A Christmas Gift by Sue Moorcroft / Blog Tour

A Christmas Gift by Sue Moorcroft

 

 

41562375Publisher: Avon

Publishing Date: 1st November 2018

Source:  Received from the publisher, thank you!

Number of pages: 484

Genre: General Fiction (Adult), Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book:  Kindle | Hardcover

 

 

 

Synopsis:

‘I love all of Sue Moorcroft’s books!’
Katie Fforde

A sumptuous, festive read from the #1 bestseller, Sue Moorcroft.

Georgine loves Christmas. The festive season always brings the little village of Middledip to life. But since her ex-boyfriend walked out, leaving her with crippling debts, Georgine’s struggled to make ends meet.

To keep her mind off her worries, she throws herself into organising the Christmas show at the local school. And when handsome Joe Blackthorn becomes her assistant, Georgine’s grateful for the help. But there’s something about Joe she can’t quite put her finger on. Could there be more to him than meets the eye?

Georgine’s past is going to catch up with her in ways she never expected. But can the help of friends new and old make this a Christmas to remember after all?

Curl up with the gorgeous new book from the Sunday Times bestseller, perfect for fans of Carole Matthews and Trisha Ashley.

My Review

Georgine France’s life used to be a bed of roses, until her family fell from grace when her father has lost his construction firm, her mother left and she had to leave university and find a job. And recently, her ex – boyfriend has left her, leaving debts and bailiffs for her to deal with. She works as an event director at Middledip’s performing arts college Acting Instrumental and she loves her job, so she completely immerses herself into the organization of this event, trying to forget about her financial problems. Joe Blackthorn has just returned to the village to be Georgine’s new assistant. Nobody knows that he was someone else in the past, the child of two alcoholics, living in the wrong part of the village, often hungry and dirty. Also nobody knows that he’s a drummer of one of the most successful British bands, now back home to lick his wounds after a falling out with the band. He never supposed to meet Georgine in Acting Instumental – his old crush that he hurt when they were teenagers. Is he going to make her life even more complicated?

The characters were easy to like and they really felt so close to life and I liked how challenging their lives were and how deep the problems were. Both Georgine and Joe had unhappy pasts and they really knew some struggles, both in mental and financial aspect. I really connected with them and I fell for them, and their problems hit me truly hard. They were both so brilliantly passionate about things they loved.

There came a moment when the story started to be more of Joe than of Georgine, though I didn’t have any problem with this. I liked Joe and I’m sure I’d feel comfortable in his presence, just like Georgine did. Jeez, I must pay so much attention when writing this name, to spell it right, it’s really annoying. The name itself too. It happens sometimes, that I don’t like the main character’s name, and it was the case here but no worries, it didn’t affect my feelings towards her. Maybe I’ll just call her G. I appreciate the fact that the author touched upon some more serious issues but sometimes the way she wrote about them felt too patronizing, there was too much stressing on them and it made them feel not too natural. And it was also somehow not too real that so many of the characters suddenly had the same kind of problem with money. But hats off to Sue Moorcroft for touching upon such things as poverty and bailiffs at all, it isn’t a common theme in women’s fiction.
To be absolutely honest, the descriptions of the show and preparations were not my cup of tea and I’ve voluntarily skipped most of them – in my opinion, even if they were a part of G’s life, they were not so significant nor too important for the plot. I simply wanted more of Joe and G’s stories, they were much more interesting and had so many layers.

“A Christmas Gift”, although not too Christmassy, it succeeded in putting me in the festive mood. It was a warm, uplifting story about second chances, friendship, families, some harsh truths and living in poverty, but also about neglect and abuse. This is a book that has it all: bouncy, full of life characters, some romance, tons of troubles, humour and sadness. Sue Moorcroft’s writing style is so lovely and full of passion and compassion and she handles each of her topics with the same attention. There is depth to this story so please don’t expect only a fluffy Christmas romance, because there is much more to it, and I’m sure you’re going to enjoy this fact as much as I did.

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The Little Village Christmas by Sue Moorcroft

The Little Village Christmas by Sue Moorcroft

 

36368810Publisher: Avon

Publishing Date: 2nd November 2017

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

Number of pages: 368

Genre:  Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Alexia Kennedy – interior decorator extraordinaire – has been tasked with giving the little village of Middledip the community café it’s always dreamed of.

After months of fundraising, the villagers can’t wait to see work get started – but disaster strikes when every last penny is stolen. With Middledip up in arms at how this could have happened, Alexia feels ready to admit defeat.

But help comes in an unlikely form when woodsman, Ben Hardaker and his rescue owl Barney, arrive on the scene. Another lost soul who’s hit rock bottom, Ben and Alexia make an unlikely partnership.

However, they soon realise that a little sprinkling of Christmas magic might just help to bring this village – and their lives – together again…

Settle down with a mince pie and a glass of mulled wine as you devour this irresistibly festive Christmas tale. The perfect read for fans of Carole Matthews and Trisha Ashley.

Rating: four-stars

 

I am always looking forward to a new Sue Moorcroft book and I adore her Christmas offerings. Maybe “The Little Village Christmas”, the newest release, is not strictly a very Christmassy story but there is enough spirit to make it feel very festive and it was a joy to read.

The characters are really well drawn, both Alexia and Ben, as well as the background characters, feel like real people. However, I had some problems to warm to them and to somehow take them seriously – no idea why! It annoyed me a little that Ben seemed all the time to be so grumpy and while I could see his reasons I also wanted to shake him and tell him that his situation is not the other people’s fault. While Alexia was a really lovely girl she also seemed too forthright to me, I had a feeling she’s going through life elbowing her way. And for me one of the weakest characters in this story was Alexia’s friend, Jodie, who shouldn’t – no matter what the circumstances – just pack up her bags, literally and proverbially, and then expect her friend to run after her. What I did really like in the characters was the fact that they made mistakes and wrong decisions, got themselves into troubles but they were there for each other, they supported each other when the need arises.

Sue Moorcroft has brought the place to life through her lovely descriptions, of both the interior design and food – especially the design parts were brilliant, different to everything I normally read. The story also offers us a return to Middledip, a place that the readers may already recognize from Ms Moorcroft’s previous books – but it introduces us to a totally fresh characters.
Of course the story touches upon some serious issues that made the characters’ lives so much more difficult, but there wouldn’t be this story without them, right. There are many surprises on their ways, full of questions and I enjoyed seeing how all the puzzle elements fell into places.

Altogether, “The Little Village Christmas” was an uplifting and heart – warming story about never giving up, about trust, full of community spirit and friendship, a great read for the lead – up to Christmas. There is enough romance but also enough reality to not make it too sugary but down to earth and realistic.

Just for the Holidays by Sue Moorcroft / Blog Tour

Hi guys! I am so thrilled as today it is my stop on Sue Moorcroft’s blog tour – she has just gone and written the ultimate summer book! “Just for the Holidays” has this all what I am looking for in a novel, it is funny and poignant, full of emotions and hilarious moments. If you haven’t had a chance to read this book yet – please do it immediately, you won’t regret it!

Just for the Holidays by Sue Moorcroft

34862126Publisher: Avon

Publishing Date: 18th May 2017

Source:  Received from the publisher in return for an honest review!

Number of pages: 400

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

Synopsis:

The #1 bestselling author returns for summer! Grab your sun hat, a cool glass of wine, and the only book you need on holiday…

In theory, nothing could be better than a summer spent basking in the French sun. That is, until you add in three teenagers, two love interests, one divorcing couple, and a very unexpected pregnancy.

Admittedly, this isn’t exactly the relaxing holiday Leah Beaumont was hoping for – but it’s the one she’s got. With her sister Michele’s family falling apart at the seams, it’s up to Leah to pick up the pieces and try to hold them all together.

But with a handsome helicopter pilot staying next door, Leah can’t help but think she might have a few distractions of her own to deal with…

A glorious summer read, for you to devour in one sitting – perfect for fans of Katie Fforde, Carole Matthews and Trisha Ashley.

Rating: five-stars

I’ve only read a few of Sue Moorcroft’s books but all of them were absolutely gorgeous stories, and “Just for the Holidays” was incredibly feel – good, brilliantly balanced novel about family dynamics and dramas but written in a very good – humoured way. It actually had it all: wonderful setting, a normal family with issues and problems, great characters, some delicious food and was full of twists and turns.

The two of the main characters have probably one of the coolest jobs in the world – chocolatier – YUMMY! I mean, how great must it be to land such a job ( I am a chocoholic. I can’t live a single day without a piece of chocolate. Or two. Or much, much more. I was salivating at the descriptions of the lovely things Leah was producing with the children, all of them including chocolate), and helicopter pilot. Mmmm. And if we are with the characters – I immediately warmed to all of them, with all their problems and dramas. They were so well written, even the children, especially Natasha with her never – ending questions asked without a break, with their realistic banter and calling themselves names. Our main character Leah not only tastes chocolate for a living but she loves her Porsche and Formula 1. I loved how she went into her role of Deputy Mum, she was terrified but she never lost her coolness and she did really great. I totally fell for her, to be honest. The switch from “Cool Auntie” to “Deputy Mum” was a shock for her – a confirmed singleton, loving her independence, it was surely not what she has expected from the holidays. But she has done so well, and with the help of her cooking skills and being compassionate she has saved the day more than once. She was strong and independent and she knew what she wanted from life.

Ronan spends his holidays in a house next to the gîte, together with his teenage son Curtis. He’s recuperating after an accident at work involving helicopter and emergency landing (and guys. Sue Moorcroft has really overdone herself in the name of research – namely at the end of the story she describes the real helicopter flight in which she went for a pretended crash – how cool is that, no?) Ronan was great, not only sexy as hell but also funny and clever and had tons of problems, and the way he dealt with them was brilliant. He was rather gorgeous, guys. Really, the characters were loveable at the first sight or unlikeable at the first sight, but all of them were believable. Sue Moorcroft has also portrayed all the teenagers in this book so very convincingly – their antics will make you wince at its familiarity. The family dynamic are brilliantly written and the story flies effortlessly from situation to situation. And there are quite a few situations in this novel, mostly unfortunate ones, that turn the dreamed – of  holidays in a beautiful place to holiday from hell – especially for Leah, but actually also for all involved.

My only problem was that somewhere around the middle the book went a little downhill for me. It slowed significantly down and started to drag on, even though there was still a lot happening! Not sure how it’s possible but it was like this. I had a feeling that we start to go in circles and even though it was entertaining and I kept my fingers crossed for Leah and Ronan to find a little alone time, I couldn’t help but sigh impatiently at the next interruption. But other than that the story was brilliant. Sue Moorcroft perfectly well knows when to drop the next bombshell and really, some of the surprise appearances were so, so unexpected – I more than once held my breath thinking oh no! Not this! Poor Leah.

“Just for the Holidays” was a lovely, full of feelings and understanding story about broken relationship and how they may affect all people involved, especially children – but don’t expect it to be a drama that is going to make you cry! If so, then with laughter. It is written in such a playful, humorous way and the author perfectly well knows how to break the tension with a joke or two. It is about love, forgiveness and friendship, about facing the consequences and being open to changes. There were so many emotions running through this story, from all of the characters. And even though it is humorous, it is not as fluffy as you could think. There is really a lot of depth to it, it makes you wonder and question, it has moments when it is truly thought – provoking and I just loved this mix. It touches upon many issues, such as late pregnancy, infidelity, exploiting and manipulating the others. It sounds serious, I know, but believe me, the author brilliantly lightened the story with her humour and with adding great romance. A perfect summer read, you should make sure that you have it with you, and not only just for the holidays! Highly recommended!

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The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft / Blog Tour

Hi guys, hope you all are having a great Friday! If not so great, that I can assure you it could be much, much better if you’d only get your hands on a copy of Sue Moorcroft’s new release, “The Christmas Promise” – this book is gorgeous, and you can read belowe in my very gushing review, why. Am really, really thrilles to be a part of Sue’s blog tour and to share my review of this wonderful read with you.

The Christmas Promise by Sue Moorcroft

 

32227415Publisher: Avon

Publishing Date: 6th October 2016 (ebook) / 1st December 2016 (paperback)

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

Number of pages: 368

Genre: General Fiction (Adult), Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

Synopsis:

For Ava Bliss, it’s going to be a Christmas to remember …

On a snowy December evening, Sam Jermyn steps into the life of bespoke hat maker Ava. Sparks fly, and not necessarily the good ones.

Times are tough for Ava – she’s struggling to make ends meet, her ex-boyfriend is a bully, and worst of all, it’s nearly Christmas.

So when Sam commissions Ava to make a hat for someone special, she makes a promise that will change her life. She just doesn’t know it yet…

Curl up with this gorgeous, festive read – the perfect treat for fans of Katie Fforde, Carole Matthews and Trisha Ashley.

Rating: 5/5

I am telling it in secret, guys, “My Christmas promise” is only my second Sue Moorcroft’s book! I myself can’t believe it, too, especially when looking at her impressive backlist of novels. The other one that I’ve read is “Is This Love?” and I totally, like totally, adored it, and starting reading Sue’s newest release I somehow had a feeling that it is a very special book and that I am for sure going to enjoy it. And? Did I?

Oh hell. I did! And how much!

This book took me totally by surprise with it perfectly mixing so many important issues in a very easy, not at all patronising way – it just somehow worked in this story, even if it had Christmas in the title. It doesn’t concentrate on Christmas trees, all that glitz and glitter that we usually associate with this time of the year (not that it’s wrong or something, oh heck, of course not, it belongs to Christmas!!!) – there is much more depth to the story and there were moments that it really surprised me with how heavy were the issues Sue Moorcroft is writing about. But it doesn’t mean that the book is also heavy in reception – absolutely not, the author has managed not only to surprise us with the twists and turns, but also with the humour and how real and down – to – earth it sounded.

Ava’s story was heart – breaking. She was this kind of character that you immediately fall for and I really couldn’t watch how she struggles – she just didn’t deserve it. There is this massive problem with her ex – boyfriend, than she’s trying to make a go of her hat business (guys. I’ve no idea that making hats is such a complicated thing. Sue Moorcroft has really done her research on this subject and right now, after reading the book, I think you can ask me any question about being a milliner. ANY. Though I must admit that those detailed description were dragging on a little – but it may be my problem, as to be totally honest, I was never into making hats, but oh my, nobody’s perfect 🙂 ), and then there are those romantic problems – her best friend has a crush on a guy who has a crush on Ava, and there is also the background story about this guy and his mother. Wow, right?

I enjoyed the writing style, it was great and easy to follow, there were only too many moments for my liking that slowed the book down a little and I had a feeling that they pull me away from the main story, and with so many subplots in the book, with the story following so many leads, I think we should really concentrate on this what’s important and significant. but this is my only “but” and I promise that in the end it turned out to be really a very insignificant problem of mine.

Those heavy issues that run in the book were important, and were written about with a lot of heart and feeling, and they were really brilliantly researched. I especially appreciated the subplot of Ava’s boyfriend, as it is something new, I haven’t read about it before in fiction, or if I did, it was not as explored as here. I think Sue Moorcroft has given hope here, with her words and her research, though she’s also made it clear that it’s not so easy to get right. So because of those issues, if you were expecting a very Christmassy book, please do not be surprised, as this story is much more than that.

The characters are very well drawn, full of depth and personalities, and sometimes those were only small details that made them so realistic and so true to life, with all their problems and small joys, and I really felt involved in their lives, especially Ava’s – I just couldn’t help but care for her and want only the best for her, then I wanted to behead Harvey and then I was taken by surprise by the events development. We have also a whole range of different relationships in this story, between mother and son, between friends, between work colleagues, mother and daughter etc, and they are all true to life, with all their ups and downs, with their misunderstandings and unconditional love, and I think that we all can relate to them, which made the reading only this bit interesting.

“The Christmas Promise” tugs at the right heart – strings but it also makes you smile and it is a perfect blend, no idea how Sue Moorcroft has done it, really, and it doesn’t happen often that a story evokes so many emotions and in such a beautiful way shows that there is always hope – not in a wishy – washy way or something, oh no, but in a realistic, true to life way, and thanks to the strong characters makes it all even realistic. Hats off (PUN INTENDED) to Sue Moorcroft! This is also a book that makes you think about things that you’ve just read about, about those pretty heavy issues that Sue Moorcroft with such gentleness, but also honesty, writes about. She shows how easy it can be to fall in a trap and then how difficult it is to deal with the situation, to get away from this all. It is a story about friendship, love, hope, betrayal of the worse kind and forgiveness and help. I finished reading it with a smile and feeling warm and fuzzy inside. A great emotional rollercoaster of a read, “The Christmas Promise” is about changes and I think that everyone is going to find something to love in this story – highly recommended!

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