Posted in Audiobook Review, Historical Fiction

Necessary Lies by Diane Chamberlain @D_Chamberlain @audible_com #AlisonElliott #AudiobookReview #HistoricalFiction

Another Historical read for me, and something that would have passed me by.

Why did I pick it up?  – If it hadn’t been recommended in a Facebook group I am in then I don’t think i would have (Thanks Cyndi)

This story was one that made me absolutely stunned, I had no idea that this was something that was practised, and also that it was STILL being practised up to the 1980’s!!

I was crazy mad listening to this book, how people can have been given this much authority over other human beings is just mind blowing.
If you are a Jodi Picoult fan then you will probably love this one too.

Anyhoo, back to my review!

My Thoughts

Set in the 60’s in Rural Grace County, Jane Forrester goes for an interview for a job as a social worker, much to the dismay of her fiance, he is unhappy in the fact that she is getting a job, let alone a job that might undermine his position as a doctor, and make him a laughing stock at the Golf Club, none of his friends wives work after all!

Jane wants to work, and feels that this would be an ideal position for her, that she may be able to do some good, she may even be able to help people less fortunate than her.

She gets the position and shadows another worker until an accident sets her on her own to carry on the job.

Ivy is one of her cases.

15 year old Ivy lives on a Tobacco farm with her family, her parents both died so she is now in the full time care of her grandmother, but her grandmother is ill, so it is Ivy that is doing the caring. Looking after her grandmother, her mentally ill sister and her sisters 2 year old son William is no mean feat, they rely on Welfare to get money for the family, they work on the Tobacco farm to pay for their lodgings.

Ivy has her own problems, she is epileptic, and because she is 15, she is “obviously” going to start sleeping around, I mean, look at Mary Ella her “feeble minded” sister, she had William after all!
They managed to fix that though, at least she won’t be bringing any more “retards” into this world!

Ivy is an ideal candidate for the program, it just needs to be signed off by the Social Worker, of course you don’t tell her what it is you are doing, just tell them that they look ill, Mary Ella had her “appendix” out, and look, she’s perfectly fine now!!

Jane cannot believe what is happening to these young girls, but what can she do, she’s already been reprimanded for something she did wrong, she may even lose her job.

This story is based on true events that happened, in the authors notes she does say that she didn’t want to focus on the actual deed, but to focus on the families and the aftermath, but some of the stories that she read about it were truly horrifying.

🎧🎧 – Brilliantly narrated by Alison Elliot, this story is one that will probably stay with you for a while!

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About the book

Bestselling author Diane Chamberlain delivers a breakout book about a small southern town fifty years ago, and the darkest—and most hopeful—places in the human heart

After losing her parents, fifteen-year-old Ivy Hart is left to care for her grandmother, older sister and nephew as tenants on a small tobacco farm.  As she struggles with her grandmother’s aging, her sister’s mental illness and her own epilepsy, she realizes they might need more than she can give.

When Jane Forrester takes a position as Grace County’s newest social worker, she doesn’t realize just how much her help is needed.  She quickly becomes emotionally invested in her clients’ lives, causing tension with her boss and her new husband.  But as Jane is drawn in by the Hart women, she begins to discover the secrets of the small farm—secrets much darker than she would have guessed.  Soon, she must decide whether to take drastic action to help them, or risk losing the battle against everything she believes is wrong.

Set in rural Grace County, North Carolina in a time of state-mandated sterilizations and racial tension, Necessary Lies tells the story of these two young women, seemingly worlds apart, but both haunted by tragedy.  Jane and Ivy are thrown together and must ask themselves: how can you know what you believe is right, when everyone is telling you it’s wrong?

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Have a great day!

Vicci

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Posted in Blog Tour

It Started With a Note by Victoria Cooke @VictoriaCooke10 @rararesources #bookreview #itstartedwithanote #giveaway

TGIF book lovers!

Excited to share with you today my review for this delightful book! A huge thank you to Rachel for my invitation to the tour and to Victoria Cooke for her engaging story!💕

It Started With A Note

One lost letter. A chance to change her life!

Superhero single mum Cath always puts other people first. But now that she’s seen her son safely off to university (phew!), life seems a little, well…empty.
 
So when Cath unexpectedly discovers some letters written by her great-grandfather during the First World War, she decides to take herself on an adventure to France to retrace his footsteps.
 
Cath expects to spend her holiday visiting famous battlefields and testing out her French phrase book. What she doesn’t anticipate is that her tour guide, the handsome Olivier, will be quite so charming! Soon Cath isn’t simply unearthing the stories of the past – she’s writing a brand new one of her own, which might end up taking her in a very unexpected direction…

My Thoughts

A lovely romance set in France sprinkled with history!

This was another wonderful romance from Victoria Cooke. Something I really enjoy about her stories is they are full of lovable relatable characters that you truly enjoy getting to know. Cath The female MC in this story is a single mother whose son has just gone off to university and now she needs to re-define who she is. As A single mother whose kids are almost all grown up I could really relate to this. when your kids are young being a mom defines you, my friends were my kids friends moms, my trips were taken when my kids had a competition or tournament, everything I did I did for them, and I don’t regret a single moment. All this is to say I could completely relate to Cath, perhaps I should go search out some old letters, I believe my grandfather was in WWI and then I should head to France myself.

Cath discovers a box of her grandfather’s letters sent to his wife and daughter, during the First World War. Feeling a bit lost because her son has just gone off to university Cath decides to take a trip to France, to see where her grandfather had served during the war, A war he did not return from. Once in France she meets the handsome tour guide Olivier. But is Cath ready for this new chapter in her life?

A tender love story packed with some pretty colorful characters. The romance between Cath and Olivier was sweet, they had a genuine authentic connection. I also learned some things in this book through all the visits to the French war sights. There is a definite blend of melancholy and beauty in the story. Another well-crafted romance from Victoria Cooke! Recommend!

*** Big thanks to HQ Digital for my copy of this book ***

Purchase Links

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Started-Note-brand-new-uplifting-adventures-ebook/dp/B07D45VCSL

US – https://www.amazon.com/Started-Note-brand-new-uplifting-adventures-ebook/dp/B07D45VCSL

Kobo – https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/it-started-with-a-note-a-brand-new-uplifting-read-of-love-and-new-adventures-for-2018

Author Bio –

Victoria Cooke grew up in the city of Manchester before crossing the Pennines in pursuit of her career in education. She now lives in Huddersfield with her husband and two young daughters and when she’s not at home writing by the fire with a cup of coffee in her hand, she loves working out in the gym and travelling. Victoria was first published at the tender age of eight by her classroom teacher who saw potential in a six-page story about an invisible man. Since then she’s always had a passion for reading and writing, undertaking several writers’ courses before completing her first romantic comedy novel, ‘The Secret to Falling in Love,’ in 2016. 

Cooke’s third novel, Who Needs Men Anyway? became a digital bestseller in 2018.

Social Media Links –

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16345710.Victoria_Cooke

https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaCookeAuthor/

https://www.instagram.com/victoriacookewriter/

Giveaway to Win a Signed copy of It Started With A Note (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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Notes for Bloggers: (Don’t include on the post).

Thank you so much for taking part in this blog tour.

Please put you post live as early as you can and either tag @rararesources or send me the link via email so that I can start sharing it. Please also tag Victoria Cooke if possible.

Use whichever way of displaying the rafflecopter that you prefer – if you can use the code please do, if not including the link is good.

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It Started With A Note

One lost letter. A chance to change her life!

Superhero single mum Cath always puts other people first. But now that she’s seen her son safely off to university (phew!), life seems a little, well…empty.
 
So when Cath unexpectedly discovers some letters written by her great-grandfather during the First World War, she decides to take herself on an adventure to France to retrace his footsteps.
 
Cath expects to spend her holiday visiting famous battlefields and testing out her French phrase book. What she doesn’t anticipate is that her tour guide, the handsome Olivier, will be quite so charming! Soon Cath isn’t simply unearthing the stories of the past – she’s writing a brand new one of her own, which might end up taking her in a very unexpected direction…

Purchase Links

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Started-Note-brand-new-uplifting-adventures-ebook/dp/B07D45VCSL

US – https://www.amazon.com/Started-Note-brand-new-uplifting-adventures-ebook/dp/B07D45VCSL

Kobo – https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/it-started-with-a-note-a-brand-new-uplifting-read-of-love-and-new-adventures-for-2018

Author Bio –

Victoria Cooke grew up in the city of Manchester before crossing the Pennines in pursuit of her career in education. She now lives in Huddersfield with her husband and two young daughters and when she’s not at home writing by the fire with a cup of coffee in her hand, she loves working out in the gym and travelling. Victoria was first published at the tender age of eight by her classroom teacher who saw potential in a six-page story about an invisible man. Since then she’s always had a passion for reading and writing, undertaking several writers’ courses before completing her first romantic comedy novel, ‘The Secret to Falling in Love,’ in 2016. 

Cooke’s third novel, Who Needs Men Anyway? became a digital bestseller in 2018.

Social Media Links –

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/16345710.Victoria_Cooke

https://www.facebook.com/VictoriaCookeAuthor/

https://www.instagram.com/victoriacookewriter/

Giveaway to Win a Signed copy of It Started With A Note (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
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Have a wonderful wonderful day!💕 Berit🌹✨

Posted in Blog Tour

Bollywood Wives by Alex Khan @alexkhanauthor @HeraBooks @Tr4cyF3nton #bookreview #bollywoodwives

Happy Thursday booklovers!

Excited to share with you today my review of this book that was deliciously devilish, I thoroughly enjoyed this story from first page to last! Many thanks to Tracy for my invitation to the tour and to Alex Khan for this fabulous story!✨✨

My Thoughts

A riveting tale packed with scandal, mystery, sizzle, and glamour!

This book was so fun bursting with glitz, glam, and drama! A compelling story that showcased the excessive wealth and luxury surrounding Bollywood. I was completely invested and captivated from the very first page, brought back memories of books of old, this book definitely had a bit of a Jackie Collins vibe to it.

Zara has kicked and clawed her way to the top and is now a BIG Bollywood star. Now she is in London starring in a retelling of Pride and Prejudice. Zara has always felt judged and look down upon by the Bollywood wives, but these ladies have secrets of their own. BUT when a dead body is discovered in Zara‘s room will she lose everything that she has worked so hard for? Will her secrets be revealed? And what is behind the dead body?

A tantalizing tale Full of brilliant and colorful characters! Zara was such a fabulously drawn character, as were all the secondary characters in this book. SO much drama, gossip, and angst. SO much fun to read! The perfect escapist story, a book to lose yourself in.

If you like scandal, glitz, glam, and steam topped off with the perfect amount of drama, this one is for you! Recommend!

🎵🎵🎵 Song Running Through My Head

I have no idea what these lyrics mean so apologies if it’s anything offensive, but this song really just reminds me of Bollywood! And I really like this song makes me want to dance!

Jai ho, jai ho
Aaja, aaja jind shamiyane ke tale
Aaja jariwale nile aasman ke tale
Jai ho, jai ho
Ratti, ratti sachi maine jaan gavayi hai
Nach, nach koylo pe raat bitayi hai
Akhiyon ki neend maine phoonko se uda di
Neele tare se maine ungli jalayi hai
Aaja, aaja jind shamiyane ke tale
Aaja jariwale nile aasman ke tale
Chakh le, ha, chakh le ye raat shahad hai, chakh le
Rakh le, ha, dil hai dil aakhri had hai, rakh le
Kala, kala kajal tera koi kala jadoo hai na
Kala, kala kajal tera koi kala jadoo hai na
Aaja, aaja jind shamiyane ke tale
Aaja jariwale nile aasman ke tale
Jai ho,…

*** huge thank you too Hera Books for my copy of this book ***

About the Book and Author

Bollywood Wives

Alex Khan

The biggest scandals happen off-camera…

Zara Das is Bollywood’s hottest property, her every move watched by the eyes of the press. Riding high from the success of a string of blockbusters, she has the world at her feet, but the scandal from her latest film threatens to dethrone her as Bollywood’s reigning queen. 

So when superstar director Raj Dillon stages a lavish retelling of Pride and Prejudice, moving the shoot from Mumbai’s soundstages to London, Zara knows this is the role that could put her back on top. Coming with them are the Bollywood Wives – Jackie, Sasha, and Rani – bringing their own off-screen drama.

But behind the diamonds, designer clothes and seven-star hotels lies the truth of how Zara reached the top. And when a dead body is found in her hotel room, it seems that someone is determined to take Zara down – and will stop at nothing to expose her darkest secrets. 

Zara has spent years running from her past. But now it’s caught up with her… 

A sexy, gripping, scandalous novel set in the world of Bollywood – fans of Jackie Collins, Crazy Rich Asians and Lauren Weisberger won’t be able to put this one down. 

Publication date:

06/02/2019

Formats:

ebook/audio

Final manuscript ready:

4th January 2019

Alex Khan is the pseudonym of Alex Caan, whose Riley and Harris police procedural series for Bonnier reached number 1 in the digital bestseller charts, with Cut to the Bone being chosen as a WHS Smith Book of the Week.

Bollywood Wives is the book that Alex has always wanted to write – a sweeping, blockbuster novel set in the luxurious world of Bollywood.

One of Hera Books’ missions is to publish fiction from BAME voices with real commercial, crossover appeal. In this novel classic Jackie Collins meets the best of Bollywood in an escapist, engrossing and sexy novel that will appeal to all readers of commercial fiction.

Posted in Audiobook Review, Mystery, Science Fiction, Thriller

Dark Matter by Blake Crouch @blakecrouch1 @audible_com #AudiobookReview #JonLindstrom #SciFi #Thriller #Mystery

Well this fancy little mindfluff was certainly something that I didn’t see coming.

Why did I pick it up? – Well, if you know me at all you will know that I cannot let everyone have all of the fun, I saw this book being read, reviewed and enjoyed all over the place…..That was my queue to jump into that madness, and what a ride it was!

Jason has a great life, he is married to the woman of his dreams Daniela, and they have a fantastic 15 year old son Charlie.

Did his life go the way he planned it? Not really, he didn’t see himself as a Physics Professor at a college, and his wife Daniela didn’t see herself giving up her budding art career to be a housewife, but they are happy with the choices they made, I mean who ever manages to get there ultimate dream?

Jason pops out one evening, to quickly say congratulations to his buddy at a bar as he has just won a prestigious award, Daniela tells him that dinner will be ready for him when he comes back, and to grab some Ice cream for her. He does exactly that.

Except he gets back to the car, only to be held up by a masked gunman, who makes him drive at gunpoint to the middle of nowhere, just before he promptly bonks him on the head, the man asks him “Are you happy with your life?”

After eventually waking up with a sore head, Jason finds he can’t move, looking around he finds that he is strapped to a gurney, surrounded by people in hazmat suits, asking where he is, he is told “Welcome back, my friend.”

Jason doesn’t understand what is going on, he tries his best to get back to his wife and child, but the thing is, he was never married to Daniela, and Charlie was never born, even stranger than that, Jason is a celebrated genius who was the person to discover the impossible!

🎧🎧 – Narrated by Jon Lindstrom, this crazy clever little Sci-Fi book had me sitting on the edge of my seat multiple times.

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About the book

Dark Matter
By: Blake Crouch
Narrated by: Jon Lindstrom
Length: 10 hrs and 8 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 11-08-16
Language: English
Publisher: Pan Macmillan Publishers Ltd.

“Are you happy with your life?” Those are the last words Jason Dessen hears before the masked abductor knocks him unconscious. Before he awakens to find himself strapped to a gurney, surrounded by strangers in hazmat suits. Before a man Jason’s never met smiles down at him and says, “Welcome back, my friend.” In this world he’s woken up to, Jason’s life is not the one he knows. His wife is not his wife. His son was never born. And Jason is not an ordinary college physics professor, but a celebrated genius who has achieved something remarkable. Something impossible. Is it this world or the other that’s the dream? And even if the home he remembers is real, how can Jason possibly make it back to the family he loves? The answers lie in a journey more wondrous and horrifying than anything he could’ve imagined—one that will force him to confront the darkest parts of himself even as he battles a terrifying, seemingly unbeatable foe. From the author of the bestselling Wayward Pines trilogy, Dark Matter is a brilliantly plotted tale that is at once sweeping and intimate, mind-bendingly strange and profoundly human—a relentlessly surprising science-fiction thriller about choices, paths not taken, and how far we’ll go to claim the lives we dream of.

May all of your dreams come true!

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Vicci

 

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray @BerkleyPub #bookreview #bookbestiescareandfeedingofravenouslyhungrygirls #thecareandfeedingofravenouslyhungrygirls

Happy hump day bibliophiles!

Today I have another impactful and emotional book to share with you! This was another group read with the Besties and we all give it our seal of approval!💕

My Thoughts

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Wow! This book was thick with dysfunction, grief, guilt, and love!

When I finish this book I did not know what to think, I was emotionally exhausted and I needed to let this book simmer for a while. I needed to process the pain and the emotion I had just experienced. Anissa Gray has written one heck of a dark evocative and emotional debut! This book was so real, so raw, so uncomfortable, and yet so exquisite! It was a book I needed to take a few steps away from to truly appreciate, I needed to separate myself from these characters to find the true beauty in these words.

The Butler family truly brings dysfunction to new heights. Every time I turned a page in this book I was drawn further into this family’s misfortune and pain. Not going to lie the darkness was a bit overwhelming for me at times and I think that is why I needed this book to sit with me before I could truly appreciate it. This is the story of sisters Althea, viola, and Lillian. Althea who became the matriarch of the family after the sister’s mother passed is in trouble. Althea and her husband Proctor have been found guilty of embezzlement a crime that the sisters and the entire community are shocked by. Viola and Lillian rally to take care of Altheas twin girls Kim and baby Vi. This was one complicated story with multiple layers and many secrets. A Family broken trying to come together and pick up the pieces.

All these characters were flawed and not necessarily likable, but they sure were real. Althea was very difficult for me to understand as a mother, but I did like how as the story went along we got to see a softer side of her (sort of). Lillian and viola were really so full of love and yet so broken. During the course of the story they really found their strength and voice, it gave me hope for a better healthier future for these ladies. Their brother Joe on the other hand…

A powerful debut packed with emotion sorrow and hope! Absolutely recommend!

🎵🎵🎵 Song Running Through My Head

Seems like it was yesterday when I saw your face
You told me how proud you were, but I walked away
If only I knew what I know today
Ooh, ooh
I would hold you in my arms
I would take the pain away
Thank you for all you’ve done
Forgive all your mistakes
There’s nothing I wouldn’t do
To hear your voice again
Sometimes I wanna call you
But I know you won’t be there
Ohh I’m sorry for blaming you
For everything I just couldn’t do
And I’ve hurt myself by hurting you
Some days I feel broke inside but I won’t admit
Sometimes I just wanna hide ’cause it’s you I miss
And it’s so hard to say goodbye
When it comes to this
Would you tell me I was wrong?
Would you help understand?
Are you looking down upon me?
Are you proud of who I am?
There’s nothing I wouldn’t do
To have…

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

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About the Book

in this dazzling debut novel about mothers and daughters, identity and family, and how the relationships that sustain you can also be the ones that consume you.

The Butler family has had their share of trials—as sisters Althea, Viola, and Lillian can attest—but nothing prepared them for the literal trial that will upend their lives.

Althea, the eldest sister and substitute matriarch, is a force to be reckoned with and her younger sisters have alternately appreciated and chafed at her strong will. They are as stunned as the rest of the small community when she and her husband Proctor are arrested, and in a heartbeat the family goes from one of the most respected in town to utter disgrace. The worst part is, not even her sisters are sure exactly what happened.

As Althea awaits her fate, Lillian and Viola must come together in the house they grew up in to care for their sister’s teenage daughters. What unfolds is a stunning portrait of the heart and core of an American family in a story that is as page-turning as it is important. 

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall

💕 Be sure to visit the other Bestie blogs!

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Have a lovely day!🌹

Berit☀️✨

Posted in Audiobook Review, Historical Fiction

Yellow Crocus by Laila Ibrahim #LailaIbrahim @TheRealBahniT @audibleuk #AudiobookReview #HistoricalFiction

I’m so happy to bring you a review for this stunningly beautiful and heartbreaking book.

If you know me at all, then you will know that Historical books are not my usual go-to reads, but it seems that I have missed out on a lot of fantastic reads, so I am aiming to rectify that and change my reading habits.

Why did I pick it up? –  1. It was the Audible Daily Deal, I couldn’t say no to it.  2. Bahni Turpin, I will literally listen to anything she narrates!

My Thoughts

This is a story set in the 19th century, an enslaved girl called Mattie is taken away from her 3 month old baby son, and moved to the “big house” to become a wet nurse for the newly born Lisbeth (Elizabeth)

(A wet nurse is a woman who breast feeds and cares for another’s child. Wet nurses are employed if the mother dies, or if she is unable or elects not to nurse the child herself.)

Mattie takes to the job, and the baby, and they both learn to love each other very much. Mattie gets to see her son and her family occasionally, even though they all live on the same plantation.

Lisbeth is brought up by Maddie to question things, even though she doesn’t say them out loud, she gets taught to not really see all of the problems that can arise when a white girl is friendly with a black family, but her Mother and Father, and the rest of the family certainly make their thoughts known!

Some of the things in this book just made me shake my head and think how shocking it was that people got treated this way, how “slaves are only three-fifths of a man. They are not entitled to the same rights” and they honestly believed this!

Lisbeth is very naive, she doesn’t see the anger and the cruelty that the slaves have to endure, she believes as her family has always told her, that they are lucky, and that they are doing a kindness by owning them.

Until one day she sees something that isn’t kind at all, and she questions everything.

All Maddie wants is to be free, she wants to be with her family, she wants to be with her son who doesn’t even recognise her really anymore, what can she do, the only thing she knows, Run…………

🎧🎧 – Narrated by the AMAZING Bahni Turpin, this one will have you shaking your head, and on the edge of your set, a fantastic listen.

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About the book

Moments after Lisbeth is born, she’s taken from her mother and handed over to an enslaved wet nurse, Mattie, a young mother separated from her own infant son in order to care for her tiny charge. Thus begins an intense relationship that will shape both of their lives for decades to come. Though Lisbeth leads a life of privilege, she finds nothing but loneliness in the company of her overwhelmed mother and her distant, slave-owning father. As she grows older, Mattie becomes more like family to Lisbeth than her own kin and the girl’s visits to the slaves’ quarters—and their lively and loving community—bring them closer together than ever. But can two women in such disparate circumstances form a bond like theirs without consequence? This deeply moving tale of unlikely love traces the journey of these very different women as each searches for freedom and dignity.

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Have those handkerchiefs handy!

Vicci

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Continue reading “Yellow Crocus by Laila Ibrahim #LailaIbrahim @TheRealBahniT @audibleuk #AudiobookReview #HistoricalFiction”

Posted in Cover Reveal

A Little Hotel in Cornwall by Laura Briggs @PaperDollWrites @rararesources #coverreveal #alittlehotelincornwall

Happy hump day!
Super excited to reveal the cover for this book coming to a shelf near you on April 30!💕

A Little Hotel in Cornwall

Struggling American waitress and aspiring novelist Maisie Clark dreams of becoming a full-time writer — even though in real life she’s just lost her chance at an exclusive writer’s mentorship program that would give her novel its big break. Desperate, she decides to take a chance and ask her favourite writer, a celebrated but reclusive English novelist, to help her find a second chance. 

When she receives the author’s reply in an envelope with a Cornish postmark, Maisie decides not to take the writer’s half-hearted ‘no’ for an answer. With nothing to lose, she takes off for the author’s last known location, a beautiful hotel on Cornwall’s western coast. But when the hotel mistakes her for the latest applicant for a maid’s position, Maisie finds herself given an opportunity too good to lose … and a chance for a summer adventure far bigger than she ever imagined.

Surrounded by breathtaking Cornwall and working in an elegant hotel, Maisie’s world becomes one of secret identities, quirky friends, and unintentional mishaps — and despite reminders of past relationship disasters, a certain handsome, charming local resident Sidney Daniels has her conflicted about her heart’s desires, too. 

Will Maisie find the chance she’s been waiting for — and a possible new romance — in her perfect Cornish summer?

Pre-order Link: http://smarturl.it/alittlehotelbook1

Publication Date – 30th April 2019

Author Bio –

Laura Briggs is the author of several chick lit and romance stories, including the Top 100 Amazon UK seller ‘A Wedding in Cornwall’. She has a fondness for vintage style dresses (especially ones with polka dots), and reads everything from Jane Austen to modern day mysteries. When she’s not writing, she enjoys spending time with family, caring for her pets, going to movies and plays, and trying new restaurants.

Social Media Links –

Twitter: https://twitter.com/PaperDollWrites

Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/authorlaurabriggs/

Posted in Book Bestie Approved

The Secret of Clouds by Alyson Richman @alysonrichman @BerkleyPub #bookbestiessecretofclouds #bookreview #thesecretofclouds

Happy Tuesday bibliophiles!

Excited and delighted to share with you my review for this beautiful story that I will not soon forget! This was a group read with all the Besties and we all loved it! I seriously still have a book hangover from this one!💕☁️

My Thoughts

A stunning story that enveloped me completely and pulled at my heartstrings!

Every once in a while when you finish a book you know it’s going to stick with you for a long time, this was one of those books. There was just something about this story that touched me deeply, and I really can’t put my finger on it. Perhaps it was the fact that this is a beautiful love story and tribute to teachers everywhere, my mother was a teacher, my daughter is in school now to be a teacher, they hold a special place in my heart. Or perhaps it was watching Katya and Sasha’s emotional struggle dealing with a sick child Yuri. It could have even been Yuri’s incredible passion for baseball, a game he himself will never be able to play. Regardless of what it was that completely captivated me, this was one lovely and emotional story!

Maggie is excited for the start of the school year when her principal reaches out and asks if she would be willing to tutor a boy who cannot come to school due to illness. At first Maggie is a bit hesitant afraid it might dredge up some old ghostss, but Maggie has too much compassion not to help a child in need. In the beginning Yuri was not receptive at all to Maggie, until they bonded over baseball. We also got a glimpse of Katya and Sasha’s lives in the Ukraine. Katya was a ballerina and Sasha an engineer, they both were in the Ukraine for the Chernobyl disaster. Their guilt over it perhaps being there exposure to nuclear power leading to Yuri’s heart defect was palpable. This story was also peppered throughout with family, food, romance, friendship, Art, and the violin.

Yuri really stole the show and my heart in this book. There was just something so innocent yet so wise about him, and I loved his bond and relationship with his parents, Maggie, and Finn. The mom in me could not help but put myself in Katya’s shoes and the human in me could not help but put myself in Maggie’s, I felt this emotional journey with the hearts of both these wonderful ladies. Maggie was such an energetic passionate teacher I enjoyed every minute I spend with her in the classroom and out. Katya was such a lovely loving mother and I loved that we got to see pieces of her past. Sasha was a remarkable man and husband, and I found it interesting how differently these two dealt with their son’s illness. There’s a part in the story regarding an assignment and letters that will make your heart both sing and cry. I could go on and on, but I will spare you all! Just read it!

Beautiful, evocative, and emotional, absolutely recommend!

🎵🎵🎵Song Running Through My Head

Rows and flows of angel hair
And ice cream castles in the air
And feather canyons everywhere
I’ve looked at clouds that way
But now they only block the sun
They rain and snow on everyone
So many things I would have done
But clouds got in my way
I’ve looked at clouds from both sides now
From up and down and still somehow
It’s cloud’s illusions I recall
I really don’t know clouds at all
Moons and Junes and ferries wheels
The dizzy dancing way you feel
As every fairy tale comes real
I’ve looked at love that way
But now it’s just another show
You leave ’em laughing when you go
And if you care, don’t let them know
Don’t give yourself away
I’ve looked at love from both sides now
From give and take and still somehow
It’s love’s illusions I recall
I really…

*** many thanks to Berkley for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

From the #1 international bestselling author of The Lost Wife and The Velvet Hours comes an emotionally charged story about a mother’s love, a teacher’s promise, and a child’s heart…

Katya, a rising ballerina, and Sasha, a graduate student, are young and in love when an unexpected tragedy befalls their native Kiev. Years later, after the couple has safely emigrated to America the consequences of this incident cause their son, Yuri, to be born with a rare health condition that isolates him from other children. Maggie, a passionate and dedicated teacher agrees to tutor Yuri at his home, even though she is haunted by her own painful childhood memories. As the two forge a deep and soulful connection, Yuri’s boundless curiosity and unique wisdom inspires Maggie to make difficult changes in her own life. And she’ll never realize just how strong Yuri has made her — until she needs that strength the most…

A novel that will make readers examine what it means to live life with a full heart. 

The Besties

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Mackenzie @ Phdiva

Holly @ Dressed to Read

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Posted in Dystopia, Romance, Science Fiction

Folsom by Tarryn Fisher & Willow Aster @DarkMarkTarryn @WillowAster #BookReview #Romance #SciFi #Dystopian

Hello again, I’m so pleased to bring you this review for a fantastic series that had me flipping those pages and staying up late to finish!

Why did I pick it up? – HELLO …Tarryn!!!!! As you all probably already know by now, I am a sucker for a Tarryn Fisher book, she writes the most messed up characters, and they all have depth to them.

In this book Ms Fisher has collaborated with Willow Aster and created a world where the Women are in charge, in fact Men are on the verge of extinction!

Think of this book as a little like a reverse take on the Handmaids Tale and you will be nearly on the right track.

Men are no longer in charge, in fact there are barley any of them left, this is why they started the “End Men” 12 men who’s sole job is to save the world, their sole purpose is to repopulate the Regions.

The rich people can afford to buy Folsom for a day, however the poor are not so lucky, they must rely on a national lottery to have their numbers pulled out, and to have the opportunity of maybe becoming pregnant by one of the End Men, if you do, well your life will change for the better, you will become a celebrity, coveted by others.

Folsom actually hates being and End Man, although he gets to have meaningless sex with strangers all the time, it isn’t as fun as it sounds, he is unhappy, empty and lonely.

Gwen’s number finally comes up! She gets to have the chance at something she has always wanted, a child of her own, she has seen Folsom in the fancy magazines and on the TV, and now she finally gets the chance to actually meet him, not only to meet him, but to potentially bare his child.

Only she finds much more than a man looking to have mindless sex with her, she sees the person underneath, she sees the injustice of what is happening to him, and she does her best to save him.

By looking at the blurb of the book, and the picture, you probably will already have guessed that there is going to be sex in the book, this is necessary to the story, you can’t have a story about men having sex with people, to not have sex in the book.I loves me some smexy times in my books, but if lots-of-lovin’ isn’t really your thing, then maybe look in the other direction, but you will be missing out on a great read, I can’t wait to read book 2.

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About the book

The nation as we know it is a thing of the past. With the male species on the verge of extinction, a society called the End Men is formed to save the world. Folsom Donahue is one of twelve men whose sole purpose is to repopulate the Regions. The endless days spent having sex with strangers leaves Folsom with an emptiness no amount of women, money, or status can fill.
Until Gwen.
Gwen has wanted a child for as long as she can remember, but when she finally gets a chance to have her own, she uncovers a long-hidden truth. The injustice she sees moves her to help save the men whom no one else believes need saving.
A forbidden love, grown in a time of despair, ignites a revolution. Folsom and Gwen, torn between their love for each other and their sense of duty, must make a choice. But some will stop at nothing to destroy them.

Folsom is book one of the End of Men series.

Hope you enjoy

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Posted in Audiobook Review, Fantasy, Mystery, Paranormal, Romance

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris @RealCharlaine #JohannaParker #AudiobookReview #UrbanFantasy #Paranormal #Romance #Mystery

Hello from over here is a wet rainy UK!

I kind of knew what i was getting into with this one as I had watched the True Blood series on TV,  however I only watched about half of the first season, so I have no idea where it goes from there.

Why did I pick it up? – Well Urban Fantasy isn’t something that I would chose to pick up as a rule, but it was for a reading challenge, so I pulled up my big-girl panties and dove in, I’m so glad I did as I loved it!

Sookie Stackhouse is a waitress in a bar, she is very ordinary and has nothing special about her, well apart from the fact that she can read your mind and hear your thoughts!

She hates that she can do this, and tries her best not to, but it isn’t always that easy.

Now the town that she lives in is very open, in fact it is so open that they are OK with the fact that vampires live there, they keep themselves to themselves and there isn’t usually any trouble.

I loved the way that it is seemed as quite normal for Vampires to be living there, I mean they are not your normal neighbourly have-a-chat friendly type, but the world has grown used to these things now, Vampires can go into a local bar and have a beer, or a synthetically modified bottle of blood, and nobody really cares that much.

Bill is such a character, Sookie is drawn to him because unlike the others, she cannot hear his thoughts or read his mind, it is quiet for her for the first time, and she likes that.
They soon become friends and then more.

Her grandmother is horrified that she is seeing a vampire, until she meets Bill and is taken by is manors and how handsome he is.

With a mystery, and a few sub plots going on, I think that this is a series that I am going to really enjoy, there was lots of blood, violence and actually a nice love story.

🎧🎧 – Perfectly narrated by Johanna Parker, I just fell in love with her accent, the way she pronounces words was just beautiful, I’ve always been a sucker for a southern accent, and this made my heart swell with love for it even more

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About the book

Dead Until Dark
Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mystery #1
By: Charlaine Harris
Narrated by: Johanna Parker
Series: Sookie Stackhouse, Book 1
Length: 9 hrs and 26 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 10-08-09
Language: English
Publisher: Orion Publishing Group Limited

Sookie Stackhouse is a small-time cocktail waitress in small-town Louisiana. She’s quiet, keeps to herself, and doesn’t get out much – not because she’s not pretty – she’s a very cute bubbly blonde – or not interested in a social life. She really is…but Sookie’s got a bit of a disability. She can read minds.
And that doesn’t make her too dateable. And then along comes Bill: he’s tall, he’s dark and he’s handsome – and Sookie can’t ‘hear’ a word he’s thinking. He’s exactly the type of guy she’sbeen waiting all her life for. But Bill has a disability of his own: he’s fussy about his food, he doesn’t like suntans, and he’s never around during the day….Yep, Bill’s a vampire.
Worse than that, he hangs with a seriously creepy crowd, with a reputation for trouble – of the murderous kind. And then one of Sookie’s colleagues at the bar is killed, and it’s beginning to look like Sookie might be the next victim….

Happy Reading

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