Thursday 21 July 2022

Book Review - The Hotel on the Riviera - Carol Kirkwood - #FamilyDrama


TITLE - The Hotel on The Riviera

AUTHOR - Carol Kirkwood

GENRE - Family Drama / Romance

BUY LINK - Click here


By the sapphire blue waters of the French Riviera, a decades-long secret is about to be revealed…

Wayward Greek heiress, Ariana Theodosis, inherits the Hotel du Soleil as part of a mysterious legacy. Captivated by its faded glamour, she hopes it offers her the chance to start again.

Hotelier Gabriel du Lac’s family have owned the hotel for decades – and he has no intention of giving it up for a beautiful stranger.

Madame du Lac has watched the rich and famous pass through the doors of the hotel for almost half a century, and she has kept its secrets too.

As the past finally catches up with them all, will this summer reveal a forgotten secret, and change their lives forever…?

I loved the authors last book which transported me to beautiful sunny climes. This book was no different. The story centres around Ariana and her wealthy family. Through an inheritance it brings Ariana into contact with Gabriel Du Lac and his family. What happens next is a tale of secrets and lies, with the truth needing to be uncovered. 

I love how the author describes her character so vividly, that you almost feel as if you know them. 

The story weaves seamlessly between the past and the present. It is based in the South of France and also the beautiful Ithos in Greece, transporting you to stunning places, making it a perfect summer read.

Monday 18 July 2022

Book Review - The Peoples Princess by Flora Harding

TITLE - The People's Princess

AUTHOR - Flora Harding 

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Buckingham Palace, 1981

Her engagement to Prince Charles is a dream come true for Lady Diana Spencer but marrying the heir to the throne is not all that it seems. Alone and bored in the palace, she resents the stuffy courtiers who are intent on instructing her about her new role as Princess of Wales…

But when she discovers a diary written in the 1800s by Princess Charlotte of Wales, a young woman born into a gilded cage so like herself, Diana is drawn into the story of Charlotte’s reckless love affairs and fraught relationship with her father, the Prince Regent.

As she reads the diary, Diana can see many parallels with her own life and future as Princess of Wales.

The story allows a behind-the-scenes glimpse of life in the palace, the tensions in Diana’s relationship with the royal family during the engagement, and the wedding itself.

I hadn't read the synopsis before I read this book, so when I started reading it I thought it was just another book about Princess Diana, and I have read many before, but how wrong I was. 

There is obviously some poetic licence taken with this book but a lot is based on fact, having read some of the discussions in a book by Andrew Morton. 

Princess Diana, before she married Prince Charles, was intrigued by a painting in Buckingham Palace of Princess Charlotte; The Queen that never was. She was given a journal written by Princess Charlotte and began to read it page by page. 

So much has been written about Princess Diana and I felt I knew a lot of it, but I knew nothing about Princess Charlotte. I fell in love with her and was mesmerised by her story. So much so that I am going to research her and read more books about her. 

This book didn't always paint Princess Diana in a favourable light, sometimes making her seem like a spoilt teenager, but then at the end of the day, she was a teenager.  However the book was very well written and I love how the author blended the stories of the two Royal Princesses. 

Thursday 12 May 2022

Book Review - Summer at The French Cafe - Sue Moorcroft - Feel good family drama/chic lit


TITLE - Summer at the French Cafe

AUTHOR - Sue Moorcroft 

GENRE - Family Drama/Chic Lit

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Sparkling sun, strolls in the gorgeous French countryside, that first sip of cool, crisp wine – Summer is Kat’s favourite season. And this year should be no exception…

‘Fun, emotional and packed with French sunshine. I adored it!’ – Sunday Times bestselling author Milly Johnson

As soon as Kat Jenson set foot in the idyllic French village of Kirchhoffen, she knew she’d found her home. Now she has a dreamy boyfriend, a delightful dog and the perfect job managing a bustling book café in the vibrant Parc Lemmel. ‘

But when she learns her boyfriend isn’t all he seems, it’s the start of a difficult summer for Kat. Vindictive troublemakers, work woes and family heartache follow, and the clear blue sky that was her life suddenly seems full of clouds.

Then she gets to know the mysterious Noah, and her sun begins to shine brighter than ever. But Noah has problems of his own – ones that could scupper their new-found happiness. Together, can they overcome their many obstacles, and find love again?

I may have said this before with Sue Moorcroft books, but she has the amazing ability to whisk you to some of the most amazing picturesque locations, making you want to go there right now. 

I couldn't wait to read this on holiday. I always love a Sue Moorcroft summer chic lit read, and this was no exception. I was mesmerised with the wonderful destination I had been transported to. This location was the pretty French countryside. 

The main character Kat, lands a job managing a book store, for an older couple. The way the bookstore with cafe was described, it made we want Kat's job! 

This book subjects you to a fabulous tale of romance (and a little heartbreak too). I loved the well constructed storyline and all the characters, even the hateful ones. 

To me, this is another Sue Moorcroft triumph. 

Saturday 9 April 2022

Book Review - The Boyfriend - Michelle Frances - #PsychologicalThriller

 TITLE - The Boyfriend

AUTHOR - Michelle Frances

GENRE - Psychological Thriller

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He loves you. He loves you not.

Amy is fiercely independent, with a high-powered career, a flat of her own and tight-knit friendships. But as she approaches her thirtieth birthday, she can’t help but rue the one thing she doesn’t have – a relationship.

When Amy comes around following a serious fall, she doesn’t remember anything from the last six months. Not even the upcoming skiing holiday at her aunt’s luxurious chalet in Val d’Isère with her mum and best friends to celebrate her birthday. And she certainly doesn’t remember being swept off her feet by the handsome Dr Jack Stewart . . .

Jack is the full package – charming, caring and devoted to Amy. Everyone is smitten with him, but as the week goes on, Amy begins to find Jack’s presence chilling. Is her broken mind playing tricks? Or is the perfect boyfriend really too good to be true?

For fans of The Chalet and The Hunting Party, The Boyfriend is a twisting anti-love story that will keep you guessing with every page, by Michelle Frances, author of the number one bestselling sensation The Girlfriend.

Amy comes round after a fall and wakes up in hospital, but she is suffering from amnesia. 

She has a boyfriend, Dr Jack Stewart, but she doesn't remember him or anything about the last few months she has spent with him. 

It is labelled under the genre "psychological thriller". It started off with promise and I was enjoying it, but the more it went on the more frustrated I got. It just got a little far fetched to me. Amy started getting on my nerves. 

There were no thrills like I would expect there to be in a book sitting in the psychological thriller section. 

The characters themselves, were well written and mostly likeable but it just seemed to get a little non-sensical.

Tuesday 1 March 2022

Book Review - The Child Without A Home by Author Ann Bennett - #HistoricalFiction


TITLE - The Child Without a Home

AUTHOR - Ann Bennett

GENRE - Historical Fiction

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Agnes was running as fast as her legs would carry her. She was dragging Dieter along beside her, her heart pounding, her mouth dry, her breath coming in great, sobbing gulps… She was running as if her life depended on it – and she knew it did.

1944. When the war comes to twelve-year-old Agnes’ village her life changes in an instant. Her father is dragged away by soldiers and her mother is mercilessly killed, leaving Agnes and her younger brother Dieter orphaned. Frightened, and surrounded by enemies, Agnes has no choice but to carry out her mother’s dying wish, whispered to her before the light flickered from her eyes: Promise you’ll look after your brother for me, Agnes… But when Dieter’s hand slips from her own while crossing a river, the rest of Agnes’s world shatters in an instant – has she truly lost everything?

Cambridge, present day. When her beloved grandfather dies, Freya is distraught. Not only has she lost the man who helped raise her, but she knows his stories of World War Two, and a part of her family history, is gone forever. But when Freya meets her new neighbour Agnes, whose accent is just like her grandfather’s, she notices a weather-beaten image of a little blonde boy in braces and boots that looks strangely familiar… Could Agnes hold the key to unlocking Freya’s past?

But Agnes has terrible secrets of her own, and she vowed never to speak about the little blonde boy in the photograph who risked everything to save her… But if she doesn’t, she might never discover what happened to her little brother all those years ago…

Inspired by the true stories of the forgotten orphans of World War Two, this heart-wrenching and moving tale is about fighting for your loved ones when all hope is lost. Breathtaking and unputdownable, this story of courage and survival is perfect for fans of Before We Were Yours, Sold on a Monday and The Orphan’s Tale.

I have never read any books by this author, but after reading this, I've added more to my list. 

This was a very emotional read, The main character is Agnes, who lives in East Prussia with her parents, and Brother Dieter. All was well before the war, but then the Country was torn apart. 

How life changes for Agnes and her Family, whilst well documented in history, is still unbelievable and heartbreaking. 

Although it's a book of fiction (I had to check), you can imagine it being true to live for displaced children during the war. 

With some amazingly well written characters, this book will pull at your heartstrings. It's certainly a book that will stay with me. 

Monday 24 January 2022

BLOG TOUR & REVIEW - All for You - Louise Jensen #PsychologicalThriller


TITLE - All for You

AUTHOR - Louise Jensen

GENRE - Psychological Thriller

BUY LINK - Click here



Lucy: Loving mother. Devoted wife. And falling to pieces.
Aidan: Dedicated father. Faithful husband. And in too deep.
Connor: Hardworking son. Loyal friend. But can never tell the truth.

Everyone in this family is hiding something, but one secret will turn out to be the deadliest of all . . .

Can this family ever recover when the truth finally comes out?

About the Author

Louise Jensen is a global No.1 bestselling author of psychological thrillers. Louise

has sold over a million copies of her books and her novels have been sold for translation in twenty-five countries, as well as being featured on the USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestsellers’ lists. Louise was nominated for the Goodreads Debut Author of 2016 Award and the Guardian’s Not the Booker 2018. Louise’s thrillers have been optioned for TV and film.

When Louise isn’t writing thrillers, she turns her hand to penning love stories under the name Amelia Henley. Her debut as Amelia Henley, The Life We Almost Had, is out now.

Louise lives with her husband, children, madcap dog and a rather naughty cat in Northamptonshire. She loves to hear from readers and writers and can be found at, where she regularly blogs flash fiction and writing tips.--This text refers to the paperback edition.

Who doesn't love a good psychological thriller. Even better when it keeps you guessing all the way through. If this is your thing, then you will love the latest book from Louise Jensen, who has really mastered the psychological thriller genre. 

This is about the Walsh family. On the surface a good well respected family. Underneath, full of secrets. It's told from the perspective of Aiden (Dad), Lucy (Mum) and Connor (Son). Kieron the other son is talked about frequently but it is never told from his perspective. A lot of their life revolves around Kieron, who is ill. 
I found Connor a friendly likeable character who was somewhat overlooked in a way by his Mother, who was always running around after Kieron, due to Kieron's illness and frequent hospital visits. Aiden seems to somehow have his own secrets which he is hiding. Lucy annoyed me somewhat but she is a good Mother, and I did warm to her as the boy went on. I did wonder how many families could hide so many different secrets, and it was a good way through the book before it all started being pieced together. 

This is a well written book, with many twists and turns throughout, and it leads you down the garden path sometimes, so what you think is going on, is something entirely different. Very clever! I was drawn in right from the beginning. 

I think it's another triumph from Louise Jensen, who has definitely mastered the craft of the psychological thriller. I think she's up there with some of the best. 

Check out some other reviews from bloggers on the tour. 

Thursday 19 August 2021

Publication Day - Book Review ~ A Home in the Sun ~ Sue Moorcroft


TITLE - A Home in The Sun (previously known as Uphill All The Way)

AUTHOR - Sue Moorcroft

BUY LINK - Click here


A gorgeous summer read about new beginnings from the Sunday Times bestseller.

Home is where the heart is...but what if your heart is broken?

When Judith loses her partner, she loses her life in Malta too - including the beautiful view from her sun-warmed balcony of the sparkling blue waters of Sliema Creek.

Back in England, Judith finds a spare room in her sister's house where she grew up - but with it comes a whole host of family dramas. Nursing a broken heart, Judith knows she must find happiness again - and rebuild her life on her own terms.

Could an island in the sun be the answer she is looking for?

Another book set on the wonderful Island of Malta. This time the main character is Judith. For those of you that have read Sue's books before you may recognise this one. It was originally called Uphill all the way. I enjoyed reading it again and can say that Sue's writing has gone from strength to strength since then, hence why I only gave this one four stars, instead of my usual 5.

Judith has a life in Malta, but it has come to a sudden end, and she no longer feels welcome in Malta. She returns to her former life in England, but several changes have to be made. She has an ex-husband in England and there is a tense relationship there, but a good relationship with her stepson. I loved to see how this relationship developed.

Unfortunately Judith encounters several issues whilst back in England, from her life in the UK and also problems associated with her life in Malta. This made it a sad almost depressing read sometimes. It was still a pleasant read, with plenty of content, and beautiful descriptions of Malta. 

I prefer Sue's more up to date novels, but maybe that is because this is an older book and her style and writing experience have progressed a great deal. Still a recommended read from me.

Publication Day - Book Review ~ Missing by Erin Kinsley

TITLE - Missing

AUTHOR - Erin Kinsley

BUY LINK - Click here


One perfect summer day, mother of two Alice walks into the sea . . . and never comes back.

Her daughters - loyal but fragile Lily, and headstrong, long-absent Marietta - are forcibly reunited by her disappearance.

Meanwhile, with retirement looming, DI Fox investigates cold cases long since forgotten. And there's one obsession he won't let go: a tragic death twenty years before.

Can Lily and Marietta uncover what happened to their mother? Will Fox solve a mystery that has haunted him for decades? As their stories unexpectedly collide, long-buried secrets will change their lives in unimaginable ways.

I found this a slow read, but it was still enjoyable. To start with I did not really warm to Marietta, the Sister from Overseas, who loved to travel rather than stay put in one place. She had wanderlust.

Then there was Lily, who seemed to be left to deal with everyone to deal with their Mother who had gone missing. It was then discovered that Alice (their Mother) had drowned. It appeared to be a suicide but no-one knew why she would have done this to herself.

The story then merges with a cold case that is being investigated by DI Fox. The story of an infant found murdered many years ago. It was good how the author merged the two stories together. 

None of it was predictable, and it was good how the two cases were blended by the author. This is a book full of secrets, lies, family drama and family relationships. Well thought out and complex, making it a good read.

Wednesday 11 August 2021

Blog Tour and Book Review ~ The Girl in the Striped Dress ~ Ellie Midwood #Bookouture


TITLE - The Girl in the Striped Dress

AUTHOR - Ellie Midwood

BUY LINK - click here

AUDIBLE LINK - UK - Click here / US - Click here



Auschwitz, 1942: This unforgettable novel, based on a true story, brings to life history’s most powerful tale of forbidden love. Set within the barbed wire of Auschwitz, a man and a woman fall in love against unimaginable odds. What happens next will restore your faith in humanity, and make you believe in hope even where hope should not exist. 

“I won’t let anything happen to you,” he whispered, pressing a note into her hand. Her entire body trembled when she read it: I am in love with you.

Helena steps off the cattle train onto the frozen grounds of Auschwitz. She has twenty-four hours to live. Scheduled to be killed tomorrow, she is not even tattooed with a prison number. As the snow falls around her, she shivers, knowing that she has been sentenced to death for a crime she didn’t commit.

When a gray-clad officer marches towards Helena and pulls her away, she fears the worst. Instead, he tells her that it’s one of the guard’s birthdays and orders her to serenade him.

Inside the SS barracks the air is warm, thick with cigarette smoke and boisterous conversation. After she sings to the guard, Franz, he presses a piece of cake into her hands––the first thing she has eaten in days. On the spot, he orders her life to be saved, forever changing the course of her fate.

What follows is a love story that was forbidden, that should have been impossible, and yet saved both of their lives––and hundreds of others––in more ways than one.

Fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Choice, and The Orphan Train will be utterly entranced by this unputdownable page-turner. This completely heartbreaking yet beautifully hopeful novel shows that love can survive anything and grow anywhere.

*Previously titled: Auschwitz Syndrome

I have read many Auschwitz related books including The Violinist of Auschwitz, also by Ellie Midwood. You start to think you've read everything about what "inmates" did, to survive this most horrendous time in history, then another book comes along like this one, and throws more tales of sadness, heroism and love into the mix. 

This is an outstanding read of the horrors of Auschwitz and Birkenau. Some of the events in this book caused a lot of conversation between myself and my Husband. We discussed both the horrors and some of the good things (if the word "good" is the corret one to use). We talked about how not all the Nazi's were sadistic and how some had been recruited into the role. 

This book is well researched and certainly generated many thoughts and conversations. Although I found it quite slow to start with, thinking it was just going to go over things covered in other books of the same genre, it moved on and came into it's own. The "characters" are well described and delicately portrayed. It is a very thought provoking read. 


Ellie Midwood is a USA Today bestselling and award-winning historical fiction author. She owes her interest in the history of the Second World War to her grandfather, Junior Sergeant in the 2nd Guards Tank Army of the First Belorussian Front, who began telling her about his experiences on the frontline

when she was a young girl. Growing up, her interest in history only deepened and transformed from reading about the war to writing about it. After obtaining her BA in Linguistics, Ellie decided to make writing her full-time career and began working on her first full-length historical novel, The Girl from Berlin.' Ellie is continuously enriching her library with new research material and feeds her passion for WWII and Holocaust history by collecting rare memorabilia and documents.

In her free time, Ellie is a health-obsessed yoga enthusiast, neat freak, adventurer, Nazi Germany history expert, polyglot, philosopher, a proud Jew, and a doggie mama. Ellie lives in New York with her fiancé and their Chihuahua named Shark Bait.

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Monday 9 August 2021

Book Review ~ Fool Me Once by Harlan Coben #Penguin #RandomHouseUK

 TITLE - Fool Me Once

AUTHOR - Harlan Coben

BUY LINK - Click here


From the #1 bestselling author and creator of the hit Netflix series THE STRANGER

You think you know the truth. The truth is you know nothing.

The international #1 bestselling author of Tell No One and Six Years is back another impossible-to-put-down thriller, now a Sunday Times top 10 bestseller and soon to be a film starring Julia Roberts.

If your husband was murdered and you were a witness.

How do you explain it when he appears on your nanny cam, back from the dead? You thought you trusted him. Now you can't even trust yourself.

Dark secrets and a terrifying hunt for the truth lie at the heart of this gripping thriller by 'master of the double twist' Harlan Coben.

This is a fast paced book that is a rollercoaster of a ride. This is what you come to expect now from Harlan Coben. You know nothing is going to be straightforward. 

There are many strong characters in this book, from the main protagonist, Military woman and widow, Maya Stern-Burkett; her Brother in Law Eddie and the secretive Burkett Family. The characters are very well written. 

Maya has buried both her Husband and her Sister. Are the murders linked? What about the death of her Husbands Brother Andrew, several years before.

It's a really good book to keep you guessing, with twists and turns around every corner.  The plot is exciting and with a twist at the end that you don't see coming.