2020, Blog Tour, Book Snippet, ebook, New Author to me, Review, Uncategorized

Blog Tour: THE WOMEN WRITERS HANDBOOK Ed Ann Sandham @aurorametro@lovebooksgroup #lovebookstours #VWoolfstatue

Blurb: To celebrate Aurora Metro’s 30th anniversary as an independent publisher with 20% of profits to go to the Virginia Woolf statue campaign. Includes essays, fiction, poems and interviews with top female writers. This is a special edition of the indie publisher’s inaugural publication which won the Pandora Award from Women-in-Publishing. Inspirational in its original format, this new edition features literary works and exclusive interviews with over 30 women writers, both emerging authors and luminaries of contemporary literature. In her foreword to the book, publisher and managing editor Cheryl Robson, describes the development of Aurora Metro Books to becoming a leading indie press and saw the company named a finalist in the 2019 IPG Diversity in Publishing Awards. Includes the original writing workshops plus quirky black and white illustrations.

Review: The absolute joy of taking part in a blog tour is being introduced to books that would have most certainly passed me by. I must admit when I first started reading this I honestly wasn’t sure I would continue. It wasn’t what I was initially expecting although like any good reader I continued. This collection of women’s writing was varied and informative featuring Sexism, Racism, LGBT, Trans, motherhood,essays, Q&As and a number of joy only positive but also literary quotes.

I really enjoyed the Q&As they broke up the writing as some of it was informative heavy and some pretty historic which was interesting but the light heartedness of the questions kept my attention. I was also truly moved by the talk of Virgina Woolf even if her story wasn’t totally what I was expecting.

If you’re a wannabe writer there are lots of hints tips and advice along the way in this collection. This book can be read in one or could be read as snippets and there is biographical information on each writer so if there are any you would love to hunt out again all the information is there for you.

This book has shown me that every once and a while I really should read more out of my comfort zone and expand and broaden my mind some more.

Thank you once again to Kelly @lovebookstours for inviting me onto this tour.

2020, Author Love, Buddy Read, Cover Reveal, debut novel, ebook, Fitness, New Author to me, novella, personal, Publication Day, Review, running, Uncategorized, update

Weekly Update #9

Well it feels like only yesterday I was penning last weeks update. In some ways the weeks are flying by in others they really aren’t. So Happy Saturday I hope you are well and safe wherever you are in the world right now.

I’m sorry that this update has come later in the day than usual. As I stated this morning in finishing Annette’s debut I was compelled to write and post that as I have commitments tomorrow and I didn’t want it to wait until Monday.

So it’s been another week of running I finished week 5 and started week 6. Wednesday saw my longest run to date with a 20 min run. It was tough going but I loved every single second of it.

Monday week 5 Run 2
Wednesday week 5 run 3 after my 20 min run
Week 6 run 1

So the last week on Monday, Wednesday and Friday I ended up running into Lewisham and treating myself to a Starbucks I sure had missed them but I was also kind of on edge on the days when I was there later and more people were around.

What have I read this week???

I finished these beauties.

What’s been on the blog this week??

There wasn’t a post on Sunday I believe I was reading and time ran away with me, this sentiment baffles me in a way as at the moment it feels like we have so much time on our hands.

On Monday I posted my thoughts on Santa Montefiore’s Here and Now this was my first Santa read and what a book you can read my post Here.

On Tuesday I wrote my mid year update well it’s mostly my lockdown reading update it’s a long one with a whole host of links to the 47 lockdown reads at the time. You can read that Here.

On Wednesday I was sharing one of my most favourite posts it’s a gorgeous cover reveal and you can see it Here.

Thursday was dedicated to Holly Hepburn – I stopped what I was reading to devour this beauty and here are my thoughts.

On Friday I was swayed from writing a review to writing about a new found love you can read my piece on Running Here.

So as well as this post which I’ve come to really enjoy writing, although I wish I had prepped it more. As obviously I was finishing and reviewing Annette’s novel and I’m powering through a different read for a blog tour tomorrow so watch this space. Here is Annette’s gorgeous debut once again you can read my thoughts here.

It’s been an interesting week I could have juggled my reading and writing a little better but we live and learn.

I don’t believe I’ve purchased anything additional this week. I was asked to show my hauls or buys I mean I have overly clicked here and there on 99p reads. I haven’t finished my current audiobook from the library as I wanted to organise my blog tour and Netgalley commitments.

If there is anything else you would love to see on Hayley Reviews do get in touch? Also if you’re an author or blogger who would like to be featured I would love to host you.

2020, audible, audiobook, Author Love, blog blitz, Blog Tour, Book challenge, Buddy Read, debut novel, ebook, Libby, Netgalley, New Author to me, Paige Toon Read Along, Uncategorized

Mid-Year roundup

Seeing as we are halfway through 2020 I’ve seen so many people taking part in mid year tags and talking of what they have read so far, and how they are fairing against Good Reads challenges.

Thank So it got me thinking about my reading journey in the craziest year of my life. So my target for the year is 100 books which for a book blogger should be easy but life often gets in the way. I’ve generally always got at least one book on the go – sometimes if I’m reading more than one it takes me longer sometimes it makes no difference.

During lockdown to date I’ve read 47 books and I’m currently at 62 out of my 100. So lockdown well and truly has helped my reading mojo. I’ve downloaded and took advantage of the Libby app supporting my library from afar, and I’ve got back into audiobooks. Following my issues with my left ear I had cancelled subscriptions and had mostly stopped listening to audiobooks I’m loving having them back.

Since lockdown….

My Review – this series le sigh.
My Review – I truly loved embracing the world of Paige Toon this was such a gorgeous read.
My Review – Wow Louise Candlish never lets me down.
My Review – This was such a tonic on a sunny day.
My Review
This was my second read of this and I somehow have never written my thoughts on this absolute beauty – I will say I had different thoughts on the second read.
My Review – Such a truly important read for any and every woman.
My Review – Following The Flatshare I was itching for this and I loved it.
My Review – the next instalment of this beauty will be on my Kindle later this week.
I still haven’t reviewed this. David is a family favourite and this was a gorgeous audiobook.
My Review
My Review
Somehow I always gush and then am lost for words. Haven’t written this review.
My Review
My Review Heidi never lets me down. Loved this trip to the beach.
My Review
My Review
My original review – this was a second time read.
My Review
My Review
My Review – this book will stay with me for a long time.
My Review – my first Patricia novel but definitely not my last.
My Review
My Review
My Review – I read this in a day on publication day.
My Review – a fantastic debut.
I loved this but haven’t reviewed as yet.
My Review – an audiobook I borrowed from the library.
My Review – a blog tour I loved
Audio Review I had heard such good stuff about this and I loved it.
My Review
My Review
My Review
My Review I loved listening to this but do I buy the hardback or the paperback
My Review – love love loves this. The hype is real.
My Review
My Review
My Review – An ace buddy read. Isabelle always has me lusting for travel.
I loved the Katey Lovell Meet Cutes.
My Review
My Review
My Review
My Review
My Review
My Review – Such a special read and I’m so glad this was my introduction to Santa.
My Review will come soon.

So 47 lockdown reads and 15 prior to that….I’m feeling pretty darn good about that. Woah it’s a long and a late one…can you imagine if I had the other 15.

2020, audiobook, Blog Tour, Buddy Read, debut novel, ebook, Uncategorized

July TBR

Sorry for the MIA yesterday it was a weird one and I had had an on/off headache but today I’m feeling a bit brighter so I’ve been thinking more and more about this post.

I rarely post a TBR (to be read) as more often than not it jinx’s me rather than spurs me on.

I started this audiobook a short while ago but I haven’t always had the time I’m 75% in so hoping to finish that ASAP.

Following my final June read I started this one and thought I would have been a little further along.

This is my first buddy read of the month and I’m enjoying it but the headaches hasn’t helped. This is also my first Santa read.

Blog tours

Netgalley and general wants to read…

Well I think that’s all my commitments there are also a few more library audio-reads that I hope to get to. I’ve also downloaded a fair few 99p reads that I hope to get too haha. Last month I managed a few shorts and I would like to do so again this month.

I hope I haven’t forgotten anything that I’ve promised to do. I’m loving reading more and keeping the blog more consistent. As ever I am always open to what else you would love to see from me.

2020, A thought? A question, Book challenge, Book Tag, ebook, Libby, New Author to me, personal, Tag, TBR, Uncategorized

The TBR Book Tag

I keep seeing this tag pop up. I haven’t been tagged but I wanted to get involved so here I am.

How do you keep track of your TBR?

I use Goodreads and since lockdown I’ve written more notes in a pad as to what I’m reading and dates especially if I’m part of a blog tour and where I’m trying to have my review up for publication day or as close to it as I can. I’ve loved being more organised and getting to read more books as I truly love escaping into another world.

Is your TBR mostly print or ebook?

I have a variation. Since lockdown I’ve gone back to having a few more audiobooks – most Arcs are now On Netgalley although I have been sent a few plus was given a bunch at an event before lockdown. I’ve purchased a lot of ebooks with the Kindle sales and I’ve been using Libby I must admit I’ve used my library a lot more since lockdown with mostly audiobooks but I have also got an ebook which is diverse and I’m loving it.

How do you determine which book from your TBR to read next?

My TBR choices change at the moment I’m reading/listening to a few library books before I dive into the book that I’m on a blog tour for on 29th June. From 1st July I have another buddy read with Catriona we decided to wait until then as our last I managed to read first but we had both taken a lot longer than we anticipated. After reading Hello Again I was eager to read some short stories and that is what I did including the last instalment in the Meet Me at Pebble Beach series.

A book that’s been on your TBR the longest?

There are sooo many but I’m going to say Daphne Du Maurier Jamaica Inn. The worst thing is when I discovered and loved Daphne I bought a whole bunch and I actually have this one sat on my shelf mocking me.

A book that you recently added to your TBR?

Following reading Daisy Jones & The Six the rest of Taylor Jenkins Reid back catalogue has quite quickly been added to my ever expanding TBR.

A book that is on your TBR strictly because of its beautiful cover?

I am swayed by a gorgeous cover but I don’t think I could say I’ve added one to my TBR based solely on the cover. (Sorry if that’s a cop out)

A book on your TBR that you never plan on actually reading?

This isn’t necessarily that I wouldn’t ever read them. Sometimes over the years I added books based on my reading during that time and later on those type of books never appealed to me again. If that makes sense.

An unpublished book on your TBR that you’re excited for?

This is so easy to answer One By One By Ruth Ware she can literally do no wrong in my book and her last one I flew through and Our Story by the fantastic Miranda Dickinson yet again another go to author of mine.

A book on your TBR that basically everyone has read except you?

There’s a few Me Before You which I’m hoping to listen to via the library. The hate U Give which seeing as I’m literally almost done with On The Come Up seems apt and Eleanor Oliphant is completely fine. I have a copy from my time at the charity shop another book mocking me from my shelf.

A book on your TBR that everyone recommends to you?

Literally all of the above oh and actually finishing the I Heart series.

A book on your TBR that you’re just dying to read?

My Darkest Vanessa I purchased a gorgeous edition from Waterstones which seems like months back and I still haven’t started it. I will get a few hardbacks read before work resumes oh and the newest Jodi Picoult another of my go to faves.

I’m not going to go through tagging but I challenge anyone who wants to take part in this fab tag.

Life has been pretty crazy recently and thankfully books, blogging and now running is taking my mind away, and challenging me both mentally and physically and I honestly think that’s been amazing for my sanity.

I’m one chapter left of On The Come Up and I definitely think it’s important for us to broaden our minds with different authors. Not only in race but in genre and in expanding our mindsets. So please feel free to send me over some more recommendations?

2020, Author Love, ebook, Enid Blyton for Grown Ups, novella, Uncategorized

Book Review: Five Go Absolutely Nowhere By Bruno Vincent

Blurb: Ah! This is the dream!’ says Julian one morning. ‘With good old British common sense and community spirit like this, there’s no reason that we couldn’t exist on the island like this for the rest of our days!’

What could possibly go wrong . . .?

Anne has gathered Julian, Dick, George and, of course, Timmy, together for a last nostalgic jaunt in the countryside together before grown-up responsibilities take the four cousins off in different directions. It’s only natural that they find their way onto Kirrin Island for a look around, as this might be the last time they’re here together as a group. 

They are planning just to spend the night there and come home the next day, perhaps with a little exploring in the dungeon for old time’s sake. But that night they hear the country has gone into lockdown. They are not allowed to leave.
With their usual resourcefulness, they are determined to make the best of it, and remain cheerful and healthy. As Anne keeps saying: They’re lucky, really, to have all this countryside and fresh air at their disposal!

Review: I have said this before and no doubt I will say it again. Enid Blyton was one of my childhood favourites, even though I’ve managed to miss a few of her books which I’m rectifying as an adult. I don’t remember how I first stumbled upon one of Bruno Vincent’s parody short stories featuring the Famous Five. Although when I was working at the charity shop from time to time these beauties were given in and I would often purchase them and recommend naturally if I had already had it.

Five Go Absolutely Nowhere could have passed me by but in looking online I was chuffed to see one of these gorgeous stories available during this crazy time. It’s the first one I have read digitally although I will want a hard copy to join my collection. Before this one the last one I remember getting was gifted for me as it was released on my birthday and that was Five Forget Mother’s Day. I’ve reviewed a few already and I have a bunch awaiting my attention. I’m hoping to start squeezing in a lot more short reads alongside my general reading.

My thoughts on Five Forget Mothers Day. And my thoughts on Five Go Parenting.

Back to Five Go Absolutely Nowhere – what I really loved was half of their concerns during lockdown is just how we are although with their added wit. I also loved that the Secret Seven were also involved in this story even though their involvement was chaos but it added to the fun and really did make me think back to the Enid Blyton of my childhood. I’m also blown away as they sound how they did all those years ago but with modern life – it’s heartwarming to have these characters in my adult life too.

I’m so grateful that Bruno Vincent has created topical short stories using these fictional beauties. I’ve realised I’ve got more than I’ve actually read so watch this space for more Famous Five chitchat from me. Julian just has to be my fave he’s pretty clueless although he really does try…

2020, ebook, New Author to me, novella, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: Meet Me at Pebble Beach Part Four Seas The Day By Bella Osborne

Blurb: Regan has been busy trying to tick everything off her lottery wish list: she’s started her own business, helped a worthy cause, and even sorted out a new home – albeit a temporary one. But she still has a couple of items to check off – including get a hot new boyfriend, and she knows justwhere to find one…

Will Regan and Charlie get their happy ending and sail off into the sunset – or does fate have other ideas?

Review: If you’ve been reading my blog you will know I have been fully invested in Regan’s story. In saying that I think that’s why it took me a while to read the fourth and final part – I’ve had it on my Kindle since publication day and I’ve only recently read it. Well as this is the final instalment it’s the time when all loose ends are tied up.

Regan sure has been on an emotional rollercoaster and the final aspects of her story are just as heartfelt. It’s been a pleasure to see her blossom due to that of gratitude and learning what’s really important in life. I’ve liked her as a heroine from the off but I’ve truly loved witnessing the change in her for the better.

In the final stages we get more from Charlie and his story I won’t say too much but there was so much uncertainty around Charlie and I loved seeing more of him and finding out more about him deep down.

Cleo & Penny have a lot more in this instalment and you see the rawness of them and what matters to them. I also liked seeing a different side to Bernice. Her story was completely heart wrenching. Before Bella ties up all the loose ends there are many dramatic aspects to Regan’s life and I thought I had worked it out but oh how wrong I was.

A gorgeous book that will take you along the seaside that will make you grateful for all you have in your life and will have you aspiring for more each and everyday. Love, loss and friendship in abundance – a book I will never forget. I hope Bella brings back some if not all of these characters at a later date. I think that was the first Bella Osborne that I’ve read I’m sure I have another on my kindle so I will be looking for more.

2020, ebook, novella, Uncategorized

Novella Review: Rescue Me By Cathy Bramley

Blurb: Fearne Lovage is living a neat and tidy life. Sure, the inner circle of people she opens up to is small – but it’s perfectly formed of people she loves. And when your heart is broken, feeling safe means everything. It’s not a time for risks.

But life has a surprise in store for Fearne – a hairy, scruffy, messy one. Soon Fearne finds herself saving the day, and getting rescued right back…

You’ll also meet the characters of Cathy’s upcoming new four-part ebook serial, MY KIND OF HAPPY – which follows Fearne on her search for true happiness. All parts are available to pre-order now.

Review: I must admit it’s been a while since I’ve read a Cathy Bramley book I’m either on it with four part serials or I completely forget. When I saw Rescue Me advertised as a free prequel to her next novel My Kind Of Happy I jumped at the chance to read it.

I’ve really loved delving into books that feature a cross over with the older generation and Rescue Me does just that with Ethel and Fearne. Both of the ladies in question are struggling with the odd bout of loneliness and they both have their own story which I shan’t spoil. The ladies need each other more than both know and from the off that’s apparent, the easy friendship between the two is heartwarming and I’m so pleased more authors are telling us these stories even if it does make me miss my grandparents terribly.

As the novella ends I was fearing the worst but in being able to read a snippet of My Kind Of Happy I think the outcomes aren’t necessarily as sad as first thought. I love the sense of wonder and hope of My Kind Of Happy and I’m looking forward to what comes next for Fearne and that of her bestie Laura. Although I do hope there’s more of Ethel too.

A gorgeous introduction to a new serial with a short read that could easily accompany a good coffee and a cake a perfect treat in an imperfect world. I’ve pre-ordered the first instalment of My Kind Of Happy which thanks to this novella I’ve read the first few chapters just hoping the world is a lot more settled and kinder when this pings through to my kindle.

2020, Author Love, Buddy Read, ebook, Netgalley, Review, TBR

Book Review: Hello Again By Isabelle Broom

Blurb: Philippa Taylor (Pepper to her friends) has big dreams. When she closes her eyes, she can picture exactly who she ought to be. The problem is, it’s about as far away from her real life in a small coastal town in Suffolk as she can imagine.

So when her elderly friend Josephine persuades Pepper to accompany her on a trip to Europe, she jumps at the chance to change her routine. And when Pepper bumps (literally) into the handsome Finn in Lisbon, it seems as though she might have finally found what she’s been looking for.

But Pepper knows all too well things are rarely as they seem. Her own quiet life hides a dark secret from the past. And even though she and Finn may have been destined to find each other, Pepper suspects life may have other plans as to how the story should end.

A romantic and sweeping story about friendship, love and realising that sometimes it’s about the journey, not the destination.

Review: Hello Again is my second buddy read from Isabelle Broom and once again it was a pleasure to read alongside my stateside friend. I can’t claim to have read all of Isabelle’s offerings I own them naturally, but what I can say is she has an uncanny habit of sweeping me off my feet. She also has a habit of giving me a bad case of wanderlust and seeing as holidays are being cancelled and work is still lacking I needed a little dose of vibrancy and this is exactly what I was given in abundance.

Hello Again in some aspects is a slow burner with a lot of the adorable Philippa’s (Pepper to her friends) secret sadness left until later on in the story. We are told pieces of the jigsaw but it’s left pretty open for a while leaving you as a reader wondering and turning those pages quicker and quicker.

When Josephine asks Pepper to accompany her on a trip to Lisbon this is when the story takes hold and the colour and warmth start spreading into the story. Pepper has longed to travel but guilt and grief have kept her existing for far too long. The trip sees a massive shift in her thought process and in being there for her friend. Lisbon is also home to the unexpected encounter which brings Finn into her path. She doesn’t realise just how much she needed to meet him until later in the story- it’s safe to say he opens her mind to a new mindset which also unlocks the door on her creativity.

This is so much more than a love story – as ever Isabelle takes us on a rollercoaster ride across Europe also taking in Hamburg and Barcelona. The mention of Barcelona piqued my interest as it’s one of the destinations I know and love and I could visualise it all. Making me long for my cancelled trip but also filling that gap in my life. It’s also made me think on about the other destinations with longing and wonder.

There are some further unexpected turns in Peppers friendships and family life. I adored seeing Pepper realise what she needed to do for both her friend and that of her mother. I also adored the fact this story has a cross generation I love hearing about older people amongst the young, we often can learn a lot from each other and I believe that was the case with Pepper and Josephine there story had me laughing and crying with equal measure.

Once again I truly loved the variation of characters Isabelle has created and I always adore a Hayley popping up in a story I enjoy. There are some complicated and in parts some heartbreaking themes to this book but it’s been done so with such grace. I don’t want to mention them any further as I don’t want to spoil the reveals.

Hello Again is a vibrant wonder in a complicated world. Alongside Pepper we are all shown the value of living in the moment and being true to ourselves. I like Pepper have also doubted myself and my capabilities over the years. Just like her I’m a work in progress looking to embrace and enjoy the simple pleasures I love in life. I will be recommending this book threefold and I definitely need the paperback of this beauty for my collection.

2020, Author Love, ebook, novella, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Cornish Cream Tea Summer – part four Muffin Compares To You By Cressida McLaughlin

There were tears….

Blurb: Being left in charge of the cream tea bus has been full of surprises for Delilah, she’s made new friends and discovered more about herself than she could possibly have imagined. But there are some things that any amount of jam and clotted cream tea can’t solve, and Delilah needs to be brave and face some of her fears, if she’s to hold on to happiness…

Review: Oh Cressida where do I begin.

I had hoped to start reading this the instant it pinged onto my kindle with a beverage but I was in the midst of something else, with the hope of reading it that evening I was then plagued with a headache, which meant my reunion was shelved for another day.

In saying that as much as I’ve been eager to know what happened I also didn’t want to say goodbye to the Cornish seaside once again. As I said on my last review for part three I had loved the original trips to Cornwall when Charlie first emerged but there really has been something about this second outing that’s got under my skin.

From the off the overly dramatic Lila has been a favourite of mine, anyone who can not only create award winning and amazingly sounding coffees but can describe them in the easy fashion that she does is a friend for life. She may get some things wrong but her heart is always in the right place and her intentions are always good. Throughout this novel she’s always put others first and in the final instalment it’s time for her to grab her own happiness by the scruff of the neck. Her friendship with Keeley was heartwarming and lovely to see especially as Keeley had felt like a fish out of water and Lila helped restore her confidence. Seeing Lila and Clara have a deep and meaningful conversation and in restoring their friendship was pretty something and was one of my hopes for Lila before the series ended.

The final instalment is always the catalyst for tying up all the loose ends. For anyone who read my last thoughts you will know there were a number of tears well in the final stages there were a lot more tears.

I have to mention Sam Magee now for anyone who knows me you will know I have a bit of a soft spot for an Irishman. With many of my friends believing that I will end up with an Irishman not that that’s come true as yet. Sam is charming, handsome and a little on the shy side. I don’t want to say too much without ruining the story but let’s say this handsome man does bring me to tears and I hope it’s not the end of Sam Magee.