One Summer in Paris – Sarah Morgan

One Summer in Paris
Sarah Morgan

USA Today bestselling author Sarah Morgan returns with this heartwarming novel about the power of friendship, love and what happens when an ending is just the beginning…

To celebrate their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary, Grace has planned the surprise of a lifetime for her husband – a romantic getaway to Paris. But she never expected he’s have a surprise of his own: he wants a divorce. Reeling from the shock but refusing to be broken, a devastated Grace makes the bold decision to go to Paris alone.

Audrey, a young woman from London, has left behind a heartache of her own when she arrives in Parris. A job in a bookshop is her ticket to freedom, but with no money and no knowledge of the French language, suddenly a summer spent wandering the cobbled streets alone seems much more likely…until she meets Grace, and everything changes.

Grace can’t believe how daring Audrey is. Audrey can’t believe how cautious newly singe Grace is. Living in neighbouring apartments about the bookshop, this unlikely pair offer each other just what they’ve both been missing. They came to Paris to find themselves, but finding this unbreakable friendship might be the best thing that’s ever happened to them…

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The perfect summer read.

This story is about two women, Grace and Audrey, who spend their summer in Paris. Grace is in her forties and her husband has just left her on their 25th wedding anniversary, whilst Audrey is in her late-teens desperate to leave home and lead her own life.

The two are polar opposites and after meeting on their first day in the city they help each other find that balance that they are missing.

I got absolutely hooked on this book and felt like I was right there in Paris with Grace and Audrey. This book is the perfect summer read, and I urge you to get your hands on it. I read my first Sarah Morgan book at the end of last year and will definitely be going back to read more of her work.

This is a story about love, friendship and self-discovery led by two fantastic character in a beautiful and romantic setting.

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The Summer of Chasing Dreams – Holly Martin

The Summer of Chasing Dreams
Holly Martin

A joyously romantic, feel-good summer read that will make you laugh, cry and fall in love. Eva Blue is about to go on a trip of a lifetime, but one adventure she didn’t count on was falling in love…

Eva is quite content with her life in London. In her job as a cover designer, she works at home, and often in her cosy pyjamas. She’s happy to stay in her safe little world and not explore much outside of it.

She is the opposite of her mum, a free spirit who craved finding adventure and thrills in all corners of the world. But on the day her mum’s will is finalised, Eva finds a list of all the dreams her mum wanted to achieve in her life. Things she never did because she fell pregnant with Eva.

Eva decides these dreams will not go unfulfilled – she is going to be brave and complete them for her mum. As Eva has no experience travelling the world, she hires a guide to go with her on this holiday.

Gorgeous but rude Thor Anderson is not the person she would choose to accompany her on this journey, but somehow she gets stuck with him. As they discover the world together Eva starts to think he might not be as bad as she first thought. She is swept away by Thor’s kindness and mischievous sense of humour. But will it be a simple holiday romance or could this wonderful adventure lead to so much more?

Discover an unforgettable romance this summer. If you enjoy reading Sarah Morgan, Miranda Dickinson, and Jill Mansell, this book is for you.

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I absolutely loved this book. It was another great feel-good read of the year.

I am a fan of Holly Martin’s and am glad that I had the opportunity to read this book. It may even just be my favourite of Holly’s so far.

I felt like I could relate to the main character, Eva, who is safe in her own world and not very daring. By completing her mum’s ‘bucket list’ it opens Eva’s eyes to the opportunities that the world has to offer.

This book was like traveling the world from the comfort of my own sofa, but also inspiring to make you think about the things that you want to achieve and the places you want to go.

The story and the development of the relationship between Eva and Thor was great and intense. But also there was Eva’s own personal story and development which I thought was a highlight of the book.

This book has a mixture of emotions but predominately it is a fun, light-hearted, feel-good read that gives you a boost.

One Summer’s Night – Kiley Dunbar

One Summer’s Night
Kiley Dunbar

The path of true love never did run smooth…did it?

Kelsey Anderson is stuck in a rut so big, she’ll need a 4-wheel drive to get out. She’s just been made redundant from her dead-end job, and boyfriend Fran is so busy climbing up the career ladder that he’s forgotten how to have fun. She needs to change her life – and fast.

Stumbling across an advert for tour guides in Stratford-Upon-Avon seems like the perfect way to bring the sunshine back. In an impulsive move, she moved from her small Scottish village to Shakespeare’s birthplace, armed only with a suitcase and her battered copy of Shakespeare’s Sonnets.

Kelsey quickly falls in love with the place, her job as a tourist guide allowing her to explore every inch of the picture-perfect town, from cosy cafes to the picturesque banks of the river.

But it’s not just the town that captures her heart, as she finds herself torn between the actors Will and Jonathan who both vie for her affections.

But will beautiful Peony, the lead actress at the Oklahoma theatre company where Jonathan is playing Oberon in A Midsummer’s Night’s Dream, play a role in keeping Kelsey and Jonathan apart?

Or will flirtatious, charming Will, the fellow tour guide who has set his sights on Kelsey, keep the star-crossed lovers from finding their happy ending?

A gorgeously uplifting, feel good romance that will captivate readers of Holly Martin, Cathy Bramley and Milly Johnson.

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Today I am taking part in the blog tour for One Summer’s Night, the debut novel of Kiley Dunbar and I couldn’t recommend this book enough. A fabulous, light-hearted, feel good read.

From the very start of this book I could relate to Kelsey, the lead character, her life taking a very close resemblance to my own. This meant that I was hooked from the start. This romantic comedy was exactly that.

Kelsey has a love for Shakespeare and she first visited Stratford-Upon-Avon as a child on a family holiday. Since then she has lost her father and has become stuck in a rut with her job and her relationship, but has never forgotten her love for the birthplace of Shakespeare. So when she sees a job advertised to work as a tour guide in the town, she doesn’t hesitate to apply.

Moving to Stratford-Upon-Avon becomes the change and the boost that Kelsey needs to change her life, thanks to her new boss, Norma, taking a chance on her.

The characters in this book are wonderful, her two love-interests, Will and Jonathan, her best friend Mirren as well as the rest of her colleagues, are all great different personalities, who made this story so readable.

I hope I find my Norma soon and I can’t wait to read the next instalment in Kelsey Anderson’s life. Keep your eyes peeled for more books by Kiley Dunbar.

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The Dinner List – Rebecca Serle

The Dinner List
Who would you invite to your dream dinner party?
Rebecca Serle

‘We’ve been waiting for an hour.’ That’s what Audrey says. She states it with a little bit of an edge, her words just bordering on cursive. That’s the thing I think first. Not, Audrey Hepburn is at my birthday dinner, but Audrey Hepburn is annoyed.’

What if your dream dinner party were to actually happen? For New Yorker Sabrina, fantasy becomes reality when she arrives at her thirtieth-birthday celebration to find not only her best friend but also her long-dead father, her admired philosophy professor, the love of her life – and silver-screen icon Audrey Hepburn. Unbelievable though this seems at first, as the wine and conversation start to flow it becomes clear that these individuals have each played a crucial role in the course Sabrina’s life has taken – and that they have come together at this moment in time for a reason….

Follow Sabrina over one evening and ten years as she grapples with the definition of romance, the expectations of love – and how to navigate her way to happiness in this bittersweet romance for our times.

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This book is based on a premise that I am sure we have all thought about, or have been asked, ‘who would be at your dream dinner party?’

For Sabrina her dream dinner party became a reality on her 30th birthday. With the guests at the dinner it was clear to see that it wasn’t a true reality, however it was a very believable situation.

Through the story we look back over Sabrina’s life and the characters at the table, her best friend Jessica, her long-dead father, her philosophy professor, the love of her life and Audrey Hepburn, are all there at this pivotal time in Sabrina’s life to help her understand her past and to move on to the future.

Each of the characters have a vital role to play in this story and in supporting Sabrina’s journey, that you can’t imagine anyone else being part of this group.

I found this a great read, a story that helps you to realise that the things that happen to you in your past are a part of your journey, they happen for a reason and to move forward with you have to let those things go. It got me thinking about the people who have played vital roles in my own life, and who would be at my own dream dinner party.

This book was great, I would highly recommend it.

Who would be at your dream dinner party?

If Only I Could Tell You – Hannah Beckerman

If Only I Could Tell You
Hannah Beckerman

Audrey’s family has fallen apart. Her two grown-up daughters, Jess and Lily, are estranged, and her two teenage granddaughters have never been allowed to meet. A secret that echoes back thirty years has splintered the family in two, but is also the one thing keeping them connected.

As tensions reach breaking point, the irrevocable choice that one of them made all those years ago is about to surface. After years of secrets and silence, how can one broken family find their way back to each other?

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This book was fantastic! I haven’t read a book this quickly for a long time, I couldn’t put it down.

This story is about Audrey, the mother of Jess and Lily and the grandmother of Mia and Phoebe, and how her family has been torn apart by a secret from thirty years ago. Jess and Lily have been estranged for thirty years despite leaving in the same corner of London as each other. There are plenty of twists and turns as Audrey looks to get to the bottom of this before time runs out.

This book is compelling and completely heart-breaking. It has been beautifully written with so many themes that take you on such a rollercoaster. It covers all things from family, loss, grief, love, honesty, acceptance and fear.

This story is told from Audrey, Jess and Lily’s perspectives, switching between the three. Along with these three main characters, the granddaughters Mia and Phoebe all play an integral part to the story.

You were kept guessing throughout, and once you thought you had things sussed there was another twist. This kept me hooked from the very beginning.

A contender for book of the year.

Blog Tour: The Outcast Hours – Edited by Mahvesh Murad & Jared Shurin

The Outcast Hours
Mahvash Murad and Jared Shurin

These are the stories of people who live at night; under neon and starlight, and never the light of the sun.

These are the stories of poets and police, tourists and traders; the hidden and the forbidden; the lonely and the lovers. This is their time.

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Today I am taking part in my very first blog tour, one of the goals I set myself at the start of the year and didn’t think would be happening so soon. Anyway, I’m excited to be involved in the blog tour for The Outcast Hours edited by Mahvesh Murad and Jared Shurin thanks to Rebellion Publishing and Tracy Fenton.

The Outcast Hours is an anthology of 25 short stories from a vast variety of genres. These stories all take place after dark, they are about those who live their lives at night. These stories are all darker than what I would normally read, however I still really enjoyed them.

Not only is there a range of genres, the authors of these stories come from all over the world and from a variety of different backgrounds, with the stories tackling a wide range of themes, a lot of which I have found has stuck with me having completed the book.

A couple of standout stories from this collection for me where:
• It Was A Diifferent Time – Will Hill
• Sleep Walker – Silvia Moreno-Garcia
• Gatsby – Maha Khan Phillips
• Swipe Left – Daniel Polansky
• MiDNIghT MaRAuDERS – M. Suddain

With The Outcast Hours being an anthology and darker than my usual reads, I was unsure of how much I would enjoy this book, but I am glad I stepped outside my comfort zone and read this book and will be looking at reading the first anthology edited by Mahvesh Murad and Jared Shurin.

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The List That Changed My Life – Olivia Beirne

The List That Changed My Life
Olivia Beirne

Georgia loves wine, reality TV and sitting on the sofa after work. She does not love heights, looking at her bank account, going on dates, or activities that involve a sports bra. And she will never, ever take a risk.

That is, until her braver, bolder, big sister finds out that she won’t be able to tick off the things she wanted to do before turning thirty, and turns to Georgia to help her finish the list…

With the birthday just months away, Georgia suddenly has a deadline to learn to grab life with both hands. Could she be brave enough to take the leap, for her sister?

And how might her own life change if she did?

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I absolutely loved this book!

Georgia, the leading character, was great, and very funny and I could definitely relate to her. Her relationship with her sister, Amy, was heartwarming and it was lovely to see how this relationship affected the story.

Amy has been diagnosed with MS, and this book shows the consequences of this disease in an enlightening way, providing information about the disease as well as showing how it can affect the lives of both the sufferer as well as their friends and family.

Considering the book is dealing with the topic of MS and how this can affect the lives of people involved, the story was full of warmth, led by the task of Georgia completing the list that Amy is no longer able to, putting Georgia out of her comfort zone and providing many laughs along the way.

This book is full of great characters, as well as Georgia and Amy, the supporting characters; their parents, Natalie, Bianca and Tamal are all great additions to the story, especially Jack, Georgia’s love interest.

Not only does it tackle MS, but the book also shows that having the right support around you, with people who believe in you and believing in yourself you can achieve anything. This book gave me a new sense of living life to the full, hope and belief and I am going to be making my own list.

I look forward to reading more from Olivia Beirne after this great debut.