2019, august, ebook, extract, Uncategorized

First chapter first paragraph Tuesday intros

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros @ I’d Rather Be at the Beach. Weekly. Share the first paragraph (or a few) of a book you’re reading or thinking about reading soon.

The morning began as so many do in winter, with lowhanging fog and a smattering of frost. For weeks the sky has been the muted silver of a much-thumbed coin, but today the sun has broken through, laundering my little Cambridgeshire village with light. As I walk the ten or so minutes to the pub, I relish this new brightness which has brought with it so much colour – red berries in a thicket of holly, a battalion of purple pansies in a window box, and perched on the wall outside the church, a blue tit, its head cocked inquisitively to one side. I see David as soon as I cross the threshold of the White Swan. He is easy to spot, with his round bald head and those John Lennon-style glasses, which he wears balanced precariously on the end of his nose.

I only started reading this beauty this morning and I’m hooked on this breathtaking story. So far Genie has been through so many emotions and my heart really does go out to her. Her best mate is called Hayley – which made me smile free-fold, I’m always looking for books with Hayley’s and she’s super fun. Although her eating lemon drizzle cake sure did make my sweet tooth twitch so I may have had some chocolate cake to accompany my reading. This is a buddy read that I’m reading with Catriona although for once I’m ahead I literally cannot get enough. I have extremely sore feet from a cut on the bottom and due to sunburn so I’ve enjoyed chilling with a book today. I’m in the midst of chapter 9 and I know I can get a few more chapters in before we go out this evening…..see there are major pluses to days staying on camp….what an absolute treat of a book. The descriptions of New Zealand sound amazing.

That’s me over and out for today…I have a few reviews to write but right now I need another coffee and to get back to One Winter Morning.

Advertisements
2019, Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday – Book characters I’d love to be besties with….

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.

Now this is a prompt that I’m going to have fun with.

I know I only recently finished this but I truly loved these beauties. I would love to be besties with Nessie and Sam oh and Ruby. I think Ruby could tell me a thing or two and she would definitely be a confidence booster.

I often wish Brew was a real place, I’d get my morning coffee and share my trials and tribulations and I might just be on the receiving end of some good luck. Last week a customer gave me a mint choc chip cornetto and it really made me think of this beauty.

In thinking of book besties it really made me think. This book made me long for more? Anna took chances, to make her own happiness. I need to do more of that. This book still gives me all the feels.

Now I’m an auntie to twins (they’re one now) I would love to have a chat with these girlies on multiples and their bond etc etc. These girls were ballsy and made me feel like I need to get out of my comfort zone more.

I simply adored Tiffy and Leon although I would wanna fight for Leon. Everyone needs a Leon.

I fell in love with Ed and I’m so glad there’s two books with him. Book boyfriend 🙂

I’m so glad I still have lots more Jessie and Meg to devour both ladies inspired me in different ways. Watch this space….so much I want to read.

Angela and Jenny are amazing, I’m still behind in this series and I’m loving experiencing everything they’re going through.

Castle Court gets a mention in Holly’s latest and it gave me all the feels once again. Who wouldn’t want to be besties with Sadie and Cat. I would love to be a bit more confident like Cat.

There is loads and loads of besties amongst the gorgeous books I devour. I definitely need to be reading more. Hoping I get answers regarding my ear today and then I hope I feel better. Hoping to get Ruth Wares gorgeous book finished today. I’m also hoping to start my buddy read of Miranda Dickinson’s The Day We Meet Again…

What are your plans and who would you be besties with? Ace prompt I probably could have added loads more.

2019, audible, Author Love, Review, Uncategorized

Audible Review: If You Could Go Anywhere By Paige Toon

Blurb: Angie has always wanted to travel. But at twenty-seven, she has barely stepped outside the small mining town where she was born. Instead, she discovers the world through stories told to her by passing travellers, dreaming that one day she’ll see it all for herself.

When her grandmother passes away, leaving Angie with no remaining family, she is ready to start her own adventures. Then she finds a letter revealing the address of the father she never knew, and realises instantly where her journey must begin: Italy.
 
As Angie sets out to find the truth – about her family, her past and who she really is – will mysterious and reckless Italian Alessandro help guide the way?

Review: Now I’ve said it before and I’m not even sorry I will keep repeating how much of a fangirl of Paige Toon I really am. If you’re not new to the blog you would have heard this before and I’m kind of sorry ha. I got into Paige late and in a way I love that as I still have many of her worlds to enjoy. I’m going on holiday in August with my family to the caravan holiday park we have been visiting since I was a kid and seeing as we will be there for two weeks this year I think a few Paige unread books will be coming. I may even ask you guys to choose nearer the time.

Anyway over to If You Could Go Anywhere firstly how it took me so long to devour this. The fabulous team at Simon & Schuster had given me a copy what seems like forever ago but due to my exams it just got shelved so I ended up listening to this beauty on Audible. I’ve listened to a few of Paige’s and the narration from Heather Long was fantastic- she also read Thirteen Weddings which was also a treat.

What can I say wow wow wow wow! (If you can say that like how Kylie sings it then you have my drift). Paige writes in a way that you are transported into that character I felt every single ounce of Angie’s emotion and on her first experience of Italy I felt like I was there. Another place I haven’t visited but my has Paige made me want to.

We meet Angie as her grandmother has passed away and she’s quite frankly lost. For so long she has taken care of her grandmother- that she doesn’t really know what to do for her. One things for sure she’s always wanted to travel and until this point she hasn’t left her own town of Cobber Pedy – Australia. A place that sounds simply gorgeous and her community are so adorable they really care for Angie and her well being. Her only travel has been through others postcards. Just reading about her postcards gave me travel envy. Angie’s friends and neighbours really do care for her best interests and what they do to push her on her journey is quite simply breathtaking.

Angie knows nothing of her father – until a letter comes to light. Her travels start with Italy and finding out some answers. Families are a funny one and they all have their secrets but Angie really didn’t bargain for what she finds.

Before finishing this fantastic novel I attended the Waterstones event for Paige, Lindsey Kelk and Lucy Vine. I had hoped to have finished in time but revision got in the way there was so much talk of the way Paige writes a proper love of your life love story and how much we were all aching for Angie and Alessendro to get together.

In a Paige Toon novel you are always guaranteed a sweep you off your feet romance usually from a brooding male….but what she created so amazingly with this one was how many sub-subjects there were. We have grief, love, travel, mental health just to name a few and they are all done with grace and understanding.

Another treat that had me in tears….I thought this one was different but it tugged on my heart strings like Paige always does. Although I must say in finishing If You Go Anywhere it left me with a happy heart and a book hangover.

Paige thank you as ever for writing a thought provoking book that took me away from the trials and tribulations of everyday stresses. Now seeing as there’s nothing more until next year I must get back to the back catalogue. There will be another post before my impending trip away.

Finally If You Could Go Anywhere where would you go? I still have a few major places I would love to see and I’m going with Nashville and New Orleans. I’m itching for them sooo badly.

2019, Author Love, christmas, Cover Reveal

Cover Reveal: The Christmas Wish List By Heidi Swain

I haven’t even devoured her latest yet but within a few days from her last publication Heidi Swain is back with news. Today she has shared with us a truly gorgeous cover for her festive novel that will be available in October 2019. I have a few of her festive ones and I’m not sure if I’ve read them all but I’m a huge fan of Heidi’s and her covers are always stunning and the content will leave me wanting more.

Blurb: After being let go from her job in a swanky hotel just weeks before Christmas, Hattie is feeling lost. Even more so when her high-flying boyfriend announces he’s landed his dream job in Abu Dhabi and asks her to move with him. Luckily, Hattie’s long-time friend Dolly is on hand to help and invites Hattie to spend one last holiday in the small, festive town of Wynbridge, determined to give her a Christmas to remember . . .

Upon Hattie’s arrival, holiday preparations are in full swing. But for Hattie, whose Christmas cheer has long since run out, it’ll take more than mince pies and mistletoe to open her heart to the season once more. Relishing the task of reigniting Hattie’s Christmas spirit, Dolly suggests they create a wish list of all the things the season can offer, and with the helpful hands of Wynbridge’s resident handyman, Beamish, Hattie finds her frosty exterior is starting to thaw.

As Wynbridge prepares for its most spectacular Christmas yet, will Hattie leave snowy England behind for life in a sunnier clime, or will she in fact realise that her heart’s desire lies much closer to home?

Heidi it’s stunning and I cannot wait to start my Christmas festivities with you and the Wynbridge crew.

2019, Bookish Adventures, event

Simon & Schuster Spring Blogger evening.

On Wednesday 6th February I was lucky enough to be invited to Simon & Schuster’s Spring Blogger Event.

These guys are my favourite publishers not only do they host a gorgeous array of authors and thought provoking books they also have the best get togethers. I’m always heartbroken if I can’t attend but thankfully I made the day completely free to attend.

Not only is it fabulous to meet authors it’s also a great evening to catch up with likeminded bloggers of whom I’m very good friends with a number of them. And it’s always lovely to finally put faces to Twitter handles and to meet newbies and get recommended more books. There are never too many books. (She says, although I think I was good compared to a few others cough Laura cough Emma).

The cakes always need their very own introduction made by restoration cakes they always taste fabulous. Thanks to SJ I devoured two of these beauties yup I did just admit that. I had if you were here and the love child.

There were an array of authors some did readings and others were attendees like me yet we did get the chance to chat to them all.

Iona Grey giving is a fabulous reading from The Glittering Hour – it was lovely to meet her especially as she follows my Twitter. I look forward to reading this.

Next up was Alice Peterson – I have one of her books at home and ashamedly I haven’t read it but I’m going to devour my sampler after listening to her read.

Claire Frost’s gorgeous debut sounds fabulous I think this will be the next sampler I read.

Claire is so genuine and is just as excited as us bloggers I look forward to seeing her journey progress.

Rachel Hore gave a fabulous reading she has such a good reading voice.

Now how I’ve never properly spoke to Milly I don’t know. She has the best reading voice, she’s funny and real. I’ve read a few of her shorts but I must delve in I know I have some of her books on my ever expanding shelf but I’m hoping to attend another event after her latest is released so I’m hoping to have read that in time.

Ever since I inhaled the Swimming Pool Louise has been one of my favourite authors although I still have a number of her books waiting on my shelf. That must change. I devoured the sampler of Those People and I know this is a book I will be shouting about I want it NOW. The characters are real, likeable and unlikeable and I know it’s going to be one of those take a day off and sit in a coffee shop reads and I want to do that.

It’s always a pleasure to see these ladies. I had a lovely chat with Anstey Harris also but there is no photographic evidence. As I said to many on that evening I either take lots of photos or none.

So to the goody bag – my pictures could be better. I’m sooo excited by both these proofs I also met Catherine again but no pic again too many people not enough time. I’ve been good and haven’t started Paige’s yet as I’m currently engrossed in The Flight of Cornelia Blackwood which is another Simon & Schuster beauty.

The gorgeous samplers that the lovely ladies signed for me.

The rest of the goodies and the extras I swiped off the shelf we were told to raid…I do blame some of my bookish pals for a few of those. I’ve not read any Gayle Forman and now I have three to devour.

I’m sorry that the blog has been a bit hit and miss of late. Although I’m chuffed that my updates all seem to be Simon & Schuster based. Any of you I met at this event know I’m currently swooning over 90s boyband Boyzone back on the road again today but I would love to hear from you all.

2018, Blogtober, Six for Sunday, Uncategorized

Six for Sunday – books I would re-read…

I’ve said it before and I will say it again I really enjoy drafting the six for Sunday question but sometimes it’s just not possible to get involved.

This week it’s books you would love to re-read. Now there are some cracking books out there and thanks to my ever expanding TBR I don’t get to re-read books but here are some beauties that I would love to read again.

I read this in serial form so I would love to devour it as a full on novel. This book spoke to me in volumes and I will keep banging on about how truly gorgeous it is. In a world full of crazy choose to be kind. Not only is it a brilliant book, Victoria Walters is also one of the nicest writers ever.

Another book from this year. I’m such a massive fan of Miranda and she always makes me feel positive and hopeful in a world that’s not always nice. I haven’t officially reviewed this beauty and I have no real reason for not doing so apart from being bogged down with other blogger stuff. This is a beautiful story about love, life and loss. Miranda wrote this during a trying time in her own life and the sense of grief is real and ever so raw. Written from the heart and with so much passion plus I fell in love with Kieran.

At school this book all and truly got under my skin. I was on the edge of my seat constantly wanting more reading way past my class.

I still need to devour a whole host of this ladies work but my Rebecca is a whole different class. I loved everything about this book. It was my introduction to Daphne and the perfect way to discover a writer.

Another one I only read recently and it’s not even out until next year. With this one I hope to devour the audiobook of this, I can guarantee the music will add to the truly unique story.

This was the first of Mhairi’s books I read I’m still a bit behind on her latest stuff but wow this book resonated with me so much. I’ve seen a number of authors with the proof for her next book and I want it like now….

2018, Author Love, Publication Day, Uncategorized

Five Years From Now is out today…

Happiest of publication days to Paige Toon for the gorgeous Five Years From Now. A novel that sucked me in and spat me out in the greatest sense of the word. The characters are loveable and you will honestly be invested in them from the off. Nell and Vian/Van were my favourites from the off.

Here is my review for Five Years From Now one of my favourite reads this year.

I haven’t had Paige in my life for long but every one of the novels of hers that I have read have been outstanding. I started with Last Piece Of My Heart another novel that had me laughing and in tears. Which was then followed by The One We Fell in Love With and then Thirteen Weddings and the Christmas short A Christmas Wedding.

A few more of my blog posts on Paige Sampler Five Years From Now

A Christmas Wedding

The last piece of my heart

So from my links there are two I shamefully haven’t reviewed wow this won’t happen again lol.

Last July I was lucky enough to meet Paige for the first time at YALC, and since then we have met a few times. Not only is Paige an awesome writer she’s a lovely and humble human being and every-time I speak to her I’m inspired and grateful.

So to everyone who has devoured all of Paige’s glorious collection what should I read next?

So what are you waiting for get ordering this beauty. Five years from now link I will be on the hunt for the pink one from Asda I’m not sure my local Asda does books but that will be my mission. As I say I’m all ears to what Paige novel I should devour next I also love Audible so let me know if I should listen.

2018, Author Love, novella, Review, Short Story, TBR, Uncategorized

Book Review: Starry Skies at Castle Court By Holly Hepburn

Sorry for the delay been sucked into a psychological thriller but here I am finally posting my thoughts on a gorgeous series.

Blurb: Sadie is a single mum, nursing a broken heart. Cat is burned out from working long hours as a chef. They decide to invest in their dream – running their own handmade biscuit shop in gorgeous Castle Court, a three-storey food court tucked away behind Chester’s bustling streets.

They soon discover that Castle Court has its own community – a little haven of delight against the stresses of the outside world. But not everyone welcomes the new business; the patisserie owner is less than pleased by what she sees as direct competition and Greg, who runs the fancy bistro that dominates one end of the courtyard, doesn’t think Sadie and Cat have the talent or business acumen to succeed. Luckily, there’s support in the form of the delectable Jaren, who owns the Dutch waffle house opposite Smart Cookies, and Swiss chocolate-shop owner, Elin. And if all else fails, the friends can drown their sorrows in the cocktail bar that overlooks the court.

Review: Wow! I think out of all four parts this was the one I was truly waiting for and I devoured it quite quickly. Once my good friend Catriona had finished it I was eager to know how it ended.

Holly Hepburn has a way of writing characters that you love and those you love to hate. Being the final part of the stories lots of unanswered questions and situations are tied up. I think I said in a previous review there were a few characters who I didn’t see as being the bad guys who actually were a lot more slimy than I first realised.

I adored Sadie and Cat from the off and I love how they became central characters to so much within Castle Court. It’s been a bumpy rollercoaster ride for the pair but they have overcome every single obstacle. We need more strong independent women to give us a boost and at Castle Court we definitely get that. I was so pleased that Cat finally seems happy and fulfilled in both her professional and personal life. It’s been a rocky road for her and I felt like I was cheering her on along the way. So I’m glad she won through – I won’t be stating anything more than that as I want you to read and get the OMG and YES moments that I got.

A wedding always makes me smile – especially if the couple are adorable and they sure are. Once again Cat and Sadie are at the heart of the action as is Sadie’s gorgeous little girl Lissy. I have to mention Adam because he’s been a firm favourite of mine and the scenes between him and Sadie make me happy and sad at times. I was so pleased to have him back – as he was adorable from the off and he’s the kind of guy I need.

There’s sooo much I want to say but I don’t want to ruin any of this gorgeousness. It’s a real treat a story of friends, love, betrayal, good guys, bad guys getting what they deserve – ooooh did I say that. Just an all round feel good read to have with a coffee and a biscuit. Two things I’m currently not having ha go figure. The ending is simply perfect and I would love to see these characters again and I’m still desperate to be in a Holly Hepburn novel – as a good character with an amazing book boy. A girl can sure dream.

Please whatever you do this May read the Castle Court series and if you only have part four to read it’s the best yet.

Review, Uncategorized

Book Review: The Vets at Hope Green part two Follow Your Heart..

hope-green

Blurb: PART TWO of a heartwarming and inspiring story about living the simple life and the joy of animals.

Working as the receptionist at her local London vets, Sam dreams of escaping to a quieter life in the country. Spending time with her Nana and her lovely but elderly dog Rufus has sparked something within Sam, and all she wants is to start afresh. But her boyfriend Adam is in London, and something tells her that it won’t be an easy conversation.
But then something happens that makes her going-nowhere receptionist job seem much more appealing: she finds a little stray cat called Ebony, in need of love and nurturing back to health. Faced with a dilemma, she must choose between her heart’s desire and the little ball of fluff burrowing her way into Sam’s heart…
Is it possible to have it all?

Review: I love these four part stories as they always end on a cliffhanger leaving you wanting more. In part one Sam had some big news and as a reader I was intrigued as to how she would handle the situation and how she would break the news to Adam. Sam’s a great character and I liked her from the beginning. Her relationship with her Nan is beautiful and the loneliness that her Nan is feeling made me think of my Nan as after we lost Grandad she was lost without him. We helped but we couldn’t always be there.

So in part two Sam moves to Hope Green yay I could see this happening from part one and I was so chuffed for her. So far it’s changed her life and her Nan Peggy’s.

As I previously stated I’m new to Sheila Norton’s writing and I’m loving every second of The Vets at Hope Green. I must say part two ended on a worse cliffhanger than part one I’m eager to know what happens.

There’s so many things I’m still eager to find out. There is so much more to Joe and I can’t wait to see.

In memory of..., Uncategorized

Remembering Nan June 

For those of you who are new to this blog all you will see is bookish chat.

Originally this blog was called life’s too short blogger and it was aimed at my volunteering for Cancer Research. I volunteered for a year after my Nan was diagnosed with Cancer the first time and I had watched a work colleague lose her mum and saw a friend pass.

I’m glad my Nan was still here when I began my Cancer Research journey, as she loved nothing more than trawling through charity shops. She would often ask me about my experiences and she had me on the hunt for a red scarf. It’s safe to say I never found a red scarf in good condition when she was alive.

But today I am going to purchase a gorgeous red scarf in honour of my beautiful Nan and I will wear it proudly. 

In January 2016 I started a new journey I became Assistant Manager in the Cancer Research store in Lewisham. So this blog was kind of redundant as I was no longer a volunteer. However, I didn’t want to get rid of this page as I was and still am proud of what I achieved here and where it took me.

Today is the anniversary of that horrid day when I didn’t make it to work, where we said goodbye to the strongest and bravest woman I have ever known. I used to love this day in January as it is exactly one month until my birthday now I remember saying goodbye. The only blessing is that me and my siblings, my mum and auntie were there until the very end.

It was a heartbreaking experience that will never leave me but we wouldn’t have let her be on her own. The other blessing is that my Nan was no longer in pain and was reunited with my Grandad.

So apologises for the change in posts but I couldn’t let today pass without saying something. Bookish chat will be resumed tomorrow with a snippet of a book that has left me eager for more.

Love you Nan June.