Tuesday, 24 February 2015

Blog-versary Giveaway of 'The Storyteller'!

Yesterday was my 1 year anniversary for my book blog, so am celebrating by hosting a giveaway! I thought I would repost my first review and offer a copy of the book up for grabs!

Sage Singer has a past that makes her want to hide from the world. Sleeping by day and working in a bakery by night, she kneads her emotion into the beautiful bread she bakes.But when she strikes up an unlikely friendship with Josef Weber, a quiet man old enough to be her grandfather, and respected pillar of the community, she feels that finally, she may have found someone she can open up to.

I’ve read quite a few of Jodi Picoult’s books, and generally have really enjoyed them, the last few however I have been slightly disappointed with. Jodi is right back on track with this one though, it definitely shares the thought provoking, often moral situations that is a common theme throughout her books.

This story had 4 different viewpoints, and two different time periods. I really liked this aspect, and while, personally I could have done without Leo’s perspective (and the predictable relationship with Sage), the others were done really well, especially Minka’s account of what had happened to her and her family. It was very harrowing, and really made me think about the atrocities that happened in World War 2.

I thought this book was very moving at times, and could never quite guess how Sage was going to react, and as a consequence her reaction did shock me. I feel I should talk more about Sage, but I didn’t really connect with her, which actually suits her self-conscious character well.

As I said above, Jodi’s books mostly involve some sort of moral/thought provoking themes, and most of them, I know where I would stand, however this one has me flummoxed. I really hope this gets chosen at my bookclub at some point, it would be interesting to hear other people’s views on it.

Rating - 4.5/5

Published by: Hodder & Stoughton

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Monday, 16 February 2015

Three Amazing Things About You by Jill Mansell


Hallie has a secret. She's in love. He's perfect for her in every way, but he's seriously out of bounds. And her friends aren't going to help her because what they do know is that Hallie doesn't have long to live. Time is running out...

Flo has a dilemma. She really likes Zander. But his scary sister won't be even faintly amused if she thinks Zander and Flo are becoming friends - let alone anything more.

Tasha has a problem. Her new boyfriend is the adventurous type. And she's afraid one of his adventures will go badly wrong.

THREE AMAZING THINGS ABOUT YOU begins as Hallie goes on a journey. A donor has been found and she's about to be given new lungs. But whose?

While I have a few Jill Mansell books on my virtual Kindle bookshelf to be read, I’ve only ever read one of them. When I saw EVERYONE on twitter raving about this book I moved it to the top of my TBR pile, and I’m immensely glad I did!

Three Amazing Things About You follows the lives of 3 women, Hallie, Tasha and Flo. All of their lives are completely separate bar a few brief chance encounters. This book has all the basics I like in a book covered. Emotional? Yup. Heart-warming? Check. Funny? Most definitely. This book made me smile, laugh and cry. Truly Outstanding!

What surprised me about this book is just how funny it was. I wasn't expecting many laughs but there were a good number of times where I either smiled to myself insanely or laughed out loud. Lots of these scenes seemed to involve food of some kind. The tomato soup incident sticks in my mind for me. It was absolutely hilarious, but at the same time was honourable and lovable, the essence of who Flo is and what she stands for. The restaurant scene with Flo, Lena and Giles also had me in stitches. Also I have to say I love Jill for referencing one of my favourite scenes from Fawlty Towers, this made me go onto youtube to watch the scene in question, and a load more as well. The list of laugh out loud moments could go on and on!

However, this book isn't just funny, it has a real emotional side on all 3 stories. At one point Hallie's ex-boyfriend was so nice, my heart just melted and I couldn't help but cry a little. We learn in the beginning that Hallie is about to have a lung transplant as she has Cystic Fibrosis, which I've never read about in a book before. This was really interesting to read about, as I am a strong believer in organ donation, since my Dad had a kidney transplant about 35 years ago.
**Fun Fact: Because of this, I was classed as a 'miracle baby' and had a news article on page 2 of the times when I was born - It's a shame my 15 minutes of fame was used up so early in life**
Anyway, as I said I was really interested to see Hallies perspective on this, and I was fascinated to learn about the domino effect that happens when people need lung transplants!

The characterisation in this book was fantastic, the 3 leads were so loveable and you really cared for them. The men in this book are al wonderful, though I was a bit suspicious of Zander to start with - I blame his sister for making me too paranoid, who is for the most part just really annoying and you just want to scream at her!

If this book is anything to go by, I am going to have to read more of Jill's work pretty sharpish! This book is so amazingly fantastic I cannot recommend it enough!

Buy on Amazon now! At time of publishing this review it is only £4.99 for the lovely Hardback, yes you read correct HARDBACK! Go buy nooooow!!!

Published by: Headline

Gratefully received from the Publisher for review.

Wednesday, 11 February 2015

Saving Grace by Jane Green

A perfect stranger wants her perfect life. Grace Chapman has the perfect life, living comfortably with her husband, bestselling author Ted, in a picture-perfect farmhouse on the Hudson River in New York State. 

Then Ted advertises for a new assistant, and Beth walks into their lives. Organized, passionate and eager to learn, Beth quickly makes herself indispensable to Ted and his family. But Grace soon begins to feel side-lined in her home - and her marriage - by this ambitious younger woman. 

Is Grace just paranoid, as her husband tells her, or is there more to Beth than first thought?

I've mentioned before on my blog that Spellbound By Jane Green was one of the first adult books I read and helped get me hooked onto my favourite genre. Jane has become one of my favourite authors and I have loved every book of hers that I've read.

This book is quite alot darker than I've found Jane's previous books which I loved. It starts at a nice easy pace, but as soon as Beth enters Grace and Ted's house it really gets into action and the tension builds. What I found particularly great in this book was that despite me really liking Grace and wanting to trust her point of view as I could see where she was coming from, at times it had me second guessing myself and maybe it was Grace being paranoid. 

I think the way Jane wrote the part of the book where Grace was seeing the doctor was outstanding and I could really empathise with what Grace was going through, especially given her family history. 

The book has some time spent in the UK as well as the US. One part had me especially excited, Grace visits her friend/surrogate mother and they mention going shopping in Sherborne. SHERBORNE. May not sound exciting to you, but I live very close to Sherborne, and this is the first time I've actually seen anywhere in my area mentioned in a book. I know simple things right, but that's what living in a relatively rural area does to me. It makes me nerd out at the mere mention of a small town I know. You think I'm crazy? You don't want to see my reaction to seeing the above sign on the film 'Four Weddings & a Funeral' merely hours after finishing this book :)

Anyway I digress...
When Grace is in Dorset you really feel that for once she's at 'home', it suits her personality to a tea. Helped by Lydia and Patrick.

All the characters were well written, they each filled their role in the plot. I really disliked Ted and his temper, especially when he mentions walking on eggshells around Grace. Pot meet Kettle! Just...Argh! 

This book is another hit for Jane. A gripping plot with the great characterisation that you come to expect from Jane's novels. 

Order on Amazon now!

Published by: Pan Macmillan

Gratefully received from the Publisher for review.

Monday, 9 February 2015

Best Kind of Broken by Chelsea Fine

The one that got away is living across the hall...

Pixie and Levi haven't spoken in nearly a year when they find themselves working-and living-at the same hotel in the middle of nowhere. Once upon a time, they were childhood friends. But that was before everything went to hell. And now things are... painful.

All they want to do is avoid each other, and their past, for as long as possible. But now that they're forced to share a bathroom, and therefore a shower, keeping their distance from one another becomes less difficult than keeping their hands off each other. Because despite everything that happened before, this isn't the kind of chemistry that it's easy to resist. Welcome to the hallway of awkward tension and sexual frustration, folks. Get comfy. It's going to be a long summer...

Having loved all of the new adult books that I have read I jumped at the chance to read and review this title. I absolutely loved this book instantaneously, the moment I started it. Like a lot of new adult books (at least the ones that focus on one book per couple), you know where this books will more than likely end, but it’s the story in between that matters and Chelsea writes such loveable characters and the opening scene with the shower was a great, funny opener to the book.

I love that Pixie and Levi had known each other in the past, but were really close friends, not linked romantically. Helping her find solace from her absolutely cow-bag of a mother. Reading about their childhood added a real depth to the characters.

Pixie and Levi both start the book aware of their attraction towards one another, but a shared tragedy stops them pursuing it further, and instead, end up fighting with each other, trying to get revenge on using all the hot water, or blowing the fuse.

As mentioned earlier, Pixie’s mother isn’t very nice, and that’s putting it lightly. However I think her Aunt was so great, as was Pixie’s best friend, Jenna. It was great she had so many other people that cared for her.

This book is amazing, I loved Levi and Pixie, and they make such a great couple. I will definitely be checking out the rest in this series, pronto!

Order on Amazon now!

Published by: Piatkus

Gratefully received from the Publisher for review.

Wednesday, 4 February 2015

Saving Quinton by Jessica Sorenson

Nova Reed can't forget him-Quinton Carter, the boy with the honey-brown eyes who made her realize she deserved more than an empty life. His pain was so similar to her own. But Nova has been coming to terms with her past and healing, while Quinton is out there somewhere, sinking deeper. She's determined to find him and help him . . . before it's too late.

Nova has haunted his dreams for nearly a year-but Quinton never thought a sweet, kind person like her would care enough about a person like him. To Quinton, a dark, dangerous life is exactly what he deserves. And Nova has no place in it. But Nova has followed him to Las Vegas, and now he must do whatever it takes to keep her away, to maintain his self-imposed punishment for the unforgivable things he's done. But there's one flaw in his plan: Nova isn't going anywhere . . .

I read the first book in this series in October 2014, and was instantly in love with the book. This book only continues to affirm my enthusiasm for this series and the characters.

Again it is told from both Quinton and Nova's viewpoints and we follow them on Nova's quest to help Quinton. We first hear from Quinton, desperate for his next fix, not concerned about roommate etiquette, just where his next fix will come from so he can stop the crushing pain caused by a tragic accident in the past, which he still blames himself for.

This book is more hard hitting than the first one, they have moved onto cocaine, crystal meth and heroine. You can really tell they are taking their toll on the characters. Both physically and mentally. This is most evident when Nova visits Quinton for the first time in his apartment. You get a detailed description of the poor conditions of the apartment, and how everyone has drastically changed in appearance. This along with the dangers Tristan puts everyone in, is truly terrifying to read, and definitely a warning against taking drugs.

The psychology of both characters, but especially Quinton was exactly how I imagine it would be in that situation. Quinton has been through so much, I can only imagine how he feels and Jessica writes it so well, you really end up feeling and caring for characters, that on the exterior at least you wouldn't normally like.

Tristan is a character I quite liked in the first book, but until near the end, all you see is him, so obsessed with drugs, he gets into such a mess that affects him and more importantly his friends, but he doesn't even seem to care. However, towards the end I really started to warm to him again. Delilah plays less of a role, and just like Tristan my feelings towards her changed from the first book, she is still with Dylan, but he treats her even worse than before, and you can see how badly this affects her. I ended up really feeling for her all the way through this book.

This book is just great. This was one sequel I was eagerly anticipating, and I was not disappointed. This book is different from most New Adult books I've read, it's got a serious side to it, which drew me in from the beginning. The ending is absolutely perfect and I cannot wait till the next book in the series is out!

Order on Amazon now!

Published by: Sphere

Gratefully received from the Publisher for review.
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