Tuesday, 31 December 2019

Review: The One Who Got Away

The One Who Got Away The One Who Got Away by L.A. Detwiler
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I liked this book, but I didn’t love it.

There were too many things that although are fiction and I took it as that, may, in other readers make them concerned.

It’s set in an old people’s home. A place where staff are meant to look after them.
And if there’s several topics that can start upset and friction it’s politics, religion, children suffering or elderly folk,
And this hits one of them.

It’s difficult putting a parent into a nursing home, it’s usually the last resort. We see this in this book. Her daughter is struggling, so is she. But although she’s not happy to be put in this place she’s ‘trying’ to come to terms with this for her daughters sake.

She’s suffering from dementia. So her thoughts are in and out.

The thing is, the author leads us down a sinister path within the home itself.

There is a person/persons who are murdering the elderly. But they are dying any way.

Then to top this, the staff are suspect and abusive.

The writing itself was good. I followed it all well. And in any other situation this would have worked but this was set in a place that some readers are just going to feel uncomfortable with.

Those are my opinions and nothing against the author.

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Review: The Sight of You

The Sight of You The Sight of You by Holly Miller
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This great book isn’t out yet, but you need to preorder this for sure.

This isn’t a soppy romance or full of sex and lust, it’s a purely remarkable sad but uplifting tale in the entire meaning of love. Self sacrificing love at its upmost. And yes, it will most probably make you cry big tears yet also with a contented smile on your face.

This was so well written, I sure had a job to put this down at times so I could get on with other things that needed my attention, yet, I couldn’t wait to get back to my book.

That’s a good sign for me.

The start of the book the chapters seem long but they get shorter as you go and this picks up pace as it’s viewpoints and feelings from both main characters, I was turning the pages so fast.

I really recommend this one. I’m not a lover of “romance” this is in a different league.

Adored it

Thank you to Headlines secret reading group.

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Sunday, 29 December 2019

Some of the best of 2019

Some best books I read this year.

Not books that have specifically been released this year. It’s just books I’ve actually got around to reading too. 
As most know, I set myself a personal challenge this year, and that was to read books from my backlist. And that’s exactly what I named my shelf on Goodreads if anyone wants to pop over and check it out.

I didn’t jump on too many blog tours and concentrated more on my reading books I already have or own. I also unhauled a heap of books this year. I hosted a big box giveaway. And my daughter and myself visited some Free little Libraries to pass on some brilliant reads for others.

So here are just a few books I loved.


I recently read this. And it kept me on the edge for sure!


Another I thoroughly enjoyed. The publishers sent me an early copy which I so appreciated.


Another early copy. And another one I enjoyed. I went in blind with this and thoroughly loved it.


Oh my. This is a story that will stay with me.



Historical novel. This was sent to me by Allison & Busby. It ended up being one of my fav historical novels this year. Not that I’ve read a huge amount ๐Ÿ˜ณ


Well what can I say. The authors a genius 


YA. Quick read with plenty to digest.


Mixed reviews, but......I liked it๐Ÿ˜


Again, mixed reviews but I’m contrary and loved it๐Ÿคฃ


Not her best, but great ideas. I think it was because it was similar to another book I had just finished in the same vain.


Flippin’ loved this!


It’s not scary! It’s a great read about a father with his relationship with his little son who he is now the sole parent of. It’s sinister, but not scared and I LOVED  IT


Yep, one of my fav authors of all time. I love how she’s veering into thriller type stories.


The first book by this author blew me away.
This one dropped but just a little. Now I’m eagerly awaiting her next book.


A.....maxing!


Poignant and well worth your time and attention.


Gob smackingly FAB..u...lous!


I love this authors stories. God knows what goes into her head but I so love what she comes up with ๐Ÿ’“


I didn’t know what to expect from myself reading this. But OMG I need book 2


Who doesn’t like B A Paris books? Who hasn’t read her previous ones!
This just had me hooked


Loved, loved LOVED this
I need her next book!


Robert Scragg is one new author to me and this is his 3rd book in his series.
Yes I’ve read them all. I eagerly wait for each book he writes.


Lisa Stone (Cathy Glass) branched out into writing thrillers. And oh my goodness she does it so well.

As with all her “Cathy Glass” books I’m sure to be stockpiling her thrillers too on my book shelves.


This book BLEW ME AWAY. I never thought this book, this content, this story this debut would have become one of my TOP 10 in its genre. I was sent an ebook, I bought and now own a copy for my shelves. I feel like I want to read every book she writes from here on. 


This was A....stounding. I read it on ebook, again I now own a physical copy so that I can forever own it. Loved loved loved it! 


Another I could rave about!


Danielle Steele 
What can I say! This is a sinister type read from her and I ate it up!


I read this early part of the year 2019. And I still remember it 278 books later!


Read it! Crazily goid!


Another of my fav authors of all time. Another that kept me busy when I should have been attending to chores. But hey ho, I’m not complaining 

I hope you’ve read some fabulous books this year too!
These are just a few of my selection.
It was a very good high standard book year.

Review: Heartlands

Heartlands Heartlands by Kerry Watts
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I’m a bit late to the table with this one.

I liked this book, I didn’t love it, but I liked it.

I had to concentrate far too much for my liking with this one. It was told from dual timelines PLUS too many characters to keep account of. Sitting alone with no distractions and reading it from beginning to end I may have faired better alas, for most of us readers that cannot be the case as real life needs to be lived.

Then picking up the book again I found myself asking “ now where was I?” And rereading parts. For me, that’s never a good sign.

Very good story. But just not easy to read with all going on.

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Review: One Dark Night

One Dark Night One Dark Night by Tom Bale
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The first part of this book goes off at a fast pace keeping the reader glues to its pages.
The secound half lost its way. I struggled with my attention plan, allowing anything to give me a reason to just go off and see to this or that.....
Then struggling to pick it up again.

For me it ended up pure silky escapism in the later parts as some seemed pretty far fetched.

I enjoyed his other books much more.

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Saturday, 28 December 2019

Review: The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty

The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty The Claiming of Sleeping Beauty by A.N. Roquelaure
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This is a very disturbing read.

I thought, right! 2019 was my resolution to read some books from my backlist AND to read a couple of books out of my comfort zone.

I wish I hadn’t had read this!

I’m no prude. I’ve read erotica in the past but this was NOT erotica, this was sadistic and utterly appalling.

A retelling of Sleeping beauty......
WTF
She wasn’t woken with a kiss, oh no, she was raped as she woke. WTF was up with this author?!

Then he claims her as his sex slave. This crossed the line.

It wasn’t consented sex, it was demeaning and degrading to women. Unless you are some sort of fiend and sadistically warped individual.

Then.....
To “punish” certain ones, let’s cover them in sweet syrup, on their genitals.....
Have them get bitten by insects.

I am at a loss to even get into this authors mind......I DON’T WANT TO....

There’s sensual erotica.

Rape
Demeaning sexual acts performed on females
Sex slaving


Remember.......this is a retelling of sleeping beauty.

Well, go.......FY

I have never given such a review as this.

Smut is one thing
This is quite beyond sexual fantasy my dear author.



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Review: MINE

MINE MINE by Casey Kelleher
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


So.....who do you trust?
Do you trust me?!
Because this is the first book I’ve read by this author. I’ve been made aware it’s her first thriller. And I can only say..

Thrilling ✔️
Edge of seat ✔️
Couldn’t put it down✔️
Didn’t want to put it down✔️
Unpredictable ✔️
Twists✔️
Tight plot✔️

Rebecca has a past, Rebecca has secrets, Rebecca has reoccurring nightmares.

She’s become a wife.
She’s become a mom.

Jamie is her husband.

But Rebecca has changed. Her mental well-being is in question.

The character parts within these chapters are well rounded. The plot is tight. It keeps your brain ticking and at one stage I thought I’d sorted it all out.

Jobs a good ‘un.....I thought.

No, no, I was definitely wrong.

I started this book late afternoon on Boxing Day. I couldn’t wait for a chance to get back to read more today, I ended up finishing it. The time flew so fast as I was totally engrossed between the pages.

Would I read more thrillers from this author?

Try and stop me!



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Thursday, 26 December 2019

Review: Woman on the Edge

Woman on the Edge Woman on the Edge by Samantha M. Bailey
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A very captivating read.
This starts off in one full action plan BANG and doesn’t stop.

One new mother with a sad eventful past.
A secret known only to a few.

Is the mother going mad? Does she have PND? Is she paranoid? Or is she just tormented by her past.
Or....
Is it real.

She’s now left with her young baby and her husband leaves, he can no longer handle her “craziness”.

The event that happened has left another woman under suspect by police.

The way this is all written out takes you step by step through it all that makes the reader think.
Did she?
Didn’t she?
If she didn’t, then who in the heck did?

A babies life and happiness at stake leads the plot. Along with, why would this mother leave her daughter entrusted with a stranger. How did she know her name?

It was very interesting and got me quite hyped up in reading this, turning the pages eagerly to discover more.

It’s not perfect, but, the bits that didn’t work for me were minor. It kept its pace although at times I could have hurried it along. After saying that, the story was so intriguing that like I say, it was minor and only my own opinion.

I would definitely recommend it to my thriller book friends.

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Review: Springtime at Hope Hall

Springtime at Hope Hall Springtime at Hope Hall by Pam Rhodes
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was such a fabulous read.

I’ve never read a book by this author before so, when I got an opportunity to explore her first book of her new series I thought, why not! It would be a light read after several thrillers I’ve just finished.

This book holds so many characters and it all features around the Local Village Hall. We get to learn about the ones behind reception, those taking classes such as dance. Then there’s the Knit and Natter class, among several of weekly events going on.

Character.
That is what each of these people we meet have.
Character and personality, and a life.

There’s back stories to some of the older generations past life.

And as you’d expect from a small village, people get to know each other yes, but, they also have a chat about each other. You can understand how rumours get started.

There’s a touch of past romance.

There’s a “lighting of a fire” between two people who are feeling undervalued in their marriage. We get insight in how that was managed.

I loved the fun stories that literally had me bursting out laughing. Reading certain passages to my husband so laughed too. Some things were very comical.

We also get to feel emotions towards some sadness in people’s life.
A death.
A long standing marriage coming to an end.

I hope I’ve whet you’re appetite to explore this book that is released in February 2020 as it’s like a “nosy” into people’s houses.

I’m really looking forward to whenever book 2 is released.



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Friday, 20 December 2019

Review: A Window Breaks

A Window Breaks A Window Breaks by C.M. Ewan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

A very good introduction on the blurb to get the interest and excitement juices flowing for us readers.
It got me.

And the writing was easy to follow as were the main characters.

However, as lots of other reviews show it as exciting, like being on a rollercoaster, tense and eagerly flicking pages, yes! Yes indeed, I was like that.....I needed to find out about their son who died.
I needed to find out Rachel’s (what appeared to be a secret from her husband, or was it plain grief?)

I needed to find out a lot of things and why their marriage was fragile.

But it came to the just over the halfway section when all I found hooking me was the bits leading up to their sons death. Along with his girlfriend, Fiona.
What happened to them?
There were sections in the book appertaining to the lead up of the death.

Everything else, the cat and mouse around the lodge they were at was really getting on my nerves if I’m honest.

Husband, wife and their daughter being there at Lionels place all secluded off was supposed to be a retreat for the family which ended up with them going around in circles trying to escape from these two sinister men in white coverups.

It was written in a brilliantly detailed way, but after a while I was getting more exhausted than the characters being chased!

I can fully understand it, but it just got tedious for me. All I wanted to know by that time, what was going on.

I think personally there were some pages that just needed condensing.

It doesn’t put me off recommending this book though, I’m sure lots I know will love and adore it.

I did like it, it was just that the “race for the truth” took to long while the family members were being chased. Some of it was way drawn out and unbelievable.

Enough said I think.

My 3*
Because the first half was breathtaking
The continuation of the throw back to their sons and his girlfriends death kept me turning pages.
It was fast flowing.

2* knocked off because the chase was too long drawn out.
Some of the ongoing conversation was nutty under the stressful situation they were under so I raised my eyes to the ceiling on more than one occasion.

The ending was mad.

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Monday, 16 December 2019

Review: Festive Spirits: Three Christmas Stories

Festive Spirits: Three Christmas Stories Festive Spirits: Three Christmas Stories by Kate Atkinson
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I have been reading a short story each day.

It says it has 80 pages when in fact it’s 68. The rest are taken up advertising her other books.

Lots love Kate Atkinson's books. I thought I’d try with her small festive collection.
I can see why her books are loved by many. Her writing in well presented and flows really well for us readers.

The first story.

แ’ชแ‘Œแ‘•Y’แ”• แ—ชแ—ฉY

This was a great little story about Lucy and her “motherhood”. Food for thought.

I loved a quote from Lucy in this story.
Lucy had met her husband Stephen and fell for him right away.

“He would have made a good politician-he had good teeth, and hair, and lied easily”
I loved that about Lucy. Her observations, beliefs and honesty.

2*

Story 2

แ–ดEแ”•TIแฏE แ”•แ‘ญIแ–‡IT

I liked this one much better.
It’s a bit of a longer tale with a funny quirk at the end.

3.75*

Story 3

แ”•แ—ฐแ—ฉแ’ชแ’ช แ—ฐEแ–‡แ‘•IEแ”•

I liked this one much better. It was short but held my attention much better.
A man and his dog, and his Mother!


All these are obviously based around some sort of festive theme. A good introduction to this authors work and (I imagine) her quirky sense of humour.


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Review: Big Lies in a Small Town

Big Lies in a Small Town Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain
My rating: 4 of 5 stars



Yep, yep, yep, yeppers.

This authors books I’ve been reading like......forever.

I’m so intrigued with this plot. I’ve read books that peel away layers and layers revealing things slowly like an onion, but to see a painting being restored and cleaned and revelations being revealed, I was glued.

As most (if not all) Diane Chamberlain’s fans know, she’s a talent to be reckoned with as she can take a reader into her story and we don’t come out to breath until the final page has been read. That’s how I felt about this book.

It’s suspense.
It’s a mystery.
It’s a great plot with fabulous characters, lovely ones to the grumpy stressed ones.
You will be in tune with them all, each for different reasons.

There’s even romance......finally.

The title says it all.

Big Lies In A Small Town.

๐€๐ง๐ ๐ฐ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐ก๐ข๐๐๐ž๐ง ๐ญ๐ก๐ข๐ง๐ ๐ฌ ๐ญ๐ก๐ž๐ฒ ๐ฐ๐ž๐ซ๐ž ๐ญ๐ก๐š๐ญ ๐œ๐š๐ฆ๐ž ๐ญ๐จ ๐ฅ๐ข๐ ๐ก๐ญ!

The ending was just ๐ฉ๐ฎ๐ซ๐ž ๐ ๐จ๐ฅ๐.

I just loved it.


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Review: Sentimental Journey: A Christmas at Ruby's Place

Sentimental Journey: A Christmas at Ruby's Place Sentimental Journey: A Christmas at Ruby's Place by Holly Schindler
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a really interesting idea moving between the times of people past and present.

We all would love to bring back back at least one of our loved ones wouldn’t we? To gather, to chat, to live again.

I’ve not read previous books in this series. I did feel I would have benefited if I did but, it does work as a stand-alone Christmas tale.

Friendship, loss, and dosed and peppered with happiness in plenty of places.

A magical read.

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Sunday, 8 December 2019

Review: Trust Me

Trust Me Trust Me by Gemma Metcalfe
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Snappy chapters.
Unique plot.
Holds your attention (it did mine)
Compulsive reading.

I was well invested in this story.



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Review: Exhibit Alexandra

Exhibit Alexandra Exhibit Alexandra by Natasha Bell
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I read this in one sitting.
Not because I was smitten with it, but because I hate giving up, so if I put it down I just knew I’d not pick it up again!

The first half of the book was slow, tedious and like walking in thick goey glue. It stuck to my feet making it harder to plough on, but......
There is also some worthy bits in this book that kept me going. So there must have been ‘something’ that kept me hanging on.

This book I read as part of my Backlist challenge. I’ve not looked if she has another book out. I’d like to give her one more try.

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Review: Baby Lies

Baby Lies Baby Lies by Chris Collett
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was first published as Blood Lies.

Again I’ve jumped into a series that I hadn’t realised .

But this is a new case although I may have missed out on the establishment of the main characters and what went before.

It’s a decent plot. Child missing, been abducted, and I’ve read far too many of these so I may not have been the right audience at this moment in time. But on its merits of excitement it’s high up there. Writing, yes this author knows how to capture the reader.

Very well done.

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Saturday, 7 December 2019

Review: The Girl from Kingsland Market

The Girl from Kingsland Market The Girl from Kingsland Market by June Tate
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I was so sad to hear of June Tate’s passing. I have read all of her books to date, although they’ve not been marked or reviewed on Goodreads as this was way before I became a reader/reviewer/blogger.

I’m so sad that this ends the final chapters of her great talent in telling stories. She was so good in the realism of characters, bringing them to life and totally bringing out the best in them, and the worse.
This is shown in this book too. We have many characters taking centre stage and giving the reading a lot to get their teeth into.

Never judge a book by its cover because this holds some very dark things in here.
Family drama, life history, and days when people cared, when doors could be left unlocked.
When friends were truly friends.

But when villains thought they were above the law. When Police where on the streets.

A remarkable story that truly kept my interest and never faltered.



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Friday, 6 December 2019

The Boy with Blue Trousers by Carol Jones.

The Boy with Blue Trousers by Carol Jones. 


About the book

On the goldfields of 19th-century Australia, two very different girls are trying to escape their past.

1856, China.
In the mulberry groves of the Pearl River Delta, eighteen-year-old Little Cat carries a terrible secret. And so, in disguise as a boy in blue trousers, she makes the long and difficult passage to Australia, a faraway land of untold riches where it is said the rivers run with gold.

1857, Australia.
Violet Hartley has arrived off the boat from England, fleeing scandal back home. Like the Chinese immigrants seeking their fortunes on the goldfields, Violet is seduced by the promise of a new frontier. Then she meets Little Cat, a woman who, like her, is trying to escape her past.

As their fates inextricably, devastatingly entwine, their story becomes one of freedom, violence, love and vengeance, echoing across the landscapes of two great continents

My












Review

 This is such a pretty book. I adore the cover.
The writing inside is exquisite and alluring so much so it becomes addictive after a while. In a good way.

It’s a very complex read with cultural class interwoven. 

Two women who are fleeing.

Difficulty 
Needing to flee their homeland
Passage to Australia 
Secrets

But neither women know each other.....
Yet.

Little Cat is not a girly girl and knows Kung fu moves from her twin brother.
But in her culture it doesn’t fit, it’s not apt.

Women are women and men are men
Women do women’s jobs
Men do men’s jobs.

But fate and circumstances change to danger.

The cultural differences, the almost poetic writing was enthralling.

It’s not my usual type of read but I have to say I really enjoyed you.





Wednesday, 4 December 2019

Review: Try Not to Breathe

Try Not to Breathe Try Not to Breathe by Holly Seddon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is so hard to believe this was this authors first debut psychological thriller. It matches any top authors who write in this genre.

This was so astounding I kept reading or listening throughout the day. I was totally hooked throughout.

The story and plot thickens with each chapter you read. Characters are so well developed you get to know them almost instantly.

There’s a lot of reviews going into parts of this story I’ll only be repeating them so I’ve chosen to say how this made me feel instead.

Hooked
Emotionally and physically connected.
Exciting
Eager to turn pages

Sad when it was finished, because I loved it so much.

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Review: The Swimming Pool

The Swimming Pool The Swimming Pool by Louise Candlish
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This authors works are well loved by me.

But to read this book from my backlist challenge I thought I’d listen to it on audio.

Oh my. That was the worst mistake I made. The narrator got on my nerves and her voice grated in the end. The pitch, power was so mundane I got bored.

I managed until halfway. Then when home I picked up the book. It was better to read it myself but by that time my interest had waned somewhat.

So 3* from me. Which does disappoint me.

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