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.

Wednesday, 15 June 2022

 

Book review: One of the Girls by Lucy Clarke [blog tour]


There are few authors whose books I instantly move to the top of my to-be-read list when a new one is released, but Lucy Clarke is one of them. Ever since I read her debut The Sea Sisters back in 2013 (nearly 10 years ago now, wow!) I've been a big fan of her writing. She perfectly blends atmospheric travel writing with mystery and intrigue; transporting the reader to an exotic location while keeping them on the edge of their seat.

Monday, 16 May 2022

 

Theatre review: Ilan Eshkeri's Space Station Earth at the Royal Albert Hall


Ilan Eshkeri is a British composer well-known for his sweeping film scores (two of my favs are Stardust and Kick-Ass). Together with astronauts from the European Space Agency he has brought his iconic style of music together with unique footage from out of space to create an immersive theatrical experience. It shows us the beauty that space has to offer – and how tiny we are in the grand scheme of things. It's both magnificent and humbling. 

Friday, 6 May 2022

 

Book review: The Agathas by Kathleen Glasgow and Liz Lawson [blog tour]


With the comeback of golden age murder mysteries, it was only a matter of time before a novel would emerge in the young adult genre reminiscent of these old school detective stories. And while The Agathas by co-authors Kathleen Glasgow and Liz Lawson may not be the first one to be released (or it might be!), it is the first one that I've picked up. The title refers to the novel's protagonist, who is a big fan of Agatha Christie (hard relate) and, coincidentally, gets embroiled into a real-life murder mystery. Dun, dun, dun...

Tuesday, 26 April 2022

 

Book review: Miss Aldridge Regrets by Louise Hare [blog tour]


Miss Aldridge Regrets by Louise Hare is not the first historical murder mystery I've come across that's set on a cruise ship. In fact, it's not even the first one I've read this year, as I also devoured A Fatal Crossing by Tom Hindle a few months ago (it must be the Death on the Nile effect). But that doesn't mean I enjoyed it any less. The setting creates the perfect backdrop for a "locked room" mystery; where readers get to intimately know all the key players one by one until they start becoming either a victim or suspect in a murderous game of cat and mouse. And, of course, there are plenty of clever red herrings interspersed into the story to throw both te characters – and the reader – off the scent of the killer.

Thursday, 17 March 2022

 

Book review: Moonlight and the Pearler's Daughter by Lizzie Pook [blog tour]


It's 1896 when Eliza Brightwell's father goes missing one night from his boat, disappearing without a trace. He's a beloved pearler in the town of Bannin Bay in Western Australia; his supposed murder causing speculation amidst the townspeople, and an innocent man is soon hunted for the deed, pursuit and blamed just because of the colour of his skin. When Eliza's brother disappears to settle the family affairs, she's left alone with the unrest brewing in Bannin Bay. Convinced her father is still alive, and the jailed Balarri is an innocent man, she realises that the only way to get to the bottom of the truth is if she'd seek it out herself. 

Monday, 14 March 2022

 

Book review: The Cartographers by Peng Shepherd [blog tour]


Who doesn't love a good map? Even in the age of sat nav and mobile phones giving us very precise directions about which turns to take, there is still a place for physical maps in the world. The average person may not be using them frequently in their everyday lives anymore, but folding out a map and physically tracing directions has a certain kind of transportive magic to it, doesn't it? That's the premise of The Cartographers, sort of.