The Sinking Chef by Sylvia Ashby Review

Blurb

“Bridget Jones meets Burnt in this delightful comedy novel about a talented YouTuber and the guy who keeps trying to bring her down. Although part of a series this book is completely standalone, as are all other novels in the Pot Love Series.

In Belsize Park, London, Ashley works hard on her daily YouTube channel “The Sinking Chef”. It’s filmed right in her kitchen, so she doesn’t go out much.

James is a gruff British TV director, turned publisher, who Ashley had a crush on ages ago. She has moved on but when he calls with an offer to take her out to lunch she doesn’t say no. It’s only lunch – what can go wrong?

The day Ashley meets James for lunch and he promises her a book deal, she makes the worse decision in her life – to hide the book deal from her boyfriend, Giacomo. As things progress Ashley’s secrets mount up and other things in her life unravel. Is there a connection? And how is she going to get out of this without losing Giacomo and the life she loves?

Set in the heart of fast-paced London, The Sinking Chef is a charming story of love, recipes, secrets, and the determination to do thinks right by those you love most in your life.”

Review

Bridget Jones meets Burnt is a very good description for this fun, flirty read. Ashley reminded me a little of Rachel Khoo, who filmed her Little Paris Kitchen series directly from her own kitchen! When her ex-crush gives her the chance to make her dreams come true, her organised life becomes a web of lies and secrets…

This was a light, fun read that I enjoyed after handing my sixth novel in. The story flowed well, although I did feel the pacing was a little quick in places. I enjoyed getting to know Ashley – she was a very contemporary character who was easy to like. She really was a modern day Bridget Jones, with two men vying for her affections! Her journey throughout the story was engaging and I was interested to see what direction she might take.

Overall, this was a really enjoyable, easy read that provided the perfect post-draft completion stress reliever!

Giveaway!

Click here to be in with a chance of winning a £25 Amazon voucher or a digital copy of The Sinking Chef!

Author Bio and Links

Sylvia Ashby is fond of the written word: books, blog posts, recipes, even an explanation to the HM Revenue & Customs as to why she thinks skirts should be exempt from VAT – she’s written it all!

She likes travelling and has lived all over Europe – London, Brussels, Amsterdam and Sofia, Bulgaria. Currently, she lives in Leuven, Belgium with her husband, daughter, son and a sparrow called Jack, who comes occasionally to peck the seeds she leaves for him on top of the garden shed.

Website: http://www.sylvia-ashby.com/

Twitter: @bysylvia_a

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Deadly Burial by Jon Richter Review

Blurb

When DI Chris Sigurdsson is assigned a grisly murder case on remote Salvation Island, he knows that it might be his strangest yet.

A forgotten wrestling star of the 1980s has been poisoned whilst in the ring, and amidst the slippery lies of his dangerous opponents, unravelling the victim’s murky past is almost impossible.

And as a storm threatens to cut Salvation Island off from the mainland, the race is on for Sigurdsson to find the ruthless killer before he strikes again…

Review

This is a delightfully spooky and sinister tale from a very talented author. Jon Richter expertly builds the tension and intrigue, leaving you wondering ‘whodunnit?’ until the satisfying reveal. I love a good crime novel, and this was a compelling tale that kept me gripped until the very end.

DI Chris Sigurdsson is dispatched to Salvation Island to solve the murder of Vic Valiant, a wrestling star from the 1980s. The island already has a sinister past, having been terrorised by a serial killer years before. It’s Sigurdsson’s job to unmask the killer before a fierce storm isolates them from the mainland…

I really loved this book. It’s fast-paced, gripping and action-packed, with a flawed protagonist who’s afraid of his own mortality and a compelling mystery at its heart. I would recommend this book for fans of Stuart Macbride’s Logan McRae series.

Book links:

Book is on sale at Amazon at the following link:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Deadly-Burial-Jon-Richter-ebook/dp/B01MXDDP6A/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1494447869&sr=8-1&keywords=jon+richter+deadly+burial

Giveaway

Win a digital copy of Deadly Burial! Click here to enter.

Author Bio

Jon Richter lives in London and spends most of his time hiding in the guise of his sinister alter ego, an accountant called Dave. When he isn’t counting beans, he is a self-confessed nerd who loves books, films and video games – basically any way to tell a good story. Jon writes whenever he can and hopes to bring you more disturbing stories in the very near future. If you want to chat to him about this, or about anything at all, you can find him on Twitter @RichterWrites, or at his Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/richterwrites2.

Insight Into My Main Characters: R S Williams

Blurb

Matilda Gregson never knew a world outside hers existed, that is until Harvey comes along and shows her something beyond her imagination. All that is on Tilly’s mind is finishing her dissertation, getting her degree, and spending time with her friends before the end of the school year.

But everything changes when she meets Jenny, an agent of a secret society, and nothing prepared either of them for the adventure they are about to endure. Under the pressures of surviving, their friendship grows and they find friends in the most unlikely of places, and betrayal just around the corner.

Will they both be able to stop him before he tears Jenny’s society to the ground?

Amazon UK: https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/1539948390/ref=x_gr_w_bb?ie=UTF8&tag=x_gr_w_bb_uk-21&linkCode=as2&camp=1634&creative=6738

Guest Post

Characters are the flesh to the skeleton of the story. Without a good Character your story is nothing. One of the things I enjoy doing to aid my writing is to create visual aids. I scour Pinterest looking for images to match to my characters. For this Post, I would like to use a “tag” of sorts that I found on Briana Da Silva’s website (http://briannadasilva.com/2016/04/a-sneak-peek-at-my-main-characters/). I’ve been meaning to post it on my own blog but never got around to it.

I’ll be profiling Tilly, Jenny, and Noah. There will be six brief questions/prompts that I will be answering for all five characters mentioned. These will be the same for each character, and I’ll include a little picture.

  1. Tilly Gregson – image discovered via pinterest (https://uk.pinterest.com/pin/294915475585831294/)

Contradiction: She loves having people around her, but is a huge introvert

Favourite Colours: Black, Light Blue and

Her Biggest Fear: Heights, she gets vertigo

Favourite Genre to Read: Historical Romance

Darkest Secret: She’s never had a boyfriend

Where does she see herself in ten years? Tilly would like to work in a museum, teaching children about history.

2. Jenny Monroe – image discovered via pinterest (https://uk.pinterest.com/pin/300896818825245229/)

Contradiction: She can be very empathetic but doesn’t understand her own emotions when they overcome her.

Favourite Colours: Orange, Red and Beige

Her Biggest Fear: Not making her parents proud.

Favourite Genre to Read: Fantasy

Darkest Secret: She knew about the Collective long before her parents told her about it.

Where does she see herself in ten years? Jenny sees herself going up in the Ranks of The Collective, she wants to be a Regent.

3. Noah Lucas – image discovered via pinterest (https://uk.pinterest.com/pin/469781804853942718/)

Contradiction: He blames The Collective for all his pain, but wouldn’t allow them to take his memories away.

Favourite Colours: Black.

His Biggest Fear: Someone finding out his secret

Favourite Genre to Read: He doesn’t read unless it’s necessary

Darkest Secret: His actions are the cause of his pain. (don’t want to give away too much).

Where does he see herself in ten years? After destroying The Collective, he wants to take it over and make it better.

Author Bio

Rhianne Williams, formally known as RS Williams, writes Fantasy, Adventure and Romance novels. As an avid reader Rhianne has always been in love with the written word and the emotions a good story can create.

Discovering she had a knack for creating stories as a teenager, she started work on her first story. However, at 16 the mundane adult world called her back to an admin job and Rhianne put writing on the back burner until she turned 20. Rediscovering her fascination with writing and creating Rhianne then threw herself back into her writing in 2014.

When she isn’t catching plot bunnies, typing up her creations or writing on her blog, you’ll find her in front of the television watching her favourite shows, spending time with her family and getting lost in others fictional worlds.

Author Links:

Website: http://www.littlenovelist.com/

Twitter: https://twitter.com/lilnovelist

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/littlenovelist/

Pinterest: https://uk.pinterest.com/littl3Novelist/

Instagram: littlenovelist93

Cocktails and Dreams by A L Michael Review

Blurb

A heart-warming novel with characters you’ll love, don’t miss this first in a new series for romance, laugh-out-loud comedy and a feel-good ending. Perfect for fans of Mhairi McFarlane and Lindsey Kelk.

I was seven years old when I realized my mother was not a great person…

Since Savvy was abandoned by her rockstar mother, she has craved a normal life. But after years of financing her boyfriend’s lacklustre career, he leaves her when he hits the bigtime.

Savvy’s friends at the burlesque club where she serves elaborate cocktails encourage her to make bold changes in her life. She soon meets handsome bartender Milo, and begins to plan a future she can be excited about.

But when Savvy’s estranged mother crashes back into her life, her newfound happiness is under threat… will Savvy have the courage to pursue her dreams?

See inside for a delicious cocktail recipe and book club questions!

Giveaway!

This giveaway is to win a cocktail making giftset and an eCopy of the book. UK only!

Click here to enter!

Review

Where do I start with this wonderful book? The well-drawn, relatable characters perhaps, or the gripping and descriptive writing? Maybe I should talk about the compelling central romance or the delicious cocktails contained within its pages? Because believe me guys, this book has it all.

Savannah Curtis’s story starts on the worst day of her life – the day her rockstar mum Persephone Black left her with her aunt Jenny and went off to tour the world. Since then, Savvy’s tried her best to blend into the background and create as little fuss as possible, so more people around her don’t leave her. So when her minor celebrity boyfriend dumps her, she realises it’s time to take on the world.

I absolutely loved Savvy. She was well-drawn and very easy to relate to. I could really identify with her deep-seated fear of people leaving her and it was a joy to see her development throughout the story. She grew in confidence and realised she was enough, that people weren’t always going to walk away. I also loved reading about her romance with Milo the bartender. He was utterly lovely and I kind of wish he was real! He was also a well-rounded character, with flaws and his own demons to battle. Although he and Savvy butted heads at times, they really did work well as a couple and I adored their pairing.

Cocktails and Dreams sparkles and fizzes like one of Savvy’s delicious cocktails. A L Michael has produced a fun, summery read with depth and a host of characters that have stayed with me long after reading ‘The End’.

Author Bio and Links

A.L. Michael is hurtling towards the end of her twenties a little too quickly. She is the author of nine novels. Her most recent collection of books, The Martini Club Series, will start with Cocktails and Dreams, released 24th July 2017. She likes to write about sassy females who follow their dreams, and don’t take no for an answer.

She is a Creative Therapeutic Facilitator, currently researching the power of creative writing to be helpful in recovering from eating disorders, and believes in the power of writing to heal.

You can find out more about A.L. Michael at (surprisingly) http://www.almichael.com and on twitter @almichael_

Book Link Amazon: http://amzn.to/2uoBJbf

Kobo: https://www.kobo.com/gb/en/ebook/cocktails-and-dreams

The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters by Jaimie Admans Review

Blurb

Where dreams come true…?

Wendy Clayton stopped believing in fairy tales a long time ago. Instead, she has a ‘nice’ life. Nice job. Nice flat. Absolutely no men. Until her life is turned upside-down when her elderly neighbour, Eulalie, passes away and leaves her the Château of Happily Ever Afters!

But there’s a catch: she must share the sprawling French castle with Eulalie’s long-lost nephew, Julian. And no matter how gorgeous he is, or how easily she finds herself falling head over heels, Wendy needs to find a way to get rid of him…

Because surely happily ever afters don’t happen in real life?

Escape to beautiful France this summer with this uplifting romantic comedy. Perfect for fans of Kat French, Caroline Roberts, and Holly Martin.

Giveaway!

French-themed stationery goodie bag.

1 x Paperchase Paris notebook and pen

1 x The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters notebook

1 x little Eiffel Tower model

1 x Eiffel Tower bookmark

1 x The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters magnet

1 x Signed postcard

Click here to enter!

Review

This was a charming summer read, perfect for escaping into on a hot day. Wendy has a nice, normal life with no adventures until her neighbour Eulalie leaves her the beautiful Chateau of Happily Ever Afters in France. After unexpectedly becoming its part-owner, Wendy finds the biggest adventure of her life is about to begin. Especially when the other owner turns out to be Eulalie’s nephew Julian.

Jaimie’s style of writing is so easy to read. I was hooked from page one and invested in Wendy’s journey right away. She goes from being someone who’s very comfortable in her life and doesn’t take chances, to someone who readily accepts the challenge of owning a sprawling estate. The chateau and French countryside are richly described and I loved the interaction between her and Julian. Although they’re complete opposites in just about every way you can think of, they also have a sizzling chemistry that develops throughout the story. Their differences make their relationship just as interesting as their similarities.

This book was a warm, funny read that instantly transported me to rural France with two characters I absolutely loved and didn’t want to say goodbye to!

Author Bio

Jaimie is a 32-year-old English-sounding Welsh girl with an awkward-to-spell name. She lives in South Wales and enjoys writing, gardening, watching horror movies, and drinking tea, although she’s seriously considering marrying her coffee machine. She loves autumn and winter, and singing songs from musicals despite the fact she’s got the voice of a dying hyena. She hates spiders, hot weather, and cheese & onion crisps. She spends far too much time on Twitter and owns too many pairs of boots.

She will never have time to read all the books she wants to read.

She is the author of chick-lit romantic comedies The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters and Kismetology, and she has also written young-adult romantic comedies Afterlife Academy, Not Pretty Enough, and North Pole Reform School.

Author links:

http://www.jaimieadmans.com
http://twitter.com/be_the_spark
http://facebook.com/jaimieadmansbooks

The Chateau of Happily Ever Afters:

Amazon UK: http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B06Y69QZGP

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B06Y69QZGP

Will also be available from all other ebook retailers.

88 North by J F Kirwan Cover Reveal

I’m so excited to be taking part in the cover reveal for this book! Doesn’t it look gorgeous?

Blurb

Would you kill your loved one to save the world?

 

The world’s most-wanted terrorist is on the loose, and this time the threat is global. To stop him, Nadia infiltrates his organization, from the triads of Hong Kong, to the refugee-smugglers of Sudan, to the Mafia gangs running oil platforms in Sakhalin. But in the end, she must travel to the top of the world and confront her sworn enemy on the Arctic ice, where she will face a terrible choice.

Buy Link

 

Author Bio

J.F. Kirwan is the author of the Nadia Laksheva thriller series for HarperCollins. Having worked in accident investigation and prevention in nuclear, offshore oil and gas and aviation sectors, he uses his experience of how accidents initially build slowly, then race towards a climax, to plot his novels. An instructor in both scuba diving and martial arts, he travels extensively all over the world, and loves to set his novels in exotic locations. He is also an insomniac who writes in the dead of night. His favourite authors include Lee Child, David Baldacci and Andy McNab.

 

Author links:

Website: www.jfkirwan.com

Twitter: @kirwanjf

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/kirwanjf/

Blood Bank by Zoe Markham Review

 

Blurb

Benjamin is a programmer moonlighting as a security guard at Dystopia, a seedy club that caters to the down-and-outs, the desperates, the addicts. He’s been building his reputation, saving for a way out – but when he rescues a young woman from the nearby estate, he may just have stepped too far out of line…

Lucy is ordinary; a girl with a deadbeat boyfriend, a normal life and college studies. But when her world takes an odd twist, she starts to wonder about the people she’s meeting, the situations she’s in, the odd aversions and attacks happening around her. They’re just coincidences…aren’t they?

And Zack is in deep trouble. He’s losing his girlfriend, drowning in debt, and has dwindling job prospects – and that’s not the worst of it. His debt is to people who won’t ever forget it, and who want the things closest to Zack’s heart: his blood – and his life.

In the heart of Swindon, an ancient order hides in plain sight, spreading their influence through the streets like a disease. But despite their widespread power they are catching up with the modern world: the vampires are going online, and the Order is about to become more powerful than even they would have dreamed…

Review

I really enjoyed Zoe’s previous books, so I was really looking forward to reading her latest one. I loved the way Benjamin, Zack’s and Lucy’s stories were woven together in a mixture of dark fantasy and realism. The characters each leapt off the page and I enjoyed being sucked into their adventures. The story was well-paced, not feeling too fast or slow anywhere. You get to know the characters throughout the story as it unfolds; this is a book that keeps you guessing and wondering what twists and turns might be around the corner. Having loved Zoe’s first two books, I also thoroughly enjoyed this one. It’s a twisty, pacy read that’ll keep you hooked till the end.

Author Bio and Links

Amazon: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Blood-Bank-Zo%C3%AB-Markham-ebook/dp/B071HF81X7/ref=sr_1_1?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1496175007&sr=1-1

Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/35154789-blood-bank?ac=1&from_search=true

Author bio: Mild-mannered editor by day, puppet-master of broken souls by night.

Twitter: @ZoeMarkham

Website: www.zoemarkhamwrites.com