The Weekend Getaway by Hannah Ellis @BookEllis @rararesources #contemporaryfiction #romance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review for The Weekend Getaway by Hannah Ellis. This was a wonderful read that fans of contemporary fiction and romance will enjoy.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous story.

This is quite a timely release for this book as The World Pilot Gig Championships are taking place this weekend on The Isles of Scilly.

A weekend away changes everything…
The chemistry between Keira and Noah is instant. After their first date, it’s clear there’s something special between them.
A weekend in Noah’s hometown further cements their feelings, and Keira falls head over heels. Not only for Noah, but his close-knit family and the stunning Isles of Scilly.

There’s just one problem: Noah’s about to move back home and his plans can’t be altered.
It’s too early in their relationship to make life-changing plans, but if they stand a chance of being together, one of them is going to have to take a leap of faith.

Can love triumph over location? And when following your heart, how far should you go?

Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

Keira and friend Mel have been popping in their local Bristol pub for a few months now, and while they have good banter with the barman Noah it hasn’t gone much further. That changes when Mel provides a little intervention as she sees that Noah and Keira obviously like each other.

This was a fabulous book that I only planned on reading a few chapters of, and I ended up reading the whole book over the course of an evening, Yep another late-night reading!

The signs that Mel could see between Noah and Keira were not wrong and the two soon start to find that there is a real attraction. One problem though, Noah is due to return back home to the Isles of Scilly. Does he really want to start a relationship?

When Kiera realises that this relationship will be hard to continue she tries to do the best thing, trying not to get to attached, but this isn’t possible. The attraction and the easy way the two have with each other are natural and effortless. Noah decides that he will invite Keira to his home and meet his family.

There is a lot more to this story than romance and friendship. Both Keira and Noah have things that hold them back, they have very different families. His is a larger family and her very small. the differences and the backstories gradually come out and this makes for some wonderful heart to heart moments and also for admitting truths.

The other characters in this book are brilliant and I am so glad to see that this is the first book in a planned series. I cannot wait to see what lies in store for two characters that will be the focus of the next book!

This was a gorgeous read and it was nice to see the Isles of Scilly being shown off, I still have to visit there and I will one day, I do live in Cornwall after all.

This is definitely one for those who like contemporary fiction, romance and stories about family and friendships. I loved it and I would definitely recommend it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hannah Ellis spent many years working in childcare before deciding she’d like to write books. When she’s not busy writing she likes to read, drink tea and eat chocolate. She also enjoys yoga and jogging.

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Welcome to Your Life by Bethany Rutter @bethanyrutter @RandomTTours @fictionpubteam #debut #contemporaryfiction #romance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Welcome to Your Life by Bethany Rutter. This is the first time I have read a book by this debut author and it was a fabulous one to read.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for squeezing me on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of the book.

52 weeks.
52 dates.
52 chances to find love.

Serena Mills should be at her wedding.


Instead, she’s eating an ice cream sundae and drinking an obscenely large glass of wine in a
Harvester off the M25.


Everyone thinks she’s gone mad. She’s jilted the man everyone told her she was ‘so lucky’ to find.
But Serena wants to find love. A love she deserves – not one she should just feel grateful for.
So, she escapes to the big city and sets herself a challenge: 52 weeks. 52 dates. 52 chances to find
love.

It should be easy, right?

MY REVIEW

This is the first time I have read anything by this author and that is because Bethany is a Debut Author, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but I really liked the sound of the synopsis. The story is of Serena, and she has just left her wedding and is eating ice cream in a chain restaurant. Oh, and she is by herself!

This is the start of a wonderful story about how Serena tries to decide who she is and what she actually wants from her life. Not being the most confident of people and not willing to go out on a limb means she settles for what she knows. Thank goodness she realised in time that what she thought she wanted in life isn’t actually what she was willing to settle for.

This is a very modern feeling romance, that does have some chuckles but also has a more serious side to it. That serious side is one that many of us have had issues with and that is weight. I love how the author has created characters that are happy in their own skins, but still show how hurtful people can be. It doesn’t matter how confident you come across, the comments do still hurt.

So, for Serena changing not only her future but by taking a look at how she perceives what she should settle for is a huge eye-opener for her. It is hard to see herself as others see her and take compliments that are seriously meant. Serena is 28 and is starting to take steps out of her comfort zone. Living in London has opened up a different world to her, giving her some amazing and tantalising new experiences.

This was such a wonderful read. It is light and fun but also deals with some serious issues and the balance was great. This is a romance with a good amount of humour and there are some rather interesting scenes!!

I was definitely interested in how Serena was changing her attitude and also for those around her to support her when she needed it. I really enjoyed this and it is one I would definitely recommend. I am really looking forward to reading more from this author.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bethany Rutter is a writer, podcaster and plus-sized influencer. Her adult
debut, Welcome To Your Life, came to life through conversations with her
friends over drinks in London. Swapping stories of toe-curling online dates,
workplace harassment, new crushes, fashion discoveries and workout
classes, she wanted to write a heroine who turns her life upside-down just
ahead of her thirtieth birthday and is plunged into the wonderful chaos of
contemporary urban life.


In her words: ‘My heroine Serena Mills makes huge decisions. She wants
things for herself, she has Big Feelings, she desires people and is desired in
return. And… she’s fat. Of course, so much about her story has little or nothing to do with her body,
and I hope Welcome To Your Life resonates with you, whatever your body looks like and whatever
you feel towards it. This is just one story that I wanted to tell, where a fat girl gets to be the
protagonist of her own story, rather than a silly footnote in someone else’s.


Welcome To Your Life is dedicated to ‘anyone who’s ever held themselves back’ and encourages
us all to shake off our insecurities and wholeheartedly embrace everything that life has to offer.

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The Mersey Mothers by Sheila Riley @1sheilariley @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #boldwoodbloggers #historicalfiction #saga #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Mersey Mothers by Sheila Riley. I have read a few books by this author but this is the first I have read from the Reckoners Row series, this is book #3!

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous book from Boldwood Books via NetGalley.

The Mersey Mothers
Liverpool 1953

January sees the dawn of Queen Elizabeth’s Coronation year as the mothers of Reckoners Row unite in preparation for the celebration of the new Queen.

Meanwhile, Evie Kilgaren is dreaming of her summer wedding to Danny Harris, but trouble looms for Skinner & Sons with a new rival trying to put them out of business, but no one knows why….

Ada Harris is summoned to the bedside of her estranged husband, who, in his dying moment confesses to a deadly secret – he knows who really murdered Evie’s mam Rene all those years ago and the consequences are far-reaching.

Has an innocent man been jailed and is there still a murderer walking carefree?

Will Evie get the happy-ever-after she so longs for with Danny? And will The Mersey Mothers unite and still be friends?
Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

I have read several books by this author and enjoyed all I have read. The Mersey Mothers is the 3rd book in the Reckoner’s Row series. I have not read the two earlier ones and while I do wish I had because the author is fab, this one did read well as a stand-alone novel.

This book opens with a prologue and then jumps forward a few years. Set in Liverpool in 1953 the residents of Reckoner’s Row are hard-working, supportive of their families and also of their community. When one of their own does something to upset the harmony then it is made known, as Ada Harris is all too aware. There is a story about her ex-husband Bert that gradually emerges and how things have changed for the main characters. This may have been present in the previous books but the author includes details so that I didn’t feel as if I was missing anything.

The area is near the docklands and is handy for haulage businesses, and this is what Danny and his fiance Evie are desperately trying to keep going. There is however a rival business that is threatening their livelihood.

In the 50s there are several historical references to keep the reader set in the day. The coronation of Queen Elizabeth, the Korean War and also rationing started to be more relaxed after the end of WWII. The country is starting to move forward, things are improving but life is still hard. This is where the communities, friendships and families are really important. This is one of the things the author really does manage to get across well in her books and The Mersey Mothers have all that sense of spirit and supportiveness.

There are several stories that are brilliantly intertwined in this family saga style story. It is these stories that make this a fabulous book to read. Families and friendships may be tested but there is a sense that the community will always keep an eye out for their own. Things are not always rosy and there are still those who are trying to get one over the rest.

This is another wonderfully addictive historical fiction story from this author. Ideal for those who love reading family sagas and while it can be read easily as a stand-alone novel you do get to see developments and changes over the course of reading a series in order. I adored this one and I would definitely recommend it. 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sheila Riley wrote four #1 bestselling novels under the pseudonym Annie Groves and is now writing the Reckoner’s Row series under her own name. She has set it around the River Mersey and its docklands near to where she spent her early years. She still lives in Liverpool.


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What’s Next by Shari Low @sharilow @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #boldwoodbloggers #NetGalley #contemoraryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for What’s Next by Shari Low. This was a wonderful read and one that is great for those who like reading contemporary fiction and family life scenarios.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy from the publisher Boldwood Books via NetGalley.

What Next?
Two weeks, four friends and one big bucket list of secrets to unravel…

Val Murray and her best friend, Josie had been planning a ‘Thelma and Louise’ bucket list style holiday.
Now Josie is gone, and Val needs to make the trip before it’s too late.
But Val doesn’t want to do it alone, so she enlists the help of her nieces, Carly and Carole, and their best pal, Jess, who jump at the chance to join Val on a trip of a lifetime.
What Val doesn’t realise is that Carly, Carole and Jess are all at turning points in their own lives, nursing crushing secrets, lies and betrayals.
Somewhere between Los Angeles, Las Vegas and New York they all hit a crossroads and have to decide if they want to return to the lives they left behind or let Josie’s last wishes take them on a brand new adventure.
Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

Having read a few of this author’s books now, I have to say this one is one of my favourites – well, so far!

It starts with a bucket list that Val and her friend Josie had thought up. Now that Josie has passed on, Val decides it’s time to get something done about this list. You soon get to realise that Val is incorrigible and so she sort of organises and hi-jacks her nieces and they all go off to America to tick off the items.

The three nieces, Carly, Carol and Jess are, well sort of stuck in their lives or have something going on with them. It gives the 4 women a chance to not only kick back and have some fun but to assess.

This is a fabulous book and I have to say Val is such an amazing character. She is one of those characters who is the cornerstone of the story. While she is loud, bright and a real hoot, she also has another softer and hugely caring side. She is also a dangerous woman to go out anywhere with as she will definitely lead you astray, this makes for some hilarious and raucous moments in the story.

Each of the women has something they need to deal with, none of them is upfront about it. They need a trigger for the secret to be released. So while this trip is for the purpose of fulfilling a friend’s wish, it is also about discovering what needs to change for each of them.

The author has got the balance spot on with this story mixing humour with worries about life, health and family. There are changes and challenges and some wonderful moments that just make you feel that you are not alone in the world. Life for the women has been portrayed very differently for each one, and this was a great way of seeing different perspectives on life and how success is seen or happiness is measured.

This is a fabulous read, it is heartwarming and yeah there were a couple of moments when I had a lump in my throat. Ideal for readers of contemporary fiction, life, family and friendship. A gorgeous read and one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Shari Low is the #1 bestselling author of over 25 novels, including One Day In Summer and My One Month Marriage and a collection of parenthood memories called Because Mummy Said So. She lives near Glasgow.
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Finding Love in Positano by Lucy Coleman @LucyColemanauth @emblabooks #netgalley #romance #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Finding Love in Positano by Lucy Coleman. I am a fan of this author’s writing and her latest book (published yesterday) is another fabulous addition.

My thanks to the publisher, Embla for my e-copy of the book via NetGalley.

Marci James is in love with her job. She’s not had a holiday in five years, but now she’s escaping to the Italian coast after agreeing to pack up her godfather, Richard’s antiques shop.

When Marci arrives it’s apparent that the task is far more daunting than she imagined, and it isn’t long before Nico, her gorgeous local guide, offers to step up and lend a hand. As the two enjoy the Positano summer, and all that the Italian Riviera has to offer, Marci finally lets herself relax and the sparks between the pair soon begin to fly.

But Richard hasn’t just left his possessions behind, he left a secret, one that Marci unwittingly stumbles across it. Will it break her heart after the happiest summer of her entire life?

MY REVIEW

If you are looking for a literary escape to warmer climates then look no further than Finding Love in Positano. A gorgeous-sounding coastal town on the Italian coast.

Marci James goes there to help sort through her godfather’s collection of art, antiques and personal belongings while he is on his honeymoon. The marriage was unexpected and seemingly out of character, but as Marci is the closest family member to him, and she is also the only single person, well it seems to be the most obvious solution. She already works in the family antique business with her brother, her mum is a silent partner.

So off she sets, she has been to Italy before for holidays, so she sort of knows what to expect. What she didn’t bank of though was the scale of the task in front of her or Nico!

Once again the author has captured an amazing sounding place and transformed it on the pages of her latest book. The mix of family and how they work together is great, in the UK the family comes across as a bit more stand-offish, more reserved if you like. While the Italian family of Nico is loud, inclusive, extended and welcoming, and there are many of them. No wonder Marci feels a bit shell shocked when she first arrives.

Family is an important theme in this story, a sense of pride and doing what is best for everyone is something that a couple of the characters have to deal with. Should honour and commitment come before love? Discussing problems and working out alternatives is something that Marci seems more willing to do. But she also discovers some things from the past that only a select few people know. How they will react and what they will do is something that is tantalising for the reader. As is the romance side of the story.

The author always gets the romance balance right for me in her novels, not too steamy but gentle, wary and not always straightforward or predictable. This makes for a story that isn’t all about romance and comes across as more believable.

Another excellent read and one for those who like a holiday style romance, family secrets and an all-around gorgeous contemporary fiction story. It is one I would definitely recommend. 

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The Cornish Captive by Nicola Pryce @NPryce_Author @rararesources #histfic #cornwall #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review for The Cornish Captive by Nicola Pryce. This is the 6th book in the Cornish Saga series. I have read several of them and they work well as stand-alone.

The sixth novel in a stunning series set in eighteenth-century Cornwall, perfect for fans of Bridgerton

Cornwall, 1800.

Imprisoned on false pretences, Madeleine Pelligrew, former mistress of Pendenning Hall, has spent the last 14 years shuttled between increasingly destitute and decrepit madhouses. When a strange man appears out of the blue to release her, she can’t quite believe that her freedom comes without a price. Hiding her identity, Madeleine determines to discover the truth about what happened all those years ago.

Unsure who to trust and alone in the world, Madeleine strikes a tentative friendship with a French prisoner on parole, Captain Pierre de la Croix. But as she learns more about the reasons behind her imprisonment, and about those who schemed to hide her away for so long, she starts to wonder if Pierre is in fact the man he says he is. As Madeleine’s past collides with her present, can she find the strength to follow her heart, no matter the personal cost?
Purchase Link – AMAZON

MY REVIEW

This is the 6th book in the Cornish Saga series. The books can be read as stand-alone stories as it is only some of the characters that are cross overs. There is a list at the beginning of the book that is handy for referring to.

The story is set in 1800, a woman is thrown into confusion as she is being got ready to move. She has been moved every couple of years from madhouse to madhouse, yet this time is too early. Her confusion is soon replaced by the feeling of being overwhelmed as is told that people have been looking for her. She did not deserve to be placed into an asylum, she knows the truth but will anyone believe her. Madeline insists on bringing a young girl with her when she is released, they have formed a close bond and rely on each other for the strength of mind.

Madeline is taken to an area she knows but disguises her identity for fear of being recognised. She has lost her husband, her house and has nothing. There are, however, those who are working in the background to help Madeline and her young friend Rowan. The only thing is that who can she trust and who is actually helping her?

I have read several of the authors’ books and I always enjoy them. Not only does she give the reader a well-researched novel but it is loaded with many details. From the scenery to the way people dress, their jobs, how men and women are treated and also a delve into law with this book. I really liked the character of Madeline, and also Rowan, in fact pretty much all of the women. The author does write a great female lead, with this book there are several females that have important roles.

The historical site of the novel is also great as it does show some of the histories of Cornwall, problems with the mines and mentions of china clay as well pilchard fishing. This is also a very important time for Britain but also for France. During the French Revolution that ended in 1799, many French royalists fled France. This meant that spies and conspiracy are rife, which adds mistrust to the story especially as Madeline is French. She also is cautious around anyone who is French as she doesn’t really know the full lie of the land. So when Captain de la Croix makes an early appearance in the story and then seems to hover around, Madeline is nervous.

The author has created a heartbreaking role for Madeline, a woman who has been moved from asylum to asylum, who has survived for 14 years in squalor. Sudde3nly finding herself free is overwhelming, descriptions of shock, and conditions gradually emerge. The author has done this so well, and it really brought Madeline to life, sharing her suffering and anxieties as well as how she perceives herself.

If you are a fan of Historical fiction Sagas set in Cornwall then this author is fabulous. I have read several of her books and have really enjoyed each one. She gives the roles of her characters fitting parts depending on their backgrounds and status. There is a very mysterious thread to this story and when the author starts to weave her story, there is more to it than you initially realise. Great books for historical fiction, saga, romance and Cornish setting readers. It is one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Nicola Pryce trained as a nurse at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in London. She has always loved literature and completed an Open University degree in Humanities. She is a qualified adult literacy support volunteer and lives with her husband in the Blackdown Hills in Somerset. Together they sail the south coast of Cornwall in search of adventure.

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The Runaway Children by Lindsey Hutchinson @LHutchAuthor @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #boldwoodbloggers #histfic #saga #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Runaway Children by Lindsey Hutchinson. This is a gorgeous historical fiction and saga story that I adored.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous book from the publisher via NetGalley.

A heart-warming saga about surviving against the odds and finding a family, from top 10 bestseller Lindsey Hutchinson.
In two rundown, abandoned houses, at the side of a barren Black Country heath, live six children with no family but each other. Abandoned or orphaned, every day is a fight to find food and keep warm. But they are determined to stay free of the clutches of the workhouse and the horrors that would face them if they were ever torn apart.
Dora Parsons lives with her mother Mary and her evil grandmother Edith. Edith’s house may be comfortable and warm, and food is plentiful, but every day Dora suffers at the hands of her spiteful gran. Desperate to protect her child, Mary longs to run away but she has no money to keep them alive and nowhere else to call home.
When fate intervenes and Mary and Dora meet the children, events are set in train that will change all their lives forever. But will the friends find peace and comfort at last, or does the chill of the winter signal the most desperate ending of all…
The Queen of Black Country sagas is back with a heart-breaking, page-turning story of survival, friendship and what it means to be a family. Perfect for fans of Val Wood and Lyn Andrews.


Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

This was a wonderful story about family and the relationship between the different members. Sometimes your closest family are those that you meet with and have no connection, those with who you form a close bond. This is what Mary and her daughter Dora discover.

Set in the Black Country, Mary and Dora are quite lucky, they have a home, a roof over their heads, food and clothing, much more than some who live on the streets. In contrast are a group of 6 children, orphans who have been cast aside who live in two run-down cottages. A chance meeting brings these two families together.

This author definitely knows how to create a nasty character. Edith is the epitome of a curmudgeonly old woman. She has her daughter Mary running circles caring for her and at the same time, she makes the life of Dora an absolute misery. The story is one that is heartbreaking as no matter what Dora does it is never good enough.

This is nicely balanced against the warmth that is shown by the 6 orphans, rather than being the thieving sort, they have morals set down by their leader Fingers. Each child has been found and becomes part of the family.

Showing the different people react and interact with each other is wonderfully shown in this story. Whether it be the kindness of strangers or the vicious remarks from an old woman, it takes all sorts to make a story. I was curious as to why Edith was so vindictive, some people however are just this way. She does seem to live to moan and cause trouble wanting to be the centra of attention.

The characters in this story do come with backstories, some may only have a small mention, but others have much more and this is what makes this story so interesting. There is a mystery to this story and it is one that gradually comes out and when it does it will change everything.

A wonderful heartwarming story for fans of those who love their historical fiction and saga stories. It is one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Lindsey Hutchinson is a bestselling saga author whose novels include The Workhouse Children. She was born and raised in Wednesbury, and was always destined to follow in the footsteps of her mother, the multi-million selling Meg Hutchinson.


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Tea For Two at the Little Cornish Kitchen by Jane Linfoot @janelinfoot @rararesources #contemporaryfiction #romance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Tea For Two at the Little Cornish Kitchen by Jane Linfoot. I have read and enjoyed a few of this authors books and this latest one is no different. A gorgeous and heartwarming story.

My huge thanks to Rachel for my spot on the Blog Tour. I had already requested this one from NetGalley when I saw that Rachel had a space to fill, so I was more than happy to snap it up.

St Aidan: a cosy Cornish village where friendships are made for life and it’s always cocktail hour somewhere…


The Little Cornish Kitchen is going on tour!


When internet sensation ‘Cressida Cupcake’ has a soggy bottomed TV fiasco and faces bake-off backlash she jumps at the chance to spend some time hiding out in St Aidan, dog sitting for her brother.
Picturesque Seaspray Cottage is meant to be Cressy Hobson’s port in the storm but with her blog sponsors having fled and her book deal gone sideways her funds are running low and she’s forced to turn to the locals for help. Soon her quiet weeks in Cornwall are filled with chasing sheep, saving the local retirement village, taking The Little Cornish Kitchen into people’s homes for baking nights…and keeping a vigilant guard against romance.


The one and only time Cressy lost her head to love was over a decade ago while in St Aidan, and she won’t be making the same mistake again – a feat easier said than done when Ross Bradbury looks even better a decade on…and every step she takes seems to put him in her path!

Purchase Links – AMAZON UK US

MY REVIEW

I have read quite a few books by this author and this latest one is a wonderfully stunning and also poignant read. Set in the fictional village of St. Aiden, Cornwall the author has brought this small coastal community to life.

Cressida, or Cressy as she prefers has come to St Aiden to pet sit for her brother and his wife. The timing is good for her as her career has taken a turn for the worse. She had a very good career on the internet from baking and sharing her recipes, tips and advice. However, this all went disastrously wrong when she appeared on a baking show.

She finds solitude to be her friend and has spent more time alone cultivating her internet persona to perfection that she has no time for anything else in her life. When she arrives in St Aiden, her sister in law has already lined a support system up for her. Cressy is polite but not that fussed. She also didn’t realise that her old flame, Ross, was back in the village.

Tal;k about things tumbling down around her, the author really did go to town with Cressy. She then throws her headlong into a group of friends who are, well a bit bossy, but who actually is just what Cressy needs, even though she doesn’t realise it.

The author does an amazingly mouthwatering job with cakes, brownies, blondies, sponges, meringues and a whole range of other delicious treats. It obviously fits in with the storyline as well as the title! The author has also made this a book about generations and this makes for some wonderful reading. Flirting and innuendos add a light touch to the story as does the antics of Diesel.

While this is a heartwarming and at times humorous story, the author touches on some very sad topics. For me, this is a way of keeping the storyline more realistic. It would be great if we could all live in a world without loss or of being scared. But life is as life is and that includes the sad times. The balance between the sadder themes is offset with some wonderful moments of hope for the future, second chances and starting afresh.

Heartwarming and wonderful from start to finish. This is definitely one for fans of contemporary fiction and romance as well as those who like stories with recipes. There is a selection of mouthwatering recipes at the end of the book as well. This is a book I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jane Linfoot is a best selling author, who lives in a cottage, up the steepest hill in Derbyshire, with her family, their pets, and an astonishing number of spiders. Although she loves seeing cow noses over the garden wall, she’s happy she can walk to a supermarket. Jane grew up in North Yorkshire where she spent a lot of her childhood avoiding horizontal gales blowing off the sea, and wrote her first book by accident while working as an architect, and renovating country houses. While she loves to write feel-good books that let readers escape, she’s always surprised to hear her stories make people laugh, admits to (occasionally) crying as she writes, and credits her characters for creating their own storylines. Jane’s garden would be less brambly if she wasn’t on Facebook and Twitter so often. On days when she wants to be really scared, she rides a tandem. She has lots of Pinterest boards relating to her novels.

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Resistance (Book #1 Liberty) by Eilidh McGinness @eilidhmcginness @RandomTTours #historicalfiction #Resistance #bookreview

I have been waiting for what feels like such a long time to share my review. Today is the day when I finally can, it’s also the last post for the Blog Tour for this fabulous story. My review today is for Resistance by Eilidh McGinness, this is the first book in the trilogy – Liberty, with Equality and Fraternity to follow. A historical fiction set in the Dordogne area of France during World War II.

My huge thanks to Anne at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this wonderfully poignant book.

Bravery, courage, fear, treachery and love in a time of war.


A chance meeting draws Sabine Faure into the shadowy world of the French Resistance. Whilst acting as courier she meets four youths of her own age who wish to also join the Resistance. She is drawn to one in particular, Hérisson, who becomes her lover. Family loyalties are stretched to the limits as Sabine’s family try to navigate safely through the occupation.


Set in Dordogne in South-west France during World War II, the friends’ relationships and strengths are tested to the limits as life changes in horrific ways, The friends find themselves facing frightening situations and responding in ways they never thought possible as bravery and resistance take different forms in each of their actions.


Vivid and powerful in its illumination of a time and place filled with atrocities but also humanity and extraordinary bravery, Eilidh McGinness’s novel may leave readers asking themselves – “what would I have done?”
The novel is the first part of a trilogy set in southwest France during WW2 and is a family saga.

MY REVIEW

I do like my historical fiction and I am always on the lookout for authors that can bring something different. This author has done just that with this first book in the Resistance series.

Set during WWII, the story concerns a young woman, Sabine and a resistance fighter known as Hérisson. The two meet as Hérisson is looking to join the resistance in the fight against Hitler. Sabine finds herself doing her part to help and is uniquely placed to do so.

This is a fabulous read and one where I found myself thinking about consequences, it is something that the characters battle with as there are reprisals from the German forces when attacks are made from the resistance. Trying to keep their activities secret means keeping an eye out at all times. No one is safe especially when Germany occupies the French town of Saint Antoine de Double, while the town is fictional, many of the events are not.

The author has woven fiction around the factual and has created a book that flits between Sabine and Hérisson. They make two very distinct sides of the same story, one trying to carry on as normal and trying not to court any attention while the other is putting himself in harm’s way.

The author has created a story that shows the fear and also the proud determination a this most horrendous point in history. Persecution, torture, execution, deportation and death is something that all are in fear of and this is something that comes across very well in the story as well as the disbelief of some of the events that happen.

This is a wonderful start to this series and I am definitely looking forward to continuing it. It is one for readers who like their historical fiction to be based around or to include actual events. It is hard reading in some places and it had me on edge as I read about the two main characters and the people they know. It is one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author

Eilidh was born and brought up in the Highlands of Scotland. She studied law at Aberdeen University. She practiced as a lawyer for twelve years, latterly specializing in criminal defense. Eilidh then moved to South-West France with her then-husband and four children. She established an independent estate agency business which she ran for twelve years before concentrating on writing- a long-held dream. Eilidh has always been fascinated by history and ordinary people who achieve extraordinary things.

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That Certain Spark by Isobel Hart @IHartauthor @rararesources #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for That Certain Spark by Isobel Hart. This is a wonderful contemporary fiction story that I really enjoyed.

My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this book.

That Certain Spark
A one-bedroom apartment with creeping damp.
Depressed cat, complete with litter tray.
Neither was part of Claire’s five-year plan.
Nor, for that matter, was divorce.
Left with a comfort eating habit that’s costing her a small fortune in ice cream, and panic attacks flooring her in front of the supermarket meals-for-one, Claire turns to her mum and Mindfulness in the hope that one of them can help her find real happiness.
She thinks she’s cracked it… but then her past comes creeping back.
Now she has to work out what really makes her happy or risk a life where Ben & Jerry are the only men who matter.


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MY REVIEW

What a fabulous story this was to read and one that I am sure many people may have a connection to. Claire is alone after her husband left her for another woman. Claire, is, well, to put it bluntly, she is wallowing in self-pity and negative thoughts. When things go wrong it is easiest to listen to the negative thoughts that squirm into your head.

Thank goodness for Claire’s mum and some fabulous friends who she meets at a Mindfulness course. Working through her own and listening to others speak and discuss their experiences helps Claire to see that she needs to put herself first and stop blaming herself for things that were out of her control.

AS someone who suffers from anxiety and who has had panic attacks I found this such a wonderful and relatable story. While my experiences are different to Claire’s I could see the benefits that came across from her taking the course and using positive exercises.

The story itself is just a pleasure to read as Claire and her friends get to know each other, they see signs in behaviours and attitudes. Realising that they are friends they are able to form bonds and it is a lifeline for them in one way or another.

There are so many wonderful moments in this book and I found myself chuckling away several times. While this is a story about positivity and well being it is also about living your life the best way you can and realising how to get rid of those things that drag the negativity back in.

A fabulous story and one that fans of contemporary fiction, family and friends will really enjoy. It is one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Born in London, Isobel Hart’s childhood was spent in the Middle East before being sent to boarding school. It meant she had a lot of time to read. Now based in the UK, she writes about what she knows – real women, with flaws.

A romantic at heart, happily married for nearly twenty-five years, her novels focus on relationships – good and bad – and the women at the heart of them. She is ever hopeful others will find their happy-ever-afters or Happy-For-Now’s too.


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