#BlogTour! #Review – Snowflakes Over Holly Cove by Lucy Coleman (@lucycolemanauth) @RaRaResources @Aria_fiction #giveaway

I am very excited to be kicking off Lucy Coleman’s blog tour today with a re-share of my review of the festive delight, ‘Snowflakes over Holly Cove’. Huge thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite! Here is my review:


As the snowflakes start to fall, Holly Cove welcomes a new tenant to the beautiful old cottage on the beach…

For lifestyle magazine journalist Tia Armstrong, relationships, as well as Christmas, have lost all their magic. Yet Tia is up against a Christmas deadline for her latest article ‘Love is, actually, all around…’

So, Tia heads to Holly Cove where the restorative sea air and rugged stranger, Nic, slowly but surely start mending her broken heart. Tia didn’t expect a white Christmas, and she certainly never dared dream that all her Christmas wishes might just come true…
Set in Caswell Bay on the stunningly rugged Gower Coast, the cottage nestles amid the limestone cliffs and the woodlands; the emotions run as turbulently as the wind-swept sea.

As cosy as a marshmallow-topped cup of cocoa, fall in love with a heart-warming festive story from the bestselling author of The French Adventure.

What does TWG think?

I had no idea, until I read ‘Snowflakes Over Holly Cove’, that a mere ONE word could be the culprit of my eyes casually leaking. I know….it’s funny how much emotion the word ‘eggnog’ has, isn’t it? Yes, I am being serious. The word ‘eggnog’ made me burst into tears. I’m still not too sure whether my tears were because the word reminded me of what it actually tastes like, even though I have never had eggnog pass my lips, or whether it was because…..oh, heck. I can’t tell you can I? Many of you may associate eggnog with Christmas, so the fact that it is in a Christmas book may not come as a surprise to some. However, if you’re a soppy date like me, ‘eggnog’ may not be just for Christmas. You’ll see what I mean when you read the book….I hope.

Anyway, eggnog aside, ‘Snowflakes Over Holly Cove’ is such a stunning read, so much so that I felt so bereft when the book came to an end. I wasn’t emotionally read to leave Tia and co behind at all. I would really love for Tia or Olweyn, or even Max, to come back again in another story as their personalities and life stories are so giving, I would love to be in their company once again. Plus, I’m very nosy and I don’t think these characters have let all of their skeletons out of the closets yet.

Tia hasn’t exactly had a calm few months and, when she returns to work, she can’t help but feel bewildered by the job her boss has sent her on. Did her boss even pay attention to what has happened in Tia’s life recently? Does she even care?

Despite her reservations, Tia begins the job with an open mind and ends up getting more than she bargained for. Maybe her boss did good after all?

‘Snowflakes Over Holly Cove’ is a book which just kept on giving. Every time I turned the page I was surrounded by yet another laugh out loud event, or a situation which made me stop to gather my thoughts – reading this book was like waking up on Christmas morning to see if Santa had been. The excitement of what lay beneath each page rivalling the excitement of what lay underneath the Christmas wrapping paper left by Santa. Feeling loved by fictional characters just like being loved by good ol’ Saint Nic. The excitement of not knowing what was a round the corner, just like the excitement when reaching for every new present. Everything about this book was just…..perfection, without a doubt.

Lucy Coleman’s story telling where ‘Snowflakes Over Holly Cove’ is concerned, has raised the bar extremely high for future novels. This author doesn’t just write words and expect her readers to imagine the Christmas magic or the deep rooted emotion, instead she writes the emotion from her own heart as though she has endured similar. Story telling of this calibre cannot be taught, you either have it or you don’t, and it is pretty clear that Lucy Coleman has that beautiful magic flowing from her mind through to her fingertips.

As I said above, a certain word made me burst into tears and whilst I can sit back and giggle about it now, my heart broke at the time because I had become incredibly invested in Tia and her life, I felt my own sense of loss for that character.

If only the feelings of love, serenity and goodwill could be bottle, I would be one extremely happy lady. I couldn’t have wished for a better book to read when my own life is crashing down on me, and I felt the love from the characters seep into my mind like the first coffee of the morning. In my eyes, this is exactly why I love reading, because of books like this.

A humbling, emotional, poignant, touching novel which wrapped my heart in a cosy rug whilst also making me cry because of the eggnog – what more could a girl want?

Buy now!

About the author.

From interior designer to author, Linn B. Halton – who also writes under the
pen name of Lucy Coleman – says ‘it’s been a fantastic journey!’

Linn is the bestselling author of more than a dozen novels and is excited to be
writing for both Aria Fiction (Head of Zeus) and Harper Impulse (Harper
Collins); she’s represented by Sara Keane of the Keane Kataria Literary
Agency.

When she’s not writing, or spending time with the family, she’s either
upcycling furniture or working in the garden.

Linn won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction
award; her novels have been short-listed in the UK’s Festival of Romance and
the eFestival of Words Book Awards.

Living in Coed Duon in the Welsh Valleys with her ‘rock’, Lawrence, and
gorgeous Bengal cat Ziggy, she freely admits she’s an eternal romantic.
Linn is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and writes feel-good,
uplifting novels about life, love and relationships.

Facebook // Twitter // Linn B Halton – Twitter // Website

Giveaway!

Win a signed paperback of A Cottage in the Country and a rustic wooden heart decoration (Open Internationally)

*Terms and conditions Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passedto the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Enter the giveaway now!

Advertisements

#BlogTour! #GuestPost from author of ‘Joseph Barnaby’, Susan Roebuck (@sueroebuck) @RaRaResources

It’s the final countdown!! Do do dooo, do do do do dooooo. Okay, it’s not, but it’s the final date of the blog tour and I have the honour of closing the tour with a guest post from the author of ‘Joseph Barnaby’, Susan Roebuck. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite. Before I get to the guest post, here is a little bit more information about Susan’s novel:

Stand by your beliefs – even if it means going to the end of the Earth

By standing up for his principles to save the life of a prize racehorse, farrier Joseph Barnaby loses everything. Now, a personal vendetta has become too deep to fight and he escapes to the island of Madeira where he finds work on a small farm at the foot of a cliff, only accessible by boat. The balmy climate and never-ending supply of exotic fruit, vegetables and honey make it sound like paradise but, for Joseph, it’s the ideal place to hide from the world. Can the inhabitants of Quinta da Esperança, who have more grit in them than the pebbled beach that fronts the property, help Joseph find his self-worth again? And can he escape the danger that draws ever nearer?

Purchase Links

Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Joseph-Barnaby-Susan-Roebuck-ebook/dp/B07FMVFLH1/

Amazon US https://www.amazon.com/Joseph-Barnaby-Susan-Roebuck-ebook/dp/B07FMVFLH1/

Guest post.

Setting your Novel in a Foreign Country

 Joseph Barnaby” is the third novel in my Portuguese series. They’re all stand-alone novels but each are set in Portugal: “Rising Tide” takes place in a small fishing village on the Alentejo coast; “Forest Dancer” in the forested hills just outside Lisbon (in Sintra); and now “Joseph Barnaby” on a remote beach on the island of Madeira. 

 One of the challenges of writing a novel in a foreign country is knowing how to keep the Portuguese “atmosphere” without ending up with a language problem. I wanted the Portuguese characters to be well-rounded and relatable, but they couldn’t all speak English that well. Having stilted speech and hesitations throughout would be very tiring for the reader so,to avoid this, in “Forest Dancer” I had some characters speaking excellent English (and I’m lucky that most Portuguese can speak good English). When those whose linguistic abilities weren’t so good I show from the context what they were trying to say, or I had one of the English-speaking characters translate. This had to be done sparingly,otherwise things would’ve become tedious for the reader. To maintain the “sense of place”, though, I kept a few Portuguese expressions or words in but made sure they were obvious from the context what they meant. As my editor told me, “don’t make your reader have to go and look something up, they might not come back again”. 

 In “Joseph Barnaby” I solved the problem by having Joseph (the English main character) managing to learn Portuguese in six months during his time working in a fishermen’s bar. Therefore the other characters all spoke Portuguese. Of course, the book is written in English, but to add authenticity, I added a few Portuguese expressions occasionally.

 Another problem that can arise when setting your novel in a foreign country is that the author should avoid using local people as characters, or even stereotype them. In “Joseph Barnaby” I endeavoured to find variety in the people just as you’d find in any country: there are hospital doctors, a bee-keeper, teachers, and the local fishermen have their unique personalities.

 Weather plays an important role in setting your novel abroad. When most people think of Portugal they imagine the sunny beaches of the Algarve, yet there is so much more to the country than that small region. Madeira is very different. It has a temperate climate and is full of flowers, but subject to some spectacular storms. 

 To conclude, then. My advice to anyone planning their novel abroad is to find aspects of the country that the reader might not expect, but to keep it realistic.

 Thank you for hosting me today! I hope you enjoy “Joseph Barnaby”.

 

About the author.

I was born and educated in the UK (I am British!) but now live in Portugal. I’ve been an English teacher for many years with the British Council and also the Portuguese civil service where I developed e-learning courses.

My first love is, of course, my husband, my second writing, and my third painting. And now I have time to be able to indulge in all three.

My debut novel, “Perfect Score” was published by Mundania Press on Sept 21, 2010 and the paperback launched on May 11 2011. It was a finalist in the 2012 EPIC e-book Awards in the Mainstream Category.

My second novel is a dark thriller/fantasy called “Hewhay Hall”. It won an EPPIE award in the 2013 EPIC (Electronic Publishing Industry Coalition) e-Book Awards in the Horror Category.

Next comes “Rising Tide”, published in 2015. Set in Portugal, published by Mundania Press. It is set in a tiny fishing village that the world, and most of Portugal, has forgotten. Read about the wonders of the ocean and see if Piper from Norfolk UK and Leo from Alaska, USA, can find what they’re searching for in the little village of Luminosa.

“Forest Dancer” was published on 20th February 2018 by CrookedCat Books. This is novel number 2 set in Portugal but this time in the forests outside Lisbon, Portugal. Instead of the sea (as in Rising Tide), now find out about the wonders of the forest and whether classical ballerina, Flora, can find what she’s searching for in the small village of Aurora.

On 5th October 2018 CrookedCat Books published My newest novel, “Joseph Barnaby”, another romance/suspense which is set on the island of Madeira
.


Social Media Links  

blog and website: http://www.susanroebuck.com

General Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SuRoebuck

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/SusanRoebuckauthor/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/sueroebuck

Amazon page: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Susan-Roebuck/e/B0050B2O3U/ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1?qid=1526385163&sr=8-1

Giveaway

Win:

1. 1st prize an Amazon book token (£10) , 
2. 2nd prize – 2 x signed paperbacks of Joseph Barnaby
3. 3rd prize – 2 x ebooks of Joseph Barnaby

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Enter the giveaway now!

#BirthdayBookBlitz! #Review – Oh! What a Pavlova by Isabella May (@IsabellaMayBks) @RaRaResources

We do like a celebration here at TWG! We take birthdays very seriously!! Happy book birthday to ‘Oh! What a Pavlova’ by Isabella May! Massive congratulations. To celebrate, I am super excited to be reviewing the book as part of the book birthday blitz organised by RaRaResources – many thanks for having me on board!

Kate Clothier is leading a double life: a successful jet-setting businesswoman to the outside world, but behind closed doors, life with Daniel and his volcanic temper is anything but rosy.

Some days – heck, make that EVERY day – cake is her only salvation. 

Slowly but surely, the cities she visits – and the men she meets – help her to realise there IS a better future.

And the ley lines of Glastonbury are certainly doing their best to impart their mystical wisdom…

But will she escape before it’s too late?

What does TWG think?

With the theme of domestic abuse running through this storyline, there were times where I felt a little bad for enjoying the book because of what Kate was dealing with. I would like to take my hat off (well, if I was wearing one) to the author for covering a topic which is both devastating and relatable, without losing the vulnerability of the situation. I won’t lie, it is incredibly difficult to read at times because I ended up relating to it due to my own past, but I was glad for the upbeat and humorous one liners to break up that dark vibe.

Isabella May is brilliant at playing on words, and what better to showcase that talent than with food!

For me personally, I did enjoy the storyline and found myself giggling multiple times, however, the dark vibe was incredibly difficult to shuggle off and I couldn’t seem to go with the flow of the storyline as much as I would have liked. Like I said before, maybe that’s down to the fact that I was able to relate to Kate’s situation because I had been through similar, therefore becoming deeper invested than a reader who may not have experienced the similarities first hand. Either way, I was glad that the topic had been put in the spotlight!

‘Oh! What a Pavlova’ is a tantalising treat which mixes pleasure and pain together like a rocky road traybake.

Buy now!

Giveaway!! Win a signed copy of The Cocktail Bar (Open Internationally) 

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passedto the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Enter the giveaway now!

About the author.

Isabella May lives in (mostly) sunny Andalucia, Spain with her husband, daughter and son, creatively inspired by the sea and the mountains. When she isn’t having her cake and eating it, sampling a new cocktail on the beach, or ferrying her children to and from after school activities, she can usually be found writing. As a co-founder and a former contributing writer for the popular online women’s magazine, The Glass House Girls – www.theglasshousegirls.com – she has also been lucky enough to subject the digital world to her other favourite pastimes, travel, the Law of Attraction, and Prince (The Purple One). She has recently become a Book Fairy, andis having lots of fun with her imaginative ‘drops’! Costa del Churros is her third novel with Crooked Cat Books, following on from the hit sensations, Oh! What a Pavlova and The Cocktail Bar. 

Social Media Links

www.isabellamayauthor.com

Twitter – @IsabellaMayBks

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/IsabellaMayAuthor/

Instagram – @isabella_may_author

#BlogTour! #Review – Christmas at the Little Duck Pond Cafe by Rosie Green (@Rosie_Green1988) @RaRaResources

I am delighted to welcome Rosie Green back to TWG as I review the latest book in the ‘Little Duck Pond Cafe’ series, ‘Christmas at the Little Duck Pond Cafe’. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite and the ARC. Here is my review:

Fen has always hated being the centre of attention.
She loves her new job, working behind the scenes at the Little Duck Pond Cafe and baking the scrumptious cakes that have helped its reputation soar. But frankly, she’d rather scrub the public toilet floor with a toothbrush than have to come out and talk to the customers.


She’s always been happy to stay in the background as long as she has a good supply of books to escape into. That’s her kind of romance – the fictional sort where she can read about other people taking a chance on love, but she doesn’t have to risk her own heart.


But that was before Ethan Fox arrived in the village and turned her world upside down. Ethan is a leading light in the local amateur dramatics theatre company and Fen knows he’s way out of her league. 
But when the popular village Christmas pantomime hits a crisis, Fen and Ethan find themselves thrown together. Can Fen overcome her shyness and find the courage to step on stage and save the day?

What does TWG think?

Oh my, what an understated little character, Fen, is! She reminded me of the type of person who comes across as very guarded, yet they have a heart of gold and the power to do anything that they put their mind to. Well, as long as they believed in themselves first.

Fen is more of a ‘behind the scenes’ gal and would do anything to keep herself behind the curtain instead of in front of it. However, when a certain head turning man walked into her life and persuaded her to join the local play group, Fen completely underestimated quite what she was letting herself in for. The thing is, so was everyone else.

I loved catching up with the gang in the latest instalment! What a drama filled, romantic read this was. Let’s just say that Fen isn’t the only one having issues in this book!! Whilst it was a shame to see good friendships being tested, it brought me a lot of joy to watch the characters realise how much they mean to each other. It’s things like that which make me feel hopeful!

‘Christmas at the Little Duck Pond Cafe’ is a mouthwatering, festive delight which I absolutely flew through. I didn’t want to put it down! It was great to see that the author put a lot of festivities into the storyline, as some Christmas books I’ve read have been a bit stingy on the decorations and Christmas spirit. Definitely made a change. I mean, what’s a Christmas book without…Christmas?

Yet another joyful, cosy read from an author who knows how to keep her readers interested like fairy lights on a Christmas tree.

Buy now from Amazon UK

Buy now from Amazon US

About the author.

Rosie Green has been scribbling stories ever since she was little. Back then they were rip-roaring adventure tales with a young heroine in perilous danger of falling off a cliff or being tied up by ‘the baddies’. Thankfully, Rosie has moved on somewhat, and now much prefers to write romantic comedies that melt your heart and make you smile, with really not much perilous danger involved at all, unless you count the heroine losing her heart in love.

Rosie’s brand new series of novellas is centred on life in a village café. The first two stories in the series are: Spring at The Little Duck Pond Cafe and Summer at The Little Duck Pond Café.


Twitter – https://twitter.com/Rosie_Green1988

#BlogTour! #Review – Autumn Antics (The Boardwalk by the Sea book 2) by Georgina Troy (@GeorginaTroy) @Rararesources

A late post tonight, apologies! I am delighted to be reviewing book number two in ‘The Boardwalk by the Sea’ series, Autumn Antics, by Georgina Troy. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite and a copy of the book. Here is my review:

Being a part-time hand model can be tricky, especially when you have to deal with prima donnas like Megan Knight, a reality star whose meteoric rise has surprised everyone. Bella is happiest running her tiny antique business from the front room of her cottage on the boardwalk. To ensure she has enough income coming in, she also rents out two of her bedrooms and is hiding a secret crush on one of her lodgers. His name is Jack and he also happens to be her best friend Sacha’s brother.

If life wasn’t complicated enough, her world-travelling mother appears on her doorstep on the same evening that Jack’s ex-fiancée arrives on the boardwalk determined to win him back. Bella has a lot of thinking to do and soon discovers that not all gems sparkle.

What does TWG think?

Oh I’m loving this series so far, I really hope there will be more books! I do like a bit of fictional drama, especially when it’s as popcorn worthy as this book!! Bella isn’t one for wearing her heart on her sleeve. In fact, she would rather not put anything too close to her immaculate hands just in case.

No, she isn’t one of those people who refuses to get their hands dirty – she’s a hand model and, whilst she enjoys the extra money, working with people who feel they are entitled to everything little thing in this world, really grinds her gears. Back in the little village she calls home, Bella is looking forward to indulging in a few home comforts and fun with her lodgers and best friend. Well, that was until she had a visitor…

The drama queen in this book, Megan Knight, reminded me of a real life reality star with the same name. One who I absolutely cannot stand! I’m not sure whether the author based the diva on a real life celeb or not, but in my head Georgina Troy did and she nailed it. Yes folks, I didn’t like the Megan in this book either!!

Look, I’m all for making the most of situations when they arise, but pushing people’s buttons in the process is guaranteed to lose fans rather than gain them, regardless of how old you are.

‘Autumn Antics’ wasn’t a taxing read at all and I loved being able to get stuck into the drama where Bella and Megan were concerned, without having to focus on a timeline of 2838484 characters with 284848484 issues. Slight exaggeration but you catch my drift I’m sure. Sometimes you just need to read a book which delivers on humour, romance, a bit of guts, and a bit moreish – ‘Autumn Antics’ ticked those boxes for me and more. I found it to be such an easy and delightful read, and the fact it was set in Jersey was such a breath of fresh air.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this little gem of a book. A book which was both modern and old school in terms of events and relationships. A book which made me giggle and my heart tingle as i followed Bella and Jack’s journey in this seasonal treat. I have everything crossed that there will be more books in this series! I don’t think I’m ready to say goodbye to them just yet!!

Buy from Amazon UK

Buy from Amazon US

About the author.

Georgina Troy is a pseudonym of author Deborah Carr. She recently signed with HarperCollins’ romance imprint HarperImpulse to write an historical romance to commemorate 100 years since the end of the First World War. The Poppy Field by Deborah Carr will be published in e-book format on 12 October 2018 and in paperback on 27 December 2018.

Georgina was a finalist in the Contemporary Romance Category of the Romantic Novel of the Year Awards 2016 (RoNAs) with A Jersey Kiss and a finalist in the Joan Hessayon Award for new writers 2015. Her first four-book series, The Jersey Scene and books 1 and 2 of her second series, The Boardwalk by the Sea are available.

She also writes thrillers as Ella Drummond and lives on the island of Jersey with her husband and three rescue dogs and is 1/3 of The Blonde Plotters.

Sign up to Georgina’s Newsletter at:deborahcarr.org/contact

Social Media Links – 

Website: https://www.deborahcarr.org/

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

Twitter: https://twitter.com/GeorginaTroy

Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/georginatroy/

Giveaway – Win an Autumn Antics Locket and Tote Bag (Open Internationally) 

Enter the giveaway now!

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

#BlogTour! #Excerpt from ‘Cupid F*cks Up’ by Paula Houseman (@paulahouseman) @RaRaResources

Cupid & Twat Full Tour Banner
Haha oh I love the titles of these books!!!! Me and Cupid aren’t best buds anymore which is pretty ideal when you take a look at what book I am featuring for this blog tour! Yes that’s right, I have the pleasure of hosting an extract from Paula Houseman’s ‘Cupid F*cks Up’. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite. Before I share the extract with you all, here is a bit more information about the book and the all important ‘buy’ links. Enjoy!

Cupid Fcks up ebook cover
Ruth Roth is a straight shooter. Pity Cupid’s not.

Smart-mouth Ruth is an inspirational humour columnist for a popular women’s magazine. Recently divorced, she has found the love of her life. Without any help, mind you, from the little fat love god. Ruth has decided she herself is her one and only.
And she’s in a comfy place. Why wouldn’t she be? No need to yell ‘Put the bloody toilet seat down!’ No need to hoover toe-nail clippings off the carpet.

But then a silver-tongued Prince Charming fronts up in his shiny Merc and tickles her discarded, little-girl fantasies. He tells her their love is written in the stars.
It must be a misprint. A romance with this particular PC is not so PC! Still …
Ruth’s life plays out more like ancient myth than fairytale. And what hot-blooded woman can resist forbidden fruit?

There’s a problem, though. Ruth does not have a hot-blooded mum. Ruth has a pain-in-the-arse mum whose squawking disapproval cranks the taboo up a notch.
All the more reason to take up with the stud! But it means taking on the harpy.
Tensions mount, and even Ruth’s man can’t protect her from the trash-talking voices in her head. It looks like he can’t muzzle his own either. When an earth-shattering revelation causes him to give her grief, it makes her feel like she’s dating her mother.
Taking the kind of advice she doles out to her readers is not so easy, and Ruth wonders if this love can survive. More to the point, is it worth the trouble?

Buy: Amazon UK // Amazon US

Extract.

It was a difficult time, compounded by Sylvia’s demands. And her browbeating. Joe was
gone; I was here to wear it. She was ringing three or four times a day, but then for two days, there was nothing. It felt like a holiday. It didn’t last long.
I was at the dining room table late one afternoon working on an article about hypercritical parents, when mine turned up on my doorstep. Sylvia had often worn black when Joe was alive, but now it was her uniform. Today, she had on a black towelling tracksuit.
‘You could have called me,’ she accused. ‘I might have been dead on the floor like your
father was. I could have composted.’
What? As in, like, manure and chicken scraps?
‘You think that’s funny? Oeuf, pest!’
I think it’s hysterical. ‘No, but I think you meant decomposed.’
‘Decomposed, composted … what difference does it make? You wouldn’t have even known I was dead!’ She beat her chest and snivelled.
‘Yes, I would. Myron calls you every day. He would have let me know.’
It was the wrong answer. She turned off the waterworks and threw me a dirty look. I was in no mood for this today. The article had got me all riled. I held her stare and threw her back one of irritation. She shifted uncomfortably and cleared her throat.
‘Well, are you going to invite me in?’
Is there a choice? I held out my hand in mock formality and watched her as she shuffled
into the lounge. With her shrunken posture and slow gait, she seemed to have aged. I felt sorry for her. I also felt guilty that I had little tolerance for my mother, so I willed myself to think positive. Ah yes, this is research for my article. It was the best I could do.
She sat on the sofa, picked at a loose thread on the seam of her trackie dacks and picked up the thread of our conversation. ‘Anyway, I’ve been calling you.’
Her little dig dissolved the pity I felt. I didn’t respond.
‘Where are the children?’
In a lucky place. ‘In their bedrooms. Hannah! Casper!’ I called out. ‘Come say hello to
Nanna.’
Two bedroom doors groaned open. Both kids came out, dutifully kissed their grandmother and said they had to finish their homework.
What the—? I was about to say something but they stared at me with eyes like saucers.
Sylvia was too self-absorbed to remember it was school holidays. I kept quiet, but I fixed my children with a look that implied, You owe me. They nodded relief. It was the closest I’d come to feeling appreciated in a while.

‘There must be something wrong with your phone,’ Sylvia said, as Hannah and Casper
disappeared into their rooms. ‘Like I was saying, I’ve been calling you and I keep getting a wrong number. It’s always the same one that’s got a message telling me about good times coming. I’m not in the mood for a good time. I’m a grieving widow.’ She sounded affronted.
‘Uh, you sure you’re not calling the wrong number?’
‘Of course I’m not! I’m a grieving widow. I haven’t lost my memory!’
Pity. All those accumulated grudges. The slate could have been wiped clean.
I told her I’d look into it.
The grieving widow stayed for another hour of lamentation. When she left, I called my
landline from my mobile. I gasped.
‘Hannah! Casper! Get out here, NOW!’
The automated greeting had been delivered by a smoky female voice, but the message made it pretty clear what the nature of the business was. I’d had a little chuckle before trying to act like a responsible person. And I’d felt confident enough to summon them with a shout—they were beholden to me.
The two of them came into the kitchen. ‘Okay, which one of you call-forwarded to a
brothel?’
Hannah looked at me with a confounded expression. Then, eyes widening, she turned to
Casper and both of them started laughing. They slapped palms.
Oh, just lovely. Great job of mothering you’ve done that your children think it’s okay to do something like that.
I think it’s quite creative. I wanted to palm-slap along with them.
What? Creative? Your children have no respect for you!
‘It’s not funny!’ I yelled, mainly to block out my internal head-to-head than berate my kids.
My disrespectful children stopped laughing. Casper gave me a repentant look. ‘Mum,
Nanna was ringing a hundred times a day and moaning about being a widow eeeevery time I answered the phone. I know she’s your mother, but … she’s a pain in the arse.’
No shit. ‘I know, but it’s not very nice to do that, is it?’ It’s never too late to be pious.
‘Sorry. I’ll call her later to apologise.’
What? No! Not too pious. ‘Uh, best not. If she finds out what you did … well, imagine?’

About the author.

Paula Houseman was once a graphic designer. But when the temptation to include ‘the
finger’ as part of a logo for a forward-moving women’s company proved too much, she knew it was time to give away design. Instead, she took up writing.
She found she was a natural with the double entendres (God knows she’d been in enough trouble as a child for dirty wordplay).

As a published writer of earthy chick lit and romantic comedy, Paula gets to bend, twist, stretch and juice up universal experiences to shape reality the way she wants it, even if it is only in books. But at the same time, she can make it more real, so that her readers feel part of the sisterhood. Or brotherhood (realness has nothing to do with gender).
Through her books, Paula also wants to help the reader escape into life and love’s comic relief. And who doesn’t need to sometimes?

Her style is a tad Monty Pythonesque because she adores satire. It helps defuse all those gaffes and thoughts that no one is too proud of.

Paula lives in Sydney, Australia with her husband. No other creatures. The kids have flown the nest and the dogs are long gone.

Social Media Links

Twitter
Goodreads
Facebook
LinkedIn

#BlogTour! #Review – Pawlife Guide: Dog Care at Home by Gina Harding (@pawlifeau) @rararesources

PawLife Guide Dog Care at Home Full Tour Banner

Something a little bit different for you all today! I am delighted to be on today’s stop on the blog tour for ‘Dog Care at Home’ by Gina Harding. Many thanks to RaRaResources for the blog tour invite and review copy. Here is my review:

Pawlife - gharding-pawlife-guide-cover-d1

 

DOG CARE AT HOME gives you the information you need to have a happy and healthy dog no matter what your dog’s current stage in life, in just 10 minutes a day. Over 200 hours of research including interviews with veterinarians and fellow dog owners around the world, Dog Care at Home is the all-in-one book to have at home, with six veterinarians that have contributed to this ultimate guide, rest assured you are in reliable hands.Inside you will discover:- Choosing the right breed- The basic steps of raising a puppy- What vaccinations are for and why your dog needs them- Travelling with your dog- How to perform CPR on your dog- Health and hygiene including dental care- Choosing the right veterinarian- When it’s time to say goodbye- And much more!PawLife’s Dog Care at Home is the answer for all your dog parenting needs in one comprehensive guide that ensures your dog lives a long, healthy and happy life.

What does TWG think?

Whether you have a dog currently, or you are looking to welcome a new four legged friend into your home, Gina Harding’s ‘Paw Life Guide’ has the information you need to ensure you are making the right decisions for you, your family, and your potential (or current) furry friend. As I already have a dog, I was already aware of a lot of information printed in this guide. However, you need to be aware that the author has written prices and processes based on she lives in Australia. Whilst a lot of the information is unlikely to differ, just ensure that you follow the processes required for your country or local authority, especially as prices differ due to exchange rate and veterinarians.

Aside from that, this guide is an informative starter read which would be ideal for someone thinking about welcoming a dog into their family. I do think that it was put together very well with the focus being on the animal in question as opposed to humans, but it didn’t flow as much as I would have liked it to.

I think beginner pet owners would benefit from Gina Harding’s book for sure, and I especially loved how the guide stipulates how important it is to pick up after your own dog in public places.

Buy now!

Author Bio

Gina is an enthusiastic dog lover, so much so that she founded her own dog blog business called PawLife, which has been awarded top 10 Australian Dog Blog. This wouldn’t be possible without her best friend Harley, who is a toy poodle mix. They are continually going on new adventures, testing out new squeaky toys.

Gina recently discovered her writing passion and wanted to create the ultimate guidebook that would support, educate and inspire pet parents and yet to be pet parents around the world. Gina and Harley are originally from Australia, where the weather is always beautiful. This is Gina’s first book and looks forward to writing many more to help fellow pet-parents; with her fur-baby Harley by her side.

Social Media Links

Facebook

Pinterest

Instagram

Website
Giveaway – Win a 12 Piece Dog Toy Starter Box from Zenify (Open Internationally)

pawlife-giveaway-V1
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Enter the giveaway!

#PublicationDayPush – The Warrior’s Bride Prize by Jenni Fletcher (@jenniauthor) @rararesources #Promo

The Warrior's Bride Prize

Warrior'sBridePrize_Cover

Daughter of a slave…wedded to the warrior!
Livia Valeria is furious when she’s ruthlessly gambled away by her intended bridegroom. Luckily, it’s tall, muscled and darkly handsome Roman centurion Marius Varro who wins her as his bride! Livia must hide her Caledonian roots, but when Marius faces a barbarian rebellion at Hadrian’s Wall she must make a choice: her heritage or the husband she’s falling for…

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK

Amazon

iBooks

WHSmith

B&N

Author Bio –
Jenni Fletcher was born on the north coast of Scotland and now lives in Yorkshire, where she writes Medieval, Roman and Victorian romance novels.

She studied English at Cambridge University before doing an MA on Women and Literature in English and a PhD on Victorian & Edwardian literature at Hull. After realising that she was better at writing than teaching, she worked in a number of administrative jobs whilst trying to finish her first book, which was rejected. Thinking there must have been some mistake, she then wrote another, which was fortunately accepted by Harlequin Mills & Boon.

Her favourite Jane Austen novel is Persuasion and her favourite Brontë is Anne. If she had to choose a romantic hero it would be John Thornton, but maybe that’s just because she’s Northern.

Social Media Links 
Facebook

Giveaway – Win 1 x Signed US Copy of The Warrior’s Bride Prize (Open Internationally)

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Enter the giveaway!

#BlogTour! #Review – Christmas on Lily Pond Lane by Emily Harvale (@emilyharvale) @rararesources

Christmas on Lily Pond Lane Full Tour Banner

I do like an Emily Harvale novel, so I am delighted to be getting ready for Christmas….ahem…as I review the latest instalment from the residents in Lily Pond Lane. Thank you to Rararesources for the blog tour invite and ARC. Here is my review:

Lily Pond Lane CHRISTMAS-VAL-DAVID-1 AUG-2 ##FINAL##

Snow is falling in Little Pondale, lights are twinkling and the smell of pine trees and roasting chestnuts fills the air

But Mia Ward is in a bit of a jam. She’d planned to rent out Corner Cottage for Christmas but thanks to best friend, Ella Swann, it’s double-booked. Now Mia’s got to let one ‘party’ down, or find another cottage – fast.

Best friends and single mums, Cathy Cole and Christy Franks want their kids to have an old-fashioned Christmas. Ice-skating, carol singing, making decorations, and tobogganing are on their list of festive fun and Little Pondale is the perfect place. Especially as it has no mobile phone reception. That will make it harder for Cathy to be found.
City banker, Leo Hardman is wondering if renting a cottage for Christmas as an anniversary surprise for his parents, was such a good idea. Little Pondale may be where his parents met, but his mum doesn’t seem pleased to be back, and his brother, Hal isn’t happy that the village is so tiny and only has one pub.

Meanwhile, Jenny Lake is settling in at her cousin’s bakery, having left her (broken) heart in Florence, but Christmas was never her favourite time of year. And Reverend Glen Fox has taken over at St Michael and All Angels. He’s glad it’s a temporary post because village life is not for him.

But luckily, for locals and visitors alike, there’s a sleigh-load of Christmas magic heading for Lily Pond Lane; enough to put a sparkle in everyone’s festive season. Although Christmas may not go quite as each of them has planned.

What does TWG think?

Oh I could read this series all day everyday without getting bored!! Although saying that, I don’t think I could put up with Hettie every day of the week though, bless her cotton socks!

If you’re new to this series or are wondering where to begin, I wholeheartedly recommend that you begin with book one because if you started the series midway, a lot of the characters and their lives probably wouldn’t make much sense. Plus, they are all brilliant books so it’s a win win situation!

I sped through this Christmas edition a lot quicker than I would have liked! Once again, Mia and Ella are doing what they do best by getting the men to cook (Ella’s tuppenceworth), and by making new visitors feel part of the village even if it’s only temporary (clearly a Mia thing!). When some rather colourful characters turn up, it isn’t just a blizzard that’s causing a bit of drama in the village!!

I have to say that due to how complex the drama was between families, I did feel as though that part was a bit rushed and could have done with a bit more time in the spotlight. Personal opinion, obviously!! Aside from that, I thoroughly enjoyed this festive treat, with Emily Harvale tickling my Christmas taste buds already! Another joyful, free spirited read which puts the warmth in the word ‘cosy’.

Buy now!

About the author.

Having lived and worked in London for several years, Emily returned to her home town of Hastings where she now spends her days writing… and chatting on social media. Emily is a Member of the SoA, a PAN member of the RWA and a Pro Member of ALLi. She’s an Amazon bestseller and a Kindle All Star. Emily loves writing and her stories are sure to bring a smile to your face and a warmth to your heart.
Emily says, “I write about friendship, family and falling in love. I believe in happing endings.” When she isn’t writing, she can be found enjoying the stunning East Sussex coast and countryside, or in a wine bar with friends, discussing life, love and the latest TV shows. Chocolate cake is often eaten. She dislikes housework almost as much as she dislikes anchovies – and will do anything to avoid both.

Social Media Links

Facebook
Twitter
Instagram

#BlogTour! #Review – The Fake Date by Lynda Stacey (@LyndaStacey) @RaRaResources

Fake Date

The Fake Date

Nine hours and eleven minutes…

That’s how long it’s been since Ella Hope was beaten to within an inch of life and left for dead. She lies, unable to move and praying for somebody to find her, as she counts down the minutes and wonders who could have hated her so much to have hurt her so badly.

Was it the man she went on a date with the previous evening, the man linked to the deaths of two other women? Or somebody else, somebody who wants her out of the picture so much they’re willing to kill?

Whoever it is, they will pay … all she has to do first is survive..!

What does TWG think?

Errrrrrr, hello book; can I have my heart back please?!?

This is definitely one of those ‘dun dun DUNNNNNNNNNN’ type of novels! You know, the ones where you’re left rearranging your organs after your heart escaped into your mouth. Sound familiar?

Lynda Stacey set the scene brilliantly with the opening to her book, making her readers enter the mind of someone who thinks that they are being left to die. Would you feel scared? Hopeless? See your past flash before your very eyes? A very, very clever way to pull readers into the story – I fell head first into it and didn’t let up until I had reached the end. I could have sworn I had a house standing before…..(jokes).

Even though I did find some parts of the storyline to be a little predictable, it didn’t stop me from being gripped by the storyline as the characters seemed to have their own hidden agenda, regardless of who they were linked to. I mean, one moment I was sitting there gripped by Ella’s emotions, and then the next my head was getting funked over by the storyline (not that I’m complaining!). Please remember that I am being vague on purpose as I am trying my best to keep spoilers away, but it’s hard as there is just so much about ‘The Fake Date’ that I want to shout about.

‘The Fake Date’ is a psychological thriller with a difference – who’d have thought romantic notions went hand in hand with a head funk of a storyline?!

What a highly gripping, engaging, and fast paced novel – roll on the next book!

Buy now!

About the author.

Lynda grew up in the mining village of Bentley, Doncaster, in South Yorkshire,
Her own chaotic life story, along with varied career choices helps Lynda to create stories of psychological / romantic suspense, with challenging and unpredictable plots, along with (as in all romances) very happy endings.

Lynda joined the Romantic Novelist Association in 2014 under the umbrella of the New Writers Scheme and in 2015, her debut novel House of Secretswon the Choc Lit Search for a Starcompetition.

She lives in a small rural hamlet near Doncaster, with her husband, Haydn, whom she’s been happily married to for over 20 years.

Social Media Links

Facebook // Twitter // Website