Book Review: The Bridesmaid by Nina Manning @ninamanning78 @rararesources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review The Bridesmaid by Nina Manning

Blurb

From the moment they met as children, Sasha knew that beautiful, wealthy, and confident Caitlin would always be her absolute best friend. Sasha would do anything to make Caitlin happy.

Even keep her darkest secrets…

The years have passed, but their friendship remains. And when Caitlin announces she’s getting married there is only one choice for the role of bridesmaid. Sasha will make sure Caitlin’s wedding is as beautiful and perfect as she is. Won’t she?

But as the big day approaches, cracks begin to appear. Because no matter what Sasha does, she never seems to make Caitlin happy.

And the secrets that once bound these two friends, now threaten to rip them apart for good…

Review

This was the first Nina Manning book I have read and it really enjoyed it. It did take me a while to get into it but I became gripped and couldn’t put it down. I really enjoyed the characters and setting. It was a wonderful read.

4/5

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Authors Bio

Nina Manning studied psychology and was a restaurant-owner and private chef (including to members of the royal family). She is the founder and co-host of Sniffing The Pages, a book review podcast. The Daughter in Law is her debut psychological thriller. The Guilty Wife was published in March 2020, The House Mate was published in October 2020.The Bridesmaid is published May 2021. She lives in Dorset in the UK.

Book Review: Your Life or Mine by Vicki Bradley @vbradleywriter @rararesources

Here is my review of the latest release from Vicki Bradley, Your Life or Mine.

Blurb

There were only ever two choices – your life or mine.Alana Loxton was part of the all-female team to take down Barratt, a notorious serial killer.

He is safely behind bars when one of the detectives goes missing.

Her disappearance, and the connection to the killer, could be a coincidence – but when her body is discovered days later, a link begins to form.Then another detective from the team goes missing and the situation becomes horrifically clear.

Someone is picking them off one by one – and Alana’s name is next on the list . . .

Review

What an incredibly gripping read Your Life or Mine was. It was the first book so have read by Vicki Bradley and it most certainly won’t be the last.

I enjoyed everything about this book, it was the perfect psychological read. I had to pace myself as I didn’t want it to end.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Your Life or Mine and look forward to reading more from this author.

5/5

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Book Review: Spring Siren by Georgina Troy @GeorginaTroy @rararesources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review Spring Siren by Georgina Troy.

Blurb

When Finn Gallichan, the new man in artist Jools Jones’ life leaves the boardwalk to go travelling for several months she’s not too worried, she has her paintings to work on as well as keeping busy helping her grandmother run Boardwalk Books, the only second-hand bookshop in the village. She’s happy to wait for Finn’s return to pick up where they left off their relationship. That is, until she decides to secretly help a new customer trace a copy of a book he wrote years before and meets Marius Arnesen, a glass artist who, fascinated by her paintings, asks her to take part in an art exhibition.

When she begins to suspect that Finn isn’t quite the person she had hoped and Marius steps up to save someone close to her, she wonders if maybe she’s made the wrong decision…

Review

This is the final book in the series and while it can be read as a standalone, I highly recommend reading the whole series. I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this series and feel it’s ended perfectly.

It has been one series where I have been fully engrossed in it from start to finish and have loved all the characters. Spring Siren was an incredible read, I particularly enjoyed how it tied everything together. It was a truly wonderful read.

5/5

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Authors Bio

Georgina Troy was a finalist in the Contemporary Romance Category, Romantic Novel of the Year Awards 2016 (RoNAs) with A Jersey Kiss, Book 1 in her Jersey Scene series (published in the US as The Legacy). She was also a finalist in the Joan Hessayon Award for New Writers 2015.

Georgina sets all her romances on the island of Jersey in the Channel Islands where she lives with her husband and three rescue dogs. She is also one of The Blonde Plotters.

Book Review: Under the Italian Sun by Sue Moorcroft @suemoorcroft @rarandomresources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review Under The Italian Sun by Sue Moorcroft

Blurb

A sun-baked terrace. The rustle of vines. And the clink of wine glasses as the first cork of the evening is popped…

Welcome to Italy. A place that holds the answer to Zia-Lucia Costa Chalmers’ many questions. Not least, how she ended up with such a mouthful of a name.

When revelations close to home turn Zia’s world upside down,she realises the time has come to search out the Italian family she’s never known.

But as she looks for answers, she can’t help but notice Piero, the vineyard owner next door – a distraction who may prove difficult to ignore…

This summer, join Zia as she sets out to uncover her past. But can she find the future she’s always dreamed of along the way?

Review

I absolutely adore Sue’s writing and I thoroughly enjoyed Under the Italian Sun. There are plenty of twist and turns to keep you on your toes and wanting more. It’s accompanied by some fabulous wine, food and an excellent cast of characters. Its the perfect romantic escape. I really had to pace myself because I didn’t want it to end but I did thoroughly enjoy it.

5/5

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Author’s Bio

Sue Moorcroft is an award-winning Sunday Times and internationally bestselling author of emotionally compelling feel-good fiction who has reached the coveted Number 1 spot on Amazon Kindle UK and Top 100 Amazon Kindle US.

Sue’s a past Vice-Chair of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and editor of its short story anthologies. Her novels, short stories, serials, courses and columns have appeared around the world. An army child, Sue was born in Germany then lived in Cyprus, Malta and the UK.

Website: suemoorcroft.com Twitter: @suemoorcroft Instagram: @SueMoorcroftAuthorFacebook: SueMoorcroftAuthor and sue.moorcroft.3

Book Review:Mrs Narwhals Diary by S J Norbury #MrsNarwhalsDiary #SJNorbury @LouiseWalters12 @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours

Thank you to Emma at Damppebbles for giving me the chance to review Mrs Narwhals Diary by S J Norbury.

Blurb

“It was Woman’s Hour who suggested I keep a diary. They said it was good for mental health, and I must say I did feel much less frazzled after writing everything down yesterday. The frustrations were all still there, but somehow smoothed out – as if by a really good steam iron.”Mrs Narwhal is overwhelmed. Her husband, Hugh, is unkind and unhappy – working every hour at a job he hates to save the ancestral home he never wanted. Then there’s Hugh’s sister, Rose, who’s spurned her one true love, and ricochets from drama to drama; not to mention two small boys to bring up safely in a house that could crumble around their ears at any moment…When Hugh’s pride receives a fatal blow, and he walks out, Mrs Narwhal is plunged into a crisis of both heart and home. With help from Rose she sets out to save the house her husband couldn’t. But now that Hugh’s gone, the question must be faced: does Mrs Narwhal really want him back? Funny, charming, and moving, Mrs Narwhal’s Diary is an irresistible story which will enchant and delight its readers. S J Norbury lives in Herefordshire with her family. Mrs Narwhal’s Diary is her first novel.

Review

I absolutely loved this book. It had me so gripped from the start that I had trouble putting it down. It was a wonderful story about the quirky Narwhals. It had plenty of humourous moments with regards to the family and how it was told through the diary. It was an excellent and enjoyable read. I look forward to reading more from S J Norbury.

5/5

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Authors Bio

S J Norbury lives in Herefordshire with her family. Mrs Narwhal’s Diary is her firs

Book Review: A Ration Book Daughter by Jean Fullerton @JeanFullerton_ @rararesources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review A Ration Book Daughter by Jean Fullerton

Blurb

Not even the Blitz can shake a mother’s love…

Cathy was a happy, blushing bride when Britain went to war with Germany three years ago. But her youthful dreams were crushed by her violent husband Stanley’s involvement with the fascist black-shirts, and even when he’s conscripted to fight she knows it’s only a brief respite – divorce is not an option. Cathy, a true Brogan daughter, stays strong for her beloved little son Peter.

When a telegram arrives declaring that her husband is missing in action, Cathy can finally allow herself to hope – she only has to wait 6 months before she is legally a widow and can move on with her life. In the meantime, she has to keep Peter safe and fed. So she advertises for a lodger, and Sergeant Archie McIntosh of the Royal Engineers’ Bomb Disposal Squad turns up. He is kind, clever and thoughtful; their mutual attraction is instant.

But with Stanley’s fate still unclear, and the Blitz raging on over London’s East End, will Cathy ever have the love she deserves?

Review

Despite not being a huge fan of historical fiction, I am absolutely loving this series. The characters are fantastic and the author really grips you and takes you into the thick of it. It’s honestly an incredible read and an excellent series. I have loved every part of it and look forward to seeing what else Jean Fullerton has to offer.

5/5

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Authors Bio

I was born into a large, East End family and grew up in the overcrowded streets clustered around the Tower of London. The Fullerton family have lived by London docks since the 1830s and all my books are set in and around this area.

East London has changed greatly and many of the old neighbourhoods I knew as a child have changed too, but I endeavour to bring them alive again in my East London stories of love, family and hard times. I feel that it is my background that gives my stories their distinctive authenticity.

I has been shortlisted for and won several awards and regularly undertake writing workshop. I’m fortunate enough to be a guest cruise lecturer and have sailed all around the world talking about East London’s vibrant history. I am married to a minister in the Church of England and have three grown-up daughters

Book Review: Banana Devil Cake by Susan A King @SusanKing63 @rararesources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review Banana Devil Cake by Susan A King.

Blurb

With the murder of last year’s fête judge now but a hazy memory, the village of Elmesbury has retired to its former tranquil existence. That is, until a mysterious newcomer sets in motion a series of events that will see members of the W.I. crossing wooden spoons at dawn.

In the midst of preparing for her long-awaited engagement party, redoubtable village busybody Beattie Bramshaw not only finds herself embroiled in a one-woman campaign to save the elm tree from which the village gets its name, but also having to contend with an outbreak of unrest within her beloved W.I. group. Rivalry to win favour with the judge of this year’s fête has fuelled dissent within the ranks and, when two members are found dead in mysterious circumstances, suspicions run rife.

Confident the devil is not only in the cake but in the detail, Beattie determines to uncover the clues that will ultimately lead to the killer’s conviction. But can she solve the mystery before another member of the W.I. is picked off?

Review

This was the first time I have read a book by Susan King and it most certainly won’t be the last and even though this is part of a series, I didn’t feel list but I do suggest reading the previous book, Marrow Jam.

I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. It was rather entertaining throughout. I couldn’t put it down and look forward to what else the author’s has to offer.

Purchase here

Authors Bio

Susan A. King lives with her husband in a quiet suburb in leafy Hampshire.The inspiration for her debut novel, Marrow Jam, came from her long experience and observation of competitors at the local Romsey Show where she regularly aspires to win Best in Show with her floral arrangements. Unsuccessful to date, she has been tempted to investigate more underhand methods by which to acquire the trophy, but has yet to sink to the depths described in her novel. Or so she would have you believe!Marrow Jam, was shortlisted for the Write Here, Right Now novel competition, Bradford Literature Festival and is published by Eye/Lightning Books.

Book Review: Buried For Good by Alex Coombs @AlexCoombsCrime @rararesources

Thank you to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for giving me the chance to review Buried For Good by Alex Coombs

Blurb

On a remote island, everyone is a suspect…

When Private Investigator Hanlon is hired to protect famous yoga instructor Camille Anderson on her Scottish island retreat, she thinks this may be her simplest job yet.

But when an attack on Camille’s life goes wrong, it soon becomes clear that there is a murderer on the island – and Hanlon will stop at nothing to track them down.

With only a small group of guests the suspects are clear, but as the body count rises Hanlon must step up to find out who the killer is before it’s too late…

Review

The latest installment in the Hanlon series is yet another scorcher. Full of action and and on the edge of your seat suspense. It was absolutely brilliant to read.

Buried for Good was a fantastic read that I would highly recommend. I look forward to seeing what else the author has to offer.

5/5

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Authors Bio

Alex Coombs was born in Lambeth in south London. Silenced for Good is the first of a new series of novels featuring Hanlon as a PI. He lives in South Bucks but has family in Scotland and spends a considerable amount of time in Edinburgh and Argyll.
He is the author of four previous novels featuring Hanlon in the police ( the DCI Hanlon series). He also writes light-hearted crime fiction as HVCoombs for One More Chapter/Harper Collins.
Visit his website at http://www.alexcoombs.co.uk or Facebook@AlexCoombsCrime

Book Review: Friends and Neighbours by Ruth Torjussen @RTorjussen @lovebooksgroup #lovebookstours

Thank you to Love Books for giving me the chance to review Friends and Neighbours by Ruth Torjussen.

Blurb

Life as a Marie Osmond impersonator living in Stoke can be challenging enough.

But when your best friend has died and your other friends have moved away it can suddenly get a whole lot tougher. Now heartbroken Jenny has a female shaped hole in her life which – despite the presence of many women – won’t go away. Grief has turned her into a first-class snob.

Husband Lonny preps the house for climate change and is unable to halt Jenny’s unravelling. Then gorgeous Trudi wafts into the creative writing class and brings some much-needed hope.

Feeling that this is the only way out of her depression, Jenny’s intention to befriend Trudi builds to an obsession while facing all manner of setbacks. A motley crew of unsuitable local women is encroaching while lovely Trudi remains elusive. Why is something that used to be so easy, now so hard?.

Mixing serious issues with much hilarity ‘Friends and Neighbours’ is a feel-good story for our times.

Review

While this book was a light, uplifting read it did touch on a tough subject, a subject that is close to my heart.

The characters were likeable and Jenny was fantastic. Despite The book being about the loss of a friend it has plenty of humourous parts. It kept me engrossed throughout. I look forward to reading it’s follow up.

5/5

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Authors Bio

Ruth Torjussen grew up in Stoke but now lives and works in Brighton as a Shared Lives Carer.

She is a passionate advocate of eating local food grown through regenerative farming as the answer to climate change.

Follow her on Twitter @RTorjussen,

Instagram @ruth_torjussen

YouTube Torjussen Ruth

Book Review: The Dig Street Festival by Chris Walsh @WalshWrites #TheDigStreetFestival @LouiseWalters12 @damppebbles

Thank you to Emma at Damppebbles for giving me the chance to review The Dig Street Festival by Chris Walsh

Blurb

It’s 2006 in the fictional East London borough of Leytonstow. The UK’s pub smoking ban is about to happen, and thirty-eight-and-a-half year old John Torrington, a mopper and trolley collector at his local DIY store, is secretly in love with the stylish, beautiful, and middle-class barmaid Lois. John and his hapless, strange, and down-on-their-luck friends, Gabby Longfeather and Glyn Hopkins, live in Clements Markham House – a semi-derelict Edwardian villa divided into unsanitary bedsits, and (mis)managed by the shrewd, Dickensian business man, Mr Kapoor.

When Mr Kapoor, in a bizarre and criminal fluke, makes him fabulously credit-worthy, John surprises his friends and colleagues alike by announcing he will organise an amazing ‘urban love revolution’, aka the Dig Street Festival. But when he discovers dark secrets at the DIY store, and Mr Kapoor’s ruthless gentrification scheme for Clements Markham House, John’s plans take several unexpected and worrisome turns…

Review

What an entertaining read The Dig Street Festival was. It had me cracking up throughout. I thought the book was well written and we’ll paced. The characters were absolutely fantastic.

This isn’t a book I would generally choose to read, however, I did enjoy it and look forward to seeing what else Chris Walsh has to offer in the future.

4/5

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Authors Bio

Chris Walsh grew up in Middlesbrough and now lives in Kent. He writes both fiction and non-fiction, an example of which you can read here in May 2020’s Moxy Magazine.

Chris’s debut novel The Dig Street Festival will be published by Louise Walters Books in April 2021. 

​Chris’s favourite novel is Stoner by John Williams and his favourite novella is The Death of Ivan Illyich by Leo Tolstoy. His top poet is Philip Larkin. He is also a fan of Spike Milligan