Love At First Like by Hannah Orenstein #RomCom #BookReview

I am delighted to share my review today for Love At first Like by Hannah Orenstein. I read this book a few weeks ago and have a slight delay with sharing non-Blog Tour books, so…

Let me show you what it is all about…

WHAT DOES IT TAKE TO FAKE THE PERFECT LOVE LIFE?

Eliza Roth and her sister Sophie co-own a jewellery shop in Brooklyn. One night, after learning of an ex’s engagement, Eliza accidentally posts a photo of herself wearing a diamond ring on that finger to her Instagram account beloved by 100,000 followers. Sales skyrocket, press rolls in, and Eliza learns that her personal life is good for business. So she has a choice: continue the ruse or clear up the misunderstanding. With mounting financial pressure, Eliza sets off to find a fake fiancé.

Fellow entrepreneur Blake seems like the perfect match on paper, and in real life he shows promise too – if only Eliza didn’t feel also drawn to someone else. But Blake doesn’t know Eliza is ‘engaged’; Sophie asks Eliza for an impossible sum of money; and Eliza’s lies start to spiral out of control. Now she can either stay engaged online – or fall in love in real life.

The synopsis for this book does a good job of setting the scene. Eliza Roth is a jeweller who accidentally posts a photo and caption of her engagement on Instagram. As her private and business profile are one in the same account she finds herself suddenly getting lots of comments. Unfortunately, she isn’t engaged, she only wishes she was. The photo sees an influx of sales and she decides not to correct her viewers.

The story that follows is how she then goes on to find a stand-in, but when she starts to develop feelings for Blake she knows she should say something, but the longer she leaves it the worse it gets. Apart from immediate family and close friends, no one else knows about this, except a local barman called Raj, he is a new friend in her life and becomes a someone she can easily chat to.

While I did like the idea of this story, there was the odd bit that wound me up. While I do get the reasons behind Eliza’s decision not to tell Blake the truth I found that he reluctance to tell him really wound me up. Blake is not a social media user, but I am sure many of his family and friends are, as that is the way of things in this day and age. I was finding this a little strange as I know myself that if something is mentioned about a friend on social media then it will come up at some point in a conversation either at work or in passing. This just felt a little unbelievable for me.

Overall a good story and one that kept me turning pages and a book that I easily read in an afternoon. A book that did keep me hooked because I wanted to know how it would pan out for all concerned and because of that I would recommend.

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

Mexico Street by Simone Buchholz @ohneklippo @annecater #RandomThingsTours @OrendaBooks #Crime #Bookreview

I am delighted to share my review today for Mexico Street by Simone Buchholz. My thanks to Anne Cater at Random Things Tours for my spot on the Blog Tour and for arranging my e-copy of the book.

Let me show you what it’s all about…

Hamburg state prosecutor Chastity Riley investigates a series
of arson attacks on cars across the city, which leads her to a
startling and life-threatening discovery involving criminal gangs
and a very illicit love story…


Night after night, cars are set alight across the German city
of Hamburg, with no obvious pattern, no explanation and no
suspect.


Until, one night, on Mexico Street, a ghetto of high-rise blocks in
the north of the city, a Fiat is torched. Only this car isn’t empty.
The body of Nouri Saroukhan – prodigal son of the Bremen clan –
is soon discovered, and the case becomes a homicide.


Public prosecutor Chastity Riley is handed the investigation,
which takes her deep into a criminal underground that snakes
beneath the whole of Germany. And as details of Nouri’s
background, including an illicit relationship with the mysterious
Aliza, emerge, it becomes clear that these are not random
attacks, and there are more on the cards…

I have read the first book in the Chas Riley series and they do work well as standalone, but obviously better if read in order to get a proper understanding of Chas.

In Mexico Street the synopsis does a great job of setting the reader up for what is to come. The author has quite a unique style and so does her main protagonist Chas Riley.

Chas is a no holds barred type of character, she is a tough cookie who tends to say what she wants, do what she wants and is in some respects a bit of a closed book when it comes to revealing things about herself.

The case of a body found in a burned out car takes Chas and her team into an area where there is a community that is country-less, refugees who cannot remain in their own country and are not allowed to settle. They are not trusting of the law, of outsiders and of strangers. They have there own ways of doing things and this makes it very difficult to gain the answers Chas needs.

The author weaves a tale that flits back and forth in time giving a backstory to the characters. These are gradually brought up to date and gives the reader the chance to get to know not only the character but also the what matters to them. She also changes perspectives as the story progresses, you get a view from Chas, the investigation as well as from a character. These are well worked to give a good depth to the story.

The story is a mix of the investigation and also from the the dead characters life to the point of death and because of this there are certain things that are not completely finalised. It is that the investigation has been solved but not all the questions are answered, but they are alluded to. Leaves the reader with something to think about.

This is an investigative story that has a different style to it giving it a unique feel. It is detailed and has more than one story-line that are gradually drawn together until they reach a point where they meet. Mexico Street is a crime and investigation read that I would recommend.

I would also like to add that the translation is brilliant.

Simone Buchholz was born in Hanau in 1972. At university, she studied
Philosophy and Literature, worked as a waitress and a columnist, and
trained to be a journalist at the prestigious Henri-Nannen-School in
Hamburg. In 2016, Simone Buchholz was awarded the Crime Cologne Award
as well as runner-up in the German Crime Fiction Prize for Blue Night,
which was number one on the KrimiZEIT Best of Crime List for months. She
lives in Sankt Pauli, in the heart of Hamburg, with her husband and son.

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

A Springtime To Remember by Lucy Coleman @LucyColemanauth @rararesources #Giveaway (Open Int) #Romance #BookReview

I am delighted to once again join a Blog Tour for one of Lucy Coleman’s books, she also write under her own name of Linn B Hatton. A Spring time by Lucy Coleman was a wonderful read and I would like to thank Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on the Tour and also for arranging an e-copy of the book.

Let me show you what it is all about…

How absolutely gorgeous is this cover 😍

Let Lucy Coleman transport you to glorious, sun-drenched France, for the perfect feel-good read. Paris and the Palace of Versailles have always meant a lot to TV producer Lexie. Her grandma Viv spent a year there, but her adventures and memories were never discussed, and Lexie has long wondered why they were a family secret.

When work presents the perfect excuse to spend Springtime in Versailles, Lexie delves into Viv’s old diaries and scrapbooks, and with the help of handsome interpreter Ronan, she is soon learning more about the characters that tend to the magnificent gardens, now and in the past.

In amongst the beauty and splendour of the French countryside, a story of lost love, rivalry and tragedy unfolds. Can Lexie and Ronan right the wrongs of the past, and will France play its tricks on them both before Lexie has to go home? Will this truly be a Springtime to Remember…?

Purchase Links:

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I really enjoyed A Springtime To Remember as I followed Lexi to Versailles to film a series about the gardens. She has an interest as her grandmother spent a year here before she got married and yet never mentions it. Ronan is an interpreter whose grandfather worked at Versailles and there is a history that haunts him. Was it fate that brought these two to work together or something else.

I have read a few books by this author and I always enjoy the stories she weaves. A Springtime To Remember had a slightly different feel to it as the author delved into a little of the history of the Palace of Versailles and its gardens. I enjoyed this quite a lot and it was interesting to see how the history, politics, financing and personalities had a part to play in this world famous site. While I did find it really interesting I did feel it took a little of the pacing from the story.

The author does a brilliant job of telling the tale of the two main protagonists as they meet and get to know each other. There is that magical feeling of a mutual attraction that this author writes so well. The story takes turns that delved into each of their family pasts as well as events happening in the present. There is turmoil to both parties and I thought they were good reading.

I liked the descriptions of the opulence of the palace and the gardens and they provided a wonderful backdrop to the story. Food is mentioned, well it is Paris afterall!

This is another wonderful story by this author, she takes the reader on a journey that sees family history finally seeing the light of day, personal revelations and realising what is important in life. I deal for romance fans who like a story that has a little history and an all round great read. It is heartwarming and not everything is guaranteed. I would recommend reading A Springtime To Remember.

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 – including Summer on the Italian Lakes, Snowflakes over Holly Cove, The French Adventure and A Cottage in the Country. She is 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, working in the garden, or practising Tai Chi.

Living in Coed Duon in the Welsh Valleys with her ‘rock’, Lawrence, and gorgeous Bengal cat Ziggy, she is an eternal romantic.

Linn is a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association and the SoA and writes feel-good, uplifting novels about life, love and relationships.

Social Media Links –

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Giveaway to Win a signed paperback of ‘A French Adventure’ and a metal leaf bookmark. (Open INT)

ENTER THE GIVEAWAY HERE VIA – RAFFLECOPTER

*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.

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

Closer To You by Adam Croft @adamcroft #PublicationDay #BookReview

I am delighted to share my review for Closer To You by Adam Croft. I would also like to take the opportunity to wish Adam a Happy Publication Day 🙂

Let me show you what Adam’s book is all about…

What if your loved one wanted you dead?

Grace wants to spend the rest of her life with Tom. She needs to. Because otherwise he’ll kill her.

He’s the perfect gentleman. He’s kind, attentive and caring. Her family love him. And he needs Grace dead. But why?

As the feeling grows that Tom is not as perfect as he seems, he begins to slowly and systematically destroy her life. Can she discover the truth and escape with her life?

This is a quick, pacy and riveting 229 pages of intrigue, manipulation and deception. Grace thinks she has found Mr. Right when she meets Tom via a dating app. He is charming, a gentleman and very attentive. He comes across as supportive and compassionate. Grace, it seems has been swept off her feet by him so why are her friends not quite so keen on him?

This is a fast paced read that in some ways mirrors the pace of Grace and Tom’s relationship. Things move quickly and it isn’t long before he has moved in. Things should be rosy, and on the relationship side of things, that is the case. However, work, friends and family relationships all seem to have problems. Things are not going well, there are fraught conversations that seem to appear out of nowhere. Grace is so confused and is so glad that she has Tom there.

This is a clever and quick read that just zooms along and is easily read in one sitting. The author does a really good job of giving the reader a story that is very easy to get caught up in. There are doubts about Tom from the synopsis and also from the reactions and responses from Grace’s close friend and her family. Grace is slowly being manipulated and doesn’t realise until Tom’s attitude changes, subtle changes, but changes all the same.

If you like quick paced, domestic thriller reads then Closer To You is a good book to pick up. The characters are good and I was able to see what the other characters could see, I could understand their frustrations and I could also see the doubt creep slowly in over Grace. For a quick read this does pack a lot of drama and tension. thoroughly enjoyable read and one I would recommend.

With more than half a million books sold to date, Adam Croft is one of the most successful independently published authors in the world, and one of the biggest selling authors of the past year.

Following his 2015 worldwide bestseller Her Last Tomorrow, his psychological thrillers were bought by Thomas & Mercer, an imprint of Amazon Publishing. Prior to the Amazon deal, Her Last Tomorrow sold more than 150,000 copies across all platforms and became one of the bestselling books of the year, reaching the top 10 in the overall Amazon Kindle chart and peaking at number 12 in the combined paperback fiction and non-fiction chart.

His Knight & Culverhouse crime thriller series has sold more than 250,000 copies worldwide, with his Kempston Hardwick mystery books being adapted as audio plays starring some of the biggest names in British TV.

In 2016, the Knight & Culverhouse Box Set reached number 1 in Canada, knocking J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Cursed Child off the top spot only weeks after Her Last Tomorrow was also number 1 in Canada.

During the summer of 2016, two of Adam’s books hit the USA Today bestseller list only weeks apart, making them two of the most-purchased books in the United States over the summer.

Before writing full time, Adam had previously worked as an internet marketing consultant, delivery driver and professional actor.

Adam has been featured on BBC Radio, The Guardian, The Huffington Post, The Bookseller and a number of other news and media outlets.

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

Cold Fusion 2000 by Karl Drinkwater @karldrinkwater @BOTBSPublicity #ColdFusion2000 #BOTBSPublicity #BookReview

I am delighted to share my review for Cold Fusion 2000 by Karl Drinkwater. Many thanks to Sarah at Book On The Bright Side for my spot on the Blog Tour and also for arranging my copy of the book.

Let me show you what it is all about…

Alex Kavanagh is a pedantic physics geek – a teacher who hates teaching, a lover who’s always getting dumped, a writer whose articles all get rejected, a 28-year-old still living at home and bullied at the bus stop by teenagers – and he’s just had the worst day of his life. Things can only get better, right?

Enter his ex, Lucy, in what seems to be a chance meeting. Her betrayal marked the point when his life went nuclear. But – holy protons! – he still loves her.

Two problems. First, she isn’t who he thinks she is. Second, she’s going to leave him forever in 72 hours.

Cold Fusion 2000 is a haunting novel about a man who’s too rational to believe in ghosts and too short-sighted to see what was in front of him all along.

This was a book that I wasn’t sure about when I first started it. The beginning was a mix of a playlist of songs, physics and then a character I didn’t immediately take to. I read a dozen pages and decided to go off and do something else. I then returned to it and an hour or so later.

I don’t why that break worked but it did. I found the main character of Alex Kavanagh to be a cold and almost allof one and I didn’t think I would like him. By the end of the book however I discovered that me initial thoughts about him were totally wrong.

Alex is a socailly awkward person, he doesn’t quite seem to fit in anywhere and doesn’t seem to have anyone that he can connect to. He had been on track to complete a Phd, he then left University before completing it after a breakup from his then girlfriend Lucy. He returned back home to live with his parents.

He then reconnects with Lucy for a short time, they get on well but it isn’t meant to last as she is only visiting.

The story flows around Alex, his past and his present and his friendship with his sisters friend Natalie. It is almost like a story of finding who he is and where he belongs. I suppose you could call it a coming of age story, but this doesn’t really feel right as you assume that this would be more about a teen, but Alex is in his 20’s.

From a story I wasn’t sure about I then discovered a tale that was wonderfully written and gradually drew me in. I then found it very difficult to put down. A story of a man who is lost, but needs someone to take the time and have the patience for him. Alex went from a man I wasn’t that fussed about to a man who I really liked.

I think this is a book for those who like something a little bit different, that is well written and has some wonderful heartwarming moments. I really enjoyed it and I would recommend it.

Karl Drinkwater is originally from Manchester but lived in Wales for twenty years, and now calls Scotland his home. He’s a full-time author, edits fiction for other writers, and was a professional librarian for over twenty-five years. He has degrees in English, Classics, and Information Science.

He writes in multiple genres: his aim is always just to tell a good story. Among his books you’ll find elements of literary and contemporary fiction, gritty urban, horror, suspense, paranormal, thriller, sci-fi, romance, social commentary, and more. The end result is interesting and authentic characters, clever and compelling plots, and believable worlds.

When he isn’t writing he loves exercise, guitars, computer and board games, the natural environment, animals, social justice, cake, and zombies. Not necessarily in that order.

Follow Karl on – FacebookTwitterInstagramGoodreadsWebsite

Check out the other stops on the Blog Tour…

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

Archie and the Enchanter by Alexander Weir @weir_norman #childrensfiction #BookReview

I am delighted to share my review for Archie and the Enchanter by Alexander Weir. My thanks to Publishing Push and Alexander for getting in touch and sending me an e-copy of this fabulous childrens book.

Let me show you what it is all about…

This is for 8 – 12 year olds.

It takes place on Scotland’s wild West Coast where Archie discovers an ancient and supernatural set of bagpipes.

The magical bagpipes do impossible things. The music it makes is powerful.

Through its music, history begins to change.

It’s not the bagpipes but the chanter that is supernatural (the chanter is the part of the bagpipe that the piper uses to make music).

The chanter is probably more than 1,500 years old and yet looks brand new.

The name ‘chanter’ comes from the word ‘enchanter’ – and ‘enchant’ is what it does. The origins of the enchanter are shrouded in mystery. It disappeared before the Jacobite risings of 1715 and 1745. Perhaps the Young Pretender, Bonnie Prince Charlie, would have won through if the Enchanter had been around.

Then our hero, a scruffy little boy called Archie, found it, and this book is about what happened next.

Let me also share the introduction to this magical story…

Archie and the Enchanter – Introduction

‘No one knows where it came from. It was found in a heathery glen by a shepherd tending his sheep. The shepherd was keeping a wary eye on the horizon for Viking raiders and for a moment looked down. And there it was shining silvery at his feet.

What it could and would do was a constant source of amazement. It didn’t seem to age, and despite the passage of the centuries it always looked as shiny and new as it had been when it was found. It became a treasured possession of one of the Highland clans. Its ownership was kept a closely guarded secret although the Royal Stuarts knew about it and called upon it to be used in their quest for power.

Then it was lost. Everyone in the clan searched, but no one found it. The chanter entirely disappeared during Scotland’s troubled times at the close of the seventeenth century.

Who knows how the conflict at Culloden would have turned out if it had been there.’

This is a wonderful story to read and I can see it being a real hit with the age group it is aimed at.

Archie is a wonderful character and one that seems to get himself into mischief without trying, I say mischief but what I actually mean is gets dirty, ruins his clothes and just seems to attract dirt from wherever he goes, much to his mums annoyance. Archie goes to visit his Grandfather and while Grandfather is asleep Archie goes exploring and comes across a very old set of bagpipes, as Archie already plays this instrument he is immediately interested.

Archie finding the old bagpipes is just the start of the story really, as the story then changes tempo as Archie discovers what the pipes can do. What follows is a wonderful tale that not only delves into a little Scottish history, but also gives some facts about bagpipes and of course what Archie gets up to.

The bagpipes have a wonderful magical quality that has quite an impact on the small Scottish Community where Archie lives. The story also has a moral.

Archie is a wonderful character who I really liked, along with a few of the other people who I briefly met. The author has done a really good job of creating an exciting story and at the same time adding little snippets of information that help me learn something as I read.

The setting descriptions were good, enough to get a sense of place but not too much to take away from the story for a younger reader. It has excitement, magic and quite a few chuckle moments in it to keep you entertained, well it did me!

This is the first in a planned series and it is a great introduction, I got to meet Archie, his family and some of the local community. This is a really good start to the series and I think the age group of 8-12 years feels about right, though I think 8-10 is more appropriate.

It is a story that has a older feel to it, by this I mean it is not full of modern technology so maybe I mean more of a whimsical classic children’s’ style to it.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book and I think children will enjoy it, I did and I would recommend it.

For Further Reading

If you head over to the Publishing Push Blog Site there is a great article that gives you a chance to read an excerpt of Archie and the Enchanter, there are also some really interesting facts and info there as well. You can follow the link HERE

You can order a copy of the book from Amazon

Alexander Weir is married, with two children together with his wife, and three dynamic go-ahead grandchildren. He lives in a small community in a remote part of Scotland’s Argyll Coast. As part of the community, he teaches art to the children in the community home school and, come evening time, they join him in the family room for ‘story time’. The imagination of the children has been captured in this tale, and author Alexander and his family, are keen to see Archie’s escapades being enjoyed by other children of similar ages too.

He has serialised both books and have been read on Argyll FM radio and covering Ulster, with an outreach across Kintyre, Knapdale, and Northern Ireland. In addition, he has introduced the books to children in Canada and Ireland – and received an enthusiastic response. Alexander is also the Editor of a quarterly Scottish Fellowship of Christian Writers literary magazine, called ‘WordWise’.

Alexander gained his MSc from London South Bank University, and has worked a varied career from Railway Manager, to Missionary, Vice Chairman of Savanne Winery in Tbilisi (Georgia), and Company Secretary, General Manager and Director for two London-based companies. He retired from Business Life in London in 2012.

His writing has not only focused on children’s historical fantasy. Alexander is also author of a peer reviewed medical research paper, and of two theological books, ‘A Question of Time’ and ‘A Question of Identity’.

For more information visit Alexander’s Website or visit him on Twitter Facebook

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

Million Eyes by C.R. Berry @CRBerry1 @rararesources #BookReview

I am delighted to share my review for Million Eyes by C.R. Berry. This is a book that has its toes dipped in a few genres and so in a way it makes it a book that may intrigue many readers… it certainly intrigued Me!

Let me show you what it is all about…

How do you fight an enemy who has a million eyes?

What if we’re living in an alternate timeline? What if the car crash that killed Princess Diana, the disappearance of the Princes in the Tower, and the shooting of King William II weren’t supposed to happen?

Ex-history teacher Gregory Ferro finds evidence that a cabal of time travellers is responsible for several key events in our history. These events all seem to hinge on a dry textbook published in 1995, referenced in a history book written in 1977 and mentioned in a letter to Edward III in 1348.

Ferro teams up with down-on-her-luck graduate Jennifer Larson to get to the truth and discover the relevance of a book that seems to defy the arrow of time. But the time travellers are watching closely. Soon the duo are targeted by assassins willing to rewrite history to bury them.

Million Eyes is a fast-paced conspiracy thriller about power, corruption and destiny.

Purchase LinksElsewhen PressAmazon UKAmazon US

I have to say that I do like a good conspiracy every now and again in my reading, Million Eyes has more than one conspiracy, in fact it has several that have been wonderfully woven back and forth in this historical /time travel fiction book.

Now where to start, Million Eyes, well I could tell you what Million Eyes is but I won’t, you will have to read the story to discover the details. There are several other things I could tell you, but… yep you guessed it… I’m not going tell you about them either lol!

So what I will tell you is that Ferro, a history teacher, has stumbled across something that could, if released to the public, turn what we know about our history on its head. He is obsessed with what he has found and wants to know more. Jennifer Larson has been following his blog and is intrigued, together they start to piece little snippets and leads together until they discover that there are obscure accounts that have been documented over the years that indicate that people from the future have been interfering, they have left evidence!

This has been very well written and as I have discovered from trying to write my review about this book, keeping a timeline that makes sense and doesn’t get muddled and confusing is a very difficult thing to do, but the author has pulled it off brilliantly so that it flows wonderfully.

The author has used parts of history and then spun them into a great setting for the story line that see’s the reader transported across centuries as a witness to the what unfolds. Given the fact that this is a story that does flit back and forth it is very easy to follow and know where in history you are. This attention to setting and timeline details is great.

I was enjoying this book a lot and liked the mystery and conspiracy elements to this story, then towards the 60% stage of the book little bombshells started to be dropped. I suddenly knew what Million Eyes and other things in the story were. This is the stage where I felt the story quicken its pace, or was that me suddenly desperate to know more and so began to read faster?

There are a few characters in this story and they are easy to keep up with, the settings are good and the timelines are clear. The story line is full of twists and turns that you don’t really get the full effect of until a lot later in the book and then you get the eureka moment without realising one was due! I do hope that makes sense …

This is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed, it is a mix of genres so if you like history, fiction, mystery, time travel or conspiracy theories in your reading then I really do recommend giving this book a read. It is the first in a planned trilogy and has been left with hints of a cliff hanger, but also nicely wrapped up to a point.

C.R. Berry caught the writing bug at the tender age of four and has never recovered. His earliest stories were filled with witches, monsters, evil headteachers, Disney characters and the occasional Dalek. He realised pretty quickly that his favourite characters were usually the villains. He wonders if that’s what led him to become a criminal lawyer. It’s certainly why he’s taken to writing conspiracy thrillers, where the baddies are numerous and everywhere.

After a few years getting a more rounded view of human nature’s darker side, he quit lawyering and turned to writing full-time. He now works as a freelance copywriter and novelist and blogs about conspiracy theories, time travel and otherworldly weirdness.

He was shortlisted in the 2018 Grindstone Literary International Novel Competition and has been published in numerous magazines and anthologies, including Storgy, Dark Tales, Theme of Absence and Suspense Magazine. He was also shortlisted in the Aeon Award Contest, highly commended by Writers’ Forum, and won second prize in the inaugural To Hull and Back Humorous Short Story Competition.

He grew up in Farnborough, Hampshire, a town he says has as much character as a broccoli. He’s since moved to the “much more interesting and charming” Haslemere in Surrey.

Social Media Links – TwitterFacebookWordPressGregory Ferro’s Blog Million Eyes

See what other Book Bloggers think of Million Eyes by checking out their stops on the Blog Tour

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

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow #Bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts on The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow. This is a fabulous and fantastical read that I thoroughly enjoyed. I have a paperback copy of this book and it is gorgeous, my photo really doesn’t do this book justice, it has gold embossing on the keys and it is just a stunning cover!

Let me show you what it is all about…

EVERY STORY OPENS A DOOR

In a sprawling mansion filled with peculiar treasures, January Scaller is a curiosity herself. As the ward of the wealthy Mr. Locke, she feels little different from the artefacts that decorate the halls: carefully maintained, largely ignored and utterly out of place.

But her quiet existence is shattered when she stumbles across a strange book. A book that carries the scent of other worlds and tells a tale of secret doors, of love, adventure and danger. Each page reveals more impossible truths about the world, and January discovers a story increasingly entwined with her own.

I really enjoyed this book so much, it was fabulous to delve into the worlds that the author has created for her main protagonist January.

January is a girl who doesn’t quite fit in, she is an in-between person who lives with the very wealthy Mr Locke. Locke is her guardian and looks after her while her father is off travelling and collecting artefacts. As January starts to feel where she fits in society she becomes more aware of her differences and also of the restrictions that Locke imposes on her. Living in a large house surrounded by artefacts, curios and all manner of different things, she becomes aware that she may actually be part of his collection.

This is such a good read that I within the first saw few chapters I felt the addiction. It has a whimsical fantasy feel that also had a historical and literary fiction vibe to it. It is a story of stories or a story within a story as I followed January on her journey through life. Along the way, I learnt of her parents and of their travels and meetings.

The journeys the author takes January on are ones that force this young girl to grow up quick. They put her in danger as she tries to discover the truth of her life and also of her parents. These journeys are wonderfully written and describe with some fabulous imagery.

This is a slower-paced story and gave me a chance to enjoy the writing and the story. It covers various emotions such as loneliness, isolation and abandonment but equally it is about hope, determination and stubbornness to continue. So has a nice balance to it.

This is a really well-written book that I thoroughly enjoyed and I would recommend it to readers who like fantasy stories.

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

Revolution by Piet Hein Wokke #histfic #Bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts on Revolution by Piet Hein Wokke today with you. This is a book that I chose to review, let me show you what it is all about…

Do we ever really fight over religion?

Or do we use religion to fight?

Escape to the Middle East in this thrilling tale about Khalid, Abdullah and Jalal – young men who try to shape the kingdom of Beledar.

While the nearest battlefields of WWII are hundreds of miles of away, on the streets of Mayasin, the capital of Beledar, Abdullah struggles to survive. In a remote village, Khalid sets out in search of his father, and must face the brutal laws of the desert.

Jalal, the young king, wants to break through nepotism and corruption, but in a conservative, Islamic country, change doesn’t come easy. That the western world preys on his country’s oil fields, doesn’t make his life any easier either.

In this exciting book, Wokke expertly and poignantly shows the roots of modern conflicts in the Middle East, through the people and ideas that inhabit it.

This is a wonderful story that pulls together ideals, politics and culture to create a story that is set in the Middle East. It charts the stories of Abdullah and Khalid two boys from different parts of the region who grow up to have very different roles and also of a man who is to become King.

This was such an interesting read and one that I found quite addictive. It has quite a lot going on and so I took a little more time with it. It covers many different aspects of life in the Middle East and uses politics and religion quite a lot to add intrigue and suspense to the story.

The lives of the two boys are really interesting as well. One is a a boy who is struggling to make enough money so that his family can eat. The other decides to follow his brother and leave school. While the man who becomes King has ideas to help the people of his country.

I loved the way the author made me feel completely immersed within this story and while I do not have a great knowledge of the Middle East I did understand all the things that were going on. Life in the royal palace was like a game, a very dangerous game. Distrust, spies, backstabbing and conspiracy were very evident. I liked this notion of not really knowing who could be trusted.

The cultural aspects were interesting and I liked the author showed the differences from where the boys started to where they ended up. Also the differences in how men and women where expected to behave and how some where trying to bring changes to a male dominant society.

The story is told in alternating chapters from the perspectives of Abdullah and Khalid. I liked how I was able to follow their own journeys and how they changed and reacted to various situations as the story gradually unfolded. Jalal also has a few chapters and seeing how he coped with power was really interesting.

The story delves into other aspects of human nature such as trust, loyalty, truth, expectation and a matter of faith. These become tested in various ways through the story and it is interesting to see how the characters deal with the challenges they face.

This is a book that I read over three days and was one of those books that I found I better grasped with the extra time I spent reading it. There are various plots and conspiracies going on through the story that I needed time to digest so I didn’t get myself confused. The author has a background in politics and also Middle Eastern History and I think this has definitely helped with the story-lines.

By the end of the book I found that many things had been answered and felt complete but, there were also some new questions that I had and I hope that there will be another book to follow on from this one. The ending of this one has an ending that just begs for another book and the story to continue.

This is a book that I think readers of historical fiction would enjoy and it is one I would recommend.

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

Children of Fire by @cw_beatty @rararesources #Bookreview

I am delighted to share my thoughts on Children of Fire by Paul CW Beatty as part of the Blog Tour with Rachel’s Random Resources. My thanks to Rachel for my spot on the Tour and for organising my e-copy of this book.

Lets see what it is all about…

Can Josiah solve the puzzle before more people die, or is he out of his depth?

In 1841, at the height of the industrial revolution in the North West of England, Josiah Ainscough returns from his travels and surprises everyone by joining the Stockport Police Force, rather than following his adopted father’s footsteps into the Methodist ministry.

While Josiah was abroad, five men died in an explosion at the Furness Vale Powder Mill. Was this an accident or did the Children of Fire, a local religious community, have a hand in it. As Josiah struggles to find his vocation, his investigation into the Children of Fire begins. But his enquiries are derailed by the horrific crucifixion of the community’s leader.

Now Josiah must race against time to solve the puzzle of the violence loose in the Furness Vale before more people die. This is complicated by his affections for Rachael, a leading member of the Children of Fire, and the vivacious Aideen Hayes, a visitor from Ireland.

Can Josiah put together the pieces of the puzzle, or is he out of his depth? Children of Fire won the Writing Magazine’s Best Novel Prize for 2017

Purchase Links – Amazon UKUS

This is a historical fiction and crime novel that is set in the North West of England in 1841. Josiah is a constable who is asked to go to see a local religious group called the Children of Fire to see if they had anything to do with a recent explosion at the powder mill.

I will say that this book took me a few chapters to get into, there were several characters I had to get my head around and for some reason this took me a while. Gradually I started to become familiar with the names and their roles in the story and things started to fall into place and became easier to follow. There is quite a few things going on in the book as I followed Josiah into his investigation, met the Children of Fire members and also the local families.

I gradually started to find my interest in the book increasing, and I like the slower pace, it seemed to suit the slower pace of life for the setting. Being a hist/fic novel I like to come across things relevant to the time a book is set. This took me into some interesting facts about the powder mills and gunpowder. There were some really interesting facts that were given as part of Josiah’s investigation. The author had worked these facts and other issues into the story very well.

As I said this is a slower paced book, but there was a good amount of intrigue Josiah’s case continued, it often seemed that as he was starting to make headway something else would crop up only to add more mystery. As I passed the half way point of the story I noticed a slight shift in the pace and then things were starting to link up and took me to quite a dramatic conclusion.

This was a book that I enjoyed and is full of interesting history relevant to the time. If you like a slower paced historical fiction that has an intriguing crime element then give this one a try. It is one I would recommend.

Paul CW Beatty is an unusual combination of a novelist and a research scientist. Having worked for many years in medical research in the UK NHS and Universities, a few years ago he took an MA in Creative Writing at Manchester Metropolitan University emerging with a distinction.

His latest novel, Children of Fire, is a Victorian murder mystery set in 1841 at the height of the industrial revolution. It won the Writing Magazine’s Best Novel Award in November 2017 and is published by The Book Guild Ltd. 

Paul lives near Manchester in the northwest of England. Children of Fire is set against the hills of the Peak District as well as the canals and other industrial infrastructure of the Cottonopolis know as the City of Manchester.

Social Media Links – Twitter

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