Sunday, 17 November 2013

Billy and Me - Giovanna Fletcher

Sophie May has a secret.

One that she's successfully kept for years.  It's meant that she's had to give up her dreams of going to university and travelling the world to stay in her little village, living with her mum and working in the local teashop.  

But then she meets the gorgeous Billy- an actor with ambitions to make it to the top.  And when they fall in love, Sophie is whisked away from the comfort of her life into Billy's glamorous - but ruthless - world.

Their relationship throws Sophie right into the spotlight after years of shying away from attention.  Can she handle the constant scrutiny that comes with being with Billy?  And most of all, is she ready for her secret heartbreak to be discovered and shred with the nation?

I have to say I was a little apprehensive picking up this book knowing it had been written by an actress and journalist married to a pop star- would it really be as good as everyone was saying?  YES!  Giovanna has a lovely writing style and even though I wasn't drawn in completely for the first chapter I still wanted to read more and by the time Molly was introduced and Sophie landed her job at the teashop I was hooked.  The words flew off the page and even though the secret was nothing like I was expecting (although equally devastating) it was written very cleverly.  I liked the way Giovanna introduced other characters who added to the story but weren't essential and gave enough info without the need to fully introduce them.  

An excellent read. 


Thursday, 14 November 2013

The Cult - Dariya Wilcox

January 1999: Cecelia Chase starts a job at the Institute, an organisation based near Mount Fuji. Her employer conducts research into deadly diseases. 

As the sultry Japanese summer approaches, Cecelia falls in love with Richard, a scientist co-worker. Their passionate affair threatens to distract her from the truth: her employer is a doomsday cult, co-workers have disappeared, and she has a peculiar feeling that she is being watched. One thing becomes clear: unless she does something, many people are going to die.

I read this book in 1 day and for those that know me know this is an extremely rare occurrence but the story was fast paced so I wanted to keep going and I really enjoyed reading this book, I found the insight into Japanese culture really interesting and the darker side fascinating as well and it complemented the story nicely.  The plot was great and had me eating up the pages to find out what was going to happen although I did feel the end and climax of the story came very quickly.  Some of the characters are really evil and written fantastically and I was constantly willing Cecelia and Richard to succeed making this a great thriller with a bit of romance on the side.  


Thanks to Dariya for sending me the book in return for an honest review, I will look forward to reading more.

You can buy The Cult here.

Tuesday, 12 November 2013

Fear the Worst - Linwood Barclay

Suppose you come to pick up your daughter from her job- and find that no one has heard of her and she's never worked there.  If she hasn't been working all day, what has she been doing?

Tim Blake's teenage daughter Sydney is staying with him while she works a summer job at a hotel.  But when one day she fails to arrive home from her shift and the staff at the hotel say they have no Sydney Blake working there, he begins to see his life going into freefall.

What could have made her step out of her life without leaving a trace?  Only one thing convinces Tim that the worst hasn't already happened- the fact that some very scary people seem just as eager to find her.

The question is: who's going to find her first?

This is the second book I've read by Linwood Barclay and it was a very good read, the characters are really well developed, the suspense is there although at times it does take a while to get to the point or next part of the plot.  I could identify with Tim and his frustrations with his ex wife, her new man, the police not believing him and his desperation to get his daughter back.  There are, as expected lots of twists and turns throughout the book, I did figure out a few seconds before I read the ending what was going to happen.  


Sunday, 10 November 2013

You've Never Read....?!

For this post I was lucky enough to be asked to write something for the lovely Kate over at Books with Bunny, so to find out why I've never read Jane Eyre, click HERE

Thanks for having me Kate it was a blast, you can find Kate's fabulous blog here, she is also on Facebook and Twitter @bookswithbunny

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

The Green Hills of Home - Emma Bennet

Love or Responsibility?

Gwen Jones, a young Welsh writer, is desperate to save the family farmhouse from being sold from under her critically ill mother and herself.

When she lands a lucrative three-book deal with an eminent publisher, she thinks her problems are all over.  However, Gwen's need to be near her sick mother means she's unable to travel to London to work with her devilishly desirable editor, John Thatcher, and he must come and stay with her in Wales.

Handsome and eminently capable, cosmopolitan John is used to getting his own way and has plans for the future which certainly don't include being distracted by pretty Welsh girls; nevertheless when he journeys into the country to work with Gwen it's not long before he finds himself falling in love with her, as well as the house she's so anxious to save.

But is John capable of loving anyone as much as his job?

And when he has to decide between his goals and Gwen, which will he choose?

This book right from the beginning had me hooked, I couldn't wait to read more and see where the story was going, Emma has a great way of enabling the reader to get their imagination going and visualise the surroundings and characters.  A really enjoyable read which had me wanting more from John.


Thanks to Emma for sending me the book in return for an honest review, looking forward to Emma's next short story which will be available soon.

You can find Emma here:
Twitter: @romanceemma

Sunday, 20 October 2013

Fear the Worst - Linwood Barclay

Suppose you come to pick up your daughter from her job- and find that no one has heard of her and she's never worked there.  If she hasn't been working all day, what has she been doing?

Tim Blake's teenage daughter Sydney is staying with him while she works a summer job at a hotel.  But when one day she fails to arrive home from her shift and the staff at the hotel say they have no Sydney Blake working there, he begins to see his life going into freefall.

What could have made her step out of her life without leaving a trace?  Only one thing convinces Tim that the worst hasn't already happened- the fact that some very scary people seem just as eager to find her.

The question is: who's going to find her first?

This is the second book I've read by Linwood Barclay and it was a very good read, the characters are really well developed, the suspense is there although at times it does take a while to get to the point or next part of the plot.  I could identify with Tim and his frustrations with his ex wife, her new man, the police not believing him and his desperation to get his daughter back.  There are, as expected lots of twists and turns throughout the book, I did figure out a few seconds before I read the ending what was going to happen. 


Sunday, 29 September 2013

Sweet Temptation - Lucy Diamond

Maddie, Jess and Lauren are all at that point in their lives- they need to battle the bulge and in doing so meet each other for the first time at FatBusters.  Lauren runs Love Hearts a successful dating agency but despite her profession she has been unlucky finding love and is convinced she will never find her prince.  Jess is engaged and desperate to fit into a slinky dress on her big day but,the big day hasn't even been booked, well, it has but her fiancĂ© keeps postponing it!  Maddie works at the local radio station where her boss humiliates her live on air, her Mum is also continually dropping hints about her loosing weight (even signs her up for the gym) and after a disastrous mum's race at her kids sports day she knows something has to change.
When all the girls join FatBusters they are somewhat reluctant and unconvinced it is the place for them but they become unlikely allies bound together in their quest to shed the lbs, along the way they develop new friendships, share secrets and stand by each other.  Maddie's story is the main thread throughout- although as I identified with her the most maybe that's why it stood out for me, Jess is a great character to follow and see her change as the story progresses, I found Lauren the hardest character to like but by the end had warmed to her.  There was no obvious conclusion as I was reading although I was willing certain things to happen somehow and they did, during the book I was wondering if Maddie would ever come to terms with her devastating news, would Jess ever find a man to treat her like a princess as she deserved and would Lauren ever believe in love again.
I loved this book, my first Lucy Diamond read and definitely not the last.  The book was well paced with lots going on switching between the characters lives, a feel good read which left me with a warm and fuzzy feeling at the end. 

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Popping the Cherry - Aurelia B Rowl - BLOG TOUR

It's time for a Release Day Blitz and Giveaway event, where corks aren't the only things being popped in celebration of Aurelia B. Rowl's newest release.

About the book...

Popping the Cherry

If you missed any of the exclusive teasers from the ten-day countdown, you can find them all here or by going to:


Buy it now...

Add to Goodreads
Mature Young Adult/New Adult fiction
Release date: 19 September 2013
Publisher: Carina (Harlequin UK)
ISBN: 978-1-472-01805-2

Nook UK (coming soon)
Kobo (coming soon)

About the author...

Aurelia B. Rowl lives on the edge of the Peak District with her very understanding husband, their two fantastic children, and their mad rescue mutt who doesn’t mind being used as a sounding post and source of inspiration. She regularly wows them all with her curious, hastily thrown together meals when she gets too caught up with her latest writing project... or five!... and she has developed the fine art of ignoring the housework.

Aurelia writes Young Adult/New Adult crossover fiction and contemporary romance. She is currently busy writing the standalone companion novels to both Popping the Cherry and Christmas is Cancelled.

To find out more about Aurelia, you can visit her website: or you can find her hanging out online, far too often, at the following:


To get the party started with a BANG, Aurelia B. Rowl has teamed up with several other Young Adult and New Adult authors to come up an awesome giveaway, with over twenty books in the Release Day Blitz prize kitty just waiting to be won.

For full details of the prizes, click here or go to:

Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Warrant for Love - Sheryl Browne - BLOG TOUR

The book blurb: Life for Paul sounds like your typical country song. He comes from a broken home, his wife is divorcing him, he's got no place to live, he's losing custody of his son, and his sergeant, who's sleeping with his wife, is a loud-mouthed braggart who won't let up on him – not even at work. Leanne's caught her (now) ex cheating on her again, but before she can give him the what-for, she's wrongfully arrested for soliciting – by Paul and his partner. One thing leads to another and things could be looking up for Paul, except for Leanne's friends – quarrelling mom Nicky and financial goddess Jade – have it out for her ex.  Leanne wants closure, Paul wants a home, and Nicky and Jade want revenge. Blackmail, lies, adultery, entrapment. Will it all work out in the end or will Paul uphold the law? It sounds like he needs a Warrant for Love.
My thoughts: Leanne is almost madly in love with Richard, she lent him enough money so he should be in love with her too- especially seeing as he uses her house like a hotel when he's actually in town and not busy off making deals somewhere!

Nicky, Leanne's sister and Steve have been married donkeys years and with 3 children life is hectic, Steve is always going off to see his ill mother, Nicky didn't even know she was ill!

Jade is a high flying career woman, who doesn't think she needs a man but Saun may change all that now.

Mike and Paul are the cops about town, Paul isn't in a good place, fighting for custody of his son James while his 'wife' sleeps with his 'DI' at the force. Currently sleeping in a bedsit, Paul and Leanne's lives unexpectedly cross- this may pave the way for the future.

There are lots of characters to get to grips with in this book, that didn't take long though and once I had the words flew off the page, the book is fast paced which I loved although this did mean I never wanted to put the book down!

A really enjoyable read, looking forward to reading some more of Sheryl's work.

To buy Warrant for Love:

About the author: Sheryl Browne grew up in Birmingham, UK, where she studied Art & Design. She wears many hats: a partner in her own business, a mother, and a foster parent to disabled dogs. Creative in spirit, Sheryl has always had a passion for writing. She has previously been published in the US and writes Rom Com because, as she puts it, "life is just too short to be miserable." Sheryl is a member of the Romantic Novelists' Association. For more information, connect with Sheryl Browne on Facebook ( or Twitter ( or visit her blog page at
About the tour: “En Garde! Safkhet Publishing and Sheryl Browne are going on tour and bringing you the entire Sheryl Browne romance collection! Follow the adventures of your Romantic Heroes and get your chance to win signed copies of all Sheryl’s books—Recipes for Disaster, Somebody to Love, Warrant for Love, A Little Bit of Madness, and Learning to Love.” The tour runs from 16th September until 27th September (excluding weekends) and promises to be a lot of fun!
As part of this tour Safkhet publishing is having a fantastic short story competition! The prizes are – Finalists will have their story published in an e-anthology and the winner will be offered a publishing contract. For full details go to where full terms and conditions can be found.
And there’s more! There will be reviews, author interviews and guest posts. Plus, if you’ve ever read any of Sheryl’s books in the past, then you are invited to post the link to your review to be in with a chance of winning a prize!
Now for the small print: This competition is not run in conjunction with Facebook and Facebook is not responsible for any competitions held on this page or for providing prizes. 
This is my first ever involvement in a blog tour, it's been so much fun, thanks so much to JB at Brook Cottage Books and Sheryl :-). x

Friday, 30 August 2013

The Longest Holiday - Paige Toon

Laura is totally in love with her husband of seven months Matthew, they are enjoying married life and are very much in love.  Laura's world comes crashing down when she discovers Matthew made a terrible mistake and has been hiding a huge secret.  A humiliated and devastated Laura is whisked off to Key West on holiday by her best friend Marty and travel writer Bridget for some fun, sun and cocktails.  When she arrives she doesn't want to be there but then finds there is an instant attraction with Leo, the sexy Cuban scuba diver.  But Laura is still married to Matthew and has fallen hard for Leo, at the end of the holiday Laura doesn't want to go home, should she face the music or does Key West have more in store for her? 

I really enjoyed this book, I felt I could relate to all of the characters, using Key West as the setting was great, the way the scenes were described really made everything come to life and almost put yourself there as well.  I warmed to Laura as a character and went through all of the emotions with her, I did need it spelling out that she was the Laura from Chasing Daisy though!  As the book went on I felt Bridget was more of a friend than Marty but by the end could see Marty only had Laura's welfare at the forefront of her mind.  As I was reading the book I had no idea how it would end which made for even more addictive reading.


Thursday, 29 August 2013

Perfect Strangers - Tasmina Perry

Sophie was once part of the Chelsea set with enough money to do as she liked and an apartment to die for. Once the money is no longer there Sophie is trying to make ends meet when she meets Lana- a glamorous socialite who is off to the South of France for the summer, Sophie agrees to house-sit at the Knightsbridge townhouse, it's just like a dream- a really good one.

Sophie delves into Lana's life and is swept off her feet by American businessman Nick Cooper at a glittering party and the two begin a passionate affair. But when Nick is found dead in his hotel suite Sophie becomes the prime suspect and realises her lover was not all he seemed. In order to clear her name she must trust a mysterious stranger and travel with him across the globe on a journey for answers, along the way these answers will change her life totally....

I loved this book- don't let the cover deceive you it's not all idyllic palm trees and sandy white beaches! The characters are well developed and the story twists, turns and intertwines throughout right until the very last chapter, which I loved and sucked me in completely I had to keep reading to see what was going to happen next. This was my first Tasmina Perry book and it won't be the last.


Wednesday, 28 August 2013

No Time for Goodbye - Linwood Barclay

As a 14 year old Cynthia went out with a boy, Vince and got drunk on a school night way past her curfew.  Her Dad came to find her and take her home, she was in trouble! The following morning the house was quiet- no sounds at all, maybe her Mum had given her brother a lift to school early and Dad had left for work already or was she being punished for the previous nights behaviour? Where was everyone? It becomes clear her family have disappeared.

Twenty-five years later Cynthia is married to Terry and has an eight year old daughter Grace who wants her own independence- walking to school alone being the first part of this, Cynthia will not allow it- what about the guy she keeps seeing around town or the brown car that keeps driving past them on the way to school. The mystery is no nearer to being solved and Cynthia is continually being haunted by unanswered questions. Were her family murdered? Abducted? If so, why was she spared? And if they're alive, why did they abandon her?

This is the first Linwood Barclay book I've read and is definitely not the last! I loved this modern thriller, it is written from the perspective of Cynthia's husband Terry, is fast paced and exciting. This is a suspense thriller so no gore which worked for me. The characters are really well developed and there is suspense right until the end- a great read.


Tuesday, 27 August 2013

The Loveliest Chocolate Shop in Paris- Jenny Colgan

Anna wakes up in hospital, missing 2 toes- she had an accident at work and subsequently is not going back again. She feels lost and like she is now missing a big part of who she is. The accident changed everything, Anna was thrown back in touch with her French teacher Claire who offered her the chance of a lifetime- to work in Paris with her former sweetheart Thierry, a master chocolatier.

Anna learns everything about chocolate in Paris- mixing, stirring and flavouring along with valuable life lessons courtesy of her eccentric flat mate Sami and Thierry's estranged son Laurent.

It took me a while to adjust to this book as it keeps going back to what happened when Claire and Thierry first met many years ago although once I had it was a thoroughly enjoyable read, I thought the ending was fairly predictable but who doesn't love a happy ending?  I liked the fact that Anna grew in confidence and as a character throughout the book learning she could still become the person she was meant to be. 


Monday, 26 August 2013

Chasing Daisy - Paige Toon

Daisy works as a 'bun tart' for an F1 racing team. When she isn't jetting from one country to another she is waiting on wealthy ladies who lunch in London. Will and Lucia drive for the team, Daisy is lusting after Will but will he really leave his girlfriend Laura for her? Lucia drives Daisy to distraction, nearly running her over at their first meeting- so why does she get butterflies every now and again around him?

Holly is Daisy's best friend and hiding something from her, but Daisy is also hiding something from her- family in NYC and £10million sitting in her bank account- but why?

I don't want to give the plot away so won't go into any more details of the actual story but I loved this book! Possibly because I have spent a lot of time at racing circuits in my youth with my Dad's job!  Daisy is a great character and everyone's lives intertwine- Daisy does a lot of soul searching, with the help of Holly adding in a couple of trips to visit Nonna (her Grandmother) in Italy for advice too.  I got a bit frustrated with Lucia and Daisy's relationship but I think that was the point!


Monday, 5 August 2013

Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop - Abby Clements

Imogen is loving life on the island of Koh Tao, Thailand with handsome American Luca and big sister Anna in Brighton is moving into her new flat with boyfriend Jon, both sisters enjoying life on different continents until they receive the devastating news their much loved Grandma Vivien has died.  Unexpectedly Anna and Imogen inherit their grandmother's ice cream parlour on the sea front in Brighton- first opened in the 1950's the parlour is a seafront institution with bags of retro charm but very few customers.  If the sisters can't turn things around their grandmother's legacy may disappear forever- especially if Aunt Francoise has her way. 

Anna flies off to Italy to educate herself in the craft of gelato production meeting handsome Matteo along the way and Imogen begins a marketing campaign to put them back on the map, making an enemy of local surf school owner Finn in the process.    Along the way Alfie, Jon's young son builds a lego house for Anna but a separate one for his Mummy and Daddy- does this mean what Anna thinks it means?  Will Imogen ever go back to Thailand and her first love of photography?  Will the sisters make a success of the family business and subsequently their beloved Grandma proud?  Or will the British summertime sour their plans?

I have had this book a while and the divine cover has been keeping me in suspense, willing me to start the book.  When I did I wasn't disappointed, the book is fast paced with both the sisters having completely different personalities and faults but they are unmistakeably joined by their sisterly bond.  I thoroughly enjoyed this book and read it in a few days, well written and full of twists and turns along the way- a great summer read.


Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Pictures of Lily - Paige Toon

At 16 Lily was uprooted from her life in England and flown half way round the world to Adelaide so her Mum could move in with her latest boyfriend Richard.  Adding in drop dead gorgeous 'half brother' Josh and handsome but 10 years older Ben, Lily's life was full of potential along with her summer job at the conservation park.  Lily learns she loves photography and animals- especially the koala's.  Fast forward ten years- Lily's Mum has left Richard and now lives in Bondi and Lily lives in Sydney. Lily's boyfriend of two years Richard has asked her to marry him, Lily says yes but all she can think of is her lost unrequited love from 10 years ago. Can Lily ever be truly happy with Richard, or will the past she can't stop thinking about present her with an opportunity she always hoped for. 

This is the first Paige Toon book I have read and it definitely won't be the last, I was hooked from the first few pages and just had to find out what happened.  The first third of the book takes you back 10 years to when Lily and her Mum first arrive in Adelaide, the relationships Lily develops that will impact on the rest of her life and how her heart is shattered when the man she loves turns and walks away. 

What I like about this book is how Paige's writing sucks you in but you have no idea where the story will go, old characters reappear years later and news ones are introduced but it is all very seamless and pertinent to the story. 

I cannot wait to read another of Paige Toon's books so watch this space, I'm sure I'll be reviewing another one soon. 


Sunday, 7 July 2013

Always on my Mind - Colette Caddle

Molly is blissfully in love with Declan, their wedding is only a few weeks away and being organised by older sister Laura, Molly's best friend Ellen is about to become a single mother and then Declan gets a fantastic new job but it takes him to Japan for weeks, meaning the wedding must be postponed.  This leaves Molly wondering if she does really want to marry Declan and as she is dropping him off at the airport she sees Luke, her childhood sweetheart.  Luke suddenly left the country when they were both eighteen, with Declan out of the country for weeks this gives Molly an opportunity to revisit her past, unsure of what her future will be. 

It took me a while to get through this book, to begin with it seemed things took a while to get going, but when they did it was an enjoyable read, there are many different angles to this story- why Molly's older sister Laura is the way she is, how a family can pull together when needed and probably my favourite is Molly's developing relationship with her niece and nephew Ash and Adam. 

I liked the way all the characters intertwined with each other along the way and how each showed their qualities at different times, I also found myself understanding the unbreakable bond between Molly and Luke but at different times rooting for him but then also Declan to win Molly's heart!

I felt the end was fairly predictable but it wasn't a dead cert until the very end- did Molly want to be with Declan, or did she want to be with Luke, or did either of them want to be with her? 


Sunday, 23 June 2013

Elly in Bloom - Colleen Oakes

Elly drove away from her old life one day after finding her husband in their bed with another woman.  She started a new life in St Louis- never going back, but the past had left an unmistakable impact on Elly, a broken past she could not let go of. 
Elly is a florist who owns her own floral wedding boutique- Posies, other main charachters include best friend Kim and employee Sarky Teenager.  When Elly is commissioned to decorate the wedding of the year she has no idea this will mean she finally has to confront her past, or what this would mean for her future.  Elly is not prepared for what she discovers about her ex husband Aaron, her new neighbour Isaac, the sandwich man next door Keith, or herself. 
Even though I read this book on my kindle I loved the cover- so clean, fresh and inviting.  Elly is instantly likeable if not a bit frustrating at times, Kim is a lovely charachter who I instantly warmed to.  Throughout the book the relationship develops unexectedly between Elly and Sarky Teenager, however I could detect her relationship with Isaac was never quite right.  I rushed some of the middle a bit as not a lot seemed to happen but I loved the ending, this book is a great read with the main charachters very well developed and a lovely sprinkling of other charachters- Sunny, Anthony, Keith and of course Cadbury Elly's faithful dog.  I love the way Colleen describes the floral and decorative aspects of the story- allowing me to build some great images in my mind.
The sequel Elly in Love is currently being written and I can't wait to read it.