And my offering today is more of a mini movie than a video! The fabulous 30 SECONDS TO MARS, fronted by the wonderful Jared Leto 😍, are another of my favourite bands EVER and are always involved in amazing videos! I think I may be sharing more of them in the future!! Enjoy!!
1960s New York, and Emma Bowden seems to have it all – a glamorous Manhattan apartment, a loving husband, and a successful writing career. But while Emma and her husband Jonathan are on vacation at the Hamptons, a child drowns in the sea, and suspicion falls on Emma. As her picture-perfect life spirals out of control, and old wounds resurface, a persistent and monotonous voice in Emma’s head threatens to destroy all that she has worked for…
Taut, elegant and mesmerising, Don’t Think a Single Thought lays bare a marriage, and a woman, and examines the decisions – and mistakes – which shape all of our lives.
A really stylish and magnetic story centred around a truly fascinating character, who seemingly had it all along but also had many demons which impacted the way she lived her life from childhood to adulthood, and no matter how many pills she took or therapists she talked to, it was never enough to set her on the path for a quiet life.
Set in the Hamptons it’s a story of Emma who is plagued by ill health which would leave her in bed for days, unable to function normally and despite the best efforts of her husband and a move to the beach, it seemed nothing would ever make her life an easier one.
The story often goes back to Emma and her childhood, where she witnessed a traumatic event and had a poor relationship with her parents and as you watch over this character as time goes on, you get to see the struggles she has with herself, whilst wondering over her reliability as a narrator. There’s always that unease about her as you see her struggle through, acting erratically and even when she gets back to writing she is plagued by events that she cannot shake out of her mind.
Her honesty as a writer earns her huge success and many fans but that success doesn’t last forever, and the voices in her head start to get louder once more – is tragedy always going to follow her around?
I really enjoyed how involved you became as a reader with this book. The anxiety Emma suffers is brilliantly portrayed and by repeating the past is she just hoping that things will change in the end or is there no other way out for her? A sophisticated and engaging read, which I highly recommend.
Smile it’s the weekend!! And if this sunny weather we are enjoying here in the south of the country continues then I’ll be extremely happy! Best to enjoy it while we have it – the housework can wait another day or two!! There’s books to be read!
And it’s been a pretty good week reading wise! Another 6 books finished, just 1 downloaded from Netgalley and 2 lovely books in the post for review! Here’s a quick look back!
It’s New Year’s Eve, the holiday of forced fellowship, mandatory fun, and paper hats. While dining out with her husband and their friends, Bunny -an acerbic, mordantly witty, and clinically depressed writer-fully unravels. Her breakdown lands her in the psych ward of a prestigious New York hospital, where she refuses all modes of recommended treatment. Instead, she passes the time chronicling the lives of her fellow “lunatics” and writing a novel about what brought her there. Her story is a brilliant and brutally funny dive into the disordered mind of a woman who sees the world all too clearly. Propelled by razor-sharp comic timing and rife with pinpoint insights, Kirshenbaum examines what it means to be unloved and loved, to succeed and fail, to be at once impervious and raw. Rabbits for Food shows how art can lead us out of-or into-the depths of disconsolate loneliness and piercing grief. A bravura literary performance from one of America’s finest writers.
THE RECOVERY OF ROSE GOLD by STEPHANIE WROBEL – copy for review
publication date – March 2020
Emerson MFA graduate now living in the UK Stephanie Wrobel’s THE RECOVERY OF ROSE GOLD, the story of a young woman being slowly poisoned by her mother for 18 years who makes a calculated decision to take her in after her prison sentence, an exploration of the aftermath of Munchausen syndrome by proxy, to Amanda Bergeron at Berkley, in a pre-empt, in a two-book deal, for publication in 2020.
THE GLITTERING HOUR by IONA GREY
copy ahead of Blog Tour
The epic and long-awaited new romance from the author of Letters to the Lost, winner of the RNA Award. Selina Lennox is a Bright Young Thing. Her life is a whirl of parties and drinking, pursued by the press and staying just the right side of scandal. Lawrence Weston is a penniless painter who stumbles into Selina’s orbit one night and can never let her go. Spanning two decades and a seismic shift in British history as World War II approaches, this is an epic novel of passion, heartache and loss.
I’m back with another festive offering for you all to enjoy!! My thanks to the team at Choc Lit and Kirsty Ferry for letting me share the fabulous cover reveal with you all!!
ABOUT THE BOOK
How far would you go to be with the one you love at Christmas?
The Isle of Skye is a magical place, especially at Christmas, and there’s no place Zac Fallon would rather be. But whilst Zac has everything he needs on Skye, there’s still something missing – and that something is a somebody called Ivy McFarlane.
Ivy used to work with Zac but then spread her wings and moved to Glastonbury. He’s missed her ever since. Now it’s almost Christmas and Zac realises that the Ivy shaped hole in his life is too big to bear. So starts his festive mission to the mainland – but will he back in time to spend Christmas in Skye? And, more importantly, will Ivy be with him?
Christmas on the Isle of Skye will be published by Choc Lit on 12th November and will be available to purchase as an eBook on all platforms and also in audio.
Are we in the Christmas mood yet then?! Are we ready to see a cover of Xmas beauty?!! Here it is……
I want my Christmas to look like that!! Perfection! What do you think?! Hope you’ll be getting your copy in November! I know I will!!!
Delighted to be taking part in this Blog Tour for FLORA AIR by JANICE CAIRNS. My thanks to the author, publisher and Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources. As well as my thoughts on the book I’m also hosting a giveaway!!
ABOUT THE BOOK
Flora Air is passionate about writing and she dreams of becoming an author, but she’s in a fog with her mundane day job. She meets a charismatic professor who nurtures her writing and suddenly her dreams seem possible. A touch of magic at the professor’s home adds old-fashioned charm and enchantment to Flora’s writing journey. When she realises she loves the married professor, her journey takes a wild turn. Can Flora actually succeed in becoming an author? What happens to the love Flora Air feels for the professor?
Janice Cairns is the author of quality romantic fiction. For more than thirty years she has lived in Edinburgh and her first three novels are set there. She now lives in a historic market town not far from Edinburgh. Most of her time is spent writing or thinking about writing. She loves long country walks, reading good books and eating out in lovely restaurants.
Giveaway to Win 2 x PB copies of Flora Air (UK Only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
I’m finding it rather refreshing to pick up more books nowadays that feature characters who aren’t just fresh out of school, or dealing with life in their 20’s and in Flora Air we meet a woman who is dreaming of being a writer but working in a mundane day job. She’s also starting to show symptoms of menopause and all that entails – the lack of sleep, the self doubt – and this story follows her as she tries to write the story she knows she’s got in her and how a chance meeting starts to see her life turn in a new direction.
Professor Jolly is a teacher of creative writing and coming to terms with his wife being poorly in hospital. He seems genuinely interested in Flora and her writing and it’s touching to see their friendship blossom – they’re both lonely souls and it seems fitting that they find one another in this way. Having another person give her feedback on her writing seems to spur her on and her outlook becomes more positive and she finally starts to believe in herself and what she could achieve.
This was a really easy to read story that just came to life for me when the magical elements were introduced! I’ve found myself wanting my books on my shelves to come to life in the same way that they do in this book – I’m still waiting but hoping!! Maybe they wait until I’m fast asleep……
I really enjoyed spending time with Flora and how having someone believe in her helped push her on to achieve her dream and help her overcome the other issues in her life. Well worth a look if you’re after a book with a lovely magical feel!
Finding herself in a new home in Brighton, Kate Bradbury sets about transforming her decked, barren backyard into a beautiful wildlife garden. She documents the unbuttoning of the earth and the rebirth of the garden, the rewilding of a tiny urban space. On her own she unscrews, saws, and hammers the decking away, she clears the builders’ rubble and rubbish beneath it, and she digs and enriches the soil, gradually planting it up with plants she knows will attract wildlife. She erects bird boxes and bee hotels, hangs feeders and grows nectar- and pollen-rich plants, and slowly brings life back to the garden.
But while she’s doing this her neighbors continue to pave and deck their gardens. The wildlife she tries to save is further threatened, and she feels she’s fighting an uphill battle. Is there any point in gardening for wildlife when everyone else is drowning the land in poison and cement?
Throughout her story, Kate draws on an eclectic and eccentric cast of friends and colleagues, who donate plants and a greenhouse, tolerate her gawping at butterflies at Gay Pride, and accompany her on trips to visit rare bumblebees and nightingales.
What a wonderful little book! As a keen gardener and wildlife lover, I’m probably the target audience I’m sure for a book written by someone who looks on their garden as more than an ‘outdoor living room’ or as a space to be ignored or paved over as is the trend nowadays, but this gem of a book perfectly explains just how important a little green space is to the owner and to the wildlife of the local area. From a tiny bee moving into a bee hotel, to the flock of sparrows enjoying the safety of a buddleia bush, this book left me itching to get even more involved with my garden and to do more to attract more wildlife.
Her memories of gardens she has spent time in over the years, especially with her family, are wonderfully told and had me remembering special times I have spent with grandparents and my parents who thankfully have always been fans of green spaces.
As a passionate amateur garden I totally ‘got’ this book – it understands just how you feel about your little patch of the world and the despair you feel when you see trees and shrubs being destroyed in the neighbourhood and surrounding areas. Through gardening it allows you to look back fondly at times spent out there, but also has you looking forward in ways you can help to attract more bees, birds and bugs to your garden. I recently saw this author present a piece on Gardeners World and her enthusiasm for bees especially had me wanting to rush out and buy a bee hotel or two, and that enthusiasm is clear for all to see in this book.
She looks back on tough times too, especially with her mother becoming unwell, and shows the importance of a garden on helping them both cope during that time. It’s a great distraction to sit out there with a cup of tea and toast and just to watch and see what is going on and let your mind wander!
It’s also fascinating to read the impact of humans are having on the ways of wildlife – habitats being destroyed and species disappearing and has just made me more determined to do my little bit, and hopefully it will encourage new gardeners to do the same and make people realise that whether they have a windowbox or a garden, there are things that can be done to help native wildlife.
I adored this book and highly recommend it as a memoir and as a book full of ideas and inspiration to help us all do our bit!
In a small back alley in Tokyo, there is a café which has been serving carefully brewed coffee for more than one hundred years. But this coffee shop offers its customers a unique experience: the chance to travel back in time.
In Before the Coffee Gets Cold, we meet four visitors, each of whom is hoping to make use of the café’s time-travelling offer, in order to: confront the man who left them, receive a letter from their husband whose memory has been taken by early onset Alzheimer’s, to see their sister one last time, and to meet the daughter they never got the chance to know.
But the journey into the past does not come without risks: customers must sit in a particular seat, they cannot leave the café, and finally, they must return to the present before the coffee gets cold . . .
Toshikazu Kawaguchi’s beautiful, moving story explores the age-old question: what would you change if you could travel back in time? More importantly, who would you want to meet, maybe for one last time?
I’ve loved discovering translated Japanese fiction this year so had high hopes for this to be another quirky reading experience, but for some reason it just didn’t feel as magical to me as I hoped it would! It has all the elements of a mysterious cafe and time travelling experiences but it just fell a little flat for me and I didn’t feel connected with it as I’d hoped.
Set in a basement cafe set off the beaten track, it’s a story that follows a few characters as they find themselves there for whatever reason as they’ve heard of this ‘legend’ that if you sit in a certain seat in the cafe, you can be transported back in time to meet someone from your past. There are a number of very important rules that need to be followed for it to work but that doesn’t put off these characters as they are desperate to go back to have one more moment in a certain point in their life – but the present cannot change. Call it the butterfly effect if you will.
There are some very emotional and poignant reasons for wanting to go back – from a woman who let a love walk out of her life, to a woman losing her husband to alzheimers – and reading their stories makes you understand why they wanted to go back. And what it shows is that going back alters their mindset – maybe things happened for a reason and you are left thinking that sometimes things are just meant to be and to happen in the way they did.
I did enjoy this story and it was quite enlightening but I did find at times it felt more like I was reading a play script as the flow just wasn’t there throughout. A sweet read.
My thanks to Picador and Netgalley for the e-copy in return for a fair and honest review.