Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Literary Fiction, Mystery, New Books, Parenting and Famlies, Saga, Travel

A Mother’s Heart Carmel Harrington 5*#Review @HappyMrsH @HarperFiction @HarperCollinsUK @fictionpubteam #IrishFiction #LiteraryFiction #FamilyDrama #saga #relationships #love #grief #secrets #parenting #Ireland #NewZealand #AMothersHeart

Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand

While Rachel Butler likes her life in a pretty Dublin coastal village, her heart lies in Hawke’s Bay, where she grew up. Visiting for the first time since tragedy tore her family apart, she and her stepchildren fall for its beauty and outdoor lifestyle.

Malahide, Ireland

As Rachel picks up the threads of her life as a single parent, she can’t shake off the memories of her loving family in New Zealand – and her dream house, the villa on the bay. But it’s time to move forwards with their life in Ireland, close to the children’s grandparents, amid the familiar surroundings they all know well.

Until the children’s grandmother, still grieving, starts to interfere, questioning Rachel’s position as stepmother.

Until Rachel’s attempts to strengthen the family she loves so dearly backfires, pitting everyone against each other.

And until her late husband’s parents mend the rift that has existed as long as she’s been married – bringing with them an explosive secret . . .

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

My Thoughts…

Rachel loses the man she loves but still has his children, who she loves dearly. Thankful that he had the foresight to make her an adoptive parent, she faces life without him. Born in New Zealand, she has a close relationship with her family, who adore the children. The children’s biological mother’s parents are not happy with things, and this story explores the conflict, emotion and love of Rachel’s determination to achieve the best family for her children.

Each believably flawed vibrant character enriches the story that shows how grief manifests itself differently and how this affects family relationships. Lyrical writing evokes the settings and adds depth to this character-driven story.

It is a heartwarming, poignant story with strong female characters. Rachel is a lovely woman who places the children’s welfare at the heart of everything she does, making this incredibly engaging to read.

Posted in Book Review, Espionage - Spy - Thriller, Historical Fiction, New Books, Political Thriller

Yesterday’s Spy Tom Bradby 5*#Review @tombradby @TransworldBooks #spy #1950s #1930s #espionage #politicalthriller #secrets #YesterdaysSpy #bookreview #publicationday

Nothing good ever comes from a midnight phone call, especially from Downing Street. For washed-up spy Harry Tower, it is the worst news at the worst possible time. His son, Sean, has gone missing in troubled Iran after writing an exposé about government corruption.

Their relationship has never recovered since Harry’s wife’s suicide, for which Sean holds his father responsible. And Harry, with his career on the verge of disintegration, needs to find him and put things right.

When Harry arrives in Tehran, he finds a city on the cusp of revolution. Foreign powers are jockeying for influence, money and, most importantly, oil. The CIA are conspiring to undermine the government with an impending coup, and there are dark mutterings about opium smuggling. But the reasons for Sean’s disappearance may be even more sinister than Harry first suspected.

Before long, he is on the run – not only from a faceless enemy but from his own past. Which will catch up with him first?

Yesterday’s Spy is Tom Bradby at his very best, delivering a cunning espionage novel rich in intrigue and history that will keep you guessing until the final pages.

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

My Thoughts…

Set in 1950s Iran, this is a complex political thriller. Retired spy Harry is searching for his journalist son at a time of political unrest. The plot is multilayered, and the historical details are fascinating, making this an original and intriguing story. As Harry considers his life, the story visits the 1930s, and the reader gets to know him, his wife and his previous role.

It immerses the reader in the characters and the story with a tangible sense of danger and a plot full of action, emotion, and intriguing mystery.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Friendship, Holiday Romance, Parenting and Famlies, Romance, Travel

Beach House Summer Sarah Morgan 5*#Review @SarahMorgan_ @HQStories #BlogTour #BookReview #BeachRead #Summer #Family #Love #friendship #media #celebrity #HolidayFiction #relationships #secrets #publicationday #paperback #California #BeachHouseSummer

When Joanna Whitman’s famous ex-husband dies in a car accident, she doesn’t know what to feel. Their dysfunctional marriage held more painful secrets than she cares to remember. But when she discovers that the young woman with him in the crash is pregnant, Joanna feels compelled to act, knowing exactly how brutal the media spotlight will be on celebrity chef Cliff Whitman’s ex-wife and his mysterious female friend.

Ashley Blake can’t believe it when Joanna shows up in her hospital room and suggests they hide away at her beach house on a sleepy stretch of the California coast. Joanna should be hating her, not helping her. But alone and pregnant, Ashley can’t turn down Joanna’s offer. Yet she knows that if Joanna ever found out the real reason Ashley was in that car, their tentative bond would shatter instantly.

Joanna’s only goal for the summer is privacy, but her return causes major waves in the local community, especially for the man she left behind years ago. All Ashley wants is space to plan for her and her baby’s future, and to avoid causing any trouble for Joanna. But as secrets spill out under the hot summer sun, this unlikely friendship is about to be put to the test.

Amazon UK

I received a copy of this book from the publisher.

My Thoughts…

The death of celebrity chef and serial cheater Cliff draws two unlikely women together in an unexpected friendship. When his ex-wife Joanna decides to help pregnant Ashley, escaping to Joanna’s beach house to avoid the media means she has to face her past and the friends she left behind.

I love the emotion and the vivid characterisation in the multilayered story. Past loves and secrets all have to be faced, and friendship endures. The Californian coastal setting and the glamour of the beach house give the story vibrant, sensual imagery, adding authenticity.

This story has believably flawed characters, a great holiday setting and a complex set of relationships that deliver an engaging story.

Posted in Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Giveaway, New Books, Parenting and Famlies, Romance

Temptation in Istanbul Hana Sheik 4*#Review @HanaSoChic @HarlequinBooks @MillsandBoon @rararesources #MillsandBoonTrueLove #HarlequinRomance #BlogBlitz #BookReview #SecondChance #Romance #TemptationinIstanbul #publicationdaypush #publicationday

Escape to Istanbul, where a nanny may just tempt a bruised billionaire to give love a second chance in this heartwarming romance by Hana Sheik.

A single dad’s greatest temptation?

The nanny on his doorstep! 

Billionaire Faisal is anxiously awaiting custody of his little girl, who’s been living miles away with her mother. First, he must win the approval of her nanny, Maryan, who has travelled with her to Istanbul. While he shows Maryan the delights of his city, the instant attraction between them is hard to ignore. But Maryan leaves in two weeks, so Faisal must decide how much of his bruised heart he is prepared to risk…

Amazon UK | Amazon (US) | Harlequin

I received a copy of this book from the author and publisher.

My Thoughts…

Billionaire Faisal wants to reconnect with his young daughter, who he has seen little of since his break up with her mother. He is determined to make time for her in his busy life. Maryan wants Zara to be happy with her father, but she needs him to know what that requires, even if she oversteps.

Maryan and Faisel have an instant attraction that they both dismiss. Both have trust issues, and they live in different worlds. When Faisel asks Maryann to stay at his home to settle his daughter, they are in each other’s orbit, and the temptation to give in to their feelings is too powerful to resist.

Gentle romance full of internal and external conflicts. The characters are likeable, and you want them to find happiness together. I like the setting and the chemistry between Faisel and Maryan.

Hana Sheik

Hana Sheik falls in love every day reading her favourite romances and writing her own happy-ever-afters. She’s worked as a data entry operator, customer service rep, telemarketer, and ghostwriter—but being a romance author is without a doubt the best job ever! Born in Somalia, she moved to the beautiful capital of Canada as a toddler and still lives there happily with her family. She loves to hear from readers. Reach out to her on the contact page at hanasheik.com

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Giveaway to Win 3 x paperback copies of Temptation in Istanbul (Open to UK / Ireland / US & Canada)

Click on the giveaway link to enter.

*Terms and Conditions – UK / Ireland / US and Canada 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, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Friendship, Giveaway, Giveaway, Mystery, New Books, Romance

Rainbows End in Ferry Lane Market Nicola May 5* #Review @NicolaMay1 @HodderBooks @rararesources #Cornwall #Market #Family #Friendship #Relationships #Romance #Art #love #mystery #SelfRealisation #BlogTour #BookReview #PublicationDay #giveaway

Book Three in bestselling sensation Nicola May’s gorgeous new series – catch up with Book One, WELCOME TO FERRY LANE MARKET, and Book Two, STARRY SKIES IN FERRY LANE MARKET, now!

39-year-old Glanna Pascoe – also known as ‘the Rainbow Painter’ – runs the Hartmouth Gallery in Ferry Lane Market in Cornwall. She is just getting her head and broken heart around being single, childless, and sober when Cupid flies in, shooting arrows all over the place.

Meeting the mysterious and fascinating Isaac Benson, a famous local artist, and recluse, allows Glanna’s disillusioned heart and attitude to soften, and she begins to learn more about herself than she ever thought possible. Confused by her growing feelings for Isaac, Glanna throws herself into organising a life-drawing class at her gallery, using both male and female nudes – and setting local tongues wagging.


A theft from her gallery and the return of ex-love Oliver Trueman cause Glanna to wonder if a pot of gold will be appearing at the end of her rainbow. And will it bring her the happiness, she has sought for so long?

Amazon UK Amazon

I received a copy of this book from Hodder and Stoughton.

My Thoughts…

Ferry Lane Market is a memorable setting, and the author brings it to life with its relatable characters and detailed description. Glanna’s journey of self-realisation is believably poignant. Her battle with addiction and her lack of self despite her material wealth resonates. Old friends from the market reappear, sharing their life events, and there are plenty of humorous interludes.

I enjoyed getting to know the Ferry Lane Market community, who are standout characters. This book is most notable for its lovely friendships and the element of forgiveness it portrays. A perfect summer read set in a picturesque coastal location, immersive and uplifting.

Nicola May

Nicola May writes ‘chick-lit with a kick’ and is the internationally bestselling author of fifteen romantic comedies. All have appeared in the Kindle bestseller charts. The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay became the best-selling Kindle book in the UK across all genres in January 2019 and March 2020 respectively. It was also the second best-selling eBook of 2019 in the UK. Nicola’s books have also been sold in many languages.

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Read my review of Welcome to Ferry Lane Market

Read my review of Starry Skies In Ferry Lane Market

Giveaway to Win PB copies of Rainbows End in Ferry Lane Market for you and a friend (Open to the UK only)

Click on the link to enter the giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the 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, Contemporary Fiction, Literary Fiction, New Books, Thriller

White Dog Rupert Whewell 4* Review #WhiteDogBook @wearewhitefox @WhiteDogBook @midaspr #thriller #literaryfiction #publicationday

White Dog is a literary thriller set against the backdrop of the contemporary art world. It follows the fortunes of Ryder, a cynical art deal who aspires to the heights, yet despises the people who populate those realms.

On his way to the top, back down, and back up again, Ryder encounters a picaresque collection of characters and gets drawn into a web of intrigue that involves murder, money-laundering, and materialism. But can his newfound fame and fortune ever make up for the loss of the one thing he ever really valued in life?

White Dog will take you on a rollercoaster ride of sex, drugs, and art – of violence, blackmail, hedonism, and dark politics. Are you ready to face the wolves?

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

Described as a literary thriller, I was intrigued to read this story completed and published posthumously by the author’s sister.

The author’s love of words is evident in his lyrical writing full of literary and sensory imagery. The writing style is in sharp contrast to the plot and setting that depicts a contemporary art world riven with materialistic people with little true feeling for the art they seek to possess.

Ryder, the main protagonist, is a young, ambitious art dealer who wants to be part of the art world’s elite even though he appears to despise them and what they represent. The story follows his career and life. Vividly depicted characters bring the story to life, but Ryder remains a mystery. He is self-absorbed, certainly, but his true self is hard to discern.

More literary fiction than thriller, but this will appeal to readers who enjoy this genre.

The only novel from budding author Rupert Whewell, who sadly lost his life in a tragic climbing accident in the Nanda Devi region of the Himalayas. At the time of his death, the manuscript of White Dog was left incomplete, with Rupert’s plans for the book’s ending remaining a mystery.

As a tribute to her brother and his love of words, Rupert’s sister Lisa Anson worked closely with renowned author John McDonald to complete White Dog, which allowed her to come to terms with his unexpected passing.

This book has been a long time in the making. Rupert always loved writing and talked often about his desire to write a book. Distracted by a full life and being present with his friends and family, it remained in the background, referenced, and variously started without real progress. In his late forties, he started to put pen to paper in earnest and White Dog was born. Rupert was a very special person; not just to me – as a lifelong presence – but to his many friends. His tragic death is something I will never get over and will never forget.

I have taken on the task of finishing and publishing his book, which he left 80 percent complete. It was important to me to see his story through and share his writing. It brought me closer to Rupert, and I hope it will keep his memory alive for those that knew him and will entertain others who did not.”

Lisa Anson, Rupert’s sister.
Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Contemporary Fiction, Family Drama, Friendship, Giveaway, Mystery, New Books, Romance

Starry Skies in Ferry Lane Market Nicola May 5* #Review @NicolaMay1 @HodderBooks @rararesources #Cornwall #Market #Family #Friendship #Relationships #Romance #mystery #SelfRealisation #BlogTour #BookReview #PublicationDay #paperback #giveaway

Amazon UK Amazon

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

My Thoughts…

The second book in the Ferry Lane Market series is addictive reading. We reacquaint with Kara and the residents of Hartmouth, but this story centres on Star. Steren or Star is Kara’s best friend, mother to Skye and daughter of Estelle. Having a baby at sixteen made her wary of relationships, especially after her early life with Estelle. A brief encounter with Jack left her wanting. Now there’s Conor, who should she choose?

It’s easy to become immersed in life at Ferry Lane. The characters are relatable and vibrant, and all have flaws and secrets to reveal. The community spirit and friendship dynamics are authentic, and it’s easy to care about these characters and what happens to them.

Star is a lovely character. There is a believably written mother-daughter relationship between Star and Skye. Star’s relationship with Estelle is also notable. Aside from amusing dialogue, and romance there’s also an element of mystery.

Perfect escapist reading.

Nicola May

Nicola May writes ‘chick-lit with a kick’ and is the internationally bestselling author of eleven romantic comedies. All have appeared in the Kindle bestseller charts. The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay became the best-selling Kindle book in the UK across all genres in January 2019 and March 2020 respectively. It was also the second best-selling eBook of 2019 in the UK. Nicola’s books have also been sold in many languages.

Twitter Publisher Twitter Instagram Publisher Instagram

Read my review of Welcome to Ferry Lane Market

Giveaway to Win 3 x PB copies of Starry Skies in Ferry Lane Market for you and a friend (Open to UK only)

Click on link to enter giveaway

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the 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, Contemporary Fiction, Crime, Detective, Family Drama, New Books

Without A Trace Jane Bettany 4*#Review @JaneBettany @HQStories #CrimeFiction #WithoutATrace #BlogTour #BookReview #DIIsabelBlood #PublicationDay #FridayReads

You can cover up the truth, but every murder leaves a trail…

The rain was relentless. It stung Ruth Prendergast’s face as she dashed towards her house, desperate to escape the cold and settle down for an early night. But upon entering her bedroom, she finds a man, lying on her bed – a knife buried in his chest.

When Detective Isabel Blood and her sergeant arrive on the scene, Ruth claims she’s never laid eyes on the victim before. But with no sign of a break-in, how did the killer gain access to the house?

Then Ruth disappears, leaving Isabel and her team to fear the worst. Has their lead suspect escaped, or is Ruth in danger herself?

Forensic evidence at the crime scene is sparse, and it’s proving impossible for Isabel to make a breakthrough. With Ruth still missing, time is running out.

But how can you catch a killer that doesn’t leave a trace?

Amazon UK

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

My Thoughts…

The second book in the DI Isabel Blood series fulfils the potential of the first book. This story set in the East Midlands is a variation of a locked room murder. A newly divorced woman returns home on a wintry night and finds a dead man in her bed. She claims he is a stranger, but there is no sign of forced entry to the property. The investigative team led by Isabel have little evidence to go on, and when the woman who found the body disappears, the situation becomes complex and urgent.

The investigation is well-written and plausible, with a satisfying conclusion. There is a good balance of personal and professional interfaces in the story, adding authenticity and depth. This promises to be a series to follow.

Posted in Blog Tour, Book Review, Christmas Read, Fantasy, Festive Read, Folk Tales, Historical Fiction, Magic, New Books

Midnight in Everwood M. A. Kuzniar 4*#Review @thecosyreader @HQStories #HQNewVoices #Fantasy #magic #festive #AdultFairytale #historicalfiction #Nottingham #PublicationDay #MidnightinEverwood

In the darkness of night, magic awaits…

Nottingham, 1906

Marietta Stelle longs to be a ballerina but, as Christmas draws nearer, her dancing days are numbered – she must marry and take up her place in society in the New Year. But, when a mysterious toymaker, Dr Drosselmeier, purchases a neighbouring townhouse, it heralds the arrival of magic and wonder in Marietta’s life.

After Drosselmeier constructs an elaborate theatrical set for her final ballet performance on Christmas Eve, Marietta discovers it carries a magic all of its own – magic darker than anyone could imagine. As the clock chimes midnight, Marietta finds herself transported from her family’s ballroom to a frozen sugar palace, silent with secrets, in a forest of snow-topped fir trees. She must find a way to return home before she’s trapped in Everwood’s enchanting grip forever.

In the darkness of night, magic awaits and you will never forget what you find here…

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

My Thoughts…

Multilayered and magical, this is a festive adult fairytale full of adventure, darkness and self-discovery. It explores Edwardian social history and how women began to challenge society’s expectations of them. Marietta is a young woman, expected to marry and leave her dance career behind. She rails against the injustice but initially fails to understand the direction of life is in her hands.

The world of Everwood is intricately created, full of vivid imagery and insidious darkness that threatens Marietta and that she must overcome. There are classic elements in the story for those familiar with the original inspiration to enjoy.

An engaging read if you enjoy dance, history and magic.