I know I know I promised to be better and I haven’t been. Sorry! In my defence I’ve started drafting some posts I have a number of reviews to pen and I started reading a new physical book last night and I’m fully immersed in this atmospheric tale.
Before any of that – I am pleased to be a part of a fabulous cover reveal today. Being a blogger means I get the chance to host a variation of posts and cover reveals are one of my favourites. As always I will tell you a bit about the book itself before sharing the gorgeous cover.
Blurb: A little dachshund ensues on a chase of something sparkly floating through the sky, vowing to return it to its rightful owner. Follow Siggy as he dashes through the village, saying hello to his friends and neighbors, but staying focused on the task at hand. Will Siggy be able to keep his promise?
Come along for a joyful, rollicking tale with vibrant illustrations, sharing in the happiness and beauty of everyday life. Young children will enjoy the escapades of sweet little Siggy while learning lessons about keeping promises and unexpected rewards.
About the Author: Children’s book author Brian Frederick knew he wanted to be a writer at a young age, having won prizes and praise for his early stories. When he writes, he finds himself entering a bubble and his mind wanders in an imaginary world, providing him with great creativity.
Today I am pleased to be a part of the blog blitz for A Deadly Coincidence….
Blurb: A deadly secret in the heart of a quiet country village.
In sleepy Lipton St Faith, the locals are getting used to their new rationing books and blackout curtains. The Second World War has brought much change to the small Norfolk village, as well as Lieutenant Eddie Elsner, on a mission all the way from America. But when the local postman is found dead, suddenly the war feels much closer to home…
The police are quick to declare it an unfortunate accident, but young, spirited Anna Grix is less convinced. After striking up a fast friendship with the newly arrived American, she teams up with Eddie to dig into this apparent accident.
Full of unexpected twists and turns, A Deadly Coincidence is a perfect read for fans of LJ Ross, Joy Ellis, Faith Martin and Elizabeth Edmondson.
About the Author: Keith is British and was born in the United Kingdom; grew up playing the horn in Brass Bands, and earned pocket money delivering newspapers. Between leaving school and taking up his apprenticeship in carpentry, Keith sold ice cream at a drive-in tourist park.
Discovering construction sites involved working in the wind and rain, which he hated, Keith opened a joinery workshop. He ran this until becoming a college lecturer ten years later.
Over the following twenty years, he steadily rose through the ranks, ending up as an Assistant Principal at a large college of further & higher education in Norfolk.
Now retired, Keith divides his time between writing, volunteering for the National Trust and helping child-mind his two youngest grandchildren. However, his wife calls into question Keith’s definition of ‘helping’.
As a side note I’m so sorry for my radio silence I will be getting my thoughts penned on the fab books, I’ve read and not got around to reviewing. I will be back more often.
Today I am over the moon to be sharing a publication day blitz courtesy of the lovely Love Books Tours team.
Blurb: A killer is loose in a small town in Oklahoma, and Sam, the Second-Hand-Man, wants him. Sam is an ancient immortal creature who feeds off the misery he creates. At first, the choice seems obvious; a kid with a stolen gun has decided to make the community pay for the suicide of his father. Sam wants to help his young protege succeed but is soon disappointed. Unfortunately for Sam, he is not the only one in town who doesn’t belong. A man had returned after losing his life in a tornado. This man, along with the help of an emotionally scarred police chief, must stop Sam before he can find and recruit a mysterious hidden killer. The future of the world will depend on it.
It sure has been a while since I posted a weekly update and you can read the last one here. I do hope to get these posts back on a more regular basis – where they will be posted on Saturday if possible and on Sunday when needed like today. I had half hoped to have got it up yesterday but I was working and then I watched the England game.
I’ve loved every second of these posts and they gave me so much during lockdown.
As always if there is something you would like to see on the update or the blog in general then leave me a comment below.
There wasn’t a lot of running to report last week but I was out pounding the pavement for week 9 run 2 last Sunday.
On Tuesday I had the absolute pleasure of attending the England V Germany game thanks to my awesome bestie for bagging the tickets.
What an honour, what a pleasure and omg what history was made. We beat Germany and Harry Kane bagged a goal. It’s safe to say I’ve been living on cloud 9 and last nights game at home added to that.
On Thursday evening I joined a bunch of my colleagues for a pub quiz and what a fun night it was. The last time I attended I didn’t remember much so I was a lot more subdued this time. I was dead happy with our team we didn’t win but I did contribute. It was so nice to be able to just chill with my colleagues. Although in saying that I learnt a lesson never leave your phone at the table. I ended up with a number of images including some blurry ones. Here’s a fun one….
It’s been very light on the blog with just this post that you can read here.
I’m hoping to finish Paige Toon’s fantastic Someone I Used To Know today so watch this space. Sorry that it’s been so sporadic I’m hoping to get things back on an even keel.
Firstly, I want to apologise for the lack of posts and general interaction here at Hayley Reviews. Returning to work has been exactly what I’ve needed but in my promotion it’s taken a lot more of my time.
As always I am still reading but my reading in itself has been somewhat sporadic. I still have an audiobook on the go – from a go to author that’s still not been finished and I thought my time with Paige Toon’s latest would have been shorter than it has been. If you remember rightly I read the sampler and was desperate for more. You can read my initial thoughts here.
I also realised I hadn’t done a post about what I had read in May and now I also have the update from June…hoping July brings back all the books as I’m a tad behind on my GoodReads target for the year when I had started well. I’m currently sat at 53 with 6 books behind.
I went back to work on the 19th May so I had some time before. So let’s look at what I read.
A few of my May reads still need reviewing so watch this space, and apologies to the authors of these stunning reads I’ve truly enjoyed everything I’ve read.
June Reads – I had such hopes but it really was a weird one.
I hope to get back on track – in penning this I haven’t got much reading done so I will be getting back to that shortly. I’m hoping to get the weekly update back but I’m not sure whether it will feature tomorrow or Sunday as yet. Watch this space?
Would you like to see my hopes for July? If so leave me a comment below.
Blurb: An offbeat, funny and heartwarming romantic novel from the fabulous King of Strictly, Craig Revel Horwood.
Set against the colourful boho backdrop of London’s Camden in the 1990s, Craig Revel Horwood’s first novel, Dances and Dreams on Diamond Street, tells the story of an unlikely family of friends who each rent a room in a ramshackle six-bedroom, four-storey townhouse. Like any family, the residents of Diamond Street sometimes fight and often act up, but when the chips are down, they’re there for each other in an instant – usually brandishing a cheap bottle of booze and the offer of an impromptu kitchen disco.
Presided over by the wise-cracking but warm-hearted patriarch of the family Danny Hall, a professional dancer turned choreographer, the novel follows a year in the life of the inhabitants of Diamond Street, rough diamonds one and all, as they try to achieve their dreams – with unexpected, heart-warming and sometimes hilarious results.
Review: Firstly I’m so sorry in the delay in this review. Craig Revel – Horwood’s fictional debut is a fantastic flamboyant story, that will sweep you off your feet from start to finish. I almost instantly fell in love with the Diamond Street clan well most of them. There is a character that I loved to hate and I’m pretty sure you will too, I could say more but I don’t want to taint your opinion.
The 90s has always been an era that I’ve loved so when I realised this was based on that time I was overjoyed. Craig has depicted a colourful and diverse London basing the story in the truly diverse Camden. It’s a no holds barred account on a diverse group of people who all ultimately need a bit of love and friendship. I mean seeing as Craig is a creative and a dancer it made sense that his debut focused heavily on those type of people and he done so with his style of grace and wit.
This story is for anyone and everyone – each of us have had a hang up during an aspect of our lives and whether that’s through work, family or from the eyes of those who should truly love you. They should be lifting you up and if they’re not then somethings wrong. I have to mention Cat and Jewel here -So different in who they are but I was rooting for them both from the off. They are warm hearted people and I must say I was there biggest cheerleader throughout I can’t say too much as there were some tough and shaky moments for both of them. The warrior in them both really did lift me up…self care is something we all need more of and a book about the 90s really hit home to me right now.
They are such an unlikely bunch but watching them bond was heartwarming. I also truly loved how they all banded together when needed – there are some funny moments that will have you laughing out loud. They really do get themselves into some funny situations. But when the chips are down this bunch look after each other.
Danny was one of my favourite characters and he was always at the heart of the action and almost like the head of the family. He has an instinct in how to get the best from people and that shines through throughout. I especially loved his friendships with Cat, Jewel and with the eccentric Lil.
I wasn’t expecting how the later stages of the novel played out but I must say Craig Revel – Horwood’s debut had me from start to finish. It’s an emotional rollercoaster and just what I needed to read right now. I’m looking forward to what’s next from Craig as I well and truly loved his sparkling debut.
Blurb: Kahlaran hasn’t had a djinn in decades. At least none that they know of.
Zaira has so far successfully avoided being found out as a wind spirit, steering clear of trouble and living the life of an ordinary human. Her luck finally runs out when she meets one of her own kind: a water djinn somehow hell-bent on evicting her for a murder she didn’t commit. Without her past djinn powers and the whole city against her, the odds of a happy ending are quite slim.
Luckily, she’s not alone. Forming a hasty alliance with fellow scapegoat and hot-headed mercenary Ezair, the pair has to navigate through the slums and shady brothels of the city, fighting guards, ghouls, magicians, and occasionally each other. But can they really overcome an enemy capable of peeking through every puddle, cup, and teardrop?
About the Author: Dar and Lory Kardenal are a pair of indie writers, and authors of the new fantasy novel Shackles of the Storm. Writing characters and creating worlds and stories on internet forums with other fantasy geeks for a decade, their first novel encompasses that experience to breathe life into the magical world of their work. In their other life they are Hungarian medical student and a neuroscientist on her way to PhD, and devoted servants of two cats.
Firstly I’m so sorry it’s taken me so long to get this post up. I was still reading and had a few things to do as my free days tend to be kind of chaotic at the moment.
So apologies – when this blog tour came up it was a no brainer I’m just sorry I had no time to read it sooner. I’ve loved the stories that I’ve read from Helene in the past so my interest was instantly piqued.
Blurb: Lizzie Thomson has landed her first job as a music teacher, and after a whirlwind romance with Markus, the newlywed couple move into a beautiful new home in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Lizzie quickly befriends their neighbour Morag, an elderly, resourceful yet lonely widow, whose own children rarely visit her. Everything seems perfect in Lizzie’s life until she finds out she is pregnant and her relationship with both Morag and Markus change beyond her control.
Can Lizzie really trust Morag and why is Markus keeping secrets from her?
In The Memories We Bury the author explores the dangerous bonds we can create with strangers and how past memories can cast long shadows over the present.
Review: The Memories We Bury is an intriguing and all encompassing read. Looking at the complexities of becoming a mother and how our past can hold us back at times. From what I had already read from this author I’ve been intrigued and I’m most definitely a fan.
As a new mother Lizzie feels clueless and quite quickly she befriends Morag and takes the retired nurse at face value on everything she says. Not once does she doubt the elderly ladies motives and she wholeheartedly trusts her.
This full length novel has the imagination and the intrigue that I’m used to with this author, with some added psychological aspects. I’ve found myself second guessing a number of the characters and their reasonings. Even though with Morag I can see how her loneliness and lack of child life around her has made her the way she is, granted she left me feeling on edge and worried for Lizzie. Morag’s character progresses so much and I honestly didn’t see the later stages coming. Markus is a complex character who is used to aid the story from Morag’s point of view.
I don’t know how to fully do this book justice as there is so much I cannot say. Helene delves into a number of complex real-life issues. I don’t even want to elaborate on those as there are aspects that aren’t apparent until the closing stages. The essence of family life and that of the expectation and the reality is so apparent in this novel.
Lizzie and Morag come together as they both had similar lifestyle aspects and you can see why they were brought together. In saying that I did not see where the story was going.
This author writes manipulation well and this is by far her best yet. I honestly was on the edge of my seat throughout I felt every single emotion with the characters and the sadness of grief will make you think of the love ones you have lost. The number of secrets shared will also have you thinking if you ever really know some
About the Author: Helene Andrea Leuschel gained a Master in Journalism& Communication, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh. She later acquired a Master in Philosophy, specializing in the study of the mind.
Helene has a particular interest in emotional, psychological and social well-being and this led her to write her first novel, Manipulated Lives, a fictional collection of five novellas, each highlighting the dangers of interacting with narcissists.
She lives with her husband and two children in Portugal. Please find out more about Helene at heleneleuschel.com or on Facebook and Twitter.
So here I am with a second post on a Saturday and oh my you are in for a treat.
Blurb: She never meant to end up in a rock star’s bed …
By day, Madelynn Crenshaw is the perfect senator’s daughter. By night, she’s a struggling artist. She doesn’t do scandal or media scrutiny, but when wicked rock god Sloan Elliot asks her to paint him for a charity event, she can’t resist. It’s for a good cause, right? She promises herself she won’t become his latest conquest—or have her love life splashed all over page one. During their studio sessions, Madelynn can’t deny their sizzling attraction, but it’s the man behind the rock god persona she really can’t resist. Sloan tempts her, teases her, and makes her long for things she’s never allowed herself to want…
About the Author: Nadia Blair writes steamy contemporary romance featuring outrageous bad boys and gutsy girls who give as good as they get. She has a thing for snappy dialog, humorous situations, and swoon-worthy happily-ever-afters. When she’s not having conversations with fictional people, she enjoys summer thunderstorms, top-shelf whiskey, and rockin’ out to a classic guitar solo.
Today I am pleased to be a part of The Reckoning blog tour and I will be sharing an extract with you today.
Blurb: The final instalment of The Unadjusteds trilogy…
THE FIGHT IS NOT OVER.
A NEW NEMESIS HAS AWOKEN.
Sinister visions of an evil entity with looming yellow eyes haunt Silver’s dreams, threatening to destroy the new world she and her friends have created. The terrifying omens push Silver to experiment with her abilities, but awaken a burgeoning thirst for more power.
As Silver walks a fine line between good and evil, her friends become wary of her intimidating abilities. She finds understanding in a sympathetic newcomer, but their deepening friendship drives an even deeper wedge between Silver and her suspicious friends.
Tragedy strikes during preparations for the final stand, bringing a terrible choice. Grief drives Silver toward reckless actions that may doom the final battle. Can she repair the relationships with her friends and control her powers before her vision becomes reality?
About the Author: Marisa Noelle is the writer of middle grade & young adult novels in the genres of science-fiction, fantasy & mental health including The Shadow Keepers, The Unadjusteds Trilogy (The Unadjusteds, The Rise of the Altereds, & The Reckoning), and The Mermaid Chronicles – Secrets of the Deep.
She is a mentor for the Write Mentor program that helps aspiring MG & YA authors. With dual citizenship, Marisa has lived on both sides of the Atlantic and uses settings in both the USA and UK as inspiration for her novels.
When she’s not writing or reading or watching movies, she enjoys swimming. In the pool she likes to imagine she could be a mermaid and become part of some of her make-believe words.
Despite being an avid bookworm from the time she could hold a book, being an author came as a bit of a surprise to her as she was a bit of a science geek at school. She lives in Woking, UK with her husband and three children. You can find her on Twitter @MarisaNoelle77 or her website http://www.MarisaNoelle.com
Turning to face the voice, rough, leathery skin sweeps past my cheek. I startle backward, looking for the attack. Ripping my glove from my hand, I ready my knife and my lightning power. But it’s just a bat. A lone bat getting an early start on the night’s hunt.
I turn again, closing my eyes against the lowering sun. I’m facing the doorway, the blackhole of my nightmares.
With a rushing flurry of wings, more bats emerge. A handful to begin with, bringing the smell of death. Then a dozen more. Fifty. A hundred. Hundreds quickly become thousands. A tumultuous flow of bats dart and weave around each other, as though trying to evade the last rays of the sun before they are saved by nightfall.
The wind howls, dislodging the last remaining snowflakes from the mountain peaks. The bats are joined by clicking, cackling insects. They fly in a chaotic group of directionless fury, as if controlled by an unseen puppet master.
I cover my ears against the noise of their deafening wings. The stench of wrongness fills my nostrils. There are thousands of them. More. Tensing, I watch the gaping entrance of the cave.
Be sure to check out the rest of the blog tour…
Thank you to Zoë at Zooloo’s Books Tours for inviting me to take part today.