Thursday, 25 August 2016

Blog Tour: The Secret Wife by Gill Paul

Happy Publication Day Gill Paul!!!!

So not only have I been incredibly lucky to receive a copy of Gill Paul's latest novel, The Secret Wife, but I have the amazing honour of hosting this new little gem on my blog as part of the blog tour, and it's publication day!! 

Before I let you know my thoughts, here is a little bit about the book to wet the taste buds.

Publishes in eBook & Paperback: 25th August


Russia is on the brink of collapse, and the Romanov family faces a terrifyingly uncertain future. Grand Duchess Tatiana has fallen in love with cavalry officer Dmitri, but events take a catastrophic turn, placing their romance – and their lives – in danger . . .


Kitty Fisher escapes to her great-grandfather’s remote cabin in America, after a devastating revelation makes her flee London. There, on the shores of Lake Akanabee, she discovers the spectacular jewelled pendant that will lead her to a long-buried family secret . . .

Haunting, moving and beautifully written, The Secret Wife effortlessly crosses centuries, as past merges with present in an unforgettable story of love, loss and resilience.


I'm not even really sure I know where to begin this review - I feel like this book hangover is going to be one of those 'grown-up' hangovers, which take a number of days to overcome. Having not read any of Gill Paul's previous novels I felt excited when I received an email to ask if I wanted to be part of the blog tour. It's one of the things I really love about book blogging; the opportunity to discover new authors all the time, and boy am I excited to have come across Gill Paul.

Immediately I was drawn to the cover of the book; the imagery creating a real sense of mystery and secrecy. I couldn't wait to begin and it wasn't long at all before I was completely hooked!! The Secret Wife is one of those stories I just didn't want to put down... not even for a second - I even forced myself to put it down and turn my light off one night, only to find myself 5 minutes later flicking my bedside lamp back on and delving into the pages once more! 

Following the story across two different time periods, 1914 and 2016, Gill Paul brings the love story of Grand Duchess Tatiana and Dmitri Malama to life beautifully. Jumping between two periods can be a very challenging style to write in, however Gill Paul masters this, enabling the reader to follow the story with ease. It took me a few chapters to get familiar with some of the Russian names, but I quickly became comfortable with them.

When reading their story, you can really feel the heartache and pain the characters face throughout their difficult journeys. It is not long before you become completely engrossed in the story, feeling the love, the pain and the desperation of the characters as they face a life of turmoil. I became increasingly captivated by the story, feeling as though I was living the journey with them. I really loved how Gill Paul uses Dmitri and Tatiana's story to help Kitty reflect on her own life and help her find her 'purpose' she has begun to search for, and to help put her own love story with Tom in to perspective in order to make the right decision about their future. 

Gill Paul has truly brought her characters to life through her writing. One of the little habits that forms between Dmitri and Tatiana is when they lean their heads against one another so they can 'hear what the other is thinking' and I feel as though this connection is made between the reader and the characters when you open the pages. You can really feel the heart and soul of each of the characters flowing through the pages of the book.

Gill Paul has adapted the story of the Romanov family into a heart-wrenching and devastatingly beautiful account of the undying love and unbreakable bond between a man and a woman, destined to be together. 

I absolutely loved The Secret Wife and cannot wait to discover more of Gill Paul's books. I was already spreading the word to friends and family when I was only a few chapters in and I can't wait share it with everyone!

I give The Secret Wife;

Buy The Secret Wife on Amazon UK now: Click Here

Here's a tasty little treat for you, an extract from the prologue of The Secret Wife:

Kitty walked back to the car to retrieve her bags and drag them down the track, flattening the grass in her wake. She ate a salt beef and gherkin sandwich from the selection she had bought at the airport, drank a can of Seven-Up, then donned some sturdy gloves to start tearing at the creepers that smothered her cabin. Already it felt like hers, she noted. Already she was falling in love with it.

One of the plants was what she and her school friends called ‘sticky willy’. They used to try and stick it on each other’s backs without being noticed. Another type of creeper filled the air with spores that tickled the back of her throat. She was careful not to let any leaves touch her skin because she knew they had poison ivy in America but she wasn’t sure what it looked like. A swarm of tiny black flies rose into the air and floated away in the breeze. She worked with grim determination, hoping that by totally exhausting her muscles she could quell the panicky thoughts that clamoured in her brain. Don’t think about Tom. Stop thinking. She had brought her mobile phone and laptop through force of twenty-first-century habit, but both were switched off. She couldn’t bear to listen to his excuses and self-justifications, simply didn’t want to deal with any of it.

When she had yanked back most of the overgrowth, she saw that the weathered wooden slats made the cabin look like an organic part of the wooded landscape. Despite having just one room it was big, perhaps twenty feet long, with windows all around, and the sloping roof had a little chimney sticking out. She went inside again and loaded debris into some heavy-duty bin bags she’d brought along, stopping to read a few yellowed news headlines: the accident at the Chernobyl power plant in Russia; the explosion of the Challenger space shuttle. The springs on the bed had long gone, so she hauled it outside to dispose of later then unrolled the sleeping bag she had brought and spread it in one corner.

By the time she finished, the sun was lowering over the lake and birds were squawking loudly, expending their final burst of energy for the day. She went to sit on the porch to listen. A whip-poor-will called, and it sounded for all the world like a wolf whistle. Shadowy bats zipped by, and frogs croaked in the distance.

Suddenly she saw something glint under the fractured wood of the steps, nestled amongst the tree roots. She lay down full length stretching her arm to grasp it and was immediately surprised by the weight of the object. She pulled it out and saw it was a golden oval, less than an inch long, studded with tiny coloured jewels – blue, pink and amber – set within swirls of gold tendrils, like flowers on a vine. It looked expensive. On the back she could make out some scratched engraving but it had been rubbed away over the years. There was a hole in the top and she assumed it had been threaded on a chain. Someone must have been upset to lose such a stunning pendant. She’d never seen anything quite like it.

Kitty slipped it deep into the pocket of her jeans and opened another airport sandwich, turkey and salad this time. She ate it for supper, washed down with a miniature bottle of Chenin Blanc she’d brought from the plane, as she sat with her legs dangling off the edge of the porch. In front of her, the trees swayed in a slight breeze and the smooth surface of the lake reflected the dramatic colours of the sky, changing from pale pink to mauve to gold and then bronze, as vivid and surreal as the painted opening title shots of a Hollywood movie.

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Thursday, 18 February 2016

Guest Review by Polly: 'Me Before You' by Jojo Moyes

All great books should come with an advisory health warning;

May cause dizziness, lack of concentration and unexplained outbursts of tears

Phase 1: Cry
Phase 2: Lie silently, running through the story over and over in your mind to make sure you don't forget any part of it

And then comes Phase 3: TELL THE WORLD! 

One of the greatest gifts about being a book blogger is having the ability to share your experience and thoughts of a book with so many other book lovers across the world. It still amazes me how my little blog I write sitting in my flat reaches so many different countries. I don't think I'll ever get over that. 

The exciting thing for me is I actually read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes because one of my friends had read it first and she hit Phase 3 of the hangover and shared her love for the book with me. I was then lucky enough to receive After You in exchange for an honest review. It was like fate!! So I thought, rather than reviewing both books myself, I was excited to get my friend involved, after all it was because of her that I read Me Before You!

So I am very excited to invite my friend, Polly Robinson-Gill, to my blog today to share her review of Jojo Moyes' Me Before You. Polly is such an amazing person - she is full of life, always bubbly and full of laughter and positivity. I can't help but smile when Polly's around; she is such a beautiful person, inside and out, and I am so honoured and lucky to be able to call her my friend. Polly is one of those treasures you find and just know you have to hold on to! I can't thank Polly enough for having the courage to write a review for my blog as I know she was nervous... I hope you all love reading Polly's review as much as I did, and please leave comments or questions for Polly below and I'll be sure to pass them on. 


Lou Clark knows lots of things. She knows how many footsteps there are between the bus stop and home. She knows she likes working in The Buttered Bun tea shop and she knows she might not love her boyfriend Patrick.

What Lou doesn't know is she's about to lose her job or that knowing what's coming is what keeps her sane.

Will Traynor knows his motorcycle accident took away his desire to live. He knows everything feels very small and rather joyless now and he knows exactly how he's going to put a stop to that.

What Will doesn't know is that Lou is about to burst into his world in a riot of colour. And neither of them knows they're going to change the other for all time.

So without further adieu, I give you, the beautiful, Polly!

Polly's thoughts: 

Reading Me Before You took me out of my comfort zone. I am a typical Erica James, Danielle Steel or Lucy Diamond reader. But after reading an article on the author Jojo Moyes in Woman & Home magazine I felt drawn in to the characters of her book which is being turned into a movie, out this year and wanted to read it. Whilst visiting my local car boot that same weekend, I saw this book for sale and I thought it was a must!

It sat on my shelf for a few weeks, thinking I must get round to reading this book. Then when a cold hit me I curled up under the covers and started. I did not put it down for 3 days (I do take along time to read). I didn’t want to stop reading about Will and Lou, or Clarke as he calls her, and their 6 months together. The way Jojo Moyes told the story was just wonderful. I felt I was in the room with them at times. It was great to read a different kind of story and it has made me want to venture into different kinds of worlds within literature and push myself more.

The empathy I felt for Will and what his family must have gone through, it has opened my eyes more to people with quadriplegia and people with mobility issues.

There is a second book out that continues the story, After You, which I have now purchased and am looking forward to reading. I know I will miss the presence of Will, but that makes this story more real; that, yes, life does change and it is not always a happy ending for everyone. The ending was sad and yes I cried for a few hours, but that was because of my understanding of how much pain a terrible accident had caused to so many people. They say some books can change your life a little... for me it made me grateful for what I have.


Thank you so much to Polly for her heart-felt review of Me Before You and for sharing the love of a good book on my blog to share with my readers. I look forward to sharing my review of After You next week... look out for it and let me know your thoughts! 

Don't stop dreaming beautifuls x

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Monday, 15 February 2016

Cover Reveal: Mean Sisters by Lindsay Emory

Another cover reveal for you lovely bookish bunch today... Lindsay Emory brings us an exciting story which is described as a cross between Mean Girls and Legally Blonde. Now how can we not be jumping with eager excitement to read this novel if it encompasses even some of the joy we found in those delightful films!

I have to admit that I'm a sucker for a pretty pink cover... so already I am excited...

Let there be pink!

Out 17th March 2016

A sassy, hilariously funny murder mystery where the closest bonds of friendship might just kill you…!

Margot Blythe is a twenty-something year old who can’t seem to let her college glory days go. After all, everyone deserves a family of ‘sisters’ like she had. When she’s invited to speak at her alma mater, her homecoming reception isn’t exactly what she expected. Tragedy strikes and Margot has to step up, especially when foul play is suspected.

She’s going to save her fifty frazzled ‘sisters’, keep the suspicious (but dangerously cute) police officer at bay and find out the truth – could a sister have committed such an unimaginable sin as murder?

Margot is going to learn the real bond of sisterhood and maybe, just maybe, discover where she truly belongs.

Mean Sisters is a murder mystery set in an American college. If you've seen the Scream Queens series then you will already have a taste for the thrill that will be encompassed in this exciting novel. This book is said to be "sassy, sharp, funny and has a killer edge to it".

I know I'm excited to get my hands on this exciting little number... be sure you don't miss out and don't forget to let me know what you thought of it and let me know your thoughts below on the cover!

Speak soon beautifuls!

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Sunday, 14 February 2016

Cover Reveal: The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows by Marnie Riches

I hope you have all been having a lovely Valentine's day, whether you've spent it with a loved one, family or some awesome friends. To end your day on an exciting note, I've got a wonderful cover reveal for you today! So here it is...

The third book in 'The Girl Who' series by the talented Marnie Riches... here's the cover for...

The Girl Who Walked in the Shadows

Out 31st March 2016

Europe is in the grip of an extreme Arctic blast and at the mercy of a killer, who leaves no trace. His weapons of choice are razor-sharp icicles. This is Jack Frost.

Now a fully qualified criminologist, Georgina McKenzie is called upon by the Dutch police to profile this cunning and brutal murderer. Are they looking for a hit man or a frenzied serial-killer? Could there be a link to a cold missing persons’ case that George had worked with Chief Inspector Paul van den Bergen – two abducted toddlers he could never quite give up on?

The hunt for Jack Frost sparks a dangerous, heart-rending journey through the toughest neighbourhoods in Europe, where refugees and Romani gypsies scratch a living on the edge of society. Walking into the dark, violent world of a trans-national trafficking ring, can George outrun death to shed light on two terrible mysteries?

Make sure to grab your copy when it's out and remember to let me know what you think of it!?

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Friday, 11 December 2015

Book Review: 'Plan Bea' by Hilary Grossman

Eeeek!!! I'm so excited about this one!!!!! I've been waiting what feels like forever for the chance to read Hilary's new novel and it finally arrived!

Published by Booktrope Editions, October 2015


How well do you really know the people in your life?

Annabel O’Conner has the perfect husband, two adorable children, an amazing job, and the mother from hell! Annabel doesn’t like it but has come to terms with the fact that her relationship with her mother, Bea, deteriorated to the point of forced and strained communications. However, an unscheduled call from Bea turns her world around and makes Annabel question everything she believed about her life.

Despite the fact secrets, lies, and misplaced blame have destroyed the women’s relationship; Annabel reluctantly agrees to help Bea plan her wedding. Little does Annabel know the impact of her decision.

In this Women’s Contemporary Fiction novel, Hilary Grossman explores the complex relationship that exists between mothers and daughters in a light-hearted and relatable manner.


Ok... so I've been staring at this blank page for ages and the big question on my mind is...

How do I write a review that does justice to such an amazing book?

So I have to admit straight away that I already have a bit of a love affair with Hilary's first novel, Dangled Carat (read my review here). This was a beautiful memoir from Hilary which was very open, real and captivating. When I heard that Hilary was writing a second novel, this time a fictional story, I couldn't be more excited. And what made it even more exciting is that it arrive the day before my birthday! :)

Plan Bea is... wow. I feel speechless.

Plan Bea is a story that focuses on the relationship between a mother and daughter, Beatrice and Annabel, and the difficulties they have overcoming some tragic events from their passed. Hilary grabbed my attention right from the first page as you find yourself becoming completely captivated by the family dynamics within the story and how each character works together and responds to one another. Hilary creates such strong, diverse characters and you immediately are able to see each of their personalities and qualities, helping the story to feel more real and authentic. When you first encounter the characters the natural instinct is to dislike Bea and feel sorry for Anna, however as the story unfolds and the truths about the passed are revealed, you find yourself starting to understand Bea and the reasons behind the way she behaves.

It is so hard for me to write about this story without giving anything away, and I don't want to let any spoilers go!

Hilary's writing beautifully entwines the present day struggles between Anna and Bea with flashbacks from the past. Despite jumping between the past and present, it is never difficult to follow the story and keep up with the story. As you read the story the secrets from the past are slowly unveiled and the tension between Anna and Bea starts to increase before any sign of reconciliation as they start to deal with the reality of what has caused the tension between them. I found myself becoming completely drawn into Hilary's writing, feeling all the emotions of each character and anxious to see how the story was going to end.

There is a huge surprising twist towards the end of the story which I was not expecting at all but it was brilliant and beautiful... and I have to admit it made me burt into tears!! As the twist unravelled and Bea revealed some intense, exciting news to Anna, I found myself entirely welling up with tears running down my face.

And then, if that's not enough, Hilary cleverly throws a cliffhanger on to the end of the story!! Aaahhhh!!!! Now I have very split emotions about this cliffhanger... on the one hand I am so super excited because it can only mean one thing... ANOTHER HILARY GROSSMAN NOVEL!!!! But then on the other hand, I DON"T WANT TO HAVE TO WAIT FOR IT!!! The way Hilary wrote the cliffhanger into the story was so clever. It pulls you in and you become curious, just like Anna, and when the story ends I wanted to yell 'Noooooo!!!!!!!!'. All I can say is I can't wait for the next book!!

Plan Bea is a beautiful, heartbreaking, honest and authentic story. The characters are all beautiful and real in their own way and the story explores some very intense, strong emotions in a very sensitive but honest way.

If there is one book you must read this year, and next year, and the year after... it is Plan Bea!!! I have already recommend it to so many of my friends and am buying it for a few as Christmas presents. And now I am recommending it to YOU! All of you! Read it now!!!! Your life depends on it... ok, so maybe that's not true but that's how much I loved this book!!

I give this amazing book;

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Sunday, 15 November 2015

Blog Tour: 'Meet Me In Manhattan' by Claudia Carroll

Today, at A Novel Thought, we are celebrating Claudia Carroll's novel, Meet Me In Manhattan. Published by Avon Books, the e-book was released on 5th November and the paperback is due out on 3rd December!!

I am excited to share this piece with you from Claudia herself on her writing habits. Whenever we try to let our creative juices flow, we all have our own little tricks and habits, our ideal locations and little quirks. I always love to hear about other people's inspirational pick me-ups - it helps you feel like you're not the only crazy one out there! Haha.. I hope you enjoy finding out about Claudia's habits... and don't forget to check out her novel Meet Me In Manhattan!!

Do you have any writing habits/superstitions/traditions? Where do you like to write?

Well, my house is generally freezing, even with the heat on, so I tend to work in whatever room is warmest. Generally at the kitchen table, though I often take the laptop up to bed with a mug of tea and work there, electric blanket up full. Just like an old lady.

Every author is different, but my little habit is to keep the writing day as close to a nine to five job as possible. Easier said than done though…trouble is, when I’m writing from home, there can just be so many other distractions. Even as I’m typing this, I’m looking at a big mound of ironing, just winking at me to be done.

I constantly have to remind myself that when I’m writing I’m working, just as if I was based in an office or business setting, so I try my best not to take calls, answer emails from pals or surf the net. Believe me though, this took a long, long time to get used to! Soon enough though, my family and friends slowly copped on not to call during the day.

So I suppose here’s a little tip to would be authors who may be reading this; just ignore the door, put the phone on silent, don’t go online and you’ll be amazed at how much you’ll get done. Really. My mother is by a mile the worst ‘time bandit’ offender, but then she thinks I spend all day every day daydreaming out the window and that books appear on shelves by magic!

Having said all that though, being a full-time author really is the single best job in the world. I’m incredibly lucky and still pinching myself that I can do it full-time now. Imagine a job where you can haul yourself out of bed and bed ‘in work’ five minutes later? What’s not to love?


In a New York minute, everything can change …

You don’t mess with aspiring journalist Holly Johnson! The man she fell for is not all that he seems – because sometimes dating online doesn’t quite go to plan. She’s decided to fly to the Big Apple to surprise him and to get some answers. And if her plan works she’ll also get the scoop of her career …

But as she steps out of her yellow taxi and the first snowflakes start to fall, it’s Holly who has the surprise of her life.

What should be a dream come true is looking a little like a nightmare. But Holly is determined to get her New York happy ending!

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Wednesday, 4 November 2015

Blog Tour: 'Nightingales Under the Mistletoe' by Donna Douglas

The new Nightingales Christmas novel from the Sunday Times top ten bestselling author of A Nightingale Christmas Wish

the Mistletoe
Donna Douglas
To be published by Arrow in paperback on 11th November 2015, at £5.99
Also available as an eBook

Christmas 1941 and the nurses at the Nightingale are facing their toughest winter yet.

With shortages everywhere, and every news bulletin announcing more defeats and losses, the British people are weary and demoralised and The Nightingale Hospital is suffering too. 

Millie is recently widowed and dealing with the demands of her family’s estate. It’s not long before her old world of The Nightingale begins to beckon, along with a long-lost love…

Jess is struggling with her move from East London to the quiet of the countryside.

Effie finds herself exiled to a quiet village, but the quiet doesn’t last for long as she soon finds excitement in the shape of a smooth-talking GI. 

As Christmas approaches, even the shelter of the countryside can’t protect the girls from heartache.

I am very lucky to be today's stop on the blog tour for Donna Douglas' new novel Nightingales Under the Mistletoe.

I have followed the journey of the Nightingale Girls after I read my first Donna Douglas novel, and the fourth book in the Nightingale series, Nightingales on Call. If you haven't started reading this beautiful series, and you're a fan of programmes like Call the Midwife, get yourself a copy and start to delve into the chaotic lives of the Nightingale Girls. You can read my review of Nightingales on Call here 

To celebrate the release of the latest in the series, Nightingales Under the Mistletoe, which looks set to bring us some Christmas festivities, Donna Douglas has given me the honour of sharing with you the character profile for Millie.

I really hope you enjoy the profile and that it entices you into the world of the Nightingale Girls. Let me know your thoughts in the comments below on Millie, any of the Nightingale books and who you favourite character is!

For now I would like to introduce you to Millie:

‘Whatever happened to Millie?’

That’s a question I’ve been asked a great deal since I started writing the Nightingale series. Lady Amelia Benedict, the flighty debutante turned student nurse, really captured readers’ hearts when she first appeared in The Nightingale Girls, but unfortunately I had to say goodbye to her after my fourth book, Nightingales On Call, when she married her beloved Sebastian and moved to the country for a life of wedded bliss.

But the readers have never forgotten Millie, and neither have I. So when I was planning Nightingales Under The Mistletoe, I realised it was a great opportunity to catch up with her and find out what was happening in her life.

And what a life she’s had. Sadly, fate hasn’t been kind to Millie. When Nightingales Under The Mistletoe begins in the winter of 1941, she has suffered the double tragedy of losing her father, the Earl of Rettingham, and her RAF pilot husband. Millie, now the mother of a young son, has been left as chatelaine of the family’s stately home, Billinghurst. She’s doing her best to run the estate as her father would have wished, but she’s hopelessly out of her depth. And when the house is requisitioned by the RAF, it feels as if Millie has lost everything.

Alone and lost, Millie takes refuge in the only place she ever felt useful – working as a nurse. After a shaky start, with the help of her fellow nurses she gradually finds a new purpose in life, but her grandmother is not impressed – she feels Millie’s only purpose should be to find a new husband. Millie is certain no man could ever take Seb’s place, until the arrival of a face from her past makes her question her future. Dare she risk her barely-mended heart a second time?

I hope you enjoy catching up with Millie – or meeting her for the first time – in Nightingales Under The Mistletoe. It’s a festive feel-good read, with plenty of drama, romance – and a few tears, too!

About the Author:

Donna Douglas lives in York with her husband and daughter. Besides writing novels, she is also a very well-respected freelance journalist and has written many features for the Daily Mail. Donna became a top ten bestseller with her 2014 Christmas title A Nightingale Christmas Wish.

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Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Cover Reveal: Plan Bea by Hilary Grossman

Since starting my blog I have met so many amazing people. As a book lover it is amazing to have the chance to share my passion with so many others and to be able to help authors promote their beautiful work. On this occasion I am particularly excited as I get to share in the excitement of this cover reveal with the author, who has become not only one of my favourite authors, but a wonderful friend too.

After reading Hilary Grossman's debut novel The Dangled Carat I was hooked. When I heard the news that Hilary had written her second novel I was so extremely excited I actually squealed out loud! I cannot wait to read it! Without further adieu, here is the beautiful cover for Hilary Grossman's new novel, Plan Bea!! I'd love to hear your thoughts on the cover in the comments below :)

Release Date: October 2015
Genres: Women’s Fiction 
Publisher: Booktrope


How well do you really know the people in your life?

Annabel O’Conner has the perfect husband, two adorable children, an amazing job, and the mother from hell! Annabel doesn’t like it but has come to terms with the fact that her relationship with her mother, Bea, deteriorated to the point of forced and strained communications. However, an unscheduled call from Bea turns her world around and makes Annabel question everything she believed about her life.

Despite the fact secrets, lies, and misplaced blame have destroyed the women’s relationship; Annabel reluctantly agrees to help Bea plan her wedding. Little does Annabel know the impact of her decision.

In this Women’s Contemporary Fiction novel, Hilary Grossman explores the complex relationship that exists between mothers and daughters in a light-hearted and relatable manner.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Author Bio:

Hilary Grossman loves to find humor in everyday life. She has an unhealthy addition to denim and high heel shoes. She likens life to a game of dodge ball - she tries to keep as many balls in the air before they smack her in the face. When she isn't writing, blogging, or shoe shopping she is the CFO of a beverage alcohol importer. She lives on the beach in Long Island.

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Sunday, 5 July 2015

Cover Reveal: My Sister's Secret by Tracy Buchanan

So I have had some time away from my blog over the last few months, but I am back and will be hitting my blog with reviews, interviews and ramblings of bookish loveliness once again. Thank you for all your support and understanding in my little 'holiday' away from my blog.

To start me back off again I have been given the beautiful honour of sharing the wonderful cover reveal of Tracy Buchanan's new novel My Sister's Secret.

Willow’s memories of her parents are sun-drenched and full of smiles, love and laughter. But a mysterious invitation to a photographic exhibition exposes a secret that’s been buried since a tragic accident years ago.

Willow is forced to question everything she knew about Charity, her late mother, and Hope, the aunt she’s lived with since she was a child.

How was the enigmatic photographer connected to Willow’s parents? Why will Hope not break her silence?

Willow cannot move forward in her life without answers. But who can she really trust? Because no one has been telling the truth for a very long time.


This is definitely a book I am looking forward to getting my hands on... Stories laced with secrets always create a sense of curiosity and intrigue and the blurb for this novel does just that. Make sure you check it out and we can all be discovering the secrets and mysteries together :)

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Wednesday, 10 December 2014

Book Review: I'll Take New York by Miranda Dickinson

Published 4th December 2014 by Avon


Have you ever given up on love?

When her boyfriend lets her down for the last time, Brooklyn bookshop owner Bea James makes a decision – no more. No more men, no more heartbreak, and no more pain.

Psychiatrist Jake Steinmann is making a new start too, leaving his broken marriage behind in San Francisco. From now on there'll just be one love in his life: New York.

At a party where they seem to be the only two singletons, Bea and Jake meet, and decide there’s just one thing for it. They will make a pact: no more relationships.

But the city has other plans . . . 


I was really excited when I was offered the chance to review Miranda Dickinson’s new novel. Her growing list of treasures have been sitting patiently on my TBR list whilst I’ve had so much to do, and I was loving that I could finally prioritise one of them!


To start with I have to say that I love how gorgeous all of Miranda’s books are – if you see them sitting on a shelf they are definitely screaming out to be taken home and devoured. 


I really liked the format of the story where we followed the stories of Bea and Jake (the two main characters), with every other chapter swapping to the others story. From the start you can sense that the story is building up to Bea and Jake finally meeting one another. At first I would’ve thought knowing this would make the story lose some of its excitement, but I found that it really intensified the anxiety as you know they were going to meet but you didn’t know how or when.


The relationship that Miranda creates between Bea and Jake is really beautiful. They are both such unique characters, who have both recently found themselves having to start over in life. Having suffered heartbreak and shared their tragic stories with one another, Bea and Jake decide to make a pact to stay single. And so the love story begins…


I loved that the romantic relationship between Bea and Jake grew gradually and that they built a strong friendship with each other before any romantic notions caused disruption! At times it did seem to be a little too slow and you just wanted to shout at them to hurry up and realise they should give it a go together! But patience is a virtue as they always say.


I really loved Miranda’s portrayal of New York – it is somewhere I have never been and it is a dream to go, so when a writer is able to really bring it to life and make me feel as though I am there they always get a massive thumbs up from me. The images Miranda creates seem so authentic and real and they have definitely only ignited a bigger flame in me to want to visit New York.


I found it really special that Miranda involves so many other characters in amongst Bea and Jake’s stories – from Jake’s brother and sister-in-law to Miranda Grandma. They all have such an important part to play in the story and in the lives of Bea and Jake. Bea’s Grandma was particularly precious, and had some very good words of wisdom for Bea. My heart melted when Bea and her Grandma shared a touching moment where her Grandma spoke about her first love.


This is such a beautiful story – definitely one to snuggle up with now the weather has turned chilly! It is a really warm, feel-good story. Having recently become a single girl myself I definitely related to the journeys that Bea and Jake have found themselves on… and may just have to share Grandma’s words of wisdom with Bea!

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