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Monday, 18 March 2019

The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew by Milly Johnson





Behind every successful man is a woman.
Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.

Sophie Mayhew looks like she has the perfect life. Wife of rising political star John F Mayhew, a man who is one step away from the top job in the government, her glamour matches his looks, power, breeding and money. But John has made some stupid mistakes along the way, some of which are threatening to emerge. Still, all this can still be swept under the carpet as long as Sophie 'the trophy' plays her part in front of the cameras.

But the words that come out of Sophie’s mouth one morning on the doorstep of their country house are not the words the spin doctors put in there. Bursting out of the restrictive mould she has been in since birth, Sophie flees to a place that was special to her as a child, a small village on the coast where she intends to be alone.

But once there, she finds she becomes part of a community that warms her soul and makes her feel as if she is breathing properly for the first time. Sophie knows she won't be left in peace for long. Now she must decide: where does her real future lie?


Title:   The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew
Author:  Milly Johnson
Published By: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 7th March 2019
Links:   UK:  Amazon        US:  Amazon


Or you can order signed copies from Milly's website  



Our Review



We are absolutely delighted and privileged to be taking part in the magnificent blog tour for The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew.

I’ve been a huge fan of Milly Johnson for a number of years now and I really thought she was top of her game. So imagine my delight when I devoured this book and found that she had actually raised the bar yet again.

If I didn’t know any better I’d say that Milly writes her books with a magic wand and not a pen. The writing style is slick and sophisticated without losing that down to earth Yorkshire charm and wicked sense of humour that Milly is renowned for.

I was immediately hooked to the story of Sophie Mayhew who is married to a handsome and powerful MP who quite simply cannot keep it in his pants. After suffering one humiliation too many in a callous world full of backbiting and sleaze, Sophie disappears to a place where she had happy memories from many years before.

The town of Little Loste was a complete contrast to the hostile environment she was used to. It was so welcoming with friendly people who were willing to give kindness without question, unlike Sophie's hateful family. Throw in a drop dead gorgeous vicar and his four year old son and a new best friend and I felt as at home there as Sophie did. 

I loved this book, it was comforting and enveloped me into loving arms, Sophie was so endearing and I was really rooting for her throughout.

The story was painful in parts, I guarantee you will be wanting to shout at the page when Sophie is berated by her family, joyful; I found myself smiling a lot, heartwarming, a gesture that Sophie's brother in law made brought me close to tears and totally uplifting, when Sophie starts to believe in herself.

Milly’s writing is such a joy and this book has now become my favourite of hers. It’s fascinating to see that well established and brilliant authors such as Milly can still keep evolving and keep us chomping at the bit for the next amazing book.

Sincerely
Book Angel x



About the Author

Milly Johnson was born, raised and still lives in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. As well as being an author of 16 published novels, 2 short story books and 2 novellas, she is also a copywriter for the greetings card industry, a poem and joke-writer, a columnist and a seasoned after dinner speaker.

She won the RoNA for Best Romantic Comedy Novel of 2014 and 2016 and the Yorkshire Society award for Arts and Culture 2015.


She writes about love, life, friendships and the importance of community spirit. Her books champion women, their strength and resilience and celebrate her beloved Yorkshire.

Her latest book - 'The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew' deals with a woman who has been conditioned since a child to be little more than a support for an important man. But there is much more to Mrs Mayhew than anyone who knows her - even her own family - could ever believe.


Milly's website is www.millyjohnson.co.uk. She is on Twitter as @millyjohnson, Instagram as @themillyjohnson and has a Facebook page @MillyJohnsonAuthor. She also has a monthly newsletter www.millyjohnson.co.uk/newsletter with exclusive, news, offers and competitions. 

Follow the rest of the blog tour here...


Thursday, 21 February 2019

The Flight of Cornelia Blackwood by Susan Elliot Wright



What has happened to Cornelia Blackwood?
She has a loving marriage. But she has no friends.
Everyone knows her name. But no one will speak to her now.
Cornelia Blackwood has unravelled once before. Can she stop it from happening again?

From a supremely talented storyteller, The Flight of Cornelia Blackwood is a powerful novel of motherhood, loss and loneliness and how we can make damaging choices when pushed to our emotional edge. A paperback bestseller with her debut novel, The Things We Never Said, and nominated for an RNA Award in 2014, Susan Elliot Wright has written a truly important novel that explores the dark depths of psychosis with honesty and sensitivity.


Title: The Flight of Cornelia Blackwood
Author: Susan Elliot Wright
Published By: Simon & Schuster
Publication Date: 21st February 2019
Links:  UK:   Amazon        Waterstones
             US:   Amazon


Our Review

Shocking and heartbreakingly poignant. 

I wish I could say that this book has a happy ending but sadly it doesn't. What it does provide is a sensitive and raw description of a woman in the grip of psychosis. I also wish I could say that things like this don't happen in real life but unfortunately they do.

This is a story of the struggles of motherhood when everything goes wrong. An honest and unflinching account of a new mum who suffers from a severe mental illness. 

The circumstances of Leah’s life are written in detail as the story switches from now to then and helps us to develop a deep empathy for her and an understanding of why she does what she does. Why don't people talk to her? What could she have done that would break her so irreparably? It's very easy to judge Cornelia Blackwood but this story shows that we all need to try to be a bit more understanding and hope that women suffering from this diabolic and destructive illness can find help.

Although we hear a lot about mental illnesses in the news lately, I haven't heard so much about this particular illness, probably because no one wants to talk about it. So whilst this is such a tragic story it's a really important subject to raise awareness about this cruel illness. 

Totally gripping throughout. 

Sincerely
Book Angel x


About the Author

Susan Elliot Wright grew up in Lewisham in south-east London. Before becoming a full-time writer, she did a number of different jobs, including civil servant, cleaner, dishwasher, journalist, and chef.  She has an MA in writing from Sheffield Hallam University, where she is now an associate lecturer, and she lives in Sheffield with her husband. She is the author of The Things We Never Said and the Secrets We Left Behind. To find out more, visit her website: http:/www.susanelliotwright.co or follow her on Twitter @sewelliot.


If Only I Could Tell You by Hannah Beckerman




Audrey's family has fallen apart. Her two grown-up daughters, Jess and Lily, are estranged, and her two teenage granddaughters have never been allowed to meet. A secret that echoes back thirty years has splintered the family in two, but is also the one thing keeping them connected. As tensions reach breaking point, the irrevocable choice that one of them made all those years ago is about to surface. After years of secrets and silence, how can one broken family find their way back to each other? Moving, thoughtful and surprising, If Only I Could Tell You is impossible to put down - and impossible to forget.

Title: If Only I Could Tell You
Author: Hannah Beckerman
Published By:  Orion
Publication Date: 21st February
Links:  UK:   Amazon     Waterstones


Our Review

If Only I Could Tell You by Hannah Beckerman is such a beautifully written and heartbreaking story. The ending transcends what we have come to expect from a tear jerking novel and literally takes us to another realm.

The story is told from three points of view, Audrey and her two daughters Jess and Lily and it moves between the present and 1988 when a traumatic incident occurs in the family.

The relationships between the three main characters are extremely complicated and Audrey is always torn between her daughters.

This book is about a family who are all painfully suffering in different ways and although they have kept a distance between them, they each hold a key to the others cure.

I felt that the story was going one way and then was completely surprised when it veered into a completely different direction that I really didn’t see coming. The way Hannah writes and reveals the story is so subtle and delicate it’s almost like peeling back the petals of a beautiful rose.

This is the first of Hannah’s books that I’ve read and I shall now read her back catalogue. 

Sincerely
Book Angel x


About the Author

Hannah Beckerman is an author, journalist and broadcaster. She is a regular contributor to The Observer, The FT Weekend Magazine, and The Sunday Express, and was the book critic on Sara Cox's Radio 2 Show. She chairs literary events around the UK and has been a judge on numerous book prizes including the Costa Book Awards.

Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Hannah was a TV Executive who spent fifteen years producing and commissioning documentaries about the Arts, History and Science for the BBC, Channel 4 and Discovery USA before turning her hand to writing.

Hannah lives in London with her husband and their daughter.

Sunday, 10 February 2019

What Happens in France by Carol Wyer




“She stood and took her place in front of the camera... It was now or never”

Bryony Masters has been looking for her long-lost sister, Hannah, for years, but when their father has a stroke her search takes on new urgency. So when primetime game show, What Happens in France, puts a call-out for new contestants, Bryony spots the ultimate public platform to find her reality TV-obsessed sister, and finally reunite their family.

With the help of handsome teammate Lewis, it’s not long before she’s on a private jet heading for the stunning beauty of rural France. With a social media star dog, a high maintenance quiz host and a cast of truly unique characters, Bryony and Lewis have their work cut out for them to stay on the show and in the public eye.

Yet as the audience grows and the grand prize beckons they find that the search that brought them together may just fulfil more than one heart’s wish…

This heartwarming romantic comedy of friendship, family and laugh-out-loud adventures is perfect for fans of Kirsty Greenwood, Colleen Coleman and Marian Keyes.


Title: What Happens in France
Author: Carol Wyer
Publication Date: 28th January 2019
Published By: Canelo
Links:  UK:     Amazon     US:    Amazon


Our Review


This is such a heartfelt story about a girl called Bryony Masters who is determined to find her long lost sister who ran away from home when she was only sixteen.

Bryony had always looked up to Hannah and neither she nor her parents ever got over their loss. When their dad has a stroke it becomes even more important that Hannah is found as they are running out of time.

Bryony then applies for a TV game show called What Happens In... as she feels this will raise lots of publicity for her search.

On the show she meets up with gorgeous Lewis who is her friend’s neighbour and a man called Oscar who has a lovable little pug called Biggie Smalls, he is already famous on Instagram and has lots of followers.

The game show scenes were lots of fun and Carol was able to convey really well the amount of energy and buzz that goes on backstage. I was able to quiz my husband on the questions that the contestants were asked so he enjoyed it too.

The other aspect that Carol managed to convey really well was the emotion tied up in Bryony and Hannah’s relationship. Bryony was only a small child when Hannah left and she could never understand why she went especially as Bryony had an illness in childhood so was quite a fragile little thing.

I felt quite sad about all the years they had missed out on as sisters but I also really felt for Hannah too and it was interesting to eventually see her side of the situation and what was going through her mind at the time.

I really liked Bryony’s character and was rooting for her the whole time and think she really got what she deserved in the end.

A lovely emotional read about sisterly love
Sincerely 
Book Angel x



About the Author



Carol Wyer, who also writes as Carol E. Wyer, is an award-winning author and stand up comedian who writes feel-good comedies and gripping thrillers.
Her book, Grumpy Old Menopause won The People's Book Prize Award for non-fiction 2015.
Carol moved to the ‘dark side’ in 2017 with the DI Robyn Carter series, starting with best-seller LITTLE GIRL LOST the #2 best-selling book on Amazon, #9 best-selling audiobook on Audible and was in the USA Today Top 150.
The Robyn Carter series has sold over 400,000 copies and foreign rights have been sold into 9 countries, earning her acclaim as a crime writer.
Following the success of THE BIRTHDAY and LAST LULLABY, 2019 sees the release of three more DI Natalie Ward books and two new romantic comedies, the first, the much anticipated WHAT HAPPENS IN FRANCE.
Carol has been interviewed on numerous radio shows discussing ''Irritable Male Syndrome' and 'Ageing Disgracefully' and on BBC Breakfast television. She has had articles published in national magazines 'Woman's Weekly' featured in 'Take A Break', 'Choice', 'Yours' and 'Woman's Own' magazines and the Huffington Post.

To learn more about Carol, go to www.carolwyer.co.uk or follow Carol on Twitter: @carolewyer.
Carol also blogs at www.carolwyer.com 


Follow the blog tour here...





Friday, 8 February 2019

Spring Blogger Evening 2019


My Fave author and friend Milly Johnson xxx
   

One of the highlights of my year has to be the annual Simon and Schuster Spring Blogger evening which is held at their headquarters in Greys Inn road. The event was organised by the amazing Sara-Jade Virtue who really is the hostess with the mostest and thanks to her and the Books and the City team we received a lovely warm welcome as we arrived.

The event is always a joy because its a chance for amazing authors and bloggers, many of whom have become friends that I know will be in my life for ever, to get together and have a good old catch up over fizz and nibbles. Followed by an array of delicious cupcakes, decorated in themes from the books.
Two special ladies,
 Milly Johnson and Mary Lewis x
Lifelong friends, me with
 Mary Lewis and Molly Blakemore x





















The atmosphere was charged with a buzz of excitement as old friends and new mingled. Then we were given goody bags which had lots of treats in them including samplers for each of the authors' books and beautiful, finished advanced copies of Messy, Wonderful Us by Catherine Isaac and If You Could Go Anywhere by Paige Toon who wasn't at the event but I've included a link below to pre-order.
Incase you were wondering what was in the little 
box it was this amazing necklace from Panda Eyes x
Goody Bag Haul x












After moving into the other room and sitting comfortably each of the authors read an extract from their book and I have to say every one sounded fantastic and yet they were all so different from each other. I have put pre-order links where possible below.

What a line up of fab authors. x
There was such a fantastic line up of authors there; including Iona Grey, Alice Peterson, Claire Frost, Milly Johnson and Rachel Hore, many of them I've read before but I was also introduced to a couple of new authors too. Also present was the lovely Heidi Swain, Juliet Ashton, Louise Candlish and Catherine Isaac who was promoting her new book Wonderful, Messy Us! which sounds amazing and will be out in Spring 2020, she had a photo booth set up and it was lovely to have a photo taken with her in it and with my friend Molly Blakemore. Catherine's previous book, You, Me, Everything was amazing and has been commissioned for a movie which is so exciting.














The evening simply flew by, after the readings we were able to get our books signed by all of the authors and then mingle some more before heading off home.

I really do love my booky events as I feel I have found my tribe and it's always such a joy to see everybody again.

Huge thanks to Sara-Jade for just being her as she is so very highly thought of by us all.

Please see below for author links:-

The epic and long-awaited new romance from the author of Letters to the Lost, winner of the RNA Award.The Glittering Hour by Iona Grey


‘I can toast to my future, but the thundercloud over my head, the threat of a storm, will follow me like a shadow wherever I go. The truth is, I have a potential bomb in my bag, and who knows when or where it will go off’
If You Were Here by Alice Peterson


This heart-warming and funny novel is the perfect balm for the Insta-weary mind
Living My Best Life by Claire Frost


THE QUEEN OF FEEL-GOOD FICTION!
'Every time you discover a new Milly book, it’s like finding a pot of gold' Heat
The brand new novel from the Sunday Times bestselling author of The Perfectly Imperfect Woman - a gorgeous read full of love, life and laughter.
The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew by Milly Johnson


COMING SEPTEMBER 2019.
The unmissable brand new novel from Rachel Hore, the Sunday Times bestselling author of Last Letter Home, a Richard and Judy 2018 Book Club pick.
The Love Child by Rachel Hore


Could you hate your neighbour enough to plot to kill him?
Those People by Louise Candlish


Treat yourself to a glorious novel full of food, sunshine, friendship and love!
Poppy's Recipe for Life by Heidi Swain


From the acclaimed author of You Me Everything, now optioned for film
Messy, Wonderful Us by Catherine Isaac.


The brand new novel from the Sunday Times bestselling author Paige Toon. The perfect summer read for 2019!
If You Could Go Anywhere by Paige Toon



















Unfortunately I couldn't find a pre-order link for Juliet Ashton's new book yet so here is one for a new edition of one of her previous books.
The Woman at Number 24 by Juliet Ashton



I'm sure you'll agree that 2019 is going to be an amazing year for books so happy reading everyone, until next time.

Sincerely
Book Angel x
























Wednesday, 30 January 2019

Love Heart Lane by Christie Barlow






Welcome to Love Heart Lane…

When Flick Simons returns to the small village of Heartcross she only expected to stay for a few days. The white-washed cottages of Love Heart Lane might be her home, but the place holds too many painful memories, and of one man in particular – Fergus Campbell.

When a winter storm sweeps in, the only bridge connecting the village to the main land is swept away! As the villagers pull together, Flick finds herself welcomed back by the friends she once left behind. And as the snow begins to melt, maybe there is a chance that Fergus’s heart will thaw too…


Title:  Love Heart Lane
Author:  Christie Barlow
Published By:  Harper Impulse
Publication Date:  11th January 2019
Links:  UK:    Amazon     US:    Amazon


Our Review

As soon as I saw the title of this book I knew I was going to fall in love with it and it certainly didn’t disappoint. I was also thrilled to find it was the first book in a brand new series set in the Scottish Highlands.

Felicity Simons is disillusioned with her life in London and when her gran sadly dies she returns home to Love Heart Lane in the remote village of Heartcross.

Having hurt so many people when she upped and left eight years before, she is filled with trepidation and isn’t sure whether she’ll be welcomed back or not.
I was intrigued to know why Fergus, her ex, found it so hard to forgive and forget and wanted nothing to do with Felicity. It was interesting to observe the dynamics of what happened in their relationship from the two different viewpoints, especially when those two people were suffering so much.

When devastation hits the small village, Felicity manages to show everyone what she’s made of and even surprises herself with what she can achieve.

The love story that runs through the book is heartbreaking, heartwarming and joyful. Christie has a way of describing emotions that enables the reader to feel every bit of pain, confusion and happiness that the characters are going through.

Felicity works hard to rebuild the bridges between her and her family and friends. The relationship she has with a little girl called Esme is simply beautiful and extremely healing.

Christie has created a wonderful village in Heartcross with characters full of warmth and kindness and it was so endearing to see the community come together to face adversity.

This book is about love, friendship, forgiveness and acceptance and will totally melt your heart.



Sincerely
Book Angel x



About the Author  


Christie Barlow is the author of A Year in the Life of a Playground Mother, The Misadventures of a Playground Mother, Kitty's Countryside Dream, Lizzie's Christmas Escape, Evie's Year of Taking Chances, The Cosy Canal Boat Dream, A Home at Honeysuckle Farm and Love Heart Lane. Her writing career came as somewhat a surprise when she decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. The book she wrote to prove a point is now a #1 bestseller in the UK, USA & Australia.

Christie is an ambassador for @ZuriProject raising money/awareness and engaging with impoverished people in Uganda through organisations to improve their well-being as well as Literary Editor for www.mamalifemagazine.co.uk bringing you all the latest news and reviews from the book world.

website www.christiebarlow.com

Twitter @ChristieJBarlow

Facebook page Christie Barlow author

Follow the blog tour here...


Friday, 25 January 2019

** COVER REVEAL ** Poppy's Recipe for Life by Heidi Swain




Heidi Swain is the perfect summer read!


About the book…

Treat yourself to a glorious novel full of food, sunshine, friendship and love.

Things haven’t always been straightforward in Poppy’s life but her dreams are finally within her reach.
She's moving into a cottage in beautiful Nightingale Square, close to the local community garden, where she can indulge her passion for making preserves and pickles. She may not have the best relationship with her family but she is surrounded by loving friends, and feels sure that even her grumpy new neighbour, Jacob, has more to him than his steely exterior belies. 

But the unexpected arrival of Poppy's troubled younger brother soon threatens her new-found happiness and as the garden team works together to win community space of the year, Poppy must decide where her priorities lie and what she is prepared to fight for …


Title:   Poppy's Recipe for Life
Author:  Heidi Swain
Published By:  Simon & Schuster 
Publication Date:  30th May 2019

Links for pre-order
E-book


Praise for Heidi Swain:


Wise, warm and wonderful – a real summertreat!’ heat magazine

'A fabulous feel good read – a ray of reading sunshine!’ LAURA KEMP, author of A Year of Surprising Acts of Kindness

'This book had it all for me! A beautiful setting, likeable characters and a wonderful plot. I was captivated from the first chapter. A charming book you will not want to put down!' NetGalley Reviewer

We are delighted to be able to share the cover for the brand new book by Heidi Swain and can't wait to read Poppy's Recipe for Life.
While you're waiting why not catch up with all of Heidi's previous books, you won't be disappointed.

You can download them here:-




The Cherry Tree Café

Summer at Skylark Farm
Mince Pies and Mistletoe at the Christmas Market
Coming Home to Cuckoo Cottage
Sleigh Rides and Silver Bells at the Christmas Fair
    Sunshine and Sweetpeas in Nightingale Square
    Snowflakes and Cinnamon Swirls at the Winter Wonderland

























Sincerely
Book Angel x



About the Author


Heidi Swain is the Sunday Times Top Ten best-selling author of SLEIGH RIDES AND SILVER BELLS AT THE CHRISTMAS FAIR. Her other titles include The Cherry Tree Café, Summer at Skylark Farm, Mince Pies and Mistletoe at the Christmas Market, Coming Home to Cuckoo Cottage and Snowflakes and Cinnamon Swirls at the Winter Wonderland.

Heidi lives in beautiful south Norfolk with her family and a mischievous cat called Storm. She is passionate about gardening, the countryside, collecting vintage paraphernalia and reading. Her tbr pile is always out of control!

Heidi loves to chat with her readers and you can get in touch via her website heidiswain.co.uk/ or Twitter @Heidi_Swain