Hello all! Apologies for the radio silence on the Blog front this week – what do you mean you hadn’t noticed?!!! I just found myself spending more and more time online, and less time reading and doing other stuff, so just took a little break to try and find that balance (don’t we all!) so hopefully I can get back to sharing more reviews and boring you all with my ramblings again! Aren’t you lucky!!?! 2018 definitely needs to see me get more organised on the blogging/reading/reviewing front…… wonder when I’ll be breaking that resolution then?! My bet is by the 3rd January!!
So on to the books of the past 7 days! And there have been a few!! Made a start on some festive reads on my Kindle which have been a delight to read, and got back to some chick lit in paperback form as my brain needed a rest from over complicated plots!! And I’ve been restrained on the book buying front once more – I need to give Santa my list of books wanted soon so want to give him plenty to choose from!! – so only had a couple of book subscription books arrive! The posties are relieved!
Click on the titles for links to my full GoodReads review if you so wish to read more!!
House of Christmas Secrets by Lynda Stacey – 5 stars
This year we’re just going to have a nice, normal Christmas…
Last year’s Christmas at Wrea Head Hall didn’t quite go to plan which is why Jess Croft is determined this festive season will be the one to remember, for the right reasons. And she has plenty of reasons to be hopeful, she’s going to marry the man of her dreams, Jack Stone, seven days after New Year’s Eve.
However, as family secrets are revealed in hidden letters and two unexpected guests turn up on the doorstep, Jess is left wondering whether her life will ever be the same again.
Can Jess and Jack still experience a peaceful festive season that they had imagined or are there some problems that even Christmas can’t fix?
This was a fabulous darker read from start to finish and a great follow on from House of Secrets. This isn’t a fluffy festive book so be warned, but it had me gripped and enthralled!
What Happens at Christmas by Evonne Wareham – 5 stars
Best-selling author Andrew Vitruvius knows that any publicity is good publicity. His agent tells him that often, so it must be true. In the run-up to Christmas, she excels herself – talking him into the craziest scheme yet: getting himself kidnapped, live on TV.
But when the plan goes ahead and Drew is unceremoniously thrown in the back of a van before being dragged to a hut in middle of the Brecon Beacons, it all starts to feel a little bit too real.
Meanwhile, not far away, Lori France and her four-year-old niece Misty are settling in to spend the holidays away after unexpected events leave them without a place to stay. Little do they know they’re about to make a shocking discovery and experience a Christmas they’re not likely to forget …
Another fabulous read set in an idyllic setting and warmed my heart with the romance!!
A Little Christmas Faith by Kathryn Freeman – 5 stars
Is it time to love Christmas again?
Faith Watkins loves Christmas, which is why she’s thrilled that her new hotel in the Lake District will be open in time for the festive season. And Faith has gone all out; huge Christmas tree, fairy lights, an entire family of decorative reindeer. Now all she needs are the guests …
But what she didn’t bank on was her first paying customer being someone like Adam Hunter. Rugged, powerfully built and with a deep sadness in his eyes, Adam is a man that Faith is immediately drawn to – but unfortunately he also has an intense hatred of all things Christmassy.
As the countdown to the big day begins, Faith can’t seem to keep away from her mysterious guest, but still finds herself with more questions than answers: just what happened to Adam Hunter? And why does he hate Christmas?
And another 5 star read from Choc Lit!! This had all the festive feels and I raced through it and swooned over Adam!! I need to find my own Adam!!
Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses by Carole Matthews – 4 stars
A heart-warming and poignant novel of romance, family and second chances, Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses is Sunday Times bestselling Carole Matthews at her outstanding best. Perfect for fans of Jill Mansell and Milly Johnson.
Christie Chapman is a single working mother who spends her days commuting to her secretarial job in London and looking after her teenage son, Finn. It can be tough just getting through the day but Christie has always found comfort in her love of crafting and any spare time she has is spent in her parents’ summerhouse working on her beautiful creations. From intricately designed birthday cards to personalised gifts, Christie’s flair for the handmade knows no bounds and it’s not long before opportunity comes knocking. All of a sudden Christie sees a different future for her and Finn – one full of hope and possibility, and if the handsome Max Alexander is to be believed, one full of love too. It’s all there for the taking.
And then, all of sudden, Christie’s world is turned upside down.
Christie knows that something has to give, but what will she choose? Will she give up her dreams and the chance of real love? What price will she pay for doing the right thing? Can Christie find her happy ending in . . . Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses
I love chick lit when it’s written as well as this was! Pure escapism and inspired me to get back to my crafting as well! Loved it!
The Happy Tree by Rosalind Murray
‘A 1926 novel which begins with the death of a young man during the war, flashes back to his happy childhood shared with the young woman who is the narrator, and then describes how the war – inevitably – took them unawares, destroyed their happiness and has left her, the young woman, emotionally maimed. ‘
Another book for my Persephone collection! I love the grey covers and love how they bring forgotten authors back to life!
Crippen by John Boyne
July 1910: a gruesome discovery has been made at 39 Hilldrop Crescent, Camden.
Buried in the cellar are the remains of Cora Crippen, formeer music-hall singer and wife of Dr Hawley Crippen.
But Dr Crippen and his mistress Ethel Le Neve have disappeared, and a full-scale hunt for them has begun.
Across the Channel in Antwerp, Captain Kendall gives the order for the SS Montrose to begin its two-week voyage to Canada. On board are 1300 passengers, including the overbearing Antonia Drake, the unassuming Martha Hayes and the enigmatic Matthieu Zela. And, slipping in almost unnoticed, a Mr John Robinson with his seventeen-year-old son Edmund…
CRIPPEN is a beatifully drawn novel recreating the true story of the amazing escape attempt of one of history’s most notorious killers.
This is the latest book I have received from The Random Book Club – the monthly book club subscription I signed up for after reading The Diary of a Bookseller by Shaun Bythell and I just love this way of discovering different books!!
Uprooted by Naomi Novik
Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.
Her people rely on the cold, ambitious wizard, known only as the Dragon, to keep the wood’s powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman must be handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as being lost to the wood.
The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows – everyone knows – that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia – all the things Agnieszka isn’t – and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.
But no one can predict how or why the Dragon chooses a girl. And when he comes, it is not Kasia he will take with him.
From the author of the Temeraire series comes this hugely imaginative, engrossing and vivid fantasy novel, inspired by folk and fairy tales. It is perfect reading for fans of Robin Hobb and Trudi Canavan
Have had this on my shelves for quite some time and have high hopes that I’ll love this!!
WILDWOOD by ROGER DEAKIN
From the walnut tree at his Suffolk home, Roger Deakin embarks upon a quest that takes him through Britain, across Europe, to Central Asia and Australia, in search of what lies behind man’s profound and enduring connection with wood and with trees. Meeting woodlanders of all kinds, he lives in shacks and cabins, builds hazel benders, and hunts bush-plums with aboriginal women.At once autobiography, history, a traveller’s tale and a work of natural history, Wildwood is a lyrical and fiercely intimate evocation of the spirit of trees: in nature, in our souls, in our culture, and in our lives
My non-fiction November reading is going very well and this is the latest book I’ve decided to read this month which I won from the wonderful Paul at HalfMan, HalfBook!
So that is my bookish week all wrapped up! I’ve made it up to 193 books now read this year – yay!! – so am hoping to make it past the 200 mark by the end of the year, knowing that I’ll probably never achieve that amount again!! It’s just going to make picking my favourite reads of the year an awful lot tougher this year! Can i have a top 50?!!