2019, july, Monthly Wrap Up, Uncategorized

What did I read in July?

It’s been a while since I’ve done a round up of my reading. As I’ve usually done a bit so so or haven’t done any.

Having finally passed both my theory exams I wanted to try and push my reading again. I love it so I wanted to embrace it more. In doing so it’s really lifted my mood snatching a few pages or a short chapter during my lunch break and listening to audio on my travels to and from work. It’s really been a breathe of fresh air and a mood lifter.

Those who don’t read will never fully understand the joy of being swept away by a good book. So without further ado let’s look at how I done in July.

The second Zoe May book I have loved and this one has made me so reminiscent of my childhood and those boys that invaded my thoughts. Two in particular still do from time to time, which is where Will and Natalie come in. You can read my thoughts Here although I’m not sure if I’ve done this gorgeous treat justice. I still have two of Zoe’s to devour and I’m hoping to read at least one in August.

I read this in four parts and I loved reading it this way. Dipping in and out. If my head hadn’t been full of As Luck Would Have It part three would have been instantly read.

My thoughts on part two and three can be read Here

https://hayleyreviews10.wordpress.com/2019/07/13/book-review-the-cornish-cream-tea-bus-part-three-scones-away-by-cressida-mclaughlin/I wanted to blitz my jobs but I also wanted to be reading – look no further it was time for an audiobook although it wasn’t a one sitting listen it did accompany me through tasks and trains and a plane. I cannot and will not stop gushing over Paige Toon and her truly awesome writing. I loved delving into her YA series I have the physical copies of two and three and I’m hoping to bump them up my TBR list. I think at least book two will accompany me on holiday unless I can try and read it before then. Watch this space….

The Accidental Life of Jessie Jefferson

This gorgeous debut really got under my skin – I loved everything about this novel and it really made me think of how we look at life via social media and how filtered it is.

Living My Best Life

I purchased this as an audible daily deal and had been wanting to listen in forever. George Orwell is a talented author and I’ve been itching to read his classics in forever I think audio is definitely the way to go and Jeremy Northam’s narration was exactly on point, for what I expected. I wasn’t disappointed and I will be reviewing this fully.

This one came through to me after reading the Cornish Cream Tea Bus and I had devoured a few chapters whilst waiting in a queue I was unaware that this was only part one. I look forward to heading back to the Glampers.

The Happy Glampers

So I didn’t do too badly. Those People was also on my list and I finished that just into August and I didn’t read the Lucy Vine novel but I shall be buddy reading that one soon.

There will be a second post from me later today after my Twitter poll had this and Stacking the Shelves so check back later to see my Shelves.

Happy Saturday, I’m already at work and I’ve also already done some reading.

2019, august, Author Love, july, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: Those People By Louise Candlish

Blurb: Meet the neighbours you’ll love to hate. Until Darren and Jodie moved in, Lowland Way is a suburban paradise. Beautiful homes. Friendly neighbours. Kids playing out in the street. But Darren and Jodie don’t follow the rules and soon disputes over loud music and parking rights escalates to threats of violence.

Then, early one Sunday, a horrific crime shocks the street. As the police go house to house, the residents close ranks and everyone’s story is the same: they did it.

But there’s a problem the police don’t agree. And the door they’re knocking on next is yours.

Review: I’ve been excited for this novel since hearing a segment from Louise at Simon & Schuster’s Spring blogger event and then I inhaled the sampler. I decided against Netgalley as at the time I had exams although as it got nearer to publication day I regretted that thought process, even though I knew I needed to knuckle down.

My one downside with this read was that I was reading a hardback. Now a hardback looks gorgeous signed and on a shelf but carrying it around is a pain which is why it took me a while to finish. As it neared the final pages I did actually just carry it around. I thought I could have finished it on the stroke of July ending but it was not to be anyway enough rambling.

Louise really does have a way with words and the way each chapter was by a different person was genius. To start with all we know is something bad is happened but you have to keep turning those pages to find the missing pieces of the jigsaw and in this case there are many sides to this story. I wouldn’t say I liked any of the characters but at the beginning when Darren and Jodie arrive it’s easy to stereotype them as the bad trash who have gate crashed a nice neighbourhood but that isn’t the case at all.

It’s so hard to do books like this justice as there is so much to say but in saying so the intrigue and the mystery that I read would therefore be ruined for someone else.

As I turned those pages I kept coming up with my own theories but each and every time I was way off. Louise has engineered scenarios where you think you know where it’s leading but you are so very wrong.

As much as I didn’t really like the characters at times I warmed to many of them especially Jodie’s words nearer the end although she also made me laugh and made me think now could Lowland Way feature again.

I’ve read two of Louise’s books and I’ve been eager to shout her praise and recommend tenfold. I’m ashamed to say I have two copies of Our House but I’m yet to devour. I have it on audio now so I think when my current audio is done I shall dive in. If you’re looking for the perfect holiday companion look no further than Those People. I thought a few of my neighbours were questionable but they aren’t a patch on this bunch.

2019, july, Top Ten Tuesday, Uncategorized

Top Ten books that lived up to the hype

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

So today’s prompt is a freebie so I spent some time deliberating over what I would do a list of and I’ve gone for the Top Ten Books that I believe lived up to the hype.

Starting with this beauty, I was intrigued by this cover and heard so many good things so had to find out for myself. I listened to this on audible and it was such a joy – I truly believe Tiffy and Leon’s story could continue.

I’m in the middle of listening to this one and it’s nothing short of amazing I’m well and truly hooked.

This book gave me all the feels and it will make you think about real life and social media in a totally different way.

Another audible listen that kept me on my toes.

Paige Toon always puts a smile on my face although there’s usually a tear or two also.

For some reason I don’t think my review of this is up but this book was heartbreaking yet thought provoking.

Darren O’Sullivan builds suspense in such a great way I couldn’t get enough of this.

2019, july, Me, Monday motivation and smiles, Uncategorized

Monday in the sunshine…

There’s a few things that never fail to raise a smile and today it’s London in the sunshine. I’m from South East London and I work within the South East, my stroll to work sure does change a conversation, with many saying I’m mad. It’s a straight road and with music an audiobook or the radio it’s not bad.

When the sun is shining my mood shifts and today even though I’m absolutely exhausted after the last week and having worked all weekend I’m ready for what Monday has to offer. As I’m strolling to work embracing the blue skies I’m listening to The Man Who Didn’t Call By Rosie Walsh I only started listening to it on my way home last night but I’m well and truly hooked its definitely for every single girl who was convinced he would call and he didn’t.

On Friday I embraced another experience that never fails to make me smile. I had my haircut, I hadn’t had a trim since just before my birthday back in February and it had got a bit out of control and had lost its shape. There really is something about someone else washing your hair it’s so therapeutic and it was needed ahead of the twins first birthday and with my holiday looming at the end of August. I cannot wait for chill time, sunshine, family time and reading.

Today is a brand new start in my working life and for the first time in a while even though I’m exhausted I’m also kind of excited by what’s to come.

Before July wraps up I would like to get a few more reads finished although I am much happier with my reading and my blogging so that’s good. I need to spend at least one of my days off literally mooching around – after half watching Step up two yesterday my sister has ordered me to binge watch them so I hope to do that this week. Have Fight Klub and Fight Klub Stryke on Wednesday it will be hard going but I know it will be done with a smile on my face.

What does your week hold?

2019, july, Stacking the Shelves, Uncategorized

Stacking the Shelves

So as promised I said there would be a second post from me today and here it is.

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme co hosted by Tynga’s Reviews and Reading Reality. Stacking the Shelves is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can add any books that you add to your shelves, whether you’ve bought them been sent them or borrowed them from the library. And then be sure to post your links over on Tynga’s Reviews.

Last Saturday we looked at my Netgalley shelf which has risen a few since then now we are to look at my Kindle shelf. I will only be picking a handful otherwise this post could go on for eternity.

Have you read any of these? As ever this is just a snapshot of my Kindle library…

2019, Author Love, july, novella, Quick Reads, Review, Short Story, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Cornish Cream Tea Bus – Part four – The Icing on the cake By Cressida McLaughlin

Blurb: Can Charlie pull off the perfect showstopper?
Charlie has fallen in love with Porthgolow village and they adore her vintage bus, now getting a new lease of life as the best place to have a Cornish Cream tea in the whole of Cornwall. Charlie and her bus have heralded a new start for Porthgolow too, but the one fly in the ointment is Daniel Harper who is still resisting the charms of Charlie and her bus. Can Charlie bake her way into his heart or is it time to admit that her Cornish dream has got a soggy bottom?

Review: Now from how part three concluded I always knew that part four would have a special place in my heart and would be the hardest to finish. I initially read the first chapter just after midnight on release day and had subsequently started reading on my walk into work, however, work, lack of sleep and the heat meant it took me a little longer to finish this beauty.

What I will say is Cressida played an absolute blinder as expected by a series part four had lots of moments that made you gasp. From the very beginning I was heavily invested in these characters and watching them experience full on life changing emotions really got me. I don’t know about those characters pulses racing at that point mine definitely were. I loved what that part of the story suggested and the messages underneath both incidents.

If I had been off work the day after I had started reading at midnight I would have been hooked on this in one sitting. In a way I’m glad I got a little bit more time with Charlie and the gang.

There were a number of quotes from Charlie’s late uncle Hal that really made me stop and think….

There is nothing that can’t be overcome if you believe in yourself

this is definitely something that I should listen to. In my own worst critic.

Another that really made me smile was a description for Porthgolow

It’s a proper slice of magic

I could use that sentence about a few of my favourite places in the world and it’s a line and sentiment that proper made me smile.

The Cornish Cream Tea Bus was an extraordinary treat that will make you salivate for afternoon tea and cake but it will also tug on your heart strings and stay there. A tasty treat with some truly powerful messages one that I won’t forget. I would love to see Cressida revisit these characters someday.

2019, Author Love, debut novel, july, New Author to me, Publication Day, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: Living My Best Life By Claire Frost

Blurb: Recently dumped by her boyfriend of ten years, Bell is struggling to move on with her life – and surrender the fleecy pyjamas she’s been living in since January. Haunted by #blessed on social media, she can’t help but compare her life to those she follows online, wondering where she is going wrong . . .

In the world of social media, Millie is the successful online influencer @mi_bestlife. But in real life she’s just a regular single mum trying to make ends meet, while fending off the younger competition and tenacious internet trolls. Her Instagram feed is far more #BestLie than #BestLife, and soon Millie begins to wish her life was more like her filters.

It isn’t until Bell and Millie’s paths cross that they begin to realise what they’re both missing. Can Millie prove to Bell that life online isn’t always what it appears to be? And in return, can Millie learn that she needs to start living for the moment and not for the likes? 

Review: Now this is a debut that I couldn’t wait to get stuck into. Although saying that having listened to Claire read a section of Living My Best Life at the Spring blogger event, it’s remarkable that I had managed to wait until nearer to publication day to actually read this treat.

Living my best life is the book every social media addict needs to read. More often than not we all get bogged down by social media in some way and Claire manages to show both sizes of this double edged coin. Our lives on social media are a far cry from the strains of our real lives. I’m not saying it’s all faked but it sure is filtered. Just like Millie I’ve often taken pictures at various angles cropping out all the everyday crap that just isn’t insta worthy.

Where do I start – Living My Best Life focuses on two women Millie – an insta influencer with an adorable son and there’s a lot more to her than meets the eye. And then we have Bell who is approaching her 40th birthday and has just been dumped by her long-standing boyfriend of ten years. Bell works in fashion but has never thought of herself as fashionable.

From the beginning I liked both of them but I instantly warmed to Bell more, don’t get me wrong as Millie’s chapters went on I couldn’t love them both more. I don’t want to say too much about the morals of the story but I loved the community element of this book and we don’t always see that gumption anymore. I love how it brought the two very different women together and it made me think of my various friendship groups. There’s always a link that brings you together but then it’s your actual friendship that stands the test of time.

There are a number of other characters that I could and probably should mention merely due to their humour but I’m going to only add Suze – who is the best mate we all need – she tells Bell exactly how it is and drags her out of her bout of sadness and Cosette – Bells funny and loveable sister who thoroughly thinks of family first.

I’m not 40 for another five years but wow Bell sure did celebrate in style and let’s face it she deserved every single second of it.

Claire’s debut is impressive, funny and plain addictive. I was so heartbroken when I forgot my copy yesterday especially as I was so close to the finish line.

What I also loved was how Claire managed to have humour alongside a number of serious real life issues which include bullying, postnatal depression and loneliness. There may also be a romance that warmed me, I can’t say too much but I was sooo sooo Happy it turned out the way it did and I literally had all the feels. That saying it happens when you least expect it sure did come to mind.

Living My Best Life is the book you need this Summer if you’re not left feeling reflective and ready for anything then did you even read it. It also shows the power of friends and friendship and that alone warms my heart. There’s a few friends who I know will totally lap up this read and I cannot wait to give them this chance.

2019, july, Six for Sunday, Uncategorized

Six For Sunday – Books and the Seaside

It’s been forever since I’ve written a Six for Sunday especially since starting Self Care Sunday’s which I’m doing by chilling today. I’m not sure what my week will entail so I would like to rest, get a few things done and organised ahead of my impending holiday at the end of August and I would like to get a fair amount of reading in as I’m truly loving my current reads.

Miranda wrote the most beautiful book based at the seaside. Somewhere Beyond the Sea – is a love story that will stay with me and I shared the story of sea glass with my niece our favourite beach hasn’t had any but we always look now.

After devouring Hannah’s short story I was itching for this I read this whilst on holiday at the seaside last year and I loved every single second of it. I can’t wait to get stuck into another Hannah Pearl novel.

Evie’s Little Black Book

I read these in part and I love love loved devouring this cinema based story. It really did make me think of my Nan who I shared a love of film with.

The Picture House by the Sea

This week the fourth and final part of this novel will ping through to my kindle and I’m excited and sad. I won’t want to say goodbye to Charlie and the gang.

Part one In doing this meme I’ve realised how long this beauty has been on my TBR I really must change this. Although I did read another of Ali’s books whilst last on holiday at the caravan in Dymchurch.

This beauty by Isabelle Broom has me longing for Mojacar I will get there someday….

Then Now Always

Part two Cressida McLaughlin

Part three Cressida McLaughlin

As ever I’ve loved sitting down and penning my thoughts. I love being by the seaside and I still haven’t worked out what I hope to read this year on my travels. I’m loving having my mojo back right must eat breakfast have the soaps on and a book to get back to.

2019, ebook, july, novella, Quick Reads, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Cornish Cream Tea Bus – Part Three Scones Away By Cressida McLaughlin

Blurb: Charlie’s toughest technical challenge yet…

Now that Charlie’s Cornish Cream Tea bus has taken off, everything should be going swimmingly- the locals love her baking, Marmite adores getting his paws wet in the crystal-clear sea at Porthgolow beach, but Charlie has managed to get on the wrong side of the mercurial owner of The Porthgolow Hotel, Daniel Harper. He wants her to pack up her doillies and pastry cutters and take her bus elsewhere, but can Charlie convince him that they have just got off on the wrong foot and that her bus could be the start of something wonderful for the little village?

Review: I’ve truly loved every second of Charlie’s story and Cressida has made me excited for my Summer trip to the coast. Although my travels will take me to the Kent coast not the Cornish one but alas it’s given me a spark. Nothing beats that glisten on the water and the feel of sand between your toes.

Anyway that’s enough of my daydreams this beauty pinged through on Wednesday evening at midnight and if I hadn’t been so hot and bothered and still reeling from the last book I had finished I could have easily read at the stroke of midnight. Seeing as the next instalment is the conclusion I may just do that.

Part three – has to have been the most intense of instalments, it’s the real meaty part of the story with lots of OMG moments constantly keeping you guessing. Now in these sort of stories there’s almost always a man behind a woman’s thoughts. In this case in part there is two guys – it’s not quite a triangle but it could have been. So I don’t want to say too much as part three has shaped my opinions on Ollie and Daniel. Although I have to mention Daniel because if you can read this and not feel anything for the hotel owner then hats off to you. I however found myself a little breathless – Cressida describes the perfect kiss on a beach location.

In reading a number of these novella style books part three is always the cliffhanger leaving so many unanswered questions. Charlie has come so far that I hope she gets the ending she deserves and I’d like to hope that it includes Daniel and staying put in Porthgolow. But we shall see.

Once again I’ve had to stop reading this treat as it’s made me extremely hungry at times. I’m going to miss the Cornish coast and watch this space I may have to dive in at midnight on 25th July.

If you fancy a trip to the coast with a slice of afternoon tea look no further. I will miss these guys when this story concludes.