Book Review

Moonlight Over Studland Bay by Della Galton | #BlogTour #MoonlightOverStudlandBay #Review #BookExcerpt #rararesources #BoldwoodBlogger |

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be apart of the blog tour for; Moonlight Over Studland Bay by Della Galton. I can’t wait to share my review with you all, plus I have an exclusive excerpt which I hope you will love. Firstly I want to say thank you to Boldwood Books for the Invite to this tour, and to Rachel and Rachel’s Random Resources for the complimentary copy. Now, lets have a look at this book!

About the Book

Moonlight Over Studland Bay by Della Galton.

Genre: Women’s Fiction

Publisher: Boldwood Books

A heartwarming read of family, friendship and growing up

‘Utterly uplifting, pure escapism’ Trisha Ashley, bestselling author

Animal loving Samantha Jones is on a mission to ‘live the dream’.

When best friend Abby has a beautiful baby boy Sam’s priorities change and she realises she wants more from her life

Uninspired with her dull day job Sam plans to expand Purbeck Pooches, her seaside pet sitting business into a full-time career and embarks on a mission to find her perfect man.

Sam soon hits trouble. Her boss accuses her of moonlighting. The perfect man is frustratingly elusive and her parents make a shock revelation.

The odds are stacking up against her but Sam finds that sometimes when you reach for the moon, you get a handful of glittering stars thrown in for free.

Purchase Linkhttps://amzn.to/2YgzrLZ

Review

Moonlight Over Studland Bay is in no other words but pure joy wrapped up in a big comforting bow, it’s a like being hugged. This is all about the journey to find happiness and meaning in life, it fills the heart with happiness, this is all about finding that much sought after peace and happiness something which so many people can relate to.

I really liked Sam, she is the sort of character that you just know you would be good friends with. She is a charming, warm, considerate, loving, passionate and inspiring young woman whom you just can’t help but like, she has been plodding along in her job and then suddenly she realises that there is more to life then what she is living now, she has dreams and hopes and she is determined that she is going to make a career out of her beloved pet sitting business; ‘Purbeck Pooches’ plus now is the time to find her the man of her dreams. But as we all know well-laid plans never go off without a hitch, with family secrets raising their ugly heads, an agitated boss and even worse Mr Right…well we as of yet need to find him!

How many of us are stuck in a bit of rut looking for something, wanting a change in life, looking for the thing that makes us glow with happiness? That is Sam – and I know that is thousands of women out there – the difference is Sam takes the chance to make her dreams become reality, to get that little more from life, she makes a plan and she soon puts her plan to action. True things don’t go exactly as expected but if there is one thing that this book tells us and that is to grasp life and take a leap of faith.

This is such an easy to read book, light-hearted, emotional, cheerful, there is pure magic circulating around Studland Bay. I love that this is all about Sam and her journey, the romance which turns up rather unexpectedly is sweet and loving, but it didn’t overshadow the overall loveliness of the story, and what a truly magic, uplifting and heart-warming story it is.

Moonlight Over Studland Bay is a genuinely lovely and captivating story, which is full of laughter, romance and real emotion. I’ve not read any of Della’s work before, but she has charmed me completely with her eloquent writing and will definitely be reading more of her books.

Excerpt

Sam had to pass the desks of the other three structural engineers on the way to her own workstation. None of them were in. They must all have gone straight out to jobs. Rex’s PA, Elannah Lewis, who was dark and petite with huge geek-girl glasses and was super mature for her twenty-seven years, had the desk just across the way from Sam’s and she glanced up as Sam arrived.

Sam went over to talk to her. ‘What sort of mood is he in?’

Elannah widened her eyes so they looked even bigger behind the glasses, sucked in her cheeks and whistled softly. ‘Not great… But you know what he’s like. He’ll bang on for a bit about you letting him down and the good name of the company, blah blah blah, and then he’ll offer you a Murray Mint and forgive you. He never loses his rag. But you did drop him in it.’ She leaned forwards. ‘Where were you anyway?’

‘I was with Abby. She had the baby yesterday.’

‘Oh wow, really – what did she have?’ Elannah was a sucker for babies and all things cute. There was a picture of a fluffy cat in a stripy hat pinned on the noticeboard over her desk.

‘Boy. Seven pounds.’

‘Are they OK?’

‘Yes, they’re doing great. Fingers crossed, they’re coming home today. I’m picking them up after work. They let them out early these days.’ She’d got the impression when she’d gone back to visit last night that the nurses would be glad to see the back of Abby. Maybe that was unfair, but she was a handful at the best of times and Sam suspected she’d be treating her hospital stay like a visit to a hotel, and expecting on tap room service thrown in.

She yawned and covered her mouth. ‘Sorry… I haven’t had much sleep the last couple of days.’ She was going to have even less from now on, much as she was looking forward to having Abby and baby Jack at Beach Cottage for the foreseeable future.

‘I bet.’

‘Shall I go in?’ It was five to nine.

‘I’ll tell him you’re here.’ Elannah picked up the phone on her desk.

There was no need for her to do this, due to the fact there was only a glass partition between Rex’s office and the main area where Elannah’s desk was – if he looked up he would see her – but Rex was a man of protocol. He liked things to be done properly. He was only forty-two, but he acted like a man a decade older. He’d inherited Fielding’s from his father when he was in his early thirties and he’d taken the responsibility very seriously.

‘Our reputation is so concrete you can build on it.’ Rex was fond of trotting out this line at regular intervals and it was also part of the company’s branding, as was the line, ‘Our word is our bond.’

‘You can go in,’ Elannah said, hanging up after the briefest of conversations with Rex and crossing her fingers surreptitiously. ‘Good luck.’

Sam stepped into the little office, which smelled of old books and coffee and still had battleship-grey metal filing cabinets that looked as though they had been made at the end of the war. On the wall hung a portrait of an unsmiling man, Mr Fielding senior, who had started the company.

About the Author

Della Galton is the author of 15 books, including Ice and a Slice. She writes short stories, teaches writing groups and is Agony Aunt for Writers Forum Magazine. She lives in Dorset. Della’s new fiction series launched with Sunshine Over Bluebell Cliff in May 2020.

Social Media Links – Website / Facebook / Twitter / Instagram

Newsletter sign up: http://bit.ly/DellaGaltonNewsletter

Gentleman Jim by Mimi Matthews | #BlogTour #GentlemanJim #Review #AustenProseBlogTours | @MimiMatthewsEsq @AustenProse

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on the wonderful blog tour for the utterly gorgeous; Gentleman Jim by Mimi Matthews. I am super excited to be sharing my review of this book with your all, firstly I want to say thank you to Laurel Anne for the invite to this tour. Now, lets have a look at this book.

Gentleman Jim by Mimi Matthews

Genre: Regency, Historical Romance

Publisher: Perfectly Proper Press

She Couldn’t Forget…
Wealthy squire’s daughter Margaret Honeywell was always meant to marry her neighbor, Frederick Burton-Smythe, but it’s bastard-born Nicholas Seaton who has her heart. Raised alongside her on her father’s estate, Nick is the rumored son of notorious highwayman Gentleman Jim. When Fred frames him for theft, Nick escapes into the night, vowing to find his legendary sire. But Nick never returns. A decade later, he’s long been presumed dead.

He Wouldn’t Forgive…
After years spent on the continent, John Beresford, Viscount St. Clare has finally come home to England. Tall, blond, and dangerous, he’s on a mission to restore his family’s honor. If he can mete out a bit of revenge along the way, so much the better. But he hasn’t reckoned for Maggie Honeywell. She’s bold and beautiful–and entirely convinced he’s someone else.

As danger closes in, St. Clare is torn between love and vengeance. Will he sacrifice one to gain other? Or, with a little daring, will he find a way to have them both?

AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLEBOOK DEPOSITORY | INDIEBOUND | BOOKBUB | GOODREADS

Review

I have been an avid reader of Mimi Matthews work for a long time now, I never turn down the chance to read one of her books, and I have been hooked by each and everyone since the very first. I am so used to her classically Victorian romances, that Gentleman Jim was a little shock to the system, it’s so different to what we are used to, especially as it is a Regency and not my beloved Victorian, but hey, that’s OK, I can cope with that and I certainly did more than cope with this beauty, I completely fell in love with it.

Set during the Regency era, Gentleman Jim tells the heart-warming story of finding love in the most unexpected places, Maggie is a landowners daughter raised to make a good marriage, her life has been set out for her and she is expected to marry a man of influence. But, our Maggie’s heart has already been stolen by Nicholas, a low born groom; son of a maid and one notorious highwayman who goes by the name; Gentleman Jim – a character who for me stole the whole book – But life goes wrong and Nicholas is soon having to flee.

Years later a mysterious man by the name of St.Claire turns up wanting revenge, he is an enigma, a complex individual with secrets and more intrigues, as soon as Maggie sets eyes on him she knows that there is something about this man, she knows him, is he really who he claims to be or is there something more?

This book is all about love, it’s about finding true love and happiness, with two young sweethearts who are torn apart by social standing, but entwined within is the classic Mimi Matthews love story which is full of secrets, lies, revenge, mystery, intrigue and sadness.

As much as I loved this book, I will be honest and say I would have loved to actually ‘meet’ the notorious highwayman; Gentleman Jim, I did feel as though something was missing by not actually seeing the rogue, I was fascinated by him, I was hooked with his exploits and those whispers and rumours, the stories about him made him all the more compelling to me, I have to admit I did become a little addicted to this shadowy figure lurking in the back of the story but never shows his face – but that’s me, I d love a bad boy, highwayman!

Gentleman Jim is a beautiful, captivating, intriguing and wonderfully romantic story, all about love and loss, about finding happiness and it is a story that will take you on a richly textured journey and settle upon your heart. As always with Mimi Matthews she will cast a spell around you with her wondrous words.

About the Author

USA Today bestselling author Mimi Matthews writes both historical nonfiction and award-winning proper Victorian romances. Her novels have received starred reviews in Library JournalPublishers Weekly, and Kirkus, and her articles have been featured on the Victorian Web, the Journal of Victorian Culture, and in syndication at BUST Magazine. In her other life, Mimi is an attorney. She resides in California with her family, which includes a retired Andalusian dressage horse, a Sheltie, and two Siamese cats. Her next romance, The Siren of Sussex, will be out in 2022 from Berkley/Penguin Random House.

WEBSITE | TWITTER | FACEBOOK | PINTEREST | BOOKBUB |GOODREADS

Blog Tour Schedule

Join the virtual blog tour of GENTLEMAN JIM; A TALE OF ROMANCE AND REVENGE, Mimi Matthews’s highly acclaimed new historical romance novel, November 9 through December 6, 2020. Forty-five popular blogs specializing in historical fiction, historical romance, and Austenesque fiction will join in the celebration of its release with exclusive excerpts, interviews, spotlights, or reviews of this new Regency-era novel set in Somerset, England.

Nov 09 Relz Reviewz (Character Spotlight) / Life of Literature (Review) / Austenprose—A Jane Austen Blog (Review)

Nov 10 Savvy Verse and Wit (Interview) / Greenish Bookshelf (Review)

Nov 11 Library of Clean Reads (Review) / Silver Petticoat Reviews (Excerpt)

Nov 12 Bookworm Lisa (Review) / Heidi Reads (Review)

Nov 13 Lu’s Reviews (Review)

Nov 14 The Green Mockingbird(Review)

Nov 15 Bookish Rantings (Review) / The Lit Bitch (Review)

Nov 16 The Historical Fiction Reader (Review) / Austenesque Reviews (Review)

Nov 17 Inkwell Inspirations (Review) / Robin Loves Reading (Review)

Nov 18 Christian Chick’s Thoughts (Review) / My Jane Austen Book Club (Excerpt)

Nov 19 Laura’s Reviews (Review)

Nov 20 Jorie Loves a Story (Spotlight) / Foxes and Fairy Tales (Review)

Nov 21 Gwendalyn’s Books (Excerpt)

Nov 22 Romantically Inclined Reviews (Review) / Book Confessions of an Ex-Ballerina (Review) / Vesper’s Place (Spotlight)

Nov 23 Fiction Aficionado (Review) / Historical Fiction with Spirit (Review)

Nov 24 Let Them Read Books (Interview)

Nov 25 The Caffeinated Bibliophile (Review) / So Little Time… (Spotlight)

Nov 27 Among the Reads (Review)

Nov 28 Chicks, Rogues and Scandals (Review)

Nov 29 Book Bustle (Review)

Nov 30 Cup of Tea with that Book Please(Review)

Dec 01 Nurse Bookie (Review)

Dec 02 Confessions of a Book Addict (Review) / Impressions in Ink (Review)

Dec 03 From Pemberley to Milton (Review)

Dec 04 Relz Reviewz (Review) / Rosanne E. Lortz (Review)

Dec 05 Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen (Review) / Probably at the Library (Review)

Dec 06 The Calico Critic (Excerpt)

Where is Tony Blunt? (Atrocities Series #2) by Joseph Mitcham| #BlogTour #WhereIsTonyBlunt #Review #AtrocitiesSeries #damppebblesblogtours | @MitchamJoseph @damppebbles

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the massive pleasure to be apart of the blog tour for the gripping; Where is Tony Blunt? by Joseph Mitcham. I am super excited to share my review of this thrilling book with you all. Firstly, I want to say thank you to, Emma at Damppebbles for the invite to this tour, now let’s have a look at this book.

Where is Tony Blunt? by Joseph Mitcham

‘Where is Tony Blunt? The former Paratrooper, having been taken into the fold of an emerging, ambitious, and savage fundamentalist group, has gone to ground without a trace.

Alex, the former Army communicator, is persuaded to return by John, the ex-Special Forces senior, to help track down the terrorist group that killed their leader and several other comrades – Tony Blunt is their only lead.

Working with multiple agencies, including The Security Service, can Alex and the team locate Blunt and stop him before he executes his masterpiece?’

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Review

Well, this was a real blink-and-you-miss-it, thriller which kept me hooked from the onset, with it’s an explosive and twisty plot, intriguing and compelling character’s and hair-raising realism which will keep you up at night.

I hadn’t read the first book in the series, something which I think impeded my understanding of certain characters, even though ‘Where is Tony Blunt’ can be read as a stand-alone, I do think you need to read the series in order. That didn’t impact on my enjoyment of this book, but it did make me feel as though I have missed out on something crucial which may have been carried over from the first book. This has nothing at all to do with the author’s writing, but more to do with the fact that I jumped into this series without reading the first. No change there, then!

There were times when I did feel huge pity for Blunt at times, especially with how he was treated in the military. There are moments as we get to know him and the reason behind why he chose the path he followed, that reveal him to be lonely, distanced human being who has only ever wanted to fit in, instead of a heartless terrorist in which he most certainly became. The author has done an incredible job at creating a character who in certain ways many could be anyone in the street, he has the same self-doubts which many. But, I can guarantee as the story quickly moves forward and more and more is revealed, that tiny pity which grabs you in the beginning soon turns to hate and revulsion, you want to see the evil cretin get what’s coming to him.

Joseph Mitcham is a damn fine author who pulls the reader into his dark and deadly world, I really liked how he described the military slang, he did it in a way very clever way, he incorporated it within the passage you read, which for me allowed me to retain all the information I needed to fully understand each scene.

I really liked the group, and especially their leader; Alex, he wasn’t exactly what you would expect, but I liked him. I liked how the team worked, they didn’t share the same views and they certainly are not at all alike, they are all so different and yet those differences create a strong and diverse team which can handle any situation they are thrown in, I would love to see more from them all again in other books.

I think that this series is going to a really thrilling and mind-blowing ride, one which I can’t wait to read more from.

Overall, an eye-opening thriller, a definite must-read for those who love their faster-paced, edgier reads.

About the Author

Joseph Mitcham served with the British military in elite and technical units for over 16 years. His service not only gave him a thorough tactical and technical understanding of some of techniques and processes employed in his first novel, it also provided him with the opportunity to develop himself, earning a first class honours degree in business leadership by the end of his service.

His debut novel, The Watch List, was published in 2019. The inspiration for writing ‘The Watch List’ was taken from personal experiences from the roles that he has served in and characteristics from some of the people that he has served with. Joseph has written an incredible, yet compellingly credible story that plays out in our world as he sees it today.

Social Media: Twitter / Facebook / Amazon

Christmas Cookie Cozies: A Holiday Cozy Mystery Anthology| #BlogTour #ChristmasCookiesCozies2020 #Review #damppebblesblogtours | @damppebbles

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Hello, Sunshines, We are getting festive on the blog today, as I have the pleasure to be kicking off this amazing blog tour for Christmas Cookie Cozies: A Holiday Cozy Mystery Anthology. This is such a cute and cosy anthology, which I am sure you all will love as much as I do. Firstly, I want to say thank you, Emma, at dampebbles for the invite to this tour, now let’s have a look at this book.

Christmas Cookie Cozies: A Holiday Cozy Mystery Anthology

2020 is going to be the coziest holiday season yet with cozy mysteries from Ava Mallory, Summer Prescott, Jenna St. James, Laina Turner, Gretchen Allen, Laina Turner, Joanna Campbell Slan, S. C. Merritt, Minnie Crockwell, Mona Marple, Rachael Stapleton and Loraine Hudson – along with their favorite holiday cookie recipe!


Gretchen Allen – Lost Claus
Charlotte Moss is one tough cookie, but her new job as Mrs. Claus isn’t what she expected. When Santa goes missing and a body is found, the most wonderful time of the year looks bleak.


Joanna Campbell Slan – How the Cookie Crumbles
Cara Mia Delgatto never met her maternal grandmother. But Nonie Josephina reaches out from the grave with a message for Cara: I left behind a treasure! Can Cara Mia find it before Santa comes to town?
S.C. Merritt – Caramelized Casualty

With the annual holiday unveiling of a giant gingerbread village quickly approaching, Kate Kennedy’s stress level is sky high. When one of the event’s diva celebrity chefs turns up dead, Kate decides she has no choice but to team up with the town’s newest detective if she’s going to pull off the big event. Can she expose the killer in time to save the event?


Minnie Crockwell – Death By Cookie
Widow Sallie Chilcoat decides to get into the holiday spirit by baking up a batch of cookies for her lakeside condominium neighbors only to have one of them turn up dead – with the remains of her cookies! Did Sallie kill her neighbor with her vegan cookies?


Ava Mallory – Christmas Cookie Catastrophe
When Consuelo “Cookie” Alvarez inherits a bakery from her aunt Birdie, she doesn’t expect to take her late aunt’s place in the Christmas Cookie Bake-Off. Now she has two weeks to perfect the super-secret recipe, but there are major obstacles in her way: she can’t bake, the recipe is missing, and her competitors are a who’s who of shady characters.


Summer Prescott – Hang Out The Stalkings
Someone is stealing Nancy’s cookies…will they steal her holiday spirit too?


Jenna St. James – Christmas Cookie Caper
When Ivy O’Brien learns her mother has been injured at the annual Couples Christmas Cookie Contest, she runs to the rescue. Looks like she needs to fill in for her mother and hunky policeman Anthony Romano has to help bake the cookie and question the suspects. Between dough-making disasters, nips of peppermint Schnapps, and rolling pin thefts, the pair slowly whittle down their suspect list.


Mona Marple – The Santa Run Is Murderous Fun
Emily Monk’s run out of excuses not to take part in the annual Santa run, but the festivities are threatened when the long-running Santa Run champ is found dead the day before the race.
With a killer to be caught, and a Christmas dinner to be bought, Emily needs to think fast if she’s going to solve this case before Santa comes.


Rachael Stapleton – Christmas, Corpses & the Gingerdead Flip-Flop
When house flippers Jack Young and Juniper Palmer purchase a colorful Queen Anne home, Juniper assumes the exterior gingerbread trim will be the most outlandish thing to see. That is until a prominent wine merchant dressed as Santa is murdered, and Jack’s mother is caught on the naughty list.


Loraine Hudson – Holly, Jolly Misdeeds
First, it’s a thieving Santa. Next, it’s a prowler that threatens Jenny’s peace. It all seems to revolve around a box of cookies.  Why? And what’s next?  


Laina Turner – Cookies and Crime
What is supposed to be a joy-filled awards ceremony for the Romero Boy Scouts turns out to be anything but when Jean Sartor, Scout co-leader, drops dead on stage. Trixie lands herself on the suspect list since she baked Christmas cookies for the ceremony. She knows she didn’t poison Jean, but who did?

Purchase Links:

US Amazon – https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08K97KLJ9

UK Amazon – https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B08K97KLJ9

Review

There is so much to love about this Anthology, it has something for everyone to love; from light-hearted cosiness, mystery, fun and good-natured humour to a darker edge feel which comes out of the blue, put together and you have one incredibly happy, heart-warming and ridiculously cheerful selection of stories all with added Cookies and festive cheer, so no matter what your preference you will find something to love in this.

I’ve not read any of the authors featured, so it was a wonderful teat to discover completely new-to-me authors and this is what I love about anthologies you have the opportunity to have a taste of what each author writes and you can go out and find more of the authors you fall in love with.

With 11 very short novella’s each as different as next – a bit like a snowflake each one beautiful and each one completely different – read as many or as few as you wish – you will be spoiled for choice. I love that each of the authors also shares their own Cookie recipe, I am definitely going to be trying one, two, five-oh, hell by Christmas I may have tried them all. 🙂

Christmas Cookie Cozies is such a charming, feel-good and delightful anthology, it’s happiness in the palm of your hand, making you feel all the festive warmth and magic – even a Scrooge-like me feels the Christmassy spirit in the air after reading it.

It’s perfect for curling up in a cosy chair, wrapped in your favourite fluffy jumper or Christmassy PJ’s (whichever floats your boat) and reading well into the night, accompanied by a  box of cookies and a hot chocolate, of course!

So if you love Christmas, lounging around, eating cookies while reading about cookies, or if you just need to feel some Christmas cheer (don’t we all at the moment?) then this is the book you really must-have in your collection.

What The World Needs Now – Trees! by Cheryl Rosebush.| #BlogTour #WhatTheWorldNeedsNowTrees #Review #lovebookstours | @lovebooksgroup

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be apart of the blog tour for; What The World Needs Now – Trees! by Cheryl Rosebush. This is a little new for the blog, I haven’t branched out into children’s books before, but this once is just too cute and it has such an important message, I can’t wait to share it with you all. Firstly thank you to Kelly for the invite to this book blitz. Now let’s have a look at the book…

What the World Needs Now – Trees! By Cheryl Rosebush

Genre: Childrens

What the World Needs Now is an environmental children’s book series for ages 4-8 that aims to connect the world’s youngest book lovers to the importance of nature, and our place in it.

Each book in the series follows a friendly animal through its habitat, helping kids learn about one thing the world needs now, be it more trees or bees or less plastic, to maintain a healthy planet.

The series is designed to help parents and educators lay the foundation for future learning on the world’s most pressing environmental challenges. But for our littlest kids, the connection starts at a much simpler point: their first job is to fall in love with nature – because you don’t protect what you don’t love.

The books support engaging with our kids on how we can better respect and care for the only planet we have.

***

Review

I will admit that I haven’t read Children’s books for a while (for about thirty years, to be perfectly honest) but this was a fabulous and cheerful escape from the norm and could be the start of more Children’s books to be featured on the blog.

I was really interested in this one because of what the book is about, the larger picture which this book is trying to share with the world. The fact that our trees are not only hugely important to our very living but the fact that trees are the life’s-blood of any creature’s very existences, a message which children need to hear and this book tells that ever-important message in a perfect way by introducing us to the adorable Jefri, a baby Orangutan.

It makes me so happy that the main character is an Orangutan I do have a real love for orangutans they are incredible creatures, intelligent and loving, the similarities with humans is astounding – if anyone has ever watched ‘The Orangutan Orphanage’ then you will know what I mean –  and yet it is human’s which are destroying their homes, their lives. So to have a children’s book telling the story of why we need to look after Tree’s and having an Orangutan tell that story is so beautifully done.

The book is pack with information and is very educational, which is all put across to the reader in a fun way, the illustrations are stunning, I would recommend you read this with your little ones using the paperback (if available) as reading from a Kindle like I did takes a little shine off just how visually appealing and special this little book is.

What the World Need Now: Trees! Is a wonderfully engaging, educational and extremely beautiful book, it’s a delightful quick read which I am sure will give children and their parent’s hours of enjoyment. They will take with them the all-important message of just how vital trees are to our world and how important it is for every person on this earth to recognise that, which will then lead more caring and treating our world with the love and respect it needs.

Note From Cheryl

This is a brand-new adventure for me – completely independent and self-published! And it feels like the culmination of everything I have ever worked on.

When was the last time you bought a book that offset its own carbon emissions and preserved critically threatened rainforests? So proud to say that when you buy “What the World Needs Now: Trees!”, you will be doing just that.

Meet Jefri! He’s the adorable main character in the first book of my series called What the World Needs Now: Trees!. He was created by my talented illustrator Zuzana Svobodova. For me, it was love at first sight!

I knew I wanted my first book in the series to be about trees, and after my World Bank mission to Sumatra in 2019, I knew I wanted my main character to be an orangutan. They literally have everything to lose by tropical forest loss. And since they share so similarities to humans, I thought an orangutan would be the perfect animal to underscore the ways in which we are all connected to trees.

Watch this amazing video to see Jefri come to life!

Awww, isn’t Jefi the cutest??

About the Author

I was born and raised in Southern Ontario, Canada in the cities of Burlington and St. Catharines. Long before the internet and mobile phones (now I’m aging myself!), my childhood was spent in forests and parks, on bike rides, and playing hide and seek until the streetlights came on. My family did comical Griswold-style road trips in wood-paneled station wagons. We spent summers swimming in friends’ backyards. These are my very fortunate roots.

I knew from an early age that my destiny would take me far from Southern Ontario. I graduated high school and moved to Montreal to study international politics at McGill University. The subject fascinated me, but as graduation approached, I realized I didn’t know what I wanted to do with a degree in international politics. I didn’t want to become a lawyer. I didn’t want to become a politician or civil servant. The media industry, on the other hand, intrigued me.

The West Coast of Canada also intrigued me. So, after graduating McGill, I packed up again, moved to Vancouver and took the first media job I could get at a local Top 40 radio station (Z.95.3) in Vancouver. Best job. Great bosses. I learned so much. But after a couple of years there, the winds of change came calling again.

September 11, 2001. In a heartbeat, Z95.3 went from playing Britney Spears to reporting up-to-the-minute information on the local, national and international fallout of the terrorist attacks in New York and Washington. In that moment, I knew I had found my calling. I wanted to do something that was needed on a good day, and needed even more on a bad day. I wanted to become a full-time journalist.

So, I packed my bags again (a running theme in my life), and moved to Ottawa, Ontario to do my Masters of Journalism. Another incredible two years culminated in me getting a research internship with the Canadian Broadcast Corporation (CBC) in London, England. That position helped me land back in Montreal for a second chapter there as local news reporter for the CBC. While I was there, I wore just about every hat you could in CBC’s radio and TV newsrooms. Depending on the day, I was a researcher, producer, reporter, or online writer. I even filled in for the weather reports every once in a while.

Find more about Cheryl here – https://www.cherylrosebush.com/

And The Stars Shine Down by Melinda Hammond | #Review #AndTheStarsShineDown #OffTheBookShelf | @SarahMRomance

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Hello, Sunshines, I hope you are all well? I am super excited to be sharing my review of the gorgeous; And The Stars Shine Down by Melinda Hammond. This little novella completely curled itself around this little reader’s heart I have had this book on my kindle shelf for way too long, now I can’t wait to share it with you all.

And The Stars Shine Down by Melinda Hammond

Genre: Romance Novella / Pages: 50 / Format: Ebook

This is Laura Grantham’s big chance, reporting on the first flight of a Spitfire that was lost for 70 years. But the story that unfolds is one Laura can never write. Who would ever believe her?

A bitter-sweet short story of two people who should have been separated by a lifetime….

Sensuality rating: sweet romance

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Review

This is such a sweet little novella, at a mere fifty pages it’s a blink and you’ll miss it a tale that spans span’s 70 years. It’s a beautiful little story of true love, one that will bury itself into your heart and rest there for many years to come. As the back blurb says; this is a bittersweet story, and no truer words have been written, like Laura, I was whisked away and became fully absorbed into the past, my heart was completely stolen by one certain person – I refuse to say who or even tell you about this character, as that would spoil the little ‘twist’ to the story, but believe me he was adorable, a proper gent!

I was completely taken with this story, not only has it so much within it I love; Spitfires, men in uniform (yes, you know me, I am a sucker for a uniform, especially those flyboy  blues, I do love an aviator jacket on a man….deep guttural, almost feral sigh!!)

Hmm, went slightly off topic there!

Laura is covering the story of the first flight of a ‘lost’ Spitfire, her grandfather has spent his whole adult life in repairing his old girl to be able to take to the skies 70 years after the Battle of Britain. Laura has her dress for the 1940’s party, she has her notes and the story ready now all she has to do is wait for the big day. Only things don’t exactly go to plan, especially not when she meets a handsome man in uniform sitting looking all forlorn beside the airfield. A moment which will change her life forever and which creates a story she can’t tell.

I know it’s all very short and vague, but as I do keep saying I don’t want to spoil the book for you, and if you go and give this story a try you will understand why I can’t go into too much depth, you won’t be disappointed!

I have to say that by the last page there were a few tear’s, it hit your heart hard and you really feel for Laura, the ending has a real twist and in that, there is a moment of clarity and peace, plus sadness. Again, I can’t say too much more as it would give away the entire plot and I really don’t want to ruin this for anyone. It’s a great read, a beautiful and all too short glimpse into a moment in time, but one which will stay with me for a very long time.

Melinda Hammond never fails to amaze, she is a wonderful author who puts so much passion and real heart into her writing and that is exactly what she’s done here, there is so much emotion threading through the story.

I loved this, I would have liked there to be more of it then there was, but it works and more importantly, it’s a wonderful little read, one which I cannot recommend highly enough, it’s perfect for that spare crucial ‘me time’.

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Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe by Morton S. Gray | #Review #ChristmasAtTheLittleBeachCafe | @MortonSGray @ChocLituk

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of the wonderfully festive; Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe by Morton S. Gray. I can’t wait to share my review of this book with you all, firstly I want to say thank you to Liz at Choc Lit/Ruby Fiction for the complimentary copy. Now, lets have a look at this book.

Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe by Morton S. Gray

Series: Borteen Bay #5

Genre: Women’s Fiction, Seasonal

Publisher: Choc Lit UK

Format: Ebook

Release Date: 17th November 2020

Run away to the little beach café this Christmas

Five years ago at Christmas, solicitor Justin Sadler made the decision to leave his comfortable existence behind and move to the coast. Since then, he’s tried his best to ignore the festive season and, as he sits in the little beach café and reflects on that fateful night when his life was turned upside down, he expects his fifth Christmas alone to be no different to any of the others since he made his escape.

But when he encounters a mystery woman on the beach, he soon realises he may have found a fellow runaway and kindred spirit.

Could Justin finally be ready to move on and let Christmas into his life again? 

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Review

Here we are again, back in the charming little village of; Borteen Bay, I can’t wait!! Grab your hot chocolate, put on your snuggly socks and enjoy the latest festive trip to one of the most enchanting villages!

This is the fifth book in the series, but don’t worry you don’t have to read them in order, you can do exactly what I did and jump straight in wherever you feel like it, I actually started this series with the previous Christmas novella; Christmas at Borteen Bay and since I have been hooked.

This time we have a mystery with festive cheer,  don’t you love it when you pick up a book which you think is going to be a cutesy little Christmas escape and it turns into something else, something which is far better then what you were expecting? Well that is exactly what happened to me with Christmas at the Little Beach Café, I thought; Oooh, this sounds a wonderful second chances festive love story, and by the last page I was; well that was unexpected and yet completely satisfying, I love the turn of events and the story concerning the mystery woman who just happened to appear as if by magic into our lonely Justin’s life just at the moment when he needed it.

Justin hate’s Christmas, he tries his hardest to ignore the very presence of the festive season, if he could hibernate until spring then I think he would, unfortunately for him, he now lives in a village that loves the joys of Christmas, it’s like being constantly caught in a Holly bush for him, (for those like myself, who have been stuck in a Holly bush while trying to collect sprigs for Christmas, you will know it’s not pleasant). But, we learn very early on, literally within the first few pages why this festive season is so hard for him….poor Justin, no wonder he wants to hide away from every bauble and Christmas tree he sees. It’s while he is trying to hide, that he comes across a mysterious woman on the beach. An encounter that not only changes his life but changes his thoughts on Christmas.

Yes, that all sounds very sweet doesn’t it? Well, that is just the tip of the iceberg, because this mystery woman not only brings fun, love and the joy of Christmas back into Justin’s heart again, she also brings a whole load of baggage. She brings with her intrigue, threats, danger and even though Justin has been dragged into this little web of intrigue she has spun around him and the readers, he can’t help himself but want to care and look after her and in doing so his heart open’s he allows the past to settle back where it belongs into the past.

Christmas at the Little Beach Cafe is a fabulously feel-good, enjoyable and very Christmassy story, which has edges of mystery, it keeps you guessing and turning the pages. I thoroughly enjoyed my latest visit to Borteen Bay and can’t wait to return again very soon.

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Winter at Wishington Bay by Maxine Morrey | #Review #WinterAtWishingtonBay #BlogTour #BoldWoodBlogger | @Scribbler_Maxi @rararesources @BoldwoodBooks

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to not only be sharing my review of the gorgeous; Winter at Wishington Bat by Maxine Morrey, but I also have an exclusive excerpt for you all to dive into. Confession time, this post was supposed to be apart of the blog tour, but as we all know life get’s in the way and I completely forgot to post…my fault, honestly I am such a bad book blogger!

So first off huge apologies to Maxine Morrey, Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources and the team at Boldwood Books for my unintentional slip up. Well, let’s move past that and let me tell you all about this charming little book.

Winter at Wishington Bay by Maxine Morrey

Genre: Romantic Comedy, Women’s Fiction

Publisher: Boldwood Books

Eighteen months ago, Sophia Jones finally walked out on her unhappy life.

With a tricky divorce ongoing, money is tight and so when friends offer her a housekeeping job while they’re away travelling, she accepts.

Nate McKinley is hesitant when his brother, Gabe, offers him the use of their home in the picturesque village of Wishington Bay. But he has a book to a write and an imploded marriage to recover from, so maybe a change of scene is exactly what he needs. 

As Wishington Bay works its magic, friendship blossoms between Sophia and Nate. For Nate, finally feeling able to be himself with someone who is honest and down to earth is a revelation. 

But Sophia has a secret and a jealous colleague is determined to blow her cover. Can she really keep her old life in the past or is it destined to destroy this new, happy one too?

Take a trip back to Wishington Bay this winter and find out…

A deliciously heart-warming and romantic read, perfect for a cosy winter’s evening, from the author of the bestselling Winter’s Fairytale.

Purchase Link – https://amzn.to/32l5kV5

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Excerpt

How the world turns, I thought, not for the first time that morning, as I gave the toilet brush a thorough exploratory trip under the rim. Eighteen months ago I had never cleaned a toilet, and most certainly had never had any inclination to. Now here I was cleaning them for strangers. Well, not exactly strangers. The house belonged to Holly, and until she and Gabe had become an item over the summer he’d been renting the other side of this gorgeous Art Deco semi. Now they were both living here, in what had once been Holly’s grandmother’s house, and which Holly had completely renovated during her enforced sabbatical from work last year, and both were full of the joys of young love. I only hoped it stayed that way – but I’d seen the way they looked at each other so I had a good feeling about it. Love had to have a solid foundation on which to build and they, like Ned and Carrie, seemed to have been lucky enough to find the right person to help grow that love and strengthen the relationship. I’d already popped next door and given it a quick flick with the duster and vacuumed round. With the two of them off taking a long overdue holiday, Holly had asked me to keep an eye on things. And now I was back in their half of the house – the difference that Holly had made to it emphasised how outdated next door was now, making it seem more shabby than it really was. But I got the feeling it wouldn’t stay that way for long.

Gigi, Holly and Ned’s grandmother, had been a wonderful woman by all accounts, and from what Carrie had said her death had completely devastated Holly. It had taken her granddaughter a year to even set foot back in the house that had been almost the sole source of any happiness she’d had during their childhood. But coming back to Wishington Bay had proved to be another pivotal point in Holly’s life. It was that kind of place – I knew that from experience. The people here were special and the village itself had something almost magical about it. Even if you didn’t feel you belonged anywhere, even if you walked in one day with everything you owned in one bag and had no clue what your next step was going to be, all the while wondering whether you’d just taken an enormous one in the wrong direction, Wishington Bay took care of you. It wrapped its arms around you and whispered, ‘It’s going to be OK.’ Of course, I hadn’t envisioned my version of OK would include cleaning other people’s toilets, but beggars can’t be choosers and it would have to do for now.

If Holly had had her way, she’d already have started transforming next door but on this point Gabe had managed to get her to see that she was at risk of setting herself up for exhaustion again, exactly the situation that had forced her return to Wishington Bay in the first place. So after consideration, Holly had acquiesced and admitted that he might actually be right, agreeing to slow down with her new endeavours – for now, at least. Especially in light of the surprise Gabe had in mind.

Review

Winter at Wishington Bay is wonderful escapism from the weirdness of the world, it’s a book you can completely dive into, you can fall into the sugar-coated, twinkly starred world that Maxine Morrey has gifted to us – and if the opportunity presents itself read in one go, it’s just perfect comfort reading!

This isn’t only my first trip to the wonderful Wishington Bay, but my first outing with Maxine Morrey. How on earth have I allowed Maxine’s beautiful books go march past me without reading one? Ah, well it’s another case of me walking around with my eyes shut, but I will definitely be stocking my kindle up with more of Maxine’s books.

This is all about second chances, about regaining trust is other, rebuilding your life and finding true happiness which is exactly what our two leads are looking for – even if they won’t admit it, we all know that Sophie and Nate are secretly wanting love. Both have come out the other side after difficult divorces, both have been burned and lost some of that much-needed care and when they are both given the opportunity to escape their own sadness and escape to the picturesque village of Wishington Bay, they can’t say no.

Sophie needs to escape her old life, while at the same time earn some money – as her divorce has sapped her of funds, plus I think it has stolen away from her trust and happiness in life, she needs a complete break so when offered a housekeepers job she grabs it both hands. Just what she needs breathing space, what she doesn’t count on is to meet a drop-dead gorgeous author – I mean, seriously this guy is so swoon-worthy, I may fall to my knee’s at his very feet…sigh!!

But, can they find new happiness, or will secrets from the past get in the way?

I thoroughly enjoyed this, it’s a really tender and heart-warming romance, but with secret’s lurking in the background this is much more than your stereotypical sweet love story, it captures the reader’s heart and keeps you transfixed to the page. I loved the character’s, from the residents of Wishington Bay to our love, lost couple, you will be backing Sophie and Nate right from page one, they are such an adorable couple. I love how everyone work so well together to create a realistic and charming little village, one I would love to visit – honestly, I have my bags and the dog packed ready to go 😉

Overall, this is the perfect book for curling up on this colder nights and being whisked away to a charming, star-sprinkled little village which will have you smiling longingly into your Hot Chocolate…..believe me, Hot Chocolate is a must-have while reading this.

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About the Author

Maxine Morrey is a bestselling romantic comedy author with eight books to her name including Winter’s Fairytale and the top ten hit The Christmas Project. She lives in West Sussex. Her first novel for Boldwood, #No Filter, was published in November 2019.

To hear all about Maxine’s books why not sign up to her newsletter here – Maxine Morrey Newsletter

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The German Nurse by M.J. Hollows | #BlogTour #TheGermanNurse #Review |@MikeHollows @HQStories

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be today’s stop on the blog tour for; The German Nurse by M.J. Hollows. I can’t wait to share my review of this beautiful book with you all, firstly I want to say thank you to Sian at HQ Digital for the invite to this tour. Now, let’s have a look at this book!

The German Nurse by M. J. Hollows

Genre: Historical Fiction, WW2 Fiction

Release Date: 18th November 2020

Publisher: HQ Digital

A powerful and heartbreaking WWII historical novel for fans of The Tattooist of Auschwitz, The Nightingale and Beneath a Scarlet Sky.

A secret past. A forbidden love. A terrifying choice.

Her past could kill you.

Guernsey, 1940. As war storms through Europe, Churchill orders the evacuation of all military personnel from the island. Boats ferry soldiers and vulnerable young children to England, leaving their parents and loved ones behind to face the invading German army on their own.

Her love could save you.

One of the few remaining policemen on the island, Jack must protect not only his friends and family, but also the woman he loves: Johanna, a Jewish nurse from Germany, whose secret faith could prove fatal to them both.

Her fate is in your hands.

When the Nazis arrive, everything changes. Jack is forced to come to terms with the pain and loss of a world re-making itself around him. And then a list of Jews on the island is drawn up, and he must make an awful choice: write down Johanna’s name and condemn her, or resist and put his family in immediate danger…

Purchase Link – Amazon

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Review

I loved this book, it’s a powerful and emotional read from the start, I was completely taken with Jack and Johanna, they pulled at my heartstring with their beautiful love story, there were times I was in tears.

The occupation of the Channel Islands has always grasped my attention, I have read many books and watched many films set during this time, the Channel Island’s – Guernsey especially – have been my to visit wish list for so long. I haven’t made it there yet, and with certain factors, in my life meaning, I most likely won’t. Thank goodness for books!

The stories that came out of that horrific and hard period will not only break your heart, but you stand back in disbelief that our country deserted them, support and protection were withdrawn and they were alone to face the full force of the Nazi army alone. Those who decided to stand back and allow our Channel Island’s to be occupied and not lift a finger to help them should hang their heads in shame. I do realise that there would have been many factors going on behind the scenes, but still, our Channel Islands were deserted and left to fend for themselves. Even once the war was over, the people of Guernsey and Jersey were still in dire need, they were starving and needing urgent supplies and again they had to wait for the UK to send much-needed aid. I think that was a blight on our history, it was disgusting how the UK deserted them and I look on those incredible people with such awe, the bravery that they showed they way many resisted against Nazi rule, these stories, their stories need to be told and I am so pleased that more and more authors are telling them.

Hmm! I think I got a little carried away there, I think I should talk about this book!

I love the opening, it sets the story up beautifully for what’s to come, you get a sense of what’s to come. Even from those first few pages, you get a real sense of just how much he loves Johanna, it’s in his every move, its the forces that push’s him onwards and its the thing that keeps telling him not to give up keep going. Jack’s undying devotion to her, to keep her safe pulls at the heart, yet saying that I think that the love story is more of a subplot, for me the main story is all about what’s going on with the occupation and how people – Jack – had to cope, how they struggled and how they survived.

This is all about survival, love and family and the contradicting feeling of duty, it’s the story of what a man would do to protect those he cares about most. Once Guernsey has occupied the people of the Island have to make choices to survive, Jack finds himself stuck between a rock and a hard place, he has a duty to do to protect his family and yet to do that he would put Johanna in danger.

What is a man to do when everyone he cares about is the danger? Jack is a good man, he is a loyal and dutiful man, a man who is torn, he struggles with his choices but he can’t abide the thought that his choices would come with too high costs for those he loves. Your heart goes out to him, he faces grim times, the author does a brilliant job at portraying Jack’s struggles and hard times with realism and sensitivity.

MJ Hollows is a wonderful author, I have read and loved his previous book; Goodbye For Now (I need to write my review of that one) as soon as I got invited to take part in this blog tour, I couldn’t sign up fast enough. I love the writing, it sweeps you away to another time.

This is a must-read for anyone, but especially for those who love their WW2 historical fiction, I cannot recommend The German Nurse enough.

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About the Author

Michael Hollows was born in London in 1986, and moved to Liverpool in 2010 to lecture in Audio Engineering. With a keen interest in history, music, and science, he has told stories since he was little.

Goodbye for Now is his first novel, which he startd as part of his MA in Writing from Liverpool John Moores University, graduating in 2015. He has also been published in SF anthologies, and is now researching towards a PhD in Creative Writing, working on his next novel.

You can find more at www.michaelhollows.com and on Twitter at @MikeHollows

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Holly’s Christmas Secret (Cornish Secret’s) by Kirsty Ferry | #Review #HollysChristmasSecret #CornishSecrets |@kirsty_ferry @ChocLituk

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Hello, Sunshines, I have the huge pleasure to be sharing my review of the utterly charming; Holly’s Christmas Secret by Kirsty Ferry. I did have this review scheduled for…well, quite a few weeks ago, but life go in the way as it does and I am late – as per usual. Honestly, this year I have been such a bad blogger! Anyway, here it is, better late then never, I suppose. Before, I start babbling, I want to say a huge thank you to Liz at Choc Lit for the complimentary copy. Now, let’s have a look at this book…

Holly’s Christmas Secret by Kirsty Ferry.

Genre: Romance, Seasonal

Publisher: Choc Lit

Series: Cornish Secret’s

Once upon a Cornish Christmas …

It’s almost Christmas at the Pencradoc estate in Cornwall which means that, as usual, tea room owner Sorcha Davies is baking up a festive storm. And this year Sorcha is hoping her mince pies will be going down a treat at ‘The Spirit of Christmas Past’ exhibition being organised at the house by new local antiques dealer, Locryn Dyer.

But as Locryn and Sorcha spend more time together, they begin to uncover a very special story of Christmas past that played out at Pencradoc more than a century before, involving a certain ‘Lady’ Holly Sawyer, a festive dinner party and a magical secret encounter with a handsome author …

Gorgeous, happy, festive, charming little book!!

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Review

Gorgeous, happy, festive, charming little book!!

It’s like having everything you love all rolled into one and makes you incredibly happy, I know I will probably use the word ‘Happy’ a lot during the review, but once you read this book you will understand what I mean and that there is no other word for how you feel when reading this book, it makes all your stresses fade away and you feel happy. Which in these incredibly weird times, we all things to make us happy and this is the perfect book for it, it’s like a big hug from a loved one.

I am a huge lover of Christmas books, I may not be a fan of the festive season (it’s doesn’t feel as full of magic as it used to when I was little, it’s become way too commercialized – or maybe, I’m just a Scrooge 😉 ) but Christmas books are something I really look forward to, especially when they are wrote by one of my favourite authors and Kirsty Ferry is easily one of the best, I absolutely love her writing, her books are always so cheerful and they put you into the festive spirit (even a Scrooge like me lol).

We are once again whisked away to the gorgeous village of; Pencradoc, for those who haven’t read the previous books in the Cornish Secret’s don’t worry these are definitely stand-alones, yes they all share the setting and some familiar faces pop up but you will never become tangled up by not knowing the previous stories, believe me I came into this series late (which is not surprising with me) and I fell in love the Cornish Secret’s. But, if have read ‘Lily’s Secret‘ earlier in the year, then you will have met our lovely tea room owner; Sorcha and I am so pleased that she has got her own story and this one is so fitting for her, plus beautiful and magical.

Sorcha as always is baking, baking, baking and making her little tea room all festive for Christmas and especially for ‘The Spirt of Christmas Past’ exhibition which will be the main evet of the season this year. It’s being organized by gorgeous….deep throat guttural groan….so handsome, way too handsome; Locryn…sigh!!!

Sorcha and Locryn start working closely together as they do the magic starts, the air crackles with festive joy and romance. Through their own blossoming romance another story emerges, one of secret parties and magical liaison’s between a Lady Holly and a visiting author…oooh, I’m getting tingles!

I adore this sweet little novella, it’s full of cheerful festive fun, romance and magic, as always Kirsty Ferry spirits you away on a delightful trip that is full of twinkling stars, festive lights and the most enchanting characters. Honestly, I cannot recommend this book and this author enough.

Holly’s Christmas Secret is just what we all need at the moment, it’s uplifting and makes you feel incredible happy, it’s like opening your favourite box of chocolates and finding a second layer so you have double the joy.

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