Format: ARC

#BlogTour #BookReview
Chasing Ghosts by Madalyn Morgan
@ActScribblerDJ @rararesources

#BlogTour #BookReview Chasing Ghosts by Madalyn Morgan @ActScribblerDJ @rararesources

#BlogTour #BookReview Chasing Ghosts by Madalyn Morgan @ActScribblerDJ @rararesourcesTitle: Chasing Ghosts

Author: Madalyn Morgan

Series: Dudley Sisters Saga #6

Published by CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform on June 23, 2018

Genres: Historical Fiction

Pages: 159

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Rachel's Random Resources

Book Rating: 7/10

 

Synopsis:

In 1949 after receiving treatment for shell shock in Canada, Claire’s husband disappears.

Has Mitch left her for the woman he talks about in his sleep? Or is he on the run from accusations of wartime treachery?

Claire goes to France in search of the truth, aided by old friends from the Resistance.


Review:

Historical, menacing, and intriguing!

In this latest novel by Morgan, Chasing Ghosts, she transports us back to 1949 as Claire embarks on a journey to find her missing husband, Mitch with the help of her contacts and friends from the Resistance after he mysteriously disappears during treatment for PTSD in Canada.

The writing is descriptive and smooth. The characters are fearless, clever, and relentless. And the plot, although a little slow to start, is a compelling tale about the psychological effects of war, family dynamics, friendship, suspicion, desperation, duplicity, and murder.

Overall, Chasing Ghosts is a sinister, fascinating, well researched, easy read that has a nice little twist and a satisfying ending. And even though it’s the sixth book in the Dudley Sisters Saga and the sequel to China Blue (Book #3) it can certainly be enjoyed and read as a standalone novel.

 

This novel is available now.

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

    

 

 

Giveaway:

Win signed copies of China Blue and Chasing Ghosts (UK Only)

 

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

*Terms and Conditions – UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

 

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

 

About Madalyn Morgan

Madalyn Morgan has been an actress for more than thirty years working in Repertory theatre, the West End, film and television. She is a radio presenter and journalist, writing articles for newspapers and magazines.
Madalyn was brought up in Lutterworth, at the Fox Inn. The pub was a great place for an aspiring actress and writer to live, as there were so many different characters to study and accents to learn. At twenty-four Madalyn gave up a successful hairdressing salon and wig-hire business for a place at E15 Drama College, and a career as an actress.
In 2000, with fewer parts available for older actresses, Madalyn taught herself to touch type, completed a two-year correspondence course with The Writer’s Bureau, and started writing. After living in London for thirty-six years, she has returned to her home town of Lutterworth, swapping two window boxes and a mortgage, for a garden and the freedom to write.
Happy to be an Indie Author, Madalyn has successfully published six novels. Foxden Acres, Applause, China Blue and The 9:45 To Bletchley are set before and during WW2 and tell the wartime stories of Bess, Margot, Claire, and Ena Dudley. Foxden Hotel and Chasing Ghosts are both post war. Chasing Ghosts is a sequel to China Blue.
Madalyn’s books are available on Amazon - in paperback and all formats of eBook.

 

#BookReview #BlogTour
Christmas on Lily Pond Lane by Emily Harvale
@emilyharvale @rararesources #LilyPondLane

#BookReview #BlogTour Christmas on Lily Pond Lane by Emily Harvale @emilyharvale @rararesources #LilyPondLane

#BookReview #BlogTour Christmas on Lily Pond Lane by Emily Harvale @emilyharvale @rararesources #LilyPondLaneTitle: Christmas on Lily Pond Lane

Author: Emily Harvale

Published by Crescent Gate Publishing on September 18, 2018

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 165

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Emily Harvale, Rachel's Random Resources

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

Snow is falling in Little Pondale, lights are twinkling and the smell of pine trees and roasting chestnuts fills the air…

But Mia Ward is in a bit of a jam. She’d planned to rent out Corner Cottage for Christmas but thanks to best friend, Ella Swann, it’s double-booked. Now Mia’s got to let one ‘party’ down, or find another cottage – fast.

Best friends and single mums, Cathy Cole and Christy Franks want their kids to have an old-fashioned Christmas. Ice-skating, carol singing, making decorations, and tobogganing are on their list of festive fun … but their kids have other things in mind.

City bankers, Leo and Hal Hardman are wondering if renting a cottage for Christmas and their parents’ anniversary is such a good idea. Little Pondale is tiny, there’s only one pub, mobile phone reception is non-existent and the cottage doesn’t even have a TV.

Meanwhile, Jenny Lake in settling in at her cousin’s bakery, but she’s left her (broken) heart in Florence, and Christmas was never her favourite time of year. And Reverend Glen Fox has taken over at St Michael and All Angels. He’s glad it’s a temporary post because village life is definitely not for him.

But luckily, for locals and visitors alike, there’s a sleigh-load of Christmas magic heading for Lily Pond Lane; enough to put a sparkle in everyone’s festive season. Although Christmas may not go quite as each of them has planned.


Review:

Romantic, charming, and jolly!

In this latest novel in The Cottage on Lily Pond Lane series, Christmas on Lily Pond Lane, we once again find ourselves back in Little Pondale where a new vicar, holidaymakers, festive cheer, and a wishing tree brings another dose of magic to Mia and the gang just in time for the holidays.

The characters are unique, easygoing, and engaging. The writing is fluent and smooth. And the plot is a lovely mix of budding romance, festive preparations, attraction, chemistry, family, friendship and lighthearted drama.

Overall, Christmas on Lily Pond Lane is a merry, captivating, entertaining read that is a delightful reminder that sometimes wishes really do come true.

 

This book is available now. 

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

 

 

And don’t forget to check out the other books in the series!

 

                               

 

About Emily Harvale

Having lived and worked in London for several years, Emily returned to her home town of Hastings where she now spends her days writing... and chatting on social media. Emily is a Member of the SoA, a PAN member of the RWA and a Pro Member of ALLi. She's an Amazon bestseller and a Kindle All Star. Emily loves writing and her stories are sure to bring a smile to your face and a warmth to your heart.

Emily says, "I write about friendship, family and falling in love. I believe in happing endings." When she isn't writing, she can be found enjoying the stunning East Sussex coast and countryside, or in a wine bar with friends, discussing life, love and the latest TV shows. Chocolate cake is often eaten. She dislikes housework almost as much as she dislikes anchovies - and will do anything to avoid both.

 

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

 

#BookReview
Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan
@pcalhenry @ThomasNelson

#BookReview Becoming Mrs. Lewis by Patti Callahan @pcalhenry @ThomasNelsonTitle: Becoming Mrs. Lewis

Author: Patti Callahan

Published by Thomas Nelson on October 2, 2018

Genres: Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 432

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Thomas Nelson, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8.5/10

 

 

Synopsis:

In a most improbable friendship, she found love. In a world where women were silenced, she found her voice.

From New York Times bestselling author Patti Callahan comes an exquisite novel of Joy Davidman, the woman C. S. Lewis called “my whole world.” When poet and writer Joy Davidman began writing letters to C. S. Lewis—known as Jack—she was looking for spiritual answers, not love. Love, after all, wasn’t holding together her crumbling marriage. Everything about New Yorker Joy seemed ill-matched for an Oxford don and the beloved writer of Narnia, yet their minds bonded over their letters. Embarking on the adventure of her life, Joy traveled from America to England and back again, facing heartbreak and poverty, discovering friendship and faith, and against all odds, finding a love that even the threat of death couldn’t destroy.

In this masterful exploration of one of the greatest love stories of modern times, we meet a brilliant writer, a fiercely independent mother, and a passionate woman who changed the life of this respected author and inspired books that still enchant us and change us. Joy lived at a time when women weren’t meant to have a voice—and yet her love for Jack gave them both voices they didn’t know they had.

At once a fascinating historical novel and a glimpse into a writer’s life, Becoming Mrs. Lewis is above all a love story—a love of literature and ideas and a love between a husband and wife that, in the end, was not impossible at all.


Review:

Vivid, compelling, and immersive!

Becoming Mrs. Lewis is an intriguing interpretation about the life of Joy Davidman, the American writer and poet who through a shared conviction of Christianity and love of writing became a close confidant, friend, and wife of the famous fantasy writer, C.S. Lewis until her untimely death from breast cancer in 1960.

It is a story about familial responsibilities, strength, friendship, kindness, encouragement, support, passion, desire, loss, and love.

Davidman was a strong, intelligent, forthright woman who not only found peace, contentment, and fulfillment through Christianity in midlife but also found her true self.

The prose is clear and precise. And the plot takes us back to the late 1940s to the early 1960s, from Ossining, NY to Oxford, England and tells the story of a life filled with loneliness, abuse, poverty, grace, riches, success, motherhood, and romance.

Becoming Mrs. Lewis is a well written, captivating, rich story by Callahan that does a remarkable job of highlighting her incredible knowledge and research into this complex, historical figure who is often unknown, forgotten or overlooked.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

 

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

 

About Patti Callahan

Patti Callahan, who also writes as Patti Callahan Henry, is a New York Times bestselling author of thirteen novels, including this latest novel BECOMING MRS. LEWIS – The Improbable Love Story of Joy Davidman and C.S. Lewis. A finalist in the Townsend Prize for Fiction, an Indie Next Pick, an OKRA pick, and a multiple nominee for the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) Novel of the Year, Patti is a frequent speaker at luncheons, book clubs and women’s groups. The mother of three children, she now lives in both Mountain Brook, Alabama and Bluffton, South Carolina with her husband.

#BookReview
The Dream Daughter by Diane Chamberlain
@D_Chamberlain @StMartinsPress

#BookReview The Dream Daughter by Diane Chamberlain @D_Chamberlain @StMartinsPressTitle: The Dream Daughter

Author: Diane Chamberlain

Published by St. Martin's Press on October 2, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction, Science Fiction

Pages: 384

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: St. Martin's Press, NetGalley

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

From bestselling author Diane Chamberlain comes an irresistible new novel.

When Caroline Sears receives the news that her unborn baby girl has a heart defect, she is devastated. It is 1970 and there seems to be little that can be done. But her brother-in-law, a physicist, tells her that perhaps there is. Hunter appeared in their lives just a few years before—and his appearance was as mysterious as his past. With no family, no friends, and a background shrouded in secrets, Hunter embraced the Sears family and never looked back.

Now, Hunter is telling her that something can be done about her baby’s heart. Something that will shatter every preconceived notion that Caroline has. Something that will require a kind of strength and courage that Caroline never knew existed. Something that will mean a mind-bending leap of faith on Caroline’s part.

And all for the love of her unborn child.

A rich, genre-spanning, breathtaking novel about one mother’s quest to save her child, unite her family, and believe in the unbelievable. Diane Chamberlain pushes the boundaries of faith and science to deliver a novel that you will never forget.


Review:

Enthralling, memorable, and heart-wrenching!

The Dream Daughter is a unique, moving, time-slip novel that takes you into the life of Caroline Sears as she embarks on a perilous journey to save and protect her unborn child.

The writing is eloquent and sophisticated. The characters are genuine, compassionate, and courageous. And the captivating, time-travel plot sweeps you away into an intricately woven tale about life, loss, family, determination, hope, solace, sacrifice, remarkable medical and scientific advances, and a little magic.

The Dream Daughter is ultimately a mesmerizing, creative, well-written story that may be a little different than Chamberlain’s previous novels, but is nevertheless an emotional, satisfying, page-turner of a tale that reminds us that a mother’s love is all-encompassing, selfless, powerful, and everlasting.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            


 

Thank you to St. Martins Press for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Diane Chamberlain

Diane Chamberlain is the New York Times, USA Today and Sunday Times bestselling author of 25 novels published in more than twenty languages. Some of her most popular books include Necessary Lies, The Silent Sister, The Secret Life of CeeCee Wilkes, and The Keeper of the Light Trilogy. Diane likes to write complex stories about relationships between men and women, parents and children, brothers and sisters, and friends. Although the thematic focus of her books often revolves around family, love, compassion and forgiveness, her stories usually feature a combination of drama, mystery, secrets and intrigue. Diane's background in psychology has given her a keen interest in understanding the way people tick, as well as the background necessary to create her realistic characters.

Diane was born and raised in Plainfield, New Jersey and spent her summers at the Jersey Shore. She also lived for many years in San Diego and northern Virginia before making North Carolina her home.

Diane received her bachelor's and master's degrees in clinical social work from San Diego State University. Prior to her writing career, Diane worked in hospitals in San Diego and Washington, D.C. before opening a private psychotherapy practice in Alexandria Virginia specializing in adolescents. All the while Diane was writing on the side. Her first book, Private Relations was published in 1989 and it earned the RITA award for Best Single Title Contemporary Novel.
Diane lives with her partner, photographer John Pagliuca, and her sheltie, Cole. She has three stepdaughters, two sons-in-law, and four grandchildren. She's currently at work on her next novel.

#BlogTour #BookReview
The Makings of a Lady by Catherine Tinley
@CatherineTinley @HarlequinBooks @rararesources

#BlogTour #BookReview The Makings of a Lady by Catherine Tinley @CatherineTinley @HarlequinBooks @rararesources

#BlogTour #BookReview The Makings of a Lady by Catherine Tinley @CatherineTinley @HarlequinBooks @rararesourcesTitle: The Makings of a Lady

Author: Catherine Tinley

Series: The Chadcombe Marriages #3

Published by Harlequin Books on October 1, 2018

Genres: Historical Romance

Pages: 288

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books, Rachel's Random Resources

Book Rating: 8/10

 

Synopsis:

Be calm , she thought.

Be gracious. Be twenty-two.

Lady Olivia Fanton is eager to prove she’s no longer a child. However, just as she thinks she’s found a suitable match in suave Mr. Manning, charismatic Captain Jem Ford walks back into her life, bringing with him all the embarrassment of her infatuation four years before! She’s determined to appear mature, distant, friendly. But dare she hope he’ll notice her as the lady she’s become?


Review:

Historical, entertaining, and lighthearted!

The Makings of a Lady is predominantly set at the Chadcombe estate in Surrey during 1819 and features the elegant, confident Lady Olivia who may unexpectedly find herself in need of her very own real-life, dashing hero, along with the charming, successful Captain Jem who may finally decide it’s time to stay home and settle down. 

The prose is amusing and authentic. The characters are engaging, fun, passionate, and in some cases devious. And the plot is a witty, mysterious mix of Regency customs and traditions, scoundrel behaviour, family drama, desire, humorous hijinks, mishaps, yearning, and romance.

Overall, The Makings of a Lady is an engaging, easy, enjoyable read that’s perfect for fans of the historical romance genre. And even though it’s the third book in The Chadcombe Marriages series, it can certainly be read as a standalone.

 

This novel is available now.

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

    

 

 

Giveaway:

Take a look at Catherine Tinley’s Social media accounts where she is running a giveaway to win a copy of the book, along with two other (surprise) romance novels by other writers.

2 x UK/Ireland Winners and 1 x International Winner.

For all the details look out for Catherine Tinley on Facebook and Twitter.

 

 

Thank you to Catherine Tinley and Harlequin Romance for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Catherine Tinley

Catherine Tinley writes witty, heartwarming Regency love stories. She has loved reading and writing since childhood, and has a particular fondness for love, romance, and happy endings. After a career encompassing speech and language therapy, NHS management, maternity campaigning and being President of a charity, she now works for Sure Start. She lives in Ireland with her husband, children, and dog.

 

#BookReview
Not Quite Perfect (Rocky Cove #1)
by Rebecca Norinne @rebecca_norinne

#BookReview Not Quite Perfect (Rocky Cove #1) by Rebecca Norinne @rebecca_norinneTitle: Not Quite Perfect

Author: Rebecca Norinne

Series: Rocky Cove #1

Published by Rebecca Norinne on September 26, 2018

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 119

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: InkSlingerPR

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

On the ferry to my mother’s wedding, I met the most amazing man—his love of Faulkner notwithstanding. Professor David Carstairs was funny, intelligent, and had the sexiest hands I’d ever seen. A conversation about classic American literature led to a romantic dinner at his house … and then a whole lot of dessert afterward. I’d never done anything like that before, but what we had was something special.

Unfortunately, everything came crashing down the next day. Because my supposedly perfect professor? His dad just married my mom, and now he’s my stepbrother!

Thanksgiving dinner just got a whole lot more complicated.


Review:

Sassy, amusing, and adorably romantic!

Not Quite Perfect is a sweet, provocative tale that features the independent, fun-loving Victoria and the confident, smart, professor David as they navigate a relationship that includes undeniable attraction, a hot-and-heavy one-night stand, a wedding with unexpected consequences, and an unhappy mother.

The writing is witty and crisp. The characters are smart, alluring, and lovable. And the plot is a delightful blend of humorous hijinks, flirty banter, steamy romance, smouldering chemistry, all-consuming desire, and family drama.

Overall, Not Quite Perfect is another entertaining, light, delectable indulgence by Norinne with an absorbing plot, irresistible characters, and an ending that will leave you yearning and excited for more!

 

This book is available now.

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

                              

 

 

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

 

About Rebecca Norinne

Rebecca Norinne writes sexy romance from the heart. Her heroines are bold and headstrong, and her heroes will do anything for the ones they love.

When not banging away at the keyboard, she is watching rugby, enjoying a pint of craft beer, or traveling the globe in search of inspiration for her next book.

Originally from California, Rebecca currently resides in Dublin, Ireland, with her husband.

 

#BookReview
The Christmas Sisters by Sarah Morgan
@SarahMorgan_ @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview The Christmas Sisters by Sarah Morgan @SarahMorgan_ @HarlequinBooksTitle: The Christmas Sisters

Author: Sarah Morgan

Published by Harlequin Books on September 25, 2018

Genres: Contemporary Romance, Women's Fiction

Pages: 416

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 10/10

 

 

Synopsis:

In the snowy Highlands of Scotland, Suzanne McBride is dreaming of the perfect cozy Christmas. Her three adopted daughters are coming home for the holidays and she can’t wait to see them. But tensions are running high…

Workaholic Hannah knows she can’t avoid spending the holidays with her family two years in a row. But it’s not the weight of their expectations that’s panicking her—it’s the life-changing secret she’s hiding. Stay-at-home mom Beth is having a personal crisis. All she wants for Christmas is time to decide if she’s ready to return to work—seeing everyone was supposed to help her stress levels, not increase them! Posy isn’t sure she’s living her best life, but with her parents depending on her, making a change seems risky. But not as risky as falling for gorgeous new neighbor Luke…

As Suzanne’s dreams of the perfect McBride Christmas unravel, she must rely on the magic of the season to bring her daughters together. But will this new togetherness teach the sisters that their close-knit bond is strong enough to withstand anything—including a family Christmas?


Review:

Delightfully mesmerizing, positively heartwarming, and absolutely brilliant!

The Christmas Sisters is an engaging, beguiling story that sweeps you away to the beautiful ruggedness of the Scottish Highlands in winter and immerses you into the lives of the McBride family as they confront the past, accept the things they cannot change, forgive, accept, repair fractured relationships, take chances, and embrace the future.

The writing is expressive, effortless, and polished. The characterization is spot on with a whole slew of characters that are genuine, multi-layered, unique, and intriguing. And the plot, and it’s series of compelling subplots, skillfully unravels and intertwines to create an unforgettable, touching story about life, love, loss, family, secrets, friendship, romance, and happiness.

The Christmas Sisters is without a doubt the perfect festive read that highlights the magic of the holidays and reminds us to always live life to the fullest and surround ourselves with those we love. It is a fabulously irresistible read that proves once again that when it comes to writing heartfelt, moving stories with characters you can’t help but fall in love with Morgan’s one of the best!

 

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 Sarah Morgan

USA Today bestselling author Sarah Morgan writes contemporary romance and her trademark humour and sensuality have gained her fans across the globe. She is a 3 time winner of the prestigious RITA® Award from the Romance Writers of America and has been nominated five times. Sarah lives near London, England, and when she isn’t reading or writing she loves being outdoors.

#BookReview
Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini
@khaledhosseini @PenguinRandomCA

#BookReview Sea Prayer by Khaled Hosseini @khaledhosseini @PenguinRandomCATitle: Sea Prayer

Author: Khaled Hosseini

Published by Riverhead Books on September 18, 2018

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 48

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Penguin Random House Canada

Book Rating: 9/10

 

 

Synopsis:

The #1 New York Times-bestselling author of The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and And the Mountains Echoed responds to the heartbreak of the current refugee crisis with this deeply moving, beautifully illustrated short work of fiction for people of all ages, all over the world.

A short, powerful, illustrated book written by beloved novelist Khaled Hosseini in response to the current refugee crisis, Sea Prayer is composed in the form of a letter, from a father to his son, on the eve of their journey. Watching over his sleeping son, the father reflects on the dangerous sea-crossing that lies before them. It is also a vivid portrait of their life in Homs, Syria, before the war, and of that city’s swift transformation from a home into a deadly war zone.

Impelled to write this story by the haunting image of young Alan Kurdi, the three-year-old Syrian boy whose body washed upon the beach in Turkey in September 2015, Hosseini hopes to pay tribute to the millions of families, like Kurdi’s, who have been splintered and forced from home by war and persecution, and he will donate author proceeds from this book to the UNHCR (the UN Refugee Agency) and The Khaled Hosseini Foundation to help fund lifesaving relief efforts to help refugees around the globe.


Review:

Impactful, evocative, and profoundly moving!

Sea Prayer is an intense, beautifully depicted story that highlights the plight of thousands around the world who are forced to leave their homes and embark on a perilous journey to find safety and freedom for themselves and their families.

The prose is lyrical and fluid. The narration is unique and powerful and told entirely through a heartfelt letter written by a father to his young son. And the illustrations are a perfect complement to the compelling, emotional plot as they transport you from the greens and reds of content country life to the blacks and browns of turmoil and war, and then on to the blues and dark greens of the unpredictable, endless raging sea.

Overall I would have to say that Sea Prayer is a short but incredibly poignant tale that reminds us that the base of humanity is kindness, compassion, and strength and that no matter nationality, locale, or religious beliefs everyone deserves to be loved, protected, and free.

 

This book 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 Khaled Hosseini

Khaled Hosseini was born in Kabul, Afghanistan, and moved to the United States in 1980. He is the author of the New York Times bestsellers The Kite Runner, A Thousand Splendid Suns, and And the Mountains Echoed. Hosseini is also a U.S. Goodwill Envoy to the UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and the founder of The Khaled Hosseini Foundation, a nonprofit that provides humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan.

Photo by Brian Sokol.

#BookReview
The Lost Carousel of Provence by Juliet Blackwell
@JulietBlackwell @BerkleyPub

#BookReview The Lost Carousel of Provence by Juliet Blackwell @JulietBlackwell @BerkleyPubTitle: The Lost Carousel of Provence

Author: Juliet Blackwell

Published by Berkley Books on September 18, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Historical Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 368

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Berkley Publishing, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

 

 

Synopsis:

An artist lost to history, a family abandoned to its secrets, and the woman whose search for meaning unearths it all in a sweeping and expressive story from the New York Times bestselling author of Letters from Paris .

Present day, San Francisco. During her free time, professional photographer Cady Drake shoots local carousels, a hobby inspired by a gift that transformed her childhood: a wooden rabbit supposedly created by master French carver Gustave Bayol a century ago. And when she’s offered a freelance assignment for a book on the antique merry-go-rounds of Paris, Cady can’t refuse the opportunity to visit the famous carousels for the first time….

1900s, France. In a small town outside of Avignon, a husband and young wife struggle to keep up their ancestral chateau–and start the family they so desperately desire. For the children they hope to have, the Clements hire the famous Bayol to build a carousel, but as the carver and his apprentice work on the beautiful and whimsical creation, fate will entwine them all in unseen ways–for generations to come…

Present day, Provence. As Cady’s research leads her to the dilapidated Chateau Clement and its fabled carousel that was lost to the ravages of World War II, she will uncover a shocking truth in a set of one-hundred-year-old photographs that could guide her in reuniting a family torn apart by petty jealousies over several generations.


Review:

Intriguing, atmospheric, and uplifting!

The Lost Carousel of Provence is an alluring tale predominantly set in the majestic southeastern region of France during the early 1900s, as well as present day, and is told from three different perspectives. Maelle, an independent, hardworking young woman struggling to showcase her talents and prove her worth in a male-dominated environment. Fabrice, a lonely, elderly man who has sacrificed, endured and lived a life weighed down by deception, regret, and unrequited love. And Cady an intelligent, independent, young woman who endeavours to photograph all the lost carousels of France and uncover all the stories and secrets that surround them.

The prose is expressive and eloquent. The characters are scarred, complex, and authentic. And the plot is a sweeping saga filled with familial drama, introspection, love, loss, life, family, friendship, community, mystique, heartbreak, romance, secrets, passion, loyalty, as well as a little insight into the designing and building of some of the most famous merry-go-rounds of all time.

Overall, The Lost Carousel of Provence is an informative, romantic, mysterious tale that is a well-written, exceptionally researched, beautiful, picture postcard of the history, landmarks, culture, culinary fare, and lost art forms of a country Blackwell obviously loves and knows well.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                        

 

 

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

 

About Juliet Blackwell

Juliet Blackwell is the New York Times bestselling author of Letters from Paris and The Paris Key. She also writes the Witchcraft Mystery series and the Haunted Home Renovation series. As Hailey Lind, Blackwell wrote the Agatha-nominated Art Lover's Mystery series. A former anthropologist, social worker, and professional artist, Juliet is a California native who has spent time in Mexico, Spain, Cuba, Italy, the Philippines, and France.

#BookReview #HarlequinDARE
Hard Deal by Stefanie London
@Stefanie_London @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview #HarlequinDARE Hard Deal by Stefanie London @Stefanie_London @HarlequinBooksTitle: Hard Deal

Author: Stefanie London

Series: Melbourne After Dark #2

Published by Harlequin Dare on September 1, 2018

Genres: Contemporary Romance

Pages: 224

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books, NetGalley, Stefanie London

Book Rating: 9/10

 

Synopsis:

From USA TODAY bestselling author Stefanie London comes the second book in the Melbourne After Dark series! Imogen Hargrove is done with playboys—until a kiss from a masked stranger turns her world upside down…

For one night only, Imogen Hargrove is a sexy spy. She’s donned a mask for the Carmina Masquerade Ball, where she hopes to catch her sister’s cheating fiancé, Daniel, in the act. But she’s the one who gets rumbled when she strays too close to her target—only to realize she’s been tailing the wrong man. A searing kiss makes her forget her mission altogether, and the mysterious stranger awakens something inside her: a burning passion she hasn’t felt since the brutal breakup of her last relationship.

Imogen is mortified to discover that the man behind the mask is her colleague, notorious womanizer Caleb Allbrook. He’s the last person she wants to get close to, and she doesn’t need another playboy in her life. But that kiss has her curious—besides, Caleb knows her sister’s fiancé and could prove very useful in digging up dirt.

She makes a deal: she’ll go on a date with Caleb in exchange for information on Daniel’s affair. But Caleb’s irresistible charm turns a casual conversation into a night of sultry seduction. Imogen knows Caleb is bad news—yet he makes her feel sexier than any man ever has. Can she pull herself away from yet another toxic relationship, or will Caleb prove there’s more to him than just sex appeal?


Review:

Amusing, provocative, and witty!

Hard Deal is a charming, titillating tale about the hardworking, dependable Imogen who finds it hard to trust and has a past riddled with heartbreak, and the handsome, charismatic playboy, Caleb who’s determined to prove he’s capable of more than just having fun and looking good.

The writing is fluid and sultry. The characters are hesitant, supportive, and lovable. And the plot sweeps you away into a storyline filled with shameless flirting, tantalizing mishaps, steamy chemistry, undeniable attraction, friendship, family, light drama, romance, and love.

Overall, Hard Deal is a passionate, cheeky, absorbing novel that’s perfect for rom-com lovers everywhere. And even though it’s the second novel in the Melbourne After Dark series and runs concurrently with Unmasked (Melbourne After Dark #1), it can definitely be read and enjoyed as a standalone novel.

 

This book is available now.

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

                                           

 

 

Thank you to Harlequin Books, NetGalley, and Stefanie London for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Stefanie London

USA Today bestselling author of contemporary romance with humour, heat and heart. Also llamas.

Originally from Melbourne, Australia Stefanie now lives in Toronto, Canada with her wonderful husband. She loves to read, collect lipsticks, watch zombie movies and drink coffee.

Her bestselling book, Pretend It’s Love, is a 2016 Romantic Book of the Year finalist with the Romance Writers of Australia.

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