2020, Author Love, Uncategorized

Book Review: One Perfect Summer By Paige Toon

Alice & Joe have well and truly stolen my heart.

Blurb: Do you still love him?’ Every second of every minute of every hour of every day…Alice is 18 and about to start university while Joe’s life is seemingly going nowhere. A Dorset summer, a chance meeting, and the two of them fall into step as if they have known each other forever. But their idyll is shattered, suddenly, unexpectedly. Alice heads off to Cambridge and slowly picks up the pieces of her broken heart. Joe is gone; she cannot find him. When she catches the attention of Lukas – gorgeous, gifted, rich boy Lukas – she is carried along by his charm, swept up in his ambitious plans for a future together. Then Joe is there, once more, but out of reach in a way that Alice could never have imagined. Life has moved on, the divide between them is now so great. Surely it is far too late to relive those perfect summer days of long ago?

Review: I’ve said it before and I will say it again I got into Paige Toon seriously late with The Last Piece of My Heart being the first of her books that I read. But I’m not saying that was a bad thing I loved the heart and soul of that read and I remember finishing it in the early hours of the morning with a tear stained face but with an extremely happy heart and from that moment on I was a fan and was eager to lap up anything and everything Paige had written.

So in doing this read along with Catriona I’ve loved delving into her back catalogue. I have met Joe and Alice before in previous books but I hadn’t read their own story. Oh my….how has this beauty been on my shelf and on my kindle for ages although I totally forgot I also had the digital version. That could have sped up my reading time…

This book is in a few sections with The Summer, six months later and then a few years on and on. The Summer in Dorset where Joe and Alice meet is intense and all consuming. The chapters are quite short so it’s easy to be like just one more just one more…It never felt false or rushed their love story blossomed quickly and intensely, it swept me along and consumed me, which was exactly what I needed with the world going crazy right now.

When it got to six months later I found myself frustrated not by Alice or her emotions but by the lack of Joe. It brought me back to reading Eclipse enjoying the pages but longing for Edward to return to Bella. I loved meeting Jessie and the punting gang I had forgotten that I had also met him before in the One Perfect Christmas collection – after this I did re-read that with such love and a new found understanding for all the characters, and for their individual stories.

Which then brings me onto Lukas – there were elements of Lukas that I found sweet but I never warmed to him. I found him controlling in the weirdest of ways… even though in some ways he was good for Alice at that part of her life but I like Alice was still longing for Joe.

I shan’t be ruining the ins and outs of the story but I must say this read did give me a rollercoaster of emotions and left me with a bit of a book hangover and longing for a cuddle. I do love seeing how all these characters intertwine it’s like reuniting with old friends comfortable and like a warm hug.

If you want a Paige Toon to start with One Perfect Summer is a gorgeous introduction to an author who covers many real-life aspects in a way that keeps you informed and let’s you escape. I’m totally loving this read along with one of my closest friends even though she’s across the pond and one of my most favourite authors.

Uncategorized

Six for Sunday…

I literally love this prompt and it’s been a while since I got on board with it. In these strange times I’m having a lot more time to spend reading and to blog so hopefully there will be many more posts on here.

This weeks prompt is six characters I’d love to go on a date with. Now for those of you who know me will know that I love a book boyfriend and in these trying times I’m turning more and more to these boys.

One of my recent book boyfriends the adorable Sam who literally swept me off my feet during this anxious time.
Another recent one the adorable Joesph Strike OMG I’m literally so full of love for him.
Ed featured in both this and Fairytale of New York he has to be one of my most fave book boys. I miss him a lot.
Leon stole my heart in the strangest of ways I will always remember this book with the fondest of memories
Hmmm now I can’t forget Sam
Edward will always have a special place in my heart.

This was hard and there are sooo many boys I’ve missed.

2020, Author Love, novella, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Cornish Cream Tea Summer – part two- Beauty & the yeast By Cressida McLaughlin

Blurb: Charlie, Delilah and their adorable cream tea bus have found themselves caught up in the filming of a lavish period drama on the Cornish coast and it isn’t long before Lila finds herself drawn to the handsome male lead.
But Lila has made a habit of making rash decisions and it’s one of the reasons she’s hiding out in Cornwall. Could this be one impulsive step too far for her, or is there the promise of something wonderful on the sea air…?

Review: Part two pinged through to my kindle at the right time. A much needed and welcome distraction to the craziness that is the corona virus. None of us could have predicted how this would effect and change our lives. For me this came through on day two with no work schedule, I love reading and having time to dedicate to my blog and to sit with family but I’m desperately missing the routine and day to day that work brings to my life.

In part two Lila is flying solo with the Cornish Cream Tea bus and she’s doing a smashing job of looking after the bus and fulfilling the needs of the cast and crew of Estelle. In this latest instalment Lila’s friendship with Keeley starts to flourish with the pair of them opening up over their separate worries.

Now I have to mention Sam – that sandy haired blue eyed beauty really does need to be on my doorstep especially on days like today. I found myself wholeheartedly embracing the romance of it all. I love how he can seem like two different people the confident actor and the shy guy. I loved seeing him cosy up to a certain someone it seemed to develop slowing but I was embracing it and full of such love – fully immersed in the story.

I don’t want to say too much about the story there is very little of Charlie and Daniel as they are off exploring San Francisco whilst Lila is switching up the coffees and embracing new ideas on the bus. She does get to do some cool stuff with the loveable Sam and Toby and seeing her friendships blossom with the cast and crew.

As her relationships are changing Lila thinks more and more about her fraught friendship with best mate Clara and in a conversation with Keeley she starts doubting herself. I love that the catalyst of that conversation has Lila desperate to prove she’s changed and learnt from her impulsive mistakes can she Sam and Charlie help change the fate of Estelle and the Cornish Cream Tea Bus.

I wasn’t particularly happy with how it ended as I just want to continue reading about the Cornish coast and their gorgeous residents. Part two was a welcome distraction that should have been read quite quickly but it allowed me to delve in and out of real life – during a time when I wanted and needed to escape. I’ve made another book boyfriend giving me unrealistic ideals but I can’t wait for Sam to come back into my life in part three.

Thank you Cressida for being the light in such an unpredictable time for of uncertainty.

2020, Author Love, novella, Publication Day, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Cornish Cream Tea Summer: part one All You Knead is Love By Cressida McLaughlin

Blurb:Everyone’s favourite bus goes on a summer adventure full of sunshine and the promise of romance…

Charlie has a new helper on her bus, her free-spirited and loveable cousin, Delilah, who’s paid a visit to the charming Cornish village of Porthgolow and is helping out on Charlie’s adorable cream tea bus.
When the Director of a new TV series filming further along the coast tells Delilah that the bus would be the perfect addition to their onsite catering, she takes him a bit too literally, and before long she and the bus have taken a rather unexpected journey…

Review: So if you’re not new to the blog you will remember I was hooked on the first Cornish experience – where I first met Charlie. Who instantly stole my heart and then alongside Charlie I also fell wholeheartedly for Daniel. The rollercoaster ride of the will they won’t they had me itching for the next instalment.

So when Cressida said she would be returning to the Cornish coast, my interest was already piqued. It’s great to have Charlie and the gang back although in this first instalment we meet her loveable cousin Delilah Lila to her friends.

Today is publication day of the second instalment of this story and for me it’s a much needed distraction in a crazy world right now. I loved going back and I’m loving seeing Lila open up to Charlie and in seeing her confidence change. I’m also loving seeing the story of the TV show and in the blossoming friends and romances. I can’t lie it’s also good to have the loveable Daniel back…..

Right without further ado I believe it’s time to put my current book down and to get back to the bus and see what Lila is up to right now….if you’re lucky I maybe back with another review shortly.

2020, A thought? A question, Uncategorized

Taking a moment…

To acknowledge that these uncertain times have left me feeling bereft and anxious. I’m not saying this for attention or sympathy I’m just now documenting my thoughts here on my blog.

I’ve made a start on some posts that will follow shortly. Although Darren O’Sullivan’s one will be posted on publication day of Dark Corners on 2nd April so watch this space.

I’m not hard faced but I have always had the mentality where I wouldn’t be scared to do my day to day things like when 9/11 and 7/7 happened I still went on trains and buses without a second thought. Maybe I looked around more but I wasn’t being scared away. During these uncertain times with the corona virus I’ve become more and more anxious. Simple things like getting on the bus to work and on a train to meet a friend it had my chest tightening – once I got there I was fine thanks to being submerged into good books and music.

Now my beloved cinema has been closed for all of our safety I’m left feeling so helpless, worrying like most of the country about bills and stuff as well as the fact I bloody love my job and I’ve finally felt content in myself.

The way I’ve been feeling is so alien to me it’s terrifying- I had a good cry last night and a few pink gins ha. Today I’m trying to embrace some me time, some family time and some self care. I’m hoping having some extra time means I can get this blog back to some momentum and I can blitz the TBR pile a bit. I finished Darren’s latest in the early hours. I haven’t started the next in our Paige Toon read-along yet I may get a short in first. As I type I’m sat warm and cosy watching the Boyzone – Thank You & Goodnight tour that my best mate filmed.

Thank god for music, books and film during such a scary time in life. In my 36 years on this planet I’ve never felt so anxious if only I could go back to much simpler worries like meeting my favourites.

Guess what lil Hayley you met them in threefold and the memories will last a lifetime. Seeing as I’m off work for now those nails are going to get a lick of paint….I would love to hear from any of you on your self care methods.

2020, Author Love, Buddy Read, Paige Toon Read Along, Uncategorized

Book Review: Pictures of Lily By Paige Toon

I fell for Lily and Ben long before I knew their full story…

Blurb: Ten years ago when Lily was just sixteen, she fell in love with someone she really shouldn’t have fallen in love with. Now, living in Sydney and engaged to another man, she can’t forget the one that got away. Then her past comes back to haunt her, and she has to make a decision that will break her heart – and the heart of at least one of the men who love her.

Review: So most of you know that I became a fan of Paige Toon kinda late, which means I have a fabulous back catalogue to delve into. Alongside the fabulous Catriona we have been buddy reading Paige’s books in order. Although due to my birthday, work and a brief cold on my side I haven’t actually finished reading Chasing Daisy but I wanted to get back on track with Cat and during the early hours of this morning I finished reading Pictures of Lily.

I had met Lily and Ben before in the One Perfect Christmas collection and in re-reading that now I’m smiling at remembering first reading that and now that I fully understand their story I’m full of such love for them and their story.

Lily is another of Paige’s gorgeous women who I instantly connected with, the intensity of her feelings and her passions are inspiring and intoxicating. This is a classic story of the one who got away? But what happens when they return. I loved seeing Lily become herself and in doing things she loved- it was heartbreaking to see her feelings so torn but eventually her heart won out.

An emotional rollercoaster that had me from start to finish. Once again an eclectic group of characters and even when you didn’t like them they were still an important part of Lily’s story….

As I had read the short from One Perfect Christmas I found myself thinking of what I knew of their story but it didn’t ruin my enjoyment in finding out all the details. Paige really does have a way of conveying every single emotion that both parties go through.

I would love to have Lily and Ben back again someday….

2020, Author Love, Book Snippet, Uncategorized

An update plus Rosie Blake goodness.

I’m so sorry I had started drafting a rather good World Book Day post whilst on my way to work yesterday morning. My break seemed to fly in the blink of an eye and I was out for a colleagues birthday so I apologise.

When I returned home I had received a parcel but said parcel wasn’t opened until this morning.

I’ve been such a fan of Rosie Blake since falling in love with her writing in her debut How to get a Love Life? Since then I’ve loved her other novels How To Find your (first) Husband? How to Stuff up Christmas? And the Hygee Holiday. So when the lovely lady herself sent me a message asking if I would love a super early copy the answer was always going to be YES.

I simply adore the cover and you can see it’s an August release by the colours…

Blurb: Lottie is always in a hurry, rushing through her days ticking tasks off her to-do lists. Teddy is worried about his granddaughter – and he knows that his late wife, Lily, would have known exactly what to say to make things better. Now that Lily has gone, it’s up to Teddy to talk some sense into Lottie.

With the help of Arjun, Geoffrey and Howard, the elderly reprobates who make up his Gin O’Clock Club, Teddy makes a plan to help Lottie find her way back to the things that really matter – family, friendship and love. But as Lottie balances a high-powered job with her reluctant attendance at whist drives, ballroom dances and bingo, Teddy wonders if she’s really ready to open up her heart to the possibility of true happiness…

I’m in the middle of a Paige Toon readathon plus I have a few other books half started so I cannot start this yet. However it has been bumped up my list so it could slot in very soon watched this space, I opened the book read the gorgeous quote and then proceeded to read a letter. Omg barely two pages and I can safely say this beauty has stolen my heart once again….

You can pre-order The Gin O’Clock Club below

2020, Cover Reveal, Uncategorized

Cover Reveal: Silent Cry By Jenny O’Brien

It’s been a while since I’ve done a cover reveal and this one looks so good.


Blurb: Alys is fine. Don’t try to find us.

Five years ago, Izzy Grant’s boyfriend Charlie took their newborn daughter Alys out for a drive.

They never came back.

After years of waiting, Izzy has almost given up hoping that they’re still alive – until a note is pushed through her door telling her they’re fine, not to look for them. Suddenly the case is top priority again, and Izzy is swarmed with faces from the past: the detective who was first on the scene to help; an old friend who vanished not long after Alys and Charlie.

Izzy doesn’t know who she can trust, who is sending her notes, where Charlie and Alys might be. Her only ally is DC Gabriella Darin, recently transferred from Cardiff and fleeing a painful past of her own.

Gaby knows something doesn’t fit with the case, and she knows Izzy won’t rest until she finds out what really happened to her daughter. Could someone she knew and trusted really have taken Alys from her?

Wherever Alys and Charlie are, Gaby is determined to find them, no matter what it takes. Somewhere in Izzy’s past is a clue, if Gaby can only find it…

If that’s wet your appetite then you can pre-order this thriller Here

2020, Author Love, event, Uncategorized

Simon & Schuster Spring Blogger Event

I have to start by saying it’s always a pleasure and a privilege to be invited to Simon & Schuster HQ, not only are they the hardest working bunch but they are the nicest people who always host an impressive event.

Whatever day week or month of the year it is I always want to be there. Not only do they make me feel valued I always leave feeling motivated and ready to accomplish anything, whether it be within my bookish realm or other aspects of my working or personal life and I will always thank them for that. It’s also a time for me to catch up with a number of my blogger pals, there’s a few of us who constantly say we will catch up more but it’s not always possible although as I had the day off I managed to meet Laura aka @grumpygirlie for food and a beverage before proceedings which was lovely and well overdue to say the least.

During the event…we were part of the gorgeous exclusive reveal of Caroline Scott’s next novel.

I haven’t read her first novel yet but what she spoke about from this one has really moved me so I’m sure it will get pushed up my list although this isn’t released until October.
I shamefully didn’t take many pictures of the fabulous authors as I was too busy getting lost in their words…and during the signing session I was talking a lot.

There was a quiz on all things Simon & Schuster and I was lucky enough to be on the winning team. We were accompanied by the stunning Santa Montefiore and this was my prize…

I’m such a Lindt fan I may have already devoured two of these beauties.

How gorgeous are these flat lays for the stunning books.
I haven’t read any of Santa’s books but this one I’m definitely pushing further up my pile.
Anstey’s debut was one of my favourite reads of last year so I cannot wait to read this one.
I devoured part one of this in January and I’m eagerly awaiting the next instalment.
I was convinced this bad boy would be in my goodie bag. I was wrong but in a way I’m glad As temptation would have won over and I’m in the middle of a readathon of Paige’s books.
This is a debut that sounds so fun and Sara was super lovely…
I read this book a while ago and I will get my thoughts together ASAP it’s gorgeous and Christina is lovely.
I haven’t read anything like this in forever and it really will happen soon.
A Simon & Schuster event always has stunning cakes and here they are again.

I always have such envy over the gorgeous Shelves. Even though mine are pretty good they don’t look like this.

I know you’ve eagerly scrolled to see my goodie bag so without further ado here is what I received and from the additional shelves I was good only taking one extra book.

Thank you as ever to SJ and the fabulous team for a truly fantastic evening surrounded by inspirational women. I cannot wait to dig in to this varied selection of reads. I swear I always leave wanting to instantly read them all.

2020, Top Ten Tuesday, Uncategorized

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl.

The rules are simple:

Each Tuesday, Jana assigns a new topic. Create your own Top Ten list that fits that topic – putting your unique spin on it if you want. Everyone is welcome to join but please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own Top Ten Tuesday post. Add your name to the Linky widget on that day’s post so that everyone can check out other bloggers’ lists. Or if you don’t have a blog, just post your answers as a comment.

This week’s topic is Books With Single Word Titles. I had seen so many tweets coming up with gorgeous links to this so I was intrigued and in looking back in my read pile there sure are a lot of them.

Now even looking at this cover gives me all those feels back.
This book had me from the get go so fast paced I loved every second.
This woman is a mastermind – loved this.
So good she’s in this list twice…
Haven’t read this one still….

Every single one of these books sent me on a rollercoaster ride and I’ve loved them all. Bar the one I still haven’t read….it’s mad when you realise there really are a lot of one worded books.