Update

Unfortunately since having our baby I simply haven’t been able to find as much time to read and I am not comfortable with putting anything but 100% into my blog. My plan is to review any books/ebooks I already have on my TBR list (as and when I can), but I’m afraid I cannot accept any new review requests as I will no longer be reviewing once that list is empty.

This means that there will still be reviews popping up here over the coming months so please keep checking.

Finally thank you SO much to everyone who has supported me and my blog over the past few years, it’s been a fun experience and I have met some lovely people.

The Wedding Diary by Margaret James

The wedding diary

Published by Choc Lit in December 2013

“Where’s a Fairy Godmother when you need one? 

If you won a fairy-tale wedding in a luxury hotel, you’d be delighted – right? But what if you didn’t have anyone to marry? Cat Aston did have a fiancé, but now it looks like her Prince Charming has done a runner.

Adam Lawley was left devastated when his girlfriend turned down his heartfelt proposal. He’s made a vow never to fall in love again.

So – when Cat and Adam meet, they shouldn’t even consider falling in love. After all, they’re both broken hearted. But for some reason they can’t stop thinking about each other. Is this their second chance for happiness, or are some things just too good to be true?”

MY REVIEW

I was lucky enough to win a paperback copy of this book from a giveaway on Dizzy C’s Little Book Blog. I was instantly attracted by the sparkly cover (I’m a sucker for sparkly things) and I was keen to find out if the story lived up to its glittery clothing.

Once I began reading I was grabbed by the excitable writing and characters who I quickly connected with.  There was a whirlwind of information which made me want to know even more about the situation so I had no choice but to keep flipping the pages!  There were lots of funny moments and the wedding competition itself was a great source of entertainment for me as it raised so many questions.

Although I had a pretty good idea how things would end up I have to admit that I found myself surprised on quite a few occasions – there were many unexpected twists which kept me on my toes until the last pages.  This book went deeper than I thought it would when I started reading.

My favourite part of the whole storyline was a trip to Italy, it had such a magical feel to it and in my mind this was where the glitter was at its strongest!

This was a warm, smiley read with characters you can easily care about.

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So, You Think You’re A Celebrity… Chef? by Caroline James

So you think...

Mix together…

A tough-cookie media agent who’s clawed her way to the top, and a con-man who wants to open a cookery school. Add in a washed-up celebrity chef whose career needs re-building…

Flavour with…

An aging rock star fresh from rehab, and a Sloane Ranger food writer who gets her own TV show…

Bring to the boil…

At a Gourmet Food Festival, in Ireland, where anything goes!”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank Janice from Loveahappyending for sending me this eBook to read and give an honest review.  I think this is only the second book I have read about chefs so it was a refreshing change for me, particularly as this one involved celebrity chefs.

The descriptive writing brought everything to life, it made every scene so easy to picture in my mind and there was even a moment which was so beautifully described it made me seriously crave a bacon sandwich for the rest of the day!!  I loved reading from each characters point of view because it gave me a deeper insight into their lives and personalities.  It also meant that there were many different sides of the story so I felt like there was always something going on to keep me interested.

Romantic tension, criminal activity and unexpected twists were just some of the features of this book that made it so readable for me.  I wasn’t sure how it was going to end but I had a firm idea in my head of how I wanted it to go – as I read the final few pages I had a smile on my face so you can be assured I was pleased with the result.

This was a fun read full of interesting characters, who knew the celebrity chef world would be so fascinating!

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Website | Twitter | Facebook | Loveahappyending

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Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com

The Naughty Girls Book Club by Sophie Hart

the naughty girls book clubA quaint suburb.  A quiet little book club.  A very naughty reading list.

When Estelle sets up a book group in order to increase custom to her struggling cafe, what follows is more life-changing than she could have ever imagined.

As the first meeting flounders, Estelle suggests a spot of erotica to spice things up.  Inspired by their naughty novels, this group of shy suburban readers shake off their inhibitions and discover that their own lives can be just as scandalous…” 

MY REVIEW

I was lucky enough to win a copy of this book from Goodreads First Reads, I was keen to read it as I had heard lots of good things about it.

I quickly became caught up in Estelle’s life and in particular her little cafe which, thanks to the clear writing style, was so easy to visualise. I could almost feel Estelle’s nerves jumping off the page at me as the very first book club meeting took place, this meant that I couldn’t stop reading because I wanted to know exactly how it would go!

The author successfully held my attention with intriguing characters (I was interested in each of their lives) and a fun storyline. Seeing how each character was affected by reading ‘naughty’ books was highly entertaining for me and caused me to smile regularly whilst reading.  The real side of relationships was captured beautifully – I found myself nodding in understanding at some of the issues raised.

The growing friendships was another enjoyable part of the storyline, I could see the characters becoming closer and more relaxed with each other right before my eyes and as they settled into their friendships the ‘naughty’ chat increased!

In my opinion, examining the sometimes controversial subject of erotica (and the many variations of it) gave this book an interesting edge.  As a book blogger who will read pretty much anything I am fascinated by the good and bad reactions that this genre can create.

This was a fun, bubbly read – can erotica change your life?

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Vets In Love by Cathy Woodman

Vets in love

“Glamorous GP Nicci (aka the galloping doctor), and Matt, the very handsome equine vet, have caught each other’s eyes. On paper it looks like a match made in heaven.

There are problems, however: Matt’s jealous ex-girlfriend being one of them. But the main trouble is Nicci’s determination to qualify for the Badminton horse trials. Because although Matt treats horses for a living, a tragedy in his past makes him terrified every time Nicci competes.

So when Nicci has a terrible accident, a devastated Matt gives her an ultimatum: it’s either him or the riding.

Nicci can’t believe he means it. But can she risk putting him to the test?”

MY REVIEW

I’ve always enjoyed the Talyton St George series by Cathy Woodman (reviews here) so I couldn’t resist buying this one!

In no time at all I was drawn in by the warm characters and rural setting. The blossoming romance was the main feature of the story but it was surrounded by the fascinating day-to-day lives of a village GP and vet.  The medical scenes were written convincingly and in such a way that I felt like I was taking part too! This was something that I particularly enjoyed.

Cathy’s relaxing writing style made this book a pleasure to read and as you’d expect from a series there was a sense of familiarity when characters from previous books made appearances.  Horse lovers will enjoy the horsey events and activities, following Nicci as she fulfills her riding ambitions. The gentle drama was just enough to keep me on my toes.

Vets In Love was another lovely read from this author, wrapping me up in the feeling of rural life beautifully.

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The Dead Wife’s Handbook by Hannah Beckerman

the dead wifes handbook

Published by Penguin in February 2014.

“‘Today is my death anniversary. A year ago today I was still alive.’ 

Rachel, Max and their daughter Ellie had the perfect life – until the night Rachel’s heart stopped beating.

Now Max and Ellie are doing their best to adapt to life without Rachel, and just as her family can’t forget her, Rachel can’t quite let go of them either. Caught in a place between worlds, Rachel watches helplessly as she begins to fade from their lives. And when Max is persuaded by family and friends to start dating again, Rachel starts to understand that dying was just the beginning of her problems.

As Rachel grieves for the life she’s lost and the life she’ll never lead, she learns that sometimes the thing that breaks your heart might be the very thing you hope for.”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for sending me this book to read and give an honest review. I had heard many intriguing things about it so I was looking forward to getting stuck in.

With straight talking right from the start I was hooked pretty quickly, there was certainly no beating around the bush with this book!  The subject was a sensitive one and, for me, very uncomfortable to think about yet it still managed to captivate me with its fascinating take on grief and the afterlife.  As a wife and mother I found that putting myself in Rachel’s shoes tapped into my emotions on quite a deep level. The author’s heartfelt writing made me feel the characters emotions too, it was like I living each moment alongside them. This inevitably led to tears, particularly as I read the last sentence.

This book took me on a journey and most definitely caused me to stop and think about my own mortality, it raised questions in my mind that I would probably not have even considered before – what an achievement for a debut novel to be so thought-provoking!

This was a deeply emotional read that was original and beautifully written, I look forward to more from this author.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Hannah Beckerman is a TV and film producer living in London. The Dead Wife’s Handbook is her first novel.

Website | Twitter @hannahbeckerman | Facebook

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com