#Review – The Little Teashop of Lost and Found @Trishaashley @poppystimpson @Transworldbooks

trisha
Alice Rose is a foundling, discovered on the Yorkshire moors above Haworth as a baby. Adopted but then later rejected again by a horrid step-mother, Alice struggles to find a place where she belongs. Only baking – the scent of cinnamon and citrus and the feel of butter and flour between her fingers – brings a comforting sense of home.

So it seems natural that when she finally decides to return to Haworth, Alice turns to baking again, taking over a run-down little teashop and working to set up an afternoon tea emporium.

Luckily she soon makes friends, including a Grecian god-like neighbour, who help her both set up home and try to solve the mystery of who she is. There are one or two last twists in the dark fairytale of Alice’s life to come . . . but can she find her happily ever after?

What does TWG think?

Oh my goodness. Have you ever finished reading a book and would do anything to read it time  and time again, as though it would be the first time reading it? Before now, I have seen various people saying that they would love to do that for various other books and I couldn’t quite understand what they meant. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve enjoyed A LOT of novels over the years but re-reading a book like it’s the first time, every time? What on Earth would be the criteria for a book to fit that accolade?
Luckily, I can now answer that question with seven words. A mere seven words is all it takes, in my eyes, to explain the criteria of first time re-reading, every single time; The Little Teashop of Lost and Found.

Why?

I have been a huge fan of Trisha Ashley’s books for a very long time, so to have the honour of holding the ARC of her new novel in my hands was a HUGE deal to me. It felt like I was holding something special, something priceless (and awfully strokeable. coverlove!!!). I tweeted Trisha periodically as I was reading her book as I wanted her to be with me on the journey that I took whilst reading her novel. That probably sounds daft, but as she couldn’t see my facial expressions etc, I wanted to let her know my thoughts as I read it. Can you tell I’m a HUGE fan of hers? OI most certainly read it alright as it only took me a couple of hours to read cover to cover, much to Trisha Ashley’s (and everyone else’s) surprise.

Alice Rose hasn’t had the most settled of lives. To start with she was left on the Yorkshire moors as a baby, adopted into a new family then rejected by her step-mother and then she had embark on an uncertain journey as an adult, with the fear of never belonging. I cannot begin to imagine how hard that must have been for Alice, she didn’t ask to be born so why did she keep getting rejected? Just when she thought that she had found the right path for her journey, Alice’s life once again takes an almighty turn and she is left with the feeling that regardless of which new route she took, the outcome was likely to be the same either way; a dead-end. She just had to work out which route was worth the extra effort to turn the dead end, into an open road. Doesn’t sound so simple when you think about it, does it?

What made me warm to Alice the most was how real she came across. Yes she came across bulshy, sassy and extremely black and white in terms of getting her thoughts across, but I could tell that she was a bit broken inside yet she didn’t shy away from that. I don’t think that this book could have wanted for a stronger main character than Alice Rose, especially as there will no doubt be a lot of readers who will be able to relate to Alice as a person as well as the hurdles she has had to jump over so far. Plus, she is absolutely hilarious!

When I saw that yet another storyline would contain a teashop/café, I will admit that I was a little bit apprehensive purely to the over popularity of those settings in novels just now. I was hoping that this one would stand out from the crowd and not get lost amongst the other teashops.
But you know what? It worked! The teashop setting in Trisha Ashley’s novel isn’t your ‘typical’ rather popular setting. For starters, the building actually took a long time to get decorated and ready for business and as readers, we get to ‘see’ the interior go from shabby to wow, step by step. Secondly, the teashop was hidden away and it was as though a map would be needed to direct customers down the ever winding roads (love btw). Thirdly, whilst the teashop was a big part of the storyline, the main focus wasn’t on the teashop itself as the focus was on Alice rebuilding her life.

Everything worked extremely well together. I felt as though I had been transported to a land far, far away because I had zoned out from my own life and went and sat in Alice’s life. There is nothing about Trisha Ashley’s book that I disliked, at all. Not only does the storyline have a fabulous main character with Alice, it also contains other fantastic who stand out in their own way. Each character made themselves known, not one of them felt the need to sit in the background and shy away from the unfolding events. They were memorable and utterly fabulous.

I really cannot recommend The Little Teashop of Lost and Found, enough.
Full of laughter, hard times, strength and heart warming events, The Little Teashop of Lost and Found, is a book to devour. A book to hold close to your heart. A book where sadness comes to light but then happiness kicks its toosh quicker than a cupcake can be eaten. A book to cherish. A book to turn off your phone, lay on the sofa with a cuppa and a cake, and get cosy with.

The Little Teashop of Lost and Found contains additional recipes to devour alongside the novel. Now, I like cake as much as the next person but you know what? The only recipe I need contains Trisha Ashley & her latest novel as THAT is my recipe to happiness. Definitely one of my most favourite books ever.

An outstanding, heart-warming novel from the incredibly talented Trisha Ashley. Magnificent.

Thank you SO much Poppy Stimpson!

Buy now from Amazon UK
(click the above link to buy in Hardback at only £4.99 as well – price correct as of 28/03/17)

#Tour!#Review – White Lies & Wishes @CathyBramley @TransworldBooks @Beckyh1712 @penguinrandom

cathyb

Three days into week two of Cathy Bramley’s blog tour for her new book, White Lies & Wishes, and it’s MY turn to host! Being asked by Becky Hunter to be involved in this tour has got to be one of my biggest ‘pinch me’ moments so far. Cathy Bramley has won over millions of hearts with her previous releases; Conditional Love, Ivy Lane and most recently, The Plumberry School of Comfort Food; making her one of the top ‘go to’ authors within contemporary fiction right now.
Basically, I’m a HUGE fan of hers and I am truly honoured to help celebrate and promote such a talented and humble author, as well as her beautiful new book; White Lies & Wishes.
I hope you enjoy my review!

cathyb1

Blurb.

What happens when what you wish for is only half the story…?

Flirtatious, straight-talking Jo Gold says she’s got no time for love; she’s determined to save her family’s failing footwear business.

New mother Sarah Hudson has cut short her maternity leave to return to work. She says she’ll do whatever it takes to make partner at the accountancy firm.

Bored, over-eating housewife Carrie Radley says she just wants to shift the pounds – she’d love to finally wear a bikini in public.

The unlikely trio meet by chance one winter’s day, and in a moment of ‘Carpe Diem’ madness, embark on a mission to make their wishes come true by September.

Easy. At least it would be, if they hadn’t been just the teensiest bit stingy with the truth…

With hidden issues, hidden talents, and hidden demons to overcome, new friends Jo, Carrie and Sarah must admit to what they really, really want, if they are ever to get their happy endings.

What does TWG think?

Three very unique women plus three bolshie wishes sounds quite straight forward, doesn’t it? After all, it’s ONLY one wish each that they are aiming to make a reality, how hard can it be? Well, considering the fact that Jo, Carrie and Sarah are virtually strangers and their wishes aren’t exactly black and white; they may be in for a bumpy ride before they get their happy endings!

To be honest, I’m sure Jo, Carrie and Sarah, are not the only ones who have made a positive ‘bucket list’, aiming to change something about their life that they haven’t had the confidence to do so before. I was going to say that it’s similar to a new years resolution, except that not many people keep theirs! The three ladies met at a time where making friendships would usually be the last thing on your mind. But for them, it seemed to be the ideal place to strike up a friendship, and put the world (well, their lives) to rights during their very first conversation! Some might say that it was a brave move on their part, or some might say that Cathy Bramley gets top marks for originality of friendship starting places. I say; BOTH!

I adored the unusual way the ladies met each other as it showed exactly how varied different lives can be. Not everyone meets at a bar or in a café; we have the chance to create friendships wherever we go and this scenario was no different. I struggled to associate with the main three characters to begin with as I didn’t warm to them as quickly as I had hoped. However, once the storyline grew and the characters let their guards down, I found that I was able to relate to them all in such very different ways. I actually can’t pick a favourite!

Describing what I enjoyed about Cathy Bramley’s new book is like having to choose a favourite pair of shoes; overwhelming and extremely difficult. I LOVED everything about this book; selecting a couple of positives to write about is really hard when there are so many (cough, the whole book, cough). The only way that I can sum up my thoughts of the book is by imagining a seedling; during the first chapter the seed was planted and the storyline began. As the storyline progressed, the seedling grew as did Jo, Carrie and Sarah. Every chapter saw the seedling gain strength, individuality and the want to weather the storm, and every chapter saw the storyline become something rather special.  So special in fact, I found myself smiling at the book multiple times as the warmth and love that was cushioned under Cathy Bramley’s words, jumped off the page and into my soul.

The seedling weathered quite a few storms, but it never lost hope, neither did the characters. Then, about three-quarters of the way into the novel my heart became full of pride and the seedling was no more. For me, three quarters of the way through the novel was a complete game changer. Cathy Bramley not only managed to fill my soul with warmth and love, she also filled my heart with hope, determination and a heart warming eye opener that left me stunned. The seedling blossomed into a beautiful flower; as beautiful as the storyline of White Lies & Wishes and the humbling message that it contains. If you feel as though your own life has a huge question marking hovering above it, get onto Amazon or pop into your local supermarket and buy this book. It won’t fix your life, but it most certainly will give you the laughter, hope and hunger to fulfill your own special dreams.

Cathy Bramley has once again written such an outstanding novel; I am in awe. A wonderful book that is full of true friendships, dreams and the desire to laugh. I think I may have just found one of my new favourite books. Wait, no, scrap that. I KNOW that I have found a new favourite book. Oh, and no, that isn’t a white lie.

White Lies & Wishes is available to buy now from Amazon.