The Summer of Impossible Things – Rowan Coleman.

Rowan Coleman

 

Back of the book :

If you could change the past, would you ?

It’s only after her mothers death that Luna discovers the secrets she has been hiding for thirty years.

Now she and her sister must travel to their mothers childhood home and settle her affairs.

But, in Brooklyn something impossible happens to Luna. She finds herself in 1977, face to face with her mother as a young woman, in the week that changed her life forever.

To save a life, would you sacrifice your own ? 

 

What I think : 

Luna’s mum has just died. But before she died she told Luna a huge secret. This secret is as big as it gets.  To find out some answers to a few of her questions, Luna and her sister Pia must go to Brooklyn, New York, the place where her mum grew up, and met their father Henry. Whilst there they also need to settle her mums affairs.

Amongst all of this, Luna is trying to cope with her sister, Pia, who is a recovering alcoholic and drug taker. But perhaps the biggest thing of all, is that odd things have started to happen, she’s started to see things that aren’t there, and it appears she can travel in time ! and somehow she’s found herself back in the summer of 1977 with her mum and all of her friends !

Can Luna change things for her mum at the biggest time of her life and possibly lose her own ? or should she just let nature take its course ?

I really love Rowans books, they hold a really special place in my heart – if it wasn’t for Rowan and her lovely novel  “The Memory Book” I probably wouldn’t have started reviewing and blogging.

This is a wonderfully written, bittersweet story about families and the heartbreak that long hidden secrets can cause. I really love the way that Rowan builds her characters to really make them jump out of the page and become real.

I read this book in a matter of days, I just couldn’t put it down, however I did slow down a bit at the last few chapters as I really didn’t want this one to end.

I have never believed in anything ‘Supernatural’ or time travel etc, however the story was written in such a way that it had me believing  in the impossible, and wishing that perhaps it might be nice to have this ability and go back and visit loved ones that have passed on.

This is a book that I really enjoyed, right from the first page to the last and its a book that will stay with me for quite a while, and yes I did cry at he ending !!

Go out and buy this book NOW !!

I give this brilliant book a very well earned 10/10 (5 Stars)

5 gold stars

Published by EBury on 29/06/17

A very big thank you to Ebury Publishing for the review copy of the book.

 

The Friend – Dorothy Koomson.

Dorothy Koomson

 

Back of the book : 

After her husbands big promotion, Cece Solarin arrives in Brighton with their three children, ready to start afresh. But their new neighbourhood has a deadly secret.

Three weeks earlier, Yvonne, a very popular parent, was almost murdered in the grounds of the local school – the same school where Cece has unwittingly enrolled her children.

Already anxious about making friends when the parents seem so cliquey, Cece is now also worried about her children’s safety. By chance she meets Maxie, Anaya, and Hazel, three very different school mothers who make her feel welcome and reassure her new life.

That is until Cece discovers the police believe one of her new friends tried to kill Yvonne. Reluctant to spy on her friends but determined to discover the truth, Cece must uncover the potential murderer before they strike again.

 

What I think : 

Cece has just arrived in Brighton from London. She is trying really hard to make things work. She doesn’t know anyone in Brighton so she’s feeling a bit isolated. Her husband, Sol, has already been there for three months and because they’ve been apart a while  they seem to have drifted apart. Cece is also worried that Sol may also, if he hasn’t already, be thinking about having an affair. When she meets Maxie on the beach and then through her, she meets Anaya and Hazel she thinks that things may finally be going to be Ok, she finally has some friends. But then, she hears about what happened to Yvonne, who was a very close friend to Maxie, Anaya and Hazel, She wonders if her new friends know more than they’re saying. Then to top it all she bumps into a face from her past who tells her a few things about the ladies and she knows she needs to find out what really happened that night to Yvonne ….

This is such a fabulous thriller that keeps you on the edge of your seat from beginning to end. Dorothy’s books are always a real treat to read, her characters are always really well written and real.

The book is written over a few weeks from the points of view of all the characters, it also takes you back into their pasts as well, so you have a bit of background for all the characters.

Full of twists and turns, it makes you really sit back and think about what is going on. I loved this book because I really couldn’t work out ‘who-dun-it’ and I was really surprised in the end at the marvellous twist.

I give this wonderful novel a well earned  9/10 (5 stars)

5 gold stars

Published by Century (Penguin Random House) on 01/06/17.

A big Thank you to Emma Draude at Century for the review copy of the book.

Also, a big Thank you to Dorothy Koomson for the extra copy of the book to give to a Friend. (I haven’t decided who to give it yet, but when I do I’ll let you know) and the lovely note that accompanied it.

All The Good Things – Clare Fisher ~ Blog Tour.

Claire Fisher

 

Back of the book : 

Twenty-one-year-old Beth is in prison.

The thing she did is so bad she doesn’t deserve ever to feel good again.

But her counsellor, Erika, won’t give up on her. She asks Beth to make a list pop all the good things in her life. So Beth starts to write down her story, from sharing silences with foster dad no.1, to flirting in the Odeon on Orange Wednesdays, to the very first time she sniffed her baby’s head.

But at the end of her story, Beth must confront the bad thing.

What is the truth hiding behind her crime ? And does anyone – even a 100% bad person – deserve a chance to be good ?

 

What I think : 

Bethany or Beth for short, is in prison. She’s done something really bad. So bad she doesn’t even want to think about it, let alone talk about it. She’s only been in there for three weeks. She has a counsellor, Erika who, even although Beth doesn’t talk to her, keeps on coming anyway. Day after day, week after week, she doesn’t give up on her.

Erika has asked Beth to write a list of ‘All the good things’ in her life. So, as she’s got nothing better to do, Beth sits down and writes ‘All the good things’ in her life. She writes about the running she loves, but has to do and also of her friend/enemy Cal, that she’s known since her school days. Beth’s life unfolds into the pages of the exercise book that Erika has given her. And she realises that her life isn’t that bad after all (apart from the ‘Bad Thing’ that she’s done)

But soon the writing must come to an end and Beth must face up to the ‘Bad thing’ the she did ….

When I was asked to read and review this book, I really didn’t know where this book was going to go, I mean a book about a woman in prison for doing something really bad isn’t really a uplifting subject isn it ? However as I started to read it, I got quite engrossed and actually read the book in an afternoon !

The story is told through the memories of Beth, of her life really. Its in the form of a list of  ‘Good’ things that are in her life.

Its quite heartbreaking in a way because Beth’s life has never really been a good one. So this list is a kind of therapy for her. She really needs it as she needs to face up to ‘The bad thing’ that she has done.

I really loved the well written characters and all their faults made them seem more human.

You don’t find out what the ‘Bad thing’ that Beth did until the very end of the book. I don’t want to ruin anything so I won’t say what the ‘Bad thing’ that she did is. But I will say this, all the clues are there and I pretty much guessed it correctly.

This is a fabulous debut book which I definitely would recommend.

I give it 9/10  (Five Stars)

5 gold stars

Published by Viking on 01/06/17.

A huge Thank you to Josie Murdoch and Claire Fisher for the review copy of the book.

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The Original Ginny Moon -Benjamin Ludwig ~ Blog Tour.

Ginny Moon

 

Back of the book :

The Original Ginny Moon’s painfully honest narrator is Ginny, a girl with autism living in a world that just doesn’t add up. Five years ago the police forcibly removed her from the home of her abusive mother Gloria.

Now fourteen and in her fourth Forever Home, Ginny is hell-bent on returning to her mothers apartment – despite knowing how dangerous that could be – to find something she insists she hid under the bed.

Ginny will steal, lie, plan her own kidnapping and tear apart every shred of the normal, stable life she currently has, just to find what she has left on the furthest edge of forever …

 

What I think :

Ginny Moon has at last got a Forever Mum and a Forever dad, (for the fourth time !) and she’s trying very hard to be good. However its proving very hard.

Ginny has autism and when she was nine years old the police came and took her away from her abusive and drug addict mum, Gloria.

Ever since then all Ginny wants to do is go back to the apartment to collect her ‘Baby Doll’ from the suitcase under the bed. Even although its very dangerous for her, she wants Gloria to ‘Kidnap’ her so she can get back to the home they once shared to get her ‘Baby Doll’, its very important to her. She has sent messages and told her the address In the hope that Gloria will come for her. Gloria has a restraining order preventing her from coming into contact with Ginny so its proving a bit problematic.

Will Ginny get back to the apartment, on the other side of Forever, to get the ‘Baby doll’ in the suitcase, or is it far too late …. ?

I really loved this sweet and gentle story about an autistic girl living in our ‘normal’ world. how is copes with life even although she had a pretty awful start to life.

I must admit I wasn’t too sure when I read the blurb on the back of the book, I didn’t think it was my kind of book. However it had me enchanted right from the first page to the last. It gathers you up and gently pulls you in.

The story is written in Ginny’s voice, so we find out exactly what she is thinking and feeling and also what she wants and what she must have, at any cost. its quite comical in places and very dry.

The author has done a fantastic job of conveying how Ginny’s thought processes happen, and even although she hasn’t been abused for five years, how it has affected her for possibly the rest of her life.

I really adored this debut novel and really hope that the author writes many more.

I give this lovely book 10/10. (5 stars)

5 gold stars

Published on 01/06/17 by HQ (Midas)

A very big Thank you to Samantha Evans at HQ for the review copy of the book.

GinnyMoon_Blogtour YES

 

Into The Water – Paula Hawkins.

Paula Hawkins

 

Back of the book :

Julia, its me.  I need you to call me back. Please Julia.  Its Important …

 

In the last days before her death, Nel Abbott called her sister.

Jules didn’t pick up the phone, ignoring her plea for help.

Now Nel is dead. They say she jumped. And Jules has been dragged back to the one place she had hoped she had escaped for good, to care for the teenage girl her sister left behind.

But Jules is afraid. So afraid. Of her long buried memories, of the old Mill House, of knowing that Nel would never have jumped.

And most of all she’s afraid of the water, and of the place they call the Drowning Pool …

 

What I think : 

Jules’ Sister Nel calls her a lot, Jules never answers the phone or calls her back though. The sisters don’t talk any more, ever since Jules left their home town. And now there has been another call, a call to tell Jules that her sister has died, she jumped into the pool near their house old family home and drowned. The Drowning Pool has a bit of a history, over the years and quite recently women have gone there to drown.

Jules knows though that Nel can’t have jumped in, she loved the water, swam there almost every day. She would have never have killed herself. or would she … ?

So now Jules has got to go back to the town she has run from, to care for the fourteen year old niece she doesn’t really know. Back to the place where her most worst memories  are, to solve the mystery of her sisters death ….

This is the next novel from the author from the massive hit “The Girl on The Train”

The start of the book found slightly confusing, there are many characters introduced and I had to really concentrate to work out who was who. It does take quite a while to work out where they all fit into the story. There is a chapter for each character.

I also found the story quite slow to get going, there is quite a bit going on so you really have to pay attention to whats happening.

Whilst the characters, as you would expect were expertly written, I really had a lot of trouble warming to them. Jules and her sister Nel, have, I felt, have always had a difficult relationship and this was just skimmed over. I thought the niece, Nena was quite awful !! Such a wilful teenager that thinks she know everything.

However, please don’t think that I didn’t enjoy the book as I did. There are some brilliant twists and turns in this book. Its a wonderfully dark, suspenseful novel and in some places quite claustrophobic, that keeps you guessing right up until the end.

If asked if this book was as good as “The Girl on The Train” I would reply that its an excellent read and completely different from TGOAT and I think that the author had another hit on her hands.

I give this one 9/10 ( 5 stars)

 

5 gold stars

Published by Double Day  (Transworld ) on 02/05/17.

A huge thank you to Alison Barrow at Transworld for the review copy of the book.

Happy 3rd Birthday …

books

Hello Lovely Book People …

Today is the blogs third birthday !! 

I can’t believe I have been part of the wonderful blogging community for three whole years ! 

I just want to say a huge thank you to all the lovely Authors (and publishers) that have trusted me to review their book babies over the last three years, and also to all the lovely bloggers that have encouraged me and have become my friends, I couldn’t have got this far without you all 🙂 

Here’s to the next three years (and many more hopefully !! 🙂 ) 

Thats all for now folks,

xxx

books

Obsession – Amanda Robson ~Blog Tour.

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Back of the book :

One evening a wife asks her husband a question : who else would you go for, if you could ? Its a simple question – a little game – that will destroy her life … 

Carly and Rob are a perfect couple. They share happy lives with their children and their close friends Jenni and Craig. They’re lucky. But beneath the surface, no relationship is simple : can another woman’s husband and another man’s wife ever be just good friends ?

Little by little, Carly’s question sends her life spiralling out of control, as she begins to doubt everything she has thought was true. Who can she trust ? The man she has promised to stick by forever, or the best friend she has known for years ? And is Carly being entirely honest with either of them ?

 

What I think : 

Carly is married to local doctor Rob, she also works at the surgery herself as the practice nurse. They have three children together, Pippa, John and Matthew. They have a really good life together.

Its whilst on a camping holiday with the children, in a moment of boredom, that Carly asks Rob a question, ‘ Who would you go for, if you could?’ after a moments thought Rob answers “Jenni’ I like Jenni. Jenni is married to Craig and they have been Carly and Rob’s best friends since the girls met at anti-natal classes years ago.

Its this question and its answer that starts a world of pain for everybody involved. It also starts an Obsession for Carly’s that she has no power over …

Wow ! this is an exceptional book, I really loved it from start to finish.

On the surface it looks although Carly and rob have a good life, a wonderful marriage, but scratch the surface bit and you discover cracks. Carly is quite a reluctant mother that is quite bored with her life. It would also seem that their friends Jenni and Craig’s marriage isn’t quite as wonderful as they make out either.

All the chapters in the story are short and from the point of view from each character, which I must admit did confuse me slightly to start with.

I found the book very dark and intense, it had a lot going on, all of the time. With many twists and turns you have to put the book down for a bit to work out what is going on. Which I thought wasn’t a bad thing as it really made me think about what I was reading.

The characters are very complex and I think they came across as human, they all behaved in a way that any person would that was in that sort of situation. What I think I’m trying to say is that I found them believable and relatable.

I was having a bit of a book slump ( where you aren’t able to pick up a book and read because you just can’t read ) before I started to read this one, however I just couldn’t put this book down. I read it in just over two days !

With a title like ‘Obsession’ I was really wondering what to expect, however I became quite ‘Obsessed’ myself, I really needed to find out how it ended. And talking of endings, the one in this book is quite superb, I really didn’t see that coming !!! I will say no more apart from go out and buy this book and get reading today, Its Brilliant !!

I give this spectacular thriller 10/10 (5 stars )

5 gold stars

Published by Avon Books on 04/05/17 on Ebook and 01/06/17 in Paperback.

A huge Thank you to Helena Sheffield for the review copy of the book.

Here for your reading pleasure is a extract of the book for you to enjoy …

Extract : 

Sitting at my desk, I switch the computer on to check my patient list. Eight patients this morning. Two breast checks. Three blood tests. Three sets of travel injections. As I press the buzzer for my first patient, the shadow that started following me on holiday begins to darken.

The shadow is no lighter when I finish at the surgery and am on my way to meet you, Jenni. You are waiting for me after work at the coffee shop, by the bus stop in the centre of town. I see you through the window as I move past the bus queue – sending a text from your iPhone, your glossy hair tumbling across your face. As soon as I enter the coffee shop you look up and beam at me, as if seeing me is the most important part of your day. Jenni, you always try to make people feel like that. As if they are important. It is one of your tricks. I know that now. When we first met, I fell for it.

We knew each other at nursing college, didn’t we, Jenni? But only from a distance. You weren’t really my type. Christian Union. No make-up. Didn’t look men in the eye. Rumour had it you didn’t go out on Saturday nights, stayed in to prepare your mind for the Lord on Sunday. Jenni. What were you like?

Our paths crossed again on a couples’ night nearly six years ago at our local NCT co-ordinator’s house, stranded together like beached whales on a low-slung sofa, so heavily pregnant that we could hardly change positions. Mark and John incu­bating inside us, almost ready to be born. I was the expert because I already had Pippa. You were stick thin except for your bump, which overwhelmed you, looking so worried as the NCT co-ordinator droned on about Braxton Hicks contractions and TENS machines and whether they worked. I looked at you as you listened, chocolate brown eyes closed in fear, and wanted to protect you. To hold you against me and tell you it’s not as bad as it sounds. (Even though with Pippa it was far worse.)

At the end of the meeting we went to the pub, I can’t remember which one of the four of us suggested it, but we all thought it was a good idea. We went to the White Swan, down by the river at the end of our road. A cold October night, sitting by the fire drinking orange juice and tonic water whilst the men cradled their pints. We were so engrossed in our own conversation, we didn’t talk to them much. It took me so long to find you, Jenni, the first female friend I really cared about. All through school and university, men had been my compan­ions. Women can be so bitchy, don’t you think? So temperamental. Men are kinder. Simpler. I had up to this point socialised with them more as a rule. But then came the female-dominated world of pregnancy and early childhood that led me to you.

Today, with Mark and John at school, and another birth behind each of us, we hug clumsily across a small wooden table in the coffee shop opposite the surgery. Across the coffee you are already halfway through drinking. Across the crumbs of someone else’s cake. I sit down on an uncomfortable wooden stool, which scrapes across the floor as I position it.

‘How was your holiday?’ you ask.

‘Awful.’

‘That wasn’t what Rob said.’

Your words punch into me.

‘When did you see Rob?’ I ask.

‘I didn’t. He texted me.’

‘Texted you?’

‘Because he was worried about you.’

You wave and smile at the waitress, who starts to weave towards our table.

We order fresh coffee for you, and chocolate cake and cappuc­cino for me. The waitress presses our order into a small handheld machine and disappears to the next table.

‘Why is Rob so worried about me?’

‘He said you weren’t yourself on holiday. You didn’t seem to enjoy spending time with the children, apparently.’

‘Well, did you when you were on holiday?’

Your toffee brown eyes widen as you look at me.

‘Yes.’

Yes?

Jenni. You sanctimonious, husband-stealing bitch.

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