#BlogTour! #Review – Strangers On A Bridge by Louise Mangos (@LouiseMangos) @HQDigitalUK

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Second blog tour for HQ today, this time I have the pleasure of closing the blog tour for Louise Mangos and ‘Strangers On A Bridge’. Big thanks to the team at HQ for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

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She should never have saved him.

When Alice Reed goes on her regular morning jog in the peaceful Swiss Alps, she doesn’t expect to save a man from suicide. But she does. And it is her first mistake.

Adamant they have an instant connection, Manfred’s charming exterior grows darker and his obsession with Alice grows stronger.

In a country far from home, where the police don’t believe her, the locals don’t trust her and even her husband questions the truth about Manfred, Alice has nowhere to turn.

To what lengths will Alice go to protect herself and her family?

What does TWG think?

I really didn’t know what to think of the storyline at first. My opinion about Alice’s actions was surrounded by a big question mark as, whilst I thought it was admirable, I couldn’t help but wonder why she did it. Maybe it was her job which gave her the nudge to take that step towards a stranger? Maybe it was her own conscience which enable her to put one foot in front of the other towards a stranger? I don’t know. Personally, the concept of suicide is extremely cut throat due to my own dad committing suicide two years ago, and the fact that someone got saved from that was pretty surreal.  But honestly, how many of us would do that for a stranger? Our first instincts may be to say a big, fat yes, but would that outcome change if we were faced with that choice one day whilst we were minding our own business?

I expected the stranger’s reaction to be what it was, and I also had an inkling that they thought they were going to find their new BFF in Alice. However, what I didn’t foresee was the extent of the stranger’s actions – they seemed to go from nought to one hundred in the blink of an eye! I was very impressed by the intricate details that were woven flawlessly into the storyline, there were times where I even found myself thinking ‘errrrrrr come again?’. Unfortunately the stranger did in fact, come again, but the longer he had Alice in sight, the more determined the stranger seemed to become.

I probably shouldn’t say this, but the stranger’s personality intrigued me greatly as I just wanted to delve into his psyche to find out the root of his actions, that’s even if he knew them himself.

The more the story progressed, the more I became accustom to the rollercoaster ride that was Alice’s life. She became so…what’s the word…obsessed with the stranger, her logical thinking was well and truly clouded. Did she bring on the family rift herself? Or did she end up unknowingly becoming the person she tries to stop her clients from becoming?

I loved the psychological aspect to ‘Strangers On The Bridge’ as it is a subject that greatly interests me, so I was very engrossed in how the author managed to make that theme the forefront of her storyline as though she woke up one day and decided to have a blueberry muffin instead of a chocolate one. It was made out not to be a big deal, even though it most definitely WAS a big deal and for that, Louise Mangos’ goes up in my estimations dramatically.

Overall I thought that ‘Strangers On A Bridge’ was a gritty, engaging, and psychologically addictive debut novel, which was written in a way that made me sit up and take notice. Very, very promising – I am rather intrigued to see what Louise Mangos’ brings out next!

Buy now from Amazon

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#BlogTour! #Review – The Wedding Shop on Wexley St. by Rachel Dove (@writerdove) @HQDigitalUK @Brookcottagebks

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It gives me great pleasure to be kicking off the blog tour for ‘The Wedding Shop on Wexley St.’ by Rachel Dove! Many thanks to BrookCottageBooks for the blog tour invite and the ARC. Here is my review:


Maria is ready to say ‘yes’ to the dress!

As owner of Happy Ever After, Maria Mallory is Westfield’s resident wedding planner,
spending her days making dreams come true for future brides.

Maria even has her own perfect day planned out too, she just needs to find the right man. So
when she falls in love with local celeb Darcy Burgess she can’t believe her luck – it was
finally her turn for her Happy Ever After. Or so she thought.

Jilted at the altar, Maria can’t believe that her fairytale ending hasn’t come true. She’s ready to
give up on love once and for all. But little does she know that once you stop looking for it,
love has a way of surprising you…

What does TWG think?

I may not be the marrying kind, but I can’t help loving books which revolve around wedding planners, bridal shops, wedding dresses etc. Weird, I know. ‘Say Yes To The Dress’ is even one of top programs that i’m most likely to binge watch!

Maria Mallory is the local wedding planner. A wedding planner who is about to say ‘I Do’ to the man of her dreams – who wouldn’t be excited about that? Getting married is all Maria has ever wanted but, unfortunately for her, her dream of becoming a ‘Mrs’ falls apart at the last hurdle. Men. Honestly. Darcy Burgess couldn’t be further from a ‘Mark Darcy’ if he tried!

Whilst Maria attempts to lick her wounds and work at the same time, ensuring that the wedding side of her business doesn’t fall flat on its face due to her being a jilted bride, Darcy seems to have come to his senses by removing himself from his mothers claws. Snigger.

Too little too late! What a dweeb!!!! Obviously I thought a lot stronger, I mean who wouldn’t? How can someone who claims to be madly in love with another person, then leave them hanging on what should have been one of the best days of their lives, only to then reappear when it suits them? A wombling cockerel, that’s who. A muffweed. A….you get the picture.

I loved how the story progressed, with Maria’s best friend, Cassie, being an absolute STAR of a character to read. Omg I haven’t laughed that much in ages! She honestly could not give a monkeys yet her heart was the size of a football pitch. People like that are extremely rare. Even Cassie got a piece of the action as well, even though the main portion of the storyline centred around Maria’s situation.

I also loved how relatable and real all of the characters were. Maria got herself into a sticky situation (pardon the pun), and whilst I feel that she should have been honest and put it out there at the beginning, I can see why she did what she did. To be honest, I don’t think anyone can judge Maria for what she did or what she didn’t do, as there were far worse decisions being made by some of the other characters in the book. Not naming any names…

Cassie’s character was incredibly relatable. She openly admitted that her outlook on relationships was rather dated, with her fear of commitment ruining things before they had even begun. I am so pleased that Rachel Dove chose to put Cassie at the centre…ish, of the storyline as I was able to see a completely different side to her.

‘The Wedding Shop on Wexley St’ surprised me on more than one level; I even found myself getting involved in the romance between the characters (I’m not the romantic type, honestly). I adored the humour that was laced throughout the storyline from start to finish, and I absolutely adored the vibe of the overall novel. Rachel Dove made her characters, especially Maria, incredibly strong, even when they found themselves sobbing their hearts out.

I thoroughly enjoyed every ruffle, every romantic notion, every laugh out loud situation, finding myself rather at home when Maria hugged the biscuit tin. I think I may have found myself in fictional form!

A huggable, humorous, relatable, heart-warming and thoughtful novel which will have you believing in anything romance, just as long as you have a biscuit tin. Brilliant, brilliant, brilliant.

Buy now!

Extract.

Two hours later, Maria found herself in Harrogate, squeezed into the red dress, heels pinching her
feet, wondering why the hell she wasn’t sat on Cass’s couch eating ice cream and crying. She said the
same to Cass as they walked on tottering heels to the nearest trendy bar, Ice, in the wine bar and
posh eatery part of Harrogate’s city centre, which, coincidentally, butted up against the legal quarter
of Harrogate, and no doubt the two sides kept each other in business quite well too. Walking into Ice
with Cassie, it was hard to ignore the stares that her friend attracted. Cassie Welburn was, let’s face
it, sex on a twenty nine year old stick. She was always tanned thanks to her meticulous salon
treatments, plucked and shaped to perfection, and tonight, as usual, was dressed to kill. Even
Maria’s daring red dress looked tame in light of Cassie’s black and silver dress, slashed to the thigh,
combined with sparkly silver heels that make Cassie even taller than her just under six foot frame.
Maria blushed and nudged Cass’s elbow with her own.
“People are staring Cass” Cassie shrugged.
“Let them stare, girl. Don’t worry, I’ve got your back” Maria belatedly realised that tonight, thanks
to that ridiculous article, the stares may indeed be for her and not her glamorous friend. She cringed
inwardly, and planted a smile on her face. She took her friend by the arm, and pushing her boobs
out and her chin up, she headed to the bar. “Let’s get smashed” she declared.

About the author.

I am a writer and teacher, living in West Yorkshire with my husband, our two sons, and our furry
pets.

In July 2015, I won the Prima magazine and Mills & Boon Flirty Fiction Competition, with my
entry, The Chic Boutique on Baker Street, out now in ebook and paperback. The Flower Shop on
Foxley Street followed this in 2017 and both books hit the Amazon top 200. Chic Boutique got to
#2 in the rural life humour chart and is regularly in the top 100 of that chart.
I am the winner of the Writers Bureau Writer of the Year Award in 2016 and I have had work
published in the UK and overseas in various magazines.

My next book, The Long Walk Back, is out in January 2018 and I am currently writing the last
book in the Westfield series. My first book with Manatee Books, Nice Guys Finish Lonely, is out
in April 2018 in ebook and paperback. I love to write romantic fiction, both rom-com and harder
hitting women’s fiction.

I am also a post 16 teacher and am undertaking an MA in Creative Writing at Teesside
University.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RachelDoveauthor/?ref=bookmarks

Twitter: https://twitter.com/WriterDove

Goodreads Author Page:
https://goo.gl/CPJkbr

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/writerdove/
Google+ https://plus.google.com/u/0/+RachelDovewriter

Giveaway!

Prize – A signed spiral bound paperback of the book plus bookmarks

(open Internationally)

Enter the giveaway now!

#BlogTour! #Promo – A Recipe for Disaster by Belinda Missen (@belinda_missen) @RaRaResources


Today I have a promotional content as my stop on the ‘A Recipe for Disaster’ blog tour. Thank you to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite.


Meet Lucy, master wedding cake baker, idealistic school canteen crusader, and
someone whose broken heart just won’t seem to mend…

Lucy is quietly confident that she has made the right choices in life. Surrounded by
friends and family in a small country town, Lucy can easily suppress the feeling that
something is missing from her life.

But when a blast from the past arrives in the form of her estranged husband,
international celebrity chef Oliver Murray, Lucy’s carefully constructed life begins to
crumble beneath her like overbaked meringue.

Is Oliver’s return all business or is it motivated by something more?

A Recipe for Disaster starts long after most love stories would have ended, proving it
is never too late to offer someone a second slice of cake or a second chance.

Buy now from: Amazon // iBooks

About the author.

Belinda Missen is an award-winning and best-selling author, screenwriter, and freelance
writer from Geelong, Australia.

A reader from an early age, Belinda began writing her own stories shortly after her love affair
with Steven Spielberg’s film Jurassic Park began. What began as fan-fiction soon took
deeper root, and she was scribbling out strange little stories in empty notebooks she found
laying around the house.

With qualifications in transport and office administration, and a combined career of fifteen
years in these industries, Belinda decided to uproot everything in 2013 and return to her first
love of writing. She now writes full-time, between cups of coffee, binge watching television,
and feeding her cats and husband.

In April 2016, she was awarded the JOLT Courthouse Youth Arts Award in the Inspire 26+
Category for her piece Obsession.

In February 2017, her book Love And Other Midnight Theories clawed its way to the top of
the Amazon charts in its category of Performing Arts, beating JK Rowling’s Fantastic Beasts
and Where to Find Them. True story – she has the screenshots to prove it.

When not dabbling in the written word, Belinda can be found mentoring other writers, beta-reading, reviewing, helping others to ready books for publication, and sleeping.

#BlogTour! #Review – The Little Unicorn Gift Shop by Kellie Hailes (@KellieHailes) @HQDigitalUK


Kicking off a very busy day here at TWG, is my review for the very sparkly, ‘The Little Unicorn Gift Shop’ by Kellie Hailes. Thank you to HQDigitalUK for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:


Life’s always better with a little bit of sparkle.

Poppy and Ben have been best friends forever and now they’re embarking on a new adventure together – opening a joint unicorn gift shop and cafe. Ben has one rule; no unicorn paraphernalia is to cross into his tea shop. But Poppy has other ideas…

They’ve always been there for each other, at least until Poppy went travelling around the world – without Ben. But now she’s back and she’s determined to stay put, bringing a little bit of magic back into Ben’s life.

Can they go back to the way things once were or will the years of distance stand in the way of their new shop and blossoming romance?

What does TWG think?

I’m going to sound a bit bad here, but there was a little part of me that couldn’t help thinking that I wasn’t going to like this book, all because I don’t see the fascination with unicorns. However, before anyone asks me why I chose to read the book with that thought in my head, it was also the unicorns and the fact that they were going to be living in a gift shop (the unicorns, not the characters) which piqued my interest at the same time. I mean, why unicorns? Why a gift shop?

It didn’t take me too long to find out the answers to both of those questions, nor did it take me long to find out that my original opinion of the book was in fact a load of tosh, making me hold my hands up and shouting, ‘I FLUFFYUNICORN LOVE THIS BOOK’. I am not even exaggerating either. What a fantastic read this is and, in my opinion, it is Kellie Hailes’ finest book to date. ‘The Little Unicorn Gift Shop’ has everything I adore from a book in this genre; romance, humour, colourful pasts, a character who puts a spanner in the works, and two main characters who are trying to battle their own individual devils. The concept of Kellie Hailes’ latest release was unique, hilarious and so more-ish. In fact, I’d even go as far to say that unicorns have grown on me a tad too! I won’t be making my jammy dodgers glittery anytime soon though, and no that is not a euphemism! Oh god, now I have an image in my head that I really didn’t want!!

Poppy isn’t your ‘typical’ girl next door type of character, she is the type of character who was made in a broken yet fabulous mould. Basically one of us. Yes, she has her own emotional scars to deal with, but how many of us don’t? She isn’t perfect, but then again what constitutes as perfection where people are concerned? I loved her personality and I found her character to be extremely hilarious and totally genuine. I have everything crossed that Kellie Hailes brings Poppy and Ben back in another book as I would love to see what they get up to next.

I have been known to invest myself in one character in a book, but it is rare that I ever invest myself in both of the main character from the same book. However, that all changed when I stepped foot into ‘Sparkle and Steep’. Goodness, I may have even found my most favourite duo yet – these two are fabulous and Ben’s lack of confidence is weirdly endearing. Okay, the unicorn aspect of the book makes the storyline what it is, yet I have to give the author a round of applause for creating two enchanting and memorable characters who completely and utterly stole my heart.

Well…..aside from Joe’s uniform…obviously. Hellooooo, envious!

‘The Little Unicorn Gift Shop’ is the perfect antidote to a rainy day. The perfect thing to turn a frown upside down. And, I can’t believe I am about to say this….but Kellie Hailes’ book is even better than a bar of chocolate. I cannot recommend this book enough, I want to read it all over again – utterly divine!

Buy now from Amazon

#BlogTour! #Extract – The Lost Sister by Tracy Buchanan (@TracyBuchanan) @AvonBooksUK


It’s TWG’s turn on the blog tour for ‘The Lost Sister’ by Tracy Buchanan. Big thank you to Avon for the blog tour invite. Today I will be sharing an extract from the book, enjoy!

For the first time in your life, she is going to tell you the truth…

Then: A trip to the beach tore Becky’s world apart. It was the day her mother Selma met the mysterious man she went on to fall in love with, and leave her husband and child for.

Now: It’s been a decade since they last spoke, but Selma has just weeks to live. And she has something important to tell Becky – a secret she been hiding for many years. She had another daughter.

With the loss of her mother, Becky aches to find her sister. She knows she cannot move forward in her life without answers, but who can she really trust?

Extract.

Mike caught my eye. He was desperate for another. But I couldn’t think of anything worse, shuddering as I remembered that sticky, confusing, sick-infested time of Becky’s newborn months. The emotions. The tears. I adored Becky, my perfect one. It would be like going back to square one if I had another. Plus, there was the slight problem of Mike and I barely touching any more. Maybe that should have worried me, but the truth was, I didn’t want to touch or be touched. On the rare occasions when we did make love, I flinched then felt nothing, going through the motions as I turned my face away. I used to be so passionate, to love to hold and be held. But not any more.

I sighed, turning back to Julie. ‘We’ve been told we can’t,’ I whispered so Mike couldn’t overhear. The lie sent a thrill through me. ‘We don’t like to talk about it, especially Mike,’ I added with a grimace. Another touch of the arm. ‘You’re one of the only people I’ve told.’
‘I’m so sorry,’ Julie whispered back. I could see it mixed in with the empathy in her eyes, how pleased she was to be one of the privileged few to know.
‘But let’s not talk about that,’ I said, fanning my hand about. ‘Tell me about you.’
As Julie launched into the details of her problems with sore nipples, I slid my sunglasses back up to hide the fact I wasn’t really listening, my mind drifting off to the plot of my latest novel.

E-book is available to buy now from Amazon

#BlogTour! #Review – The Place We Called Home by Jenny Oliver (@JenOliverBooks) @HQStories


The third and final blog tour for today is for ‘The House We Called Home’ by Jenny Oliver! Thank you to HQStories for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

The house where Stella and her sister Amy grew up never changes – the red front door, the breath-taking view over the Cornish coast, her parents in their usual spots on the sofa. Except this summer, things feel a little different…

Stella’s father is nowhere to be seen, yet her mother – in suspiciously new Per Una jeans – seems curiously unfazed by his absence, and more eager to talk about her mysterious dog-walking buddy Mitch.

Stella’s sister Amy has returned home with a new boyfriend she can barely stand and a secret to hide, and Stella’s husband Jack has something he wants to get off his chest too. Even Frank Sinatra, the dog, has a guilty air about him.

This summer, change is in the air for the Whitethorns…

What does TWG think?

Well, I am sure that a lot of us, if not all of us, have been involved in heated family issues at some point in our lives! For the Whitethorns however, family disputes seem to be a rather regular occurrence, but they wouldn’t know that would they? Seeing as communication isn’t exactly their fortes!

I don’t know if it’s just me, but Jenny Oliver’s writing style seemed to be a bit different this time round. I’m not too sure if that’s because of the subject she was writing about, or whether her writing has changed direction, either way it did make me sit up and take notice. I guess part of me didn’t find this book to be as cosy as her other reads, which is why I probably noticed the change.

That said, the overall storyline is definitely full of hope and I thoroughly enjoyed the humour that was evident throughout the entire novel. I ADORED Sonny and the guy, Amy, had brought back home to meet her family. I thought that they were absolutely hilarious, especially the way that they lifted the storyline due to their carefree attitudes.

‘The House We Called Home’ is an enjoyable read which highlights a very important message regarding family disputes, relationships, and what to do with a drain cover. The theme of the book is one that needs to be given a lot of attention as there is a lot going on, but I don’t think that that is a bad thing at all. I loved the way that Jenny Oliver incorporated her trademark humour into a deep storyline, making me laugh like a seal more than once.

Jenny Oliver has a real knack in creating some rather memorable and hilarious characters, making her stories come to life quicker than a dog is able to pick up a piece of food that has fallen to the ground. ‘The House We Called Home’ is written in such a poignant manner, you may even wish to remodel your own house or your relationships after reading this book!

Enjoyable, hopeful and very touching, roll on the next book!

Buy now!

#BlogTour! #Review – Summer on the Little Cornish Isles: The Starfish Studio by Phillipa Ashley (@PhillipaAshley) @AvonBooksUK


I have never been more excited to review a book with Cornish/Cornwall in the title before, until now! I am so excited to be today’s stop on Phillipa Ashley’s blog tour for ‘Summer on the Little Cornish Isles: The Starfish Studio’. Big thank you to Avon Books for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

Poppy has always loved Cornwall – the crisp sea air, the welcoming community. So when her boyfriend Dan suggests they leave their office jobs and take over the Starfish Studio on the Isles of Scilly, Poppy doesn’t need asking twice.

But things don’t go to plan when Dan dumps her, weeks before they’re due to move. Determined not to give up, Poppy accepts the help of local photographer Jake, her landlord’s grandson. But Jake is distracted by a loss from his past.

Can they turn the crumbling gallery into a success in time for tourist season? And will a summer on the little Cornish Isles mend just the studio – or Poppy’s heart too?

What does TWG think?

-swoons- Why am I only starting to read this series now?! I think I have been hiding under a rock or something, because I see no other explanation as to why I haven’t read any of the ‘Cornish Isles’ series! This is book three!! At least I do prove that you don’t have to read the books in order and that they can be read perfectly well as a standalone. Hell, I didn’t even realise that this was a series until I looked on Amazon!

I absolutely devoured ‘Summer on the Little Cornish Isles: The Starfish Studio’ in a few hours, how could I not when the story was so enchanting, enticing and beautifully written? The moment Poppy stepped over the threshold into the Starfish Studio, it was like love at first sight. Not only did the beauty of the studio and its contents blow Poppy away, she was rather taken with the artist himself Several years later, Poppy finds herself stepping over the threshold of the studio again to start her new life. Whilst part of Poppy was hoping her new life would begin smoothly, she couldn’t have been prepared for what lie waiting for her. Her ex-boyfriend, Dan, might think that she wouldn’t be able to cope, but Poppy is made of strong stuff, a lot stronger than what people give her credit for…

Oh my goodness me, I’m just going to lay my cards straight on the table; I love, love, LOVED this book! What a beautiful, beautiful story which seemed to capture my heart and soul from the moment Poppy got off the boat. There was something so magical about her character and, even without knowing too much about her, I just knew that she was going to go up in my estimations the more of the story I read.

As for Jake, oh Jake…he’s a bit of a shattered soul bless him, I couldn’t help but laugh at his relationship with Leo! I am being vague on purpose as I don’t wish to give anything away, but please do trust me when I say that this is a story that needs to be given as much love as it will give its readers.

I was blown away by how free-spirited the story made me feel, hugging me from the inside out with every turn of the page. ‘Summer on the Little Cornish Isles: The Starfish Studio’ may come across as being Poppy and Jake orientated, but in actual fact that couldn’t be further from the truth as the author gives multiple characters their individual times in the spotlight. I really did love that as I was able to find out more about certain characters and how they became who they are today.

As I have already said, I love ‘Summer on the Little Cornish Isles: The Starfish Studio’, and I would read it all over again in a heartbeat! Such a heartfelt, touching, poignant, and mesmerising novel which will stay in my heart for a very, very long time.

Buy now from Amazon

#BlogTour! #Review – #TheHappinessList by Annie Lyons (@1AnnieLyons) @HQDigitalUK


Happy publication day to Annie Lyons and #TheHappinessList! I am so excited to be kicking off the blog tour today, so a big thank you to HQDigitalUK for allowing me to do so, and for the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

Life is about to change forever…

Heather is finally back on Hope Street after running from the memories for so long. She hasn’t bumped into many neighbours yet but with her upcoming wedding to plan there’s plenty to keep her busy!

Fran is still trying to get used to a life without her husband by her side. It’s hard enough raising two children on her own – she doesn’t have time to even think about dating…

Pamela is fed up with being taken for granted by her grown-up children and grumbling husband. She’s ready to shake things up a little, but will her family even notice?

So when the three women hear about a ‘happiness course’ starting on Hope Street, surely it’s the perfect opportunity to let their hair down, laugh with new friends and maybe even change their lives in ways they never expected…

What does TWG think?

I had a feeling that, based on the title, Annie Lyons’ latest novel was going to open my eyes and keep them open. What I never expected, however, was for ‘The Happiness List’ to not only keep my eyes open, but it also made me think about my life in a completely different way.

Heather, Fran and Pamela may be three completely different women, yet they’re all bound together by one coming thing; heartbreak. However, with all three women going through different types of heartbreak at different points in their life, their outlook on how they cope with it is incredibly different, with some of their family members being confused by how they seem to be dealing with the aftermath. The thing is, everyone copes with things differently, and just because someone else will do things one way whilst another person will do things in another way, it doesn’t make it wrong at all, so they shouldn’t be made to feel as though they’re not coping or get told that they should be ‘fine by now’. Is there a timeline for when heartbreak should be dealt with? No. And that’s where ‘The Happiness List’ comes in. When all three ladies have the chance to create a personal list to enhance their own happiness, it makes them realise that to truly be happy, they need to forgive themselves. I know, it sounds easier said than done, but once you’ve read this book, it will become clear that it is in fact an incredibly difficult thing and that you need to have a supportive group of people around you for when the going gets tough. Not people who are only there when they want something or who dip in and out of your life quicker than Justin Bieber’s relationships. True friends. The ones who turn up at your door in their pyjama’s to sit on your sofa, or the ones who answer your phone call any time of day, even if it is just to listen to you cry because you’re on your monthly/football team didn’t win.

Sorry, I have ranted a little bit, but this is such an important book to read and digest, I wouldn’t be doing it justice if I didn’t write my thoughts honestly.

What really hit home with #TheHappinessList was the way Annie Lyons made it clear how heartbreak is individual, and how nobody should invalidate how you feel all because they would do things differently. I found Heather, Pamela and Fran’s friendship incredibly heart-warming and made me wish that I had friends like that because to be honest, I never have. It made me quite emotional to read how the author made one of character’s happy on their own, proving that happiness doesn’t always mean being in a couple.

I loved the humour in this book as it made the storyline balanced when it came to reading the emotional scenes. Reading ‘The Happiness List’ is a journey in itself, one which is life affirming, powerful, and has the chance to put a spring in your step for the smallest things. To look at, you may think that this book is full of joy as the cover is incredibly colourful and, whilst I will agree to a point, there is a lot to this book than the cover divulges. A bit like a trifle (hear me out) – to look at you see cream/topping and sprinkles, but underneath that colourful and silky topping are multiple layers which will feel you with different kinds of joy. Is the jelly raspberry, blackcurrant or strawberries? Are there lady fingers at the bottom or fruit? So yes, Annie Lyons, for me, has written a book that resembles a trifle as, the more of the book I read, the more beautiful things I discovered and the larger my smile became.

I adore Annie Lyons’ story telling as she writes with such soul and magnetism, bringing joy to the reader’s heart like our good friend Winnie the Pooh. I will never get tired of Lyons’ tales and as far as I am concerned, this author and her books have their own bookshelf in my heart AND its under lock and key.

Buy now!

#BlogTour! #Review – Summer at Lavender Bay by Sarah Bennett (@Sarahlou_writes) @HQDigitalUK

Summer_Blogtour
Apologies for the lateness, but I am incredibly honoured to be kicking off the blog tour for one of my most favourite authors ever, Sarah Bennett! Many thanks to HQDigitalUK for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

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Love happens when you least expect it…

When Eliza Barnes said ‘I do’ to her husband all those years ago, she thought that they’d be together forever. Instead, he’s flown to Abu Dhabi to start a new life, and she’s returning to the little seaside town of Lavender Bay.

It’s finally time to chase the dreams she’s put on hold for so long, whipping up luxury bath products and organic soaps using local ingredients. Of course, she didn’t expect to meet local farmer, Jack Gilbert, or for him to be quite so gorgeous!

So when her husband turns up, she knows she must decide between the man she knows everything about and the man who makes her heart race in ways she’d never imagined – before it’s too late…

What does TWG think?

 You are in for a treat with ‘Summer at Lavender Bay’! It may be book two in the ‘Lavender Bay’ series, but it can easily be read as a standalone no problem. Of course, you know what I am going to say – I would highly recommend reading the first book as well.

Eliza is at the heart of this book as she finds herself picking up the pieces to a life she thought was certain, when she realises that her heart was no longer where she thought it was. (Metaphorically speaking, obviously…!!) Personally, I am surprised Eliza didn’t come to her senses soon enough. I mean, what on Earth! Everything about her situation made my blood boil not because of what she had done, but because of her husband. Well, she could have told him to do one way before then, but hindsight is a truly wonderful thing! At least she came back fighting!

If you have read the first book in the series, ‘Spring at Lavender Bay’, you’ll see some old friends popping up as Eliza’s story progresses. Don’t fret if you haven’t though, Sarah Bennett has written these books so that everyone can enjoy them in any way that they see fit.

For me, Eliza was such a breath of fresh and, seeing as she lived in the bay, it didn’t take her very long to slot back into life at home. Not only does Eliza manage to get back up again, she also finds herself making a new friend. He’s rather furry though, I wonder if she noticed ;).

What I love most about Sarah Bennett’s novels is how enchanting and magnetic they always seem to be. I don’t ever pick up one of this authors novels and go, ‘nahhhh, she didn’t write it from the heart’, because it is very clear that she does, and that is what I find really endearing. Yes, Sarah Bennett may give her characters emotional hurdles to jump over, and yes, she may have a theme running throughout her novel that could make tears fall from your eyes without realising it. But you know what? I love it because it shows that the author is real and relatable, allowing her readers to truly connect with characters like Eliza, or like Jack, a man whose situation made a lump form in my throat quicker than you can say ‘give me the cake’.

Never mind fairytale princesses such as Cinderella or Sleeping Beauty, give me Eliza any day of the week. ‘Summer at Lavender Bay’ is a fairytale after my own heart. A book which not only tells a story, it creates a vision. A vision where the imagery of the beautiful words written, come to life making Sarah Bennett’s characters to become more than just fiction.

I absolutely adored every single page of this book, and my only disappointment is that it was in no way long enough. I have said this once before, but I am more than happy to say it again; Sarah Bennett has the literary talent of a literary angel, making my life just that bit happier every time I read one of her books. Is ‘Summer at Lavender Bay’ her best book yet? Honestly? Yes it is, and I know I say that about every book that she writes, but she just keeps getting better and better with every new book. Just look at Eliza – she may have started out being low like Cinderella, but it didn’t take her too long to find her special shoe (or in Eliza’s case, special oil) to allow her to fly her wings like she was meant to have done all along.

Flipping brilliant without a doubt.

Buy now!

#BlogTour! #Review Poppy’s Place in the Sun by Lorraine Wilson (@Romanceminx) @HarperImpulse @RaRaResources

Poppy's Place In The Sun
It gives me great pleasure to be one of the bloggers closing Lorraine Wilson’s blog tour for ‘Poppy’s Place in the Sun’. Big thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite and thank you to HarperImpulse for the ARC. Here is my review:

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‘She had me at Bonjour! Warm, funny, deliciously French…this lovely story filled my heart with sunshine’ Jane Linfoot

Sometimes you need to lose yourself to find your way home…

With only her trusty dogs Peanut, Treacle and Pickwick by her side, Poppy Kirkbride could be forgiven for having doubts about her move to a quiet village in rural France. But as the sun shines down on her ramshackle new home, Poppy knows she’s made the right decision. A lick of paint, and some TLC and her rustic farmhouse will be the perfect holiday retreat – Poppy’s dream come true.

Poppy is welcomed by her fellow villagers, except for brooding local vet Leo Dubois, who
makes it clear Poppy isn’t welcome in his village – or his life! Leo might be gorgeous, but
Poppy won’t be told what to do by an arrogant Frenchman – no matter how kind and gentle he is to her dogs!

Determined to stay, Poppy tries to understand the enigmatic Frenchman better. But as the two get closer, Poppy sees another side to Leo – a man with heartbreak of his own. Falling in love with Leo is easy, but can he ever return Poppy’s love? And what would this mean for her dream life and place in the sun?

What does TWG think?

If you’re after a bit of girl power, look no further as Lorraine Wilson has upped the ante in that department, that’s for sure!!

I adored this book pretty much from the beginning, as the author seemed to connect with her readers on an emotional basis when we first meet Poppy. Unfortunately for Poppy, luck wasn’t on her side and everything she thought she knew was taken away from her in the blink of an eye. Any plans she had made had to be rearranged, putting her newfound life in a spin before it’s even begun. It was from that moment where I knew that Poppy was going to be an incredibly special character. Thankfully Lorraine Wilson didn’t allow my opinion to falter throughout the story.

Due to the rough start Poppy had in her new life, she was determined not to let anyone get in the way of her future happiness, especially a charming vet! I say charming, Poppy may say arrogant and I’ll agree, because at first he was the type of person I would walk away from. Yet there was something about him which made me feel as though he was being led by a personal barrier. What that may be, however, I had no idea.

‘Poppy’s Place in the Sun’ is such a feel-good, smiley read which left me wanting more. Not only that, this book contains dogs and oh my goodness, they are a HOOT! I couldn’t stop laughing at their antics and, whilst Poppy and Leo were very endearing characters, I couldn’t help but be bowled over by the personalities of the fantastically named pooches.

Despite the vibe of the book being quite romantic, the author doesn’t shove it down your throat. Funnily enough, even though I enjoy reading romance novels, I am the least romantic person ever so I did appreciate the romance element being a bit rugged. For me, it added depth to the storyline as I was excited by what may or may not happen, without things being evident from the onset.

I won’t be forgetting ‘Poppy’s Place in the Sun’ anytime soon as it is such a wonderful read. Lorraine Wilson is an incredible storyteller, creating stories which hug you from the inside out and warm your heart like a coal fire on a winter’s day. A truly enchanting and feel-good novel, I absolutely it!

Buy now!

Giveaway!

Poppys Place In The Sun Giveaway
Win a PB of Poppy’s Place in the Sun and a crossbody hand bag (Open
Internationally)
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the
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valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received
within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all
entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is
used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of
the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for
fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for
despatch or delivery of the prize.

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About the author.

Lorraine Wilson writes flirty, feel-good fiction for Harper Impulse – a Harper Collins imprint – and is unashamedly fond of happy endings. She loves hearing from readers and feels incredibly grateful to be doing the job she always dreamt of.
She splits her time between the South of France and Cambridgeshire and is usually either writing or reading while being sat on, walked over or barked at by one of her growing band of rescue dogs.

You can find her online either via her website: http://www.lorraine-wilson.com or on Facebook:
http://www.facebook.com/LorraineWilsonWriter and Twitter @Romanceminx