#BlogTour WITCH by MARK BROWNLESS #BookReview @ZooloosBT @SpellBoundBk #SHOctober #ZooloosBookTours

Are you ready?! Shocktober is with us and it’s time to get scared!! Huge thanks to the team at Spellbound books and ZooLoosBookTours for putting this all together and letting me be part of it all!!

ABOUT THE BOOK

𝐅𝐨𝐫 𝐒𝐚𝐥𝐞

We are delighted to present Ty Llun – Lake House – which is, once again, available.

A beautiful 400 year old waterfront property in an idyllic Welsh village, the property has plenty of character and comes complete with the spirit of a long dead witch.

It’s the ideal place for a couple to move to, to start again, to try and forget the heartbreak of the past.

And we are sure that, this time, 𝒔𝒉𝒆 will leave you in peace…

𝗪𝗶𝘁𝗰𝗵, 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝘁𝗲𝗿𝗿𝗶𝗳𝘆𝗶𝗻𝗴 𝗻𝗲𝘄 𝗵𝗼𝗿𝗿𝗼𝗿 𝗻𝗼𝘃𝗲𝗹 𝗳𝗿𝗼𝗺 𝗠𝗮𝗿𝗸 𝗕𝗿𝗼𝘄𝗻𝗹𝗲𝘀𝘀, 𝘁𝗵𝗲 𝗮𝘂𝘁𝗵𝗼𝗿 𝗼𝗳 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗦𝗵𝗮𝗱𝗼𝘄 𝗠𝗮𝗻 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗧𝗵𝗲 𝗛𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗼𝗳 𝗮𝗻 𝗔𝗻𝗴𝗲𝗹.

Published by  SPELLBOUND BOOKS

PURCHASE LINK

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Mark Brownless lives and works in Carmarthen, West Wales, UK. He has been putting ideas on paper for some years now but only when the idea for THE HAND OF AN ANGEL came to him in the autumn of 2015 did he know he might be able to write a book. Mark likes to write about ordinary people being placed in extraordinary circumstances, is fascinated by unexplained phenomena, and enjoys merging thriller, science fiction and horror.

Mark’s new novel, The Shadow Man is a terrifying horror thriller imagining what would happen if you found out the memories of your childhood were untrue, and that something sinister was lurking behind the facade of your life. Could you face what had happened back then? Could you face The Shadow Man.

Mark is also fascinated by myths and legends such as those of Robin Hood and King Arthur. This has culminated in the release of his short story series, Locksley, a Robin Hood story.

Follow him at:

 Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/markbrownlessauthor 

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJgI_jjJAyOhCtuZTH7Vx8Q 

Twitter: https://twitter.com/markbrownless


MY REVIEW

An isolated 400 year old waterfront property in a rural Welsh village… what could possibly go wrong??!!  I am so glad I read this book with all the lights on and during the daytime!!  Even now I am still wincing at weird noises around the house….. just in case the witch has decided to come and haunt me!

Victoria and Gabe are both writers, and they find themselves moving to this new property to try and help them move on from a tragedy.  But you can really tell that this grief goes deep and it’s very hard to move on.  The locals aren’t too welcoming and soon talk turns to the witch that haunts the property!!  That would see me running for the hills! But Victoria and Gabe aren’t put off by these tales….. and then the weirdness starts up at home!!

There’s noises, strange sightings, messages left on the wall….they begin by trying to be rational about it all but it soon turns much darker and Gabe is left to find out more about the past of this home in the hope he can put an end to it all, whilst Victoria seems to become more fascinated by this ghostly presence.

It was wonderfully descriptive throughout, that really helps put you at the centre of the action and leaves you with chills as the darkness that surrounds them takes hold!  I also loved the flashbacks to the past to tell the story of Morvith and could have happily read more tales of her and the goings on of the past!

It’s a book to frighten, to shock and to entertain and I loved every single minute of being scared and chilled to the core!!

★★★★

#BlogTour THE BOOK BINDER’S DAUGHTER by JESSICA THORNE #BookReview @bookouture



Excited to be with you today as part of the  Blog Tour for the magical THE BOOK BINDER’S DAUGHTER by JESSICA THORNE. 
My thanks to the author, publisher and Noelle for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!


ABOUT THE BOOK

Book: The Bookbinder’s Daughter 

Author: Jessica Thorne

 Pub Day: Sept 20th 2021


Buy Links: 

Amazon: https://geni.us/B09BCSKJ46social

Apple: http://ow.ly/iciE50FG1VL

Kobo:  http://ow.ly/47Kp50FG1Uc

Google: http://ow.ly/UqkO50FG2jS

The song surrounded her now, the murmuring of the library insistent, and her foot took the first step on the winding stairs. She knew it wasn’t entirely a dream. It was the library calling her, its magic driving her.

When Sophie is offered a job at the Ayredale Library – the finest collection of rare books in the world, and the last place her bookbinder mother was seen when Sophie was just a teenager – she leaps at the chance. Will she finally discover what happened to the woman she’s always believed abandoned her?

Taking in the endless shelves of antique books, the soaring stained-glass windows, and the grand sweeping staircase, usually shy Sophie feels strangely at home, and is welcomed by her eccentric fellow binders. But why is the Keeper of the Library so reluctant to speak about Sophie’s mother? And why is Sophie the only person who can read the strange spells in the oldest books on display, written in a forgotten language nobody else understands?

The mysteries of the library only deepen when Sophie stumbles upon an elaborately carved door. The pattern exactly matches the pendant her mother left behind years ago, engraved with a delicate leaf. As the door swings open at her touch, Sophie gasps at the incredible sight: an enormous tree, impossibly growing higher than the library itself, its gently falling golden leaves somehow resembling the pages of a book. Amidst their rustling, Sophie hears a familiar whisper…

‘There you are, my Sophie. I knew you’d come back for me.’

An absolutely spellbinding read about long-hidden family secrets and the magic that lurks between the pages of every ancient book. Perfect for fans of The Ten Thousand Doors of January, The Night Circus and The Binding.Author Bio

Jessica Thorne saw Star Wars at an impressionable age and life was never the same. She’s loved fantasy, romance and science fiction ever since and spends her time looking for adventure – in the pages of her books.

Sometimes she is Ruth Frances Long and won the European Science Fiction Society Spirit of Dedication Award for Best Author of Children’s Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2015.


Social Media

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/JessThorneBooks/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/jessthornebooks

Website: http://www.rflong.com/jessicathorne/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jessthornebooks

MY REVIEW

A magical library. Secrets. Danger…. what’s not to love!?  This was a wonderfully magical read and is the kind of book that you totally lose yourself in! I know I did!

Sophie is at the heart of the story and is desperate to make her father proud who she has recently lost, whilst wanting to learn more about her mother who disappeared from her life when she was younger.  The more she discovers about the mysterious library where she gets a job as a bookbinder, the more the mysteries of the past become a little clearer.  And why is she the only person who can understand the language of some of the oldest books in their care?!

When her dreams start to lead her towards uncovering secrets from the past, she is unsure of what she will find or just who to trust along the way and you find yourself anxious on her behalf!  I loved the mystical feel of it all and the way the story flows and how she begins to emerge from the shell she had found herself living in because of the past trauma she’d gone through.  

I was enchanted by this story and just loved the magical library setting alongside a cast of intriguing characters.

★★★★

#BlogTour THE SEAMSTRESS OF WARSAW by REBECCA MASCULL #BookReview #TheSeamstressOfWarsaw #SpellBoundBooks #ZooloosBookTours @zooloo2008 @rebeccamascull @SpellBoundBks



Super excited to be with you today as part of the Blog Tour for the fabulous THE SEAMSTRESS OF WARSAW by the wonderful REBECCA MASCULL.
My thanks to the author, publisher and Zoe of Zooloo’s Book Tours for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!

ABOUT THE BOOK

1940

London

A man learns a shocking truth about his past.

Warsaw

A mother writes a diary as the ghetto walls go up.

From the bombed streets of London, to occupied Warsaw, to the Polish forests bristling with partisans, will their paths cross?

Will their pasts be reconciled?

And will they survive the deadly assaults on their freedom and their lives?

THE SEAMSTRESS OF WARSAW is a tale of endurance and loss, family and blood, stories and histories, that questions the nature of who we are and where we are going, when the road ahead is burning.

PUBLISHED BY SPELLBOUND BOOKS

PURCHASE LINKS

 Amazon UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B099KWCPFS

 Amazon US – https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B099KWCPFS

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Rebecca Mascull is an author of historical novels. She also writes saga fiction under the pen-name of Mollie Walton. Rebecca’s latest book under the Mascull name is coming on September 18th 2021, THE SEAMSTRESS OF WARSAW, the powerful tale of two people unknowingly connected to each other, caught up in the whirlwind of World War II, whose perilous journeys we follow from the Blitz to the Warsaw Ghetto and beyond, published by SpellBound. Mollie Walton’s The Ironbridge Saga series is set in the dangerous world of the iron industry: THE DAUGHTERS OF IRONBRIDGE (2019). The second book in the trilogy is THE SECRETS OF IRONBRIDGE (2020), set in the brickyards of the 1850s. The third book is set in the coalmines and servants’ quarters of the 1870s: THE ORPHAN OF IRONBRIDGE (2021). All three are published by Bonnier Zaffre. Mollie’s next trilogy will be set in WW2 North Yorkshire and the first book of this saga will be out in March 2022, published by Welbeck. Her first novel as Rebecca Mascull, THE VISITORS (2014) tells the story of Adeliza Golding, a deaf-blind child living on her father’s hop farm in Victorian Kent. Her second novel SONG OF THE SEA MAID (2015) is set in the C18th and concerns an orphan girl who becomes a scientist and makes a remarkable discovery. Her third novel, THE WILD AIR (2017) is about a shy Edwardian girl who learns to fly and becomes a celebrated aviatrix but the shadow of war is looming. All are published by Hodder & Stoughton.

She also completed the finishing chapters of her friend and fellow novelist Vanessa Lafaye’s final work, a novella called MISS MARLEY, a prequel to Dickens’s A CHRISTMAS CAROL. This novella is published by HarperCollins.

Rebecca has worked in education, has a Masters in Writing and lives by the sea in the east of England. She is also a Fellow of the Royal Literary Fund, based at the University of Lincoln.

Follow her at: 

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RebeccaMascull/ 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/beccamascull/

 Twitter: https://twitter.com/rebeccamascull

MY REVIEW

This is a wonderfully written story, that triggers all your emotions as it focuses on characters who are dealing with the toughest dilemmas and conditions during the War and brings to the fore the strength of the human spirit. Even when life is so desperate and hopeless, there is something within us that keeps us fighting and pushing for answers.


On one side of the story we hear from Daniel, a young man in 1940 London who is desperate to go to Poland to find out the truth about his past and discover who he really is.  And on the other, we hear from a woman who is Jewish, living in  Poland and the utterly horrific conditions that the Jewish people were left to face when the Germans came to Warsaw.   Reading about the treatment they faced left me with horror as they were all humiliated and degraded on a daily basis, but they found a way to stick together and get through – dreaming of a better life.


As Daniel finds out more about his Polish family, he travels to become a spy in the hope he can get the answers he so desperately craves and you can only begin to imagine what is going through his head as to whether he’ll find out what he wants to know.


The story of Helena for me had the most impact.  It was harrowing but full of hope and a tale of real bravery.  The struggle to live day to day, not knowing what was in store for them all next was heroic and her dressmaking skills were what kept her going, and kept her sane.  You are just aching for a happy ending to the story for all their sake
This was an epic and emotional story that lays bare the reality of life during the war for those being persecuted.  The fear they faced on a daily basis alongside the determination to get through it for their own and their family’s sake.  An exquisitely told historical story that will stay with me for a long time to come.


★★★★★

#BlogTour LIES LIKE WILDFIRE by JENNIFER LYNN ALVAREZ #BookReview #TheWriteReads @The_WriteReads @penguinplatform #LiesLikeWildfire #UltimateBlogTour



Delighted to be with you today as part of the Blog Tour for the wonderful LIES LIKE WILDFIRE by JENNIFER LYNN ALVAREZ..  My thanks to the author, publisher and The Write Reads for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!

ABOUT THE BOOK


An intense high-stakes story about five friends and the deadly secret that could send their lives up in flames, perfect for fans of Karen McManus and E. Lockhart.

In Gap Mountain, California, everyone knows about fire season. And no one is more vigilant than 18-year-old Hannah Warner, the sheriff’s daughter and aspiring FBI agent. That is until this summer. When Hannah and her best friends accidentally spark an enormous and deadly wildfire, their instinct is to lie to the police and the fire investigators.

But as the blaze roars through their rural town and towards Yosemite National Park, Hannah’s friends begin to crack and she finds herself going to extreme lengths to protect their secret. Because sometimes good people do bad things. And if there’s one thing people hate, it’s liars.


PUBLISHED BY PENGUIN

PURCHASE ORDER

Amazon


MY REVIEW

This is a thrilling, and chilling!, YA novel that explores the dark sides of youth, where the consequences of their action spirals out of control!  And what follows is the story of lies,tension, regrets and betrayals and I thoroughly enjoyed it – I can already picture the drama series on TV!!


A group of friends are out in the woods and accidentally start a fire – the impact of which is deadly! They don’t want to admit responsibility for their actions so they make a pact to stay silent – they weren’t there. They saw nothing.  But that involves trying to cover their tracks and soon cracks start to appear in their stories, and as the death toll rises, the conscience of some of the group starts to get the better of them… much to the disgust of others.


This is a really clever book as it covers so many relevant topics of the time – the dangers of using flames in a dry area and how quickly that can spread and how the local areas have to deal with the devastation of one reckless act.  It does get  very dark at times but really does show the impact of peer pressure and how selfish some people can be to save their own backsides.  


It is fast paced and disturbing but a gripping read showing the impact of a rash decision that leads to such devastating consequences for so many innocent people.  How quickly life can change…..


★★★★

#BlogTour THE LION AND THE UNICORN by TOM WARD @RandomTTours #BookReview



Delighted to be with you today to start off the Blog Tour for the fantastic THE LION AND THE UNICORN by TOM WARD.
My thanks to the author, publisher and Anne of Random Things Tours for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all to share my thoughts!!


ABOUT THE BOOK


London, 2054. After a devastating global pandemic and a bloody revolution, Britain’s new government imposes peace by stringently dictating the nation’s cultural intake. In the quest to create better citizens, everything from the television we watch to the clothes we wear is strictly policed. As part of the unit tasked with upholding these so-called ‘Bad Taste Laws’, H. and his partner, Bagby, have their work cut out. When former reality TV star Caleb Jennings is found murdered, some suspect it could be a simple vigilante slaying. But, as H. digs deeper into the killing, Bagby’s association with old revolutionary figureheads is called into question. With the help of Caleb’s estranged sister, the museum curator Kate Faron, H. must navigate a Britain in which paranoia and suspicion of the unknown are rife, all the while dealing with the mysterious tech behemoth Vangelis, new revolutionary murmurings, and the legacy of Kate’s biologist parents. Compelled by what he uncovers, H. begins to question his loyalty to the state at a time when national stability couldn’t be more precarious. 


PUBLISHED BY UNBOUND


PURCHASE LINK


AMAZON


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

 Tom Ward is an author and features writer, writing for publications including Wired, Esquire and National Geographic. He has won the GQ Norman Mailer Award, the PPA New Consumer Magazine Journalist of the Year Award, and has been shortlisted for The People’s Book Prize. He is also a graduate of the Faber Academy. 


MY REVIEW



Remember when we thought dystopian books were so far fetched that we couldn’t imagine living in a world like that?!  Weirdly, after the past 18 months, I think we can believe anything can happen in this world we live in, and that’s what made this story work so well for me!! It was plausible!! However insane it may seem, I’m sure there are people out there who would welcome the world that Tom Ward has created, where the government impose strict rules on how people live their lives.   From the clothes they wear, to the music they listen to… and this is a chilling look at such a world where the wishes of those in power are imposed on everyone else – all in the name of increasing the intellect of people and keeping them more engaged!

When a former reality TV star is found murdered, H and his partner Bagby are brought in to delve a little deeper, and what they find shocks them and makes them question who they’re working for and why!

There was something more sinister behind the murder, than just a vigilante killing, and as they look into the past of Caleb and the truth is uncovered it becomes a race against time to find out who is involved, and who could be next.

I loved H as a character as he had a healthy cynicism about him! He did as he was told for work but would always go a little further to do his own research for his own peace of mind.  And with a partner like Bagby working with him, his job is never straight forward!  And the more he delves into the case, the more he is shocked by what he finds!

The story zips along at a fair old pace and I loved the subterfuge, the manipulation and the general feeling of fear of living in this world where you can be in danger for listening to the wrong kind of music, and wondering just who you can trust!!  It’s a really thought provoking book and I really look forward to reading more from the author in the future

★★★★★

#BlogTour FOR YOUR OWN GOOD by SAMANTHA DOWNING #BookReview #foryourowngood #samanthadowning @smariedowning @michaeljbooks

Delighted to be with you today as the latest stop on the Blog Tour for the fabulously thrilling FOR YOUR OWN GOOD by SAMANTHA DOWNING.  
My thanks to the author and publisher for letting me be part of the tour and sharing my thoughts!


ABOUT THE BOOK




SOME LESSONS CAN BE DEADLY . . . The unputdownable new thriller from the author of international sensation and Richard & Judy pick, MY LOVELY WIFE

‘Dark, sly and delicious . . . totally original – and totally compelling’ 
JP DELANEY, bestselling author of PLAYING NICE
 Samantha Downing is totally the real deal. Wry and dark and witty and clever’ SARAH PINBOROUGH, bestselling author of BEHIND HER EYES
‘Wonderfully dark and twisty. I raced through it, desperate to know how it would end’ BA PARIS
_______

Teddy Crutcher won Teacher of the Year at the prestigious Belmont Academy. Everyone thinks he’s brilliant.
Only you know the truth.

They all smile when he tells us his wife couldn’t be more proud.
But no-one has seen her in a while.

They’re impressed when he doesn’t let anything distract him – even the tragic death of a school parent.
Even when the whispers start, saying it was murder.

You’re sure Teddy is hiding something about what happened that day.

You’re sure you can prove it.

But you didn’t stop to think that when it comes to catching a killer, there’s no place more dangerous than just one step behind . . .
_______

‘An irresistibly tale tale of parents, pupils and poison: the American dream turned suburban nightmare’ TM LOGAN

‘A brilliant psychological black comedy with a really fresh feel, packed with sly observation and outrageous twists’ DAILY MAIL

PUBLISHED BY  MICHAEL JOSEPH

PURCHASE LINK

Amazon

MY REVIEW


I have never known a book full of so many twisted, devious characters… no wonder I loved it!!  This is one of those stories that leave you horrified, excited, appalled and thoroughly entertained from page one to the last!!


Teddy, a teacher, is at the heart of the story and he has very particular ways to get the best out of his students.  Many don’t agree with those ways but it gets results! He just finds himself taking it to another level at times and it’s shocking to see how devious he is!!
Add to the mix desperate parents trying to get the best for their children – by any means necessary! – and students who have their own ways of being devious, and you’re left with a school that hits the headlines for all the wrong reasons!!


The story excels through its’ use of using different characters to tell their side of the stories! They’re all a little unhinged and that just adds to the fun of it all!  From staff to students, there’s such a dark undertone throughout, and as a reader you are just puzzled as to where the story is going and just how far things will be taken!! And believe me, they’re taken to the edge!!


Teddy knows he has the futures of his students in his hands and he plays up to that in how he tries to control matters.  Everyone needs to dance to his tune … or else!The darkness comes in the form of murder, and we’re left with the task of working out who committed the murders, and why others are taking the blame!! 

 I loved the madness of the storyline, the extreme characters and the chilling outcome! It is one of those books that you find very hard to put down once you start reading – the crazy keeps calling you back!!  Terrific thriller!

★★★★★

#BlogTour FIREBORN by AISLING FOWLER #BookReview #Fireborn #UltimateBlogTour @The_WriteReads @HarperCollinsCh @fowler_aisling



Delighted to be with you today as part of the wonderful Blog Tour for the fabulous FIREBORN by AISLING FOWLER.  My thanks to the author, publisher and The Write Reads for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!!


ABOUT THE BOOK

Lyra. Lucy. Percy. Once in a generation, a hero emerges whose story enthralls readers worldwide.

Fireborn is an epic quest, perfect for fans of the His Dark Materials and The School for Good and Evil series, that will spin readers into a magical world like no other–and introduce them to an unforgettable new heroine named Twelve.

Ember is full of monsters.

Twelve gave up her name and identity to train in the art of hunting them–so she says. The truth is much more deadly: she trains to take revenge on those who took her family from her.

But when Twelve’s new home is attacked, she’ll find herself on an unexpected journey, where her hidden past is inescapably intertwined with her destiny–and the very fate of her world.


published by HarperCollins

PURCHASE LINK


Amazon


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Aisling was born in 1985 and wishes that she had grown up in a magical, mountainous kingdom, but was actually raised in Surrey on a diet of books and Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Her early ‘adventure’ stories involved surprisingly little action and her first novel (3 pages long) was politely declined by publishers at age 11.

After earning a BSc in Biology and working as a support worker and then a nurse, the idea for her debut novel, Fireborn, came to her as she moved back and forth between London and the US. Now based in Hackney, when she is not reading or writing, Aisling loves cooking and plotting adventures (for herself as well as her fictional characters). Fireborn will be published by HarperCollins in 2021.

MY REVIEW


If a book is inspired by Buffy the Vampire Slayer, then I want to read it!! And it’s been a total blast of a reading experience and I’m eagerly awaiting more of the series if they’re all going to be like this!


At the heart of the story is Twelve, an inspiring female character who is full of rage and anger, but uses that to fight monsters and to right the wrongs of the world she finds herself living in.  She’s a bit of an outsider, seen as a weirdo by some of her classmates, but she just doesn’t care! With her pet squirrel, Widge, by her side, she soon finds herself setting off to save a friend.  I really got the Lyra (His Dark Materials) vibes about her as a character – she’s determined, loyal and very stubborn!


This story has a good mix of the dark and light, it does sometimes get a bit bleak but that really gets you on side with Twelve and understands why she is doing what she’s doing. Her journey is mixed with flashbacks to happier times with her family, and you wonder what messages she is meant to take from these dreams she keeps getting.


It’s a story of magic and monsters, adventure and adversity, battles and betrayals and I loved it!  Bring on the next installment!! 


★★★★

#BlogTour THE HEIGHTS by LOUISE CANDLISH #BookReview @louise_candlish @TeamBATC #TheHeights



Delighted to be with you today as part of the Blog Tour for the fabulous THE HEIGHTS by LOUISE CANDLISH. My thanks to the author and publisher for putting the tour together, and letting me be part of it all!!

He thinks he’s safe up there.
But he’ll never be safe from you.

The Heights is a tall, slender apartment building among the warehouses of Shad Thames, its roof terrace so discreet you wouldn’t know it existed if you weren’t standing at the window of the flat directly opposite. But you are. And that’s when you see a man up there – a man you’d recognize anywhere. He’s older now and his appearance has subtly changed, but it’s definitely him.

Which makes no sense at all since you know he has been dead for over two years.

You know this for a fact.

Because you’re the one who killed him. 


published by Simon & Schuster

PURCHASE LINK

Amazon


MY REVIEW

I found this to be a book that horrifies, terrifies, excites and thrills in equal measures!!  You just can’t get over the intensity as the hate builds and the twists and turns end up punching you in the gut with their verocity!!  I’m still in shock!!

It’s the story of parents dealing with grief, and in the case of Ellen she isn’t coping well!  She’s doing her best to get on with her life after losing her son, but you’re always aware with her that there is an edge and she’s obsessed with what happened – and how what she has just seen has sent shockwaves through her.  The case has consumed her and there is no limit to how far she’ll go to get what she wants!  After losing her son, she had a media campaign to be involved with wanting longer sentences and it’s almost as if she got addicted to the feeling of power and control.  Is it justice she wants? Or revenge?! I know where I’m putting my money!!

As well as seeing the story from her point of view, we get the viewpoint of Vic, the father of Lucas, and how the case impacted on and how he sees what Ellen is up to now and how it changed her as a person back then.

I loved the slow build up in this book. It really sets the scene to the characters state of mind, so their actions begin to make sense and allows you to put yourself in the same position and wonder if you’d be driven to such extremes if faced with the same situation!

This was such an engrossing read that I raced through it and didn’t want it to end – especially with all the twists and turns ramping up the tension!!

★★★★★

#BlogTour CLOTHES by ALEXANDRA SHULMAN #BookReview #Clothes @AShulman2 @Octopus_Books @RandomTTours



Delighted to be sharing my review today as part of the Blog Tour for the fabulous CLOTHES.AND OTHER THINGS THAT MATTER by ALEXANDRA SHULMAN.  My thanks to the author, publisher and Anne of  RandomThingsTours for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!


ABOUT THE BOOK

In Clothes… and other things that matter, Alexandra Shulman delves into her own life to look at the emotions, ambitions, expectations and meanings behind the way we dress. From the bra to the bikini, the trench coat to trainers, the slip dress to the suit, she explores their meaning in women’s lives and how our wardrobes intersect with the larger world – the career ladder, motherhood, romance, sexual identity, ambition, failure, body image and celebrity. By turns funny, refreshingly self-deprecating and often very moving, this startlingly honest memoir from the ex Editor of British Vogue will encourage women of all ages to consider what their own clothes mean to them, the life they live in them and the stories they tell. Shulman explores the person our clothes allow us to be – and sometimes the person they turn us into.


PUBLISHED BY CASSELL


PRAISE FOR CLOTHES… AND OTHER THINGS THAT MATTER


Book of the Week – OBSERVER

‘A must-read memoir for even those beyond the fashion set.’ — EVENING STANDARD

 Best books of the year – FINANCIAL TIMES

 Best memoirs of the year – DAILY MAIL 

‘Self-deprecating and stylish, this is sure to become a classic.’ — VANITY FAIR 

‘Warm, thought-provoking and honest.’ – VICTORIA HISLOP 

‘What do clothes really mean? If there’s anyone who can answer that question, it’s former British Vogue editor-in-chief Alexandra Shulman. The little black dress, the white shirt, the bikini – they all get their moment in the spotlight, as Shulman considers their role in her life and in ours – prompting funny, forceful meditations on topics ranging from celebrity and body image to love and failure. When we choose what to wear, she says, we’re not only revealing our personal histories, we’re also shaping our futures. Because, while they might not exactly make us, clothes do help determine where life takes us. Revealing and self-deprecating, the book glints with shrewd social observation and intriguing snippets of fashion history.’ – PORTER 

‘Such a great read – so open and honest and funny. I devoured it in one sitting.’ — KIRSTY WARK

‘Clever, emotionally intelligent, revelling in style without making us yearn to shop.’ — THE TIMES

‘Scintillating reading.’ — THE SPECTATOR 

‘Thoughtful, wry and candid.’ — MAIL ON SUNDAY‘

In three dozen tidy, perceptive essays, the former editor-in-chief of British Vogue explores the semiotics of clothes and her relationship with bikinis and boiler suits,white shirts and Chanel jackets (“the epitome of status dress for the successful magazine executive,” she writes). A handy read for those wanting a deeper understanding of modern dress.’ – FINANCIAL TIMES

 ‘Alexandra Shulman’s style is unaffected, immediate and hilariously dry. She’s brilliant at observing everyday feelings in a joy-sparking turn of phrase – but better still she has made me feel so much better about owning too many clothes. Instead of doing a ruthless edit I find myself curating my own private exhibition – inside my wardrobe hang not just clothes, not just stories but my own autobiography.’ – HELENA BONHAM CARTER 

‘Shulman weaves memory, history and anecdote with observations about working life. An early mentor tells her that no matter how few the words “you have to tell a story”, and this advice makes for compelling reading.’ – TLS

 Best summer reading – GUARDIAN

 ‘Shulman’s wardrobe might be larger than many of our own, but it holds the same mix of memories, online splurges, the hits and misses as well as the vortex we all get sucked into while shopping for a new life-changing item. I’m also with her on the quest to find the right pink lipstick, which thus far has proved elusive.’ – THE GLOSS 

‘Beautiful, nostalgic, wry, clever company.’ – SOPHIE DAHL

 ‘It’s funny, honest and in typical Shulman style mixes high and low effortlessly. We don’t know many people who can write about bras, Donald Tusk and Madeleine Albright all in the same sentence.’ — A LITTLE BIRD

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Alexandra Shulman is a journalist, consultant and commentator. She was Editor-in-Chief of British Vogue from 1992–2017, the magazine’s longest serving editor. She has been Trustee of the National Portrait Gallery and The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity and is an honorary fellow of the University of the Arts. She won 2017 Periodical Publisher’s Association Editor’s Editor Award and The Drapers Award 2017 for Outstanding Contribution to Fashion. She is Vice President of The London Library and was awarded the CBE in the 2017 New Year’s Honours List. She has a weekly column in the Mail on Sunday, is a contributor to other national newspapers and has written two novels: Can We Still Be Friends? (2012) and The Parrots (2015). Inside Vogue: The Diary of My 100th Year was published by Fig Tree in October 2016 and sold more than 30,000 copies in hardback and paperback (Nielsen TCM). Alexandra was featured in a three-part primetime BBC series on Vogue’s centenary year in 2016.

MY REVIEW

I expected this to be a stylish read, and I haven’t been disappointed!  It’s a wonderful mix of looking back over a life devoted to fashion, and all those memories that just a single item of clothing can evoke in us all!

 I found myself smiling so many times as Alexandra looks back at different items of clothing over the years that have meant so much to her, and the world of fashion from the humble little black dress, to the white shirt, t-shirts, handbags and bras!  There’s so much that made me think back to my own life through clothes I’ve worn – the successes and failures! – and I loved just how relatable her style of writing was!  

She uses items of clothing to represent how different items define us at different stages in our lives, and the emotional bonds we build up over an item that carries memories of our own, and that of those closest to us.    And how 2020 has made us look at clothing and fashion so differently!!  Will we ever be able to break out of our comfort clothing style now?!

I loved the glimpses into her working life and found that part really interesting to see her journey progressed and how clothes became even more important to her to make a statement and the responsibility she had when working in fashion.  She shares many stories of famous people she has worked with and met, and how even she finds clothes shopping can be a wonderful experience or a completely deflating one!!

This is one of those books that I think will connect with so many of us! It has brought back so many memories to me while reading and how styles have changed over the years – some good, some bad!! – and I just found it to be such a treat to read and highly recommend it!

★★★★★

#BlogTour A NARROW DOOR by JOANNE HARRIS #BookReview @Tr4cyF3nt0n #CompulsiveReaders #ANarrowDoor



Super excited to be with you today as part of the Blog Tour for the fabulous A NARROW DOOR by JOANNE HARRIS.
My thanks to the author, publisher and Tracy of Compulsive Readers for putting the tour together and letting me be part of it all!ABOUT THE BOOK

Your favourite authors have been gripped by this electric psychological thriller!

‘A dark world of emotional complexity and betrayal, where twist follows twist and nothing is what it seems’ ALEX MICHAELIDES
‘Exhilarating, addictive, fierce’ BRIDGET COLLINS
‘A psychological thriller you can’t put down and an antiheroine you won’t forget’ HARLAN COBEN
‘Dark, Gothic, and propulsively readable – past secrets and present discoveries entangle in an intricately crafted conclusion’ RUTH WARE
‘Engrossing, cunning, sharp, sinister . . . kept me enthralled till the final pages’ CHRIS WHITAKER
‘A clever chess game of repressed fears, power struggles, secrets and lies’ LUCY ATKINS
‘A complex, chilling mystery full of shifting truths and dark corners where the unburied past lies in wait’ TAMMY COHEN
‘A dark and richly enjoyable novel that already feels like a classic’ ELLY GRIFFITHS
‘Irresistibly readable, dark and brilliant with a masterful emotional punch’ CATRIONA WARD

* * * * *

Now I’m in charge, the gates are my gates. The rules are my rules.

It’s an incendiary moment for St Oswald’s school. For the first time in its history, a headmistress is in power, the gates opening to girls.

Rebecca Buckfast has spilled blood to reach this position. Barely forty, she is just starting to reap the harvest of her ambition. As the new regime takes on the old guard, the ground shifts. And with it, the remains of a body are discovered.

But Rebecca is here to make her mark. She’ll bury the past so deep it will evade even her own memory, just like she has done before. After all…

You can’t keep a good woman down.PUBLISHED BY ORIONPURCHASE LINKAMAZON


MY REVIEW
Dark. Twisted. Thrilling. Sinister… got your interest yet?!  This is one of those books that I was absorbed in from the get go! You are confronted by a woman who is determined, single minded and not prepared to put with anything. And now she’s in the perfect position to put everything into play… and that means settling scores!
Be prepared to be led down a garden path, or school corridor!, on a number of occasions as the story flits from the now to the past and the shocking events that plagued her childhood and have made her the woman she has become. 
When a body is discovered on the school grounds, Rebecca seems untroubled by the events, and more concerned with how a certain member of staff reacts to the news.  Amidst the school setting we get to see the politics at play and the sexist attitudes never far from action and that really adds to the muddying of water as you make up your mind about Rebecca and her motives!
The more you find out about her childhood and the past, the more the ‘now’ begins to make sense and that undercurrent of darkness is forever present and storyline of her past was particularly intense and gripping!
This is a psychological thriller full of complex characters and situations and I was totally ensnared in the web of intrigue!!


★★★★★