Posted in Blog Tour

The Overdue Life of Amy Byler by Kelly Harms @tlcbooktours @luauthors @amazonpub #bookreview #theoverduelifeofamybyler

Happy Thursday all!

I loved this book and I am so excited to share my review with you all! Huge thanks to Lisa for my invitation to the tour!😍

My Thoughts

🅡🅔🅛🅐🅣🅐🅑🅛🅔. 🅗🅘🅛🅐🅡🅘🅞🅤🅢. 🅕🅐🅝🅣🅐🅑🅤🅛🅞🅤🅢.

Kelly harms! BRAVO! This was such a relatable story told with so much heart and humor, I absolutely adored it! Amy is the single mother of 15-year-old Cory and 12-year-old Joe. Three years ago Amy’s husband John went out of country for work and never came back. Amy picked her self up, dusted herself off, went back to work, and learned how to be a single parent. Now John is back wanting to repair his relationship with his Children and offering Amy a summer off from parental responsibility. What follows is Amy’s summer of freedom, fun, self discovery, love, and a new wardrobe. #momspringa

Amy was such a real and relatable character. As a single mother I saw so much of myself in Amy. It is so easy to get caught up in your kids lives and not make enough time for yourself. But you also don’t know who you are if you’re not a mom. It was so much fun reading about Amy rediscovering herself in New York. I loved the makeover, all the shopping, and all the crazy dates. I also loved her support system her Besties Lena and Tallia, and Mathew who was kind of a bit of a fairy godfather. Also loved the big part that books played in this story. Amy was a librarian and she had this really interesting program she presented at a librarian convention. I’m sure all bookworms will appreciate the amount of booktalk in this book. And there is a hot librarian love interest. Another part of the book I really loved was Corey’s journal entries, Kelly harms really nailed the 15-year-old voice. There was just so much fun and goodness in this book!

This is one of those books that will make you smile, make you laugh, and leave you feeling good when you have turned that last page. The characters are relatable, likable, and entertaining. The storyline is amusing and authentic. I think all moms will absolutely love this book! BUT I think the book will not only appeal to Mom’s it will appeal to anyone who is ever needed a break from their real life, A little re-charge. Simply put this is an uplifting feel-good story with relatable characters and a lot of humor!

*** Big thanks to Lake Union for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

Overworked and underappreciated, single mom Amy Byler needs a break. So when the guilt-ridden husband who abandoned her shows up and offers to take care of their kids for the summer, she accepts his offer and escapes rural Pennsylvania for New York City.

Usually grounded and mild mannered, Amy finally lets her hair down in the city that never sleeps. She discovers a life filled with culture, sophistication, and—with a little encouragement from her friends—a few blind dates. When one man in particular makes quick work of Amy’s heart, she risks losing herself completely in the unexpected escape, and as the summer comes to an end, Amy realizes too late that she must make an impossible decision: stay in this exciting new chapter of her life, or return to the life she left behind.

But before she can choose, a crisis forces the two worlds together, and Amy must stare down a future where she could lose both sides of herself, and every dream she’s ever nurtured, in the beat of a heart.

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

Connect with Kelly

Website | Facebook | Instagram

Let’s Connect!

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Have a magnificent day!🌼

Berit☀️✨

Posted in Blog Tour

The Promise Between Us by Barbara Claypole White @bclaypolewhite @rararesources #bookreview #thepromiseus

Happy hump day all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this emotional and absorbing book. Thank you so much Rachel for my invitation to the tour!🌸

The Promise Between Us

“If you leave your newborn child because you have unstoppable thoughts of harming her, are you a good mother or a terrible one? This dilemma is at the heart of Barbara Claypole White’s novel, a wrenching story of how one woman’s OCD has a ripple effect on those around her—including the people she tried hardest to protect. This is an eye-opening and realistic exploration of mental illness—a topic that greatly deserves to be front and center.”—Jodi Picoult, New York Times bestselling author of Small Great Things

Metal artist Katie Mack is living a lie. Nine years ago she ran away from her family in Raleigh, North Carolina, consumed by the irrational fear that she would harm Maisie, her newborn daughter. Over time she’s come to grips with the mental illness that nearly destroyed her, and now funnels her pain into her art. Despite longing for Maisie, Katie honors an agreement with the husband she left behind—to change her name and never return.

But when she and Maisie accidentally reunite, Katie can’t ignore the familiarity of her child’s compulsive behavior. Worse, Maisie worries obsessively about bad things happening to her pregnant stepmom. Katie has the power to help, but can she reconnect with the family she abandoned?

To protect Maisie, Katie must face the fears that drove her from home, accept the possibility of love, and risk exposing her heart-wrenching secret.

My Thoughts

Barbara Claypole White has written an emotional and eye-opening story. Katie suffers from OCD, after her daughter Maisie is born she realizes that her mental illness is putting her daughter’s life in danger. She realizes it is in her daughter’s best interest that she leave and eventually she also revoked her parental rights.Years later and a strange twist of fate Katie is in a position where she is interacting with her daughter. However, Maisie is not aware that Katie is her birth mother. When Katie sees signs of OCD in Maisie she is conflicted as to what to do. Can she help her daughter? Can she tell her daughter the truth?

Miss Claypole White suffers from OCD herself, I thought that gave this book such an authentic feel. This book was told from multiple perspectives, I thought that added so many layers to the story. Not only did we get the perspective of Katie and Maisie, but we also got the perspective of Maisie’s father, stepmother, and uncle. I found it so interesting not only did we really learn about OCD, but also learn how it is to live with it and how it is to live with those who are living with it. One of my best friends son suffers from OCD and I have to admit sometimes I don’t completely understand his actions and this book made me a little more understanding and compassionate.

This story was so beautifully told and I could just feel the author’s heart pouring into these pages. This is also a book that begs to be discussed, I have so many thoughts rolling around in my brain and I have no one to discuss them with. I think this would make for a very good book club read. Simply put this was a lovely story filled with heart and hope and even a little touch of suspense.

*** many thanks to Lake Union for my copy of this book***

Purchase Link:

UK – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Promise-Between-Barbara-Claypole-White/dp/1542048982/

US – https://www.amazon.com/Promise-Between-Barbara-Claypole-White/dp/1542048982/

Author Bio – Bestselling author Barbara Claypole White has created her own idiosyncratic niche in mainstream fiction: hopeful family drama with a healthy dose of mental illness. Originally from England, she writes and gardens in the forests of North Carolina, where she lives with her family. Her novels include:

The Unfinished Garden, Mira Books, 2012, winner of the Golden Quill for Best First Book 2013; The In-Between Hour, Mira Books, 2014, chosen by the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance as an Okra Pick; The Perfect Son, Lake Union, 2015, Goodreads Choice Awards Semi-finalist for Best Fiction; Echoes of Family, Lake Union, 2016, WFWA 2017 Star Award Finalist; The Promise Between Us, Lake Union, 2018. (View the book trailer here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tLW9XFo0nlg&t=5s)

Barbara is also an OCD advocate for the A2A Alliance, a nonprofit group that promotes advocacy over adversity.

To listen to Barbara’s 2018 interview with Frank Stasio on The State of Things, click here: http://www.wunc.org/post/her-family-grapples-ocd-author-tackles-stereotypes-through-writing?fbclid=IwAR08E-DQ73f31jWBP2uKlix-eFsV7OOSQk_pXfS4uX3kqgnuHkbtVeB1Wvc

To watch Barbara’s 2018 interview with Linda Hurtado on Fox 13, click here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZJUPUBZLCf8&t=33s

For more information on Barbara, please visit www.barbaraclaypolewhite.com 

Social Media Links –

https://www.facebook.com/BarbaraClaypoleWhite

https://www.instagram.com/bclaypolewhite/?hl=en

Posted in Blog Tour

Bright Burning Stars by A.K. Small @Algonquinyr @AKSmallwords #bookreview #brightburningstars

Happy Wednesday everybody!

Excited to share with you today my review for this addicting dark story about the competitive world of ballet. My daughter was a competitive dancer (yes I was a dance mom) so I found a lot of this book relatable, however she did not dance at the level of the girls in the story.🧸🌹

My Thoughts

About the Book

As a young ballerina in Paris, young adult novelist A. K. Small studied at the famous Académie Chaptal and later danced with companies across the US. Inspired by the dancers from her childhood, Small weaves a vivid story of a fiercely competitive female friendship in her dazzling debut, Bright Burning Stars (Publication Date: May 21, 2019

Fighting for center stage and a spot in the Opera’s prestigious corps de ballet, this page-turning novel explores the lengths it takes to turn talent into a career. A gifted new writer, Small brings the reader into the passionate world of ballet all while telling an engrossing story of female friendship.

Kate and Marine have trained since childhood at the Paris Opera Ballet School where they formed an intense bond after respective family tragedies. Their friendship seems unshakeable until their final year when only one girl can be selected for a place in the Opera’s company. The physically demanding competition takes an emotional toll, and their support for each other starts to crumble. Marine’s eating disorder begins to control her life as she consumes less and dances more, and Kate discovers the depths of depression and the highs of first love as she falls for the school heartthrob—who also happens to be Marine’s dance partner.

As rankings tighten and each day is one step closer to the final selection, neither girl is sure just how far she’ll go to win. With nuance and empathy, the intense emotions of teenage years are amplified in Small’s debut as the girls struggle with grief, mental health issues, and relationships, all set against the glamorous backdrop of Paris.

With the incredible success of the film Black Swan and dance reality TV shows today, dance seems to be more popular than ever. Kirkus Reviews praises the debut as “addictive, angst-y, and heartfelt” while Entertainment Weekly.com calls out that Bright Burning Stars is “notable for the way it tackles sensitive topics such as mental illness and eating disorders”. In Bright Burning Stars, debut author A. K. Small pens a stunning, propulsive story about girls at their physical and emotional extremes, the gutting power of first love, and what it means to fight for your dreams.

A.K. SMALL was born in Paris. At five years old, she began studying classical dance with the legendary Max Bozzoni, then later with Daniel Franck and Monique Arabian at the famous Académie Chaptal. At thirteen, she moved to the United States where she danced with the Pacific Northwest Ballet for one summer in Seattle and with the Richmond Ballet Student Company for several years. She’s a graduate of the College of William and Mary and has an MFA in fiction from Vermont College of Fine Arts. When she’s not writing, she spends time with her husband, her puppy, and her three daughters, and practices yoga. Bright Burning Stars is her first novel.

aksmallwords.com | @aksmallwords | @aksmallwords

Bright Burning Stars by A.K. Small

Algonquin Young Readers / Publication Date: May 21, 2019

Price: $17.95; Hardcover; 304 pages; ISBN: 9781616208783

http://www.algonquinyoungreaders.com | aksmallwords.com

Follow Algonquin Young Readers on Twitter @algonquinyr, Instagram at @algonquinyr or on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/algonquinyoungreaders

Author Q & A

General Q&A:

How did you write BRIGHT BURNING STARS? All at once or did you outline the story?

I wrote it all at once but multiple times! I’m trying to learn how to outline. Man, is it hard. My brain goes to the creative before the analytical.

What was the most surprising thing you learned in creating your characters? Which of your characters do you most identify with, and why?

I think that the most surprising aspect of character building is that it took me years to understand and relate to Kate. I had to spend a long time with her before she finally clicked on the page.

I identify with Marine because M and I both believe that any artistic success comes not from talent but from sweat and grit.

What gave you the idea for BRIGHT BURNING STARS?

I wrote a short story titled The Art of Jealousy and then I knew I wanted to write a larger piece.

Do you have a favourite scene, quote, or moment from BRIGHT BURNING STARS?

I love the scene where Marine dances to Biggie Smalls and there is a Luc scene I adore but I don’t want to give it away.

If you could tell your younger writing self-anything, what would it be?

I would tell her never to forget about the magic of process and to always trust her instincts.

What is on your current TBR pile?

The Night Tiger by Yangsze Choo, The Meaning of Birds by Jaye Robbin Brown, Wilder Girls by Rory Power, How It Feels to Float by Helena Fox, Heroine by Mindy McGinnis. I’m a sucker for books. I LOVE to read.

Do you write to music? If so, what artist were you listening to while writing BRIGHT BURNING STARS?

I usually don’t, but as I was trying to figure Kate out I listened to Unsteady by X Ambassadors and I put on classical piano pieces, literal ballet music, while I worked on studio scenes for atmosphere and rhythm purposes.

Posted in Domestic Thriller, New Releases, pub Day, Thriller

The Women by S.E. Lynes @SELynesAuthor @bookouture @Netgalley #NewRelease #HappyPublicationDay

Hello book friends,

Super happy to bring you a review for this cracker of a thriller, I was completely blown away with this book.

Happy Publication Day to S.E. Lynes!

Why did you pick it up Vicci?

After reading the blurb on Netgalley I was crossing my fingers hoping that I would be accepted for this one, it just sounded like I would love it, and I wasn’t wrong!

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My Thoughts 

Wow, what a crazy ride that was!

After meeting both Samantha and Peter on their no-so-happy honeymoon, we then get flashed back in time to when they met.

Samantha is a normal student, she likes to go out drinking and having fun with her friends.

When the handsome lecturer Peter sidles up behind her and starts to show her some attention, she is of course flattered, he is after all, the sexy man that all of the girls have their eyes on.

He is a very well-knowledged man, and although he didn’t actually call her stupid, she feels it, and he definitely didn’t imply it…did he?

The attraction between them is palpable, and a very quick relationship is formed, so much so, that Samantha is moving in with Peter within a week of meeting him!

She soon learns that living together is very difficult, I mean she’s never lived with anyone before, so it is only right that he tells her when she is doing something wrong, like eating at the wrong times, or taking too long in the shower.

Only someone that really loves you would make sure that you are reading the correct literary fiction instead of that “propagandist tosh” in her women’s magazines.

He is a very clever man, and appreciates things like a glass of red wine every night (that he has chosen), with the dinner (that he has cooked), and after the meal they have (he has) a strict 10 o’clock bed time (after sex of course) routine.

And she really is happy…….right?

After starting her new job as a Creative writing teacher (that Peter kindly got for her), she starts to receive poems that make her very uncomfortable, are they from one of her students? they could be I suppose, but then, that would mean that the person writing them knows about her life, how can someone else know what is going through her own head?

I was totally gripped by this book, I could clearly see the red flags, they were there for all to see, except Samantha didn’t, and unfortunately (myself included) unless you have been in this situation, the flags do not show until you are at rock bottom.

A fantastic read, grab it ASAP!!

**Many thanks to The author, Bookouture, and Netgalley for my copy of the book**

44091295

About the book

The Women
by S.E. Lynes
The night she moves in with Peter, she’s so happy, so exhilarated, so in love. Later, she will remember a much smaller feeling, a tiny one percent in her gut. And she will remember pushing that feeling aside…

Samantha Frayn doesn’t know why Peter Bridges picks her – a nobody with bitten fingernails and a troubled childhood behind her – but she falls quickly. He’s older, charming, likes fine wine and French films, and his beautiful home has real art on its walls.

Peter transforms Samantha’s life in an instant. He sees the better version of herself – the one she’s always wanted to be. It’s only normal that there’s a little friction, when she moves in, over domestic matters like where things are kept, or the proper times to eat, sleep and shower. She’s lucky to be with someone who can help her find a new job, move on from childish friends, and speak with greater sophistication.

But as Samantha notices, more and more, Peter’s temper, she starts to wonder if there might be consequences to breaking the rules of the world he has so quickly built around her.

And then she receives an anonymous note that makes her ask: is she the first woman to feel trapped by Peter? Is she being paranoid, manipulated, or could she be in danger?

You can tell the truth about your life, but someone needs to be listening. Someone needs to trust you. And someone needs to save you from the man you thought you loved.

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Vicci

Posted in Blog Tour

The Forgiving Kind by Donna Everhart @suzyapbooktours @wordstogobuy #bookreview #theforgivingkind

Happy Tuesday all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this book that blew me away! This book had so much heart I simply devoured it! Thank you so much Suzy for my invitation to this tour!🌼

My Thoughts

𝕭𝖊𝖆𝖚𝖙𝖎𝖋𝖚𝖑. 𝕮𝖔𝖒𝖕𝖊𝖑𝖑𝖎𝖓𝖌. 𝕳𝖊𝖆𝖗𝖙𝖜𝖆𝖗𝖒𝖎𝖓𝖌.

This was an evocative story that I found simultaneously heartwarming and heartwrenching. 1950s North Carolina 12-year-old Sonny loves her life with her family on their cotton farm. She shares a passion for the land as well as the ability to divine water with her beloved father. When Sonny’s father meets with a tragic accident it is up to her mother, her two older brothers, and herself to maintain the family farm. In order to keep the farm a float Sonny’s mother makes a deal with their reclusive neighbor Mr. Fowler, a deal that will change everything.

This was a beautiful coming-of-age story, but it was also so much more. Sonny was a remarkable character with such a beautiful spirit. I loved her friendship with Daniel and even more than that I loved how she didn’t even really realize that he was different (for lack of a better word). Her relationship with her brothers was touching, even though Trent was a bit of a jerk.* Sidenote my oldest son is named Trent, so it was kind of funny seeing this character who definitely had A bad side with the same name* I was so conflicted when it came to Sonny’s mother. On one hand I really wanted her to open her eyes to how despicable Mr. Fowler was, and on the other hand I do realize she did not have many choices. This part of the book really made me think, I was able to get out of a bad marriage, but a lot of that was because I had an amazing support system. What happens when you don’t have that support system? Where she was in the 1950s in North Carolina where they wouldn’t even give her credit to purchase seeds? Mr. Fowler was a bigot with a heart full of hate and he made me cringe more than once.

The story was so beautifully told… Donna Everhart really brought life on this cotton farm to the pages of this book. The hard dirty work and the love for the land was so evident. But as much beauty as there was in this book, there was also so much ugliness. The racism, the bigotry, the abuse,

. Simply put this was an extremely well told story with an ending that left me satisfied.

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

About the Book

For twelve-year-old Martha “Sonny” Creech, there is no place more beautiful than her family’s cotton farm. She, her two brothers, and her parents work hard on their land—hoeing, planting, picking—but only Sonny loves the rich, dark earth the way her father does. When a tragic accident claims his life, her stricken family struggles to fend off ruin—until their rich, reclusive neighbor offers to help finance that year’s cotton crop.

Sonny is dismayed when her mama accepts Frank Fowler’s offer; even more so when Sonny’s best friend, Daniel, points out that the man has ulterior motives. Sonny has a talent for divining water—an ability she shared with her father and earns her the hated nickname “water witch” in school. But uncanny as that skill may be, it won’t be enough to offset Mr. Fowler’s disturbing influence in her world. Even her bond with Daniel begins to collapse under the weight of Mr. Fowler’s bigoted taunts. Though she tries to bury her misgivings for the sake of her mama’s happiness, Sonny doesn’t need a willow branch to divine that a reckoning is coming, bringing with it heartache, violence—and perhaps, a fitting and surprising measure of justice.

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Cover Reveal

Singles, Set and Match by Elaine Spires @ElaineSWriter @rararesources #coverreveal #singlessetandmatch

Happy Tuesday everybody!

Delighted to share with you today this cover for a book that sounds really good!🌴

Singles, Set and Match

The fifth and final book in the Singles’ Series takes us to the Mediterranean island of Ibiza then back to the Caribbean island of Antigua, where it all began.

After making a hard decision two years earlier Eve Mitchell has moved on with the hand that life has dealt her and she finds herself on the White Island working a tennis holiday. While it isn’t a job she would have chosen, in her typical pragmatic way Eve gets on with it, working hard to ensure that her diverse group of singles, with their hopes, expectations character flaws and baggage, have the best time possible. And as she binds together tennis sessions, social gatherings, meals and trips Eve hears some tragic personal news that brings her to another crossroads in her life. Will she and the love of her life Melv finally make a life together and live happily ever after?

Publication Date – 1st July 2019

Singles, Set and Match will appear on Elaine Spires Amazon Author Page to pre-order – https://www.amazon.co.uk/Elaine-Spires/e/B009YQR7LG?ref=sr_ntt_srch_lnk_1&qid=1557946137&sr=1-1

Author Bio –

Elaine Spires is a novelist, playwright, screenwriter and actress. Extensive travelling and a background in education and tourism perfected Elaine’s keen eye for the quirky characteristics of people, captivating the humorous observations she now affectionately shares with the readers of her novels. Elaine has written two books of short stories, two novellas and seven novels, four of which form the Singles Series – Singles’ Holiday, Singles and Spice, Single All The Way and Singles At Sea. Her latest book, Singles, Set and Match is the fifth and final book in the series. Her play Stanley Grimshaw Has Left The Building is being staged at the Bridewell Theatre, London in May 2019. Her short film Only the Lonely, co-written with Veronique Christie and featuring Anna Calder Marshall is currently being in shown in film festivals worldwide and she is currently working on a full length feature film script. Only the Lonely won the Groucho Club Short Film Festival 2019!  Elaine recently returned to UK after living in Antigua W.I. She lives in East London.

Social Media Links –

Facebook: Elaine Spires Author

Twitter: @ElaineSWriter

Instagram: elainespiresauthor

Posted in Blog Tour

Tuscan Enchantment by Kate Zarrelli @katmezzocappa @rararesources #bookpromo #tuscanenchantment

Tuscan Enchantment

This was no cold marble—this was a man! Antonia goes to Tuscany to rebuild her life. The last thing she wants to do is fall in love, least of all with rich, arrogant, aristocratic Lorenzo.

Librarian Antonia Gray has fled England for northern Tuscany after an unhappy love affair to work on the archive of a 17th century Italian explorer, a member of a centuries-old aristocratic family. There she meets his descendent, Lorenzo Quattromani, rich, arrogant, handsome—and engaged to the beautiful and ruthless Giselle. The last thing Antonia wants is to fall in love, least of all with someone so dangerous. His engagement, though, is not what it seems, and Lorenzo breaks down Antonia’s resistance. But Giselle has other ideas.

Purchase Links

http://www.devinedestinies.com/978-1-4874-2305-6-tuscan-enchantment/

Author Bio

Kate Zarrelli is the romance and erotica pen-name of Katherine Mezzacappa. Kate is Irish but now lives in Carrara in Northern Tuscany, between the Apuan Alps and the Tyrrhenian Sea, with her Italian husband and two teenage sons. She writes historical, erotic, feel-good and paranormal fiction, set all over Europe, and in her spare time volunteers with a used book charity of which she is a founder member. You can follow her on Facebook at Kate Zarrelli books or on Twitter @katmezzacappa.

Social Media Links –

@katmezzacappa

https://www.facebook.com/katezarrellibooks/

https://www.facebook.com/katherinemezzacappafiction/

Kate Zarrelli

Giveaway to Win a Little Carrara Marble Heart Pendant (Open Internationally)

• Can be engraved with winner’s initials

*Terms and Conditions –Worldwide 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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Posted in Audiobook Review, Blog Tour

The Song of the Jade Lily by Kirsty Manning @KirstyManningAu @wmmorrowbooks @harperaudio @tlcbooktours #bookreview #audiobook #thesongofthejadelily

Happy Monday all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this stunning story that all historical fiction lovers will devour! A huge thank you to Trish for my invitation to the tour!🌺

My Thoughts

ℭ𝔬𝔪𝔭𝔢𝔩𝔩𝔦𝔫𝔤. 𝔄𝔟𝔰𝔬𝔯𝔟𝔦𝔫𝔤. ℜ𝔦𝔳𝔢𝔱𝔦𝔫𝔤.

Kirsty Manning has written a stunning story filled with secrets, sorrow, and resilience. 1939 Vienna Austria Romy’s family realizes it is in their best interest to leave the country. But the only place that will take them in without a visa is shanghai. Shanghai is miles away, a brief respite from the war, but it isn’t long before shanghai is also impacted by WWII. 2016 Alexandra returns home to Australia from London to see her beloved grandfather before he dies. Alexandra was raised by her grandparents after her mother Sophia was killed in a car accident. Alexandra knows that her mother was adopted brought over to Australia by her grandfather and grandmother, Romy. Alexander has taken a new job in Shanghai Inn is determined to figure out where her mother came from. The only information Alexander has is a necklace, a birth certificate, a picture, and journal. Will Alexandra discover her roots? Or are some secrets best kept in the past?

This was an amazing book that introduced me to a part of history I previously had no idea about. When I think of WWII I certainly never think of China. I had no idea China took in so many Jewish refugees. I was ignorant to the tensions between Japan and China during WWII. The beauty of historical fiction is learning something that you probably otherwise would never have learned. Romy and her family have found themselves in the unfortunate position of leaving one horrible situation to find themselves in the midst of another. I once again was completely in awe of the resilience of people.

The characters and the setting of this story completely popped off the pages. Kirsty Manning has seamlessly woven together the present and the past in this compelling tale. Both timelines completely captivated me and all these characters stole my heart. The friendship between Romy and Lee was so beautiful to read about. I loved how we really got to learn about the Chinese culture through Romy’s eyes. I found the Chinese medicine fascinating. Romy was such an authentic character, my heart broke for her with some of the letters she wrote to her brother Daniel back in a work camp in Austria. I was so curious as to what the secret was she was keeping from her granddaughter Alexandra, and what her motivations were. Alexandra was also an intriguing character. I loved discovering the past right alongside her. And I love the little bit of romance she had going on with John.

A beautiful story brimming with family, friendship, and culture. This is not a short book, but it went so quick I was so riveted by the story and I just needed to know what the secret was. I also am completely intrigued by all eastern cultures and just love getting to know more about them. Simply put this was an evocative story that all fans of historical fiction will completely devour.

🎧🎧🎧 The audiobook is narrated by Saskia Maarleveld who in my opinion is one of the absolute best! There are so many accents in this book and she nailed them all! She gave each character their own distinct voice and I never was confused as to who is narrating the story. A stellar job!

*** Big thanks to William Morrow and Harper Audio for my copy of this book **

About the Book

“Kirsty Manning weaves together little-known threads of World War II history, family secrets, the past and the present into a page-turning, beautiful novel.”— Heather Morris, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Tattooist of Auschwitz

A gripping historical novel that tells the little-known story of Jewish refugees who fled to Shanghai during WWII.

1939: Two young girls meet in Shanghai, also known as the “Paris of the East”. Beautiful local Li and Jewish refugee Romy form a fierce friendship, but the deepening shadows of World War II fall over the women as they slip between the city’s glamorous French Concession district and the teeming streets of the Shanghai Ghetto. Yet soon the realities of war prove to be too much for these close friends as they are torn apart.

2016: Fleeing London with a broken heart, Alexandra returns to Australia to be with her grandparents, Romy and Wilhelm. Her grandfather is dying, and over the coming weeks Romy and Wilhelm begin to reveal the family mysteries they have kept secret for more than half a century. As fragments of her mother’s history finally become clear, Alexandra struggles with what she learns while more is also revealed about her grandmother’s own past in Shanghai.

After Wilhelm dies, Alexandra flies to Shanghai, determined to trace her grandparents’ past. Peeling back the layers of their hidden lives, she is forced to question what she knows about her family—and herself.

The Song of the Jade Lily is a lush, provocative, and beautiful story of friendship, motherhood, the price of love, and the power of hardship and courage that can shape us all.

About the Author

Kirsty Manning grew up in northern New South Wales, Australia. She has degrees in literature and communications and worked as an editor and publishing manager in book publishing for over a decade. A country girl with wanderlust, her travels and studies have taken her through most of Europe, the east, and west coasts of the United States as well as pockets of Asia. Kirsty’s journalism and photography specializing in lifestyle and travel regularly appear in magazines, newspapers, and online. She lives in Australia.

Find out more about Kirsty at her website, and connect with her on TwitterInstagram, and Facebook.

Purchase Links

HarperCollins | Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Audiobook Review, Book Bestie Approved

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren @christinalauren @gallerybooks #bookreview #audiobook #theunhoneymooners

Happy Monday all!

Super excited to share my review with you today for this book that I absolutely unequivocally LOVED! Christina Lauren is an amazing writing team and I will read absolutely everything they write. If you have not read them yet, what are you waiting for???🍍

My Thoughts

𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓼𝓾𝓷. 𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓼𝓪𝓷𝓭. 𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓢𝓷𝓪𝓻𝓴. 𝓣𝓱𝓮 𝓼𝓮𝔁𝓾𝓪𝓵 𝓽𝓮𝓷𝓼𝓲𝓸𝓷.

Christina Lauren can do no wrong! This was another homerun from this amazing writing duel. Olive’s twin sister Amy is getting married. The wedding goes off without a hitch and it should because Amy has given Olive a to do list over 75 items long. BUT The perfect day is hijacked by the seafood buffet that makes every single guest sick, with the exception of Olive and Ethan the groom’s brother. Bride Amy is sick as can be, but does not want her honeymoon to go to waste, so she convinces her sister to take her place. The problem Olive’s plus one will be Ethan and the two of them have never got along. Well that might be putting it mildly the two pretty much can’t stand the sight of one another. BUT how can Olive resist 10 days in Maui?

Loved this book from cover to cover. The sun. The sand. The sexual tension. Olive was a fabulous character smart, snarky, and sassy. Enemies to lovers is one of my absolute favorite tropes and I loved how it played out in this story. The banter between Olive and Ethan was perfection. The story is told from Olive’s perspective. I generally like getting the mail POV as well in romances, but I thought this was really impactful in this book. We got to know Ethan as Olive did. Ethan was a great guy and I think I might have fallen in love with him right along with Olive. There are a few times during this book he said the absolute right thing at the perfect time. I said awww out loud a few times. I also found myself laughing out loud quite a bit. I love humor in my romances. BUT this book add a bit of a more serious side in parts. I thought this balance everything out well and I loved the resolution to the issues in this book. There was one part of this book that had me standing up cheering! You’ll know what I’m talking about if you have read this book!

If you are a Christina Lauren fan you will love this book! If you have not read them yet, what are you waiting for? This was a romcom done perfectly. The perfect blend of sass, Snark, swoon, and sizzle. A cast of engaging well developd characters and I really loved how important family was in this book. Well I’ve said a lot, I could go on anon, but I won’t, I will spare you all! Just read it! it’s fantastic!

🎧🎧🎧 Cynthia Farrell did an amazing job with her audiobook narration. She gave a perfect voice to both Olive and Ethan. I want to give her big props on her male voices. Deacon Lee came in and narrated the epilogue, he’s one of my favorites so of course I think he did a fab job!

*** Big thanks to Gallery and Simon & Schuster Audio for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

For two sworn enemies, anything can happen during the Hawaiian trip of a lifetime – even love – in this witty and swoon-worthy romance from the New York Times best-selling duo who “hilariously depict modern dating” (Us Weekly) and authors of Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating and Roomies. 
Olive is always unlucky: in her career, in love, in…well, everything. Her identical twin sister, Amy, on the other hand, is probably the luckiest person in the world. Her meet-cute with her fiancé is something out of a romantic comedy (gag), and she’s managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a series of internet contests (double gag). Worst of all, she’s forcing Olive to spend the day with her sworn enemy, Ethan, who just happens to be the best man.
Olive braces herself to get through 24 hours of wedding hell before she can return to her comfortable, unlucky life. But when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning from eating bad shellfish, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. And now, there’s an all-expenses-paid honeymoon in Hawaii up for grabs.
Putting their mutual hatred aside for the sake of a free vacation, Olive and Ethan head for paradise, determined to avoid each other at all costs. But when Olive runs into her future boss, the little white lie she tells him is suddenly at risk to become a whole lot bigger. She and Ethan now have to pretend to be loving newlyweds, and her luck seems worse than ever. But the weird thing is that she doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, she feels kind of…lucky.
With Christina Lauren’s “uniquely hilarious and touching voice” (
Entertainment Weekly), The Unhoneymooners is a fun and charming romance that is perfect for anyone who has ever felt unlucky in love.

The Besties

Mackenzie @ PhDiva

Jennifer @ Tarheel Reader

Holly @ Dressed to Read

Kendall @ Sunflower Book Lover

💕💕 Be sure to check out all the Besties’ reviews!

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Berit☀️✨

Posted in Series Promo

Blackthorn Series by Lindsay J Pryor @bookouture #seriespromo #blackthornseries

Hope you had a wonderful weekend!

Delighted to share with you today this series that will appeal to all you paranormal vampire lovers out there!🧛🏻‍♀️

Combining sizzling passion and sinfully seductive vampire heroes, Blackthorn is the perfect series for anyone who loves urban fantasy, paranormal romance, or dystopian fiction. Packed with suspense and intrigue, thrillingly sensual romance, and characters you can’t help but root for, Blackthorn has seen thousands of fans fall head over heels for this stunningly intricate world.

Each book takes readers on a dark, twisted journey deeper into the world of Blackthorn. Following four couples through intense passion, betrayals, and threats to the very fabric of their world, the series begins when Caitlin Parish, a Vampire Control Unit agent, is on a mission to hunt down Kane Malloy – a master vampire. Her mission is complicated when an unexpected but deep passion builds between them…

Intense, addictive and action-packed, Blackthorn will leave you breathless. Discover the series today!

Books 1,2 and 3 are available in a box set for just £3.99/$6.99

About the author

Lindsay J. Pryor is a speculative fiction author published by Hachette U.K. Her dark, gritty and complex dystopian BLACKTHORN series has achieved numerous Gothic and PNR Amazon number ones both in the UK and the US. Her spin-off LOWTOWN standalone novels are underway as well as her upcoming romantic Gothic horror.

Quickly deciding that fantasy was more interesting than reality, Lindsay has been creating stories since she was nine years old. She holds a BSc (Hons) degree in Psychology and Communication and is a qualified Psychology lecturer and English teacher. She taught for eighteen years before becoming a full-time author.

Lindsay was born and grew up in Wales and now lives in South West England with her husband and a plethora of wild woodland creatures.

To find out more about Lindsay and her books, please visit her website: lindsayjpryor.com