Time to Say Goodbye by S.D. Robertson #SayGoodbye

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Publisher: Harpercollins UK, Avon

Publication Date: 11 February 2016

“HOW DO YOU LEAVE THE PERSON YOU LOVE THE MOST?

Will Curtis’s six-year-old daughter, Ella, knows her father will never leave her. After all, he promised her so when her mother died. And he’s going to do everything he can to keep his word.

What Will doesn’t know is that the promise he made to his little girl might be harder to keep than he imagined. When he’s faced with an impossible decision, Will finds that the most obvious choice might not be the right one.

But the future is full of unexpected surprises. And father and daughter are about to embark on an unforgettable journey together . . .”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for approving my NetGalley request for this eBook. I had already taken part in the cover reveal and couldn’t wait to find out more about the book everyone was talking about!

The very first line pulled me in and raised all sorts of questions which, thankfully, were answered as I continued to read.

In a strange way the storyline felt so far from reality but at the same time so so real. Not being around to help your children grow up – isn’t that every parents biggest fear? I know it’s mine.

There were some humorous moments which I hadn’t expected at all, nothing over the top, just little things like not saying the ‘G-word’ and trying to recreate a movie moment. I liked these because they lightened the mood a little.

I can’t write this review without mentioning the tears because there were plenty of them. It was impossible not to put myself in Will’s shoes and that meant I felt everything. Every frustration, every loss, every heartache – pretty much every emotion you can think of when you’ve lost the most precious people in your life. There were even tears of happiness during some of the most touching parts of the storyline!

This was a heartpoundingly beautiful read. It left me looking at life and death from a completely different perspective.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Website | Twitter | Facebook

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The Dead Wife’s Handbook by Hannah Beckerman

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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

Take Me Home by Daniela Sacerdoti

TAKE ME HOME
Published by Black & White Publishing in December 2013 (eBook) and 10 April 2014 (Paperback).

“Inary Monteith’s life is at a crossroads. After a stolen night with her close friend Alex, she’s just broken his heart by telling him it was all a terrible mistake. Then she has to rush home from London to the Scottish Highlands when her little sister’s illness suddenly worsens – and in returning she must confront the painful memories she has been trying so hard to escape.

Back home, things become more complicated than she could ever have imagined. There’s her sister’s illness, her hostile brother, a smug ex she never wants to see again and her conflicted feelings about Alex in London and a handsome American she meets in Glen Avich. On top of that, she mysteriously loses her voice but regains a strange gift from her childhood – a sixth sense that runs in her family. And when a voice from the past keeps repeating, ‘Take me home’, she discovers a mystery that she knows she must unlock to set herself free.

Take Me Home is a beautiful story of love, loss, discovering one’s true abilities and, above all, never forgetting who you really are.”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for sending me this eBook to read and give an honest review. I’m a big fan of Daniela’s writing (reviews here) and I had heard wonderful things about this book so I was very much looking forward to getting started.

The prologue gave me chills (the first of many whilst reading the book) as I learned about the moment Inary realised she had a gift. There were also hints of something unpleasant in her past which really intrigued me and I couldn’t wait to find out what it was.

A night of passion caused Inary some confusion and unfortunately that was immediately followed by some bad news which, understandably, mixed her life up even more. Reading Alex’s point of view was lovely but a little bit heartbreaking at the same time because it was only then that I realised the extent of his feelings towards Inary.

After an extremely sad scene of loss which had me filling up with tears, Inary discovered that she had lost something else – this was a fascinating part of the storyline for me, I was just so interested to see how she would cope and how it would affect her life.  The loss also opened up a strange opportunity for her which led to plenty more eerie moments and Mary’s story (an incredibly addictive tale that captivated me as much as it did Inary).

The atmospheric writing style beautifully captured each situation and made me feel what the characters were feeling.  Speaking of the characters, they were so likeable that I felt personally connected to each of them.

This was a beautiful and touching story with a twist of spiritual intrigue!

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Take Me Home is Daniela’s second adult book.  Her debut novel Watch Over Me was released as an eBook in 2011 and has now sold over 400,000 copies.  She is also the author of the paranormal YA trilogy, The Sarah Midnight Trilogy (Dreams/Book 1 and Tide/Book 2) and is working on the third installment, Spirit.

Website | Twitter | Facebook

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com | The Book Depository

The Restaurant @ The Mill by Linn B Halton Including Winter Warmers!

Fancy ‘A Winter Warmer’ … at The Restaurant @ The Mill?

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“Age, relationships, and careers – we are all unique. Yet beneath the exterior facade we choose to show to the world at large, what do we have in common? The things we bury deep inside; the worries and fears we are unable to verbalise, and the hand fate takes in our lives is a common thread. Sometimes we fail to recognise in each other that innermost struggle on the path to true love.

Six very different stories, six couples linked by The Restaurant @ The Mill, owned by Hilary Marks and Ben Adams. As the restaurant thrives the atmosphere is alive with conversation, snapshots of lives unfolding; each one a personal journey.”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this e-book to read and review.  The Restaurant @ The Mill is available to buy now from Amazon.

I struggled to get into the story to begin with but I’m not sure if that was the books fault or because I had just returned from holiday, either way it didn’t last long and I was soon hooked by the characters and each of their personal stories, which were told through the seasons.

Hilary was a lovely character who was always there for others, she definitely gave off a caring agony aunt vibe.  She knew that Ben wasn’t telling her everything about himself and yet she still didn’t push him to open up, instead waiting for him to share when he felt ready.  It took me a while to figure Ben out, he was very quiet and reserved and this just made me want to know his secrets more!

I absolutely loved Sadie, even after a family tragedy she was still a happy and bubbly character and this made her really likeable to me.  I enjoyed watching her grow in confidence throughout the book as she came to some firm decisions about what she wanted out of life.

Thomas was a shrewd businessman but wasn’t so good with his personal life, the reasons behind this were something that I hadn’t expected and I liked that I hadn’t been able to figure it out before.

At times I found Charlotte and Nick’s story difficult to read but only because I felt so worried for them, they were struggling with their life together and I found myself really hoping things would turn out for the best between them.

Grace was an amazing character, tales from her past made me feel so sad and later on when things were starting to go right for her she received some devastating news that brought tears to my eyes.

I really enjoyed reading about Isobel’s first steps into writing fiction, it was fascinating to find out about the thought processes that go along with writing a book.  When she met Lionel I had a feeling that it would only end in disaster especially with David being around so much after his retirement.

On top of all these characters was the addition of a spirit called Sarah, she was a fabulous twist to the story and her tale was as interesting as the rest.  The epilogue was great, it was very different and really left me smiling!

This book covered some very difficult issues (bereavement, family rifts and an unplanned pregnancy to name just a few) but I felt that they were written well and with care, I feel confident that most people would be able to relate to at least one character and that is what makes this book so readable for me.

I loved how the individual stories tied together and made me feel personally involved with them all, also the descriptions of the mill and it’s surroundings enabled me to picture everything so easily.

This is a thought-provoking book that has everything from romance to ghosts, definitely worth a read!

I asked why Linn was inspired to write this collection of stories, which is based around one central point that ties them all together – an old mill in a very rural setting.

“It reflects love through several decades – from the very young, to a couple meeting up again after fifty years apart. Each couple’s problems are different and for some there is no quick and easy answer, but then that’s the nature of life and the pursuit of true love!

The idea came to me when I was sitting across the table from my husband on a romantic night out in one of our favourite restaurant’s in Nailsworth, Gloucestershire. I looked around at the other diners and wondered if they too were out celebrating a special occasion. The seed was sown …”

WINTER WARMERS

Winter warmers recipes (2) (872x1280)The Restaurant is publishing its own ‘Winter Warmer’ recipe booklet and it will be available to download free at the end of January 2014. To sample some of the recipes in advance of that, drop by and be tempted by delicious Easy Apple Muffins and Kedgeree or Winter Sausages and some wonderful wines to accompany them! This small collection of both savoury and sweet recipes will become a firm favourite – who could resist Boozy Chicken in a pot or Christmas crepes? Linn B Halton will be publishing each recipe individually on her website, so if you are looking for some winter-warming meals for the family, click through!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Bristol born Linn B Halton lives in Gloucestershire, in the small village of Arlingham. It sits a stone’s throw away from the banks of the River Severn; she resides there with her adorable husband and cat with attitude – Mr Tiggs!

Whilst Linn loves to write romantic novels, there is often a psychic ‘touch’ to her stories. Many of the paranormal events that feature in some of her books are real-life experiences.

She is the author of four novels, one true story and three novellas. Signed by HarperImpulse and US publishers Sapphire Star, the third novella in the Angels Among Us series, Forever, is out on 23 January 2014.

Linn is the creator, and editor-in-chief, of the Loveahappyending Lifestyle magazine (LLm) and was the winner of the:

 2013 Festival of Romance Industry Award for “Innovation in Romantic Fiction (Author)”

She is also a member of the Romantic Novelists’ Association.

LINKS

Website (linnbhalton.co.uk) | Twitter: @LinnBHalton | Facebook:  Linn B Halton and Author Linn B Halton | Amazon Author PagePinterest | Loveahappyending Lifestyle | HarperImpulse and Sapphire Star Publishing author pages

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Spirits of Christmas by Nicky Wells

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“At one time, up-and-coming rock singer Jude had it all: a great band, a platinum record, a loving girlfriend. This Christmas, however, he is well down the road towards spontaneous self-destruction.

Unwitting at first, Jude has progressively alienated his band and driven away the love of his life. Tonight, the night before Christmas Eve, he has broken the final taboo during a disastrous gig. Yet Jude doesn’t see how badly his life has derailed, not until a ghostly procession of legends passes through his bedroom with a series of vivid and powerful wake-up calls.

Will the Spirits help Jude put the friendship, love, and rock music back into his Christmas?”

Spirits of Christmas is a modern-day rock’n’roll adaption of Charles Dickens’ classic A Christmas Carol. This novella will enchant romance readers, rock lovers, fans of ghost stories, and everybody who adores the festive season.

EXCERPT

‘Hiya, Jude!’

The voice emerged from the door, and Jude’s head whipped round as if drawn by a string.

‘Hiya, Jude,’ the voice repeated cheerfully. Unexpectedly, it launched into the first line of one of Jude’s most favourite songs. Jude once again sank onto the bed, his legs refusing to carry him with the shock of this second apparition.

‘Is this really you?’

For a moment, Jude’s second otherworldly visitor abandoned his song and remained silent, motionless, allowing Jude to take a good, long look. The sideburns, the nose, the defined chin, the round glasses were clearly visible despite the spirit’s transparent appearance.

Everything about this figure was familiar, yet nothing was quite as it should have been. It was as though Jude was looking at a hologram, a distorted, stretched vision where nothing quite fitted together.

Nonetheless, Jude found his voice. ‘Oh my God, it is you!’

Excitement made his exclamation strong and clear. The figure flinched at the sudden burst of noise, but Jude ploughed on. ‘This is…this is totally unreal. I mean, imagine this—here’s me in my bedroom, and there’s you, come to visit me.’

‘I’m not who you think you see,’ the apparition interrupted. ‘I’m the Ghost of Christmas Past.’

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this eBook novella to read and give an honest review.

Nicky Wells has done it again with this fantastic rock twist on the classic A Christmas Carol story! Jude was an unpleasant character to begin with and I was looking forward to seeing how he would fare with the ghosts.  Obviously knowing the story well I knew where everything was heading but I still thoroughly enjoyed following Jude on his journey, I’ve never read a rock’n’roll version before so this was an exciting experience for me.

The ghosts provided some eerie moments and the descriptive writing style made it so easy for me to visualise each scene.  To tie in with Nicky’s Rock Star Romance Trilogy there were mentions of Tuscq and Dan Hunter – I absolutely loved this because it gave the story a familiar feel, almost like I was catching up with old friends!

Just like the traditional version this was thought-provoking and encouraged me, the reader, to think about my own life from a different perspective.  Jude’s character developed beautifully and I really enjoyed seeing the change in him.

Another hit from Nicky Wells, this took me on an intriguing journey and left me with Christmas in mind!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Hi! I’m Nicky Wells, your ultimate rock chick author. My books offer glitzy, glamorous contemporary romance with a rock theme ~ imagine Bridget Jones ROCKS Notting Hill! If you’ve ever had a crush on any kind of celebrity ~ rock, pop, movie or other ~ you’ll connect with my heroes and my leading ladies!

Like my first leading lady, Sophie, I love listening to rock music, dancing, and eating lobsters. When I’m not writing, I’m a wife, mother, occasional knitter, and regular contributor to The Midweek Drive show on Lincoln’s Siren 107.3 FM. Rock on!

My books: Sophie’s Turn | Sophie’s Run | Sophie’s Encore | Spirits of Christmas

Join me: Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Romantic Novelists’ Association | Sapphire Star Publishing | Amazon | Goodreads | Pinterest

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk Kindle | Amazon.co.uk PaperbackAmazon.com Kindle | Amazon.com Paperback

The Temporal Stone – Suzy Turner

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“It’s been a couple of months since Emma and Lana entered the Praxos Academy and life has been hectic ever since. What with regular A level classes combined with learning all about the supernatural world, control classes, self defence and fight night, the girls are constantly busy.

But when their world seems to stop right in front of them, they and their fellow Watchers, have a huge mystery to solve. A mystery which will lead them on a long road trip across south west England where they will meet all kinds of strange creatures, some intent on causing harm and others desperate to put a stop to the problem.”

Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this eBook to read and give an honest review.  I was excited to catch up with Emma and Lana in their new lives as Watchers so I couldn’t wait to get started.

It was action-packed right from the start, an academy trip to Somerset turned supernatural very quickly and I was captivated by the events that followed.  The whole storyline was so imaginative and I really enjoyed picturing everything like a movie in my mind.  Something else that was particularly enjoyable for me were all the familiar places that the characters visited – Salisbury, Winchester and the New Forest to name just a few.

I loved all the supernatural creatures that featured in this book, my favourite was Jimble the pixie troll because he was just so adorable! The author successfully brought the characters to life for me and made me care about what happened to them.  Following them all as they uncovered clues to help solve the mystery was lots of fun and I look forward to the next instalment.

This was another exciting adventure in The Morgan Sisters series.

To find out more about Suzy Turner:

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Buy the book:

Amazon Kindle Edition £1.88 | Amazon Paperback £8.99

Daisy Madigan’s Paradise – Suzy Turner

Daisy madigans paradise

“When tragedy falls upon 15 year old Daisy Madigan, she escapes to the only place she feels safe, the cemetery of Abney Park. There, in the company of the dearly departed, she realizes she is changing, growing stronger and faster by the day. But in the darkness lurks a terror even she can’t imagine facing.”

Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this eBook novella to read and give an honest review. This quick read covered the back story of Daisy Madigan who was one of the characters from The Ghost of Josiah Grimshaw.  I was pleased to find out more about her as she had been a bit of a mystery and as I read about the traumatic events that led up to her appearance in the first book I felt incredibly sad for her.

I was intrigued by Jack, I couldn’t figure out where he fit into the story and was concerned that he would turn out to be a bad person for Daisy to have in her life.

Daisy discovered her abilities and found her purpose in life in the dark, dangerous cemetery.  This was something that fascinated me and gave the book an eerie atmosphere.  I can’t wait to see the part Daisy will play in the next book The Temporal Stone.

This was an emotional and intriguing read, another piece of the puzzle in place for this mysterious series.

To find out more about Suzy Turner:

Website | Blog | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

Buy the book:

Amazon Kindle Edition FREE | Amazon Paperback £4.99