Genre: General Fiction

#BookReview Little Big Man by Katy Regan @katyreganwrites @PGCBooks @panmacmillan

#BookReview Little Big Man by Katy Regan @katyreganwrites @PGCBooks @panmacmillan Title: Little Big Man

Author: Katy Regan

Published by: Pan Macmillan on Jun. 5, 2017

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 464

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 10/10

Sometimes it takes a little boy to see the big things in life.

Ten-year-old Zac has never met his father, who allegedly took off before he was born. But when his mum lets slip that he’s the only man she’s ever loved, Zac turns detective and, roping in his best friend, hatches a plan to find his dad and give his mum the happy-ever-after she deserves. What he doesn’t realize, though, is that sometimes people have good reasons for disappearing.

Little Big Man is a compelling story about family secrets and fierce, familial love. It’s about growing up and being accepted; grief and lies, and the damage they can do. But, most of all, it’s about a determined little boy determined who wants to give the man he’s never met a second chance to be a father—and his mum a second chance at love.


Review:

Beguiling, poignant, and incredibly uplifting!

Little Big Man is an exceptionally absorbing tale set in the small, economically declining, fishing town of Grimsby and told from three different perspectives. Zac, a sweet, innocent young boy contending with ongoing bullying from his peers and a relentless hunt for the father he’s never known. Juliet, a single mother with a big heart struggling to care and support those she loves as well as herself. And Mick, a loving grandfather who’s weighed down by the secrets he keeps and the feelings of loss and grief that constantly surround him.

The prose is eloquent and expressive. The characters are genuine, sorrowful, sympathetic, and lovable. And the story is a beautifully mesmerizing tale about life, loss, love, grief, long-hidden secrets, forgiveness, familial drama, friendship, courage, community, moving on, and happiness.

Little Big Man is a masterfully crafted, astute tale that immerses you so thoroughly into the lives, feelings, and personalities of the characters you never want it to end, and it is without a doubt one of my favourite novels of the year.

This novel 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 Katy Regan

Katy Regan was born and raised in the northern seaside town of Morecambe, England. She went on to study English and French at Leeds University where she became the features editor of the student newspaper before moving to London. She wrote for various magazines and newspapers before becoming Commissioning Editor at Marie Claire magazine. Katy's previous novels include One Thing Led to Another, The One Before the One, How We Met, and The Story of You. Little Big Man is her first for Mantle. Katy, who has one son, now lives in Hertfordshire.

 

#BookReview Bluethroat Morning by Jacqui Lofthouse @jacquilofthouse @Blackbird_Bks

#BookReview Bluethroat Morning by Jacqui Lofthouse @jacquilofthouse @Blackbird_Bks Title: Bluethroat Morning

Author: Jacqui Lofthouse

Published by: Blackbird Digital Books on May 22, 2018

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 551

Format: eBook

Source: Blackbird Digital Books

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Alison Bliss, celebrity model and critically acclaimed writer, walks into the sea one ‘bluethroat morning’. In death she becomes a greater icon than in life, and the Norfolk village where she lived is soon a place of pilgrimage. Six years later her husband Harry, a schoolteacher, is still haunted by her suicide and faithful to her memory. Until he meets Helen and they fall in love.

Harry and Helen’s relationship initiates a return to the scene of Alison’s death where they meet ninety-eight year old Ern Higham, and a tale is revealed that has been generations in the making. As Harry pieces together a tragic history and finally confronts his own pain, he discovers that to truly move forward, first he must understand the past …


Review:

Intense, somber, and contemplative!

Bluethroat Morning is a hauntingly perceptive novel that takes us into the life of Harry Bliss, a middle-aged man struggling to come to grips with the incredible grief, guilt, and emptiness he still feels over the loss of his wife to suicide.

The prose is poetic and sophisticated. The imagery is vivid. The characters are complex, self-indulgent, and tortured by the past. And the well-crafted plot written in a reflective past/present style does a remarkable job of unraveling all the secrets, mysteries, motivations, actions, personalities, and relationships within it.

Bluethroat Morning is ultimately a novel about marriage, life, loss, friendship, ambition, despair, solitude, secrets, manipulation, desire, acceptance, and forgiveness. And it becomes abundantly clear from the outset that Lofthouse is an exquisite literary writer with an uncanny ability to lay bare humanities weaknesses and emotional fragility and remind us that everyone that enters our lives, no matter the length of time, shapes, defines and influences us.

 

This book is available now.

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

              

 

 

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

 

About Jacqui Lofthouse

Jacqui Lofthouse is the author of four novels ‘The Temple of Hymen’, ‘Bluethroat Morning’ ‘Een Stille Verdwijning’ and ‘The Modigliani Girl’. Her novels have sold over 100,000 copies in the UK, the USA and Europe and have been widely reviewed.

Jacqui began her career as an actor touring India as Sheila in J.B. Priestley’s ‘An Inspector Calls’. She went on to study Drama and English at the University of Bristol and subsequently worked in radio production and media training. In 1992 she studied for her MA in Creative Writing at the University of East Anglia under Sir Malcolm Bradbury and Rose Tremain.

Jacqui has taught creative writing in a broad variety of settings including from City University to Feltham Young Offenders Institution. She has also taught English and Drama in London secondary schools.

In 2005, Jacqui founded The Writing Coach, a coaching and mentoring organisation for writers (www.thewritingcoach.co.uk). She is currently working on her first YA novel and returning to actor training at Identity School of Acting. She has recently been cast in four short films. Jacqui is delighted that Blackbird Digital Books are publishing the first digital edition of ‘Bluethroat Morning’ in May 2018.

#BookReview Sal by Mick Kitson @PGCBooks @canongatebooks

#BookReview Sal by Mick Kitson @PGCBooks @canongatebooks Title: Sal

Author: Mick Kitson

Published by: Canongate Books Ltd on Mar. 1, 2018

Genres: General Fiction

Pages: 234

Format: Paperback

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 8.5/10

Sal planned it for almost a year before they ran. She nicked an Ordnance Survey map from the school library. She bought a compass, a Bear Grylls knife, waterproofs, and a first aid kit from Amazon using stolen credit cards. She read the SAS Survival Handbook and watched loads of YouTube videos. And now Sal knows a lot of stuff. Like how to build a shelter and start a fire; how to estimate distances, snare rabbits, and shoot an air gun; and how to protect her sister, Peppa–because Peppa is ten, which is how old Sal was when Robert started on her.

Told in Sal’s distinctive voice, and filled with the silent, dizzying beauty of rural Scotland, Sal is a disturbing, uplifting story of survival, of the kindness of strangers, and the irrepressible power of sisterly love, a love that can lead us to do extraordinary and unimaginable things.


Review:

Pensive, adventurous, and moving!

Sal is a compelling tale that takes us on a journey into the lives of two young sisters as they learn to escape and survive both the predators and dangers found in the Scottish wilderness as well as those within their own home.

The prose is astute and vividly descriptive. The characters are witty, vulnerable, loyal, resourceful, and endearing. And the plot is a heart-wrenching story about alcoholism, sexual abuse, poverty, self-preservation, coming-of-age, innocence, morality, and selfless love.

Overall, Sal is a profound, sophisticated, inspiring novel that highlights the complex dynamics of sister relationships and does an exquisite job of reminding us just how indomitable the human spirit can truly be.

 

This novel 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 Mick Kitson

Mick Kitson was born in South Wales and grew up in London. He studied English at the University of Newcastle Upon Tyne before a brief spell as one half of 80s pop duo The Senators. He went on to work as a newspaper reporter before switching career again at the age of 40 to become an English Teacher.

He lives in Fife, Scotland with his wife Jill and bad tempered dog Lucy. He has three grown up children: Molly, Susie and Jimmy and spends more time than is good for a person fly fishing for sea trout, reading, playing the banjo and growing
Strawberries. He also builds boats.

#BlogTour #BookReview The Things We Need to Say by Rachel Burton @bookish_yogi @rararesources @HQDigitalUK

#BlogTour #BookReview The Things We Need to Say by Rachel Burton @bookish_yogi @rararesources @HQDigitalUK

#BlogTour #BookReview The Things We Need to Say by Rachel Burton @bookish_yogi @rararesources @HQDigitalUK Title: The Things We Need to Say

Author: Rachel Burton

Published by: HQ Digital on May 11, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 384

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: HQ Digital, NetGalley, Rachel's Random Resources

Book Rating: 9/10

Sometimes the things we never say are the most important.

Fran loves Will with all her heart. They had a whirlwind romance, a perfect marriage and a wonderful life. Until everything changed. Now Fran needs to find her way again and teaching a yoga retreat in Spain offers her just that. Leaving behind a broken marriage she has some very important decisions to make.

Will needs his wife, he needs her to open up to him if they’re to ever return to the ways things once were. But he may have damaged any possibility he had of mending their relationship and now Fran is in Spain and Will is alone.

As both Fran and Will begin to let go of a life that could have been, fate may just find a way of bringing them back together.

 Perfect for fans of Katie Marsh, Amanda Prowse and Sheila O’Flanagan


Review:

Heartwrenching, touching, and undeniably affecting!

The Things We Need to Say is an absorbing, character-driven novel that highlights the emotional, physical and mental strain infertility and the loss of a child can have on a marriage.

The writing is vivid and eloquent. The characters are raw, consumed, traumatized, and real. And the plot told from dual perspectives is a beautifully written tale about life, loss, heartache, infidelity, friendship, yoga, introspection, and second-chance love.

Overall I would have to say that The Things We Need to Say is an immersive, warm, thought-provoking novel that reminds us just how important trust, communication, honesty, forgiveness, and love are to the success of a relationship and thus ultimately our own happiness.

This book is available now.

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

    

 

 

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

 

About Rachel Burton

Rachel Burton has been making up stories since she first learned to talk. After many false starts she finally made one up that was worth writing down.

After graduating with a degree in Classics and another in English, she didn’t really know what to do when she grew up. She has worked as a waitress, a paralegal and a yoga teacher.

She has spent most of her life between Cambridge and London but now lives in Leeds with her boyfriend and three cats. The main loves of her life are The Beatles and very tall romantic heroes.

Her debut, The Many Colours of Us, was an Amazon Kindle bestseller. Her second novel, The Things We Need to Say, is released on 11 May 2018. She is currently working on her third novel in which the heroine follows the love of her life to live in a city in northern England. It has no autobiographical elements at all…..maybe.

Find her on Twitter & Instagram as @bookish_yogi or search Facebook for Rachel Burton Author. She is always happy to talk books, writing, music, cats and how the weather in Yorkshire is rubbish. She is mostly dreaming of her next holiday….

#BookReview The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews @mkayandrews @StMartinsPress

#BookReview The High Tide Club by Mary Kay Andrews @mkayandrews @StMartinsPress Title: The High Tide Club

Author: Mary Kay Andrews

Published by: St. Martin's Press on May 8, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 480

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: St. Martin's Press, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8.5/10

When ninety-nine-year-old heiress Josephine Bettendorf Warrick summons Brooke Trappnell to Talisa Island, her 20,000 acre remote barrier island home, Brooke is puzzled. Everybody in the South has heard about the eccentric millionaire mistress of Talisa, but Brooke has never met her. Josephine’s cryptic note says she wants to discuss an important legal matter with Brooke, who is an attorney, but Brooke knows that Mrs. Warrick has long been a client of a prestigious Atlanta law firm.

Over a few meetings, the ailing Josephine spins a tale of old friendships, secrets, betrayal and a long-unsolved murder. She tells Brooke she is hiring her for two reasons: to protect her island and legacy from those who would despoil her land, and secondly, to help her make amends with the heirs of the long dead women who were her closest friends, the girls of The High Tide Club—so named because of their youthful skinny dipping escapades—Millie, Ruth and Varina. When Josephine dies with her secrets intact, Brooke is charged with contacting Josephine’s friends’ descendants and bringing them together on Talisa for a reunion of women who’ve actually never met.


Review:

Mysterious, sentimental, and uplifting!

The High Tide Club is an alluring tale that delves into the life of ninety-nine-year Josephine Bettendorf Warrick and all the friendships, lies, secrets, and promises she made, told, and broke over her lifetime.

The prose is clear and fluid. The characters are well-developed, unique, and inquisitive. And the plot, alternating between past and present, is a nostalgic, twisty tale full of familial drama, loss, grief, war, forgiveness, deception, happiness, love, skinny dipping, southern life, and murder.

Overall, The High Tide Club is a humorous, emotional, heartbreaking, suspenseful story that highlights the intricate and dynamic bonds between friends, both old and new, that gets better and better as it goes along and is an excellent choice for a summer read!

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

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

 

About Mary Kay Andrews

Mary Kay Andrews is the pen name of American writer Kathy Hogan Trocheck, based in Atlanta, who has authored a number of best-selling books under the Andrews pen name since 2002.

Trochek graduated from the University of Georgia with a journalism degree in 1976. She worked as a reporter at a number of papers, and spent 11 years as a reporter for the Atlanta Journal-Constitution before leaving to write fiction full-time in 1991. She published ten mystery novels under her own name between 1992 and 2000, and switched to the Andrews pen name in 2002 to author Savannah Blues, which marked a change in her style to more Southern-flavored themes.

#BookReview The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner @JamieLBrenner @littlebrown

#BookReview The Husband Hour by Jamie Brenner @JamieLBrenner @littlebrown Title: The Husband Hour

Author: Jamie Brenner

Published by: Little Brown and Company on Apr. 24, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 368

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Little Brown and Company, NetGalley

Book Rating: 10/10

When a young widow’s reclusive life in a charming beach town is interrupted by a surprise visitor, she is forced to reckon with dark secrets about her family, her late husband, and the past she tried to leave behind.

Lauren Adelman and her high school sweetheart, Rory Kincaid, are a golden couple. They marry just out of college as Rory, a star hockey player, earns a spot in the NHL. Their future could not look brighter when Rory shocks everyone-Lauren most of all-by enlisting in the U.S. Army. When Rory dies in combat, Lauren is left devastated, alone, and under unbearable public scrutiny.

Seeking peace and solitude, Lauren retreats to her family’s old beach house on the Jersey Shore. But this summer she’s forced to share the house with her overbearing mother and competitive sister. Worse, a stranger making a documentary about Rory tracks her down and persuades her to give him just an hour of her time.

One hour with filmmaker Matt Brio turns into a summer of revelations, surprises, and upheaval. As the days grow shorter and her grief changes shape, Lauren begins to understand the past-and to welcome the future.


Review:

Absorbing, poignant, and incredibly moving!

The Husband Hour is a beautifully written story that delves into the complexities and dynamics of relationships between partners, siblings, and the nuclear family as a whole and reminds us that there’s no perfection in humanity, we are all wonderfully flawed.

The prose is fluid and well turned. The characters are authentic, scarred and lovable. And the story is an exceptionally mesmerizing tale about life, loss, love, grief, forgiveness, familial drama, friendship, courage, community, moving on, happiness, and the enduring physical and psychological effects of sports injuries on professional athletes.

Overall, The Husband Hour is the perfect blend of heart-wrenching emotion, grit, hope, and humour. It made me laugh, it made me cry, and it left me smiling, and I absolutely loved it!

This book is available now.

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

                                             

 

 

Thank you to Little, Brown and Company and NetGalley for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Jamie Brenner

Jamie Brenner was born and raised in suburban Philadelphia but has called New York City her home for the past twenty years. She graduated from George Washington University with a degree in literature and spent her career in publishing before becoming an author herself. Her books include The Gin Lovers, The Wedding Sisters. She lives in Manhattan with her husband and two daughters.

#BookReview An Unsuitable Match by Joanna Trollope @joannatrollope @PGCBooks

#BookReview An Unsuitable Match by Joanna Trollope @joannatrollope @PGCBooks Title: An Unsuitable Match

Author: Joanna Trollope

Published by: Pan Macmillan on Mar. 27, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 304

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Publishers Group Canada

Book Rating: 7.5/10

Number one bestselling author, Joanna Trollope, is back with her twenty-first novel.

Dealing with one’s own emotions is one thing, but facing a parent’s rollercoaster of a love life is quite another.

Rose Woodrowe is getting married to Tyler Masson – a wonderful, sensitive man who is head-over-heels in love with her. The only problem? This isn’t the first time for either of them. And when you marry later in life there are a lot more people to consider…

Like Rose’s daughter, Laura, who remembers her mother’s first marriage and doesn’t want her to get hurt again. Or the twins, Emmy and Nat, who are used to their mum being there for them whenever, and for whatever, they need. And then there’s Tyler’s children: Mallory, a young actress who craves her father’s attention, and Seth, whose San Francisco bakery is just taking off and needs all the money he can get.

Both Rose and Tyler are determined to get it right this time, but in trying to make everyone happy, can they ever be happy themselves?


Review:

Insightful, sincere, and absorbing!

An Unsuitable Match is a heartfelt, domestic story about relationships, new and old, and all the complexities, drama, and emotion that surround them.

The prose is polished and astute. The characters are well-developed, genuine, and troubled. And the plot is a compelling, heartwarming ride of life, love, self-discovery, familial dynamics, second-chance romance, aging, support, honesty, and friendship.

Overall, An Unsuitable Match is a sophisticated, moving, relatable tale that highlights the highs-and-lows of committing later in life and reminds us of all the struggles and challenges of trying to combine and blend families together.

 

This novel 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 Joanna Trollope

Joanna Trollope is the author of twenty highly acclaimed and bestselling novels, including City of Friends, Friday Nights, Second Honeymoon, and The Other Family. She was appointed OBE in 1996, and a trustee of the UK National Literacy Trust in 2012. She has chaired the Whitbread and Orange Awards, as well as being a judge of many other literature prizes; she has been part of two DCMS panels on public libraries and is patron of numerous charities, including Meningitis Now, and Chawton House Library. In 2014, she updated Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility as the opening novel in the Austen Project.

#BookReview The Italian Party by Christina Lynch @Clynchwriter @StMartinsPress

#BookReview The Italian Party by Christina Lynch @Clynchwriter @StMartinsPress Title: The Italian Party

Author: Christina Lynch

Published by: St. Martin's Press on Mar. 20, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Historical Fiction

Pages: 336

Format: Hardcover, ARC

Source: St. Martin's Press

Book Rating: 8/10

Newly married, Scottie and Michael are seduced by Tuscany’s famous beauty. But the secrets they are keeping from each other force them beneath the splendid surface to a more complex view of ltaly, America and each other.

When Scottie’s Italian teacher―a teenager with secrets of his own―disappears, her search for him leads her to discover other, darker truths about herself, her husband and her country. Michael’s dedication to saving the world from communism crumbles as he begins to see that he is a pawn in a much different game. Driven apart by lies, Michael and Scottie must find their way through a maze of history, memory, hate and love to a new kind of complicated truth.

Half glamorous fun, half an examination of America’s role in the world, and filled with sun-dappled pasta lunches, prosecco, charming spies and horse racing, The Italian Party is a smart pleasure.


Review:

Picturesque, insightful, and delightfully winsome!

The Italian Party is an immersive story that takes you back to Siena, Italy during the mid-1950s when The Cold War was still influencing Italian politics, Communism was rampant, spies were everywhere, and in this tale newly married American couple Michael and Scottie have just arrived with glamour, high-tech gadgets, and an abundance of secrets.

The prose is eloquent and atmospheric. The characterization is exceptionally well drawn with a whole slew of characters that are colourful, affable, and quirky. And the plot is an intriguing mix of spy thriller, romance, and comedy, that’s full of life, love, self-discovery, deception, betrayal, grief, friendship, antics, and community.

I have to admit I wasn’t sure what to expect when I started The Italian Party but it wasn’t long before Lynch swept me away in a debut that’s mysterious, informative, and witty and gave me a beautiful picture postcard of the history, landmarks, culture, and culinary fare of a country she obviously loves and knows well.

 

This novel is available now.

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

                                            

 

 

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

 

About Christina Lynch

Christina Lynch’s picaresque journey includes chapters in Chicago and at Harvard, where she was an editor on the Harvard Lampoon. She was the Milan correspondent for W magazine and Women’s Wear Daily, and disappeared for four years in Tuscany. In L.A. she was on the writing staff of Unhappily Ever After; Encore, Encore; The Dead Zone and Wildfire. She now lives in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. She is the co-author of two novels under the pen name Magnus Flyte. She teaches at College of the Sequoias. The Italian Party is her debut novel under her own name.

 

 

#BookReview Say My Name by Allegra Huston @allegrahuston @HarlequinBooks

#BookReview Say My Name by Allegra Huston @allegrahuston @HarlequinBooks Title: Say My Name

Author: Allegra Huston

Published by: Mira Books on Jan. 9, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 304

Format: Paperback, ARC

Source: Harlequin Books

Book Rating: 7/10

Eve is a garden designer and antique buyer whose husband has left her after several miserable years of marriage. Her latest antique find is an old violin, beautiful but broken.

On meeting Micajah, 20 years younger than her, she feels a spark between them – a sexual spark she hasn’t felt in a long time.

As their affair escalates, Micajah shows her how to embrace her sexuality and take charge of it. A musician, he also helps her repair the violin to be even more beautiful than she could have imagined.

Eve goes on a journey of discovery, and the story ends in Venice where she and Micajah set each other free in the world, allowing Eve to take charge of her own happiness at last.


Review:

Pensive, intriguing, and incredibly seductive! 

Say My Name is an alluring novel that reminds us that women can be attractive, powerful, sexual beings at any age and highlights that you’re never too old to try new things, take risks, and discover what truly makes you happy.

The prose is delicate and raw. The characters are authentic, sensual, and unique. And the plot sweeps you away into an engaging saga about marriage, independence, age disparity, music, desire, lust, and happiness.

Overall, Say My Name is a thought-provoking, love story with palpable emotion that for the most part kept me captivated and invested in both the characters and the situations they found themselves in.

 

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 for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Allegra Huston

Allegra Huston has written screenplays, journalism, and one previous book, Love Child: A Memoir of Family Lost and Found. After an early career in UK publishing, including four years as Editorial Director of Weidenfeld & Nicolson, she joined the film company Pathé as development consultant. She wrote and produced the award-winning short film Good Luck, Mr. Gorski, and is on the editorial staff of the international art and culture magazine Garage. She lives in Taos, New Mexico, with her 15-year-old son.

 

#BookReview & #GuestPost If I Fall by Ella Harper @Ella__Harper @canelo_co

#BookReview & #GuestPost If I Fall by Ella Harper @Ella__Harper @canelo_co Title: If I Fall

Author: Ella Harper

Published by: Canelo on Jan. 22, 2018

Genres: General Fiction, Women's Fiction

Pages: 237

Format: eBook, ARC

Source: Canelo, NetGalley

Book Rating: 8/10

Four university friends, four devastating secrets.

I’m really sorry for what I’m about to do…

It’s fifteen years since graduation, and Connie, Jonas, JJ and Layla have managed to remain close despite the odds. They’ve supported each other, but are some things too big for friendship?

Connie is desperate to maintain the veneer of perfect family life.

Jonas is feeling the pressure at work.

Layla’s career is unravelling thanks to her ill mother

JJ’s past is catching up with him.

When they stumble and fall, who will be there to catch them?

A truly powerful and unforgettable story of love, friendship, and real life, If I Fall is perfect for readers of Alice Peterson, Amanda Prowse and Lianne Moriarty.


Review:

Sobering, compelling, and incredibly intense!

If I Fall is a complex, character-driven novel that delves into how much friendships can define us and highlights how secrets, lies, and unspoken words can emotionally and psychologically impact them.

The writing is somber and raw. The characters are multifaceted, desperate, and broken. And the plot, using multiple perspectives, is an engaging, edgy tale about life, loss, love, heartbreak, deception, jealousy, abuse, friendship, and family.

If I Fall is truly a poignant novel that reminds us that life is unpredictable and full of ups and downs and true friends are those who are there not only in the good times, but more importantly during the hard ones.

 

And now Ella Harper with:

The Importance of Subplots

So. We all know what the main plot in the novel is. It’s the story at the centre of the novel…the important, key issue or theme. That’s the all singing, all dancing part of the story – the part we most want the reader to connect with and relate to. But by and large, there will also be a subplot – or subplots – running alongside.

   The subplot is the secondary strand that supports the main story. It will usually (but doesn’t have to) connect to the main plot and this could be in terms of the theme of the novel, or perhaps the timeline. The subplot could involve the main characters or supporting characters in the book and it will take up less action. It might, however, provide light relief for the tenseness of the main plot strand, adding humour perhaps. It might create a realistic feel to the main plot by showing contrast or providing colour and richness. It can also be used to develop a lesser character in the novel who may become significant later on and who could be woven into the main plot. The subplot should definitely reinforce the main plot – and much of the time, this is a device used to reveal relevant information to the reader that might not have been revealed elsewhere. Equally, a subplot might be used to crank up the tension in the main plot, bringing the protagonist to a different point.

   Another useful aspect of the subplot is to bring in another viewpoint. Sometimes an author can use an entirely new voice or ‘person’ for the subplot…writing in the third person or the first person to differentiate and bring another layer into the novel. But the main thing is the ensure that the main plot is always at centre stage and only use your subplot when you want to change the pace or utilise it in the ways mentioned above.

   I used a few subplots in my first Ella Harper novel Pieces of You. The main characters were essentially Luke and Lucy Harte, but with Luke in a coma for much of the novel, other characters had to come to the fore. So the feelings of Luke’s sister Nell and his mother Patricia then came into play as subplots, which supported the main plot.

   In If I Fall, each character was part of the main storyline, but also had their own subplot, which made it complex, but really fun to write. The characters interacted with one another, weaving in and out of each other’s lives and stories until they merged into one and the subplots all kind of became the main plot. But the characters’ subplots served to provide background and an insight into their lives that then became relevant to the main plot and hook of the novel which is…which one of them wants to commit suicide? And why? As I say, tricky to write, but my favourite so far, because of all the complex subplots!

 

 

This novel is available now.

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

             

 

 

Thank you to Ella Harper and Canelo for providing me with a copy in exchange for an honest review.

 

About Ella Harper

Ella Harper learned foreign languages, and imagined she might eventually get a glamorous job speaking French. After climbing her way up the banking ladder, Ella started idly mapping out the beginnings of a novel on an old laptop. When she realised her characters were more real to her than dividends and corporate actions ever could be, she left her job to become a writer.

 

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