The Silver Bells Christmas Pantomime by Lynsey James

The Silver Bells Christmas Pantomime by Lynsey James

 

cover100809-mediumPublisher: HQ Digital

Publishing Date: 1oth November 2016

Series: Luna Bay #3

Source:  Received from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 196

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Romance

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

Synopsis:

This Christmas pantomime is about to be the talk of the town!

Luna Bay’s festive preparations are well under way and the much anticipated annual pantomime is to be, once again, the highlight of the season. Too bad that the village’s very own actress and darling of Broadway, Alice Woods, isn’t feeling in the mood for Christmas.

Until the pantomime comes under threat and a grief-stricken Alice is forced to push her personal pain aside and step up to direct – after all, the show must go on…

So with (more than) a little help from her new found friends, not to mention one very gorgeous Hollywood A-list celebrity, the play begins to come together, but will Alice finally believe that Christmas is a time for miracles after all?

Rating: 4/5

One thing is certain. Till now I’ve only read Lynsey James’s debut novel and I had some problems with it. However, “The Silver Bells Christmas Pantomime” is Lynsey`s fourth book and I can absolutely, totally ascertain that it is much, much better than her debut, both in writing style, characters descriptions, storytelling and general feel. I was a little sceptical of requesting this author’s book after the first novel that I’ve read but now I actually regret not doing it!

“The Silver Bells Christmas Pantomime” is the third and final book in the “Luna Bay” series and I was a little afraid when starting it that I may be confused or that maybe I’ll miss too much on the previous books, that I haven’t read. However, it was not the case. I’m guessing the story mentions previous characters but it is actually dedicated to Alice Woods, I’m guessing a new character to the series.

I totally loved the idea of the pantomime, and I totally loved the actors! Again, the feeling of community was great in this story, and I always so adore to see the villagers supporting each other, but also pushing their noses in others’ people business, no matter if wanted or not. And Lynsey James has created here some very unforgettable characters, believe me! Next to our main heroine Alice Woods, who is lovely, guys, she’s so normal and down to earth, and so genuine with all her feelings, we have for example Christabel who’s been taking charge of the pantomime for years. And making it a disaster every year, even though it’s her pride and joy, but as Christabel knows everything better there is nothing – and nobody – stopping her! Until Alice decides she gives it a try, only to jet off her mother from her. Then we have Lucy and Emily, and I’m guessing the previous stories were about them, and as the girls were so lovely, warm and full of fun I desperately need to read their stories! And let’s concentrate shortly on the male characters, and especially Ethan Fox, mmmm, Ethan Fox that played Mr Darcy….. Ethan Fox, who seems to appear everywhere Alice is… Ethan Fox that made my heart beat faster… And the brilliant, colourful cast members of the pantomime, so entertaining and so full of life, who only waited to show their true talents.

I liked the romance aspect, and even though Ethan was a Hollywood star and suddenly found himself in the little Luna Bay to catch a breath, it was still believable and they both, Alice and Ethan, with their awkwardness, uncertainty and problems only made it feel more realistic. I also liked to see Alice blossoming – you could think three years of grieving are enough, right, because starting to live again doesn’t mean forgetting, no? Yet somehow I felt sympathy for Alice and fell for her and it was a great joy to see her coming back, to see the new Alice, not shy and keeping herself to herself anymore.
For me personally the second half of the book went a little downhill. While the first half kept me totally entertained, I had a feeling that then it slowed down a little, there were too many repetitions for my liking, when the character were re – telling what’s happened, and I had a feeling that it’s not as light – hearted and funny anymore. But still, it was a great and engaging read. no worries there!

So altogether, this book is full of positive vibrations, feel – good factor and it was a great joy to read it. A lovely story about friendship and leaving past behind but not forgetting it! It’s about courage and about coming out of your comfort zones and pluck up the courage again, about learning to trust and hope again. The writing style was flowing, it was lovely, warm and inviting, and the author has filled the story not only with great characters but also with very palpable feelings of friendship, despair, love, hope, romance, and there were some surprises and twists on the way as well! A lovely, festive read that put a smile on my face, just what I needed!

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It’s Not You, It’s Them by Portia Macintosh

It’s Not You, It’s Them by Portia Macintosh

 

31366739Publisher: HQ Digital

Publishing Date: 3rd November 2016

Source:  Received from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 216

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

Synopsis:

First comes love. Then comes family…

After a lifetime of kissing frogs, Roxie Pratt has given up on finding her own fairytale romance. That is, until she meets her very own Prince Charming, Mark Wright, and he sweeps Roxie off her feet!

So when Mark finally gets down on one knee and pops the question, there’s only one thing left to do: meet the family! And when everything has been picture-perfect so far, what could possibly go wrong…?

Rating: 4/5

If you asked me one thing about Portia Macintosh I’d say you can reach for her books when you are feeling low – they for sure are going to pull you out of your slump, as they are always brilliantly funny, light – hearted and casting great bunches of characters. This time, with “It’s Not You, It’s Them”, Portia of course hasn’t disappointed, bringing all the hallmark writing, elements and humour into her new novel. It follows a very simple formula – meeting your future in – laws together with being snowed – in in a very remote house and Christmas – what could go wrong, actually?
Well, as it turned out, a lot could go wrong! Firstly, the above mentioned future in – laws have no idea that their beloved son is going to bring his girlfriend and that, in fact, she’s not a girlfriend anymore, she’s already fiancée! Then it can turn out that they are not as lovely as Mark has painted them to Roxie, they are in fact as cold as the house they’re living in. And, as it turns out a little later, they were hoping to see Mark married to a totally different girl who – coincidence, coincidence of course – finds herself at their place! And yes, add to this being snowed in – I wouldn’t like to be in Roxie’s shoes, would you?

Really, guys, I couldn’t fell more for Roxie! She was so much in love with Mark, she had so many hopes and then came this wall in the persons of Mark’s family. They were all so uptight and while they weren’t officially evil (well, not all of them. Maybe only two. Or three. Or four…), they weren’t especially welcoming and open – hearted. The biggest nightmare a girl can experience, no? To say that things were frosty would be an understatement. This what made me laugh so much brought Roxie on the verge of her nerves as Mark’s mother was very inventive and the things she goes so far for only to make sure her precious son won’t marry Roxie were hilarious for us, readers, but not so much for the poor Roxie. Oh, I so wanted to slap Mark’s mother guys, believe me, and I am a very calm and collected person. Starting with giving Roxie her worst clothes to wear and ending with closing Mark and his ex in a cupboard together, and generally make the things difficult to Roxie everything and making her a laughing stock.

This book is full of Portia’s signature humour and there were many laugh – out – loud moments, as well as some embarrassing and awkward ones. There were also some too clichéd moments for my liking, and the book was tad too predictable and too far fetched, but overall it was a light – hearted, easy read. It is full of mishaps and misunderstanding, and yes, it shows people at their worst I think, but thanks to this the characters came across as much more realistic and relatable too. There were some unforgettable moments, and let’s only mention the Teenage Mutant Ninja outfit, broken bed, spiking the drinks, the traditional Truth or Dare game.

Portia Macintosh has brilliantly captured the many different personalities and she also brilliantly showed how people can really be, how some situations unleash the worst of them, and how the real family dynamics usually work, and I enjoyed this rollercoaster of emotions and feelings immensely!

With so many people and so many different personalities this book reminded me so much of “National Lampoons’ Christmas Vacation”, which I can watch every Christmas to be honest – and they both show how often you just must bite your tongue, pretend not to see or hear things, how appearances are the most important thing to survive. There is also this teeny tiny problem of Roxie being a journalist and her best articles being about her relationship with Mark – and right now she was ordered to write one about meeting your future in – laws. What shall she do? Write truth? Will she dare to?

It is full of chaos but also full of situations and emotions that you can relate to. The author has really brilliantly developed the tension and I couldn’t see how it’s going to end. In my eyes everything was possible – the happy end, as well as the unhappy one. There were also moments that I was wondering if I really wish Roxie her happy end because Mark, well, Mark, what shall I say, people can show their real faces only when confronted or forced to, right? And Mark was changing before our own eyes, every day, he didn’t see things as they really were, he didn’t believe Roxie and actually I don’t think that he at least once stood up for her. It says a lot, no? But altogether, “It’s Not You, It’s Them” was all I have expected from Portia Macintosh – a light, easy read with a festive feeling. Recommended!

Nice Day for a White Wedding by A.L. Michael – Blog Tour

Hi guys, good morning! We are starting early today with a review of “Nice Day for a White Wedding” by A.L. Michael as a part of a great blog tour. There is also a brilliant giveaway to enter – good luck!

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Nice Day for a White Wedding by A.L. Michael

 

29912901Publisher: Carina

Publishing Date: 22nd August 2016

Series: The House on Camden Square #2

Source:  Received from the publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 187

Genre: Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

Synopsis:

Sometimes, Happy Ever After is where the real trouble begins…

Chelsea Donnolly wasn’t supposed to amount to anything. But if there’s one thing the bad girl from the estate liked better than trouble, it was a challenge. So, to the amusement of her best friends Evie, Mollie and Ruby – and the disbelief of her teachers – this bad girl turned good.

These days, Chelsea is the kind of girl people are proud to know – and, after a surprise trip to Venice, she has a ring on her finger to prove it. But to get there, she’s had to learn to keep her deepest secrets from everyone – even her fiancé. And when wedding preparations threaten to blow her cover, Chelsea can’t help but wonder: in her battle to the top, might she have left the best parts of herself behind?

 

Rating: 4/5

“Nice Day for a White Wedding” is a second book in The House on Camden Square series, and even though I haven’t read the first book, I didn’t have any problems to get directly into the heart of this story – I’d say it could easily be read as a standalone book. There were some flashbacks into the past but to be honest they only roused my curiosity what happened then, so I’ll be for sure reading “Goodbye Ruby Tuesday” sooner rather than later.

The story follows Chelsea. It very quickly becomes clear that she’s broken free from a very bad background and has made a success out of her life. She’s escaped the estate and now lives in London, has a great job and a successful boyfriend, and she wants very much to forget about her past – so much that she keeps it a secret whenever she can, even from her boyfriend. However, it is not only the estate that she’s left but her two younger brothers who need her, so will she be able to keep her past always a secret? Especially as Kit, her boyfriend, has just proposed and it’s time to get to know the families… With this end in view the two travel to Lake Garda to meet Kit’s family and it is so clear from the very beginning that there is a huge difference between their backgrounds and life styles and the question is, will this engagement, that was off to such a rocky start, survive?

I didn’t have problems to warm to Chelsea. Sure, she was stubborn but she had her reasons and I really admired her for the fact that she was consequent and when she had a goal she worked toward achieving it. Thanks to the flashbacks into the past we quickly learn what it was that made Chelsea to be like she was and what happened to make her change her mind. She worked hard for what she has now and it was really not a wonder to me that she wanted to keep her independence for herself. Even though her mother was not the easiest person and didn’t make it light for her daughter, Chelsea still supported her family, not only financially, and seeing how much she cared of her brothers was really touching.
On the other hand, I wasn’t so sure about Kit. At the beginning he seemed OK, but then it is amazing how some people and different surrounding can change a person, no? I really wasn’t sure which face of his is the real one, and probably this was my biggest problem with him, because I wasn’t sure if I can trust him. As long as Chelsea and Kit were alone together, everything was perfect, it only changed when the lovely (NOT) Jemima entered the scenes. This relationship seemed so real and so genuine, and then they went to Lake Garda and well, it wasn’t like this anymore. And I partly blamed Kit for this. But it was interesting to make the relationship between Chelsea and Kit so different because of their backgrounds. It was not only bed of roses, it was full of problems, especially when Kit’s family, and his dragon mother, entered the scenes. But it made a difference from all the other bookish romances and it was not so straightforward, which only added tons of meaning to the story, and it sounded really realistic.

It is a story about family bonds, asking if blood is really thicker than water. A story about growing up and seeing what’s important and what’s not. Story about differences and how to overcome them. It was a funny read with many poignant moments, touching upon some important issues. It shows how secrets and lies can affect our lives. Judging on a title I’ve expected a light – hearted romance, however this book is much more emotional and there is much more depth to it than I expected. It moved at a good pace and there were some beautiful settings, which only made the book even more enjoyable and vivid.

GIVEAWAY!

This giveaway is for an Italian themed goodie bag that Andi is preparing herself which has lots of goodies in it – like processo, biscotti and other italian themed yummies!YAY!

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

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When Only Cupcakes Will Do by Daisy James

When Only Cupcakes Will Do

by Daisy James

 

30357657

Publisher: Carina

Publishing Date: 4th August 2016

Source:  Copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley, thank you!

Number of pages: 210

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

The delightfully heartwarming romantic comedy from Daisy James!

When life gives you lemons, make lemon drizzle cupcakes…

Lucie thought that proposing to her boyfriend in Tiffany’s would be the best day of her life. Until he said no. In just a few seconds, her whole world is turned upside-down! And when she accidentally switches cocoa powder for chilli powder at work, she finds herself out of a job, too…

Baking has always made life better in the past, but can Lucie really bake her way to happiness? Starting her own company, selling cupcakes out of an old ice cream van might just be the second chance that Lucie needs!

Of course, she never expected to find love along the way…

Rating: 4/5

So OK, “When Only Cupcakes Will Do” is the kind of book that I have requested basically judging it on the cover, which is gorgeous. I would read it no matter what the synopsis says because it just drawn me in and made me intrigued. I love cupcakes, and I fell in love with the cupcake on the cover and hit the “Request” button without hesitation. The question is, did the book live up to my expectations and to the cover???

One thing that didn’t sit with me so well was the romance element in this story. I’m not sure why, but for me it all seemed too rushed, too far – fetched, too impossible, as from the beginning the only things I’ve heard about Ed were not too nice. I don’t know, I just haven’t seen this attraction, and I didn’t buy this romance. Also Lucie’s first relationship also stroke a little too unbelievable chord for me and it annoyed me that it took her so much time to see what I’ve immediately seen – that Alex was self – obsessed, weak, sleazy coward and she was much better without him. Alex ignored Lucie, he run away and didn’t deign to try to get in touch with her for a few months and yet she still needed so long to get over him and to preocuppy her thoughts with him – it made me feel so, so annoyed with her! But Lucie was a strong – willed woman and she belongs to my favourite category of characters: those that mature and develop. I could applaud her on her journey to finding her new herself after she’s lost her job because of her loosing her temper – to be honest, if I were her boss, I’d never give her a sack! all the characters are so well developed and drawn, and even the ice – cream van that plays Greensleeves when you press the silver button was brilliant!

“When Only Cupcakes Will Do” was a lovely, uplifting, feel good read, and let’s not forget the delicious cupcakes and ice – creams! I absolutely loved the ideas for cupcakes Lucie had, the amazing and unusual flavours and aromas and her plans for the parties she was planning with her sister, and the parties themselves – I’d love to go to such a party, and not necessary as a mother of the invited child 🙂 There is a lovely sense of humour in this story, and the storyline, even when tad too predictable and sometimes far – fetched (and everything seemed to come so easily to the characters, they had the right friends with right connections etc) – it doesn’t really matter and it was nevertheless lovely. It is a delicious story about family, friendship, food and about finding your own way and I truly enjoyed reading it.

 

Breakfast Under a Cornish Sky by Samantha Tonge

Breakfast Under a Cornish Sky

by Samantha Tonge

 

29219342Publisher: Carina

Publishing Date: 28th July 2016

Source:  Copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley, thank you!

Number of pages: 313

Genre: Contemporary,  General Fiction (Adult)

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

Synopsis:

DREAMING OF THE PERFECT MAN?

Kate Golightly needs to move forward and what better way to do that then with a trip to the Cornish coast with best friend and boss, Izzy.

The sea wind is just what Kate needs to finally relax and begin to let go of her past. Except she’s suddenly got one big reason to panic! She RSVP’d ‘yes’ to the Queen Bee of her high school’s wedding saying she’s bringing her boyfriend (she doesn’t have one) who looks just like Ross Poldark!

With only two weeks to find the Poldark look-alike of her dreams Kate is under a lot of pressure for the Cornish coast to deliver…

A hilarious and moving romantic novel from bestselling author, Samantha Tonge. A must-read this summer!

Rating: 3/5

I actually have nothing against women covering for the fact that they’re single and inventing boyfriends only to “keep a face” for their friends, and I thought that “Breakfast Under a Cornish Sky” could be THIS book. Especially as it is set in Cornwall, which lately seems to be THE place to go – I mean, to set a story. And also, there is something that Ms Tonge has already proven she’s brilliant at – and namely, there is food, glorious food! The descriptions of all those delicious goodies were mouth – watering, and you had a great range to choose from, starting with English breakfast and ending with brilliant doughnuts made by Izzy (I might feel inspired. I might. Daughter is actually on the doughnuts – phase, I can bake them every second day. May “borrow” some of Izzy’s ideas, thank you very much.)

The story lacked a little in the originality and the plotline didn’t surprise me – mostly I could predict all the things that happened but the book had its moments as well. I loved Kate’s imagination and spontaneity, her creativity and never – ending ideas how to better up the White Rocks Resort in Cornwall. I was also incredibly intrigued how the search for the perfect Poldark is going to end and what’s going to happen in between, and the few dates made me laugh out loud, and also Kate’s idea of finding herself a man at the harbour was hilarious… However, as it turned out, the search for the perfect man didn’t overtake the whole plot, it was actually somehow upstaged by Kate and Izzy taking on the renovations but it doesn’t mean that it’s wrong. It made the book a little different, in a good way.

I don’t want to sound harsh but I just can’t wait for Ms Tonge to write something that is exceptional and original because to me it seems that there are books about food, they are very popular and Samantha Tonge writes a book with food; then we have books set in Greece, they are very popular and Ms Tonge writes a book set in Greece; now it seems that books set in Cornwall seem to be trending and so we have a book set in Cornwall! Please, don’t be annoyed with me, lovely Samantha, I just know that you can much, much better, that there is THIS story in you waiting to be written and I can’t wait for it! Nevertheless, I think that with every book Samantha Tonge’s writing is maturing and developing without losing her lovely sense of humour – I’d even say that this sense of humour is getting better and better, as I still can remember that after reading my first book by this author I thought, oh heck, a little too far – fetched and the author tried really too much. This time the humour and storyline flow seamlessly and effortlessly and “Breakfast Under a Cornish Sky” is a light – hearted, not too demanding read.

And I personally think that those were the characters that saved the story. When we forget about rather impossible to accomplish mission that Kate’s takes on herself – basically single – handedly saving of the resort (I mean, a person comes for holidays, finds the place is in troubles and immediately starts to pitch her ideas how to save it, and yes, the ideas are great and I loved them, but let’s face it, would it really go so smooth in reality? And so quickly? Or am I a malcontent? But on the other hand, even though not too realistic, I still liked it and I think that the girls, Kate and Izzy, were so unselfish to forget about their own holidays to help Kensa Maddock and Tremain to save White Rocks.) – Samantha Tonge had created lovely, larger – than – life characters with great personalities, characters that were not perfect, that had flaws but this only made them much more realistic. Kate annoyed me slightly as she hasn’t seen the obvious things, things that I’ve noticed years before she even started to contemplate them possible, and then it developed and progressed so, so quickly. Too quickly for my liking, in comparison to the whole story. But other than that she was a lovely character, a person that always put other people’s happiness first but not in this victimy – way – it came to her very natural, and I really loved it in her. She never gave up, neither on things nor people and methinks we need such people in our lives – especially if you are Tremain!

As usual in Ms Tonge’s books we have a romantic element in this story as well, however, the plot mostly concentrates on the problems faced by the resort and the girls’ frantic attempts of helping it. Nevertheless, the love triangle is there, we have the good one and the bad one, though I must admit that the “good one” made me mostly feel annoyed and desperate. Sure, I know where he was coming from, and I felt for him, really I did, but he just behaved like a spoiled child mostly, inculpating everything and everyone around him.

“Breakfast Under a Cornish Sky” is another light read by Samantha Tonge and I am sure it is going to find its faithful fans, but personally I preferred “Game of Scones” and “My Big Fat Christmas Wedding” better – they just felt somehow much more honest – but I am not saying that the newest release is not good! It is a perfect novel for the summer, to read on your holidays, as it is uplifting, cheery and optimistic and there are characters to die for.

A Summer of Secrets by Alice Ross

A Summer of Secrets

by Alice Ross

 

Publisher: Carina

Publishing Date: 9th May 2016

Source:  Copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley,  thank you!

Series: Countryside Dreams #2

Number of pages: 238

Genre: Women’s Literature, Contemporary

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

 Synopsis:

A perfect, feel-good summer read about love, life and family.
One long hot summer. Secrets never stay buried for long…

Portia is determined to restore Buttersley Manor, her family’s crumbling ancestral home, to its former glory. Yet she has a feeling that there are a few forgotten skeletons in the dust-covered cupboards.

Jenny has put her life on hold for far too long. It’s time to finally start living and to dig up those hopes and dreams she’s kept hidden all these years – but is she brave enough?

Rich is happily married with a beautiful wife and lovely daughter. In fact, his world is perfect until a very unexpected consequence of his past walks through the door…

Joe would like nothing more than to travel back in time to when he and Gina were happy. But is it too late to rescue what they once had?

One thing’s for sure, nothing’s ever quite what it seems when it comes to life in the country!

Rating: 4/5

 

„A Summer of Secrets” is the second book in the Countryside Dreams series by Alice Ross and as I haven’t read the first book I was a little afraid that I may miss something. However, it can be absolutely read as a stand – alone novel and I also had a feeling that the book introduces totally new characters to us, so no problems here, guys.

The story introduces us to four different characters and this is my problem here. You know how much I like when something links the characters to each other, when their stories somehow intertwine, and here it only looked as if the place they were living in, small town of Buttersley, is the only thing that links them. Otherwise they didn’t have anything in common and I am not sure if they all even knew each other. Organizing stories this way is often really confusing for me because I am always looking forward to something happening to all of the characters, to something they have in common, and usually I end the book surprised that it ended already and what now?
So we have Portia here, who’s back to the town, having inherited her parents’ home, but she’s not sure what to do with the estate. she’s given up a job as a war correspondent and her dream now is to keep the house and make something special there. Rick, a successful entrepreneur with a lovely family consisting of clever, beautiful wife and young daughter, but suddenly his life is being turned upside down – is his marriage going to survive this shock? Jenny, already over 50, but still living with her dominating mother and letting her to organize her life. But suddenly Jenny starts to discover that there is much more to life than being under her mother’s thumb. Joe, still coming to terms with the fact that his girlfriend has broken up with him and left him, taking their baby son, but now suddenly Gina is back… For good? Or for worse?
So you see. Four people, four different stories, nothing linking them to each other. Nevertheless, I really liked the characters – they were full of life and the way they acted and reacted was realistic and seemed genuine. I can’t say that I had my favourite character, to be honest, they were all really well developed and their stories were told in a great, very accessible way, though I think that it was Jenny that stole my heart. At first I was surprised when I’ve learnt that she’s over 50 already, but when I got to know her story I really, truly fell for her, and the more I was reading about her, the more I liked her and kept my fingers crossed for her. Even though she’s been living under her mother’s thumb, she was a clever, funny woman with just the right dose of sarcasm and distance to herself and I loved the scenes with her and her rescue dog – they were absolutely great! But really, all the other characters were also brilliant, and I think it was impossible not to like them – they were fair and down – to – earth, just like I like my characters to be. Also the twists and turns that they were meeting as the story progressed were unexpected and while some of them were for my liking too far – fetched, mostly the reader could relate to them. Alice Ross has managed to write them in a way that made me feel as if I know all of them and am part of the Buttersley community.

The story is full of really funny moments but it also touches upon some serious situations and I loved how well the author has balanced them in this story. The things that happened to the characters could happen to all of us and I liked how they carried off with all the problems and ups and downs.

„A Summer of Secrets” is not a book that is going to stay with you forever but nevertheless, I enjoyed the story while reading it. It is fast – paced, have some surprises on the way and mostly the characters are really well developed, even those that are only the background to our main ones. The switching between the characters was very well done and I immediately knew who is who and who belongs to who. It is really a brilliant summer read, full of love, hope and also happily ever after – and who doesn’t like their HEA, right?

 

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Alice Ross used to work in the financial services industry where she wrote riveting, enthralling brochures about pensions and ISAs that everyone read avidly and no one ever put straight into the bin.

One day, when nobody was looking, she managed to escape. Dragging her personal chef (aka her husband) along with her, she headed to Spain, where she began writing witty, sexy, romps designed to amuse slightly more than pension brochures.

Missing Blighty (including the weather – but don’t tell anyone), she returned five years later and now works part-time in the tourism industry.

When not writing, she can be found scratching out a tune on her violin, walking her dog in wellies two sizes too big (don’t ask!), or standing on her head in a yoga pose.

Links: Website | Twitter

Don’t You Forget About Me by Liz Tipping

Don’t You Forget About Me

by Liz Tipping

 

Publisher: Carina

Publishing Date: 6th June 2016

Source:  Copy provided by the publisher via NetGalley, thank you!.

Number of pages:

Genre: Contemporary, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle

 

 Synopsis:

An athlete, a princess, a brain, a criminal, a basket case…

Cara Dunham is definitely one of them. But stuck in her small hometown, with no prospects of escape, she’s struggling to find her thing. Her life is more book club than Breakfast Club and there is no Judd Nelson in sight!

So when Cara is invited to a school reunion she knows this is her chance to channel her inner Molly Ringwald and grab her John Hughes moment, once and for all. Because her teenage love, Daniel Rose will be there, the coolest boy at school and the one that got away.

But transforming into an 80′s icon isn’t easy and Cara enlists the help of her oldest friend, Stubbs, to teach her all she needs to know about being cool and quirky – a la Ringwald.

Except Stubbs thinks she’s perfect, just as she is and takes it upon himself to show Cara that her life might not be ‘movie perfect’, but there is always another take to get things right. And maybe the hero she’s dreamed of has been under her nose the whole time…

From the author of the hilarious Five Go Glamping comes your perfect summer read.

 Rating: 3/5

 

I loved Liz Tipping’s debut novel, „Five Go Glamping” – it was full of humour, brilliant read with brilliantly drawn characters, a read that kept me entertained and that I couldn’t stop to talk about. Keeping this in mind, I was more than excited when I’ve heard news that Liz’s new novel „Don’t You Forget About Me” is about to be released soon, and I kept stalking NetGalley in anticipation of this story.

Full of expectations I started reading it. However, very soon I started to ask myself, what happened? What happened? Where is the Liz that I got to know and love when reading her first novel? I more than once wanted to put this book down, frustrated, as it just didn’t deliver for me. I had a feeling that the first 70% is about the main character repeating that she wants to be invisible, that she doesn’t want other people to spot her, and the last 30% was about Cara and Stubbs going around themselves in circles and wondering will they/won’t they, even though it was obvious that, finally, they will. However, in these last 30% the pace in the book picked up a little, it was more light – hearted and this is why the story got from three, and not two, stars. I really had a feeling that first we are reading over and over again about Cara and her dilemmas about people not liking her, it was just too repetitive, and then suddenly it changed tracks and we got a love story.

I also had some problems to engage with Cara, our main character. You can be shy, you may not want to stand out from the crowd, but Cara took it another level already and it annoyed me a little. She also lived in the past, believing that everybody perceive her as she was then, a „bag lady”, because she dressed in second – hand clothes and believed that nobody liked her. She found happiness in watching films and „The Breakfast Club” was probably her favourite one, and she was a great fan of Molly Ringwald – she even won an e-bay auction for Molly’s cardigan! She didn’t know who she really is and in the lead up to a high school reunion she wanted to try and see if she’s an athlete, a criminal, a brain, a basket case or a princess, and I couldn’t stop thinking, why Cara? Why not to be yourself? I get what the author wanted to achieve with Cara, but in the end she’s made her too down, too unsure and the story being so repetitive was just annoying. I wanted to love the story, I truly wanted it, but I couldn’t.

But one thing stayed the same – Liz’s writing style is light – hearted and easy to follow and she has a great talent to tell stories, and it simply appeals to me. Even though „Don’t You Forget About Me” is a tad predictable story, there were some unexpected moments as well. However, I loved Liz Tipping’s debut novel much, much more and I really hope that her next release will take us back closer to „Five Go Glamping”.