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The Divorce Planner by Angela Lam
Publication Date :
May 20th 2019
Publisher : The Wild Rose Press
Read Date : May 19th 2019
Genre : Women’s Fiction / Chick Lit
Pages : 301
Stars : ★★★★ /5

When her daughter suggests Darcy Madison attend her ex-husband’s wedding, Darcy enlists the help of her colleague, divorce attorney Victor Costello, to pose as her dashing young date. But when Victor proposes to Darcy at the reception, Darcy forgets they are pretending and says, “Yes!” Between her false engagement to Victor and her daughter’s suggestion to have a double wedding, Darcy falls even further in the fantasy of being a blushing midlife bride. The longer the masquerade continues, the more Darcy starts to wonder what is love and can it last forever in a world where divorce is the only language she knows?

The Divorce Planner revolved around Darcy who was 50 something, professionally divorce planner trying to mend relationship with her daughter by planning her wedding. In between juggling the divorce planning and wedding planning, she found someone who changed her belief, made her to think about love again. The book was about divorce vs wedding, love vs logic and realism, second chance to love, and midlife and married life crisis.

I loved many things in the book. Writing and plot was fabulous and gripping. It was third person narrative from Darcy’s POV. Her voice was charming that pulled me into the story right from the beginning. Humor, romance, drama, conflicts, and insights everything was there to make the book enjoyable.

Book started with Joyce calling her mother Darcy to plan her wedding. But the thing is Darcy was the divorce planner not wedding planner who was against marriage. She vowed not to marry ever. Darcy was so sure of no true love, no happy ending, no fairy tales and no forevermore and adamant all things related to love and marriage end disastrously. But when she met Victor at gala event and later for business, all her beliefs threatened to go wrong. Things got even worse when they attended Darcy’s ex-husband wedding as fake madly-in-love couple.

I was curious to see how they will get out of their lie, what they will experience once their fantasy ended and were forced to come back in reality, will Darcy break her vow and give love a second chance, and how they will confess their true feelings. There were little surprises here and there that kept the story gripping and exciting.

The best part was characters, especially Darcy. She was my favorite character in the book. Like her name she was man in women’s body- realistic, cynical, and practical. Darcy’s story of her previous marriage, how it ended horribly that affected her relation with her daughter, how she failed to mend it ever since the divorce, and how a party planner Darcy turned to divorce planner. It showed endurance, patience and strength. I liked her cynical thoughts on marriage, love and divorce. The way she handled her clients, work life, social Life and daughter’s wedding all at once was admirable. Darcy’s emotions throughout the book were perceptible. I could feel her exasperation, confusion, fear, and struggle. As a mother I could see how difficult it might be to cope with Her ex-husband, Nathan and daughter, Joyce who were irritating and blamed Darcy for anything that went wrong with them. Many times I put down the book to think how Darcy might have dealt with them for so many years.

First chapter and I already hated Nathan. He repeatedly blamed Darcy for their divorce. He was liar who turned everyone against Darcy even their daughter. And now that she is planning Joyce’s marriage he called her a bad luck for their daughter’s marriage! No wonder Darcy is a divorce planner.

Joyce was no better than Nathan. She loved her dad more than Darcy even though he cheated Darcy. She was Bridezilla who wanted her mother to put her work and clients on sidelines to organize her perfect wedding and she didn’t even appreciate all Darcy did for her till date. Not just that she threatened to fire Darcy!! She was petulant, controlling and spoiled person. But things changed by the end of the book and I liked the way both father and daughter realized their mistake, it was realistic.

Here comes my second favorite character of the book. Victor, 37, so younger than Darcy that he could be her eldest son. Handsome divorce attorney at Darcy’s best friend’s firm, workaholic, sensitive and romantic. He was such a gentleman, sweetheart, and perfect marriage material, it was surprising he never married or didn’t have life outside work. I loved him when he asked Darcy to take him as a date to her Nathan’s wedding and his logics for it were fabulous.

All characters were relatable, I could understand their feelings and emotions. I felt like I was part of their story. Those Books and Booze club discussion were fun to read. All members of the book club were interesting and unique. I even loved their little stories after climax and their discussion on Darcy’s love life. It made me want to find a book club with regular meet to have that kind of fun.

So many things happened between climax and end. This portion was felt longer but was filled with humor, drama and lots of emotions. I loved the way characters realized their mistakes and tried to make things right between them. End was good and fun. Another good book-to-screen kind of story. I would love to see this as a movie.

Everything about the book was enjoyable but it was little predictable. Sometimes characters acted childishly. Joyce telling all private details of Darcy to everyone, Victor sharing things to Tyler before consulting Darcy, Nathan and Tanya’s friend belittling Darcy and Victor! They were all adults and I wished they acted accordingly.

Overall, it was entertaining, romantic and relatable chick-lit with interesting characters and their views on marriage and divorce.

Author Links:

Website: www.angelalamturpin.com
Facebook: Author and Artist Angela Lam
Twitter @authorangelalam
Goodreads: Angela Lam

Book Links

Goodreads | Amazon

*** Note: I received e-copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. ***

WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THE BOOK AND MY REVIEW? HAVE YOU READ THIS BOOK ALREADY OR ANY OTHER BOOK BY AUTHOR? ARE YOU GOING TO ADD IT TO TBR?

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Hello Readers! Today is the cover reveal for The First Lie by A. J. Park, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources. Check out the wonderful cover of this interesting book.

The First Lie by A. J. Park
Publication Date: 13th June 2019
Publisher: Orion
Genre: Psychological thriller

Synopsis:

We’ve all had sleepless nights thinking about it.
You’re home alone. Someone breaks in.
In defending yourself, you end up killing the intruder.
Now you’re the one the police want.

That is the situation that criminal barrister Paul Reeve arrives home to find.
His wife Alice stands in the bedroom, clutching a bloodied letter opener in her shaking hand.

“What have you done, Alice?”
“I didn’t have a choice…”

We would all believe the person we love most.
But would we all make the same choice Paul and Alice make next…?

Cover…

Pre-order Links :

UK | US | Waterstones

Author Bio –

After studying literature, linguistics and Spanish at university, AJ Park trained as an English teacher and actor. He has edited magazines and taught English, Media Studies and Drama in secondary schools in England. He was also a competitive fencer for seven years.

Social Media Links –

Twitter @AJParkauthor               

Facebook KarlVadaszffy

www.karlvad.com

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The Truth About Love and Dogs by Lilly Bartlett
Publication Date:
October 13, 2016
Publisher : Notting Hill Press
Read Date : May 14th 2019
Genre : Romantic Comedy / Women’s Fiction
Pages : 332
Stars : ★★★★ /5

Four little words, uttered by her husband…
‘Oh my god,’ he gasped into her shoulder. ‘Shannon!’
There’s just one problem: her name isn’t Shannon.

Rewind six months and Scarlett and Rufus aren’t in the honeymoon stage anymore so much as the honey-should-we-bother phase. Desperate to get their sparkle back, Scarlett has plotted, planned and waxed more than any woman should have to, but none of it is working. Which makes it very hard to start the family they want. 

At least her business is going strong, even if her marriage isn’t. She and her best friend spend their days tangled up in dog leads and covered in fur. Scarlett/ is the fairy dogmother, training hopeless pets like compulsive eater Barkley, impulsive Romeo Murphy and bossy Biscuit. Meanwhile, her best friend walks the dogs and pines for the man who doesn’t know she exists. Thank goodness the women have each other. 

If only Scarlett could work out how to get her marriage back on track. But Rufus isn’t sharing his feelings with her. He is, though, sharing with her best friend. Her best friend, Shannon.

The Truth about Love and Dogs was a lovely romcom that revolved around Scarlett, her perfect business as dog behaviourist and not so perfect married life. It was about love, friendship, companionship, couple having difficulty in conceiving and its impact on their relationship, and of course, dog and their peculiar owner.

Scarlett was a fairy dogmother for her clients who turned struggling, suffering dog owners’ life into happily ever after, but when it came to her marriage, she couldn’t figure out how to get it on the track on happy married life. She was clever, smart and lovely person. I loved the way she handled her business and clients. She was amazing with dogs. I couldn’t help but feel for her. Her emotions and thoughts were genuine and relatable. She was strong. In her situation, most of people could drown in depression. I loved how her relationship developed with Rufus, Shannon, and her clients.

Rufus was Scarlett’s husband. At first I didn’t know what to think about him. It looked like he never took things seriously. He was tired of Shannon and their efforts of being parents and he was totally ignoring Shannon’s feeling. But I could see why he felt constantly pressured how it could suck out all the love from a person if the feeling is not shared. But I didn’t appreciate his behavior after test.  His development by the end of the book was good.

Shannon was dog walker, business partner, and best friend of Scarlett and childhood friend of Rufus. She was shy, awkward dresser with wild imagination. She was wonderful character and friend. She was pretty supportive and knew the right thing to say to Rufus. Initially, I thought she was being partial but I loved the way she kept her loyalty and sided with a friend who was right. I liked her in the end.

All side characters Gemma, dog owners and Scarlett’s parents were great.

Plot, setting, characters, emotions, and dogs everything was nicely balanced and executed. The writing was charming. The story was narrated alternatively from Scarlett and Shannon’s POV. Their voice was refreshing filled with humor, wit, and emotions.

When I started reading this book I didn’t know how deeply I was going to invest into character’s emotions. I thought it would be all humor, dogs, and romance, little I knew it going to have theme of infertility, couple having difficulty in conceiving and its impact on their relationship, male ego, how easy it is for man to accept the problem from women’s side but not the other way around.

From the very beginning we see the strain in Rufus and Scarlett’s relation because of difficulty in conceiving. As I read more I could see their relationship coming to end even before Rufus’s stupidity. It was bad enough they couldn’t have their dream of being parents as they planned but it was worst they were shutting other out not being able to share their feelings or make things normal between them and when they got GP results all the pent-up emotions, disappointments and pressure snapped. And things got worse to disastrous when Rufus stupidly uttered wrong word at wrong time.

I could see from blurb where it would end up and still I was curious what Shannon thought about it all. How she felt for Scarlett and what she thought about Rufus’ stupidity. And I must say she surprised me at the end.

What I loved most was dog training sessions. It was fascinating to read all little tricks Scarlett showed to dog owners, advices about the dog behaviors, how it is so closely related to their owner’s behavior, and how to train them in right direction. Max and his Irish Setter Murphy, Barkley- yellow Labrador and his owner Charlie, Margaret and her Spaniel Biscuit. All owners and dogs were wonderful, I loved to read their life story and their issues with their dogs and how they worked hard to make their relationship even stronger. I specially loved development in Margret and her dog.

Another most favorite thing about the book was emotions. I could feel Scarlett at all the stage- her agitation when she failed to conceive, her relief on receiving GP results, betrayal when she thought there’s no more pressure between her and Rufus, agony when Rufus refused to work on other options. All Scarlett’s reactions were understandable and might be relatable to many but at the same time I really felt bad for Rufus, well, in the beginning then he started being jerk. I almost hated him.

There was a strong female friendship in this book. I loved Shannon’s proposal at the climax, her efforts to help her friends and appearance of Mr. Darcy was most surprising. I do agree with Scarlett on that matter. I loved how things worked out at the end. This is perfect book-to-screen story.

I kind of guessed there will be problem between Scarlett, Rufus and Shannon very early in the book. In fact, synopsis gave it away. I was just looking forward to Scarlett’s decision at the end.

Overall, it was fun, relatable, sweet romcom with amazing characters and happy ending. Dog lovers will definitely enjoy it.

Author Bio:

Michele writes books packed with heart and humour, best friends and girl power. Call them beach books, summer reads, romantic comedy or chick lit… readers and reviewers call them “feel good”, “thought-provoking” and “laugh out loud”. She is both a Sunday Times and a USA Today bestselling author, raised in the US and living in London with her husband. She is very fond of naps, ice cream and Richard Curtis films.
Michele also writes cosy chick lit under the pen-name Lilly Bartlett. Lilly’s books are full of warmth, romance, quirky characters and guaranteed happily-ever-afters.

Author Links: Facebook Newsletter Twitter |Website

Book LinksAmazon US  | Amazon UK

*** Note: I received e-copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. ***

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Hello Readers! Today I’m excited to be the part of Blitz tour for Sylvana by Sian B. Claven, organized by Digital Reads Blog Tours. Please check out book details in this post.

Book Details:

Sylvana by Sian B. Claven
Series : The Butcher Series #3
Genre : Horror

Book Blurb:

Diana and Robbie are tired of moving their family of five around. When Robbie is offered a great job, and permanent position, they must find somewhere to stay temporarily while they house hunt. Aware of the gruesome murders that happened in the Metz family house, they move in regardless and instantly regret it. With nowhere to go and no one to turn to, Diana and Robbie must face their greatest horror. A copy cat killer starts to strike around their neighbourhood, just like the Butcher once did, and Diana’s family seems to be right in the centre of it. 
Where is Sylvana when her tenants need answers? 
The Butcher might just strike them where it hurts most before they get the answers they seek.

Excerpt:

Diana

When Diana saw the flashing blue lights outside her house, she panicked. James was home and Robbie wouldn’t be back until later, so as a mother she assumed the worse. She sped up and held her breath until she realised the cars were parked outside her neighbours’ house and not her own.

The police had marked off the area around their neighbours’ and, as they climbed out, Clinton asked, “What do you think happened? Do you think Lincoln is okay?”

Diana shook her head. “I’m sure he’s fine, baby. Why don’t you take Charlie and go check on your brother while I see what’s going on.”

She walked the short distance between the two houses and saw a nurse standing there, a cardigan wrapped around her shoulders. She had tears streaming down her face, crumpled tissue in her hand, dabbing at her wet nose, and her breaths were coming out short. Diana recognized her as her next door neighbour; she had seen her whenever they took the garbage out. Diana felt quite bad now, not knowing what her name was.

Quickly she made her way towards the woman. She was briefly stopped by a policeman before the nurse waved him away and said it was fine.

“Are you okay, sweetie?” Diana asked, putting an arm around her shoulders.

“Oh … oh … it’s Lincoln,” she sobbed. “He’s dead,” she managed to get out.

“What?” Diana gasped. “How? What happened?” she asked without thinking. “Never mind. I am so sorry …”

“Megan,” she said, hugging Diana and sobbing into her shoulder. “He was murdered in his bed,” she revealed between gasps for air. “I found him … someone cut off his head and cut out his tongue and … oh, my poor baby …” She burst into renewed sobs and Diana couldn’t make out another word after that.

She stayed with Megan until a family member arrived and took over. Diana quietly excused herself and went home to check on her children. She felt nervous; the murder was seriously familiar to those she had heard about when she rented the house.

Once home, however, she found her three children setting the table for dinner. James had a big smile on his face and was telling Clinton stupid jokes. Clinton was half listening, smiling as well, but his mind seemed far away.

“Clinton, honey, we need to talk …” Diana said, taking her son by the hand and leading him to the living room.

Author Bio:

Hailing from Johannesburg South Africa, Sian B. Claven has enjoyed stories for all her life, whether she was reading them or making them. She has written for as long as she can remember, but Ensnared is the first book she decided to publish. Moving towards writing more for the horror / paranormal thriller genre, Sian has subsequently published the first two books in The Butcher Books series, Tatum and Kallista. When Sian isn’t thinking of ways to terrify people, she enjoys writing science fiction stories, poetry and rather long and gushy birthday wishes. When she isn’t working on her writing you can find her knitting, scrapbooking, reading, or playing Xbox. Sian previously reviewed for The Blithering Bibliomaniacs and still reviews in her private capacity. She clearly doesn’t know what the words rest and relaxation mean, at least not in the traditional sense.

Social Media Links:

Website | Facebook | Facebook Group | Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads | Amazon | WordPress | Newletter Signup | Booksprout | Bookbub

Book Links:

Buy Link | Add it to your TBR

Organized by :

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Hello Readers! I’m pleased to be part of the book blitz for Paladin by Sarah MacTavish, organized by YA Bound Book Tours. Please check out book details and book snippet in this post. I hope you enjoy it.

Book Detail:

Paladin by Sarah MacTavish
Genre:
YA Historical Fiction
Release date: April 2019

Summary:


When Lincoln calls for volunteers to put down the rebellion, four friends become soldiers for different reasons. Freedom. Justice. Love. Revenge. But they’re united by a secret… one of them is a girl in disguise.

“This is my country, and I aim to fight for it. You can help me, or get out of my way. Your choice.”

Hidden under an over-sized uniform and a false name, Saoirse Callahan strives to prove herself as strong and brave as any other soldier. But when an old enemy appears in camp, she knows it’s only a matter of time before her identity is exposed. And what will happen to her friends if she’s discovered?

“I’m quite certain what I am willing to die for. But taking a life is another matter entirely.”

Westleigh Kavanagh is a scholar, not a soldier. Still he enlists, because he believes their cause is holy–freedom for all, at any cost. When the bullets start flying, he realizes he’s made a terrible mistake. Too late to turn back, Westleigh prays that they’ll all make it home safely. But can his soul survive the journey?

Add to Goodreads

Paladin purchase links:

Amazon | Barnes & Noble

Excerpt:

I didn’t hear a word of Reverend Bischoff’s sermon, staring down at my tapping toes, thumbing through my Bible over and over. My mind was in a haze ever since Jack told me he meant to enlist. After the news of that fort in South Carolina surrendering, Lincoln called for volunteers to put down the rebellion. Seventy-five thousand soldiers. And Jack would be one of them it seemed.

He’d go, all right, and with Allison and all the Horner brothers likely to follow. Westleigh would stay behind of course. He’d already got himself teaching back at the little schoolhouse on the hill, doing at least some small something with his life. I would be trapped here. Aimless, useless, and bored. Jack would leave me alone.

Or so he thought.

I didn’t care two bits what he said. If he went away to war, I’d be on his heels no matter how hard he fought me. And so I spent most the morning in church attempting to go over the particulars in my head. But it was difficult to concentrate, seeing Jack twisting Abigail’s ring between his fingers.

I blinked away the water in my eyes. I knew why he had to go. ‘Twas why I was so desperate to join him. Together we’d fight, perhaps even die in her memory, and for all of those still in bondage. For freedom.

It was the very least we could do.

I caught Westleigh staring at me. I quickly turned my head aside to hide my tears. Ever since he came home he’d been on my own heels like a lost puppy, and I tried my hardest to avoid him. The last thing I wanted right now was his sympathy. Or worse, having him talk sense into me with those big, sad eyes of his.

The church-folk stood to sing and to pray, and I breathed in the trepidation of those around me like factory smoke. It set my lungs and throat on fire so that I could only whisper along. Even Allison, near the front with his family, seemed disquieted.

As we dispersed, the usual hum of conversation and laughter was subdued. Families went home, with few lingering about on the lawn. Allison dragged Westleigh off to who-knows-where. But Jack and I stood with my da and the Bischoffs, waiting for the reverend to finishing shaking hands so that we could go to the tavern for our Sunday afternoon meal. I say we stood together, but ‘twas more the men were gathered in a tight huddle, with Lucy and myself on the outside. Jack had his back to me, whispering. As if I didn’t know what they spoke about.

“Don’t think there will be a regiment formed around here.” George shook his head. “Likely the boys around this area are heading to Pittsburgh to enlist.”

David gripped Jack’s shoulder. “You’re sure about this?”

“Absolutely. Leaving first thing tomorrow.”

I folded my arms and ground my heel into the dirt.

George finally noticed me, and his mouth flipped into a grin. “You’ll have to take it up with Saoirse, from the looks of it.”

Jack sighed.

About the Author:

Sarah MacTavish is a librarian-author who writes historical fiction for teens. She’s also a gamer, cat lady, and Hufflepuff. When Sarah isn’t writing, she’s either gaming, working on the family tree, or reading Star Wars novels.

Connect with her online and get the latest updates on her books at www.sarahmactavish.com

Author Links:

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Giveaway details:

I will be giving away a digital copy of Paladin to a winner chosen randomly from anyone who signs up for my newsletter between May 13-18. (you can either link to my website or the signup directly at this link: http://eepurl.com/dxJnJz

Book Blitz Organized By:

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Books Teacup and Reviews by Yesha - Books Teacup And Reviews - 1w ago

‘It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?’ is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week.  It’s a great post to organise yourself. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date.

Hello Readers! Happy Monday! Last week I feel like I haven’t read anything even though I finished 1 and half book and reviewed 2 books. Many social visits and shopping for my cousin’s engagement. Sometimes I really wish to live like hermit. One good thing is a book landed on doorstep.

LAST WEEK I READ- REVIEWED- CURRENTLY READING-

Four little words, uttered by her husband…
‘Oh my god,’ he gasped into her shoulder. ‘Shannon!’
There’s just one problem: her name isn’t Shannon.

Rewind six months and Scarlett and Rufus aren’t in the honeymoon stage anymore so much as the honey-should-we-bother phase. Desperate to get their sparkle back, Scarlett has plotted, planned and waxed more than any woman should have to, but none of it is working. Which makes it very hard to start the family they want. 

At least her business is going strong, even if her marriage isn’t. She and her best friend spend their days tangled up in dog leads and covered in fur. Scarlett/ is the fairy dogmother, training hopeless pets like compulsive eater Barkley, impulsive Romeo Murphy and bossy Biscuit. Meanwhile, her best friend walks the dogs and pines for the man who doesn’t know she exists. Thank goodness the women have each other. 

If only Scarlett could work out how to get her marriage back on track. But Rufus isn’t sharing his feelings with her. He is, though, sharing with her best friend. Her best friend, Shannon.

NEXT THIS WEEK-

When her daughter suggests Darcy Madison attend her ex-husband’s wedding, Darcy enlists the help of her colleague, divorce attorney Victor Costello, to pose as her dashing young date. But when Victor proposes to Darcy at the reception, Darcy forgets they are pretending and says, “Yes!” Between her false engagement to Victor and her daughter’s suggestion to have a double wedding, Darcy falls even further in the fantasy of being a blushing midlife bride. The longer the masquerade continues, the more Darcy starts to wonder what is love and can it last forever in a world where divorce is the only language she knows? 

WHAT ARE YOU READING THIS WEEK? HAVE YOU READ ANY OF THESE BOOKS BEFORE OR PLANNING TO READ IN FUTURE? WHAT DO YOU THINK ABOUT THEM??

Share your thoughts in the comment-box below.

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Books Teacup and Reviews by Yesha - Books Teacup And Reviews - 1w ago

The Scopas Factor by Vincent Panettiere
Publication Date :
November 5th 2018
Publisher : BookBaby
Read Date : May 10th 2018
Genre : Mystery / Thriller
Pages : 326
Stars :  ★ ★ ★1/2 / 5

A Hmong “story cloth,” a Revolutionary War battle flag, forged Picassos and a Russian drug dealer—finding the link between these disparate elements is the challenge Mike Hegan faces in The Scopas Factor, the latest mystery from Vincent Panettiere.

After his last investigation ends tragically, Detective Mike Hegan returns to Chicago from St. Kitts, hoping to put everything behind him. But his girlfriend, Diana, has other plans, and although he has no interest in the job opportunity she presents him—in a small northern California town, no less—he wants to please her. Upon his arrival in Weedley, he’s caught up in a kidnapping and two murders. A visit to Diana’s family in San Francisco only serves to deepen the mystery, as her father might be the link to a gang of antiquities thieves that might have something to do with the crimes in Weedley. And when Diana’s father disappears, Hegan takes off for Antibes in southern France, where he discovers that the mystery has only just begun.

The Scopas Factor was a second book in Mike Hegan mystery series. Book was revolved around primitive art, forgery, Laosian history, and drug smuggling that tangled main character – detective Mike Hegan in complex case. Book was filled with twist and turns, some tense scene and little bit romance.

I haven’t read first book so I can tell there wasn’t much I was missing from first book and can be read as standalone. Writing was okay at first but as I read more I could see it improving by the end of the book. It was third person narrative from multiple character’s perspective. The narration style, setting and plot was different and interesting.

It started in 1990 with Hmong woman running from communist insurgents terrorizing village. They were assisted by the Americans during Vietnam War. While staying at refugee camp she recreated horrors of war by sewing a cloth depicting the events she witnessed. She hid it in secret compartment of her lean-to. The cloth that took old woman’s life and put her daughter Mos and her family in danger even after 25 years.

Why cloth was so important, why the Skaggs was after it, why Tom and some other people had ‘Don’t Trade On Me’ flag and why they had letters from Ambassadors of America signed by Rene Sabotka, who was Sabotka, how he was related to cloth and why he wanted it? All these questions made the book interesting and I was curious to find out how Hegan was going to solve the mystery of story cloth.

First few chapters gave overview of history of story cloth, Tom Fritzgerald and Hegan’s life as detective of Chicago Police Department, how he was now on sabbatical after returning previous mission and on the case of two murders and a missing story cloth.

Hegan was clever, his deductive skill was great and I liked how he cared for people around him. Initially he was suspicious of Thornie but once it was cleared their team was remarkable. I enjoyed conversations between them. Thornie was my most favorite character in the book. He was hilarious British that made the book lively and eased the tension of the mystery.

Side characters David, Alexis, LeNoir and Thornie were eventually introduced. I liked to read their part in the mystery that helped to gather the pieces of puzzle. Yvette’s life story and her relation to LeNoir was intriguing and I liked how she reconnected with her lost family. All characters were flawed and realistic.

Drama, murder, kidnapping, smuggling with many twist and turns made me read till the end of the chapter. A statue by Scopas and Hegan’s skill was the turning point in the book. Climax was good. Last 30% of the book fast paced, real interesting and tense filled with action, little surprises and better writing. I liked the way mystery was concluded.

Now there were few things that kept me distracted and from fully enjoying the story. I enjoyed first chapter but from second to seventh chapter (first 100 pages), it didn’t held the same interest and pace, maybe because of narration style which was little confusing.

I couldn’t feel the characters. There was more focus on plot than characters. I didn’t care for any of them. Though Hegan was main character, I feel like I don’t know much about him and his romance with Yvette was also superficial. The way they met and their love at first sight felt unrealistic.

I couldn’t feel the thrill of mystery until last 30% of the book.

Overall, it was interesting and unique plot and mystery with twist and turns. I would have loved the book if it had depth in characters and more gripping narration.

*** Note : I received this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. ***

Author: Vincent Panettiere

Purchase Link: Amazon

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Hello Readers! Today is the cover reveal for The Road to Cromer Pier by Martin Gore, organized by Rachel’s Random Resources . Please check out the beautiful cover and book details in this post.

Book Details:

The Road to Cromer Pier by Martin Gore
Publication Date: 29th June 2019
Genre: General fiction

Synopsis:

Janet’s first love arrives out of the blue after forty years. Those were simpler times for them both. Sunny childhood beach holidays, fish and chips and big copper pennies clunking into one armed bandits.

The Wells family has run the Cromer Pier Summertime Special Show for generations. But it’s now 2009 and the recession is biting hard. Owner Janet Wells and daughter Karen are facing an uncertain future. The show must go on, and Janet gambles on a fading talent show star. But both the star and the other cast members have their demons. This is a story of love, loyalty and luvvies. The road to Cromer Pier might be the end of their careers, or it might just be a new beginning.

Goodreads – https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/45303438-the-road-to-cromer-pier?from_search=true

Pre-order Links:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07R9XP3QM/

US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07R9XP3QM/

The cover….

Author Bio:

I am a 61 year old Accountant who semi-retired to explore my love of creative writing. In my career I held Board level jobs for over twenty five years, in private, public and third sector organisations. I was born in Coventry, a city then dominated by the car industry and high volume manufacturing. Jaguar, Triumph, Talbot, Rolls Royce, Courtaulds, Massey Ferguson were the major employers, to name but a few.
When I was nine year’s old I told my long suffering mother that as I liked English composition and drama I was going to be a Playwright. She told me that I should work hard at school and get a proper job. She was right of course.
I started as an Office Junior at Jaguar in 1973 at eleven pounds sixty four a week. I thus grew up in the strike torn, class divided seventies. My first career ended in 2015, when I semi retired as Director of Corporate services at Humberside Probation. My second career, as a Non Executive Director, is great as it has allowed me free time to travel and indulge my passion for writing, both in novels and for theatre.
The opportunity to rekindle my interest in writing came in 2009, when I wrote my first pantomime, Cinderella, for my home group, the Walkington Pantomime Players. I have now written eight. I love theatre, particularly musical theatre, and completed the Hull Truck Theatre Playwrite course in 2010. My first play, a comedy called He’s Behind You, had its first highly successful showing in January 2016, so I intend to move forward in all three creative areas.
Pen Pals was my first novel, but a second, The Road to Cromer Pier, will be released in the Summer of 2019. 
I’m an old fashioned writer I guess. I want you to laugh and to cry. I want you to believe in my characters, and feel that my stories have a beginning, a middle, and a satisfactory ending.

Social Media Links:

Twitter | Facebook

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Hello Readers! Today is my stop during the Blitz tour for Runaways by Rachel Sawden, organized by Xpresso Book Tours (in collaboration with The Literary Lobbyist).  Please check out book details, excerpt and giveaway in this post.

Runaways by Rachel Sawden 
Publication date: November 9th 2018
Genres: Contemporary, New Adult, Romance

Synopsis:

Harper Rodrigues’ five-year plan was on track. She’d worked hard to secure her graduate marketing job, her boyfriend Adam was set to propose any day, and she was learning to process the death of her sister. She’d been through some dark times, but there was light at the end of the tunnel.

At least, that’s how it had seemed until the day she was fired in the morning and dumped by nightfall.
Now, with her life plans in ruins, Harper turns to her best friends who are going on the trip of a lifetime – five-months traveling across Asia and Oceania. Determined to see the silver lining in her unraveled plans, she decides to book a plane ticket to join them and resurrect her dreams of becoming a travel photographer.

But Harper’s travels aren’t all sunshine and cocktails. With Adam begging for her forgiveness and proposing on the eve of her departure, Harper knows she must be on her best behavior. But when she meets Xavier, an enigmatic poet on the beaches of Goa, that may just be easier said than done.

Runaways is the empowering and racy tale of one woman’s voyage of self-discovery. A must-read for fans of travelogues and romance alike.

Endorsements:

In overcoming her fears, the protagonist learned to live and not just exist. A great read for anyone who wants to change their life but is scared to step outside the norm. I would love a sequel! –Netgalley 5-star

If you enjoy books about self-exploration, summer love and some drama this would be a good book for you. –Goodreads 4-star review

This was a gripping read. I really felt like I was there experiencing different countries with the writer. A great combination of wanderlust, romance, friendship and life after loss. –Amazon 5-star review

This a heartwarming story about friends, romance and following your dreams. I enjoyed the debut novel of this author as the combination of the relationship of the three friends, the great locations that felt like you were travelling with them and the romances they experienced on their journey turned into an enjoyable story and I would definitely read her future books. –Amazon 4-star review

Book Links : Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo

——

Excerpt:

Date: January 8, 2010

Toronto, Canada

Where would you go if you could run away? Trek the tangled jungles of Thailand? Camp under the constellations in the Australian outback? Or run wild with your lover on white sand beaches in the South Pacific?

“Nowhere,” I whispered. My heels clicked on the linoleum floor, punctuating the spiel from my presentation echoing in my head. “I am exactly where I am supposed to be.”

How could I not be positive? I was one of the lucky few to gain and maintain employment in the shadow of the Great Recession. Fresh out of university, I might add. Granted, my working unpaid for TMI Marketing during my summer years gave me a leg up on the competition. While my job consisted mainly of making coffee, filing papers, and having my ideas ignored, I worked my ass off for the past three years. And today was the day my hard work would pay off. It was the day it all would change. The career side of my five-year plan was on schedule.

A fresh wave of adrenaline pulsed through me as I made my way down the hallway of very unflattering lighting to my boss’s office to discuss the presentation I’d given that morning. A discussion that would hopefully lead to a new position in the company. One where I could take on actual responsibility and express my creativity. Perhaps be involved in art direction. A business card with a title: Harper Rodrigues, Marketing Executive.

I would actually manage my very own accounts.

We had secured a new client, a travel website, Madcap Travels, who was looking to reevaluate their social media marketing plan and contracted my company to manage it. Myself and a colleague had made competing presentations for the job. Only one of us could gain the account. Only one of us could be promoted. Only one of us could win today, and I wanted it to be me.

I had never been so excited about a project, and so damn scared about presenting.

Inspired by my friends’ upcoming “gap year” travels, I created the Run Away campaign harnessing the power of this growing thing called social media. When Facebook became a buzzword a few years back, my father said it was just a passing fad used by horny college students too lazy to go to the bar and talk to each other. He may have been right, but once it had been opened up to anyone with an email address there were millions of lazy, horny people of all ages across the world skulking around on confined areas of cyberspace. And that is gold to a marketer.

In a nutshell, the campaign would focus on incentivizing both amateur and professional photographers who were traveling the globe to connect and share their stories and photographs on social media platforms. Top entrants would not only gain recognition on the website but also chances to win prizes from partner sponsors such as airlines, tour companies, and hotels. I poured myself into this presentation. Putting myself in the shoes of one of the many runaways, I imagined my life living out of a backpack, seeing a new city every week, learning from other photographers, finding remote waterfalls and villages from the whispers of other vagabonds.

It was what I hoped to do had I not abandoned my plans to become a world-famous travel photographer.

It was what I could do if I abandoned my carefully crafted five-year plan and took off with Jade and Lana.

It was what I wanted to do with my sister, Audrey, since we were little girls. It was what we could have done if she were still alive.

Author Bio:

Rachel Sawden was born and raised in Bermuda. As the daughter of a Jamaican father and English mother the former model earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from McGill University in Montreal Canada. Today Rachel is an author, producer, and content creator in her beautiful island of Bermuda. The certified scuba and free diver explored the Great Barrier Reef and underwater worlds in Cuba and Indonesia. She is the ultimate travel maven having journeyed to over 35 countries across 5 continents since graduating college.

Website / Goodreads / Instagram / Twitter

GIVEAWAY!

Blitz-wide giveaway

  • 10x signed copies of Runaways (US only)
  • 10x ebook copies of Runaways (INT)


a Rafflecopter giveaway

——

Xpresso Book Tours
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Books Teacup and Reviews by Yesha - Books Teacup And Reviews - 2w ago

Sunset Beach by Mary Kay Andrews
Expected Publication Date
: May 7th 2019
Publisher : St. Martin’s Press
Read Date : May 6th 2019
Genre : Women’s Fiction / Mystery
Stars : ★ ★★ ★ ★ / 5

Pull up a lounge chair and have a cocktail at Sunset Beach – it comes with a twist. 

Drue Campbell’s life is adrift. Out of a job and down on her luck, life doesn’t seem to be getting any better when her estranged father, Brice Campbell, a flamboyant personal injury attorney, shows up at her mother’s funeral after a twenty-year absence. Worse, he’s remarried – to Drue’s eighth grade frenemy, Wendy, now his office manager. And they’re offering her a job.

It seems like the job from hell, but the offer is sweetened by the news of her inheritance – her grandparents’ beach bungalow in the sleepy town of Sunset Beach, a charming but storm-damaged eyesore now surrounded by waterfront McMansions.

With no other prospects, Drue begrudgingly joins the firm, spending her days screening out the grifters whose phone calls flood the law office. Working with Wendy is no picnic either. But when a suspicious death at an exclusive beach resort nearby exposes possible corruption at her father’s firm, she goes from unwilling cubicle rat to unwitting investigator, and is drawn into a case that may – or may not – involve her father. With an office romance building, a decades-old missing persons case re-opened, and a cottage in rehab, one thing is for sure at Sunset Beach: there’s a storm on the horizon.

Sunset Beach is a compelling ride, full of Mary Kay Andrews’ signature wit, heart, and charm.

Sunset Beach was women’s fiction filled that revolved around Drue’s life and two suspenseful mysteries she got invested on arriving at the Sunset Beach. A wonderful summer novel about cold-blooded murder, suffering of women in the male dominated fields, hotel management and their low ethics, domestic violence and some family drama and suspense. 

Drue was fabulous in whole book. She was 36 but I felt she was younger than that. At first she was complaining with life, because of her father, job, boyfriend and her injury that held her on the grounds away from her kite-boarding passion but as I read more she developed gradually and took grip of new life quite nicely. I liked the way she accepted Brice and Wendy’s marriage eventually, bonded with Jonah and Aliyah. She was natural in communication and investigation and I’m happy how she solved both cases.

All side characters were great. The team at Campbell firm, detective working on case, Jazmin’s family all made the book interesting.

First few chapters were character and plot building. We got to know about Drue’s childhood filled with hurt feeling because of abandonment by her father-Brice, now a rich lawyer running a law firm. When she met him after a long time at her mother’s funeral he offered her a job and a key to her grandparent’s cottage she inherited at Sunset Beach. Looking at her jobless, homeless and relationship-less situation, she took up her father’s offer and joined his firm where she received a unsavory surprise. She met her father’s third wife, Wendy, her ex-best friend when she was 15. Another surprise came pretty soon. Once she moved back to cottage, she found two intriguing cases that she instantly hooked to – 1) a missing case of local beauty, a forty years old unsolved case and 2) the case of woman brutally murdered at the Gulf Vista hotel, the case for which victim’s mother hired Drue’s dad’s firm 2 years back but she got penny as a result. As soon as Drue started nosing around to solve the case story took many interesting turns.

It was third person narrative with wonderful picturesque beach town, ideal cottage, perfect sunsets and detailed case descriptions. Writing was easy to follow with interesting pieces of puzzle that I could easily follow but hardly could guess the conclusion. It was wonderful to read the way Drue turned her damaged uninhabitable cottage into beautiful dream house.

Some chapters were written in past, 1976, that told the life story of Colleen, how she was connected to Brice and Jimmy, how she went missing, what actually happened to her, and how the police file of the case ended up in the attic of Drue’s cottage. I could guess some points in Collen case but the way chapters were represented made me question my own theory. All chapters related to this case were tense and made me nervous. The conclusion was totally unpredictable. I didn’t like the way things settled for Colleen and all characters related to her.

In Jazmin’s case, I couldn’t pinpoint anything. Whole thing at that Gulf Vista was fishy. I could feel why Drue was so invested in this case. Aliyah was such adorable girl and as a mother I could imagine how devastating Jazmin’s mother might be. I was shocked how hotel management remained impassive and obstructive from the very beginning. And when mystery finally unraveled, I felt outrageous.

Both case’s file records were narrated with minute details. In both the cases things would have not taken nasty turns only of characters decided to act differently. Elements of sleuthing, mysteries, family drama, little bit of romance along with the theme of domestic violence and mistreatment of female employees was perfectly balanced.

Oh and those events after climax were mind boggling. This part shocked me more than all that happened previously. End was satisfactory. I loved author’s dream beach house note and recipes that you could enjoy during your summer vacation at beach.

Overall, it was suspenseful, engrossing, women’s fiction with cozy mystery, a perfect beach novel with great characterization and plot. I definitely recommend this book to read on you summer vacation.

Author : Mary Kay Andrews

Purchase Link : St. Martin’s Press

*** Note: Many thanks to publisher for providing e-copy via NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review. ***

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