#BlogTour! #Review – To the Stars and Back by Camilla Isley (@CamillaIsley) @RaRaResources

Second RaRaResources blog tour of the day is for a review of ‘To the Stars and Back’ by Camilla Isley. Many thanks to Rachel for the blog tour invite and ARC.

When Hollywood’s sexiest bachelor meets the girl next door their relationship doesn’t follow the script…

On-screen, Christian Slade is America’s favorite heartthrob. Off-screen, letting romance into his life isn’t as easy. The women he dates all seem to want a piece of his glamorous life rather than his heart, and trust doesn’t come easy for him.

Then along comes Lana. A beautiful rocket scientist who’s also sweet, smart, sexy, and has absolutely no idea who he is. But what will happen when she finds out?

Will their worlds prove too far apart or could love really be like in the movies?

What does TWG think?

What would you do if the guy you started dating was in fact a top Hollywood actor, but he didn’t tell you? Would you be mad? Would you feel deceived? Lana, after being betrayed by her best friend, found herself in that exact position and she doesn’t quite know how she feels about it.

Like, Lana is an engineer, not someone who spends her time keeping up to date with the latest fashion trends, or has money to burn like Christian Slade does. Two people, two completely different lifestyles. Chalk and cheese or a match made in heaven?

This was such a fun story to read, and one I was able to lose myself in very quickly. The premise of the book isn’t too taxing, and the pace is ideal if you’re just wanting a book to cruise along with, without the addition of too emotional events and what not.

I love how Camilla Isley has included characters from other books in the series so seamlessly, as if they were meant to be there all along. Don’t be panicking though – this book is part of a series but each book can be read as a standalone with no issues.

If you’re into highly romantic, boy meets girl type of novels, ‘To the Stars and Back’ would be right up your street. I’m not a romantic, yet I could still appreciate the attention to detail in the characters relationships and how their lives came together throughout the book.

Another fun, humourous, and enjoyable read from the very more-ish, Camilla Isley.

Buy now!

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

TWG is back visiting the Little Duck Pond cafe today, huge thanks to RaRaResources and the author for having me! Here is my review of Rosie Green’s latest installment to her serial:

Wedding fever is in the air in the village of Sunnybrook.

With Ellie and Zak’s Big Day on the horizon, the sun is shining brightly on the Little Duck Pond Cafe community. But when dark clouds begin to roll in from more than one direction, several close relationships look to be under threat.

Will the wedding of the year actually take place at all?

What does TWG think?

I was NOT expecting to be getting into a tizzy whilst visiting the Little Duck Pond Cafe. Not at all! But I did and, whilst I would love to sit and have a natter about what made me stressed up to the eyeballs, it may be considered a spoiler. It literally came from nowhere and certainly put the characters to a test regarding their relationships and best laid plans.

‘Confetti at the Little Duck Pond Cafe’ IS part of a series, and I wholeheartedly recommend that you do read the books in order so that you are more aware of how the characters got where they are now, who they are, and why they are (if they are) involved in any ruckus’ with anyone else.

I love this series, especially as it just gets better and better with every new story. I must admit that I found Ellie quite annoying this time around as she just seemed in a rush to tick boxes regarding her wedding without thinking about the logistics behind it, especially seeing as other people were involved and it wasn’t all about Ellie. For someone who has always taken time to think about her actions and how they affected others, she couldn’t have been further from that person if she tried.

That said, the story wasn’t all romance and confetti, there was a lot more to this novella than I had anticipated and I thought that it did the book wonders in terms of depth and atmosphere.

Rosie Green, once again, has left me with a massive smile on my face thanks to this heartwarming and more-ish addition to the Little Duck Pond Cafe series. A wonderful, wonderful story which was an pleasure to devour.

Buy now from Amazon UK

#BlogTour! #Review – The Perfect Moment by Alix Kelso (@AlixKelsoAuthor) @RaRaResources

I am super excited to be kicking off Alix Kelso’s blog tour today, I really hope it will be THE perfect moment for her….

Sorry, I’ll get my coat. Anyway, thank you to Rachel, as always, for the blog tour invite and to the author for the ARC. Here is my review:

Is there ever a perfect moment to begin again in life?

Ever since tragedy threw her life into turmoil, Laura has taken refuge at her waitressing job inValentino’s restaurant in Glasgow’s leafy Fairhill. Serving lattes and lunch specials means she’s toobusy to think about all she lost, or the dreams she was forced to abandon. So when her beloved boss announces she’s selling the business, Laura is devastated.

Hatching a plan to set her up with the local pub owner, Laura hopes the two of them will make a connection that might just change her mind. Recovering from betrayal and heartbreak, Bruce is also in hiding from the world, and working in his uncle’s pub while he wonders how to restart his life. When Laura asks for help with her matchmaking scheme, he finds himself unable to refuse.

She has a smile he can’t resist, no matter how much he wants to.But as their plan is set in motion, the matchmakers begin falling for each other. Yet Laura thinks she’s happy with her dull boyfriend, and Bruce won’t risk another broken heart. As the future of Valentino’s hangs in the balance, can these two lost and lonely people find the perfect moment tostart their lives again together?

What does TWG think?

Oooo watch out book world, theres a new rom-com writer on the block!!!

This book didn’t really tick my boxes to begin with if I’m honest. I couldn’t grab onto the waist of the storyline like a guy grabs the waist of his missus, however I was very hopeful that that would change.

It may have taken a few ‘dates’ for me and the book to get acclimatised, but when we did, I flew through the pages like nobodies business. What a warm hearted, uplifting and more-ish book this is!

Laura has had her own fair share of tragedy. To be honest, most of the characters in this book have been affected by some sort of tragedy in their life, and I think that’s why I found a lot of the characters endearing because they were real. They had been on the receiving end of life changing situations. Their heartbreak was realistic and would actually happen to John-Boy across the street.

I am not a romantic. Some people may call me a cynic. However, I have now decided, after reading ‘The Perfect Moment’, that my own perfect man would be someone who knew what was on my most favourite pjs. Just like Bruce. I mean, it’s important information!!!!

‘The Perfect Moment’ really did deliver in humour and tenderness, and I closed the book feeling rather annoyed because I wanted more. I adored the heart and the addictiveness of Alix Kelso’s story telling. I CANNOT WAIT to delve into another ‘Fairhill’ novel if ‘The Perfect Moment’ is anything to go by! Loved it!

Buy now from Amazon UK

Buy now from Amazon US

#BlogTour! #Review – #TheFriendWhoLied by Rachel Amphlett (@RachelAmphlett) @BOTBSPublicity

Last but not least, another BOTBSPublicity blog tour to end the day, this time for Rachel Amphlett and ‘The Friend Who Lied’. Many thanks to Sarah for the blog tour invite and ARC, here is my review:

What she doesn’t know might kill her…

Lisa Ashton receives a last-minute reprieve from death two weeks before her birthday. Regaining consciousness, she is horrified to learn one of her friends has been killed – and saved her life.
As she recovers, she uncovers a trail of carefully guarded reputations, disturbing rumours, and lies. Soon, Lisa begins to wonder if one of her friends is hiding a terrible secret.
Because five of them entered the escape room that day, and only four got out alive.
And someone is determined to cover their tracks before she can find out the truth.

Can Lisa find the killer before someone else dies?

What does TWG think?

Wowza!! Nothing like coming back to reality with a bang! Why did the book have to end! Rudeness!!

‘The Friend Who Lied’ reminded me of Cleudo…in book form! Obviously not the whole candlestick and all that jazz, but the overall premise of the story if that makes sense. Such an incredibly clever way of putting a story together, and so very well thought out.

Lisa’s life has been saved. Just. However someone she knows was killed, therefore saving her. But how did they die? Lisa wants to get to the bottom of what had happened and, even though she is over the moon that her life was saved, the relief is tainted due to the loss of her friend.

This was such a thrilling, cat and mouse type of read. There was danger, suspense, shocking discoveries, and the added bonus of feeling like a detective. Honestly, Rachel Amphlett made the chase thrilling, and the pace rocket like. I genuinely was gutted that the book had come to an end because I had found myself so invested in trying to work out who killed Simon, as well as unearthing some of the other characters secrets.

A chilling, unnerving, cleverly crafted novel – I would have hated being the ‘mouse’ in this book, that’s for sure!!

Buy now from Amazon UK

About the author.

Before turning to writing, USA Today bestselling author Rachel Amphlett played guitar in bands, worked as a TV and film extra, dabbled in radio as a presenter and freelance producer for the BBC, and worked in publishing as a sub-editor and editorial assistant.

She now wields a pen instead of a plectrum and writes crime fiction and spy novels, including the Dan Taylor and English Spy Mysteries espionage novels and theDetective Kay Hunter British police procedural series.

She’s a member of International Thriller Writers and the Crime Writers Association, with the Italian foreign rights for her debut novel, White Gold sold to Fanucci Editore’s TIMECrime imprint, and the first four books in the Dan Taylor espionage series contracted to Germany’s Luzifer Verlag.

#BlogTour! #Review – #SummerAtTheKindnessCafe by Victoria Walters (@Vicky_Walters) @TeamBATC @AnneCater @SimonSchusterUK

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Next up on the blog this afternoon is my review of ‘Summer at the Kindness Cafe’ by Victoria Walters. Happy publication day! Many thanks to Anne for the blog tour invite, and huge thanks to the publisher for the ARC (and the Brew)!!

Summer at Kindess Cover
Welcome to Brew, a cafe where kindness is almost as important as coffee… almost!

Abbie has fled London and the humiliation of not being able to make rent after being made redundant. Her sister, Louise, unlucky in love, has thrown herself into her career at the local hospital. And Eszter, who has travelled from Hungary with her daughter Zoe, is hoping to fulfil her husband’s dying wish: to reunite his family.

This summer, three very different women are inspired by the random acts of kindness written up on the Kindness Board at Brew, and decide to make a pact to be kinder to others and to themselves.

Can a little bit of kindness really change your life? Eszter, Abbie and Louise are about to find out!

**Summer at the Kindness Cafe was previously published
as a four-part serial titled Random Acts of Kindness.
This is the complete story in one package.**

What does TWG think?

I’m just going to chuck this straight out there – what a breath of fresh air this book is! I have never, ever, rooted for three characters as much as I did Abbie, Louise, and Eszter! I really wanted them all to have their happily ever afters, I was even half tempted to do a Joey Tribianni and step into the book instead of a map!

All three ladies have their own story to tell, each of which are explored as the storyline progresses, and all three women have fled to Littlewood to restart their lives. Thanks to a ‘Kindness Board’ in local cafe, Brew, their lives take an interesting turn which allows them to revaluate their fears and attempt to make a decision that will change their lives forever.

Putting it like that, I guess it sounds pretty dramatic! It isn’t, not really. I mean, Abbie has ventured to Littlewood to see her sister, Louise, after being made redundant (there’s more to that story!), Louise arrived few years prior after a relationship breakdown, and Eszter brought her daughter, Zoe, to the little village from Hungary…of all places, to fulfil one last wish. Could they BE any more chalk and cheese? I think that’s why I thought they worked brilliantly together. Each woman had their own way of doing things, and brought different wisdom to the table whenever it was needed. I loved their diversity and the fact that wanted to go all out to help people they barely knew, just because. No hidden agenda. No guilt attached. Nothing. They were kind because, guess what? THEY WANTED TO! I know, people seem to think that being kind is hard!

I ADORED this book! I loved how infectious the authors determination to be kind was, and I just loved how satisfying the entire book was. If you feel as though you are needing a pick me up, or if you feel like you’ve misplaced your reasons to get up and go, I highly recommend reading this book to help you put things in perspective. Don’t get me wrong, it’s not going to tell you how to live your life or tell you the answers to your questions – it’s not a Magic 8 ball, however the story really does have its own magical powers in the sense it makes you look at situations from a different angle. Instead of sitting and worrying about looking like a ‘lumpy sausage’ in a dress, just go and get a new one. It sounds very simple, but when you’re in amongst things and are struggling to think logically, you just don’t find the answers to things as quickly as you usually would.

‘Summer at the Kindness Cafe’ also had a wonderful character who had me in hysterics and left me clapping my hands in glee; Ben. What a wonderful, wonderful addition to an already beautiful book. He is brilliant and definitely worth its weight in gold!

As I said, I cannot recommend this uplifting, joyous, poignant and utterly divine book which will open your eyes to different paths on journeys you may embark on. Victoria Walters brings happiness and warmth to this poignant and heartwarming novel, in the most unique and unforgettable way. Such a joy to read – I’m envious of anyone and everyone who gets to read it for the very first time!

Buy now from Amazon.

#BlogTour! #Review – Dead Inside by Noelle Holten (@nholten40) @KillerReads @BOTBSPublicity

#DeadInside B L O G T O U R
Have you ever heard of CrimeBookJunkie? The name sure sounds familiar doesn’t it. I just can’t place where I have heard it before!

Jokes. Everyone has heard of CrimeBookJunkie, and if you haven’t heard the news already, where the hell have you been – she’s only gone and written a book! I have the pleasure of closing Noelle’s blog tour for her debut novel, ‘Dead Inside’. Thank you to Sarah for the blog tour invite, I am delighted to be involved. Also, many thanks to the publisher for the ARC. Here is my review:

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The killer is just getting started…

When three wife beaters are themselves found beaten to death, DC Maggie Jamieson knows she is facing her toughest case yet.

The police suspect that Probation Officer Lucy Sherwood – who is connected to all three victims – is hiding a dark secret. Then a fourth domestic abuser is brutally murdered.

And he is Lucy’s husband.

Now the police are running out of time, but can Maggie really believe her friend Lucy is a cold-blooded killer?

What does TWG think?

That’s the million dollar question, what DOES TWG think? I’d be lying if I said that ‘Dead Inside’ took me ages to read, because it didn’t. Far from it actually. I think I demolished the entire story in a couple of hours! One minute I was at 18%, and then the next I was updating my Goodreads to show that I had completed it! What a read! I have never, ever read anything like it before.

If you’ve been following this authors blog before she became an author, you’d know that she used to work in Probation. Her knowledge in that topic is extremely evident throughout the entire storyline, and I thought that that gave the story the edge that maybe some other books in this genre would be missing out on.

‘Dead Inside’ is entered around domestic abuse, a topic which is very hard-hitting to read on its own, let alone being the main premise of a crime novel. Noelle Holten hasn’t just dumped the topic in her book and went on her merry way, she pulled the topic to shreds and highlighted the impact that domestic abuse has on the victim, as well as the people around them. She has also laid it bare as to how manipulative abusers can be, and how they can get what they want at the click of their fingers. On a personal level, Holten nailed the emotional devastation and, whilst it took me back to a dark time in my past, I appreciated the realism. There’s nothing worse than reading about a topic in a book, only to find it isn’t realistic at all, and unfortunately or fortunately, whichever way you want to look at it, in this instance it is highly realistic and brilliantly done.

Now, I like a jam-packed novel as much as the next person, but for me, I felt that there was too much going on at times. Not only did the storyline cover abuse, it also covered murder, psychological issues, coercive control, blended families, drugs and alcohol abuse. I couldn’t keep up at times with the to-ing and fro-ing between each situation, as well as the snippets from different points of view, and so forth. I can appreciate that all of the topics were related to the storyline and what the author was trying to achieve, but I think I would have been less dizzy if there were a few less things to focus on, instead putting more detail into the other sections. But that’s just me.

Overall, I was very impressed by the strength of Noelle Holten’s debut novel – she clearly has the talent there to hook her readers and leave them wanting more, and I think that her background has helped to put her novel a cut above the rest. ‘Dead Inside’ is such an intense, fast paced, gripping read which left me really annoyed when it had finished – I wanted more! Looks like Noelle Holten is now an author to watch!!

Buy now from Amazon

About the author.

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at www.crimebookjunkie.co.uk. She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and a regular reviewer on the Two Crime Writers and a Microphone podcast. Noelle worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of cases including those involving serious domestic abuse. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle‘s hobbies include reading, author-stalking and sharing the book love via her blog. 

Dead Inside is her debut novel with Killer Reads/Harper Collins UK and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

Links:
 

#BlogTour! #Review – The Mother’s Mistake by Ruth Heald (@RJ_Heald) @Bookouture

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Day two of the blog tour for ‘The Mother’s Mistake’ by Ruth Heald, and the glittery, Bookouture tour bus stops with me, TWG! Many thanks to Bookouture for the blog tour invite and ARC – here is my review:
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Everyone makes mistakes. But does everyone deserve to be forgiven?

She runs past the tinkling of children’s laughter that fills the park. Heart hammering, feet stinging, she reaches the riverbank, her breath catching in her throat. And then she sees…

Three years later.

Claire has everything she’s always wanted. A new-born baby. A doting husband by her side. A picturesque home in the countryside.

But behind closed doors, Claire’s life is falling apart. Her husband is barely ever home, she’s struggling to bond with her baby girl, and she swears that she is being watched in the remote, lonely cottage.

And when a threatening note is posted through her letterbox, saying she doesn’t deserve her daughter, it’s clear that someone knows about the terrible mistake that Claire made – someone won’t let her forget it. Three years ago, she would have known who to turn to. But now she no longer recognises those closest to her, or the person she’s become. Who can she trust?
What does TWG think?

Forgiveness is a tough one, isn’t it? People usually say that, to move on from something, you have to learn to forgive the person involved. But what happens if that person involved is…yourself? How can you forgive yourself for something when guilt overrides any logical thinking? Like I say, it’s a tough one and unfortunately for Claire, that was exactly the situation she found herself in.

Moving to the countryside was supposed to be a fresh start for them all. A new home, a new baby, a new life – what’s not to like? Claire’s relationship with her mother in law is hanging by a thread, and it doesn’t help that Claire cannot get one minutes’ peace from her sticking her nose in as the mother in law lives next door!

‘The Mother’s Mistake’ is such a satisfying and gripping novel – I wasn’t expecting the storyline to be what it was at all! Ruth Heald nails the psychological element of the book, and at times I felt like my head was spinning out of control due to not knowing which way to turn. Who do I believe? What do I believe? I really didn’t know.

This story is told via different points of view which, in my opinion, increases the depth of the novel as I felt I got to see different sides to each of the characters. I would say that, at times, the pace was a little bit too slow and unforgiving, however when the storyline peaked it blew the slowness out of the water.

‘The Mother’s Mistake’ is a very, very impressive read which kept me on my toes until the very end. It’s clear that Ruth Heald is a talented writer who knows which buttons of her readers she needs to push in order to get a reaction. This book was definitely one of those buttons!

Buy now from Amazon
About the author.

Ruth Heald is a psychological thriller writer from a suburban Buckinghamshire town. She studied Economics at Oxford and then worked in an eclectic mix of sectors from nuclear decommissioning to management consulting.

Seeking a more creative environment, she found a role at the BBC and worked there for nine years before leaving to write full time. Ruth is fascinated by psychology and finding out what drives people to violence, destruction and revenge. She’s married with one daughter and her novels explore our greatest fears in otherwise ordinary, domestic lives.

Social Media Links:

Website

Twitter

#BlogTour! #Review – #TheSundayGirl by #PipDrysdale @SimonschusterUK @AnneCater

Last up on the blog today is something a bit dark and devious, my review of ‘The Sunday Girl’ by Pip Drysdale. Many thanks to Anne for the blog tour invite, also thank you to Jess and the Simon & Schuster team for the ARC.

Some love affairs change you forever. Someone comes into your orbit and swivels you on your axis, like the wind working on a rooftop weather vane. And when they leave, as the wind always does, you are different; you have a new direction. And it’s not always north.’

Any woman who’s ever been involved with a bad, bad man and been dumped will understand what it feels like to be broken, broken-hearted and bent on revenge.
Taylor Bishop is hurt, angry and wants to destroy Angus Hollingsworth in the way he destroyed her: ‘Insidiously. Irreparably. Like a puzzle he’d slowly dissembled … stolen a couple of pieces from, and then discarded, knowing that nobody would ever be able to put it back together ever again.’
So Taylor consults The Art of War and makes a plan. Then she takes the next irrevocable step – one that will change her life forever.

What does TWG think?

‘The Sunday Girl’ has a very dark premise to it, one which some may find quite unbelievable. However, the topic of revenge via social media in regards to personal videos etc, is actually a lot more ‘popular’ than people realise. I don’t mean ‘popular’ in the sense that it’s going to the new craze, I just mean that it happens a lot more than people realise.

Taylor is broken hearted. She has split up with her boyfriend Angus, and doesn’t quite know what to do with herself. Angus on the other hand, has many ideas of his own, one of which he has turned into a reality rather quickly. Once Taylor realises what her ex-boyfriend has done, revenge seems to be the only comeuppance she can think of. But if a person is capable to stoop so low as to try and ruin another person’s life, is it wise to try and give them a taste of their own medicine yourself?

Taylor is a unique character, one I didn’t really warm to as her personality made me eyeroll more often than not. That said, I did feel for her due to the situation she found herself in. Angus really didn’t do himself any favours!

I thought ‘The Sunday Girl’ was such an addictive, compulsive, and gritty read which had narcissism at its core in a relatable manner. The pace was on par with the vibe of the book, and the level of suspense, alongside the dark notions of revenge, was just bang on. Pip Drysdale’s book may not have been what I was expecting, but I really enjoyed it and cannot wait to see what else Drysdale has to offer!

Buy now!

#BlogTour! #Review – #StillStanding by Natalie Queiroz (@natqleigh) @AnneCater @jblakebooks

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It is an honour to host such an incredible, incredible woman on my blog today. Natalie’s story is one which, despite the fact that it shouldn’t have happened in the first place, will leave you bereft. Many thanks to Anne Cater for inviting me to take part in the blog tour, and for the ARC of Natalie’s memoir, ‘Still Standing’. Here is my review:

Still Standing Cover
Natalie Queiroz was eight months pregnant when she was stabbed by her partner in the most vicious attack imaginable. 

In the space of nine minutes, and in broad daylight, Natalie was stabbed twenty-four times with a carving knife.

She suffered horrific wounds to her lungs, liver, stomach and uterus, whilst the knife missed her baby by a margin of two millimetres  before the arteries in her wrists were methodically severed by the hooded attacker she finally realised was her partner and the father of her unborn child. 

After heroic intervention by passers-by and police, the attack was brought to an end, but her ordeal was not over. An air ambulance rescue was launched, and against all medical odds, Natalie and her baby survived – but not without life-changing physical and emotional damage. 

Still Standing is the story of one life-shattering event – what came before that fateful day, what happened on it, and how one woman and her baby survived to rebuild and heal together after it. At once a shocking story of evil, manipulation and violence, and a truly moving reminder that a life can be pieced back together, no matter how bad the damage, this book will empower and inspire anyone who has ever faced true adversity to rise up and stand tall.

What does TWG think?

I have been thinking about how best to write my review, all day. How on EARTH can you form coherent words about an incident which left 2 people for dead. Wait, hang on, how on EARTH does someone carry out the attack that leaves 2 people for dead, one being their own flesh and blood!!!! If I was asked, in person, as part of a random chat, about my thoughts of ‘Still Standing’, the amount of swear words I would use would turn the air blue. However, seeing as this is my own blog and I will be putting the review on Amazon, no swear words will be in this at all. Shame.

Natalie was stabbed 24 times. 24 TIMES! Not only that, she was 8 months pregnant and the attacker stabbed her in the stomach as well. Not only THAT, the attacker was someone incredibly close to Natalie. Someone which helped to create the baby that they nearly killed. Sick isn’t it?

I have no idea how this woman is, pardon the pun, still standing. I would love to say that she is strong, and whilst I wholeheartedly believe that, I am angry for her because she shouldn’t have HAD to be strong – she shouldn’t have been attacked anyway! It is, just like Natalie says in the book, very easy to sit here and commend her on the way she got through the attack, because she did get through it and it is amazing. However, like I just said, she had no other bloomin’ option BUT to get through it! She didn’t get through it for herself. She got through it for her babies, the two that had already been born and the one that was fighting for its life inside her. Natalie HAD to put on a brave face because she had children to look after despite being severely injured by an absolute cactus. Again, I have absolutely no idea how she managed to do it, but holy moly she did and what an unbeliever woman she is.

‘Still Standing’ goes back to the day which Natalie would no doubt love to forget – the day she saw her life flash before her very eyes. The day her baby was born early. The day her life changed drastically both in terms of her physical looks, and her emotions. Natalie describes the attack in incredible detail, as though you’re watching it happen in front of you. She describes her feelings at that time, what went through her mind when the paramedics were with her, what went through her head when she woke up in hospital hoping that everything was a dream. It’s heartbreaking to read, and yet I wasn’t even the one going through what she did!

The attack didn’t just affect Natalie, it also affected her two eldest children because of course, she is their mummy and they were old enough to be aware of certain things. I am so, so pleased that the bystanders were recognised for assisting Natalie that day, as were the emergency services involved. What an incredible bunch they are. A lot of people snipe about our NHS but without it, there’s a slim chance that Natalie and her bubba would have survived.

This memoir is incredibly emotional. It’s gritty. It’s eye-opening. It highlights the lengths which people can go to to manipulate a situation. ‘Still Standing’ doesn’t just focus on the day of the attack, it also focuses on the aftermath and how Natalie begun to get her life back little by little, as well as the emotional turmoil she had to face at the hands of a downright selfish person.

As I’ve already said many times, Natalie didn’t have a choice BUT to survive that day. She could have easily given up. It’s a massive shame that her strength is coming to light due to what she went through, because I am sure she was an incredibly strong person beforehand. That said, in my eyes, Natalie Queiroz is a superhero. What a moving, emotional, raw and poignant piece of writing this is. When I grow up, can I please be like Natalie? I’ll make my own cape…!

Still Standing will be published on the 13th June. Pre-order now!

About the author.

Natalie Queiroz is the survivor of one of the most appallingly brutal attacks imaginable. After being stabbed two dozen times by her partner when she was eight months pregnant, she has rebuilt her life and inspired people the length and breadth of the country with her courage and refusal to be bowed by her trauma.
Alongside a successful full-time career, she has since become a motivational speaker and, through various feats of endurance and daring, raised thousands of pounds for the Midlands Air Ambulance charity she owes her life to.

#BlogTour! #Review – A Summer Reunion by Fanny Blake (@FannyBlake1) @AlainnaGeorgiou

Blog Tour A Summer Reunion
It gives me great pleasure to welcome Fanny Blake to TWG today as part of the ‘A Summer Reunion’ blog tour! Huge thanks to Alainna and Orion for the blog tour invite and ARC. Here is my review:

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One perfect villa, four old friends, and a holiday that will change everything…

Amy, Linda, Kate and Jane were best friends at school. Now, years later, they have grown apart. When Amy discovers her husband has been stealing from her successful interiors business, and with a milestone birthday looming, she decides it is the time to reach out to her old friends once again.

So, she decides to invite the other three to her beautiful villa in Mallorca for a reunion weekend. As the four friends gather, secrets are unearthed, old scores settled and new friendships forged. Will this holiday bring them together or tear them apart? And will each of them grasp their second chance for happiness…?

What does TWG think?

Oh I thoroughly enjoyed this!! If you’re sitting there thinking that ‘A Summer Reunion’ is going to be all sunshine and relaxation, you have another thing coming. I, like you no doubt, thought the same when I first saw the cover of Fanny Blake’s new novel. So, the more of the book I read, the more surprised I was to find that ‘A Summer Reunion’ has a lot more to it than I originally thought.

As the title suggests, the book is about a reunion which happens in the summer. However, what the cover doesn’t state is just how stressful that particular reunion is. Firstly, the four women involved; Amy, Jane, Linda and Kate, haven’t seen each other for many years. The last time they were in close proximity of each other ended up severing ties for them. Aside from Jane and Kate though, they’re the only two who have had any involvement in the years that have passed since their school days.

What on Earth could have caused such a ruckus? I know that not everyone stays friends with who they went to school with, but seeing as their friendship group is the reason that Amy’s life didn’t quite go to plan, it must have been something major for them to part ways.

I’m not going to go into detail as to what the ruckus ended up being, and even though the author hints at issues throughout the book, the truth doesn’t get revealed properly until nearer the end. What an absolute bombshell. I mean, considering the extremity of said situation, I was very impressed by the way in which Fanny Blake handled the finer details surrounding it. It is an incredibly difficult thing to talk about and, as weird as this sounds, I just loved the way the author approached it as she did the characters, and anyone else who had been in a similar situation, very proud.

I flew through the pages of ‘A Summer Reunion’, and I lapped up the storyline like the four women lapped up the sunshine in Mallorca. It made a nice change to read about characters who were at a later stage in their life, instead of reading about characters who were merely starting theirs and didn’t know much. The wisdom of the four women enlightened me and got completely under my skin – I loved it!

‘A Summer Reunion’ is an uplifting tale of true friendships, emotional hardships, and uncertain futures. Fanny Blake has written such a heartwarming, atmospheric storyline which allows the reader to be captivated by the trials and tribulations of each individual character. It’s deep, it’s moving, it’s detailed, and it’s empathetic. It has everything I could have wanted from a book, and it was an absolute pleasure to be able to lose myself in Amy, and her friends lives.

‘A Summer Reunion’ is published on the 13th June. Pre-order now.