#BlogTour! #Review – Love, Lies and Wedding Cake by Sue Watson (@SueWatsonwriter) @Bookouture

suewatson1
Happy publication day to Sue Watson and ‘Love, Lies and Wedding Cake’! I am absolutely delighted to be hosting one of my all-time favourite authors on my blog today, on her own very special day. Big thanks to Bookouture for the blitz invite and my ARC of the book. Here is my review:

suewatson
An absolutely hilarious, laugh-‘til-you-cry, romantic comedy about how life never quite goes to plan…

Faye is in crisis. You wouldn’t know it, because of the big fat smile on her face, but inside, she’s one step away from nuclear meltdown. And she shouldn’t be. Dan is the man of her dreams. And he’s just asked her to marry him.

But Faye’s been down the marriage road before and it ended up with her having Ryan Gosling fantasies while her ex-husband obsessed about the plumbing. Faye and Dan, on the other hand, have been living their lives to the fullest, travelling around the world, having sex under the stars… They’ve never argued about unrolling socks before putting them in the laundry.

Besides, even if she wanted to say yes, how could she move to the other side of the world? Because marrying Dan would mean living in Australia. Beautiful, warm and a gazillion miles from Faye’s daughter, Emma, a single mum with her own crazy little girl who both need Faye every single day. Leaving them – even for someone who makes her as happy as Dan – simply isn’t an option. 

Dan is offering Faye everything she ever wanted. So why does she feel like she’s about to lose it all?

What does TWG think?

‘Love, Lies and Wedding Cake’ is the sequel to Sue Watson’s previous novel, ‘Love, Lies and Lemon Cake’. I had hoped that I would have read the first book before reading the second book, however that wasn’t the case. Luckily it didn’t make much difference as I was able to read this book perfectly well on its own.

Faye is as happy as pig in……cough. She has a wonderful daughter, a sassy granddaughter, and is the girlfriend of an Australian hunk (a toy-boy fyi). What more could a forty something woman want? When Faye finds out that her boyfriend, Dan, has to go back home to Australia, she feels her heart shatter into a million pieces. Dan tells her that it’s about time she lived her own life, instead of living her daughter’s. But can she really go half way around the world without her two girls with her?

Can I just say that Faye’s granddaughter is absolutely hilarious!! Someone get that girl her own novel! What a sassy, strong willed toddler who, incidentally, reminded me of my  own little girl. Gotta love them though, eh!

As daft as this sounds, ‘Love, Lies and Wedding Cake’ came at the right time as lately I have been struggling to do things for myself, because I am so busy doing things for other people. Just like Faye. It’s after you see it in black and white from a different perspective, that things start to make sense. Faye struggled with her own conscience of trying to be the perfect mum/granddaughter, whilst also wanting to finally live her life with her boyfriend. It was as though she was damned by any decision that she made, yet the only person who was going to suffer in the long run was herself.

This storyline really did hit home on a personal level, making me quite emotional in the process, making me feel as though my own personal feelings were being validated by a fictional character. I could see where Dan was coming from to a certain extent, yet the way he ended up phrasing it to Faye made him come across like a donkey hat.

Sue Watson’s delivery of both a hilarious and heart-warming read was, as always, totally flawless. The ratio between serious and snort-your-drink-out-of-your-nose moments was brilliantly defined, moulding well together to create an all round, perfect and huggable read.

Faye, courtesy of Sue Watson, made me remember that whilst we are often intent on splitting ourselves between 3855738 people, the person who we need to ensure is happy and fulfilled more often than anyone else – is ourselves. Faye highlighted that that was easier said than done, yet she also highlighted how important it was to do, before you end up hitting fifty and realising that you have actually done nothing for yourself. Gives you food for thought really, doesn’t it? Or cake….

‘Love, Lies and Wedding Cake’ fulfilled me from the tips of my fingers to the tips of my toes, wrapping me up in a blanket with its cosy and touching moments. Sue Watson’s novel could not have come at a better time for me to read, and I feel like now, thanks to copious amounts of cake and a sassy granddaughter of Faye’s, I can allow myself to snort drink out of my nose in laughter if I choose to do so…for me.

Beautifully written, I’m torn between choosing this book or choosing a cake – that is how much I loved this book**

** Ps, the book won seeing as it contains cake ;).

Buy now!

About the author.

Sue Watson was a journalist then a TV Producer at the BBC until she realised that instead of working, she could stay at home, and write about exciting things like foreign travel and cake!

So far Sue’s written twelve books, and some have been translated into Italian, German and Portuguese (she’s big in Brazil!) Originally from Manchester, Sue now lives with her husband and teenage daughter in Worcestershire where her days are spent baking (and eating) lots of cake, while making big life decisions about whether to have Caramel Chew Chew or Salted Caramel ice cream while watching ‘My 600lb Life,’ on the sofa. 

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

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

Follow Sue on Twitter @suewatsonwriter

Advertisements

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Lead Me Home by CS Savage (@sarahsavage26) @BloodhoundBook

B L O G B L I T Z (1)-3
Today I am reviewing CS Savage’s new novel, Lead Me Home’ as part of the blog blitz. Thank you to Sarah from Bloodhoundbooks for the blitz invite and the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

Lead Me Home – CS Savage (1)

His perfect woman will be his forever.

As an overworked NHS psychiatrist, Dr Clancy Mclean is used to dealing with mental illness.  But she is stressed –  trying to balance her career and the needs of her only child, Rowan.  And she has her work cut out trying to keep her patients well. She knows two of them are psychotic, and becoming overwhelmed by their voices. If they act on them it could prove disastrous.

Rowan is troubled. Her boyfriend is abusive but she doesn’t want to end the relationship – she’s too scared of being lonely. Can she find someone else to keep her company?

And, as if Clancy doesn’t have enough to worry about, another of her patients is paranoid and convinced she is being stalked. Is it just a symptom of her mental illness?

Because there is a stalker on the prowl and he is getting closer to his victim with each passing day.

What does TWG think?

Can I come out yet? My mind has been in hiding ever since I finished reading ‘Lead Me Home’ last night. For a book that made me rather uncomfortable and a little bit nauseous, I wasn’t able to tear my eyes away from the chilling storyline of ‘Lead Me Home’. There were, I’m not going to lie, moments whilst reading the novel where I had to put it down for a few minutes to compose myself before picking it up again, with parts of my brain telling me to stop reading. I couldn’t stop, that was the weird thing. However, what was even weirder, was the fact that I don’t think I actually wanted to stop reading, regardless of how uncomfortable the storyline was making me.

I am really glad that my decision not to read blurbs pays off because, if I read the blurb of ‘Lead Me Home’ beforehand, I don’t think my reaction to the chilling events would have been so dramatic.

Clancy works as a psychiatrist, coming face to face with patients who think they’re hearing voices, threatening to harm themselves and other people, or anything else under the Mental Health umbrella. What Clancy doesn’t realise, however, is that due to her going with her gut instincts where one patient is concerned, she has unknowingly put her daughter at risk. But will Rowan see that? And will Clancy open her eyes to goings on outside of her works four walls?

I really couldn’t work Clancy out at all and, if truth be told, she actually got on my nerves a lot of the time. When Rowan made it clear that she thought her mother was spending too much time thinking about work and not enough time thinking about her own daughter, I thought Rowan was just being a spoiled brat. But, after delving into the situation a little bit more, I hold my hands up and say that I was wrong, and Rowan was right. Yes, Clancy’s job is demanding and life consuming – but so is being there for her daughter which in my eyes, should have been her priority.

Considering Rowan is an 18 year old female, I am surprised at just how naive she was. I mean, really? Who does what she did without even thinking about the consequences behind her actions? It’s not as though she’s a young girl – she’s pretty much an adult! I think I’m starting to show my age now….

There were several situations described in the novel which brought shivers up my spine and made my heartbeat turn irregular. Honestly? I was a little bit unnerved by what I was reading. Personally, I don’t see my reactions to those situations as a negative thing, because I would probably count myself as weird if I turned around and said that I loved them ;).

The fact that my reactions to ‘Lead Me Home’ were incredibly strong, just goes to show just how well CS Savage has written the book. I was addicted to the twisted scenarios. I was chilled to the bone. I became nauseous in reaction to certain characters actions. Yet, hand on heart, I can honestly say that ‘Lead Me Home’ is definitely a heart in mouth, jaw dropping, high energy, and severely thrilling read which managed to leave me feeling highly uncomfortable, scared, yet weirdly content.

‘Lead Me Home’ is a twisted tale about trust, battling against your own mind, and dealing with your own conscience. Whilst CS Savage didn’t exactly ‘lead me home’ as I don’t fancy living with Clancy and co, the author managed to lead me somewhere and I am in awe at where she managed to take me. What a belter of a book.

Buy now!

About the author.

CS
Savage is a psychiatrist, and a life long fan of mystery/suspense and crime fiction.

She works and lives in South London with her family and two dogs, but spends as much time as she can in her Lake District retreat.

She followed her life long ambition to write two years ago, and is an alumni of the Faber academy.

Lead Me Home is her debut novel, and she is currently working on the sequel.

Links:

#BlogTour! #Review – Three Secrets by Clare Boyd (@clareboydclark) @Bookouture

Cboyd1
Another Bookouture related review for you all today, this time it is for Clare Boyd and ‘Three Secrets’. Once again, thank you to Bookouture for the blog tour invite, as well as the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

CBoyd

A terrible secret killed your husband… but which one?

Robert kisses his wife on the head before heading out to the shop for more wine; he walks up the hill, takes a left across the footbridge and jumps to his death on the busy motorway below.

Two years later, Francesca and her young daughter are leaving London for a fresh start, money is tight and Robert’s mother has found them a little cottage in her village. Francesca is grateful for the help, but why does Robert’s mother want to keep them so close? Does she know about what Francesca did in the hour before Robert’s death?

Soon Francesca begins to suspect there was more to her husband’s death than she realised, that there might be even darker secrets hiding in his past than her own…

The closer gets to uncovering the truth, the more she asks: is her own life in danger now too?

What does TWG think?

What an intriguing novel! On one hand I was all ‘the pace is slow, I’m not too sure…’, yet on the other hand I couldn’t help but think ‘I have to find out more. I have to find out the reasons behind Francesca’s guilt’. So, whilst there was part of me that was battling with the slow burning storyline, the other part of me was too nosy NOT to find out the truth.

The more of the storyline I read, the more intrigued I became. Even though truths were coming out regarding a couple of the characters secrets, there seemed to be a lot of information still being withheld by Francesca, John and even Robert and John’s mum. As for Dilys, well, the less said about her the better!!

Personally, I didn’t feel that the pace picked up all that much, yet the strength of the storyline itself seemed to mature over the duration of the book. The characters seemed to come into their own, and the dynamics within the storyline increased in-depth. Therefore, even though I would have enjoyed the book more if the pace had been slightly faster, the fact that the author had written such an intense and gratifying read meant that I wasn’t as bothered by the pace to the level I usually am.

I loved how busy the storyline was, as it meant that I was able to sink my teeth into so many things without being bored or the story becoming stagnant. Clare Boyd made every little piece of information flow incredibly well, alongside the larger and more intrusive moments.

The conclusion was a shocker and a half, even though I did feel like it ended far too abruptly for my liking, I could easily have read more of the book without any issues! Hooked? I think so!

‘Three Secrets’ made me doubt every truth I had been told, every lie, and every single person for the duration of the novel. Clare Boyd, unknowingly made me prisoner of her characters secrets and I couldn’t have been happier and no, that isn’t a secret!

Buy now!

About the author.

Clare lives with her husband and their two daughters in Surrey, where her little green shed at the bottom of the garden provides a haven for her writing life. Before becoming a writer, she enjoyed a career in television, as a researcher in documentaries and then as a script editor in drama at the BBC and Channel Four, where her love of storytelling took hold.

Clare’s debut novel, Little Liar​, is published by Bookouture and is available to buy now.

Three Secrets, will be available to buy on May 17th 2018

 Author Social Media Links:

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/clareboydclark

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Last Goodbye by Arlene Hunt (@arlenehunt) @Bookouture

AH1
Happy publication day to Arlene Hunt and ‘Last Goodbye’. Huge thanks, as always, to Bookouture for the blitz invite, as well as the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

AH

You’re young. You’re in love. You’re in terrible danger …

‘The woman’s body lay on the bed, hair fanned out in a golden halo, blue eyes open. On the table stood an unmistakable sign: a bouquet of bright yellow roses…’

On a freezing January morning, a young couple is found dead in their cottage in the quiet Dublin suburbs. When Detective Eli Quinn arrives at the scene his stomach drops. It’s the second double homicide in as many months where the killer has left a bunch of yellow roses.

Tucked between the thorns is a little card, with an image of a broken heart. There’s no doubt the killer is trying to send a message, but what do the flowers mean? And can Eli figure out the killer’s motive, before they strike again?

What does TWG think?

Wow, wow, wow, wow, and WOW! ‘Last Goodbye’ had me in its clutches from the very first page, drawing me in like a cold drink on a summer’s day before I even had time to think. I didn’t just read Arlene Hunt’s novel, I devoured it (I think reading 37% of the novel in less than an hour is testament to that, don’t you think?).

There was just something rather special about this book and, despite finishing it 24 hours ago, I still haven’t been able to put my finger on what that is. It just is an exceptionally special novel which made me feel as though I was under investigation, never mind the fact that a killer was at large of course! My hands felt obstructed, my forehead was damp, and my arms were covered in goosebumps – if that is not proof of a brilliant read, I have no idea what is.

Thank goodness for being single is all I can say after reading this! A killer was drawn to couples in ‘love’. They were drawn to females, and they were drawn to killing for their own personal gain. Well, the dead person ended up being given flowers but I don’t suppose that counts seeing as they’re dead, but y’know!

I could tell straight away that Detective Quinn was a man to watch. Not because he was underhanded, but because he seemed to know a lot more than he was willing to divulge. Intrigued? I was! Having taken the newest recruit, Malloy, under his wing, Quinn is determined to show Malloy a few tricks of the trade. However, seeing as Malloy is a force to be reckoned with herself, personalities looked like they were going to clash sooner rather than later.

I would love to be able to talk about the part that shocked me the most, but seeing as it would be a humongous spoiler, I will refrain from doing so. All I will say is, once you begin this book, do not stop reading as the best is yet to come. Seriously! ‘Last Goodbye’ started with a bite, yet finished with a gash.

For me, Arlene Hunt ticked every single box and I have a feeling that this book is just the start of a fantastic series. I cannot WAIT to sink my teeth into book two if it’s anything as brilliant as this one is.

Shocking, thrilling, fast paced, and extremely addictive, ‘Last Goodbye’ will leave you wishing you had to do anything else but say goodbye.

Buy now!

About the author.

Arlene spent her childhood with ‘my nose buried in a book’.  She was a fierce debate-captain in school and her love of language was bound to lead her to writing. Alongside being an author, she writes, edits and reviews briefs for radio.

Arlene is married with one daughter and lives with a crotchety one-eyed cat named Binkley and a German Shepherd named Archer, who is not at all crotchety.

 Author Social Media Links:

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

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/arlenehunt

Website: http://arlenehunt.com/

#Review – The Millionaire’s Wife by Shalini Boland (@ShaliniBoland) @Bookouture

The-Millionaires-Wife-Kindle
Everyone has their secrets. But this one could destroy your marriage.

When Anna Blackwell opens an email from an unknown sender, the shocking image attached shatters her perfect world. A woman has been killed. And Anna knows who did it. The past is catching up with her.

Is it her turn next?

To protect herself and her husband Will, she must tell him the terrible truth about her first love. But as the secrets of her life unravel, Anna begins to realise that she is not the only one who has been living a lie.

Anna doesn’t know who to turn to: her best friend, her parents, her husband. But she knows that her ex-lover is dangerous and she must stop him, before it’s too late…

What does TWG think?

Happy publication day, Shalini Boland and ‘The Millionaire’s Wife’. Big thank you to Bookouture for being the book fairy godmother and granting my wish so that I could read the book in time for publication day!

I’m not too sure whether I’m becoming pickier regarding the books I now read, or whether I need to regroup where psychological thrillers are concerned, because I seem to be sitting on the fence for a lot of them to begin with. Now, seeing as it takes a little while for my mind to conjure up an opinion of the storyline, I don’t necessarily see that as a bad thing when I do find myself lagging behind on the fence, waiting for the pace to pick up. ‘The Millionaire’s Wife’ was no exception as, to begin with, I was rather unsure on what I was reading. However, after a couple of chapters of too-ing and fro-ing with my opinion, all of a sudden the storyline catapulted into grit and my eyes were glued to the page.

Anna Blackwell is holding on to multiple skeletons in her closet, whilst trying to move on with her life with her husband Will. As far as she is concerned, the past is gone and is no longer a threat to Anna’s new life. Unfortunately for Anna, her past is certainly not forgotten and, with one small detail brought to Anna’s attention, that fact was cemented straight away. Should she tell Will what is going on? Or should she wait to see whether the past goes through with the threat?

Oh my gosh! I am so glad that I continued to read ‘The Millionaire’s Wife’ as it just kept on delivering shock after shock every time I turned the page. One moment life was all rosy for Anna and Will, the next moment their lives are hanging by a thread. Literally. When the truth came out and Anna was made aware of just who was involved in certain events, it sent multiple shivers up my spine. It just goes to show that sometimes people really can be wolves in sheep clothing.

The energy felt throughout this book was like a lightening bolt. I couldn’t keep up with the shocks the author was intent on delivering, nor could I keep up on the attacks that were flying in Anna’s direction.

What started off, in my opinion, as a slow burning read, ending up being an absolute firecracker of a book which gripped me from head to toe. Never mind this book being about a millionaire’s wife, I feel like a millionaire just by being able to read it!

Buy now from Amazon

About the author.

Shalini Boland is a USA Today bestselling author of psychological thrillers ‘THE GIRL FROM THE SEA’ (No 1, US Audible charts), ‘THE BEST FRIEND’ (No 2, US Audible charts), ‘THE MILLIONAIRE’S WIFE’ (No 9, UK Kindle charts), ‘THE SECRET MOTHER’ (No 2, US Kindle charts), THE CHILD NEXT DOOR (No 11, UK Kindle charts).

THE SILENT SISTER is now available to preorder!

Shalini lives in Dorset, England with her husband, two children and their cheeky terrier cross. Before kids, she was signed to Universal Music Publishing as a singer/songwriter, but now she spends her days writing psychological thrillers (in between school runs and hanging out endless baskets of laundry).

Be the first to hear about her new releases here: http://eepurl.com/b4vb45

She is also the author of two bestselling Young Adult series as well as an atmospheric WWII novel with a time-travel twist.

http://www.facebook.com/ShaliniBolandAuthor
http://www.shaliniboland.co.uk
https://twitter.com/ShaliniBoland

#BlogTour! #Review – Summer Secrets at the Apple Blossom Deli by Portia MacIntosh (@PortiaMacIntosh) @HQDigitalUK

DdnxMJ7UQAAuND9.jpg-large
Day three of the ‘Summer Secrets at the Apple Blossom Deli’ blog tour is with me, TWG! I adore Portia MacIntosh’s novels, so when I received the e-mail about this little beauty, I just knew that I had to read it. Did it disappoint? You’ll have to read my review to find out! Big thanks to HQ for the blog tour invite and the ARC of the book.

Dddv3mXX0AAqzGh.jpg-large
Lily Holmes is ready for a fresh start. And there’s no better place to begin again than the idyllic seaside town of Marram Bay.

All Lily wants to do is focus on making her new deli a success and ensuring her son’s happiness. Not the postcard creeping out of her handbag, and definitely not finding a new man in her life!

But this isn’t going to be as easy as she first thought. The town is in uproar about the city girl who’s dared to join them and she’s fighting a battle at every turn.

Perhaps with a little help from the gorgeous cider farmer next door, she may be able to win them over, but her past secrets threaten to ruin everything…

What does TWG think?

SISTERS ARE DOING IT FOR THEMSELVES. STANDING ON THEIR OWN TWO FEEEEEEET!

Ohhhhhh my goodness me – what a refreshing read this is! Being a single mum myself, of  course I am going to zoom in on those parts of the storyline, especially due to the way the author wrote them.

Many books I have recently which have featured a single mum or two, have made us single mums’ out to be whining, negative women who aren’t good role models to our children. This book however, did the complete opposite. Whilst I am incredibly proud to be a single mum, after reading Portia MacIntosh’s new book, I felt even more proud to be one. Not only did MacIntosh celebrate single mums with her main character, Lily, she also showed all the haters that bringing up a child on your own is something to be proud of in more ways than one. This author didn’t patronise us, nor did she make us out to be a negative thing. Instead, she embraced us by allowing her character to kick all of the haters bottoms. For that alone, I want to thank Portia MacIntosh for writing a story which shows single mums in a positive way – it’s refreshing to see an author thinking for themselves where this topic is concerned.

So, Lily wants a new start for reasons which aren’t clear to us readers at the start. Her son’s happiness is at the forefront of her mind, but so is being able to lock the door on the past. However, with the locals going out of their way to alienate Lily and Frankie from the town before they have even unpacked their belongings, Lily’s ‘fresh start’ looks to backfire before it has even properly begun. Even though Lily is determined to do things on her own without the help of a man, when her new neighbour comes to help her out, she knows it would be incredibly rude to say ‘thanks but no thanks’, especially when he is too hot to trot. The neighbour, not his llama (of course). 

It’s amazing how much animosity one deli can cause. Or is the animosity radiating from her new visitor who likes the water the ground with his self attached hose? Who knows!

Hand on heart, if you were to ask me to tell you one negative thing about this book, I couldn’t reply. It’s not that I’m afraid of saying negative things, it’s because I genuinely cannot think of anything negative to say. Portia MacIntosh really has outdone herself with the content of ‘Summer Secrets at the Apple Blossom Deli’. From start to finish I was  gripped by such a refreshingly brilliant storyline which just kept on given. Even though the storyline contained more laugh out loud moments than serious moments, the author still managed to give the more serious situations the same amount of attention. Portia MacIntosh is known to make me snort drink from my nose, but when the vibe of the storyline changed to accommodate a stressful situation for Lily, MacIntosh delivered the sombre moments with the gritty oomph that they rightly deserved. Okay, she did include some things which did make me laugh out loud and visualise things when, being perfectly honest, I would have preferred NOT to, but it all worked very well together and I cannot fault the delivery of the theme in any way shape or form.

I LOVED every single thing about this book, so much so I had to wipe a stray tear from my eye when I reached the end (er, I think it was a stray tear, either that or the sweat from the 37573838 degrees outside was dripping down my face). I have everything crossed that ‘Summer Secrets at the Apple Blossom Deli’ is the start of a brand new series, but if it’s not, I hope MacIntosh can feel MY LOOK radiating through this blog post as a ‘wtf, get on with it’. Although, seeing as my daughter loves the fact the author has included a Shopkin name in her title (apple blossom), I cannot wait to see what Shopkin name you’ll manage to put into the second book in the series – there had better be a second book!

Such a hilarious, unique, refreshingly brilliant, and addictive read which will tickle your taste buds more than Shirley Valentine like her ahems tickled until Friday. I urge you all to go and read this – you will be missing out on a beaut of a book if you don’t!

Buy now from Amazon!

#BlogBlitz! #Review – Dying Truth by Angela Marsons (@WriteAngie) @Bookouture

dyingtruth
Today is the third and final day of the ‘Dying Truth’ blog blitz, and I am delighted to be able to share my review. Big thank you to Kim Nash for the blitz invite, as well as the ARC of the book. Here is my review:

dyingtruth1
How far would you go to protect your darkest secrets?

When teenager Sadie Winter jumps from the roof of her school, her death is ruled as suicide – a final devastating act from a troubled girl. But then the broken body of a young boy is discovered at the same school and it’s clear to Detective Kim Stone that these deaths are not tragic accidents.

As Kim and her team begin to unravel a dark web of secrets, one of the teachers could hold the key to the truth. Yet just as she is about to break her silence, she is found dead. 

With more children’s lives at risk, Kim has to consider the unthinkable – whether a fellow pupil could be responsible for the murders. Investigating the psychology of children that kill brings the detective into contact with her former adversary, Dr Alex Thorne – the sociopath who has made it her life’s work to destroy Kim. 

Desperate to catch the killer, Kim finds a link between the recent murders and an initiation prank that happened at the school decades earlier. But saving these innocent lives comes at a cost – and one of Kim’s own might pay the ultimate price.

What does TWG think?

Finally!! After seeing a lot of posts on social media regarding the contents of ‘Dying Truth’, I FINALLY was able to read it. Of course, with some of those social media posts stating how the book made people cry, I was a little bit apprehensive as to whether the book was going to come across as being hyped up because of that, or whether I was going to end up like other readers with a muckle book hangover at the end of it.

‘Dying Truth’ started very cleverly, with part of the ending being brought to the beginning, adding the all important hook straight from the get go. I was intrigued big time, wanting to find out exactly how Kim Stone ended up in the predicament we find her in at the start of the book, which was actually part of the ending.

Set predominantly in a high-end boarding school, Kim Stone and her team are faced with multiple deaths of children from said school. Kim’s gut instinct says that they’re all linked, but some members of her team aren’t quite so convinced. Is there a child killer on the loose? Or has someone ruffled other people’s feathers by shuffling their deck of cards?

For me, the boarding school situation went on a little bit too long. I can see why it did need to be the focus of the storyline to an extent and I would agree with the majority of that, however, it was as though the storyline was being padded out by the too-ing and fro-ing, making the conclusion longer to reach. Well, either that or I am incredibly impatient!

Because I had seen so many readers say that they were in floods of tears and distraught at certain events in the book, it was in the back of my mind and I was trying not to let it interfere with my own views of the book. I couldn’t help but sit and wait for the emotional parts, therefore, I didn’t end up reacting the same as others. Yes, it was shocking, and yes my hand connected with my mouth more times than I can remember. But I didn’t cry, nor was I distraught. I was more shocked than anything else, truth be told!

‘Dying Truth’ certainly had the shock factor which gripped me from start to finish, like I was trapped in chains with no means of getting released until I had reached the end of the story. The dynamics of the storyline were brilliantly written and very well executed, and even though I did feel certain parts were padded out, I did enjoy the cat and mouse chase regarding the school. I did try to work out who the culprit was, and the fact that I caught onto the red herrings meant that I was 100% wrong when it came to the ‘whodunnit’ parts. I didn’t see it coming at all – I was just glad that I was sitting down when I reached the conclusion!

Another high energy, shocking and gripping read from Angela Marsons. Impressive from start to finish, this author never fails to deliver.

Buy now from Amazon

About the author.

Angela Marsons is the author of the International Bestselling DI Kim Stone series and her books have sold more than 2 million in 2 years.

She lives in the Black Country with her partner, their cheeky Golden Retriever and a swearing parrot.

She first discovered her love of writing at Junior School when actual lessons came second to watching other people and quietly making up her own stories about them. Her report card invariably read “Angela would do well if she minded her own business as well as she minds other people’s”.

After years of writing relationship based stories (The Forgotten Woman and Dear Mother) Angela turned to Crime, fictionally speaking of course, and developed a character that refused to go away.

She is signed to Bookouture.com for a total of 16 books in the Kim Stone series and her books have been translated into more than 27 languages.

Her last three books – Blood Lines, Dead Souls and Broken Bones – reached the #1 spot on Amazon on pre-orders alone.

#BlogTour! #Review – The Wedding Date by Zara Stoneley (@ZaraStoneley) @RaRaResources @HarperImpulse

The Wedding Date Full Banner
The Royal Wedding is nearly upon us, and what could be more apt than ‘The Wedding Date’ by Zara Stoneley! Even though I have already reviewed this book independently, I jumped at the chance to be involved in the blog tour organised by RaRaResources, by sharing my review for a second time. And, seeing as this book is ABSOLUTELY FABULOUS, I think it deserves being put in the spotlight multiple times.

weddingdate
One ex.
One wedding.
One little white lie.

When Samantha Jenkins is asked to be the maid of honour at her best friend’s wedding, she couldn’t be happier. There are just three problems…

1) Sam’s ex-boyfriend, Liam, will be the best man.
2) His new girlfriend is pregnant.
3) Sam might have told people she has a new man when she doesn’t (see points 1 and 2 above)
So, Sam does the only sensible thing available to her… and hires a professional to do the job.

Actor Jake Porter is perfect for the role: single, gorgeous and cheap! Sam is certain it’s the perfect solution: no strings, no heartbreak and hopefully no chance of being found out.
But spending a week in the Scottish Highlands with Jake is harder than she imagined. He is the perfect boyfriend, charming, sexy and the hottest thing in a kilt since Outlander! And his dog Harry is quite possibly the cutest things Sam has ever seen!

As the wedding draws closer, Jake plays his part to perfection and everyone believes he is madly in love with Sam. The problem is, Sam’s not sure if Jake is acting anymore…

What does TWG think?

I have to admit that at first, I was a little bit wary about the concept of this book. I mean, we have all seen the film ‘The Wedding Date’ with Debra Messing and Dermot Mulroney, right? Plus, having read multiple books with a wedding date at the forefront of its storyline, I couldn’t help but wonder what was going to be different about Zara Stoneley’s interpretation of the theme seeing as it has been done multiple times…

But, after reading ‘The Wedding Date’, I can honestly say that whilst the theme may be familiar, nobody has written it in the way that Zara Stoneley has. Ever. And I don’t think that they will either. There’s writing a story based on a popular theme, and then there’s writing a story based on a popular theme and owning it ten times over. Zara Stoneley is the latter and by golly did she own it!

Samantha has been asked to be the maid of honour at her best friends wedding. The wedding where her ex-boyfriend (the one who dumped her after dipping his wick in new wax before the old wax had even dried) was going to be the best man. Samantha’s knee-jerk reaction is to hide under the covers and ignore the invitation ever arrived, just so that she doesn’t have to come face to face with the man who thinks his derrière doesn’t smell after a bout of diarrhoea. But, because Sam has a conscience and a heart, she is determined to not let her best friend down on her wedding day. With no boyfriend, no date, no man in question, Sam has to think outside the box when it comes to wanting to shove her ex boyfriend inside a box. How? Well, you’d better read the book then, hadn’t you!!

Oh my goodness gracious me! This book!!!! I think I resembled a pig more often than not whilst I was reading Zara Stoneley’s latest offering! The amount of snorting that came out of me really didn’t sound healthy at all, especially when faced with a border collie whose personality is larger than life. Seriously, the dog is a legend and I want his bandana for my own dog!

Now, as a person who finds themselves checking into ‘Zara Stoneley Anonymous’ after each book, I cannot help but think that ‘The Wedding Date’ is her best book EVER. Seriously! The humour was absolutely brilliant, unforced, and totally in keeping with the overall vibe of the storyline. Not only that, the energy throughout the entire story was mind-blowing and highly contagious. So much so, I couldn’t help but feel like I could conquer anything, even if it meant looking like a prat whilst doing it. ‘The Wedding Date’ is Zara Stoneley’s most energetic book yet, and one which kept me with a humongous smile on my face the entire time.

Everything the characters got up to was unique, brilliantly written and full of hilarious one liners which ended up creating vivid (and hilarious) imagery in my mind. One word – horse. When you delve into this book for yourself, remember the word ‘horse’ and you’ll see what I mean!

Whilst I have to admit that the author may have adapted her writing style slightly with ‘The Wedding Date’, I for one am not complaining and think that the slight change has brought more energy and oomph to an already accomplished author. I would LOVE to see these characters back in another story, and I would love to see Harry settle down with a Mrs Harry to find out whether they dress their pups in bandana’s. It has GOT to happen!!

‘The Wedding Date’ blew me away and threw all of my misconceptions out of the window straight away. These bunch of characters are truly fantastic, with personalities you cannot help but gel with. Well, apart from the two characters which are total asshats!!

I want to stand on my soap box with brightly coloured pom poms and shout about this book for the entire world to hear – that is how much I loved this book! Honestly, what a fantastic, high energy, hilarious novel – ‘The Wedding Date’ is my most favourite book of 2018 so far, and even in my ‘top books of all time’ list. I have found my new book boyfriend in ‘Jake’ and nobody is pinching him!!! ‘The Wedding Date’ is the best date I have ever been on, and the one I will remember for a very long time…especially seeing as I will be re-reading this book until I know it word for word. Out-fudging-standing. Zara Stoneley, you legend!!!

Buy: Amazon // iBooks // Waterstones

About the author.

Born in a small village in Staffordshire, Zara Stoneley wanted to be James Herriot, a spy, or an author when she grew up. Writing novels means she can imagine she is all these things, and more! Zara’s bestselling novels include ‘The Holiday Swap’, ‘Summer with the Country Village Vet’, ‘Blackberry Picking at Jasmine Cottage’ and the popular Tippermere series – ‘Stable Mates’, ‘Country Affairs’ and ‘Country Rivals’.
She lives in a Cheshire village with her family, a naughty cockapoo, and a very bossy cat, and loves spending time in sunny Spain.

Where you can find her-

Website // Twitter // Facebook // Instagram

#BlogTour! #Review – The Purfect Pet Sitter by Carol Thomas (@carol_thomas2) @RaRaResources @RubyFiction

The Purrfect Pet Sitter Full Tour Banner
I am delighted to be sharing my review of Carol Thomas’ pet filled, bookish delight, ‘The Purrfect Pet Sitter. Big thank you to Ruby Fiction/ChocLitUK for the ARC, and a big thank you to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite. Here is my review:

Actual Hi Res
Introducing Lisa Blake, the purrfect pet sitter!

When Lisa Blake’s life in London falls apart, she returns to her hometown rebranding herself as ‘the purrfect pet sitter’ – which may or may not be false advertising as she has a rather unfortunate habit of (temporarily) losing dogs! 

But being back where she grew up, Lisa can’t escape her past. There’s her estranged best friend Flick who she bumps into in an embarrassing encounter in a local supermarket. And her first love, Nathan Baker, who, considering their history, is sure to be even more surprised by her drunken Facebook friend request than Lisa is. 

As she becomes involved in the lives of her old friends Lisa must confront the hurt she has caused, discover the truth about her mysterious leather-clad admirer, and learn how to move forward when the things she wants most are affected by the decisions of her past.

What does TWG think?

I am highly impressed that the author managed to change my opinion of the book within a matter of chapters. I have to admit that I was umm-ing and ahh-ing about the storyline to begin with, crossing everything that the pace would pick up the more of it I read. Thankfully though, I wasn’t left on the fence too long with my uncertain opinion as, before I knew it, I was snlaughing and covering myself in my boiling hot cup of tea. Oh how things can change!!

Lisa Blake, unfortunately, has a habit of mislaying her clients. And no, I don’t mean the two-legged variety. For a person who you’re supposed to have complete faith in to look after your pets, Lisa’s track record isn’t exactly the reassuring kind. That said, she more than makes up for it with her bubbly personality and the fact she would do absolutely anything for the dogs, even if it includes turning into one temporarily in water. (Trust me, it’ll make sense once you read the book).

For Lisa Blake, life isn’t all pooper scoopers, tearaway animals and looking after furry friends of the smaller variety, especially when she ends up coming face to face with someone she knew inside out. Can Lisa finally own up to her past mistakes? Or will her new/old friend end up tearing away like her four-legged friends?

‘The Purrfect Pet Sitter’ had me in absolute stitches more than once thanks to Lisa’s questionable antics. Despite going through a tough time herself, she didn’t take herself too seriously and was more than willing to get stuck into any situation, even if it meant her looking like a numpty. I thought the social media references were apt and brilliantly written, highlighting the true antics of twenty-something people everywhere. Anyone who says that they haven’t facebook stalked before are lying!

I thought Felicity was a fantastic character to read about as she was just so black and white, coming out with a lot of things that mothers everywhere would be nodding their heads at.

All in all, my original opinion of ‘The Purrfect Pet Sitter’ got chucked out of the window quicker than Lisa caught her tear away dog. My gut instinct told me that this book was something special, and once again my gut instinct was one hundred percent correct.

Carol Thomas’ novel is a fantastic, laugh out loud novel which will leave you feeling care-free and content. I cannot recommend this book enough – what a fun-filled read this is.

Buy now!

About the author.

Carol Thomas lives on the south coast of England with her husband, four children and lively young Labrador. She has been a playgroup supervisor and taught in primary schools for over fifteen years, before dedicating more of her time to writing. Carol is a regular volunteer at her local Cancer Research UK shop. She has a passion for reading, writing and people watching and can often be found loitering in local cafes working on her next book.

Social Media Links –

http://carol-thomas.co.uk
http://facebook.com/carolthomasauthor
http://twitter.com/carol_thomas2
http://www.pinterest.co.uk/carol_thomas2/
http://www.instagram.com/carol_thomas2/

#BlogBlitz! #Review – The Journey by Conrad Jones (@ConradJones) @Bloodhoundbook

B L O G B L I T Z-6
A late one for you all tonight! TWG is going on a journey, not just any journey, but ‘The Journey’, courtesy of Conrad Jones. Here is my review as part of the blog blitz organised by BloodHoundBooks:

Conrad Jones - The Journey_cover_high res
The gripping story of a young boy and his family, driven from their home by war and indiscriminate violence. Like millions of others, they attempt the treacherous journey across their war-torn continent, trying to reach the safety of Europe.

The truth is, Europe doesn’t want them and thousands die every month at the hands of thieves and profiteering men to whom life is cheap. Kalu believes that he can lead his family to safety, he has planned for this. They have money, a plan and Kalu is, after all, the smartest man in Monguno.

The story is fast-paced, at times funny, at times heart-breaking but it will pull you along at 100 miles an hour. It will make you think, it will make you question your perceptions. Most of all it will make you ask, if your family was in peril, what would you do?

What does TWG think?

What an incredibly apt title this book has! Conrad Jones does indeed, take you on ‘The Journey’. A journey of self discovery. A journey of learning how to be empathetic to society. A journey where people’s lives are on the line and you have to decide whether to try to save them, or save yourself first.

I found this a really, really hard book to read. Not in terms of language usage or storyline structure, but due to the severe intensity of the storyline itself and what the underlying theme was. Conrad Jones hasn’t written a ‘typical’ thriller, yet he has written a thriller which is likely to chill you to the bones a lot quicker, due to how ‘on point’ the scenes within his book are. For Jones’ characters, life isn’t all cosy houses, plenty of food and security from the government like we have here. Instead, Jones’ characters stand in the path of death and destruction. They stand in the place where they played with a friend not long ago, who had just been shot in the head while they looked on, frozen to the floor.

For people in Nigeria, where the book is set, things like that happening are not rare. But for people like us who don’t witness devastation like that that often, it can be quite difficult to digest the barbaric events which Conrad Jones explores in his novel.

Even though I found the content incredibly harrowing, the way in which the author told the story was pragmatic and powerful, switching between both heart-wrenching emotion and heart-warming situations absolutely flawlessly.

I think that ‘The Journey’ was the first book I have read by Conrad Jones, and I have to say that I am incredibly impressed by the way he tells the story and the way that he brings his characters to life. It’s as though he turns his 2D thoughts of a character into a 3D, page jumping character who becomes your visual experience whilst you read the rest of the book.

I’ll admit that, whilst the content wasn’t really my cup of tea, the true star of the show was the author himself. Such an intense, chilling and eye-opening novel which is guaranteed to leave you utterly speechless.

Buy now!

About the author.

Conrad Jones is a 50-year-old Author, originally from a sleepy green-belt called Tarbock Green, which is situated on the outskirts of Liverpool. He spent a number of years living in Holyhead, Anglesey, which he classes as his home. He worked in management at McDonalds Restaurants Ltd from 1989-2002, working his way up to Business Consultant (area manager) working in the corporate and franchised departments.

On March 20th 1993 he was managing the Restaurant in Warrington`s Bridge St when two Irish Republican Army bombs exploded directly outside the store, resulting in the death of two young boys and many casualties. Along with hundreds of other people there that day he was deeply affected by the attack, which led to a long-term interest in the motivation and mind set of criminal gangs. He began to read anything crime related that he could get his hands on and links this experience with the desire to write books on the subject.

He signed a three book deal with London based publishers, Thames River Press. The Alec Ramsey series is now 7 books long with an average of 4.8 stars from over 2000 reviews. Conrad has also written The Soft Target series, which has received critical acclaim. 

Links:

https://www.facebook.com/conradjonesauthorpage/

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Conrad-Jones/e/B002BOBGRE/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1493730391&sr=8-1

https://twitter.com/ConradJones