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

Starlight Cottage K.T.Dady 4*#Review #PepperBay @kt_dady @rararesources #IsleofWight #Friendship #family #Romance #secondchances #community #BlogTour #BookReview #StarlightCottage #mentalhealth

Welcome to Pepper Bay. A small close-knit community where you’ll find chocolate box cottages, quaint shops, drama, friendship, and love.

Snuggle down with this cosy, feel-good, comfort read that whisks you away to a beautiful bay on the Isle of Wight.

The Pepper Bay books are standalone stories that intertwine with recurring characters.

Starlight Cottage – Anna Cooper and Jake Reynolds both live at the luxury London building, River Heights. The only difference is that Jake lives in the penthouse, and Anna lives in a tent on the roof.

When Jake finds out, he offers Anna a chance of a new life in his grandmother’s childhood home in Pepper Bay, and she decides to take the opportunity to see if she really can make a fresh start somewhere else.

The beauty of Pepper Bay, with its quaint shops, chocolate box cottages, and all of Jake’s closest friends, immediately fills Anna’s heart with nothing but love, and it isn’t just Starlight Cottage that she finds herself falling in love with.

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

My Thoughts…

The first meeting between Anna and Jake isn’t promising, but it introduces the characters succinctly and adds some lovely touches of humour and poignancy. Max the dog is a lovely character, the perfect friend, and matchmaker. Pepper Bay proves to be their salvation, with its caring, kindly intrusive community and coastal beauty. Both characters have emotional journeys to travel to reach their happy place, and the reader is immersed in their story and wants them to get there.

This is a gentle romance with believable characters that is an engaging read.

Author, reader, mum, chocolate lover, and a huge fan of a HEA. I was born and raised in the East End of London, and I’ve been happily writing stories since I was a little girl. When I’m not writing, I’m baking cakes or pottering around in my little garden in Essex, trying not to kill the flowers. I’m the author of contemporary romance, middle-grade, and the thought-provoking thriller about mental illness, The Focus Program.

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Murder Mystery, Mystery, New Books, Psychological Suspense, Suspense

The Island Mary Grand 4*#Review @authormaryg @BoldwoodBooks @rararesources #boldwoodbloggers #psychological #suspense #Family #secrets #MurderMystery #TheIsland #BlogTour #BookReview #IsleofWight #MondayBlogs

Where everyone knows everyone, and secrets are impossible to keep…

‘Be careful, you don’t know them as well as you think. Remember – anyone can kill.’

Juliet has returned to the Isle of Wight from years abroad to visit her sick father and to be reunited with her three sisters – Cassie, a professional musician who seems to have lost her way in life, Mira, who is profoundly deaf, is married to the local vicar but their relationship is falling apart, and Rosalind, glamorous and charming but now deeply unhappy and secretive about her life. 

As Juliet’s father lies dying, he issues her with a warning. There is a killer on the loose, and they may be closer than she can ever imagine. He anxiously tells Juliet that he confided a family secret in son-in-law Rhys, and now regrets ever saying a word.

Days later, as the clock strikes one in the morning, a man comes out of Rhys’s church, walks along the path and is run down by a car driven by an unidentified person. When the finger of suspicion points to Juliet, she realises the only way to clear her name is to uncover the secrets her family has been keeping from her for years. But with a killer on the loose, danger is getting closer all the time…

The Island  is set on the Isle of Wight – insular,  claustrophobic, and where secrets are hard to keep.

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

Set on the Isle of Wight, this is an atmospheric and twisty family orientated mystery and psychological suspense. The book begins with a drama-filled incident before returning to the recent past to illuminate the reader on events leading up to this.

Juliet returns home just in time to see her dying father and listen to his last requests. She is left wondering if they have substance or are the incoherent ramblings of a dying man. Her family appear to be hiding secrets. Have they always been like this, or has her time away given her clarity? When someone else dies, Juliet is drawn deeper into finding out who the murderer is and why putting herself in danger of losing her family’s respect and possibly her life.

Juliet is the main protagonist with additional points of view from her sisters and the killer. The plot has twists relating to the family and the criminal investigation, which leave the reader with many suspects and fewer answers until the climactic conclusion. The characters and familial dynamics are relatable. The plot intensifies, becoming increasingly menacing as the story progresses.

The clues to the killer and their motivations are discernible. I guessed the culprit but not the twists that came before. The multi-faceted characters, sympathetic setting, and well thought out plot make this an enjoyable read.

Mary Grand

Mary Grand is the author of six novels and writes gripping, page-turning suspense, with a dark and often murderous underside. She grew up in Wales, was for many years a teacher of deaf children and now lives on the Isle of Wight where her new novel, The Island is set

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Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Murder Mystery, Suspense

The House Party Mary Grand 4*#Review @authormaryg @BoldwoodBooks @rararesources #boldwoodbloggers #psychological #suspense #MurderMystery #TheHouseParty #BlogTour #BookReview

Someone is about to die… Someone is about to lie…

At the intimate house-warming party for her glorious ‘grand design’, Kathleen confides in her best friend Beth that she is terrified of one of their close friends, but daren’t reveal which one. The guests are a tight-knit group, but Kathleen is convinced one of them is dangerous.

The next day Kathleen’s body is found at the foot of a cliff and Beth must face the sickening truth that she may have been killed by one of their trusted friends. With little help from the police, Beth’s decides to seek answers.

All the friends have secrets they are desperate to hide, but only one of them is ready to kill to keep theirs safe…The House Party is set on the Isle of Wight – insular,claustrophobic, and with nowhere to run. Mary Grand has written a heart-stopping novel of secrets, betrayal and desire.

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

This story is more noir crime than the murder mystery I was expecting. In keeping with the murder mystery genre, there is a cast of characters with the motivation for murder and secrets. This story also has an element of psychological suspense increasing the level of menace.

The opening scenes at the house party flag up that Kathleen has secrets and that someone is using these against her. She’s troubled but anxious to talk them over with Beth her lapsed best friend. Patrick Kathleen’s partner interrupts their conversation. The next morning Kathleen is dead.

Beth feels she owes it to, Kathleen,to investigate her death, and this leads to deceit, danger and eventually the discovery of the murderer in their midst.The island setting makes this atmospheric. The suspects’ closeness makes this intense. No one is reliable, and the undercurrent of danger is strong in this story.

This story makes the most of its unusual setting with an intriguing plot and mysterious characters.

Mary Grand is the author of five novels and writes gripping, page-turning suspense, with a dark and often murderous underside. She grew up in Wales, was for many years a teacher of deaf children and now lives on the Isle of Wight where her new novel,

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