Monday 30 September 2019

Book Review - Summer Days at Sunrise Farm by Lucy Daniels - #HolidayReading Madeira

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Amazon UK
Title: Summer Days at Sunrise Farm
Author: Lucy Daniels
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
Publication Date: 30th May 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

Summer has arrived in Welford, but does a new season mean new beginnings?

Veterinary nurse Helen Steer adores her job at Animal Ark, and with the summer ahead things couldn't be better.

That is until her best friend goes travelling, leaving Helen unexpectedly jealous and questioning her own stable life with her boyfriend Seb. Charming new vet Toby Gordon, with his flirtatious wit and mysterious family background, suddenly seems a much more exciting prospect.

But just as Helen and Toby's friendship starts to become something more, Sunrise Farm, the beautiful fruit farm where Helen lives, is hit by crisis leaving its future in the balance. Along with her friends Mandy and James, who put aside their own problems to help, Helen throws everything she has into saving her home.

Though with so much at stake, is there time to think about a new relationship? Or will Helen be forced to let her second chance at love slip away?

Always great to be back in Welford amongst my friends at Animal Ark. 

This time the story focuses on Helen, and her relationship with Seb which has become a bit on the rocky side. 

We also get to fall in love with Isla, a new rescue dog that Helen can't resist helping. 

For fans of the series don't worry we see plenty of Mandy Hope and the rest of the hope clan, just from a different angle, and it is great catching up with them too. 

I loved all the animals as always, and also the real sense of community when something happens and everyone bands together to help. 

i adore this series and am already eager to start the next one, well once its out! 

Full of charm, plenty of enjoyable moments, cute animals and the course of true love not running smoothly, this is another fantastic addition to the series, and one I whole heartedly recommend.  

Thanks to Hodder and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Sunday 29 September 2019

Book Review - The Worst Couple In The World by Holly Tierney-Bedford

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Title: The Worst Couple In The World
Author: Holly Tierney-Bedford
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Author supplied copy
Publisher: Self Published
Publication Date:  16th September
Rating: 4 Stars

No longer content to just be Snappigram sensations, folk hop singers Zeke and Angelique are ready to move up from coffee house performances to the big stage. With songs like “Uh Huh, Future Baby Mama” and “Don’t Worry About the Bills, Little Missus” there’s pretty much no way they can fail. 

But if their musical career takes off, will it leave their love behind?

This satirical novella about an over-the-top fame hungry duo is for fans of David Sedaris and Don DeLillo.

Zeke and Angelique really are the worst couple in the world. but not necessarily for the reasons you may think.  

This is an over the top look at modern society, especially social media fame, and how fickle it can be. And its a perhaps cynical look at how Instagram influencers attempt to get free stuff!  

It's definitely not your typical story, and although I'm never sure if I get satire, I could tell this was quite clever and its very amusing. 

There are assorted lyrics to Angelique and Zeke's songs, nothing that I would ever imagine wanting to listen to but it adds to the quirkiness of this novella. 

The story moves along at a quick pace, mirroring the trends nowadays for there to always be a next big thing, and just about all the characters are larger than life, and exaggerated to bring home the authors point.   And wait until you meet Zeke's family!! 

I found this to be  a very quick story to read, and one I really did enjoy, and after reading I Will Follow Him, shows to me another side to this clearly imaginative writing.  

Thank you to the author for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Saturday 28 September 2019

Book Review - Christmas at Wynter House by Emily Harvale

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Amazon UK
Title: Christmas at Wynter House
Author: Emily Harvale
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Author supplied copy
Publisher: Crescent Gate Publishing
Publication Date: 25th September 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

After a frosty welcome, things soon heat up at Wynter House.

Neva Grey is looking forward to spending a quiet Christmas with her family in the cosy cottage they’ve rented in the picture-postcard village of Wyntersleap. Nestled between rolling hills and a gently burbling river, it’s going to be idyllic.

Except it’s not. Torrential rain causes the river to burst its banks and the quaint little village isn’t quite so cosy with water lapping at the doors. Add to that a power cut and a sudden blizzard and Christmas is looking bleak ... until gorgeous Adam Wynter invites them all to Wynter House.

Although not everyone is happy to share the ancestral home. Adam’s elder brother, Rafe is less than pleased. Their grandmother, Olivia extends a grudging welcome. And for Carruthers, the oddly arrogant butler, unexpected guests are a Christmas surprise he could do without. Especially one as troublesome as Neva’s eight-year-old niece.

But something’s not quite right at Wynter House. What is Rafe intent on hiding behind the locked doors of the old barn? And what really happened to his first wife? It’s a good thing Neva has a sense of humour. She’s going to need it this Christmas at Wynter House.

This is book one in the Wyntersleap series but it can be read as a standalone. The Wyntersleap series is interlinked with the Merriment Bay series and several characters appear in both series.

Emily Harvale is a romantic writing genius, this book kept me wanting more, I even want to start reading the interlinked series, instantly, as I just want more of these settings, characters.    

There are moments of drama with early power cuts and flood risks, there are a pair of ridiculously sexy brothers, there are secret passage ways,  a daring rescue of Tempest, and it was driving me mad throughout to discover just what was in the old barn. 

I started reading this reasonably late at night, and by the time I finished a chapter in bed, i was wondering why I really had to sleep as I just wanted to continue turning the pages. It's a book that really did cast a spell over me and although life sort of tried to get in the way, I read it in a day,  and just couldn't' get enough of it.   

The blurb to be honest covers the plot really well so no point me touching on the story too much, but safe to say that with both the Wynter Family, and the Grey family we have two sets of characters that have already touched my heart.  

From 8 year old niece, Sasha, who is obsessed with ghosts, zombies and death, as well as her new puppy (who is adorable), to Carruthers the butler at Wynter House and his expressive eyebrows, to Neva and her foot in mouth approach to conversations with Rafe Wynter, including making it clear how much she fancies his brother!   Then there are the soul sucking gossips in the cottage next to Neva, the rather cold Olivia Wynter, and then the wonderfully generous surprise gifts from Neva's parents. 

There are just plenty of fabulous characters. And that is before we get to Wyntersleap village, which had is not been for the torrential rain, river getting rather full, and ginormous hailstones, would have been incredibly picturesque.  I hope we get to visit it in the Summer where I'm sure it would be shown off to its best.  

 And the day trip into Merriment Bay, which is the setting for the author's next serial,  has whetted my interest even further for reading that! 

I could probably continue to wax lyrical about everything in the book, but honestly whether you are a fan of the author in which case you may agree that this is amongst her best work, or new to Emily Harvale, in which case you have picked a fabulous place to start - I would urge you to read this if you love your women's fiction and rom com. 

So easy to read, and get  absorbed into the story, this is one Christmas Cracker of a read,  and amazingly all the action actually takes place over Christmas, which is surprisingly refreshing from some of my festive reads this year so far! 

Thank you to Emily Harvale for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Friday 27 September 2019

Book Review - They Call Me The Cat Lady by Amy Miller

Amazon UK
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Title: They Call Me The Cat Lady
Author: Amy Miller
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley 
Publisher: Bookouture
Publication Date: 26th April 2019
Rating: 4 Stars

You’ve seen me on the street. You’ve walked past my house, and pointed, and wondered. The cat lady. All on my own, with only my five cats to keep me company. Did no-one ever tell you that you can’t judge a book by its cover?

Everyone in town knows Nancy Jones. She loves her cats. She loves her tumbledown house by the sea. She loves her job in the local school where she tries to help the children who need help the most. Nancy tries hard not to think about her past loves and where those led her…

Nancy never shares her secrets – because some doors are better kept locked. But one day she accepts a cat-sitting request from a local woman, and at the woman’s house, Nancy sees a photograph, in a bright-red frame. A photograph that opens the door to her painful past…

Soon Nancy doesn’t know what frightens her the most: letting her story out, or letting the rest of the world in. It’s impossible to find companionship without the risk of losing it. But can Nancy take that risk again?

A heart-wrenching and heart-warming story of love lost and found, and of second chances, They Call Me the Cat Lady is perfect for fans of A Man Called Ove and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.

Not sure how but I managed to read this in a couple of short hours,  I just couldn't put it down, nor was I particularly aware of the outside world while I was reading it. 

Although I had read a few of Amy Millers books years ago when she was writing as Amy Bratley, I haven't read one for ages, but apparently the author is as absorbing as ever for me. I love her writing style and ability to tell a story. 

That being said I had no idea what to expect from this book, and I loved getting to know Nancy Jones, who is a bit of a lost soul, but has a heart of gold. 

She is many years on still recovering from a tragic accident, and it's lead to her leading a life that outsiders may see as odd. 

But as the book progresses you see her starting to heal, and open up her life a lot more.   The little boy she tries to help really got under my skin, and I also enjoyed the descriptions of her cats. 

It really is a lovely heartwarming story, that was a pleasure to spend a sunny afternoon reading.  

Thank you to Bookouture on Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Thursday 26 September 2019

Book Review - Let It Snow by Sue Moorcroft - Blog Tour

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Amazon UK
Title: Let It Snow
Author: Sue Moorcroft
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: 26th September 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

This Christmas, the villagers of Middledip are off on a very Swiss adventure…
Family means everything to Lily Cortez and her sister Zinnia, and growing up in their non-conventional family unit, they and their two mums couldn’t have been closer.

So it’s a bolt out of the blue when Lily finds her father wasn’t the anonymous one-night stand she’d always believed – and is in fact the result of her mum's reckless affair with a married man.

Confused, but determined to discover her true roots, Lily sets out to find the family she’s never known; an adventure that takes her from the frosted, thatched cottages of Middledip to the snow-capped mountains of Switzerland, via a memorable romantic encounter along the way…

When the weather outside is frightful....

you can do no better than curling up with a fabulous festive Sue Moorcroft book, and  Let It Snow is just that. 

And The Fire is so delightful...

... so is everything about this book, from the picturesque setting, to the family dynamics, the friendships, the potential romance, the snow, and just the way it all made me feel, utterly delightful. 

And Since We've No Place To Go.... 

... not true at all for Lily and the rest of the Middletones, where we get to see their entire trip to Switzerland which was my favourite part of the book. I loved everything about Switzerland. the Christmas markets, the singing that the Middletones did, the cuckoo clocks,  all the snow, and getting to know a couple of very key people out there. 

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

.. what an apt title for a book that certainly does feature a large amount of snow.  Doggo who had to be one of my favourite characters, loved chasing around in the snow, and I enjoyed the teenagers who couldn't resist taking part in snow ball fights.   Not to mention that Let It Snow was one of the more popular tunes of the group, and thus  I had it running in my head a lot! 

Man it doesn't show signs of stoppin'

... the pace doesn't let up in this book, there are so many different storylines in play, romantic tensions, and there is the non stop will Lily or won't Lily reveal her true identity to her half brothers. 

And I brought me some corn for poppin

... plenty of delicious food mentions, between the pub that Lily and Isaac are working in to the delights in Switzerland. 

The lights are turned way down low

...  Well there were some darker times as you get to grips with just why Lily is in Middledip to start with, and what her decision is doing to her family.  And Isaac certainly has a tough time of it when his ex, Hayley becomes rather prominent, but not in the way you may be thinking. 

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

.. As I have been trying to say, I loved every single moment of this book, it is Sue Moorcroft at her best, its warm and cosy,  the whole of the Switzerland section was fabulous, and its always great to be back in Middledip.  This easily stands alone with plenty of brand new characters to get to know, and I loved all the various threads of story involved. 

Really what I should just be saying is

Buy it now... buy it now... read it now!! 

Thank you to Avon on Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Please do follow along with the rest of the blog tour, you may even find some reviews that make more sense than me singing out of tune!! 

Wednesday 25 September 2019

Book Review - Christmas at Frozen Falls by Kiley Dunbar

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Amazon UK
Title: Christmas at Frozen Falls
Author: Kiley Dunbar
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Hera 
Publication Date: 4th September 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

Christmas magic can thaw the coldest of hearts…

Sylvie Magnusson is going to be lonely this Christmas. Instead of jetting off for her
sunshine honeymoon, she’s freezing at home in Cheshire. Guess that’s what happens when your fiancĂ© dumps you a week before your wedding…

Sylvie’s best friend, Nari, plans a trip to see the Northern Lights and get Sylvie’s mojo back. But as their Lapland getaway approaches, Sylvie realises that Frozen Falls is the hometown of Stellan Virtanen, her dreamy Finnish ex-boyfriend, the one that got away. Even though he actually ran away, and Sylvie never understood why…

Luckily, when they meet, Stellan’s still gorgeous – and her heart is warmed when he shows her the romantic delights of Lapland (as well as some seriously adorable Husky puppies). But when she returns to England can she really leave Stellan behind? Or will she find that her heart belongs in the frozen North?

Curl up with the perfect cosy Christmas read this winter. Fans of Sarah Morgan and
Carole Matthews will adore this feel good, heart-warming romcom.

It's beginning to feel a bit like Christmas or at least Winter, and having read Christmas at Frozen Falls, I just want to pack my bags and spend Christmas this year in Lapland. 

Ok in reality its a tiny bit too cold for my liking, so I'll probably spend it in a much warmer destination - but wow who wouldn't want to go husky sledding,  take a sleigh ride with real reindeer and generally spend a few days at the place that we all know the real Santa lives! 

This really is a bit of Christmas magic, seeing how Sylvie and Nari take a last min trip to Lapland, and go to the resort where  Sylvie's ex-boyfriend Stellan is from and might be there.   In fact we get to meet not only Stellan but also reindeer herder Niilo, who believes Nari may be his soulmate. 

Frozen Falls is such a gorgeous location for book,  I really felt I was there alongside Sylvie and Nari, its utterly stunning, and if it can't ignite some Christmas feeling in you then nothing will. 

I loved seeing how both ladies interacted with their potential romances, and as well as being on holiday together they spend quite a bit of time apart. 

It is clear that Finnish Lapland has been well researched with mentions of Finnish customs, and odd phrases in Finnish put in too for flavour.  I loved learning about the sauna customs, and also the mentions that Finn men are slightly quieter, less demonstrative than the male species of other Scandinavian countries. 

Oh and the huskies, just how adorable are they.  Please can I have a husky puppy for Christmas, I really want to give one a big cuddle, and if i had a team of them, I'd be able to rather unique transport!!  They really are great and Sylvie spends quite a bit of time with the dogs in this, as she is even more enchanted than I am with them. 

Christmas at Frozen Falls is a wonderful start to my Christmas reading this year,  its full of festive feeling, fabulous characters,  friends, family,  snow and all sorts of traditional Lappish food and customs.  I just loved every second of this book.  

This may only be Kiley Dunbar's second book, but I can already tell these are the start of a long writing career (I hope), as I am loving her writing,. I can't wait to see what is next. 

Thank you to Hera and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Tuesday 24 September 2019

Book Review - If You Were Here by Alice Peterson

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Amazon UK
Title: If You Were Here
Author: Alice Peterson
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 2nd May 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

When her daughter Beth dies suddenly, Peggy Andrews is left to pick up the pieces and take care of her granddaughter Flo. But sorting through Beth’s things reveals a secret never told: Beth was sick, with the same genetic condition that claimed her father’s life, and now Peggy must decide whether to keep the secret or risk destroying her granddaughter’s world.

Five years later, Flo is engaged and moving to New York with her fiancĂ©. Peggy never told her what she discovered, but with Flo looking towards her future, Peggy realises it’s time to come clean and reveal that her granddaughter’s life might also be at risk.

As Flo struggles to decide her own path, she is faced with the same life-altering questions her mother asked herself years before: if a test could decide your future, would you take it?

An emotional, inspiring and uplifting novel, IF YOU WERE HERE will break your heart and put it back together again.

Just wow, I knew Alice Peterson was a fabulous writer, but this may just be my new favourite book from her, although A Song For Tomorrow is still one of my favourites. 

This is certainly a thought provoking and emotional book - there were tears pricking my eyes at various points of this.   If I was in Flo's situation I honestly don't know what I would do. 

It's a fascinating look a one specific genetic condition, that doesn't have huge amounts of awareness, and raises all manner of questions.   I think this would definitely be a great book club read. 

We take in three generations of the Andrew's family,  Granny Peggy and grand daughter, Flo, and we learn about Beth's life through her diaries,. 

The diaries are in some respects the best bit of the book, you get a first hand look into what life as a person with the condition is like, and we also see how it affected her father. 

But then again seeing the range of thoughts and emotions of Flo as she comes to terms with the information she has never been given before is also amazing, as is seeing how she reacts.  The final section of the book I had a massive lump in my throat the whole time - it is just that well written. 

And granny Peg, what a character she is, I loved seeing her world expand and her friendship with her new neighbour was a lovely one to see develop. 

There is so much packed into this amazing story, I read the majority of it in a long stint in the garden, not overly noticing that it was getting cooler around me. It is gripping, it makes you think, it makes you feel - its just a complete story that is wonderful. 

Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily, 

Monday 23 September 2019

Book Review - Bring Me Sunshine by Laura Kemp

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Amazon UK

Title: Bring Me Sunshine
Author: Laura Kemp
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Orion
Publication Date: 21st March 2019 
Rating: 5 Stars

Charlotte Bold is nothing like her name - she is shy and timid and just wants a quiet life. When her job doing the traffic news on the radio in London is relocated to Sunshine FM in Mumbles, she jumps at the chance for a new start in Wales.

But when she arrives she discovers that she's not there to do the travel news - she's there to front the graveyard evening show. And she's not sure she can do it.

Thrust into the limelight, she must find her voice and a way to cope. And soon she realises that she's not the only person who finds life hard - out there her listeners are lonely too. And her show is the one keeping them going.

Can Charlotte seize the day and make the most of her new home? And will she be able to breathe new life into the tiny radio station too...?

I loved this story of Charlie Bold, who needs to regain her confidence and kick start her life a bit. She had completely lost her confidence, and for someone working in radio, has stage fright and can't speak on a microphone. 

When her station forces her to relocate to Swansea, and aren't exactly honest about her new role, it is time for her to sink or swim.  With the help of Delme who she has only just met, things start happening for Charlie, slowly at first, and then wow she is one fabulous woman. 

I loved the ideas she had for her evening radio show and generally seeing how she fitted into her new life. I hated her current boyfriend Jonny and just prayed she would see sense with him.  

I loved getting to know Delme's story properly, he is a character I gelled with from the first instance and seeing how he developed over the book was wonderful.  As was Tina's story which kept giving us gasp worthy shocks, once you got to know her. 

It's a story of fresh starts, new beginnings, gains in confidence, the attempt to improve a small radio station, a lovely location, all manner to unexpected directions for the story and some wonderful advice too.  

It's a really great feel good story, that is guaranteed to bring some sunshine into your life. 

Thank you to Orion and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Sunday 22 September 2019

Q&A with Sue Black - Morecambe and Vice Festival Blog Tour

Today I'm taking the time to interview one of the authors who will be attending the Morecambe & Vice Crime Writing Festival, Sue Black, the author of All That Remains: A Life in Death. 

1: What led you to the career that you are in now? 

I studied human anatomy at university and it was a natural step from my research into identification from the skeleton into forensic anthropology.

2: Through your work you have obviously seen some horrific things. How do you shut off from your work?  

I try to keep a sterile corridor between work and home.  I have a mental picture of a clinical space in my head where all my work is done and when I am finished at the end of the day, I leave the space and mentally shut and lock the door.

3: What sort of crime books and authors did you enjoy reading when growing up?  

I have never been a crime reader I am afraid.  I like historical novels and the more detailed they are the better.  So books like the Quincunx by Charles Palliser or classics such as the Lord of the Rings or the tomes by Ken Follett, are my kind of thing.

4: What is your typical working day like? 

 It is unpredictable.  I may be sitting in university meetings, I might be meeting with partners on exciting new developments, I might be in a mortuary or at a crime scene, I may be writing reports on child sexual abuse cases, I may be at a book festival but it is never boring and it is never empty.

5: Do you have any advice for anyone interested in becoming a forensic anthropologist? 

You have to be a scientist first.  The case work is all well and good and comes across as the ‘exciting’ stuff but the real value to justice comes from curiosity driven research where science can be best placed to work to serve truth.

Amazon UK
Shortlisted for the CWA Gold Dagger for Non-fiction 2019, this incredible memoir from the Sunday Times Bestseller. Professor Sue Black breathes new life into the subject of death.

Sue Black confronts death every day. As a Professor of Anatomy and Forensic Anthropology, she focuses on mortal remains in her lab, at burial sites, at scenes of violence, murder and criminal dismemberment, and when investigating mass fatalities due to war, accident or natural disaster. In All That Remains she reveals the many faces of death she has come to know, using key cases to explore how forensic science has developed, and examining what her life and work has taught her.

Do we expect a book about death to be sad? Macabre? Sue's book is neither. There is tragedy, but there is also humour in stories as gripping as the best crime novel.

Part memoir, part science, part meditation on death, her book is compassionate, surprisingly funny, and it will make you think about death in a new light.

About the author

Professor Dame Sue Black is one of the world’s leading anatomists and forensic anthropologists. Her expertise has been crucial to many high-profile criminal cases, and in 1999 she was the lead anthropologist for the British Forensic Team’s work in the war crimes investigations in Kosovo. She was one of the first forensic scientists to travel to Thailand following the Indian Ocean tsunami of 2004 to provide assistance in identifying the dead. 

Sue is a familiar face in the media where documentaries have been filmed about her work and she led the highly successful BBC 2 series - History Cold Case. In 2015 she was interviewed on Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs  and has also been a guest on BBC Radio 4’s The Life Scientific. Most recently she stunned over 300,000 Outlander followers where she announced that Lord Lovat, Simon Fraser, was not residing in a coffin built for him at the Wardlaw Mausoleum.

She was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2016 Queen’s Birthday Honours for services to forensic anthropology.

To find out about some of the other authors appearing at this festival, please do follow along with this tour 

Sat 28th & Sun 29th Sept 2019
The Midland Hotel, Morecambe

If you are free next weekend and fancy travelling to Morecambe, then take a look at the details of this festival on their website.  There is an impressive line up of authors attending, and tickets are still on sake. 

And check out this programme of events for the weekend, Looks like there are some really appealing things happening, for any crime fan. 

Friday 20 September 2019

Book Review - The Backpacking Housewife: The Next Adventure by Janice Horton - #HolidayReading Madeira

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Amazon UK
Title: The Backpacking Housewife: The Next Adventure
Author: Janice Horton
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: One More Chapter
Publication Date: 19th September 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

They say home is really where the heart is…

Lori Anderson should be bursting with happiness. Since leaving behind her life as a housewife to embark on an incredible backpacking adventure she’s met a man she’s fallen head over heels in love with and is living aboard a yacht in the turquoise waters of the sun-drenched Caribbean.

She should be instagramming photos of her swimming with dolphins and sipping cocktails at sunset….and yet Lori finds herself desperately missing her grown-up family, and her normal London life. But when she’s unexpectedly called home, reality hits hard. The urban bustle she used to find exciting is now just exhausting – and why doesn’t it ever stop raining?

If there’s one thing Lori has learnt it’s that you have to fight for what might make you truly happy – so Lori is determined not to let her chance of a little slice of paradise slip through her fingers….

Wow, well I knew I had loved the first Backpacking Housewife book, but I think I may adore this second one even more!

Read in an afternoon poolside, I was whizzing through the pages of this action packed story with a plot and sort of adventure most would never encounter in a lifetime. 

It is an exhilarating read of travel, both to exotic places but also for me much closer to home, but also a story of family, and trying to work out what your heart really desires. 

I'm absolutely loving this next step in Ethan and Lori's lives, and even just hearing what they get up to in the bit between the two books is exhausting but eye opening. 

There is also a keen theme of animal conservation running through this book, and I love how they are always trying to save the planet.  

With every book I'm reading of Janice Horton's,  she is excelling herself and getting better and better. 

I have loved discovering the British Virgin Islands in this book, especially the more remote ones, and all the travel aspects are so well described, it was like I was there beside them. 

Although only present for a small bit, Monty was completely fabulous, and I loved getting to know him.

Wonderful book from a fabulous author, what more could a girl want from her holiday reading!

Thank you to Netgalley and One More Chapter for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 

Thursday 19 September 2019

Book Review - The Unlikely Life of Maisie Meadows by Jenni Keer

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Amazon UK
Title: The Unlikely Life of Maisie Meadows
Author: Jenni Keer
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: 8th July 2019
Rating: 5 Stars

When Maisie Meadows finds herself single and jobless on New Year’s Day, she resolves that this will be the year she focuses on bringing her scattered family back together. Romance is all very well, but it’s the people you grew up with that matter the most.

But a new job working at an auction house puts her in the path of Theo, a gorgeous but unattainable man who she can’t help but be distracted by. As their bond begins to grow, Maisie finds herself struggling to fulfil the promise she made to herself – but the universe has other ideas, and it’s not long before the Meadows family are thrown back together in the most unlikely of circumstances…

Can dealing with other people’s treasures help Maisie to let go of the past, and teach her who she ought to treasure the most?

I can't believe this is only the author's second book, it is so accomplished and I much prefer it to her first one, which I also really enjoyed.  

I connected really quickly to Maisie Meadows, and absolutely loved the assorted storylines running through the book, although one of the most obvious things to me, was never spelt out to Maisie until towards the end, so there were plenty of conversations at cross purposes, which are always amusing. 

I loved the auction house that Maisie is working at, complete with all of her new colleagues, all of whom are simply wonderful, from the flamboyant Johnny, the quiet Elle, chatterbox Arthur (and there is so much more to his story, its a joy to uncover), and  Theo who we meet in a wonderfully memorable way. 

Then there is Maisie's family, she is the youngest of four, and just wants to reunite her siblings and parents under one roof and for them to all be on big happy family again like she remembers before it all went wrong... however let's just say again all the family members are radically different and nothing is as it seems. 

Finally we have Maisie's quest to reunite all the pieces of a special tea set, and in doing so learns a lot about another large family who is fractured.  The big question though is whether the tea set really does have slightly magical properties, or whether everything that happens really is coincidence. 

There is masses of story in this, if you don't like one thread, then don't worry another one comes along very soon. Personally I enjoyed every last minute of it, and absolutely loved spending time with this cast of unusual characters. 

There is more depth to the plot than you may think, and I already thought the cover was lovely, but looking at it again since reading the book, I can see just how relevant all those small items really are, each holing clues to strands of this book. 

It was an utter delight to read, and I think Jenni Keer is definitely an author who will be going places, and I intend to keep reading and following her (in a completely non creepy way!). 

Thank you to Avon and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily. 
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