2019, audible, Blogtober, New Author to me, Review, Uncategorized

Audible Review: What Happens Now By Sophia Money-Coutts

Blurb: After eight years together, Lil Bailey thought she’d already found ‘the one’ – that is, until he dumped her for a blonde twenty-something colleague. So she does what any self-respecting singleton would do: swipes right, puts on her best bra and finds herself on a first date with a handsome mountaineer called Max. What’s the worst that can happen?

Well it’s pretty bad actually. First Max ghosts her and then, after weeing on a stick (but mostly her hands), a few weeks later Lil discovers she’s pregnant. She’s single, thirty-one and living in a thimble-sized flat in London, it’s hardly the happily-ever-after she was looking for.

Lil’s ready to do the baby-thing on her own – it can’t be that hard, right? But she should probably tell Max, if she can track him down. Surely he’s not that Max, the highly eligible, headline-grabbing son of Lord and Lady Rushbrooke, currently trekking up a mountain in South Asia? Oh, maybe he wasn’t ignoring Lil after all…  

Review: I saw a tweet of a video of Sophia Money-Coutts reading the prologue of What Happens Now. I was instantly intrigued in looking into the audio and in reading that she’d read her book I instantly hit the pre-order button. I did manage to listen to a bit on publication day but as it was just before my holiday and crazy busy at work I didn’t devour it as quickly as I would have hoped. Although saying that, that wasn’t a bad thing at all as this book will keep you in good spirits whatever life’s throwing at you.

From the very start I adored Lil she’s a straight up talking gal with no airs and graces. Often thinking after she’s said the unthinkable, although saying that she’s a professional teacher who does her best for her pupils. I loved this story from start to finish it was hilarious at times but Sophia also manages to interlink amazing real life scenarios that have you thinking. I liked seeing both sides of her, at her funniest and at her lowest and the resounding message is that she’s a strong woman.

At first I got a little confused until I’d realised that some chapters were from the meet between Max and Lil and then from when she found out she was pregnant. That scene alone was one of the funniest moments even though you’re like OMG what is she going to do now? Lil’s relationship with her family is a little strained but deep down the family unit is there and she has a fabulous set of friends who really make up a lot of this novel especially when Lil is seriously stressing out. She’s oblivious to who Max really is and that also adds to the humour.

Max is a great leading man he’s not so much brooding but he’s definitely got his own share of baggage. Although Lil being Lil puts two and two together and makes five. I loved how their story shaped and I had many hours of listening to them, and constantly wanting more. As I neared the end of the novel it was hard to put it down.

This was my first Sophia Money-Coutts novel and it definitely won’t be my last if you haven’t discovered the wit and flair of Sophia look no further. For me What Happens Now was a snapshot of what she can do combining real and at times hard issues with humour sure is a skill.

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2019, audible, Blog Tour, Review, Uncategorized

Audio Review: The Apartment By K.L.Slater

Blurb: The Apartment tells the story of a newly widowed young mother who moves into a smart London apartment building that feels too good to be true. When strange things start to occur, Freya suspects that someone is trying to control her behaviour. Things escalate from there, and Freya and her daughter narrowly get out alive. Loosely based on the Little Albert experiment from the 1920s, The Apartment is brilliant at developing a slow sense of unease, which lends itself all the more beautifully to audio.

Review: Firstly, I would like to thank Anna at Midas PR for inviting me onto this audio blog tour. This is my first K.L.Slater read but it will not be my last. I would also like to say I’m sorry this wasn’t up first thing this morning but better late than never eh?

I love audiobooks and this was perfect to finish my holiday time before heading back to work. Now I need to mention Tuppence Middleton – what a fabulous narrator, the narration makes such a difference to me and I’ve listened to some questionable narrators on Thrillers.

Now I don’t dislike Freya but for a recently widowed young mother she’s extremely naive and I found myself increasingly frustrated with her. From the off I wanted to shake her as she took so much at face value from the minute she spoke to the doctor in the Starbucks on High St Kensington- I loved this reference though as I used to work down the road from said Starbucks it was my local for a good six months.

This is a slow burner that will have you constantly thinking what is the deal with this house/ this apartment. The Marsden’s are extremely controlling and their actions will have you as a reader thinking what the hell are you still doing there. Freya thinks things are weird but she’s made to feel like she’s imagining things until a chat with a gardener has her itching to find out more…this is when the story really takes a turn and Freya comes across stronger and more confident.

As Freya finds out more about where she’s living the story takes on a crescendo that had me gasping out loud realising there’s much more to the Apartment. Oh Freya you really are naive….

wow wow wow!!! There’s so much I want to say but I cannot spoil the outcomes although I was somewhat sceptical on a few people and aspects but I must say I did not see it coming…it’s always the quiet ones as they say.

K LSlater is an extremely clever writer, her writing in the apartment is slow and steady but she keeps you hooked from start to finish. As the story took on a chilling turn it had me completely freaked out yet in awe of this writer. I’m definitely a fan and I cannot wait to devour her back catalogue. She’s created a story loosely based on the chilling Albert experiment.

So for anyone who has already read a K L Slater novel what should I reach for next??

Be sure to check out the rest of the blog tour for this chilling tale.

2019, Author Love, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: When Polly Met Olly By Zoe May

Blurb: Polly and Olly were never supposed to meet…

Polly might spend her days searching for eligible matches for her elite list of clients at her New York dating agency, but her own love life is starting to go up in smoke.

Even worse, she can’t stop thinking about the very person she’s meant to be setting her latest client up with… surely it can’t get any worse!

But then Polly bumps into oh-so-handsome Olly, who heads up a rival agency, and realizes that perhaps all really is fair in love and dating war…

Review: I’ve been championing this lady since devouring Perfect Match – it was a Netgalley read that provided me a new author and friend. I’ve spoken to Zoe so much over Twitter and Instagram and as much as I have championed her she’s also been very complimentary of me and my blogging efforts.

When Zoe went to New York to research for this novel we had chatted loads and loads I felt like I wanted this book long before it had been written. In a way it’s bad form on me for only having just finished it. I’ve been away with my family and I knew it would be the perfect time to get some reading done although I haven’t read as much as I would like I’m so glad to have read ‘When Polly Met Olly’. It’s a perfect feel good read and the ultimate tonic when you need a pick me up or if you’re in a reading slump.

Zoe writes about dating so effortlessly, I’ve been a huge fan of Celebs Go Dating for yonks and if you have ever watched the series I’m sure Olly will remind you of a certain Eden Blackman. I could picture him from the off and for me it added to my enjoyment of the story. I didn’t always like Olly but deep down there was always another side to him and I’m glad that that came into fruition before the story ended.

I loved Polly and everything about her story, seeing her progress in New York. I said to Zoe how real Polly was with her struggles to become a photographer, I’ve known that pain. Having studied New Media Journalism and spent so much of my spare time trying to make something of myself. In reading this book it’s shown me that we do have to go back to why we started and why we loved it. I may not be getting paid to write but I have a blog that I enjoy sharing my passion for books and the written word. I’ve also shared a few of my other passions and lifestyle changes, in starting my new job at the end of September I’m hoping to add some new additions to the blog and I cannot wait.

Zoe May writes a truly engaging novel that keeps you on your toes. I loved the different aspects with the emails and Tinder/Match messages alongside texts and dialogue. I also loved the stark contrast to people in New York with money and those trying to make their way. I also have to mention Gabe I truly loved the friendship between Gabe and Polly, everyone needs that friend who will tell you how it is rather than what you want to hear.

The other resounding message from this novel is looks can be deceiving. In this day and age with social media taking over we’re all obsessed with how we come across and insta and reality are two separate things and sometimes we all need to take a step back. I pride myself on taking people as I find them and Polly’s gut instincts helped her in the end.

A truly enjoyable read that could have been devoured in a solitary sitting if I had had that luxury. A fantastic final read before I head back to reality, back to work for me tomorrow and I still have an audiobook to finish…

2019, New Author to me, novella, Quick Reads, Review, Short Story, Uncategorized

Novella Review: Stepping Out By S.J.King

Blurb: WINNER of the Books and the City Choice Award in the #heatseeker short story competition, Stepping Out is a poignant, inspiring short story about acceptance, self-love and finding the courage to be who you really are.

Paula has been practising walking in her new red velvet heels for weeks. So far, she hasn’t made it past her front door.

But tonight is different.

With the help of her sister, a panty-girdle and a little bit of Dutch courage, Paula is stepping out, for the very first time.

Will she find the courage to show her true identity to the world? And if she does, will they accept her?

Review: I purchased this on 16th September 2018 and just under a year later I’ve finally read it. The Heat-seeker winners that I’ve read have been fantastic and following Hannah Pearl’s treat I instantly downloaded this one. For one reason or another it’s taken me this long to read this but I truly enjoyed this short read. It’s the perfect tonic in between reads and kept me entertained with a coffee and a biscuit just after my breakfast and in between my lunch whilst at the seaside.

I honestly didn’t know what to expect from this novel, from the off I worked out it was heavily focused on anxiety but considering the title I was a little naive in what I thought it was about. An extremely well written short that had me on the edge of my seat throughout constantly wanting more and not feeling like I’d been short changed by the novella. I wholeheartedly felt captivated by the thoughts and feelings of someone overcoming these sort of challenges, and how it changes even the smallest of events hence Paula’s night out taking so much effort and preparation.

A truly heartfelt and powerful read of anxiety change and the love of a sister.

2019, Netgalley, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: Rewind By Catherine Ryan Howard

Blurb:

PLAY
Andrew, the manager of Shanamore Holiday Cottages, watches his only guest via a hidden camera in her room. One night the unthinkable happens: a shadowy figure emerges onscreen, kills her and destroys the camera. But who is the murderer? How did they know about the camera? And how will Andrew live with himself?

PAUSE
Natalie wishes she’d stayed at home as soon as she arrives in the wintry isolation of Shanamore. There’s something creepy about the manager. She wants to leave, but she can’t – not until she’s found what she’s looking for…

REWIND
This is an explosive story about a murder caught on camera. You’ve already missed the start. To get the full picture you must rewind the tape and play it through to the end, no matter how shocking…

Review: It’s been a while since I’ve read a book like this where the story goes back and forth.

PLAY: Focuses on Andrew the manager of Shanamore Cottages. Andrew is an interesting case and for me he had a touch of Norman Bates about him. Which in turn left me intrigued for each of his instalments. Like Norman he was strange but at times I also felt extremely sorry for him, just like with Norman in Psycho- when realistically the logical part of your brain is saying don’t emphasise he’s a complete creep. For me that’s a fantastic creepy character where you have conflicting emotions. It also made for compelling reading as I wanted to know what he’d done and why he was going through the motions that he was.

Andrew is strange and even his back story shows how weird he is. His thought process isn’t normal and the way he treats girls is sickening but when he sees the murder play out on his hidden camera you can feel his terror.

PAUSE: Focuses on Natalie, from the off I feel for her. I can’t say too much on Natalie as if you read it you’ll soon know her fate or will you? I was conflicted on a number of things linked to Natalie but had somehow overlooked what actually was the case. Just like with Andrew’s instalments it made for compelling reading.

REWIND: Brings you back to the jigsaw of the murder. Who died and why? This kept me on my toes although I wasn’t sure at one point if there was more than one death but as I kept turning those pages I knew my original thoughts were right.

This was a Netgalley read for me and I’m so glad that I was approved to read this beauty. It was just the read I needed at the start of my holidays and just the tonic after a purely emotional read. It really did bring me back to my media studies classes when we were studying Psycho – all those thoughts and feelings came right to the forefront of my mind. A truly creative read that will shock you and keep you guessing in a world where Instagram posts aren’t all they’re cracked up to be. There’s a fine line between online and in real life. It’s also strange to see how people cannot separate reality and fantasy, that aspect is terrifying but I’ll leave you to read and form your own opinions.

I still have Distress Signals on my Kindle and it will definitely be pushed up the list. Catherine writes a compelling story and I’m a definitely a fan.

2019, august, Author Love, Buddy Read, ebook, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: One Winter Morning By Isabelle Broom

Blurb: Genie isn’t feeling very festive this December. 

The frosty mornings and twinkling fairy lights only remind her it’s been a whole year since she lost her adoptive mother, who took her in as a baby and raised her as her own. 

She’s never felt more alone – until she discovers her birth mother’s identity.

And where to find her: New Zealand, half the world away. 

Travelling there could be her one chance to meet the woman who gave her up. 

But will she find the answers she has been looking for? Or something she could never have expected?

Review: It’s been a while since I’ve read an Isabelle Broom novel and I felt so privileged to have buddy read this with Catriona. I feel like I flew through this one, it’s one of those reads where you’re saying just one more chapter and at each turn there was more than enough to keep you wanting more.

This could have easily been read in one sitting but as I’m away with my family that was never going to happen but at each time I read a healthy amount, although at times I stopped myself because of my locations. I could feel my emotions brewing in public places. Not that that’s ever really bothered me but I did not want to feel uncomfortable when I have truly loved every single second with this book and these characters.

One Winter Morning is a story that will have you flying through the pages captivated by the words the imagery and most of all the people. Isabelle really does research her places well. I’ve never been to New Zealand but having read this novel I felt truly captivated by the surroundings and I feel like I’ve visited Lake Wakatipu. Her imagery is astounding I honestly feel like if I visited I would feel like I’d already been there, like retreating to a place you’ve been going to for years.

I really enjoy a buddy read especially with Catriona, it’s mad that now she’s in the States we talk more than we did when she was in the UK. She saw a few things coming in this, although I was pleased to see one of my wants come into fruition. Because of the location I didn’t feel like I was reading a winter book in the wrong timezone, although it was based around Christmas and New Years heavily focussing on love and loss and finding yourself.

There’s so much I want to say but you have to read to fully understand the true gorgeousness of this book. From the off I loved most of the characters Genie aka Evangeline is a great girl struggling with the loss of her adoptive mother and with the emotions over whether to search for her real mother or not. She goes through all the feels, wonder and most of all guilt. In searching for her real mother she feels like she’s cheating on the woman who raised her when in actual fact that’s not the case at all.

I have to mention Hayley, I rarely get to read a book with a Hayley and this one is ballsy and fun and has hollow legs from the amount of cake and physical activity she does. This made my little heart so happy and for her to be such an amazing friend too it really was the icing on the cake.

I feel like I wanted more of David’s thoughts as he played such a huge part in this story and I must say Isabelle wrote a fantastic kids story. I wholeheartedly believe my nieces and nephew would love the Evangeline series.

Tui was the most adorable little girl, a truly gifted child who defies all odds. I loved her story and part of me saw some of it coming but nowhere near to the extent of how her story ended.

I don’t feel like Griff stood a chance next to Kit but oh le sigh! all the feels and some. Isabelle looks at love, loss and healing in so many ways. I loved the sentiment of the future being the light in the sun and the past being the shadow and looking to the sun.

I also loved how there were parts for Genie and for Bonnie and how the letters were in italics. I’m all for a back story and it gave you the remaining pieces of the puzzle not that I saw some of it.

I’m a massive worrier and I often need to take a step back and breathe. I know that I personally need to live in the moment more, I’m often too worried about things and circumstances that I cannot change. Looking too far at what’s to come and what’s been rather than looking into the here and now, I hope to do more of being in the now.

A brilliantly written story of love, loss, friendship and finding yourself. If you are looking for the perfect book to give you all the feels or to get you out of a reading slump this is definitely it.

Now I’ve got those thoughts out I can start another book. Although I must say I really must tackle more of Isabelle Broom’s books, just like Miranda Dickinson’s books I’m left feeling hopeful and extremely positive as well as left with an extremely happy heart and a book hangover.

2019, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Turn of the Key By Ruth Ware

Blurb: I know you don’t know me but you have to help me. I didn’t kill anyone.

When Rowan stumbles across the advert, it seems like too good an opportunity to miss: a live-in nanny position, with a staggeringly generous salary. And when she arrives at Heatherbrae House, she is smitten by the luxurious ‘smart’ home fitted out with all modern conveniences, by the beautiful Scottish Highlands, and by this picture-perfect family.

What she doesn’t know is that she’s stepping into a nightmare – one that will end with a child dead and her in a cell awaiting trial for murder.

She knows she’s made mistakes. But she’s not guilty – at least not of murder. Which means someone else is…

Review: I’m a massive fan of Ruth Ware she’s definitely an auto buy author and if you only discover her from here. Wow I truly believe you will be reaching wholeheartedly for her back catalogue. For me it all started with In a Dark Dark Wood and I was mesmerised by it. So much so that I wanted to share the story so I gave my copy away, I now have another signed copy and I’m so glad as it really changed my reading habits. Enough about my fangirl back story.

I read the first chapter of The Turn of the Key and instantly wanted more. I knew that I needed this book more than anything. I hit the request button on Netgalley and was checking my emails obsessively, the email never came so just before publication I pre-ordered it when it pinged through just after midnight I tried to read past where I had been but tiredness took hold. If it wasn’t for circumstances I wholeheartedly could have devoured this in one maybe two sittings.

In some ways I’m blessed as extending this read gave me added enjoyment. I ended up finishing it whilst waiting to be seen by the doctor and that last 30% was probably the most intense. Although saying that the levels of intensity were there throughout.

Where do I begin?

There is so much in this novel and even at 70% in I still didn’t know anything connected to Rowan being in prison. At each turn I was left with many unanswered questions and new theories sprang to mind and each and every time I was so far from the truth.

Rowan is an interesting character, I can’t say I liked her, as at times I didn’t but I also sympathised with her at times. Either way she was a compelling leading lady with so much substance and as I got further through the book so much became clear, yet it also wasn’t totally clear.

Maddie and Ellie went through stages of being insanely cute and incredibly creepy. There was something about each of them from the off. Rhiannon was a totally different kettle of fish and was nowhere near as bad as the persona we are given from the off.

I cannot say anymore than that a twisting tale with oh soo much. It’s a story you will want to talk about but you honestly can’t until your mates have read it. I loved the set up of the letters, emails etc. It’s one of those books where you keep saying just a little more and then something happens to change your thought process again and the pages just keep turning. It’s also a very atmospheric book, I’ve been to Scotland but never anywhere like this although I feel like I have been there from how Ruth has explained everything about Heatherbrae House.

Ruth Ware is the Queen of thrilling, a twisting tale with sooo many ifs, buts and OMGs. A heart in mouth read that I will be recommending to any and every thriller lovers out there. This is the compelling read that will keep you awake at night, once you get to the heart of the story you won’t be able to stop.

Once again Ruth Ware has left me breathless and with a massive book hangover. I have a number of thrillers to read and now it’s going to be a hard task in beating this one…..and I loved that there was a very brief Hayley mentioned.

2019, audible, New Author to me, Review, Uncategorized

Audio Review: The Man Who Didn’t Call By Rosie Walsh

Blurb: Imagine you meet a man, spend seven glorious days together, and fall in love. And it’s mutual: you’ve never been so certain of anything. 

So when he leaves for a long-booked holiday and promises to call from the airport, you have no cause to doubt him.

But he doesn’t call. 

Your friends tell you to forget him, but you know they’re wrong: something must have happened; there must be a reason for his silence.

What do you do when you finally discover you’re right? That there is a reason – and that reason is the one thing you didn’t share with each other? 

The truth.

Review: First off whatever you think this books about forget it. Whatever you were assuming is completely wrong – expect the unexpected.

This book is for every single girl who’s waited and waited for a man to call and he simply hasn’t. You had such a fantastic time together and you’re adamant that you’ll meet again but it’s not meant to be.

I toyed with whether to read or listen to this beauty and I opted for the audio. Narration is a massive thing for me and Katherine Press reads Rosie Walsh’s words so well.

OMG! So everything I expected from this novel was flipped on its head. I started thinking I could see what the truth was but my oh my I was so so wrong. Just when I thought I had the main essence of this story well and truly sussed Rosie threw a massive curve ball my way and I was left speechless and eager for more.

Everything about how this novel was written had me on the edge of my toes wanting more, as the end neared though I found myself halting time as I just didn’t want it to end. Rosie has a distinctive style, she has managed to create a love story of sorts and what could be described as a girlie read, with a twist and a totally thrilling aspect to boot. It’s one of those books where you will wholeheartedly think you know how it’s going to end and bam you are completely clueless with dramatic results.

I enjoyed how this novel focuses on the north of Gloucester and of the USA. This novel has it all families – their grief, feuds and so much more. Friends, loneliness, love, health and well-being just to name a few, and most importantly self care and in some aspects the lack of self care. Most of the voice is from Sarah but from time to time other characters voices spring forward.

This is a book that will stay with you long after the last line. It will make you think about your actions in many aspects of life. And sometimes he just doesn’t call for good reason.

I honestly cannot wait to see what Rosie Walsh does next. I’m definitely a fan and the hype over this book is well and truly warranted. Don’t delay get it today you won’t regret it.

2019, Author Love, Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: Last Orders at the Star and Sixpence By Holly Hepburn

Blurb: Nestled in the quiet countryside sits the cosy village of Little Monkham, home of The Star and Sixpence, a renovated pub owned by sisters Sam and Nessie. As the locals welcome the new season, it appears that change is afoot in their tiny community, and not all of it for the better . . .
 
Nessie is moving in with her boyfriend, leaving Sam alone in the pub. But with the arrival of new chef Gabriel causing a flutter among the women of the village, it seems that Sam might not be so lonely after all. Having just recently come out of a relationship, Sam’s attraction to Gabe is inconvenient, but that’s the least of her worries when an unexpected visitor arrives at the pub, determined to stir up trouble.
 
As Gabe and Sam grow closer, Little Monkham’s latest arrival threatens to reveal a secret that will turn more than one world upside down. Can Sam and Nessie work through the fall out, or is it really last orders at The Star and Sixpence?

Review: I often find the term an emotional rollercoaster a bit of a cop out when reviewing a book but Last Orders at the Star and Sixpence is definitely a thrilling rollercoaster of a multitude of emotions. I’d like to take this time to thank Harriet at Simon & Schuster for not only championing me as a blogger but for the invite onto this tour. I will cherish my last orders beer mat.

Reading a Holly Hepburn novel sure is like reuniting with old friends, comforting, heartwarming and full of such hope. I must admit as much as I am always taken with her characters they can also be some of the most frustrating creatures I have ever met. Just like a friend who never takes the advice you have dished out.

I adore Nessie and Sam, I must admit the original A Year at the Star and Sixpence I own but I’ve only read the Valentines section. I know I know. But the good thing is when I’m really missing this bunch I have that to fully discover. I love how close these sisters are and I love how different they both are. If I can channel a little bit of either of them then I will definitely feel much more confident in my own skin and my abilities.

There are so many sub-subjects in this novel – family, friends, happiness, loneliness, grief, addiction, and a few tragic circumstances that I won’t reveal and most of all love.

Romance – now….I made Holly’s day on Twitter after my words on that kiss, that kiss when you read this novel you will know exactly what I’m talking about. Wow! The intensity gave me all the feels and I wasn’t even being kissed myself but I was definitely left breathless and wanting more.

Now I don’t want to spoil any actual information as I want you to read this book with the intrigue and suspense that I did, there’s a scene that is heart achingly real although, it’s not something I have suffered but I know people who have been through similar heartache. Saying that said sadness had me reading just a little more to find out what happened next.

Grief hits us all in different ways and out thoughts go into overdrive. Holly captures grief in both a male and a female but ultimately proves together they can heal. The Star and Sixpence is very much community driven and this bunch really do rally round for one of their own. This was truly heartwarming and something you really don’t see enough of these days.

There were so many lines that truly had me thinking about life. Sam had many great one liners and “If I cant have a love life of my own, at least I can get a vicarious thrill through yours.” Had to be one of the best I can imagine a cheeky glint in her eye and a smile on her face.

There was one character who I didn’t like from the off and something about said character had me dubious and I was right. I loved seeing the outcome and via whom. I now have to give a special mention to Ruby – everyone needs a Ruby in life. She’s experienced, classy and just damn fabulous.

I loved my time at the Star and Sixpence, Last Orders at the Star and Sixpence is very much a just another chapter sort of read and it each turn you’ll want more and more. It’s best served with an ice cold beverage and a slice of something sweet. I had a few cans of Baileys mocha and I no longer have any. I had a few breakfasts alongside this treat and I must say after spending Monday and Tuesday morning with them, I sure did miss them this morning.

I hope this isn’t the end as I would love another visit to the cosiest pub around and to see how Sam and Nessie and co are getting on. To be honest I would love to join them. Holly has left me feeling swoon-some and longing for romance.

2019, august, ebook, novella, Quick Reads, Review, TBR, Uncategorized, update

A Patchwork Family – Part One – Moving On By Cathy Bramley

Blurb: Gina Moss is proud of herself: she’s just had the most amicable divorce ever. No arguments, no fuss, no drama. It means she has plenty of time and energy for her thriving childminding business too.

Welcome Cottage is both home and workplace for Gina. It sits just on the edge of The Evergreens – a grand if slightly run-down Victorian residence to three octogenarians who have far too much fun for their age: Violet, Delphine and Bing.

But a tragedy puts her older friends at risk of eviction – and Gina in charge of the battle to save them. It might be her first fight, but it’s one that Gina is determined not to lose…

Review: It’s been a while since I’ve read a Cathy Bramley novel and when this series was mentioned I instantly pre-ordered it, them good old 99p kindle purchases. I had hoped to have read and reviewed on publication day but that wasn’t to be. See I’m getting more organised but I’m also wanting to read more and more.

Part one is aptly named – Moving On as Gina has accomplished her amicable divorce and later on in the instalment there are more tragic circumstances. It starts with Bramley’s trademark wit, I’d heard of divorce parties via another book and the meal between Gina and Eric sure was full of laughs. It’s extremely rare that marriages can end well – but they are one of those rare breeds. The scene in the restaurant had me laughing out loud, but it also made me want to know more as they got on so well, I’m sat there wondering why they called time on their marriage.

It being part one it sets the scene and the groundwork for the story with the hint of what’s to come. What I’ve grown to love about these type of series’s is that you are left eager and wanting more and this did not disappoint. A Patchwork Family crosses over to The Lemon Tree Cafe as it’s based in the same town with some of the same characters. In realising that I realise I only read the first part of that story, so that will need to be rectified but August is proving to be a busy one.

Gina is a character that I instantly liked, she’s a go getter and wants the best out of life. A tragedy makes her realise she needs to live every day like it’s her last.

I loved the sentiments in this novel, friends and family come in all shapes and sizes and I loved the variation of age groups. You have the older generation who Gina is extremely fond of and then you have the children to whom she is also fond of. Being a childminder and an extremely good and experienced one at that. It also showed me that families can be a blessing and a curse. I don’t want to spoil the intrigue so I won’t say anymore than that. I want to see whether Dexter pulls through for the sake of his family.