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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Under One Roof by Samantha Tonge @SamTongeWriter @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #boldwoodbloggers #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to be one of the Bloggers to open the Blog Tour today and to share my review for Under one Roof by Samantha Tonge. This is a wonderful mix of contemporary fiction, family and life, I thoroughly enjoyed it.

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 from Boldwood Books via NetGalley.

One forgotten discovery will change three women’s lives for ever…


Robin hasn’t been home for decades. After running away to London, she never expected to see her cantankerous mother, Faye, again. But when Faye has a fall, the two women are thrown together once more.


The years apart have not made their hearts grow fonder and the ground between them is unsteady. Then Robin finds an unopened scroll – the last of the treasure hunts her much-missed father used to take them on every Sunday. A hunt he believed might change everything. 


Yet, not even this gift from her beloved father can smooth the way until Robin’s daughter, Amber, arrives to meet her grandmother for the first time.  Amber is determined that the decades-old mystery be solved.
Can a 30-year-old treasure hunt really ‘change everything’?


Purchase Link: HERE

MY REVIEW

I have read a couple of this authors books and have really enjoyed them. Her latest one, Under One Roof, is a wonderful mix of contemporary fiction and family life.

Faye has a fall and her daughter, Robin, is persuaded to go to stop with her Mother to help her while she heals and recovers. It may sound odd that a daughter has to be persuaded, but the close bond that many have is just not there between Faye and Robin. To say that the long-overdue reunion is tense would be an understatement. You could cut the tension with a knife! The author has done a great job of creating animosity and tenseness between mother and daughter that you can really feel as you read.

When Robin’s daughter, Amber, also needs a helping hand, it is to Faye’s house she also stayed at. Three generations of women Under One Roof should be something that you would expect to be a time of reminiscing, chatting over stories and memories. Instead, each of the women is a closed book. They are short with each other with just the occasional glimmer of emotion underneath.#

I really enjoyed the dynamics between the three women, each feel hard done by, but why! The author gradually reveals some interesting pasts to Faye and Robin, it will go a long way to bridging the gap, it will also help Amber to see why the women are so aloof with each other.

The author brings into this story some tough things for the women to explain. Not only why there isn’t the closeness, but also why Robin ran away from home. Yes to a certain extent this is about these two women, but the help of a third is also needed and this is where Amber becomes the centre for this see-saw. She gives them a push and in doing so learns more about her family.

This is a wonderfully written story about understanding and opening up to feelings, fears and emotions. Through the three generations, there are different perspectives and opinions. While there is a sadness to some of the secrets that finally are revealed it isn’t overly done. There is a nice lightness to the writing that makes it a very addictive story to read.

This is one for those who like a story that centres around family, secrets and misunderstood people. I adored this story a lot and I would definitely recommend it.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Samantha Tonge lives in Manchester UK and studied German and French at university. She has worked abroad, including a stint at Disneyland Paris as part of the Opening Crew, and has travelled widely. She enjoys family time, baking and walking and always knew that one day she would write. Samantha finally took the plunge seriously in her late thirties, and hasn’t stopped since. Under One Roof will be her sixteenth book and she has also sold many dozens of short stories to women’s magazines.

Samantha’s uplifting stories are about identity and self-discovery, about friendships and communities. She enjoys creating diverse characters and writing about relatable issues that make the reader feel it’s not just me. Her books have hit the AmazonUK overall chart Top Ten position twice and she has won two awards.

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War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm by Rosie Clarke @AnneHerries @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks #boldwoodbloggers #histfic #saga #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm by Rosie Clarke. I have read a few books by this author and have thoroughly enjoyed them. Her latest book is the start of a new series, it was a brilliant book to read.

As always, my huge thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of the book via NetGalley.

Cambridgeshire – March 1939


As the clouds of war begin to gather in Europe, the Talbot family of rural Blackberry Farm will be torn apart, just as so many families all over the world will be. Life will never be the same again.


Whilst in London, the Salmons family will feel the pain of parting and loss.


Brought together by war, the two families become intertwined and, as the outlook looks bleak, they must draw on each other’s strength to fight through the hard times.


Lizzie Johnson and Tom were sweethearts until a mistake caused a terrible rift. Lizzie takes herself off to London to heal the pain in a glamorous new job but she still loves Tom. His pride has been hurt – but deep down inside Tom still cares. Can they find happiness before their chance is gone and the whole world is swept into the terrible madness of war?


Purchase Link – HERE

MY REVIEW

War Clouds Over Blackberry Farm is a new series from the author and it is another fabulous historical fiction set in 1939.

Blackberry Farm is a delightful sounding farm where the Talbot’s, a hard-working and well-respected family in Cambridgeshire. Tom and Lizzie have been together for a while, but one night something happens that leaves her embarrassed and she decides to leave the village and try to find a job in a London hair salon. She falls on her feet when she finds not only a job but also a wonderful family to stay with.

The Salmon’s are another close-knit family who is welcoming and Lizzie soon finds herself feeling welcomed. She finally decides that she needs to confront what happened in the past come what may. She needs to know if Tom will accept her explanation as to what happened and if there is a chance for a future between them.

I thoroughly enjoyed this first book in this new series. It didn’t take me long to work out the characters and their roles in the families. Working between the city and the countryside brings different views and of course ways of living.

As the war is becoming more definite, people are thinking towards the weeks, months ad possible years to come. Some men sign up, others decide to wait to be called and some will apply for exemptions to work in their job. As the inevitable begins, wounded men are starting to return, women are thinking of training to be nurses as well as becoming land girls.

Bringing two new families means that I get to know a whole new set of characters. There are some glimpses of backstories and of course, not all the characters are nice to meet. The way the families live and work is laid out well and the mentions of foods and especially cakes sound amazing. I did like how the author used the soon to begin war as a way for her characters to make use of what they have while they have it.

I liked the contrast between the city and the country and how well the author bridged the gap between the two and also how the families become connected. I was gutted when I realised I had gotten to the end of the book. I did that whole thing of swiping back a page, and forward again, then back again before it sunk in that I had actually got to the end.

This is a book for those readers who like historical fiction and romance, for sagas and women’s fiction set in the early days of WW II. A brilliant opener to the series and one I would definitely recommend.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rosie Clarke is a #1 bestselling saga writer whose most recent books include The Shop Girls of Harpers and The Mulberry Lane series. She has written over 100 novels under different pseudonyms and is an RNA Award winner. She lives in Cambridgeshire.

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Secrets of the Jam Factory Girls by Mary Wood @Authormary #panmacmillan @RandomTTours #histfic #saga #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Secrets of the Jam Factory Girls by Mary Wood. I am a huge fan of this author and her books and this is the second book in the series.

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

A heart-warming saga about female friendship from the bestselling author of The Jam Factory Girls.
Secrets of the Jam Factory Girls is a moving saga novel of friendship set in the heart of pre-WWI London from
bestselling author, Mary Wood.


Elsie’s worked her way up at Swift’s Jam Factory from the shop floor to the top, and now it’s her time to shine. But
when she’s involved in an incident involving her half-sister Millie’s new husband, she is forced to keep it secret – the
truth could threaten their sisterly bond.


Dot is dogged by fear, coming to terms with her mother’s rejection of her. She should be enjoying the happiness she
craves with her beloved Cess; instead, she’s trapped in an asylum, haunted by the horrifying cries of inmates. All she
wants is to get married, but what chance is there for her if she’s locked away?


Millie is trying to build a life with her new husband. But the man she loves is not all he seems . . .


Can the Jam Factory girls create the future they all deserve?


This historical saga series begins with The Jam Factory Girls.

My Review…

This is the second book in the Jam Factory Girls series and it does continue on from the previous book, but you could read it as a stand-alone, but you would miss out on a great story and intro to the girls.

Life has changed for Elise and Millie as their sisterly bond becomes closer. In fact, the bond between Cess, Bert and all the characters becomes closer. Within this closeness, there is still the feeling of not belonging as Millie has lived a very different lifestyle to that of her new fond family. These differences can be overcome and realisations are discussed as each person finds where they feel more at home.

This closeness is going to be tested, and not in a way I had ever envisioned. I don’t ever read the synopsis for any of this authors books, I just know I want to read them and that is just what I do. The Jam Factory is improving, and not just in the profits but also in production since Elsie and Millie have had more of an input. Working conditions and the health and well being of their mostly female staff has worked wonders.

With the slowly changing attitudes, things do have the appearance of looking up, there is however the old fashioned attitude that is still very strong, an attitude of ” this is how things have always been” still has a firm foothold. Challenging this attitude both on the work and homelife front is something that will be a strength of will.

This is a wonderful historical fiction that I adored, as I mentioned this is a continuation and it was great to catch up with the girls and their families. The author really does encompass so many things in the time of the setting. Hints and nudges towards working condition, family life, status, a little of the politics and of course it is all wrapped up in a wonderful story.

the author never makes things easy for her characters, or for that matter her readers as she does put us all through the wringer. I did find this book angered me a lot as the attitudes of the time and of particular characters are so bloody-minded and it is the strength of the writing that brings out the feelings.

A superb read as always from a fabulous author. If you are a fan of historical fiction, sagas and family dramas from a time gone by then you are going to get on so well with this author. I would definitely recommend this book.

About the Author…

Born the thirteenth child of fifteen to a middle-class mother and an East End barrow boy, Mary Wood’s family was poor, but rich in love. Mary raised four children and has numerous grandchildren, step-grandchildren and great-grandchildren.


An avid reader, she first put pen to paper in 1989 and is now a full-time novelist. She is the bestselling author of
numerous books, including The Abandoned Daughter and The Brave Daughters.

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Don’t Ask by Paul Carroll @paulcarrollink @RandomTTours #RandomTTours @matadorbooks #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Don’t Ask by Paul Carroll. This was a fabulous read and one that really caught my attention.

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

A DNA ancestry test opens up a Pandora’s Box of secrets.

When Elsa Watson takes a DNA ancestry test out of idle curiosity she little imagines the devastating consequences she is about to unleash.
Two families become reluctantly entwined as inconvenient truths and long suppressed memories resurface.

A #whodunnit with a difference, Don’t Ask visits the glam rock Seventies, Britpop, Operation Yewtree and #metoo within its alternating past and present chapter structure.

Purchase link – Amazon UK

My Review…

This really was a fabulous book to sit and read over a couple of days. The synopsis does mention some things that may be a trigger for some readers with the #metoo and Operation Yewtree, a police investigation into child abuse by TV personalities.

Given that this story does contain some hard to read themes, the author has approached it with care. For me, the story is about family and finding out the truth. A simple DNA test that you buy off the shelf to discover your ancestry is the catalyst for the story. A simple test to discover your heritage and where your roots hark back to. Sounds great until you discover that you have a close relationship with someone else.

Using this as the basis the author has woven a story that I found to be compelling reading. Family secrets are at the heart of the story and also embarrassment, shame and guilt. The author has taken the story to include many twists and turns that kept me guessing even when I knew some of the answers. Having the answers is not enough and the author has given an intriguing route for the reasons why. This does involve some unpleasantness, but it is kept in context and not embellished or over dramatised in my opinion.

The story involves different generations of two families, their backgrounds are told across a timeslip style. They flit back and forth between time and character. There is no warning or indication about these switches, but to be perfectly honest, once I got to know the characters I soon found it very easy to follow.

Discovering that you don’t know all about your family must be very hard. The author gives a feel of loss as the characters involved are discovering their truths. The story was a slow-paced one and this helped with getting to know the characters and how they have changed over the years, the memories that have been suropressed and their relationships with each other.

This is a novel that I really got on with and I do think the author has hit the balance well with the themes he has included. A mix of contemporary fiction and a mystery as the truth is finally revealed. The story of two families and their everyday lives is rocked by a simple and innocent DNA test. A sad story but one I would definitely recommend.

About the Author…

Paul Carroll has been drawn to ink and the written word since launching a rock fanzine in his late teens.

Born and bred in Leeds, Paul crossed the Pennines in the mid-70s to study English Language and English Literature at the University of Manchester. 

Chasing a job in journalism he stumbled into the world of PR and ten years after starting his career set up his own PR consultancy, Communique PR, in Manchester.

There he worked on many well-known brands including Boddingtons, Heineken, Thorntons Chocolate, Chicago Town Pizza, Big D peanuts, Co-op Funerals and Manchester Airport.

These days, Paul concentrates on his writing.

Paul’s books are full of dark humour and satirical takes.  His writing has been compared to that of Ben Elton, Nick Hornby and Jonathan Coe in tackling serious contemporary issues in a highly engaging and entertaining way.

Don’t Ask (Matador 2021) is Paul Carroll’s fourth novel, following A Matter of Life and Death (Matador, 2012), Written Off (Matador, 2016), and Trouble Brewing (Matador, 2017).

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One Day in Summer by Shari Low @sharilow @rararesources #contemporaryfiction #bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for One Day in Summer by Shari Low. 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 brilliant book.

Let me show you what it’s all about…

One Day In Summer


Coming soon from #1 bestseller Shari Low, an emotional roller-coaster, that keeps you guessing…

One day in summer, three lives are about to change forever.

After two decades of looking after others, this is the day that Agnetha McMaster is reclaiming her life. It’s her turn, her time but will she have the courage to start again?

Ten years ago, Mitchell McMaster divorced Agnetha and married her best friend, Celeste. Now he suspects his second wife is having an affair. This is the day he’ll discover if karma has come back to bite him.

Thanks to a DNA test, this is the day that Hope McTeer will finally meet her biological father. But will the reunion bring Hope the answers that she’s looking for?

Three people. Twenty-four hours. A lifetime of secrets to unravel.

Purchase Link – Amazon

How gorgeous is that cover? 😍

This is the first time I have read a book by this author and I absolutely loved it. The story is set on one day though that particular day has several threads that are wonderfully woven to create such a compelling story.

The synopsis give a very good idea of the basic story line to this book, and within a few paragraphs I was already hooked and curious. The story flits between characters and also time and this gradually gives a fuller picture. There is a lot more to the story than meets the eye and the author has allowed the story to flow and felt like effortless reading.

Understanding events of the past helps to realise how things stand in the present, but even when you think you know everything do you? A betrayal, a twisted version of events, things coming full circle and having the support of family and loyal friends will help.

I found this was such a well paced story that kept my attention from start to finish. I has warmth, hope, dreams and definitely a few surprises. The author was crafty in the way she laid things out and it kept me on my toes and this again is another way of keeping my attention.

Once I began to see the threads being pulled together I could start to make connections, I started to understand the why’s of tensions and how the fear of missing out and wanting more can be twisted.

There are several characters I loved and I could definitively see myself getting on with if they were real, they added a dynamic and mixed set of traits and personalities. Though not everyone was likeable!

This is a fabulous story that I had a couple of teary eyed moments with, it was wonderful to sit and read this book literally in the course of One day and in the sunshine it definitely felt like summer. A fabulous read and one I would definitely recommend.

Shari Low is the #1 bestselling author of over 20 novels, including One Day In Winter and My One Month Marriage and a collection of parenthood memories called Because Mummy Said So. She lives near Glasgow.

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From Venice With Love by Rosanna Ley #contemporaryfiction #romance #BookReview

I am so delighted to share my review for From Venice With Love by Rosanna Ley, this is a book I read a few weeks ago and it is absolutely gorgeous. A must for readers who love a story about family, relationships and romance.

Let me show you more about this book…

The best-selling author of The Lemon Tree Hotel returns with an enchanting new holiday listen about family bonds and following your heart, wherever it might take you….

With her marriage in danger of falling apart, Joanna returns home to the beautiful but dilapidated Mulberry Farm Cottage in rural Dorset, where her sister Harriet is struggling to keep the farm afloat and cope with their eccentric mother.

When Joanna discovers a bundle of love letters in the attic, written by a watercolourist named Emmy, she is intrigued and sets out to discover Emmy’s true story. Emmy’s letters take Joanna to the picturesque alleyways and bridges of Lisbon, Prague, and the most romantic place of all: Venice – where a whole new magical world seems to unfold in front of her.

Meanwhile, back at Mulberry Farm Cottage, a mysterious prowler adds to Harriet’s problems and interrupts her search for a perfect partner. Will she ever find true love? Where will Emmy’s mesmerising pathway lead? And more importantly, will Joanna and Harriet be able to rescue the cottage and finally be able to rediscover their sisterly bond? 

What an absolutely wonderful read this was, and a first by this author for me, even though I do own several of her books! This is the story of two sisters, the elder Henrietta lives in the family farm of Mulberry Farm Cottage in Dorset with the Audrey their mother. Joanna has been living and working in London but has just moved back to the family after her husband admitted to having an affair. Going home will give her the chance to look at her life and decide what she wants to do next.

This was such an amazing book to read, the author has such a wonderful way of describing the various settings in the book. If like me, you love to disappear into a different country or country, then this is a book you really want to pick up as her descriptions are so good.

The story itself is one of self discovery for various characters, yes, they are adults and therefore to a point they should kind of have an idea of what they want to do with their lives. But the thing is that they have had some major change in their lives and this has left them wondering what role they have within the family as well as what direction they would now like to go in.

Joanne discovers old love letters, these set her off on a trail and takes her to Venice, it also fits in with her job so she can combine two things in one. Her latest is to write some travel guides that have something a little different to them. The letters lead her on a wonderful journey that I thoroughly enjoyed.

I really want to go into more details about the sisters, their mother, then Owen and Nicholas, as well as the journeys that are made, but I don’t want to spoil it for you. It is such a wonderfully evocative book that I started to read and didn’t put down until I had finished.

The author looks at family dynamics, there is the odd secret that emerges. The expectations of others and also the expectations of the characters as well. There are problems, dilemmas, but also something slightly whimsical that has such a fabulous impact on the story. For Joanna, the journey she takes to discover more about the letters also, in turn, takes her on a journey. It was like the past was showing her a way to the future.

This is a slower-paced book and it is perfect for the pace of life on the farm and also for one of the other characters. The descriptions of Dorset and Cornwall, as well as other European cities, add to this ambling pace and it is wonderful.

I cannot say anything but good about this book, well I do have one bad point… it ended! I didn’t want it to end at all!

If you are a fan of slower-paced books that delve into family and how changes impact their lives then this is a book for you. If you like descriptions of settings then this is a book for you. It is a fabulous read and I absolutely adored it and I would highly recommend it.

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The Memories We Bury by Helene Leuschel @HALeuschel #PublicationDay #PsychologicalFiction #BookReview

Happy Publication Day to you Helene Leuschel for The Memories We Bury, and many thanks for my review copy for an unbiased review xx

Let me show you what this book is all about…

An emotionally charged and captivating novel about the complexities of female friendship and motherhood, from the author of Manipulated Lives.

Lizzie Thomson has landed her first job as a music teacher, and after a whirlwind romance with Markus, the newlywed couple move into a beautiful new home in the outskirts of Edinburgh. Lizzie quickly befriends their neighbour Morag, an elderly, resourceful yet lonely widow, who’s own children rarely visit her. Everything seems perfect in Lizzie’s life until she finds out she is pregnant and her relationship with both Morag and Markus change beyond her control. 

Can Lizzie really trust Morag and why is Markus keeping secrets from her? 

In The Memories We Bury the author explores the dangerous bonds we can create with strangers and how past memories can cast long shadows over the present.

As the title indicates, this book is about memories, and particularly memories that have been buried been mis-remembered.

The author has taken this story and woven such a compelling read. Lizzie had not had the best of childhoods and her memories are not the best. his leaves her vulnerable to stronger personalities like that of her husband Markus. The couple move next door to Morag, a woman who is lonely and who is eager to help out Lizzie. Her help is invaluable as Lizzie gives birth to her son Jamie.

Over the next few weeks Lizzie and Jamie find the help that Morag gives them to be wonderful, but gradually this help progresses into more. Lizzie is struggling with being a new mum, feeling insecure and it doesn’t help that her husband works away. While the help Morag provides is good, Lizzie would like more time with her son alone.

This is such a deceptive novel and starts quite innocently enough, a neighbour willing to help out and provide aupport when needed, but then the author does something quite special and adds such a good psychological twist to it.

The story alternates between Lizzie and Morag, it delves into their past and their present lives. It builds a bigger picture over the story and had me completely and utterly hooked.

If you are a fan of family life and relationship reads that have secrets and mistrust, deception and manipulation then you are going to love this one. I did! A fabulous read that I would definitely recommend.

Helene Andrea Leuschel gained a Master in Journalism & Communication, which led to a career in radio and television in Brussels, London and Edinburgh. She later acquired a Master in Philosophy, specializing in the study of the mind. 

Helene has a particular interest in emotional, psychological and social well-being and this led her to write her first novel, Manipulated Lives, a fictional collection of five novellas, each highlighting the dangers of interacting with narcissists. 

She lives with her husband and two children in Portugal.

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Mine by Clare Empson @ClareEmpson2 @Tr4cyF3nt0n #CompulsiveReaders #OrionBooks #BookReview

I am delighted to be sharing my review today for Mine by Clare Empson. I would like to say a big thank you Tracy at Compulsive Readers for my spot onthe Blog Tour and for arranging my copy of this wonderful book.

Let me show you what it is all about…

Who am I? Why am I here? Why did my mother give me away?’

On the surface, Luke and his girlfriend Hannah seem to have a perfect life. He’s an A&R man, she’s an arts correspondent and they are devoted to their new-born son Samuel.

But beneath the gloss Luke has always felt like an outsider. So when he finds his birth mother Alice, the instant connection with her is a little like falling in love.

When Hannah goes back to work, Luke asks Alice to look after their son. But Alice – fuelled with grief from when her baby was taken from her 27 years ago – starts to fall in love with Samuel. And Luke won’t settle for his mother pushing him aside once again…

One word…Wow!

What an emotional story Mine was, I say emotional but actually it was an emotional roller-coaster. The synopsis tells you the basics you need to know about this story and to be honest I am not going to really expand on that.

The story is essentially two stories that are intertwined in a Now and Then format. The Now part of the story of Luke and how he finally gets to meet Alice, his birth mother, and how their relationship builds. The second story is about Alice and her journey through Art school, life and to the point of giving her son up for adoption.

There are obviously others in the story, Hannah is Luke’s partner and together they have Samuel, there is Luke’s mother as well. In the past there are those important to Alice, such as renowned artist Rick.

During this slower paced story the there are various aspects that the author has dealt with and I think has done very well. There is an obvious impact of reconnecting with a birth parent, expectations, questions, guilt are just the tip of the iceberg. The impact is felt for all that are part of the family and in someways careful managing is needed.

The emotion aspect of the story was gradually built up, from the initial nervousness of a first meeting to Alice becoming part of the family. While the story does have a psychological thriller feel to it, it is more about family relationships, and it has a more dramatic second half.

A fabulous read that had some surprises, and though I did have a nervous feeling I wasn’t quite expecting the way the author played her story line out. A cracking read for readers who like a book that has a slower build-up, that is as much about family life and relationships as it is the psychological thriller. It is one I would definitely recommend.

Clare Empson is a journalist with a background in national newspapers and has worked as a small business editor, finance correspondent and fashion at the Mail on Sunday and the Daily Express. Clare freelances for The Sunday Telegraph, The Sunday Times, the Evening Standard and Tatler amongst others. She currently works as editor/founder of experiential lifestyle website http://www.countrycalling.co.uk.

Him was her debut novel. Her second novel Mine is an exploration of the fraught relationship between a birth mother and her adopted son set against a backdrop of a passionate love affair in the 70s.

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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