#Tour #Review The Many Colours of Us – Rachel Burton @bookish_yogi @NeverlandBT @HQDigitalUK

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Finallyyyyy!!! It’s my turn to host today’s stop on Rachel Burton’s blog tour for her debut novel, The Many Colours of Us, which was published by HQDigitalUK on the 26th April 2017! I hope you enjoy reading my review as much as I enjoyed reading this book.

Many colours

What if your life was built on lies?

Julia Simmonds had never been bothered about not knowing who her father was. Having temperamental supermodel, Philadelphia Simmonds, as a mother was more than enough. Until she discovers she’s the secret love-child of the late, great artist Bruce Baldwin, and her life changes forever.

Uncovering the secrets of a man she never knew, Julia discovers that Bruce had written her one letter, every year until her eighteenth birthday, urging his daughter to learn from his mistakes.

Julia begins to dig deeper into the mysterious past of her parents, opening up a history she’d never have imagined, but as she discovers the truth she needs to decide if she is willing to forgive and forget…

What does TWG think?

What do I think….what do I think….

1. Julia’s mother needs a stern talking to and a ruddy good shake.
2. Julia’s father should have been made to see sense when he was alive.
3. Julia needs a bloody big hug, with someone trustworthy to lead her in the right and TRUTHFUL direction.

Review done. kthx.

Fine, I’ll do a proper one! Although if I was asked to say three things about this storyline, the above is what I would come out with! Now, seeing as I haven’t been asked for three things in particular, I can now squeal and ramble!

Sometimes when I sit down to read a novel, I ensure I am on Twitter at the same time as I quite like tweeting the author whilst I read their book; Rachel Burton was one of those authors!

I have to say one thing first though as it really shocked me, to be honest I still can’t get my head round it….

HOW THE PICASSO IS THIS RACHEL BURTON’S DEBUT NOVEL?! DEBUT?!? DEBUT!?! I didn’t realise it was her debut until afterwards! The entire novel read as though it was written by an author who had perfected her craft! Can you tell that I was gobsmacked? If this is what Rachel Burton manages to deliver with a debut novel, I cannot WAIT for book two.

Julia Simmonds has grown up knowing one parent, her mother. Every time Julia tried to bring up the subject about her father, her mother culled the conversation, using the excuse of lack of memory for lack of information. As far as Julia was concerned this was her life, she trusted her mother and the information she had been given over the years. Her mother hadn’t exactly given her cause for concern regarding her father….

How could you not be hooked with a storyline like this? I thought my family had a lot of skeletons in our closets but EEEESH! It didn’t take me long at all to sink my teeth into the gritty and intense storyline, as soon as I was hooked I couldn’t put the book down, hence why it only took me a matter of hours to read. Unfortunately, I was able to relate to several of the situations that unfolded in this book, especially where Julia’s father was concerned.

Seeing as I read this book like an outsider looking in, I attempted to see the situation from each of the characters points of view to begin with, but I couldn’t help getting angry at Julia’s mother. Well, and her father! Their ‘logic’ was extremely selfish in my opinion. But like I said, I can relate to certain aspects of the book which is why my views are more emotionally based, and a lot harder than others.
Just to clarify, but views up to this point are solely on the storyline and not the way the author has written it, btw.

‘The Many Colours of Us’ blew me away on more than one occasion. It wasn’t all light-hearted and lovey dovey, the storyline was incredibly black and white at times (in a good way), powerful and unbelievably soulful. I don’t think I have ever read a debut novel that carried itself with such grace, intensity, and emotion, like Rachel Burton’s. I’m not going to lie, I couldn’t stand a couple of the characters in the book yet they brought another dimension to the novel, so they were put in the book for the right reasons (even if they did irk me).

Again, this is yet another review that I have to be rather vague about as every event and emotion in the book is linked to another. I don’t wish to get into trouble for causing a domino effect of spoilers!

I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘The Many Colours of Us’; Rachel Burton really has done herself proud by writing such a beautiful, but raw storyline. A lot of people are going to read this book and feel as though their own lives are being written about; yes, it really is that relatable.

Such a poignant and impressive debut novel. I loved it! Absolutely flawless.

Thank you HQ.

Buy now from Amazon UK

Author Bio:

Rachel Burton has been making up stories since she first learned to talk, prodigiously early. In 2013 she finally started making one up that was worth writing down. 

She has a BA in Classics and an MA in English and has never really known what to do when she grew up. She has worked as a waitress, a legal secretary, a yoga teacher and a paralegal. She never quite made it to law school.

She grew up in Cambridge and London but now lives in Leeds with her boyfriend and three cats. The main loves of her life are The Beatles and very tall romantic heroes

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/bookish_yogi

The Many Colours of Us Schedule Graphic

#BlogTour! #Guestpost from ‘First Time Mums’ Club’ author @lucie_wheeler @HarperImpulse

First Time Mums Club

Today I have the honour of closing Lucie Wheeler’s FIRST EVER blog tour! If you missed any of the blog posts on the previous days, all of the bloggers who have taken part are listed above. I’m not biased or anything as I am a blogger myself, BUT, what a fabulous bunch of bloggers on this tour!! Don’t you agree? The excitement on social for Lucie Wheeler’s debut novel has been outstanding, I am truly blessed to be part of a fantastic group of bloggers for a truly inspirational author.
Today I have a guest post from the lady herself, Lucie Wheeler, but if you did miss my review of her debut novel ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’, you can check it out here: #BookReview! The First Time Mums’ Club by Lucie Wheeler (@lucie_wheeler) @HarperImpulse

My ideal writing environment.
by Lucie Wheeler

There are people who can write anywhere, and there are people who can only write in certain places. I think I fall in between. Generally, as a rule, I write in my office upstairs, which is the box room. I have my desk in there which I bought from Ikea, a steal at £40, a cube unit (also from Ikea) which stores anything and everything and a few filing cabinets for all the boring stuff. It is a room which I really wish I could spend some money on and jazz it up into a fantastic little writing room full of inspiring quotes and beautiful furniture… but that will have to wait. Right now, it serves its purpose and that’s what is important. So I generally do my writing in there. 

However, I also have my laptop which I can take with me anywhere I go and I can still write. Sometimes this is just downstairs on the sofa so that I can spend time with my family alongside writing or catching up with work emails. And sometimes this will be in my car, in the car park at gymnastics, whilst I wait for LO. I do occasionally venture into the garden too – but I get frustrated with the glare from the sun so it doesn’t happen often. 

So what do I need from a writing space? Whether I am in my office at home, or in the car, I need relative silence to function. I am not a writer who can listen to music and write. Sometimes I use music to get a ‘feel’ for a scene or try to encourage an emotion out of me so that I can write about it, but when it gets down to the nitty gritty of writing a story, I like it to be quiet. I like to let the story talk to me and run away with my imagination. Saying this, I can work with a little background noise. The TV is on at the moment and I can concentrate fine (unless something like The Great British Bake Off or The Apprentice is on!) I can also write in the library when I am at uni (because I have a lot to do and not a lot of time so sometimes my writing has to happen whilst at university) and the library isn’t silent. But… I can’t concentrate in a place like a coffee shop. I think because the talking there is closer to me and more in my personal space, whereas in the university library, it is a large space and the chatter tends to be a dull hum rather than an interesting conversation that I want to earwig in on – and let’s face it, we authors love an earwig on a conversation. It’s where half our material is inspired from! 

And I am definitely a straight-to-computer type of writer. I can’t do longhand. Whilst this is fine for notes, I simply cannot write fast enough. I like the speed of typing as the idea unfolds in my head and my hand doesn’t write fast enough. And when I try to do it, the words become illegible and it’s a waste of time. So for me, typing is the way forward. 

So there you have it. As long as I have a computer and fairly quiet surroundings, I can write pretty much anywhere. Although if we are talking about an absolute ideal writing environment – I wouldn’t say no to a balcony in a tropical climate with a cocktail and the sea to look at… who wants to take me?

Haha I don’t think many people will be disagreeing with Lucie on her dream writing location, would we? I certainly wouldn’t! It’s fun to see what an authors life is like BEHIND the book. Big thanks to Lucie Wheeler!

If you still haven’t been able to get your paws on a copy of ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ yet, here are all the details of the book and the ‘to buy’ link:

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Meet Pippa…

After years of trying and a failed IVF attempt, Pippa is thrilled to see two little lines appear on a pregnancy test. Finally a precious baby to call her own. This is all Pippa has ever wanted…if only husband Jason could show just a little excitement.

Imogen…

A baby is the icing on the cake for Imogen and Alice – proof that their love for each other can overcome any obstacle. But when Imogen starts receiving malicious texts, it’s clear that not everyone is thrilled about the girls’ good news.

And Ellie…

A drunken one-night stand and Ellie’s life is ruined! Pregnant, jobless and the relationship with her best friend, Chris, over- forever. Because Chris just happens to be the father of Ellie’s baby…and potentially the love of her life!

For these first time mums the road to motherhood is bumpier than most!

Buy now from Amazon UK!

#CoverReveal! The Secrets of Village Rosso by Linn.B.Halton (@LinnBHalton) @HarperImpulse

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)

Woo! Delighted to be able to share with you Linn.B.Halton’s brand new book cover for her upcoming novel, The Secrets of Village Rosso! Linn’s book is set to be published by Harper Impulse (in e-book) in July, with the paperback following in October. If you haven’t read Linn’s previous novels, you really are missing out on some fabulous reads. I for one cannot WAIT for this beautiful new book!

So, are you ready to see the book cover?

Of course you are!!

Rosso terrace
WHY HELLOOOOOO STROKEABLE BOOK COVER!!

The Secrets of Villa Rosso:

Escape to Italy for a summer romance to remember

When Ellie Maddison is sent on a business trip to Southern Italy, she’s reminded why she loves her job – set amongst rolling vineyards and rich olive groves, the beautiful Villa Rosso is the perfect escape from her life back home. But what Ellie isn’t prepared for is the instant connection she feels to the estate’s director Max Johnson, or the secrets they share that are as intertwined as the rambling vines that cover Villa Rosso.

It’s not long before Ellie finds herself entangled in the history of the place, trying to understand the undeniable effect Max is having on her. As their relationship grows, what will Ellie discover about this idyllic villa and those who have walked through its doors?

What started as a simple work trip will change Ellie’s life forever.

Before I give you the links to be able to pre-order the new novel, I have an excerpt for you too! I know, I know, I spoil you…

Excerpt.

It isn’t just the sunshine and the electric blue sky, but the musical calls of the countryside that reach out to me. A chorus of low-level sounds play like a soft melody in the background. It’s breathtakingly beautiful and I feel like I’m watching a re-run of a favourite film. I could stand here for a long time simply taking in the detail and with each sweep of my eyes noticing something new.

Spinning around I look back at the villa, taking in the rustic beauty of the stonework and the pale orange-red hue of the sun-bleached roof tiles. This is, quite simply, unreal. It’s a little piece of heaven and, so far removed from my daily life that it’s hard to believe this is on the same planet. The sheer scale of the landscape literally steals your breath away. I’m a mere speck, small and insignificant in the grand scheme nature is presenting to me. But rather bizarrely, it doesn’t feel alien in any way at all. The vastness isn’t overwhelming, but strangely comforting.

I walk back to a cluster of wooden tables surrounding a small fountain and take a seat. As I dive into my bag to extract some sunglasses, I hear a polite cough and look up at the face staring down at me.

‘Mrs Maddison? I’m Max, Max Johnson. Welcome to Villa Rosso.’

I stand, automatically plastering a pleasant smile on my surprised face as recognition kicks in. I know this man, I mean, I’ve met him before. At least I think I have, but there’s nothing similar reflected back at me, only a warm smile. The sort of smile that radiates out from mysteriously deep, hazel eyes. We shake hands. He’s younger than I expected, probably in his early forties and tall. Six foot something that’s for sure, because I feel he’s towering over me.

‘I’m sorry to disturb you. I just wanted you to know that I’m here at your disposal whenever you are ready to begin. Would you like me to fetch you a coffee so you can sit for a while and enjoy the view?’

Although I knew he was British, his tan and elegant demeanour lend an air of cosmopolitan sophistication. I would not have been at all surprised if he had been Italian. He’s hovering politely and I still haven’t answered him…

Available to pre-order now in eformat and paperback

eformat release date: 21 July 2017; paperback 5 October 2017

Published by: Harper Impulse

AMAZON: http://smarturl.it/SecretsofVillaRosso

KOBO: http://ow.ly/2ANQ30bbpBZ

Author bio:

Bristol-born Linn B Halton lives in the Forest of Dean, in the UK. 

“I’m a hopeless romantic, self-confessed chocaholic, and lover of strong coffee. For me, life is about family, friends, writing … and house renovation! Oh, and the occasional glass of White Grenache…”

An Amazon UK Top 100 best-selling author with A Cottage in the Country in November 2015, Under the Stars and A Little Sugar, A Lot of Love also became best-sellers in 2016 & 2017. Linn’s novels have been short-listed in the UK’s Festival of Romance and the eFestival of Words Book Awards. Linn won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction award.

Linn writes chick lit, women’s contemporary fiction and psychic romance for Harper Impulse, Choc Lit and Endeavour Press.

Website/blog: http://linnbhalton.co.uk/

Twitter: @LinnBHalton FB: Linn B Halton Author.

#BlogTour! #Review – Trust Me by Gemma Metcalfe (@gemmakmetcalfe) @NeverlandBT @HQDigitalUK

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One phone call. Two lives. Their darkest secrets.

Lana needs to sell a holiday, fast. Stuck in Tenerife, in a dead end job, she never expected a response quite like Liam’s. Thousands of miles away a phone rings. Liam never intended to pick up, he’s too busy choosing the quickest way to die. But at least someone should know the truth before he goes, even if that someone is a stranger.
As time runs out both are drawn to the other, expressing thoughts they never thought they would share.

What does TWG think?

I am STILL trying to get my head around this storyline itself, and the fact that it is also the authors debut novel! For a debut, I was rather surprised to see that ‘Trust Me’ had the type of storyline that will leave its mark, as well as making itself known in your mind for a very long time. It certainly was a memorable read!

Lana is in a job with no future (in her eyes), yet she still has to do her job and sell holidays. In the process of doing so, Lana reaches out to a stranger (Liam) whose mind is on everything BUT a holiday. Basically, Liam wants to kill himself and Lana is the only person that can either talk him out of it, or be the one to listen to his final thoughts…

Can you see why I am STILL trying to get my head around this novel? Not in a bad way btw! The storyline is quite complex and severely intense that my mind had to work a little bit harder to keep up with everything that was going on. ‘Trust Me’ brings to light a topic that is unfortunately more ‘popular’ than a lot of us realise; suicide. Hats off to the author for writing about such a tangled, emotional and misunderstood topic, whilst keeping the subject as realistic as possible. In my opinion, it takes a lot of guts and determination to pinpoint a bold subject and run with it, especially in your very first book. I must admit that I was impressed by the way Metcalfe approached the overall concept.

There were, unfortunately, some parts of the novel that I found tricky to gel with and dissect, but because of the strong premise overall, it didn’t bother me too much.

‘Trust Me’ is definitely the novel that will require your full attention, and nothing BUT your full attention. It will know that you’re not focused, trust me! The twisty, rollercoaster ride of a storyline will take you on a journey that you have never embarked on before. A journey which will leave you speechless, catching flies and unable to remove yourself from its tangled web of intensity. Trust me, you’re going to remember this one..

Thanks to HQDigital/NeverlandBT & Gemma.

Buy now from Amazon UK

About Gemma Metcalfe

Gemma Metcalfe is a Manchester born author who now lives in sunny

Tenerife with her husband Danny and two crazy rescue dogs Dora and Diego. By day, Gemma can be found working as a Primary school teacher, but as the sun sets, she ditches the glitter and glue and becomes a writer of psychological thrillers. An established drama queen, she admits to having a rather warped imagination, and loves writing original plots with shocking twists. The plot for her debut novel  Trust Me,  is loosely based on her experiences as a call centre operative, where she was never quite
sure who would answer the phone…
Twitter: @gemmakmetcalfe

GIVEAWAY!!!
**UK ONLY**

To be in with the chance of winning a Boots voucher, a hard copy of Trust Me and some surprise Boots goodies, click the link below to enter! Good luck!

Enter the giveaway HERE

trust

 

#BookReview! The First Time Mums’ Club by Lucie Wheeler (@lucie_wheeler) @HarperImpulse

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A gorgeous, heartwarming debut for fans of Giovanna Fletcher, Paige Toon and The Unmumsy Mum!

Meet Pippa…

After years of trying and a failed IVF attempt, Pippa is thrilled to see two little lines appear on a pregnancy test. Finally a precious baby to call her own. This is all Pippa has ever wanted…if only husband Jason could show just a little excitement.

Imogen…

A baby is the icing on the cake for Imogen and Alice – proof that their love for each other can overcome any obstacle. But when Imogen starts receiving malicious texts, it’s clear that not everyone is thrilled about the girls’ good news.

And Ellie…

A drunken one-night stand and Ellie’s life is ruined! Pregnant, jobless and the relationship with her best friend, Chris, over- forever. Because Chris just happens to be the father of Ellie’s baby…and potentially the love of her life!

For these first time mums the road to motherhood is bumpier than most!

What does TWG think?

If I wasn’t broody before I read this novel, I sure as hell am now!!! Waiting for Lucie Wheeler’s book to land amongst the blogger community was quite similar to the last month of pregnancy; long and couldn’t come quick enough! The thing is though folks, I am rather disappointed. You know when you wait an absolute age for something whilst getting more and more excited as each day passes, the day finally arrives and you end up feeling ‘OH’, ever get that? I am at that point, so I am rather disappointed.

I mean, WHY THE MATERNITY DID THE BOOK HAVE TO END?!?!?! Nobody told me that it would end…I wasn’t prepared for the story to finish and be left sitting there. -cries eyes out- I WANTED TO STAY WITH IMOGENNNNNNNN, WAHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!

Ohhhhhhh, sorry, did you think I was going to say that I was disappointed with the book? Er hell no! Being a mummy myself I was able to relate to a lot of the storyline, especially Ellie’s situation (to a point). Pippa, Imogen and Ellie all have babies on the brain, after all, all three ladies are expecting! At first the ladies are complete strangers yet they are all drawn to a certain café. Well, seeing as it’s Ellie’s sister who owns the café it would be a bit tricky for her not to be drawn to it…

Each lady has their own individual story; Pippa is married to husband Jason and after a failed attempt at IVF, they’re FINALLY going to be parents, Imogen is married to wife Alice and despite all of the hurdles their relationship has had to jump over, they are about to complete their family with a baby of their very own. Oh, and finally, there is Ellie who is probably the least maternal woman of the group, yet ta-daaaa she is about to become a mummy after a drunken sha….shenanigan left her eating for two. And you know what? They’re all unbelievably fabulous!

If you’re a pregnant, first time mum and are currently experiencing feelings such as the ones mentioned in this storyline, or if you have already had your baby(ies), you’ll know that finding out you’re pregnant has got to be one of the most phenomenal yet terrifying experiences. Yes, even if the pregnancy is planned! Lucie Wheeler has captured those fears, apprehension and sheer enjoyment, in every part of her storyline absolutely magnificently. A lot of people may think that pregnancy and impending parenthood will be a vision of white roses and bouncing rabbits (well, that was how you got there), when in reality it’s not always like that. Lucie Wheeler has taken the topic of pregnancy, laid it bare and written about it in such a black and white manner; aka realistically. Take Ellie for example; as soon as she found out she was pregnant she felt as though her whole world had nose-dived, yet that is quite a common reaction to pregnancy, especially if unplanned!

Falling pregnant isn’t a case of wham, bam, thank you mam and a baby is made. No. Some women may need additional help or may be classed as high risk, so their feelings are going to be completely different to women who do fall pregnant on the first sniff of the Sea Man. What really impressed me with the entire storyline was how nearly every avenue was explored; fertility issues, same-sex marriage, single parent, rocky marriage and so on. Hand on heart, how many storylines do you know of that cover all of the above in one sitting?

Even though I adored every character (bar one), I resonated more with Imogen’s personality and beliefs. She became my ‘go to’ character very quickly and it was her labour that caught me more than the others. Daft eh? On a very personal level what with being considered ‘higher risk’, just like Imogen I’ve always know that I wanted to be a mummy; her fears and levels of uncertainty was as though I was watching a video of myself pregnant. Maybe that’s why I found her to be my ‘go to’ character, I don’t know.

For me, ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ was such a flawless representation of motherhood, even where the labour was concerned! I could go on and on about Lucie Wheeler’s book all night, it really is THAT good. But I won’t though!

It is incredibly rare to read a storyline which not only captures your heart, your soul and your ovaries, it also leaves you feeling a level of fulfilment that you have never, ever felt before; just like The First Time Mums’ Club. I cannot put into words how much I adored every word and every feeling that this storyline contained; every single thing was…perfection.
Personally, ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ had the right amount of giggles, the right amount of solidarity and girl power, the right ratio of serious to light-hearted moments, and even the right way of showing all first time mums (and mums in general) that it’s more than okay to not have everything together ALL of the time.

Lucie Wheeler’s debut novel, ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ is such an outstanding and beautifully written tale about motherhood and friendship; I cannot tell you how much I LOVED reading this belter of a book. I was absolutely devastated to reach the end of such an empowering and fantastic book, so much so I am debating whether to read it for a second time already!

Phenomenal debut novel from the inspirational, Lucie Wheeler. It’s safe to say that ‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ is ranking in TWG’s Top 5 books of 2017 so far; roll on book two!!

Thank you HarperImpulse!

‘The First Time Mums’ Club’ will be published by HarperImpulse on the 5th May 2017 – you can pre-order the novel now from Amazon UK.

 

#BlogTour! #Review & #Extract – The Woman Who Met Her Match @FionaGibson @AvonBooksUK

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Fiona Gibson has drawn her own blog tour banner and OHMYGOD it’s GORGEOUS!!! SWOOOOOOOOOOOON! I am beyond excited to be today’s stop on Fiona’s blog tour for her new book, The Woman Who Met Her Match, which was published by #TeamAvon on the 20th April! Today I bring you not one but TWO exciting things in my post; a review of the book and an extract. I hope you enjoy! Big thanks to #TeamAvon for asking me to be on the tour!

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What if your first love came back on the scene . . . 30 years later?

After yet another disaster, Lorrie is calling time on online dating. She might be single in her forties, but she’s got a good job, wonderful children and she’s happy. This, Lorrie decides, is going to have to be enough.

That is, until she receives a very unexpected request from France. Antoine Rousseau, who had once turned a lonely French exchange trip into a summer of romance, wants to see her – after thirty years.

But Lorrie is a responsible woman. She can’t exactly run off to Nice with the man who broke her teenage heart . . . can she?

A wonderfully funny novel, perfect for fans of Jill Mansell, Joanna Bolouri and Milly Johnson.

What does TWG think?

I’ll admit, I was UBER excited about Fiona’s new book as soon as I saw it! Have you SEEN that font?! Vintage swirls meet bold and inspirational, that’s my take on the font anywhoo!

SO, the book!! Lorrie, a single mum to two teenagers that are adamant to get her love life rocketing from 0-100, with a little help from a certain online dating site. Little did she know what colourful men she would meet on the dates! Cringe! Being a single lady in her forties didn’t seem to worry Lorrie TOO much, yet when her past decided to reappear once again, her personal life decided to use a question mark for a hat.

Can you imagine that, having a question mark for a hat? Wouldn’t really keep your head dry if it rained though, eh?

Just like Fiona Gibson’s previous novels, TWWMHM (The Woman Who Met Her Match) was full of one liners, sarcastic humour and enough cringey moments to keep you full until dinner time (aka A LOT). Honestly! Some of the things Lorrie’s dates came out with caused my hand to fly up to my face so quickly due to embarrassment, I ended up slapping my own face! Classy TWG, classy.

I thought that the French addition to the storyline was a genius idea as I was able to see a different side to Lorrie. She seemed to have a larger than life personality and I wanted her to show it off!

What really hit home with Fiona’s novel was the underlying inspirational touch throughout the entire storyline. Instead of the frequent use of candyfloss inspirational messages, Fiona incorporated fictional kicks up the tooshes into her relatable, bold storyline. There didn’t seem to be any unattainable hidden messages about situations that could happen once in a blue moon; instead there were positivity outcomes to real life circumstances. What more could you want? For me, the real life edge gave the entire storyline its own special platform and made it stand out from the rest.

Whilst I enjoyed the overall storyline, there were a couple of moments where the storyline slowed down and I ended up wondering where it was heading. Luckily, it did get its little nudge and the storyline picked back up again but I did hope that Lorrie could have filled that gap with her big personality.

There were A LOT of things in this book that made me laugh out loud and think to myself , many things which could be seen as spoilers so I’ll keep it to myself. BUT, those thought-provoking moments in the storyline really did open my mind and helped me to see certain things in a different light.

TWWMHM is a bubbly, colourful, laugh out loud read which will keep you on your toes, and have you reaching for a slice of cake to support Lorrie. When the Spice Girls used the term ‘girl power’ back in the nineties, I ignored it, yet Fiona Gibson has just made ‘girl power’ popular again thanks to THIS novel.

Yet another delightful and insightful novel from the very talented, Fiona Gibson. Definitely NOT to be missed!

Thank you Avon Books!

Buy now from Amazon UK

Extract!

30 Years Later

He’s done that thing.

That thing of using a really old photo on his dating profile. How long ago was it taken? Ten years? Fifteen? This could be a fun guessing game. As if I wouldn’t notice that his hair isn’t in fact a lush chestnut brown as it appears in his picture but actually silver.

‘Lorrie? Hi!’

‘Ralph, hi!’ Force a smile. Don’t look shocked. Don’t stare at the hair.

‘Lovely to meet you.’

‘You too . . .’

‘Shall we go in then?’ he asks brightly.

‘Yes, of course!’

As the two of us stride into the Nutmeg Gallery, I try to reconcile the fact that the man I’ve had lodged in my head – with whom I’ve been corresponding via email all week – isn’t the eerily youthful-looking Ralph I’d expected to meet. Dressed in a crisp white shirt, new-looking jeans and a blue cotton jacket, he is a perfectly presentable man of forty-eight. He has striking blue eyes, his teeth are notably good – shiny and white, probably flossed – and he’s in pretty decent shape, suggesting that he does a bit of light jogging and goes easy on the booze. So why dig out a picture from something like 2002? When someone does that – and it contravenes the trade descriptions act really – it doesn’t matter how attractive they are, because it’s all you can think about.

And you feel sort of duped.

It was Ralph’s suggestion to meet here, outside the gallery tucked away by a pretty stretch of the canal in Islington. Ideal, I thought. The art bit would feel pleasingly grown-up. I know I shouldn’t still regard galleries in that way, being forty-six myself. I mean, I am mother to two teenagers, for goodness’ sake. I shouldn’t need to do certain things – like look at art – in order to feel like a bona fide adult. Then, after we’d sped through the gallery, we could get to the part I was really looking forward to: a chat in the cafe he’d mentioned, with tables overlooking the canal. ‘Amazing home baking,’ he’d said.

I’d had a good feeling about today, and not just due to the cake element. Ralph had been chatty and interesting in his emails: a solicitor – again, pleasingly grown-up – with hints of poshness and a warm, likeable face. After a couple of dud dates with other men I’d allowed myself a glimmer of hope. But now, well, he’s just not what I expected.

‘I didn’t even know this place existed,’ I tell him as we wander into the first gallery room.

‘Oh, I’ve been here a few times. It’s a charming little place.’

As we study the paintings – at least, I pretend to study them – a sense of awkwardness settles over us.

‘So, how’s it been so far?’ I ask lightly. ‘The whole, um, online thing, I mean?’ An older couple are perusing the artworks, and my voice sounds terribly amplified in here. Perhaps it wasn’t such a great choice of venue after all.

‘Oh, I’ve just started really,’ Ralph says. ‘In fact, you’re the first person I’ve met.’

‘Really? Well, I’m flattered.’ Silly thing to say, I know. He probably just hasn’t got around to meeting anyone else yet.

‘What d’you think of these?’ He indicates a row of small paintings, all in similar beigey hues. They are close-ups of various body parts – a forearm, a thigh, a rather septic-looking finger – each bearing a plaster.

‘Not crazy about them,’ I admit. ‘It’s all a bit medical, isn’t it?’

Ralph chuckles. ‘Yes, it is a bit. The permanent collec­tion’s much better – let’s go take a look.’

We stroll through to an airier room filled with bright, splashy abstracts which are far more pleasing with their cheery colours. Ralph makes straight for a still life depicting a wobbly yolk-yellow circle on a sky blue back­ground.

‘That’s quite striking, isn’t it?’ I remark.

He nods. ‘Yes, it was always Belinda’s favourite.’

‘Belinda?’ I give him a quizzical look.

‘My wife,’ he explains.

‘Oh, right.’

#CoverReveal! The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters by Jaimie Adman. @neverlandBT @HQDigitalUK

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)

It’s cover reveal time!

I must admit, I’m pretty intrigued about this book! Luckily it is being published in the not so distant future; 7th June to be precise! It’s going to fly by, right?! Waiting for new books seems to require loooooooads of patience -taps foot-. Obviously a cover reveal is better than nothing, SO, I am rather excited to be sharing with you the rather delightful book cover for Jaimie Adman’s new book!!

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Where dreams come true…?

Wendy Clayton stopped believing in fairy tales a long time ago. Instead, she has a ‘nice’ life. Nice job. Nice flat. Absolutely no men. Until her life is turned upside-down when her elderly neighbour, Eulalie, passes away and leaves her the Château of Happily Ever Afters!

But there’s a catch: she must share the sprawling French castle with Eulalie’s long-lost nephew, Julian. And no matter how gorgeous he is, or how easily she finds herself falling head over heels, Wendy needs to find a way to get rid of him…

Because surely happily ever afters don’t happen in real life?

Helloooooo pretty book! If you’re just like me and patience for books is inexcusable, you can pre-order your copy right now:

Pre-order Jaimie Adman’s book HERE

#Tour! #Review: The Cows – Dawn O’Porter (@hotpatooties) @fictionpubteam #Dontfollowtheherd

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Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god. I cannot believe I am about to type the following sentence; today it’s TWG’s stop on Dawn O’Porter’s blog tour for her new book, ‘The Cows’!

Let me just let that sink in a moment…Dawn O’Porter is on TWG. THE Dawn O’Porter….can somebody pinch me please?! SQUEAL!! Can you tell I’m excited?! Huge thanks to the lovely Emilie from HarperFiction for giving me a stop on the tour! Anyway, lets get this tour stop started then shall we?

dawnoporter1Fearlessly frank and funny, the debut adult novel from Dawn O’Porter needs to be talked about.

COW [n.]
/kaʊ/

A piece of meat; born to breed; past its sell-by-date; one of the herd.

Women don’t have to fall into a stereotype.

Tara, Cam and Stella are strangers living their own lives as best they can – though when society’s screaming you should live life one way, it can be hard to like what you see in the mirror.

When an extraordinary event ties invisible bonds of friendship between them, one woman’s catastrophe becomes another’s inspiration, and a life lesson to all.

Sometimes it’s ok not to follow the herd.

The Cows is a powerful novel about three women – judging each other, but also themselves. In all the noise of modern life, they need to find their own voice.

What does TWG think?

Dawn O’Porter’s sought after novel, The Cows, has arrived!! Dawn’s book has been on my radar since late last year, so I was beyond thrilled when I was able to get my grubby mitts on a copy, shut out the big wide world and ignore everyone and everything for the duration of the novel. And you know what? I did just that!

Three completely different women; each with such individual life-styles, yet their paths manage to cross in the most unusual way.

Tara; a working mum who battles ‘working mumma guilt’ thanks to her male colleagues, as well as copious amounts of sexual frustration (in no way linked FYI). Oh! & she constantly battles the aftermath after a certain train incident. Ahhhh!
Cam; a misunderstood blogger who is all for women’s rights. She uses her blog as a platform to try to inform the world that maybe, just maybe, not all women want to have children. Who would have thought it!
Lastly, Stella; a woman whose personal life has gone from bad to worse in no time at all, and now her future seems to be taking the dreaded path of uncertainty. Stella is near the point of no return and to be honest, she’s a bit of a mess.

A lot of men say that females are incredibly difficult to understand. Maybe we are, but seeing as both genders are built-in completely different ways, it doesn’t take a scientist to work out that females are going to be wired differently than males. Saying that, should we constantly have to explain our actions and our choices to them, and anyone else, if they don’t fit into the box that society has allocated us? No, we shouldn’t and visa versa. Can you imagine 30 million females + in the UK explaining every single choice they made? I can’t, which is why I was over the moon to see that Dawn O’Porter had voluntarily become the voice for millions of women via her novel.

Dawn’s three characters cover just some of the issues that can arise on a daily basis, where females are concerned. Working mum, mum life, mummy guilt, social media highs and lows, choosing not to have children, and so much more. I have seen other people saying that the concept of the novel is far too busy and has too much content. My response to that is; ehhhhhhh no. Why? Because for starters its three different lifestyles and three different women. The issues discussed in the novel isn’t just one character choosing the short straw and having to deal with everything I mentioned, and more. Secondly, it is probably quite rare to come across a female who has just one situation to contend with; having multiple issues in the one novel is more realistic otherwise we could have ended up with ‘The Cows – Part One’, and so on
Thirdly, this book is severely kick ass and whilst some of the characters choices are quite questionable (although hilarious), nobody can fault Dawn O’Porter for taking taboo and often misunderstood topics, laying them bare and owning them.

This storyline has everything you could ever wish for in a book as it contains very colourful language, shameless situations and copious amounts of nitty-gritty honesty. Did I have a favourite character? No I didn’t. Did I dislike any of the characters? No. However, I disliked a few of the paths that the ladies chose to go down. Don’t get me wrong when we get caught up in an emotionally charged situation or two, our logical thinking goes out the window and we charge into things like a bull in a china shop; I just thought about those choices based on the decisions that I would make in the same instance.

As for favouritism, all of the ladies had something rather special about them and unfortunately I was able to relate to one of them in particular. I say ‘unfortunately’ due to what the character faced in the storyline but I was fortunate to be able to relate to them on a personal level.

Dawn O’Porter has written such an emotionally charged and high energy storyline, which highlights the importance of living your life the way YOU choose to without feeling guilty for making a different decision to those around you. The storyline also highlights the true extent of peer pressure and what can happened if someone is unable to fight against it. I absolutely loved this book from start to finish as the honesty and power made me feel like I could combat anything, as long as I believed in myself and my decisions.

I laughed, I raged and yes, I even cried whilst reading ‘The Cows’. ‘The Cows’ is what the book world has been waiting for. ‘The Cows’ is what the female population has been waiting for. ‘The Cows’ is what I, TWG, have been waiting for.

A truly outstanding, intense, emotional and honest novel from the incredible voice, Dawn O’Porter. I will be recommending this novel until the cows come home…literally. And you know what else? #Dontfollowtheherd has just become my new mantra and it SHOULD be YOURS too.

Dawn O’Porter, you’re an absolute legend, please can you bring out a handbag sized book of ‘O’Porter’ wisdom? The world needs more of you and so do I (not in a stalker way obvs).

Thank you SO much HarperFiction!

Buy NOW from Amazon UK.
Buy NOW from Amazon US

dawnoporter2(picture credit: David Loftus)

#BlogTour! Author @Catherine_ann_f shares her views on writer life @avonbooksUK #guestpost

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Author of the incredible novel; Four Weddings and a Fiasco, Catherine Ferguson, is back and she is bringing her brand new novel with her! ‘The Secrets of Ivy Garden’ was published on the 3rd April 2017 by Avon Books and is currently sporting a ‘Best Seller’ banner on Amazon UK already!! Today is day three of Catherine’s blog tour with me, TWG. I have a guest post from the lady herself where she shares her own personal thoughts about writer life, I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did.
Please follow the blog post until the end where there will be the all important new book details and to buy link for you!

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Fab and scary things about being a writer
by Catherine Ferguson.

Let’s get the scary things out of the way first …

That horrible first draft.

There’s a brilliant book on writing by Ann Lamott called Bird by Bird that explores all the high and lows of writing for a living – and her assertion that ‘all first drafts are shitty’ was a real relief moment when I read it. Because I realised it’s absolutely true – for me, at any rate. My first drafts are embarrassingly bad, and it can be quite scary when you’re right in the middle of it all and wondering why your sentences seem so dull and uninspiring this time round. You panic, thinking you’ve lost the knack altogether and you’ll never again be able to write a book that some people might actually enjoy.

                I used to agonise for ages over the opening chapter, polishing the same few thousand words over and over, aiming for perfection. But I’ve since realised that the trick, for me, is to just get it all down on the page, without stopping to read it back, no matter how childish it seems or how many holes in the plot I might suspect there are.

                Then, when I’ve got the words down (but not necessarily in the right order), I can go back to the beginning and transform my shambolic load of horse manure into something that makes sense and might even be emotionally engaging!

Self-motivation

You need this in spades to be a writer. As you’re usually working at home (with easy access to fridge, TV and social media, without a boss looking over your shoulder), it can be very hard to rev the engine and get motoring. I envy people who can be stern with themselves (no stopping until I’ve written a thousand words!) and actually carry through with it. I’ve found it helps to set a realistic word-count target that you know you can easily meet. Then, if you manage to actually exceed your target, you feel very pleased with yourself, which puts you in a helpfully positive frame of mind for the next day’s writing session!

            Reviews (bad)

It doesn’t matter how many great reviews you might already have, it’s the single bad one you will end up obsessing about. Scary!

And the fab things?

Light-bulb moments

These are the times I love best of all about being a writer.

                Light-bulb moments happen most often when I’m out walking to escape the screen for an hour. It can be anything from suddenly thinking of the most brilliant name for a character, to realising in a flash of inspiration exactly why I introduced the friendly post woman in chapter three. (When characters first come along, they’re not fully formed and it can take a while to get to know them and to find out what their motivation is.) I love it when a piece of the plot jigsaw suddenly falls into place and I realise, for example, that the friendly post woman would pair up perfectly with one of my male characters!

Publication day

There are butterflies in the stomach on publication day, when all your months of hard work are about to be revealed to the public. But they’re the deliciously scary kind rather than the exam-day dread type. Publication day is always exciting. And the perfect excuse for opening the champagne. I’m currently writing my sixth book but I know that when publication day arrives, I’ll be just as excited for this one as I was three years ago for my very first book …

Reviews (good)

Reviews mean so much to a writer – especially if they’re glowing! It can really make your day like nothing else if a reader takes the time to go on Amazon and tell the world that they really enjoyed reading your book. It makes you feel all months of the hard work were worth it.

*********

Whilst Catherine’s post made me chuckle, it was lovely to get an insight into a writer’s mind. If you thought that your one sentence opinion on a book (constructive) was irrelevant, think again. Reviews are what help authors get seen in a very busy market, although make sure your review is actually for the correct thing. I mean, you don’t want to review Catherine’s book with a line that should belong somewhere else now do you?

Thank you to Catherine Ferguson for the fabby-tastic guest post!
If Catherine’s Ivy Garden intrigues you with its secrets; here is the important ‘to buy’ link and the book information!

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The ebook bestseller is back with her next hilarious read – a fun, fresh tale of love, friendship and family secrets…

When Holly breaks up with her boyfriend Dean, she’s at a loss as to what to do next. But things go from bad to worse when her beloved grandmother Ivy dies – and Holly is left in charge of sorting out Ivy’s house and garden. As she sorts through her grandmother’s belongings and makes her way through the wilderness outside, Holly soon finds that there is more to Ivy than meets the eye, and uncovers a surprising family secret that changes everything…

This is a heart-warming and hilarious story from Catherine Ferguson about starting over, learning to garden and most of all learning to love.

Buy now from Amazon UK

Author of ‘Those Who Lie’, @DianefJeffrey chats to TWG! @HQDigitalUK #authorinterview

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I am absolutely thrilled to welcome back to TWG, author of the AMAZING ‘Those Who Lie’, Diane Jeffrey! I had the honour of being able to review that very novel and you can find my review here: #BlogTour! #Review – Those Who Lie by Diane Jeffrey (@dianefjeffrey) @neverlandbt.

It feels like ages ago that I last interrogated an author, and quite frankly, I was having withdrawal symptoms! Luckily for me, Diane was happy to step into that spotlight and I really do think that I was rather easy on her…this time anyway! I hope you enjoy reading the chat that Diane and I had! As always, the book link will be after the interview!

First of all, I would like to thank you for taking the time for this interview!

  • Could you tell us a bit about yourself and the genre you write?

    Hi Kaisha! Thank you so much for interviewing me! My name is Diane Jeffrey. I grew up in Devon and I now live in Lyon, France with my husband and our three children. My debut psychological thriller has just been published by HQ (Harper Collins).

 

  • What made you choose that particular genre as your niche?

    When I first decided to write a book to try and get it published, I wrote a Chick Lit novel. It didn’t get published and it was over ten years ago. At the time, I read a lot of Chick Lit. But, although my tastes in reading are quite wide, I read more thrillers than any other genre, and in particular psychological thrillers. So, years later, I tried my hand at that instead!

  • Have you always wanted to become a published writer?

Yes. Ever since I was little. I wrote stories and poems even when I was a little girl. I even illustrated some of them, which makes me cringe now as I am absolutely hopeless at drawing!!! I sent a novel off to an editor when I was eight years old. It was entitled The Stowaway. Needless to say, I was unsuccessful!

  • Where did you get your inspiration from for your debut novel?

    I wanted to write about a female protagonist who is harassed over the Internet. A friend of mine sent me an article in which a man complained that he’d been receiving disturbing messages on Facebook from his ex-girlfriend. He didn’t know what to make of these messages as she was supposedly dead! This inspired the beginning of Those Who Lie.

  • If you could pick a favourite character from your book, who would it be and why?

    It would probably be Emily, my main character, even though she’s not really likeable and I am not really like her! She is a complex, traumatised character. She can’t trust anyone around her, not even herself. She makes some bad decisions, avoids her problems and is dishonest, including to herself, but she’s smart, she does her best and I think she’s strong.

  • Did you dislike any of your characters along the way?

    Ooh, yes. All of them at some stage! Josephine certainly won’t be getting a nomination for mother of the year award! And Emily’s father was pure evil!

  • Time for a tough one, if you could choose any book that has already been published to be the author of, which one would you choose and why?

    I think the first time I read a book and thought: ‘God, I wish I’d written that’ was the first Harry Potter book. I thought it was absolutely brilliant! The fact that I would now be a multi-millionaire if I’d written that book just reinforces that feeling! More recently, I’ve had that same thought when reading The Fault in our Stars by John Green, The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion and The Hundred-Year-Old Man who Climbed out the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson.

  • Do you have plans for your next novel? If so, what can we look forward to?

    I’ve started a second novel. It’s another psychological thriller. It focuses on domestic abuse and I’m currently discussing this with another central female character who has experienced it. Psychological abuse can be so much more insidious, but just as damaging as physical abuse, and I’d like to explore this.

  • Are there any authors you aspire to? If so, who and why?

Apart from the authors whose books I wish I’d written myself, my ideal author would be a mixture of Dennis Lehane and Stephen King but with a British voice. That’s who I’d like to be!!!

  • One final question. What advice would you give to a writer that wants to be published? Any words of wisdom?

Get in touch with authors who write in your genre. Via Twitter, Facebook and friends of friends, I got in touch with people who not only gave me sound advice, but also became good friends.

See, I wasn’t lying when I said that it was a tame interrogation! I really do hope that you enjoyed reading Diane’s author interview and I can assure you that the interrogation level will be higher next time. Whoops, sorry Diane haha.

If you’re curious at all about Diane Jeffrey’s novel, here is the blurb and the all important ‘buy’ link!

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Emily Klein doesn’t know she has killed her husband until the day of his funeral.

At first, signs point to a tragic accident. Yet, as Emily pieces together the events before his death – events which led to her own memory loss – she begins to suspect that her husband’s death may have been the result of more than a terrible twist of fate…

But the accident is only the beginning. Because while Emily’s physical scars will heal, the trauma of the accident has awakened old ghosts. She hears strange sounds, catches things that can’t possibly be there in the corner of her eye. Before long, everywhere she looks, she seems to see her husband.

And suddenly, Emily finds herself asking the most dangerous question of all.

Buy now!

Can she really trust herself?