As Weekends Go by Jan Brigden

Publisher: Choc Lit

Publication Date: 4 December 2015

What if your entire life changed in the space of a weekend?

When Rebecca’s friend Abi convinces her to get away from it all at the fabulous Hawksley Manor hotel in York, it seems too good to be true. Pampering and relaxation is just what Rebecca needs to distract herself from the creeping suspicion that her husband, Greg, is hiding something from her.

She never imagined that by the end of the weekend she would have dined with celebrities or danced the night away in exclusive clubs. Nor could she have predicted she would meet famous footballer, Alex Heath, or that he would be the one to show her that she deserved so much more …

But no matter how amazing a weekend is, it’s always back to reality come Monday morning – isn’t it?”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for approving my NetGalley request for this eBook. It sounded like a fast-paced, exciting romance and I couldn’t wait to find out if my expectations would be met.

I was definitely right about the exciting romance – the weekend scenes were full of fantasy moments. I read this over a sunny weekend in the garden with the children splashing water everywhere and it gave me a real sense of escapism.

When the weekend was over, the heart-pounding revelations just kept on coming and that’s when Rebecca’s dilemma became more complicated. Certain characters never failed to annoy me (I’m pretty sure this was the author’s intention so it was definitely not a bad thing).

The author’s natural style of writing meant that I fell into the storyline effortlessly. It was almost as if I had known Rebecca for years! I also enjoyed switching perspectives throughout because it gave me a deeper understanding of each character.

The ending left me smiling but it also left me wanting more – I would love to know what the future holds for Rebecca!

An interesting mix of fun, frolics and life-changing decisions. As Weekends Go gets 5 stars from me.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Blog | Twitter | Facebook

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com

kate1

Behind Closed Doors by B.A Paris

IMG_2647

Publisher: Mira

Publication Date: 25 February 2016

“Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace. He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do.

You’d like to get to know Grace better. But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.

Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim.

And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank Midas PR for sending me this book to read and share my thoughts. I don’t often read thrillers, so when I do they really have to pique my interest. Behind Closed Doors certainly did that, I was coming up with scenarios in my mind before I had even opened the book!

Almost immediately I was struck by the dark undertone, I couldn’t quite put my finger on what was going on but I definitely had an uneasy feeling.

Jack and Grace’s relationship was difficult for me to fathom until the sickening truth was revealed, then my heart broke for a sweet character who deserved so much better.

I loved the way the author kept the suspense going throughout, even when I knew what was happening between the couple, there were still more discoveries to be made.

There were some truly sinister moments that made my heart beat faster and I must admit I found some scenes difficult to read. The whole concept of the storyline was just so believable in a horribly unbelievable way (if that makes any sense at all).

This was a chilling yet fascinating read, a brilliant debut!

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

B.A Paris is from a Franco/Irish background. She was brought up in England and worked in London for three years before moving to Paris, where she spent some years working in corporate banking and as a trader in an international bank. After the birth of her first daughter, she became a stay-at-home mum and went on to have another three daughters. She spent four years in the Netherlands, where her fifth daughter was born. She returned to France in 2000 and in 2003, decided to re-train as an English teacher.

She worked for some years in an international school and then at the Université de Marne la Vallée, teaching English to Architecture students. In 2009 she set up a language school with her husband and now teaches Business English in Paris. Her inspiration for Behind Closed Doors came when she suspected that someone she knew wasn’t allowed to do as she wished, that there was an element of control involved. From there, B.A came up with Grace’s story.

Twitter (@BAParisAuthor)

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.ukBook Depository

kate1

The Birthday That Changed Everything by Debbie Johnson

IMG_2666

Publisher: Harper

Publication Date: 28 January 2016

She wanted a birthday surprise, just not the one she got…

The last thing Sally Summers expected from her husband on her special day was that he’d leave her for a Latvian lap dancer half her age. So with her world in tatters, Sally jets off to Turkey for some sun, sea and sanctuary.

The Blue Bay resort brings new friends and the perfect balm for Sally’s broken heart in gorgeous Dubliner James. He’s just the birthday present she needs. And when the chemistry between them continues to spark as the holiday ends, Sally wonders if this is more than just a summer fling.

But James has scars of his own and Sally isn’t quite ready to turn her back on her marriage. This birthday might have changed everything, but what will the next one bring?”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for approving my NetGalley request for this eBook. The first thing to catch my eye was the beautiful cover and then when I read the description I just couldn’t resist.

What a fab opening paragraph! A book that can put a smile on my face just a few words into the storyline is definitely going places.

Sally’s life had pretty much crashed down around her. She still had her kids, Lucy and Ollie but they weren’t easy to handle at all, especially Lucy whose words could have brought a grown man to tears. At the beginning I felt so sorry for Sally having such difficult children but do you know what, they totally grew on me and by the end I loved them both as much as the rest of the characters!

Somehow Sally and her kids ended up in Turkey and that’s when the fun really began.

The author’s style of writing and humour made this such an easy book to enjoy, a few of my favourite laugh-out-loud moments included: a baggage mix-up, a pub brawl and a pink spray attack! I found myself looking forward to picking up my Kindle to read more because I knew I’d soon be having a giggle.

There was an entertaining collection of crazy characters and each one of them added their own special zing to the comedy. Thrown into the mix was an exciting touch of romance which lingered beautifully, teasing me in a ‘will they, won’t they’ kind of way.

It wasn’t all about the laughter though, the author had a wonderful way of making me care about the characters so that when things went wrong I felt the same emotions they were feeling.

This book contained lots of fun combined with lots of emotion. I’ll definitely be reading more from this author!

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Website | Twitter | Facebook

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com

kate1

Jera's Jamboree/Talk of the Town

You’re The One That I Want by Giovanna Fletcher

      Published by Penguin in May 2014

“Maddy, dressed in white, stands at the back of the church. At the end of the aisle is Rob – the man she’s about to marry. Next to Rob is Ben – best man and the best friend any two people ever had.

And that’s the problem.

Because if it wasn’t Rob waiting for her at the altar, there’s a strong chance it would be Ben. Loyal and sensitive Ben has always kept his feelings to himself, but if he turned round and told Maddy she was making a mistake, would she listen? And would he be right?

Best friends since childhood, Maddy, Ben and Rob thought their bond was unbreakable. But love changes everything. Maddy has a choice to make but will she choose wisely? Her heart, and the hearts of the two best men she knows, depend on it…”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publishers for sending me this book to read and give an honest review. I had previously read this author’s debut novel (review here) and I was keen to find out if her second book would be as good as the first.

I’m pleased to say it definitely was!

The storyline centered around three friends – Maddy, Ben and Rob. The beginning of the book took me back to their childhood and explained how they became friends in the first place. I took a liking to each one of them for different reasons and as they grew up on the pages in front of me I felt like I knew them all personally.

The authors writing style was comfortable and easy to read, it enabled me to be pulled into the storyline in a big way, I just couldn’t put the book down – just one more page always turned into about fifty more pages!

I was so conflicted about the love triangle, I simply couldn’t decide which way I wanted Maddy to go. My opinion literally changed from page to page and I hoped something would happen to help me make up my mind once and for all. Sadly, for me, that didn’t happen so I was left undecided even after I’d finished.

This was an addictive read that pulled me in and wouldn’t let go!

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon.co.uk | Amazon.com

7 Years Bad Sex by Nicky Wells

7 Years Bad Sex Nicky Wells

“One wedding. One curse? Disaster ever after…

A seven-years-bad-sex curse? Surely not! Yet something went wrong when rock singer Casey and drummer Alex got married on that beautiful yacht anchored off St Tropez in the south of France. Something went badly wrong. For even on their wedding night, the young couple discovers a complete and somewhat surprising inability to make love. Muddling through their honeymoon with a string of thin excuses for their predicament, the lovers defer finding a solution (and panicking) until the return to their home in London. After all, they married for life and to make rock music, not for the love of sex. Right?

But when they resume life as normal in London, all hell breaks loose. Increasingly frantic in their quest for release, the unhappy newlyweds embark on a string of hilarious and occasionally harmful antics that drives them, their band, and an assortment of random strangers to the brink of despair. But it ain’t over ‘til it’s over or, in this case… it ain’t over ‘til the newlyweds sing.” 

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the author for sending me this eBook to read and share my honest opinion. How could I not be looking forward to this book? I love Nicky’s writing (my previous reviews can be found here) and the title of this one just screamed ‘you must read me’! I admit I had high expectations for 7 Years Bad Sex and I’m glad it didn’t disappoint.

Giggling like a schoolgirl was pretty much the ongoing theme for me whilst reading this book. Picturing each scene, each predicament just gave me the giggles, especially as Nicky’s fabulous writing made me feel like I was there in the room with them, awkward!

During some of the more embarrassing moments I cringed on behalf of Casey and Alex, their mortification was palpable and I wanted to erase those moments for them because they were such an adorable couple. I was basically willing the two of them to get down to it – I never thought I’d be so wrapped up in someone else’s sex life!

The writing really was engaging, it completely pulled me into the storyline and made me think of it even when I wasn’t reading. I couldn’t stop turning the Kindle pages to find out what crazy, embarrassing thing would happen next and I found myself still reading at midnight on a couple of occasions.

There were a few surprising turns, Casey and Alex made some really odd decisions but I guess desperation (and a lack of communication) can make a person do strange things. Amongst all the funny parts were a few sparkles of tender moments which I really liked because it gave me the chance to see the ‘real’ side of the couple.

I’d like to share some of my favourite parts of the book with you, the parts that really stick out in my mind:

  • A bad breath problem.
  • An embarrassing incident involving workmen.
  • An interesting new bowling game!
  • An urgent 999 call.
  • A jaw dropping relationship counselling session.
  • Last but not least, two words – James and Rodge! Read the book and you’ll know exactly what I mean.

7 Years Bad Sex was a fabulously funny page-turner, I enjoyed every moment.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Romantic Novelists’ Association | Sapphire Star Publishing |Amazon | Goodreads | Pinterest | Google+

BUY THE BOOK

Amazon – UK | US | DE | CA

Unravelling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Unravelling oliver
Published by Penguin Ireland in March 2014.

‘I expected more of a reaction the first time I hit her.’

Oliver Ryan is a handsome and charismatic success story. He lives in the suburbs with his wife, Alice, who illustrates his award-winning children’s books and gives him her unstinting devotion. Their life together is one of enviable privilege and ease – enviable until, one evening after supper, Oliver attacks Alice and beats her into a coma.

In the aftermath, as everyone tries to make sense of his astonishing act of savagery, Oliver tells his story. So do those whose paths he has crossed over five decades. What unfolds is a story of shame, envy, breath-taking deception and masterful manipulation.

Only Oliver knows the lengths to which he has had to go to get the life to which he felt entitled. But even he is in for a shock when the past catches up with him.”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for sending me this book to read and give an honest review. I admit that I was a little nervous about reading this book due to the subject but I shouldn’t have worried because I found that I was fascinated by it!  There were a couple of distressing moments that were not easy to read but on the whole it was really interesting.

Oliver was not a particularly likeable character but I don’t think he was supposed to be.  There was something about his story that completely drew me in though and I found myself looking forward to reading from his point of view.  His harsh honesty was, at times, refreshing but there was also a sinister edge to it that gave the book an unsettling feeling.

There were other characters involved who were linked to Alice and Oliver in different ways, I enjoyed seeing things from their angle – switching perspectives throughout the book enabled me to build up a clearer picture of their lives together.

A mysterious box became quite a focus point of the storyline for me, I was so intrigued as to what was kept inside and why it caused such drama.  When the answer finally came it wasn’t something that had crossed my mind at all and I liked being surprised in that way.

This was an eye-opening read full of intrigue, a great debut novel!

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

In her early career Liz Nugent worked as a stage manager in theatres in Ireland and toured internationally.  More recently, Liz has written extensively for radio and television drama including RTÉ’s Fair City.  She has been shortlisted for the prestigious Francis McManus Short Story Award.  She lives with her husband in her native Dublin.  Unravelling Oliver is her first novel.

Website | Facebook | Twitter

BUY THE BOOK

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

I Wished For You by Amy Huberman

I wished for you
Published by Penguin in June 2013.

“Grace and Robbie seem destined to be together for ever, but when he unexpectedly goes down on bended knee, Grace freaks out. Cue the mother of all meltdowns.

On top of all that, Grace is not exactly fulfilled by her job – dressing well-to-do ladies with way more money than style. Cue – in her addled state – losing it at work, with disastrous consequences.

Into Grace’s train-wreck of a life comes Verity – ex-Hollywood costume lady and vintage-clothing queen. Verity has seen it all and done it all and her life makes Grace’s look about as exciting as Songs of Praise. Verity tells Grace that the secret of happiness is to discover her ‘heart wish’. If only Grace could work out what her heart’s greatest wish really is…”

MY REVIEW

Firstly I’d like to thank the publisher for sending me this book to read and give an honest review.

The witty writing style was something that really jumped out at me with this book and it happened pretty much straight away. The amusing situations Grace found herself in and her reactions to them were described in clear detail so that I could picture them easily – this really made me giggle!

I’m not even sure how to describe Grace, she was sort of crazy but in a very adorable way.  I definitely liked her and found myself wanting the best for her so there were times that I felt frustrated by the choices she made.  She was fed up with everyone expecting her and Robbie to get married so when she thought he was about to propose, she freaked out in a spectacular way!

The moment Grace met Verity was enchanting, this was something that I hadn’t expected from the storyline and it brought a magical feeling to the book.  Other favourite moments of mine included: reading about how Grace and Robbie first met, ice skating in New York, Christmas time, the Wish Factory and a movie-style proposal. I also loved how it ended with a beginning (this will make sense when you read it), it was different and left me smiling.

The only downside for me was that some of it felt a little bit forced, there were a few places where it almost felt like the author was trying too hard which was a shame because the storyline itself was really good.

This was an enjoyable read with lots of laughs, twists and turns to keep you on your toes.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR

Twitter | Goodreads

BUY THE BOOK

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