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

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Sarah Bennett is back with a brand new serial, and I am delighted to be sharing my review of the first book in the series, ‘Spring at Lavender Bay’. Big thank you to the publisher and the author for the ARC, and thank you to NeverlandBT for the blog tour invite. Here is my review:

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A season for change…?

Beth Reynolds loved growing up close to Eleanor’s Emporium – a bric-a- brac shop full of wonders on Lavender Bay. Devastated to learn that Eleanor has died, she returns home from London immediately and is shocked to discover that the elderly lady has left the shop to her!

Vowing to restore it to its former glory, she only intends to stay until the end of the season. Although the longer she spends in the colourful seaside town, the more she falls back in love with everything she left behind…and quite possibly, with her best friend Eliza’s older brother, local chef Sam Barnes!

Why didn’t she notice he was quite this gorgeous before? And will their spring fling be enough to convince her to stay?

Don’t miss Spring at Lavender Bay, the first book in the enchanting Lavender Bay trilogy!

Book 1: Spring at Lavender Bay
Book 2: Summer at Lavender Bay
Book 3: Snowflakes at Lavender Bay

What does TWG think?

After falling in love with the authors first serial (and not just because it contained the word ‘Butterfly’), I had absolutely no idea how she was going to trump that serial. I mean really, if you’ve read the ‘Butterfly Cove’ series, you’ll know fine well what I’m talking about. Whilst I knew deep down that Sarah Bennett would not disappoint, I felt like I was cheating on the characters of the previous series. I think I have a problem – I struggled to let them go!

After giving myself a pep talk and telling myself that the previous bunch of characters would be happy that I’ve moved on, knowing that I would never forget them (ahem), I snuggled down in bed with ‘Spring at Lavender Bay’, excited to see what waited for me beyond the front cover…

Oh Sarah Bennett, what have you done to me woman!!!! I knew it all along that this author wouldn’t disappoint with her new book, after all she never disappoints me with any of the books she produces, but reading about Beth’s new venture made me feel like I was coming home. How? I have absolutely no idea, but it did. I cannot explain it. I really wish I could. All I know is that Sarah Bennett is an absolute genius.

Poor Beth Reynolds was merely going through the motions in her day to day life. Feeling as though she had the weight on her shoulders, Beth’s day gets a lot worse when she finds out someone she knew has passed away. From then on, everything else that was bothering her seemed unimportant and frivolous. Life is far too short to be working with a twonkwomble, right?

What I loved most about Beth was how real she was. She didn’t pretend to be something she wasn’t which, considering the amount of rubbish she had gone through in such a short space of time, is highly commendable. I adored the community spirit which seemed to engulf the storyline from the get go, holding Beth up when things became too much for her to handle (or when she decided to give up after a short amount of time). Even though I could understand why she felt like giving up, the way she went about it really irked me as it was like she was slapping all of the people who went out of their way to help her, round their faces. I’m probably going to sound a little mean here, but I found her to be a little selfish because of that. That said, I still absolutely loved her as she was hilarious and, like I said above, real.

The storyline itself is full of hilarious anecdotes, heart-warming situations, and enough love to warm every single person’s hearts ten times over. Yes it was pretty clear where a certain situation was heading, but weirdly enough, it didn’t bother me as it just fit with the vibe of the book and everything the storyline stood for. A match made in heaven if you will.

‘Spring at Lavender Bay’ highlights the importance of not giving up, regardless of how hard things are. It also highlights the importance of bouncing back, even after you have given up. If something is worth doing, it’s worth doing right. If you really want something, you’ll walk through fire and rain to do it. Plus, more importantly, it made me realise that there is always someone there for you – the one’s who really love you will always be by your side, regardless of the time.

Sarah Bennett’s new book brought many smiles to my face, made me giggle like a little child, and brought tears to my eyes due to sadness and warmth. This new series has started off with a bang and, in al honesty, it truly is the start of something incredibly special.

Delightful, touching, beautiful, and the hug in a book I so desperately needed, Sarah Bennett has written a story which will be there for you in your time of need. A story which will hug you from the inside out, reminding you that even books can be there for you when you need someone to care. A story which will make you realise that showing negative emotion is in no way a bad thing, so why hide it? I wish I could bottle up the feeling this book gave me, just so that I could hold onto it forever. Especially when I’m feeling lonely.

This is…..beautiful.

Amazon UK // Amazon Audio Book // Kobo // iBooks // Google Play

About the author.

Sarah Bennett has been reading for as long as she can remember. Raised in a family of
bookworms, her love affair with books of all genres has culminated in the ultimate Happy Ever After – getting to write her own stories to share with others.

Born and raised in a military family, she is happily married to her own Officer (who is
sometimes even A Gentleman). Home is wherever he lays his hat, and life has taught them both that the best family is the one you create from friends as well as relatives.
When not reading or writing, Sarah is a devotee of afternoon naps and sailing the high seas, but only on vessels large enough to accommodate a casino and a choice of restaurants.

Sarah is the author of the Butterfly Cove trilogy, published by HQ Digital UK.
Her new series is set in the beautiful seaside town of Lavender Bay, and will follow the lives of three best friends – Beth, Eliza and Libby.

Twitter // Facebook

Giveaway!!

To be in with a chance of winning this amazing bundle of goodies; Kindle Fire 7, Room Diffuser & L’Occitne Hand Cream Set, all you need to do is enter the giveaway via the link below. Good luck!!

Please note that this giveaway is UK Only

Enter the giveaway now!!

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#BlogTour! #Review – 66 Metres by J.F.Kirwan (@kirwanjf) @HQDigitalUK @RaRaResources

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As far as I am concerned, this author needs no introduction!! Here is my review!!

66 metres
The only thing worth killing for is family.

Everyone said she had her father’s eyes. A killer’s eyes. Nadia knew that on the bitterly
cold streets of Moscow, she could never escape her past – but in just a few days, she would finally be free.

Bound to work for Kadinsky for five years, she has one last mission to complete. Yet when she is instructed to capture The Rose, a military weapon shrouded in secrecy, Nadia finds herself trapped in a deadly game of global espionage.

And the only man she can trust is the one sent to spy on her… 

Book One of Nadia Laksheva spy thriller series

What does TWG think?

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that I am a HUGE fan of J.F.Kirwan and this series. Now, usually I would suggest reading book serial’s in order and, whilst you can get away with reading the second book in this series BEFORE the first one (just like I did), I found that I was unable to enjoy the first book as much as I would have liked because I knew what was going to happen later on down the line. Make sense? Let me just clarify though, that it totally my error and in no way a critique of the author.

My stupidity aside, let’s just focus on the storyline itself – intense!! Never in a million years did I think I would adore a spy series, but I do! Yes, because my own stupidity with the book order left a bad taste in my mouth, I still thoroughly enjoyed this book. It was great to see how Nadia was in the beginning of the series, and she happened to be on the path that was going to haunt her for the rest of her life. I’ll say it again – INTENSE!!

The psychological element to this storyline was exceptionally clever. I never expected a lot of the things that happened as my mind was in such a head funk, I wouldn’t have even been able to tell you where I lived, never mind trying to work out where the storyline was going. I mean c’mon!!

J.F.Kirwan is a fantastic author, he really knows how to pull his readers in with his fast paced, chilling and devastatingly inviting storylines – you know you probably shouldn’t be head over heels in lust with this book, but you just cannot help it. In my eyes, that is an example of an author who knows his craft and knows how to use it to his advantage.

’66 Metres’ isn’t my most favourite of the three books, but it is still an enlightening teaser for what’s to come later on. If you find yourself enjoying this book, you’ll absolutely love the next book in the series.

Brilliant.

Buy now from Amazon

Author Bio

J. F. Kirwan is the author of the Nadia Laksheva thriller series for HarperCollins. Having
worked in accident investigation and prevention in nuclear, offshore oil and gas and aviation sectors, he uses his experience of how accidents initially build slowly, then race towards a climax, to plot his novels. An instructor in both scuba diving and martial arts, he travels extensively all over the world, and loves to set his novels in exotic locations. He is also an insomniac who writes in the dead of night. His favourite authors include Lee Child, David Baldacci and Andy McNab.

Website // Blog // Facebook // Twitter

#CoverReveal!! #OneSummerInRome by Samantha Tonge (@SamTongeWriter) @rararesources @HQDigitalUK

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)
I do like a cover reveal, especially when the cover is as gorgeous as the one I am about to show you!! Samantha Tonge is back (well, in May), with a brand new book and I for one CANNOT wait.

Need a change of scenery?
Need to go somewhere where the temperature is a lot higher than the -1 we are relishing in just now?

If you answered ‘YES’ to the above questions, you’re in for a treat!! You ready?

Of course you are!!

one summer final cover
To Rome…with love?

Mary Smith is turning her very ordinary life upside-down! She’s bought herself a
one-way ticket to Rome and is ready for a summer she’ll never forget.
Men might be off the cards for waitress Mary, but within hours of arriving at the
utterly charming family-run La Dolce Vita pizzeria, she’s already fallen in love
with the bustling capital!

Only Dante Rossi, the mysterious (and drop-dead gorgeous) chef seems
displeased with her arrival. And in the heat of the kitchen, it doesn’t take long for
long-buried secrets to surface and sparks to fly…

A deliciously heartwarming romance to have you dreaming of summer.
Perfect for fans of Debbie Johnson and Caroline Roberts.

Oh, doesn’t that cover bring an instant smile to your face? Such a summery, colourful cover.

‘One Summer in Rome’ is due to be published by HQDigital in May, but you can pre-order your copy of the book right now from Amazon

Bio

Samantha Tonge lives in Cheshire with her lovely family and a cat who
thinks it’s a dog. When not writing she spends her days cycling, willing
cakes to rise and avoiding housework. She has sold over 80 short
stories to women’s magazines. Her bestselling debut novel, Doubting
Abbey, was shortlisted for the Festival of Romantic Fiction best Ebook
award in 2014. Game of Scones hit #5 in the UK Kindle chart and won
the Best Romantic Ebook category at the 2015 Love Stories Awards.

Links

Twitter // Facebook // Website

one summer never forget

#BlogTour #Review – The Long Walk Back – Rachel Dove @WriterDove @HQDigitalUK @brookcottagebks

The Long Walk Back Tour Banner

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Does everyone deserve a second chance?

As an army trauma surgeon Kate knows how to keep her cool in the most high
pressure of situations. Although back at home in England her marriage is falling
apart, out in the desert she’s happy knowing that she’s saving lives.

Until she meets Cooper. It’s up to Kate to make a split-second decision to save
Cooper’s life. Yet Cooper doesn’t want to be saved. Can Kate convince him to
give his life a second chance even though its turning out dramatically different
from how he planned?

What does TWG think?

What an opening!! The first couple of pages of this novel had me absolutely gripped. Will they survive or won’t they? How would they come back from the devastating situation they witnessed? Only time would tell, but it was going to be a rollercoaster ride of a journey, whichever way it went.

It was pretty clear from the onset that the storyline was going to be highly emotive – I just didn’t expect it to be THAT emotional. ‘The Long Walk Back’ covers a variety of topics, always giving you something to sink your teeth into when you turn the page. Obviously I can’t discuss my thoughts on the plot too much, as that would result in spoilers!

I have to admit though, there were times when I could not stand Kate. I found a lot of her actions to be extremely selfish and self-centred, especially given the nature of her circumstances. Whilst I realise that people react in different ways during troublesome times, I found Kate’s reactions to be jaw dropping. And not in a good way. On the other side of the coin though, there were times where I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her journey, hoping for the best outcome for her current situation. Kate had gone through so much in such a short space of time, I’m not disputing that at all, I just wish she didn’t make me go ‘hmmmmm’ a lot of times, that’s all.

As for Cooper, well, I think the author hit the nail on the head regarding his character traits, especially how he reacted to a certain life changing event. His heart always seemed to be in the right place which, whilst was so lovely to read, I felt it was wasted on Kate. God I sound nasty don’t I haha. Just to clarify, these are my opinions of the characters and not my opinion of the authors writing. I treat characters in books like real  people!

Overall, I really did enjoy reading ‘The Long Walk Back’ as it was so refreshing to read a storyline which laid a lot of ‘taboo’ subjects bare, showing readers that there are people in the real world who deal with things like the characters in the book. It was realistic, relatable and of course, emotionally charged. I absolutely love Rachel Dove’s writing style as she always seems to get into the heart of her characters, ensuring that they deliver the storyline to the highest level. Once again, I do think that the author has delivered on that, and I feel that Rachel Dove should be exceptionally proud of the rock solid storyline she has created.

Emotional, heart-warming, and most definitely eye-opening; ‘The Long Walk Back’ will make you look at your life in a completely different way, changing your mindset from just ‘being’ to ‘living’.

Huge thanks HQDigitalUK.

Amazon UK // Kobo // Barnes and Noble 

Extract.

Kate was in a real mood; Trevor could tell from the way she pounded across the tent to him.
He was doing his rounds, and they had had a good night. A good night here was when they still had the same number alive as the day before. A great day was when there were no casualties at all, but Trevor was hard pushed to remember many days like that.
‘Who’s upset you? Neil whingeing about doing the dishwasher again, is he?’ Trevor asked, and immediately regretted cracking the joke when the icicles from Kate’s frosty glare jabbed him in the chest.
‘Captain Cooper thinks he is hilarious. I’m just waiting for him to call me ‘toots’ and slap me on the behind,’ Kate said, seething. Trevor checked the vitals on his sleeping patient, and satisfied, made notes on his chart.
‘So he’s awake? That’s amazing! How is he doing?’
‘Oh he’s doing just fine, for a male chauvinist pig.’
Kate,’ Trevor admonished, trying not to laugh at her furious expression. ‘How are his vitals?’
Kate pursed her lips, taking a breath to focus on the job. ‘He’s stable, the chest drain is
working well. I’m still concerned about his leg though. He has limited blood flow to the area, and I’m worried about sepsis.’
Trevor nodded sadly. ‘So he will probably lose the leg, if we try to keep him alive.’ He
rubbed at his temples. ‘Not told him any of this, have you?’
Kate shook her head. ‘I told him you would explain on this morning’s ward round. I wanted to go through everything again, monitor him closely for as long as we safely can before we make a decision.’
Trevor looked at her, his face unreadable. ‘It may not be our decision, it’s up to him.’
Kate looked nonplussed. ‘The evac chopper is coming in two days. At present, he’s too
unstable to move. We need to get him home then, leg or no leg. A decision between losing a limb and dying is not a great thing to have thrust at you, granted – but he wants to live,
surely?’
Trevor placed the chart at the foot of the bed and started to walk towards the next patient, issuing medication instructions to the nurse as he walked.
‘Kate,’ he began in a tone he might have used to tell his child that Father Christmas wasn’t real. ‘I have worked on men like Captain Cooper since this whole nightmare started. These are army men to the core. Sometimes going home means no family, no buddies, no job, and a lifetime of relying on other people. They are proud, and sometimes, to them, the reality is worse than death. Don’t take anything for granted when it comes to patient wishes.’
‘A boy died yesterday, to save these men. Surely that’s reason enough to want to live?’
Kate ran her fingers through her hair, suddenly feeling tired all over again.
‘Cooper knows that. Better than most, probably. It’s still his decision, he has to live with it. Understood?’ Trevor spoke firmly now.
Kate opened her mouth to argue, but she thought better of it. She respected her mentor,
always had, and she didn’t want to argue. Not when the fact that life was so short and
precious was evident in every face, every feature she saw over here. ‘Understood.’

Giveaway!!

To be in with a chance of winning a signed copy of ‘The Long Walk Back by Rachel Dove’, enter the giveaway by clicking the link below. Open internationally.

Enter the giveaway here!

About the author.

I am a wife, mother of two boys, perpetual student, avid reader and writer of words. I sometimes sleep, always have eye bags and dream of retiring to a big white house in Cornwall, with 2 shaggy dogs, drinking wine on my seafront balcony whilst creating works of romantic fiction. All done with immaculate make up and floaty dresses.
In the meantime I nearly always remember to brush my hair, seldom have time to look in a mirror and write many, many to-do lists.

My first solo novel, Crossing Life Lines is out now in Kindle and paperback format. Look out for my horror shorts, published through Bayou Brew Publishing: The House of Sugar Blood, August 2013 and Uni Assassin, out now, and my short story, Mallow Girl, out now.
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 e-book and paperback, and the follow-up novel in the series, The Flower Shop on Foxley Street.

Facebook // Twitter // Goodreads Author Page // Instagram // Blog

TWG’s #TopBooksof2017! @Bookouture @TeamBATC @Headlinepg @HQDigitalUK @AvonBooksUK @ChoclitUK

The Writing Garnet's
It’s that time of year again when most publishers, bloggers, readers, publicists, (you catch my drift) go through their ‘read’ books of the year, ready to compile a list of their most favourite books. A yearly ritual which sees ‘TBR’ piles growing even bigger, lists being compared, and readers finding new books they wouldn’t have dared to pick up until they read that particular list. A ritual where all the fabulous books us readers/bloggers have fallen in love with over the past year, get celebrated once again.

In lament terms, we get to gush. Having read a total of 318 books in 2017, I knew my #TopBooks list wasn’t going to be small. Have you SEEN the books published this year!? 2017 has been an outstanding year for books. So many debut authors have shone with their debut novels, whilst other authors many already love have upped their game with yet another novel. I have managed to get my list down to a Top 40 otherwise we would have been here until next year going through them, but, in all honesty, I could have happily put most of those 318 books on this list!

In absolutely NO particular order, here are TWG’s #TopBooksof2017!

 

1. A Song for Tomorrow by Alice Peterson
(You can read my review here)
2. The Legacy of Lucy Harte by Emma Heatherington
(You can read my review here)
3. Before You Go by Clare Swatman
(You can read my review here)
4. Sister, Sister by Sue Fortin
(You can read my review here)
5. The Quiet Man by James Carol
(You can read my review here)
6. The Second Chance Tea Shop by Fay Kennan
(You can read my review here)
7. The Year of Saying Yes by Hannah Doyle
(I am still due a full review for all parts of this book – watch this space!)
8. Lost For Words by Stephanie Butland
(You can read my review here)
9. The Woman at Number 24 by Juliet Ashton
(You can read my review here)
10. The Wedding Girls by Kate Thompson.
(You can read my review here)

11. Blink by K.L.Slater
(You can read my review here)
12. A Time to Change by Callie Langridge
(You can read my review here)
13. The Doll House by Phoebe Morgan
(You can read my review here)
14. Too Damn Nice by Kathryn Freeman
(You can read my review here)
15. Another Woman’s Husband by Gill Paul
(You can read my review here)
16. The Law of Attraction by Roxie Cooper
(You can read my review here)
17. I’m Still Standing (previously titled ‘Reach For the Stars) by Colleen Coleman
(You can read my review here)
18. 37 Hours by J.F.Kirwan
(You can read my review here)
19. If You Could See Me Now by Keris Stainton
(You can read my review here)
20. Til The Dust Settles by Pat Young
(You can read my review here)

21. The Betrayed by Casey Kelleher
(You can read my review here)
22. The Detriment by David Videcette
(You can read my review here)
23. The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters by Jaimie Admans
(You can read my review here)
24. Skin Deep by Laura Wilkinson
(You can read my review here)
25. Trust Me by Angela Clarke
(You can read my review here)
26. Summer at the Dog and Duck by Jill Steeples
(You can read my review here)
27. Hot Mess by Lucy Vine
(You can read my review here)
28. It Started With a Tweet by Anna Bell
(You can read my review here)
29. A Little Christmas Faith by Kathryn Freeman
(You can read my review here)
30. A Little Luck, A Lot of Faith by Linn.B.Halton
(You can read my review here)

31. Dying Breath by Helen Phifer
(You can read my review here)
32. Dying Day by Stephen Edgar
(You can read my review here)
33. Scream Blue Murder by Tony.J.Forder
(You can read my review here)
34. The Little Clock House series (book 1&2) by Eve Devon
(Reviews can be found here and here)
35. Murder Game by Caroline Mitchell
(You can find my review here)
36. The Lost Child by Patricia Gibney
(You can find my review here)
37. The Man Who Died by Antti Tuomainen
(You can read my review here)
38. How To Be Champion by Sarah Millican
(I still need to write my review for this book – watch this space!)
39. Bad Sister by Sam Carrington
(You can read my review here)
40. The Other Mother by Judith Baker
(You can read my review here)

Phew! I’m knackered now! If any of the above books tickle your fancy, all purchase links can be found on the review link below each title. So many incredible books written by such fantastic authors – it has been an absolute honour to have been given ARC’s of a majority of the above books. I would like to say a huge thank you to:

Simon&Shuster // ChocLitUK // Harper Impulse // PanMacMillan // Bookouture // Aria
Headline // Bombshell Books/Bloodhound Books // HQDigitalUK // Faber Books 
Accent Press // Avon // Orion // Orenda & Bonnier Zaffre

for giving me the opportunity to read all of the above books. I would also like to thank all of the authors above for writing such jaw dropping and emotional reads! I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again – this year has been a fantastic year for books and I want to extend another thank you to every author and publisher behind each and every one of the 318 books I have read this year. Just like many readers, I use books to escape and without you writing/publishing those books, I truly don’t think that I would be able to cope.

Whilst 2017 has blown me away, 2018 is set to be another brilliant year for books as well – my number one novel to watch out for in 2018 is ‘Anatomy of a Scandal’ by Sarah Vaughan which is due to be published on the 11th January 2018. I was very lucky to receive an ARC of this book before publication and you can read my review (as well as pre-order the book) by clicking here.

Did any of YOUR favourites pop up in my #TopBooksof2017? Let me know in the comments if any have, or whether you have decided to nab a few of these books for your own TBR piles!

2017, it has been a bookish pleasure. I cannot WAIT to see what 2018 brings in terms of books!

#CoverReveal! The Things We Need to Say – Rachel Burton @bookish_yogi @HQDigitalUK #comingsoon

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)
It’s like Christmas has come early this afternoon! Why? Because I have the absolute honour of sharing author of the outstanding novel, ‘The Many Colours of Us’, Rachel Burton’s upcoming book cover!!!! I am so excited about this book and, what’s even better, the cover is a beaut as well!

So, what can I tell you about this book? Well, it is looking to be published in e-book format in May 2018 by HQDigitalUK. Here is the blurb (please note that any of the information given in this post could be subject to change at any time):

Sometimes the things we never say are the most important.

Fran loves Will with all her heart. They had a whirlwind romance, a perfect marriage and a wonderful life. Until everything changed. Now Fran needs to find her way again and teaching a yoga retreat in Spain offers her just that. Leaving behind a broken marriage she has some very important decisions to make.

Will needs his wife, he needs her to open up to him if they’re to ever return to the way things once were. But he may have damaged any possibility he had of mending their relationship and now Fran is in Spain and Will is alone.

As both Fran and Will begin to let go of a life that could have been, fate may just find a way of bringing them back together.

Perfect for fans of Katie Marsh, Amanda Prowse and Sheila O’Flanagan

From the best-selling author of The Many Colours of Us comes an emotional story of grief, relationships and ultimately hope.

Coming May 2018.

I know, I know – doesn’t it sound incredible? I guess you want to see the book cover now, don’t you? I suppooooseeeeeeeee!!!!!!

BgiT0LxK

‘The Things We Need to Say’ by Rachel Burton, is coming May 2018. You can pre-order your copy right now from Amazon UK

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)

#BlogTour! #Review – 88 North by J.F.Kirwan (@kirwanjf) @HQDigitalUK @NeverlandBT

88
SO excited to be reviewing yet another J.F.Kirwan novel on my blog today! After surprising myself by being hooked on his previous novel, ’37 Hours’, I just knew I had to read the last book in the series. Huge thanks to HQDigitalUK for the ARC of ’88 North’, and thank you to NeverlandBT for inviting me to take part in the blog tour. Here is my review:

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The deadliest kind of assassin is one who is already dying…

As the radiation poisoning that Nadia Laksheva was exposed to in Chernobyl takes hold of her body, she knows she has mere weeks to live. But Salamander, the terrorist who murdered her father and sister has a deadly new plan to ‘make the sky bleed’. Nadia is determined to stop him again, even if it is the last thing she ever does.

The only clue she has are the coordinates 88˚ North, a ridge in the Arctic right above one of the largest oil fields in the world, three thousand metres below the ice. If Salamander takes hold of the oil field, he could change the climate of the whole planet for generations to come…

But can Nadia stop him before her own time runs out?

The gripping third and final novel in J.F. Kirwan’s brilliant spy thriller series. Perfect for fans of Charles Cumming, Mark Dawson and Adam Brookes.

What does TWG think?

If you had told me a couple of years ago that I would be hooked on a spy thriller series, I would have laughed in your face. I have never really paid much attention to, nor had much interest in, spy novels. I’ve always thought of them as ‘boy novels’, stupidly. So, when I was approached to read J.F.Kirwan’s previous novel ’37 Hours’, my curiosity got the better of me and I decided to take a running leap out of my comfort zone, to read J.F.Kirwan’s novel. Of course I thought to myself, ‘nahhhhh, I won’t like it’, yet I was pleasantly surprised when I absolutely flipping loved it. Because of that, my excitement to read ’88 North’ was through the roof. Would Nadia complete what she set out to do? Would Salamander STILL rule the roost? So many questions, so little time. I would be lying if I said that my heart wasn’t in my mouth the entire time – because it was.

Once again J.F.Kirwan has written such a complex, intense and jaw dropping storyline, which makes talking about this book even more difficult as each event in the storyline is linked with another one, therefore not only would the chances of giving away one piece of information be extremely high, the chances of giving away multiple pieces of information are through the roof. I don’t wish to be the person who gives away an entire storyline, yet I would love to be able to shout about this book and say, ‘WHAT ABOUT THE PART WHEN…….’. Seriously.

Seeing as it had been a little while between reading the books in the series, it did take me a little while to get back into the swing of the storyline. That said, I guess you could read this book as a standalone. But in my personal opinion, I would advise you to grab the previous two books before you read this one just so that you can read all of the events in order, and so that you know each of the main characters back stories.

Reading ’88 North’ really was bittersweet as whilst I was super excited about delving into the book, I was gutted that as soon as I came to the last page, the series was now at an end. I didn’t want it to finish but I whole heartedly understand that Nadia’s story had to be left somewhere, and that carrying it on could weaken the overall feel of the storyline.

I’m not sure whether it was just me, but I found this storyline to contain a lot more gore than the previous book and, whilst I would usually shy away from that sort of thing, all of the blood and gore fit one hundred percent. In all honesty, I don’t think the storyline would have made such an impact on me if it contained no elements of gore. It needed all of that to bring Nadia’s story to life even more, as weird as that sounds but I’m hoping that that makes sense to a lot of you.

J.F.Kirwan has quickly become one of my all-time favourite authors with his dark, gritty, suspenseful and utterly incredibly storylines. If it wasn’t for this author, I don’t think that I would have dared to step outside of my comfort zone to read, and fall in love with (as weird as that sounds) with this spy thriller series. I could not put this book down and to be perfectly honest, I really didn’t want to either.

Jaw-droppingly brilliant, ’88 North’ is the icing on the cake where Nadia Laksheva is concerned. A brilliant finale to a phenomenal series, I would recommend this book, and the series, time and time again.

Outstanding!!!

Huge thanks to HQDigitalUK.

Pre-order now from Amazon UK. (Released 14th December 2017)

Author Bio

J. F. Kirwan is the author of the Nadia Laksheva thriller series for HarperCollins. Having
worked in accident investigation and prevention in nuclear, offshore oil and gas and aviation sectors, he uses his experience of how accidents initially build slowly, then race towards a climax, to plot his novels. An instructor in both scuba diving and martial arts, he travels extensively all over the world, and loves to set his novels in exotic locations. He is also an insomniac who writes in the dead of night. His favourite authors include Lee Child, David Baldacci and Andy McNab.

Author links:

Website // Twitter // Facebook

Giveaway!!

To be in with a chance of winning  3, £10 Amazon gift cards (3 different winners) International, all you need to do is enter the giveaway here! Good luck!

#BlogTour! #Review – Ours Is The Winter by @LaurieEllingham @HQDigitalUK @NeverlandBT

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Delighted to be kicking off Laurie Ellingham’s blog tour today for ‘Ours Is The Winter’, which was published by HQDigital in November. Huge thanks to the publisher for the ARC, and thank you to NeverlandBT for asking me to take part in the blog tour. Here is my review:

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Journeying across the Arctic, their pasts are about to catch up with them.

Erica, Molly and Noah are embarking on the challenge of a lifetime, driving Siberian huskies across the frozen wilderness of the Arctic. Cut off from the world and their loved ones and thrown together under gruelling conditions, it isn’t long before the cracks start to show.

Erica has it all. A loving husband, a successful career and the most adorable baby daughter. But Erica has been living a double life, and as she nears her fortieth birthday her lies threaten to come crashing down. Molly was on her way to stardom. But when her brother died, so did her dreams of becoming an Olympic champion. Consumed by rage and grief, she has shut out everyone around her, but now she’s about to learn that comfort can come from the most unexpected places.

Noah has a darkness inside him and is hounded by nightmares from his past. Tortured, trapped and struggling to save his fractured relationship, he knows this journey is not going to help, but try telling his girlfriend that.

As their lives and lies become ever more entwined, it becomes clear that in the frozen wilds there is nowhere to hide.

What does TWG think?

If this book doesn’t give you all the feels, I don’t know what will.

Three main characters, three different reasons for embarking on a journey of a lifetime, yet all three are connected by one heart-breaking event. Erica, Molly and Noah are about to get up close and personal with a group of Siberian huskies in the Arctic (as you do). Noah is there as his girlfriend, Rachel, is adamant that the challenge will change Noah for the better. Erica is there because she needs to go back to basics and learn how to be herself again. And Molly, well, she’s there for a good reason, but it’s a reason which is completely unknown to her.

All three characters are extremely complex, each of them going through life with a bucketful of guilt mixed in with the odd secret. They have all gone through the last few years believing completely different things, refusing to believe anything different from what their mind has conjured up and it is severely destructive.

I adored how different the setting of this book was! So unique and intriguing, yet not too overpowering to swallow each individual character’s stories. I just loved how the author went about it, peaking my interest with the huskies in the Arctic, yet igniting my emotions with such a clever and well thought out storyline. Even though I had an inkling about where a part of the storyline was heading, I wasn’t prepared for the rawness of how the situation was executed. It was like I was in amongst Erica, Molly and Noah, watching everything unfold and seeing the emotion for my very own eyes. The way in which the author wrote those scenes was incredibly gut wrenching yet written absolutely beautifully.

For me, ‘Ours Is The Winter’ came with such a poignant, underlying message. One which I feel a lot of people need to read and adhere to. A message which stopped me in my tracks, made me sit up and take notice, whilst reaching the very centre of my soul. ‘Ours Is The Winter’ taught me that forgiveness is the greatest power anyone could ever hold in their hands. It takes a lot of courage to be able to stand and look at someone who has hurt you, whilst uttering the words ‘I forgive you’. To be perfectly honest, I have absolutely no idea what I would have done in Molly’s situation, yet the way she handled it is incredibly inspiring. ‘Ours Is The Winter’ taught me that whilst moving on takes strength, forgiving someone takes courage and belief. Forgiving someone doesn’t mean that you trust them, it means that you’re refusing to let their actions have a hold on you anymore.

I absolutely adore Laurie Ellingham’s storytelling as it’s real. It’s poignant. It’s beautiful, and it’s so thought-provoking. This author writes stories from the heart and I’m telling you now, even if your heart is surrounded by enough ice to rival Elsa from Frozen, Laurie Ellingham will get part that exterior and hold your heart in her hands with the minimal amount of effort.

Outstanding once again.

Thanks HQDigitalUK.

Buy now from Amazon UK

Author bio:

When I’m not running around after my two children, my husband, our Cockerpoo Rodney, or just plain running, I love nothing more than disappearing into the fictional world of my characters preferably with a large coffee and a Twix (or two) to hand.
When I am in the thick of a character crisis, I can often be seen walking around the village with my jumper on inside out and back to front, chatting (and occasionally laughing) away to myself. I have a first class honours degree in psychology and a background in Public Relations, both of which help in everything I do.

Links:

Twitter // Website

Giveaway!

Prize: 1 signed paperback of Laurie’s previous book, “One Endless Summer”.

Enter the giveaway!

#BlogTour! #Guestpost – Top 10 Xmas Ideas for a booklover by Rebecca Raisin @jaxandwillsmum

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Super excited to be taking part in Rebecca Raisin’s blog tour for ‘Winter at Cedarwood Lodge’, which is published today by HQDigitalUK. Congratulations Rebecca! I am having to split my slot on the tour into two so today is the guest post which Rebecca has kindly written for us, and then in a few days I will be sharing my review of ‘Winter at Cedarwood Lodge’. I have actually read this book as it was previously published as three separate books. But, because that was last year and this new version contains bonus material, I want to do the review and book justice by splitting into tour.

So, if you’re stuck for Christmas present ideas for the book lover in your life then look no further! I am delighted to hand my blog over to Rebecca Raisin as she gives you the lowdown on the Top Ten Christmas Ideas for the booklover in your life. Enjoy!

Top ten Christmas gift ideas for the booklover in your life

OK, so I mean us! We bibliophiles who look forward to the festive season because it means extra time curled up with a book and hopefully some new bookish gifts!
When I wrote Winter at Cedarwood Lodge I had lots of fun deciding on Christmas gifts for my characters as if they were real people and I was puzzling over real presents. I mean, who doesn’t love a Christmas onesie?

But we bookworms need a little more while we read so here at my top ten gift ideas:

1. Slippers. No brainer, right? Preferably a pair that have some relevance to books and
that will earn you extra points. But think comfort, think fluffy, think big.

2. Bookmarks, even for the dog-ear- er in your life, they can learn can’t they? I hasten to
add I am a dog-ear- er from way back and unrepentant, but still, I like bookmarks
because they’re pretty! Ones with motivational quotes, literary one liners, take a punt and buy them all!

3. Candles, yes we burn the midnight hour reading way past our bedtime and we’d like
to do that with some exotic scented candles, thank you very much! If you can find one
that smells like old books, more the better!

4. Book totes! Literary themed of course! We’re planning on spending all those book
gift vouchers as soon as the shops are open and we’ll need some heavy duty tote to fit
them all in.

5. Book related jewelry, anything goes! From those cute miniature book charm
necklaces to Pride and Prejudice earrings, you buy it, we’ll wear it!

6. Cushions. Lots of ‘em. Cushions with ampersands, furry cushions, Paris themed,
shaped like donuts! What’s a book nook without cushions?

7. Notebooks, oh beautiful notebooks with leather bound covers, or covers that look like
old library cards, or have pictures of bookshelves, or sweet musings, we need them,
and we need them urgently to scribble down our book loving thoughts.

8. Book boxes, yes tiny boxes shaped like books for the literary jewelry that’s wrapped
and under the tree (see no.5!) These little boxes come in all shapes and sizes and the
perfect gift to stash away those lovely little bookish gems.

9. Bookshelves… I mean, we all need more, am I right? Or a bigger house. So yeah,
maybe put house on the list.

10. Books! Better yet, bookshop gift vouchers, because we’ve read everything already!

Note to my family: this list goes for me too!

I hope you have a lovely Christmas filled with great food, good wine and lots of new
characters to fall in love with… xxx

So fellow book lovers, how many from Rebecca’s list have you asked for for Christmas? In an ideal world the man in red would leave it all for me Christmas morning, but I have a feeling that I may need to go out and by them for myself! Well, unless anyone wants to surprise me at Christmas that is…hint ;).

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Winter at Cedarwood Lodge by Rebecca Raisin can be purchased now from Amazon UK.

#CoverReveal! The Little Wedding Island-Jaimie Admans @Be_the_spark @HQDigitalUK @NeverlandBT

Weekly Wrap Up! (1)
-hyperventilates-
I have been waiting YEARS* for news of Jaimie Admans new book, and now it’s here! The news, not the book.
*I may have SLIGHTLY exaggerated there….only a little bit.

Anyway. I am SO, SO, SO, SO excited to be revealing the book cover of Jaimie Admans upcoming novel, ‘The Little Wedding Island’, which is due to be published by HQDigitalUK in March 2018. I know, I know. I cried at the release date too. Sniff. Unfortunately I sat on my magic wand so it’s no longer working, I am unable to make the time fast forward to said publication date.
HOWEVER, what I can do instead is tease you a bit by showing you the cover, AND let you know a bit more about the book. Oh, and of course giving you the all important pre-order links, obviously!

Are you ready for this?!

SQUEAL.

The Little Wedding Island-large*Please note that this blurb is unofficial and could change at any time*

Bonnie Haskett loves love. She’s a hopeless romantic who’s always daydreaming of the day she’ll finally get married and live happily ever after. She hasn’t found Mr Right yet, but she’s sure he’s out there somewhere… For now, she consoles herself by writing about beautiful weddings for a bridal magazine, watching brides and grooms so hopelessly in love that it’s enough to melt even the harshest cynic’s heart.

Rohan Carter is love’s harshest cynic and nothing about a wedding will melt his heart, thank you very much. He writes a monthly column for a men’s magazine in which he advises men never to get married and gives advice on how to protect themselves from love.

These two rival journalists find themselves stuck together on Edelweiss Island, an island off the south coast of Britain that has become known as ‘the little wedding island’. There’s a rumour that no marriage performed in the church there has ever ended in divorce, and Bonnie and Rohan are both sent to investigate it.

However, they quickly find the locals are unwelcoming and untalkative, and no one is going to tell them anything about this ‘church of no divorces’ if they aren’t there to get married in it. There’s only one thing for it – team up and pretend to be engaged to each other to gain access to the church and find out what’s really going on there. They might not be friends, but their only chance to get the inside scoop on the mysterious island that everyone’s talking about is each other. It would be a win for both of them and all it would take is one little white lie. Just one…

Does this book sound and look fabulous, or does this book sound and look fabulous!!! I really cannot wait to get my hands on Jaimie’s new novel, especially after reading her previous novel ‘The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters’.

Whilst ‘The Little Wedding Island’ is available to pre-order now from Amazon UKAmazon US, and Kobo (e-book is available to pre-order from other e-book retailers also, not just the ones listed so make sure you check if your usual one isn’t listed!), Jaimie’s previous book ‘The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters’ is available to buy and read now from Amazon UK, if you fancied reading it whilst you wait for her new book to land!
(You can find out what TWG thought about Jaimie’s previous book right here – #Tour! Chateau of Happily Ever Afters – Jaimie Admans @be_the_spark @NeverlandBT @HQDigitalUK).

Author bio:

Jaimie is a 32-year-old English-sounding Welsh girl with an awkward-to-spell name. She
lives in South Wales and enjoys writing, gardening, watching horror movies, and drinking tea, although she’s seriously considering marrying her coffee machine. She loves autumn and winter, and singing songs from musicals despite the fact she’s got the voice of a dying hyena. She hates spiders, hot weather, and cheese & onion crisps. She spends far too much time on Twitter and owns too many pairs of boots.

She will never have time to read all the books she wants to read.
She is the author of chick-lit romantic comedies The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters and Kismetology, and she has also written young-adult romantic comedies Afterlife Academy, Not Pretty Enough, and North Pole Reform School.

Twitter // Website