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The Grownup
The Grownup
by Gillian Flynn
Edition: Paperback
Price: £1.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A quick read, 22 Nov. 2015
This review is from: The Grownup (Paperback)
This is a short story by Gillian Flynn, as soon as I heard she was releasing this I knew I had to get a copy. I was surprised to discover it is a short story though at around 64 pages. This allowed me to read it in one sitting.

This story has left me thinking what the hell? It seemed to be all over so quickly and I needed time to digest what I had read. This story begins with a female narrator, we don't know who she is or what her name is, however after a few pages we discover who she is, a fake psychic by day and previous lady of the night. She is beginning to get to grips with her knew role when she meets Susan. Susan comes to her for help, she believes her Victorian house that she lives in is haunted and wants her to come and try to put it right. The woman agrees to help her even though she doesn't believe in all the strange things going on in the house. On entering she feels something is not right in the house and vows to Susan to help her.

The story although so short packs a lot in, I felt it was part horror part thriller and would have been perfect if I had read this in October. The lead character I didn't like that much and my feelings about Susan also changed throughout the story. My only negative is that I didn't feel like the characters were as developed as they could have been and at parts in the story it felt a little rushed. I think this would have been the good beginning of a full length novel.

The Marble Collector
The Marble Collector
by Cecelia Ahern
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £6.50

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Different from other Ahern novels, 8 Nov. 2015
This review is from: The Marble Collector (Hardcover)
I have been a fan of Ahern's writing ever since I discovered 'P.S I love you', so whenever I see a new novel by her I make sure I pick up a copy.

This book I felt was very different from her other books, it is told by two people, Fergus and Sabrina. To begin with you don't really know the connection between the two characters but it doesn't take too long to work it out. Right from the beginning I got the feeling that Fergus was from the past, this was confirmed the further I got into the novel, however this shifts in the novel as there are times that Fergus is in the present and we follow his life today. Sabrina is Fergus's daughter, which we find out early on in the book. Unfortunately Fergus recently had a stroke and is now living in a home. Sabrina makes sure she regularly visits him, one day she receives a call from the home about a package that has been delivered for her father. Sabrina is amazed to discover these are marbles, and on closer inspection some are missing.

This story is about discovery, not only of the marbles but of who the family are and the secrets they keep. Throughout the novel some secrets are revealed to the reader and we can build up a picture of the characters and their stories. I enjoyed reading both character's stories and although I could not find a connection to them, thought it was well written and covers a unique story line. There are many characters that the reader comes into contact in this book and I feel they have all been written well. Some of the characters I would have liked to know a little more about, however we begin to learn more about these characters through the point of view of Fergus and Sabrina.

This story brings up questions about how well do we really know someone, even our family. We only know what they want to tell us. To discover secrets it then can have a devastating effect on those who love us, who may feel like their life has been a lie. This really come out of Ahern's book for me and I thought the emotions Sabrina felt were realistic.

I have read many of Ahern's books and unfortunately this is not one of my favourites, however I think if you enjoy a historical element in stories, you will like this. To me it just didn't have the magical charm I have grown to love with Ahern's novels.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

West End Girls
West End Girls
by Jenny Colgan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £8.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Entertaining, 6 Nov. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: West End Girls (Paperback)
I was looking for an audio book to keep me entertained on the way to work in the mornings and evenings. This I thought was perfect as full running time is around 3 hours. I thought that this would last me about a week, which it did.

Morwenna Banks, the narrator really brings the story to life, she gets into character very well and managed to keep think up throughout the novel.

Penny and Lizzie are twins and have lived in a council house for most of their lives. Suddenly their luck changes and they move to a large flat in Chelsea, which belongs to their grandmother. They have not seen her for years and she now lives in an old peoples home.

Although Penny and Lizzie are twins, they are very different. Lizzie is happy to have the quieter life, getting a job in a sandwich shop and working for George. From the moment I met George I knew he was going to be a great character and I loved reading about his and Lizzie's story.

Penny in contrast seems loud, pretends to be someone she's not and is always wanting to party. Penny soon finds out living in Chelsea and trying to be famous is not all that it is cracked up to be.

I did enjoy listening to this book, however it was not very taxing. I could and did guess the ending but this didn't bother me as I was only looking to be entertained. As others have said, this is not the best Colgan book and her latest ones are certainly much better. However if you are looking for light relief then this is for you. Just don't expect to get a deep and meaningful story line as you won't.

Love You Better
Love You Better
by Natalie K Martin
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.99

3.0 out of 5 stars O.K, 4 Nov. 2015
This review is from: Love You Better (Paperback)
After recently breaking up from a relationship with Smith, Effie Abbot meets the man of her dreams, he's everything Smith isn't and after a whirlwind romance she walks down the aisle a month later to marry Oliver Barton-Cole a successful and wealthy barrister.

It's not too long into her married life that the cracks begin to show and Effie starts to realise Oliver may not be as perfect as she first thought. To complicate matters Smith has turned up again in her life and she's not entirely sure how she feels about him.

As life with Oliver and his mood swings and temper intensify so does Effie's feelings for Smith and when she becomes a victim of domestic abuse things start to spiral out of control.

It was enjoyable in parts but glaringly predictable right from the outset really so there were no real surprises and I felt it could have been shorter. Nothing really to set this apart from other chick-lit/domestic abuse novels and not really memorable enough once read to warrant more than 3 stars - sorry it didn't do it for me.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

The Gilded Life Of Matilda Duplaine
The Gilded Life Of Matilda Duplaine
by Alex Brunkhorst
Edition: Paperback
Price: £7.99

4.0 out of 5 stars Well deserved 4*, 29 Oct. 2015
I enjoyed this book more than I first thought I would. Initially it was a bit difficult to get into but once it got going it was an easy read. Although set in the modern day it had all the feel of the glitzy romantic Hollywood era. I loved the main character Thomas Cleary who goes to LA to restart his flagging career as a reporter on the New York Times. He is sent on a story to get some quotes and information for an obituary of famous film producer and meets his daughter Lily who owns an antiques shop. Lily immediately seems to connect with Thomas and she takes him under her wing. Through Lily Thomas experiences the wonderful world of Hollywood and meets some of it's legends when she invites him to a dinner to interview some of her fathers' friends. Being invited into this 'inner circle' of legends he is closer than any other reporter has been able to get and his career starts to take off.

Lily invites him to other social gatherings and he is invited to a special party one evening that he never manages to get to. He goes to the address he believes the party is being held in the Bel-Air home of David Duplaine a famous producer and meets Matilda his 19 year old daughter who he instantly falls in love with. Matilda he learns is very different to other girls and he discovers that she has never left the Bel-Air estate. They meet often in secret always at the estate but the inevitable happens and when David Duplaine discovers the meetings Thomas is banned from the estate and told never to return. In desperation Thomas persuades Matilda to run away with him and after confessing everything to Lily she helps them to go to Hawaii for a month in a house that her father owned.

Matilda is like a child experiencing everything for the first time, initially she clings to Thomas who has freed her from captivity but then she begins to want to fly the nest and does not want or need Thomas anymore. He has almost taken on the role of a parent to her child and like a child she needs to grow and experience things for herself. Thomas is hurt that she does not want to include him in her new friendships and while he spends a lot of his time alone in Lilys' fathers house he starts to piece together who Matilda is and eventually he discovers why she has been hidden away. He writes it all down, mainly to help him with the puzzle never intending to publish or tell anyone what he has found out. When they return to LA they are not the same people they were when they left a month before and their love affair has burnt out.

It is a lovely written book, very nice to have it narrated from the mans' perspective. It has all the nostalgic glamour of the Hollywood movie stars, the intrigue and pace of a good mystery and good descriptive passages that help transport you from the shores of Hawaii to the affluence of Bel-Air. I loved Lily and couldn't help but feel that she manipulated Thomas with the intention of freeing Matilda from her 'prison'because in many ways she had spent her life in a 'prison' herself and she didn't want Matilda to have suffered as she had.

It didn't have the 'happy ever after' ending that one might expect it to have had but it didn't disappoint either - I would give this a well deserved 4 stars for an enjoyable debut novel.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

Star Wars: Aftermath: Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens
Star Wars: Aftermath: Journey to Star Wars: The Force Awakens
by Chuck Wendig
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £13.59

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars I had a bad feeling about this., 29 Oct. 2015
Star Wars Aftermath – I had a bad feeling about this.
Having read a wide range of extended universe novels, from Anderson to Zahn, I was excited to have the opportunity to read the first, post-Jedi canon effort from Wendig. Expectations were high; surely, this would be an opportunity to reminisce and give us a sneak preview of what the future holds?
Alas, no.
As though translated from Rodian, the narrative trips and tumbles clumsily through the plot in the present tense and leaps from character to character faster than the Millennium Falcon did the Kessel Run. Recently, I saw the whole Star Wars saga written in the style of a Facebook status and, yes, it is not to that extreme but a dinosaur such as myself does prefer a story in the past tense, especially a story set a long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…
A consequence of this meant that I found it impossible to relate to any of the new protagonists. Frustratingly, however, they certainly do have potential: Sinjir has the possibility to excite; and Jas (at least to begin with) sparks intrigue; Admiral Sloane probably comes out of this tale most favourably but I still feel like I don’t know her true character – a shame after 379 pages of trying. The less said about “Mr Bones” the better…seriously, was this drawn out of a hat of Kindergarten ideas or is the author merely hinting at a Star Trek cross-over?
Looking back at previous books I found difficult to follow (The Bounty Hunter Wars, for example), I could at least relate to the major characters from the films. In Aftermath, however, I found even these stalwarts loathsome: Akbar is grouchy; Mon Mothma preachy; Wedge is nondescript. Why waste such opportunities to grab the Bantha by the horns and excite the reader?
And it’s not just the characters.
Little subplots raise their heads above the Tatooine dunes but scuttle off to avoid any imperial excitement - I wanted more from the potential rebellion on Coruscant; the seedy deals on our favourite desert planet; and the throwbacks to Vader and the Sith. But like Sy Snootles, Wendig just teases us and leads us up the garden path like a Jawa trader.
When reading a Star Wars book I crave information and back story; the detail is vital. I feel like I haven’t even found the tip of the Hoth iceberg with much of the plot.
But this isn’t the only hope. There is another.
When I first watched Episode I, I felt let down and disappointed. Looking back at it now, I do have an appreciation that it had the difficult job of setting up the whole new trilogy – it may even be my favourite of the second three. I so desperately wanted Aftermath to answer all of my questions that perhaps I built it up too much in my own mind prior to reading it. Maybe, in a few years, I’ll look back at this book and give it another go and it will all make sense but, for now, I feel somewhat flat and cynical about the future of canon Star Wars literature.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending this in exchange for an honest review.

Offered by Sales Direct Online
Price: £9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent worked well with one use!, 28 Oct. 2015
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
Excellent product, I had just moved home and where I had moved to I noticed there were lots of moths flying about. I decided to purchase this, hoping it would help the problem I had.

With only one application to the carpets I have seen no other moths.I did use the product a lot and probably used more than was necessary, however I wanted to make sure I killed all traces of the moths.

This also came with moth traps, to be honest I have not had to use these and hopefully I won't have too, however these are a nice little extra.

A word of warning - I think the product is very strong and chemicals are used in it. Make sure when you have used the product wash your hands and try to keep it away from animals.

RITUALS Rice Shower Cream Scrub 150 ml
RITUALS Rice Shower Cream Scrub 150 ml
Price: £9.00

4.0 out of 5 stars Gentle body exfoliator, 28 Oct. 2015
This product I felt was a bit of a strange one to begin with. It is a bit like a shower gel but also has grains of rice in it, which acts as a gentle body exfoliator. The product has very little scent to it and due to this I then used a body wash after to make me smell nice.

I did like the product but I am unsure if I would purchase again.

RITUALS Happy Hands Lotion 75 ml
RITUALS Happy Hands Lotion 75 ml
Price: £7.65

5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful smell, 28 Oct. 2015
This was bought for me as a gift and I had never heard of the brand before so didn't know what to expect. When I opened the hand cream I was first hit with the smell, it was fantastic, I haven't smelt a hand cream as good and as strong as this in a long time.

The cream itself is luxurious and thick, a small amount will go a long way.

This hand cream is a great size that will keep you going for a long time. You only need the smallest amount in order to get super soft and wonderful smelling hands.

Air Wick Air and Fabric with Fresh Bubbles 345 ml - Crisp Linen and Lilac, Pack of 4
Air Wick Air and Fabric with Fresh Bubbles 345 ml - Crisp Linen and Lilac, Pack of 4
Price: £12.00

5.0 out of 5 stars 5*, 28 Oct. 2015
This is a great product, I have used it regularly for a couple of years and every time I am amazed at the scent that comes from it.

It is safe to use on fabrics and carpets. I have used it on bedding and on sofas. The scent lasts for a long time and makes the room feel and smell fresh when you walk into it.

I will always buy this product, so far I haven't found a better on the market that offers the same thing.

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