Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Festive Read, Friendship, Giveaway, New Books, Romance, Travel

The Amsterdam Affair Kate Frost 5* #Review @katefrostauthor @rararesources #BlogTour #BookReview #Amsterdam #Travel #Friendship #Romance #TheAmsterdamAffair #MondayBlogs

A new start, a chance encounter, a Christmas to remember. Will Iris’s new year be happy ever after? 

When Iris Greene’s boyfriend surprises her with a romantic dinner at their favourite restaurant, she’s expecting a proposal, not a move to another country. 

But Amsterdam proves to be the change she never knew she needed, and a surprise encounter with a local actor leads Iris to new friends and the rediscovery of a long lost passion. While Iris thrives in a city filled with festivity, her boyfriend struggles, and her heart is torn in two. 

As snow falls and secrets are revealed, Iris must decide her future. Will she be brave enough to start over and take a chance on love? 

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

Iris finds her life upturned when her partner of several years accepts his dream job in Amsterdam. The lack of discussion before he accepts this role makes him seem selfish, unlike Iris, who wants to make him happy, even though she has doubts.

Amsterdam proves to be a journey of self-discovery for Iris, as she rediscovers her creativity and finds friends who appreciate her. The story is full of vivid descriptions from Iris’perspective that makes the story entertaining and informative for the reader.

Iris has to choose whether to follow her dreams. Invested in her happiness, you want her to decide wisely. The characters are believably flawed and relatable, the setting immerses you in Iris’ adventure, and the story is heartwarming and uplifting to read.

Kate Frost

Kate Frost is the author of best-selling romantic escape novels (The Baobab Beach Retreat, A Starlit Summer, The Greek Heart, The Love Island Bookshop and The Amsterdam Affair), character-driven women’s fiction (The Butterfly Storm series and Beneath the Apple Blossom), and Time Shifters, a time travel adventure trilogy for children. She has a MA in Creative Writing from Bath Spa University, where she also taught lifewriting to creative writing undergraduates.

Kate lives in Bristol with her husband, young son, and their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Frodo. As well as writing novels, she’s also the Director of Storytale Festival, a new city-wide children’s book festival that she co-founded in Bristol in 2019 with the ethos of making books accessible to all and encouraging children and teens to read, write and be creative. Kate feels incredibly lucky to spend her days writing and being immersed in books. Her first book with Boldwood will be published in March 2022.

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Giveaway to Win a paperback copy of The Amsterdam Affair along with a bag of mini Stroopwafels (Open to UK Only)

Click to enter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the giveaway lilnk above.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 Rachel’s Random Resources reserves 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 be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for the fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for the despatch or delivery of the prize.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Festive Read, Friendship, Giveaway, New Books, Romance, Romantic Comedy

A Christmas Caroline Camilla Isley 4* #Review @camillaisley @rararesources #BookReview #BlogTour #Giveaway #romcom #NewYork #AChristmasCaroline #festive #AChristmasCarol

A modern-day retelling of A Christmas Carol…


Caroline is a cynic career woman living the high life in Manhattan where love and relationships are but a distant memory of the past.

But after a freak accident on Christmas Eve, Caroline receives a visit from a cheeky spirit of Christmas Past, Present, Yet to Come, and—most importantly—Christmas That Could Have Been. When she wakes up on Christmas Day suddenly married with three kids and living two doors down from her parents in New Jersey, Caroline has a chance to experience the life she would’ve had if she’d made a different choice.

Will small-town life as a mother and a wife make her rediscover what’s really important in life?

Amazon UK Amazon Apple

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

My Thoughts…

This story is a modern retelling of the Christmas classic A Christmas Carol. Caroline, a career-driven, successful woman, is the modern-day Scrooge. Her meeting with the Christmas Spirit occurs after an accident as she tries to escape festive, family life.

This festive story is full of love, laughter and little ones, as Caroline finds out what marriage and motherhood are like. Her character development mirrors the classic story. Her gender and the setting add originality.

Camilla is an engineer turned writer after she quit her job to follow her husband on an adventure abroad.

She’s a cat lover, coffee addict, and shoe hoarder. Besides writing, she loves reading—duh!—cooking, watching bad TV, and going to the movies—popcorn, please. She’s a bit of a foodie, nothing too serious. A keen traveller, Camilla knows mosquitoes play a role in the ecosystem, and she doesn’t want to starve all those frog princes out there, but she could really live without them.

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Giveaway to Win 3 x e-copies of A Christmas Date (Open Internationally)

Click to enter Giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome.  Please enter using the giveaway link above.  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 Rachel’s Random Resources reserves 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 be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for the fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for the despatch or delivery of the prize.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Festive Read, Friendship, New Books, Romance, Romantic Comedy

The Perfect Christmas Gift Katie Ginger 5*#Review @KatieGAuthor @HQStories #festive #Christmas #ChristmasGift #BlogTour #BookReview #PublicationDay #ThePerfectChristmasGift

Can neighbours become more than just good friends this Christmas?

Bella Moore is excitedly counting down the days to Christmas. That is until she arrives home one evening to find her boyfriend leaving her for another woman. Completely heartbroken, Bella is left wondering if Christmas can still be the same this year.

Next door, Bella’s neighbour Nick is facing his first Christmas as a single dad and doubting whether he can make it the magical time his son Freddie deserves.

Determined to fix both Christmas and their broken hearts, Bella comes up with an idea: a Christmas giving tree for the whole village, where the community can unite and secretly give each other the Christmas presents they truly need.

As Bella becomes chief elf, taking donations and delivering gifts with much-needed help from Nick and Freddie, the two neighbours grow closer and start seeing each other in a whole new light.

But when Nick’s estranged wife returns just before Christmas, is their budding romance over before it’s begun? Or will love be Nick and Bella’s perfect gift this Christmas?

A heart-warming hug in a novel.

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

A lovely festive story with a theme of giving, Neighbours Bella, Nick and his son Freddie work through their heartbreak and loss to make Christmas memorable for everyone in the village. This is an emotional and uplifting story with relatable characters who draw the reader into their world. The village ethos is well-described, and there’s an element of second chance romance for Bella and Nick.

The story isn’t without conflicts, but friendship and trust overcome these. This is heartwarming and uplifting, the perfect festive read.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Festive Read, Friendship, Romance, Travel

A Christmas Wedding in the Cotswolds Lucy Coleman 5*#Review @LucyColemanauth @BoldwoodBooks @rararesources #AChristmasWeddingintheCotswolds #boldwoodbloggers #BookReview #BlogTour #Romance #Friendship # #uplit #wedding #festive

What could be more festive than a winter wedding in the picturesque English countryside? Join us for Christmas in the Cotswolds with the bestselling Lucy Coleman

Imogen Tolliman and Gray Adams can’t wait to get married after getting engaged the previous year, when they were stranded by snow in a blizzard. Now they are busy planning their wedding, but when the date slips six months because Gray is working on a huge film project, it seems like fate that after their snowy start, they will end up getting married at Christmas.

The couple are living in Immi’s grandfather’s picturesque lock-keeper’s cottage at the Aysbury
marina in the Cotswolds, which they are renovating to become their forever family home. As well as building work, full-time jobs and wedding planning, Immi is in charge of raising money to build a children’s playground, to celebrate the tenth anniversary of The Santa Ahoy Cruises – her grandfather Tollie’s life work
.

When Gray is suddenly forced to travel abroad, Immi is left to cope with everything alone, and
before long, even the best-laid plans start to wobble. When a terrible betrayal is uncovered, the whole community of Aysbury is left reeling, and Immi is left wondering if there will be a wedding after all…

Let Lucy Coleman transport you away to an unforgettable Cotswolds Christmas full of romance and laughter, friendship and family and much-loved festive traditions.

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts

With characters we first met in Christmas at Lock Keeper’s Cottage, this is a lovely heartwarming story of community, friendship, love and secrets. Planning her wedding keeps getting further down Immi’s to-do list. She needs help but doesn’t like to ask. Events conspire until compromises and accepting she can’t do everything alone is inevitable. This story reads well as a standalone as salient details of their lives so far are integrated into this story.

The characters are believably flawed, and the sense of community is uplifting. The conflicts Immi faces are relatable, and this is a journey of self-belief and self-discovery for her. The sense of place and season is vividly described.

A lovely rural story with engaging characters and a picture postcard setting.

Lucy Coleman

Lucy Coleman is a #1 bestselling romance writer, whose recent novels include Snowflakes over Holly Cove. She also writes under the name Linn B. Halton. She won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction award and lives in the Welsh Valleys.

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Read my review of Christmas at Lock Keeper’s Cottage

Posted in Book Review, Festive Read, Romance, Romantic Comedy

Mills and Boon Holiday Reading #Reviews @MillsandBoon #MollyCoopersDreamDate #TheChristmasExchange #Film @BarbaraHannay #StacyConnelly #AnneOliver #OneWinterWedding #BookReviews #TheChristmasWeddingPlanner

I received a copy of these book from Mills and Boon via NetGalley in return for honest reviews.

Molly’s Diary April 10th

So, I’ve finally done it. I’ve house-swapped my little cottage in Australia for a snazzy bachelor pad in Chelsea. I can’t wait to explore London. Most of all I’m hoping to meet my dream man, my secret fantasy: a perfect English gentleman. Though I’m starting to wonder whether Patrick, my house-swapper, might actually be HIM! Is that ridiculous?

We’ve been e-mailing – and he sounds HOT! Oh, hang on, there’s another e-mail now – can’t wait to find out what Patrick’s been up to… What do you do when you realise the one you want is half a world away – living in your home, sleeping in your bed…?

My Thoughts… 4* #Review

This is a book in, ‘The Holiday’ house swap theme, but with some original differences that make this an engaging read. The couple, swop their homes, correspond by email, and gradually a relationship develops.

The reader gains important insight into both characters, from the emails, and diary entries. This adds to the story’s enjoyment. There’s a twist, which threatens the fledgeling relationship magnified because Molly is looking for an ideal man and has trust issues, but eventually love prevails and there’s a happy ever after.

The romance is gentle and sweet, making this easy to escape with and a heartwarming read.

One Winter Wedding

The perfect place to meet your groom

Once Upon a Wedding – Stacy Connelly
Wedding planner Kelsey Wilson’s business depends on her cousin’s wedding going off without a hitch. So when private investigator, Connor McClane shows up to stop the wedding Kelsey must stop him. But as sparks fly between the two might there be a wedding after all…

Bridesmaid Says ‘I do!’ – Barbara Hannay
Thrilled to be Bella’s bridesmaid, Zoe throws herself into her duties. But meeting the groom himself, sexy Kent Rigby, ruins everything…
What happens when you find the man of your dreams and he belongs to someone else?

The Morning After The Wedding Before – Anne Oliver
Emma Byrne takes her role as her sister’s Maid of Honour seriously. But drop dead sexy best man Jake Carmody is determined to loosen her up with a wedding night fling! Yet after the wedding, Jake must deal with the distinctly unfamiliar sensation he might want more…

My Thoughts… 3* #Review

This is a book of three stories, with a Winter wedding theme.

Once Upon a Wedding’ features wedding planner Kelsey and Connor, a private investigator. Kelsey has always felt second-best in her aunt’s family. Planning her cousin Emily’s wedding will prove her success to them and herself, but nothing is straightforward. Connor nearly took Emily from the family once before, and now he’s back. Can Kelsey save the wedding? There is a gentle slow-building romance between Kelsey and Connor fraught with conflicts. Family secrets, misunderstandings and trust issues are all explored in this classical romance.

‘Bridesmaid Says “I Do”‘ is a case of the bridesmaid falling for the wrong man, the groom. This book has an interesting setting and a sexy hero even though the romance is sweet. This has a rom-com plot, with the bridesmaid and groom falling in love. A recipe for disaster? Well, not if the bride’s affections are engaged elsewhere. Good characters, a nice romantic plot and a happy ending.

The Morning After the Wedding Before’ is a sexy romance about letting go of your inhibitions and responsibilities, and living for the day. Emma and Jake are a likeable couple. Even though Jake seems in control, he soon finds that he’s out of his depth.

This is a mix of romantic genres which will appeal to a wide audience of wedding romance lovers.

Posted in Blog Blitz, Book Review, Christmas Read, Festive Read, Friendship, Mystery, Romance, Romantic Comedy

A Kiss in the Snow, Little Duck Pond Café Rosie Green 5*#Review @Rosie_Green88 @rararesources #romcom #Winter #Festive #LittleDuckPondCafe

After a cruel twist of fate sends her hurtling into a black hole of despair, Carrie is absolutely dreading the festive season – especially with sister, Krystle, being even more demanding of her time and energy than usual. But then friend Maddy offers Carrie a lifeline: the chance to get away from it all in a holiday cottage in the gorgeous little village of Silverbells. Deciding that a few weeks of tranquillity – reading, baking and going for long walks in the countryside – might just restore her mood, Carrie is quick to take up the offer. But on arriving, it very soon becomes clear that this break is going to be anything but peaceful!

An unwelcome houseguest proves unsettling enough – especially one who whistles loudly first thing in the morning and is far too cheerful for his own good – but finding herself drawn into the spooky mystery of her missing neighbour means there really isn’t much time for personal reflection. And then love comes knocking, and Carrie is forced to decide exactly where her heart lies.
Will this festive season be the disaster Carrie predicted? Or will Santa be good to her and deliver her heart’s desire? One thing’s for sure – this will be a Christmas Carrie will never, ever forget…

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

Book 13 in, The Little Duck Pond Cafe series, is a lovely festive read. Set in Silverbells, it’s a standalone story featuring Carrie. New readers can enjoy this without reading others in the series, as its a complete story with a festive twist and even snow.

Carrie grasps the chance to stay in a friend’s cottage when she misreads a friend’s signals and ends up with a broken heart. The cottage is lovely, but next door is a little sinister surrounded in mystery, so maybe it’s a good thing she has an unexpected housemate?

The villagers in Silverbells are interesting characters with unique stories, and Carrie soon feels at home. Not everyone is likeable, but not everything is at it seems. Character-driven this story has a plot full of humour, mystery, poignancy and romance. The setting is festive, and the story is absorbing and detailed.

It’s a perfect mix of lighthearted and poignant, and the ending is suitably romantic.

Rosie 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 Little Duck Pond Cafe series of novellas is centred around life in a village cafe. Each book can be read as a stand-alone story.

Rosie revisits the Little Duck Pond Café with a beautiful story of love and friendship at Christmas time, entitled A Kiss in the Snow.

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Posted in Audiobook Review, Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Family Drama, Festive Read, Romance

A Surprise Christmas Wedding Phillipa Ashley 5* #Review @PhillipaAshley @AvonBooksUK #HarperCollinsAudioUK #festive #Christmas #Cumbria #Events #Weddings #Winter #BookReview #Audiobook Narrator Laura Kirman @laurakirman #Review #ASupriseChristmasWedding

It’s been a year since Lottie’s fiancé walked out, leaving her heartbroken. But things start to look up when she lands her dream job at a beautiful Lake District estate, with a handsome groundskeeper for a neighbour.
 
So when Lottie is asked to organise a last minute Christmas wedding at Firholme, she can’t wait to get started. Until she meets the couple, and discovers that Connor, the man who broke her heart, is the groom-to-be.
 

As snow falls on the hills, can Lottie put aside her past to organise the perfect winter wedding? And will there be any festive magic left to bring Lottie the perfect Christmas she deserves?

Curl up with this gorgeous story about love and second chances.

Amazon UK Audiobook

I received a copy of this book and audiobook from Avon Books UK and Harper Collins Audio UK via NetGalley in return for an honest review.

My Thoughts…

I’ve read lots of this author’s books, but this is the first I’ve listened to as an audiobook. Rather than Cornwall, the setting for this story is Cumbria one of my favourite places, so I couldn’t wait to start listening. This is a story of betrayal, forgiveness and second chances with a surprising festive wedding. Not wanting to give away the plot suffice it to say not all surprises are welcome.

Lottie is working as an event planner at a Cumbrian country house. Planning her first wedding causes conflict in her personal and professional lives, ultimately it makes her realise, some truths about herself and her previous relationship. Jay appears unsocial, but he has trust issues when it comes to relationships, something that stands between his and Lottie’s happiness.

The story has some lovely festive touches, and the romance is conflicted, but rewarding. There is also a poignantly relevant sub-plot about Lottie’s sister, which shows the importance of their sisterly bond and is a particularly heartwarming part of the story.

The characters are vibrant and wonderfully flawed, and they are brought to life, convincingly, by the excellent narrator. Not all the characters are easy to like, particularly Connor and his fiancee Keegan. The story has a good plot for an audiobook with lots of characters and dialects. The narrator is professional and copes well with the different accents and characters.

If you are looking for a festive read with family and forgiveness at its heart with ripples of romance, and humour this is a perfect read.

Posted in Book Review, Festive Read, Romance

Snowbound At The Manor Ellie Darkins 4*#Review @MillsandBoon @EllieDarkins #MillsandBoonInsiders #Romance #SnowboundAtTheManor #instagram #MillsandBoonTrueLove #Festive Read

The words merry and Christmas don’t go together for Jess. So her trip to a luxury stately home is for business, not pleasure. Only Jess hadn’t counted on spending Christmas snowbound with enigmatic Rufus, elusive owner of the manor. To top it off, it’s more difficult to ignore the sparks between them with each passing day!

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

It took me a little while to warm to the characters and events in this story, although I enjoyed the setting and the unexpected encounter element from the start. Rufus and Jess meet dramatically with him collapsing on her holiday home doorstep, and the chemistry begins to sizzle as she helps him thaw out. Neither is keen on involvement, so there is plenty of conflict in this story as they fight the attraction between them. The Instagram promotion angle is the least appealing element of the story for me, but I appreciate others may love this.

This is a lovely festive read with a great setting, romance and snow.

Posted in Book Review, Christmas Read, Festive Read, Friendship, Romance

Sinfully Yours Margot Radcliffe 4*#Review @MargotRadcliffe @MillsandBoon #Christmas #Festive #family #Friends #NewYork #Romance #BookReview #MillsandBoonInsiders #MillsandBoonDare #SinfullyYours

Dark and brooding hotel magnate Will Walker is exactly what Laura Edwards wants for Christmas. Too bad he can’t forgive her for disappearing from their unhappy existence in foster care without a word.

But when a snowstorm leaves her sharing Will’s penthouse over Christmas, the passion between them burns brighter than Times Square. This time, can Will trust Laura to stay?

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

There’s a Christmas feel from the first pages of this romance. Laura is a festive event planner and especially loves Christmas. The meeting with Will her client is unexpected, especially when she recognises him. Will has never forgotten Laura, and how she left him without a word. Trust is a conflict in their passionate romance, as is Laura’s lifelong guilt. Both characters have damaged childhoods but have achieved material success in life, emotionally, they are bereft.

Their festive romance is idyllic, with snow, confectionery and passion, but when the snow melts and the real world intrudes their conflicted past and trust issues make Will withdraw from the happy-ever-after Laura wants.

This is story has emotional angst, likeable characters and passionate romance, the perfect recipe for a festive romance read.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Festive Read, Friendship, Romance, Romantic Comedy, Travel

The 12 Christmases of You & Me Jennifer Joyce 5*#Review @Writer_Jenn @rararesources #Festive #SecondChance #romcom #Friendship #BlogTour #BookReview

What if you could go back in time and fix the biggest mistake of your life?

Two years ago, Maisie’s best friend walked out of her life and she hasn’t heard from him since. When she wakes up in 1994, she naturally assumes she’s dreaming. But when she finds herself in the past again the next night and her actions in the dream alter her present-day life, she begins to wonder if she’s somehow hopping back in time. And if she is time-travelling, can she save her friendship with Jonas?

When Maisie is forced to relive Christmases of the past, will she face up to her mistakes, or make them all over again?

The 12 Christmases of You & Me is a magical tale of friendship, first loves, and learning to live in the present.

Amazon UK Amazon

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

My Thoughts…

The idea of Christmas past, present and future is used here as a festive twist to explore coming of age, friendship and love from Maisie’s point of view. The story begins in the present, and the humour and connection between Maisie and Lily are engaging. Maisie realistically revisits past Christmases. She learns from her mistakes and omissions and subtly alters her future.

This is a story about growing up and changing friendships with a magical festive twist. The characters are relatable and engender emotions in the reader. The story is heartwarming and humorous.

Jennifer Joyce

Jennifer Joyce is a writer of romantic comedies who lives in Manchester with her husband and their two daughters. She’s been scribbling down bits of stories for as long as she can remember, graduating from a pen to a typewriter and then an electronic typewriter. And she felt like the bee’s knees typing on THAT. She now writes her books on a laptop (which has a proper delete button and everything).

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