He found his one-and-only on land. But now that they’re at sea, will passion stay full steam ahead?
Brian never thought a single conversation could steal his heart and expand his world. But when he strikes an instant connection with a Romanian beauty, he gets swept up in a hilarious, carefree, romantic escape to her native Transylvania. So when she must leave to work on a cruise ship, he impulsively dons his sailing cap and follows her aboard.
Though he was unprepared for the grueling onboard training of new hires, his determination to be with her surpasses his awkward American moments. But as the reality of long days and seasick nights sets in, dark secrets surface that threaten to pull their courtship under…
Will Brian need a lifejacket to keep his relationship afloat?
From Romania with Love is the first book in the delightful Gone with the Waves romantic comedy series, entirely of true events in the author’s life. If you enjoy travelogue-like settings, witty banter, and reckless hearts, then you’ll adore Brian David Bruns’s continent-spanning adventure.
I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.
Humour, romance, secrets and travel are the components of this romantic comedy based on the author’s real-life experiences. The author has written the best-selling series Cruise Confidential, and this is a spin-off concentrating on his romance with the love of his life Romina.
Told informally and inclusively the reader shares the author’s love story, which has the same ups and downs, as travelling on the cruise ships. This is a delightful tale with an abundance of angst, laughter, poignancy, and romance. Being based on reality gives the story a unique appeal.
Brian David Bruns has adventured in over 60 countries to gather material for his books and won dozens of literary awards, including the USA REBA Grand Prize. Since his debut, Cruise Confidential, became a national bestseller, he has been featured on ABC 20/20, CBS InsideEdition, and in articles translated for a dozen nations.
Bruns writes of his global experiences with a self-mocking wit, an astute insight into human behavior, and a love of quirky history. After several years residing in Dracula’s hometown (yes, really), he and his Romanian wife now live in Las Vegas with their two old rescue cats, Julius and Caesar.
This is the story of two women. One old, one young. One looking for new adventures. One looking for a purpose. Both needing a friend.
And this is how, along with two little girls in need of a family, a gorgeous stranger, and a scruffy dog, they bring the whole community together every Saturday morning for love, laughter and a little bit of running…(well, power walking).
Some people come into your life when you need them the most.
I received a copy of this book from One More Chapter and the Author in return for an honest review.
There’s something for everyone in this heartwarming story of ordinary people looking for friendship, love and purpose without even realising its missing from their lives. Clare and Ash meet or more accurately collide by chance. There’s chemistry amidst the anger and the pride, but where will it lead?
Clare is career-focused. A possible partnership keeps her single-minded. She fails to notice her failing health and the problems in her sister’s life until they unexpectedly make a change in her life inevitable.
Hilda is lonely but wants to bring the community together. When the three unlikely friends meet everything starts to come together in the form of a Saturday morning park run.
This original story has a motivational ethos with believably flawed and relatable characters. The group dynamics are authentic and insightful. This is an emotional story that takes the reader on a journey. Fun, friendship, poignant moments and self-realisation are all explored through the characters with a satisfying life-affirming conclusion.
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 fourteen novels, The Saturday Morning Park Run being the latest.
I received a copy of this book from Avon Books UK via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
This is a lighthearted romantic comedy where the female lead makes all the choices. It’s contemporary and diverse embracing love wherever it falls, which is refreshing. Penny is likeable, and the love square she finds herself in is amusing, frustrating and a little sad. I don’t necessarily understand what motivates some of her actions and choices, but they do make this a good read.
‘I absolutely adored this book. It gave me all the feels! A charming read full of warmth and heart.’ ***** Kim the Bookworm
Bea Winters is in desperate need of a fresh start. Being bullied at work is not her idea of fun and she longs to follow her dream of becoming a published author. When an advert appears in her local paper to work in a publishing house in the sleepy village of Bloomsdale, it sounds too good to be true.
She strikes up an instant friendship with gorgeous aspiring author, Eddie Richards and her dashing millionaire boss Scott Summers
But all isn’t as it seems in the sleepy village of Bloomsdale.
How does the local clairvoyant know her name? Who does the little black dog that keeps appearing belong to and why does she keep bumping into the mysterious Charlie?
As she starts to unravel the truth, it seems that everyone in Bea’s life is keeping secrets. An uplifting romantic comedy that will warm your heart.
I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.
Winters’ Gift offers its readers something different. Bea is a likeable protagonist flawed but easy to empathise. Her life’s not easy, especially at work. With a little supernatural nudge, she embraces an opportunity for a new life and job.
Bea’s adventures in Bloomsdale are numerous, some funny some sad as she learns the secrets of her past and a real-life family drama unfolds at the publishing house.
Vibrant characters and a lovely balance of humorous and poignant moments make this an engaging story, especially with its supernatural twist.
Florence Keeling adopted for her pen-name her Great Grandmother’s name, chosen because of the shared birthday of April Fool’s Day. She is married with two teenage chidren. Born and raised in Coventry, England she now lives just outside in Nuneaton. Reflected Destinies is her first novel.
Florence Keeling also writes for children under the name of Lily Mae Walters.
Everyone’s favourite bus goes on a summer adventure full of sunshine and the promise of romance…
Charlie has a new helper on her bus, her free-spirited and loveable cousin, Delilah, who’s paid a visit to the charming Cornish village of Porthgolow and is helping out on Charlie’s adorable cream tea bus.
When the Director of a new TV series filming further along the coast tells Delilah that the bus would be the perfect addition to their onsite catering, she takes him a bit too literally. Charlie and Delilah find themselves caught up in the filming of a lavish period drama and it isn’t long before Delilah finds herself drawn to the handsome male lead.
But Delilah has made a habit of making rash decisions and it’s one of the reasons she’s hiding out in Cornwall. Could this be one impulsive step too far, or is a change of direction the start of something quite unexpected…
I received a copy of this book from Harper Collins UK – Harper Fiction via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
It’s lovely to be back with Charlie and her Cornish Cream Tea Bus. This time her cousin Lila is running from her imploded life in London. Charlie and Lila are close but have very different personalities. Impulsive Lila soon ruffles Charlie’s organised life with the best of intentions. A contract with a film company on location challenges Lila’s career plans and her emotional future. Meeting the actors and film crew engages Lila and draws her into a glamorous world. It has an intrinsic interest and is so enjoyable for the reader too.
The romance between Lila and Sam is lovely understated but powerful. It tugs on the heartstrings when circumstances and misunderstandings pull them apart. There are some sublimely romantic scenes balanced with many equally humorous ones. The best friend drama is an added conflict. I have to admit I am firmly in Team Lila who undergoes significant positive character development in this story.
The beautiful setting believable characters and engaging plot make this an enjoyable, effortless read.
Becky Rose has just landed her dream job house-sitting at a top-end villa on the island of Corfu. What could be better than six weeks laying by an infinity pool overlooking the gorgeous Ionian waters while mending her broken heart.
Elias Mardas is travelling back to Corfu on business whilst dealing with his own personal demons. Late arriving in Athens, Becky and Elias have to spend a night in the Greek capital. When they have to emergency land in Kefalonia, Becky’s got to decide whether to suck up the adventure and this gorgeous companion she seems to have been thrown together with or panic about when she’s going to arrive at Corfu…
Finally reaching the beautiful island, Becky is happy to put Elias behind her and get on with her adventure. Until he turns up at the villa…
I received a copy of this book from Aria via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
Becky wants more than working in a sandwich business. She’s creative and clever but is gradually losing her sense of self, by keeping quiet and hiding her talents. The chance to housesit in Corfu, is too good an opportunity, to miss, even though it strains her sibling relationship. This is a gently paced book. You get to know Becky before she sets off on her adventure. Unexpected events make the flights more adventurous than expected, and Becky meets two fellow travellers, full of emotional angst and secrets.
With lovingly described settings, the story has an authentic sense of place. The emotional plot combines friendship, humour, poignancy and romance, in a relatable way. Complex, flawed and unique characters, complement a gently paced, detailed plot. Unexpected twists keep you turning the pages, as the main characters discover what’s important to them.
This story is an escapist read, letting the reader experience love and life in an engaging holiday setting.
#MandyBaggot20 – A tale of many books…
I’ve written 20 books! No matter how many times I say this to myself I still can’t quite believe it. How DID that happen? Yes, this year, fittingly in 2020, my 20th novel is published – My Greek Island Summer! So, where did my writing journey begin and what exactly has happened in the last twelve years from Book 1 to Book 20?
Book 1 – Excess All Areas (self-published)
Picture the scene, a new mother crying out for some respite from nappy changes and piles of washing carrying a birth injury no one could fix… what does she do? She escapes into another world and writes about her last sunshine holiday to Corfu creating characters who can do anything! Readers still tell me how much they love Freya Johnson!
Book 2 – One Night on Ice – Aria Fiction (first self-published as Breaking the Ice)
My love of Dancing on Ice spurred me into writing this story. Again, I was escaping into fiction any time I could and writing about other characters’ issues took me away from my own.
Book 3 – Knowing Me Knowing You (self-published)
I have no idea where the idea for this book came from. It’s based around a relationship gameshow where single mum Kate has to compete for a prize alongside the gorgeous Joel, the date she has paid to be there who she knows nothing about. Think The Generation Game meets Take Me Out…
Book 4 – Strings Attached (self-published)
This is my real rock star romance spawned from all those delicious tortured bad boys we love to think we could change if they were in our orbit. I think bringing out this book was the time I thought I might be able to take my writing seriously and maybe, just maybe, I could get a publisher.
Book 5 – Taking Charge (Sapphire Star Publishing)* This book is being re-released by Aria Fiction in 2020 under a new title
This was my first traditionally published novel! All the titles I self-published before had been rejected by every publisher imaginable but I refused to give up hope. Call me Little Miss Persistent! Two publishers offered on this book and I decided to go for new small press, Sapphire Star Publishing. I wrote this book after I visited my dad in Michigan and fell in love with the area and the ice hockey…
Book 6 – Public Property (self-published)
This was the 2nd book I ever wrote because it has the same characters as Excess All Areas. I think, when you start off writing, comfortable is good and these characters were comfortable to me so I wrote about them again.
Book 7 – Security (Sapphire Star Publishing)*This book is being re-released by Aria Fiction in 2020 under a new title
This was my first attempt at romantic suspense. I didn’t set out to write a suspense novel, it just happened that the characters and ideas made it that way. It’s always about the romance and the connection, first and foremost, with my writing and this book is no different. Autumn and Nathan are still two of my favourite characters and I can’t wait for this book to be released again!
Book 8 – Do You Remember? – (HarperImpulse)* This book is being re-released by Aria Fiction in 2020 under a new title
I was invited to go to HarperCollins to talk about their idea for a new digital imprint, HarperImpulse. After the meeting I decided I’d submit my next book to them myself! And I got my first UK traditional publishing deal! This book features a dual timeline with the story being present day and ten years before. I think this is probably my most heart-wrenching romance and I can’t wait for it to meet new readers when it releases again!
Book 9 – One Summer in Nashville – Aria Fiction (first published by HarperImpulse as ‘Made in Nashville’)
This was all about my love of country music and the stories Honor and Jared had to tell were a true gift from my imagination. This was one of the easiest books to write because these characters knew exactly what they wanted to do! I’m so glad new readers are discovering this story this year!
Book 10 – Truly Madly Greekly (Bookouture)
This book literally changed my life. My first visit to Corfu since 2004 and I fell in love with our hotel (Mareblue Beach) and all its people. It inspired the backdrop for Ellen and Yan’s romance and this book – to date as I’m writing this – has sold almost 50,000 copies. This novel made me realise that romantic comedy was where my heart was.
Book 11 – One Wish in Manhattan (Bookouture)
I adored writing this book. Hayley, Angel and Oliver were a dream to create and the New York setting just added to the magic. This book is special because it was shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists’ Association Romantic Comedy of the Year and it was the first book I had translated into a foreign language. Thank you Germany! I’m lucky to have books translated into German, Hungarian, Czech and Italian now, with the map growing soon I hope!
Book 12 – Those Summer Nights (Bookouture)
My love of Corfu was growing with each trip back, so it made sense to continue to show the love in my next novel. The restaurant in this book was based on a real taverna on the beach in Acharavi called ‘Lavender’. Lavender has since sadly closed but a new restaurant is in its place, Corfu Grill. Definitely worth a visit!
Book 13 – One Christmas in Paris (Bookouture)
How do you follow up a Christmas book set in NYC? You write about the most romantic city in the world – Paris. It had been a long time since I visited Paris so I had to read a lot of guidebooks and watch a lot of You Tube videos to get this one right. Readers tell me I brought the magic of Paris alive so, job done!
Book 14 – Single for the Summer (Ebury)
I moved to join Penguin! This was my first deal that saw copies of my book in Tesco, W H Smith Travel and Asda! It’s always a dream come true to see your books in the supermarkets and at airports! Signing copies at London Luton on my way to Corfu with my family was a particular highlight!
Book 15 – One Christmas Kiss in Notting Hill (Ebury)
Again, copies of this book were in supermarkets and this one was my first book with a gorgeous glittery cover! We love a bit of glitter! Think Love, Actually meets Notting Hill with bulldozers…
Book 16 – Desperately Seeking Summer (Ebury)
I do like to have some of my characters coming from places close to me. In this book Abby Dolan comes from Romsey in Hampshire which is just down the road from me here in Wiltshire. I never forget my roots… but she does get to travel to Corfu in this book too!
Book 17 – One New York Christmas (Ebury)
My tomboy heroine in this novel is Lara and she’s from Wiltshire and drives a lorry. The idea for this book involves connecting with celebrities on social media and what would happen if one of them actually replied…
Book 18 – One Last Greek Summer (Aria Fiction)
I joined the incredible Aria Fiction after deciding that I really needed to get back to driving digital sales. The paperback market is so competitive and fewer and fewer books are getting picked for the shelves. This book has done brilliantly and I couldn’t be happier working with Team Aria. Beth and Heidi head to Corfu to be 21 all over again but will their past be waiting for them?
Book 19 – One Christmas Star (Aria Fiction)
Without any doubt, this is my favourite book I’ve ever written. It’s funny and heart-warming but also sad and thought-provoking. Emily and Ray drove their stories for me and the children of Stretton Park really are the stars of the book. I’ve never been prouder of a book and, in my completely biased opinion, it really deserves all the awards/accolades/film deals there are!
Book 20 – My Greek Island Summer (Aria Fiction)
And here we are! Bang up to date! My Greek Island Summer is a worthy 20th novel that seems to encompass everything I love about writing rom com with a little nod to all the books that have come before. It’s sunshine and good times with life hurdles to get over and crazy Greekness all the way through. Some say it’s my best yet… but why don’t you decide!
Mandy Baggot is an internationally bestselling and award-winning romance writer. The winner of the Innovation in Romantic Fiction award at the UK’s Festival of Romance, her romantic comedy novel, One Wish in Manhattan, was also shortlisted for the Romantic Novelists’ Association Romantic Comedy Novel of the Year award in 2016. Mandy’s books have so far been translated into German, Italian, Czech and Hungarian. Mandy loves the Greek island of Corfu, white wine, country music and handbags. Also a singer, she has taken part in ITV1’s Who Dares Sings and The X-Factor. Mandy is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and the Society of Authors and lives near Salisbury, Wiltshire, UK with her husband and two daughters.
When Maisie accepts a celebrated author’s invitation to mentor her, she finds herself leaving Cornwall behind on train tracks bound for the glitter city of Paris. Instead of making beds and serving coffee at the Penmarrow hotel in Cornwall, she’s making notes on her manuscript while sitting in a French cafe, meeting famous writers at private dinner parties, and trying to ferret the secrets behind the author’s unfinished future novel.
It’s glamorous, it’s breathtaking … but it’s also an ocean channel away from the place that she loves, and, more importantly, the person to whom she just recently confessed her deepest feelings. Separated from Sidney by distance and circumstances, Maisie fears that their connection will be lost despite her words to him – and maybe because of those words, and the ones she didn’t allow him to say in return.
Meanwhile, there are plenty of things in her new life trying to distract her – the professional editor hired to critique her novel, the eager young literary agent who sees pie-in-the-sky potential for Maisie’s talent, but Maisie finds solace in the eclectic group of amateur writers into whose midst she finds herself by accident. Their critique and advice is fast becoming as important as the editors – maybe even more important than the published author Maisie believed held the keys to refining her skill.
But it’s missing Sidney that fills Maisie’s thoughts the most, along with her life back in Port Hewer, and she can’t stop wondering whether his feelings are the same as her own. His unspoken answer has become one of the most important pieces of her life, even as she struggles to match the pace of her new life and keep her dreams in sight. And when she unwittingly becomes privy to a seeming literary conspiracy, she must decide what to do in light of its truth – and decide what’s most important in her quest to become a professional writer.
Join Maisie in a whirlwind tour across two of the world’s greatest cities, filled with questions, dreams, and a chance for fame that she believed far beyond her grasp, as she discovers herself as a writer, and how to embrace an unexpected future on her own terms.
Favorite Things About Writing ‘A Train From Penzance to Paris’:
A huge thank you to Jane for letting me drop by and chat about my latest book with everyone on her lovely book blog! It is the fifth installment in my series about aspiring author Maisie Clark, whose adventures working at a Cornish hotel by the sea have been filled with secrets, romance, and plenty of surprises along the way. This newest story is a bit different from the ones before it, taking Maisie to new locations with new acquaintances—but still lots of questions about her future as a writer, not to mention her romance with the charming Sidney Daniels back in Cornwall. With so many changes, yet so much still the same, I thought it might be fun to share a few of the reasons I enjoyed working on Maisie’s latest adventure, so here goes!
Part of the story takes place in Paris:
I was fortune enough to visit the City of Light with some friends a couple of years ago, and it was every bit as beautiful as it seems in the movies. Like Maisie, I was a bit dazzled by the chic atmosphere and historic landmarks (and the pastries were among the best I’ve eaten anywhere!). It was a wonderful experience that I hope crept its way into some of the descriptions of Maisie’s own impression of this gorgeous part of the globe—though, no doubt it still contains the many inaccuracies of a tourist’s attempts to capture the nuances of a place they’ve visited only once! Though I do hope it will at least whisk the reader away to a version of the city as colorful and glamorous as those found in classic films like Funny Face and Paris When it Sizzles, or the many popular chick lit reads about Parisian bookshops and quaint cafes!
A love of books and writing is a recurring theme:
And as a writer, I can definitely identify with Maisie’s excitement—as well as her hesitations—about plunging into the world of published works. It was fun to explore that side of her character more thoroughly and to show some of the challenges faced by those who purse the dream of sharing their work on the page. It was especially fun to explore the dynamics of the amateur writing group that Maisie becomes a part of on her visit to London. Their diverse backgrounds and writing styles take the budding novelist Maisie by surprise on more than once occasion as she gets to know these fellow artists who share the same hopes, reservations, and secret ambitions in their love for the craft.
The romance is kept in suspense:
Those familiar with my Cornish hotel series have probably come to expect the slow burn nature of Maisie’s relationship with the handsome and somewhat inscrutable Sidney Daniels. And although Sidney doesn’t factor into this newest story as a key player, he’s definitely in Maisie’s heart and thoughts the entire book. Her letters to him reveal her deepest dreams and fears about her writing quest yet, and even though the feelings between them are still unresolved, she has no doubt about his place in her heart—or those three all-important words she spoke to him the last time they shared a kiss right before she had to say goodbye. Whether or not her quest to fulfill her dreams has cost her a chance with him remains to be seen, but Maisie isn’t the type to give up where her heart is concerned, and readers can expect some much-anticipated romantic resolution when book six in the series makes its debut later this summer.
There’s a surprise twist at the end:
And that’s also something fans of the series are accustomed to, though I’m hoping they won’t even have an inkling what this one could turn out to be. It certainly knocks Maisie for a loop, so to speak, and readers can expect some drama and a little angst as Maisie’s fifth adventure reaches a somewhat unexpected conclusion.
If you haven’t yet read any of the books in A LITTLE HOTEL IN CORNWALL I do hope this will inspire you to check them out. Books one through five are now available in eBook format, with book six currently on pre-order at Amazon!
Laura Briggs is the author of several feel-good romance reads, including the Top 100 Amazon UK seller ‘A Wedding in Cornwall’. She has a fondness for vintage style dresses (especially ones with polka dots), and reads everything from Jane Austen to modern day mysteries. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with family and friends, caring for her pets, gardening, and seeing the occasional movie or play.
A page-turning new cosy novel in the bestselling Love Heart Lane series.
Love Heart Lane – where friends are there for you no matter what.
When Vet Rory Scott inherits ramshackle Clover Cottage in the quaint village of Heartcross, Allie MacDonald just knows this is their happy ever after. A place to call home with the man she loves – it’s her dream come true!
Until Rory drops a bombshell. He loves Allie but he has dreams of his own to follow – to live and work in Africa. Clover Cottage will have to wait just a little longer…
Allie can’t imagine life without Rory, but she loves him too much to hold him back. And as he embarks on his adventure, Allie begins to rethink her own plans. She loves Rory and knows she wants him in her life, but maybe she can follow her own dreams too?
And always there, nestled in the beautiful village of Heartcross, surrounded by the people she loves, will be the place that will always bring them back to each other. Their forever home, Clover Cottage.
I received a copy of this book from One More Chapter via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
The third in the Love Heart Lane series, Clover cottage reads well as a standalone. I have read the first book in the series, but not the second. Allie and Rory’s relationship appears to be following its expected path. When Vet Rory’s parents offer him a cottage that needs doing up, Allie sees this as a positive step. Rory sees it as another way his parents are directing his life, possibly not in the way he wants it to go. This is a realistic story of wanting to follow your dreams but not wanting to hurt those you love. The delicacy of Allie and Rory’s relationship is the mainstay, of this, but there is a much wider story too.
Family secrets are explored with some surprisingly poignant revelations. The community is authentic and relatable and they give this story its engaging quality. A new temporary villager brings glamour and a new perspective to the group of friends.
The characters draw you in and you become embroiled in their lives, making this an emotional read. There are many lighthearted moments and a few sad ones, but the ending is heartwarming and uplifting.
This is definitely a village to settle in if you want to escape to the country.
Christie Barlow is the international bestselling author of A Year in the Life of a Playground Mother, The Misadventures of a Playground Mother, Kitty’s Countryside Dream, Lizzie’s Christmas Escape, Evie’s Year of Taking Chances, The Cosy Canal Boat Dream, A Home at Honeysuckle Farm, Love Heart Lane and Foxglove Farm. Her writing career came as somewhat a surprise when she decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. The book she wrote to prove a point is now a #1 bestseller in the UK, USA, Canada & Australia.
Christie is an ambassador for @ZuriProject raising money/awareness and engaging with impoverished people in Uganda through organisations to improve their well-being.
There’s nothing sexy about her humdrum life as a mum. But is her husband’s crazy scheme a bit too exciting?
Sarah’s mind-numbing housewife existence is turning her brain to mush. With her third bun in the oven, this British mum is drowning under a mountain of playdates, bills, and head lice checks. But her man’s get-rich-quick idea of writing steamy novels isn’t her ideal way to dial up life’s passion.
Drew desperately wants a break from Sarah’s whinging. And if that means researching how to write racy books all by himself, then he’ll make the sacrifice. But as he finally warms Sarah up to the sultry side hustle, their R-rated private project gets publicly exposed…
With an office scandal brewing, it’s only a matter of time before gawking workers and a perfectly nosy PTA president turn them into social pariahs. Can Sarah and Drew earn some extra income from sizzling lit without falling prey to stiff gossip?
Erotic Fiction is a charming comedy for fans of humorous fiction. If you like sweet love stories, endearing characters, and dry British humour, then you’ll adore Kindle Storyteller Award Winner Hannah Lynn’s delightful tale.
Buy Erotic Fiction to slip into something a little more lovable today!
I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.
I enjoyed this very British romantic comedy, full of laugh out loud moments, poignant interludes and witty retort.
Sarah is a stay-at-home-mum, expecting her third child, and wondering if she will ever see beyond the sleepless nights and tantrums. Drew loves his family, but wants to give them more, he wants Sarah to smile again, and quite by chance he finds an unusual avenue to improve the family bank balance.
This is a well-paced, easy to read, tale about children, financial struggles, marriage, parenting and relationships. It is written with vivid characters and events, that lets you visualise what is happening, it’s almost like watching a quintessentially Britsih sitcom, familiar, funny and farcical.
The plot is simple but effective and provides the perfect foil for the excellent characters. Sarah and Drew are relatable and easy to like, the cast of supporting players are noteworthy and give the story, authenticity and quirkiness that is appealing.
If you enjoy finding the humour in everyday life, with just a touch of fantasy, this story is recommended.
Hannah Lynn is an award-winning novelist. Publishing her first book, Amendments – a dark, dystopian speculative fiction novel, in 2015, she has since gone on to write the multi-award-winning The Afterlife of Walter Augustus – a contemporary fiction novel with a supernatural twist, Fiona and the Whale – a thought-provoking romantic comedy and the delightfully funny and poignant Peas and Carrots series.
While she freely moves between genres, her novels are recognisable for their character-driven stories and wonderfully vivid description.
She is currently working on a YA Vampire series and a reimaging of a classic Greek myth.
Born in 1984, Hannah grew up in the Cotswolds, UK. After graduating from university, she has spent twelve years as a teacher of physics, first in the UK and then around Asia and Europe. It was during this time, inspired by the imaginations of the young people she taught, she began writing short stories for children, and later adult fiction. Now as a teacher, writer, wife and mother, she is currently living in the Jordan.
I received a copy of this book from the author in return for an honest review.
I like this story, with its quirky, varied characters, fantasy-inspired plot, and irreverent commentary on life, death, love, marriage, relationships and sex. Although the story of ‘The Ghosts of Curmudgeon Avenue’, is standalone, it is a progression of the three previous books. To appreciate the character dynamics and the ethos of Curmudgeon Avenue you need to read the books in order, which I haven’t.
The story concentrates on the ghosts, the previous occupants of the house, who met untimely, accidental deaths, their friends and relatives and the house’s new occupants. The characters are larger than life, even in death, and the humour is plentiful.
The plot is complex and character-driven and told from the house’s point of view. It proves to be as gossipy and quirky as its inhabitants past and present. If you are accepting of the paranormal and enjoy a raucous family drama, full of humour, and a generous share of sex, secrets and scandal this will meet your needs on all levels.
Samantha Henthorn was born in 1970something in Bury, England. She has had short stories and poetry published in magazines. Her books include the Curmudgeon Avenue series (The Terraced House Diaries and The Harold and Edith adventures). ‘1962’, ‘Quirky Tales to Make Your Day’ and ‘Piccalilly’
She has two cats, one dog, one gorgeous grown up daughter and one husband. When not reading or writing, she is listening to heavy metal and would be thrilled to bits if someone read her books.