‘Game Changer’ – written by Lasairiona McMaster #BookReview @QueenofFireLas @rararesources

When you get to know both sides from a story.

Synopsis

AJ Williams wasn’t supposed to fall in love with a girl on the internet. But he did. 

Other than living over five thousand miles away in Northern Ireland, Lisa Millar is seemingly his perfect match. AJ can’t quite believe his luck, not only is she beautiful, but she has an appreciation for both music and hockey – two of his favoritethings.

Surprised by Lisa turning up unannounced in Alabama, AJ is under pressure to deal with the issue at hand. Should he risk losing her, come clean and tell her the truth? Or should he try to keep his secret under wraps?

Will true love win out? Or will AJ’s secret be too much for Lisa to bear?

My review

AJ Williams starts chatting with a girl, to help his best friend Jeremy. What starts as a group conversation, soon evolves to a private chat.
Apparently he and Lisa have a lot in common, they both love music and hockey.  Only problem is, Lisa lives over five thousand miles away…

When she surprises him with a visit, he is struggling with the secret he kept for her. Will their long distance love be strong enough to overcome this big secret?

I have read first the Lisa Millar series, so I kind of knew what would happen.
But it was so amazing to read the whole love story again, but this time from AJ’s point of view.
There is so much more you get to learn now.
In the view of Lisa, I never really connected with AJ. But having read this part now, I now understand better what AJ is going through.

Also we get to know why he agreed with the secret. And also his struggles with his decision.
Thanks to this book, AJ seems more ‘real’ to me, compared with the first part of Lisa.

Reading his side of the story, I realized he is not the usual macho man, but he is not afraid to show his true feelings. Also the other problems he is having are more clear now. He has some issues, but is not afraid to talk about them, and he discusses with his loved ones when things are just too much for him.

I loved this book, as it gives you more insights, and I just CANNOT WAIT to read the next part of it, as I know what huge cliffhanger is going to take place. I just need to know how AJ will react and what turmoil it will cause in his world!
But for those who haven’t read the Lisa series, do not worry, you can read this perfectly without having read Lisa her story first.

 

‘Surviving me’ – written by Jo Johnson #BookReview @rararesources

So hard to explain what I felt…

Synopsis

Deceit has a certain allure when your life doesn’t match up to the ideal of what it means to be a modern man. 

Tom’s lost his job and now he’s been labelled ‘spermless‘. He doesn’t exactly feel like a modern man, although his double life helps. Yet when his secret identity threatens to unravel, he starts to lose the plot and comes perilously close to the edge.

All the while Adam has his own duplicity, albeit for very different reasons, reasons which will blow the family’s future out of the water.

If they can’t be honest with themselves, and everyone else, then things are going to get a whole lot more complicated.

This book tackles hard issues such as male depression, dysfunctional families and degenerative diseases in an honest, life-affirming and often humorous way. It focuses particularly on the challenges of being male in today’s world and explores how our silence on these big issues can help push men to the brink.

My review

When Tom loses his job, he is sure he will find a new one straight away. So what’s the point in telling his wife Siri (FYI, Siri is just a nickname 😀 )?
But when a job isn’t so easily found, Tom doesn’t find the courage to tell Siri what is really going on. So instead of coming clean, he keeps up his charade and pretends to go to work each day while truly he is going to a bar spending the while day there drinking coffee.

On top of losing his job, he finds out he is infertile. So now creating a so much wanted family is also out of the picture.

All these events make Tom believe he is useless and slides into a depression. So he decides he doesn’t want to live anymore, so he won’t be a burden anymore.

And when his brother in law is behaving not like himself, the worries even become more.

“Pffff….”, that was my initial thought after having read the last words of this book. This is not a story to take lightly.
Depressions isn’t something to be underestimated. And how the whole situation has been described, and how Tom feels, are so accurate (not that I know how a depression feels) and explain so well what Tom is going through…

And not only Tom his feelings, but also the feelings of the people around him… The people who care want to help him, but they realize it’s not so easy as it seems.

This is a story about real people, with all their imperfections, trying to stand up to the high standards of society. And when you are not able to fulfill the requirements, it’s you who is not right, pushing you in a downward spiral…

This story makes you realize that often people are just playing a role, and hide their true feelings. But it also makes you realize that asking for help (even professional help) is not something to be ashamed of.

With all the heavy emotions, there are even some funny moments, making it possible to take a breath and make you smile.

A recommendation to truly understand what effects depression can have on a person and his environment. But also a realization that to overcome it is a real option! 

 

‘The Chapel’ – written by Jess B. Moore #BookReview @authorjessb @rararesources

When work brings people together.

Synopsis

Mallory Johansen has nearly given up on thinking she’ll get her act together – the one where she plays the part of an adult – by the time she hits thirty. As it is she’s desperate and depressed. Her only friend is leaving town, she’s paired to work with a man who can’t stand her, and she finds herself homeless. Definitely hasn’t mastered being a grown-up yet. 

Otis Bell wants nothing more than to play his guitar, book acoustic bands to perform at his upcoming music venue, andbe in charge of his own life. Instead, he’s working full time in his family’s auto shop. He only owns half the supposed music venue, which stands as an abandoned church and needs more than a little work. When his best friend moves away, he’s paired with an aloof girl he’s never liked as partner, andstretches himself thin working too many hours. 

The Chapel is the little music venue that could. Full of potential. Full of ugly carpet, peeling paint, and exhausting work. Mallie and Otis navigate their way through a fledgling partnership, trying their darnedest to get the place up and running, while trying pretty hard not to fall in love in the process.

My review

Mallory Johansen is a bit of a lonely woman. Being orphaned on an early age, her one true friend is her cousin and she just tags along with him and his friends.
But when he leaves for a once in a lifetime opportunity, she has to work with a man who can’t stand her, AND she loses her home, she feels very desperate and lonely.

Being partner with Otis for The Chapel, she puts her best foot forward to change the literal tiny church into a brand new music venue.
A shy girl always standing in the shadows and a man ready to do whatever it takes to make his dream of an amazing music venue come true, different personalities, will they manage to work together?

This was such a sweet story to read!
As being really shy, Mallory doesn’t know if people help her because they pity her, or because they really want to.
So when Otis starts helping her even when it has nothing to do with the renovations of The Chapel, she is sure he is just doing it out of a sense of duty, and not because he really cares about her.

And Otis is being a typical guy (no offence!), not wanting to admit his feelings but pretend he is indifferent towards Mallory.
But the further the story evolves, you see the true Otis. He’s this sweet man, wanting to help out where he can. He cannot stand how Mallory gets treated, wants to protect her and just wants her best interest.

I loved it… I didn’t know what to expect from this book, because this was the first book I’ve read from this author. I started reading and I couldn’t put it away!
The characters are all so recognizable. They are not someone special, but just regular people like you and I.
Also the feelings that are described, are feelings every one of us can have. Haven’t we all once felt just being taken care of because of a sense of duty? Doubting if we are really liked or just being pitied?
But the joy and happiness that are also present, are so fun and sweet to read!

Reading about Mallory and Otis made my day!

 

‘The New Guy’ – written by Kathryn Freeman #BookReview @KathrynFreeman1 @rararesources

Just loved it!

Synopsis

Sam Huxton doesn’t do one-night stands, especially not with men she’s just met! But the hot guy at the bar was hard to resist and their one night together is one she’ll never forget.

But one night is all they share – no names, no numbers, just some much needed fun…

Until the same guy walks into Sam’s life the next day as her new employee.  Sam never mixes business with pleasure and makes it clear an office fling with Ryan is off-limits.  But after-hours…one thing can lead to another. Can Sam trust her heart and her business with the new guy?

My review

After she has been cheated by her boyfriend and business partner, for Sam it’s only work and no play.
But one night she decides to just have fun and has a one night stand with a gorgeous man she met at a bar.
Just one night fun with him, no exchanging names, numbers etc. and chances of meeting again are nihil.

But when suddenly her one night stand shows up at her work, as her latest employee, the awkwardness is palpable…
Can Sam and Ryan keep it strict business? Or will all the extra hours spending together for their deadline make the attraction too hard to resist?

Each time I read a book written by Kathryn, I am amazed. I don’t know how she succeeds each time in writing about an impossible love story but making it so lovely and sweet.
And what a relief for reading a story where the woman is the boss and not the other way around!

The characters are also very loveable. Sam has started her own business and is in charge of it all. After she has been betrayed in the worst way, and her ex is still finding ways to get her blood boiled. Despite everything she is determined to succeed in her goals.
She is hard in her business, but also cares about her employees. When someone makes a mistake, she is not finger pointing but will find for a solution.
But deep down she is also a bit afraid of what other people think of her, and doesn’t want to be the latest gossip.

Ryan is different… not having had the easiest of youth, he cannot stand bullies. Honesty is the most important thing for him, so he speaks his mind, even if this could hurt someone. But better to tell the truth, and not keep lying?
He finds it hard to trust someone, but once you’re in his circle, he would move heaven and earth for you…
What a man!

This story was so well written, and so easy to read! It may seem an easy story, but it just got me under my skin.
You get to know each character, also the sidekicks. The friends in the book are people you would like to have as your friends too!
Sometimes it happens that many persons kind of have all the same personality, but here each one of them was so different compared with someone else. If you put them all together, you get the perfect mix!

I can just keep repeating myself by saying I loved it. I jumped on the opportunity of reading this book, and I didn’t regret it for an instance! Can’t wait to read more!!!

 

‘The Summer Island Swap’ – written by Samantha Tonge #CoverReveal #TheSummerIslandSwap @SamTongeWriter @aria_fiction @rararesources

Time for an amazing Cover Reveal! My interest is surely peeked!

Synopsis

Sometimes the best holidays are the ones you least expect…

After a long and turbulent year, Sarah is dreaming of the five-star getaway her sister has booked them on. White sands, cocktails, massages, the Caribbean is calling to them.

But the sisters turn up to tatty beaches, basic wooden shacks, a compost toilet and outdoor cold water showers. It turns out that at the last minute Amy decided a conservation project would be much more fun than a luxury resort.

So now Sarah’s battling mosquitos, trying to stomach fish soup and praying for a swift escape. Life on a desert island though isn’t all doom and gloom. They’re at one with nature, learning about each other and making new friends. And Sarah is distracted by the dishy, yet incredibly moody, island leader she’s sure is hiding a secret.

Pre-Order links:

Amazon: https://amzn.to/38xIJFD

Google Play: https://bit.ly/2IuyI1q

Kobo: https://bit.ly/333XuPn

iBooks: https://apple.co/39x8VS9

About the author

Samantha Tonge lives in Manchester UK with her husband and children. She studied German and French at university and has worked abroad, including a stint at Disneyland Paris. She has travelled widely.


When not writing she passes her days cycling, baking and drinking coffee. Samantha has sold many dozens of short stories to women’s magazines.


She is represented by the Darley Anderson literary agency. In 2013, she landed a publishing deal for romantic comedy fiction with HQDigital at HarperCollins. In 2015 her summer novel, Game of Scones, hit #5 in the UK Kindle chart and won the Love Stories Awards Best Romantic Ebook category. In 2018 Forgive Me Not, heralded a new direction into darker women’s fiction with publisher Canelo and in 2020 her novel Knowing You won the RNA’s Jackie Collins Romantic Thriller Award.

The cover!

‘Distorted Days’ – written by Louise Worthington #BookReview @louiseworthing9 @rararesources

When you’re at your lowest…

Synopsis

If she could speak to them, she would say they have exploded her heart, released firecrackers through her senses. She wishes she could call the police, the ambulance, the fire brigade, to arrest and anaesthetise and waterboard the bastards. 

So what happens when your husband runs off with your best friend? When you discover the dead body of an old man halfway through your delivery round? When your house is burgled and you get beaten up? Doris, Andy and Colleen are about to find out. They’re also about to discover that you can find friendship and support in the oddest of places…

Heart-rending, humorous and above all authentic, Distorted Days is an exquisitely written account of the ways in which life can knock you off our feet – and how you can pick yourself up again. If you’ve experienced the fickleness of fortune, this is a book that you’ll never forget.

My review

This story is about 3 people who are not having the happiest period of their lives.
Doris her husband left her for her best friend, Andy finds one of his customers dead during his delivery round and Colleen has been beaten up during a burglary.
All three of them are in the process of overcoming these but find it very hard.
Despite their differences they find each other, and they start all looking after each other.

Initially I had some difficulties getting a grip on the story. I didn’t understand what was going on. It starts with Doris, but I was all confused, because it wasn’t clear to me what was real and what was imagined by Doris.
But after the initial struggle (purely from my side) it all started making sense.

What really touched me, was how they all were there for each other. At the beginning of the story, they didn’t know each other, but the further you get into the story, their lives are getting intertwined and friendships are made.
And they are friendships in the real meaning of the word. You see it too often in real life that someone is your “friend” but then in times of need, they suddenly disappear. But here the friendship between Doris, Andy and Colleen is for real.
They stuck together, are there for each other and don’t let anyone left alone.

Together they try to overcome their misfortunes. And even if initially they are introvert, they start to trust each other and together they try to find a solution.

I liked reading this one, because of the high reality factor. The things Doris, Andy and Colleen go through, are things that could happen to any of us.
And then having someone to back you up, it’s not something you can take for granted.
it was a bitter sweet story showing that no matter how low you are, when you have the right persons by your side, you can find a way to process it all and become the person you once were again!

 

‘The Widow’s Mite’ – written by Allie Cresswell #BookReview #AllieCresswell @rararesources

When losing your husband is not the worst thing that happened…

Synopsis

Minnie Price married late in life. Now she is widowed. And starving.
No one suspects this respectable church-goer can barely keep body and soul together. Why would they, while she resides in the magnificent home she shared with Peter?
Her friends and neighbours are oblivious to her plight and her adult step-children have their own reasons to make things worse rather than better. But she is thrown a lifeline when an associate of her late husband arrives with news of an investment about which her step-children know nothing.
Can she release the funds before she finds herself homeless and destitute?

Fans of ‘The Hoarder’s Widow’ will enjoy this sequel, but it reads equally well as a standalone.

My review

Minnie Price nearly gave up her dream of being a married woman. But then she met Peter and her dream finally came true.
But when Peter suddenly dies, she finds it hard to survive. Her stepchildren are not very helpful, on the contrary. Because of their own egoism, they dig an even deeper hole!

When she is contacted concerning an investment her late husband, she believes she only needs to hold it together for a short period, and then all her problems will be solved.
Meanwhile she has to think how to spend any penny and even starts to starve herself, as she finds it harder and harder to survive and her investors just keep on asking extra money…

This is not a nice story to read… because the desperation is just heart – breaking… and the cruelty of some people is just beyond imagination!
Minnie is a poor thing, struggling with her problems, feeling she has nobody to confide…
Even her friends are not aware of what she is going through. She feels ashamed to admit she finds it hard to make ends meet.

But her real friends see that Minnie is not her cheery old self, and are trying to gently let her admit her problems. And with Maisie, Minnie finds an amazing friends. Even if their friendship is rather new, they are very alike in character.
Maisie is also facing family problems and is trying to make amends so that her family is close again, after revealing a secret that will affect every member.

This story is about how fake and mean people in your environment can be. It’s not because you’re someone with a good sense of right and wrong, that all people are like that.
But don’t despair, as there are people around with the same common sense! 

‘You’ve Got My Number’ – written by Angela Barton #BookReview @angebarton @rararesources

To do the right thing doesn’t always mean doing the right thing…

Synopsis

Three isn’t always a magic number … 
There are three reasons Tess Fenton should be happy. One, her job at the Blue Olive deli may be dull, but at least she gets to work with her best friend. Two, she lives in a cosy cottage in the pretty village of Halston. Three, she’s in love with her boyfriend, Blake. 

Isn’t she? 

Because, despite their history, Blake continues to be the puzzle piece in Tess’s life that doesn’t quite fit. And when she meets intriguing local artist Daniel Cavanagh, it soon becomes apparent that, for Tess, love isn’t as easy as one, two, three … 

 My review

Tess seems to have it all, working with her best friend, living in a nice cottage and is in a relationship with Blake.
But she feels that being together with Blake isn’t what she really wants. So should she stay with him, or should she decide to move on without him?

When she has made up her mind and wants to tell Blake about it, he himself has some news to tell. And this will jeopardize the future Tess was imagining.
Because the meeting with local artist Daniel Cavanagh stirs more than she thought!

I just loved it! This is a story about a woman who has made up her mind and wants to do what’s best for her.
But she has a strong sense of responsibility and also wants to do the right thing. And doing the right thing she will do, even if this in contrast with what she wants…
And doing the right thing also means to forget about the attraction she feels for Daniel. Because she is not one to cheat…

Daniel is also an amazing guy, as he realizes what Tess is holding back. He admires her for her selfish actions and believes that being friends with her is better than nothing at all.
A man who respects a woman’s wishes, isn’t that just perfect!

But honesty forces me to tell you that I was furious about Blake his actions… The lies he is telling are just atrocious… knowing the real struggles of someone in that situation and that Blake sees no harm in it, it’s just disgusting…

Tess and Daniel are becoming friends, and Tess shows what an amazing and supportive friend she truly is.

Both of them are so lovely people, respectful, taking care of those in need, being friends in the true meaning.

I had the urge to strangle Blake, but was full of admiration for Tess and also Daniel was a real friend…

I had several laughs and was exasperated when there were misunderstandings. But I finished the book with a smile on my face and with happy emotions!

‘Lady Edith’s Lonely Heart’ – written by Audrey Harrison #BookReview @AudreyHarrison2 @rararesources

Dating during Regency, as difficult as dating in current times…

Synopsis

A dashing tale of romance from a bestselling author of Regency Romance.

She is under pressure to find a husband she doesn’t want. 

He keeps to the fringes of society because of family constraints. 

Will the written word be enough to bring two lost souls together? 

Lady Edith Longdon is an heiress, in danger of being classed a spinster, and disillusioned with the fops, dandies, and fortune hunters surrounding her in society. Deciding it’s time to take her future into her own hands, she devises a foolproofway of finding someone she can love. She’s convinced nothing could go wrong… 

Lord Ralph Pensby, overwhelmed by a sense of obligation, and with no one he can turn to, is adrift from those around him…

Two people drawn together, both on a journey which will affect them in ways they could never have foreseen. Secret correspondence, mistrust and confusion, not to mention cads of the highest order, make this novel a fast-paced, heart-warming story, with appealing characters and a strong sense of time and place. 

Perfect for lovers of all things Regency. 

My review

Lady Edith, despite being of an age of 22, is on the verge of being seen a spinster. It’s not acceptable of being of that age and not be married.
She wants to marry out of love, and instead of waiting for the man, she decides to place an ad in the newspaper, trying to find her perfect match.

Meanwhile she gets to know her brother’s friend Lord Ralph Pensby. He is determined to never get married, as he has a secret he doesn’t want anyone to burden with.

This story takes place in the past, but it could be taken place today. Edith is struggling with society’s standards. She wants to find her perfect man, and takes desperate measures. She writes an ad in a newspaper, which can be compared to the modern dating apps.
Obviously the replies that she receives are not all that well – intentioned!
But putting her despair of finding a man apart, she is woman knowing what she wants and does not settle for less.
She stands her ground and is not afraid to speak her mind. Which is very progressive for that time!

Lord Ralph Pensby seems a detached man, but the more you read, the more you get to really know him. Behind his mask, he is actually this caring man, who would give up his own happiness if it would mean he could have his loved ones longer with him.
Feeling that he cannot rely anyone with his problems, he starts writing Edith without letting her know who he is.
By writing the letters, he finds a way to vent about his struggles. And Edith, having no clue who she is replying, is giving her support, which means the world to Ralph.

I liked this story because the struggles Edith is having are still up to date. Trying to find the love of her life, in a world where not everyone is having the best intentions.
But I loved how she was staying true to herself. If you have to change yourself to please someone, he/she is just not worth it.
It shows that something you have to be patient and that there is a lid to every jar…

 

‘The Walls We Build’ – written by Jules Hayes #CoverReveal @JulesHayes6 @rararesources

I’m surely curious and loved the cover, what about you?

Synopsis

Three friends … 

Growing up together around Winston Churchill’s estate in Westerham, Kent, Frank, Florence and Hilda are inseparable. But as WW2 casts its menacing shadow, friendships between the three grow complex, and Frank – now employed as Churchill’s bricklayer – makes choices that will haunt him beyond the grave, impacting his grandson’s life too.

Two Secrets …

Shortly after Frank’s death in 2002 Florence writes to Richard, Frank’s grandson, hinting at the darkness hidden within his family. On investigation, disturbing secrets come to light, including a pivotal encounter between Frank and Churchill during the war and the existence of a mysterious relative in a psychiatric hospital.

One Hidden Life … 

How much more does Florence dare reveal about Frank – and herself – and is Richard ready to hear?

Set against the stunning backdrop of Chartwell, Churchill’s country home, comes a tragic story of misguided honour, thwarted love and redemption, reverberating through three generations and nine decades.

For readers of Kate Morton, Rachel Hore, Katherine Webb, Lucinda Riley and Juliet West.

“Passion, intrigue and family secrets drive this complex wartime relationship drama. A page turner. I loved it.”  #1 bestselling author, Nicola May

Publication Date: 23rd March

Pre – order links:

UK -= https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B0855YZ3GG/
US – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0855YZ3GG/ 

About the author

Jules Hayes lives in Berkshire with her husband, daughter and a dog. She has a degree in modern history and holds a particular interest in events and characters from the early 20th century. As a former physiotherapist and trainer – old habits die hard – when not writing Jules likes to run. She also loves to watch films, read good novels and is a voracious consumer of non-fiction too, particularly biographies.

Jules is currently working on her second historical novel, another dual timeline story.

Jules also writes contemporary thriller and speculative fiction as JA Corrigan.

Jules Hayes  can be found at:

Website: jules-hayes.com  

Twitter @JulesHayes6  http://www.twitter.com/JulesHayes6

Facebook Author Page: JulesHayesAuthor  http://www.facebook.com/JulesHayesAuthor

Instagram: JulesHayes6  http://www.instagram.com/juleshayes6

Writing as JA Corrigan, Jules can be found at: Website: http://www.jacorrigan.com

Twitter: @juliannwriter  http://www.twitter.com/juliannwriter

Facebook Author Page: JA Corrigan  http://www.facebook.com/jacorrigan
Instagram: corriganjulieann  http://www.instagram.com/corriganjulieann