Friday, 31 October 2014

Blogiversary Giveaway #22: Win a Halloween Bundle

And now it's finally time to come to the end of the blogiversary celebrations... and it's only fitting that since it's Halloween to have a Halloween bundle.

One winner will receive all of this:
  • Say Her Name by James Dawson
  • 3 ghost clip bookmarks
  • Sour Tricks jelly sweets
  • Sack of Crunchy Bones chocolates
  • Sack of Gooey Brains chocolates 

Books Read: Amelia Thorne - Beneath the Moon and the Stars

Home, sweet home…

Joy Cartier has been to some of the most beautiful places in the world – but none of them have ever felt like home. So moving into a tiny cottage in the idyllic village of Bramble Hill, walking distance from her childhood home, seems like the perfect plan. 

That is, until she gets there. The surly inhabitants of Britain’s Friendliest Village are anything but welcoming. Even her neighbour, reclusive Hollywood star Finn Mackenzie, takes one look at her and walks in the other direction. 

But when the village animosity steps up a gear, it is the infuriatingly brooding Finn who keeps coming to her rescue. Slowly Joy begins to realise that maybe a happy home isn’t about where you live, but who you’re with…

Amazon link: Kindle

Thursday, 30 October 2014

Guest Book Review: Ruth Saberton - Escape for Christmas

Reviewed by Tanya Phillips

Gemma Pengelley is looking forward to a romantic Christmas with her boyfriend Cal, far away from the chaos caused by their well-meaning family and friends. After a whirlwind of a year some quality time in a picturesque Cornish cottage is exactly what they need. 

But when ghosts of partners past, a tangled web of secrets and the demands of a reality television show strike at the very heart of Gemma’s plans, her dreams of the perfect Christmas crumble. Will she still find her Christmas escape? Or is Gemma just running away?

Amazon link: Kindle

Blogiversary Giveaway #21: Win a copy of Winter Siege by Ariana Franklin & Samantha Norman

I recently received a copy of Winter Siege to review but as it's not the type of book I would normally read and I'm currently struggling to clear current review pile, the publicist has kindly agreed that I can give this copy away to a follower.   Fortunately this will now be reviewed on the blog as Janet has offered to review it for me from her own eBook copy.  

Run, run, girl. In the name of God, run. 

It's 1141 and freezing cold. Gwil, a battle-hardened mercenary, watches in horror as a little girl with red hair is dragged away by his own men. Caught in the middle of the fight for England she is just one more victim in a winter of atrocities. 

 But a strange twist of fate brings them together again. Gwil finds the girl close to death, clutching a sliver of parchment - and he knows what he must do. He will bring her back to life. He will train her to fight. And together, they will hunt down the man who did this to her. 

Blogiversary Giveaway #20: Win a copy of Mapp & Lucia Omnibus by E.F. Benson

I recently received 2 review copies of this Mapp & Lucia omnibus so I've agreed with the publicist that I can offer the second copy as one of the final blogiversary prizes.

The arrival of the snobbish Mrs Emmeline Lucas (know as Lucia to her friends) to the small seaside town of Tilling causes waves as she threatens the queen bee of Tilling's social circle, Miss Elizabeth Mapp. 

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Blogiversary Giveaway #19: Win Christmas eBooks from Holly Martin & A.L. Michael

The final eBook giveaway package for today is for a copy of Holly Martin's One Hundred Christmas Proposals and Driving Home for Christmas by A.L. Michael.

If you thought Harry & Suzie’s life couldn't get anymore sweepingly romantic than Harry asking her to marry him at the end of One Hundred Proposals – think again! 

It’s Christmas in a snow-kissed London, and have vowed to carry out one hundred proposals in December. No easy task at the best of times - made even more complicated by Harry & Suzie trying to plan their first Christmas and a visit from the dreaded in-laws. But one hundred deliciously Christmassy proposals later they find themselves asking if everything is still perfect in their own relationship…. 

Blogiversary Giveaway #18: Win Christmas eBooks from Rebecca Raisin & Samantha Tonge

Ready for another giveaway?  The second of today's fabulous Carina UK Christmas eBook packages is for a copy of Christmas Wedding at the Gingerbread Cafe, the final book in Rebecca Raisin's Gingerbread Cafe series, and Samantha Tonge's latest eBook Mistletoe Mansion.

You are invited to the wedding of the year!

Snow is falling thick and fast outside the Gingerbread CafĂ© and inside, its owner Lily is planning the wedding of the year. Her wedding! She never dreamt it would happen, but this Christmas, she’ll be marrying the man of her dreams - in a Christmas-card-perfect ceremony! 

The gingerbread is baking, the dress is fitted and the mistletoe’s in place – for once, everything’s going to plan. That is until her mother-in-law arrives... Suddenly, Lily’s famous cool is being tested like never before and her dream wedding is crumbling before her eyes. 

Extract from The Boy in the Cemetery by Sebastian Gregory

It's publication day for Sebastian Gregory's latest novel The Boy in the Cemetery which is perfect timing for all of you who are looking for a spooky Halloween read. 

To get you in the mood I'm happy to be able to share with you a short extract below.    
This is the story of a girl who lived but was not alive…

Carrie Anne is desperately unhappy. Tangled in a web of abuse, she seeks solace in the cemetery that backs onto her garden. But something creeps between the gravestones. Carrie Anne is not alone… 

…and a boy who was dead, but could not die. 

The cemetery is home to a boy. He has guarded these forgotten bones since meeting a gruesome end two hundred years ago. Neither dead nor alive, he has been watching for a long time. And now, he finally has the visitor he’s been waiting for… 


The boy had to push branches to one side as he approached. It was as if the trees themselves were trying to deter him from his path. The boy could not be deterred and the scratching of the trees was nothing to the pain that fate had already inflicted upon him. He reached out, pulling the ivy from the door. The plant resisted but was torn aside nonetheless. The wind blew harder and the trees shook harder as the boy pushed at the creaking doors. They opened with no resistance. As the boy took his steps into the tomb the wind howled.. It sounded like a mother crying.

Guest Book Review: Lia Riley - Sideswiped

Reviewed by Janine Cobain

It was only meant to last the summer...

Talia Stolfi has seen more than her share of loss in her twenty-one years. But then fate brought her Bran Lockhart, and her dark world was suddenly and spectacularly illuminated. So if being with Bran means leaving her colorless NorCal life for rugged and wild Australia, then that's what she'll do. But as much as Talia longs to give herself over completely to a new beginning, the fears of her past are still lurking in the shadows. 

Bran Lockhart knows that living without the beautiful girl who stole his heart will be torment, so he'll take whatever time with her he can. But even though she has packed up her life in California and is back in his arms for the time being, she can't stay forever. And the remaining time they have together is ticking by way too fast. Though fate seems determined to tear them apart, they won't give up without a fight-because while time may have limits, their love is infinite . . .

Amazon links: Kindle or Paperback

Blogiversary Giveaway #17: Win a couple of Jenny Oliver Christmas books

Today it's a bumper day of Christmas giveaway prizes thanks to the generosity of Sara at Carina UK.

The first prize bundle you could win are for two Jenny Oliver books, a paperback copy of The Parisian Christmas Bake Off as well as a copy of her latest eBook The Little Christmas Kitchen.

Welcome to the most celebrated patisserie competition in Paris – ready, steady, bake!

Watching snowflakes settle on the Eiffel Tower, Rachel Smithson’s cosy English village feels very far way – as, thankfully, does her commitment-phobic ex, probably already kissing someone else under the mistletoe. But Rachel hasn’t come to Paris to mope she’s come to bake. Hard. 

Because the search for Paris’s next patisserie apprentice is about to begin! And super-chef judge Henri Salernes is an infamously tough cookie. But Rachel isn’t about to let her confidence (or pastry) crumble. She’s got one week, mounds of melt-in-the-mouth macaroons and towers of perfect profiteroles to prove that she really is a star baker. 

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Debut Spotlight & Giveaway: Louise Lindley

This afternoon I'd like to introduce you to author Louise Lindley who has just published her debut novel Bruises

Louise Lindley grew up in the northeast of England. In 2004 she moved to Canada with her husband, for what was supposed to be one year. Ten years, two children, two cats and a dog later, she appears to be staying. She worked as a registered nurse until giving up her career to raise her family. When she was diagnosed with a chronic disease, she turned to writing, combining her knowledge of the medical world with personal life experiences. She lives in Vancouver with her husband and two boys. Bruises is her debut novel.

Dr. Frances Robertson is confident, beautiful, single, independent and going on 40. 

When family circumstances beyond her control force her to temporarily suspend her career and her great lifestyle in Vancouver, to return to her childhood home in England, she finds herself resentful and apprehensive about spending 6 months in the city she had thought she'd left for good. Staying in her cousin's flat, Frankie takes on an interim position at the local hospital to make ends meet while she is occupied with clearing out the home of her father, a man who never showed her any love. The thankless task weighs heavily on her mind - until she is thrust into working with Jack at the hospital. Gorgeous, young, and virile, Jack harbours a painful past and insecurities under that handsome exterior. The sparks fly and Frankie soon finds herself teaching Jack a thing or two in the bedroom. 

The intense sexual heat between Frankie and Jack soon turns into more, and both simultaneously worry about and pretend to ignore the looming date for her return to Vancouver. The seemingly perfect, steamy romance becomes strained as neither wants to admit their feelings or face reality. Hot and torrid, their passion flares and tensions mount as Frankie and Jack have to decide whether love will be enough to heal their bruises.

Can you tell us a little bit about your debut novel?
Bruises is a steamy romance in which two people find love when neither of them are looking for it, and then try to avoid it. The main female character, Frankie, takes a sabbatical from her well paid job as a doctor, and her idealistic lifestyle, in Vancouver, to return to her family home in England. Circumstances beyond her control require her to clear the family home, sell it, and leave behind her unhappy childhood for good. She still needs to make ends meet, and therefore takes a temporary locum position at the local hospital she’d previously worked at as a trainee… where she meets Jack.

The gorgeous exterior of Jack is all a cover up; he’s dealing with his own tragedy. When he first meets Frankie and finds himself assisting her, he avoids his feelings by being hostile. She’s a confident professional woman who’s 7 years his senior, she wouldn’t be interested in him… 

What starts as an arrangement very quickly develops into much more. They spend the following six months together, having fun and soul searching, while Frankie uncovers all the secrets and lies that the family home has been hiding from her all her life. They have both found love, but neither will admit it, and time is running out because Frankie must return home…

Blogiversary Giveaway #15: Win a copy of The Story of You by Katy Regan

Today's giveaway prize is for a copy of one of the books that's been on my wishlist all Summer, The Story of You by Katy Regan.  I recently saw that it was on promotion in Tesco so I bought 2 copies, one for me and one for a follower to win in this morning's blogiversary giveaway ;-)

There is no story of me without the story of you. 

I want to explain it all to you. How this happened. How that summer – the summer I was 16 – made me the person I am today. 

Monday, 27 October 2014

Blogiversary Giveaway #14: Win 1 of 3 copies of Some Veil Did Fall by Kirsty Ferry

Over the years the lovely ladies at Choc Lit have very generously offer me fantastic books to review and their generosity doesn't stop there as they offered me 3 copies of Kirsty Ferry's latest book Some Veil Did Fall for this latest blogiversary giveaway.

What if you recalled memories from a life that wasn't yours, from a life before? 

When Becky steps into Jonathon Nelson's atmospheric photography studio in Whitby, she is simply a freelance journalist in search of a story. But as soon as she puts on the beautiful Victorian dress and poses for a photograph, she becomes somebody quite different... 

From that moment on, Becky is overcome with visions and flashbacks from a life that isn't her own - some disturbing and filled with fear. 

Author Interview: Emma interviews Michele Gorman

Emma recently reviewed Michele Gorman's Perfect Girl for the blog so when we were contacted about doing an interview I asked Emma if she'd like to come up with some questions for Michele...

Where did the idea come from for Perfect Girl?
I like to explore familiar situations, and the pressure to have it all while living a perfect life is something that most women can identify with. The fun thing about writing romcoms is that you get to take a situation and push it to the extreme. That’s where a lot of the humour comes from. So in Carol’s case, it wasn’t enough to have demanding parents and work commitments (something a lot of us experience). I piled on a nightmare sister, rogue boyfriend, hopeless best friend and the risk of prison… and Carol came out swinging! 

Have you ever experienced writer's block? If so what do you do to overcome it?
I don’t get Writer’s Block as much as Writer’s Procrastination. It’s often worse! There’ve been times (sometimes weeks) when I’m supposed to be writing but find myself doing anything but that. I’ll spend hours on Facebook and twitter, or looking for new recipes or cleaning my flat (a classic procrastination technique from university days). When it happens I have to break the cycle, so I start writing first thing in the morning, with the Internet turned off, and don’t stop until I reach my word count. After a week or so of such discipline my writing routine returns and I’m productive again (until next time!)

Blogiversary Giveaway #13: Win a copy of A Most Desirable Marriage by Hilary Boyd

I recently received a duplicate copy of Hilary Boyd's A Most Desirable Marriage, as well as Emma who was sent a copy which she reviewed.  But as my TBR pile is already overflowing and I'm unlikely to be in a position to read this one myself anytime soon I have decided to offer it up as an additional blogiversary prize.

Lawrence and Jo have enjoyed a strong marriage, the envy of their friends. Even after thirty years they have lots to say to each other, many interests in common and, until recently, a good sex life. 

But Lawrence seems wary and restless. Something's wrong. Just how wrong, Jo is about to discover...