8.5/10

#BookReview
One Night Gone by Tara Laskowski
@TaraLWrites @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview One Night Gone by Tara Laskowski @TaraLWrites @HarlequinBooksTitle: One Night Gone

Author: Tara Laskowski

Published by: Graydon House on October 1, 2019

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 352

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

It was the perfect place to disappear…

One sultry summer, Maureen Haddaway arrives in the wealthy town of Opal Beach to start her life anew—to achieve her destiny. There, she finds herself lured by the promise of friendship, love, starry skies, and wild parties. But Maureen’s new life just might be too good to be true, and before the summer is up, she vanishes.

Decades later, when Allison Simpson is offered the opportunity to house-sit in Opal Beach during the off-season, it seems like the perfect chance to begin fresh after a messy divorce. But when she becomes drawn into the mysterious disappearance of a girl thirty years before, Allison realizes the gorgeous homes of Opal Beach hide dark secrets. And the truth of that long-ago summer is not even the most shocking part of all…


Review:

Tight, mysterious, and pacey!

One Night Gone is an atmospheric, suspenseful thriller that takes us into the life of Allison Simpson, a depressed, heartbroken meteorologist who after moving to Opal Beach to house sit for the fall inadvertently gets drawn into a thirty-year-old missing persons case involving the young carnival teen, Maureen Haddaway who one day just vanished without a trace.

The prose is descriptive and intense. The characters are troubled, vulnerable, and tenacious. And the plot using a past/present, back-and-forth style unravels and intertwines into a compelling, cunning tale full of deception, manipulation, familial drama, swirling emotions, violence, mayhem, and murder.

Overall, One Night Gone is an eerie, sharp, ominous debut by Laskowski that highlights the selfish, scheming, desperate side of human nature and reminds us that skeletons often find their way to the surface no matter how well they are hidden or buried.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

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

 

About Tara Laskowski

TARA LASKOWSKI is the award-winning author of two short story collections, Modern Manners for Your Inner Demons and Bystanders, which was named a best book of 2017 by Jennifer Egan in The Guardian. Her debut novel One Night Gone will be published in October 2019 by Graydon House Books. She has had stories published in Alfred Hitchcock’s Mystery Magazine, Mid-American Review, and the Norton anthology New Micro: Exceptionally Short Fiction, among others. Her Ellery Queen’s Mystery Magazine story, “States of Matter,” was selected by Amy Hempel for the 2017 Best Small Fictions anthology, and her short story “The Case of the Vanishing Professor” is a finalist for the 2019 Agatha Award. Tara was the winner of the 2010 Santa Fe Writers Project’s Literary Awards Prize, has been the editor of the popular online flash fiction journal SmokeLong Quarterly since 2010, and is a member of Sisters in Crime. She and her husband, writer Art Taylor, write the column Long Story Short at the Washington Independent Review of Books. She earned a BA in English with a minor in writing from Susquehanna University and an MFA in creative writing from George Mason University. She grew up in Pennsylvania and lives in Virginia.

#BookReview #BlogTour
Four Christmases and a Secret
by Zara Stoneley @ZaraStoneley @rararesources

#BookReview #BlogTour Four Christmases and a Secret by Zara Stoneley @ZaraStoneley @rararesources

#BookReview #BlogTour Four Christmases and a Secret by Zara Stoneley @ZaraStoneley @rararesourcesTitle: Four Christmases and a Secret

Author: Zara Stoneley

Published by: HarperImpulse on September 27, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 400

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: HarperImpulse, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

Except for Daisy Christmas means another of Uncle T’s dreaded Christmas parties, complete with Christmas jumper and flashing antlers.  And Oliver Cartwright.  Gorgeous Oliver Cartwright. Who she hates.

Every year Daisy has to face insufferable Ollie and hear all about how BRILLIANT he is.  Whereas Daisy has no job, no man and no idea how to fix things.

This Christmas however Daisy is determined things will be different.  There will be no snogging Ollie under the mistletoe like when they were teenagers.  No, this year she’ll show Ollie that she’s a Responsible Adult too.
 
But as the champagne corks pop, and the tinsel sparkles, Uncle T has news of his own to share…and it could change Daisy’s life forever…


Review:

Charming, touching, and romantic!

Four Christmases and a Secret is a cute, heartwarming read that takes you into the life of Daisy Dunkerly as she meanders through all sorts of highs and lows, from losing her boyfriend, enduring an unsatisfying career, fostering dogs with sweet personalities, surviving the annual Christmas parties, ugly sweaters and all, and reconnecting with a successful, handsome friend from the past.

The writing is sentimental and light. The characters are charismatic, unique, and endearing. And the plot is an engaging blend of heart, humour, family, friendship, nostalgic moments, attraction, chemistry, spirited shenanigans, awkward moments, tricky situations, painful secrets, and a little Christmas cheer.

Overall, Four Christmases and a Secret is another refreshing, enjoyable, emotive treat by Stoneley that reminds us that life is an adventure and mistletoe can sometimes be magical.

 

This book is available now. 

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

 

 

About Zara Stoneley

Zara Stoneley is the USA Today bestselling author of The Wedding Date.

Born in a small village in the UK, she wanted to be a female James Herriot, a spy, or an author when she grew up. After many (many) years, and many different jobs, her dream of writing a bestseller came true.

She writes about friendship, dreams, love, and happy ever afters, and hopes that her tales make you laugh a lot, cry a little, and occasionally say 'ahhh'.

Zara now lives in a Cheshire village with her family, a lively cockapoo called Harry, and a very bossy (and slightly evil) cat called Saffron.

Zara’s bestselling novels include 'No One Cancels Christmas', 'The Wedding Date', 'The Holiday Swap', 'Summer with the Country Village Vet', 'Blackberry Picking at Jasmine Cottage' and the popular Tippermere series - 'Stable Mates', 'Country Affairs' and 'Country Rivals'.

 

Thank you to Zara Stoneley and Rachel’s Random Resources for providing me with a copy in an exchange for an honest review.

 

#BlogTour #BookReview
All the Way by Kendall Ryan
@KendallRyan1

#BlogTour #BookReview All the Way by Kendall Ryan @KendallRyan1

#BlogTour #BookReview All the Way by Kendall Ryan @KendallRyan1Title: All the Way

Author: Kendall Ryan

Series: Hot Jocks #2

Published by: Dream Press on Setptember 24, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 344

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Kendall Ryan

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

Synopsis:

I know it’s time to move on from my rocky past and get back out there and start dating again.

It’s just that every time I think about it, I get all nervous and sweaty.

Good thing I have a secret weapon to help me—my best friend, professional hockey stud Owen Parrish.

He’s the king of hookups, and promises he’ll be my guide through the world of online dating. With his help, I know this won’t be as hard.

  • • •

I’ve never been this hard in my entire life.

My friend Becca wants my help hooking her up with some douchey guy from a dating app.

I said I’d help her—but now I’m noticing all kinds of things I can’t ignore, like how pretty she is behind those baggy clothes and messy buns.

I want to be the one to help her, to show her the ropes in the bedroom, and it turns out, Becca’s game to let me take a more hands-on approach.

But what happens when she’s ready to take her newfound confidence and move on? I’ve never been boyfriend material, but for her, I want to try.

Your favorite hot jocks are back with an all new standalone novel. If you like sexy, confident men who know how to handle a stick (on and off the ice), and smart women who are strong enough to keep all those big egos in check, this series is for you!


Review:

Angsty, hopeful, and passionate!

All the Way, the latest novel in the Hot Jocks series, is a slightly more emotive tale about the scarred, hesitant Becca who after suffering an assault in the past is having a hard time moving forward, and the handsome, hockey stud Owen who is more than happy to help his best friend find her mojo again.

The writing style is seamless and sincere. The characters are patient, supportive, committed, and lovable. And the plot is a delightful mix of life, love, friendship, family, self-discovery, empowerment, scorching chemistry, and steamy romance.

Once again with All the Way, Ryan has proven that not only is she one of the best at writing contemporary romance stories that are humorous, light, bursting with sexual tension, and full of characters we can’t help but root for, but also emotionally compelling ones.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                       

 

 

 

About Kendall Ryan

A New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today bestselling author of more than two dozen titles, Kendall Ryan has sold over 1.5 million books and her books have been translated into several languages in countries around the world. She’s a traditionally published author with Simon & Schuster and Harper Collins UK, as well as an independently published author. Since she first began self-publishing in 2012, she’s appeared at #1 on Barnes & Noble and iBooks charts around the world. Her books have also appeared on the New York Times and USA Today bestseller lists more than three dozen times. Ryan has been featured in such publications as USA Today, Newsweek, and InTouch Magazine.

 

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

 

#BookReview
Clear My Name by Paula Daly
@PaulaDalyAuthor @PGCBooks @groveatlantic

#BookReview Clear My Name by Paula Daly @PaulaDalyAuthor @PGCBooks @groveatlanticTitle: Clear My Name

Author: Paula Daly

Published by: Grove Press on September 20, 2019

Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 304

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

A rising star in domestic suspense broadens her canvas in a brilliant new thriller in which a woman convicted of murdering her husband’s lover waits to be exonerated by a female investigator battling her own dark past Paula Daly is widely acclaimed for her masterful plotting and thrilling page-turners. Now she delivers Clear My Name, a page-turning new thriller about an investigator, who in order to free her client, must confront secrets she has struggled a lifetime to hide.

When Carrie was accused of brutally murdering her husband’s lover, she denied it. She denied it again when they found her blood inside his house, again when they put her in front of a jury, and again when they sent her to prison. Now she’s three years into her fifteen-year sentence, gradually losing hope and separated from her pregnant daughter, but she is still maintaining her innocence. Tess is the only paid employee of Innocence UK, a charity that helps clear people wrongfully convicted of crimes, and which accepts Carrie’s case. But can she trust Carrie? Tess is no starry-eyed recent grad – her assumption is that they’re all lying.”

Meanwhile, Tess is also paired with Avril, a naive young investigator-in-training, with the hope that by mentoring her, she can eventually double the group’s investigative workload. But Tess unexpectedly bolts when she’s tipped off to a witness that could possibly prove Carrie didn’t commit the crime. While Tess and Avril work the case, re-interviewing witnesses and testing assumptions made at the time of the arrest, the tension ratchets up in both the case and Tess’s personal life.


Review:

Gripping, intense, and tricky!

In this latest novel by Daly, Clear My Name, Tess Gilroy chief investigator for Innocence UK heads back to her hometown of Morecambe, England where she finds herself not only investigating the possible wrongful conviction of Carrie Kamara in the stabbing of her husband’s mistress but also having to confront her own past that’s littered with secrets and heartbreak.

The prose is tight and direct. The characters are meticulous, troubled, and multilayered. And the plot is a compelling tale full of deduction, duplicity, manipulation, infidelity, obsession, anger, hatred, injustice, violence, and murder.

Overall, Clear My Name is a sophisticated, unnerving, gritty read that has just enough twists, suspense, in-depth character development, and forensic analysis to keep you intrigued from start to finish.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                          

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Paula Daly

Paula Daly is the acclaimed author of five novels. Her work has been sold in fifteen countries, shortlisted for CWA Gold Dagger Crime Novel of the Year award, and her books are currently being developed into the ITV drama - Deep Water - set to air in 2019. She was born in Lancashire and lives in the Lake District with her husband, three children, and whippet Skippy.

#BookReview
Where the Light Enters by Sara Donati
@akaSaraDonati @BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCA

#BookReview Where the Light Enters by Sara Donati @akaSaraDonati @BerkleyPub @PenguinRandomCATitle: Where the Light Enters

Author: Sara Donati

Series: The Gilded Hour #2

Published by: Berkley Books on September 10, 2019

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 672

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Penguin Random House Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

Synopsis:

From the international bestselling author of The Gilded Hourcomes Sara Donati’s enthralling epic about two trailblazing female doctors in nineteenth-century New York

Obstetrician Dr. Sophie Savard returns home to the achingly familiar rhythms of Manhattan in the early spring of 1884 to rebuild her life after the death of her husband. With the help of Dr. Anna Savard, her dearest friend, cousin, and fellow physician she plans to continue her work aiding the disadvantaged women society would rather forget.

As Sophie sets out to construct a new life for herself, Anna’s husband, Detective-Sergeant Jack Mezzanotte calls on them both to consult on two new cases: the wife of a prominent banker has disappeared into thin air, and the corpse of a young woman is found with baffling wounds that suggest a killer is on the loose. In New York it seems that the advancement of women has brought out the worst in some men. Unable to ignore the plight of New York’s less fortunate, these intrepid cousins draw on all resources to protect their patients.


Review:

Multilayered, fascinating, and incredibly absorbing!

Where the Light Enters is a gritty, compelling tale set in New York City in the mid-1880s at a time when the island was bustling, female doctors were still discounted and frowned upon, reproduction and childbirth still had high mortality rates, and women looking for help with unwanted pregnancies had little or nowhere to go.

There are two main memorable characters in this novel; Dr. Sophie Savard, a young multi-ethnic obstetrician who returns to the United States to open a scholarship program and home for girls looking to study medicine after her husband succumbs to Consumption; and Dr. Anna Mezzanotte, a young surgeon who spends her days operating on those less fortunate and helping her detective husband Jack as he hunts for a serial killer who preys on women seeking an abortion.

The prose is eloquent and rich. The characters are strong, independent, intelligent, and genuine. And the plot using an intriguing mixture of narration, letters, newspaper articles, and reports immerses you in a riveting, suspenseful tale of familial dynamics, duty, friendship, passion, loss, love, sexism, violence, murder, and the roles and struggles faced by female physicians in early medicine.

Where the Light Enters is once again another hefty novel by Donati, with just under 700 pages, but it is so remarkably atmospheric and beautifully written that before you know it the story is finished and you’re yearning for more.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Sara Donati

Sara Donati is the pen name of Rosina Lippi, a former academic and tenured university professor. Since 2000 she has been writing fiction full-time, haunting the intersection where history and storytelling meet, wallowing in nineteenth-century newspapers, magazines, street maps, and academic historical research. She is the internationally bestselling author of the Wilderness series (Into the Wilderness, Dawn on a Distant Shore, Lake in the Clouds, Fire Along the Sky, Queen of Swords, and The Endless Forest) as well as The Gilded Hour, the first in a new series following the descendants of characters from the Wilderness series. She lives between the Cascades and Puget Sound with her husband, daughter, Jimmy Dean (a Havanese), and Max and Bella (the cats).

Photograph courtesy of penguinrandomhouse.com

#BookReview
The Long Call (Two Rivers #1)
by Ann Cleeves @AnnCleeves @PGCBooks
@panmacmillan @headcrime #thelongcall

#BookReview The Long Call (Two Rivers #1) by Ann Cleeves @AnnCleeves @PGCBooks @panmacmillan @headcrime #thelongcallTitle: The Long Call

Author: Ann Cleeves

Series: Two Rivers #1

Published by: Pan Macmillan on September 3, 2019

Genres: Mystery/Thriller, Police Procedural

Pages: 400

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

Synopsis:

Bestselling author of the Shetland and Vera Stanhope series’, Ann Cleeves returns with the first in a brand-new series set in North Devon and featuring Detective Matthew Venn. In this rural idyll, where two rivers meet, crime is always there waiting to rise from the water.

In North Devon, where the rivers Taw and Torridge converge and run into the sea, Detective Matthew Venn stands outside the church as his father’s funeral takes place. The day Matthew turned his back on the strict evangelical community in which he grew up, he lost his family too.

Now he’s back, not just to mourn his father at a distance, but to take charge of his first major case in the Two Rivers region; a complex place not quite as idyllic as tourists suppose.

A body has been found on the beach near to Matthew’s new home: a man with the tattoo of an albatross on his neck, stabbed to death.

Finding the killer is Venn’s only focus, and his team’s investigation will take him straight back into the community he left behind, and the deadly secrets that lurk there.


Review:

Simmering, menacing, and clever!

The Long Call is the kickoff for a brand-new series by Cleeves that sweeps you away to North Devon where the reticent, intelligent, DI Matthew Vern finds himself investigating a complicated case involving a stabbing victim with a bird tattoo, two missing girls, a community centre that hits a little too close to home, and an evangelical Brethren that excommunicated him in the past.

The prose is meticulous and crisp. The characters are methodical, relentless, and flawed. And the plot, including all the subplots, unravel and intertwine into a mysterious tale filled with mixed emotions, deception, abuse, manipulation, corruption, red herrings, and murder.

Overall, The Long Call is a well-paced, pensive, sophisticated thriller by Cleeves that’s a brilliant start to the Two Rivers series and another fine example of her ability to write police procedurals with well-drawn characters and sinister storylines.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                          

 

 

Thank you to Publishers Group Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Ann Cleeves

Ann Cleeves is the author behind PBS’s Vera and BBC One’s Shetland. She has written over twenty-five novels, and is the creator of detectives Vera Stanhope and Jimmy Perez – characters loved both on screen and in print. Her books have now sold over 1 million copies worldwide.

Ann worked as a probation officer, bird observatory cook and auxiliary coastguard before becoming a crime writer. She is a member of ‘Murder Squad’, working with other British northern writers to promote crime fiction. In 2006 Ann was awarded the Duncan Lawrie Dagger (CWA Gold Dagger) for Best Crime Novel, for Raven Black, the first book in her Shetland series, and in 2012 she was inducted into the CWA Crime Thriller Awards Hall of Fame. Ann lives in North Tyneside, England.

#BookReview
The Reckless Oath We Made
by Bryn Greenwood @bryngreenwood @PenguinRandomCA @PutnamBooks

#BookReview The Reckless Oath We Made by Bryn Greenwood @bryngreenwood @PenguinRandomCA @PutnamBooksTitle: The Reckless Oath We Made

Author: Bryn Greenwood

Published by: G.P. Putnam's Sons on August 20, 2019

Genres: General Fiction, Contemporary Romance

Pages: 448

Format: Hardcover

Source: Penguin Random House Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

A provocative love story between a tough Kansas woman on a crooked path to redemption and the unlikeliest of champions, from the New York Times bestselling author of All the Ugly and Wonderful Things.

Zee is nobody’s fairy tale princess. Almost six-foot, with a redhead’s temper and a shattered hip, she has a long list of worries: never-ending bills, her beautiful, gullible sister, her five-year-old nephew, her housebound mother, and her drug-dealing boss.

Zee may not be a princess, but Gentry is an actual knight, complete with sword, armor, and a code of honor. Two years ago the voices he hears called him to be Zee’s champion. Both shy and autistic, he’s barely spoken to her since, but he has kept watch, ready to come to her aid.

When an abduction tears Zee’s family apart, she turns to the last person she ever imagined–Gentry–and sets in motion a chain of events that will not only change both of their lives, but bind them to one another forever.


Review:

Heart-tugging, unconventional, and gritty!

The Reckless Oath We Made is an incredibly raw, moving novel about life in small-town Kansas where making ends meet is hard, responsibility weighs heavy, and loyalty, innocence, and love comes in many different forms.

The writing style is unique, with the narration being a mixture of contemporary and Middle English. The characters are tormented, fragile, and opportunistic. And the plot takes us on an emotional rollercoaster ride full of life, love, violence, tension, special needs, incarceration, ignorance, injustice, death, loss and selfless heroism. 

The Reckless Oath We Made is a very complex, intriguing, tragic romance that highlights just how powerful and personally destructive a solemn promise can be. It grips you from the very first page and leaves your heart bleeding for every single character, even the ones who at times are truly difficult to even like.  

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Penguin Random House Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Bryn Greenwood

BRYN GREENWOOD is a fourth-generation Kansan and the daughter of a mostly reformed drug dealer. She is the author of the NYT bestseller All the Ugly and Wonderful Things. The Reckless Oath We Made is her fourth novel from Putnam. She lives in Lawrence, Kansas.

Photograph courtesy of Goodreads Author Page.

#BookReview
The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal
@esmacneal @SimonSchusterCA

#BookReview The Doll Factory by Elizabeth Macneal @esmacneal @SimonSchusterCATitle: The Doll Factory

Author: Elizabeth Macneal

Published by: Simon & Schuster on August 13, 2019

Genres: Historical Fiction, Mystery/Thriller

Pages: 386

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Simon & Schuster Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

The Doll Factory, the debut novel by Elizabeth Macneal, is an intoxicating story of art, obsession and possession.

London. 1850. The Great Exhibition is being erected in Hyde Park and among the crowd watching the spectacle two people meet. For Iris, an aspiring artist, it is the encounter of a moment – forgotten seconds later, but for Silas, a collector entranced by the strange and beautiful, that meeting marks a new beginning.

When Iris is asked to model for pre-Raphaelite artist Louis Frost, she agrees on the condition that he will also teach her to paint. Suddenly her world begins to expand, to become a place of art and love.

But Silas has only thought of one thing since their meeting, and his obsession is darkening . . .


Review:

Gothic, evocative, and eerie!

The Doll Factory is a riveting, gritty tale set in London in the mid-1800s at a time when the city was bustling, scavenging was prevalent, respectability meant everything, The Great Exhibition was a structural marvel, and the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was redefining visual art.

There are three main memorable characters in this novel; Iris Whittle, a young red-headed girl who dreams of becoming an artist and unconsciously catches the eye of many; Silas Reed, a strange fellow with a morbid fascination with taxidermy and a macabre, obsessive nature; and Albie, a young guttersnipe who spends his days traipsing the streets for a shilling and dreaming of a mouth full of pearly whites.

The prose is ominous and rich. The supporting characters are multilayered, flawed, and believable. And the plot is an insightful, compelling tale of familial responsibilities, strength, duty, coming-of-age, art, friendship, passion, desire, obsession, loss, love, survival, and the roles of women in Victorian England.

Overall, The Doll Factory is an intense, creative, menacing read by Macneal that does a beautiful job of interweaving historical facts and compelling fiction into a sinister, suspenseful mystery that is deliciously atmospheric and highly entertaining.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

Thank you to Simon & Schuster Canada for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Elizabeth Macneal

Elizabeth Macneal was born in Edinburgh and now lives in East London. She is a writer and potter and works from a small studio at the bottom of her garden. She read English Literature at Oxford University, before working in the City for several years. In 2017, she completed the Creative Writing MA at UEA in 2017 where she was awarded the Malcolm Bradbury scholarship.

The Doll Factory, Elizabeth's debut novel, won the Caledonia Noel Award 2018. It will be published in twenty-eight languages and TV rights have sold to Buccaneer Media.

Photography by Mat Smith.

#BookReview #BlogTour
The Summer House in Santorini
by Samantha Parks @samanthajgale @HarperImpulse @rararesources

#BookReview #BlogTour The Summer House in Santorini by Samantha Parks @samanthajgale @HarperImpulse @rararesources

#BookReview #BlogTour The Summer House in Santorini by Samantha Parks @samanthajgale @HarperImpulse @rararesourcesTitle: The Summer House in Santorini

Author: Samantha Parks

Published by: HarperImpulse on June 7, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: HarperImpulse, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

 

Synopsis:

One summer in Greece will change everything…

Anna’s running away. From a failed relationship, a dead-end career and a complicated family life.

On the island of Santorini, with its picturesque villas, blue-tiled roofs, and the turquoise waters of the Aegean lapping at the white sand beaches, Anna inherits a less-than-picturesque summer house from her estranged father. As she rebuilds the house, she rebuilds her life, uncovering family secrets along the way that change everything. She starts to fall for her little slice of paradise, as well as for gorgeous, charming Nikos.
 
Will Anna lose her heart in more ways than one?


Review:

Breezy, hopeful, and romantic!

The Summer House in Santorini is a delightfully charming, touching tale that takes us into the life of Anna Linton at a time when her love life is in tatters, her career is stalling, and she’s reluctantly heading to the Mediterranean to sell a house she unexpectedly inherited from her recently deceased, estranged father.

The writing is light and smooth. The characters are independent, hardworking, and caring. And the plot is an uplifting tale of life, love, friendship, family, community, starting over, taking chances, old hurts, new beginnings, following one’s dreams, and contentment.

Overall, The Summer House in Santorini is a heartwarming, engaging, summery read that reminds us to always surround ourselves with those we love, stay open-minded, and be excited for whatever comes next.

 

This novel is available now. 

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

 

 

Thank you to HarperImpulse and Rachel’s Random Resources for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Samantha Parks

Samantha Parks is the pen name of Sam Gale. Her pen name comes from her late grandmother Velma Hobbs nee Parks, who was one of Sam's greatest role models. Sam was born in North Carolina but now resides in Bournemouth, UK with her husband Alex. She owns a successful marketing company and is enjoying her slow descent into "crazy plant lady" status.

 

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#BookReview #BookBlitz
Good Guy by Kate Meader
@KittyMeader @XpressoReads

#BookReview #BookBlitz Good Guy by Kate Meader @KittyMeader @XpressoReads

#BookReview #BookBlitz Good Guy by Kate Meader @KittyMeader @XpressoReadsTitle: Good Guy

Author: Kate Meader

Series: Rookie Rebels #1

Published by: Kate Meader LLC on July 30, 2019

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 340

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Kate Meader

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

He’s a Special Forces veteran making his pro hockey debut. She’s a dogged sports reporter determined to get a scoop. She’s also his best friend’s widow…

Fans can’t get enough of Levi Hunt, the Special Forces veteran who put his NHL career on hold to serve his country and fight the bad guys. So when his new Chicago Rebels bosses tell him to cooperate with the press on a profile, he’s ready to do his duty. Until he finds out who he has to work with: flame-haired, freckle-splashed, impossibly perky Jordan Cooke.

The woman he should not have kissed the night she buried her husband, Levi’s best friend in the service.

Hockey-stick-up-his-butt-serious Levi Hunt might despise Jordan for reasons she can’t fathom—okay, it’s to do with kissing—but her future in the cutthroat world of sports reporting hangs on delivering the goods on the league’s hottest, grumpiest rookie. So what if he’s not interested in having his life plated up for public consumption. Too bad. Jordan will have to play dirty to get her scoop and even dirtier to get her man. Only in winning the story, she might just lose her heart…


Review:

Sassy, steamy, and sexy!

Good Guy is a second-chance, hockey romance featuring the humble, publicity magnet, Levi Hunt who after having a harrowing career in the Green Berets becomes the oldest rookie in the NHL, and the spunky, tenacious widow, Jordan Cooke who may have to decide what’s more important the feelings of her late husband’s best friend or the opportunity at the career she’s always wanted.

The writing is crisp and fervent. The characters are charismatic, intriguing, and endearing. And the plot is a lighthearted, passionate tale filled with sizzling tension, poignant moments, scorching chemistry, flirty innuendoes, genuine emotion, and a swoon-worthy, happy-ever-after ending.

Overall, I found Good Guy to be a charming, entertaining, fantastic start to this new Rookie Rebels series by Meader that I am positive will be a big hit with fans of the sports romance genre and lovers of the Chicago Rebels series everywhere.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

EXCERPT:

He needed to escape before he said or did something he’d regret, but he also needed her to be safe, which meant there was only one way this could proceed.

“I just hauled you out of there under the guise of doing this interview, so we—”

“Probably should keep up the pretense?”

“Correct.” He stalked toward the elevator bank, both relieved and on edge that she accompanied him.

“Were you headed to the bar to meet up with someone?”

“Just feeling restless in my room. Looking for company.”

“And I ruined it by making you think you needed to play target extraction.”

The elevator doors opened and when they closed again, he was inside and sharing the sultry air with Jordan. He pressed the button for the tenth floor. “You didn’t ruin it. Something else took precedence, is all.”

You.

In that moment, when he saw her, all thoughts of a night of dumb jokes with his crew dispersed to the outer limits of the Tri-State area. Sure, he noticed her discomfort with Stroger but even if he hadn’t, even if it had been Jordan in a room full of supermodels, there would have been no one else. Only her.

This was not controlling the narrative.

This was a fucking mess.

The elevator reached his floor and he stepped off, with her following.

Please. Fucking. No.

“Well, like I said, Levi, you didn’t have to rescue me.” She placed a hand on his arm and squeezed, probably intending to be friendly. Her touch flayed him. “I had it handled.”

He snapped. “Did you have it handled, Jordan? Because from what I can see you’re a beautiful woman forced to play nice with a bunch of jocks who probably think they have a shot with you.”

Her eyes flashed. “No one forcesme to do anything. I do this job because I love it, and yeah, the guys I cover usually enjoy a laugh and a joke. Unlike some people who’d rather scowl everyone around them into the grave. But I know where the line is and I’ve no problem redrawing it when necessary.”

Fury shouldn’t have made her more attractive. It shouldn’t have given that wrinkle between her eyebrows new purpose or the lips he wanted to kiss a plumpness that made his mouth water. It shouldn’t have made her chest heave with effort, which only drew his attention to their lush swell and the hint of cleavage he wanted to explore.

“I’m not saying you don’t. I’m saying that guys in this environment tend to turn into entitled asses and wouldn’t know a line if it was steamrolled all over their faces. I don’t want you to be in any situation where you have to even think about the line. Case in point, maybe you shouldn’t be fondling Kershaw’s biceps!”

She did a double take. “Fondling?”

“Yes, fondling. You’re a journalist. Haven’t you heard of it?”Weak, man. So weak.

“Yeah, I’ve heard of it,” she said, a rasp to her voice. “It’s one of my favorite words, actually. Are you seriously jealous … of Theo?”

Yes. All the yes.“Of course not. But he’s a dumb kid, and I don’t want him to get the wrong idea.”

She was closer now, close enough to share a breath. To stumble headlong into her. To fall into madness.

 

Thank you Kate Meader for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Kate Meader

Originally from Ireland, Kate Meader cut her romance reader teeth on Maeve Binchy and Jilly Cooper novels, with some Harlequins thrown in for variety. Give her tales about brooding mill owners, oversexed equestrians, and men who can rock an apron, a fire hose, or a hockey stick, and she's there. Now based in Chicago, she writes sexy contemporary romance with alpha heroes and strong heroines (and heroes) who can match their men quip for quip.

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