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Sophie's Turn (Part 1 in the Rock Star Romance Trilogy)
Sophie's Turn (Part 1 in the Rock Star Romance Trilogy)
Price: £2.49

5.0 out of 5 stars Slightly bitter sweet romance, 7 Oct 2013
Turn a classic chick lit novel. Nicky kindly sent me an e-book copy of her novel . Normally I don't enjoy reading e-books, I'm pretty old fashioned and love the feel and smell of a reading a new book. After reading about Sophie's Turn, however, I was excited to get started. I always enjoy reading novel's by new and upcoming author's and Sophie's Turn was no exception.

Have you ever dreamed of being engaged to a man you have lusted after for many years who is also the lead singer of your all time favourite band? Well for Sophie Penhalligan, this isn't just her dream its her reality. Dan the lead singer of Tusk has just proposed to her and she is over the moon. There's just one issue she's already engaged to her long term boyfriend Tim. You're probably wondering how one girl can become engaged to two men at once, right? Well so was I when I read the prologue of Sophie's Turn, after all its not the predicament you find yourself in every day. You're also probably coming to many presumptions about Sophie already but wait, you have to read her story before you judge her. Once you start devouring the pages you will come to realise how Sophie has managed to land herself in this unlikely situation and along the way you will begin to not only fall in love with her but also perhaps envy her just a little bit. Not only do we come to realise that she has a conscience she also has many elements to her that we can all relate to.

Sophie's Turn is split into three sections; Flashbacks, Playing With Fire and Showtime. The first looks at how Sophie managed to become engaged to two men at one time; reliable dependable Tim and roguish handsome Dan. The second looks at the progression of both of her relationships with both men, with the third leading us to how Sophie manages to get herself out of her predicament and the decisions she comes to make. I usually don't enjoy flashbacks as a way of telling back stories, however in Sophie's Turn Nicky Well's manages to fit these flashbacks perfectly into the narration so that the novel does not become stilted but continues to flow. I loved the humour injected into this novel with the moment of Tim de-slugging his garden having me laughing out loud, leaving me receiving many strange looks from people around me. I also was thrilled to notice some British elements thrown in, resulting in much nostalgia for me with the mention of scotch eggs and sausage rolls, as I am originally from England and miss many of these elements about Britain. Many UK novelists tend to stay away from too many mentions of words and items only associated with England, fearing that they will isolate the American market, so I was delighted to see that Nicky Well's had not shied away from this.

Will Sophie choose Tim or Dan? Well you'll have to read the book to find that answer but let me tell you the ending might just surprise you.

In Sophie's Turn Nicky Well's mixes a style reminiscent of Lauren Weinberger's `Last Night in Château Marmont' with her unique British charm resulting in a honest, charming and slightly bitter sweet, romantic take on modern chick lit. Reading this novel feels as though you are hearing it directly from you're best friend. I was able to devour this novel almost as fast as I tend to wolf down a chocolate bar when I`m in need a sugar rush, even having to be literally dragged away from the novel at one point. Anyone who likes chick lit will love Sophie's Turn just as much as I did.


Fly Away Home
Fly Away Home
Price: £3.49

3.0 out of 5 stars Not her best but still enjoyable, 7 Oct 2013
This review is from: Fly Away Home (Kindle Edition)
Jennifer Weiner creates her magic again, with Fly Away Home, another chick lit novel you just want to dive straight into. Fly Away home is poignant without sending you into a downward spiral of depression and blends Jennifer's wit with her sensitivity to create a timeless novel.

Fly Away home centre's around the story of Sylvie a politician's wife involved in a scandal and her two daughter's; Diana and Lizzie. What's the scandal Sylvie's involved in? Well her husband, Richard, has been caught by the press having an extramarital affair with a lawyer young enough to be his daughter. Sylvie is devastated, after all she thought that her marriage was pretty perfect. Sylvie had reinvented herself since meeting Richard, in order to be the ideal politician's wife. Her main jobs being that she stays twenty pounds less than she was in her twenties, has a wardrobe full of tailored suits and she tends to her husbands every need. After the shock of the affair will Sylvie stand by her husband or will she choose a different path? After all there are Sylvie's two daughters; Lizzie and Diana, to think about. The scandal has affected both of them in different ways. Lizzie, is a recovering addict trying desperatly to keep her life under control. Will the scandal send her spiralling back down the path to drugs? Diana appears to have everything that Lizzie does'nt. As an ER nurse, with a husband and son (in that order) she seems to have everything she ever wanted. Except her marriage is a loveless one and she's looking for more. Could that more come in the form of an intern doctor? The scandal forces all three women to re-evaluate their lives and discover what they all really want.

Fly Away home is told from the viewpoint of all three women, meaning that we get to really learn about how they are all affected differently. I do not usually enjoy novels where the narration is told from many different viewpoints as this can sometimes become confusing. I thought, however that in Fly Away having the three different narrations was a welcome change and we learnt more about Lizzie, Diana and Sylvie than we would have done otherwise. I also enjoyed the way that Jennifer threw in many enticing and detailed descriptions of food and scenery. I love the way she described meals which instantly made me hungry and want to eat exactly what the characters were. The sense of humour of Selma, Sylvie's mother, was a welcome relief in the otherwise sombre mood of the novel, which I felt was much needed.

I do feel that Jennifer could have expanded on the characters of Sylvie, Diana and Lizzie more, so as to make us really care about them and what happens to them more. The novel also fell a little flat in some parts, redeeming itself towards the end of the novel where all the characters are reunited together. I really did not enjoy the way that Sylvie had not spoken to her husband, Richard, for most of the novel but then at the end suddenly begins talking to him again, and is able to move on. I felt that Sylvie changed her mind too quickly without any real deliberation.

Fly Away Home has an ending which is left pretty open, perhaps leaving options for Jennifer to write a sequel in the future. Even though this is not one of Jennifer's best novels, overall I still enjoyed reading this book. In the time of politicians, sports people and other celebrities wives being thrown into similar situations, this is a very current yet still timeless novel, that women of all ages will enjoy and be able to relate to. With Jennifer Weiner you can't really go wrong, after all she always manges to create chick lit masterpieces and though this novel may not be up to her usual standard its still a book worth reading


So, You Think You're A Celebrity... Chef?
So, You Think You're A Celebrity... Chef?
Price: £1.99

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fun light hearted look into the world of celbrity chefs, 7 Oct 2013
When invited to join the book tour for Caroline James' new novel, So You Think You're A Celebrity Chef, I jumped at the chance. I love cooking shows and so reading a book about the lives behind the glossy world of celebrity chefs is something that really had me intrigued and a concept I had not read about before.

I absolutely loved the main character of Hilary Hargreaves, the agent of the celebrity chefs. She was such a character, with her larger than life character. She has a harsh exterior but once you delve beneath that layer Hilary is hilarious and is found dancing on tables to the 'gobble dance', drinking far too much Black Velvet and champagne and being the focus of a large amount of male attention. My favourite character had to be Bob, Hilary's flamboyant assistant who absolutely loves gossip but is completely loyal to Hilary. All the supporting characters were all interesting and memorable including, Lenny the scammer, Mickey chef and Hilary's ex-lover, Zelda the posh chef who cant control her weight and Long Tom the mysterious rock star.

I really enjoyed delving into the world of celebrity chefs and all the crazy happenings. Its a world that isn't looked into very often and I can imagine that some well known celebrity chefs can be a complete handful to deal with getting up to all sorts of mischief. The plot takes the characters from their base in London to Kindale in Ireland for a food festival to the exotic Caribbean. I enjoyed jetting off to all these different locations in the food world.

So You Think You Are A Celebrity Chef is a funny, well written novel centred around the world of celebrity chefs. I found myself laughing out loud on many occasions and was routing for Hilary and who she would end up romantically with in the end. A highly recommended read for anyone looking for a light hearted novel.


Glittering Fortunes
Glittering Fortunes
by Victoria Fox
Edition: Paperback
Price: £6.39

4.0 out of 5 stars As good as Victoria Fox's bonkbuster novels, 30 Sep 2013
This review is from: Glittering Fortunes (Paperback)
Having read and enjoyed some of Victoria Fox's previous bonkbusters I was excited to read her first novel published by Mills and Boon which was said to take a different direction to her usual novels. I couldn't wait to dive in and find out whether I would enjoy Glittering Fortunes just as much.

At the beginning some of the characters appear a little shallow and one sided, with them being the typical stereotypes that you would expect. As the novel, progressed, however so did the characters and I was pleasantly surprised to find that Victoria Fox added more depth especially to Cato and Susannah. I found that at times I was conflicted as to whether to hate them or to feel sorry for them. I enjoy reading about characters that you hate but see are not entirely bad underneath it all. I loved the rivalry between the two brothers Charlie and Cato, while routing for Charlie throughout. Olivia was a good heroine, even though I found her annoying at times, especially with her obsession with Addy, which drove me a little crazy. In the end I was hoping for a little romance between her and Charlie.

Glittering Fortunes is not just your typical romance story, it has humour, especially from Susannah and I found myself laughing out loud at some of her theories throughout. There is also a twist in the story, which I could see coming before it happened, however I still enjoyed it and think it played out well. I have a fascination for stately homes and country estates and so loved reading about Usherwood House and the upkeep of such a home as well as Charlie's complete and utter love for it.

Glittering Fortunes is a beautifully written story that had romance, secrets, humour and wonderful characters. I would highly recommend this book especially if you have enjoyed Victoria Fox's previous novels, you are always guaranteed a fun and entertaining read.


Amelia Grey's Fireside Dream
Amelia Grey's Fireside Dream
by Abby Clements
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.85

4.0 out of 5 stars Perfect Autumn Read, 27 Sep 2013
I have read all of Abby Clements previous novels and loved them, so when I heard that she was releasing a second novel this year I just couldn't wait to pick it up and devour it. The cover is so enticing and just draws you in, it is the perfect cover for an autumn read. With the change in the weather I love snuggling up with a cosy autumn read and this cover sets that mood perfectly.

Many people dream of moving from the hectic life of the city to somewhere quieter in the country and that is just what Amelia has always wanted to do before she turned thirty. Moving house and especially moving from one environment to another is never easy and I enjoyed how realistic Abby Clements made the situation. What I really loved about this novel was the decorating and renovation element. Amelia has to redecorate the entire house from top to bottom in her own style and I loved that the novel moved from room to room and the way Amelia made mood boards and details on how she would do each up. It almost made me want to start redecorating my own home so I could join in on all the fun.

I found the character of Amelia really relatable and I think she will strike a chord with many who want to make changes in their life and find out where they are headed. Amelia grabbed onto a dream that she had and followed it through which I found inspirational. I also really admired how much she cares about the students she teaches and how the school is run, it showed her caring side. I have to admit that I wasn't too keen on Jack, Amelia's husband. Yes he is a busy man who works in the city but at the same time I felt that he almost left Amelia in the country to get on with things while he continued to live his life with little disruption. I also didn't like the way in which he felt that his decisions and opinions on how life should be were much more important than Amelia's. That being said I was routing for both characters as a couple throughout.

I would recommend this novel for anyone looking for the perfect autumn read to snuggle up with as the nights draw in with a hot cup of tea. Amelia Grey's Fireside Dream is a moving realistic story that I found difficult to put down.


The Longest Ride
The Longest Ride
by Nicholas Sparks
Edition: Hardcover
Price: £11.23

15 of 15 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful story, 17 Sep 2013
This review is from: The Longest Ride (Hardcover)
Before I begin I just have to let you all know that I absolutely adore Nicholas Sparks. I have seen all his film adaptations and read a lot, although not all, of his books. I was eagerly awaiting The Longest Ride, his latest novel, and was so excited when I received a copy for review that I just had to dive straight in.

The Longest Ride switches between the plot of two different stories, that of Ira and that of Sophie and Luke, while alternating between the perspective of all three. I enjoyed seeing the two stories and eventually learning how they connect. Ira's story was beautiful and told of his journey and I learnt a lot about his past. Each time Ira's chapters came around I found myself liking him more and more and realising just what a wonderful man and character he really is. His love for his wife never falters and is so emotional to read about. I adored the character of Ruth and the way she is portrayed. I also enjoyed the story of Luke and Sophia, although I did like Luke's character a little more. Luke came across as caring and very family orientated while I have to say Sophia was a little selfish at times. Although as their chapters move on I did find myself liking each character by the end of the book.

The Longest Ride was not a typical Nicholas Sparks novel. Yes it had the raw emotion, yes it made me cry, more than once, but it was a little different. I think perhaps because of the two stories running along side each other of which you do not see any connection until the end of the book. I do not think this is a bad thing as I enjoyed both stories and their connection, it just made it a little different from previous Nicholas Sparks novels.

Overall, I loved The Longest Ride. The grand love story is there and I think the marriage and love between Ruth and Ira is one of the best I have read about in a long time. It made me wish for even a small amount of the way in which they love each other. I would defiantly recommend The Longest Ride for any Nicholas Sparks fan or for anyone looking for a great romance with strong emotion that will pull at the heart strings. Just be prepared, you will end up crying.


The Reunion
The Reunion
by Amy Silver
Edition: Paperback
Price: £5.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional Read, 15 Sep 2013
This review is from: The Reunion (Paperback)
I have never read any of Amy Silver's previous novels, however from reading their synopsis and comparing them with The Reunion it seems as though Amy Silver has taken a turn in her writing. Her previous novels seem like more fun light hearted reads while the reunion takes a more mature storyline and deals with emotion, tragedy and friendships changing over the years.

The plot is told through three sections; the reunion of the six friends, the events of the past and then what happens after the reunion. Usually I don't enjoy books that move around between time periods, however with The Reunion I think this meant I understand the characters and the events that occur with much more clarity. I really enjoyed that at the end of most chapters is a letter sent between the friends, which really gave an insight into each characters true feelings. I think this is a unique and interesting way of telling the story. I also enjoyed how each character gets to tell their own story and we see the events that happened from each perspective, showing that there is always more than one side to every story

The Reunion is an emotional read that is deep and dark in certain places. While there is romance none of it is light hearted and there always feels to be something dark lurking with the relationships showing the problems and difficulties within each. Real friendship and the issues that are faced are dealt with extremely well, as many friendships do not last forever and if they do last then they change in many ways.

I would highly recommend The Reunion to anyone looking for a story with great depth and emotion. I had tears in my eyes on more than one occasion and the ending truly broke my heart. The story is thought provoking and beautifully written making me look at my own friendships and cherish life while we still have it.


Tempting Fate
Tempting Fate
by Jane Green
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.85

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Moving story with wonderful characters, 12 Sep 2013
This review is from: Tempting Fate (Paperback)
Jane Green is one of my all time favourite authors and has been for many years. Every time she releases a new novel I rush out to buy it and devour it as quickly as possible. I have never been disappointed by a Jane Green novel and her writing just seems to get better and better over time. Tempting Fate, the latest novel, fulfilled all my expectations and much more.

Tempting Fate pulled at my heat strings in a way that many books fail to do. I am against cheating in a very strong way but I empathised with the main character Gabby throughout the entire novel. I knew that she had done wrong and couldn't condone her behaviour but I also couldn't help feeling for her. There were times throughout this novel that I felt truly uncomfortable and really anxious for certain characters and it is Jane Green's fantastic writing and character building that did this for me. All through Tempting Fate I just wanted things to work out for Gabby and I have to admit that I cried on more than one occasion, which is a rare occurrence for me when it comes to books.

There may not be a lot happening in Tempting Fate in terms of plot, as this is more a character driven, emotional story about feelings, but I didn't feel anything was lacking within this book. I couldn't stop turning the pages anticipating what was going to happen next and how things were going to end up for the Gabby and Elliot. I really enjoyed that even though the majority of the story is told from Gabby's point of view, there are also a few pages showing the story from Elliot's side as well. This really added to the story as in these kinds of situations there really are two sides to every story and it was interesting to see how Elliot was coping throughout.

Along with Promises To Keep, Tempting Fate is one of my new favourite Jane Green books. I absolutely loved the story and just could not put it down. Even days later I am still moved by the story and cant stop thinking about the characters. If you love Jane Green you need to pick up Tempting Fate I cannot recommend it enough


Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns
Revenge Wears Prada: The Devil Returns
by Lauren Weisberger
Edition: Paperback
Price: £3.50

4.0 out of 5 stars Good book but not a great sequel, 25 Aug 2013
I was an enormous fan of The Devil Wears Prada, both the book and the movie versions, if you haven't read or watched this yet then you really need to. As soon as I heard that there would be a sequel, Revenge Wears Prada, I could not wait to get my hands on a copy. I just had to see what had happened to Andy, Emily and Miranda since the days of working at Runway

I love Lauren Weisberger's writing style; it just flows so easily and naturally while still managing to be engaging. I found myself wanting to keep reading on and on as Lauren Weisberger managed to make me want to know exactly what was going to happen next by leaving little cliff hangers at the end of chapters, making it very difficult to put the book down. I did enjoy reading about the old characters, especially Miranda Priestly who returns in full force in this sequel. She was her usual self and defiantly a character that I love to hate. I could not get enough of her in the book. I also loved how Andy and Emily now run a wedding magazine, The Plunge, as I have a fascination for wedding so I enjoyed getting a glimpse into that world.

My main issue with Revenge Wears Prada was with the character of Andy. I loved Andy in The Devil Wears Prada, but there were very few flashes of that old Andy with Revenge Wears Prada. Most of the time I felt like I was reading about an entirely different character, someone new and definitely not Andy. Even though I know that the book is set ten years later and so of course Andy's character has grown and changed I just felt that she had changed beyond recognition at time. Even Emily did not seem to be the same girl she was in the previous book.

The Revenge Wears Prada may not have lived up to the expectations I had for a sequel to The Devil Wears Prada but overall it was still a good book. I loved returning to the characters that I have missed and reconnecting with them all over again. Revenge Wears Prada is filled with the luxury and glamour of living in Manhattan and left me wishing that I could live in that world.


Swimming Pool Summer
Swimming Pool Summer
Price: £3.59

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Great summer read, 23 Aug 2013
I love reading a good summer read while it is hot outside and I can relax in the sunshine imagining that I am on some exotic island far away. A large part of reading for me is about escapism so devouring Swimming Pool Summer over the summer months was just perfect for me. Although I am sure that if you pick up this read during the winter it will be able to transport you away from those cold winter nights.

The premise of the story is quite simple focusing on the three women and their separate as well as inter-joined lives while on holiday in Greece. Rebecca Farnworth manages to describe Greece in such detail that I find myself wanting to book a holiday there immediately. From the villa the women are staying in to the restaurants and the scenery, it was all brought to life and made me feel as though I could almost be there along with them. I love books that are set abroad as they manage to add another layer of escapism while reading and Swimming Pool Summer did this perfectly for me.

All three main characters were fantastic, each being so relatable with their problems and dilemmas. I really felt for each of them with what they are going through as thirty something year old women in todays society. I really enjoyed the way in which the novel switches between the viewpoints of the women each chapter meaning I got a real feel for each of the ladies in turn and kept the plot moving at a good pace. My favourite character was probably Tor as she has many insecurities that a lot of women can relate to yet really she is a beautiful woman.

Swimming Pool Summer is a fantastic book to devour over the summer or while on holiday with a cocktail in hand. A beautiful setting, real issues and likeable characters make for a great light hearted summer read. I am looking forward to reading more from Rebecca Farnworth.


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