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on 3 February 2015
A fan of this author's works, which I read quite a few by now, I picked 'Round and Round' with high expectations, having fallen in love with it's cover the moment I saw it. This calm, warming sense of the perfect, sunny afternoon out there in the country - did it make me long to be out there too!

Well, the story itself fit the cover as perfectly. Sophie and her 'magical' tree that Aunt Flick had left for her behind, after passing away, promising to watch after her beloved niece no matter what. The story flowed in this exact pace, not too fast and not to slow, in a perfect accord with Sophie's character, and with my preference as a reader.

Sophie is a reserved, introvert girl, one of these people we meet quite often, interesting, deep, but not a doer, not a type to get up and do things. She prefers to go with the flow of her life, to drift along. Good friend, good partner, good lover, good worker - a positive type. Even when it comes to her passion, a stage play, something she seems to be quite good at, even talented, she hesitates, feeling it safer to drift with her amateur local theater instead of trying her luck out there.
Even when her life accelerates all of a sudden in her mid-twenties, trowing many great possibilities her way, the crazy year of four Valentine cards, even then, Sophie keeps on drifting, undecided, keeping herself and everyone on edge, not taking a plunge. But that's her. The author rounded her character so well, I never found myself questioning her deeds or decisions. It was like watching a friend's life. Sophie was Sophie and that was that.
But then....
Oh my, did I love the unexpected twist this story took! Not one but many. At one point I stopped even trying to guess what would happen. I just went with the flow, and such exciting ride it was! Those four Valentine choices, they kept haunting not only Sophie. I was as obsessed with those, with the question what would have happened - such a classical question.

It was a wonderful read,one of those books that leave you perfectly satisfied with the ending, yet at same time it makes you longing for more. You don't know what exactly this 'more' means as everything ended just like it should have, at the perfectly fitting accord, and yet, and yet...
I supposed it means that I would do myself a favor by by picking another book by this author.
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on 26 July 2014
I have a special interest in the afterlife, so this book hit the spot for me. Sophie Heron is fast approaching her fortieth birthday and the future looks bleak. Aunt Flick who died a few years ago said "I'll always be with you" and Sophie visits her special Angel tree where she talks to the departed Flick.

She reflects on her own life. Looking back to 1997, the year her friend Tallulah introduced her to a new slimming programme. The weight she dropped was fantastic, it gave her a confidence boost, a new job and four Valentine's cards. One card from Chris White, safe, stable live-in partner. Another from Sebastian Charteris, posh-boy artist who understood Sophie's creative side. The third was from Neil Raines, assistant Director at the theatre where she acted and the fourth was from Kieran Greenleaf, a musician who lived a carefree life in a VW Campervan.

Choices, choices, Sophie looks back longingly to that time when she had a choice of four men and wonders what life with each one would have been like and did she make the right choice? Aunt Flick moves in mysterious ways and I did have to smile when reading several chapters of this book, I was sat in my tiny garden and a pair of pigeons decided to join me. They sat extremely close to me on the fence and as I read of Sophie's adventures they proceeded to kiss and cuddle. Pigeons, I believe mate for life and these two looked particularly content. Find out if Flick answered Sophie's pleas of "Help me" yourself in this lovely book.

This review is based on a free copy of the book given to me by the author
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on 11 September 2014
Sophie is feeling less than satisfied with her life and with her boyfriend who has developed an interesting new ‘hobby’ - one that she wants no part of. As her fortieth birthday approaches, Sophie thinks back to 1998, the year she received four Valentine’s cards and the year she had to make a choice - but did she make the right one? Feeling alone, now that her beloved Aunt Flick has died, her best friend is miles away and her mother is as being as judgemental and unhelpful as ever, Sophie questions her decisions and wonders what might have been. But Aunt Flick isn’t about to let a little thing like death prevent her from helping Sophie find the right path.
I’m a complete sceptic about things like life after death and guardian angels, but I found myself thoroughly enjoying this lovely book. Sophie is a great central character - I really cared about her and felt her frustration as she struggled to come to terms with the regrets she had about what might have been. Supporting characters are well drawn and believable - they develop along with Sophie. The romance isn’t sugary sweet and there are plenty of laughs too.
I recommend ‘Round and Round’ - having only read Terry Tyler’s short stories before in ‘Nine Lives’ (recommended too) I was impressed by this book and will definitely be reading more of the author’s novels.
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on 27 July 2014
"If" is one of the tiniest—and most powerful—words in the English language.

In Terry Tyler's new novella, "Round and Round", these two letters torment the main character, Sophie, as she approaches her fortieth birthday.

Dissatisfied with her lackluster professional and love life, she can't help but wonder about the choices she’s made that have brought her to this point.

If only she could go back in time to that wonderful moment when she was just 24 and had four different men to choose from. How would her life be different today?

With a bit of help from above in the form of her late Aunt Flick, Sophie is given the chance to experience the different lives she would have led if she had taken a different turn so long ago.

Terry Tyler captures Sophie's growing desperation, her deep desire for a more fulfilling life hampered by her fear of being alone.

Certainly, more than one woman reading this will be able to identify with that sense of frustration and the slow suffocation of the hope for something better. That sense of, is that all there is?

Not if Aunt Flick has anything to do with it :)

A charming, light read, perfect for a lazy Sunday afternoon.
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on 14 December 2014
As someone who has to read an awful lot of dry, factual and scientific papers for my work, I sometimes get a hankering to be entertained by a book that just takes me to another world.This was one of those occasions. I've just spent the evening reading Round and Round after a day of grading tedious papers and I just loved it. It was precisely what the doctor ordered. As always with Terry Tyler's work, this wonderfully esoteric story is beautifully written. It is also very well paced and totally compulsive. It could have been chick lit, but Terry Tyler, being the writer she is, has avoided that by weaving some serious relationship issues and even hints of the paranormal into the story that will have many readers wondering about their own lives.

The blurb summarises the book well, but the pivotal point in the story - the year Sophie has to choose between the four who have sent her valentine cards while she is trying to come to terms with her less than happy situation - means that all the possible scenarios she might have opted for continue to haunt her in day and night-time dreams for years. This is of course until fate (or perhaps even Aunt Flick) presents her with a very un-dreamlike and real solution by pushing her into a situation that forces her to make some decisions. Sophie is charming, real, human and flawed and we can all recognise the reality of her dilemma.

And as for the heavenly Aunt Flick, I loved the way she kept trying to remind a rather obstinate Sophie about what she really wanted in life. I also liked the way the romantic outcome was not the clichéd solution we would usually get in romance novels. As I've said this was just what I needed, and the ending was - well - simply magic. Just the best read I've had in a goodly long while. Thanks so much Ms T!!
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on 19 October 2014
We’ve all done it, looked back and wondered if one simple decision would have made us happier, wealthier, more exciting, on and on. For Sophie, her moment of questioning her decisions came as she closed in on her fortieth birthday and she wasn’t particularly thrilled with the paths she chose throughout life. What if she has chosen a different man? Where would her life be? Her confidant and dearest aunt, Flick was her sounding board, but Auntie Flick has passed on, leaving behind their favorite place to talk and share things. In that special place, Sophie still returns to “talk” with Auntie Flick and somehow, she finds her answers. Is that a vow from her aunt to always be there? Is she Sophie’s guardian angel of sorts?

Sophie’s life has been led hoping someone else will give her happiness, more than temporary happiness, but forever happiness. Will she finally learn the need for creating her own? Will she always need Auntie Flick?

Told with humor and heart, Round and Round by Terry Tyler is a delightful read, a little dark sometimes, humorous at others, while being a “coming of age” for our late blooming Sophie. Ms. Tyler digs in and creates a woman we can all relate to, maybe finding a bit of her in ourselves at times. We could all benefit from an Auntie Flick to show us what could have been every once in a while, especially when the perfect scenarios you create in your mind grow a few warts in reality! The lesson? For me, it was life is what you make it, go with your heart and mind and do no harm. The journey through the unknown is an adventure in itself, but before you leap, take a look at what may be below you!

Terry Tyler has created an entertaining read that is both thought-provoking while still fun!
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on 9 September 2014
Sophie's almost forty. According to her mother things can only go downhill from there. Sophie wonders if she's right. She doesn't like her life at all. Her relationship with a man she doesn't really love turns into something she hates, because of his new interests Sophie wants to stay far away from. Since her best friend moved abroad she doesn't really have close friends who are around. She misses her aunt Flick now more than ever. Her beloved aunt was like a second mother and when she died Sophie was devastated. Her aunt promised to guide her before she passed away. Sophie wonders if she's made the right choice. In 1998 she received four cards on Valentine's Day, which man would have been mister right? Sophie and her aunt shared a special tree and Sophie is spending a lot of time there to think about life and the decisions she's made and has to make. Will her aunt stay true to her word and guide Sophie so she will steer her life in the right direction this time?

Round and Round is a story about important choices. What would or could have happened if they'd handled things differently is something a lot of people are often thinking about. Terry Tyler writes about that topic in a beautiful way. Aunt Flick is a wise person and she's there for Sophie all the time, she's a constant presence and I liked that. Sophie has to make a choice, she can't spend the next years in a relationship that's going nowhere. Her fortieth birthday is around the corner and if she wants to be happier something has to change. I loved reading about the way aunt Flick helps her to make her see and do things. Round And Round is such a great story, it's symbolic and it broadcasts several important life lessons without ever becoming obtrusive, which is really clever. I think Terry Tyler has written a fabulous story and I'm glad I had the chance to read it.
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on 1 August 2014
Sophie is an ordinary girl, a bit on the plump side, jogging along in a fairly dull life with her boyfriend Chris, who’s really ‘nothing to write home about’. In fact he’s a bit on the dull side. Sophie has a gloomy, pessimistic mum, who tries to erode her self esteem, warning her that reaching the age of forty is a miserable milestone.

But luckily Sophie has also got a bright and adorable Auntie Flick, who is wholeheartedly on her side. Two things happen: Sophie loses weight, and her consequent surge of confidence allows her to accept promotion at work, and also to begin an affair with a handsome man, who has all the charisma and style that dull Chris lacks, and also to meet other potential suitors as well. And then Auntie Flick dies.

Going into too much details might spoil the story, but Sophie’s love life becomes vastly complicated, and she faces tough choices. Auntie Flick, from ‘the other side’ is able to outline to Sophie how her life will pan out according to the decisions she makes, in various fascinating ‘alternative realities’ projecting how her life would be, depending on which life partner she chooses.

'Round and Round' touches on all kinds of things, some of them fairly challenging. Is the future set in stone? What is fate? And just how far can you control your own personal destiny? Most important of all, how do you know if you’ve made the right choices in life?

The fact is, you don’t, you never know, you just make the decision that seem right at the time and muddle through as best you can. But the joy of this book is that Sophie is allowed the magic luxury of hindsight, thanks to Auntie Flick’s paranormal interference, and, I can reveal that eventually Sophie’s life becomes happy and fulfilled, despite plenty of hiccups on the road to get there.

I liked Sophie. I liked Auntie Flick. And I felt sorry for the sad fact, that, for everyone, your happiness or otherwise often depends largely on the life partner you choose to accept or reject – and that’s not even considering the people you might or might not meet, which again depends on the things you choose to do, or where you choose to live. Is everything really as random as it seems, or could it be that there is some guardian angel guiding each and every one of us towards happiness?

I like all Ms Tyler’s books, she’s never written a bad one, but I especially liked 'Round and Round', because everything works out so neatly and cleverly, and it’s so enjoyable.

This book makes you think, it gives you plenty of laughs, it’s a bit sexy (but certainly not offensive or explicit in any way), but most of all it makes you happy.
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on 29 July 2014
Have you ever wondered what might have happened if you had done things differently, taken that job abroad, studied harder or married your first love? Well in Terry Tyler’s new novella, “Round and Round,” heroine Sophie does just that. As she approaches her dreaded 40th birthday she looks back sixteen years and wonders whether she made the right choices.
I warmed to Sophie very quickly. She is trying to make the best of her life but indecision in the past and the loss of her greatly loved Aunt Flick cause her to question her way of life. Looking back to 1998 when she had lost weight and made advances in her career, it seemed as though she would have a golden future but there were four men in her life and she couldn’t choose between them.
But this is not a lightweight romance. The story is set in the modern world, with concerns about career, home and family. Sophie’s mother Alana is an embittered, abandoned woman who wants her daughter to settle down with a reliable man. In contrast Flick is a woman of the 1960s who talks about karma and auras. She takes Sophie to the Angel tree, a special place where all cares disappear and life seems clearer.
The four suitors; cheerful, affectionate Chris, handsome, artistic Seb, carefree Kieran and Neil, the friend who shares her interest in the theatre, are believable, well-drawn characters who gradually change over time as their lives progress. Sophie is not naturally promiscuous, she is aware that each of them offer her the possibility of a happy, fulfilling future and she doesn’t want to hurt any of them; or herself.
What makes this book different is the way in which alternative life paths are shown. It raises the question, are we entirely responsible for the way our life turns out? And if things go wrong can we do something about it? Of course a little bit of magic or help from a guardian angel is always useful.
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on 25 July 2014
Once again, Ms. Tyler has delivered an excellent read! The magic of Terry Tyler's writing is that although you may or may not identify directly to one of her main characters, she definitely captures the unique nuances of the intricate and delicate relationships portrayed. You can see and relate to a piece of ourselves in her characters circumstances and from different points of view. In Round and Round, the story is relate-able in that we have all looked back and wondered 'what if I did something different than the path I took?' This story explores the different possibilities and potential outcomes.
As when reading her other books, the time flies by until you suddenly reach a very satisfying ending!
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