The Cosy Cottage Café book series by Rachel Griffiths: Summer and Autumn book review

Author Rachel Griffiths has written a new cosy romance book series and I’m pleased to share my reviews of the first two instalments in the series; Summer at The Cosy Cottage Café and Autumn at The Cosy Cottage Café.

summer at the cosy cottage cafe

Summer at The Cosy Cottage Café written and self-published by Rachel Griffiths is available NOW in ebook format.  The ebook is also included in the kindleunlimited scheme.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2v6N0gf

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Allie Jones loves her cosy cottage café in the picturesque village of Heatherlea. She has her independence, two grown-up children and two cute cats. Life is settled and she thinks she’s happy.

Author Chris Monroe has it all. Critical success, a luxurious London apartment, and the kind of jet-set lifestyle most people dream of. But something’s missing.

When a family bereavement throws these two old friends together, they begin to question the true meaning of happiness.

Love is in the air, but do Allie and Chris have room in their hands-on lives for more than a summer fling?

My Review

This was such a treat of a read. I loved, loved the sound of this haven that the main character Allie Jones had created with The Cosy Cottage Café. Six years ago Allie’s life had turned upside down with the tragic death of her husband Roger. Wanting to start afresh for her two children and herself Allie bought the rundown cottage turning the bottom half into a café. A lifelong dream of hers since secondary school bringing so much joy and comfort not only to herself but also to the community.

The café was doing fine and Allie was happy with the life she had formed for her two now grown-up children, her two cats and herself. However, when a close friend from the past turns up she realises how much she has missed the bond she once shared with Chris.

Chris Monroe left the village just after his two close friends Roger and Allie married. Wanting to pursue a career in writing he sought the buzz of the city. Now a successful author with benefits of a great lifestyle it takes the sad death of his mother to bring him back to the village. He then realises what and who was missing from his life, Allie Jones.

The rekindling of friendship between Allie and Chris evokes many memories between them and emotions soon stir between them. Can love make way into each of their lives?

A gorgeous start to a new book series that I am already eagerly awaiting for the next instalment. A beautiful, cosy, heart warming romance.

autumn at the cosy cottage cafe

Autumn at The Cosy Cottage Café written and self-published by Rachel Griffiths is available NOW in ebook format.  The ebook is also included in the kindleunlimited scheme.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2xjQ75r

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Motherhood has been one of the great blessings of Dawn Dix-Beaumont’s life but with her children’s growing independence, it’s finally time for Dawn to return to teaching. However, Mother Nature has other ideas…

Rick Beaumont loves his family but he’s busier than ever. With his high-flying career, two children and a third on the way, there’s a lot to juggle.

Battling expectations, disappointments and a few surprises along the way, Dawn and Rick find their commitment to each other tested to the limit. The next steps they take will be the most important of their lives.

So when the pressure mounts and an important decision has to be made, will Dawn and Rick’s marriage become stronger than ever, or will it be time to move in different directions?

My Review

This is the second book in the new cosy romance series by Rachel Griffiths and I’m loving it! I feel at home with these novels. The setting is perfect; a cosy cottage cafe in a small country village. The ideal haven for friends and family to have a cup of tea and a piece of cake to catch up on gossip, to forget about your everyday chaos, to meet and make new friends, to welcome in old friends. This little book series makes you feel like you are joining friends with the warm array of characters the author has created.

This second book concentrates on Dawn who is married to Rick and has two children. She’s just found out she is expecting her third child, a complete shock and surprise. Dawn had hopes of returning to her teaching career now the children were settled in school. However, with this new arrival now on the cards Dawn’s hopes of returning to work are put on the back burner. Dawn’s emotions are all over the place and she’s starting to feel a little vulnerable in her marriage. Rick works very long hours in the city and seems to be spending more time away from home. Can the couple get a little time together to work out their concerns?

Another gorgeous story from an author that is rapidly becoming one of my favourites.

To find out more about Rachel Griffiths and her work please visit the following pages:

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

Cover Reveal – Zenka by Alison Brodie

I’m delighted to be able to share with you today the cover for Alison Brodie’s new novel which is due for publication in November 2017.  The new novel fits in the genre Adult, Comedy, Romance, Thriller.  Early praise for Zenka:  “ZENKA is top of my list for best fiction this year. If Tina Fey and Simon Pegg got together to write a dark and hilarious mobster story with a happy ending, ZENKA would be the result!” -Lauren Sapala, Book Reviewer and Writers’ Coach

Without further ado here is the striking cover of Zenka …

Zenka_Final

Synopsis

“She’s the one to die for”

Zenka is a seductive Hungarian pole-dancer with a stubborn streak. When London mob boss, Jack Murray, saves her life she vows to become his guardian angel – whether he likes it or not.

“How can you be my guardian angel,” Jack scoffed. “You’re only five foot two.”

Zenka shrugged, “So vat? I am small, but a grenade is also small.”

Jack receives a letter saying he has a son, Nicholas. Nicholas is a wimp, bullied by his flatmate, pussy-whipped by his girlfriend and terrorised by his elderly patients.

Jack is delighted to be a dad, but he has to tread carefully. People are out to harm him and those close to him. Can he use his wealth, wiles and tough-guy contacts to make a man out of this mouse – before his enemies turn him into mincemeat?

Zenka takes charge. She’s going to “bring out the gorilla” in Nicholas. And she succeeds!

Nicholas transforms from pussycat to mad dog, falls in love with Zenka, and finds out exactly where the bodies are buried – because he buries them. He’s learning fast that sometimes you have to kill … or be killed.

As family ties become more disturbing, questions have to be asked:

How do you tell a mob boss you don’t want to be his son?

And is Zenka really who she says she is?

***

ZENKA is a black comedy/crime thriller/romance set in gangland London in the weeks leading up to Christmas.

About the Author

Alison Brodie is an internationally-published author. GOOD HOUSEKEEPING chose her debut for their Pick of the Paperbacks. The Scottish Daily Mail reviewed ‘Face to Face’: “Vain but wildly funny leading lady.”

Alison has a criminal record for busking/disturbance of the peace in Piccadilly Circus; speeding in Spain and hustling in Athens. She lives in Biarritz, where she can be found speaking unnintelligabuble French.

Author links:

Love at the Italian Lake by Darcie Boleyn book review

love at the italian lake

Love at the Italian Lake written by Darcie Boleyn, publisher Canelo, is available NOW in ebook format

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2v7jshH

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Sophia Bertoni discovers her boyfriend in bed with another woman, and realizes her life is going nowhere. Leaving her high-pressure job, she travels to Italy to stay with her grandmother while she figures out her next move.

When Sophia – quite literally – bumps into devastatingly handsome Joe Lancaster her plans are turned upside down. As the two realize they’re both spending the summer in the same town, a love affair seems on the cards.

But Sophia and Joe are both burdened by family secrets. Despite their attraction, will the sun set on Sophia and Joe’s romance – or will they find love at the Italian lake?

romeo and juliet clipart

A glorious sun-drenched romance set in the Italian Lakes.  Once again Darcie Boleyn has taken me on a journey; a journey of emotions with the characters and a journey around the beautiful, picturesque setting of the Italian Lakes.

Sophia Bertoni makes a startling discovery and realises she isn’t quite effected by the discovery as she ought to be.  Sophia has been living the same daily ritual for a good while; concentrating on her career her personal life has taken a back step.  This discovery makes her think twice about her life and she decides to get away from it all and visit her Nonna in Italy.  Leaving her high pressured job and ex behind looking for rest for her heart, mind and body and hoping for inspiration.

Sophia’s mind was definitely ‘off’ men until she stumbles across Joe Lancaster.  Joe Lancaster, a fellow Brit, who is staying in the same village as Sophia’s Nonna.  Joe is also inbetween jobs and with complications at home and heartbreak in his past he’s also looking for a light or a sign regarding his future.  His sign and light comes from the connection he felt when his eyes met Sophia’s dark eyes.  Sophia also felt an instant attraction with the depths of Joe’s emerald eyes drawing her in to a handsome face and she couldn’t shy away from his kind demeanour.

A friendship developed between the pair however, Sophia and Joe were soon quarrelling with their own conscience over the ever growing emotions they were feeling for each other.  Should they enjoy the here and now and not worry about what the future may hold?

Whilst Sophia is staying with her Nonna she unearths a secret that will send repercussions through her family heritage and could break her family apart.

A wonderful journey of self-discovery, a journey of new beginnings, a journey of discovering new beauties all around the Italian Lakes.

To find out more about Darcie Boleyn and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website:  https://darcieboleyn.wordpress.com/

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

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

 

 

Cover Reveal – The Big Dreams Beach Hotel by Lilly Bartlett

I am so pleased to be able to reveal the cover of Lilly Bartlett’s new romcom which is due out in ebook on 18th August 2017.  The cover is so bright, cheerful and full of the warmth that we all hope summer will bring …

Big Dreams Beach Hotel eBook UK

To pre-order/buy link:  http://amzn.to/2utBfiZ

Product Details (as per amazon page)

This is a brand new standalone novel from the author of the Carlton Square series with a whole new cast of characters to fall in love with!

Wriggle your toes in the sand and feel the warm breeze on your face when you check into the hotel that’s full of dreams…

Three years after ditching her career in New York City, Rosie never thought she’d still be managing the quaint faded Victorian hotel in her seaside hometown.

What’s worse, the hotel’s new owners are turning it into a copy of their Florida properties. Flamingos and all. Cultures are clashing and the hotel’s residents stand in the way of the developers’ plans. The hotel is both their home and their family.

That’s going to make Rory’s job difficult when he arrives to enforce the changes. And Rosie isn’t exactly on his side, even though it’s the chance to finally restart her career. Rory might be charming, but he’s still there to evict her friends.

How can she follow her dreams if it means ending everyone else’s?

bunting

To connect with Lilly Bartlett/Michele Gorman please visit the following pages:

Website:  www.michelegorman.co.uk
Blog: http://michelegormanwriter.blogspot.com
Instagram: @michelegormanuk
Twitter: @MicheleGormanUK
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/MicheleGormanBooks

 

Summer’s Lease by Carrie Elks book review

summers lease

Summer’s Lease written by Carrie Elks, publisher Piatkus, is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

A free summer holiday in a beautiful villa in Lake Como. The catch? Sharing a house with her worst enemy . . .

Cesca Shakespeare has hit rock bottom. After one prize-winning play that ended in disaster, writer’s block turned up, moved in and got a Netflix subscription. Six years later, she’s just lost her crappy job and is about to lose her flat. Worse still, her sisters have no idea how far she’s fallen. So when her fairy Godfather offers her a free summer holiday in a beautiful Italian villa, she grudgingly agrees to try writing a new play. That’s before she finds out the house belongs to her arch-nemesis, Sam Carlton.

Having just hit the headlines for all the wrong reasons – again – Hollywood heart-throb Sam Carlton needs a place to hide out. Where better than his family’s gorgeous empty villa on Lake Como? Except when he arrives, it isn’t as empty as he’d hoped.

One thing’s for sure – this is going to be a red-hot, scorching summer . . .

theatre curtains

Summer’s Lease is book one in a new series titled The Shakespeare Sisters by Carrie Elks.  This is my first introduction to the work of Carrie Elks and I was in for a treat!

Cesca Shakespeare had spent six years in despair getting over the unexpected end of her play which was due to be played in the West End.  A flop before the curtains were even drawn all because the leading man, Sam Carlton, upped and left without another word.  Cesca had been unable to write another word without it making sense so she hopped from one dead end job to another to try and make ends meet.  When  the opportunity of a summer job arose house sitting in Italy she felt like it was her saviour.

The villa in Italy was beautiful beyond words and Cesca was soon feeling relaxed and was allowing her mind to refresh.  However, her stress levels were soon to rise when an unexpected visitor turned up at the villa.  The visitor was none other than the son of the owners of the villa, Sam Carlton.  The same Sam Carlton that vanished from her play.  The same Sam Carlton that was now a Hollywood heartthrob with millions of adoring fans following his success in the hottest chick flick trilogy to hit the screens.

As you can imagine Cesca was none too pleased to see Sam.  Tempers flared and after much warring of words Cesca and Sam agreed on a temporary truce.

Staying at the villa had re-invigorated Cesca’s will to write and she soon got started on drafting a new screenplay.

Sam Carlton had fled to his family’s Italian villa escaping a storm in the media that had just brewed inciting much gossip about the actor’s personal life.  When Sam arrived at the villa he couldn’t remember this young woman that was now shooting so much verbal towards him.  When he eventually remembered the time six years ago when he fled from London he recalls the hurt he felt so deeply which he received from someone he thought loved and cared for him.  Sam has spent the last six years avoiding as much as possible this time in his life where everything he knew and thought about himself changed.

However, Sam sees something in Cesca; he sees the love that she had back then in the play that she wrote.  He sees how proud she was and as an eighteen year old girl it had mean’t the world to her and his unfortunate actions destroyed it.

Can the pair learn to live in harmony in the same villa whilst Cesca continues with her new job and Sam avoids any media intrusion?  Can Cesca have the courage and determination to write again?  Can Sam stop the demons from his past troubling his future?

This was such a beautiful story set amongst a stunning Italian lakeside villa.  It’s difficult to remain mad or upset with anyone when you wake up everyday surrounded by a dazzling landscape.  The ending was picture perfect, I felt like I’d just sat through the most sublime chick flick movie.  A sexy, addictive romance worthy of big screen triumphs.  I can’t wait to read more from Carrie Elks and The Shakespeare Sisters.

To find out more about Carrie Elks and her work please visit the following pages:

Website:  https://carrieelks.com/

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

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

 

The Writer’s Retreat by Indu Balachandran book review

the writers retreat

The Writer’s Retreat written by Indu Balachandran, publisher Jacaranda Books, is available NOW in ebook and paperback format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Amby Balan has had enough of the corporate life in a multinational bank in India. On a reckless whim, she quits her job and becomes a Tweet Writer for Krish Kumaar, the hunky new Kollywood superstar. Despite her glamorous new job (and the opportunity to ogle her gorgeous boss all day long) Amby still longs to fulfil her dream of becoming a writer.

She comes across an exciting ad for a Writers’ Workshop in Greece and cannot pack her bags soon enough. On the way to Crete and Santorini, she meets Mini Cherian, a bestselling children’s book author who fantasises about writing erotic novels; and Bobby Varma, who left behind the advertising world to become a travel writer.

Together, they embark on an unforgettable adventure to discover their true selves and find love in impossibly romantic Greek islands.

sunrise greece

This was such a fun read and very different from the usual romcoms I’ve read with it having Indian characters and set in India. Some of the names I struggled with but after a while I didn’t care if I pronounced their names incorrectly as I was drawn into the characters and their personality. I loved the premise of the story; three different women wishing to fulfil their dreams of becoming a writer and taking the plunge going on a retreat thousands of miles away to Greece. The different settings and culture from India to Greece worked well and I felt the thrill of their eyes experiencing new sites myself. The romance was a slow burning one which made it all the more special when the flames actually grew stronger.

This is my first experience of Indu Balachandran’s writing and I really enjoyed her wit and humour within the storyline.  Indu Balachandran transported me to the lushness of India and the very different landscape of Greece.  A gorgeous, fun romcom that made me smile and melted my heart.

About the Author

Indu Balachandran had a 30-year career in advertising, before switching to travel writing. She has published articles in Travel Plus, The Lonely Planet, iDiva, The Sunday Times and reviewed seventy eco- friendly destinations all over India for Travel to Care. Her writings have featured in five anthologies of short stories. She lives in Chennai. The Writers’ Retreat is her second novel.

To connect with Indu Balachandran please visit the following pages:

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

Website:  http://indubee.blogspot.co.uk/

Tempted by the Bridesmaid by Annie O’Neil book review

Tempted by the Bridesmaid written by Annie O’Neil, publisher Mills & Boon Medical, is available in ebook format from 1st August 2017.

To buy link:

Amazon UK:  http://amzn.to/2vY2QuI

Product Details (as per amazon page)

A woman to unlock his heart?

The last time brooding Italian surgeon Luca Montovano saw bubbly heiress Francesca Martinelli was at his best friend’s failed wedding. Sparks flew then, and now she’s made a surprise appearance at his mountaintop clinic, bringing a much-needed whirlwind of laughter!

Aristocratic Luca just wants to be left alone to care for his orphaned niece. The scars on his face reach right to his heart, and he’s learned to push people away. Until Fran forces him to see the world through her eyes!

A gorgeous romance to set your heart a flutter in the beautiful Italian hillsides.

Fran was currently over in Italy as one of the bridesmaids for her best friends society wedding. Fran was left with a dilemma after seeing the groom-to-be in a very friendly embrace with one of the other bridesmaids. Does she reveal the truth and break the heart of her best friend?

Not only was Fran in Italy for the wedding but she was also due to spend the summer at a new Medical Clinic hoping to introduce her Canny Canine dogs to a teenage paraplegic girl.

Luca Montovana was pounding all his energy and money into building the clinic in Mont di Mare. He wanted to build a rehab place of respite and care for severely disabled teenagers. Following the terrible tragedy in his family that caused the death of four members of his family he is now the sole carer of his niece Pia, who had been left paralyzed from the waist down. Luca was still left physically and mentally scarred from this tragedy and was tirelessly working 24/7 to bring any help he can to his niece and others in a similar situation.

When Fran arrived at the Medical Clinic at Mont di Mare she didn’t expect to see one of the wedding guests and for him to be the proprietor of the clinic and now her new boss. Tempers and personalities flared on arrival at the clinic and Luca was very dubious as to how Fran’s dogs could help his niece. As a trained physiotherapist and dog handler Fran knew she had a difficult task ahead but she had full faith in her dogs’ abilities.

Canny Canines were not only helping the disabled but were also bringing a brightness and lightness to the temperament of Luca who at times felt like he had the world upon his shoulders.

Chemistry soon started sizzling between Fran and Luca but as her time at the clinic was only a temporary situation can the pair let love in even for a short time?

A gorgeous romance with a story giving hope, belief and warmth.

To find out more about Annie O’Neil and her books please visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.annieoneilbooks.com/

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