To Provence, with Love by T.A. Williams book review/blogtour

to provence with love book cover

To Provence, with Love written by T. A. Williams, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:

Amazon Link: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0711T5LQC

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Escape to the south of France with this perfect feel-good summer romance!

Anything is possible…

Struggling writer Faye Carter just can’t believe her luck. She’s off to Provence to write the autobiography of a famous film star and she’ll be staying in the stunning chateau!

So when she meets charming (and completely gorgeous) lavender farmer, Gavin, she knows that she’s made the right choice – even if glamourous, elderly Anabelle seems to be hiding something…

But when the sun is shining, the food is delicious and the air smells of honey, anything seems possible. Will the magic of Provence help Faye finally find a happy-ever-after of her own?

to provence with love tour poster

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting the launch of To Provence, with Love by T. A. Williams.

This was another lovely romance from T. A. Williams.  What I love about his stories is that I feel instantly transported to the beautiful areas he talks about.  With this story I was delivered to the aromatic fields and fauna of the Provence in the south of France.  Where the fields of green had magically turned to a stunning hue of purple with fields and fields of lavender filling the air with it’s heady scent.

Faye Carter, a language teacher at a secondary school in inner city London, was feeling despondent with her career.  She had just recently self-published her debut novel and knew she wanted more than the constraints of the city classroom.  When she was approached about an unusual, secret and quite exciting job prospect Faye took up the chance to find out more.  The job entailed writing the biography of screen siren Annabelle Beech and working alongside her at her chateau in France.  Now 82 and retired from the screen Annabelle has many tales to tell.  However, Annabelle is holding back a secret from her history from the year 1955 which holds a great significance to Faye.  Opening up about the actresses life is proving very emotive, can Annabelle gain strength from within and delve into her past and reveal all?

Six months working for the aging actress is a welcome break for Faye and she is loving this new experience.  Her heart has recently been battered but when she bumps into the local lavender farmer Gavin, Faye cannot help her initial attraction to him.  However, Gavin has experienced so much heartbreak and it is clearly written on his face.  Faye vows to become his friend and help him out of his sorrow.  What she doesn’t expect is to fall for him but with her time in the Provence soon to come to an end she’s not sure what her future holds and whether there will be room for a lavender farmer.

A lovely, cosy romance that for me ended too soon.  I would have loved the story to continue a little more and I do love an epilogue.  A story that will transport you both visually and aromatically to fields of purple blending with hearts of gold.

To find out more about T. A. Williams and his work please do visit the following pages:

Website: http://www.tawilliamsbooks.com/

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/TAWilliamsbooks

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/TrevorWilliamsBooks

lavender fields

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Broken Branches by M. Jonathan Lee book review

Broken Branches

Broken Branches written by M. Jonathan Lee, publisher Hideaway Fall, is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2v8GlWd

Product Details (as per amazon page)

‘Family curses don’t exist. Sure, some families seem to suffer more pain than others, but a curse? An actual curse? I don’t think so.’

A family tragedy was the catalyst for Ian Perkins to return to the isolated cottage with his wife and young son. But now they are back, it seems yet more grief might befall the family.

There is still time to act, but that means Ian must face the uncomfortable truth about his past. And in doing so, he must uncover the truth behind the supposed family curse.

tree silhouette

This was a stunning, poignant story of one families plight coping with tragedy after tragedy.  An inherited farm and cottage held more than memories for the Perkins family.  It held secrets of family torment and battles.  Generations coming and going carrying with them a burden of a legendary curse.  A curse that brought so much despair, anguish and grief.

We follow Ian Perkins in this time slip novel as we learn of his time as a child in the cottage, of the hierarchy in the family and how each member is perceived.  In the present day Ian is obsessively researching his family history with a view of uncovering the facts of the curse.

The author M. Jonathan Lee has cleverly written us a stunning story of a family saga, it’s coping mechanisms with the onslaught of tragedies no family should ever have to face.  There were so many twists and turns the reader was taken on and the storyline took an almost other worldly nature.  Brilliant storytelling that was chilling and heart breaking.

To find out more about M. Jonathan Lee and his books please do visit the following pages:

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/JonathanLeeAuthor/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/MJonathanLee

Website:  http://jonathanleeauthor.com/

The Shogun’s Queen by Lesley Downer book review and Japanese Tea Ceremony post

the-shoguns-queen

The Shogun’s Queen written by Lesley Downer, publisher Corgi, is available now in ebook and hardcover and FROM 27th July 2017 the novel will be available in paperback format.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2thjxQ2

Product Details (as per amazon page)

The year is 1853, and a young Japanese girl’s world is about to be turned upside down.

When black ships carrying barbarians arrive on the shores of Japan, the Satsuma clan’s way of life is threatened. But it’s not just the samurai who must come together to fight: the beautiful, headstrong Okatsu is also given a new destiny by her feudal lord – to save the realm.

Armed only with a new name, Princess Atsu, as she is now known, journeys to the women’s palace of Edo Castle, a place so secret it cannot be marked on any map. Behind the palace’s immaculate façade, amid rumours of murder and whispers of ghosts, Atsu must uncover the secret of the man whose fate, it seems, is irrevocably linked to hers – the shogun himself – if she is to rescue her people . . .

Lesley Downer The Shogun's Queen blog tour 1

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour promoting and celebrating the launch of the paperback of The Shogun’s Queen.  I reviewed a copy of this novel back in October last year and I’m happy to reblog my review today.

My Review

This was such an epic story that sent my emotions soaring high and dramatically cascading low.  I was enchanted by the author Lesley Downer’s beautiful words describing a colourful world.  I felt instantly transported to a land far, far away to a time where legends and rituals were significant and paramount.  To a time when the unknown were feared.  A time when sacrifices had to be made for the sake of the countries survival.

The Shogun’s Queen is a fictional novel based on events in Japanese history.  Young Okatsu with her beauty, knowledge and courage has been given a task like no other.  At the tender age of 17 Okatsu has been given a mission, a mission that seems almost impossible but none the less she has no option but to try.  Okatsu must leave her family, her village and the love of her life.  A tumultuous journey lies ahead for Atsu, as she is now formerly known and her destiny is shrouded with secrets, political upheaval and death.

The torment that Okatsu faces saying goodbye to her love is so heartbreaking but more heartbreak is to come.  I could hardly read the words with the tears falling.  The Shogun’s Queen story gripped me and left me intrigued all the way through and has left me feeling quite emotional and bereft at the end.  I completely adored this novel and would highly recommend it.  A stunning historical romance of sacrifices and love.  5/5*

japanese word tea

I was fascinated to learn of the culture of Japan in this novel, especially the tea ceremonies.  The author, Lesley Downer, has kindly written a short post for my blog on the art of Japanese tea ceremony.

 

You can connect with Lesley Downer at the following pages:

Website:  http://www.lesleydowner.com/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/LesleyDowner

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/AuthorLesleyDowner/

The Art of Hiding by Amanda Prowse book review

the art of hiding

The Art of Hiding written by Amanda Prowse, publisher Lake Union Publishing is available NOW in ebook format.  The book is also included in the kindleunlimited scheme.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Nina McCarrick has it all: a loving husband, two beautiful boys, a well-appointed home and more time than she knows what to do with. Life is perfect. Until her husband, Finn, is killed in a car accident and everything Nina thought she could rely on unravels.

Alone, bereft and faced with a mountain of debt, Nina quickly loses her life of luxury and she begins to question whether she ever really knew the man she married. Forced to move out of her family home, Nina returns to the rundown Southampton council estate—and the sister—she thought she had left far behind.

But Nina can’t let herself be overwhelmed—her boys need her. To save them, and herself, she will have to do what her husband discouraged for so long: pursue a career of her own. Torn between the life she thought she knew and the reality she now faces, Nina finally must learn what it means to take control of her life.

Bestselling author Amanda Prowse once again plumbs the depths of human experience in this stirring and empowering tale of one woman’s loss and love.

marble

Amanda Prowse knows what she is good at and she continues to dig into our hearts and souls with the words she pens across the page.  From the synopsis you know there is tragedy ahead but when you get lost in the minds of the characters the tragedy that strikes hits you like a sledgehammer and you are left with a shattered heart.  As the main character, Nina, slowly picks up the pieces of her heart you too are gaining strength from within.

Nina’s childhood wasn’t without struggles and when she meets Fin, 10 years her senior a confident, charismatic property developer she is taken in by his promises of a better life.  Happily married with two boys aged 10 and 15 life was idyllic for homemaker Nina but when tragedy strikes her world is turned upside down.  With the sudden death of her husband and father to her two boys Nina is trying so hard to be strong for her family.  However, she is to be dealt with another blow and her boys and herself have to take drastic action to survive.   When the full extent to the secrets he had hidden so well are uncovered Nina starts to doubt whether she actually knew her husband and also whether he actually knew her.

Building a new life for herself and her boys was a challenge and Nina had to step out of her comfort zone which she had slowly built around herself and had been hiding in since her marriage.  Her responsibilities with the love of her boys and her memories from her childhood gave her the strength she needed.

A truly beautiful story of grief, loss, secrets, strength and taking one day at a time.  Heart wrenching but at times inspirational.  5/5*

To find out more about Amanda Prowse and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website:  http://amandaprowse.org/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/MrsAmandaProwse

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/amandaprowsenogreaterlove

 

Wild Life by Alison Brodie book review

Wild Life

Wild Life written and self-published by Alison Brodie is available NOW on ebook.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

She says he’s got five per cent body fat and one per cent brain activity.
He says she’s a foul-mouthed tart.
Meet Faustine and McPherson.

Faustine is terrified of responsibility and never wants kids. She lives in New York filling her time with dead-end jobs and high-end stimulants but when she hears that Beech Wood Rise is about to be flattened, she sobers up and heads home to England. The ancient woodland holds her only memories of her dead mother and she’s going to fight every step of the way to stop the land developer.
McPherson is the land developer. He never wants kids because he believes he’s inherited his father’s violent temper. Having been evicted from his home as a child, McPherson’s mission is to build low-cost housing for the poor. And Beech Wood Rise is his next project.
Oscar, 9, has been taken from his crack-head mum in London and placed with his aunt in the countryside while Child Services find him a foster home. Oscar dislikes his aunt and takes up residence in the abandoned tree-house on Beech Wood Rise.
Suddenly, Oscar’s peace is shattered.
Oscar watches the battle between Faustine and McPherson with a spectator’s enthusiasm, while fanning the flames of war. Yet he knows his days of freedom are numbered. Rather than go into foster care, he plans to do a disappearing act.
When Faustine and McPherson discover that Oscar is not a middle-class brat dodging piano practice but an emotionally traumatised reject who is about to run away, they declare a temporary ceasefire as they try to save him.
What they don’t know is: all their careful plans to stay child-free are about to be challenged.
Oscar has decided that Faustine and McPherson would make great parents. HIS parents.
Now all he has to do is make them fall in love.

tree silhouette

Wow, I absolutely loved this novel and I didn’t want it to end.

A romcom story with great dialogue that makes you spontaneously laugh out loud and then it rips at your heart leaving you a crumpled mess, then your emotions are soaring high again.  It was so clever of the author, Alison Brodie, to bring laughter to a story that held a serious, sensitive subject to the crux of the storyline.

Faustine couldn’t believe her luck when she’d won the big modelling contract but then her heart sank a little when she learn’t that she had to now portray a certain elegant image.  She thought one last binge wouldn’t hurt then she’d do all she could to maintain the appropriate image for the mega bucks pay packet.  However, a plea of help from her sister to save the sacred trees near her ancestral home back in England may scupper her new image.

Property developer McPherson had set his sights on building a new housing development in a sleepy village in the Cotswolds.  He had a dream to make affordable housing and his aim was to bring families from inner cities to his idyllic location and let them feel and see the countryside all the time.  His dream was being hampered by local protestors appealing against his proposal hoping to save the ancient woodland which included the magnificent old tree lovingly named Old Bob by the locals.  He now had dwellers living in the tree which had been temporarily turned into a makeshift treehouse.  A young boy and woman were residing in the tree but McPherson felt no threat from them.  Little did he know that the woman residing the treehouse had a history with the tree and emotions were running high.

Faustine’s mission was to stay in the tree till the protestors won the appeal.  This tree Old Bob held so many childhood memories for Faustine and it hurt her deeply to think that someone could quite easily chop it down.  The young boy helping Faustine with her protest was Oscar.  A very street wise lad from London that was currently staying with his Aunt nearby whilst his mum was recovering from her drug addiction in rehab.  Through his bravado you could sense a vulnerability within Oscar and the more Faustine got to know him the more she realised he needed her help.  Faustine had never felt maternal but she felt a kinship with this child and with the unexpected help from the developer McPherson the adults strove to help young Oscar as much as they could.  Unbeknown to the adults young Oscar was plotting to bring the temporary warring adults together.

This was such a wonderful story full of warmth and good humour.  Alison Brodie had injected some sizzling sexual chemistry within the story and I felt that the shared love of the countryside was soon spreading it’s magic to our warring couple.  It felt like Old Bob was an anchor pulling all three main characters together; Oscar, Faustine and McPherson each had a part to play in helping one another.  A funny, sexy, heartfelt story cleverly blending around a serious issue.  5/5*

To find out more about Alison Brodie and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.alisonbrodiebooks.com/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/alisonbrodie2

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/AlisonBrodieAuthor/

 

I Have Never by Camilla Isley blogtour/book review

 

 

i have never

 

I Have Never written by Camilla Isley, publisher Pink Bloom Press, is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.

To buy link:

amazon UK:  http://amzn.to/2uqkdX6

amazon US:  http://amzn.to/2u030Tr

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Twenty-nine-year-old Blair Walker is a girl with a plan, or more a girl with a list. A list of dos and don’ts to live the perfect life, land a dream career, and marry Mr. Right.

But when Blair loses her job and gets dumped by her boyfriend all in one day, she starts to wonder if she’s had it all wrong. And what better way to find out than experience everything the list forbade?

*Never Lie
*Never Pick a Fight
*Never Make a Scene
*Never Make the First Move
*Never Make Impulse Decisions
*Never Mix Business and Pleasure…

With hilarious consequences, Blair will discover some items are trickier to tick off than she’d thought…

I Have Never is a wonderful chick lit beach read and a fabulous office romance. A laugh out loud romantic comedy perfect for fans of Lindsey Kelk, Sophie Kinsella, and Mhairi McFarlane.

First Comes Love is a series of interconnected romantic novels. However, each book in the series can be read as a standalone novel.

blue scroll

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour promoting and celebrating the release of Camilla Isley’s latest book I Have Never.  This is the second book in the First Comes Love series and each book in the series can be read as a standalone but to be honest once you’ve read and enjoyed one of Camilla Isley’s stories you want to read them all.

This is Blair Walker’s story who has lived her life with a list of ‘Never’s’ from advice given to her whilst growing up.  She’s been happy living and abiding with this list but when one day her life starts crumbling around her she decides to rebel against the list.

Our leading lady, Blair, sounded like a vibrant young woman who was career orientated and never lost the sights of her dream as a Fashion Editor for a magazine.  Blair was initially taken in by the glossy images of the upmarket offices and of her peers at Evoque Magazine but when she takes a step back and has a closer look revealing the ugly warts of the business she thinks again about her dream.  Appearances definitely are deceiving.  I instantly fell for the charms of our leading man who had a vulnerability about him.  With the introduction of a stray lost puppy the story took on another dimension and both leading characters were softened by this lovable furry friend.

With Blair rebuilding her life and defying against the list and accidentally falling secretly in love with her new boss Camilla Isley has written us a gloriously, fun filled romance.  I loved it!

To find out more about Camilla Isley and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website:  https://camillaisley.com/

Twitter:  http://www.twitter.com/camillaisley

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/camillaisley/

I-have-never

July 13th
Rachel Brimble Romance – Author Q&A
A Beautiful Book Blog – Book Review
Writing Pearls – Book Review
With Love For Books – Book Review
For the Love of Chick Lit – Book Review
July 14th
Kristin’s Novel Cafe – Book Excerpt (chapter one)
JenaBooks – Book Review
He Said Books or Me – Author Guest Post
Judging More than Just the Cover – Author Q&A
July 15th
I Heart Fictional People – Book Review
Chrissi Reads – Book Review
Books and Photographs – Book Review
Rebecca Book Review – Book Excerpt (chapter two)
Monique McDonell-Author  – Book Excerpt (chapter three)
July 16th
One Book At A Time – Spotlight Post
CosyCuteKnits – Book Review
The Writing Garnet – Book Review
July 17th
The Belgian Reviewer – Book Excerpt (chapter one)
Girl vs Books – Book Review
kraftireader – Book Review

July 18th

 

Reading Is My SuperPower – Book Review
I Heart Fictional People – Book Review
THE CHLOE DOUGLAS BLOG – Book Review
July 19th
Kristin’s Novel Café – Book Excerpt (chapter two)
Simona’s Corner of Dreams – Author Guest Post
Bookish – Book Review
July 20th
TheBlossomTwins – Book Review
Grass Monster – Book Review
Chick Lit Central – Author Q&A
Living Life with Joy – Author Guest Post
July 21st
ItaPixie’s Book Corner – Book Review
Rae Reads – Book Review
Novelgossip  – Book Review
Whispering Stories – Book Review
Ali – The Dragon Slayer – Book Review
A Daydreamer’s Thoughts – Book Review
Steamy Book Momma – Book Excerpt (chapter nine)
July 22nd
BookLoverWorm – Book Review
Pretty Little Book Reviews – Book Review
Book Lover in Florida – Book Excerpt (chapter one)

 

Walking Wounded by Anna Franklin Osborne book review

walking wounded

Walking Wounded written and published by Anna Franklin Osborne is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Born at the end of the First World War, a young girl struggles to find her own identity in her big family and is pushed into a stormy marriage through a terrible misunderstanding from which her pride refuses to let her back down. As her own personal world begins to crumble, the foundation of the world around her is shaken as Germany once again declares war and her brothers and young husband sign up with the first wave of volunteers.

Walking Wounded tells the story of those left behind in a Blitz-ravaged London, and of the web of loyalty, guilt and duty that shapes the decisions of the women awaiting the return of their men-folk as the war draws to a close.

Spanning the period from the Armistice of the First World War to the exodus of the Ten Pound Poms to Australia in the 1950s, Walking Wounded is a family saga whose internal violence is mirrored by the world stage upon which it is set.

london station blitz

This was such a profoundly emotive story that deeply moved me.  At one point I had to pause from reading due to the tears blurring my vision.  Anna Franklin Osborne has taken me on a very real emotional journey, a journey that millions took that had no choice but to “Keep Calm and Carry On” but behind the smiles lay troubled souls and broken hearts.

This family saga started back in 1918 travelling through to 1952 on the life of one family coping and trying to survive what life through at them.  Through pivotal moments in Britain’s history and through life’s own harsh battles.  Women waiting patiently for news of their loved ones; be it fathers, brothers, sons, husbands and lovers.  Dreading the post for fear of bad news.  However, when the men came back they were scarred both physically and mentally and the scenes that they have endured will never leave them.  The joy of seeing and being with your family again was tinged with the fear of what the war did to the minds of their men.

Whilst the men did their duty the women were left to hold the fort back at home and at work, struggling to make ends meet and struggling to keep morale high.  Anna Franklin Osborne’s female characters were all very strong young women full of vitality and hope at the beginning of the war but life was very cruel and hearts were shattered and minds were tested.  The walking wounded were not just the soldiers of war but of those left behind wounded by life and all it threw at them.  A smile can hide a multitude of emotions.

This is a very special story, a fictional story based loosely around Anna Franklin Osborne’s three great uncles, her great aunt and her grandmother who all played a part during the war years.  I do believe fictional stories bring history to life and Anna Franklin Osborne has taken me on this historical journey.  A stunning story spelling out life in it’s raw detail.  5/5*

To find out more about Anna Franklin Osborne please do visit the following pages:

Facebook:  http://www.facebook.com/GooseWingPublications/