Monday, 31 March 2014

The Coffee Shop Book Club - Breast Cancer Care

The Coffee Shop Book ClubThe Coffee Shop Book Club by Breast Cancer Care
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'Irresistible stories of love and fidelity, mystery and unexpected lives from some of the bestselling authors writing today, including Kate Mosse, Cathy Kelly and Ian Rankin.

Published in conjunction with Woman & Home and Breast Cancer Care, this collection of terrific short stories includes many of the top names in fiction writing today: Fanny Blake, Fern Britton, Elizabeth Buchan, Tracy Chevalier, Jenny Colgan, R J Ellory, Julia Gregson, Tessa Hadley, Maeve Haran, Veronica Henry, Victoria Hislop, Eowyn Ivey, Cathy Kelly, Erin Kelly, Deborah Lawrenson, Kathy Lette, Lesley Lokko, Jill Mansell, Val McDermid, Kate Mosse, Jojo Moyes, Adele Parks, Nicky Pellegrino, Ian Rankin, newcomer Cara Ross, Penny Vincenzi and Katherine Webb.'

I was very lucky to have been sent this wonderful book in exchange for an honest review.

I love reading short stories, I feel it allows you to get to experience authors perhaps you would have never of thought about reading. This book allows you to do just that.

This is an excellent collection of short stories by many well - known authors, which have not stuck to one genre. There is something to suit everyone!

I am not going to talk about individual stories, they are short and I don't want to give them all away, plus there are 28 of them in total!!

All of the stories are well written and perfect for the busy lady who can only capture time to read in her lunch hour/while the child is asleep etc. It allows you to feel you have accomplished reading a whole story and you have been able to enjoy every moment of it.

I would recommend this short story collection to everyone, you will be surprised with the content and maybe even discover an author you never knew. The best bit? £1 for the sale goes to Breast Cancer.

Go out and grab your copy today!!!

Friday, 28 March 2014

Confessions of a Chalet Girl - Lorraine Wilson

Confessions of a Chalet Girl (Ski Season, #1)Confessions of a Chalet Girl by Lorraine Wilson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'Set in the exclusive Swiss ski resort of Verbier, the winter playground of the rich and famous, Confessions of a Chalet Girl is a fun and flirty contemporary romance novella from the fabulous Lorraine Wilson.

The slopes seriously start to heat up when chalet girl Holly is propositioned by her sexy new boss!'

I didn't really know what to expect when I downloaded this story for my kindle. It is a fun holiday read, perfect for the plane or while commuting.

The story is based on Holly, she decides to sign herself up to go to a ski centre for the winter, she was meant to be going with a friend but unfortunately that is no longer possible. This is totally unlike anything Holly has ever done before, however she takes it in her stride and attends alone. She is not like your typical girls there. Holly begins to try to mix in and in the process meets Scott, who as she finds out soon enough is her boss.

This is a light hearted read. It has everything a girl could want in a novella. The story did seem slightly rushed as it was so short and I felt that it could have been developed.

This book will make you drift off to the ski slopes for a few hours out of your hectic day.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Holding Paradise - Fran Clark and Giveaway!

Cover Reveal (with giveaway)

Publishing 14th April 2014
On a grey and miserable morning in 2008, London businesswoman, Angelica Ford boards a plane and flies off to the blues and greens of her mother’s island in the Caribbean. Angelica is desperate. She is looking for a way to save her marriage and win back her daughter. A web of lies has torn a hole into her seemingly perfect world and she is convinced that only her mother, Josephine Dennis, can help her turn her life around.
Josephine Dennis arrived in England by ship on a cold winter’s morning as a young mother joining her husband. She weathers a lifetime of secrets and betrayal, as she raises her family in 1960s London. A matriarch with strong family values, she told her children colourful stories to guide them through life. It is the wisdom of one of these stories that Angelica seeks. Josephine has one last story to tell – the story that could change both of their lives.

About the Author

Fran Clark was born and currently lives in West London. Her first novel, Holding Paradise, is published in 2014 by Indigo Dreams Publishing. Fran is studying for a Creative Writing MA at Brunel University. A professional-singer songwriter and vocal coach, she recently released her second album of original songs. She is now working towards the completion of her second novel.
Author Links


To enter the giveaway of a copy of Holding Paradise, follow Fran Clark on Twitter @FranClarkAuthor and let her know in the comments below:

“What was your favourite story growing up and how did it change your life?”

For UK entrants the giveaway is a paperback copy and International entrants, an ecopy.  Don’t forget to leave your Twitter name and whether you are entering for UK or International.  The author will choose the overall winner after the closing date of 11th April 2014.

Monday, 24 March 2014

The Island Hideaway - Louise Candlish

The Island HideawayThe Island Hideaway by Louise Candlish
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

'How far would you follow him before you accept it's over? 

Eleanor Blake, distraught after breaking up with her fiance Will, decides to do what most would scarcely dare: secretly follow him to the island hideaway where he's on holiday with the woman who took her place. But on the shimmering, sun-drenched Sicilian island of Panarea, distractions come in many forms - including her fellow hotel guest Lewis, an enigmatic Englishman with secrets of his own to protect. And then there's Frannie, a young Italian actress on the island to prepare for her first film role, who is as charming as she is beautiful. Can she really be so perfect? And shouldn't Eleanor be the first to suspect that things might not be as they seem? 

The Island Hideaway is a surprising, insightful and compelling novel from the bestselling author of Since I Don't Have You.'

I had previously read a short story by Louise Candlish and enjoyed it so much that I bought this one.

Since reading the book I have found out this was published a few years ago under a different name - Prickly Heat. Since then it has been updated to fit into the world today. Things such as technology have changed which the author updated. Was this necessary? I am not sure, however the cover of the book also was update, which I think has been for the better. It appealed to me more and I am sure some others would feel the same.

The book follows Eleanor, she pursues her ex- fiance to an island. I found the story very hard to get into, it starts straight in what felt like the middle of the story. I found it hard to work out who was who and build up the scene/plot. This eventually became apparent and throughout the story we go from the past to the present so understanding the characters became clear. This was something else that I found hard to follow.

The plot of the story is an unbelievable one, Eleanor follows her ex - fiance to an island to 'spy' on him, she spends her days trying to look out for him but at the same time trying not to be seen. The likely hood of this actually happening is slim to non. But it is chick lit in style and relatively easy to read. At the beginning of the book, I was wondering how this was going to pan out and what Eleanor was going to do when she did spot Will. I felt that actually little happened, she watches him from various places and even meets up with his now current partner but nothing surprising happens. This I felt was a bit disappointing and at the end of the story I actually felt a little flat.

We also meet the other characters in the book who are staying at the same hotel as Eleanor and actually I enjoyed reading about them more and what they got up to. This created a diversion in the book at kept it moving.

This is a good beach read for you to pack in your case, as it has the holiday feel while reading it. Overall I found the book to be O.K - nothing taxing but perfect for the beach.

View all my reviews

Saturday, 22 March 2014

Keep your friends close - Paula Daly with Giveaway!

Keep Your Friends CloseKeep Your Friends Close by Paula Daly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'Natty and Sean Wainwright are happily married. Rock solid in fact. So when Natty's oldest friend, Eve Dalladay, appears - just as their daughter collapses on a school trip in France - Natty has no qualms about leaving Eve with Sean to help out at home.

Two weeks later and Natty finds Eve has slotted into family life too well. Natty's husband has fallen in love with Eve. He's sorry, he tells her, but their marriage is over.

With no option but to put a brave face on things for the sake of the children, Natty embarks on building a new life for herself.

And then she receives the note.

Eve has done this before, more than once, and with fatal consequences...'

When I was contacted on Twitter inviting me to join the 'Keep your friend's close' book blog tour I jumped at the chance. To begin with I was worried I wouldn't have enough time to read it before I needed to post the review on my blog. I should not have been worried, I read the book in two sittings (less than 24 hours) and was surprised how quickly I finished it.

Paula Daly is a new author to me, I had not heard of her debut novel, however after reading this I would rush out to get it and read.

Natty and Sean are happily married, they were childhood sweethearts, followed each other to university and now have two teenage daughters, Felicity and Alice. It was a relationship that everyone thought wouldn't last but they proved them all wrong. Today they run a very successful hotel in the Lakes, have a wonderful car and house. From the outside they have the perfect life.

Natty works very hard to keep the perfect family life, running after everyone and juggling being a mum with running a hotel. One thing she has neglected lately is her husband Sean, but he understands she is busy right?

Sean hasn't been happy in their marriage for a while, it's as if Natty doesn't have any time for him anymore. He can't remember the last time they actually spent any time together, just the two of them. He is beginning to feel abandoned and that he is so far down the line of getting any attention off of Natty as she has more important things to care about. But he is important isn't he? And he has needs too...

Felicity is on a school trip in France, there is a problem and she is called to come quickly. Luckily Natty's old university friend Eve is staying to look after her family for her.

Eve Dalladay is Natty's old friend who she hasn't seen in years, she currently lives in America but after an argument with her husband flees the country and comes back to the UK. She turns up at Natty's at a time when she needs her, they both have been through so much and know each other inside and out, or do they? Eve has a plan and sets straight to work while Natty is away. After all Natty won't mind her staying looking after her family, they go back so far and she trusts her with her life. It doesn't take long for Natty's life to get turned upside down and Eve is behind it.

Natty needs to be sensible, she is having her life ruined by someone who she thought was her friend, she has taken her husband and she knows if she is not careful her daughters will follow suit.

This is a brilliant story, the characters are real and deep. The story line is excellent, believable and gets your questioning do you really know your friends. It is excellently written and keeps you hooked throughout. I was routing for Natty to expose the truth and willing someone to believe her, I became passionate about her as a character, I really got behind her. I hated Eve and I desperately wanted her to be found out and want Sean to see what she was capable of. She gives the persona of a monster who will not stop until she gets what she wants and this makes the story a captivating read.

Other characters are introduced into the story such as Natty's dad, Jackie and Eve's mother. These provide background information on the main characters and we follow their journey from their past to the present day. This helps give different opinions and to help you form your own opinion on them.

I enjoyed the book immensely, however I did feel like I was left wanting a little more. I felt questions weren't answered and it was left to the readers interpretation. Had the book been a little longer I felt some of these questions could have been answered. There were a few twists I was not expecting during the book - particularly towards the end which made me enjoy the book even more. I found the book gripping and captivating and I would recommend others to read this.

I would like to thank Alison for sending me this copy to review. Alison has also very kindly given me a copy to offer as a giveaway! This book is a must read so be sure to enter!

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Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Hidden - Barbara Taylor Bradford

HiddenHidden by Barbara Taylor Bradford
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

'On the surface, Claire Saunders has it all. She has a rewarding career in fashion and a talented concert pianist daughter. Her loving husband is one of the country’s most trusted diplomats. 

She thinks she’s hidden her secret from her best friends, but they know her too well. 

Can her friends get her out of harm’s way and protect her from a man who is as ruthless as he is charming and powerful? And along the way, can Claire learn to stop protecting the wrong people?'

I normally really enjoy short stories, and I did enjoy this, however I felt that the story line was a little deep to be covered and it didn't do it as much justice as it could have.

The story centers around domestic violence, Clare is married to Mark - her soul mate and has been for many years. Mark has a high profile job and is regularly away on business. When he is at home he has begun to abuse Clare, she had changed from a confident woman, into a timid one who tries to cover for him.

Clare has been best friends with 3 other girls for many years. They know things have change, and they have seen the bruises. One day they take it upon themselves to control the situation- Clare is too weak too.

In general the idea of the story I thought was good, it is far fetched in places but this could have been down to lack of background/build up which would have been evident in a longer novel.

I did enjoy the story, but I feel it would have benefited from being longer. It was well written, but not enough background was given for me to connect to the characters. This is a good short story that will help pass the time.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Chocolate Book Tag

I was tagged by to do the chocolate book tag which was originally thought up by Faye over at A Daydreamer's Thoughts. Here are my answers... Thanks again for the tag!

1.Dark chocolate: a book that covers a dark topic.

Keep your friends Close - this is a book I have very recently read and I thought was fabulous! It is  about betrayal of a friend and at what lengths they will go to, to get what they want. 

2.White chocolate: your favourite light hearted/humorous read.

This was the first Sophie Kinsella book that I ever read. I must say that this I think still remains my favourite. There are so many laugh out loud moments. 

3.Milk chocolate: a book that has a lot of hype that you're dying to read.

I have managed to get my hands on a copy of this finally!!! So it is sitting on my TBR pile, I am hoping to get round to it soon!

4. Chocolate with a caramel centre: a book that made you feel all gooey in the middle while you were reading it.

I read this at Christmas and I absolutely loved it! It has to be my favourite read of the season.

5. Wafer free kit kat: name a book that has surprised you lately.

 I was sent this book and I was really surprised about it. I would recommend this to read. 

6. Snickers: a book that you are going nuts about.

I have recently finished this book and I loved it. It was such a different read to what I have previously read and I really enjoyed it. 

7. Hot chocolate with cream and marshmallows: a book that you would turn to for a comfort read.

I read this years ago but it always has a place in my heart. 

8. Box of chocolates: what series have you read that you feel has a wide variety and something for everyone?

This is really hard as the series I have read have all been from the same genre so unfortunately I can not answer this!

Thanks to Catriona for tagging me, I would like to Tag

Margaret @bleachhouselibrary
Megan @meganinthesun
Jenny @jennymarston_xo
Erin @erinschoicee
Sharon @shazbookblog

Monday, 17 March 2014

The Perfect Match - Katie Fforde

The Perfect MatchThe Perfect Match by Katie Fforde
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'The wonderfully romantic new novel from the No. 1 Sunday Times bestselling author of Recipe for Love.

Three years ago Bella Castle left her home town nursing a broken heart over Dominic Thane, the man she fell in love with but couldn't have .

Now she's made a new life for herself in the country, working as an estate agent.

Bella loves her job and she loves her boyfriend Nevil. But recently he's been preoccupied, and she's starting to question if his future hopes and dreams are a perfect match for hers.

And when Dominic turns up unexpectedly in search of his dream house, she begins to wonder if home is really where the heart is. But she's over him, isn't she?'

When I was offered the chance to review the new title by Katie Fforde I jumped at the chance. I had never read any of Katie Fforde's novels - only a novella - how I do not know!

Bella is the central character in this novel, she is an estate agent who currently lives with her Godmother Alice. Bella is going out with her boss, Nevil. Bella ran from her previous job due to a man, Dominic who was a married man with a child. She left her job and her home for a chance to start again.

Bella, has a professional but friendly relationship with most of her clients as she really feels like she wants to help them. Jane is an elderly lady who loves her home but its beginning to become a little unmanageable for her. Nevil wants her to sell, unlike Bella who desperately tries to find ways of her remaining in her house. There is good news when her nephew Dominic is coming to stay with her - the same Dominic that Bella went running from!

I loved this book as not only do we follow Bella and her relationship but Alice her Godmother and her second chance at love, she meets Michael on a train and forms a firm friendship with him. Although there are many side stories in this novel they all come together really well and none of them feel rushed. Being younger, I was unsure how I would connect to Alice and her story, as she is an older woman, however I found that this was one of my favourite stories within the novel.

Although this was the first book I have read by Katie Fforde this will certainly not be the last. I would recommend this book to any woman, older or younger you will connect to the story in a way and thoroughly enjoy it. I found the book easy to read and read in two sittings. It was wonderfully written and left me with a heartwarming feel.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending me this copy. For me this was 'The Perfect Match!'

Friday, 14 March 2014

In her Shadow - Louise Douglas

In Her ShadowIn Her Shadow by Louise Douglas
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'Hannah Brown never thought she'd have a best friend like Ellen Brecht. Ellen is everything she isn't - beautiful, daring, glamorous and fierce. Growing up together in rural Cornwall, life seems perfect. But their idyllic childhood is shattered by obsession, betrayal and, ultimately, tragedy.

Hannah has tried for twenty years to forget what happened during that terrible summer. Then, one ordinary morning at work, she glimpses a woman who is identical to Ellen. Can it really be her? And has Ellen returned to forgive her - or to punish her?'

I have never read a book by Louise Douglas before and wow what a good one to start with! I have been so impressed with her book that now I have bought another one of her books!

Hannah Brown works in a museum in Bristol she has a relatively normal life. She has some secrets and had a mental breakdown a few years ago from something that has stemmed from her past. One day Hannah is having a normal day at work when she spots Ellen Brecht, the girl she tried so hard to forget from her past.

Ellen was Hannah's best friend. Ellen moved into Thornfield House, her grandmothers old house. Ellen and Hannah are completely different, Ellen can be intimidating and Hannah being the quieter of the two accepts her personality. Ellen has a struggle with her family life and Hannah sticks by her. However their lives become twisted with lies, betrayal and tragedy.

So was this Ellen that Hannah saw? What does she want? Hannah wants to get to the bottom of it and will not let it get to her as before.

This book takes your emotions on a range of journeys, it is captivating and from the moment I picked the book up to the moment I put it down I was hooked. It flowed wonderfully and was such an easy read.

The characters in the book are developed well and although this is told by Hannah's point of view, you can connect with all characters on some level.

The book is set into different chapters from Hannah's past and the present day, these link in nicely and I looked forward to reading about Hannah's past. I felt sad for Hannah at times in the book, the way Ellen treated her and her struggle with her own emotions in the book. I felt like I grew up with Hannah too, going from a teenager into an adult and coping with all she had to deal with. Towards the end of the book, I began to feel sad for Ellen and relised that life was not always as it seemed for her.

Louise Douglas knew how to build tension in this book and I couldn't wait to find out what was going to happen next. There were twists and turns through out the book and I did not find it predictable at all, which added to my enjoyment of the book. I found the book captivating and would urge others to read it.

I would like to thank the publisher for sending me such a fantastic book to review!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

The Escape - Lynda la Plante

The Escape (Quick Read 2014)The Escape by Lynda La Plante
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

'Is a change of identity all it takes to leave prison?
Colin Burrows is desperate. Recently sent to prison for burglary, he knows that his four year sentence means that he will miss the birth of his first child. With his wife's due date fast approaching, he had hoped that the prison authorities would allow him to be present for the birth, but they have said no.
Sharing a cell with Colin is Barry Marsden. Unlike most of the inmates, Barry actually likes prison life because he has come from a very difficult family and been in and out of a series of foster homes. In prison, he has three meals a day and he has discovered a talent for drawing. So he is upset that he will have to leave on parole soon.
Sad to see his cellmate looking depressed, Barry hatches a plan to get Colin out of jail for the birth. It's a plan so crazy that either it will fail and get both men in deeper trouble, or it might just work. 
Bestselling author Lynda La Plante's exciting tale of one man's escape from jail is based on a true story.'

I have never read a book by Lynda La Plante before and I didn't really know what to expect. I didn't think I would enjoy it too much, I must say I was pleasantly surprised.

This is a short little novella that had me hooked from the beginning. Colin is in prison and his wife is due to have a baby, he has asked to be released for the birth of his child but has been refused. He sinks into depression and the guards are worried about him. They move him into another cell where he meets his new cell mate Barry.

Barry is younger than Colin and has some learning difficulties. Colin just wants to be left alone but Barry is under strict instructions to cheer him up. They form a good friendship over the next few months, when Barry hears about Colin's problem with not being at the birth of his baby, Barry wants to do all he can to help.

Together they come up with a plan that if works will allow Colin to be by his wife's side. As the days get closer Colin becomes more anxious but feels he can't back out as Barry has worked hard for him.

Will he see his baby?

I thought I was not going to enjoy the story but I did, I read this in about an hour - I couldn't put it down, I was routing for Colin to visit his wife in hospital and wanted to see them have a happy ending. The way the story is written you flow through it and then look up and realised you have already read half! The characters are described well and you care about them.

This is a brilliant short story that is well worth a read, what made it even better for me was finding out that it is based on a true story at the end.

Monday, 10 March 2014

Rules for Dating a Romantic Hero - Harriet Evans

Rules for Dating a Romantic HeroRules for Dating a Romantic Hero by Harriet Evans
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'An absorbing and romantic Quick Read from the Sunday Times bestselling author.

Do you believe in happy endings?

Laura Foster used to be a hopeless romantic. She was obsessed with meeting her own Prince Charming until she grew up and realised real life doesn’t work like that.

Then she met Nick. A romantic hero straight from a fairytale, with a grand country estate and a family tree to match.

They’ve been together four years now and Laura knows that what really matters is the two of them, not everything else around them. She can’t imagine ever loving anyone the way she loves Nick.

Now, though, people are openly asking when they’ll hear wedding bells, and Nick is keeping secrets from Laura. She’s starting to feel she might not be ‘good enough’ for his family.

Can an ordinary girl like Laura make it work with one of the most eligible men in the country?'

This is the first book I have read by Harriet Evans and it was not until I had finished it that I realised that it was a sequel of A hopeless romantic. This I don't think matters, it can be read as a short stand alone story.

The story is chaptered in rules, although they are rules it reads as a good story and flows well. We meet Nick and Laura. Nick has a royal heritage and Laura is your regular girl. Laura finds it hard to 'fit in' to what Nick's family want and she is unsure if she wants all that too.

This is a light hearted, fun little novella, which is easily read in a few hours. It is typical chick lit and if you want a little short story for the beach this one is for you. I personally read in bed with a lovely cup of tea - either way it will leave you feeling a little fuzzy inside.

I would read more from Harriet Evans.

Friday, 7 March 2014

The Never List - Koethi Zan

The Never ListThe Never List by Koethi Zan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars


For years, Sarah and Jennifer kept the Never List: a list of things to be avoided at all costs.


But one night, they broke their own rules - with horrifying consequences.


Sarah has spent ten years trying to forget her terrifying ordeal. But it seems the killer has not forgotten her.


This book really gripped me from the start, I began to connect with the characters and actually cared about them.

The Never List is based on characters Sarah and Jennifer, they are friends and have been most of their lives. They create a list of things that they should never do. One night though after a night out they break one of their own rules - Never get into a car with a stranger. That was the biggest mistake they ever made. After years of kidnapping and torture Sarah is out, we are not sure how, but through the book we go on a journey with her to retell her tale and find out why she wants to go back.

I found it fast paced to begin with and really kept me wanting more, as the book went on the pace slowed down some what but I was still gripped. I did feel that the book was better the first half than the second and that the 'shocking' twist was not as shocking as I was thinking. This I felt a little let down by as the rest of the book had been so good.

I also found that I was left at the end of the book with questions and felt that not everything had been given to me as I had wanted. Saying this I enjoyed the book immensely and it was definitely a page turner - I read in 2 sittings, only because on the first day I purchased it after lunch!

I am glad The Never List grabbed me, I have not felt that way about a book for a long time. This actually has spurred me on to find another book in the same league.

The only thing I would say about this book is that I did not find it a thriller, I thought it was more crime and mystery. Saying that I enjoy all types of books so this didn't matter to me.

Wednesday, 5 March 2014

The Night Rainbow - Claire King

The Night RainbowThe Night Rainbow by Claire King
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'Under the sweltering heat of the summer sun, five-year-old Pea - and her vivid imagination - run wild in the meadows behind her home on the edge of a small village in Southern France.

Pea’s father died in an accident, and now she only has her little sister, Margot, for company. Their mother is too sad to take care of them; she left her happiness in the hospital last year, along with the first baby.

Overwhelmed by grief, isolated from the other villagers, and pregnant again, Maman has withdrawn to a place where Pea cannot reach her, no matter how hard she tries.

When Pea meets Claude, a neighbour who seems to love the meadow as she does, she wonders if he could be their new papa. But the villagers view their friendship with suspicion. What secret is Claude keeping in his strange, empty house?'

This has been a book that has been on my TBR pile for a long time, finally I got round to reading it and I am unsure on how to actually rate and review this book. It is like nothing I have ever read before.

This story is told by Pea a five and a half year old girl, I struggled with this concept to begin with, I am a teacher who teaches this age group and some of the vocabulary used I found a little unbelievable, especially by Margot Pea's 4 year old sister. She is very wise for her years and I had to regularly tell myself she was the younger of the two.

I struggled with my emotions through this book, the children just want to make their mother happy and dream up challenges they can do to make this a reality; as since Pea's father died the mother has never really had the time for them. This has left Pea and Margot to their own devises most of the time, which I personally struggled to deal with while reading.

Pea and Margot spend a lot of their time in the meadows, this is where they meet Claud. This also I found was a strange relationship and as an adult, at times I feared for the children and couldn't work out what he was up to. This shows through this novel, how easy it is for a child to trust a stranger and how easy they can be led. Yet again something I found difficult to read.

I don't want to say an awful lot about the plot as it will give it away. I found it hard to get into initially, due to my own struggles with the book I feel. However I also found it a bit slow, from finishing the book I understand why this is the case and why it was necessary to build up the characters and your feelings for them.

Just over half way through the book I had twigged - (this is all I can say without giving it away) but then spent the rest of the book looking for clues. Once I had twigged, yet again my emotions took a turn.

I am finding it difficult to rate this book because of the way it made me feel and how the lasting effect has had on me. I think though this is a brilliantly written story and Claire King has done it justice. If you want something a bit different I would recommend this. I have rated this book as 4* down to the way it has been written and the way the book made me feel.

This was not my usual read, but it was nice to read something a little different.

Monday, 3 March 2014

Zenith Hotel - Oscar Coop - Phane - Giveaway!!

Zenith Hotel
by Oscar Coop-Phane

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

'Narrator Nanou, a street prostitute, gives a detailed account of her day, from the moment she wakes up with a foul taste in her mouth, in her sordid rented room, until the minute she crawls back into her bed at night to sleep. Interwoven with her story are portraits of her clients. Oscar Coop-Phane invents an astonishing cast of original and deeply human characters - losers, defeated by the world around them - who seek solace in Nanou's arms. Original and moving, this short book deftly paints a world of solitude and sadness, illuminated by precious moments of tenderness and acts of kindness.'

I was sent this book from Arcadia publishers in exchange for a honest review.

I took this with me away for the weekend, it is relatively short so I thought I would be able to finish it in one sitting, which I did.

This is not my usual read, I don't think I would have chosen it, if it had been on offer, however I was pleasantly surprised.

We are given a snap shop of a day in the life of Nanou, a Parisian prostitute, there is nothing sleazy about the book. Just the loneliness of her life and those of her clients. We hear from all her clients that day and this as she puts it herself is the same day after day.

The story jumps between her clients thoughts and her own, there is brief speech between the clients and Nanou. All the characters in the book are well written and developed well, throughout the book.

I believe that this gives an insight into Parisian life which is not so glamorous and stylish. I think that this should be part of everyone's TBR pile.

Thanks to my friends at Arcadia Books they have very kindly offered me 3 copies of Zenith Hotel to giveaway! Please enter my giveaway!! It is INTERNATIONAL so what are you waiting for??? 

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