When I Come Home Again by Caroline Scott @CScottBooks @simonschusterUK @RandomTTours #WhenIComeHomeAgain #bookextract

When I Come Home Again written by Caroline Scott, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook, audiobook and hardcover format.

Book Blurb

They need him to remember. He wants to forget.

1918. 
In the last week of the First World War, a uniformed soldier is arrested in Durham Cathedral. When questioned, it becomes clear he has no memory of who he is or how he came to be there.

The soldier is given the name Adam and transferred to a rehabilitation home. His doctor James is determined to recover who this man once was. But Adam doesn’t want to remember. Unwilling to relive the trauma of war, Adam has locked his memory away, seemingly for good.

When a newspaper publishes a feature about Adam, three women come forward, each claiming that he is someone she lost in the war. But does he believe any of these women? Or is there another family out there waiting for him to come home?

Based on true events, When I Come Home Again is a deeply moving and powerful story of a nation’s outpouring of grief, and the search for hope in the aftermath of war.

To buy link:

https://uk.bookshop.org/books/when-i-come-home-again-a-beautiful-and-heartbreaking-wwi-novel-based-on-true-events/9781471192173

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting the launch of Caroline Scott’s latest novel: When I Come Home Again. I have the pleasure of sharing an extract with you.

Chapter two extract

‘Name:                   ’

The hairs rise on his forearm and he hugs his knees to his chest. It is cold in the cell. They have taken his clothes away and he feels every breath of air from the window above. His naked body is familiar to him and yet not. He knows his own hands, but he can’t remember the scars on his arms, or the lice bites that cover his body. He scratches the backs of his knees and sees that there is blood on his fingers.

Your name, they said. We need a name. We can’t start without it. You need to give us your name.

It comes back at him again, that insistent question. All through the night. No starting, but no stopping. He would have told them, if he could.

The walls of the cell are blistered with damp. The plaster ripples and glistens. The walls are as pockmarked as his skin and the whitewash comes away on his shoulder when he leans against it. There are scales of lime in the creases of his hands and chalk down his fingernails. Five white condemning crescents. It is the chalk that has put him in this police cell.

Where’s your identity disc? they asked. Your pay book? Your service number?

Looking at the new bruise blooming on his arm makes him ashamed. The constable had walked him through the town with his arms in a grip. It wasn’t so much that it hurt, but he had felt humiliated when the people’s eyes flicked towards him and then away, and chastened by the words that they mouthed. He wanted to tell them that he’d done nothing wrong. He wanted to shout it out. He wanted to tell them that this wasn’t him.

What’s your battalion? What regiment? Where are you stationed?

They had emptied his pockets while the sergeant questioned him. Every item was catalogued and inspected. Every coin was turned over. Every pebble. Every piece of chalk. This scrutiny made him feel as though his pencil stub and box of matches were specimens in a museum requiring labels. But what should their labels be? Could these innocent items condemn him? They told him that they were taking his belt away so that he wouldn’t hang himself.

He watches the silverfish scurry. There are cobwebs in the corners and chains on the wall of the cell. They are crumbling, rusting old chains, the kind prisoners have in storybook dungeons, and he suspects they are there more for warning than purpose. He hears the spyhole in the door click again. They have been doing this all night; coming to look at him, checking on him. Why did they imagine that he might hang himself?

Home address? You must have a home address. You must have come from somewhere.

He tries to remember. He genuinely tries. He recalls the barns and sheds and ditches of the past few weeks, but nothing before that. He slept on a bench in a church porch some days ago. An old woman handed him a bowl of warm milk in the morning. A young cleric gave him a blanket that smelled of laundry soap. He tries to remember what home feels like, what it smells like. It smells of damp and disinfectant and urine in this cell, and the sweat on his own skin.

Place of birth? Date of birth?

‘Born to raise the sons of earth,’ the voice in the next cell crescendos. ‘Born to give them second birth.’ It’s Christmas carols now. The disembodied voice has been singing hymns all night; eight hours of rhyming trials and tribulations, mysteries and mercies, and green hills far away.

It was a desecration of a place of worship, they told him. It was a serious offence. He’d laughed when they said that this was the sort of filthy thing the Germans had done in France.

They told him it didn’t help his case that he laughed. They asked him why he did it. What was he thinking? What made him want to do such a thing? He could only reply that he didn’t know.

Next of kin?

Nothing. He apologized. He could see their frustration. He didn’t want to frustrate them. It wouldn’t do him any good, the sergeant said, if he didn’t speak up, if he didn’t cooperate. He would have to go back to his regiment, they said. The authorities would need to be informed. Was he home on leave, they wanted to know. Was he due back with his battalion? Had he gone absent?

What were you thinking, lad? they asked. Are you a deserter?

The electric bulb buzzes and casts a cold white light. It has been left on all night, the moths dancing foolishly around it. He picks them up off the floor now and they crumble to dust between his fingers.

The sergeant had brought him a tin mug of tea, bread and butter and a jug of hot water. He’d told him that he should wash. That he stank. When he put his hands to his face he realized that he hadn’t shaved for several days. He can’t remember his own reflection. He felt the new shape of his face with his wet fingers. The sergeant had leaned against the wall as he watched him wash. He said that he lost his son to the war last year. That Colin was a good boy. That his mother wouldn’t ever get over it. There were dark shadows under the man’s eyes.

Where’s your mother, lad? Does she know where you are? Don’t you want to be a good boy for your mother?

They showed him the charge sheet, turned it round to face him, the empty white spaces that ought to be filled. Where he ought to have a date and place of birth. Where he ought to have a residence. A next of kin. A name. The inspector’s finger jabbed at the paper.

What are you called? he asked it again. They keep on asking it. What’s your fucking name?

About the Author
Caroline completed a PhD in History at the University of Durham. She developed a particular interest in the impact of the First World War on the landscape of Belgium and France, and in the experience of women during the conflict – fascinations that she was able to pursue while she spent several years working as a researcher for a Belgian company. Caroline is originally from Lancashire, but now lives in southwest France. The Photographer of the Lost was a BBC Radio 2 Book Club pick.

Twitter: @CScottBooks

My One True North by Milly Johnson @millyjohnson @simonschusterUK @TeamBATC #bookreview #feelgoodfiction

my one true north

My One True North written by Milly Johnson, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook, hardcover and audiobook format.

The hardcover is available from most supermarkets, I picked mine up from Tesco, so whilst you are shopping for essentials quickly dash to the book aisle and pick up a copy to bring a smile and more to yourself during this difficult time of isolation.

To buy online links:

amazon UK: https://amzn.to/3bRdHLa (currently listed at £7.50 half price)

Waterstones: https://www.waterstones.com/book/my-one-true-north/milly-johnson/9781471178498

Hive: https://www.hive.co.uk/Product/MILLY-JOHNSON/MY-ONE-TRUE-NORTH-SIGNED-EDITION/24899549 (signed edition)

Book Blurb

Laurie and Pete should never have met.
But fate has pushed them together for a reason.

Six months ago, on the same night, Laurie and Pete both lost their partners.
Struggling to manage the grief, they join the same counselling group – and meet each other.

From their sadness, Pete and Laurie find happiness growing and they sense a fresh new beginning.
Except, the more they talk, the more they begin to spot the strange parallels in their stories.
Then Pete discovers a truth that changes everything.

But, as surely as a compass points north, some people cannot be kept apart.

My One True North is a story of friendship and what love means, of secrets uncovered, teashops on corners and the northern lights.

 

REVIEW

Milly Johnson has a wonderful way with words that feels very warm and welcoming. Whilst reading any of her novels you almost hear the authors voice reading out loud to you and once again Milly Johnson has used her winning style to create another belter of a read.

Sadly life isn’t without darkness and although this story is about two lost souls overcoming grief the story doesn’t feel depressing as the author has injected her charismatic Yorkshire charm within each page. After a touching, poignant moment your heart will feel enveloped and cradled and you will also feel light returning back after some very well timed humour to the storyline.

This is Laurie and Pete’s story who were initially united in tragedy and grief both taking the next steps to healing by joining a bereavement friendship group. When Laurie and Pete first meet each other there is a joint kinship of appreciation felt but as time goes by a friendship soon develops. But as the story unfolds secrets from their pasts are slowly unravelled and their connection becomes more tangled and could damage the start of a beautiful friendship.

A story of life, love, loss and grief but a story filled with hope and warmth and plenty of giggles.

About the Author

Milly Johnson was born, raised and still lives in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. She is the author of 17 published novels, 4 short story ebooks, a book of poetry and a Quick Reads Novella (‘The Little Dreams of Lara Cliffe’) and was an erstwhile leading copywriter for the greetings card industry. She is also a poem and joke-writer, a newspaper columnist and a seasoned after dinner speaker.

She won the RoNA for Best Romantic Comedy Novel of 2014 and 2016, the Yorkshire Society award for Arts and Culture 2015 and the Romantic Novelist Association Outstanding Achievement award in 2020. See her popular acceptance speech here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hxzeFTvHXDo&fbclid=IwAR27aZML4er_dZLgD2e-URQdBoOK3L9hM8mauFpn3aFvAws7y3VVtXsYTvI

She writes about love, life, friendships and the importance of community spirit. Her books champion women, their strength and resilience and celebrate her beloved Yorkshire.

Her latest book – My One True North tackles the subject of moving on after grief with a light and joyous touch. The Daily Trumpet makes a large appearance and previous novels ‘The Teashop on the Corner’ and ‘Here Come the Girls’ are referenced.

Milly’s website is http://www.millyjohnson.co.uk. She is on Twitter as @millyjohnson, Instagram as @themillyjohnson and has a Facebook page @MillyJohnsonAuthor. She also has a monthly newsletter http://www.millyjohnson.co.uk/newsletter with exclusive, news, offers and competitions.

Snowed in at The Practice by Penny Parkes @CotswoldPenny @simonschusterUK @annecater @TeamBATC #blogtour #bookreview #Larkford #SnowedinatThePractice

Snowed In At the Practice Cover

Snowed in at The Practice written by Penny Parkes, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available for pre-order in ebook, audiobook and paperbook format in readiness for the publication on 14 November 2019.

The paperback will be available from all good book retailers including Waterstones, WHSmith, Foyles and amazon.

To pre-order links:

Waterstones: https://bit.ly/2C3HC2O

amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2pANVIt

Book Blurb

Dr Holly Graham is finding life with two sets of twins exhausting. Even with husband Dr Taffy Jones and devoted friend Elsie by her side, she is completely outnumbered. Making the transition back to work will be no easy feat, but a regular slot on Radio Larkford as their on-air doctor might be the perfect stepping stone – until an unexpected job offer changes everything…
Dr Alice Walker’s new canine clinic at Larkford Surgery with Coco, her assistance dog, has been a storming success. If only shipping her best friend, Dr Tilly Grainger, in from South America to cover for Holly had been such a smooth transition. It seems that Tilly isn’t finding life in the peaceful Cotswolds valley as rewarding as she’d hoped, and she is causing chaos…

Snowed in at the Practice BT Poster

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 the launch of Penny Parkes latest novel: Snowed in at The Practice.

This is my first visit to Larkford and it’s residents but when I read the synopsis of Penny Parkes fourth instalment in The Larkford series I just knew I’d feel welcomed.

Penny Parkes has managed to captivate her audience with an endearing story set around the medical practice in a Cotswold village.  There is plenty of wonderful light and shade to the storyline as it weaves itself around the lives of the doctors, it’s extended staff, family and friends.

Larkford is such a close-knit community and when Dr Holly Graham goes off on maternity leave the residents embrace the arrival of her twin baby girls but they soon miss her presence at the practice.  After a few months at home Holly too is missing her work and her patients, she is feeling a little lost in her new role and is desperate to feel like her old self again.  But as she goes through the emotions of motherhood again she starts to realise that her old self isn’t what she wants anymore and that she needs to find a new balance, not just for herself but for her team at the practice who are all going through personal and professional changes.

As this was my first introduction to the work of Penny Parkes I didn’t know any of the history surrounding the characters so I totally read this story with open eyes and heart and soon got trapped, in such a wonderful way, into the goings on of Dr Holly and her team at work and home.  I’ve had twins myself so know how crazy life becomes when you’ve got double trouble but Holly had this times two!

The storyline sways happily towards the festive season but as in reality life has a habit of throwing hurdles in people’s paths.  These hurdles were very emotive to read about and for the wider network of colleagues and residents of Larkford I felt my heartache for the cruelty.  The darkness in the storyline does lead onto some of the most tender and endearing moments I’ve ever read about and your emotions will get the better of you.

Snowed in at The Practice is wonderfully heart-warming full of life, laughter, love and tears.  I adored it and Penny Parkes has a new fan in me.

About the Author

snowed in ... Penny Parkes Author PicturePenny Parkes survived a Convent education largely thanks to a ready supply of inappropriate novels and her passion for writing and languages. She studied International Management in Bath and Germany, before gaining experience with the BBC. She then set up an independent Film Location Agency and spent many happy years organising shoots for film, television and advertising – thereby ensuring that she was never short of travel opportunities, freelance writing projects or entertaining anecdotes. Penny now lives in the Cotswolds with her husband, two children and new puppy. Her first novel, Out of Practice was winner of the RoNA for a Romantic Comedy Novel 2017.

Publisher Page: https://www.simonandschuster.co.uk/authors/Penny-Parkes/576636362

Twitter:  @CotswoldPenny

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

 

The Love Child by Rachel Hore @Rachelhore @simonschusterUK #TeamBATC @annecater #blogtour #bookreview

the love child

The Love Child written by Rachel Hore, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook and hardcover format.

The hardcover is available from all good book retailers including Waterstones, amazon, Foyles and an exclusive spredges edition from WHSmith.

To buy links:

WHSmith: https://bit.ly/2k7lE9E

amazon UK: https://amzn.to/2lESH5o

Waterstones: https://bit.ly/2m0bBUn

Book Blurb

A young mother’s sacrifice. A child’s desperate search for the truth . . .
London, 1917

When nineteen-year-old Alice Copeman becomes pregnant, she is forced by her father and stepmother to give up the baby. She simply cannot be allowed to bring shame upon her family. But all Alice can think about is the small, kitten-like child she gave away, and she mourns the father, a young soldier, so beloved, who will never have the chance to know his daughter.

Edith and Philip Burns, a childless couple, yearn for a child of their own. When they secretly adopt a baby girl, Irene, their life together must surely be complete. Irene grows up knowing that she is different from other children, but no one will tell her the full truth.

Putting hopes of marriage and children behind her, Alice embarks upon a pioneering medical career, striving to make her way in a male-dominated world. Meanwhile, Irene struggles to define her own life, eventually leaving her Suffolk home to find work in London.

As two extraordinary stories intertwine across two decades, will secrets long-buried at last come to light?

FINAL The Love Child BT Poster

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 the launch of Rachel Hore’s latest novel: The Love Child.

This is my first introduction to the work of Rachel Hore and I totally fell in love with her story telling.

The Love Child is an exceptional family saga with substance.  The author cleverly entangles you into her web of words and you become emotionally involved with the characters and storyline.

This is a story starting in 1917 when young women were encouraged to help out with the war effort and were also seen to take on jobs that were previously only undertaken by men.  The war brought a time of new beginnings for women and many were keen to increase their skills set.  One young woman doing her bit was Alice Copeman who as a VAD was nursing on the front.  Her time overseas was to become particularly memorable when Alice fell in love then suffered heart-breaking devastation with the death of her man but then her life was to take another twist and she found out she was pregnant out of wedlock.  Being with child out of wedlock was frowned upon in the early 20th century, Alice came from a well to do family and was forced to give up her child.

Suffering with another loss so soon after the death of her boyfriend brings spiralling levels of emotion to young Alice and the author takes us on a journey with Alice finding the strength to go on.

We also follow the story of a young girl who has never felt welcomed in her family and she feels a little lost in the world.  When Irene starts to pick up snippets of her heritage she feels compelled to learn more.

This is a wonderful story of discovery for two women in a time of advancing changes for women in the country.  With women’s rights slowly being considered and the introduction of the first birth control clinic in Britain women’s health and well-being were to make radical changes to the family unit and to the economy.

A highly emotive story spanning decades that will captivate you.

About the Author

Rachel Hore Author PicRachel Hore worked in London publishing for many years before moving with her family to Norwich, where she teaches publishing and creative writing at UEA. She is married to writer D. J. Taylor and they have three sons.

Visit Rachel at http://www.rachelhore.co.uk, or follow her on Twitter @Rachelhore

 

Summer at the Kindness Café by Victoria Walters @Vicky_Walters @TeamBATC @annecater #blogtour #bookreview #SummerAtTheKindnessCafe #feelgoodfiction

 

Summer at Kindess Cover

Summer at the Kindness Café written by Victoria Walters, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook and audiobook format and is due to be released in paperback format on 13th June 2019.

To buy/pre-order link: https://amzn.to/2WfIpVO

Book Blurb

Welcome to Brew, a cafe where kindness is almost as important as coffee… almost!

Abbie has fled London and the humiliation of not being able to make rent after being made redundant. Her sister, Louise, unlucky in love, has thrown herself into her career at the local hospital. And Eszter, who has travelled from Hungary with her daughter Zoe, is hoping to fulfil her husband’s dying wish: to reunite his family.

This summer, three very different women are inspired by the random acts of kindness written up on the Kindness Board at Brew, and decide to make a pact to be kinder to others and to themselves.

Can a little bit of kindness really change your life? Eszter, Abbie and Louise are about to find out!

**Summer at the Kindness Cafe was previously published as a four-part serial titled Random Acts of Kindness. This is the complete story in one package.**

Summer at the Kindness Cafe BT Poster

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 the paperback launch of Victoria Walter’s latest novel: Summer at the Kindness Café.

Summer at the Kindness Café is centred around three young women who have felt heartbreak and loss in their own way.  Abbie, Louise and Eszter have come to escape, make amends, recoup in a little fictional town called Littlewood.  As in most towns there is a welcoming café and Brew has a little special something about it, apart from the generosity of the owners it has a sort of novelty that draws visitors in and reminds them of the good in people all around them.

A bond soon starts developing within the three women and they share the ethos of the kindness and hospitality stemmed from the cafe and this is spreading to all that they touch.  Littlewood becomes an haven for the women as they each moved to the town for different reasons.  After a little while Abbie, Louise and Eszter soon become settled with their new lives.  New friendships for the women are being made bringing much hope for the future but life has a way of throwing stumbling blocks in their paths.  Will all the good that the women have built in the little town soon be a forgotten memory?

Summer at the Kindness Café is a gorgeous, heart-warming tale that is quite inspirational.  Kindness doesn’t cost anything.  There is a definite cosy, feel-good feel to this novel and it is the perfect summer holiday read.

I have worked in an Infant and Secondary School and I can totally see the concept of the spreading and paying back of kindness working with children.  Kindness is not age related and has no barriers, the inspiration from Victoria Walters novel could prove a very useful tool in schools building morale, ownership of actions and a sense of togetherness.

About the Author

Victoria Walters Author PicVictoria Walters was discovered in a short story competition run by Simon & Schuster’s The Hot Bed. Her first novel, The Second Love of my Life was published by Headline, and she returns to the fold with Summer at the Kindness Cafe, her second novel.

Website: https://victoria-writes.com/

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

The Mother of all Christmases by Milly Johnson book review

 

the mother of all christmases

The Mother of all Christmases written by Milly Johnson, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook, paperback and audiobook format.

The book is available from all good book retailers including Waterstones, WHSmith, Foyles and amazon.  The book can also be found at certain supermarkets.

To buy link (Waterstones): https://bit.ly/2QdkG5B

To buy link for ebook (amazon UK): https://amzn.to/2CFWntA

Product Details

Eve Glace – co-owner of the theme park Winterworld – is having a baby and her due date is a perfectly timed 25th December. And she’s decided that she and her husband Jacques should renew their wedding vows with all the pomp that was missing the first time. But growing problems at Winterworld keep distracting them …

Annie Pandoro and her husband Joe own a small Christmas cracker factory, and are well set up and happy together despite life never blessing them with a much-wanted child. But when Annie finds that the changes happening to her body aren’t typical of the menopause but pregnancy, her joy is uncontainable.

Palma Collins has agreed to act as a surrogate, hoping the money will get her out of the gutter in which she finds herself. But when the couple she is helping split up, is she going to be left carrying a baby she never intended to keep?

Annie, Palma and Eve all meet at the ‘Christmas Pudding Club’, a new directive started by a forward-thinking young doctor to help mums-to-be mingle and share their pregnancy journeys. Will this group help each other to find love, contentment and peace as Christmas approaches?

christmas cracker clipart

Wow!  What a whirlwind of emotions that the author Milly Johnson has taken her readers on in her latest romcom: The Mother of all Christmases.  I was roaring with laughter one minute and the next my heart felt physically crushed.  The author has sensitively written a story that contains life in all it’s glory including all the low points.  Although there is sadness within the storyline it has been beautifully written and there is an overwhelming heart-warming theme running through the story.

Once again author Milly Johnson has written a story with characters from the heart.  You can recognise and relate to them and a few of your favourite characters from previous novels crop up in this book making it the more wonderful to hear from them again.  Although you can read The Mother of all Christmases as a standalone I would highly recommend reading A Winter Flame prior to this novel so you can fully appreciate the back history surrounding a few of the characters.  I would also recommend reading the novella The Barn on Half Moon Hill for an extended story that relates to a few of the characters.

The Mother of all Christmases is about three women, from very different backgrounds, facing a new challenge in their lives.  One that would have them all coming together and sharing their new journey.  There is Annie who co-owns the Cracker Factory with her Italian husband Joe.  Eve co-owns Winterworld with her husband Jacques.  Palma is a young woman that has felt lost for a long time and finds herself in a situation which she believes is her way out of a disastrous rut she has found herself in.  These three women were to form a bond that would become strong and help them through challenges that came their way.

An extremely heart-warming story that took you into the lives of Annie, Eve and Palma smiling and laughing with them and then holding their hands when they needed strength.  Beautiful and poignant and filled with the most endearing Yorkshire charm.  Milly Johnson, The Mother of all Christmases is a cracker of a read!

About the Author (as shown on amazon page)

Milly Johnson was born, raised and still lives in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. As well as being an author of 15 published novels, 2 short story books and 2 novellas, she is also a copywriter for the greetings card industry, a joke-writer, a columnist, after dinner speaker, poet, BBC newspaper reviewer, and a sometimes BBC radio presenter.

She won the RoNA for Best Romantic Comedy Novel of 2014 and 2016 and the Yorkshire Society award for Arts and Culture 2015.

She writes about love, life, friendships and that little bit of the magic that sometimes crops up in real life. She likes owls, cats, meringues, handbags and literary gifts – but hates marzipan. She is very short.

Website: http://www.millyjohnson.co.uk  (Milly has a monthly newsletter with exclusive news, offers and competitions and is well worth signing up to, please look on the website for more details).

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

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

You Me Everything by Catherine Isaac book review

you me everything

You Me Everything written by Catherine Isaac, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook, hardcover and audiobook format.

To buy link:  https://goo.gl/ZRuwFN

Product Details (as per amazon page)

You and me, we have history.
We have a child together.
We have kept secrets from each other for far too long.
This summer, in the beautiful hills of the Dordogne, it is time for everything to change.

castelnaud_en_dordogne

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 is a simply beautiful novel with such a profoundly poignant storyline that grips at your heart leaving it with an ache for the characters you have learned to love amongst the pages.  For a long time I had a certain book as my favourite story of all time but I do believe Catherine Isaac has written a book worthy of the top spot of my and I would think many, many others, all time favourite reads.  This story is simply stunning.

Although there is an underlying sadness to the story you are left feeling hopeful. Hopeful for a miracle, hopeful for a change, hopeful that love will find a way through all that life brings your way.

Young lovers Jess and Adam were living the dream after meeting and falling in love at university.  Life was full of hopes and dreams until Jess fell pregnant and their relationship started to show cracks and couldn’t cope with this enormous change in their relationship status.  10 years down the line Jess has more or less single handed brought up William who’s a bright, gifted boy full of inquisitivity.  However, since William was born Jess has had to cope with another critical change to her family unit when her mother was diagnosed with a life threatening condition.  With Jess’ mum now in a care home one of her mother’s wishes is for Jess and William to go to France and visit William’s dad, Jess’ ex, Adam.  Jess’ mum wants Adam to become a bigger part of William’s life, a life that up to now he hasn’t spent much time in.

Jess is anxious about meeting Adam again, she’s been let down so much in the past and fears that Adam will just repeat his past demeanours but now he just doesn’t have Jess’ heart to break but his son Williams.

The author, Catherine Isaac, deals with life in it’s rawest form and tackles it with sensitivity and grace.  However, she injects warmth and humour bringing touches of brightness to the story.  This story is all about letting your heart remember the good times, the nostalgic memories that reignite why the love you had was there in the first place.  A story of letting go, a story of letting love find it’s way to bring light back into the darker times.

Beautiful, stunning storytelling about life, love and hope.  A must read!

To learn more about the author Catherine Isaac please visit the following pages:

Website:  https://www.catherine-isaac.com/

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

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

 

 

The Sunday Lunch Club by Juliet Ashton book review

sunday lunch club

The Sunday Lunch Club written by Juliet Ashton, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available from 19th April 2018 in ebook and paperback format.

To pre-order/buy link:  https://goo.gl/7ZaA3V

Product details (as per amazon page)

The first rule of Sunday Lunch Club is … don’t make any afternoon plans.

Every few Sundays, Anna and her extended family and friends get together for lunch. They talk, they laugh, they bicker, they eat too much. Sometimes the important stuff is left unsaid, other times it’s said in the wrong way.

Sitting between her ex-husband and her new lover, Anna is coming to terms with an unexpected pregnancy at the age of forty. Also at the table are her ageing grandmother, her promiscuous sister, her flamboyantly gay brother and a memory too terrible to contemplate.

Until, that is, a letter arrives from the person Anna scarred all those years ago. Can Anna reconcile her painful past with her uncertain future?

table setting clipart

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.

Firstly, I’d like to talk about the cover of this novel, it is such an appealing colour and quite striking and sitting on a shelf amongst other books it would stand out for me.

I adored this wonderful book by Juliet Ashton and The Sunday Lunch Club is her fourth book.  I do need to find the time reading her back catalogue.

Whilst reading this novel I felt like it would work wonderfully as a Sunday night TV serial. The drama and emotion surrounding each member of the family captivated me. I felt the raw emotion from each character as they were struggling to cope with demons from their past and the demons that they had carried all throughout their life. Each sibling and their respective partners and friends had their own unique personality but they complimented the family unit as a whole. Even though their was plenty of drama and hurdles for the siblings to climb there was plenty of fun interspersed within the storyline.  The novel had a wonderful cosy feeling about it, a feeling of togetherness between the family and I especially liked the powerful bond between the grandchildren and Dinkie.

A beautiful, heartfelt novel that was full of family sagas but had an intense feeling of family spirit surviving all that was dealt their way.

To learn more about the author Julie Ashton please visit the following pages:

Author website:   http://www.berniestrachan.com/
Twitter:   http://www.twitter.com/julietstories

The Perfectly Imperfect Woman by Milly Johnson book review

the perflectly imperfect woman

The Perfectly Imperfect Woman written by Milly Johnson, publisher Simon & Schuster UK is available NOW in ebook, hardcover and audiobook format.

To buy link:  https://goo.gl/F7UPYp

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Marnie Salt has made so many mistakes in her life that she fears she will never get on the right track. But when she ‘meets’ an old lady on a baking chatroom and begins confiding in her, little does she know how her life will change.

Arranging to see each other for lunch, Marnie finds discovers that Lilian is every bit as mad and delightful as she’d hoped – and that she owns a whole village in the Yorkshire Dales, which has been passed down through generations. And when Marnie needs a refuge after a crisis, she ups sticks and heads for Wychwell – a temporary measure, so she thinks.

But soon Marnie finds that Wychwell has claimed her as its own and she is duty bound not to leave. Even if what she has to do makes her as unpopular as a force 12 gale in a confetti factory! But everyone has imperfections, as Marnie comes to realise, and that is not such a bad thing – after all, your flaws are perfect for the heart that is meant to love you.

strawberry cheesecake clipart

This latest novel by Milly Johnson was perfectly perfect!

Once again Yorkshire lass Milly Johnson has injected her warmth, humour and charm into the words spelled out across the pages.  Whether you are a fellow Yorkshire lass or lover of a story that injects so much of the cultural charm of the locality in a story you can fully appreciate the author’s love of her county.  Recognising locations brings a feeling of home and also helps the story come to life.

Marnie Salt has always felt different all her life, from an early age the feeling of her love not being reciprocated has stayed with her from childhood to her adult life, with a string of failed relationships behind her.  When the office heartthrob pays her some attention she feels her luck in love is about to change.

Marnie loves baking, especially cheesecakes from memories she shared as a child with a dear old lady. When Marnie gets chatting to a fellow cheesecake fan on a website forum she builds up a budding friendship with Lillian.  Little does she realise that this new friendship is the start of something new to happen in her life.

Milly Johnson has filled this heartwarming tale with a touch of mystery with hints of myths and legends from centuries ago that left a curse on a small village in the Yorkshire Dales.  I could feel the sparkles of magic amongst the delightful charm of the storyline.  The characters were easily recognisable and written with such warmth and you soon wanted to champion Marnie and all that was dealt her way.  The storyline had many twists and turns and was very poignant and emotive at times but there was a wonderful warm undercurrent of inspiration, fun, love and community spirit.  I was romantised by the charm of this quaint Yorkshire village and I fell in love with The Perfectly Imperfect Woman.

To learn more about the author Milly Johnson please visit the following pages:

Website:  http://millyjohnson.co.uk/

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

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

The Queen of Wishful Thinking by Milly Johnson book review

queen of wishful thinking

The Queen of Wishful Thinking written by Milly Johnson, publisher Simon & Schuster UK, is available NOW in ebook and hardcover format.  The book will be available in paperback format from the 4th May 2017.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon link)

When Lewis Harley has a health scare in his early forties, he takes it as a wake-up call. So he and his  wife Charlotte leave behind life in the fast lane and Lewis opens the antique shop he has dreamed of. Bonnie Brookland was brought up in the antiques trade and now works for the man who bought out her father’s business, but she isn’t happy there. So when she walks into Lew’s shop, she knows this is the place for her.

As Bonnie and Lew start to work together, they soon realise that there is more to their relationship than either thought. But Bonnie is trapped in an unhappy marriage, and Lew and Charlotte have more problems than they care to admit. Each has secrets in their past which are about to be uncovered. Can they find the happiness they both deserve?

rainbow umbrella

Milly Johnson has a knack of creating characters you instantly warm to and want to champion. This is how I felt about Lewis and Bonnie, the two main characters in The Queen of Wishful Thinking. Lewis Harley and Bonnie Brookland haven’t had an easy life; what with Lewis’ sudden heart attack two years ago which made him take stock of his job in London and Bonnie’s grief for the losses she has incurred in the past and also the despair of living in a loveless marriage. Bonnie was in desperate need of a new job and approached Lewis, the owner of the new antique shop, Pot of Gold, for a possible vacancy. Fate has played a big part in putting these two people together, like two pieces of a missing jigsaw. The Pot of Gold was such a warm, friendly antique shop and working in the shop was giving Bonnie a new hope for the future and she was feeling the strength to make big decisions about her personal life.

Lewis’ own personal life takes a dramatic turn and the shop with Bonnie and her quirky friends turn Pot of Gold into a lifesaving haven for many that set foot in it’s door.

Bonnie’s husband is not happy with the changes she makes and he takes up drastic action himself which leads to a series of secrets and revelations being unearthed that could rock Bonnie’s future.

Emotions are running high for both Lewis and Bonnie and the future is looking very unsettled.

This was such a wonderful heartfelt story. The characters were written with such warmth and personality. I particularly liked the array of eccentric sub-characters. As always Milly sets her stories in her beloved Yorkshire, with it’s wonderful backdrop of moorlands and little villages. I particularly love this about Milly’s novels the location and dialect of the characters are very relatable and charming and you can hear the characters come to life in your head. I was surprised but thrilled with the twists and turns in this tale which left me turning the pages to find out what happens next. A gorgeous story that had me hooked from start to finish.

To find out more about Milly Johnson and her books please do visit the following pages:

Website (which I recommend signing up for Milly’s newsletter as she offers many competitions and informative news):  http://www.millyjohnson.co.uk/

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

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