Friday, 14 June 2019

BLOGTOUR: Mulberry Lane Babies - Rosie Clarke


About the book
1941, Mulberry Lane, London. War rages but new arrivals bring new hope. Perfect for fans of Katie Flynn and Cathy Sharp.
Life is hard for all on Mulberry Lane as the war rages into yet another year. Desperate times push people into dangerous situations.
Menacing shadows lurk on dark street corners, threatening the safety of those who are alone and vulnerable.
When Peggy's twins are born early, Maureen and Nellie are there to lend a helping hand. The mothers of Mulberry Lane stick together despite the grim conditions of war-torn London and a shadowy fear that stalks their lives. Neighbours and friends look out for each other and new life brings hope and joy to the Lane.
My Review: 
Mulberry Lane Babies is the third in the Mulberry Lane series from Rosie Clarke, but it is personally my first visit. I don’t think it’s essential to have read the others – it read well as a standalone book, in my opinion. You probably would benefit from reading the others, as it is always nice to read any book series from the start – you may find out things about the characters that I have missed out on.

We are given the stories of several women who go about their lives with loved ones away at war or having already been lost, they are either having, expecting or hoping for babies. The lives of these very endearing ladies are taking very different paths and each girl is having to cope with cruel or surprising twists and turns. It’s a good thing they have each other for support and they try to keep on.
There's a fair dose of drama within the book, a mixture of happy and sad times. I really enjoyed Rosie Clarkes style of writing, everything flowed nicely and was lovely to delve into their world. A fantastic book that fans of historical romance will love. I recommend


About the author 


Rosie is happily married and lives in a quiet village in East Anglia. Writing books is a passion for Rosie, she also likes to read, watch good films and enjoys holidays in the sunshine. She loves shoes and adores animals, especially squirrels and dogs.

Follow Rosie:
Twitter: @AnneHerries

Buy links:






Follow Aria:
Twitter: @aria_fiction
Facebook: @ariafiction
Instagram: @ariafiction

Sunday, 9 June 2019

COVER REVEAL: The Secret - Violets Story by Eliza. J Scott




The Secret – Violet’s Story

It’s been two years since glamorous and ambitious Violet Smith fell head-over-heels in love with blacksmith Jimby Fairfax, and moved back home to the North Yorkshire village of Lytell Stangdale to be with him.

Life couldn’t get much sweeter. Their romance is blooming and Romantique - the business she set up with Jimby’s sister Kitty, designing luxurious underwear and burlesque costumes with the odd wedding dress throw in - is thriving.

But on a romantic weekend break, a face from her past triggers a series of events which send Violet into turmoil. She finds herself with no alternative but to reveal a secret she’s buried deep for the past sixteen years. A secret she hasn’t shared with anyone, not even her best friends, Kitty and Molly, and they share everything.

With the revelation forcing a wedge between herself and Jimby, heartbroken Violet fears that he won’t ever be able to think of her in the same way again and won’t want anything more to do with her.

As ever, Kitty and Molly rally round, offering their advice and support but Vi is worried that keeping her secret was just a step too far for Jimby.

Will she succeed in showing him their love is strong enough to overcome it?

The Secret – Violet’s Story is book 3 in the Life on the Moors Series.


Pre-order Links

Publication Date: 8th July

About the Author:

Eliza lives in a 17th-century cottage on the edge of a village in the North Yorkshire Moors with her husband, their two daughters and two mischievous black Labradors. When she’s not writing, she can usually be found with her nose in a book/glued to her Kindle or working in her garden. Eliza also enjoys bracing walks in the countryside, rounded off by a visit to a teashop where she can indulge in another two of her favourite things: tea and cake.


Eliza is inspired by her beautiful surroundings and loves to write heartwarming stories with happy endings.


Social Media Links –
Blog: Eliza J Scott - elizajscott.com
Twitter: Eliza J Scott – @ElizaJScott1
Instagram: Eliza J Scott - @elizajscott
Facebook: Eliza J Scott - @elizajscottauthor

Sunday, 2 June 2019

REVIEW: I Heart Hawaii - Lindsey Kelk

Available Here
Join Angela and Jenny in the series finale of the bestselling I Heart books…

When Angela Clark’s best friend Jenny invites her to join a press trip to Hawaii, three days of sun, sea and sleep sounds like the perfect antidote to her crazed life.

 
At work in New York, she’s supposed to be the face of Having It All. But the only thing Angela feels she excels at is hiding in the printer cupboard, eating Mini Cheddars and watching Netflix on her phone and if this is living the dream, she's more than ready to wake up.
 
A few days away with Jenny sounds like exactly what she needs but Angela’s talent for getting into a scrape guarantees nothing goes to plan – and not even the most beautiful beaches, blue skies and daiquiris will get her off the hook…

My Review:


Ten years – I can barely believe it! I’ve loved this series of books from the moment I got my hands on I heart New York (I got my first, very original copy with a magazine, can anyone remember which it was?) But I was hooked and an instant Lindsey Kelk fan.

I know many of us feel so invested in Angela and friends, and to think this would all be over with this book was truly a saddening moment, but I knew that Lindsey would do it in style and we’d have fun and adventure in I heart Hawaii. As it comes to endings, I think this book gave us the perfect one, very emotional, like a rollercoaster of feelings. From the prologue, where I was pretty concerned and quite upset if I’m honest, to the final ‘The End,’ I heart Hawaii gave my hardened heart a battering.

I’ve always loved the mixed bag of characters ‘I heart...’ gives us and Angela is one of my favourite characters ever- funny, loving, spirited and well just blooming ace. Jenny, well there aren’t really words to describe her sass and epic coolness, we could all do with being a little bit Lopez. Alex is the epitome of leading men, he’s gorgeous, a cool superstar and just the right person to balance Angela. Tip of the iceberg with great characters though. After all they have been through, all the characters have matured over the series and yet they are still the same characters we fell in love with. How I wish I could be in their friendship group!

I loved that other characters from some of Lindsey’s books popped up in I heart Hawaii; with this being the destination I hoped there would be a little crossover from another series, and I was not disappointed. I did also like the references to other authors’ characters too. See if you can find them 😉

I Heart Hawaii finds Angela trying to juggle motherhood with a new job, then the guilt at leaving baby Alice with Alex for 5 days while she heads off to basically unwind and have fun. I believe we see Angela at her very best in this book – motherhood is suiting her but it’s nice we get a glimpse of the Angela we all love so well when she goes to Hawaii.

As with any I heart book, this is full of fun and adventure. There are some hilarious scenes (the horses!!), real laugh out loud moments and everything we expect from this bunch of characters but, as with every one of the books, it includes some sensitive, serious, heart-warming moments, that show the depth and strength of true friendship.

I have always enjoyed Lindsey’s writing style, chatty and animated and naturally very funny; she can evoke emotion at just the perfect moment though so watch out for surprise tears. The books are easy to read but that never takes anything away from the wonderful stories being told. I read I Heart Hawaii in a few hours – mainly because I couldn’t put it down, I wanted to see how it would end yet I never wanted it too either.

If you haven’t read any of the I Heart series, then I would suggest going back and reading the others before this one simply because THEY ARE BRILLIANT! I’m sure it could work as a standalone book but it’s hard to tell when you’re already so involved with them isn’t it?!

I don’t want to spoil or lead anyone in any direction with the review, so I don’t really want to say too much about what happens. I think people need to go into this without knowing what will happen at all. I will say it’s a beautiful end to an incredible series.  

Thank you, Lindsey Kelk, for creating wonderful stories with great characters that we have grown to love like our own friends. Although it’s hard to know we won’t get any more ‘I heart’ books I’m sure we can all imagine what they’re all getting up in the future.  Great things must come to an end (*cries*) but I know Lindsey will have brilliant things for us in future.

Anyone for an ‘I heart’ film or TV series?

Comfy Rating:
👍👍👍👍👍

Meeting the lovely Lindsey with  the equally wonderful Paige Toon - 01/06/2019


Wednesday, 29 May 2019

REVIEW: Girls on the Home Front (Factory Girls #1)

Available here

August 1941: As war sweeps across Britain and millions of men enlist to serve their country, it’s up to the women to fight the battle on the home front.

Fran always thought she would marry her childhood sweetheart and lead a simple life in Massingham, the beloved pit village she has always called home.

But with war taking so many men to the front line, the opening of a new factory in the north-east of England presents an opportunity for Fran to forge a new path.

Against her father’s wishes and with best friends Sarah and Beth by her side, Fran signs up to join the ranks of women at the factory. It’s dangerous work but as the three friends risk life and limb for their country, they will discover that their lives are only just beginning…

My Review:

This is the first in a ‘Factory Girls’ set of books by Annie Clarke and what a wonderful start. This book is a brilliant look at a time that women were inspirational and supported men in the fight for victory. Full of spirited characters that I think other readers will really like and want the best for.

Girls at the Home Front is about some women from the pit village of Massingham, who work hard to support their families often by risking their lives as well as dealing with their personal problems. I particularly like how the characters in this book are normal, realistic people – making mistakes and having problems that aren’t easily rectified. I always enjoy this genre as women as often portrayed as determined, little forces to be reckoned with.

I really liked learning about Fran, Sarah, Beth and their families, as the book progressed, I found myself unable to put it down as I was invested in their lives.  Other characters all play their role and are wonderful additions to the book, although I think anyone that reads this can agree that Ralph is the villain of the piece.

I enjoyed this book, a heart-warming, nostalgic saga with community at its heart. I must admit it took me a while to get into it, and I struggled understanding all the local dialect, but I persevered and found it easier the more I read. It definitely opened my eyes in what communities and families had to go through during the war. 

I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts and opinions expressed here are my own.

Monday, 27 May 2019

BLOGTOUR: Review of Edie Browne's Cottage by the Sea - Jane Linfoot


Edie Browne’s Cottage by the Sea

Those who don’t jump will never fly…
Hurtling through the sky was supposed to be Edie Browne’s flight of independence. But when she falls head over champagne bucket while celebrating her successful landing, her life is changed in an instant.

But starting over has its benefits, and as Edie relearns the basics under the watchful eye of her Aunty Josie and an entire Cornish village of new friends and neighbours, she finds love and joy she never could have imagined in the unlikeliest of places… 

Come home to St Aidan and Periwinkle Cottage for a romance full of love, laughter and friends for life! 
***********************************************************************************************
I am eternally grateful for that one-day last summer when I checked out a Jane Linfoot book from the library and opened a brand-new world of wonderful books by this incredible author. From that initial book loan, I quickly devoured every other book I could get my hands on.  
To say I’m a fan is an understatement. When I got a top-secret email from the lovely Rachel at Rach’s Random Resources, asking if I’d like to be on the book tour for Jane's new book – I don’t think I could reply quick enough!!

My Review:
I was very excited to read that Edie Browne's Cottage by the Sea was set in St Aiden (if you are a fan of Jane’s work you will share that excitement!) If I could live in St Aiden I would, no doubt. I knew it would be a great trip back to a community that has already given us so many adventures and I couldn’t wait to see what was in store for Edie Browne.
   
It was comforting to get started, back in the safe hands of Jane – who has a wonderful writing style. She writes stories with great heart, with an abundance of humour yet with moments of great sensitivity, of course you have glorious, uplifting romance but also strong stories of friendship, community and of the compassion of others when you are in need.  
I thought the inclusion of each ‘epic achievement’ was inspired. I don’t want to give away too much, but I loved seeing what Edie Browne managed next. I enjoyed her progression throughout the book, and it made me consider that what may be epic is to one person is totally different to another.

Life had dealt Edie a massive blow and she must spend time ‘starting over’- a huge step forward in doing this is going to stay with her Aunt Josie in St Aiden. Her Aunt also reaps the benefit of having Edie around, so its a mutually beneficial arrangement. 

Having previous experience with St Aiden I already knew how amazing the people who live there are but yet again we discover that no matter what Edie and Josie try to do to distance themselves, the locals are a gorgeous bunch that are kind, caring, full of fun and most of all take the two ladies into their hearts instantly.  It is their support that really helps Edie progress and make great inroads into getting back to her normal self.

I was a fan of Barney from the moment we were introduced. What a cool guy – to let things progress naturally, be a source of support and understanding and for being a great role model for young Cam. 

Edie’s relationship with Cam is EVERYTHING. It was gorgeous to read the two of them together, funny, cute and so simple, with all that she has been through to meet a 6-year-old that is on her level is just one of the perfect elements to this story. Jane gave us a relationship that goes above and beyond the others.

I adored everything this book is and what it stands for – acceptance, perseverance, following your heart and being true to yourself. I love how Jane combines the highs and lows of their journey; one moment I was laughing, the next feeling quite emotional.  Well written characters who you fall in love with, root for and would love to meet again.


I cannot recommend this book enough, a heart-warming treat that will have you smiling throughout and for days after. Take a trip to St Aiden this summer, you’ll love it there. 

Purchase Links:



About the Author:     

Jane Linfoot is a best selling author, who lives in a muddy cottage, 
up a steep hill in Derbyshire, with her family, their pets, and an astonishing number of spiders. Although she loves seeing cow noses over the garden wall, she’s happy she can walk to a supermarket.

Jane grew up in North Yorkshire where she spent a lot of her childhood avoiding horizontal gales blowing off the sea, and wrote her first book by accident, while working as an architect, and renovating country houses. While she loves to write feelgood books that let readers escape, she’s always surprised to hear her stories make people laugh, admits to (occasionally) crying as she writes, and credits her characters for creating their own story lines.

Jane’s garden would be less brambly if she wasn’t on Facebook and Twitter so often. On days when she wants to be really scared, she rides a tandem.

Her latest books include a series of stand alone novels, based around a seaside wedding shop in Cornwall. Cupcakes and Confetti – The Little Wedding Shop by the Sea, Sequins and Snowflakes – Christmas at the Little Wedding Shop, and Bunting and Bouquets – Summer at the Little Wedding Shop, and most recently, The Little Cornish Kitchen. These are all published by Harper Impulse, an imprint of Harper Collins.

Follow Jane on Twitter @janelinfoot, or find her on her Author Page Facebook or her Personal Page Facebook. She’s also on Instagram, and has lots of Pinterest boards relating to her novels.




BLOGTOUR: Review for Poppy's Recipe for Life by Heidi Swain

Order your copy here


Poppy's dream is finally coming true - she's moving into Nightingale Square. She's keen to get involved with the community garden and share her passion for preserves. Poppy is soon surrounded by friends and is determined to break the cool, grumpy exterior of her new neighbour Jacob.

The surprise arrival of Ryan, Poppy's teenage brother threatens to ruin her happy existence on Nightingale Square and, as the community gears up to win a local competition, Poppy has to decide what her priority must be. 
My Review:

I am a huge fan of Heidi Swain books, Team #SWAINETTE all the way. All of Heidi’s books are so wonderfully cosy and charming, you can't help but be swept along into a world full of community, friendship, care and cake (or in this instance pickles!) I've been looking forward to Poppy's Recipe for Life for so long as it was a very welcome return to Nightingale Square. (Fans of Heidi will recall the brilliant book - ‘Sunshine and Sweetpeas in Nightingale Square’) Don't worry if you haven't read anything of Heidi's before as they are all gorgeous standalone books; they just include characters and places you will know and love if you have. 
Poppy is a bright, confident and happy young woman. I like her a lot, she works hard and is passionate about what makes her tick, you know she hasn't got a great relationship with her family but she is surrounded by wonderful friends and that is all she needs. She sacrifices a lot for her brother, her friends and the local community - putting others needs in front of her own most of the time. I loved that in her but at the same time was willing her to do what was good for her too - nobody needs to be completely selfless all of the time. I also admired her tenacity in trying to break down the gruff exterior of Jacob. (Cue girly swoon!) 
Jacob was clearly destined to be part of the community - no matter how much he resisted; and he certainly gave that his best shot. Initially, I found him to be quite rude although it soon became clear if anyone could make him change it would be Poppy. She seems to have a way about her. A turnaround in attitude happened quite quickly, but I'm not complaining as I enjoyed the chemistry between him and Poppy.
Ryan is your typical teenager. Sullen, moody and after years of suffering, is not outwardly interested in much. I loved seeing how his character developed but also how Ryan helped Poppy. A great relationship and for me it was the most important within the whole book.
A whole host of fun and quirky characters await you in Poppy’s Recipe for Life, all so lovely in their own way and bringing different elements to the story. It's an eclectic bunch of residents in Nightingale Square that I hope we will learn more about in the future. Please say we do Heidi...  
Heidi writes with such care for her characters and settings. You think of them as friends, and Poppy is now amongst them. A firm favourite for her positive outlook on life. I love Heidi's feel good style of writing and I often wish I could live in these fictional places.  
This book is a pure uplifting, romantic comfort read. A hug in book form! I read it in a few hours - I didn't want to put it down and yet I wanted to make it last for as long as I could. Perfect to read on the beach, by the pool or snuggled up on the sofa with a cup of tea and cake.
I cannot recommend this book (and all of Heidi’s previous books!) enough - a gorgeous, feel good treat. Thank you, Heidi, for bringing us Poppy, taking us back to Nightingale Square and sharing this wonderful story with us all.
With thanks to Books and The City (@TeamBATC), Heidi Swain (@Heidi_Swain) for providing me with a copy to read and review honestly. It’s a pleasure to kick to start this wonderful blog tour. 
About the Author:
Sunday Times Best-selling author with a passion for vintage, hearth & home.
Creating wonderful communities and characters. Find out more -
Check out the blog: http://heidiswain.blogspot.com/


Follow the rest of the BLOG TOUR:


Saturday, 25 May 2019

BLOGTOUR: A Bakery at the Little Duck Pond Cafe - Rosie Green

Available Here


Ellie’s dreams of opening a bakery in Sunnybrook are finally coming true and best friends Fen and Jaz are happily rallying round, helping her to plan a fabulous grand opening day. Everything in their garden seems to be rosy – until the arrival of a newcomer brings chaos to the village and tests relationships to the limit. 
Can the bakery succeed in the face of such upheaval? And more importantly, can firm friendships survive?


My Review:

As I came to read A Bakery at the Little Duck Pond Café I realised it was part of a series – this is book 5. I was cautious that I would have perhaps missed too much but it’s written very well as it could easily be a standalone. I do not feel like I’ve missed anything and in fact, this book has just made me want to go and start at book 1!

Although Katja Skoroboganova jokingly fills in a job application in the name of Kate Baker, she has no real intention of applying but her Gran posts it in and Katja soon finds herself going to an interview. Under the name Kate Baker, she impresses and gets the job – soon moving to Sunnybrook in eagerness to start work at the bakery. Unbeknownst to Katja, she is one of two new starters and they are competing for the role. The other girl reminds Katja of someone in her past that bullied and made her life hell.

I liked Katja straight away, she has been through a lot, and it is understandable that she just wants to blend in and become just a regular part of the community without them knowing her background. She’s found something that may possibly make her truly happy and then she is hit with the realisation of Maddison.

Maddison is the kind of character you will truly dislike, she does everything to wind Kate up or make her look bad, but as you progress through the story you start to see little chinks in her armour, you feel a sense of sadness and vulnerability that may just make you reconsider your opinion of her – well slightly!

You’ve got cake, cuteness and of course – romance, what more do you need?  This is an uplifting, feel good read, very well written with characters you will adore. I devoured it in one short sitting and can’t wait to go back and catch up on all the fun and adventure I’ve missed with the other books. I cannot wait to get to Confetti at the Little Duck Pond Cafe!! Rosie Green has got a massive new fan here. 

Thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources and Rosie Green for an advanced readers copy of this book. 
About the Author:  

Rosie Green has been scribbling stories ever since she was little. Back then they were rip-roaring adventure tales with a young heroine in perilous danger of falling off a cliff or being tied up by ‘the baddies’. Thankfully, Rosie has moved on somewhat, and now much prefers to write romantic comedies that melt your heart and make you smile, with really not much perilous danger involved at all, unless you count the heroine losing her heart in love.
​Rosie’s brand new series of novellas is centred on life in a village café. Confetti at the Little Duck Pond Cafe will be the sixth in the series

         
Breaking News - Coming Soon – Confetti at the Little Duck Pond Café 


With Ellie and Zak’s Big Day on the horizon, the sun is shining brightly on the Little Duck Pond Café community. But as dark clouds begin to roll in, threatening more than one close relationship, will the wedding of the year take place at all? 

Follow Rosie Green on Amazon to hear when its published and available for purchase - https://www.amazon.co.uk/Rosie-Green/e/B07CZYV7DW