Welcome to my round-up of the books I have loved this year. Today is the turn of Romance, Rom-Com and Historical Fiction.
Yesterday saw my Top Reads for Crime, Thriller, Mystery and also Fiction. You can see this post HERE.
Tomorrow will see the turn of Fantasy, Dystopian, Children’s Books and Non-Fiction. Then on Christmas Eve I will have a Top 10 Books of the Year Post, there is one book that is my #1 Book of 2019.
Many books cross genres, so I have listed these books in the genres that work for me 🤔 For Romance & Rom-Com, these books may not all necessarily have a strong romantic theme, but I love seeing all these wonderful covers side by side – my logic knows no bounds 😂❤
I am delighted to share my thoughts on It’s Not PMS, It’s You by Rich Amooi. This is a fabulous read and I was delighted to have a spot on the Blog Tour for this book. My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my date on the Tour and also for arranging my e-copy of the book.
Let me show you what it is all about…
Ruth “Ruthless” Harper is on the verge of becoming managing partner at her all-male consulting firm and she won’t let anything stand in her way. That includes men, relationships, and that dreaded F word, FEELINGS—distractions she eliminated long ago.
After the worst day ever (a near-death experience and a public wedgie, for starters), Ruth realizes she doesn’t want to live and die alone. She puts together a business plan to find the perfect man and dives head first into the murky online dating pool. All she wants is a high-powered executive who understands how important her career is. If only it were that easy.
Problem is most men are intimidated by Ruth’s confidence and shocked by her bluntness. The exception being her landscape designer, Nick, whose cool demeanor and unsolicited dating advice are driving her nuts. He’s the antithesis of the business-oriented man Ruth envisions for herself, so why do all signs keep pointing back to him?
Reading a book where the main character is a female who works within the high-powered world of men and can hold her own and yet is still not taken seriously was just perfect.
Ruth was the ultimate workaholic, her focus on getting to the top in her career was her focus. It left very little time for anything or anyone else. She was professional and takes no nonsense from the male dominated workforce.
I immediately liked Ruth and her assistance Dee. The two made such a brilliant combination. Dee was the organiser and go to woman for information, meeting details, and travel plans. It was almost like Ruth had a more happy-go-lucky side and she was called Dee.
As Ruth is so busy she engages the services of a landscape gardener, Nick… mmm, again another brilliant character who was the total opposite of Ruth. He seems to have the measure of Ruth and has a cheekiness to him that catches Ruth by surprise.
This is a fabulous rom-com by an author who really does know how to create a story-line that has tension, romance, surprises and funny little asides. I have read one of Rich’s books before and loved it. I really must find more time to sit and read more by him because he is brilliant.
The way the author has brought together two total opposites is just brilliant, nothing goes as planned, nothing is guaranteed and so the will they won’t they is constantly hanging in the air.
As Ruth is all about work, Dee decides that it is time that Ruth went on dates, and so their enter online dating and meetings. I suppose they are a little cliched, but you know what I loved them and they just fit wonderfully into this authors writing style.
Having a hunky landscape gardener working for Ruth is actually a good thing, there is more to Nick than meets the eye. He gives Ruth tips on how to relax and de-stress and though it takes a while, she does start to pay attention to him.
In case you may not have realised already, I loved this story a huge amount. It was an easy book to read in one sitting and I was laughing within the first few pages. If you have not come across Rich Amooi yet, then go and discover him because he is a wonderful author. It’s Not PMS, It’s You is a book I would definitely recommend.
P.S. Carry on reading after the story, it is quite enlightening!
Amooi is a former radio personality and DJ who now writes romantic
comedies full-time in San Diego, California. He is happily married to
a kiss monster imported from Spain. Rich believes in public displays
of affection, silliness, infinite possibilities, donuts, gratitude,
laughter, and happily ever after.
*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
I have been waiting for so long to share my review for Magic Under The Mistletoe by Lucy Coleman and finally my spot on the Blog Tour has arrived! 🙂
My thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Tour and for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous book. I have read a few books by this author and also under her real name of Linn B Hatton she is a fabulous author and I adore her books.
Now, let’s have a look and see what it is all about…
How gorgeous is that cover… let me tell you the story inside is just as gorgeous! 😍
Christmas and romance are in the air…
It’s December 23rd and while everyone else is rushing home for the holidays, workaholic Leesa Oliver is dreading switching on her out-of-office for the festive season. And it seems her equally driven boss, Cary Anderson, isn’t relishing spending Christmas at his family’s country estate either.
So together, they draft an unexpected Christmas contract: They’ll spend half of the holidays with each other’s families, pretending to be a couple. Leesa knows the insufferably good-looking Cary will make her Christmas more bearable, but what happens after the last of the mince pies have been eaten…?
Leesa signed off on a sensible business agreement, but somewhere, amongst the fairy lights and carols something seems to have changed… It seems there might just be some magic under the mistletoe this Christmas!
Leesa is not having the best day before Christmas Eve, stuck on a flight with an energetic child, then when she finally get to the airport she weather has taken a turn for the worse. It was fortunate that her client is on the same flight, but if her client didn’t keep moving the boundaries in a video shoot she had done, then she would have been home a few days earlier.
But sometimes fate intervenes.Her client Cary, has a proposition for Leesa and it is something that could benefit them both. Leesa would get a to stay in a gorgeous house overnight, but only if she agree’s to pose as Cary’s girlfriend.
In a world of deals, contracts and clauses, this agreement seems to be quite workable and it has surprising benefits as far as their respective families go. A handy pact to fill in the plus-one gap if you like.
This author has created a wonderful setting for this story that has characters who are stubborn and quite happily dig there heels in. Some are quite justified, but ramifications and truths will always rear their heads. Not everything that goes on in families is straight forward, and I gradually found out some surprising details within the families of this story.
Past loves and relationships leave there mark, it can affect how people react to others, how easy they trust people and also take advice. There are a few strong characters who don’t always want to listen to advice or suggestions. Sometimes it is what is not said that is the important bit to listen out for. There have been several things that had been skirted around and tey do have a little habit of popping up and spoiling things.
This is another fabulous, one-sitting read read from a wonderful author. It is a heartwarming story that at times took me by surprise, a fabulous story with brilliant characters and completely gripping from start to finish. Magic Under the Mistletoe was just that …Magic and I would definitely recommend it.
From interior designer to author, Linn B. Halton – who also writes under the pen name of Lucy Coleman – says ‘it’s been a fantastic journey!’
Linn is the bestselling author of more than a dozen novels and is excited to be writing for both Aria Fiction (Head of Zeus) and Harper Impulse (Harper Collins); she’s represented by Sara Keane of the Keane Kataria Literary Agency.
When she’s not writing, or spending time with the family, she’s either upcycling furniture or working in the garden.
Linn won the 2013 UK Festival of Romance: Innovation in Romantic Fiction award; her novels have been short-listed in the UK’s Festival of Romance and the eFestival of Words Book Awards.
Living in Coed Duon in the Welsh Valleys with her ‘rock’, Lawrence, and gorgeous Bengal cat Ziggy, she freely admits she’s an eternal romantic.
Linn is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and the Society of Authors. She writes feel-good, uplifting novels about life, love and relationships.
Giveaway to Win a Signed paperback copy of Snowflakes over Holly Cove and Christmas Pamper Pack. (UK only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
I am delighted to share my thoughts with you for All Summer With You by Beth Good.
Let me show you what it is about…
There’s no place like home…
Nursing a broken heart, Jennifer Bolitho retreats to Pixie Cottage. Her new landlord – a former soldier turned movie heartthrob – has grounds so large, she’s sure the little house nestled in the woods will bring her solitude.
Alex Delgardo also has reasons to hide away. Seeking refuge after a tragic incident turned his world upside down, he knows that the most important thing now is to care for his ailing family.
But when Jennifer enters their lives, that changes. Because, as they both learn, you can’t heal others until you learn to heal yourself…
When Jennifer moves into the cottage that adjoins the estate of film star Alex Deldgardo, there are certain clauses attached. One is that she should not trespass onto his property. She has no intention of doing so, unfortunately or fortunately a goat has different ideas. Jennifer finds a friend in an elderly lady and feels welcomed. Alex on the other hand is moody, grumpy and quite rude.
The author does such a fabulous job of entwining all things Cornish into this story. From local foods, plants, folklore, language and stories and weaves them wonderfully into the story that unfolds. Jennifer is a story teller and the author uses this character to introduce some well known Cornish stories into her tale.
The main characters of Jennifer and Alex both have histories, Jennifer is using the solitude to write her next book while also trying to come to terms with a break-up. Alex is also recovering, though from something quite different. I liked how the author took an unusual approach with his back story and as I learnt more my initial thoughts on him changed.
The author weaves a thoroughly enjoyable story the inclusion of various Cornish elements was great and very recognisable to me as I have lived in this county for 20 years. Including the language and stories was wonderful and the way they were included added an extra element to the reading. Often descriptions of scenery and food are mentioned in Cornish based books so it was a treat to see some of the extras.
The story flowed along at a really nice pace and had some really good heartwarming and also heartbreaking moments, and also the odd humorous moments as well. There were various elements that complemented each other so well.
This is a story that is a tale of coming to terms with the past and accepting that some things are out of your control. It is a story of life, love and loss and is one that I would definitely recommend.
Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be wonderful 🙂 xx
I am delighted to share my thoughts on Coming Home To Winter Island by Jo Thomas. I love this authors books so I was so excited to grab a spot on the Blog Tour arranged by Anne at Random Things Tours and thank you so much for my advance copy of this fantastically fabulous book 🙂
Let me show you what it is all about…
Wrap up warm and explore the breath-taking beauty of a remote Scottish island and an old house waiting to unlock enchanting family secrets.
Fans of Jill Mansell and Milly Johnson will love this irresistible new winter novel from Jo Thomas.
Do you need to find out where you’ve come from before you can know what the future holds?
Ruby’s singing career is on the verge of hitting the big time, when her voice breaks. Fearing her career is over, she signs up for a retreat in Tenerife to recover.
But an unexpected call from a stranger on a remote Scottish island takes her on a short trip to sort out some family business. It’s time to go and see the grandfather she’s never met.
City girl Ruby knows she will be happy to leave the windswept beaches behind as quickly as she can, especially as a years-old family rift means she knows she won’t be welcome at Teach Mhor.
But as she arrives at the big house overlooking the bay, she finds things are not as straightforward as she might have thought.
There’s an unexpected guest in the house and he’s not planning on going anywhere any time soon …
Praise for Jo Thomas:
‘Magically romantic…best read in front of a crackling log fire’ Milly Johnson
‘The characters went straight to my heart’ Katie Fforde
‘A sparkling, heartwarming hug of a story’ Miranda Dickinson
‘Like the best kind of holiday’ Lucy Diamond
What happens when you mix a remote island, a voiceless singer, a sitting tenant, and a unknown grandfather and a lost gin recipe? You get the most amazing story by the fabulous Jo Thomas that is what you get! This is the third book I have read by this author and every time she transports me with her descriptions, story lines, characters and theme of the story.
Coming Home To Winter Island is a stunning read as I followed the devastating and catastrophic bad luck that fell on Ruby Mac, she lost her voice as she and her band are on the verge of being signed by a record company. She then gets a mysterious phone call and changes her plans ending up on a wintry Scottish island.
The author weaves in a story that takes quite a few surprising turns and I have to say they were brilliantly executed. Music, gin, recipes, dementia, local community and family history are all fabulous additions to Ruby’s story. There are a couple of other main characters of Hector and Lachlan, they are again so well developed and give a heartwarming and also a nervous and tentative feel to the story.
The descriptions of Christmases past and memories that are intertwined in the story add an extra special feeling to this story. It has a definite foothold in memories and these then help the progress forwards to the future. There are also some wonderful setting descriptions that definitely added extra sight, sound and smell senses to the story.
I will admit to not being a big fan of gin, I’m more of a whiskey drinker, but I have to say the sound of the gin mentioned in the book sounds amazing.
This is yet another book I absolutely devoured as I have with the previous books I have read by this author. If you are a fan of books that have a wonderful story, fabulous characters, sumptuous settings, that has many surprises, unexpected friendships and that does not take a direct route then I think this is the book for you. If you have already read Jo’s books then you will know where I am coming from because she is a fabulous author.
Coming Home To Winter Island is yet another book by Jo Thomas that I would Highly Recommend.
Jo Thomas worked for many years as a reporter and producer, first for BBC Radio 5, before moving on to Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and Radio 2’s The Steve Wright Show. In 2013 Jo won the RNA Katie Fforde Bursary. Her debut novel, The Oyster Catcher, was a runaway bestseller in ebook and was awarded the 2014 RNA Joan Hessayon Award and the 2014 Festival of Romance Best Ebook Award. Jo lives in the Vale of Glamorgan with her husband and three children.
See what other Book Blogger think by following the Blog Tour…
I am delighted to share my thoughts on Notting Hill In The Snow by Jules Wake. 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 wonderful festive book.
Let me show you what it is all about…
It’s mayhem in Bethlehem…unless they can work together!
Viola Smith plays the viola in an orchestra (yes really!), but this year she’s been asked to stretch her musical talents to organising Notting Hill’s local nativity. Nate Williams isn’t looking forward to Christmas but as his small daughter, Grace, has the starring role in the show, he’s forced to stop being a Grinch and volunteer with Viola.
With the sparks between them hotter than the chestnuts roasting in Portobello market, Nate and Viola can’t deny their feelings. And as the snow starts to fall over London, they find themselves trapped together in more ways than one…
This is such an addictive book and has a very festive Christmas feel to it. Viola Smith is a viola player and is asked to help with a local school nativity as part of an outreach program. Viola has never organised anything like this before and she is supposed to have help from one of the parents, Nathan Williams.
Nathan is a lawyer and Viola doesn’t have a good track record with them, but, Nathan and his daughter Grace are dealing with life alone as Elaine, the wife and mother, is currently working away. Viola offers to help Nathan and Grace as they all juggle work, schedules, shopping and the upcoming preparations for Christmas.
I love the feel of this book as it really does bring together the traditional Christmas vibes. As well as the main story of a friendship between Viola, Nathan and Grace, there are other things also going on in the background. Viola has a rather demanding family and think that she is at their beck and call because she is single! Talk about running herself ragged, poor girl! She is one of those people who will put others before herself and this means she is going to have let some people down. Who and why is revealed as the story progresses further and further.
There is a strong underlying attraction between Nathan and Viola and things are not easy as there is Grace who is at the centre of any decisions and don’t forget Nathan also has a wife, albeit in New York…
The setting of Notting Hill is done so well, the author has managed to create an almost village like setting as she describes this busy area of London. This adds to the overall warm snugly feel of the story. Her descriptions of more traditional Christmas festivities are wonderful, from the gaudily decorated Christmas trees to the mugs of hot chocolate and stockings at the end of the bed are just superb.
This is a terrific read and I was hooked from the very first pages, I like the tentative tiptoeing around the romance and the obvious attraction between Nathan and Viola and yet all the while there is a feeling of this could go wrong at any point. Story-lines and themes have been wonderfully woven like tinsel on a Christmas tree and the overall effect is stunning.
This is a wonderful book that readers of romance and festive fiction will absolutely adore. I would definitely recommend this wonderful book.
Jules Wake announced at the age of ten that she planned to be a writer. Along the way she was diverted by the glamorous world of PR and worked on many luxury brands and not so luxury brands. This proved fabulous training for writing novels as it provided her with the opportunity to hone her writing and creative skills penning copy on a vast range of subjects from pig farming and watches, sunglasses and skincare through to beer and stationery.
She writes best-selling warm-hearted contemporary fiction for One More Chapter as Jules Wake and under her pen name Julie Caplin, she writes the Romantic Escapes series.
Between them, the two Js have written twelve novels, Notting Hill in the Snow being the latest.
I am delighted to welcome you to my thoughts on Coming Home to Glendale Hall by Victoria Walters. My huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and also for arranging my e-copy of this fabulous book.
Let me show you what its all about…
No matter how far you go, home is where the heart is…
Beth Williams hasn’t been home for ten years. After falling pregnant at sixteen, she ran away from the imposing Scottish estate where she grew up rather than risk her family’s disapproval, working hard to build a life for herself and daughter Isabelle – but now she’s finally returning to Glendale Hall.
As Beth tries to mend her broken family ties, and fights to bring the community of Glendale back together, she realises that the story she has told herself for a decade might well be a very different one from the truth. Even though she ran from Glendale it has never left her heart. And, she soon realises, neither has Drew – Beth’s first love.
Will Beth be able to forgive her mother and grandmother (and herself) for what happened ten years ago? What will Drew say when he discovers the secret she’s been keeping from him for so long? Can a festive trail bring the village back together?
Will Christmas work its magic on Glendale – or will Beth be forced to run away from it all over again?
A charming, uplifting novel that will warm your heart – the perfect read to curl up with this autumn. Fans of Trisha Ashley, Debbie Johnson and Cathy Bramley will love this gorgeously romantic read.
I have to say I am not normally a reader who reads festive fiction out of season but as there is a definite autumnal chill in the air I found that the season did a great job of adding the right seasonal atmosphere!
Beth Williams left Glendale Hall in Scotland at 16 thinking she had no other option but to leave her home and family. 10 years later she gets a call from her father to say that Beth’s Grandmother is ill and that Beth should return home. Beth brings her daughter, 10 year old, Izzie who will visit her mums childhood home for the first time.
Within a few pages I was hooked as the author introduced me to Beth and her daughter Izzie. It wasn’t long before I then got to see Glendale Hall and meet the rest of the family. From their meeting up after Beth’s long absence I was aware of an underlying anger and frustration as old feelings of sadness and rejection crept into the conversations as feelings of things being unsaid stood like a shadow around the adults.
Beth’s shock at how things had changed in the area after her decade away really did home for her and gives her a sense of motivation. People from her past come into her life once again, her best friend and also her first love. This adds for more tension between some of them and misunderstandings are rife. Yet another emotional twist is woven into an already emotional story.
Izzie is such a wonderful character and she is like glue, she has the ability through her childhood innocence to see things for what they actually are. She injects a great sense of fun and also the author uses her character to give others the ability to take part in Christmas activities that help put the sad feelings to one side for a moment.
This is a glorious read that brings out all the hurt and pain from the past, the author has brought everything to the forefront again and foces her characters to deal with things that have gone on in past. It is a personal journey for not only Beth but for others as well. As adults there are things that have happened and they have sat and festered, now is the time for them to be revisited.
This is not just a story about the family at Glendale Hall, it also encompasses the local village as well. The changes in the community have not been for the best and it has left the village feeling a loss of identity and is threatened. Its story works so well and compliments the one with Glendale so well and is perfectly woven.
This is a wonderful read that had me guessing and kept me on my toes right the way through. I was never sure how the author was going to work through the threads and there were several moments when I had that fabulous will they/ wont they feelings as I read. Nothing was guaranteed to work and it kept me addictively turning pages.
A wonderful read from the first to the last page that dealt with the past and the present and also the future, and it made for the ideal “snuggle down and read” book. It is one I would definitely recommend 🙂
Victoria Walters writes up-lifting and inspiring stories. Her moving debut novel THE SECOND LOVE OF MY LIFE was chosen for WHSmith Fresh Talent and shortlisted for an RNA award. Victoria was also picked as an Amazon Rising Star. Her heart-warming new novel SUMMER AT THE KINDNESS CAFE is available to download now.
As well as being an author, Victoria also works as a Waterstones bookseller and buys far too many books there. She lives in Surrey with her cat Harry (named after Harry Potter). Victoria is not only obsessed with books but loves buying slogan tops, mugs and notebooks, and posting them all on Instagram.
Even if she’s lost most of her friends because of spending all her time at work, and can’t remember when she last had fun, it’s worth it.
Until she’s suddenly made redundant. Now she’s 37, jobless, and after the breakup with the former love of her life, unhappily single.
Enter Maddy’s childhood friend, Beth, the owner of Growlers, the doggy daycare centre at Giddywell Grange, on a mission to make Maddy see there’s more to life than work.
Soon, Maddy is swapping spreadsheets for volunteer duty at the library, daily Starbucks for cups of tea with elderly neighbours, and her Prada handbag for doggy poo bags… And with Beth’s gorgeous brother, Alex, back from the States, Maddy starts to think that Giddywell Grange might just be her happy place.
But when her old life – and her old boyfriend – comes calling, will Maddy go back to the job she loved so much? Or will she discover that the key to happiness lies in making others happy?
The synopsis gives a wonderful idea as to what the book is about. I met maddy as she is nervously waiting for her meeting where she is expecting to be promoted. This is something that Maddy feels she deserves due to all the hard work she has being doing over the years in PR. Work has been her life she has missed family and friends important events and not seen them as much as she should have done because she has been too busy with her work. So from anticipated nervous excitement she is suddenly dropped into a devastated place where she feels she is now surplus to requirements.
I immediately felt my heart go out to Maddy and I quickly found myself caught up with the story within a matter of a few paragraphs. This is the second book by this author and yet again she has absolutely and completely had me hooked and wrapped up within her writing.
I love how quickly the author shows the extreme emotions with Maddy, from enthusiasm to dejected in just a few words. It is this empathy that she brings out in the reader that shows how well she engages with this reader. I think this is why she is going to be a writer whose future books I will always buy without giving it a second thought. I know this is only the second book she has written but I am already a huge fan.
So, from starting the book I spent a few delightful hours devouring the story, I learned about Maddy, her Mum and her best friend Beth. I love how the once best friends had drifted due to Maddy’s work, but instantly connected when Maddy decides to come home again. I must say I also love the characters of Uncle Tom and Alex. They, along with Mum and Beth are full of advice and support as Maddy tries to find her feet and are on hand with loads of love and hugs with the occasional kick up the backside for good measure.
I loved watching the transformation in Maddy from a highflying PR career woman to one who pick up poo as she helps in Beth’s Dog Kennels. The author got the balance so right as it would have been so easy to stray into that feeling of “how the mighty have fallen”, but instead of that she created a character who is warm, helpful and supportive, as I said she got the balance right! The author has created little situations where Maddy is not expected to take part, but she when she surprises people and does these little tasks, it makes for humorous reading.
Life is not straight forward for Maddy and even though she has taken a step back from the PR world, she still has her eye out for another job while helping Beth out. I loved that nothing was straight forward and I wasn’t sure how things were eventually going to pan out and I discovered some nice little surprises along the way!
The author has once again created a story that completely wrapped me up for the few hours that I sat and read. I loved watching the characters develop through the story and how they react and interact with each other. The feeling of warmth, love and family at Giddywell Grange is fabulous and sounds a wonderful place that I would quite happily love to live in.
This is a story about searching your soul and doing what is right and best for yourself. Maddy is fortunate to have a great cast behind her as she learns and discovers things about herself, what makes her happy and I loved watching her discover that there is more to life than a high flying stressful career.
This is a wonderful heartwarming story the I would absolutely Recommend because it is just fabulous. And left me wanting to read more by this author, get a move on Kim I need another of your books to read ASAP 😍😁
Kim Nash lives in Staffordshire with son Ollie and English Setter Roni, is PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture and is a book blogger at www.kimthebookworm.co.uk.
Kim won the Romantic Novelists Association’s Media Star of the Year in 2016, which she still can’t quite believe. She is now quite delighted to be a member of the RNA.
When she’s not working or writing, Kim can be found walking her dog, reading, standing on the sidelines of a football pitch cheering on Ollie and binge watching box sets on the TV. She’s also quite partial to a spa day and a gin and tonic (not at the same time!) Kim also runs a book club in Cannock, Staffs.
Amazing Grace was her debut novel with Hera Books and came out in April 2019.
Escape to Giddywell Grange is Kim’s second novel and will be published on September 18th 2019.
I am delighted to share my thoughts with you for My Lemon Grove Summer by Jo Thomas. This is the 2nd book I have read by this author, the first being Sunset Over Cherry Orchard. Because I loved her that one so much I was not going to leave this sat on my shelf too long before picking it up.
Let’s see what it’s about…
Could the lemon groves of Sicily be the perfect place to start over? The irresistible new novel from Jo Thomas, the author of Sunset Over the Cherry Orchard, will transport you to the island of mountains and sparkling blue seas.
When life hands you lemons … is it ever too late for a second chance?
Zelda’s impulsive nature has got her precisely nowhere up until now. A fresh start in a beautiful hilltop town in Sicily looking for new residents, together with her best friend Lennie, could be just what she needs. And who better to settle down with than the person who knows her best?
But the sun-filled skies and sparkling seas can’t hide the shadow hanging over Citta d’Ora, which means not everyone is pleased to see their arrival. The dreams Zelda and her fellow new residents had of setting up a new life might be slipping away. But a friendship with restauranteur Luca could be about to unlock the possibilities that lie in the local lemon groves. And there’s a wedding on the horizon that might be just what the town needs to turn it around…
Could a summer in Sicily help Zelda learn to trust her instinct and follow her heart?
Zelda and Lennie are best friends. When they were teens they made a pact. If they were not in a relationship with their respective Mr or Mrs Perfect by the time they were 40, they would marry each other. Both are stuck in a rut and single when Lennie pulls the “pact” agreement out and suggests to Zelda that they up-sticks and move to Sicily. A fresh start, a new adventure beckons.
This is such a wonderful book that I happily lost myself in for an afternoon. The author once again successfully created wonderful imagery with her words. I was able to imagine the village and more importantly the surrounding area and the lemon groves. I have not been to Sicily, but the author made me feel as if I had glimpsed it through her story.
The adventure that Zelda and Lennie sign up for is a dream of local business man, to help -build the community he loves and get the passing tourists to stop rather than just drive past. On arrival though, Zelda and Lennie discover that things have not been planed and sorted as they had expected. They soon discover they are not the only ones who have decided a fresh start is the way to go.
I liked how the author brought in people from different backgrounds and for different reasons together, though she does not excessively dwell on those, she does give enough information about them so I got to know them a little. The main focus is on the key characters, and I have to say there is one I would quite happily focus on!…
Lemons feature in this story and does some fabulous food mentions, I am glad I read this after eating a Sunday roast or my stomach would have been growling. Along with the food, there is also a mentions about lemons, and the growing of them.
This is one of those stories that I think is delightful reading, it is perfect for loosing yourself in and makes you feel good. The author has woven a tale that has friendship, optimism, feuds, family, relationships and drama.
A fabulous summer read that I happily read in one sitting. It’s also one that I would definitely recommend!
Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share is always appreciated 🙂 xx
I am absolutely delighted to be sharing my thoughts with you all today for Meet Me In Monaco by Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb. This is such a stunning story that I absolutely fell in love with.
I bought a copy for my kindle, but I am also going to get a paperback when it is published at the beginning of September, it’s that good!
Let’s see what it is all about…
Set in the 1950s against the backdrop of Grace Kelly’s whirlwind romance and glamourous wedding to Prince Rainier of Monaco, New York Times bestselling author Hazel Gaynor and Heather Webb take the reader on an evocative sun-drenched journey along the Côte d’Azur in this page-turning novel of passion, fate, and second-chances.
Movie stars and paparazzi flock to Cannes for the glamorous film festival, but Grace Kelly, the biggest star of all, wants only to escape from the flash-bulbs. When struggling perfumer Sophie Duval shelters Miss Kelly in her boutique, fending off a persistent British press photographer, James Henderson, a bond is forged between the two women and sets in motion a chain of events that stretches across thirty years of friendship, love, and tragedy.
James Henderson cannot forget his brief encounter with Sophie Duval. Despite his guilt at being away from his daughter, he takes an assignment to cover the wedding of the century, sailing with Grace Kelly’s wedding party on the SS Constitution from New York. In Monaco, as wedding fever soars and passions and tempers escalate, James and Sophie—like Princess Grace—must ultimately decide what they are prepared to give up for love.
What an absolutely brilliant read this was. Set in the 1950’s of Monaco, it has a wonderful atmosphere in the era of Grace Kelly and her meeting with Prince Rainier. The authors have blended a little fact with the fiction to create a stunning and highly addictive story.
The setting is wonderful adding a little of luxury of the country, with the film star and life style of the iconic and well known film star Grace Kelly.
I was introduced to perfumer Sophie Duval and photographer James Henderson. This happens as Grace seeks sanctuary in Sophie’s shop trying to avoid the press and photographers. Over the course of the story that follows I gradually got to know more about the friendship that forms between Sophie and James. They just never quite seem to get together at the right time, there always seems to be something that gets in the way.
For James, photography is his passion, but snapping celebs is not what he wants to do. He wants scenery and locations, not easy when there is someone at home that also needs his time.
Sophie is being pressured to sell her business, a business that she took over from her father. The business is in her bones and her soul, it is everything that makes her who she is.
This is such a stunning story and the authors have captured the feel and atmosphere so well. The visuals that they have conjured up made it so easy for me to imagine so many things from, dresses to scenery they made it seem effortless. There is a romantic tension that builds up between Sophie and James, and as much as I wanted to see them together early on I was glad that the authors kept pulling them apart.
The emotion of the story was something that gradually built up and by the end of the book the dam finally burst. I was in tears and not for the reason that you are probably thinking!
There are notes at the end of the book that gave some extra’s into the life of Grace Kelly as well as about perfumes and how the book came to be. I must admit I did spend quite a bit of time after finishing the book, Googling Grace and her life, I wasn’t quite ready to turn the last page on Grace at that moment and needed to read more about this beautiful lady.
This is a book that I would absolutely recommend.
Many thanks for reading my post, a like or share would be fabulous 🙂 xx