Love at the Northern Lights by Darcie Boleyn blogtour book review

 

Love at the Northern Lights CoverLove at the Northern Lights written by Darcie Boleyn, publisher Canelo, is available NOW in ebook format.

Canelo books can be found on Amazon, Kobo, Apple and Google Books – some books will be limited to UK publication places only.

To buy link (amazon UK):  https://amzn.to/2O8RiAu

Product Details

‘Climbing out the window in her dress and tiara wasn’t exactly how Frankie imagined her wedding day…’
Runaway bride Frankie Ashford hops a plane to Norway with one goal in mind – find her estranged mother and make peace with the past. But when a slip on the ice in Oslo lands her directly in Jonas Thorsen’s viking-strong arms, her single-minded focus drifts away in the winter winds.
When it comes to romance Jonas knows that anything he and Frankie share has an expiration date – the British heiress has a life to return to in London that’s a world away from his own. But family is everything to Jonas and, as the one man who can help Frankie find the answers she’s seeking, he’ll do whatever it takes to help her reunite with her mother.
Now, as Christmas draws closer and the northern lights work their magic Frankie and Jonas will have to make a choice…play it safe or risk heartbreak to take a chance on love.

Love at the Northern Lights blog tour

I voluntarily reviewed an arc of this book. All opinions are my own and no content may be copied. However, authors and publishers may use elements of my reviews for quotes.

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting Darcie Boleyn’s latest novel; Love at the Northern Lights.

A story as magical and wonderful as the aurora borealis

Darcie Boleyn has become one of my go to authors for stories that I know will take me to a place of wonder that will fill my heart with warmth and joy. Each story that the author writes you can appreciate the setting and almost experience it just like the characters written on the pages. Love at the Northern Lights is a story that takes you from the city metropolis of London to the idyllic sounding city of Oslo, Norway. A city that sounds full of culture, charm and with the added wonder of a community that enjoys the spectre of the mesmerising dance of colours within the night sky, known as the northern lights.

Frankie Ashford was on the countdown to her wedding to fellow socialite Rolo Bellamy. Frankie’s family was full of wealth and living in the grand house with her Grandmother and Father, Frankie was used to her life being mapped out before her, including her forthcoming nuptials. However, on her wedding day Frankie felt that something was amiss and before she makes the biggest mistake of her life she has to make a big decision. Frankie’s decision takes her to Norway with just her honeymoon clothes and a mission to find her estranged mother.

With the drama and mayhem of escaping her own wedding we follow Frankie to the snowy climes of Norway. A journey that is filled with trepidation, enlightenment, forgiveness, new beginnings and new friendships.

I loved Frankie’s story. It was such a whirlwind of emotional upheaval for her. I felt like I’d laughed with her, cried with her and fallen in love with a new country and new friends. A story that will have you absorbed and entranced from start to finish. It will also have you reaching for the Norwegian travel brochures!

About the Author

DarcieDarcie Boleyn has a huge heart and is a real softy. She never fails to cry at books and movies, whether the ending is happy or not. Darcie is in possession of an overactive imagination that often keeps her awake at night. Her childhood dream was to become a Jedi but she hasn’t yet found suitable transport to take her to a galaxy far, far away. She also has reservations about how she’d look in a gold bikini, as she rather enjoys red wine, cheese and loves anything with ginger or cherries in it – especially chocolate. Darcie fell in love in New York, got married in the snow, rescues uncoordinated greyhounds and can usually be found reading or typing away on her laptop.

Social Media links:

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

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

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

 

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Martinis & Memories by A. L. Michael blogtour author guest post

 

martini

Martinis & Memories written by A. L. Michael, publisher Canelo, is available NOW in ebook format.

Canelo books can be found on Amazon, Kobo, Apple and Google Books – some books will be limited to UK publication places only.

To buy link (amazon UK):  https://amzn.to/2MHaGRd

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Bel Hailstone has spent the past decade building her dream – Soho’s best burlesque club – from the ground up. But now The Martini Club is under threat and it will take everything in Bel’s power to resist encroaching developers and save her pride and joy.

Amidst the chaos Bel’s past comes knocking with the unexpected arrivals of her still-not-quite-ex-husband, her estranged mother and Brodie Porter – the boy who got away all those years ago.

To keep her beloved club afloat – not to mention her sanity – Bel will have to accept help for the first time in a long time, put the past to rest and claim the happy ever after she once thought was lost for good.

If you loved Martinis and Memories, why not read the first two stories in The Martini Club series? Cocktails and Dreams & Prosecco and Promises are both available now!

The Martini Club
Cocktails and Dreams
Prosecco and Promises
Martinis and Memories

Martinis and Memories Blog Tour (Final)

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting book 3 in The Martini Club series by A. L. Michael.  Today, I have a great post from the author to share with you:

Searching for fathers in The Martini Club

The title is misleading – we’re not looking for parents in a London burlesque club (although as Bel will tell you, all are welcome) but in thinking about what ties my books together, there’s a focus on parental relationships.
Mothers and daughters are complicated, sure, but in these books the fathers each have a role to play too.

In Cocktails and Dreams, Savvy’s dad was a glorious surprise, someone she had never known and who saught her out in her teen years after he found out she existed. Their relationship over the next ten years was about becoming close and finding a bond that was solely theirs, having survived life with her tempestuous (but brilliant) mother. They were a team, and Savvy’s dad is a sweet, kind man who’d do anything for the daughter he’s so grateful to have.

Mia’s relationship with her father is different – a proud man, it pains him to let his daughter witness as he finally loses out to cancer. He’s had a good life, fought for a long time, and even bagged a beautiful young wife in the process, but it’s the fact that his daughter put her life on hold due to his sickness that torments him.
So he sends her away at the end, desperate to remain strong and alive in her memories.
For Mia, it’s a hard thing to love and hate someone at the same time, fearful of losing them, angry at being sent away, scared to be alone. Her father raised her after her mother died, and apart from a young stepmother who drives her crazy, she’s always trusted in his decisions. She honours his choice to send her away and not return until after he’s died, but it’s incredibly difficult and she’s hard to be around. Mia secretly thinks she’s unloveable, and without her father to convince her otherwise, she fears she’ll always be lost and alone.

Bel’s story is different again – she doesn’t have a father. Her mother never mentioned him, and refused to answer any questions. To her, it’s clear the man never wanted her, or was never told. Or perhaps, he was just a bad guy. Her mother is a nightmare, and she couldn’t imagine anyone putting up with that, even for a daughter.
Instead, Bel creates an imaginary father when she’s a kid. She imagines a Johnny Cash character with a guitar coming to take her away to a better life. When she finds Sam, it’s like he’s the father figure she’s always dreamt of, and he helps her get out of the job, relationship and situation that has dragged her down for the last couple of years, and helps her believe in herself enough to chase her dream – a burlesque club. Sam has always been there, supportive and caring, one of the few people she feels she can be herself with. It’s just that when Bel’s mum turns up and meets Sam, she thinks he’s pretty perfect too.

The Martini Club series is about figuring out who you are and what you want to do, especially for women at the end of their twenties or beginning their thirties. You look at what society wants from you and how everyone else defines success and you try to figure out what will make you happy. In each book, looking back to their families, giving people a second chance and allowing for a little vulnerability sets these women on the path they need.

Thank you so much for joining me on my blog today, I look forward to reading Martinis & Memories.

To learn more about the author A. L. Michael please visit the following pages:

Website:  https://almichael.com/

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

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/A.L.Michael.writer/

 

Searching for Steven by Jessica Redland blogtour book review

Searching for Steven HIGH RES (1)

Searching for Steven written by Jessica Redland, publisher Little Bear Books, is available NOW in ebook format.  The ebook is also included in the kindleunlimited scheme.

To buy link:  https://amzn.to/2JfuDB3

Product Details (as per amazon page)

What if you already know your future… but not the path to take you there?

When Sarah Peterson accepts her Auntie Kay’s unexpected offer to take over her florist’s shop, she’s prepared for a change of job, home and lifestyle. What she isn’t prepared for is the discovery of a scarily accurate clairvoyant reading that’s been missing for twelve years. All her predictions have come true, except one: she’s about to meet the man of her dreams. Oh, and his name is Steven. Suddenly Stevens are everywhere. Could it be the window cleaner, the rep, the manager of the coffee shop, or any of the men she’s met online? On top of that, she finds herself quite attracted to a handsome web designer, but his name isn’t even Steven… During this unusual search, will Sarah find her destiny?

Search For Steven Full Banner

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting Searching for Steven (Welcome to Whitsborough Bay Book 1).  I was recently introduced to the work by Jessica Redland when I read Raving about Rhys (the prequel to Welcome to Whitsborough Bay) and I fell in love with her writing style and was completely comforted and entertained.  Searching for Steven has given me a full dose of Jessica Redland’s charming Yorkshire coastal stories of love, life and the paths you take that make it all the more interesting.  Each of the books in the series can be read as a standalone but I would encourage you to read them all to fully appreciate and enjoy all the great character descriptions and locations.

The books in the series are:

  • Searching for Steven
  • Getting over Gary
  • Dreaming about Daran
  • Raving about Rhys

When a new career opportunity comes Sarah’s way that it too good to miss Sarah feels that this is fate giving her a helping hand when her life is at a low after her recent relationship woes.  Moving from the city of London back home to Whitsborough Bay on the Yorkshire coast could be just the tonic Sarah needs.  With the start of a new creative venture in the florist shop life for Sarah is starting to bloom again surrounded by her family and friends.  However, when an old tape cassette of a clairvoyant reading from her teens is found Sarah is struck by similarities that have occurred in her life but there are a few things that are still left unresolved that Madame Louise predicted many years ago.  Sarah starts to become slightly obsessed with her mission to find the one, the Steven that Madame Louisa predicted and goes on a journey to find the perfect Steven with hilarious results.

Can Sarah’s Mr Right be found by the mystical views of a fortune teller?

Whilst Sarah is searching for Steven is she missing out on the perfect one and will a love from her past be the flame that she needs to reignite?

Once again the author Jessica Redland has created a gorgeous heartwarming, funny tale of love, life and the paths that we take or are stumbled upon that make life that little bit more interesting.  I love stories set in Yorkshire there is a certain charm in the locations and locals with their dialect that makes you feel at home.  I have found a gem in the author Jessica Redland and will look forward to catching up with her other stories.

About the Author

Jessica had never considered writing as a career until a former manager kept telling her that her business reports read more like stories and she should write a book. She loved writing but had no plot ideas. Then something happened to her that prompted the premise for her debut novel, Searching for Steven. She put fingers to keyboard and soon realised she had a trilogy and a novella!

She lives on the stunning North Yorkshire Coast – the inspiration for the settings in her books – with her husband, daughter, cat, Sprocker Spaniel, and an ever-growing collection of collectible teddy bears. Although if the dog has her way, the collection will be reduced to a pile of stuffing and chewed limbs!

Jessica tries to balance her time – usually unsuccessfully – between being an HR tutor and writing.

Social Media Links –
Twitter:   @JessicaRedland
Facebook:   https://www.facebook.com/JessicaRedlandWriter/
Website and blog:   http://www.jessicaredland.com

 

When Archie Met Rosie by Lynda Renham excerpt

archie_bright

When Archie Met Rosie written by Lynda Renham, publisher Raucous Publishing, is available NOW in ebook format.  The ebook is also included in the kindleunlimited scheme.

To buy link:  https://amzn.to/2Jh1NjW

Product Details (as per amazon page)

*An Unexpected Love Story*
Rosie Foster has two dreams. The first is to get off the Tradmore Estate and the second is to go to Paris. When she wins at the Gala bingo it looks like her dreams may come true. But is money the root of all evil?
Archie wants for nothing. He has his five bedroom house but no one to share it with now his beloved wife Cathy has died.
And then … Holly has a disastrous night out and Archie meets Rosie against all odds.
A funny, sad and poignant tale of how love can be found in the strangest places.

heart balloon clipart

I am so pleased to be able to share with you all today Chapter One to Lynda Renham’s latest romcom, When Archie Met Rosie.  Lynda Renham’s writing style is very witty with great character descriptions, you can’t help but have a smile on your face when you read her romcoms.  If you find yourself enjoying chapter one do check out the ‘to buy’ link above; the story sounds like the perfect summer read.

Chapter One
Rosie

Don’t you just hate those people who win at everything without even trying? A flutter on the horses or a scratch card at the newsagent and they’re laughing all the way to the bank. I don’t think I’ve ever laughed all the way to the bank. I’ve cried maybe, but that’s usually on the way back from the bank. I once considered robbing our local Barclays. I did seriously. That’s what desperation does to you. I don’t often think about robbing banks, just in case you think I do. It was only the once. Times can be hard sometimes, especially when Frank blows all our money on Millwall. The football club, that is, not the town. Not that anyone in their right mind would spend their money on Millwall, the town or the football club, but then I do sometimes wonder if Frank is in his right mind. Anyway, I digress. There’s a lot of expense involved in robbing a bank, I discovered. I’m telling you this now, just in case you were thinking of robbing a bank yourself. You need a pair of tights for a start. Not just any old pair either. A decent pair costs you a fiver. Now, I don’t know about you, but I can think of better things to spend a fiver on than a pair of nylons, that I’m just going to pull over my face. I did try an old laddered pair, but you could see my features. Not as good as you normally would, admittedly. It resembled a balaclava with one too many holes. Frank said I ought to wear it all the time.
‘It’s a great improvement,’ he’d laughed.
Cheeky bugger.
And then there’s the rucksack. You’ll need one of those. All the best bank robbers have rucksacks. We have one, but the zip is broken. It would be just my kind of luck to have the newly stolen banknotes scattered through the streets of Essex. The expense of a new rucksack was a bit daunting too, especially as Frank only uses it when he trudges down to the off-licence. It nicely holds a six-pack, he’s fond of telling me. It takes a lot of planning, does this bank robbery business. After all, you don’t want to be bursting into Barclays brandishing your P’tit Clown 74560 automatic plastic gun at the wrong time of day, do you? Midday would be a perfect time for me because it’s when I have my lunch break, but have you seen the queues? There’s bound to be one pissed off customer wanting to be a hero, who’d think nothing of wrestling me and my P’tit Clown 74560 plastic gun to the ground, while I’d be yelling, ‘Get your hands off my P’tit, you moron.’
I know what you’re thinking. I have no idea why it’s called P’tit. I imagine, because most of the people who buy it are tits, like me. Let’s be honest, how many bank robbers buy their plastic guns from Amazon? Bank robbers like me, that’s who. Anyway, last but not least, you need a getaway car. If you saw our old Fiesta you’d understand why it wouldn’t have worked. For a start, there’s no door on the driver’s side. Actually, that’s not strictly true. Obviously, there is a door. It would be a touch chilly without one and clearly illegal. It just doesn’t open. No one is sure why. Sam offered to replace it with a spare yellow door he had lying around the garage. Our Fiesta’s black and I didn’t fancy driving around in a lookalike stripy tiger, so I said no and anyway, everyone would have recognised it on the Crimewatch reconstruction. It also takes forever to climb over onto the passenger seat. It’s okay climbing over when you’ve got plenty of time. If your pantyhose got caught on the gearstick, you’ve got time to sort yourself out, haven’t you? But when you’ve got a fleet of police cars after you it’s a whole other ball game. I’m okay getting one leg over the gearstick but it’s my dodgy hip in the other leg that’s the problem. I’ve been known to get stuck in the Lidl car park before now, my crotch nestling nicely on the gears while some kind passer-by hoists my gammy leg over it. Frank says I only do it to pull the blokes. Huh, like I need another one. Although, I have to admit, it is often men who come to my rescue. I guess women are suspicious of a woman sitting on a gearstick. It’s not something you see every day is it? They probably think I’m doing something sordid. I think the men just want a gander up my skirt. They certainly get that. Anyway, the point is, I don’t imagine a kind passer-by is going to give me a leg over after I’ve just robbed Barclays bank, and quite right too.
Anyway, I never did rob the bank. I’m Rose Foster by the way, but everyone calls me Rosie. I like that. It makes me feel young. I live on the Tradmore Estate in Dagenham, Essex. It’s quite well known. Ask anyone where it is, and they’ll be able to tell you. They’ll no doubt look at you with fear in their eyes and advise you to stay away. Tradmore Estate is a regular feature in our local paper. We’re quite famous, although I suppose infamous is the correct word. We’re well known for our raves and raids, usually in that order. We’ve been on Jeremy Kyle too. That is, a few of my neighbours have, not us. I really don’t have the time to go on Jeremy Kyle. I’d love to live somewhere else, but Frank doesn’t believe in mortgages, says they’re a noose around your neck. We can’t afford to rent a house, so I guess I’ll stay on Tradmore Estate until they bring me out feet first. Although, knowing Frank, he’ll bury me on the allotment if it means saving some money. It is expensive dying, isn’t it? More expensive than living if you ask me. Frank works at the greyhound track in Walthamstow and I work three half days at Waitrose and two evenings at Cineworld in Romford. I like that job. They give us free popcorn on Saturdays. It’s rare to get something for nothing these days isn’t it?
Anyway, I’ve seriously digressed. Frank says I can talk the hind legs off a donkey. The reason I began talking about people who easily win things is because, I actually think, any minute now, I’m going to win something. Yes me, Rosie Foster, who never wins anything. I’m desperately wishing I’d had that glass of white wine that Shirl had offered earlier. It would calm my shaking hands. I’m at the Gala Bingo. That’s a joke isn’t it? After I’ve just rabbited on about how I don’t bet. I only come once a fortnight. It’s our girly night out. It’s cheap, cheerful and a bit of a laugh. I’ve never won so much as a quid, until now … right now. All I need is two fat ladies and number one. I can barely breathe. If I win this … Oh God, if I win this, it will be five thousand quid. My head spins at the thought. What would I do with five thousand pounds? Apart from pay the back rent of course.
‘Twenty-two,’ shouts the caller. ‘Two little ducks …’
‘Quackety quack,’ yells Shirl beside me.
I feel sick. This is all I need. It would be just like me to throw up just as I’m about to shout house and win five thousand quid.
‘On its own, number one,’ shouts the caller.
That’s me. Oh bejesus, I’m starting to think robbing the bank might have been easier. I’m likely to have a heart attack if this isn’t over soon. I’ll be carried out feet first from the Gala Bingo Hall instead of our flat. Oh well, at least the funeral directors will be pleased. There’s no stairs at the Gala Bingo. I hold my breath. I just know that someone is going to call ‘house’ any minute, and I feel sure it isn’t going to be me. I’m Rosie Foster, from the Tradmore Estate. I don’t win the bingo. I never win anything, not even a goldfish at the funfair, and everyone wins a goldfish, don’t they?
‘Eighty-eight …’
‘Two fat lad …’ Shirl begins but she doesn’t get to finish because I almost knock her off her stool as I jump up.
‘House,’ I yell. ‘House.’
‘I’ve only gone and won,’ I say turning to Shirl.
‘You haven’t,’ she says, straightening up.
I’m shaking so much, I can barely speak.
‘Let’s see your card darling,’ says the caller.
What if I got a number wrong? I wasn’t concentrating properly at the start. What if …?
‘Congratulations darling, you’ve won five thousand pounds.’
‘I have?’ I stammer.
‘Lucky cow,’ says Shirl, squeezing my arm.
‘Well done,’ says Doris, draining her wine glass and struggling not to look jealous.
‘I can’t believe it,’ I say finally. ‘I never win anything.’
‘Well, you have now.’
‘Shall we quit while we’re ahead,’ suggests Doris.
I nod. I want to go home and tell Frank. Maybe we’ll open that bottle of Prosecco that Waitrose gave me last Christmas. After all, five grand is something to celebrate isn’t it? Not that I have any intention of telling Frank exactly how much I’ve won. I’m soft but I’m not that soft. Money burns a hole in Frank’s trousers quicker than a firelighter. I’d like it to last us a bit longer than twenty-four hours.
‘Shall we go up west on Saturday?’ asks Shirl, ‘Now that you’re flush and all that.’
‘I’m saving it,’ I say.
Shirl and Doris look at me.
‘Saving it for what?’
‘I’d like to go to Paris,’ I say without thinking.
The fact is, I’ve always wanted to go to Paris. I fancy climbing up the Eiffel Tower. The view from there must be amazing, I imagine.
‘What do ya want to go there for? It stinks by all accounts.’
‘That’s Venice, you dopey mare,’ laughs Doris, zipping up her fake Mulberry. ‘Paris is romantic.’
‘So, you won’t be taking Frank then,’ giggles Shirl.
I try Frank’s mobile, but it goes to voicemail. He’s probably got the tele up loud. You have to in our flat to cover the noise of the neighbour’s shouting. If you like Jeremy Kyle, you should come to ours for the day. You’d love it.
We walk home arm in arm. We feel safer like that. I’ve got my five thousand quid tucked into the corner of my old Top Shop tote. The man at the Gala Bingo was reluctant to give me the cash at first.
‘It’s normally a cheque,’ he’d said.
I didn’t want a cheque. It would go straight into our bank account and straight out again to pay the overdraft. It was Frank’s fault we had that. He’d wanted part ownership in a greyhound. So now, not only do we have an overdraft but also part of a dog. I don’t know which part, the useless part probably, knowing our luck.
‘We’ll get our money back,’ Frank had assured me.
But, of course, we hadn’t and instead had accumulated interest on our overdraft. I’ve had this tote bag for donkey’s years and I keep checking that there are no rips in it. That’s sods law isn’t it? You put five thousand quid in your bag thinking it’s perfectly safe and don’t realise you’re dribbling tenners along Romford High Street. I’m not though. I know that, because I keep checking behind me. We arrive at the Tradmore Estate and I try to ignore the used condoms that litter the grass verge outside our block. A policeman hovers outside the main doors but I don’t think anything of it. There are always police around the estate. It makes me feel safe to tell you the truth.
He straightens as we approach the doors.
‘Mrs Foster?’ he asks.
Doris and Shirl look at me anxiously.
‘I’m Mrs Foster,’ I say.
‘What’s ‘appened?’ asks Doris worriedly.
‘I’ve got bad news I’m afraid,’ he says removing his hat.
It’s got to be bad hasn’t it, if they take off their hat? I must have had a tear in my bag after all. They’ve no doubt been collecting ten-pound notes all over Romford.
‘Oh,’ I say, glancing into my bag.
‘Your husband, Frank Foster, is dead I’m afraid.’
‘Dead?’ I repeat.
I sway, and Shirl supports me by the arm.
‘You could ‘ave waited until she was sitting down,’ says Doris crossly.
How can Frank be dead? He was watching the tele.
‘Sometimes it’s best just to say it,’ says the policeman.
‘Are you sure?’ I ask.
Oh dear, that didn’t sound good, did it? It’s as though I want to be sure he’s well and truly brown bread.
‘He fell into the road I’m afraid. He’d had a bit too much to drink and the Domino’s Pizza van …’
Frank was killed by a Domino’s Pizza van?
‘Domino’s Pizza?’ I repeat.
‘He liked pizza,’ says Doris.
That’s wonderful isn’t it? I win five thousand on the bingo and Frank decides to walk in front of a pizza delivery van. Now I’m most likely going to have to spend my winnings on Frank’s funeral.

 

To learn more about the author Lynda Renham please visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.renham.co.uk/

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/Lyndarenham

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/lyndarenhamauthor/

 

One Summer in Rome by Samantha Tonge book review

one summer final cover

One Summer in Rome written by Samantha Tonge, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:  https://amzn.to/2IgR7wN

Product Details (as per amazon page)

To Rome…with love?
Mary Smith is turning her very ordinary life upside-down! She’s bought herself a one-way ticket to Rome and is ready for a summer she’ll never forget.
Men might be off the cards for waitress Mary, but within hours of arriving at the utterly charming family-run La Dolce Vita pizzeria, she’s already fallen in love with the bustling capital!
Only Dante Rossi, the mysterious (and drop-dead gorgeous) chef seems displeased with her arrival. And in the heat of the kitchen, it doesn’t take long for long-buried secrets to surface and sparks to fly…

heart shaped pizza

I voluntarily reviewed an arc of this book. All opinions are my own and no content may be copied. However, authors and publishers may use elements of my reviews for quotes.

This was such a wonderful treat of a read, a read that whisks you away to Rome that wakens up all your senses with it’s sights, sounds, tastes and aromas.  The author, Samantha Tonge, took me to this beautiful sounding city with it’s ancient monuments and piazzas filled with fountains, street artists and authentic Italian restaurants.  I could easily picture the scenes and the characters taking part in their daily lives.

This is the story of Mary Smith who has taken the plunge to leave her broken heart in the UK and move to Italy to work for a small family-run restaurant in the city.  Mary has had a tough upbringing and has longed for the love and support of a strong family unit.  Joining this Italian family was difficult at first as she felt like an outsider but the warmth she felt from her new employers gave her the confidence she needed to accept herself and her history.  Not all members of the family and team at the restaurant were quite so welcoming, Rocco the waiter and Dante the son had some reservations against Mary working at the restaurant.  Slowly barriers were let down and Mary was beginning to understand this close-knit team.  Mary also started letting her own barriers down but feared her heart would be broken again.

The restaurant has in the last few years experience much heartbreak and tragedy and it’s been particularly hard keeping the business going with Mary’s arrival she seems to have brought a certain joy and new ideas to the family.

A storyline that wasn’t all sunshine and amore Samantha Tonge has included a few serious topics in the storyline that were dealt with in a very sensitive manner.  However, to guide us away from the hardships of life we have a dance competition, Italian festival, Italian food, a wonderful feeling of togetherness and Dante who isn’t your average book hero, he’s so much more.

A book that makes you feel as bright, warm and comforting as the Italian sun and it’s cuisine.

To learn more about the author please do visit the following pages:

Website:  http://www.samanthatonge.co.uk/

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

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/SamanthaTongeAuthor/

 

 

The Map of Us by Jules Preston book review

the map of us

The Map of Us written by Jules Preston, publisher HarperImpulse, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link: https://amzn.to/2jKDQSI

Product Details (as per amazon page)

 Violet North is wonderfully inconvenient. Abandoned by her family and lost in an imagined world of moors and adventure, her life changes in the space of just 37 words exchanged with a stranger at her front door.
Decades later, Daniel Bearing has inherited his father’s multi-million pound business, and is utterly lost. He has no idea who he is or where his life is headed.
When Violet’s granddaughter’s marriage falls apart, Tilly, always adept with numbers, compiles a detailed statistical report to pinpoint why. But the Compatibility Index Tilly creates has unforeseen consequences for everyone in her world.
Tilly and Daniel share a secret too. 10.37am, April 22nd.
Soon, a complex web of secrets and lies is exposed and an adventure begins with a blue typewriter…

sand sculpture clipart

The Map of Us is the debut novel by Jules Preston.  The storyline is quite a clever mix of family drama, grief, betrayal, bullying, diversity, courage and love.

The author’s writing style is full of wit and wisdom and had a multitude of short chapters.  At times, for me, I did find the storyline a little repetitive but by the end of the story all these character idiosyncrasies with their quirks and insecurities all made complete sense.  Now and again the author would throw a little line and it would completely melt my heart and would leave me feeling joyous.

Violet North was a very ill child and her parents treated her badly, once she reached adulthood they abandoned her and left her to her own devices.  This unbeknown to her family was the best thing that could have happened to her.  To while away her time Violet decided to write herself a companion and she wanted this companion to travel on the paths and roads, hills and mountains that she couldn’t.  Violet’s imagination was just wonderful and for a while this was all she needed in her life.

Matilda (Tilly) North is the youngest of three grandchildren to Violet North.  Tilly is a statistician and when her marriage broke down she decided to analysis it’s downfall with pages and pages of research and compatibility equations.  Tilly loved the simplicity of numbers, her brother Jack loved colour and her sister loved handbags.  Their father, who I adored, loved sand and sculpting amazing shapes and creations out of the sand.

These little quirks that each member of the family held was their own way of dealing with life and they were accepted for all that they were, as a family unit they blended perfectly.

A very fresh, imaginative approach to a love story.  A love story that has spanned decades and has weathered time.  I look forward to more from this promising new author Jules Preston.

About the Author

Jules Preston was born in London, and has had lots of jobs. Some good. Some bad. The best was cutting up national newspapers with a huge pair of scissors. He now lives in Devon, surrounded by piles of paper held together with bulldog clips. One day they might get turned into books too. Hopefully.

Twitter:  https://twitter.com/jules_preston_

Facebook:  https://www.facebook.com/JulesPrestonAuthor/

Blogblitz: One Summer in Rome by Samantha Tonge

one summer final cover

One Summer in Rome written by Samantha Tonge, publisher HQ Digital, is available NOW in ebook format.

To buy link:  https://amzn.to/2KMTGIF

Product Details (as per amazon page)

To Rome…with love?
Mary Smith is turning her very ordinary life upside-down! She’s bought herself a one-way ticket to Rome and is ready for a summer she’ll never forget.
Men might be off the cards for waitress Mary, but within hours of arriving at the utterly charming family-run La Dolce Vita pizzeria, she’s already fallen in love with the bustling capital!
Only Dante Rossi, the mysterious (and drop-dead gorgeous) chef seems displeased with her arrival. And in the heat of the kitchen, it doesn’t take long for long-buried secrets to surface and sparks to fly…
A deliciously heartwarming romance to have you dreaming of summer. Perfect for fans of Debbie Johnson and Caroline Roberts.

One-Summer-In-Rome-PDP

I am so pleased to be involved in the publication day blogblitz for Samantha Tonge’s latest heartwarming romance: One Summer in Rome.  I’ve read a few of Samantha Tonge’s novels and thoroughly enjoyed them so I’m eagerly awaiting to be transported away to the historical city of Rome.  I’m looking forward to sharing my review with you all soon as this novel is primed on my kindle as my next read.

About the Authorme-and-mitzie
Samantha Tonge lives in Cheshire with her lovely family and a cat who thinks it’s a dog. When not writing she spends her days cycling, willing cakes to rise and avoiding housework. She has sold over 80 short stories to women’s magazines. Her bestselling debut novel, Doubting Abbey, was shortlisted for the Festival of Romantic Fiction best Ebook award in 2014. Game of Scones hit #5 in the UK Kindle chart and won the Best Romantic Ebook category at the 2015 Love Stories Awards.

Twitter: https://twitter.com/SamTongeWriter
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/SamanthaTongeAuthor
Website: http://samanthatonge.co.uk/