in parts, and yes, it smashed my heart into smithereens. However, it was also beautiful. Poignant. Powerful.

‘Postscript’ tells the story of Holly’s life after Gerry’s death seven years prior. To the outside world, Holly has moved on. To Holly, she feels guilty for living her life without Gerry by her side, even though she has no choice. When her sister, Ciara, asks for her help with her podcast, Holly can’t quite shift the sinking feeling in her gut. Part of her thinks that she shouldn’t delve into the emotions that have taken seven years to come to terms with, yet another part of her thinks that it would do her good to talk about Gerry’s death. Never in a million years did Holly ever think that Gerry’s actions would end up inspiring other people, yet they did. They ended up inspiring a group of strangers who begin to embark on their own journeys with different expiry dates; expiry dates that are currently unknown but they all have one thing in common – they want to leave a part of themselves for their loved ones…with Holly’s help.

Obviously I’m not going to go into detail about those journeys, Holly’s included, however I will say that all of the characters in this book had their own stories to tell which completely blew me away on various different levels. The poignancy behind their lives, who they loved, and what they wanted to achieve, was just so emotional and moving. It was so hard to just sit and watch certain things happening to people who didn’t deserve it. I wanted to reach inside of the book and make everything okay, but I couldn’t. Clearly. The thing is, even if I could have done something to make it all okay, it wouldn’t have been realistic. Thousands upon thousands of people go through things similar to the characters in this book, and thousands upon thousands of people wish they could become a superhero and make everything okay. The reality of that though, is that it isn’t reality and often that can be the hardest thing to accept.

As I said above, I sobbed my heart out a total of FIVE times by the end of the book. I was so overwhelmed by Cecelia Ahern’s beautiful words and the way in which she made every character have a voice. Ahern didn’t gloss over anything, pretending that life was all rosy and that everything would magically be fine. Instead, she told the story of life for what it was; a journey of existence. A journey of power. A journey of emotional. A journey of constant memories.

It doesn’t feel as though fifteen years have passed since Holly and Gerry entered our lives, especially as ‘Postscript’ just continues the story as though there has never been a break between books.

‘Postscript’ is the most humbling, empowering, beautifully written novel I have EVER read. Cecelia Ahern has a timeless beauty about her, with a writing style that goes beyond anything I have ever come across before.

There comes a point in your life where you read a book which fills your body with fizzy emotion, empowering knowledge, poignant hope, and the ability to witness life in all of its glory – ‘PostScript’, for me, is that book.

Buy now from Amazon.

#BlogTour #Review – #TheDayWeMeetAgain by Miranda Dickinson (@wurdsmyth) @HQStories #TeamSparkly

HUGE thank you to HQ for inviting me to take part in Miranda Dickinson’s new novel, ‘The Day We Meet Again’. It was such an honour to receive such a lovely ARC package in the post as well, thank you again to HQ, and of course thank you to Miranda Dickinson for allowing me to be a part of #TeamSparkly!

‘We’ll meet again at St Pancras station, a year from today. If we’re meant to be together, we’ll both be there. If we’re not, it was never meant to be . . .’

Phoebe and Sam meet by chance at St Pancras station. Heading in opposite directions, both seeking their own adventures, meeting the love of their lives wasn’t part of the plan. So they make a promise: to meet again in the same place in twelve months’ time if they still want to be together.

But is life ever as simple as that?

This is a story of what-ifs and maybes – and how one decision can change your life forever…

What does TWG think?

Hello modern day ‘You’ve Got Mail’! ‘The Day We Meet Again’ had Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan all over it!

This book is romantic with a capital R. From the get go we see two strangers connecting on a level other people would only ever dream about. Some think that love at first sight is a load of tosh, however Phoebe and Sam are not afraid to listen to what their hearts are telling them. Me personally? I don’t believe in falling in love straight after meeting someone, however I do think that its more than possible to connect with someone new when you’ve only just met them. But love at first sight? I’m not convinced.

Thankfully my opinion on that matter was null and void because the story was about Phoebe and Sam, not me. The premise of the book was such a brilliant escapism and showed readers that you can still live your life even though you have fallen in love. Your plans do not automatically freeze because you have a partner. Again, not everyone realises that though. Take a look at Phoebe and Sam’s friends for example; they were obviously concerned for their friends decision, yet it was incredibly easy for them to pass their doubts onto both Phoebe and Sam. Would the couple find their way back to each other in a years time?

What I love most about Miranda Dickinson’s writing, is the way she creates her characters from her heart, making their personalities jump off the page as though they’re a real life human, like you and me. Dickinson’s storylines are addictive, beautifully thought out, and full of such joy, hope and companionship.

My only irk about the book was the ending. Considering how in depth the rest of the book was, I felt that the ending didn’t fit in with the strength of the rest of the book. It was still cute, I’m not saying that there was anything wrong with it, I just found it a little flat in comparison to the rest of the book.

I loved the fact that I was able to lose myself in Phoebe and Sam’s journeys of self discovery – it was very difficult to not fall in love with such a touching and enriching storyline like ‘The Day We Meet Again’. Phoebe and Sam gave me hope, and ‘The Day We Meet Again’ is the love story of all love stories – the perfect read.

Buy now.

#Review – #ElevatorPitch by Linwood Barclay (@linwood_barclay) @HQStories

(Many thanks to HQStories for the ARC).

It all begins on a Monday, when four people board an elevator in a Manhattan office tower. Each presses a button for their floor, but the elevator proceeds, non-stop, to the top. Once there, it stops for a few seconds, and then plummets.

Right to the bottom of the shaft.

It appears to be a horrific, random tragedy. But then, on Tuesday, it happens again, in a different Manhattan skyscraper. And when Wednesday brings yet another high-rise catastrophe, one of the most vertical cities in the world – and the nation’s capital of media, finance, and entertainment – is plunged into chaos.

Clearly, this is anything but random. This is a cold, calculated bid to terrorize the city. And it’s working. Fearing for their lives, thousands of men and women working in offices across the city refuse leave their homes. Commerce has slowed to a trickle. Emergency calls to the top floors of apartment buildings go unanswered.

Who is behind this? What do these deadly acts of sabotage have to do with the fingerless body found on the High Line? Two seasoned New York detectives and a straight-shooting journalist must race against time to find the answers . . .

Pulsating with tension, Elevator Pitch is a riveting tale of psychological suspense that is all too plausible . . . and will chill readers to the bone.

What does TWG think?

I never, ever, EVER want to go in a lift again!!! Plus, how the fudge have I not read a Linwood Barclay novel before? I am disgusted with myself, and I want to apologise to my bank balance in advance for when I do binge buy sevral of his novels.

As I’m sure you can tell from the title, ‘Elevator Pitch’ is centred around elevators, or lifts as we call them in the UK. With that little snippet of information, you’re probably wondering why anyone would want to read a book about lifts, right? Understandable! But what if I told you that Linwood Barclay’s novel is a psychlogically twisted, fraught, and unique read that just happens to have elevator problems?

I say elevator problems like I’m describing a nuisance spot; they are indeed way more than being a little problematic, sometimes a teeny bit gruesome! I never knew just how lethal elevators and elevators shafts were!

Linwood Barclay is a force to be reckoned with. His talent at creating such a rollercoaster, chilling and intense read, seriously blew my mind. There were so many fingers pointing towards various characters, and I had marked the one I thought was ‘it’ early on, however I changed my mind multiple times throughout the book because of certain events, certain actions of the characters, and because of my own uncertainty. I wont say which particular character that was as I don’t wish to influence anyone if they haven’t read the book yet.

I really wasnt expecting ‘Elevator Pitch’ to conclude the way it did but oh my goodness, my heart was in my mouth! This book has given me a brand new author to stick on my to be read pile, and it’s a book that I will be shouting about big time!

Just a word of warning though; #takethestairs.

An insanely dark, spine tingling and bloody fantastic book. I honestly couldn’t have wished for anything more.

Buy now from Amazon