Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Friendship, New Books, Romance, Romantic Comedy, Travel

Meet Me in Tahiti Georgia Toffolo 4*#Review @ToffTalks @MillsandBoon #Romance #SecondChances #memories #Tahiti #BookReview #MeetMeinTahiti #MeetMe #MillsandBoonInsiders @AvrilTremayne

Where there’s always a second chance at first love…

Zoe has spent her life facing battles: fighting her parents for independence, struggling with her feelings for local bad boy Finn and, after a car accident at eighteen, adjusting to the fact she would not walk again. She remained strong until the day Finn, the person she thought she could trust, broke her heart… Now a successful travel writer, Zoe is excited to review a new luxury hotel in the beautiful South Pacific – until she meets its owner…

Finn was never good enough for Zoe. He knew it. Zoe’s family knew it. The village of Hawkes Cove made sure he knew it. Proven when he let her down in the worst way possible. Now a successful businessman, he thought his past was behind him, until a journalist turns up to review his new resort…

As Finn shows Zoe the exotic wonders of the islands both face the fact their shared past might just be the beginning of a future. But only if Zoe can win the biggest battle of her life…facing up to her heart’s desire.

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Set in romantic Tahiti, Zoe and Finn meet again after twelve years and find that the attraction still burns brightly between them but are they brave enough to overcome past differences? Zoe is a travel writer who explores holiday resorts to discover their accessibility. Zoe’s story is a journey of self-discovery, coming to terms with her past and taking a second chance at love with Finn. The story features Victoria, Lily and Malie and is told from Zoe and Finn’s viewpoints.

The setting is well described, and the friendship dynamic between the women is pivotal to the story and well written. This is an enjoyable chapter in the Meet Me series, humorous, poignant and romantic.

Read my review of Meet Me in London

Read my review of Meet Me in Hawaii

Posted in Blog Blitz, Book Review, Friendship, Historical Fiction, New Books

The Secrets of Latimer House Jules Wake 5* Review @Juleswake @0neMoreChapter_ @rararesources #BlogBlitz #BookReview #WW2 #HistoricalFiction #histfic #secrets #womeninwar #friendship #TheSecretsofLatimerHouse

In the war against Hitler every secret counts…

Society heiress Evelyn Brooke-Edwards is a skilled interrogator – her beauty making her a non-threat in the eyes of the prisoners.

Farm girl Betty Connors may not be able to type as she claimed, but her crack analytical skills soon find her unearthing covert connections.

German ex-pat Judith Stern never expected to find herself listening in to German POW’s whispered conversations, but the Nazis took her father from her so she will do whatever it takes to help the Allies end this war.

Billeted together in the attic of Latimer House – a place where secrets abound – Evelyn, Betty and Judith soon form a bond of friendship that carries them through the war. Because nothing is stronger than women united.

Tucked away in the Buckinghamshire countryside, Latimer House, a grand country estate, stands proudly – a witness to some of greatest secrets of WW2.

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from One More Chapter and the Author in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

With vibrant characters and based on real-life historical events, this story of courage, friendship and intrigue is an engaging read. Evelyn, Judith and Betty, are three women from differing backgrounds who are billeted together during WW2 at a secret military facility. They all play pivotal roles in the war against Nazi Germany and allow the reader to explore the roles fulfilled by women during this war.

With vibrant characters and based on historical events, this story of courage, friendship and intrigue is an engaging read. Evelyn, Judith and Betty, are three women from differing backgrounds who are billeted together during WW2. They all play pivotal roles and allow the reader to explore the roles fulfilled by women during this war.

The characters are cleverly created and easy to empathise with. Their friendship is realistic and full of humour, love and poignancy. The story has an intriguing ethos and gives the reader a great sense of place and time.

This is an absorbing historical read with vivid characters and events.

Jules Wake

Jules Wake announced at the age of ten that she planned to be a writer. Along the way she was diverted by the glamorous world of PR and worked on many luxury brands and not so luxury brands. This proved fabulous training for writing novels as it provided her with the opportunity to hone her writing and creative skills penning copy on a vast range of subjects from pig farming and watches, sunglasses and skincare through to beer and stationery. 

She writes best-selling warm-hearted contemporary fiction for One More Chapter as Jules Wake and under her pen name Julie Caplin, she writes the Romantic Escapes series. 

Between them, the two Js have written eighteen novels, The Secrets of Latimer House being the latest.

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Posted in Audiobook Review, Contemporary Fiction, Crime, Family Drama, Murder Mystery, Mystery, New Books

The Appeal Janice Hallett 5*#Review @JaniceHallett @ViperBooks #audiobook @HachetteAudioUK #CrimeFiction #murdermystery #legal #psychological #suspense #BookReview #TheAppeal

In a town full of secrets…. 

Someone was murdered. 

Someone went to prison. 

And everyone’s a suspect. 

Can you uncover the truth?

Dear Listener – enclosed are all the documents you need to solve a case. It starts with the arrival of two mysterious newcomers to the small town of Lockwood, and ends with a tragic death. 

Someone has already been convicted of this brutal murder and is currently in prison, but we suspect they are innocent. What’s more, we believe far darker secrets have yet to be revealed. 

Throughout the Fairway Players’ staging of All My Sons and the charity appeal for little Poppy Reswick’s life-saving medical treatment, the murderer hid in plain sight. Yet we believe they gave themselves away. In writing. The evidence is all here, between the lines, waiting to be discovered. 

Will you accept the challenge? Can you uncover the truth? 

The standout debut thriller of 2021 that delivers multiple brilliant twists, and will change the way you think about the modern crime novel.

Amazon UK

My Thoughts…

This book has a contemporary and original format well suited to audiobook media. The author’s insightful exploration of community, social hierarchy and relationships are intrinsic to the story.

A respected barrister is prepping for an appeal. On his instruction, two pupil lawyers investigate the case through emails, messages and crime documents. The ordinariness of the email and other electronic communications belie the information they contain. The reader is invited to get to know the characters and their relationship dynamics. Being part of the investigative team immerses the reader in the story, which is addictive.

The narrators are excellent, bringing each character to vibrant life. Whilst, there are no physical descriptions of the characters, sensory imagery makes them and the events that unfold easily visualised.

Additional information and a list of characters are divulged to the pupil lawyers. This allows them to focus on the case’s pertinent areas and produce a legal analysis of the information to make a viable appeal case. The final revelations reveal the truth with just a hint of mystery to ponder.

This is an engaging and enjoyable audiobook.

Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Friendship, New Books, Psychological Suspense

The Affair Hilary Boyd 4*#Review @HilaryBoyd @PenguinUKBooks @MichaelJBooks #FamilyDrama #Relationships #psychologicalsuspense #BookReview #TheAffair

A SUMMER SHE WILL REMEMBER FOREVER. BECAUSE HE WON’T LET HER FORGET . . .

Escape to the sun-drenched shores of Lake Como in the irresistible and gripping new novel from the million-copy bestselling author of Thursdays in the Park, The Anniversary and The Lie

Connie McCabe longs for the summer where she spends the days leading tours across Europe.

But it’s on the glamorous shores of Lake Como where she is truly swept away, when Jared, a much younger man, falls for her.

Despite resisting his advances Connie finds that he’s got under her skin.

And so begins a long, hot, intoxicating summer where Connie succumbs and breaks her marriage vows.

At the end of the season Connie returns home to her husband, wanting to put this affair behind her.

But Jared has other ideas . . .

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Penguin Books UK- Michael Joseph via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

The emotion and intensity of this immersive family drama draw the reader into Connie’s world. She is believably flawed and easy to empathise with. The affair is brief and easy for Connie to compartmentalize from her daily life. Her crumbling marriage and lack of response from her husband make her vulnerable to flirtation. The inevitable consequences are devastating for her and her family. Her friendships are strong, which help her come to terms with her imploding life. The twist is cleverly woven into the story and allows for an impactful, poignant conclusion.

This is an absorbing read with relatable characters and scenarios.

Posted in Blog Tour, Historical Fiction, Saga

A Winter Baby For Gin Barrel Lane Lindsey Hutchinson @LHutchAuthor @BoldwoodBooks #AWinterBabyForGinBarrelLane #Promo #boldwoodbloggers @rararesources #Saga #historicalfiction #HistFic #BlogTour

Dolly Perkins and Jack Larkin have grown up in the notorious gin palaces of Birmingham.

It’s a world of happiness and friendship, but also violence and poverty. Now that Dolly runs the Daydream Gin Palace on Gin Barrel Lane she can finally control her own destiny, but sometimes fate still plays its hand.

Keen to expand her empire, Dolly and Jack take on a new pub, but they are in for a shock when a foul smell in one of the bedrooms turns out to come from a body hidden in the wall.

As the police hunt for their suspect, rumours abound, spread by the local urchins – happy to be used as runners for a little bit of food and a coin or two.

But rumours can be dangerous, and as one of the worst winters on record covers everything in snow, Dolly and Jack have to fight for the lives they have made for themselves, and for the urchins that they have come to think of as family.  Will the arrival of a new baby on Gin Barrel Lane bring the promise of new hope, or will the long-awaited thaw uncover new secrets and new tragedies…

The Queen of Black Country sagas is back on Gin Barrel Lane with a rip-roaring, heart-warming, page-turning story of family, friendship and beating the odds.

Amazon UK

Lindsey Hutchinson

Lindsey Hutchinson is a bestselling saga author whose novels include The Workhouse Children. She was born and raised in Wednesbury and was always destined to follow in the footsteps of her mother, the multi-million selling Meg Hutchinson.

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Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Friendship, New Books, Romance

The Seaside Cocktail Campervan Caroline Roberts 5*#Review @_caroroberts @0neMoreChapter_ @fictionpubteam #BookReview #Northumberland #Romance #family #Weddings #campervan #cocktails #Friendship #secrets #TheSeasideCocktailCampervan

Bringing love, laughter and friendship from coast to coast…

*The new heatwarming and cosy romance from Caroline Roberts – the only seaside escape you need this summer!*

Next stop: seaside, sunshine and romance!

When Lucy isn’t in her cosy cottage by the sea, she’s winding through the Northumberland coast with her loveable Dachsund Daisy, cooking up a storm at the local village celebrations. Inspired by her Italian Poppa, Lucy’s chasing a new dream with her pizza van business. And at one particular party she meets Jack, the brooding but gorgeous owner of the Cocktail Campervan.

Wary of repeating mistakes of the past, Lucy and Jack keep it strictly business. But as the summer drifts by in a swirl of garden parties, fun and fizz, laughs and celebrations, and as the cocktail campervan creates the community they so desperately need, romance starts to blossom – one stop at a time…

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from One More Chapter – Harper Collins UK via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

This story has all the qualities I’ve come to expect from this author’s books. Romance full of conflict and emotional connection, friendship, family drama and a lovely mix of humour, poignancy and recipes to complete the collection.

Contemporary and relevant, we follow Jack (the cocktail campervan man) and Lucy(the All Fired Up pizza woman) as they travel Northumberland’s coastal and rural regions at various celebratory events. Both are in an emotional wasteland from failed relationships and family tragedy. Despite their growing attraction, they fear loss more than they crave love.

This book explores the couple’s emotional journey. It’s highlighted by interesting events that add authenticity and depth to this lovely story. The descriptions immerse the reader in this mobile catering world with picturesque settings and mouthwatering recipes.

Posted in Book Review, Historical Fiction, Historical Romance, New Books

A Blues Singer to Redeem Him Elle Jackson 4*#Review @readellejackson @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #HistFic #MillsandBoonInsiders #HistoricalRomance #1920s #NorthAmerica #BookReview #ABluesSingertoRedeemHim

Nights at the speakeasy…

Spark a dangerous romance

Evelyn Laroque’s performances at Lorenzo De Luca’s Kansas City blues club draw even bigger crowds than his bootleg whiskey. And every time he hears her voice, Lorenzo falls a little harder for the achingly beautiful blues singer. When Evelyn becomes a target for the KKK, Lorenzo faces an impossible choice. Will this son of a gangster turn to the mob if it’s the only way to protect the woman he loves?

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

The author captures this violent period of North American history succinctly. The story has a dramatic and devastating beginning, but it draws the reader into this time of lawlessness.

Evelyn is still grieving from losing her parents in a violent massacre but determined to realise her dream of being a singer whilst helping her grandmother. Lorenzo is the heir to the De Luca family, entrenched in the mob. He wants to do things differently, but his father’s influence is great. Lorenzo has powerful enemies and someone he wants to protect, but can he do it his way?

This is an atmospheric story with detailed world-building that doesn’t shy away from the prejudice and violence of the 1920s. The romance between Evelyn and Lorenzo is riven with conflicts. They both realise that any relationship would put the other in danger of reprisal, but the attraction is great and the gradual emotional connection even more compelling. The romance is forbidden but inevitable with courageous characters who the reader wants to find happiness.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Friendship, New Books, Romance

A MidwinterMatch Jane Lovering 4*#Review @janelovering @BoldwoodBooks #love #life #friendship #romance #rivals #secrets #self-belief @rararesources #boldwoodbloggers #AMidwinterMatch

Ruby Oldbridge needs to learn to take her own advice.

A brilliant counsellor at work in York, she is however floundering in her own life. Her romantic track record is woeful, her finances are in a pickle, and she’s back in a house-share after splitting up with her useless ex.

But one thing Ruby is brilliant at, is helping other people find a way through their problems, and she excels at the job she loves, doing just that.

Happy-go-lucky, Mr Positivity, Zac Drewe also loves his job – the trouble is, it’s the same as Ruby’s, and the management have decided to ‘rationalise’ their department. There’s only room for one of them.

As the snow and winter close in on York, Ruby and Zac have everything to lose, and Ruby starts to wonder if the happy face Zac shows the world, might be disguising a sadder secret.

Set against one another, they are unlikely friends. But perhaps, if they could take the time to understand each other, they might discover that rather than rivals, they could be the best thing that ever happened to one another…

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Boldwood Books via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

This is my first winter-themed book of the year and gives the reader so much more than a cosy winter read. Ruby and Zac are counsellors who find they both have to compete for the same job after a company merger. Told from Ruby’s viewpoint, we realise she is recovering from a bad break-up, being in debt and losing her home. Zac is outwardly positive and self-assured, but as the two are drawn into forced proximity, they begin to see the true person behind the facade and become friends.

The setting in a wintry York is wonderfully described and immerses the reader in this festive setting. The characters are flawed and relatable, all with stories to relate that add to the book’s authenticity. The story has a strong focus on mental health and its triggers which make it contemporary and relevant. There is a balance of humour and poignancy. The reader wants the characters to have what they deserve in life in this engaging story.

Jane Lovering is the bestselling and award-winning romantic comedy writer who won the RNA Novel of the Year Award in 2012 with Please Don’t Stop the Music. She lives in Yorkshire and has a cat and a bonkers terrier, as well as five children who have now left home. 

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Gothic Fiction, New Books, Noir, Psychological Suspense, Psychological Thriller, Suspense, Thriller

Rock Paper Scissors Alice Feeney 5*#Review @HQStories @alicewriterland #RockPaperScissors #psychologicalsuspense #Marriage #anniversary #Relationships #secrets #lies #Holiday #BookReview #publicationday

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from HQ in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

Reading this story is like opening Pandora’s box, compelling, creepy and full of unexpected consequences.

In an attempt to rescue their marriage after ten years, Amelia and Adam head to the remote Scottish Highlands. It’s clear from the beginning both have secrets and that they dislike each other. The setting is atmospheric and claustrophobic, and the writer’s excellent use of sensory imagery immerses the reader in the gothic setting.

Told from Amelia, Adam and later Robin’s viewpoints, the reader has an omnipotent view of the character’s motivations, but all three are unreliable, so who can you trust? There is also a series of secret letters which give the reader something to think about.

As the story progresses, the twists intensify. This story keeps you gripped until the very last word. You unravel part of the truth, but there is always more to discover. The characters are complex, damaged by their pasts, and have many unlikeable traits. Despite these, this story has a poignant ethos drawing the reader’s empathy.

The ending is believable, impactful and thought-provoking.

Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, New Books, Romance

Beauty in the Billionaire’s Bed Louise Fuller 5*#Review @MillsandBoon @HarlequinBooks #MillsandBoonInsider #MillsandBoonModern #HarlequinPresents #Romance #Proximity #Northumberland #preorder #August19 #BeautyintheBillionairesBed

The temperature is rising for this adventurous billionaire when he encounters a gorgeous stranger in this sexy forced-proximity story by Louise Fuller!

An uninvited guest
An undeniable desire!

Billionaire explorer Arlo Milburn returns home to his secluded mansion to find an unexpected beauty sleeping in his bed! Learning that Frankie Fox is a social media influencer does nothing to inspire his trust. It’s been a while since Arlo welcomed anyone into his solitary life…

However, stranded with Frankie while a storm rages outside, Arlo discovers her glamorous persona shields a warm, wounded young woman who touches him in ways he hadn’t thought possible. Attraction may have brought them together, but can it break down his walls entirely?

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

A passionate encounter on a Northumberland island brings Frankie and Arlo together. This is an atmospheric and emotional romance with a contemporary edge. There are believable characters, sexy encounters and a growing emotional connection between the couple. The internal conflicts are relatable, and the romance is hot. This is the perfect romantic escape for those who like sensual romance.