Coming Home to Island House – Erica James.

Erica James

Back of the book : 

It’s the summer of 1939, and after touring an unsettled Europe to promote her latest book, Romily Temple returns home to Island House and the love of her life, the charismatic Jack Devereux.

But when Jack falls ill, his estranged family are called home and given seven days to find a way to bury their resentments and come together.

With war now declared, each member of the family is reluctantly forced to accept their new stepmother and confront their own shortcomings. But can the habits of a lifetime be changed in one week? And can Romily, a woman who thrives on adventure, cope with the life that has been so unexpectedly thrust upon her?

What I think : 

Romily is an author.

The year is 1939.

War is imminent.

On the day that Romily returns home from a European book tour, Jack, the love of her life and whom she secretly, married just a few weeks before her book tour began, has a stroke.

Jack doesn’t have much time left, he’s estranged from his three grown up children and his niece. He has instructed his long-time friend and family solicitor Roddy to bring them all home. He dearly wants to put right all the wrong things that he said and did to his sons Arthur and Kit and to his daughter and Niece, Hope and Allerga. However they have a few problems of their own.

Then Jack dies, and the will is read. They all have a huge surprise, as its not as straight forward as they’d all hoped. They can’t just claim their parts of the inheritance and leave again. In order to inherit their fathers money they have to all spend a week together at Island House. If one of them decides to leave half way through, none of them inherit. This wouldn’t be too bad in a normal family,  however, as well as not getting on with their father (and Uncle) they don’t actually get on with each other.

Will the family come together in this testing time or will it all fall apart … ?

I have always loved reading Erica’s books, they are never a disappointment, and this one is no exception. As always she has written a wonderful tale of a family who have to learn to live with loss and in some cases, to forgive and learn to love again. Of finding yourself in the most unlikeliest of circumstances.

With fabulously written characters, this book was a very easy read, just what you need for these dark winter days, or perfect after a long day at work. A wonderful escape to the village of Melstead St Mary !

I loved this book and give it a well-earned 10/10 (5 Stars)

5 gold stars

Published by Orion Publishing On 11/01/18.

A big Thankyou to Elaine Egan at Orion Publishing for the review copy of the book.

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The Bad Mother – Amanda Brooke.

The Bad Mother

Back of the book :

Thats what he wants you to think …

A good mother doesn’t forget things.

A good mother isn’t a danger to herself.

A good mother isn’t a danger to her baby.

You want be the good mother you dreamed you could be.

But you’re not. You’re the bad mother you were destined to become.

At least, thats what he wants you to believe …

What I think : 

Lucy is married to Adam, they are expecting their first child in a few months. They had whirl-wind romance and have only been married for about a year.

Lucy has started to forget things, and its beginning to worry her. She lost her keys and found them in the oddest place, she left the gas hob on, but can’t remember actually switching it on in the first place, and there is the conversation’s that she’s had with Adam, but can’t remember them either.

Adam was very patient with her to begin with, but has started getting a bit annoyed with her. He’s worried that she won’t be able to cope when the baby is born, he’s worried about her ‘past’

Lucy lost her dad when she was a small child, he committed suicide. Lucy is worried that he had something more wrong with him than just the depression her mum said he had.

Adam has his own “past’ problems too, he has a brother that lives in America that he hasn’t spoken to since he was a child, however his brother is back and wants to patch things up.

Can Adam cope with his brother returning and with Lucy too … ?

Is Lucy just a ‘hormonal baby brain’ fog or is this something a lot more sinister ….. ?

Ive always loved Amanda’s books, my favourite (and the first I read ) was ‘Yesterdays Sun’. It stuck in my mind for a long time after reading it and I think that this one probably will too, The subject of this book could quite easily happen to anyone. After finishing this one, I actually went onto the internet to look it up and realised how common it is.

At the start of the book Lucy was quite a likeable character, a young wife, expecting her first child and wanting to do everything right. But later into the book she seems to just give in and let things happen, not being able to breathe without the permission of her husband. Adam on the other hand,  I found him really spoilt and arrogant, thinking he knew best at all times.

The book is really well written, it explains why Lucy and Adam, to a certain extent are like they are as it covers their backgrounds throughout the book.

I did think this book was quite dark and sinister in places, and I also found some of it quite difficult reading matter too. However, I did find it quite predictable and I did guess quite early on as to what was happening. Having said that though, I did really like this book, it held my attention and I read it in only a couple of days.

I give this book 8/10 ( 5 stars )

5 gold stars

Published by Harper Collins on ebook on 14/12/17 and paperback on 22/02/18.

A really big Thank you to Jaime Frost at Harper Collins and to Netgalley for the review copy of the book.

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My Top Ten Books of 2017 ….

HERE’S MY TOP TEN BOOKS FOR 2017 ….

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What a year its been for books !

Here are my ten favourites, In no particular order … 

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All the books that Lucy Clarke has written … I’ve read all of these this year and they are fab !

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Dinah Jefferies – Before the rains. (18 May)

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Cecelia Ahern – Perfect. (6 April – Young Adult )

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Isabelle Broom – Then, Now, Always. ( 20 April )  and The Place We Met. (30 November) I loved both of these books and couldn’t decide !

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CL Taylor – The Escape. (23 March)

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CL Taylor – The Treatment. (19 October – Young Adult )

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Sophie Kinsella – My Not So Perfect Life. (13 July)

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Lisa Jewell – Then She Was Gone. (29 July )

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Dorothy Koomson – The Friend. (1 June )

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Julie Cohen – Together. (13 July)

So there you have it, my favourite books of 2017.

Im really looking forward to all the new books coming in 2018, I predict there is going to be some really good ones coming our way, Im especially looking forward to “Still Me” by Jojo Moyes thats published on 25 Jan and “Surprise Me” by the fab Sophie Kinsella which is published at the start of Feb.

All thats left for me to say is,

Happy New Year ! 

Thats all for now folks, 

Happy Reading 

xxx

I’m coming back …

Hello Lovely Book People….

It seems ages since I’ve written a blog post. My life has been so hectic in the last two or three months with work and family life, and not to mention the fact that I’ve been having an horrendous ‘book slump’ (where you just can’t get into any book at all)

But, I’m really glad to say that work has calmed down and I’ve cured my ‘book slump’ – I actually managed to read the wonderful ‘The pearl Sister’ by Lucinda Riley in a couple of days 🙂 Thank Goodness !! (Read my review on the blog)

And my family life … Well, it’s as calm as it’s ever going to be !!

So … in a couple of weeks I’ll be compiling my Top Ten for the best books for 2017 and then in the New Year I’ll be reading and reviewing all those fab books that will be published in Jan.

All that’s left for me to say is I hope you all have a HAPPY CHRISTMAS AND A FAB NEW YEAR !!!

That’s all for now folks

xxx

The place we met – Isabelle Broom

isabelle broom

Back of the book :

 

Lake Como, Italy, New Year’s Eve.

The perfect place to fall in love? Or the perfect place for everything to fall apart . . .

Lucy may have suffered her fair share of bad men, but now she has Pete.

Finally, a man worth sharing her favourite place with, Lake Como.

That’s if she can put mysterious phone calls and glamorous ex-girlfriends out of her mind.

Taggie is rushed off her feet, but distraction is exactly what she needs to forget why she fled England and the

sadness she left behind.

She certainly doesn’t have time for infuriating stranger Marco. A man is the last thing she needs right now.

Lucy and Taggie might not know it, but their lives are about to collide.

The New Year might begin with fireworks – but how will it end?

 

 

What I think :

I really loved this book. But then I really loved Isabelle’s other books, so I was really looking forward to this one, and I’ve got to say that it is fabulous, I wasn’t disappointed at all.

I really felt as if i was in Italy on New Year’s Eve, drinking hot wine wrapped up in my big coat, wandering through the Christmas markets looking for that special gift.

I have been having a really bad reading slump lately and have been having a lot of trouble getting into a book. Right from the minute I picked this novel up it had me hooked. I couldn’t put it down until the last page.

I liked both of the girls characters and I thought Marco sounded gorgeous ! Shouldn’t everyone have a Marco in their lives ? (If only to look at !)

What I really liked was the way the all twists, turns and revelations intertwined the two couples.

This book made me reach for the tissue box a couple of times but they were happy tears – mostly. This is a beautiful book with love, loss and betrayal all mixed up into a brilliantly written book.

I give this book a well earned 9/10. (5 stars )

5 gold stars

Published on 30/11/17 by Penguin, Random House.

A huge Thankyou to Sarah Harwood at Penguin Random House and to Isabelle Broom for the Review copy of the book.

 

 

The Pearl Sister – Lucinda Riley.

Lucinda Riley

Back of the book :

CeCe D’Aplièse has never felt she fitted in anywhere. Following the death of her father, the elusive billionaire Pa Salt – so-called by the six daughters he adopted from around the globe and named after the Seven Sisters star cluster – she finds herself at breaking point. Dropping out of art college, CeCe watches as Star, her beloved sister, distances herself to follow her new love, leaving her completely alone.

In desperation, she decides to flee England and discover her past; the only clues she has are a black-and-white photograph and the name of a woman pioneer who lived in Australia over one hundred years ago. En-route to Sydney, CeCe heads to the one place she has ever felt close to being herself: the stunning beaches of Krabi, Thailand. There amongst the backpackers, she meets the mysterious Ace, a man as lonely as she is and whom she subsequently realizes has a secret to hide . . .

A hundred years earlier, Kitty McBride, daughter of an Edinburgh clergyman, is given the opportunity to travel to Australia as the companion of the wealthy Mrs McCrombie. In Adelaide, her fate becomes entwined with Mrs McCrombie’s family, including the identical, yet very different, twin brothers: impetuous Drummond, and ambitious Andrew, the heir to a pearling fortune.

When CeCe finally reaches the searing heat and dusty plains of the Red Centre of Australia, she begins the search for her past. As something deep within her responds to the energy of the area and the ancient culture of the Aboriginal people, her creativity reawakens once more. With help from those she meets on her journey, CeCe begins to believe that this wild, vast continent could offer her something she never thought possible: a sense of belonging, and a home . . .

What I think :

This book follows the story of Cece, as she traces her past and where she comes from. She leaves the UK just before Christmas and she’s pretty much rudderless. She feels she doesn’t fit and anywhere, especially since her sister Star has found her birth family. She journeys on to Thailand and there on the beach she meets the mysterious ‘Werewolf’ Ace, but it seems he has a few problems of his own. Again, she decides she must move on and she finally arrives in Australia, it’s there she finds out who she really is ….

This is the fourth book in the ‘Seven Sisters’ series, and I’ve got to say this one is probably the best one yet. I was having a real reading slump before I started reading this and I can safely say that this has helped me out of it. Although this marvellous read is an epic 688 pages long, I managed to read it in just under a week !

I really enjoyed it and can’t wait for the next story in the series.

I give this excellent book a fab 8/10. (5 Stars)

5 gold stars

Published by Macmillan on 02/11/17

I purchased my copy from Waterstones for £11.99

Bad Sister – Sam Carrington ~ Blog Tour

 

the bad sister

Back of the Book : 

Stephanie is scared for her life. Her psychologist wants to help her face her fears, but Connie Summers will never really understand her. Stephanie’s past has been wiped away for her own protection. Stephanie isn’t even her real name. But then Dr Summers isn’t Connie’s real name either.

And its not all the women have in common. As Stephanie opens up about her trouble relationship with her brother, Connie is forced to confront her own dark family secrets.

When a mutilated body is dumped in plain sight, it will have devastating consequences for both women.

Who is the victim ?

Who is to blame ? 

Who is next ? 

 

What I think : 

Dr Connie Summers has just opened her own practice, she was working as a psychologist in the prison service. Sometime ago she thought that a prisoner she had been working with, was fit to leave prison, soon after he left prison, days in fact, he offended again, he raped a woman. Needless to say the press got hold of the story and she was made a scape goat. She resigned from her post at the prison and set up a practice on her own. She also changed her surname in a bid to start again.

One of her new patients Stephanie has just recently moved from Manchester. She has a small child, a little boy called Dylan. Stephanie is part of the witness protection scheme as she helped to put a away some dangerous criminals that her ex boyfriend was mixed up with. Stephanie hasn’t really had a very good life, her father was killed in a house fire that her little brother started. Connie really wants to help Stephanie but is she giving her the full picture ?

Connie is soon back in the papers as a body is found outside the very prison she used to work in, it soon transpires that the body is that of the prisoner that she helped to set free and who reoffended. Why has he been murdered and how is Connie linked ?

I must admit when I first started reading this book it did take me a while to get into it. however after wrestling with the first few chapters I really did get into it. What I found confusing was the way that it keeps on jumping from one character to another. Once I’d got used to that I found it to be quite thrilling book.

There are plenty of twists and turns to keep you on your toes. There are some pretty well written characters which seemed pretty believable. Yes I really quite liked this book and give it 8/10.

four-stars

Published by Avon on Ebook on 05/10/2017 and in Paperback on 14/12/2017. A huge Thank you to Sabah Khan at Avon for the review copy of the book

Here for your reading pleasure is a extract from the book.

 

Extract : 

Eric Hargreaves’ body looked fake; like a dummy someone had made for Halloween, or one carefully crafted by the special effects teams for TV shows like Silent Witness. His skin appeared pale and waxy until you took in the injuries. They had a purple-red tinge to them. The flaps of flesh hung to the sides of his torso like chunks of meat hanging off a slaughtered pig in a butcher’s shop, exposing his bent ribcage – a structure meant to protect his heart – now broken and useless. The whole scene looked surreal. That was the only thing that enabled Lindsay to distance herself – if she didn’t think of this body as a man, a once living, breathing man, she could get through this. As tough as she considered herself to be, no matter how many times she’d been to the morgue, it was one of her least favourite parts of her job. There was something unnerving about silent, still bodies. And her mind always conjured her dear dad, and unwanted visions of him lying on a slab in this very morgue.

Lindsay took a deep breath and turned to Mack, his height blocking the strip lighting. ‘Wouldn’t you be better sitting?’

‘Hah! No, I like to be able to see right inside, can’t take in all its glory if you’re sat.’

‘As long as you don’t faint. I’m not attempting to catch you if you do.’

‘I’m good. Thanks.’

Harry conducted an external examination, calling out measurements to the path assistant as he travelled around the body. Lindsay noted that Hargreaves had extensive tattoos but her ears pricked when she heard Harry say a few of them appeared to be new.

‘Oh? How new?’

‘I’d say, given the colour of the ink and the absence of swelling or scabbing . . .’ He paused, bending closer to the cadaver. Lindsay felt her upper body move forward, eager for him to carry on. ‘That three of these were acquired post-mortem.’ He looked up, raising his eyebrows in their direction.

‘That’s interesting. So, mutilation through cutting and through tattooing? Why bother with both?’ Lindsay wondered out loud. ‘Can you take pictures of those, please.’

‘Perhaps that wasn’t part of the mutilation,’ Mack said. ‘Could be a message?’

Lindsay’s blood pulsated loudly in her ears. A tingle of excitement travelled the length of her spine; that familiar feeling of adrenaline coursing through her.

‘A message for who?’ she asked quietly and the question hung, suspended in the room like oil on water.

 

the bad sister blog tour