Book Review: Wartime with the Cornish Girls by Betty Walker

I love a good historical fiction book and Wartime with the Cornish Girls by Betty Walker sounded like a really good read with the bonus of it being set in Cornwall on of my favourite places.

Genre: Historical Fiction

Pages: 349

What’s the book about?

1941. The Blitz rages over London.
And even in Cornwall, the war is being fought…

When Violet loses her sister in the Blitz, she must take her nieces to safety in Cornwall. On the coast, she meets carefree chorus girl Eva, who is also running from the dangers of London.

But Porthcurno hides a secret military base, and soon Violet and Eva realise there’s a battle to fight in Cornwall, too.

Together with local Hazel, who works on the base, they must come together to help the war effort. But will their friendship be enough to keep them safe?

My thoughts:

Wartime with the Cornish Girls follows Violet and Eva who move to Cornwall to escape war in London. However, far from escaping the war the girls soon realise that there is a war to be fought from the whole of the UK as they find a secret military base in Porthcurno. Together with local girl Hazel they must come together with the community to fight the war.

I have read many historical sagas and this one rates right up there with my favourites. I loved the setting, Cornwall in wartime and the secret military base, the unsavoury characters, the friendship and romance. Betty Walker has created some well rounded characters that I really want to follow throughout the war in her other books in this series. The plot has some twists and turns that you don’t see coming which is really nice in an historical read.

I am really excited to see what’s next for the girls and their families. This is perfect for fans of Nancy Revell and Fiona Ford.

About the Author:

Betty Walker lives in Cornwall with her large family, where she enjoys gardening and coastal walks. She loves discovering curious historical facts, and devotes much time to investigating her family tree. She also writes bestselling contemporary thrillers as Jane Holland.

You can buy the book here.

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Book Review: The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman

I had read and heard so much about The Thursday Murder Club but hadn’t picked myself up a copy until early this year. I read this book back in March and loved it. I have recently brought the second book and cannot wait to see what all the characters are going to get up to in this instalment.

Genre: Humorous Fiction, Crime

Pages: 382

What’s the book about?

In a peaceful retirement village, four unlikely friends meet up once a week to investigate unsolved murders.

But when a brutal killing takes place on their very doorstep, the Thursday Murder Club find themselves in the middle of their first live case.

Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahim and Ron might be pushing eighty but they still have a few tricks up their sleeves.

Can our unorthodox but brilliant gang catch the killer before it’s too late?

My thoughts:

I am not sure why I held off on reading The Thursday Murder Club as there were so many great reviews for this book and as soon as I picked it up I was hooked.

Set in a retirement village, a murder club is set up by four friends who have an interest in solving crime, especially murders. Elizabeth, Joyce, Ibrahm and Ron however, find themselves right in the middle of a murder and task themselves with solving the case.

As you can imagine with the characters pushing on eighty there is great humour in what they are hoping to achieve. Richard brings to life the retirement village and these four friends vividly in the pages of this book. I liked reading from the different characters perspectives and getting to know each of them throughout the book. Richard leaves bread crumbs in each chapter, creating some surprises along the way that kept me pretty much guessing right up until then end.

The Thursday Murder Club was an outstanding read and took me out of my comfort zone reading something I might not normally have read.

About the Author:

Richard Osman is an author, producer and television presenter. The Thursday Murder Club is his first novel. He is well known for TV shows including Pointless and Richard Osman’s House of Games. As the creative director of Endemol UK, Richard has worked as an executive producer on numerous shows including Deal Or No Deal and 8 Out of 10 Cats. He is also a regular on panel and game shows such as Have I Got News For You, Would I Lie To You and Taskmaster.

You can buy this book here.

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The Book Share by Phaedra Patrick – Book Review

Book Review: The Paris Connection by Lorraine Brown

I picked this book up in Tesco while waiting for the husband and after reading the back of it I made the mistake of reading the first few pages and didn’t want to put it down, so I ended up buying it.

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction, Humorous Fiction

Pages: 337

What is the book about?

Could one split second change her life forever?

Hannah and Si are in love and on the same track – that is, until their train divides on the way to a wedding. The next morning, Hannah wakes up in Paris and realises that her boyfriend (and her ticket) are 300 miles away in Amsterdam!

But then Hannah meets Léo on the station platform, and he’s everything Si isn’t. Spending the day with him in Paris forces Hannah to question how well she really knows herself – and whether, sometimes, you need to go in the wrong direction to find everything you’ve been looking for…

My thoughts:

The Paris Connection was quite simply, the funniest, most romantic book I have read in a while.

Hannah and Si are on a train heading towards Si’s sisters wedding, they have come from a wonderful holiday together but the train divides and Hannah ends up in Paris with Si 300 miles away in Amsterdam. Hannah then meets Leo and there is a connection. They spend the day together in Paris while waiting for a train to Amsterdam and Hannah begins to learn things about herself and questions her life with Si.

I wanted Leo and Hannah to stay in Paris for ever. The time they spent there was so romantic, magical and healing for Hannah and as a reader I felt it too. Lorraine Brown creates such a warm, emotional and funny atmosphere in The Paris Connection that I really didn’t want to read it to quickly but couldn’t help myself from devouring it all in one go.

I loved Hannah but Leo is a really special character too. They really bring out the best in each other despite a rocky start. The laugh out loud moments really make this story come alive. Lorraine Brown has created a really special story about going in a different direction in life to perhaps find what you have been searching for all along.

I am looking forward to more from Lorraine Brown.

About the Author:

Lorraine lives in London with her partner and their 8-year-old son. She previously trained as an actress and has recently completed a postgraduate diploma in psychodynamic counselling. UNCOUPLING is her debut novel and will be published in the UK by Orion Fiction on 18th February 2021 and in the US by G.P. Putnam’s Sons on 24th August 2021 (as THE PARIS CONNECTION). For monthly updates, a behind-the-scenes look at the world of publishing and Lorraine’s monthly favourites (including TV, movies and books), please go to her website on http://www.lorrainebrownbooks.com and sign up to her newsletter.

You can by the book here.

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Book Review: The Bookshop of Second Chances by Jackie Fraser

This book has a lot to answer for. Since reading this book I have taken a real liking to stories that are set in bookshops or that have a book related or writing theme to them. So expect a few reviews in the coming months featuring them.

Genre: Contemporary women’s fiction, Romance.

Pages: 312

What’s the book about?

Thea’s having a bad month. Not only has she been made redundant, she’s also discovered her husband of nearly twenty years is sleeping with one of her friends. And he’s not sorry – he’s leaving.
 
Bewildered and lost, Thea doesn’t know what to do. But, when she learns the great-uncle she barely knew has died and left her his huge collection of second-hand books and a house in the Scottish Lowlands, she seems to have been offered a second chance.
 
Running away to a little town where no one knows her seems like exactly what Thea needs. But when she meets the aristocratic Maltravers brothers – grumpy bookshop owner Edward and his estranged brother Charles, Lord Hollinshaw – her new life quickly becomes just as complicated as the life she was running from…

My thoughts:

Escaping to the Scottish Lowlands seems like the only option for Thea after the bad month she is having, being made redundant and then finding out that her husband, the man she thought she would be spending the rest of her life with, is cheating on her with her friend. Thea discovers that a great uncle has left her a house in the Scottish Lowlands as well as a large collection of books and hoping that by moving away will give her a chance to mend her broken heart Thea takes the plunge but once there she meets two brothers who quite quickly make life for Thea even more complicated again.

The Bookshop of Second Chances is Jackie Frasers first novel. I adored reading it. Visiting the Scottish lowlands through her eyes was beautiful and magical. I found her writing style remined me little of Trisha Ashley’s, and the characters were quite quirky.

My favourite scenes who those at the beach house and how romantic they were, drinking by the fire under the stars. I loved the romance that blossomed and the depth of emotions that Thea went through to find herself. The bookshop was all that I hoped it would be to and I loved how the very essence of the bookshop fell from the pages.

The Bookshop of Second Chances was a fantastic read one that I found very difficult to put down once I had started reading. A brilliant first novel and I cannot wait for more.

About the Author:

Hello, I’m Jackie, and The Bookshop of Second Chances is my first published novel.

I’ve been writing for a long time, and I’ve written lots of books, mostly to amuse myself. Writing is the only thing I like as much as reading, and both have brought me a lot of pleasure.

I live in Hampshire with my boyfriend and our very elderly cat. When I’m not reading, writing or editing (my day job) you might find me climbing over gates to look at stone circles, taking photographs of rusty things, or poking about in antique shops.

You can buy the book here.

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The Book Share by Phaedra Patrick – Book Review

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Book Review: Under a Greek Moon by Carol Kirkwood.

I read Under a Greek Moon back in January and posted a review on Instagram but thought I would share my review here to.

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Pages: 360

What’s the Book about?

One woman returns to the island that changed her life forever

A-list actress Shauna Jackson has the perfect life. Fame, fortune, marriage. Or so it seems.

Running from a scandal, Shauna flees to the place that changed her life twenty years ago, the idyllic Greek island of Ithos.

Captivated once more by the azure seas and scented olive groves, bittersweet memories resurface of one summer, one unforgettable man, and a long-hidden secret.

Shauna can escape Hollywood, but can she escape her past?

My thoughts:

Wow! I loved Under a Greek Moon by Carol Kirkwood.

When I saw this on the shelf in Sainsburys I thought I recognised the author and upon reading the blurb I was completely drawn in by Shauna Jackson and needing to find out about her past in the beautiful Greek island of Ithos. I love watching Carol on the BBC and was intrigued to read her novel.

I was not disappointed! Under a Greek Moon was as breath taking as the cover looks. The story was so well written. I loved Shauna Jackson and her romance with Demetrios as it played out over the years. I also fell in love with the Greek Island of Ithos and its beautiful beaches and hospitality.

I was totally captivated by this wonderful story, that is full of passion, sercerts and love for family.

I am very excited for Carol Kirkwoods next book, The Hotel on the Riviera coming out July 2022, so look out for my review later this year.

About the Author:

Carol Kirkwood is one of our most loved TV personalities. Millions of viewers and listeners know her for her weather reports on BBC Breakfast, Radio 2‘s Breakfast show, Wimbledon fortnight and for waltzing into our hearts on Strictly Come Dancing. Carol was inspired to write her first novel by her passion for travel and her love of Hollywood glamour. Off-screen, Carol can often be found ensconced in a book, singing, dancing and taking long walks in the countryside.

You can buy the book here.

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Butterfly Sisters by Jenny Hale – Book Review

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Book Review: The Book Share by Phaedra Patrick

The Book Share by Phaedra Patrick quite literally jumped out at me from the shelf in the book shop. I mean, any title with the word book in it and with a cover image depicting a woman sitting reading, had, one me over already and that’s without reading the back of the book.

Genre: Humorous fiction, Women’s fiction

Pages: 384

What’s the book about?

It’s never too late to start a new chapter…

Liv Green loves losing herself in a good book. But her everyday reality is less romantic, cleaning houses for people who barely give her the time of day. So when she lands a job housekeeping for her personal hero and mega-bestselling author Essie Starling, she can’t believe her luck.

When Essie dies unexpectedly, Liv is left with a life-changing last wish: to complete Essie’s final novel. To do so, change-averse Liv will have to step away from the fictitious worlds in her head, and into Essie’s shoes. As she begins to write, she uncovers a surprising connection between the two women – and a secret that will change Liv’s life forever…

My thoughts:

Liv Green is me in a nut shell. A book lover, lost in her imagination and dream world going about her daily life pushing her dreams to the side. Liv loves her day job cleaning and she always does a good job but she has become a bit of a push over and taken for granted. That is until Liv gets a job housekeeping for her favourite bestselling author, Essie Starling. Liv cannot believe that she gets to spend time with her favourite author even if it is just being in the same building cleaning, while Essie types away in her study. Then Essie dies and everything changes for Liv. Her life is turned upside down and she realises that she needs to take in hand the dreams she once had to be truly happy in life.

The Book Share is one of my favourite books this year. I loved it from cover to cover. I was completely drawn in to Liv’s world and all her emotions and have never wanted a character to succeed more. Phaedra Patrick has captured a pure book lovers dream in the character of Liv, she is vulnerable, stronger than she realises, resilient and a complete joy to read about. I adored the relationship Liv had with Essie. Essie Starling is an eccentric character and one I feel could have a whole book written about her, although I don’t think she would have liked that. All the characters in this story are brilliantly written into the plot and really do make this story shine.

As the cover of The Book Share says ‘its never too late to start a new chapter’, and that is exactly what this story left me feeling like. I wanted more when it ended only because I loved it so much and didn’t want to say goodbye to Liv Green.

I will defiantly be reading more books by Phaedra Patrick as The Book Share was a complete joy to read and has captured my heart. I will be re-reading this again and again!

About the Author:

Phaedra Patrick studied art and marketing and has worked as a stained glass artist, film festival organiser and communications manager. An award-winning short story writer, she now writes full time in Saddleworth where she lives with her family.

Her debut novel, The Curious Charms of Arthur Pepper, was translated into over twenty languages worldwide and has been optioned by a major Hollywood film studio. Her second novel, Rise and Shine, Benedict Stone (named Wishes Under the Willow Tree in the UK), is also under option in the US as a TV movie. Her third novel is The Library of Lost and Found, and the fourth one is titled The Secrets of Love Story Bridge (The Secrets of Sunshine in the UK).

You can find/follow Phaedra at www.phaedra-patrick.com where she shares more information and writing tips. She’s also on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

You can buy the book here.

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The One by Claire Frost – Book Review

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The One by Claire Frost Blog Tour Review

I was very excited to be asked to read and review this amazing book, The One by Claire Frost published by Simon and Shuster. I was also asked to be apart of the wonderful blog tour.

If you want to buy The One by Claire Frost you can buy it here.

What happens when you lose the love of your life just three months after you meet him?

Lottie Brown has finally found The One. Leo is everything she’s ever wanted – he’s handsome, kind, funny and totally gets her. Three months into their relationship, Lottie is in love and happier than ever before. 

But then Leo tragically dies, and Lottie is left floundering.

As she struggles to stop her life falling apart, Lottie learns more about the man she thought she knew, and starts to question whether Leo really was as perfect as he seemed…

Chells and Books Review

Wow! This book is incredible, I am almost lost for words it really is that good.

The One sounds like it will be a sad emotional read and that is the initial reaction I’ve had when I read the blurb or mention it to friends, but I can reassure you that it is far from that. I felt hopeful and so proud of Lottie and how far she had come from the start of the book to the end.

Lottie Brown is one of my all time favourite heroines. I loved her and found she was totally relatable. There was some really funny moments, romantic moments and emotional moments, Claire has really captured it all in this book and I was hooked. Lottie has fallen in love fast and hard and then has it is all suddenly taken away from her, this brings about so many emotions for her that lead her to question her relationship and her life. There are some difficult times ahead for Lottie but the love from her sisters and regular pub meet ups really help Lottie to talk through everything and make some choices on what she can do about things.

This is the heart warming moments that really shine through for me, the love story between Lottie and her sisters as well as the romantic love story that Lottie goes on.

This is by far Claire’s best novel! I loved it! One of the best books of 2022 for sure!

About Claire Frost

Claire Frost grew up in Manchester, the middle of three sisters. She always wanted to do a job that involved writing, so after studying Classics at Bristol University she found a job in magazines. For the last 10 years she’s worked at The Sun on Sunday’s Fabulous magazine, where she is Assistant Editor and Books Editor. She can mostly be found at her desk buried beneath an ever-increasing pile of books or at home writing funny and heart-warming novels about love, life and social media.

Follow the Blog Tour

If you want to buy The One by Claire Frost you can buy it here.

Before the Dawn by Emma Pass Blog Tour Review

I was delighted to be asked to read and review Before the Dawn by Emma Pass, after reading the description I could not wait to start reading.

Before the Dawn is published by Aria and can be brought here.

When everything you hold dear is torn apart by war, can love put you back together again?

It’s 1943, and the Second World War is raging. Ruby Mottram works for her local newspaper, the Bartonford Herald, typing up adverts and obituaries, whilst dreaming of a more exciting life. Between her shifts as an ARP warden and caring for her ailing father, the chance for escape doesn’t come often to Devon.

Meanwhile, in America’s deep south, Sam Archer is hatching a plan to raise enough money to get his mother and sister away from his abusive stepfather. Using falsified documents to hide his age, he enlists with the U.S. Army.

Two chance encounters bring Ruby and Sam together from opposite sides of the Atlantic, giving them the chance of love, hope and freedom from their troubled lives. But fate, in the shape of D-Day and Omaha Beach, has other ideas.

When their very lives are at risk, will their promise to wait for one another be what keeps them alive?

Chells and Books Review

Before the Dawn set in WW2 is a gripping tale of heartbreak, love and growing up in a war torn world. I loved it from start to finish and sat up late into the night

I loved Ruby! Ruby is tied down by life care for her father, working at the local paper and taking on war work as an ARP warden, she is only young but life is looking like she will be stuck living and working in Bartonford for ever and things get worse when her grandmother moves in too. However, when the American arrive and bring some excitement to the sleepy village in Devon Ruby finds herself falling in love with American Sam despite having to keep their blossoming romance a secret. As war rages it keeps them apart, I loved reading the dramatic war scenes and how Ruby has to keep it together on the home front, as she hopefully awaits Sam’s save return.

Emma has written an exciting, gripping, heart breaking and heart warming romance set in WW2. I fell in love with Sam and Ruby and was gripped by each event has it happened. This story really kept me on my toes and I went through every emotion you can imagine. I was transported with Sam as he landed on the Omaha Beach and as he struggled to make it back to Ruby, gripped by the scenes around him. I could feel the love for each other falling from the pages .

I really cannot wait to re-read Before the Dawn again just to re-live this beautiful historical love story.

About Emma Pass

Emma Pass has been making up stories for as long as she can remember; she reckons it’s the most fun you can have without attracting attention from the authorities. She wrote her first novel, aged 13, in maths lessons with her notebook hidden under her work. After school, she went to art college, but soon realized she wasn’t cut out to be a painter and decided to stick with writing.

By day, Emma works as a library assistant and lives with her husband and crazy greyhound G-Dog in the North East Midlands.

Before the Dawn can be brought here.

Butterfly Sisters by Jenny Hale Book Review

I got asked to read and review Butterfly Sisters by Jenny Hale by the publishers Harperth Road and I was very excited to be able to read another book by Jenny Hale as I have loved her books in the past. I am also part of the blog tour for this book and I will share the poster at the bottom of this post so you to can follow along.

About to land her biggest deal yet, Leigh Henderson is on her game. Nothing can get in her way. Except Rebecca Mayer, who’d sashayed in a few weeks ago with a former client list that would fill the entire hallway to Leigh’s office. When her boss unexpectedly offers the deal to Rebecca and tells Leigh he’s letting her go, Leigh finds herself without a job.

But that’s the least of her worries.

Her mother has some news that will change everything. She’s asked Leigh and her sister Meredith to meet her at the family cabin on Old Hickory Lake. Not only has Leigh been unable to track down her sister for years, but going back to the cabin would mean dealing with the loss of her beloved grandmother and also chance running into her old flame Colton Harris, the one love she’s never been able to completely let go of.

Will confronting her grief, speaking to her estranged sister, and forcing herself to face the love she’d left behind help Leigh to learn who she really is?

Chells and Books Review

I am really enjoying reading romance/women’s fiction books that are set in America and Butterfly Sisters in set in Tennessee. I have loved Jenny’s books that she has written in the past and they are all really amazing reads with that cosy romantic feel to them and Butterfly Sisters has that too but this also has a contemporary feel to it as well which I really enjoyed. This is one of Jenny Hales best books.

In this story we have a second chance at romance and I loved the build up to it, reading about the past and how the love develops second time around. Leigh as a character develops a lot over the story as she comes to terms with the struggles she has with her sister. These two sisters have a complicated relationship but by returning to their nans cabin and facing the past they learn more about themselves. I loved reading about it and although we all know Jenny’s stories always have a happy ending the plat and character development made the pages turn.

Butterfly Sisters was a brilliant read and I would highly recommend it. If you are a fan of Jenny Hale the Butterfly Sisters is next level good. A brilliant heart-warming read!

If you would like to buy a copy of this brilliant read you can find a copy here.

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