🌺💐The Fair Botanists by Sara Sheridan…. A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 🌺💐

Beautiful cover!!! 😍

Publication Date: 5th August

Formats: Hardback & Ebook

Price: Hb £16.99/ Ebook £6.99

Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton

I would like to say a huge thank you to Steven Cooper for inviting me on this book’s marvellous and fantastic blog tour. I would also like to say a huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton for gifting me a wonderful and utterly beautiful finished copy of this stunning book. I would also like to say a huge thank you and congratulations to the creative talent Sara Sheridan, for breathing life into a fascinating and exciting time of Great Britain’s history, which also includes Scotland in this as well, filled with discoveries of both nature and vast and new landscapes in the world, which explorers would then send back to botanical places such as Kew Gardens among others. (I might need to stop there before I spoil anything further lol) Intrigued? let’s head over to the blurb and find out a bit more.

Could one rare plant hold the key to a thousand riches?

It’s the summer of 1822 and Edinburgh is abuzz with rumours of King George IV’s impending visit. In botanical circles, however, a different kind of excitement has gripped the city. In the newly-installed Botanic Garden, the Agave Americana plant looks set to flower – an event that only occurs once every few decades.

When newly-widowed Elizabeth arrives in Edinburgh to live with her late husband’s aunt Clementina, she’s determined to put her unhappy past behind her. As she settles into her new home, she becomes fascinated by the beautiful Botanic Garden, which boarders the grand house and offers her services as an artist to record the rare plant’s impending bloom. In this pursuit, she meets Bella Brodie, a vivacious young woman with a passion for botany and the lucrative, dark art of perfume creation.

Belle is determined to keep both her real identity and the reason for her interest in the Garden secret from her new friend. But as Elizabeth and Belle are about to discover, secrets don’t last long in this Enlightened city.

And when they are revealed they can carry the greatest of consequences.

I have to admit as soon as I had this book in my hands, I was hungry to delve into this book’s secrets and the world of botany and Edinburgh in early 18th century. I was hooked from the first page and couldn’t put it down til the last page fell. This story evokes the life, times, smells, voices and feelings that swirled around at that time. Especially in Scotland what with only a few years previously where there were fresh wounds of defeat and betrayal by some of the lords of the land.

For me I loved the descriptions of Edinburgh, as having recently visited this majestic and breathtaking (in more ways than one lol) city, I felt I could visualise each area or place that the characters visited or stayed and lived. We are introduced to two bright, blooming and intriguing main characters, Belle and Elizabeth. Both at first seem to be similar if not in lifestyle but also in their outlook on life. But unbeknownst to Elizabeth, Belle is not who she thinks she is, a lady of means and education. Yes Belle has had family connections and could be classed to be more than she is, but due to her precocious nature and not wanting anything from her family, has set out to be a “Courtesan” ( you can almost here the ladies of 18th century gasp with shock, horror and a tingle of delight). And Elizabeth who is.a relatively young widow, being sent to live with her in laws in a different part of the country. And yet it is here in, a cold bleak and mountainous city in Scotland that she finally feels herself at home.

We watch and observe these two strong (in their own ways) women, befriend slowly one another and how secrets and lies can always come back to haunt you and make cracks in a young friendship start to appear. I also loved how each of them comes at the Gardens with different skills and knowledge, one who paints the intricate detail of rare plants and the other in the smells that can evoke desire and perfume the air around oneself. I was hooked straightaway and found this story painting its own unique and fascinating picture of that time.

I won’t go into too much detail, only to let you know there’s alot more that goes on in this book, there’s a sense of mystery, danger, romance and secrets that could undo everything. All surrounding a visit from the King. This is a wonderful story and one that everyone should read, for both plant, botanical and garden lovers to historical buffs too. There is something for everyone in this story and I hope you get hold of this book as soon as you can (see above for publication date).

Ratings: 4 🌟s with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰 (just what you need with this book 😉)

Authors Blurb:

Sara Sheridan is an Edinburgh-based writer of over 20 books including cozy crime noir mysteries set in 1950’s Britain and historical novels based on the real-life stories of late Georgian and early Victorian explorers. She has also written non-fiction as well as books for children. Sara has been named one of Saltire’s Society’s 365 most influential Scottish woman past and present.

I hope you have enjoyed this fascinating , wild and botanical beauty filled journey from Kew Gardens all the way up to Edinburgh.If you want to grab your hands on this lovely tale, you can either pre-order it or wait for it to come out on Thursday. You can find it in Waterstones, any independents (though you may have to ask) and of course on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!!

Check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

🔎🗃👑A Case of Royal Blackmail by Sherlock Holmes…. A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 🔎🗃👑

Lush cover!!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!! (1st July)

Format: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £7.50/ Ebook £2.84

Publisher: Unicorn Publishing Group

I would like to say a huge thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tour for organising such a fun and fantastic tour for this brilliant book. I would also like to say a huge thank you to Unicorn Publishing Group for gifting me a proof of this marvellous book, I am always extremely grateful for what I am able to do. A huge thank you goes to the creative genius and world renown detective, Sherlock Holmes, this is definitely an eye opener to what Sherlock was like before Watson and also, yes he can turn his thoughts to an intriguing novel. Intrigued? let’s head to the blurb and find out a bit more.

In A Case of Royal Blackmail, the 24 year-old Sherlock Holmes recounts how he untangles the web of blackmail and deceit surrounding the ‘complex romantic endeavours’ of the Prince of Wales, later King Edward VII, those of Lillie Langtry and her various suitors and the morass of ‘scandal sheets’ and libel cases surrounding the Prince’s court of the time.

Set in July 1879, 18 months before he met Dr Watson, the action takes place in the vividly described London of Queen Victoria. Taken from his own case notes, Holmes also reveals the full story behind the previously untold cases: Vamberry the Wine Merchant and Riccoletti of the Club-Foot and the Abominable Wife, and a new discovery, The Curious Case of Oscar Wilde’s Amethyst Tie-Pin.

This is such a fun, and exciting adventure back into the world of Victorian mystery, danger and yes the game is a-foot (wink… yeah I will just walk away lol). This also gives a bit more flesh to the enigmatic, and puzzling detective. The only little niggle I had with it, was that there was a bit too much going on, theres the main case, then all these other little cases too, which I felt could be set aside for later publication. At times it felt quite busy and I couldn’t follow the case too well, but overall it’s a brilliant look into the times of high victorian society, the scandals, the noise, the life, the dirt and the crowded streets. I felt at times claustrophobic and yet excited at all these inventions which to them was out of this world new, but now has become the norm and taken for granted.

I loved the mention of Holme’s family, and how important they are to him, even if he is a reluctant son at times. What is also excellent is how vivid and real the whole story feels, with real life characters and participants and what you could almost believe would happen to the Prince of Wales. This has all the classic twists and turns with which all Sherlock Holmes stories thrive upon and yet it also feels more modern too, with are younger, a little less polished version of the Holmes that we know through Watson’s eyes. Here is a story through the eyes of the worlds most loved and best known amateur detective.

If you are looking for a tale that will take you away from the cares of this world into a fun, and adventurous world, then this book is the one for you. Also if you love and have a collection or two of Sherlock Holmes stories (shhh yes I am one of those lol) then I too would highly recommend you pick this wonderful gem up.

Ratings: 4 🌟s with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰 (you need the comfort with this book… and maybe a roaring fire… maybe 😂)

Authors Blurb:

Sherlock Holmes was a late Victorian and early Edwardian consulting detective, known both for his pioneering work in the scientific aspects of criminology and for his powers of deduction and observation. From 1881 his many cases were well recorded by his friend and sometime flatmate Dr John Watson, and some of these exploits have subsequently been made into feature films and TV.

I hope you have enjoyed this somewhat fun and endearing and enduring legend of the myth and story surrounding Sherlock Holmes. I always love a bit of a new snapshot into Sherlock Holmes and how he would have interacted with other family members, to me he would have had more family than just his brother. Anyway I will stop there otherwise I could ramble on and well you all would be a bit bored. If you are wanting to acquire this brilliant little tale, you can find it in Waterstones and on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

🖼 The Painting by Alison Booth… A Book Blog Tour Review!!!! 🖼

Intriguing cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!! (15th July)

Format: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £8.99/ Ebook £2.99

Publisher: RedDoor

I would like to say a huge thank you to Helen Richardson and the team at RedDoor publishing for inviting me on this wonderful and fascinating book’s tour. I would also like to say thank you as well for my gifted copy, which I am always extremely grateful to be able to read and review. A huge thank you to the creative talent, Alison Booth has painted (intentional pun apologies) an intriguing story, one of a fascinating history which involves the main characters family and this painting. Intrigued? let’s head over to the blurb to find out a bit more.

When Anika Moinar flees her home country of Hungry not long before the break-up of the Soviet Union. She carries only a small suitcase – and a beautiful and much loved painting of an auburn-haired woman in a cobalt blue dress from her family’s hidden collection.

Arriving in Australia, Anika moves in with her aunt in Sydney, and the painting hangs in pride of place in her bedroom. But one day it is stolen in what seems to be a carefully planned theft, and Anika’s carefree life takes a more ominous turn.

Sinister secrets from her family’s past and Hungry’s fraught history cast suspicion over the painting’s provenance, and she embarks on a gripping quest to uncover the truth.

Hungry’s war-torn past contrasts sharply with Australia’s bright new world of opportunity in this moving and compelling mystery.

This book is rich in historical detail for both the painting and Anika’s family as well as both her country’s (Hungary) past troubles and future. It’s not just about the painting, which is emotionally priceless to Anika, but also worth a lot to some rather shady characters.

I liked the feel of the story and how she feels like she can find her place within Australia even if she has left dear ones behind, but all that changes when “her” painting goes missing… well gets stolen. This is when she realises that the past doesn’t always stay in the past, dead and buried but can come back to haunt you. I also love how even though you have moved to a different country you will still have things that will remind you of the home you left. I wasn’t completely hooked into the story I have to admit, but that’s my own opinion and I hope you will read this and become beguiled by Anika and her quest to find out the provenance and why it was stolen.

If you love fiction with a bit of suspense and an intriguing lost/stolen artefact with a bit of history, then this is the book for you.

I am sorry for this being a short review, its a brilliant story with some rather intriguing characters and a moving, suspenseful tale.

Authors Blurb:

Alison Booth

Alison Booth was born in Melbourne, brought up in Sydney and has worked in the UK and in Australia as a professor as well as a novelist. Alison’s work has been translated into French and has also been published by Reader’s Digest Select Editions in both Asia and Europe. Alison, who holds a PHD in Economics from the London School of Economics, is an active public speaker and has participated in many writer’s festivals and literary events.

I hope you have enjoyed this intriguing book, and will hopefully want to have it in your hands if you want to find out where you can grab a copy, you can find it in Waterstones and of course on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

🦒 🦓 We Are Animals by Tim Ewins… A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 🦒 🦓

Groovy cover!!!

Publication Date: 26th July

Format: Paperback

Price: Pb £8.99

Publisher: Eye Books

I am so excited to kick off SquadPod’s first little book blog tour, of this extraordinary novel. I would like to say a huge thank you to the wonderful organisers behind the scenes (Ellie, Sue, Vikk and many many others love you all) I would also like to say a huge thank you to Tim Ewins for being so lovely and just as excited as we are about shouting out about this fascinating story. I would also like to say thank you to Eye Books too. Intrigued? let’s head to the blurb and find out a bit more.

A cow looks out to sea, dreaming of a life that involves grass.

Jan is also looking out to sea. He’s in Goa, dreaming of the passport-thief who stole his heart (and his passport) forty-six years ago. Back then, fate kept bringing them together, but lately it seems to have given up.

Jan has not. In his long search he has accidentally held a whole town at imaginary gunpoint in Soviet Russia, stalked the proprietors of an international illegal lamp-trafficking scam and done his very best to avoid any kind of work involved in the packing of fish. Now he thinks if he just waits, if he just does nothing at all, maybe fate will find it easier to reunite them.

His story spans fifty-four years, ten countries, two imperfect criminals (and one rather perfect one). twenty-two different animals and an annoying teenager who just……

Will…..

Not…..

Leave.

But maybe an annoying teenager is exactly what Jan needs to help him find the missing thief?

Featuring a menagerie of characters, each with it’s own story to tell, We Are Animals, is a quirky, heart-warming tale of lost love, unlikely friendships and the certainty of fate (or lack thereof).

Wow, this book had me hooked from the start and what a wild journey it was. I had no idea how absolutely weird, and totally immersive this book would be. We follow Jan as he waits in Goa on a beach, with a cow, and a slightly suspicious teenager, for a thief who not only stole his passport but also stole his heart. This is one wild and quite a funny tale of misadventures, lost loves and discovering new friendships along the way, and that life is never straightforward or predictable, there is always going to be a kink in your path, it’s what you do with that kink and where it leads that’s the deciding factor.

I also loved all the little animal tales which are linked into the story, from a cow on a beach to some otters in the sea, and all have their unique and quirky little personalities that make you want to know more about them. I did at times get a bit sidetracked by these stories rather than the main plot, and may have got a bit lost, but overall the story is incredibly funny, joyous and just like a big hug (something big and fluffy and huggable).

If you love a quirky, wonderful and beguiling tale that will take you on a journey from a small english village all they way through to Goa, via a few mishaps, adventures along the way. This book is one for you, I cannot for the life of me think of any book that comes close to how absorbed and strangely compelling it makes you feel. It is definitely one to make laugh out loud in certain moments and groan in a sympathetic embarrassment with the main character whenever he does or is lead on to do something foolish. I loved the relationship between the irascible older man (Jan) and his annoying, yet at times, only real friendship with a slightly bemused teenager. I would highly recommend this book, and if you don’t already know and will sure to over the coming few days of this wonderful tour, you can grab hold of a copy yourself and get a 30% discount (and if you are in the UK there is free P&P too) So what more could you ask for, to do that go on to Eye&Lightening Books website and you might find more goodies there awaiting you.

Ratings: 4 🌟s with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰.

Authors Blurb:

Tim Ewins

Tim Ewins has enjoyed an eight year stand-up career alongside his accidental career in finance. He has also had a very brief acting stint (he’s in the film Bronson, somewhere in the background). He lives with his wife, son and dog in Bristol. We Are Animals is his first novel.

I hope you have enjoyed this intriguing and wonderful little novel, and I hope there will be many more little blog tours or reviews for the Squadpod in future (love you all xxx) and I also love you my dear unknown (to me) reader too so no feeling left out here. This is one of those times where I beg and plead for you to ignore the wiles and beguiling charm of Amazon and instead check out a fun, cheeky and quirky independent publishing company and also help out a really lovely new author (who’s also remarkably funny too wink wink) anyway I will leave you all to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Check out all the other lovely bloggers too!!!

🏰 ⚰️ 🩸 The Corfe Castle Murders by Rachel McLean… A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 🏰 ⚰️ 🩸

Intriguing cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!!

Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £9.99/ Ebook £1.99

Publisher: Ackroyd Publishing

Purchase Links: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B0989Y2J2R

I would like to say a huge thank you to Rachel of Rachel’s Random Resources for organising this intriguing and thrilling book’s tour. I would also like to say thank you to Ackroyd Publishing for allowing me access to a digital copy of this book, I am always extremely grateful to be able to do this. I would also like to say a huge thank you to the creative talent Rachel McLean, for creating such a wonderful cast of brilliant characters and a very intriguing plot, I would also like to say thank you for using Corfe Castle as the scene for this particular crime, I know this area of Dorset all my life and have lived and grown up around there so for me I can visualise every scene and setting. Intrigued? let’s head over to the blurb and find out a bit more.

Meet DCI Lesley Clarke. She’s a straight-talking city copper who doesn’t suffer fools gladly…..and she’s been transferred to rural Dorset.

After being injured in a bomb attack, Lesley is presented with a choice – early retirement or a period of respite in a calmer location.

But things don’t stay calm for long

Before she’s even started her new job, Lesley is dragged into investigating a murder at one of England’s most Iconic landmarks, the imposing Corfe Castle.

Lesley must hit the ground running. Can she get along with her new partner DS Dennis Frampton, a traditionalist who doesn’t appreciate her style? How will she navigate the politics of a smaller force where she’s a bigger, and less welcome, fish? And most importantly, can she solve the murder before the killer strikes again?

Wow, this book took me captive and completely hooked me right in to the story, it definitely had nothing to do with where it’s set or where the murder happens to be…. nope definitely not my favourite castle and where I spent my childhood (wink). Well maybe it did have some compelling magic, but the story and the characters are just beautifully and craftily written. I really loved the feel of it, and how I could almost visualise myself there with only a few words. Whether it’s because I know the area of Corfe Castle, Wareham and Swanage like the back of my hand is another matter, the story has made me appreciate what I love about Dorset and also how special I had it when growing up within and surrounded by all the natural beauty and historical wonders in that part of the South of England.

We are introduced to both Lesley, an injured and slightly grumpy DCI, who’s been (forced) told to recuperate in a quiet place down South in Dorset, where nothing ever happens. Well we see what happens isn’t exactly quiet when a murder happens on the site of an archaeological dig in Corfe Castle itself. With Lesley ruffling a few feathers and taking charge like a bull in a china shop (with less damage… hopefully) we are instantly captivated by the pace of this unusual and intriguing case. As we follow her progress and that of her disgruntled yet slowly admiring colleagues it feels like we are allowed to relax in a pair of capable, determined and strong hands and whatever happens she will get to the bottom of this case.

If you love, Vera, or any other strong and determined woman police officer, then this series is one for you, I really cannot wait to read the next one in this series and I am loving the fact that it’s based in Dorset so my memories can live on and hopefully learn a bit more about the area I lived and love, even if it’s the dark and morbid kind.

Ratings: 4 🌟s with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰 (maybe it’s a Dorset Apple cake… warmed with a dollop of cream on the side 😋) seriously this book is lovely book to read in the sun.

Rachel McLean

Rachel McLean is an author of thrillers which she hopes makes you think. What does that mean exactly? In short, she wants her stories to make your pulse race and your brain tick (she really does that in spades… or trowels wink) Do you often get through a thriller at breakneck pace but are left with little sense of what the book was really about? Do you sometimes read literary fiction but just wish something would damn well happen? Her books aim to fill that gap. If you would like to know more about her books and receive extra bonus content please join her book club at rachelmclean.com/bookclub. There will be updates about her writing, stories and bonus content for each book and will also let you know when her books are on offer… seriously go check it out!!!

I hope you have enjoyed this lovely, thrilling and intriguing novel of all the best crime stories, hate, love and betrayal and of course obsessions. If you are wanting to grab a copy for yourself you can find this on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!.

Check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

🤫 💀🔪🩸The C Word: An Anthology of Murder, Mystery, Death and Destruction by Various Authors compiled by Spell Bound Books… A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 🤫 💀 🔪 🩸

Oooo an intriguing cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!!

Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £10.99/ Ebook £3.99 ( all proceeds of royalties from this book will be donated to NHS Together Charities)

Publisher: SpellBound Books

I would like to say a huge thank you to the lovely Zoé of ZooloosBookTours for inviting me on this incredible and thrilling collection of devious and murderous stories. I would also like to say thank you to SpellBound Books for allowing me access to a digital copy to read and review, I am extremely grateful, and because I loved it so much I will try and buy myself a paperback copy, so that I can donate and support our wonderful NHS and also because books!!!!. Intrigued? let’s head to the blurb and find out a bit more.

So what do writer’s do during Lockdown? They create murder, mystery, death & destruction of course!

The C Word is a collection of short stories collated during the COVID-19 pandemic to raise money for NHS Charities Together. A plethora of wonderful stories created by a wide variety of writers, each with their own unique style. Some you will know already and some we’ve yet to introduce you to. However, we’re sure you’ll want to hear from each & every one of them as we leave 2020 behind us.

With contributions from Steve Mosby, Sophie Hannah, Elly Griffiths, Sarah Hilary, Rob Scragg, Trevor Wood and many more.

Wow, this wonderful collection of truly murderous, devious short stories hooked me completely and did not let me go till the last (digital) page fell (or turned? not sure lol but am sure you know what I mean). These little gems gripped me and just lured me in…. and I loved it.

I am not sure how I can even pin point which story I loved more, they are all as fantastic, thrilling and gripping as the next one. The theme is of course COVID (The C word) some are more subtle and others are obvious and yet they all centre around death, murder and mystery because what is more thrilling than a lockdown mystery during a pandemic. There’s not just stories written by recognised and lauded authors, but ones that I am eager and desperate to read more of. I am ecstatic about all these brilliant tales of the dark side of humanity. I would highly recommend this to anyone who loves, chills, thrills and just excellent story writing. How you can make every day items, that we take for granted such as a trolley and turn it into something truly terrifying in the style of a Stephen King story is just magic (of the devious kind ofc) to some horrific and yet understandable wish to turn back time to get your loved one back even if it means back from the dead….

All these stories are just exquisitely written, some are more humorous others are terrifying but also, as above full of sadness and grief which makes you sympathetic to their wishes or desires. This is such a brilliant collection that everyone who loves crime/thrillers and horror should pick this treasure up today or ASAP!!! and you will also be helping out a wonderful charity and supporting the NHS who have been the hero’s throughout all of last year and this year and really every single day, and to be able to buy a book and give money for a cause… well who can’t resist that?.

Ratings: 5 🌟 with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰…. with maybe a 🍪 or two…. Or three. This is one to savour and enjoy, preferably tucked up on a sofa or comfy chair by a fire with a cat/dog on the rug by your feet or on your lap. 😉

I would usually do an authors blurb bit, but as this redundant due to the plethora of talent within this gorgeous collection, I would like to urge you to check out SpellBound Books, who are an independent publisher who have only just started out and this collection is just one of their recent additions to their growing gathering of digital books. So please do go out of your way and buy this brilliant book, in whichever format you prefer because one you will be hooked and two you will be helping a fantastic charity. You can find this on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Please check out these wonderful bloggers too!!!

🎸🎶The Keeper of Songs by Fiona Mountain… A Book Blog Tour Review!!!! 🎸 🎶

Gorgeous cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!!

Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £9.99/ Ebook £4.99

Publisher: SnowGlobe Books

I would like to say a huge thank you to Anne Cater and Random Things Tours for organising this wonderful, magical and folky book’s tour, and thank you for inviting me to take part. I would also like to say thank you to SnowGlobe Books for allowing me access to a digital copy to read and review. Thank you also to the creative talent, Fiona Mountain for creating such a beguiling, entrancing and lovely story about, music, heartbreak, the past and how going back home can also be good to reignite past loves and heal old wounds. Intrigued? let’s head over to the blurb and find out more.

A missing singer. A doomed love story. A family split by secrets & lies.

1967: Enigmatic young folk singer Molly Morrison disappears on the cusp of fame.

2002: Silva is working as a housemaid at Chatsworth when her father suddenly dies, leaving her with one instruction – find Molly.

The only clue is a haunting song, centuries old, that Molly recorded before she vanished. The only person who can help Silva fulfil her father’s dying wish is song collector, Robbie Nightingale. They were teenage sweethearts, but Silva’s not spoken to Robbie for decades. If they try to find Molly, what else will they discover? For Molly is not the only girl to have disappeared. Silva’s mother, Sukey, vanished when Silva was a child, leaving her with scars that Robbie once tried to heal.

This is a modern day Downton Abbey set at Chatsworth House, England’s most famous stately home. The Keeper of Songs is inspired by the work of Mercury Music Nominated folk singer and song collector, Sam Lee and by Bella Hardy’s song ‘Henry & Clara’, which is based on real events – the murder of ‘The Runaway Lovers’ in the Winnats Pass in the Peak District.

Wow this book had me gripped and entranced from the first page all the way to the end. This is such a wonderful, lovely tale of both the power of love, redemptive love and also how mistakes and secrets in the past can come out and deliver some shocks, hurt and a mixture of anger and sadness but also a mixture of happiness too. This has all the ingredients for an amazing and heartwarming tale of love, sadness, hurt and anger which closely resembles the folk songs which are enthused in every line.

We follow not only the past but the future, in which Silva suddenly learns that she’s on her own and that her father has given her a task to fulfil, one that leaves her baffled but intrigued, ‘find Molly’. This is the hook that lures you in and what follows is like any good rhythm or riff or line in a song that sucks you in and captivates you with the story that unfolds. I loved Silva and Robbie’s story and how their relationship though in the past didn’t last due to one leaving to find life outside of the Peaks, whilst the other preferred staying safe at home, to then find that they are both now back home and the will they won’t they questions start to ramp up.

We also, throughout all of this witness (like all good observers do) the past that unfolds and creates the secrets and lies which have devastated a family’s life. I loved Molly and John and how they both have a wonderful connection, which there’s almost an uncanny likeness with Silva and Robbie (though not as devastating). Sukey, feels like the odd one out, the one that really shouldn’t have been in the frame, even though she is just as important to this soulful bard-like tale.

As we watch both the past and the future, we see the errors made by all the main characters which help set up the future and how it only takes one little task to unravel a gordian knot of lies and secrets and yet within that is also a chance to heal and overcome those secrets and hurts and realise that yes these events happened but you are not defined by the past it’s what you do with what you have that matters. I also loved how the song of the murdered lovers is also interwoven within this story, and how folk music and tales of old are fixed in our love of nature and old village communities.

I really loved this book, and can highly recommend this to anyone who loves folk music, old folk tales, love, hurt, secrets, deceits, lies and maybe possibly redemption. This book wrings every emotion you have and more. It makes you laugh, cry and gives you hope.

Ratings: 5 🌟s with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰…. one to sit by the fire and just relax.

Authors Blurb:

Fiona Mountain

Fiona Mountain grew up in Sheffield and worked for the BBC for ten years in the press office for Radio 1. She has written five novels, which have been published around the world. Her debut, Isabella, was shortlisted for the Romantic Novel of the Year Award. It was followed with Pale as The Dead and Bloodline, which feature ‘ancestor detective’, Natasha Blake. Bloodline is the winner of the prestigious Mary Higgins Clark Award from the Mystery Writers of America. She lives in the Cotswolds with her family.

I hope you have enjoyed this lovely, wonderful, heartwarming and seductive tale of love, secrets, songs of an age old murder, and yet it’s also uplifting and joyous. If you want to get a hold of this simply beautiful and poignant novel you can find this in Waterstones, any independent and of course on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

😱💡Afraid of The Light by Douglas Kennedy… A Book Blog Tour Review!!! 😱💡

Gorgeous cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!! (8th July)

Format: Paperback

Price: £12.99

Publisher: Hutchinson

I would like to say a huge thank you to Ed PR team for organising this wonderful, powerful and intriguing book’s tour, also for inviting me to help read and review this exceptional thriller. I would also like to say thank you to Hutchinson for gifting me a copy to review, I am always grateful to be able to do this, so thank you. I would also like to say thank you to the creative genius, Douglas Kennedy for such an impactful, insightful and moving novel and one that is personally connected to me and which deals with it absolutely brilliantly and emotively. Intrigued? let’s head over to the blurb and find out a bit more.

Brendan is an ordinary man; a married man and devoted father who has always tried to live his life well and do the right thing. Now, on the cusp of sixty and having lost his job after corporate downsizing, he is struggling to stay afloat in the only work on offer for a man his age – driving for Uber.

When one of his rides, a retired professor named Elise, asks to be dropped off outside an abortion clinic where she now volunteers, Brendan finds himself driving right into the explosive epicentre of one of the most polarised ethical issues of our time. As the religious and moral diversions deepen within his own family, everything about the life Brendan knew, starts to unravel. Will the unlikely friendship with Elise bring the possibility of a new life or does the “good guy”never win?

This book held me in its grasp and didn’t let go till the final page fell, I was gripped, thrilled and enthralled, by this book’s story, of love, hate and fear. That trying to do good can lead to some difficult issues and questions ones in which that can make you question whether to do the right thing? or whether to just leave it alone. We follow an Uber driver, who is late to this long and difficult (both hour wise and financial) life and passes the time in listening and observing his clients/passengers. His life has been one of running to and fro around Los Angeles and making sure his family are ok and happy. Until one day, he drives a passenger to an Abortion clinic, which in America is rife with a lot divisions and controversy.

I am going to put this here, now there may be a bit of a backlash and people might not like what i have to say but it is relevant to this brilliant book, I too had to have an abortion, luckily in the UK it’s not such (I will say this lightly as I know it is just as contentious here, but it is not so obvious or as rowdy as in America) a huge issue and at the time I was at Uni and I had a really good and supportive family and my then boyfriend (now husband) supported my decision and was there for me. With the support of loved ones I was able to go through with the procedure without any qualms or much heartache (does that make me heartless? I don’t think so, my decision was based on how i would cope, how I would feel and also how it would impact everyone, having a child is serious and not to be taken lightly at all, and with me being young I couldn’t in all honesty feel happy in making me or the whatever it was unhappy) I know I don’t need to explain all of this and you don’t need this history or will care, but this book touched something deep within me and made me realise how easy and without any hardship I had it. Abortion is such a touchy and heated topic and this author has done something absolutely wonderful, he’s given voices to the lost, vulnerable, and the hurt and at the same time has given a more rounded look at the other side of the debate.

I really did love this book, and these characters are just so sharp, vivid and alive, we have the anxious, worried old Uber driver, who really does go out of his way to be an ordinary hero. We also have his wife, who sadly has become immersed and caught in the plausible falsehoods of some of the most radical branches of evangelical christians in America. We also have his daughter who is much more like her father in temperament and always questioning and wanting to help others, but is also just as vulnerable and prey to naivety as her mother. We also have Elise, the retired professor and volunteer at the clinic who helps the driver (Brendan) see how being a bystander to this madness is unacceptable and that to do good we sometimes have to face our foes as well as our friends. I won’t go on much further because I really don’t want to spoil this fascinating and thrilling book for you but I would highly recommend this book for anyone who loves a good thriller, which blends real life issues, and some rather sinister and psychotic religious fanatics.

As I have mentioned above, this book deals with an issue that a lot of women will have or have gone through (yes I am now a statistic) and yet it doesn’t feel judgey one way or the other, in fact it is probably more on the side of pro-choice, (well thats what I took from it anyway). For me I was mentally able to deal with what I needed to do and had huge amount of support, which helped a great deal, for others it’s the most hardest thing to do, due to family issues, society or culture and it can lead to many young women being ostracised and lead to a lot of mental health problems due to women not being supported or helped to deal with feelings afterwards. This is such a tough issue, that I am left impressed with any person able to write or say something about it, which is why I have mentioned it here, I am not ashamed or even regret my decision in what I did, for me it is and was the right thing to do…. But I had choice, and that to me is the most important lesson we can give and no one should stop another person from that decision. No man, religion or even another woman, Me I chose to abort, someone else might choose to keep, and someone else to send to adoption all of these are valid and fine and none should be used to force or coerce someone out of their choices.

Anyway, sorry may have rambled on a bit there, but wow this book is powerful, moving and just a gripping read, I would urge you to buy this book right now.

Ratings: 5 🌟 with a large ☕️ and a large 🍰 and possibly a 🍪 or two….or four 😂… honestly you will need this.

Authors Blurb:

Douglas Kennedy

Douglas Kennedy‘s previous fourteen novels include the critically acclaimed bestsellers The Big Picture, The Pursuit of Happiness, A Special Relationship and The Moment. He is also the author of three highly-praised travel books. The Big Picture was filmed with Romain Duris and Catherine Denevue; The Woman in the Fifth with Ethan Hawke and Kirstin Scott Thomas. His work has been translated into twenty-two languages. In 2007 he was awarded the French decoration of Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, and in 2009 the inaugural Grand Prix de Figaro. Born in Manhattan, 1955, he has two children and currently divides his time between London, Paris, Berlin, Maine and New York.

I hope you have enjoyed this brilliant, thrilling and intriguing ride through the underbelly of Los Angeles, how one passenger in a car can change a course of a life in a blink of an eye. I hope you will want to go out and grab hold of this exceptional book. This is one that will be on my forever shelves. You can find this in Waterstones, any independent and of course on Amazon. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!

Please check out these lovely bloggers too!!!

🛏🦁Lying With Lions by Annabel Fielding… A Spotlight!!! 🦁🛏

ooo stunning cover!!!

Publication Date: Out now!!!

Formats: Paperback & Ebook

Price: Pb £8.50/ Ebook £3.61

Publisher: KDP

I would like to say a huge thank you to Annabel Fielding for inviting me on to her book’s blog tour and for allowing me to spotlight this intriguing novel. If you want a historical novel full of twists, turns and suspense this is one for you, as well as filled with intricately researched for the era it is set in. Intrigued? let’s head to the blurb and find out a bit more.

Edwardian England.

Agnes Ashford knows that her duty is threefold: she needs to work on cataloguing the archive of the titled Bryant family, she needs to keep the wounds of her past tightly under wraps, and she needs to quietly grateful to her employer for taking her up in her hour of need. However, a dark secret she uncovers due to her work thrusts her into the Bryants’ brilliant orbit – and into the clutch of their ambitions.

They are prepared to take the new century head-on and fight for their preeminent position and political survival tooth and nail – and not just to the first blood. With a mix of loyalty, competence, and well-judged silence, Agnes rises to the position of a right-hand woman to the family matriarch – the cunning and glamorous Lady Helen. But Lady Helen’s plans to hold onto power through her son are as bold as they are cynical, and one day Agnes is going to face an impossible choice…..

If this sounds intriguing to you, and you want to know where you can get hold of a copy…. check out the link below:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Lying-Lions-Annabel-Fielding/dp/057892918X/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1625686166&sr=8-1

Authors Blurb:

Annabel Fielding

Annabel Fielding graduated from the University of Arts London with an MA in Public Relations, she is a PR assistant by day and a novelist by night. Being a self-professed history geek, she dedicates her free time to obscure biographies, solo travel and tea. She also posts a mix of book reviews and travel photos on her blog at historygeekintown.com.

I hope this has caught your eye and interest, because this is a unique and wonderful little book, on secrets, lies, ambition, greed and revenge and also how far do you go for loyalty and what will it cost you. So please I hope you do check out this lovely book. I will leave you now to say Happy Reading and see you all soon!!!