Sunday, 29 April 2018

I will warm him

I Will Warm HimI Will Warm Him by Julius DeAngelus
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is a short story, a very short story.
7 pages.
More pages are used in a letter....right?

I have read short stories that pulled a punch but with this one?
It’s left me confused and scratching my head

View all my reviews

Tuesday, 24 April 2018

Beautiful Liars by Isabel Ashdown

Beautiful Liars by 








Eighteen years ago Martha said goodbye to best friend Juliet on a moonlit London towpath.
The next morning Juliet's bike was found abandoned at the waterside.
She was never seen again.

Nearly two decades later Martha is a TV celebrity, preparing to host a new crime show... and the first case will be that of missing student Juliet Sherman. After all these years Martha must reach out to old friends and try to piece together the final moments of Juliet's life.
But what happens when your perfect friends turn out to be perfect strangers...?


The first couple of chapters were laying the ground work which was going to end up into a fab read at the end. I know that now, but at the time I was really having to concentrate on what I was reading, so don't get interrupted when you first start to read this, it really is an amazing plot.

We have lie, we have deception and most of all we have secrets.

Based around three main characters, all different but all friends. Each come from a different background. 

Each person tells their stories in alternating chapters some of the past, the now and the present. 

Then another character who steals the show. 

Its such a wonderful plot that I loath to give anything away, the twists in this is so awesome you won't guess. 

I warmed to each character in their own right because each experience was unique. 

A young girl going missing. 
A devoted husband who was seen to be to blame. 

This is definitely going into my top 2018 shelf. 

Highly recommended




"Tender and subtle ... Ashdown tiptoes carefully through explosive family secrets" - Observer Best Books of the Year

Isabel Ashdown was born in London and grew up on the Sussex coast. She is currently a Royal Literary Fund Fellow at the University of Chichester, and along with Leonard the dachshund, a regular Read2Dogs volunteer for the charity Pets as Therapy.

In its first three weeks, LITTLE SISTER reached #4 in Amazon UK's Hot New Crime, Thrillers & Mystery Releases. Isabel's 2018 thriller BEAUTIFUL LIARS is now available for pre-order (Orion/Trapeze).




Lucy Dawson - White Lies

Lucy Dawson - White Lies











White Lies by Lucy Dawson




Alexandra Inglis is a respected family doctor, trusted by her patients to keep their most intimate secrets. And if sometimes the boundaries between duty and desire blur… well, she’s only human.

But when Alex oversteps a line with Jonathan, one of her patients, she knows she's gone too far. Jonathan is obsessive, and to get what he wants he will tear Alex's world apart - threatening not only her career but her marriage and family too. 

Soon Alex finds she's capable of doing almost anything to keep hold of her perfect life, as it begins to spin dangerously out of her control…

A darkly gripping domestic drama of secrets and lies, from the bestselling author of The Daughter. Perfect for fans of Big Little Lies, Louise Jensen and The Couple Next Door.


Oh my giddy aunt!
This is a book that will keep you up all night. I'm being serious, once you break this book in, you will not, I repeat not be able to rest until you read right to the vital end. 

Its a she said, but did she.
Its a he said, but did he.

Its a maybe.....
its someone else.

Alexandra Inglis is a respected doctor within her practice and for all that know her. 
There are ethic and boundaries that have to be in place and each doctor to abide by. 

But then there is Johnathan and 18 year old diabetic lad. 

I was astounded at this story, not for its content so much as for the great style it was written that kept me on my toes spinning around and around and not knowing just where I was to focus, the author sure had me dizzy. 

I could write a heap of things and I want to give it all away......
but I won't, I need you to read this, its truly a great read, a breathless read. 

I was pushed, I was prodded I was sure it was........
I think I suspected everyone who was ever mentioned in this book. 

By the time I got to the end I had narrowed it down. Was I right? Hmm not 100% 








About me by Lucy Dawson: 

I’ve been writing psychological suspense novels since 2008, when my first bestseller – His Other Lover – was published. I write full time (mostly on the playroom sofa) from my home in Devon, where I live with my husband and children. Before that, I used to interview the likes of Steps and SClub7 for a living, making absolutely no use whatsoever of my psychology degree from Warwick University, but it was a lot of fun. 

I'm addicted to writing about the extraordinary things that can happen to ordinary people - I like stories that jump in at the deep end, with a gasp. When readers take the time out to let me know they've stayed up all night because they couldn't put the book down, it makes my day. 

I really enjoy catching up with readers and always reply to emails. You can reach me at lucy@lucydawsonbooks.com. I’m also on Twitter @lucydawsonbooks and have a Facebook page at lucydawsonbooks. Alternatively you can download a free short story of mine at www.lucydawsonbooks.com or if you want to look at a lot of pictures of the beach and books that I'm reading, find me on Instagram at lucydawsonbooks.

Sunday, 22 April 2018

What falls between the cracks

What Falls Between the CracksWhat Falls Between the Cracks by Robert Scragg
My rating: 4 of 5 stars


Here we are. A debut novel. I love debuts.
When a first book is as good as this you wonder how can they excel themselves in the next book they write.
But you know what? I really think this new author has found his niche in life. I read his bio just a minute ago and thought.....
You should have done this writing lark much sooner.

I’m not always into police investigations as some can bore me while others work the opposite and I feel part of the team.
I very much felt part of the team in this one.

DI Jake Porter and his sidekick Detective Sergeant Nick Styles are a fab duo. Not only do they do a good and thorough job but the wise remarks to each other sometimes made me chuckle.

We have a Maintenance man investigating a leak from an appartment only to discover a hand in the freezer with a finger missing.

An apartment that doesn’t look like it’s been lived in for years and everything is outdated.

They find out who should be living there.


Investigations start.

This is where it got interesting even further. When they hunt down her family there are some who don’t want to speak to the police.
So now you know something is amiss.

When Natasha Barkley whose flat it is has been missing for such a long time, why hasn’t anyone reported it?
She seems to have taken off around the same time her father committed suicide.


There is a lot more than meets the eye here.
The deeper you dig the more the soil clumps and it becomes a mass of uncovering what is below the surface.

This is book 1 the start of a series.

I, for one, can’t wait for book 2.

My thanks to the publishers for my copy AllisonandBusby.

View all my reviews

SNAP

SnapSnap by Belinda Bauer
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A fast paced, thought provoking and sometimes emotive read.
It truly keeps that grey matter ticking for clues and answers.

Jack and his two sisters are left in the car awaiting they’re Mothers return while she goes to find a phone.
The last thing she says to the older child Jack “ I won’t be long, you’re in charge”
But they waited
And waited
And waited.

So jack decides along with his younger sister to pick up the youngest child and go find their Mom.

Jack ends up catering and becoming a Carer of his young siblings the only way he learns how to since his dad couldn’t hack things and went.

He gets on the wrong side of the law but quite by default he’s in remission.

His aim now he’s a bit older is to find out what happened to his Mom.

We have the new neighbour next door making an appearance. I loved how I didn’t like her, then I did.
No one is ever what they seem.

Quite a few things stood out. The most for me was the knives. The coding.
I really enjoyed working on that with the a Investigation I truly felt a part of it.

There is so much more I can say about this book and it’s plot or plots. It would spoil it.

So I’m stopping where it’s safe.

Have been on a roll with books this year. Quite a few are already in my Top Reads shelf ready to sort out at the end of the year. At this rate it’s going to be an impossible task.
Thank you Random House for my copy via Net Galley


View all my reviews

Tapestry of War blog tour

Allison & Busby – Press Release




Tapestry of War by Jane MacKenzie
Amidst the horrors of the Second World War, love and friendship bring two strangers together across conflict-ravaged continents
In Alexandria, Fran finds her life turned upside down as Rommel’s forces advance on the idyllic shores of Egypt. In place of the luxury and stability that she is used to, she finds herself having to deal with loss, heartache and political uncertainty.
Meanwhile, on the Firth of Clyde, Catriona works day in, day out nursing injured servicemen. As the war rages on, the two women’s lives become entwined – bringing love and friendship to both.
A perfect read for fans of Victoria Hislop and Santa Montefiore
£12.99 TRADE PAPERBACK WITH FLAPS 19th APRIL 2018 ISBN: 9780749022990




Jane MacKenzie has spent much of her adult life travelling the world, teaching English and French everywhere from the Gambia to Papua New Guinea to Bahrain, and recently working for two years at CERN in Geneva. She now splits her time between her self-built house in Collioure, France, and the Highlands of Scotland, where she has made her family home. She is the author of the best-selling Daughters of Catalonia.



Women are the stronger sex, isn't that what we hear? This is definitely so many times over. Especially the war or pre war times when they had to take on all sorts of tasks including men's jobs.

The opening chapter slowly drew me in.

"It was just after dawn when Fran saw the body. She had set out from home in the pitch black as soon as she heard the all clear sounded."

She discovered this man was bleeding out a lot. She did the only thing she could and used clothing to pull the wound tight. 

Fran had to overcome a lot during world war two. 

Fran is a journalist and shes used to covering stories, but during these times people come into her life making an impact. 

There is death, misery and despair, but this is also strength that shines through.

We also meet Catriona lives in Scotland who is fighting the war around her. She has her career, a rehabilitation nurse, but alongside that she has a Father, a lonely Father who wants no more than for her to stay at home and keep him company, how is she to juggle both?

These a characters that the author breathes life into and the reader soon becomes part of. 

I enjoyed the sincerity within these pages, the way that life and the people came across throughout such a tragic time. Things I can't even imagine. 

If you love historical fiction you will love this

Jane MacKenzie has lived an exceptionally adventurous life, working in such far-flung corners of the world as the Gambia, Bahrain, and Papua New Guinea, and Switzerland and France nearer to home. 

She is as much at home teaching in an African village as organising the research budgets of Nobel scientists, and is a natural linguist, picking up languages wherever she has lived, to complement the fluent French from her first degree in French Language and Literature. 

She is an entrepreneur, an international expert in education, and latterly helped transform the UK Government’s Office at CERN in Geneva during two years as its Head. In her fifties Jane turned to writing novels, for a new challenge, and to fulfil a long-held dream.

Jane splits her time now between her homes in the Scottish Highlands, and in her beloved Catalan village in France, the region where her three novels have been set.

Jane is widowed with grown up children
janemackenzie.co.uk @JaneFMackenzie
The author is available for interview.

• Inspired by the author’s family: during WWII, her father-in-law disguised himself to rescue Allied servicemen in the Greek islands, and met his future wife in Alexandria.
• Jane lives in the Scottish Highlands, and captures the spirit of the area in the book.

Saturday, 21 April 2018

The Things We Need To Say

The Things We Need to Say: An emotional, uplifting story of grief and hope from bestselling author Rachel BurtonThe Things We Need to Say: An emotional, uplifting story of grief and hope from bestselling author Rachel Burton by Rachel Burton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars



This has everything that you don't need in a marriage.
Affairs, lies, infertility, lack of honesty and being open about your thoughts and feelings and sharing them.

I felt so bad for the pair of them.
They were such a great couple, then the not being able to have a child curled herself into a ball, loosing her Mother was also in the mix.
Its very hard to judge another for withdrawing as we all deal with trauma and hardship in different ways and not necessarily with the one you should be communicating with.

I could understand Will wandering for attention on the night they both argued., not saying I condone it, but I understand why it happened.

When Fran finds out about the fling he had she is more than devastated.

She had a Yoga retreat planned so she headed off without looking back.
Us the reader are left wondering if she will return and so is Will.

The story is told in both viewpoints and also goes back in time, you get the whole big picture of their relationship.

So well written, so sensitively put and with the most basic of emotional behaviour raw and open wide for all to see and judge.

I loved it.,

View all my reviews
The Things We Need to Say: An emotional, uplifting story of grief and hope from bestselling author Rachel BurtonThe Things We Need to Say: An emotional, uplifting story of grief and hope from bestselling author Rachel Burton by Rachel Burton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars



This has everything that you don't need in a marriage.
Affairs, lies, infertility, lack of honesty and being open about your thoughts and feelings and sharing them.

I felt so bad for the pair of them.
They were such a great couple, then the not being able to have a child curled herself into a ball, loosing her Mother was also in the mix.
Its very hard to judge another for withdrawing as we all deal with trauma and hardship in different ways and not necessarily with the one you should be communicating with.

I could understand Will wandering for attention on the night they both argued., not saying I condone it, but I understand why it happened.

When Fran finds out about the fling he had she is more than devastated.

She had a Yoga retreat planned so she headed off without looking back.
Us the reader are left wondering if she will return and so is Will.

The story is told in both viewpoints and also goes back in time, you get the whole big picture of their relationship.

So well written, so sensitively put and with the most basic of emotional behaviour raw and

REVIEW POLICY

REVIEW POLICY


My review policy is quite simple

ONLY contact me if you have looked through my blog and my account on Goodreads to see what kind of books I read or will consider.

I will need:

1. A description of your book, what its basically about.

2. How many pages

3. The timeline you need me to read it by


I WILL NOT REPLY IF:

You try to send me a book that you can see its a genre I NEVER read [for example : fantasy or sci i]


I AM NOT BEING RUDE, just clarifying that its a waste of your'e precious time and mine as I have heaps of emails everyday to go through. 

PLEASE REMEMBER the email that I am using to connect you to me from this blog is not my private one so I don't access it each day., 
Be patient. 








I have been blogging and reviewing for Indie authors as well as Published authors and publishing houses for over 7 years so I'll let you know my ratings.



1. Star .................rarely happen as I choose books I think I like the sound of.

2. Star........................This rarely happens also. But if I do, it means, I THOUGHT IT MIDDLE OF THE ROAD, NOTHING THAT STANDS OUT
But might appeal to others



3. Star.................I REALLY loved this book. It held its own in this genre, great things I loved and highly recommended. Will be reading more from this author


4. Star..............I COULDN'T LEAVE THIS BOOK ALONE I was singing its contents and begging everyone to buy it!


THOSE ARE MY GENERAL IDEAS around my star markings. 



CONTACT

ReadalongwithSue[at]gmail.com
A Monster CallsA Monster Calls by Patrick Ness
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


I promised myself that I would not take on so much this year and make time for books that I haven't read over the past couple of years that had sunk to the bottom of my TBR list and this was one of them.

My husband watched the movie and he isn't ashamed to say that he shed a tear.

I read the book then followed it up by watching the movie and I have to say that each is good.

This is one of the statements that stood out for me

"There is not always a good guy. Nor is there always a bad one. Most people are somewhere in between.”

Isn't that the truth when we stop and think, people react to circumstances and it brought home to me that little Connor whose mum was dying from cancer had all that anger inside him, also he was sectioned out by this bully at school which didn't help.

He over powered the lad eventually
No punishment

He wrecked one of his Grandmothers rooms
No punishment

Do you know why?
You need to watch this film or better still read the book if you haven't done so [which I am sure you have already and I'm the only one behind]

The 'monster' for me was a fantastic story teller and the consequences from these stories plus Connor revealing his nightmare brought home a significant lesson to me even at my old age. They say, you are never too old to learn, that is so true and sometimes from the least expected places.

I loved the actor who took on the monsters voice in the film, creepy.
And the child who played Connor was such a great little actor in the making.

The writing from this author is always secound to none and always an enjoyable read with great morals behind them if you look.

So happy that I have got to read and watch A Monster Calls at last

View all my reviews

Tuesday, 17 April 2018

THE MAID ROOM by FIONA MITCHELL

THE MAID ROOM by FIONA MITCHELL





Set in the blistering heat of Singapore, The Maid's Room follows the lives of two Filipina maids - sisters Dolly and Tala who are working hard to send money back home, and British ex-pat Jules who has left her job as a midwife to move to Singapore with husband David.

Told with humour, heart-breaking detail about daily life as a maid, and with an exhilarating spirit that is ultimately uplifting, this book will resonate with anyone who has struggled to have their voice heard.

Perfect for fans of The Help and The Invention of Wings




I really don’t know what to say that hasn’t been said in other reviews.

This is an outstanding piece of work that although written in fiction format should go down into history for its factual honesty and bringing this to the attention of many people.

I for one didn’t realise this still existed, I feel like an ostrich whose had her head buried in the sand.

I am aware that people come to my country and work sending the majority of their earning back to their families.

These are two women with children of their own working in Singapore so that they can send money back to their families so that their children can have a better life, better education and obviously don’t end up where they are; Maids in a Maids room in another country.

Except the Maids Rooms are not luxurious oh no, they are tiny cupboards where they are made to sleep or bunkers, even an uncomfortable sofa in the corner away somewhere. Not room to swing a cat or keep anything except they’re essentials.

“She shuts the door of the windowless box and struggles to breath in the hot scarce air”

I felt claustrophobic just reading that.

There was such a shocking moment written in this book it made me gasp out load.
So much so my husband thought I was in pain. I was, but for reasons within these pages not an actual hurt on my person but on this Maids.

It tells both sides of a story the wealthy side too which made for extra diamonds of a read.

The impact of this book will be forever lasting.

The blogger who tells the secrets is astounding. That part I eagerly came too.

Not an actual quote but it sort of went like this “ if you see a glimmer of a shinning light this could be you are being spied on by your employer”

Oh my.
This surely kicks you into life.

It does have humour within the pages too that lighten it somewhat.

My thanks to Hodder & Stoughton who sent me a copy through the post.




Fiona Mitchell is an award-winning writer and has worked as a journalist for many years. She spent almost three years living in Singapore and now lives in London with her husband and daughter. The Maid's Room is her first novel.

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GoodReads https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/14683804.Fiona_Mitchell