Friday, 23 September 2022

 

Book review: The Woman in the Library by Sulari Gentill [blog tour]


With the amount of murder mysteries that have come out lately, it feels like we're in the second golden age of detective fiction – and I am all here for it. I've found a renewed love for Agatha Christie, and I'm thrilled that more and more 'locked room' style whodunnits are being published to continue to feed my addiction. This year alone I've had the pleasure to read The Maid by Nita Prose, Miss Aldridge Regrets by Louise Hare, A Fatal Crossing by Tom Hindle, and now The Woman in the Library by Sulari Gentill. My interest for this book was first sparked by the striking cover and title, and after the turning the final page I am glad that I can say that the story fully lived up to my high expectations.

Thursday, 15 September 2022

 

Book review: Cornish Clouds and Silver Lining Skies by Ali McNamara


Ali McNamara has been one of my go-to women's fiction authors ever since I read Step Back In Time in 2013 (nearly 10 years ago now, wow!). I've devoured many of her books since, such as Letters From Lighthouse Cottage and The Little Flower Shop by the Sea. And after not really picking up contemporary romance fiction for a few years, it were her novels that got me right back into them. Returning to her fictional town of St Felix in Cornish Clouds and Silver Lining Skies felt like reuniting with an old friend. 

Monday, 12 September 2022

 

Book review: Ithaca by Claire North


A flurry of Greek retellings has been published in recent years and I absolutely love it. I've always enjoyed reading and learning about the classics, and many of the reimaginings that are released these days shine a light on the women that were so often only briefly mentioned in the heroic tales of the Greek men and gods. These new books show that these women were often just as important – if not moreso – in creating the legendary stories as we know them today. 

Wednesday, 7 September 2022

 

Book review: Wolfsong by TJ Klune [blog tour]


At the start of this year I FINALLY joined the TJ Klune hype train. I read The House in the Cerulean Sea and Under the Whispering Door back-to-back and was instantly obsessed with the beautifully heartfelt and unique magical worlds created by Klune's imagination. Needless to say, I was thrilled to discover that one of his older series, Green Creek, is now being released in the UK so I can continue to build my collection. 

Thursday, 1 September 2022

 

Book reviews: If the Shoe Fits by Julie Murphy & By the Book by Jasmine Guillory (Meant to Be series)


I love a good fairy tale retelling. However, the ones I've read up until this point usually fall into one of two categories: empowering a female character and making them a bad-ass hero in a fantasy world, or redeeming a villain by diving into their back story to make the reader realise that they're not evil, just misunderstood. These are great arcs, don't get me wrong, but they have started to feel a bit repetitive. The Meant to Be series by Studio Press (Bonnier Books), has taken a completely different take with their retellings: placing classic fairy tale characters in contemporary, Hallmark-like romance stories. And they absolutely smashed it.

Thursday, 18 August 2022

 

Book review: The Twist of a Knife by Anthony Horowitz (Hawthorne Investigates #4)


The Hawthorne Investigates series is a contemporary take on Sherlock Holmes. On the one hand you have a genius, but self-centred private investigator and on the other his bumbling sidekick. The twist? In this version, the sidekick is none other author Anthony Horowitz himself. Sure, he's fictionalised in some ways, but there's also a lot of truth in the story, from publisher meetings to references of working on his other books. This approach wonderfully blends reality with fiction, adding an extra layer of enjoyment on top of what's already a fantastic book series.

Thursday, 4 August 2022

 

Book review: The Last Party by Clare Mackintosh


I recently read Hostage, my first Clare Mackintosh novel, and I was completely gripped throughout this page-turner, not seeing some of the revelations coming at all. So I was thrilled to discover that not only do I have a fairly extensive back catalogue by the author to catch up on, a new novel was coming out just weeks after I finished the last one: The Last Party
 

Tuesday, 19 July 2022

 

Book review: Time After Time by Louise Pentland [blog tour]


Louise Pentland is as a prolific British YouTuber and Instagrammer, whose online channels are homey, family-oriented, and cosy. Alongside her social media work, she has written a trio of novels about fictional character Robin Wilde, and non-fiction book, MumLife, a memoir about motherhood. As a big fan of Louise's online content – and a book blogger to boot – it's shocking I haven't read any of her books to date. So I'm very glad I've FINALLY been able to rectify this shameful fact by devouring her latest standalone novel (in a single afternoon, that's how much I got swept away by the story!). 

Thursday, 14 July 2022

 

Theatre review: Disney's Beauty and the Beast at The London Palladium


My first "big" theatre experience was Disney's Beauty and the Beast on Broadway back in 2006. As a big fan of the movie, and it being my first Broadway show, it didn't take much to impress me. And impress me it did. From the lavish musical numbers through to Donny Osmond's surprising comic turn as Gaston, the more-muscles-than-brains bully wanting to marry Belle. Fast-forward 16 years and the Disney classic has made a return to London's West End, for a short stint as part of a wider UK tour. Is the show still impressive, or has some of the glitz and glamour worn off? I had the chance to find out earlier this week.

Monday, 4 July 2022

 

Book review: The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday by Cressida McLaughlin [blog tour]


For years I read little besides contemporary women's fiction novels. The cute and cosy kind, set in the idyllic English countryside with a woman looking for a drastic change in her life and moving next-door to a gruff but dashing man. Hilarity – and romance – ensued. But over time my reading tastes changed (perhaps a case of too much of a good thing). Thankfully, after a break of a few years, the romcom bug has finally hit me again. I've been on the look-out for the perfect read and Cressida McLaughlin managed to fill that hole in my life (and then some) with her latest Cornish adventure.