Book reviews, Cancer, Womens fiction

The Pelican by M Naidoo – Book Review



“Because life is about living…”

Julia has never been one to surrender without a fight, but when she receives a devastating diagnosis, she has a decision to make.

Even after thirty years, she can still see her mother slowly fading away with every dose of chemo, every round of radiation, and every lost shred of hope. No, she won’t do it… not to her family… and not to herself!

Without warning, she packs up her belongings and disappears, leaving behind a life that, by all accounts, had been as perfect as they come, and a distraught family full of questions.

Finding peace in a beach house in Northern California turns out to have its complications though. While only a handful of other residents share the tiny beach community, each one has brought their own baggage and developed their own way of dealing with it. All Julia wants is to be left alone, but that simply does not seem to be an option, especially when there’s a persistent bird that declares her to be his new best friend.

Haunted by the shadows of the past, Julia is struggling to cope with the present. Will she have the strength to do this alone and eventually follow through with her plan? Will her family, divided by mixed reactions to being abandoned, come together to try and track her down? And what is the deal with that pelican of hers?

Only time will tell – and time is the one thing Julia does not have…



Julia finds out she has cancer and decides to keep a promise to herself, made years before when watching her mother struggle through cancer, chemo and ultimately her death.

She decides to disappear, to deal with her own cancer, her mortality, alone. She wants to spare her husband and family the heartache of watching her fade away.

This is an incredibly emotional tale, (which I personally found a difficult read due to my own health….I’m currently undergoing treatment for stage 4 malignant melanoma) and I can fully understand her reasoning, to protect those closest to you, but also to protect yourself……trying to cope with your own emotions is tough enough without having to think of others too at an incredibly difficult time.

A story of utter selflessness with the intent on sparing her family pain and the unhappy memories. Wonderfully emotive writing…… have a box of tissues with you, when you read this..……you’ll need them.

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.


Purchase Links
For duration of tour – The Pelican will be £1.99 on Amazon UK (and US)

Author Bio 

E924E779-51DA-489C-BD87-741349AC95FFBorn and raised in Germany, M.Naidoo lives in Northern California with her husband, two daughters,
and three dogs. One of them, Dusty, a spunky terrier mix, found its way into her debut novel. When she is not in front of her computer, pounding out story lines and characters, she enjoys reading, movies, spending time with her family, and long walks on the beach – her proverbial ‘happy place’. M’s love for the beach and ocean shine through in the vivid descriptions of the coast in The Pelican.

Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller

The Cleansing by JA Baker – Book Review



When Ray moves to a new house in the village of Whitchurch, he leaves behind a relationship and a luxury apartment in search of a better life in the countryside.

However, he soon realises that sleepy Whitchurch also has its own fair share of problems. Last year, a woman’s body was discovered in the woods nearby. The killer was never caught.

Soon suspicious things start to happen. Threatening letters are sent, cars are vandalised and headstones are desecrated. But who is responsible for these acts and why?

As the tension in the village builds, Ray begins to feel the pressure. Someone is out to cause trouble and that someone might be closer to Ray than he ever imagined.


Whitchurch seems to be a lovely little village, everyone knows each other and a nice community with a local pub….all good…except something dark is happening…

A local woman’s body was found….the killer unknown, then a cat is killed, threatening letters are sent to various inhabitants and dog mess smeared on some cars…some of the villagers are a little hysterical and blaming an ex-con who lives in one of the local houses…..just who beat Jim, who was just watching the stars! Who set fire to Emily’s home…..were these attempted murders?

Ray has moved to Whitchurch after leaving a relationship in Birmingham, he wants a quiet life. It takes a little while to be accepted into the village, but the friendly barmaid, Lily helps and he’s soon mixing and socialising with the villagers…

I liked the way the book was set out, with the short chapters from the perpetrators point of view….it builds a sense of unease. Just how much does nurture over nature affect a child….?

There’s lots of gossip and pondering as to who the perpetrator is, but J.A.Baker’s clever writing keeps you guessing…..right up to a gasp inducing end….!

Thank you to Bloodhound Books for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.


BUY A COPY HERE (click on the image)





J.A.BAKER was born and brought up in North East England and has had a love of language for as long as she can remember.

She enjoys reading many genres of books but especially enjoys psychological thrillers. When she’s not busy writing, she can be found trying to keep on top of her high maintenance garden!

In December 2016 she was signed by Bloodhound Books who published Undercurrent.


Her second novel, Her Dark Retreat was published in October 2017. Since then she has written four other novels – The Other Mother, Finding Eva, The Uninvited and The Cleansing which is her latest release.

J.A. Baker has four grown-up children and a grandchild and lives in a village near Darlington with her husband and madcap dog.

You find out more about J.A.Baker by visiting her website at

Book reviews

Dyed Souls by Gary Santorella – Book Review



Described by John Lloyd of The Bookbag as “Catcher in the Cuckoo’s Nest,” Dyed Souls is a gritty coming-of-age literary novel, set in a residential treatment center in 1980’s California.

Charlie Lyle loves science, natural history, and the world of the mind, and it is his refuge and salvation as he copes with his drug-addicted mother and a world of circumstances well-beyond his grasp. More a work of philosophy than psychology, “For the teen it has a galling coming-of-age, redemption quest. For the adult it has that, as well as a literary look at a singular fictional life.”



This is a marvellously written story of a young man called Charlie.

He had to go to the Hawthorne Residential Treatment Centre for troubled young people. Charlie is very intelligent and reads constantly, this makes him different amongst his peers.

His drug addicted mother, tends to treat him badly as though she feels he is to blame somehow for her situation….but he’s very close to his grandparents..

This story tells of Charlie’s life at Hawthorne, there are many incidents, even Charlie fighting with another child.

But then he meets Margo, a pretty girl he falls in love with and he feels a happiness he hasn’t known before…..but will this end well?

This is a coming of age story which is wonderfully written, heartbreakingly sad at times but a compelling read….

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

Purchase Links

Troubadour –
UK –
US –

Author Bio


Gary Santorella, Owner, Interactive Consulting is a Lean implementation, ..organizational development, conflict resolution, and team-building specialist. He has a BA in Behavioural Psychology from Providence College, Providence, RI (1980), a Master’s Degree in Occupational Social Welfare from UC Berkeley (1990), and is a licensed cognitive-behavioural therapist in the State of California. His book: Lean Culture for the Construction Industry: Building Responsible & Committed Project Teams 2nd Edition was published by Productivity Press (a division of Taylor & Francis) in 2017. His first novel, Dyed Souls, was published by Matador Publishing in 2018.

Social Media Links –
Dyed Souls has won two awards:
Silver in the 2018 Global eBook Awards – Young Adult Fiction Category
Chill With a Book Readers Award.

Book reviews

Barnabas Tew and The Case of the Cursed Serpent by Columbkill Noonan – Book Review



“For Queen, for Country, and for….Uncle Rabbit?”

Just when Barnabas and Wilfred thought the world was safe at last, along comes a new threat: the Mayan Lords of Death have hatched a plan to overthrow the natural order of things, involving a cursed serpent god, two untrustworthy sets of twins, and a dead bunny that must be resuscitated at all costs.

Only Barnabas and Wilfred can possibly unravel the convoluted plot, but they face danger after danger as they attempt to do so. If they fail, up will be down and down will be up, and the evil Lords of Death will take over the heavens.

Do Barnabas and Wilfred have the courage, skill (and luck!) to save the world yet again?





Barnabas and Wilfred meet a paw handed, snake haired woman and wonder if they are hallucinating…..but no…it’s real….Odin recommended them as detectives..

Uncle Rabbit is dead, he needs to be resurrected to prevent the end of the world…

Will they be able to rouse Kukulkan so he can resurrect Uncle Rabbit and so save the world?

What follows is a wheeze, they travel to Chichen Itza, meet the monkey gods, Mr Monkey and Mr Spider, there are also bat-monsters, Mr Bat and pus curses in a romp in the vein of Jeeves and Wooster….just who is in charge?

Very clever writing and a lot of Mayan mythology in a fun filled thriller.

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.


Purchase Links
US –
UK  –


Author Bio

Columbkill Noonan is the author of the bestselling “Barnabas Tew” series, which features the bumbling-yet-lovable Victorian detective Barnabas and his trusty sidekick, Wilfred. Columbkill combines her love of mythology and her affinity for period fiction to craft unique cozy mysteries that will leave you guessing (and chuckling!) till the very end.
Social Media Links –



Book reviews, Thriller

Downfall by Will Jordan – Book Review



“My name is Ryan Drake and this is just the beginning.”

Ryan Drake and his team are in hiding, having become sworn enemies of states and agencies around the world. When a CIA operative is killed in a car bomb, Drake is shocked to see an old enemy felled. Further still when a video is released claiming responsibility for the attack… under the name of Ryan Drake.

Forced out of hiding, Drake embarks upon a mission to confront his past. When the stranger from the video reaches out, hinting at secrets just out of reach, he leads Drake on a high-octane journey through the slums of Rio to the deserts of Afghanistan.

Following in the wake of his trail of destruction, the team must pursue Drake as he stops at nothing to find the key to his past.

An edge-of-your-seat action thriller from bestselling author Will Jordan, perfect for fans of James Phelan and Vince Flynn.




This is the 8th in the Ryan Drake series by Will Jordan, but can easily be read as a stand-alone.

This starts with a prologue dated 14 Jan 2011, Afghanistan…..Ryan Drake has a captive and two helicopters arrive to pick them up.

The story is full of conspiracies, the CIA, the NSA and a group of ex-CIA operative trying to stay under the radar…..then a car bomb is blamed on Drake and so the action really begins…

This reminded me a little of the Jason Bourne series, in that the CIA and Langley are involved, leaving damaged men in their wake, with great characters in Drake and Anya. The writing is excellent in this incredibly well plotted, brutal, action packed and twisty thriller…… will end in tears ! If you like Ludlum or LeCarre, you’ll love this.

Thank you to Damppebbles Blog Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

BUY A COPY HERE (click on the image)




About Will Jordan:


Will Jordan’s Ryan Drake novels draw on extensive research into weapons and tactics, as well as the experiences of men who’ve fought in some of the world’s most daunting combat zones. Other books in the series include Redemption, Sacrifice and Betrayal. He lives in Fife, Scotland, with his wife and sons.

Social Media:
Amazon Author Page:

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK:
Amazon US:
Google Play:

Publishing Information:
Published by Canelo in eBook and paperback on 7th January 2019.


Book reviews

It’s Gone Dark Over Bill’s Mother’s By Lisa Blower – A Review

A great review from Bookish Chat ( my mum still says, it’s dark o’er bills mothers – you have to say it in a Yorkshire accent though!)

Bookish Chat

Publisher: Myriad

Publication Date: 18th April 2019

When my good bookish pal Clare from Years Of Reading Selfishly brought this short story collection to my attention it made me feel quite emotional.

My lovely Dad who is no longer with us used to say ‘It’s gone dark over Dick’s mothers’ whenever the sky looked gloomy. He was called Bill….

Apparently the phrase is one that developed in the Stoke potteries area, often uttered by the working classes. Which was another huge draw for me to this book. The stories are all told by the northern working classes, many of which are matriarchal voices. I ADORE this!

The very first story ‘Barmouth’ tells of a working class family’s road trip to their annual caravan holiday. Within the first 3 pages I had read things which sparked memories of my own childhood holidays. It was like a warm comforting blanket despite the…

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Book reviews

Book Review – The Princess And The Fan Girl by @ashposton @quirkbooks @jamiedoespr #Geekerella #ThePrincessAndTheFanGirl

A lovely review

the bookish gurl

The Prince and the Pauper gets a modern makeover in this adorable, witty, and heartwarming young adult novel set in the Geekerella universe by national bestselling author Ashley Poston.

Imogen Lovelace is an ordinary fangirl on an impossible mission: save her favorite character, Princess Amara, from being killed off from her favorite franchise, Starfield. The problem is, Jessica Stone—the actress who plays Princess Amara—wants nothing more than to leave the intense scrutiny of the fandom behind. If this year’s ExcelsiCon isn’t her last, she’ll consider her career derailed.

When a case of mistaken identity throws look-a-likes Imogen and Jess together, they quickly become enemies. But when the script for the Starfield sequel leaks, and all signs point to Jess, she and Imogen must trade places to find the person responsible. That’s easier said than done when the girls step into each other’s shoes and discover new romantic possibilities, as well…

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Book reviews, Thriller

Arbitrage by Colette Kebell



Ryan Logan thinks he has it all… A young attorney specialising in finance and tax law, Logan has earned an impressive reputation and commands a hefty fee for his services. But when he advises his corporate employers against a merger with a shady financial institution, he soon finds himself caught up in a web of betrayal and deceit.

Framed for the murder of his wealthy boss, Logan is forced to accept a plea deal, to keep his own dark secrets from coming to light…

Arbitrage is a fast-paced, stand-alone financial thriller. If you like edge-of-your-seat suspense, sweet revenge, and twists and turns you won’t see coming, you’ll love this eye-opening look into the world of financial crime.

Can a burned out lawyer outwit an army of con artists and killers?



While this is a complex and intriguing read with many characters all linked in some way and lots of financial and banking jargon it’s still easy to follow.

Ryan Logan is a hard drinking, partying, quite arrogant lawyer who is imprisoned after the death of his boss….but as he has secrets of his own, he accepts a plea deal..

The story recommences after his release and what follows is a tale full of financial shenanigans, with share dealing, money laundering, the Russian mob and even Interpol…..who is playing the long con? A wonderfully twisty tale right to the very end….very clever and creative writing by Colette Kebell.

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.

Purchase Link –

Author Bio


Colette Kebell is an eclectic author, though a relatively new one and thus far has self-published her books. Her books are light-hearted, fun and quirky and even considered by some to be inspirational.

She publishes mostly for the English speaking market and the Italian one. Colette Kebell does not stick to just one genre when writing though, as you shall discover from her latest book to be launched on 5th April 2019

As a career, Colette spent her later years as a legal secretary. After a first attempt at writing many years ago (a book that still remains in her drawer) she resumed this passion a few years back, after being made redundant. After few book signing events and a book talk, which almost caused her to collapse with nerves, Colette now spends her time between her home in the UK and her home in France.

Colette has two adorable dogs and, when not writing and marketing her books, she likes cooking for herself and her husband, gardening or designing various items for their home. Amongst her other hobbies, she has also experimented with furniture upholstery, and she might, from time to time, have a paintbrush in her hand.

She can be found on twitter @ColetteKebell though doesn’t tweet a vast amount.

Social Media Links –
Twitter –
Facebook –



Book reviews

Who’s Sorry Now? By Helene Fermont – Book Review


Who’s Sorry Now? Is a collection of four crime and romance stories.

It’s about love, betrayal and dreams.

Do we really know the people we love?

Can love be rekindled?

Do dreams come true?

The truth always comes out in the end.



A little collection of four short stories about family, love and betrayal….a nice, light and quick read you can dip in and out of….

Full Circle:

A lovely, romantic love story. After breaking up Mandy and Chris meet up again and admit the love is still there…a lovely story with a happy end.

The Perfect Murder:

Twins Tess and Bianca meet for dinner… is planning a murder….so much deception in this tale of lies and greed…


Who’s Sorry Now:

Madeleine is missing her ex-husband, Carl. He was unfaithful so they divorced….he contacts her and asks to meet but is there more to know…..A short story but packed with hurt and betrayal….

Katie’s Christmas Wish:

A cute romance about love being closer than you think…..heartwarming.

A nice mix of tales, short and sweet ( and some bittersweet)…perfect for when you have 10 minutes to spare and a coffee…

Thank you to Sarah at Book On The Bright Side for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.


Author bio:

Born into a bilingual family (Swedish/ English) Hélene Fermont enjoyed an idylic childhood on the outskirts of Malmö, Sweden’s third largest city and major cultural hub. Growing up in the 1970s she had a brief musical career on Swedish TV and radio. Hélene lived in London for over 20 years but has recently returned to Sweden. Hélene is a former teacher, a practising psychologist, and currently the author of three novels, all of which are psychological suspense with a nordic noir flavour. Her fourth novel is coming soon!

SM links:

Book reviews, Thriller, Womens fiction

The Problem with Perfect by Megan Mayfair – Book Review



Marigold Doyle’s life was perfect, with a successful career and wonderful marriage. But when her husband, Julian, passes away, her life is thrown into turmoil as she discovers a trail of secrets Julian was hiding in the months prior to his death.

Struggling with her grief, she knows she needs to find out Julian’s actions to help her move on.

Finn Schröder, a former police officer and now private security consultant, is focused on an uncomplicated, unattached life and growing his business. He agrees to help Marigold find out the truth about Julian, but as they become closer, he realises his feelings for her may be developing beyond simply professional.

As Marigold and Finn work through the web of Julian’s deception, will they learn to face the reality that things aren’t always exactly as they seem?

Purchase Link –



After the death of Marigolds beloved husband, Julian,  her perfect life is fractured by secrets. Just what was Julian hiding?

Marigold enlists the help of Finn, ex cop and now a security consultant, to find out how far the secrets go and why… there such a thing as perfect? Or is this an unattainable dream?

Finn and Marigold grow close as their investigation progresses in this quite light and easy read…..interesting and emotional writing by Megan Mayfair.

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.


Author Bio 


Megan’s stories are about families, intrigue and love. Every book contains a bit of humour and a lot of heart.

Megan lives in Melbourne with her husband and three children, and has a background in public relations and higher education.

She drinks far too much coffee and has an addiction to buying scarves. She interviews with other authors for her blog series, Espresso Tales, and loves a bit of #bookstagram.

Her debut novel, The Things We Leave Unsaid, was released by Crooked Cat Books in 2018, followed by Tangled Vines. The Problem with Perfect is her third novel.

Social Media Links –


Book reviews, Historical fiction, Thriller

The Golden Hour by Malia Zaidi – Book Review




London 1927

Lady Evelyn Carlisle has barely arrived in London when familial duty calls her away again. Her cousin Gemma is desperate for help with her ailing mother before her imminent wedding, which Evelyn knew nothing about! Aunt Agnes in tow, she journeys to Scotland, expecting to find Malmo Manor in turmoil.

To her surprise, her Scottish family has been keeping far more secrets than the troubled state of their matriarch. Adding to the tension in the house a neighbour has opened his home, Elderbrooke Park, as a retreat for artistic veterans of the Great War.

This development does not sit well with everyone in the community. Is the suspicion towards the residents a catalyst for murder? A tragedy at Elderbrooke Park’s May Day celebration awakens Evelyn’s sleuthing instinct, which is strengthened when the story of another unsolved death emerges, connected to her own family. What she uncovers on her quest to expose the truth will change several lives forever, including her own.

With the shadow of history looming over her, Evelyn must trust in her instinct and ability to comb through the past to understand the present, before the murderer can stop her and tragedy strikes again.




Set in April 1927 and Lady Evelyn Carlisle receives a call from her cousin Gemma, she is about to be married, but wants Evelyn to arrive early in Scotland, as she is concerned about her mother’s behaviour….

When she arrives she’s puzzled as there seems nothing wrong…But things are not quite what they seem, Gemma’s mother is lively and helping a neighbour turn his home into a retreat for artistic veterans of the Great War. Not everyone is happy about this though.

Then, on the Mayday celebration, a body is discovered by Lady Evelyn and, of course, she is determined to help catch the guilty party.

While this is quite slow paced, there is a lot happening and the characters are all well rounded. Malia Zaidi’s evocative writing brings the atmosphere of the time alive, from wealthy London life with butlers and staff….to Scotland and the murder mystery….a little darker than a cozy mystery and a thoroughly entertaining read.

Thank you to Damppebbles Blog Tours for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook. This is my honest, unbiased review.


About Malia Zaidi:

Version 2

 Malia Zaidi is the author of the Lady Evelyn Mysteries. She studied at the University of Pittsburgh and at the University of Oxford. Having grown up in Germany, she currently lives in Washington DC, though through her love of reading, she resides vicariously (if temporarily) in countries around the world.

Social Media links :

Purchase Links:

Amazon UK:

Amazon US:

Publishing Information:
Published in paperback and ebook formats on 26th March 2019.

Book reviews

The River Girls by Melinda Woodhall – Book Review



When the body of a missing girl washes up on the banks of the Willow River, the killing is linked to two cold case murders, and the investigation must uncover the twisted motive of a serial killer before he kills again.

Still reeling after her sister’s brutal murder, grief-stricken Eden Winthrop has returned to Willow Bay, where she runs the Mercy Harbor Foundation, a safe haven for victims of violence.

When a teenage trafficking victim disappears from a shelter run by her foundation, Eden is drawn into the search for the sadistic killer. The hunt becomes personal when Eden’s niece is abducted just as the body of yet another victim is discovered in a local river.

In a desperate effort to save her niece, Eden must partner with the small-town police force that had failed to save her sister. And to catch the killer, she realizes she must trust the one man she vowed to never forgive and summon the strength to face her deepest fears.

The gripping first book in the page-turning Mercy Harbor Thriller Series will keep you up at night.



Firstly, how come I’ve not heard of Melinda Woodhall before? ….I read a lot and hadn’t come across her writing….

So, The River Girls….

Eden Winthrop helps run The Mercy Harbor Foundation in Willow Bay, this is a refuge for women, to help them escape domestic violence. She has some severe anxiety issues stemming from when her sister was killed by her estranged husband and has help from the adorable Duke, a golden retriever…

One night a young girl, Star turns up at the foundation asking for help. Eden goes against protocol and lets her in, but then she runs away…

Soon after a young girls body is found in the river….is this Star? Or something more sinister at work……?

What follows is an intense, emotion packed, twisty thriller….with some great characters in Hollywood, the seedy, violent,drug addicted pimp, his sidekick Vinny and of course the lawyer, Leo Steele….a possible budding romance with Eden??

Wonderfully immersive writing from Melinda Woodhall….in this real nail biter of a thriller….I will be looking out for more of her writing in future that’s for sure.

I received a free advance copy of The River Girls and this is my honest and unbiased review.

Published by Creative Magnolia in November 2018


Book reviews, Womens fiction

The Peacock Bottle by Angela Ridley – Book Review and #GIVEAWAY



The Peacock Bottle

In this Victorian dual timeline novel, Amelia Wise feels a jolt when she finds a blue perfume bottle in the overgrown garden of the house she has inherited. 

Several events in her life mirror those from the past and, with the help of her newfound cousin, Olivia, the bottle’s secret is uncovered.



This is historical fiction set in the 1800’s in the Lake District…

It covers two separate time periods, 1840 and 1893 and the history of the Wise family.

In 1893, Amelia and her Stepmother move to a new home after the death of her father. The house and garden have been neglected and need work and while clearing the garden, Amelia finds a perfume bottle…this then gives us flashbacks to history, why was the bottle buried? A story of family and secrets. 

Angela Ridley has written a gentle tale, with some really descriptive writing giving nice well rounded characters and a sense of the atmosphere of the time. A well written, easy and enjoyable read….

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.

Purchase Links:

UK –

US –


Author Bio


Married to Don, I have 5 children and 9 grandchildren, I live in Derbyshire, England, and enjoy researching my family tree (having found ancestors as far back as 1465), reading, gardening, playing Scrabble, meals out and family gatherings. I am the treasurer of my writing club, Eastwood Writers’ Group, and I also write and record Thoughts for the Day for Radio Nottingham. 

At church I sing in the choir and am an Extraordinary Minister of Holy Communion, a reader, a flower arranger and a member of the fundraising team for Cafod, my favourite charity. I have written hymns, although I cannot read music.

Social Media Links –



Giveaway to Win 2 x Paperback copes of The Peacock Bottle (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

Book reviews, Psychlogical thriller, Thriller

The Passengers by John Marrs – Book Review


Eight self-drive cars set on a collision course. Who lives, who dies? You decide.

The new gripping page-turning thriller from the bestselling author of THE ONE – soon to be a major Netflix series.

When someone hacks into the systems of eight self-drive cars, their passengers are set on a fatal collision course.

The passengers are: a TV star, a pregnant young woman, a disabled war hero, an abused wife fleeing her husband, an illegal immigrant, a husband and wife – and parents of two – who are travelling in separate vehicles and a suicidal man. Now the public have to judge who should survive but are the passengers all that they first seem?



An inquest is being held to determine who is at fault during accidents with driverless cars…..the car or the human…a jury watches videos of accidents and makes decisions on quite basic information….the car is usually exonerated.

But, then 8 driverless cars are taken over by The Hacker, the inquest jury, headed by MP Jack Larsson is told to decide who of the 8 will survive…

They are given a chance to interview each person to make an informed decision, Libby though, knows one of the Passengers….Jude, the person she met in a bar and believes he is the One.

It taps into our fear of a loss of control, being in a car with no driver…..would my life be deemed worth saving over that of someone else in an accident….

What follows is one of the most twisty thrillers I’ve read. There are so many secrets and lies to keep you guessing right to the breathtaking end. A definite must read for any lover of a dark thriller……a thought provoking nail biter….a brilliant 5 * read.

I would like to thank the Pigeonhole and the author for the opportunity to read this book for free and this is my honest and unbiased review.



Amazon UK





Book reviews, Historical fiction, Romance

A Dangerous Act of Kindness by LP Ferguson – Book Review

Title: A Dangerous Act of Kindness

Author Name: LP Fergusson

Previous Books (if applicable): TBC

Genre: Historical Fiction

Release Date: 28th March 2019



What would you risk for a complete stranger?

When widow Millie Sanger finds injured enemy pilot Lukas Schiller on her farm, the distant war is suddenly at her doorstep. Compassionate Millie knows he’ll be killed if discovered, and makes the dangerous decision to offer him shelter from the storm.

On opposite sides of the inescapable conflict, the two strangers forge an unexpected and passionate bond. But as the snow thaws, the relentless fury of World War Two forces them apart, leaving only the haunting memories of what they shared, and an understanding that their secret must never see light.

As Millie’s dangerous act of kindness sets them on paths they never could have expected, those closest to them become their greatest threats, and the consequences of compassion prove deadly…

A Dangerous Act of Kindness is a beautiful, harrowing love story, perfect for fans of Rachel Hore and Santa Montefiore.



This is set during WWII and Millie is a young widow, who is running her dairy farm with the help of a neighbour and some evacuees….

A German fighter plane crashes in a nearby field and the kind Millie takes the injured pilot, Lukas in to her care and hides him in the barn. She’s not really thinking of the consequences this may have on her and those closest to her….

This is historical fiction at its best. It tells of the atrocities of war and the emotional and physical effects this has both on those fighting and their families. It also touches on the labour camps where German POW’s were kept and the Land Army women and how women managed during the war years…changing perceptions forever.

With likeable and believable characters this is beautifully written by LP Ferguson with stunning imagery and emotion. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Thank you to Canelo for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.


Links to Book:

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Author Bio:

LP Fergusson grew up on the borders of Wales in a Tudor house on the banks of  the River Wye. As a child she longed to go back in history. Now she does, through her writing. She has an MA in Creative Writing from Oxford Brookes University and won the Blackwell’s Prize for MA Creative Writing. Her stories have made a number of shortlists for competitions run by the Orwell Society, Oxfordshire Libraries and Flash500.

Her psychological thriller reached the final three of a Quercus/Psychologies Thriller competition and her wartime novel A Dangerous Act of Kindness was Highly Commended in the Caledonia Novel Award 2018. She edits the historical blog With Love from Graz which was featured on BBC Radio Wales, Radio 2 and BBC4’s A Very British Romance with Lucy Worsley. She now lives in an Oxfordshire village beneath the chalk downs where her debut novel is set.


Book reviews

Reflected Destinies by Florence Keeling- *PROMO*****HALF PRICE*



Reflected Destinies

Laura is happy and content, she has a new boyfriend and loves her job teaching primary school pupils in London.  But when she inherits a rundown house from a stranger on her 30th birthday, memories of her prom night come flooding back, memories of a scary encounter and an antique mirror in the very same house.
Laura visits the house with all its secrets and as she unravels the clues she reveals the biggest secret of all: her own destiny.  But how can you change the future if it’s already written in the past?




Wow….this sounds so intriguing….and……it’s a bargain! What’s not to love….


To celebrate Mother’s Day, Reflected Destinies will be half price from 29th March to 1st April.

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About Florence Keeling

Florence Keeling adopted for her pen-name her Great Grandmother’s name, chosen because of the shared birthday of April Fool’s Day.  She is married with two teenage chidren.  Born and raised in Coventry, England she now lives just outside in Nuneaton.  Reflected Destinies is her first novel.

Florence Keeling also writes for children under the name of Lily Mae Walters.

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Book reviews

The House at Greenacres by Darcie Boleyn @DarcieBoleyn #HouseAtGreenacres #BlogTour @Canelo_co #Review

Great review 💕

I’m thrilled to be sharing my review today as part of the blog tour for The House at Greenacres by Darcie Boleyn. With thanks to Ellie at Canelo for the invite to join the tour and for my copy via Netgalley. First of all though let’s take a look at the description for the book…

When Holly Dryden fled Penhallow Sands
nearly a year ago she was determined to put the past – and Rich Turner – behind
her. But now an unexpected loss and financial trouble has led her back to the
family vineyard and it’s time to tell Rich the truth – he’s a father.

Surrounded by the memories of what they once
shared Holly’s anger fades in the glow of Rich’s undeniable love for their son
and the way he selflessly steps in to help the vineyard out of trouble. As
Holly watches Rich flourish in his…

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Book reviews

The Scarecrow and The Princess by Maggie Archer – Book Review


Prince Harvey had a great life.
He was very handsome (some would say, too handsome for his own good). He was heavily doted on by his parents, and the ladies were crazy about him.
Still, he had a good heart.
He spent his days swimming, fishing, practising his target shooting, and getting up to general high jinks with his cousin and best friend, Ralphie. He also enjoyed tearing about the kingdom on Black Terror (ironically, a rather timid horse).
Until, one day, he got on the heretofore good witch Bettina’s nerves so much that she turned him into a scarecrow and banished him to an unknown apple orchard.
(Well, it was unknown to Harvey. Obviously the owners of the orchard knew about it).

What a pickle!

Meanwhile, the princess of a neighbouring kingdom had her own set of problems. She was getting into the questionable habit of discussing those problems, and everything else dear to her heart, with the new resident scarecrow.

What does fate have in store for these two?



The Scarecrow and the Princess by Maggie Archer is an enchanting tale. Prince Harvey is arrogant and thoughtless, he has the entitled life as the son of King and Queen of Avaria.

Harvey is handsome, but a little conceited but the ladies love him…especially Blandina….she pesters him all the time, until he finally tells her No, but he is cruel and she runs home sobbing…to her mother…..a powerful witch!! Oops..

She puts a curse on him, turning Harvey into a scarecrow…..destined to stay this way unless someone falls in love with him and wishes him alive…..but it has to be under a full moon……

Princess Sasha often visits an orchard and notices the new scarecrow…..she chats away to him……and in the long hours he is alone…Harvey has time to think…about the person he was and how this has brought him here, a scarecrow in an orchard.

This is a charming and well written book, easy to read and full of humour and a little magic…

I can recommend this highly is ideal for any middle-grade lovers of fairy tales..absolutely charming.

I received my copy of The Scarecrow and the Princess from Maggie Archer and this is my honest and unbiased review.

Book reviews, Crime thriller, Thriller

The Snowman of Zanzibar by Gordon Wallis – Book Review



The Snowman Of Zanzibar
Ex Rhodesian soldier Jason Green was frustrated and mildly depressed.

The winter in London had been long and bitterly cold. The steady work as a freelance insurance fraud investigator was mundane and repetitive. This tedious monotony suddenly changes early on a frigid February morning when he is summoned to the offices of a wealthy investment banker in the City.

The brief , to ascertain the source of the unanticipated wealth of the man’s high flying young son. The time frame , urgent. The payout , enormous. Inspired and rejuvenated , Green takes the job immediately.

The roller coaster ride that follows takes Jason Green from the grimy streets of London to the beaches of Cape Town and ultimately to the dark tropical jungles of the spice island of Zanzibar.

Intrigue , chaos , murder , betrayal and revenge follow swiftly as a series of unfortunate events unfold. Events far beyond Green’s control. Events that result in unspeakable violence and horror. The action comes hard and fast in this page turner and culminates in an ending that will leave the reader breathless.



The Snowman of Zanzibar by Gordon Wallis is easy to read….by this I don’t mean simple, but his writing style is a joy to read…..not fast paced, but slowly building the compelling atmosphere and mystery in this clever thriller.

An ex- Rhodesian soldier who now works as an insurance fraud investigator. Jason is hired by a London investment banker to look into his son’s seemingly inexplicable spending, just where did he get his money ?..and so the story starts , first London, then to Cape Town and to Zanzibar…

Jason seems quite a lonely person his unexpected friendship with his target, Richard makes for an interesting situation….

Wallis has written a wonderfully detailed and well crafted story to take your time over and enjoy, hard to put down, full of emotion and yet an action filled detective and mystery thriller with a marvellously explosive end…..

Thank you to Rachel’s Random Resources for the opportunity to participate in this blog tour and for the promotional materials and a free copy of the ebook  in exchange for my honest, unbiased review.

Author Bio


Gordon Wallis is a 50 year old author based in Zimbabwe , Southern Africa. Born of British parents he has lived there all his life. A keen reader of thriller novels , particularly those set in Africa , he has travelled extensively in Africa , Europe , The Middle East and Asia. He runs a number of businesses in Zimbabwe and is single.

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