Thursday, 28 February 2019

Yoga Club: February Unboxing & Review plus $10 off






Yoga Club is a subscription service for high end yoga/fitness and athleisure apparel at 50 to 60% off retail price.
How Yoga Club works is you go onto their website and sign up. You take a personalised style quiz where you are asked numerous different questions to get a sense of your own personal style. For example, it asks what kind of activities you wear athleisure for with options from Yoga to travel and brunch. Do you like leggings? Capri's? Shorts? Sports bras? Tank tops? Long sleeve? and do you like neutrals, colours and patterns? These are just a few. You put in your height and sizes and a personal stylist curates an outfit just for you. This means that your outfit will not be the same as another person. Some subscription services send the same outfits out each month but that is not the case with Yoga Club. Each box is curated specifically tailored to you.
The Guru box (the one that I get) comes with 3 different pieces. All high end, good quality pieces from name brand companies. We are talking Teeki, Jala, Onzie, Manduka, Columbia, Free People, Glyder, MPG and Niyama Sol just to name a few.  A pair of leggings (or crops or shorts if you put it on your quiz) a sports bra and a layering piece. The price of the Guru box is $79 USD, Check out my link below to get $10 off for life. The nice thing about Yoga Club is that you are not locked in to any amount of time. You can cancel or pause your subscription at any time. If your exercise needs or style changes you just need to log into your account and re-take the style quiz.
On top of all that, Yoga Club gives back. For every Yoga Club box sold they give a class to a child in an under served community. They also have a Love Guarantee. If you don't love it or something doesn't fit properly they have an easy exchange policy for something you do.
If Yoga Club is something that you have been considering you can get $10.00 off your boxes for life by clicking my referral link Here.
  

A first look inside my February box!



A look at the outfit as a whole!

Sports Bra
Onzie (Own-Zee)- Chic Bra Blush retail value $48 USD

I received this sports bra in a previous box but in black so I know I like it. The pink is super cute and gives me a lot of different wardrobe options. It matches really well with some of my other outfits so I will be able to mix and match. Also the super feminine strappy back looks amazing with the layering piece that I received in this months box.


Layering Piece
Slide View 1: No Sweat Tank Solid
Free People- No Sweat Tank in Black retail value $38 USD

I couldn't properly get a picture of this tank so I took one from the Free People website. Maybe one day I will perfect the selfy and manage to get pictures of myself wearing the outfits!
Effortless American made tank featuring a soft tri-blend jersey fabrication. Open cross-back silhouette and rounded hem with relaxed fit make for easy wear before, during or after any workout. It is also ideal for showing off details on active bras and crops!
I love this tank! I can see myself wearing it a lot in the summer at the lake where I have no air conditioning but still want to get active. Won't the blush sports bra look adorable under it? It will also work great for throwing on over top of a bathing suit if a neighbour pops by for a visit.


 Bottoms
Glyder- Moxie Joggers in Grey retail value $64 USD

This is the first pair of joggers I have received in one of my boxes and the first piece from Glyder. These super comfy pants are perfect for me. I love to be comfortable and when I am not wearing my leggings you can usually find me in jogging pants. These ones are a little less frumpy than most that I own and that is a good thing. I have been wanting to get some items from Glyder for some time now so I am happy to have a piece to try out. I am really hoping to get a pair of their leggings in a future box.

Again I am very pleased with the outfit that was curated for me. At a retail value of $150 USD it is a definite savings and it is so much fun to open up and see what I get each month. This box is $79 but if you are interested you can get $10 off for life by using my referral link here.


Thoughts and opinions are my own and are not endorsed or sponsored by Yoga Club in any way.

Wednesday, 27 February 2019

Review: Confess by Colleen Hoover


Auburn Reed is determined to rebuild her shattered life and she has no room for mistakes. But when she walks into a Dallas art studio in search of a job, she doesn’t expect to become deeply attracted to the studio’s enigmatic artist, Owen Gentry.

For once, Auburn takes a chance and puts her heart in control, only to discover that Owen is hiding a huge secret. The magnitude of his past threatens to destroy everything Auburn loves most, and the only way to get her life back on track is to cut Owen out of it—but can she do it?


Paperback, 320 pages

Published March 28th 2017 by Atria Books (first published March 10th 2015)

Terri's Thoughts

This is the second book I have read by Colleen Hoover and as I did with the last one, I chose to listen to this in audio format.  I must take a second to acknowledge that.  I really enjoyed the fact that the voices of Auburn and Owen were narrated by two different people.  This kept the story very simple and easy to follow along and had less variation in voices.

This is my favorite of Hoover's work that I have read thus far.  Yes, yes I know, it is only the second however that doesn't change the fact that this is my favorite.  As I continue to read her work things may change but for now it holds the number one spot.

I now really understand why my sister keeps saying that nobody does chemistry and relationships like Hoover.  From the heartbreaking beginning to the story, to the first meeting of Auburn and Owen, I could feel every emotion like I was experiencing it myself.  With every look, touch and conversation, I was falling in love with the story as much as Auburn and Owen were falling in love with each other.  Through every bump in the storyline, I just knew that there had to be a way out of their impossible situations or I would have been devastated.

This story has been reviewed many times so I wont discuss any more of the plot other than one thing  The final chapter.  Wow.  IT JUST GUTTED ME.  It is also what pushed this story to my favorite Colleen Hover read.  All I can say is just read it.  If there is anyone out there who has not yet discovered Colleen Hoovers work, start with this one and you will find yourself binge reading the rest as I plan on doing.

About the Author


International and #1 New York Times bestselling author of romance, YA and Women's Fiction.

Still doesn't know the difference between affect/effect, further/farther, or if the oxford comma is in or out


Tuesday, 26 February 2019

Re-Release Day Blitz & Excerpt: Hold on Tight by Serena Bell

 

 


What Readers Are Saying

“Sweet, sexy and real . . . In Hold on Tight, Serena Bell has written a beautiful story about a wounded soldier and the woman strong enough to love him.”—Jessica Scott, USA Today bestselling author of Because of You

“The authenticity of their story is resounding. This isn’t a story of instant love, but of an uphill battle and determination, of making decisions, and of living in the here and now.”Heroes and Heartbreakers

“This contemporary second-chance romance is Bell’s best written book yet. It deals with the horror of war beautifully and with great care, weaving it into a great love story, and many, many swoons.”—The Book Hammock

“Just a beautiful, and yet not overly emotionally weighted, story of two people fighting their way out of a life they were dealt, toward a life they choose wholeheartedly. This book left me feeling warmed, encouraged, bolstered and full. Phenomenal writing by Serena Bell.”—Ripe for Reader

“I was completely swept away with the characters, story and the writing.”—Twin Spin

Blurb

Hold On Tight (Returning Home, Book One)

A wounded soldier. A secret baby. A second chance.
Jake Taylor has made a few terrible decisions, but none worse than the one in Afghanistan that cost him his best friend and his leg.
Or so he thinks, until he comes home from war to discover a seven-year-old son he never knew existed.
Jake can’t regret the blissful nights he spent with Mira in his arms, or the boy with his eyes, but he can leave them alone so they don’t become yet another one of his mistakes.
He’ll rehab his body, figure out how to find purpose again—and keep things simple with the woman he once craved desperately.
Except the sizzling attraction that drew him to Mira is still fierce, and staying away from her is a lot harder than he ever expected…
Mira Shipley has promised herself that if she ever sees Jake Taylor again, she’ll tell him he has a son.
She isn’t expecting to run into him at the physical therapist’s office, where he’s learning to live with an above-the-knee amputation.
She can’t blame him for being a grumpy jerk under the circumstances, but it would be a lot easier to ignore him if she didn’t desperately need child care for her son.
And if Jake didn’t make her feel brand new and dazzlingly alive.
She knows she needs to protect her son’s feelings—but no matter how hard she tries, she can’t forget the long, sweet nights she and Jake spent learning each other’s bodies and each other’s secrets…

Hold On Tight Excerpt

On the other side of the room, the cocky guy with the prosthetic leg shifted in his seat, drawing her gaze. Brown hair, on the longer side of short, uncombed. A couple of days’ unshaven scruff. Not her type; she liked professional men, clean-shaven. Her mind was about to dismiss him—a guy I ran into in the physical therapist’s office and wasn’t attracted to, but not because he was an amputee, just because he wasn’t my fantasy. But something made her look again.
Holy shit. She knew that face. The strong jaw, the well-formed upper lip, the deep groove that ran vertically between his brows—
She’d memorized his features in the few weeks they’d been together, the quick three-quarters way he smiled, like he couldn’t quite fully commit to happiness, the all-in truth of his smile when he gave himself over. The creases that formed when he frowned, the way his jaw set when something bothered him. That night at the lake—the last night—the look on his face when she’d taken off her clothes. Gratitude and longing and Who, me? For real?
The night came back to her in sharp contrasts, pairs of impressions. The coolness of his wet skin and the heat of his body. The softness of his mouth moving over hers, over her breasts, and the hard tug of his suckling, the yank of desire she’d felt. The rich summer smells, green and overripe, and the clean soap scent of him. How open she’d felt, how boundary-less, melting, flowing, willing—and how her body had betrayed and frustrated her.
How good he’d made her feel, better than she’d ever felt in her life, and the way he’d hurt her. The way they’d dressed, packed up, and driven home in silence. How hard she’d cried, and for how long.
Jake.
His eyes caught hers, caught and held and held and held. Sam’s gray-blue eyes, Sam’s full lower lip, Sam’s absurdly long eyelashes. Jake’s face.
Would Sam someday have a jaw like that, square and strong? Would his nose, which was still a little boy’s pudgy upturned nose, be as bladelike as his father’s?
How many times had she promised herself that if this moment ever came, she wouldn’t hold the truth back from Jake?

Info Sheet

  • Title: Hold On Tight
  • Author: Serena Bell
  • Category: Contemporary romance
  • ISBN: 978-1-7328948-0-8
  • Format: e-book
  • Publication Date: February 26, 2019
  • Pages: 247
  • Price: $3.99
  • Available from: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Apple Books, Google Play

About the Author

Photo credit Susan Young








USA Today bestselling author Serena Bell writes contemporary romance with heat, heart, and humor. A former journalist, Serena has always believed that everyone has an amazing story to tell if you listen carefully, and you can often find her scribbling in her tiny garret office, mainlining chocolate and bringing to life the tales in her head.
Serena’s books have earned many honors, including an RT Reviewers’ Choice Award, Apple Books Best Book of the Month, and Amazon Best Book of the Year for Romance.
When not writing, Serena loves to spend time with her college-sweetheart husband and two hilarious kiddos—all of whom are incredibly tolerant not just of Serena’s imaginary friends but also of how often she changes her hobbies and how passionately she embraces the new ones. These days, it’s stand-up paddle boarding, board-gaming, meditation, and long walks with good friends.

Social Media Links


Buy Links for Hold On Tight.



Monday, 25 February 2019

Review: All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover


Colleen Hoover delivers a tour de force novel about a troubled marriage and the one old forgotten promise that might be able to save it.

Quinn and Graham’s perfect love is threatened by their imperfect marriage. The memories, mistakes, and secrets that they have built up over the years are now tearing them apart. The one thing that could save them might also be the very thing that pushes their marriage beyond the point of repair.

All Your Perfects is a profound novel about a damaged couple whose potential future hinges on promises made in the past. This is a heartbreaking page-turner that asks: Can a resounding love with a perfect beginning survive a lifetime between two imperfect people?

Paperback, 306 pages
Published July 17th 2018 by Atria Books

Terri's Thoughts

My sister and co-blogger has been a huge fan of Colleen Hoover for many years now. Since we share the blog, I have stayed away from her work in order to offer up our views on as many different author's and genres as possible.  The time has finally come for me to discover her work after she has talked about it so often.  This is my first foray in to her work and I chose to use audio format in order to make a flight less painful.  Boy am I glad I did.

The one thing my sister has always said to me, and documented in her reviews is that Hoover has a way of defining connections between people like no other and I have to say I agree.  This book was a perfect example of the good and the bad when two people connect.  Alternating between when Quinn and Graham first started their journey and the present day status of their journey, I was rivetted from the get go.

I will say that Hoover excels at the instant attraction and magic of a new relationship.  The witty banter and sizzling energy between the two had me in their corner from day one.  I was excited as Graham and Quinn were as they delved in to their future together.  I was as saddened and heartbroken in their present day situation as they were as well.  When the past and the present collided, I may have shed a tear or two.

I have to admit that it is rare that I rate a book outside of the historical fiction genre a 5 star rating however with this book I will go against my regular trend.  While I may be late to the game in discovering Hoover, I think the way I review books may change.  Who needs to bing watch Netflix when you can binge read Colleen Hoover!

Blog spoiler alert:  There may be many more Colleen Hoover books reviewed by me in the days to come!

About the Author


International and #1 New York Times bestselling author of romance, YA and Women's Fiction.

Still doesn't know the difference between affect/effect, further/farther, or if the oxford comma is in or out.



Sunday, 24 February 2019

Namast'eh Box: February Unboxing and Review

Namast'eh is a Canadian subscription box that delivers premium yoga and athletic wear from Canadian brands at 50% off retail value right to your door. There are three different subscriptions to choose from.

The True North Box- 3 piece Premium Outfit $119.00
The Glowing Heart Box- 2 piece Premium Outfit $89.00
The Maple Leaf Box- 1 Pair Premium Leggings or Capris $59.00

You can choose to get your box every month, every second month or every three months and you are not locked into a plan of any kind. This means that you can pause or cancel your subscription at any time without penalty. How it works is you choose your subscription, complete your profile (sizes, activities) and your box gets delivered to your door.

At the moment I am subscribed to the True North Box and I have it coming every month. I plan to give it a few months to see how I like it and the products before I decide if I want to continue monthly or less frequently or at all.

This is what it looks like when you first open the box.


This is what the outfit looks like all together


The sports bra

Tonic Active- Nevah Bra in Hybrid Red ($68.00)

Tonic Active is an Eco- conscious company that provides innovative active wear and lifestyle apparel out of Vancouver, British Columbia. I got this exact same sports bra in last months box but in Cobalt. Normally something like that would annoy me but it doesn't and I'll tell you why. I took this bra from last months box on vacation with me a couple of weeks ago to do my morning workouts. I have to say that this sports bra is the most comfortable sports bra that I have ever had on my body. I loved how it felt and how it stood up to my workouts. Having just put this bra to the test and loving it had me shouting "yes" when I received another one. This picture does not do it justice (it looks pink in this pic) but the colour is an amazing red. I love, love, love this piece!



The layering piece


MPG- Hudson Performance Cashmere Tee in Charcoal ($66.00)

The Hudson Tee is a stylish boxy tee in a cashmere blend fabric that is temperature regulating, defining affordable luxury. I apologise for how wrinkled the shirt is in my picture. The box the outfit comes in is pretty small so things can be pretty wrinkled when they come out. This tee is just super soft and comfortable and will go with just about anything you put it with. I am very happy with this piece too.

The leggings


Tonic Active- Nevah Crop in Black ($80.00)

I haven't had the opportunity to test these leggings out yet so I can't really speak to the quality and my satisfaction with them yet. They are definitely pricey and I'm not sure if I was at a store that I would pay that much for them. I specifically requested crops because of my height and I envision wearing them a lot for running outside in the nicer weather.

The retail value of these items is $214.00 so the box is 50% off that price and definitely a great savings. After receiving the box for three months now I can definitely say that the sports bras that I have been receiving are my favourite pieces with the layering tops coming in a close second. Once I have the opportunity to try out the leggings more I may change my opinion. I will let you know. I think I'll stick with the subscription a little longer and see what else they send me. It's always fun to unwrap a new outfit.

Saturday, 23 February 2019

Review: The Sweetness of Forgetting by Kristin Harmel

A baker in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, must travel to Paris to uncover a family secret for her dying grandmother's and what she learns may change everything. The Sweetness of Forgetting is the book that made Kristin Harmel an international bestseller.

At thirty-six, Hope McKenna-Smith is no stranger to bad news. She lost her mother to cancer, her husband left her for a twenty-two year old, and her bank account is nearly depleted. Her own dreams of becoming a lawyer long gone, she's running a failing family bakery on Cape Cod and raising a troubled preteen.

Now, Hope's beloved French-born grandmother Mamie, who wowed the Cape with her fabulous pastries for more than fifty years, is drifting away into a haze of Alzheimer's. But in a rare moment of clarity, Mamie realizes that unless she tells Hope about the past, the secrets she has held on to for so many years will soon be lost forever. Tantalizingly, she reveals mysterious snippets of a tragic history in Paris. And then, arming her with a scrawled list of names, she sends Hope to France to uncover a seventy-year-old mystery.

Hope's emotional journey takes her through the bakeries of Paris and three religious traditions, all guided by Mamie's fairy tales and the sweet tastes of home. As Hope pieces together her family's history, she finds horrific Holocaust stories mixed with powerful testimonies of her family's will to survive in a world gone mad. And to reunite two lovers torn apart by terror, all she'll need is a dash of courage, and the belief that God exists everywhere, even in cake..

Paperback, 368 pages
Published August 7th 2012 by Gallery Books (first published 2012)

Terri's Thoughts

This was a story that I randomly chose by browsing Goodreads recommendations and chose to listen to it in audio format.  I didn't realize at the time that both Kristine (my co-blogger) and I had already read some of her other works.  I read How to Save a Life and awarded it a five start rating while Kristine read The Room on Rue Amelie and also gave a five star rating.  When I realized this I was more eager than ever to get in to the story.

Those who listen to audio books know that it takes forever to get through them as it is much faster to read the written version (unless you really speed up the program).  I seemed to get through it extremely fast.  The reason why?  I was so engrossed in the story that I seemed to listen to it every possible waking moment.  I listened with my morning coffee while catching up on the world news, while cooking dinner, while cleaning the house and while in the shower.  I literally didn't put it down.

Now I must apologize that I will be unable to write the deep and moving review that I was planning as life got in the way after I finished it and some time has passed since completing it so I really wont be able to do it justice.  The good news is that this is not a new story so I am confident that out of the 9.2K reviews on Goodreads, someone was able to do the justice this story deserves.  If not, I know Kristine has this book on her TBR file and perhaps she will be able to give the glowing review I had planned to.

I am a sucker for wartime stories and that is likely one of the reasons why I fell in love with this story.  I also found it to be a refreshing take on the genre as the majority of the story takes place in present time while only briefly slipping in to the past.  The reader is putting the pieces together of Mamie's past at the same time Hope does.  All of the tragedy is there however it is experienced by a third party who can't possibly truly understand the time.

I wont discuss how it ends however it got me in the gut in both a sad and happy way that one could understand by reading the story.  This story stayed with me long after it finished and I would recommend it to all fans of historical fiction  It has also convinced me that I should continue to explore the library of Harmel's work as she has not let me or my sister down yet.


About the Author


Kristin Harmel is the international bestselling author of THE SWEETNESS OF FORGETTING, THE LIFE INTENDED, WHEN WE MEET AGAIN, and several other novels. Her latest, THE ROOM ON RUE AMELIE, is out now from Gallery Books/Simon & Schuster. A former reporter for PEOPLE magazine, Kristin has also freelanced for many other publications, including American Baby, Men’s Health, Glamour, Woman’s Day, Travel + Leisure, and more.

Kristin grew up in Peabody, Mass.; Worthington, Ohio; and St. Petersburg, Fla., and she graduated with a degree in journalism (with a minor in Spanish) from the University of Florida. After spending time living in Paris, she now lives in Orlando, Fla., with her husband and young son.





Thursday, 21 February 2019

Review: The Last Letter by Rebecca Yarros

Beckett,

If you’re reading this, well, you know the last-letter drill. You made it. I didn’t. Get off the guilt train, because I know if there was any chance you could have saved me, you would have.

I need one thing from you: get out of the army and get to Telluride.

My little sister Ella’s raising the twins alone. She’s too independent and won’t accept help easily, but she has lost our grandmother, our parents, and now me. It’s too much for anyone to endure. It’s not fair.

And here’s the kicker: there’s something else you don’t know that’s tearing her family apart. She’s going to need help.

So if I’m gone, that means I can’t be there for Ella. I can’t help them through this. But you can. So I’m begging you, as my best friend, go take care of my sister, my family.

Please don’t make her go through it alone.

Ryan


Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Expected publication: February 26th 2019 by Entangled: Amara 
Genre: Contemporary Romance

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

I'm just going to come right out and say it. THIS BOOK RUINED ME! I was not at all prepared for the emotional paces that this book put me through. It was marketed as contemporary romance so I expected a little conflict, some misunderstandings and a whole lot of sexual tension but I was not at all prepared for the number of tears that this book got from me. It was so much more and the story was so much bigger than a typical contemporary romance. Sigh...

The book starts with Ryan asking his sister to be a pen pal for his friend who didn't have anyone while they were away serving. Ella and Chaos start a beautiful friendship with pen and  paper. When Ryan was killed in action, his last letter was delivered to his best friend asking him to go and help his sister because she needed it but would never ask for it. Due to circumstances surrounding Ryan's death, Chaos honoured his wishes but showed up in Telluride to help Ella, whom he had fallen in love with from her letters, with his real name and lying by omission that he was Chaos.

Sounds like the makings of an interesting love story right? That's what I thought too. However, it was so much more than that. There were six year old twins involved and a cancer diagnosis on top of it. The developing love story wasn't just between Beckett and Ella but also between Beckett and the twins. Cancer played a very big role in The Last Letter and the emotional ride was long and intense. At the heart of it, the story was about trust, love, loyalty and family but without all of the rainbows and unicorns to get them there. It was at times beautiful like reading the growing relationship between Beckett, Cole and Maisie and devastating at other times reading about the cancer treatments and insurance bills.

The story alternated between Beckett and Ella's point of view with each chapter starting with one of the letters that they wrote to each other while Beckett (Chaos) was deployed. I loved this because I was able to get a feel for the relationship they developed from pen alone and the emotional connection that Beckett already had to Ella when he arrived in Telluride as someone else.

WARNING... just when I thought the roller coaster was nearing the end and I was cozied up this morning to finish the last hour of the book, it got me again! It literally reached within my body cavity, grabbed my heart, ripped it out and threw it out the window. I kid you not! It is now hours later and I am still searching through the broken glass in an effort to find my heart and put it back where it belongs. I was completely blindsided and I have absolutely no words. Seriously! I can't say any more than that but I desperately want to. I need someone else to read this book so that I have someone to discuss it with. Like I mentioned before, I am ruined and heartbroken over this book. Maybe even a little bit mad.

This book was beautiful but not in the typical way and it wasn't the type of light and fluffy romance that you would think it would be from reading the synopsis. It was highly, highly emotional and incredibly sad at times. You really need to be prepared for it or you won't appreciate it to the degree that it should be appreciated. Grab the Kleenex and buckle yourself in and please, please come back and tell me what you thought. I really need to discuss this book with other people. I want to say that I loved it but I don't feel that is a proper descriptor for such an emotionally charged book that I hated a little at the same time.

 


About the Author
Rebecca Yarros is a hopeless romantic and a lover of all things coffee, chocolate, and Paleo. She is the author of the Flight & Glory series, including Full Measures, the award-winning Eyes Turned Skyward, Beyond What is Given, and Hallowed Ground. Her new Renegade Series features Wilder and the upcoming Nova, and is sure to keep your heart pounding. She loves military heroes, and has been blissfully married to hers for fourteen years.

When she’s not writing, she’s tying hockey skates for her four sons, sneaking in some guitar time, or watching brat-pack movies with her two daughters. She lives in Colorado with the hottest Apache pilot ever, their rambunctious gaggle of kids, an English bulldog who is more stubborn than sweet, and a bunny named General Fluffy Pants who torments the aforementioned bulldog. They recently adopted their youngest daughter from the foster system, and Rebecca is passionate about helping others do the same.

Connect with Rebecca
 

Wednesday, 20 February 2019

Review: Home at Last by Shirlee McCoy


eturning to their hometown isn't something the Bradshaw brothers ever thought they'd do. But a family tragedy has reunited them in Benevolence, Washington--where second chances, reignited dreams, and real love are never far away . . . Texas rancher Flynn Bradshaw has his work cut out for him. His sister-in-law, Sunday, is finally home after the car crash that killed her husband and left her critically injured. But Flynn still has to get her failing ancestral farm up and running while looking after his six nieces and nephews. He prefers wide open spaces and working solo. Yet as he tries to get the grieving Sunday to care about her life again, he's finding a chance for love that's closer than he ever expected . . .

Even before the accident, Sunday struggled to keep the farm afloat as her once-happy marriage crumbled. Now with her body still recovering, she can't seem to get back the hope she once had. But as she reconnects with her children, Flynn's dedication, love for the land, and caring slowly inspire her to dream again. Is their growing affection enough to help them through unresolved pain--and risk trying for a future together?

Paperback, 352 pages

Expected publication: February 26th 2019 by Zebra

Terri's Thoughts

** I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you!**

This is the third and final (I am assuming because there are no more brothers left to write about) instalment of the Bradshaw brother series.  As in all the previous editions, this was a fast and easy read.

In this story, we finally get to see Sunday's point of view as she struggles to get back to normal following her accident which is was the backstory of the entire series.

I struggle to write this review as for me, the story flew by  before I knew it I was at the end.  I think I mentioned it before with the first two books but this is a good story (and series) if you are looking for a romance that is clean.  As the main focus is on the welfare of the children and the land, there is not a lot of room for the steamy scenes in this book.  It is refreshing.

While I kind of felt that the romance between Flynn and Sunday came out of nowhere, (potential spoiler) it was nice to see the happily ever after in this series conclusion.



About the Author


Website

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Review: When You're Gone by Brooke Harris

1958
In a small town like Athenry, people talk. Everyone’s noticed that the injury which stopped Annie Fagan’s father from working doesn’t prevent him from hitting his wife. But a man’s home is his castle, and no one is going to intervene.

Until Annie runs into Arthur ‘Sketch’ Talbot. Sketch is determined to help Annie, and the two soon fall in love. But Annie’s father won’t give his daughter up lightly, and Sketch’s attempts to save her will have devastating consequences…

Now
Holly’s world is falling apart. Her unborn baby is seriously ill, her relationship is fracturing before her eyes, and her Nana is dying. But Nana has one final wish before she leaves: to read, one last time, the handwritten story of her first – and last – love, Albert ‘Sketch’ Talbot.

As Holly reads to Nana, could it help her find the strength to face her own future? Could fulfilling her grandmother’s final wish really be a gift for Holly?

Compelling, heart-breaking, and emotionally vivid, When You’re Gone will break your heart and fix it anew. A gripping and emotional novel about family, love and sacrifice, for fans of Diane Chamberlain, Susan Lewis and Kathryn Hughes’ The Letter.

Previously published as When It Rains. This edition contains significant editorial revisions


Expected publication: March 14th 2019
Genre: Fiction

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from Bookouture via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

When You're Gone (previously published as When It Rains) is highly rated on Goodreads so I was excited to dive into it. I don't often look at other ratings but sometimes when I'm looking to discover "new to me" authors it is a good starting point. Unfortunately this can sometimes leave me with high expectations that aren't always met.

When You're Gone told the story of Holly at the end of her Grandmother's life (now) and Annie's love story (then) with a man named Sketch. I thoroughly enjoyed Annie's story and her developing relationship with Sketch. In fact, I enjoyed it so much that I craved more of it than I got. The book stayed in the present and dealt with a lot of grief more than it went to Annie's story in the past. The tidbits from the past were too brief and far between for my liking. It left me wanting more.

I found the present day story surrounding Holly very depressing. She was dealing with a dying Grandmother a struggling relationship and a very sick unborn child. The interactions between family members was sometimes juvenile and annoying. I also struggled with some of Holly's decisions and actions. Having just lost my own mother this past year I thought that I would be able to empathise way more than I did with the situation. There was a little disconnect that I can't quite explain. Perhaps this story came a little too soon for me to fully appreciate. Perhaps it was a little too neat, tidy and predictable to be believable. I'm not sure. Perhaps it was simply the fact that I was enjoying Annie and Sketch so much that I was anxious to get back to them.

Overall When You're Gone was a good book but a sad book. You really need to be in the right frame of mind to read it. It was about death and dying but had some beautiful moments and messages mixed in with all of the sadness. It is definitely worth reading when you are in the right frame of mind. I think readers will love Annie and Sketch.





Monday, 18 February 2019

Review: Forgiveness Road by Mandy Mikulencak



n this powerful and ultimately uplifting new novel set in 1970s Mississippi, the acclaimed author of The Last Suppers tells of three generations of women whose lives are thrown into upheaval when a dark secret is brutally exposed . . .

On a hot, humid July morning, sixteen-year-old Cissy Pickering calmly and deliberately shoots her father in the back.

To their Mississippi community, the death of well-regarded attorney Richard Pickering is a fascinating scandal. To Cissy's distraught mother, Caroline, it's an unforgivable crime. But in Cissy's troubled mind, killing her father was the only way she knew to save the two people she loves most in the world. For years, Cissy has endured a devil's bargain with her father, hoping that he would leave her younger sisters alone if she kept his abuse to herself. When that thin trust shattered, she saw no other choice.

Janelle Clayton, the family's matriarch, has kept her distance from her daughter, Caroline--a fact she now regrets--yet she hopes to do right by her granddaughter. Cissy has always been an unusual girl, given to compulsive counting and list-making, but Janelle believes her implicitly. When Cissy is remanded to the Greater Mississippi State Hospital, a caring psychiatrist tries to help, yet new revelations drive Cissy to retreat even further from reality. It will fall to Janelle, despite her own failing health, to become Cissy's advocate and rescuer. And over the course of an unlikely road trip, Janelle and Cissy will confront the truths they've hidden from the world and themselves, finding courage, deep-rooted resilience, and a bond tender and tough enough to transform them both.
 

Hardcover, 304 pages
Expected publication: February 26th 2019 by John Scognamiglio Book

Terri's Thoughts

** I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.  Thank you**

This story covers some pretty serious topics ranging from sexual abuse, mental health and racial boundaries in the 1970's.  Naturally I had to read it.

I went through several emotions while reading this, disgust, pity, and sadness being some of the predominant ones.  I felt disgust for what happened to Cissy and for the way her mother treated her when the truth came out.  Pity for Cissy who suffered in silence and for her journey in a mental health facility.  Sadness for Janelle for well, pretty much everything.

This is not a story that will give you the warm and fuzzies.  It deals with serious subject matters and while well written, is a heavy read due to the subject matter.  My only item for contemplation was the way Cissy was portrayed.  I couldn't decide if she really did have mental health issues and was written that way, or if her oddities were just coping mechanisms as she read as someone much younger than she really was.  I guess the two are closely linked so it doesn't really matter much.

While not a lot of good is written about in this book, I do have to say that I absolutely loved the ending.  The whole time I was reading this I was wondering how there would be a clean way to conclude the story.  I can say that Mikulencak nailed it!



About the Author


Mandy Mikulencak has been a writer her entire working life. First, as a journalist, then as an editor and PR specialist for two national nonprofits and a United Nations agency. Today she lives in the mountains of Southwest Colorado with her husband. Her historical novel, THE LAST SUPPERS, was released by Kensington Publishing in late 2017. Her next book, FORGIVENESS ROAD, comes out in March 2019. 



Sunday, 17 February 2019

Review: I Owe You One by Sophie Kinsella

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Sophie Kinsella, an irresistible story of love and empowerment about a young woman with a complicated family, a handsome man who might be “the one,” and an IOU that changes everything

Fixie Farr has always lived by her father’s motto: “Family first.” But since her dad passed away, leaving his charming housewares store in the hands of his wife and children, Fixie spends all her time picking up the slack from her siblings instead of striking out on her own. The way Fixie sees it, if she doesn’t take care of her father’s legacy, who will? It’s simply not in her nature to say no to people.

So when a handsome stranger in a coffee shop asks her to watch his laptop for a moment, Fixie not only agrees—she ends up saving it from certain disaster. Turns out the computer’s owner is an investment manager. To thank Fixie for her quick thinking, Sebastian scribbles an IOU on a coffee sleeve and attaches his business card. But Fixie laughs it off—she’d never actually claim an IOU from a stranger. Would she?

Then Fixie’s childhood crush, Ryan, comes back into her life and his lack of a profession pushes all of Fixie’s buttons. She wants nothing for herself—but she’d love Seb to give Ryan a job. And Seb agrees, until the tables are turned once more and a new series of IOUs between Seb and Fixie—from small favors to life-changing moments—ensues. Soon Fixie, Ms. Fixit for everyone else, is torn between her family and the life she really wants. Does she have the courage to take a stand? Will she finally grab the life, and love, she really wants?


Kindle Edition, 432 pages
Expected publication: February 19th 2019 by The Dial Press
Genre: Womans Fiction/Chic Lit

Kristine's Thoughts:

** I received an advanced readers copy from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!**

I've read a ton of Sophie Kinsella books. I have loved almost all of them. She has a way of bringing quirky and unique characters to life on the page. Most of them are dysfunctional but grow and learn as the story progresses. This is what her books are known for.

Fixie Farr definitely fit into the quirky and unique category with her need to fix things and her unusual relationship with her family. For some reason though, I had a harder time getting behind her than characters in past books. I found myself completely frustrated with her unhealthy and self deprecating obsession with her brother's best friend Ryan. Her level of self worth and confidence and her total ignorance of all the warning signs made me feel sad when I know some of the events in the book were meant to be funny. It was hard for me to look past all of her issues to enjoy the plot or the direction it was heading. I just wanted to call a therapist!

If you were to take Ryan out of the picture (or to the degree he was) the story improved. I enjoyed most of the parts involving Fixie and Sebastian but I felt that story line took too much of a backseat in the beginning. Their story didn't really pick up until the book was half finished.

There were moments of what I have come to love in a Sophie Kinsella book hidden in the pages but not as many as I would have liked. I wouldn't say that I disliked this book but it definitely wasn't as great as the ones I've read in the past.





About the Author

Sophie Kinsella has sold over 40 million copies of her books in more than 60 countries, and she has been translated into over 40 languages.

Sophie Kinsella first hit the UK bestseller lists in September 2000 with her first novel in the Shopaholic series – The Secret Dreamworld of a Shopaholic (also published as Confessions of a Shopaholic). The book’s heroine, Becky Bloomwood – a fun and feisty financial journalist who loves shopping but is hopeless with money – captured the hearts of readers worldwide. Becky has since featured in seven further bestselling books, Shopaholic Abroad (also published as Shopaholic Takes Manhattan), Shopaholic Ties the Knot, Shopaholic & Sister, Shopaholic & Baby, Mini Shopaholic, Shopaholic to the Stars and Shopaholic to the Rescue. Becky Bloomwood came to the big screen in 2009 with the hit Disney movie Confessions of a Shopaholic, starring Isla Fisher and Hugh Dancy.

Sophie has also written seven standalone novels which have all been bestsellers in the UK, USA and other countries around the world: Can You Keep A Secret?, The Undomestic Goddess, Remember Me?, Twenties Girl, I’ve Got Your Number, Wedding Night, and My Not So Perfect Life, which was a Goodreads Choice Awards finalist for Best Fiction in 2017.

In 2014 she published a Young Adult novel Finding Audrey about a teenage girl with social anxiety and her madcap family, and in January 2018, Sophie published her first illustrated book for young readers about the charming adventures of a mother-daughter fairy duo, Mummy Fairy and Me (also published as Fairy Mom and Me).

Sophie’s latest novel, Surprise Me, published in February 2018, presents a humorous yet moving portrait of a marriage—its intricacies, comforts, and complications. Surprise Me reveals that hidden layers in a close relationship are often yet to be discovered.

Sophie wrote her first novel under her real name, Madeleine Wickham, at the tender age of 24, whilst she was working as a financial journalist. The Tennis Party was immediately hailed as a success by critics and the public alike and became a top ten bestseller. She went on to publish six more novels as Madeleine Wickham: A Desirable Residence, Swimming Pool Sunday, The Gatecrasher, The Wedding Girl, Cocktails for Three and Sleeping Arrangements.

Sophie was born in London. She studied music at New College, Oxford, but after a year switched to Politics, Philosophy and Economics. She now lives in London, UK, with her husband and family.


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