Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour -What Happens Now by Sophia Money-Coutts @hqstories @sophiamcoutts #WhatHappensNow

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for What Happens Now! I was kindly sent this book by HQ Stories to review for the tour! Check out the rest of the blog tour down below!

After eight years together, Lil Bailey thought she’d already found ‘the one’ – that is, until he dumped her for a blonde twenty-something colleague. So she does what any self-respecting singleton would do: swipes right, puts on her best bra and finds herself on a first date with a handsome mountaineer called Max. What’s the worst that can happen?

Well it’s pretty bad actually. First Max ghosts her and then, after weeing on a stick (but mostly her hands), a few weeks later Lil discovers she’s pregnant. She’s single, thirty-one and living in a thimble-sized flat in London, it’s hardly the happily-ever-after she was looking for.

Lil’s ready to do the baby-thing on her own – it can’t be that hard, right? But she should probably tell Max, if she can track him down. Surely he’s not that Max, the highly eligible, headline-grabbing son of Lord and Lady Rushbrooke, currently trekking up a mountain in South Asia? Oh, maybe he wasn’t ignoring Lil after all…

 

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Our main character Lil has not long come out of a long-term relationship when her best friend Jess persuades her to download a dating app. She goes on a date with a guy called  Max, a professional climber, and it goes really well – up until he ignores her.

What Happens Now is a really cute, funny (in a laugh-out-loud way) and touching story – Max is swoon-worthy, although he definitely had some stupid moments.

It’s light reading, but it’s entertaining and the characters are actually people you could relate to in real life. It’s one of the appealing aspects of the book.  Lil is a great narrator, she’s also a very funny and blunt, while her friends also come across as real people.

The relationship between Lil and Jess is a good one, and one of the strengths of the book. The romance is a plot point, rather than the main focus of the book, which makes it all the more enjoyable.

Will be perfect for holiday reading, and I will actually seek out Sophia Money-Coutts’ books in future.

This book is out today! Definitely check it out below!

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour – Take It Back by Kia Abdullah @hqstories @KiaAbdullah #TakeItBack

Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Take It Back by Kia Abdullah organised by HQ Stories! Check out the blog tour banner below!

Zara Kaleel, one of London’s brightest young legal minds, shattered the expectations placed on her by her family and forged a glittering career at the Bar. All before hanging up her barrister’s wig to help the victims who needed her most. Victims like Jodie Wolfe.

Jodie’s own best friend doesn’t even believe her claims that their classmates carried out such a crime. But Zara does. And Zara is determined to fight for her.

Jodie and Zara become the centre of the most explosive criminal trial of the year, in which ugly divisions within British society are exposed. As everything around Zara begins to unravel she becomes even more determined to get Jodie the justice she’s looking for. But at what price?

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TRIGGER WARNING – subjects of rape and sexual assault.

This book is quite heartbreaking to read especially at the beginning. I couldn’t put it down. I do highly recommend Take it Back to all crime fans. Kia Abdullah is a fantastic writer, the idea for this novel is absolutely brilliant
Take it Back is a fictional court room drama story, about Jodie and Nina who are best of friends. Nina is busy dancing with some guy. Amir Rabbani wants Jodie to go to a secret place with him. On the night of Thursday 27th June, Jodie makes a statement to police that four Muslim boys, Amir Rabbani, Hassan Tanweer, Mohammed Ahmed, and Farid Khan had raped her. She didn’t tell her friend Nina what had happened because for one particular reason Jodie didn’t think Nina would believe her.
The court case is going to prove that Jodie Wolfe was raped. But during this court case, someone is lying, but who and more importantly why? A lot more happens in this book but because its a mystery and loads of twists and turns, I believe it will be a lot more enjoyable and a shock to read without any spoilers.

I rated this book 4/5 stars.

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Book Reviews

Book Review – A Pocketful Of Stars by Aisha Bushby @aishabushby @egmontuk #APocketfulOfStars

Safiya and her mum have never seen eye to eye. Her mum doesn’t understand Safiya’s love of gaming and Safiya doesn’t think they have anything in common. As Safiya struggles to fit in at school she wonders if her mum wishes she was more like her confident best friend Elle. But then her mum falls into a coma and, when Safiya waits by her bedside, she finds herself in a strange alternative world that looks a bit like one of her games. And there’s a rebellious teenage girl, with a secret, who looks suspiciously familiar . . .

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I loved this book. It is a book full of love, hope, friendship, magic and intrigue! The main character Saf is so endearing and sweet you can’t help but love her. Bushby’s writing is so beautiful, full of heart and soul. You can tell this story was written with love and care and it was devoured by me! It talks about grief, loss of innocent and broken friendships and relationships, which are all handled with respect and dignity. This book filled my heart with love and i didn’t want to say goodbye to Saf by the end of it. Her character stuck in my heart. It also has LOTS of nerdy game related references which i always loved to see in books. I always connect with fellow geeks.

It is out in August and I rated it 5/5 stars! You should definitely pre-order it! Thankyou to the publisher for sending me this copy!

Book Reviews

Book Review – A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess

When Henrietta Howel is forced to reveal her unique power–the ability to control flames–to save a friend, she fears she will be executed. Instead, she’s invited to train as one of Her Majesty’s royal sorcerers and declared the chosen one, the girl who will defeat the Ancients, bloodthirsty demons terrorizing humanity. She also meets her fellow sorcerer trainees, handsome young men eager to test her power and her heart. One will challenge her. One will fight for her. One will betray her.

But Henrietta Howel is not the chosen one.

As she plays a dangerous game of deception, she discovers that the sorcerers have their own secrets to protect. With battle looming, how much will she risk to save the city–and the one she loves?

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‘A Shadow Bright and Burning’ is the first book in the young adult fantasy series by Jessica Cluess. I honestly adored this book from start to finish. It’s been sat on my bookshelf for months and I only picked it up now because I pulled it from my TBR jar but how i wish i’d read it sooner!  After reading the description, I liked the premise and thought it sounded interesting, but I wasn’t sure how much I would actually like it. Well, I didn’t like it – I LOVED it. Every single aspect of the book is nothing short of amazing and it all comes together seamlessly to create one of the best books I’ve ever read. I am so happy that this is just the first book in a  series, because I’ve ordered the second and third books to binge! I fell in love with all of the characters, the world they live in, and the war they’re trying to win.

The characters were all well rounded and had their own unique personalities and traits – especially our leading lady, Henrietta. She was a really wonderful main character and I loved getting to know her throughout the story. Henrietta has some fantastic qualities – she’s smart, determined, down to earth, opinionated, and stands up for what she believes in. She has her faults though – just like the rest of us. There was something about her during the first half of the book that just rubbed me the wrong way, although I can’t put my finger on exactly what is was. She was very humble and uncomfortable in her new life in warded London, but sometimes her thoughts and behaviours felt fake or something. She really comes into her own throughout the story, and I loved watching her grow as a person. There’s a bit of romance wound into the story, but it made the book more enjoyable and didn’t detract from the main plot.

The world building was nothing short of epic. This alternate history of Victorian London was so richly detailed that I had no problem visualising it. Even the otherworldly Ancients and their creepy Familiars were easy to conjure up in my mind. The author used lots of vivid imagery and detailed descriptions to bring Henrietta’s world to life right from the very beginning. I easily slipped into her world from the first page on, and I didn’t come back out until I had finished the book. Another aspect I adored was the use of the first person point of view. I’m a huge advocate for this writing style, as I believe it allows the reader a much more intimate connection with the narrator. The story is told from Henrietta’s perspective, and we get to really know her during the course of the book. By the end of the book, it felt as though I had experienced everything right alongside Henrietta.

There are so many other things I loved and could ramble on for a long time, but it wouldn’t be doing any justice to the novel. This is one of those magnificent books that you can’t properly review because you know anything and everything you say won’t come close to explaining how you feel and why. All I can keep saying is that I absolutely loved this book and I’m already dying to read the next one. I can’t recommend this novel highly enough to fans of the genre, as well as readers who enjoy paranormal and historical fiction.

 

I rated this book 5/5 stars!

Book Reviews

Book Review – Descendent Of The Crane by Joan He

Tyrants cut out hearts. Rulers sacrifice their own. Princess Hesina of Yan has always been eager to shirk the responsibilities of the crown, but when her beloved father is murdered, she’s thrust into power, suddenly the queen of an unstable kingdom. Determined to find her father’s killer, Hesina does something desperate: she enlists the aid of a soothsayer–a treasonous act, punishable by death… because in Yan, magic was outlawed centuries ago.

Using the information illicitly provided by the sooth, and uncertain if she can trust even her family, Hesina turns to Akira–a brilliant investigator who’s also a convicted criminal with secrets of his own. With the future of her kingdom at stake, can Hesina find justice for her father? Or will the cost be too high?

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This book was great. It was different from anything I have ever read. Although it started out a bit slow for me, after I got past that bit, I could not put it down.

This story follows Hesina as she is thrust into power after the death of her father. The mysteries of his death plague her so she takes up the responsibility of finding out what really happened. After meeting with a sooth, whose magic is outlawed, she is told to seek a representative by the name of Akira, who help find whoever, if anyone, killed her father.

Hesina is the strong female protagonist we all dream about. Her path to justice and finding her strengths were incredible. Every character was interesting. I especially loved Akira and Hesina’s relationship and seeing it grow. I also loved the side characters like Hesina’s brother and Caiyan and Lilian, there wasn’t a character I didn’t enjoy.

Joan’s writing is beautiful and profound and hit every emotion through the book. The only thing I will say is this book was extremely well hyped and although it was good and interesting to read it wouldn’t be a favourite of mine. Joan He is going to be one to watch for future books.

I rated this book 4/5 stars.

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Book Reviews

Book Review – The Wren Hunt by Mary Watson @bloomsburybooks @stonemadonna #TheWrenHunt

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Every winter, Wren Silke is chased through the forest in a warped version of a childhood game. The boys who haunt her are judges, powerful and frightening pursuers, who know nothing of her true identity. If they knew she was an augur, their sworn enemy, the game would turn deadly.

But Wren is on the hunt, too. Sent undercover as an intern to the Harkness Foundation – enemy headquarters – her family’s survival rests on finding a secret meant to stay hidden. As the enmity between two ancient magics reaches breaking point, Wren is torn between old loyalties and new lies. And trapped in the most dangerous game of her life.

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The wran, the wran, the king of all birds,
On St Stephen’s Day was caught in the furze.
Her clothes were all torn, her shoes all worn,
We chased her all night, right through until dawn.

 

The story itself was highly immersive – beginning with a chase and developing into a deep seated mythology that was beautifully layered and highly engaging. we follow Wren as she infiltrates the enemy camp so to speak in an attempt to steal the one thing that can save her family.

The Wren Hunt is a very surreal read in a lot of ways – very modern and yet very old school in concept, it is a tale of family feuds and misconceptions, of magic and of folklore and all that is mixed up into an honestly compelling tale that will keep you hooked all the way through.

It is a difficult book to review in a lot of ways because you don’t want to spoil the heart of it but there isn’t really a genre box you can put it in – all I can say is you probably have not read anything quite like it and if you love a good story well told well you certainly get that here.

 

I highly reccommend this book to any fantasy fan. I adored this book and need to read The Wicker Light immediately.

 

Thankyou to Bloomsbury UK for sending me both books to read and review.

 

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Blog Tours · Book Reviews

Blog Tour – Miracle Creek by Angie Kim @angiekimwriter @readeatretreat @hodderbooks @hodderscape #MiracleCreek

Hi guys! Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Miracle Creek by Angie Kim! This book grabbed my attention straight away with the stunning cover! Check out the blog tour banner below!

In rural Virginia, Young and Pak Yoo run an experimental medical treatment device known as the Miracle Submarine: a pressurized oxygen chamber that patients enter for “dives”, used as an alternative therapy for conditions including autism or infertility. But when the Miracle Submarine mysteriously explodes, killing two people, a dramatic murder trial upends the Yoos’ small community.

Who or what caused the explosion? Was it the mother of one of the patients, who claimed to be sick that day but was smoking down by the creek? Or was it Young and Pak themselves, hoping to cash in on a big insurance payment and send their daughter to college? The ensuing trial uncovers unimaginable secrets from that night – trysts in the woods, mysterious notes, child-abuse charges – as well as tense rivalries and alliances among a group of people driven to extraordinary degrees of desperation and sacrifice.

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Miracle Creek is Angie Kim’s debut novel and I would never have known. Kim knows how to write a suspenseful thriller!
The story is told chapter by chapter through the eyes of each character. It explores the criminal trial that is trying to get to the bottom of why a fire broke out in a privately operated hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

Kim manages to develop fully-formed characters even while switching between points-of-view every chapter. The Yoo family and Elizabeth are particularly powerful portrayals. The descriptions of an immigrant family adjusting to life in the United States, were heartbreaking and interesting to read about. I have a little experience with autism, but I thought Kim’s chapters from Theresa and Elizabeth’s point of view were thought-provoking and emotional.

There are multiple layers to this story. You notice quite early on that nothing is how it seems. Kim peels the layers back one by one so that gradually we get inside her characters skins. By the end I wasn’t entirely surprised with the truth, but I enjoyed piece by piece everything being revealed!

If you enjoy a good psychological thriller then Miracle Creek is a book that you should definitely read!

This book is out now! Check it out below!

I rated this book 4/5 stars!

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