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#BookReview
Don’t You Forget About Me by Liz Tipping

#BookReview Don’t You Forget About Me by Liz TippingTitle: Don't You Forget About Me

Author: Liz Tipping

Published by: Carina UK on June 6, 2016

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 205

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Carina UK, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

An athlete, a princess, a brain, a criminal, a basket case… 
Cara Dunham is definitely one of them. But stuck in her small hometown, with no prospects of escape, she’s struggling to find her thing. Her life is more book club than Breakfast Club and there is no Judd Nelson in sight!

So when Cara is invited to a school reunion she knows this is her chance to channel her inner Molly Ringwald and grab her John Hughes moment, once and for all. Because her teenage love, Daniel Rose will be there, the coolest boy at school and the one that got away.

But transforming into an 80’s icon isn’t easy and Cara enlists the help of her oldest friend, Stubbs, to teach her all she needs to know about being cool and quirky – a la Ringwald.

Except Stubbs thinks she’s perfect, just as she is and takes it upon himself to show Cara that her life might not be ‘movie perfect’, but there is always another take to get things right. And maybe the hero she’s dreamed of has been under her nose the whole time…


Review:

Funny, touching, quirky, and romantic!

This is a classic friends-to-more romance that pays homage to all those 80s movies we love and can’t get enough of.

The writing is well done. The characters are lovable, cute, and genuine. And the plot flows nicely, has just the right amount of drama, with a side of movie trivia, that will keep you engaged until the last page.

I really enjoyed this book and I highly recommend it.

And between you-and-I, I always secretly hoped that one day I would be sitting on a dining room table, and Jake Ryan (Michael Schoeffling) would give me a birthday cake and ask me to make a wish!

 

This book is due to be released on June 6, 2016.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Carina UK, for providing me with a copy of this story in exchange for an honest review. 

#BookReview
Don’t You Cry by Mary Kubica

#BookReview Don’t You Cry by Mary KubicaTitle: Don't You Cry

Author: Mary Kubica

Published by: MIRA on May 17, 2016

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 320

Format: Hardcover

Source: Purchased

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

New York Times bestselling author of The Good Girl, Mary Kubica returns with an electrifying and addictive tale of deceit and obsession 

In downtown Chicago, a young woman named Esther Vaughan disappears from her apartment without a trace. A haunting letter addressed to My Dearest is found among her possessions, leaving her friend and roommate Quinn Collins to wonder where Esther is and whether or not she’s the person Quinn thought she knew. 

Meanwhile, in a small Michigan harbor town an hour outside Chicago, a mysterious woman appears in the quiet coffee shop where eighteen-year-old Alex Gallo works as a dishwasher. He is immediately drawn to her charm and beauty, but what starts as an innocent crush quickly spirals into something far more dark and sinister than he ever expected.  

As Quinn searches for answers about Esther, and Alex is drawn further under Pearl’s spell, master of suspense Mary Kubica takes readers on a taut and twisted thrill ride that builds to a stunning conclusion and shows that no matter how fast and far we run, the past always catches up with us in the end.


Review:

This is a dark, intelligent, psychological thriller that will have you asking yourself, “How well do we really know someone?”

The story is told from two different perspectives. One is that of Quinn, a young woman living in Chicago whose roommate, Esther, has gone missing. And the other is that of Alex, an 18-year-old boy living in a small town 70-miles outside of Chicago who recently noticed a strange woman wandering around the town. These two characters have never met and you are left to puzzle how and when their two paths will collide throughout the novel.

The characters are multi-layered, complex and empathetic. The story is skillfully written. And the multiple plots will have you pondering each and every twist and turn.

This story is not full of action or extremely suspenseful. However, the slow build will keep you enthralled and captivated until the very end.

I really enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it

 

#BookReview
London Belongs To Us by Sarra Manning

#BookReview London Belongs To Us by Sarra ManningTitle: London Belongs to Us

Author: Sarra Manning

Published by: Bonnier Publishing Fiction on June 2, 2016

Genres: Young Adult

Pages: 272

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Bonnier Publishing, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Seventeen-year-old Sunny’s always been a little bit of a pushover. But when she’s sent a picture of her boyfriend kissing another girl, she knows she’s got to act. What follows is a mad, twelve-hour dash around London – starting at 8pm in Crystal Palace (so far away from civilisation you can’t even get the Tube there) then sweeping through Camden, Shoreditch, Soho, Kensington, Notting Hill . . . and ending up at 8am in Alexandra Palace.

Along the way Sunny meets a whole host of characters she never dreamed she’d have anything in common with – least of all the devilishly handsome (and somewhat vain) French ‘twins’ (they’re really cousins) Jean Luc and Vic. But as this love-letter to London shows, a city is only a sum of its parts, and really it’s the people living there who make up its life and soul. And, as Sunny discovers, everyone – from friends, apparent-enemies, famous bands and even rickshaw drivers – is willing to help a girl on a mission to get her romantic retribution.


Review:

This is a clever, laugh-out-loud funny, imaginative novel.

The writing is exceptional. The characters are smart, adventurous, and engaging. And I love that the sights, sounds, history and diversity of London play a key role, and is a character itself.

The plot is fast-paced, the whole story takes place within 12 hours, is full of fantastic escapades, and is so engaging you will read this book in one sitting.

This is a great book. I loved it.

 

This book is due to be published on June 2, 2016.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Bonnier Publishing, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
Destination: India by Katy Colins

#BookReview Destination: India by Katy ColinsTitle: Destination: India

Author: Katy Colins

Series: The Lonely Hearts Travel Club #2

Published by: HQ Digital on June 2, 2016

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 334

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Carina UK, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

 

Synopsis:

Let yourself go…

Georgia Green is about to board a plane to India, alone – again. Things were supposed to be different this time, but Georgia backpacked solo to Thailand and survived, what could possibly go wrong?

Only she is about to find out that when in India the country calls the shots – not you.


Review:

Imaginative, fascinating, and funny!

This is a really nice contemporary romance that takes us on a whirlwind tour of India, both the good and bad, using remarkable description and humorous mishaps.

The writing is well done. The characters are smart, adventurous, and engaging. And the plot is interesting, captivating, full of fanciful escapades, and, of course, a little romance.

I really enjoyed this book. And I look forward to reading the next book in the series, Destination: Chile later in the fall.

 

This book is due to be published on June 2, 2016.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Carina UK, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
What We Didn’t Say by Rory Dunlop
@roryjamesdunlop

#BookReview What We Didn’t Say by Rory Dunlop @roryjamesdunlopTitle: What We Didn't Say

Author: Rory Dunlop

Published by: Bonnier Zaffre on June 30, 2016

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 320

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Bonnier Publishing, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

A darkly funny story of a marriage in crisis, perfect for readers who loved Us by David Nicholls and The Versions of Us by Laura Barnett

Jack and Laura have separated. Jack thinks it’s all Laura’s fault.

Laura disagrees.

Jack writes to Laura, desperate to put across his side of the story.

Laura interrupts.

Wryly sarcastic and intensely well-observed, What We Didn’t Say is about that gap between words and feelings where relationships live – and die.


Review:

Deeply moving, insightful, and captivating.

This is a poignant novel that reminds us that life is short and precious, and that fundamentally we all need to love and be loved.

It touches on familial dynamics, marriage, secrets, jealousy, love, trust, and the importance of communication.

The story is written using a two-person narration, in a creative and unique style, which allows readers to flow both effortlessly between past and present, as well as hear both perspectives seamlessly.

It is well written. The prose is simple, precise, and darkly witty.  And the characters are complex and real.

This is engaging story with a powerful impact, and I highly recommend it.

 

This book is due to be published on June 30, 2016.

 Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following Amazon link.

Amazon UK

 

For more information on Rory Dunlop, follow him on Twitter at: @roryjamesdunlop

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Bonnier Publishing, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
Summer at Oyster Bay by Jenny Hale

#BookReview Summer at Oyster Bay by Jenny HaleTitle: Summer at Oyster Bay

Author: Jenny Hale

Published by: Bookouture on June 9, 2016

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 278

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Bookouture, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Summer at Oyster Bay is the perfect, feel-good summer romance, about the importance of home and family, learning what love is, and living for the moment.

They say falling in love is easy. But what if you know it’ll break your heart?

For Emily Tate, returning to her charming childhood home Oyster Bay is like coming up for air after the fast pace of her city life. At the farm her grandfather built, surrounded by sister Rachel’s chatter, Gram’s buttermilk biscuits, and the soft, white sand, Emily is reminded of exactly who she is and what she holds most dear.

When Emily starts work at elegant Water’s Edge Inn, Charles Peterson, the handsome new owner, asks for her help. He wants to expand and needs Emily to teach him the local ways, so he can convince the planning commission. Emily vows to make him fall in love with her hometown, just the way it is.

At work, Charles is reserved and serious, yet once Emily has him kicking off his shoes in the sand and sailing across the glistening Chesapeake Bay, she sees another side to him, and their easy rapport feels like the start of something big.

But when it becomes clear Charles’s plans for the inn involve bulldozing Oyster Bay, Emily is heartbroken. Will she lose her home and Charles all at once, or can she save Oyster Bay, and give true love a chance?


Review:

Sweet, amusing, and engaging!

This is a classic contemporary romance story. It has friendship, heartbreak, grief, family, food, and romance.

The characters are lovable, dependable, and real. The plot is captivating and interesting. The prose is well done and exceptionally descriptive. And the setting, is the beautiful East Coast, complete with melt-in-your-mouth seafood, campfires, and endless summer days.

I really enjoyed this book. It was like being wrapped up in a cozy blanket, warm and comfortable.

 

This book is due to be published on June 9, 2016.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Bookouture, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
The Night Stalker by Robert Bryndza
@robertbryndza @bookouture

#BookReview The Night Stalker by Robert Bryndza @robertbryndza @bookoutureTitle: The Night Stalker

Author: Robert Bryndza

Series: Detective Erika Foster #2

Published by: Bookouture on June 2, 2016

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Pages: 384

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Bookouture, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

If the Night Stalker is watching, you’re already dead… 

In the dead of a swelteringly hot summer’s night, Detective Erika Foster is called to a murder scene. The victim, a doctor, is found suffocated in bed. His wrists are bound and his eyes bulging through a clear plastic bag tied tight over his head. 

A few days later, another victim is found dead, in exactly the same circumstances. As Erika and her team start digging deeper, they discover a calculated serial killer – stalking their victims before choosing the right moment to strike. 

The victims are all single men, with very private lives. Why are their pasts shrouded in secrecy? And what links them to the killer? 

As a heat wave descends upon London, Erika will do everything to stop the Night Stalker before the body count rises, even if it means risking her job. But the victims might not be the only ones being watched… Erika’s own life could be on the line. 


Review:

Intense, suspenseful, and clever!

This is a compelling thriller that delves into the depth and despair associated with psychological and physical torment, and reminds us that you never really know what happens behind closed doors.

The characters are multi-layered, complex and creative. The story is well written, with multiple plots and great twists and turns that will keep you enthralled for hours.

This is a gripping page turner that is disturbingly real, and I highly recommend it.

 

This book is due to be published on June 2, 2016. 

Pick up copy from your favourite retailer or from one of the following links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon Canada

 

Thank you to Bookouture for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Robert Bryndza

Robert Bryndza is the author of the international #1 bestseller The Girl in the Ice, which is the first in his Detective Erika Foster series.

The Night Stalker, Dark Water and Last Breath are the second, third, and fourth books in the series, and the fifth book, Cold Blood is available now.

Robert’s books have sold over 2 million copies and have been translated into 27 languages.

In addition to writing crime fiction, Robert has published a bestselling series of romantic comedy novels. He is British and lives in Slovakia.

#BookReview
The Sunshine and Biscotti Club by Jenny Oliver

#BookReview The Sunshine and Biscotti Club by Jenny OliverTitle: The Sunshine And Biscotti Club

Author: Jenny Oliver

Published by: Carina UK on May 19, 2016

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 384

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Carina UK, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Moving to Italy to set up a baking club is a dream come true…

…until Libby catches her husband cheating just weeks before The Sunshine and Biscotti Club opens its doors.

With the first wave of guests set to arrive any day, Libby has no choice but to tie on her apron and get set to bake. But with a dash of sunshine and a sprinkling of old friends, Libby’s kitchen nightmare might just become the best thing that’s ever happened to her.

After all, you can’t bake biscotti without breaking a few eggs…

For guaranteed sunshine all holiday long, pack your bags and escape to The Sunshine and Biscotti Club – the irresistible new book from Jenny Oliver!


Review:

Intelligent, delightful, and charming!

This is a story about friendship, heartbreak, acceptance, forgiveness, love, and food.

The characters are fun-loving, dependable, flawed, and real. The plot is interesting and engaging. The writing is exquisite. And the prose is descriptive and witty. 

To me, it was like sitting down to watch a reunion episode of Friends, but instead of the usual gang sitting around the Central Perk, this one had a new light-hearted bunch gathering in the lush countryside of Italy instead.

I loved this book. It is a perfect summer read. 

 

This book is due to be published on May 19, 2016.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Carina UK, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
Finding You by Danielle Ryan

#BookReview Finding You by Danielle RyanTitle: Finding You

Author: Danielle Ryan

Published by: Aria on May 1, 2016

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 190

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Aria, NetGalley

Book Rating: 7/10

 

 

Synopsis:

A feel good love story where sometimes first impressions can be very wrong..

Valentina Harrison is a PA at an international advertising agency but when her boss disappears, James Spencer is flown in from the New York office to take over the helm.

James is handsome, successful and arrogant, Valentina is intelligent but, compared to the other fashionistas in her Milan office, rather plain and different. Because of this James treats her with contempt; needless to say Valentina can’t stand him.

As their work brings them closer together, James and Valentina discover that first impressions can be wrong, so very wrong…


Review:

This is a fun, sweet contemporary romance.

The story takes us into the world of advertising in both Milan and New York. The characters are interesting, quirky, and likeable. And the plot has some mystery, drama, and of course romance.

If you’re looking for a light-hearted, easy, boss-to-more read, this one’s for you.

 

 

Thank you to NetGalley, especially Aria, for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

#BookReview
Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave @chriscleave

#BookReview Everyone Brave is Forgiven by Chris Cleave @chriscleaveTitle: Everyone Brave is Forgiven

Author: Chris Cleave

Published by: Simon & Schuster on May 3, 2016

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 418

Format: Hardcover

Source: Purchased

Book Rating: 10/10

 

 

Synopsis:

From the author of the #1 New York Times bestselling Little Bee, a spellbinding novel about three unforgettable individuals thrown together by war, love, and their search for belonging in the ever-changing landscape of WWII London.

It’s 1939 and Mary, a young socialite, is determined to shock her blueblood political family by volunteering for the war effort. She is assigned as a teacher to children who were evacuated from London and have been rejected by the countryside because they are infirm, mentally disabled, or—like Mary’s favorite student, Zachary—have colored skin.

Tom, an education administrator, is distraught when his best friend, Alastair, enlists. Alastair, an art restorer, has always seemed far removed from the violent life to which he has now condemned himself. But Tom finds distraction in Mary, first as her employer and then as their relationship quickly develops in the emotionally charged times. When Mary meets Alastair, the three are drawn into a tragic love triangle and—while war escalates and bombs begin falling around them—further into a new world unlike any they’ve ever known.

A sweeping epic with the kind of unforgettable characters, cultural insights, and indelible scenes that made Little Bee so incredible, Chris Cleave’s latest novel explores the disenfranchised, the bereaved, the elite, the embattled. Everyone Brave Is Forgiven is a heartbreakingly beautiful story of love, loss, and incredible courage.


Review:

This is a remarkable story that is incredibly insightful, and deeply moving.

The story is set in wartime London, and is told from two perspectives. Mary, a young woman of privilege and class, who decides to help and continues to help with war efforts, even when it seems like she is battling societal ideologies as much as the enemy itself.  And Alastair, an art restorer turned officer, who continues to fight for his country, even when all seems bleak and his resilience, strength, and memories of home are all that keep him moving forward.

This is story about war, loss, injustice, love, courage, and survival.

The writing is precise and poetic. The characters are sympathetic, valiant and real. The descriptive prose is stunning. And the dry wit of the dialogue keeps the story buoyant, above the darkness, and allows you to be impacted but not sunk.

Perhaps Kipling’s iconic words say it best, “lest we forget.” 

This story will resonate with you long after the final page has been turned. And I have a feeling it won’t be long before it is on book club lists everywhere. 

 

This novel is available now.

Pick up a copy from your favourite retailer or from the following Amazon links.

Amazon UKAmazon USAmazon Canada

 

For more information on Chris Cleave, visit his website at: chriscleave.com

or follow him on Twitter at: @chriscleave

 

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