Thursday 24 September 2015

Review of A Parcel for Anna Browne by Miranda Dickinson - Five *


The gift of a lifetime?

Anna Browne is an ordinary woman living an ordinary life. Her day job as a receptionist in bustling London isn't exactly her dream, yet she has everything she wants. But someone thinks Anna Browne deserves more . . .

When a parcel addressed to Anna Browne arrives, she has no idea who has sent it. Inside she finds a beautiful gift - one that is designed to be seen. And so begins a series of incredible deliveries, each one bringing Anna further out of the shadows and encouraging her to become the woman she was destined to be. As Anna grows in confidence, others begin to notice her - and her life starts to change.

But who is sending the mysterious gifts, and why?


If you want to read something a bit different - this is the book for you. It has a very unusual storyline set in the cut-throat world of modern newspapers.

Anna is a receptionist and starts to receive parcels from an unknown source, The contents make her feel great and this in turn affects how she behaves and interacts with others.

There are 2 men in her life and we are kept guessing until the end how she will go. One is a very hot newspaper hack and the other is her friend who lives in her block of flats.

The identity of the mysterious sender is the theme throughout the book and it keeps you hooked trying to work out who it could be.

And you'll get no help from me. I'm not even saying if you'll find out or not! Suffice to say I thought Miranda wrote a wonderful, romantic book with a great mystery in it!!

Monday 21 September 2015

Review of The Changing Room by Jane Turley - Five *


"Today, I am in the changing room of my life and tomorrow, win or lose, I'll move forward a stronger and wiser woman." 

Sandy Lovett's confused mother and chaotic life are having an effect on her waistline. She knows she needs to change her life but doesn't know how until she buys a risqué dress which sets in motion a sequence of life-changing events. 

After years as a mother, carer and full-time employee, Sandy quits her job and places her mother in a care home, and life seems on the up. But disaster is never far away for the hapless Sandy as her mother’s obsessions continue to wreak havoc and her husband’s business begins to fail. Short of cash and needing a flexible job, Sandy joins a sex-chat service. At The Beaver Club Sandy discovers a talent for selling telephone sex - a skill she later regrets when she meets unscrupulous local politician and prospective MP, Trewin Thackeray. 

The Changing Room is a comedy-drama for all those whose glass is half-full. Preferably with gin and a big fat cherry.


I don't think I've ever read a book that has made me laugh and cry so much! Sandy and her family and friends are the funniest people . 

Jane takes difficult subjects - Alzheimer's and cancer - and treats them respectfully but with a ton of humour! She is the master of the throwaway line. I also loved the way she finishes paragraphs and chapters with one of those throwaway lines, leaving the actual description of the situation to the reader's imagination. 

I so hope we will follow Sandy in another book, Jane seems to have opened another door and I hope any sequel is treated just as irreverently!

I received an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon UK: The Changing Room
Amazon US: The Changing Room

Saturday 19 September 2015

Review of  Survivor by Marissa Farrar - Four * (To be published 24/09/15)


Broke and fallen from grace after her billionaire father is convicted of embezzlement, ‘It Girl’, Charlie Charleston has little choice but to accept the offer her agent makes for her to appear in the reality television show, Celebrity Survivor. 

The thought of being stranded in the middle of nowhere without so much as a scrap of makeup, and all for the general public’s entertainment, scares the life out of her. Charlie hasn’t even so much as been camping before, never mind existed without any creature comforts, and with food she has to catch and kill herself. 

Upon being introduced to ex-marine and survival expert Tyler Janson, the man who will be guiding her through all matters to do with surviving in the wild, she wonders if things might have started looking up. 

The problem is Tyler seems to think she’s about as pointless as a pedicure, and nothing she does gets his attention. 

But when their plane goes down in the middle of nowhere, something Charlie is sure is a set-up by the producers of the show, she is determined to show Tyler Janson exactly what she’s made of. 


This is an amazing book! I started it yesterday, had to force myself to put it down last night, and finished it today!

It is a totally addictive read. Celebrity Charlie enters a reality TV show where she has to survive on a desert island surrounded by hidden cameras. She has a survival expert with her to help her - the very hot Tyler!

But the plans go awry in a very dramatic way and Charlie and Tyler find themselves alone on a deserted island. Charlie refuses to believe it isn't the planned island and we are left to draw our own conclusions for a few chapters. I actually felt thirsty reading about their dehydration and search for water!

The book follows their time on the island as they change and their attraction to each other becomes stronger. I loved the arguments, followed by the making up - very realistic.

The stress of their situation is treated sensibly and had my attention the whole time. No skimming paragraphs in this book!

Thank you to the author and THE Book Club on Facebook for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon UK: Survivor
Amazon US: Survivor

Publication date: 24th September 2015

Special Price if ordered now: 99p/99c :)

Friday 18 September 2015

Exclusive (sort of!) Cover Reveal of Trisha Ashley's A Christmas Cracker!!

Gorgeous cover!!

A Christmas Cracker from Best Selling Author Trisha Ashley

The queen of Christmas Trisha Ashley is back this festive season summer with her eagerly anticipated new novel, A Christmas Cracker.

Releasing just in time of the yuletide season on 22 October on Kindle and in hardback by Avon, A Christmas Cracker is a heart-warming, funny and simply gorgeous Christmas read.

This Christmas is about to go off with a bang!

Things can’t possibly get worse for Tabby. Framed for her boss’s dodgy dealings, she’s landed an eight month prison sentence. Then Tabby’s boyfriend dumps her and gives her cat away to a shelter.

But rescue comes in the form of Mercy. A master of saving waifs and strays and impressed with Tabby’s creativity, Mercy wants her to breathe new flair into her ailing cracker business. Together with a staff of quirky ex-cons, they’ll save Marwood’s Magical Christmas Crackers.

But someone’s not happy. Mercy’s nephew Randal wants to turn the mill into a shopping outlet and he thinks Tabby’s a fraudster. Stubborn, difficult and very attractive, suddenly Tabby’s future depends upon winning the brooding nephew round. Standing under the mistletoe, Tabby’s Christmas is set to be one that she will never forget . . .

Amazon UK: A Christmas Cracker
Amazon US: A Christmas Cracker

The review will follow as soon as I can lay my paws on a copy!!

Thursday 17 September 2015

Review of A Summer Breeze by Colette Caddle - Four *


She's made mistakes, but doesn't everyone deserve a second chance? The magical new bestseller from Irish number one bestselling author Colette Caddle

All Zoe Hall has ever wanted to do is act, then love got in the way of her dreams. But now that she has divorced her husband and come home to Dublin, she is determined to get her career back on track. It's easier said than done though and she earns just as much helping out her caterer friend, Tara Devlin, as she does from acting. 

Finally she is offered a juicy part courtesy of Tara's famous actor father and heart-throb, Terence Ross. It looks like finally Zoe is going to get a chance to show off her talents - or is she? 

At a time when she should be concentrating solely on her acting role, Zoe finds herself drawn deep into the lives, loves and heartaches of the people around her, not least that of her beloved brother, Shane. Consumed by her need to help, Zoe is in grave danger of missing out on her second chance, a chance that may also be her last…

A compelling, emotional story from number one bestseller Colette Caddle.


I have never read anything by Colette Caddle and had a very open mind. I love books set in Ireland, particularly those by Irish authors (Maeve Binchy, Cathy Kelly, etc) and this little gem was no exception.

Zoe is one of those people who are genuinely nice, selfless and always thinking of others. Fortunately, she is very human too, otherwise she would have been up insufferably nice!

I loved the way the different storylines intertwined and the people interacted with each other. Each character has their own story and these are really well described. I enjoyed reading about the play and how lines between character and actor can be blurred.

The ending was most enjoyable - some sadness but a great deal of happiness. And not all the storylines were wrapped up and ended - as happens in real life.

I'll definitely be looking for more books from Ms Caddle!

I received an ARC from NetGalley and the publishers in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon UK: A Summer Breeze
Amazon US: A Summer Breeze

Tuesday 15 September 2015

Review of Devoted in Death by J D Robb - Five *


It's a new year in New York city, and two star-crossed lovers have just discovered an insatiable appetite...for murder.

Lieutenant Eve Dallas has witnessed some grisly crimes in her career and she knows just how dark things can get on the streets. But when a much-loved musician is found dead, Eve soon realises that his murder is part of a horrifying killing spree, stretching right across the country.

Now the killers have reached New York, and they've found themselves another victim. Eve knows she only has a couple of days to save a young girl's life, and to stop the killers before their sadistic games escalate. Eve's husband Roarke is ready to put his brains and his considerable resources behind the search. But even as the couple works closely together, time is running out...


Was delighted to receive this ARC from NetGalley. I can't remember reading any J D Robb books, although I've read many Nora Roberts books! 

I know what a prolific writer she is and was a little concerned that I was coming into a long series at the end! But I needn't have worried. I soon picked up the romance thread between Eve and Roarke and it actually made me want to go back to the beginning to follow their relationship!

The book is predominantly a crime story. The fact that it was set in 2061 was very interesting - not too much different to now, but lots of human like robots and air borne cars! You really have to concentrate on the storyline as there are so many cops all doing different things and chopping and changing those things at the drop of a paragraph! It's not a mystery as we know from the word go who the criminals are. It is the story of the cops working it out from one body and a clue on that body. 

I was fascinated and found myself reading faster and faster as the book headed towards the final scenes.

Loved it! The woman is amazing!

Amazon UK: Devoted in Death
Amazon US: Devoted in Death

Thursday 10 September 2015

Review of Please Release Me by Rhoda Baxter - Five *


What if you could only watch as your bright future slipped away from you? 

Sally Cummings has had it tougher than most but, if nothing else, it’s taught her to grab opportunity with both hands. And, when she stands looking into the eyes of her new husband Peter on her perfect wedding day, it seems her life is finally on the up. 

That is until the car crash that puts her in a coma and throws her entire future into question. 

In the following months, a small part of Sally’s consciousness begins to return, allowing her to listen in on the world around her – although she has no way to communicate. 

But Sally was never going to let a little thing like a coma get in the way of her happily ever after …


I trust Choc Lit so much that I didn't read the blurb and was startled by the unusual story. However, I did really enjoy it. It starts with a wedding and more or less ends with a funeral - very roughly! I'll say no more as I don't do spoilers!

The three main characters, Sally, Grace and Peter are like chalk and cheese. Grace and Peter have far more in common but it is Sally who, being very strong-willed, runs the storyline. I felt very sorry for Glenda - Sally's family situation really helped to explain a lot. 

Grace was lovely - seeing her come alive and start living again was quite wonderful. Peter seemed to be a bit of an innocent to start with, but he actually has remarkable inner strength. Sally was.....well Sally! And I was not expecting her to do what she did at all! I couldn't have ever guessed the end - in fact I had it completely wrong!

Sadly, a sequel would not be possible in this instance...or would it?

Amazon UK: Please Release Me
Amazon US: Please Release Me

Review of The Things We Do For Love by Alice Peterson - Four *


Love may hurt, but not loving hurts even more . . .

January Wild loves her daughter, her dog and her childhood home by the sea.
Single parenting is tough, but January has no regrets. She has a job she loves, a happy home and the support of her beloved grandfather. The arrival of a new boss, however, threatens to shake up January's safe world.

Ward Metcalfe loves great sales results and a well-run office.
Everyone at her office agrees: Ward is a soulless, corporate slave driver. Even Spud, the company mascot, dislikes him.

A secret stands between them.
Yet over time January sees there is more to Ward than meets the eye. Rumours circulate. What exactly is he hiding? and is January prepared to risk everything to find out?


This book is a little treasure! It's very emotional, funny and sad. I wasn't sure at first, when the timeline kept jumping around, but soon realised that the preceding chapter always explained where we were going. Once I got into it, I zoomed through it in a day!

January is a lovely woman, contradictory, funny and scared. Losing her parents at a very young age has affected both her and her brother Lucas. Their ability to trust has been severely handicapped, particularly with Lucas. Jan is more accepting of people although Dan really hurt her.

Isla is a lovely little girl and very down to earth, as most children are. I wasn't too sure about award, but as he mellowed, so did I. The gradual building of his relationship with Jan was extremely well written.

The few paragraphs had me laughing and crying at the same time. And the last two lines are magic! (No peeking!)n
And it might even change your opinions of estate agents!

Thanks to NetGalley for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.


Monday 7 September 2015

Review of You Think You Know Me by Clare Chase - Five *


Sometimes, it’s not easy to tell the good guys from the bad … 

Freelance journalist, Anna Morris, is struggling to make a name for herself, so she’s delighted to attend a launch event for a hip young artist at her friend Seb’s gallery. 

But an exclusive interview isn’t all Anna comes away with. After an encounter with the enigmatic Darrick Farron, she is flung into the shady underground of the art scene – a world of underhand dealings, missing paintings and mysterious deaths … 

Seb is intent on convincing Anna that Darrick is up to no good but, try as she might, she can’t seem to keep away from him. And as she becomes further embroiled, Anna begins to wonder – can Seb’s behaviour be explained away as the well-intentioned concern of an old friend, or does he have something to hide?


This was unexpected! Having read lots of Choc Lit authors, I was expecting a nice romance. In hindsight the cover should have given me a clue! This was a taut thriller about the art world with a very credible heroine and some very dodgy characters!

I really enjoyed reading about Anna as she delved deeper and deeper into the mystery of her old university friends and the appearance of the mystery man at the art gallery. I was no wiser than her - who could she trust?

The ending was heart-stopping and I'm sure I actually stopped breathing! Can't recommend this book highly enough - it's a keeper as well. I'll read this one again!

I was given an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday 3 September 2015

Review of Stirred with Love by Marcie Steele - Four *


'Marcie Steele’s STIRRED WITH LOVE will remind you of chatting over coffee with three of your closest girlfriends. A fantastic read about overcoming life’s obstacles with friendship and love.' Talli Roland 

Sometimes the best friends can be found where you least expect them … 

Still grieving after the loss of her beloved husband, Lily Mortimer is determined to do something with the time she has left. 

After the end of her fairytale marriage, thirty-something Kate is trying hard to mend her broken heart. 

Chloe, a young woman with the world at her feet, is struggling to know what to do with her life. 

When Lily embarks on a new venture in the picturesque town of Somerley, the three women come together to open The Coffee Stop, the most charming café for miles around. 

But opening a coffee shop is never as simple as it seems, especially when you add neighbouring competition, local heart throbs and heartbreak to the mix. 

When tragedy strikes, can the three women pull together to make the new business fly, or will Lily’s last chance disappear down the drain along with yesterday’s coffee grinds? 

As comforting as a cappuccino and a better pick-me-up than a grande Americano, Stirred with Love will captivate readers of Milly Johnson, Carole Matthews and Jenny Colgan. 

Marcie Steele is the pseudonym of bestselling crime fiction author MEL SHERRATT. 


Thoroughly enjoyed this book. It is a great chick lit novel. Kate splits from her husband, Chloe has just finished her A Levels and Lily owns an empty tea room. They come together to create a coffee shop and the book follows their struggles.

There are some very human emotions in this book - resentment, jealously, sorrow - and love, friendship and fantastic support.

It is very funny at times - and very sad at others. It really is a great read and I'm grateful to Bookouture for providing me with an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Amazon UK: Stirred with Love
Amazon US: Stirred with Love