A Pearl for My Mistress by Annabel Fielding book review

a pearl for my mistress

A Pearl for My Mistress written by Annabel Fielding, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2mKYKFK

Product Details (as per amazon page)

England, 1934. Hester Blake, an ambitious girl from an industrial Northern town, finds a job as a lady’s maid in a small aristocratic household.
Despite their impressive title and glorious past, the Fitzmartins are crumbling under the pressures of the new century. And in the cold isolation of these new surroundings, Hester ends up hopelessly besotted with her young mistress, Lady Lucy.
Accompanying Lucy on her London Season, Hester is plunged into a heady and decadent world. But hushed whispers of another war swirl beneath the capital… and soon, Hester finds herself the keeper of some of society’s most dangerous secrets…

vintage pearls

 

This debut novel by Annabel Fielding is loosely based on a pivotal moment in Britain’s political history.  To a time in the early 1930’s were a political uprising was brewing bringing with it fear, unease and danger. I didn’t know a great deal about this part of history and this is the beauty of historical fiction it does give the opportunity for the author to bring history to life to a new audience that otherwise wouldn’t have known about it.

The story starts with young Hester Blake leaving home and starting her job in service as a Ladies Maid.  She was to aid the Earl of Hereford’s daughter, Lady Lucy Fitzmartin, to care for her needs and play chaperone during her first appearances in society.  Hester’s first impression of Lady Lucy was of a delicate, porcelain-esque young lady that held an almost ethereal beauty.

Underneath this delicate cloak Lady Lucy held a strong attitude especially towards her beliefs in politics and this was clearly evident in her writing with her articles in the press.  When her writings take on an almost obsessive indulgence to this new regime her life together with those around her becomes in danger.  I felt that this fear almost drove her on and Lucy became blinkered to the whole picture of what was really going on in the country and Europe.

This was a story of a political uprising filled with secrets and espionage and a fear bringing danger.  Amongst all this upheaval the author has woven a love within the storyline.  A love that had to be kept hidden, a love that the lovers greedily sought comfort with each other.  Two women from very different backgrounds, both with a harrowing and heart breaking past, brought together at a time when women were glamorous but also finding that they had a useful place in society and their efforts could make a difference.  An interesting story that had me gripped wanting to know where the author would take me next.

To learn more about Annabel Fielding please do visit the following pages:

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

Blog:  http://historygeekintown.com/

Advertisements

Pieces of my Life by Rachel Dann book review

pieces of my life

Pieces of My Life written by Rachel Dann, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2j0JjqW

Product Details (as per amazon page)

A journey she never expected…

Kirsty is happy. Really, she is. After five years with her boyfriend, Harry, she’s ready to take things to the next step and turn that spare room into a little nursery. And she thought Harry was too.

Only, it turns out that Harry’s ‘big news’ is actually not that he wants to try for a baby, but that he wants to travel to South America – with Kirsty! She’ll just have to trust that after their trip of a lifetime, Harry will be ready to settle down for good.

Arriving in hot, steamy Ecuador it soon becomes clear that Harry is hiding something. Something that he’s been hiding for years. And as Kirsty’s dreams are at risk of shattering, she begins to pick up the pieces of the life that she’s put off for so long…

galapagos island

I was completely enthralled with this story right from the start.  Pieces of My Life is Rachel Dann’s debut novel and it completely ticked all the boxes for me.  Characters that were written with such warmth and relatable, exotic location that the author transported you to with the words on the page, intrigue and curiosity of the world and people around you and also about the person you have lived with for five years.  A journey dredging up memories from the past that at the time were very emotive but now you have time to re-evaluate them and see them in a different life. Thought provoking issues that made you think that first impressions are not the whole picture.  Political changes that could inevitably make the difference in someone’s life to give them hope and belief of a better tomorrow.

Kirsty and Harry have been together for five years since meeting at University.  Kirsty was so surprised that this well-travelled, handsomely rugged young man was interested in her, the shy studious student.  Kirsty was charmed by Harry from the start and when they graduated she happily accepted that they’d live closer to his place of work and Kirsty would commute each day to hers.  Kirsty was also keen to start a family and was feeling that the time was right in their lives however, Harry had other plans for their future.  Harry wanted them to go travelling to Ecuador and take a 3 month sabbatical from work.  He was so excited about this trip that the eagerness grew on Kirsty and she was soon planning trips and sights of interest to visit.

Once the couple arrive in the heat and bustle of this new world and culture Kirsty is captivated by it’s beauty but Harry’s enthusiasm has definitely ebbed and he is displaying unusual body languages.  They soon build up a friendship with owners of a local eatery and when Kirsty hears that the wife Gabi helps out in the local women’s prison Kirsty’s interest is peaked.  Whilst Harry continues to have mood swings and display unusual behaviour Kirsty decides to seek more information regarding helping out with the charity that visit the women prisoners.  Once Kirsty gains more information a spark from her dreams in the past slowly becomes alive and she aims to help the women, especially the British women held in a foreign cell.

We follow Kirsty’s new affirmative journey gaining the courage to go into a scenario she has never been before, understanding the lives of these women and finding out what she can do to help them.  We also follow Kirsty slowly unravelling Harry’s unusual attitude.  This three month visit to Ecuador will change Kirsty’s life in more ways than one as it opens up new wounds, old heartbreak, invigorates the dream in her professional life and also her personal life.  An uplifting, life affirming story set in a stunning location.  A family saga of sorts and a beautiful tale of new beginnings.

To find out more about Rachel Dann please visit the following pages:

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

Amazon UK Author Page:  https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rachel-Dann/e/B07285YW67

Rubies in the Roses by Vivian Conroy blogtour/book review

rubies in the roses

Rubies in the Roses (Cornish Castle Mystery book 2) written by Vivian Conroy, publisher HQ digital is available in ebook from 30th August 2017.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2wUtzer

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Welcome to Cornisea island and spend your summer holidays in a Cornish Castle.

Guinevere Evans has a dream summer job: cataloguing books at a castle on a tidal island off the coast of Cornwall. With her perky dachshund Dolly by her side she explores the island’s colourful history, tries fabulous local food and sees the gorgeous sunsets.

But when an old friend of her employer drops in, claiming a rare bejewelled wedding goblet is hidden in the castle gardens, strange events start to take place: several people turn up claiming they have a right to the elusive goblet, and a dead body is found on the beach.

An unfortunate accident, or does this death relate to the struggle for ownership of the goblet? Is there even a goblet?

Guinevere and Dolly dig in and discover plenty of motives to lie, steal and yes, maybe even kill. Can they prove what really happened to the victim and what became of the precious rubies that are at the heart of the mystery?

rubies in the roses blogtour

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour promoting and celebrating the launch of book 2 in this cosy crime series by Vivian Conroy.

This is the second book in the Cornish Castle mysteries.  Although, the novel could be read as a standalone I would urge you to read book one Death Plays a Part first just to appreciate the history of the characters and setting.  You can find my review of book one here.

Once again we are back on Cornisea Island and the Castle is at the centre of another mystery.  Legend has it that a silver goblet studded with rubies and diamonds that was used in wedding ceremonies many, many years ago was left hidden by it’s last known owner somewhere on the castle grounds.  An article has been written in a forthcoming magazine claiming to know the whereabouts of the goblet.  Lord Bolingbrooke is keen for the goblet to be found on his property so he can claim rights to it however, others feel they have family connections to the treasured piece.

Vivian Conroy has taken us on another cosy crime mystery with Rubies in the Roses.  Guinevere is a little like a modern day Miss Marple and with her trusty side kick Dolly the Daschund providing many charming moments to make you smile.  As with the first book in the series I did find the story a little slow but thinking back about the genre the style and flow of the writing suits this cosy crime mystery.  The series would make a perfect Sunday chill day reading.

To find out more about Vivian Conroy please visit the following pages:

Vivian Conroy’s call story:  http://www.carinauk.com/the-call-vivian-conroy

Fantastic Fiction:  https://www.fantasticfiction.com/c/vivian-conroy/

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

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

Death Plays a Part by Vivian Conroy book review

Death plays a part

Death Plays a Part written by Vivian Conroy, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

With high tide comes murder…

When her beloved London theatre closes for renovations, costume maker Guinevere is excited to start a job at Cornisea castle, a centuries-old keep on a small tidal island off the coast of Cornwall. Imagine a whole summer full of stories of hidden treasures, fab food and long walks with her perky dachshund Dolly.

But when a re-enactment of a medieval trial in the castle dungeons ends in real-life murder, and accusations threaten the castle’s future, Guinevere and Dolly dig deep into the island community’s best-kept secrets to unmask the killer and save their Cornish summer.

The first book in the Cornish Castle Mystery series with the second instalment RUBIES IN THE ROSES coming August 2017!

daschund

This is the first mystery novel I’ve read and also the first book by Vivian Conroy so two firsts.  It’s so good to open your eyes to new genres and new authors.

I loved the premise of this story; Theatre Costume Designer Guinevere and her cute Daschund companion Dolly were off to spend the summer in Cornwall working for the owner of an ancient castle on the fictional island of Cornisea, off the coast of Cornwall.  Sounds like a perfect summer working vacation to me as Guinevere was to help catalogue the books in the castle.  The island was steeped with history and legends and the castle was also to play host in the re-enactment of one of the local legends.  During the re-enactment history was to repeat itself as one of the cast was found murdered in the dungeons.

After the initial shock, horror and upset from all the cast involved in the re-enactment Guinevere and Oliver the son of Lord Bolingbrooke, decide to do some detective work and solve the mystery of the murder in the dungeons themselves.  With Oliver’s local knowledge, Guinevere’s theatrical background with scene plotting and Dolly the Daschund’s inquisitive mind and doggy instincts the trio go on an ‘whodunit adventure’!

I must admit I did find this story a little slow to start with but once I got into it I was as eager as the trio to find the culprit.  The storyline felt quite nostalgic, the crime didn’t feel at all grizzly and I loved the amateur sleuths investigations taking them around this idyllic isle.  By the end of Death Plays a Part I had grown to love the characters portrayed in the storyline and I’m looking forward to the next book in the Cornisea Castle Mystery book series.  4/5*

To find out more about Vivian Conroy and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.carinauk.com/the-call-vivian-conroy

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

Escape to the Cotswolds blogtour – Q & A with author Natalie Kleinman

 

escape to the cotswolds

Escape to the Cotswolds written by Natalie Kleinman, publisher HQ digital is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:  http://amzn.to/2tFbywN

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Can love blossom in the countryside?

Artist Holly Hunter is turning her life upside-down! She’s leaving the bright lights of London (and a cheating husband) behind her and hoping for a fresh start as she escapes to the peaceful Cotswolds countryside.

Men are off the cards for Holly. Instead, she’s focusing on her little gallery and adopting an adorable Border Collie puppy named Tubs. Or so she thought…

Because no matter how hard she tries to resist him, local vet Adam Whitney is utterly gorgeous. And in a village as small as this one, Holly can only avoid Adam for so long!

 

 

border collie

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting the launch of Natalie Kleinman’s new novel, Escape to the Cotswolds.  I’d like to welcome Natalie to my blog today:

Thank you so much for hosting me today, Adele

When did you decide to become a writer?

It had never been my ambition to become a writer. I didn’t actually decide at all. It decided for me. At a loose end and with far too much spare time I enrolled in a ten week council run course in creative writing. It could just as well have been painting, craftwork, French or dressmaking. Actually it never would have been dressmaking. After weeks of being told to unpick something at school I was turned off for life. But writing was the one I opted for and it grabbed from day one. Something that was intended as a hobby almost immediately became an obsession. Spare time has eluded me ever since.

Your new book is set in the Cotswolds, why did you choose the Cotswolds?

Warm honey-coloured buildings. Quaint villages and quintessentially English country market towns. A feeling of peace every time I visit the area. A wonderful romantic setting. That isn’t to say there isn’t plenty going on. And with access to major towns and cities such as Oxford and Bath, Cirencester and Stratford-upon-Avon, and too many castles to mention, there’s never a shortage of things to do. For me, though, it’s the countryside that generates such a pull. I’ve been visiting the Cotswolds for many years and I have to say it draws me back like a magnet. A Londoner all my life, if I could live in the country that’s where it would be.

I love stories with animals in, I feel they bring charm and warmth to the storyline.  Did you know from the start that a puppy would be included in the story?

Not from the word go but fairly quickly. After all, my hero Adam is a vet so animals were bound to be part of the mix. But as a pet for Holly, no, it wasn’t until her encounter with Old Meg that I thought she might have a puppy of her own. Having in my time met many new litters with their wonderful rounded tummies, I didn’t even have to look for a name for Tubs. I could see her in my mind’s eye as soon as the thought occurred to me. She is just as real to me as any of my other characters.

Do you have a work in process?  If so, can you give us any brief clues?

Not so much a work in progress as an outline for my next book and yes, there is a dog involved that has a critical role. It’s also set in the Cotswolds but this time in one of the many amazing historical (fictional) country houses that the area is dotted with. And there’s a bit of a mystery as well!

There’s been some amazing books out in recent years, what has been one of your favourite books from the last couple of years?

That’s always a difficult question, isn’t it? Jojo Moyes’ Me Before You had a profound effect on me when I read it a few months ago. Most recently I read a book my daughter gave me to take on holiday. It’s her childhood much read and cherished copy of Robinsheugh by Eileen Dunlop, set in Scotland in a semi-isolated house shrouded in mystery. I loved it! It was the outline of my next book that prompted her to lend it to me.

If you were given an all expenses paid budget for your book launch what would be on your shopping list?

Dinner with Eddie Redmayne on the set of Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, complete with suitcase from which he would pull copy after copy of my book clutched in the paws of Holly’s dog, Tubs.

Natale Kleinman - Author PhotoAbout the author:

Natalie, a born and bred Londoner, has a not-so-secret wish to live in the area she so enjoys writing about. While this isn’t practical at the moment she stills allows herself to dream of honey-coloured stone cottages, quaint villages and rippling brooks. Maybe one day.

A late-comer to writing, she has two published novels prior to Escape to the Cotswolds and many short stories to her name. She attributes her success to a determination to improving her craft, attending any and every writing event she can. All that and a weekly attendance at The Write Place Creative School in Dartford where cream cakes are frequently on the agenda.

Natalie lives with her husband, Louis, in Blackheath, south-east London – except when she’s tripping off to The Cotswolds in the name of research. Somebody has to do it!

To find out more about Natalie Kleinman and her work please visit the following pages:

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

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

 

DOUBLE COVER REVEAL – Cornish Castle Mystery series by Vivian Conroy

Double Cover reveal Cornish Castle mystery

The wait is over … I’m pleased to reveal the covers of Vivian Conroy’s forthcoming books in her new 2 book series titled Cornish Castle Mystery.  How gorgeous and colourful do the books look and that daschund is such a cutie 🙂  The books are published by HQ Digitial and Book 1 is out on the 7th July 2017 with Book 2 released shortly after on 30th August 2017.

Product Details (Book1) – Death Plays a Part

Death plays a part

Welcome to Cornisea island and spend your summer holidays in a Cornish Castle.

Guinevere and her trusted dog Dolly have arrived on Cornisea island in Cornwall for the summer. But what should be weeks of cataloguing books and sunny walks on the beach turns deadly when murder strikes!

The first book in the Cornish Castle Mystery series with the second instalment RUBIES AMONG THE ROSES coming August 2017!

To pre-order:  http://amzn.to/2sSSXgl

To add to your goodreads ‘Want to Read’ list:  http://bit.ly/2r9oido

 

Product Details (Book 2) – Rubies in the Roses

rubies in the roses

Welcome to Cornisea island and spend your summer holidays in a Cornish Castle.

Guinevere and her Dachshund Dolly are happily enjoying their summer by the Cornish coast – sun, sea and delicious food. Until a long-lost treasure and a mysterious death turns her holiday into a search for justice!

The second book in the brand new Cornish Castle Mystery series, don’t miss DEATH PLAYS A PART – the first in this new cozy crime series.

To pre-order:  http://amzn.to/2r9Mhcp

To find out more about Vivian Conroy and her work please visit the following links:

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

Website:  http://www.carinauk.com/the-call-vivian-conroy

dog paw print border clipart