The Doll by Yrsa Sigurdardottir #NeyGalley #20booksofsummer #PublicationDay @HodderBooks #suspense #bookreview

Firstly, Happy Publication Day to Yrsa Sigurdardottir on her latest novel The Doll. This is my 6th book choice that I am delighted to share my review for as part of for #20booksof summer reading challenge.

My thanks to the publisher Hodder & Stoughton for my e-copy request via NetGalley. My review is my own. I still get the creeps when I see this cover!!!

It was meant to be a quiet family fishing trip, a chance for mother and daughter to talk. But it changes the course of their lives forever.

They catch nothing except a broken doll that gets tangled in the net. After years in the ocean, the doll a terrifying sight and the mother’s first instinct is to throw it back, but she relents when her daughter pleads to keep it. This simple act of kindness proves fatal. That evening, the mother posts a picture of the doll on social media. By the morning, she is dead and the doll has disappeared.

Several years later and Detective Huldar is in his least favourite place – on a boat in rough waters, searching for possible human remains. However, identifying the skeleton they find on the seabed proves harder than initially thought, and Huldar must draw on psychologist Freyja’s experience to help him. As the mystery of the unidentified body deepens, Huldar is also drawn into an investigation of a homeless drug addict’s murder, and Freyja investigates a suspected case of child abuse at a foster care home.

What swiftly becomes clear is that the cases are linked through a single, missing, vulnerable witness: the young girl who wanted the doll all those years ago.

My Review…

I am so glad I had a digital copy of this book rather than a physical copy. I mean, that cover! It so creepy and unsettling.

The doll is discovered during a fishing trip by a young girl out with her mum and a family friend. Later that night the mother dies, the police agree that is was an accident. Rosa is adamant that she wasn’t and that her mum was murdered. She is ignored and her pleas fall on deaf ears.

This is a slower paced police procedural that is set in Iceland. It is a book in the Children’s House series but can easily be read as a stand alone. It did take me a while to get my head around the characters as initially a few were introduced over a short period. I did soon however remember who was who.

The plot of the story is one that is interesting and I was intrigued as to why the doll was so important. It wasn’t until the latter stages that I eventually got the answers. There is several plots going on in this story and it was complex but it did make sense during the reading.

It looks s heavier on the descriptions and details and even though I did like this it did slow the pace down considerably. Fine is you like a more in-depth procedural. It does add a tension and suspense aspect to the story as you have to wait longer for the clues to connect.

I enjoyed this story, a complex and intriguing crime thriller that I would recommend. 

AND JUST IN CASE YOU WANT TO SEE THAT COVER AGAIN…

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

The Pact by Sharon Bolton #NetGalley @TrapezeBooks #20booksofsummer #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Pact by Sharon Bolton. This is the 5th book that I have chosen for my list in the #20booksofsummer reading challenge.

I requested this via NetGalley from Trapeze Books. My review is my own. I read The Craftsman by Sharon 3 years ago and it became my Top Read of 2018. You can read my full review of that book HERE

A golden summer, and six talented friends are looking forward to the brightest of futures – until a daredevil game goes horribly wrong, and a woman and two children are killed.

18-year-old Megan takes the blame, leaving the others free to get on with their lives. In return, they each agree to a ‘favour’, payable on her release from prison.

Twenty years later Megan is free.
Let the games begin . . .

Richard & Judy bestseller Sharon Bolton is back, with her twistiest thriller yet. 

My Review…


What an addictive and darkly twisted book this is. When the synopsis mentions Megan being released from prison and the line “Let the games begin” follows, well that is intriguing enough. After reading the book I now appreciate how important that line is!

Megan is part of a group of students that are top of their class. They are a small but compact group and they spend a lot of time in each others company. After a game of dare goes wrong it is Megan that takes the blame. The full reasons as to why are told later in the story. But as the synopsis says, the rest of the group now owe her a favour.

This was a brilliant story and one that I found myself getting hooked on pretty quickly. Starting the story when the friends were younger. At uni, they excel in their classes and do the usual evening partying.

When Megan is released after serving her sentence the author began to expand on her story. She manages to portray anxiety from the rest of the group as they are left to wonder what Megan will ask of each of them. On the whole, they are successful, they work, have nice houses and they all have a lot to lose.

I adored the way the author very subtle builds up tension, it starts early on and then as the stake get higher she then builds it up more openly. Wondering what will happen and if the group will agree to terms or demands is great. But, there is something else going on, it is dark and it caught me out.

I loved the tense psychological aspect of this story, it kept me on my toes and the story is so addictive. If you have read any of this author’s books before then you know you get amazing reads from her. This one is no exception it is a mix of crime, mystery and thriller with a brilliant psychological edge to it. It is one I would definitely recommend.

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Insider by Owen Mullen @OwenMullen6 @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #ganglandcrime #boldwoodbloggers #NetGalley #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Insider by Owen Mullen. This is the second book in the Family series and it is a corker. I have read several book by this author and I am loving this latest series. You can read my full review of the first book Family HERE.

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.

Someone’s playing both sides and now they have a score to settle…

When the family business is crime, you can never be sure who to trust. And when three of their businesses are hit in one night, the notorious Glass family close ranks. Either someone is sending them a message or a war is coming… 

With trouble coming from all sides, the heads of the Glass family have more than enough to deal with, but all bets are off when a stranger from the past enters the game, causing division and mistrust.

Crooked cops, rival gangs and old enemies are bad enough, but when the trouble comes from the inside, loyalties are tested, with deadly consequences.

Page-turning, gripping, gritty, Insider is perfect for fans of Martina Cole, Kimberley Chambers and Mandasue Heller.

Purchase Link – HERE

My Review…

I loved the first book in this series and this second book Insider continues the story of the Glass family. This is where I do recommend reading the first book, not only because there are details that help the relationships in the second book. And also because it is a brilliant read.

Danny Glass is gone, Luke Glass is now running the family business and Nina Glass is running her real estate business. Things seem to be going well until there are two robberies and a third on the LBC club. The club is the centre of the business, it is Luke’s baby and he feels this as an attack on him and his family. Good job that there is a security guard there who knows his business.

The author once again hit the reader with an amazing high impact crime thriller read. The Glass family are not, well, they’re not quite legitimate, actually, they are a lot not legitimate! But there is something quite likeable about them. I think it is the way the author portrays the importance of family. They never had the best childhood but they did what they did and it is the reason they are where they are today.

The author introduces some new characters, this keeps the storyline fresh and gives more for the reader to think about. Being a series that revolves around a crime family you know that there is going to be a large amount of mistrust. Adding new characters is enough to keep the reader kind of on the fence as they try to work out why the new characters are there.

This is a fabulous read and one that I adored from the very bringing to the end. Many twists and second-guessing moments, there are red-herrings as the author toys with the reader. The questions that start to build are eventually answered, the doubts are put to rest but there is something lingering on the horizon for the family and it has left me so eager to see what happens next.

This is one for readers who like gritty, gangland crime thrillers read. It is addictive, fast-paced and an absolute hard hitter. An excellent second book in this series and one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Owen Mullen is a highly regarded crime author who splits his time between Scotland and the island of Crete.  In his earlier life he lived in London and worked as a musician and session singer. He has now written seven books and his first gangland thriller for Boldwood, Family was published in January 2021.

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The Promise of Summer by Bella Osborne @AvonBooks #romance #contemporaryfiction #NetGalley #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Promise of Summer by Bella Osborne. This is the first book in a planned four part series and after reading this first book I am looking forward to reading the rest.

My thanks to Avon books who granted my request to review this book via NetGalley.

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This is the first part in a brand new four-part serial from Bella Osborne.

Ruby’s life is about to change for ever…

After years of dating losers, cheats and one guy who did something unrepeatable to her kettle, Ruby has all but given up on romance. But then a stranger sits next to her on a train to London and explains his plan to propose to the woman of his dreams. Maybe true love does exist after all?

When the man accidentally leaves the engagement ring behind, Ruby is determined to save the day. But she hasn’t counted on fellow passenger Curtis stepping in and insisting he should be the one to track the stranger down.

As summer closes in, the unlikely pair make a promise to reunite the ring with its owner. But can they find their own happy ever after along the way?

My Review…

I have read a few books by this author and I have always enjoyed them, her latest book is another fabulous addition. It is the first book in a four-book series.

Ruby hasn’t had much luck as far as relationships go, she is a believer in romance, finding the one and wants to be whisked off her feet, get married, have children and live happily as they do in romance novels.

A train journey makes Ruby felt that romance is truly alive and real, for some people that is. When a fellow passenger tells of his proposal to his girlfriend and then loses the ring she tries her best to think of ways to reunite the ring with its owner. Another passenger also has the same idea.

Curtis is the other helper. He is so different to Ruby and the contrasts between the characters are great. Ruby is impulsive, gets swept up in the moment while Curtis is staid, organised and plans, literally, he will plan everything.

This is such a wonderful story that doe shave quite a few different threads going on in it. Ruby and Curtis are the main characters and they are joined with a wonderful supporting cast of friends. The story starts as trying to return a ring but then gradually deepens. Friendships grow and it is the friendship that is the key for me to this story. Yes, there is a bit of a romantic thread, but friendship rules here.

This is a story that has coincidences, and through these connections are made. And I have to say there are a couple of heartbreaking moments that did cause me to well up a little. I read this book in one sitting so I was well and truly invested in the characters and what happened to them.

I did feel that this story stood out more and this is down to the differences between the characters. I thought the author really drew Curtis out and made him so interesting and the friendship that grows was important to the development.

I adored this one and enjoyed the feel-good vibes it left me with. A contemporary fiction that is heart-warming and it is one I would definitely recommend.

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

A Cut for a Cut (Detective Kate Young #2) by Carol Wyer #ACutForACut #DetectiveKateYoung @carolewyer @AmazonPub @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours #PublicationDay #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Book Bloggers to be opening the Blog Tour today and to share my review for A Cut for a Cut by Carol Wyer. This is the second book in the Detective Kate Young series. I read and loved the first book, An Eye for an Eye (full review HERE)and this second is also totally brilliant.

My thanks to Emma at damppebbles blog tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this fabulous book via NetGalley.

I also want to take the opportunity to wish Carol a very Happy Publication Day xx

DI Kate Young can’t trust anybody. Not even herself.

In the bleak countryside around Blithfield Reservoir, a serial murderer and rapist is leaving a trail of bloodshed. His savage calling card: the word ‘MINE’ carved into each of his victims.

DI Kate Young struggles to get the case moving—even when one of the team’s own investigators is found dead in a dumpster. But Kate is battling her own demons. Obsessed with exposing Superintendent John Dickson and convinced there’s a conspiracy running deep in the force, she no longer knows who to trust. Kate’s crusade has already cost her dearly. What will she lose next?

When her stepsister spills a long-buried secret, Kate realises she’s found the missing link—now she must prove it before the killer strikes again. With enemies closing in on all sides, she’s prepared to do whatever it takes to bring them down. But time is running out, and Kate’s past has pushed her to the very edge. Can she stop herself from falling?

Purchase Links – Amazon – UK or US

My Review…

Having read and loved the first book in this series, An Eye For An Eye I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the second Detective Kate Young book. And Wow! what a story!

The author does fill in details about Kate and her life from the first book, but in all honesty, I would recommend reading the first book to get a proper idea of what Kate has been and is currently dealing with.

It is often the case that the lead detectives in fiction do have some trouble or scarring from their pasts. With Kate, however, this is something that she is not over dealing with, she is constantly reminded of her loss. I am not going to delve into this too much, but what the author did with this thread at the end of the book left me with goosebumps and also worried about Kate! Such a subtle sentence!

The case itself is brutal. A woman found dead with the word MINE carved into her skin is only the start of the investigation. Having only a small team at her disposal keeps Kate on the back foot to a certain extent. Lacking the resources but still having the pressure from those above doesn’t help her but her tenacity is something that keeps her going.

As the case intensifies the intrigue is built upon. Occasional italicised chapters add a very tense edge giving a more brutal, chilling psychological side to the story.

There is so much I want to say about the case, Kate’s personal life and the story in general. It is a brilliantly woven story and I am only just touching the edge of what happens. Fear of leaving spoilers and ruining it for those who have not yet read this is keeping this review vague.

With a personal story, a family reunion, pressure from the hierarchy it is a wonder Kate holds everything together. Is she holding it together or is she just hanging on? This is where the author has worked some magic, keeping Kate juggling so many things.

This is a brilliantly worked second book in the series and one that had me gripped. It is brutal, chilling, carefully worked and just amazing reading. One for those who like a gritty, crime, thriller and one I would very definitely recommend.

About the Author…

USA Today bestselling author and winner of The People’s Book Prize Award, Carol Wyer writes feel-good comedies and gripping crime fiction.

A move from humour to the ‘dark side’ in 2017, saw the introduction of popular DI Robyn Carter in LITTLE GIRL LOST and demonstrated that stand-up comedian Carol had found her true niche.

To date, her crime novels have sold over 750,000 copies and been translated for various overseas markets.

Carol has been interviewed on numerous radio shows discussing ”Irritable Male Syndrome’ and ‘Ageing Disgracefully’ and on BBC Breakfast television. She has had articles published in national magazines ‘Woman’s Weekly’, featured in ‘Take A Break’, ‘Choice’, ‘Yours’ and ‘Woman’s Own’ magazines and the Huffington Post.

She currently lives on a windy hill in rural Staffordshire with her husband Mr Grumpy… who is very, very grumpy.

When she is not plotting devious murders, she can be found performing her comedy routine, Smile While You Still Have Teeth.

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Yours Cheerfully by A.J Pearce #histfic #NetGalley @panmacmillan #publicationday #20booksofsummer #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Yours Cheerfully by A.J. Pearce. This is the second book in The Emmy Lake Chronicles. I loved the first book Dear Mrs Bird and this second book is just as good.

My thanks to the publisher Pan Macmillan for my advanced e-copy that I requested via NetGalley. This book is also #3 in the #20booksofsummer reading challenge.

From the author of the “jaunty, heartbreaking winner” (People) and international bestseller Dear Mrs. Bird, a new charming and uplifting novel set in London during World War II about a plucky aspiring journalist.

London, November 1941. Following the departure of the formidable Henrietta Bird from Woman’s Friend magazine, things are looking up for Emmeline Lake as she takes on the challenge of becoming a young wartime advice columnist. Her relationship with boyfriend Charles (now stationed back in the UK) is blossoming, while Emmy’s best friend Bunty, still reeling from the very worst of the Blitz, is bravely looking to the future. Together, the friends are determined to Make a Go of It.

When the Ministry of Information calls on Britain’s women’s magazines to help recruit desperately needed female workers to the war effort, Emmy is thrilled to be asked to step up and help. But when she and Bunty meet a young woman who shows them the very real challenges that women war workers face, Emmy must tackle a life-changing dilemma between doing her duty and standing by her friends.

Every bit as funny, heartwarming, and touching as Dear Mrs. BirdYours Cheerfully is a celebration of friendship—a testament to the strength of women and the importance of lifting each other up, even in the most challenging times. 

My Review…

I have been waiting for a follow on to Dear Mrs Bird and Yours Cheerfully is a fabulous 2nd book in The Emmy Lake Chronicles.

Emmy Lake wanted to be a war journalist, she did get a job but not quite the one she imagined. It was for an Agony Aunt Column in a magazine called the Woman’s Friend. Set during WWII Emmy is making her way in the magazine world. this magazine is a small friendly publication that is full of tips on clothing, making the best of what you have, gardening, cookery and of course advice.

The Ministry call on magazines to help recruit more women to work in a bid to help out the war effort. A chance meeting with Anne a mother of two gives her an insight into women working in the factories. the women are determined in doing their bit, but they feel they are being treated as men would be and that fact hey they have children and homes to look after is not being taken into account. This sets Emmy on something of a mission as the factory women become friends, she still has to be careful about what she writes due to censorship.

I loved how the author has continued the story of Emmy and also her good friend Bunty. There is enough information given to get an idea of the first book, but I would recommend reading it as it was such an excellent one.

Once again the author includes a letter from readers who seek advice during a worrying time. For young girls working for the first time, for mothers who have children to care for alone, she touches on how widows are treated and the conditions that women who are effectively single parents during wartime deal with in life.

The author has brought the style of the magazine, which was seen as one of the little publications for older readers into the forefront. Giving Emmy a larger role so that she is able to really get to grips with the working woman life. There is politics, there is a certain amount of elitism and snobbery and there is the old boy’s brigade that comes into play. But during all this, the author does remember that Emmy has a life outside of the magazine. One that involves her boyfriend Charlie.

Once again the author has created such an addictive read. She deals with issues of the day in such a way as it makes the reader care about the issues. Some of the things I was not aware of and it has been an enlightening read as well as an emotional one. It does have its moments of sadness but also many moments of hope. A gorgeous story and one for those who like historical fiction during WWII. It is one I would definitely recommend.

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

The Hotel at Honeymoon Station by Tilly Tennant #NetGalley @Bookouture #20booksofsummer #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for The Hotel at Honeymoon Station by Tilly Tennant. This is the 2nd book in my #20booksofsummer reading challenge.

Run away to the Dorset countryside, to the sleepy village of Honeymoon, where rose-adorned thatched cottages soak up the sunlight and Emma is risking everything for a brave new start on life and love…

When Emma’s useless fiancé tells her a lie she cannot forgive, she decides enough is enough. She leaves him, quits her dead-end job and travels hundreds of miles away to the ancient village of Honeymoon in the Dorset countryside, to help her friend Tia turn the old train station into a boutique hotel.

Tia has told Emma that it will be a project, but when Emma arrives in Honeymoon and sees a weed-choked crumbling ruin, her vision of an idyllic life in Dorset begins to disintegrate. But when she meets twinkly-eyed builder Aiden in the village shop, and sparks fly between them, she can’t help but feel that the stars have for once aligned.

As work begins on the hotel, Emma and Aiden grow closer, and on sun-dappled evening walks, he tells her the secrets of the village. But there are some villagers who wish that Emma had never arrived in Honeymoon… And when Emma is involved in a terrible accident on site, and then discovers what Aiden has been keeping from her, it feels like the universe is telling her to leave Honeymoon for good. What if she was wrong to say goodbye to all that was safe and familiar? Will she ever be able to find her happy-ever-after in Honeymoon?

A completely gorgeous and romantic read about being brave and taking chances on love and life. Fans of Shari Low, Jill Mansell and Milly Johnson will be enchanted by The Hotel at Honeymoon Station. 

My Review…

I have not read all of these authors books, but the ones I have read have been fabulous. The Hotel at Honeymoon Station is another wonderful and heartwarming read. Perfect for summer escapism.

The main two characters in this book are Emma and Tia. They kind of were friends at school but not really in the same social circles. They are definitely characters that are chalk and cheese. Emma, I discovered has had more to worry about as she has grown up than Tia. Whereas Tia is more energetic and outgoing, Emma is more reserved and staid. She will admit to being boring, with no imagination. So, given this, it is quite surprising for her to take on a project that means walking away from the monotony of her, life, her waste of space boyfriend and her family.

Even though it does appear out of character, she wants a new start. Something she can get excited about and with a friend in the form of Tia.

I love how the author brought these two characters together and not only embraced their differences but made them part of the story. While it is mainly more about Emma, Tia has a very large and important part to play. As do, the erm local builders! The author has once again played on differences with the buff, building, brothers Aiden and Blake, and to great effect as well I may add.

The story was entertaining as well as being a discovery about the characters themselves. Starting a new life when you are risking everything is going to be scary. Emotions, worries, stress, finances are all going to work the way to the surface at some point. What you do with them once they are there though, well you will have to read and discover yourself.

This is a wonderful story, gorgeous and with a mostly welcoming community. Finding their way in and around the area is another way of the author showing the differences, not only with Emma and Tia but also with Aiden and Blake.

This is a gorgeous story and one that I read over two sittings, although if I had started it earlier in the day I would have easily read it in one. This is a story that is about family and friends as well as finding the courage to stand up and take a chance. If you have read this authors books before then you know you are going to be in for a treat. This is one for fans of contemporary fiction with a heartfelt warmth to it and a good dash of romance. It is one I would definitely recommend. 

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

Going Greek by Sue Roberts #NetGalley #bookouture #romance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Going Greek by Sue Roberts. I requested this book via NetGalley and it is due for publication next week (28th May2021)

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Sun, sea and a sizzling romance… the perfect holiday, right? Wrong.

After a work party gone disastrously wrong, Samantha suddenly finds herself jobless and jilted. So when her sister invites Sam to stay at her little whitewashed farmhouse on a Greek island, Sam leaps at the chance to escape. Before long, she’s trundling up the cobbled driveway, almost colliding with sexy neighbour Spyros.

It isn’t all sunshine and smiles though. For every afternoon spent lounging by the pool, cocktail in hand, there is a morning spent adjusting to life with boisterous six-year-old nieces. When Spyros invites Sam to explore the island with him she’s tempted, but with his carefree, live-for-the-moment attitude, he couldn’t be more different to Sam with her five-year plans and high-maintenance hair. One drink, as friends, couldn’t hurt though? Over glasses of fruity Greek wine and honey-sweet baklava, can he – and the other charming locals – help city girl Sam to appreciate the simple pleasures the Greek life has to offer?

Just as Sam is considering ditching her designer gear for good though, she runs in to an old flame from home, and suddenly her London life comes hurtling back. Can her smooth-talking ex convince Sam to return to the concrete jungle, or will the lessons she’s learned from her Greek escape persuade her to stay?

A fun, fabulous and completely laugh-out-loud summer read perfect for fans of Carole Matthews, Jenny Colgan and Sophie Kinsella.

My Review…

I have read and enjoyed a few of this authors books, so when I saw her latest one out I immediately grabbed a copy. I mean the setting is Greece so straight away I am imagining the food and the setting.

Sam is a television presenter, she has worked hard to get where she is. She has a squeaky clean profile, with no skeletons. This is she has been so career-focused. It has been all she has thought about since she was a little girl. Until she is snapped kissing a man who turns out to be married! She was unaware and suddenly she is being trolled on social media and is in hiding. Escaping to her sister sheep farm in Greece gives her a chance to hide and reassess her life.

This is another enjoyable read from this author and once again she has given me a gorgeous setting to imagine myself in, surrounded by family and friends. Sam gets a shock when she bumps into an old flame and does have a rather nice on the eye neighbour. As she isn’t sure which way her life is going to go she stutters around not really getting anywhere.

I do like this author and I really enjoy her books, this one felt a little flat on the romance side. I mean there is some eye fluttering, the odd peck and the like but not the anticipation or the build-up to a steamy romance. In some ways, this was as if Sam was holding too dearly to her public image, or maybe once bitten twice shy as far as trusting men.

This was a relatively quick read and I did think it progressed a little too quickly. I would have liked a little bit more romancing, all the same, a very nice story and one I was glad to have read. I would definitely recommend this author and I would recommend this latest book.

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Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx

Italy Ever After by Leonie Mack @LeonieMAuthor @rararesources @Boldwoodbooks #boldwoodbloggers #NetGalley #contemporaryromance #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Italy Ever After by Leonie Mack. I have read a couple of this authors books before and I have thoroughly enjoyed them. So it was very easy to jump on the Blog Tour by Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources. Huge thanks to Rachel for my spot on the Tour and for my e-copy of this fab book that I read via NetGalley.

Escape to the sun and head off to Italy, with the wonderfully warm and ever-so-page-turning Leonie Mack!

TV journalist Lou feels battered and bruised after her divorce from Phil, the father of her daughter Edie. Her confidence and sense of fun have steadily been drained away, and she isn’t sure who she is any more.

When the opportunity arises to accompany Edie on a music camp in Italy for a month in the summer, Lou jumps at the chance for new adventures, new horizons and new friends. The hazy warmth of the summer sun, shining brightly over the stunning Lake Garda, slowly brings Lou back to life. 

Nick Romano, Edie’s music teacher, loves being home in Italy, but coaching his students for their concert in Milan, is bringing back difficult memories. His blossoming friendship with Lou is the perfect distraction, although a summer fling would be easier to conduct without the scrutiny of his mother Greta, not to mention the interference of his extended Italian family.

As the summer passes, full of sunshine and breath-taking scenery, gelato and delicious feasts, Lou and Nick get ever closer. But as the time for farewell creeps up on them, will they be able to say goodbye and leave their memories behind in the Italian sun, or can a summer romance last a lifetime?

Leonie Mack is back with a sizzling, sun-baked love story, perfect for all fans of Mandy Baggot, Jo Thomas and Carole Matthews.

Purchase Link – Amazon UK

My Review…

The synopsis does an absolutely fabulous job of letting you know what this book is about. Two adults, one a mother, the other a teacher, an ex-husband and a daughter. In some ways, it is the story of how the dynamics of a relationship can change over the course of time, it is also something much more special than that as well.

Lou and daughter Edie are in for a fabulous time in Italy. Lou is a parent helper for the group led by Nick, conductor for the orchestra and choir. It soon becomes apparent that there is more to Nick’s musical abilities that Lou realises. But, she is ordinary in comparison to him, untalented beside her daughter and ex-husband.

During the course of the story, I began to realise how low Lou is when it comes to her perception of herself. She compares herself to those around her and finds herself coming up short. Nick has talent to spare but keeps it hidden, instead, he focuses his energies and his love for music on the children he teaches.

To a certain extent, the story is about the adults finding themselves, or maybe finding confidence in themselves. The author definitely knows how to write chemistry between the characters, this is woven brilliantly into their stories and of those close to them.

As well as the chemistry, the music, the fun, the food there are also some gorgeous description and not just of Nick! The scenery of lakes, mountains and general area is wonderful. There is a mention in the authors note about how she achieved the descriptions during the lockdown, well worth reading by the way.

A wonderful story that is a romance but is also about finding comfort in one’s own skin, making up your mind to stop doubting and to take a risk or two. A gorgeous story that I read over a couple of sitting while sitting outside in the sun. It is one for fans of contemporary fiction and romance and one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Leonie Mack is a debut novelist whose first book My Christmas Number One was published by Boldwood in September 2020. Having lived in London for many years her home is now in Germany with her husband and three children. Leonie loves train travel, medieval towns, hiking and happy endings!

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The Jigsaw Man by Nadine Matheson @HQstories #NetGalley #crime #thriller #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review for The Jigsaw Man by Nadine Matheson. This is one for crime thriller fans who like their reads to be on the gritty side.

My thanks to HQ Stories for accepting my request to read this title via NetGalley.

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery…

When body parts are found on the banks of the River Thames in Deptford, DI Angelica Henley is tasked with finding the killer. Eerie echoes of previous crimes lead Henley to question Peter Olivier, aka The Jigsaw Killer, who is currently serving a life sentence for a series of horrific murders.

When a severed head is delivered to Henley’s home, she realises that the copycat is taking a personal interest in her and that the victims have not been chosen at random.

To catch the killer, Henley must confront her own demons – – and when Olivier escapes from prison, she finds herself up against not one serial killer, but two. 

My Review…

If you like gritty crime thrillers then this is a book that should be on your radar. Not for the faint-hearted as there are some pretty brutal murders. If, however, you do like your crime to be a bit more bloody then give this a go.

This is the first book in the Inspector Anjelica Henley series and I loved it. The story begins really well and has a strong hook to it. The main character is Anjelica, aka Anj or Helnely. She has been on office duty after the brutal case of Peter Olivier, a man that she helped hunt down and resulted in injuries to herself.

There is a new wave of murders and body parts are being discovered around the London area. This looks to be the same sort of modus operandi as Olivier, but with some slight differences. Some of the similarities were only known to a select few people. How to catch the copy cat of an already incarcerated killer? Well, you go to see the incarcerated one!

This is a very addictive crime thriller that starts the series but gives a background to its main characters. There is a good amount of detail on the main players and they soon become very recognisable. Given this is the start, there is already a nice vibe going on between some of the characters and their backstories and working relationships are filled in to give a bigger picture.

This story also has a psychological edge to it in respect to Henley and her previous run-in with Olivier. I do like how the author did play on this a little but not too much. Trying to juggle work, family and having a trainee detective with her, she has a full plate, to say the least.

This novel has a good amount of twists, when you think things are going in one direction the author deftly turns and takes you on another route. This is a great intro for a new series and also for me to this author. I will be keeping an eye out for more Henley books in the future.

This is one for crime fans who love a good, gritty and at times brutal police procedural thriller. I thoroughly enjoyed this one and I would definitely recommend it.

Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be amazing 🙂 xx