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Did my Love Life Shrink in the Wash? by Kristen Bailey ~ Book Tour & Review

Book Description:


Sure, my bedroom gets lots of action. It’s called snoring.

Will and I didn’t have a clue what we were signing up for. It turns out that there’s loads we weren’t warned about:

1) You’ll spend more time spooning your child’s cuddly donkey than your own boyfriend. 
2) Communication with your other half will be via post-it notes on the fridge, mainly telling him to buy more milk. 
3) If you make the mistake of going to a nightclub you’ll nod off, drool, and be woken up by an angry bouncer. 
4) In the middle of the night you’ll be begging Siri for advice on getting your baby to sleep. (Whale music doesn’t work.) 
5) Sex is something that happened in another dimension.

But even if I feel like I’m waiting for my motherhood powers to come in the post, at least I’ve got Will. Our old life – festivals, sambuca shots, an actual sex life – might be a distant memory, but we can get through anything together, can’t we?

At least that’s what I thought until, one day, Will walked out on us… If I’m on my own (apart from Siri, obviously) can I do this whole parenting thing? Or I am destined to lose my sanity one sleepless night at a time?

A totally hilarious and absolutely relatable tale for anyone who has survived parenthood purely on microwave meals and wished for an IV drip of coffee to get them through! This uplifting page-turner will make your belly ache with laughter. Perfect for fans of Why Mummy Drinks, Sophie Ranald and Sophie Kinsella.

Purchase a copy on Amazon.


Author Bio:
Mother-of-four, gin-drinker, binge-watcher, receipt hoarder, enthusiastic but terrible cook. Kristen also writes. She has had short fiction published in several publications including Mslexia & Riptide. Her first two novels, Souper Mum and Second Helpings were published in 2016. In 2019, she was long listed in the Comedy Women in Print Prize and has since joined the Bookouture family. She writes women's fiction and she hopes her novels have fresh and funny things to say about modern life, love and family.

You can find out more about her at her website.

Review:

This is book 3 in the series but the first book I have read by Kristen Bailey. I am hooked! I loved this book. It can easily be used as a stand alone. I am looking forward to reading more in this series. Kristen writes from the heart. The lighthearted warmth of this novel along with humour grabbed me right from the start. Topics of motherhood, relationships, body imagine makes it feel so real and relatable. I have two kids and felt like I went back in time to my first born. I could totally relate with Beth on so many levels. She is a great character and I felt for her all the way through this book. The ups and downs of motherhood, a rocky relationship as Will is just "so stressed & really scared" that his first reaction is to run. All the sisters are so likeable and shows great family dynamics. This series is a lot of fun. I really felt like I was reading a book by Sophie Kinsella. I give this book a 5 stars.  
   

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

You Have a Match by Emma Lord ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


From the beloved author of Tweet Cute comes Emma Lord's You Have a Match, a YA novel of family, friendship, romance and sisterhood…

When Abby signs up for a DNA service, it’s mainly to give her friend and secret love interest, Leo, a nudge. After all, she knows who she is already: Avid photographer. Injury-prone tree climber. Best friend to Leo and Connie…although ever since the B.E.I. (Big Embarrassing Incident) with Leo, things have been awkward on that front.

But she didn’t know she’s a younger sister.

When the DNA service reveals Abby has a secret sister, shimmery-haired Instagram star Savannah Tully, it’s hard to believe they’re from the same planet, never mind the same parents—especially considering Savannah, queen of green smoothies, is only a year and a half older than Abby herself.

The logical course of action? Meet up at summer camp (obviously) and figure out why Abby’s parents gave Savvy up for adoption. But there are complications: Savvy is a rigid rule-follower and total narc. Leo is the camp’s co-chef, putting Abby's growing feelings for him on blast. And her parents have a secret that threatens to unravel everything.

But part of life is showing up, leaning in, and learning to fit all your awkward pieces together. Because sometimes, the hardest things can also be the best ones.

Purchase a copy on Amazon. 

About the Author: 

Emma Lord is the author of TWEET CUTE and upcoming YOU HAVE A MATCH, and a digital media editor living in New York City, where she spends whatever time she isn’t writing either running or belting show tunes in community theater. She graduated from the University of Virginia with a major in psychology and a minor in how to tilt your computer screen so nobody will notice you updating your fan fiction from the back row. She was raised on glitter, grilled cheese, and a whole lot of love. Her sun sign is Hufflepuff, but she is a Gryffindor rising.

Author's Website.

Review: 

I recommend this book for kids 13 + because there is some swearing.

My favourite character in this book is Abby Day because we have the same name and that she is the main character, we get to read what she’s thinking and what's happening on her end of the story.

At first, I wasn’t really into the book because it was a bit boring but when Abby went to the camp and got in trouble for chewing gum by Savvy gave her trouble, after that I started to get more interested. I think the family drama and the parts where Abby and Savvy aren’t happy with each other and all the friend drama with Connie and Leo, are the parts I liked best. Those parts had the most action and I wanted to find out what will happen.

I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars!

Review by Abby

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

Aunt Ivy’s Cottage by Kristin Harper ~ Book Excerpt ~ Blog Tour

Book Description: 

Clearing out the attic, Zoey opens the carved trunk and smiles as she picks up the small, leather-bound diary hiding inside. Curious, she leafs through the pages, and realises this will change everything…

All Zoey’s happiest childhood memories are of her great-aunt Ivy’s rickety cottage on Dune Island, snuggling up with hot chocolate and hearing Ivy’s stories about being married to a sea captain. Now, heartbroken from a breakup, Zoey escapes back to the island, but is shocked to find her elderly aunt’s spark fading. Worse, her cousin—next in line to inherit the house—is pushing Ivy to move into a nursing home.

With the family clashing over what’s best for Ivy, Zoey is surprised when Nick, a local carpenter and Ivy’s neighbor, takes her side. As Zoey finds comfort in his sea-blue eyes and warm laugh, the two grow close. Together, they make a discovery in the attic that links the family to the mysterious and reclusive local lighthouse keeper…

Now Zoey has a heartbreaking choice to make. Nick’s urging her to share the discovery, which could keep Ivy in the house she’s loved her whole life… but when Zoey learns that Nick and her cousin go way back, she questions if the man she‘s starting to have feelings for really has Ivy’s best interests at heart. Will dredging up this old secret destroy the peace and happiness of Ivy’s final years—and tear this family apart for good?

A stunning and emotional read about old secrets, new love and never forgetting the importance of family. Perfect for fans of Mary Ellen Taylor, Robyn Carr and Mary Alice Monroe.

Purchase a copy on Amazon. 

About the author

Ever since she was a young girl, there were few things Kristin Harper liked more than creative writing and spending time on Cape Cod, Massachusetts, with her family. Eventually (after a succession of jobs that bored her to tears), she found a way to combine those two passions by becoming a women’s fiction author whose stories occur in oceanside settings. While Kristin doesn’t live on the Cape year-round, she escapes to the beach whenever she can.

Website | Twitter |

Excerpt from Aunt Ivy's Cottage

Prologue 

The daffodils that were meant to brighten the room were already going limp in their vase and Zoey Jansen felt as if she were wilting, too. It was a sunny afternoon in mid-April, but the thermostat was set at seventy-four. Zoey’s sweater stuck to the small of her back and she wiped perspiration from her upper lip. Yet her great-aunt Sylvia, who was covered to her chest with a quilt, kept saying she was cold.

Zoey lifted the blankets only enough to gently place a freshly filled hot-water bottle into her aunt’s hands. “This should help warm you up.”

“Mmm,” Sylvia murmured drowsily, her eyes closed. “You’ve always been so good to me, Ivy. More like a sister than my own sisters.”

She thinks I’m my great-aunt Ivy. Zoey didn’t correct her mistake. Sylvia had been so restless the past several days that she didn’t want to rouse her if she was finally sleepy. As she started to withdraw her hand from beneath the blankets, Sylvia feebly grasped her fingers.

“Don’t go. I need—” her voice crackled. Assuming what Sylvia needed was a cool drink, Zoey reached for the water glass on the nightstand but her aunt tugged her hand again, pulling her closer. “I need to tell you something important.” Zoey touched her shoulder to reassure her that she had her full attention. “What is it?”

“Mark doesn’t deserve this,” Sylvia uttered. “It’s not fair. I can’t let it happen.” Mark—whose given name was Marcus—was Sylvia’s grandson. Ivy’s great-nephew. And Zoey’s cousin. His second wife had recently divorced him and Zoey figured that was what Sylvia meant was unfair. The old woman had always doted on her only grandchild, so Zoey understood it must have been upsetting for her to realize not every woman thought the sun rose and set on Marcus Winslow III. Struggling to say something that was honest yet kind, Zoey resorted to one of the platitudes she’d often heard Sylvia use. “Sometimes, these things have a way of working out for the best for everyone.” Especially for his wife.

“No, no. That boy can only take so much.” Sylvia wiggled her head back and forth against the pillow, clearly agitated. “Enough is enough.”

Zoey gently pulled her hand free to smooth down her aunt’s flyaway hair, vaguely aware of how self-conscious Sylvia was about her appearance, even now, at eighty-four. “He can take it. He’s a lot stronger than you think.” Some might even say he’s a bully.

“What about Zoey? She’s such a dear girl. I’m concerned about her.”

“She’ll be fine. She’ll find another job soon.”

“What if she doesn’t? She’s lost all of her savings and she can’t pay her mortgage. Where will she live?”

Zoey’s breath caught. She had told her great-aunts she’d been laid off from her job as a librarian when the city closed the branch where she worked, but how had Sylvia found out that she’d lost her savings and was on the brink of losing her townhome? Zoey hadn’t wanted to burden her aunts by telling them that the guy she’d been seeing for the past year, a financial planner, had risked—and blown—all of her savings in a series of investments that turned out to be just shy of illegal. And she was too ashamed to admit she hadn’t even realized what he’d done until she tried to withdraw money from her depleted retirement funds to pay her mortgage.

Guessing that her aunt must have overheard her ranting about it on the phone to her friend, Lauren, she pleaded, “I know you’re worried about me, Aunt Sylvia, but Aunt Ivy can’t find out about that yet. She’ll get upset and stress is bad for her heart. When the time is right, I’ll talk to her about it. Meanwhile, please promise you won’t tell her.”

Upon hearing Zoey call her aunt, Sylvia opened her eyes and blinked in apparent surprise. Then she knitted her brows together, agreeing, “You’re right. It’ll be our secret.”

“Thank you.” As her aunt’s eyelids fell shut again, Zoey stood to leave.

But Sylvia added in a raspy voice, “For now, it’s best to let the past stay buried in the past… beneath the roses.” What does that mean? Although her aunt’s health had been improving, Zoey wondered if she was feverish again. She leaned down and kissed her forehead. No, no fever…Yesterday, right before dozing off, she’d rambled on and on about dancing in the stars. When she woke, she had no recollection of having said anything and they concluded she’d been dreaming. Maybe she was only semi-awake now, too.

Zoey waited. When Sylvia didn’t say anything else, she straightened her posture and tiptoed across the room toward the heavy old door, slightly ajar. Aware it would creak if she opened it any farther, Zoey turned sideways to ease across the threshold. Before she left, she impulsively stopped to glance back at the bed and whisper, “I love you, Auntie. Sleep well.” 



~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

The Silent House by Laura Elliot ~ Book Tour & Review

Book Description: 


In the small hours of a cold winter morning, charcoal grey clouds gather in the sky over Hyland Hall where a young teenage girl is about to make an emergency call to say her life is in danger …

With her marriage in pieces and desperate to find work and a new home for her and daughters, Isobel and Julie, Sophy accepts a job as a live-in nurse for Jack Hyland.

Once a magnificent house, Hyland Hall has fallen into disrepair and its owner, Jack, disfigured in a terrible fire that broke out on the property years ago, is now a recluse.

As Sophy’s daughters struggle to adjust to their new surroundings, exploring every forbidden corner of the house, Sophy does her best to care for Jack and her broken family.

But Jack has secrets of his own and Sophy’s arrival is about to set in motion a chain of events that will uncover the devastating truth of Hyland Hall’s past. A truth that will put her daughters in harm’s way.

An intense and emotionally engrossing read that will keep you compulsively turning the pages late into the night.  

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Laura Elliot is an Irish novelist who writes psychological thrillers and lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her novels are: The Thorn Girl, The Wife Before Me, Guilty, Sleep Sister, The Betrayal, Fragile Lies, Stolen Child and The Prodigal Sister. Her latest novel, The Tinderbox is due for release in December 2020. AKA June Considine, she had written twelve books for children and young adults. She has worked as a journalist and magazine editor.

Author's Website.

Review: 

A gripping psychological thriller that'll keep you guessing as you turn the page. I honestly didn't see that kind of ending coming but it kept me reading until the wee hours of the night to find out what would happen next.

The story starts out a little slower paced as we follow Sophy who has no choice to but to take a job as a live-in nurse to Jack Hyland, sole owner of Hyland Hall. Sophy needs this job as her husband has an addiction that has lead them to sell everything they own including their house. Sophy moves her two daughters Isobel and Julie into a huge dark rundown mansion called Hyland Hall, where Jack who has recently survived a terrible fire has closed himself off in the upstairs and will not show himself to anyone other than Sophy and his nephew, Victor.

Told through Sophy and Isobel we get different takes on this "new adventure" Sophy has promised her girls. Sophy is trying to deal with the lies from her husband and pick herself up from her failed marriage. Isobel's side of the story is that of a teen just trying to find some light in this creepy old house with the top floor she nicknamed Fear Zone. She doesn't want to be here and is very afraid of Jack as she hasn't met him but can hear him moving around above them. Throw in a mannequin doll her younger sister, Julie, wont go anywhere without and it's definitely a creepy read.

I give this a 4 star review!

FOLLOW THE BLOG TOUR



~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

The Coffee Corner (Amish Marketplace #3) by Amy Clipston ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


In this third installment of Amy Clipston’s Amish Marketplace series, an acquaintance grows into love over a few well-timed cups of coffee.

Alongside her cousins who have booths of their own, Bethany Gingerich runs a busy and successful coffee and donut stand at the Amish market. Since she has café-style tables and chairs, her regular customers enjoy purchasing a morning treat so they can sit and talk to their friends.

Micah Zook and his grandfather, Enos, visit Bethany every Saturday morning to purchase coffee and donuts before going to work at Enos’s custom outdoor furniture shop. Bethany enjoys talking to Micah and Enos, and she’s always thought Micah was handsome—but she doesn’t think her crush will ever result in anything more.

When Micah and his grandfather don’t come to see her one Saturday morning, Bethany begins to worry. And when she learns that tragedy has struck, she wonders how to help Micah in his time of need. Turns out he needs a friend now more than ever, and Bethany may be just the kind of friend that God has provided for him.

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Amy Clipston is an author of Amish and Christian fiction with HarperCollins Christian Publishing. Most of Amy's books focus on the Amish community, faith, and love. Amy also writes romance novels and young adult inspirational stories.

Author's Website.

Review: 

Another great Amish Marketplace story. This is the third in the Marketplace series. I haven't read them in order as I haven't read book two yet. Amy Clipston writes each book in a way that can be a stand alone but is much better when read together. I enjoyed this installment about Bethany Gingerich who runs a coffee and donut stand in the Marketplace where her cousins also have different stands. Bethany hasn't had any luck in relationships but when she met Micah she is hoping it will change. This story follows Bethany as she runs her coffee and donut stand and Micah, who moves in with his grandfather to help Enos with his custom outdoor furniture business. Micah is troubled from the loss of his fiance. Battling demons of his own can he overcome them to have a healthy relationship in the Amish community and Bethany? I read this book in almost one sitting. It isn't a light romance because of the nature of Micah's battle with his emotions but it is a sweet Amish story of hope, friendship and family. With Pennsylvania Dutch dialect making this feel an authentic Amish story. I look forward to the next Marketplace novel. 

I give this book a 4 out of 5 stars! 

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

The Woman Outside my Door by Rachel Ryan ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


All children have imaginary friends, Georgina tells herself. It’s perfectly normal, and they all grow out of it in the end. But when her seven-year-old son, Cody, tells her about New Granny, the new friend he’s met in the park, Georgina is instantly suspicious. Something—call it maternal instinct—tells her he isn’t making it up.

But maybe Georgina is losing her mind. It wouldn’t be the first time, after all. And with her own mother’s recent death leaving her bereft and trying to cope with life as a busy working mom, it’s no wonder she’s feeling paranoid that Cody has invented a “New Granny” to replace his beloved grandmother.

Her husband, Bren, becomes the voice of reason, assuring Georgina that it’s just a game, the product of their son’s overactive imagination. But what if Cody’s imaginary friend is not so imaginary after all?

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Rachel Ryan was born and raised in Dublin, Ireland. She can usually be found writing in coffee shops, hanging around libraries, or walking the streets of Dublin, making up stories. The Woman Outside My Door is her first novel.

Author's Website.

Review: 

I was pretty excited to read this book as it was recommended if you enjoy Lisa Jewell novels. I found it didn't totally live up to that. I did like this book but I found some parts slow and predictable.  I was having a hard time with liking the characters especially Bren. I felt like he was gaslighting Georgina, where I was hoping for him to be a bit more supportive after what trouble he has caused in their marriage. Their relationship or lack of bothered me, especially their lack of communication. 

The author does set up the plot so you are wondering who is this "New Granny", is it someone Georgina knows, a complete stranger or is she losing her mind after dealing with the grief of losing her mother and other stresses in her life. I did end up feeling bad for Georgina as she didn't have anyone else to turn to. It was a quick read and I do look forward to reading more from this debut author. 

I give this book a 3 stars out of 5. 

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

Anxious People A Novel by Fredrik Backman ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


A poignant, charming novel about a crime that never took place, a would-be bank robber who disappears into thin air, and eight extremely anxious strangers who find they have more in common than they ever imagined

Looking at real estate isn't usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. The captives include a recently retired couple who relentlessly hunt down fixer-uppers to avoid the painful truth that they can't fix up their own marriage. There's a wealthy banker who has been too busy making money to care about anyone else and a young couple who are about to have their first child but can't seem to agree on anything, from where they want to live to how they met in the first place. Add to the mix an eighty-seven-year-old woman who has lived long enough not to be afraid of someone waving a gun in her face, a flustered but still-ready-to-make-a-deal real estate agent, and a mystery man who has locked himself in the apartment's only bathroom, and you've got the worst group of hostages in the world.

Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises, these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in a motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next.

Humorous, compassionate, and wise, Anxious People is an ingeniously constructed story about the enduring power of friendship, forgiveness, and hope—the things that save us, even in the most anxious of times.

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Fredrik Backman is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of A Man Called Ove (soon to be a major motion picture starring Tom Hanks), My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry, Britt-Marie Was Here, Beartown, Us Against You, as well as two novellas, And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer and The Deal of a Lifetime. Things My Son Needs to Know About the World, his first work of non-fiction, will be released in the US in May 2019. His books are published in more than forty countries. He lives in Stockholm, Sweden, with his wife and two children.

Author's Website.

Review: 

I just LOVED this book! I was hooked right from the beginning. Beckman's humor is dry, entertaining, making me laugh out loud. The characters all have their own anxieties, unique, mind baffling but they all make so much sense as the story unfolds. I just loved it. This isn't a story about a man on a bridge but is it? It is a story of a botched bank robbery that turned into a hostage taking? Why did the robbery turn into a hostage taking? because people are idiots that's why.

This isn't a book for everyone. It's for anyone who doesn't mind 10 different characters all going this way and that but crossing the paths of one another along the way. There is so much going on that at first I was wondering what is the author doing?!? where is he going with this story? My mind was trying to follow everything and everyone while trying to piece it all together. I honestly was on the wrong path at one point which I am sure is exactly what the author intended. I love the characters and everyone was so well developed that I felt like I was there in the apartment during this not so common hostage situation. I was sad to have the story end as I felt like I was really getting to know some of the characters especially Zara and wanted to have more time with them.

I give this book a 5 stars! It is in my Top 5 books for 2020! A must read for anyone that wants to laugh out loud. A fun humorous mystery that I could definitely read again and again. I can't wait to read more of Fredrick Backman's novels. This is the first one I have read and now I have a new favourite author!

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

People of Abandoned Character by Clare Whitfield ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


Marry in haste . . . Murder at leisure?

London, 1888: Susannah rushes into marriage to a young and wealthy surgeon. After a passionate honeymoon, she returns home with her new husband wrapped around her little finger. But then everything changes.

Thomas's behavior becomes increasingly volatile and violent. He stays out all night, returning home bloodied and full of secrets. The gentle caresses she enjoyed on her wedding night are now just a honeyed memory.

When the first woman is murdered in Whitechapel, Susannah's interest is piqued. But as she follows the reports of the ongoing hunt for the killer, her mind takes her down the darkest path imaginable. Every time Thomas stays out late, another victim is found dead.

Is it coincidence? Or is her husband the man they call Jack the Ripper?

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Clare Whitfield is a UK based writer living in a suburb where the main cultural landmark is a home store/Starbucks combo.

She is the wife of a tattoo artist, mother of a small benign dictator and relies on a black Labrador for emotional stability. She has been a dancer, copywriter, amateur fire breather, buyer and mediocre weight lifter.

Clare nurtures an obsession with female characters that are as much villain as hero, and enjoys lurking in the blurry landscape between perception and reality.

Author's Twitter

Review: 

This novel has a definite dark feeling throughout and had me hooked right from the start. Susannah was caring for her ailing grandmother. Once she passes, Susannah becomes a Nurse at the London Hospital. She is a plain girl and older than a lot of the new nurses at age 27. When Susannah meets wealthy Surgeon Thomas Lancaster it is a quick romance that leads to marriage. After a passionate honeymoon they go back to Chelsea, where things turn sour and fast. Thomas is not who Susannah thought he was when he was romancing her in the beginning of the relationship.

Young women begin to be brutally murder, the same nights Thomas comes home late with blood on his close etc. Could Thomas be Jack the Ripper?

I had a hard time pulling myself away from this story. For a debut novel, I will say that this did not read as such. I love how the author develops the characters that they feel so real, like they are jumping of the page. I could feel and see the story as it was happening. Some descriptions were so gruesome that I actually cringed while reading it. I can't wait to read more from Clare Whitfield. I am not normally a historical fiction fan but after reading this book I will be checking out some other historical novels.

I give this book a 4 stars! A great book to get comfortable in front of the fire.

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

The Twelve Dogs of Christmas (Pine Hollow #1) by Lizzie Shane ~ Book Review

Book Description: 


A delightful holiday romance about a small-town single dad and an animal rescue owner as they try to find forever homes for a dozen lovable pups before Christmas.

Pine Hollow has everything Ally Gilmore could wish for in a holiday break: gently falling snow in a charming small town and time with her family. Then she learns some Grinch has pulled the funding for her family's rescue shelter, and now she has only four weeks to find new homes for a dozen dogs! But when she confronts her Scroogey councilman nemesis, Ally finds he's far more reasonable — and handsome — than she ever expected.

As the guardian of his dog-obsessed ten-year-old niece, Ben West doesn't have time to build a cuddly reputation. But he does feel guilty about the shelter closing. So he proposes a truce with Ally, agreeing to help her adopt out the pups. As the two spend more time together, the town's gossip is spreading faster than Santa's sleigh on Christmas Eve. And soon Ben is hoping he can convince Ally that Pine Hollow is her home for the holidays... and the whole year through. 

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Contemporary romance author Lizzie Shane was born in Alaska and still calls the frozen north home, though she can frequently be found indulging her travel addiction. Thankfully, her laptop travels with her and she has written her way through all fifty states and over fifty countries.

Lizzie has been honored to win the Golden Heart Award and HOLT Medallion, and has been named a finalist three times for Romance Writers of America’s prestigious RITA Award®, but her main claim to fame is that she lost on Jeopardy!

Author's Website.

Review: 

I love a good sweet holiday romance and this hit the spot. Add in a dog rescue with lots of cute puppies and I just couldn't put this book down. Pine Hollow is a small village where everyone knows each other. When Ally comes from the big city to help her Grandparents run the dog shelter she never thought it would lose its town funding and have to close by the end of the year. Ally also didn't expect to fall in love. The characters are very well developed and I just love them all. I felt like I was actually along for the ride with Ally as she navigates through Pine Hollow to help save the dog shelter. This is an amazing little town that I would just love to live in. I can't wait to read book two! I have three rescue dogs and understand the hard work that goes into finding the right furever home for each puppy. This was a truly great little Holiday read that I definitely could find myself reading over and over again.

If you are a dog lover, want a little Holiday romance then this is the book for you! I give a 5 star!


~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

Invisible Girl by Lisa Jewel ~ Book Review


Book Description: 


Owen Pick’s life is falling apart.

In his thirties, a virgin, and living in his aunt’s spare bedroom, he has just been suspended from his job as a geography teacher after accusations of sexual misconduct, which he strongly denies. Searching for professional advice online, he is inadvertently sucked into the dark world of incel—involuntary celibate—forums, where he meets the charismatic, mysterious, and sinister Bryn.

Across the street from Owen lives the Fours family, headed by mom Cate, a physiotherapist, and dad Roan, a child psychologist. But the Fours family have a bad feeling about their neighbor Owen. He’s a bit creepy and their teenaged daughter swears he followed her home from the train station one night.

Meanwhile, young Saffyre Maddox spent three years as a patient of Roan Fours. Feeling abandoned when their therapy ends, she searches for other ways to maintain her connection with him, following him in the shadows and learning more than she wanted to know about Roan and his family. Then, on Valentine’s night, Saffyre Maddox disappears—and the last person to see her alive is Owen Pick.

With evocative, vivid, and unputdownable prose and plenty of disturbing twists and turns, Jewell’s latest thriller is another “haunting, atmospheric, stay-up-way-too-late read” (Megan Miranda, New York Times bestselling author).

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 

Lisa was born in London in 1968. Her mother was a secretary and her father was a textile agent and she was brought up in the northernmost reaches of London with her two younger sisters. She was educated at a Catholic girls’ Grammar school in Finchley. After leaving school at sixteen she spent two years at Barnet College doing an arts foundation course and then two years at Epsom School of Art & Design studying Fashion Illustration and Communication.

She worked for the fashion chain Warehouse for three years as a PR assistant and then for Thomas Pink, the Jermyn Street shirt company for four years as a receptionist and PA. She started her first novel, Ralph’s Party, for a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in May 1998. It went on to become the best-selling debut novel of that year.

She has since written a further nine novels, as is currently at work on her eleventh.

She now lives in an innermost part of north London with her husband Jascha, an IT consultant, her daughters, Amelie and Evie and her silver tabbies, Jack and Milly.

Author's Website.

Review: 

I was so excited to see a new Lisa Jewel book! I have read her last five books and couldn't wait for the next one. Invisible Girl does not disappoint! Suspense that'll keep you guessing.

This book was hard to put down. Meet Saffyre Maddox, ex patient of Roan Fours. Why is she sneaking around following Roan? Who is Own Pick? Is he just some creepy loner in the neighborhood or could he be the one out assaulting women? Is the Fours marriage a happy one?

Jewel had me feeling terrible for Owen Pick. Nerdy, virgin loner living with his aunt that doesn't want him in her living space. He is confined to his cold bedroom alone. Now he's being accused of sexual harassment from two of his female students, and put on suspension while the school investigates.

Saffyre Maddox seems to be up to no good following her ex psychiatrist around. Hiding out in an abandoned lot by the Fours house. With these characters you would think you would know right away who is behind the assaults happening in the area to young women. Jewel will take you on a ride you were not expecting. Saffyre definitely has some secrets that I was waiting for throughout the story. What's her deal?

I always find myself trying to figure out things before they happen in Jewel's books but usually I am off. I loved all the thrilling suspense that kept me wanting to read more. I just wanted to know who was behind what and if certain characters would be caught. So many secrets. The characters are so well developed and easy to like.

I give this book a 5 out of 5 stars and I can't wait for Jewel's next novel!

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

Big Lies in a Small Town by Diane Chamberlain ~ Book Review

Book Description: 

North Carolina, 2018: Morgan Christopher's life has been derailed. Taking the fall for a crime she did not commit, she finds herself serving a three-year stint in the North Carolina Women's Correctional Center. Her dream of a career in art is put on hold—until a mysterious visitor makes her an offer that will see her released immediately. Her assignment: restore an old post office mural in a sleepy southern town. Morgan knows nothing about art restoration, but desperate to leave prison, she accepts. What she finds under the layers of grime is a painting that tells the story of madness, violence, and a conspiracy of small town secrets.

North Carolina, 1940: Anna Dale, an artist from New Jersey, wins a national contest to paint a mural for the post office in Edenton, North Carolina. Alone in the world and desperate for work, she accepts. But what she doesn't expect is to find herself immersed in a town where prejudices run deep, where people are hiding secrets behind closed doors, and where the price of being different might just end in murder.

What happened to Anna Dale? Are the clues hidden in the decrepit mural? Can Morgan overcome her own demons to discover what exists beneath the layers of lies?

Purchase a copy on Amazon

About the Author: 


Diane Chamberlain is the New York Times, USA Today and (London) Sunday Times best-selling author of 27 novels. The daughter of a school principal who supplied her with a new book almost daily, Diane quickly learned the emotional power of story. Although she wrote many small “books” as a child, she didn’t seriously turn to writing fiction until her early thirties when she was waiting for a delayed doctor’s appointment with nothing more than a pad, a pen, and an idea. She was instantly hooked.

Diane was born and raised in Plainfield, New Jersey and lived for many years in both San Diego and northern Virginia. She received her master’s degree in clinical social work from San Diego State University. Prior to her writing career, she was a hospital social worker in both San Diego and Washington, D.C, and a psychotherapist in private practice in Alexandria, Virginia, working primarily with adolescents.

More than two decades ago, Diane was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, which changed the way she works: She wrote two novels using voice recognition software before new medication allowed her to get back to typing. She feels fortunate that her arthritis is not more severe and that she’s able to enjoy everyday activities as well as keep up with a busy travel schedule.

Diane lives in North Carolina with her significant other, photographer John Pagliuca, and their odd but lovable Shetland Sheepdog, Cole

Author's Website.

Review: 


Another great novel by Diane Chamberlain. I have only read a handful of Chamberlain's books but this is a must read. Written beautifully between two era's (past - 1940 & present), we follow two main characters throughout this novel - Morgan (present) & Anna (past). Once I picked up this book it was very hard to put down. I was drawn in from the very beginning. It was a book I wish could have went on a little longer, I wasn't ready to part with these two. 

Morgan has been asked to restore a mural that was painted by a young artist in 1939. This is Morgan's get out of jail free card after a DUI. Morgan is an artist but has no idea how to restore paintings but she takes the other and learns so much about the original artist along the way. A retelling of history where a young women who competes with male artists wins a contest to paint a mural for a small town. Anna is a beautiful young lady trying to make a name for herself as an artist. Anna is strong willed and will not let people bully her or her students that she has helping her with the mural. 

The history of this mural is one that will stay with the read long after you are finished reading this novel. Chamberlain combines mystery, racism, bullying, friendship and love to make this an unforgettable tale.

I give this book a 5 stars. 
~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

Book Review

Book Description: 


In an unforgettable novel that traces a centuries-old curse to its source, beloved author Alice Hoffman unveils the story of Maria Owens, accused of witchcraft in Salem, and matriarch of a line of the amazing Owens women and men featured in Practical Magic and The Rules of Magic.

Where does the story of the Owens bloodline begin? With Maria Owens, in the 1600s, when she’s abandoned in a snowy field in rural England as a baby. Under the care of Hannah Owens, Maria learns about the “Unnamed Arts.” Hannah recognizes that Maria has a gift and she teaches the girl all she knows. It is here that she learns her first important lesson: Always love someone who will love you back.

When Maria is abandoned by the man who has declared his love for her, she follows him to Salem, Massachusetts. Here she invokes the curse that will haunt her family. And it’s here that she learns the rules of magic and the lesson that she will carry with her for the rest of her life. Love is the only thing that matters.

Magic Lessons is a celebration of life and love and a showcase of Alice Hoffman’s masterful storytelling.

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About the Author: 

Alice Hoffman is the author of more than thirty works of fiction, including The World That We Knew, The Rules of Magic, The Marriage of Opposites, Practical Magic, The Red Garden, the Oprah’s Book Club selection Here on Earth, The Museum of Extraordinary Things, and The Dovekeepers. Her most recent novel is The World That We Knew. She lives near Boston.

Author's Website.

Review: 

I just love Practical Magic and was really excited to see another prequel to the book by Alice Hoffman. Dating back to the 17th century to the beginning of the Owen family. I read this on my phone as an ebook and I will say it was harder for me to get into it at no fault of the authors. I just don't like reading on my phone. I will be going out and getting a paperback copy soon! This is a book I need on my bookshelf.

Alice Hoffman has done an amazing job bringing us back to the beginning of the Owen family with Maria. Witchcraft, curses, Salem trials, love and history. This is an extraordinary novel by an amazing author. A definite must read for any fan of Practical Magic or Alice Hoffman!

I give this book a 5 stars!

~*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All opinions and thoughts are my own. *~

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