The Impulse Purchase – Veronica Henry

If only life really as about following your dreams. For Cherry as she watches the great and good celebrate the retirement of her husband, photographer, turned university professor she witnesses something that rocks those dreams.

Returning to Rushbrook to finalise the selling of her late mother’s house – on impulse Cherry buys the local pub.

Cherry is not the only one following her dreams, her daughter Maggie is still grieving for husband and his death has left a huge hole in her life. With her experience in PR suddenly not required by her regular clients thanks to a better offer, on impulse Maggie throws everything and follows her mother to Rushbrook and wants to spend the time in the kitchen of this pub to realise her own dreams and go back to her roots.

Rose has lost her dreams, the death of her father, the loss of her grandmother and being a young mother is perhaps not the life she envisaged. She is struggling mentally, but wants to do right by everyone. When on impulse she does the wrong thing at a local drop in centre. She runs to Rushbrook to be with her mother and grandmother.

Three women at very different points in their lives, are all thrown together to get the village pub at Rushbrook back up and running. At the same time to get their own lives back up an running.

Told from all the points of view of the main female protagonists, this book is if anything a glorious celebration of women being able to achieve anything no matter what life decides to put in their way. A sense of determination exudes off the pages and I was swept a long with all of the characters both the main ones and the cast of supporters as well. I felt particularly for Chloe whose life was at the point of going down a very different path.

We are swept into the village, the descriptions of the rundown pub and its makeover, the garden, the surrounding areas. The descriptions of the food had my mouth-watering and I could hear the sound and the smell of the pigs as a local farmer who is living up to his own impulse purchases embraces village life and the new owners of the pub as well.

There was something about this book which moved me, reminded me how strong a single female can be and that determination and a bit of old fashioned hard work can get you anywhere and that whatever path you choose, its always the right one for you at that time. It may be that all impulses are for a reason.

And for that reason I implore you to make your own impulse purchase and buy this book – you will not be disappointed.

The Impulse Purchase is out now.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.


Cover Reveal – The Wisteria Tree of Love

Any regular followers to this blog will know that I enjoy Holly Martin’s novels and that I have been lucky in the past to read some pre-publication and taken part in blog tours. Here I am with a cover reveal of her next novel – The Wisteria Tree of Love.

Get you preorders in here

You can start the adventure of the first in this series of books here while you wait for the Wisteria to blossom and the book to be released.


The Twyford Code – Janice Hallett

If there ever was a book so difficult to write a review for – this is it. I was hooked by The Appeal and wanted to see if the second novel lived it up to. It did, but in a completely different way, I was expecting the same and got something totally different and it blew me away!

A famous children’s book, a famous author; Edith Twyford. Left on a bus and found by Steve Smith. It is 1983 and Steve can’t read so he takes the book to school to Miss Isles and she reads it out. Miss Isles is enthralled, the book contains a code and that leads Steve and his remedial English class to Bournemouth. Miss Isles never returns from that trip. What happened?

40 years later Steve is still puzzled by the mystery of Miss Isles, the book and what really happened. Having lived a life mainly behind bars, lost his wife, alienated from his own family and no longer part of anything, Steve wants to get to the truth. Although estranged from his son, he is given an old phone from him and Steve although still not as educated and well read uses it to record all of his thoughts and understandings of what happened all those years ago.

All the recordings are transcribed and this is what forms the book and we get to find out what happened to Miss Isles but also Steve’s past and how he has come to have been in and out of prison and the circumstances that have led him to record his past.

This is a complex book but fascinating and it draws you in and you find yourself being pulled back into the recordings and the voice of Steve. I admit it took me longer to get used to this novel than it did her first, but once I slipped into the way of the writing and the voice I was intrigued as the truth become closer and closer.

There are twists and turns and when the book reaches it conclusion, it had me wanting to go back and read from the beginning, knowing the ending to see the clues. A true sign of a thoroughly cleverly constructed mystery novel and I am still puzzling the final mystery.

If you want to try something different, it you want to be challenged, if you love word games, puzzles and have an understanding of language then pick up this book, you will not be disappointed.

I cannot wait to see how the author tackles this genre in her third novel, I know she is going to blow us all away with it.

The Twyford Code is out now.

The publisher via netgalley gave me the opportunity to read this book. However, I went an purchased my own copy as I wanted to make sure I experienced it as it was printed and formatted and sometimes with advanced review copies the formatting can be a bit off and that can spoil the impact of the book.


Murder in First Class – Helena Dixon

If you have been following my reviews or blog you will know that I have been with this series of books since the beginning. The delightful sparky Kitty Underhay is still keeping everyone including her fiancée Matt Bryant on their toes and as readers we get to see it all played out with the delightful backdrop of Dartmouth as well.

Of course it wouldn’t be a murder mystery series unless there was at least one murder involving a train! Hoping for a quiet week off, Kitty and Matt find themselves called to help in the murder of Simon Travers on a train from London to stay with Matt.

Simon Travers was one of the passengers in the first class compartment, the others being a travelling salesman, a singer, a vicar, a young flapper, a poorly missionary and just to add to Kitty’s headache, Mrs Craven. Long term friend to Kitty’s grandmother and who always has an opinion of everything. The murder on this train is no different.

It all points to the travelling salesman but then his body is washed up.

Can Kitty and Matt find the truth as it appears at first that none of these people have any connection between each other. However as truths are uncovered and secrets from the past exposed, it leads Kitty nearer to the truth. But can she get there in time when she is suddenly face to face with her own past?

Another excellent book in the series, and if you discover it now you have some great mysteries to go back and solve. Kitty is very much before her time and it is always great to read books with strong female protagonists. Familiar characters to the series still feature, like Alice the maid and faithful companion to Kitty. We get to see more of her Alice’s family which is always a delight.

For fans of historical mystery fiction and those that want to lose themselves in a series well written and that keeps you hooked from beginning to end. I heartily recommend and look forward to the next as always.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.

Murder in First Class is out now.


Love Blooms at Mermaids Point – Sarah Bennett

Following a series means that you can get really involved in the characters lives as you see them pop in and out of the differing books. Last time I met Alex he was helping his brother, Tom the new Doctor at Mermaids Point settle in. He was at a crossroads in his life and could see that this little gem on the coast had healing properties. Even more so when he meets and flirts unashamedly with Ivy.

Ivy is having a tough time and her immediate future is all she can care about.

Time has moved on, Alex has made the decision to move to Mermaids Point and restart his life away from the city, away from the rash decision to publish a book under a pseudonym and also from his ex wife Jo. Buying a rundown bookshop seems like the perfect choice for Alex, it seems that rash decisions follow him everywhere.

Ivy is coming to terms with the death of her mother and the massive hole caring for her that has left. Now she can start to focus on herself. What she doesn’t realise is that the home, the life she has known is suddenly upended and she finds herself looking for everything home, job but most definitely not love.

However love has a funny way of finding you and that comes in the form of Alex, who can provide everything Ivy needs. Trouble is Ivy needs to see it first and Alex perhaps needs to be truthful about who he really is.

Being back in Mermaid’s Point is like returning home. The Morgan’s who feature strongly in the first couple of books are of course quite present in this novel, but it is very much the story of Alex and Ivy. You are on their side from the beginning and if I could have stepped into the book I would have certainly have shook both of them at some points, where the misunderstandings were just that.

Of course the path of true love never runs smooth and this relationship whilst off to a fast and fantastic start has to face some stumbling blocks. Some people don’t like this genre of fiction because it is making life to be too perfect, this is not true here. The author shows us life in all it’s ups and downs and realities most importantly and where doubts about people and trust issues can be affected by ones past. Both Alex and Ivy have that in abundance to resolve for them to be able to move on together of course.

Another strong read to this series of books and I highly recommend. Now if I could find my own Alex………

Love Blooms at Mermaids Point is out today.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.


The Blossom Tree of Dreams – Holly Martin

Wishing Wood seems almost Enid Blytonesque and that I am going to be transported to different lands through that magical tree and meet all sorts of different characters. Of course this books content is far from what happens in The Faraway Tree, but it had the magical quality about it of escapism to a different place, a different time and where there will always be a happy ending.

Indigo Bloom, had one magical night and now she is off to tell the owner of Wishing Wood, River Brookfield the news of that fateful night. What she doesn’t realise that she is going to land head long into his family and his life and it might not necessarily be what she or River wants.

There is also another problem – it appears that River, doesn’t remember her.

Hurt but in need of a job and somewhere to live, Indigo keeps her secret. However there is something magical about the place, the treehouses all tell a story and one in particular is exactly as she once described to River.

Add into the mix River’s daughter and a past hurt that has seem him completely abandon all hope of his own happy ending. With two brothers all with a family history of not perhaps the ideal upbringing who all cling to that idea of a happy family, a happy ever after can Indigo break through all the barriers and make River finally see what has been under his nose all along.

This is a wonderful, escapist novel and just what you would expect from the pen of Holly Martin. It was great to see the male character just as dominant as all the female ones, including River’s delightful daughter all playing an equal part in the story. There was something so inclusive, so well rounded and thought out with this book that it made my heart just sing.

Now whilst I wait for the next in her series I am off to investigate treehouses and wishing woods and my own happy ending.

Thank you to Holly Martin for an advance copy of this book in return for an honest review.

The Blossom Tree of Dreams is out now.


The Farmhouse of Second Chances – Helen Rolfe

You could say that home is where the heart is or wherever you lay your hat. For many people who have stayed at the Old Dairy Farm that is very true as they don’t move far and come back when and as much as they can. That is because of the love that Joy gives them, the love that Joy received when she was down on her luck all those years ago.

Libby is a high flyer in New York, but has swapped it for the quiet countryside of Somerset and her Aunt Joy’s home. The last time she saw her Aunt she was a mere child, but has kept up a correspondence over the years. Secret from her own parents as Joy was always considered someone you never spoke about within the family.

Libby doesn’t know what happened. Only Joy can share the story, but it is a story that will ripple out to everyone who has been living and working at the Old Dairy Farm.

This is book full of secrets and it kept me turning the page and I was intrigued in Joy’s past; my assumption was wrong and the real truth was heart breaking and I felt such a loss for the life Joy could have led. The emotions in the book are quite raw but there was such joy in seeing the characters interact, progress and develop that the books leaves you with such a lovely feeling. I was transported to the kitchen table for a full breakfast and I couldn’t wait to interact with the gorgeous puppies, being given new homes as well.

A book full of second chances and making a home wherever your heart is most at ease.

Thank you to the publisher via netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.

The Farmhouse of Second Chances is out now.


The Staycation – Cressida McLaughlin

You can be a travel agent without ever going abroad – can’t you?

For Hester Monday this is something she has been doing for over a year and no one has yet rumbled her. She has not set foot on a plane since she was a young girl, something happened then, it has scarred her and she cannot move forward.

Enter Jake Oakenfield, not allowed to travel back to New York on a plane because of an heroic deed which has left him with injuries and holed up in a luxury hotel in London.

Can Hester take him holiday to faraway places without leaving the hotel room? Of course she can. But can she do it all without revealing how she hasn’t been tp any of the places she is talking about?

The most important question for Hester is can you have a holiday romance when you are not even on holiday?

The sparks between Jake and Hester are clearly there, but some honesty and facing fears for both of them are the only things that are going to move them beyond the sparks which were flying off the page in places, into something much more solid.

I would say for me, this is a move from the author’s normal books and I was not disappointed but it didn’t have for me that something her other books have. I so wish I could name what that ‘thing’ was, maybe it didn’t give me enough of a pull to want to go back and revisit the characters.

However if you are missing travel across the globe or even the luxury places around the UK, then this book will whisk you away with a big dollop of romance thrown in for good measure.

Thank you to netgalley for the opportunity to read this book.

The Staycation is out now.


February Roundup

A quiet month in terms of reading, brain not wanting to process words after hours at work processing numbers and idiots, not necessarily in that order. The most I have been able to do is sleep. Even the crafts have taken a bit of a blip and I know that would make me feel so much better. So rather than giving anything up for Lent, perhaps I should do the reverse and start something instead.

Anyway on with the books, the first was Sharon Gosling – The House Beneath the Cliffs, originally requested via Netgalley and one that I forgot to download in time and because I was so interested I bought a copy. A really great read, took me away to Scotland and I have found an author I would like to read more of too.

Sometimes a book is like a big hug and you are transported to a place that feels just like that as if you could walk into the pages of the book and fit right in. That was the case with Helen Rolfe – The Farmhouse of Second Chances a heart breaking read but one that will equally fill your heart with joy.

Another place to escape to in all it’s magical form was Holly Martin – The Blossom Tree of Dreams, the first in a new series from this author where the main protagonists were male and that you are transported to the woods, the trees and nature in all its glory.

Sticking with transported away, of course our worlds have got really small in the last couple of years and travel has been a bit spares but of course you can always bring the holiday to your home as does Cressida McLaughlin – The Staycation. This is a slight change of direction for this author and whilst I enjoyed it, I wasn’t quite sure.

Not being quite sure was how I approached Janice Hallet – The Twyford Code, not because there is anything wrong with the book. It is so cleverly written it made my brain hurt! But in a good way and did I see the red herrings, was I suspicious, did I work it out? I think I would have to reread the book more than once to work it all out!

I enjoy reading by what it teaches me, what I discover that I didn’t know and how cleverly the writing can be. With the final book of February to tell you about was something I learnt by reading Lorna Cook – The Dressmakers Secret. Chanel is a name we all know. Her past wasn’t something I knew anythign about, perhaps a vague notion of something not the norm. This was a book that surprised me and showed me a different side to a well known person and brand,. Fascainting and this is one of th reasons I love hisotrical fiction.

One thing I will say, is writing reviews are a bit slow. Not sure why, I am reading but it seems to be taking a while for the words to come out the end of my fingers onto the keyboard and get it down to share. Doesn’t help when you have oodles of books to read either!

Better get on with March and reading some of them.