Blog Tour

Book Review: Clover Cottage by Christie Barlow

Hello and welcome to Christie Barlow and the blog tour for her new novel, Clover Cottage. This is the third novel in the Love Heart Lane series. 

Love Heart Lane – where friends are there for you no matter what.

When Vet Rory Scott inherits ramshackle Clover Cottage in the quaint village of Heartcross, Allie MacDonald just knows this is their happy ever after. A place to call home with the man she loves – it’s her dream come true!

Until Rory drops a bombshell. He loves Allie but he has dreams of his own to follow – to live and work in Africa. Clover Cottage will have to wait just a little longer…

Allie can’t imagine life without Rory, but she loves him too much to hold him back. And as he embarks on his adventure, Allie begins to rethink her own plans. She loves Rory and knows she wants him in her life, but maybe she can follow her own dreams too?

And always there, nestled in the beautiful village of Heartcross, surrounded by the people she loves, will be the place that will always bring them back to each other. Their forever home, Clover Cottage.

 

Allie has lived in Heartcross for most of her life and with Rory, the local vet, she feels as though she has met the love of her life. When he inherits Clover Cottage, she begins to picture the potential happy life for them both. When Rory drops a bombshell and opportunities threaten to pull them apart, Allie can feel the happiness slip away.

This is the third installment in the Love Heart Lane series and although I had not read the previous two books, this can be read as a standalone. There are characters that cross between the novels, but I didn’t feel as though I was playing catch up. I do want to eventually make my way through the first two books in the series though as I have quickly fallen in love with the residents of Heartcross.

All of these characters add something wonderful to the story and to me, feel real and relatable, even Zach, the visiting celebrity. I like how he was incorporated into the story. It wasn’t how you’d expect. I didn’t guess how it was going to go and it didn’t end the way I thought. There were a few surprises that kept the pace up well.

This was told from Allie’s point of view. I liked her. She displays a rollercoaster of emotions and I became invested in the relationship between Allie and Rory.

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Book Extract: How Not To Be A Loser by Beth Moran

Beth Moran joins me on Novel Kicks today as the blog tour for her latest novel, How Not To Be A Loser, continues.

 

Here’s a little about the novel…

Amy Piper is a loser. She’s lost her confidence, her mojo and her way.

But one thing she has never lost is her total love for her thirteen-year-old son Joey, and for his sake she knows it’s time for a change. But first she has to be brave enough to leave the house…

What she needs are friends and an adventure. And when she joins a running group of women who call themselves The Larks, she finds both. Not to mention their inspiring (and rather handsome) coach, Nathan.

Once upon a time Amy was a winner – at life, at sport and in love. Now, with every ounce of strength she has left, she is determined to reclaim the life she had, for herself and for Joey. And who knows, she might just be a winner again – at life, sport, and love, if she looks in the right places…

 

Beth and Boldwood Books have shared an extract from How Not To Be A Loser today. Cup of tea or coffee? Check. Biscuit? Check. Comfortable chair? Check. Right, all set. Enjoy.

 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Stop Being a Loser Plan

Day One

It wasn’t intentional. I didn’t get woken up by my phone alarm blaring, spring out of bed and decide today was the day. I didn’t open up Facebook and one of those irritating quotes – embrace the rain if you want to dance under the rainbow – actually inspired someone for the first time ever to change something. After cajoling my son, Joey, out of bed, I didn’t gaze at his beautiful face as he poured a second giant bowl of cereal, raving about the school football match coming up, and in a surge of love and regret suddenly experience the pivotal moment in a decade of non-moments.

In fact, apart from the invitation that arrived in the morning post, most of the day went precisely as expected. Which was, in summary, exactly the same as pretty much every other weekday. I waved Joey off to school, reminding him to hand in the form about the meeting that evening and cleared away the breakfast dishes. I worked at my desk in the kitchen, breaking the monotony of writing about corporate social responsibility policies by swanning off to eat lunch in the living room, because that’s the type of wild and crazy woman I am.

I rescued Joey’s football kit from festering on his bedroom floor and stuck it in the wash, because despite telling myself on a daily basis that it’s time he learnt the hard way, circumstances dictate that I also live with an extra-large pile of parental guilt, so I make life easier for him where I can.

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Book Review: The River Home by Hannah Richell

Hello to Hannah Richell and the blog tour for her latest novel, The River Home.

The river can lead you home. Or it can take you under…

In their ramshackle Somerset home, its gardens running down to the river, the Sorrells have gathered for a last-minute wedding.

Lucy is desperate to reunite her fractured family. Eve is fighting to keep her perfect life together. Their mother, Kit, a famous author whose stories have run dry, still seethes with resentment towards her youngest child. And Margot, who left home eight years ago under a black cloud, is forced to come face to face with her darkness…

As the family come together for a week of celebration and confrontation, their relationships are stretched to breaking point. But can you ever heal the wounds of the past?

 

Eve, Lucy and Margot may be sisters but they are all very different.

Eve is the stoic older sister. On the outside, she has the perfect marriage and two children.

Lucy is the free spirit, the one who just wants her family back together.

Margot is the mysterious, closed off sister who has done all she can to put miles between herself and her childhood home and Kit, their mother who is struggling to finish her best-selling series of books.

When Lucy announces that she’s getting married, Margot heads home and back to the past she has wanted to escape from.

One word for this novel… WOW.

This is the first of Hannah’s books I have read but I am fast becoming a fan.

Immediately, I was drawn into this compelling novel, right from the first page. I could picture Windfalls, the river and the surrounding areas. It all felt so vivid.

The characters are all strong, complicated women who, through a lack of communication, miss out on so much with one another. It made me sad. I got emotionally involved with all these women. Each of them has such a distinct, unique voice. They are each holding their own secrets and there was a small part of me that wanted to shake them all. I grew so fond of them throughout the course of the book.

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Book Review: The Five Year Plan by Carla Burgess

Orla is a trainee reporter with a five-year plan: work her way up the career ladder, move to London and secure a job on a big national newspaper. She doesn’t want a boyfriend, he’s only going to hold her back anyway.

Aiden spends his life travelling the world and living in a tent. He knows his goal: to photograph animals and raise awareness of global warming and wildlife conservation. He’s definitely not looking for a relationship past the odd casual hook-up!

So when Orla and Aiden’s lives collide, they do everything to not fall for each other – with the opposite effect. But they stick to their plans, and go their separate ways…

Five years later, they meet again…

 

Orla has a five year plan. Advance in her journalism career, move to London and work at one of the national papers. What she didn’t count on was Aiden.

He’s a wildlife photographer who spends his life traveling the world. They don’t plan to fall in love but they do.

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Book Extract: The Chapel by Jess B. Moore

I hope you’re all having a good Saturday? I am happy to be welcoming Jess B. Moore to Novel Kicks and the blog tour for her latest novel,  The Chapel.

Here’s a little about the book.

Mallory Johansen has nearly given up on thinking she’ll get her act together – the one where she plays the part of an adult – by the time she hits thirty. As it is she’s desperate and depressed. Her only friend is leaving town, she’s paired to work with a man who can’t stand her, and she finds herself homeless. Definitely hasn’t mastered being a grown-up yet. 

Otis Bell wants nothing more than to play his guitar, book acoustic bands to perform at his upcoming music venue, and be in charge of his own life. Instead, he’s working full time in his family’s auto shop. He only owns half the supposed music venue, which stands as an abandoned church and needs more than a little work. When his best friend moves away, he’s paired with an aloof girl he’s never liked as partner, and stretches himself thin working too many hours. 

The Chapel is the little music venue that could. Full of potential. Full of ugly carpet, peeling paint, and exhausting work. Mallie and Otis navigate their way through a fledgling partnership, trying their darnedest to get the place up and running, while trying pretty hard not to fall in love in the process.

 

Jess B. Moore has shared an extract with us today so grab the drink of your choice, that chair and enjoy.

(Warning – strong language.)

 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

This scene from The Chapel is taken from the first chapter, introducing Mallie, her cousin Tyler, and setting up the story which will unfold. The book starts with Tyler dropping a bomb on Mallie and throwing her life into a tailspin!

 

The thing about being in your late twenties is that you’re supposed to have it all figured out. The career, the house, the long term relationship, the life plans sprawling out before you.  You’re expected to have your shit together.

I don’t have a career. Not really.  I’m still figuring out what I want to do with my life.  I take photos and I’m good at it, but I don’t enjoy wedding photography or infant photography or running wild toddler photography.  I haven’t found a way to make money doing nature or still life or anything else with my camera.  I help at my Aunt Violet’s vintage shop that barely brings in enough revenue to keep me on the payroll.

No house. Not one that’s mine.  Not one I want to live in for any length of time.  The place I rent is small, smells bad, and the landlord is suspect.  The neighbors are loud and disrespectful of my desire to sleep during the nighttime hours.

I have never had a long term relationship. I can’t imagine one will crop up before I hit my thirties.  The guys I’ve dated have been few and far between and never serious.

My life plans are vague at best. Dismal and depressing at worst.

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Book Extract: The Widow’s Mite by Allie Cresswell

I don’t think there’s a better way to begin a new week than to welcome Allie Cresswell to Novel Kicks and the blog tour for her latest novel, The Widow’s Mite. 

Minnie Price married late in life. Now she is widowed. And starving.

No one suspects this respectable church-goer can barely keep body and soul together. Why would they, while she resides in the magnificent home she shared with Peter?

Her friends and neighbours are oblivious to her plight and her adult step-children have their own reasons to make things worse rather than better. But she is thrown a lifeline when an associate of her late husband arrives with news of an investment about which her step-children know nothing.

Can she release the funds before she finds herself homeless and destitute?

Fans of ‘The Hoarder’s Widow’ will enjoy this sequel, but it reads equally well as a standalone.

 

Allie has shared an extract today. Grab that cuppa, a comfortable chair, a biscuit and enjoy. First, Allie gives us a little introduction. 

 

Allie: Writing a novel about bereavement brought all kinds of issues into the limelight. Apart from exploring the emotional corollaries – what does grief feel like, how and when does it strike? – death brings practical consequences that had to be studied. How does being, suddenly, alone feel and what differences does it entail in day-to-day life? There must be a hundred small divergences that impact everything from the ironing pile to the shopping list, the signing of birthday cards, holiday choices,  TV viewing.

Then there are the landmark occasions, previously shared, but that now must be faced alone.

Here, a group of single women discuss their plans for Christmas

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

‘What are you all doing for Christmas?’ Gloria asked, helping herself to the last sausage roll.

‘We always do a Christmas lunch at church,’ Gwen said, gathering the dirty plates and tea cups back onto the tray, ‘for those who find themselves alone. Last year there were twenty or so of us – we barely had enough turkey. The helpers get there early to start the prep, and then there’s the meal and the clearing up afterwards. It was gone four by the time I got home, so the whole day had gone by pretty well.’

Minnie felt the familiar swell of sadness press her throat and behind the eyes. She had not thought about Christmas. Last year she and Peter had spent it at a hotel in the country. Lots of log fires and mulled wine. Artfully decorated trees in every room. A local choir singing carols on Christmas Eve. Then, on Christmas day, a big breakfast followed by a brisk walk. An exquisite lunch at a table for two. The chef had dressed up as Santa – she had glimpsed the chequerboard pattern of his kitchen trousers beneath the furred hem of his cloak. Peter had given her a gold watch set with diamonds round the face. Her hand pushed back her cardigan cuff to reveal it. She had not sold it although she was sure it was worth several hundred pounds. She could not believe that this year she would be reduced to lunch in the draughty church hall with the rest of the lonely old souls who were not wanted elsewhere. The very thought of it made her eyes well. In and of itself it was so pitiful, but in comparison to last Christmas it was tragic. Dolly [her dog], always so sensitive to Minnie’s emotional compass, made a whimpering sound. Thankfully Gloria had followed Gwen out of the room to help with the dishes so Minnie was able to wipe her eyes and pull herself together before the others reassembled.

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Book Extract: You’ve Got My Number by Angela Barton

Hello and welcome to Angela Barton on what is the final day on her blog tour for her new novel, You’ve Got My Number. 

About the novel…

Three isn’t always a magic number … 

There are three reasons Tess Fenton should be happy. One, her job at the Blue Olive deli may be dull, but at least she gets to work with her best friend. Two, she lives in a cosy cottage in the pretty village of Halston. Three, she’s in love with her boyfriend, Blake. 

Isn’t she? 

Because, despite their history, Blake continues to be the puzzle piece in Tess’s life that doesn’t quite fit. And when she meets intriguing local artist Daniel Cavanagh, it soon becomes apparent that, for Tess, love isn’t as easy as one, two, three … 

 

Angela has shared an extract today. Grab that cup of coffee, tea or a glass of wine (go on, it’s Sunday,) and enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of novel****** 

 

Introduction: My hero, Daniel, has a twin sister. Although Denise is a secondary character, I share a particularly difficult time of her life with my readers. A bizarre happening involving a parrot plays its part in this storyline, but as unbelievable as it appears, it was taken from reality – it happened in my life.

 

It had taken a shockingly short time since returning from their idyllic day out on Hampstead Heath, for Denise’s happy, organised life, to turn upside down. After the boys had been bathed and their knees had been scrubbed clean of grass stains, she’d taken a long hot shower. She sang beneath the deluge of water as the rose-scented bubbles decorated her skin. Her mind had been full of their day out, her family, the bottle of wine she would shortly share with Simon and the bar of Galaxy chocolate secreted away from her sons.

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Book Extract: When The Time Comes by Adele O’ Neill

I am happy to welcome Adele O’ Neill to Novel Kicks and the blog tour for her novel, When The Time Comes. 

Here’s a little about the book…

Her husband says it’s suicide. The police say it’s murder.

Liam Buckley was a married man with two teenage children when he moved out of the family home to start a new life with his lover. His wife Jennifer never forgave him, but now she needs him to come back: she’s been diagnosed with a terminal illness, and the kids can’t cope alone.

One day after Liam moves home, Jennifer is found dead. Liam thinks it’s suicide. But the police, led by DS Louise Kennedy, are convinced it’s murder.

Liam hires a retired detective to help prove his innocence, but it’s no easy task. The children are distraught, and Jennifer’s best friend, Sarah, is waging a campaign against Liam, determined to expose him for a liar and a cheat.

As secrets surface from the complex web of Buckley family life, DS Kennedy must decide. Did Jennifer Buckley end her own life, or did Liam take it from her? The answer, when it comes, will shock them all…

 

Adele and Aria have shared an extract today. Grab a cup of tea, a comfy chair and enjoy. 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

When I think of my ex-wife Jenny, it’s her smile I see, the roguish way she used to lift the corners of her mouth just enough to suggest that underneath the warmth and kindness, she’s a bundle of fun. Abbie, our fifteen-year-old daughter, is just like her, or I should say, just like how Jenny used to be, before everything changed.

She has the same luscious auburn hair that falls in waves down her slender back, the same porcelain skin that sizzles at the slightest hint of sunshine and the same affinity for random knowledge and clever facts. She puts her older brother and me to shame whenever The Chase or some other quiz programme is on, although I suspect that Josh lets her win sometimes. A shiver runs down my spine now, when I picture the four of us then, how we used to be. Nothing in any of our lives worked out exactly the way we wanted it to.

‘Sorry, Louise, it’s just a little…’ I don’t how to finish the sentence and fill my cheeks with exasperated air. ‘Overwhelming,’ I manage. ‘Hard to get my head around, you know?’ I look at her expectantly, hoping for a modicum of sympathy.

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Book Review: The Hidden Girl and Other Stories by Ken Liu

From a Tang Dynasty legend of a young girl trained as an assassin with the ability to skip between dimensions on a secluded mountain sanctuary to a space colony called Nova Pacifica that reflects on a post-apocalyptic world of the American Empire and ‘Moonwalker’ Neil Armstrong, award-winning author Ken Liu’s writings are laced with depictions of silkpunk fantasy, Sci-Fi and old Chinese folklore, wrapped up in a mesmerising genre-bending collection of short stories.

Ken Liu is one of the most lauded short story writers of our time. This much-anticipated collection includes a selection of his latest science fiction and fantasy stories over the last five years – sixteen of his best – plus a new novelette. In addition to these seventeen selections, The Hidden Girl and Other Stories also features an excerpt from book three in the Dandelion Dynasty series, The Veiled Throne.

 

When asked to take part in the blog tour for The Hidden Girl and Other stories, I couldn’t wait to get started.

The Hidden Girl and Other Stories is a collection of sixteen science fiction and fantasy stories. Most of them focus around technology and the human condition.

The first thing I want to comment on is the cover. It is absolutely beautiful.

I had not read any of Ken Liu’s writing before so I didn’t quite know what to expect. This is a stunning set of stories that really go into the amazing but sometimes devastating reality of technology and our reliance on it.

The Hidden Girl also examines how humans relate to one another and what we are capable of doing to each other.

These stories provoked such emotion and have made an impact. It was hard to pick one I liked over the others. However, Thoughts and Prayers was particularly hard to read when you consider what is happening in terms of gun control and internet trolling.

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Book Extract: We Are Animals by Tim Ewins

I am pleased to be welcoming Tim Ewins to Novel Kicks today and the blog tour for his new novel, We Are Animals. 

Here’s a little about the book…

A cow looks out to sea, dreaming of a life that involves grass.

Jan is also looking out to sea. He’s in Goa, dreaming of the passport-thief who stole his heart (and, indeed, his passport) forty-six years ago. Back then, fate kept bringing them together, but lately it seems to have given up.

Jan has not. In his long search he has accidentally held a whole town at imaginary gunpoint in Soviet Russia, stalked the proprietors of an international illegal lamp-trafficking scam and done his very best to avoid any kind of work involving the packing of fish. Now he thinks if he just waits, if he just does nothing at all, maybe fate will find it easier to reunite them.

His story spans fifty-four years, ten countries, two imperfect criminals (and one rather perfect one), twenty-two different animals and an annoying teenager who just…

Will…

Not…

Leave.

But maybe an annoying teenager is exactly what Jan needs to help him find the missing thief?

Featuring a menagerie of creatures, each with its own story to tell, We Are Animals is a quirky, heart-warming tale of lost love, unlikely friendships and the certainty of fate (or lack thereof).

For the first time in her life the cow noticed the sun setting, and it was glorious.

 

Without further ado, here’s the extract. I hope you enjoy. Over to you, Tim. 

 

Thank you so much Laura, for letting me share an extract from We Are Animals with everyone at Novel Kicks! In this extract, the protagonist’s parents do not know that their son has stowed away on a stranger’s boat, dreaming of lands afar. I’ve chosen this extract as an example of one of the smaller love stories that pop up along the plot of We Are Animals.

I hope you enjoy it…

 

*****beginning of extract*****

 

Jan’s mother, still completely unaware of Jan’s lack of presence in Fishton, and of his unauthorised presence on England man’s boat, was washing the family’s clothes.

Now, there are three types of clothes washers. There are those who don’t use detergent and don’t sort their socks (the slackers), there are those who do use detergent but don’t sort their socks (the half-a-jobbers), and there are those who do use detergent and do sort their socks (the jobs-worths). Jan’s Mother was of category number three, religiously. It was when she was sorting Jan’s socks that she realised something must be wrong. There were seventeen in total, twelve of which she could match. She sat on her kitchen floor with the other five surrounding her. She’d had the odd odd sock before, and could handle that, but five? Something wasn’t right. ‘What a waste of detergent,’ she thought. Then she worried about the five missing socks. She hadn’t seen them when she’d been cleaning, and she prided herself on her housekeeping. Where were those socks?

Incidentally, you will notice that there are only three types of clothes washers – not four. No one has ever not used detergent but then sorted their socks. These people simply do not exist.

When Jan’s father returned home from the fish shop with their tea he found Jan’s mother sitting on the kitchen floor repeatedly tying the odd socks together and then untying them again.

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Book Review: The Liar’s Daughter by Claire Allan

No one deserves to be taken before their time. Do they?

Joe McKee – pillar of the Derry community – is dead. As arrangements are made for the traditional Irish wake, friends and family are left reeling at how cancer could have taken this much-loved man so soon.

But grief is the last thing that Joe’s daughter Ciara and step-daughter Heidi feel. For they knew the real Joe – the man who was supposed to protect them and did anything but.

As the mourners gather, the police do too, with doubt being cast over whether Joe’s death was due to natural causes. Because the lies that Joe told won’t be taken to the grave after all – and the truth gives his daughters the best possible motive for killing him…

Joe McKee is popular in his Derry community. He is also dead.

Arrangements are being made for his traditional funeral. He is being remembered as a nice man and the grief is felt strongly amongst friends and family.

For his daughter, Ciara and his step daughter, Heidi however, there is a whole different set of feelings. They both hold a secret that could pull the whole family apart.

Not long after Joe’s death, the police arrive. They don’t believe Joe’s terminal cancer killed him.

The horrible truth will emerge and the people with the strongest motive to kill him… are his daughters.

The Liar’s Daughter is told from the point of view of Joe, Heidi and Ciara. I found the structure of this novel compelling. I loved how it was told in both the present with flashback chapters to the past. It really gave the plot a chance to develop whilst keeping a terrific pace and a sense of suspense and building tension.

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Book Review: Liar Liar by Mel Sherratt

Hello to Mel Sherratt and the blog tour for her latest novel, Liar Liar, released on eBook by Avon on 10th February. 

The truth can be a dangerous thing…

When a young boy falls from a balcony in a block of flats, DS Grace Allendale witnesses the shocking aftermath of the tragic event. But strangely, no one will admit to seeing anything – and the parents will only tell the police that it was an accident.
 
Determined to sort the truth from the lies, Grace is thrown into a case that takes her to the darkest corners of the criminal world – and strikes closer to home than she could have ever imagined…

 

Liar Liar is the third novel in the DS Grace Allendale series.

Grace witnesses the aftermath of a tragic event. A young boy has fallen from the balcony at a block of flats.

No one will admit they saw anything. The parents are saying it was an accident. The evidence says different.

Can Grace find the truth as she’s one again thrown into the darkest corners of the criminal underworld?

Welcome back Mel!

It was so good to be back with Grace. She has become one of my favourite fictional detectives. There is something real about her. I get the feeling that there is so much about her we still don’t know. She has many layers and I look forward to discovering more (please let there be more, Mel.)

This is the third book in the series but it can be read as a standalone. I do recommend the first two books though (Hush Hush and Tick Tock.) They are excellent.

This book deals with some heavy themes, including a crime against a child but it does it with compassion.

The tension builds incredibly well as breadcrumbs are left all the way through the plot to the unseen conclusion.

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Book Review: Make or Break at the Lighthouse B&B by Portia MacIntosh

Hello to Portia MacIntosh and the blog tour for her latest novel, Make or Break at the Lighthouse B&B which is due to be released on eBook by HQ Digital on 14th February. 

Thirty-one-year-old matchmaker Lola James had it all – until she broke her leg at a wedding and discovered that her so-called ‘best friend’ was suddenly too busy to call, her flat had far too many steps, and her boyfriend replaced her quicker than you can say ‘crutches’.

And so she’s back at her parents’ B&B, sleeping in the living room (she can’t get upstairs) and having her hair washed by her mum (she can’t get in the shower).

Freshly single and with a lot of time on her hands, Lola is only too pleased to run into gorgeous Dr Will, an old friend who has definitely improved with age… And then there’s Dean, a divorcé who’s convinced he’s better off alone – no matter how lonely he is.
 
Can Will help mend Lola’s broken heart as well as her leg? Can she help Dean find love? As a wise man once said, sometimes the one for you is right under your nose, all along…

Lola James has the perfect life. She’s a matchmaker for celebrities, has the handsome boyfriend and she’s about to be a bridesmaid to her very glamorous friend.

However, when she breaks her leg, her boyfriend suddenly has better things to do, her friend is angry at Lola for supposedly stealing her wedding thunder and her boss tells her that, with a cast, she is not the right image for the job.

Just like that, she finds herself back in Marran Bay, back in her childhood home – The Lighthouse B&B.

As she re-acquaints herself with childhood friends, she is trying to figure out what to do next. Could a new life and love be closer than she thinks?

I immediately warmed to Lola. She wasn’t like the characters around her at the beginning of the book.

I think we’ve all had moments where we are not sure what to do next and Lola is definitely having one of those moments. I could really empathise with that.

I want to go to Marran Bay. It sounds beautiful. I also love the idea of a B&B attached to a lighthouse. It reminded me of the Portland Bay lighthouse I used to visit as a child.

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Book Extract: When Adam Met Evie by Giulia Skye

A big welcome to Giulia Skye and the blog tour for her new novel, When Adam Met Evie. Giulia has shared an extract with us but first, here’s a little about the book… 

 

When former Olympic Swimmer, Michael Adams—now Canada’s hottest reality TV star— insults his fake showbiz wife on social media, he escapes the ensuing scandal and jumps on the first flight to Australia. Desperate to experience ordinary life again—if only for a few weeks—he becomes “Adam”, just another tourist traveling through the Outback. But with a reward out for his safe return and his fame’s nasty habit of catching up with him when he least expects, he needs a better disguise… and he’s just found it.

Sweet and scruffy British backpacker, Evie Blake, is taking a year out of her busy London life. Tired of lies and liars, she’s looking for adventure to heal her broken heart. So when the hot Canadian she meets at the campground offers to be her travel partner through Western Australia’s wild Kimberley region, she grabs the chance, unaware he’s got the world out looking for him.

He’s just a down-on-his-luck traveler, right?

 

If you want my opinion, it sounds amazing. 

OK, so do you have a cup of tea… biscuits… a comfy chair? Excellent. Keep reading and enjoy. 

 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Extract intro: When Adam first meets Evie

“Adam” is a Canadian celebrity-sportsman on the run from scandal, pretending to be an ordinary tourist on the Australian backpacker trail. Evie is a British backpacker working as a cleaner at the campground she’s been staying at. Adam has just arrived at the campground, very hot and very dirty after a few days on the road…

 

 

EXTRACT:

 

He grabbed his gel and towel, and stepped out of the truck. Man, this heat was intense. The air thick and heavy like soup. He wiped the towel over his sweat-slicked face, desperate for cold water on his skin. But when he reached the shower block, a sign stood in his way.

Closed for cleaning.

No frickin’ way.

“Hello?” he called, but when no reply came back, he stepped inside, thinking what the hell? He stripped and stood under the shower, turning the dial full blast toward the blue arrow. He’d be thirty seconds, sixty tops—just long enough to feel something cold on his skin and wash away the three-day grime. By the time the cleaning guy returned, he’d be cooled off, semi-dressed and out.

Only the water wasn’t cold and the cleaning guy not a guy at all.

Adam wiped soapy water from his eyes and focused on the figure standing before him. The cleaning guy was a young woman with huge brown eyes and sun-streaked hair scraped back into a tight knot on the top of her head, just like his favorite aunt Florence used to wear. Except Aunt Flo’s hair was gray and looked like wire, and she’d never before stood outside his shower gawping at his naked penis—unlike this bug-eyed stranger.

“The showers are closed,” the woman said to his bare butt as he whipped around. Her accent was flat and clipped—British—like royalty, though looking over his shoulder he saw nothing regal about her. She was dressed in dark green shorts and a dirty light-blue vest, damp with patches of sweat or water, or both. White earphones dangled around her neck. He turned off the shower.

“Didn’t you notice the bright yellow sign? The cleaning bucket? The distinct lack of shower curtain?”

Well, he’d ignored the sign and bucket, obviously, and throughout his career, he’d been in plenty of changing rooms at top sporting venues around the world all boasting a distinct lack of shower curtain. Okay, they were all a lot nicer than this dump, but he’d never been in a place like this before so how would he know?

“If you’d be so kind as to pass me my towel, I’ll get out of your way.”

She handed it to him, finally lifting her gaze to his face. Her eyes narrowed. He narrowed his own back, already picturing the headlines.

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Book Extract: In Too Deep by Elly Redding

Hello and welcome to Elly Redding and the blog tour for her novel, In Too Deep which was released by Silverwood Books on 3rd February. 

Set in the rolling countryside of Devon, ‘In Too Deep’ is the emotional story of a woman’s determination to win the trust of the man she’s adored since they were thrown together as children, by forcing him to confront the darkness of his long-lost past.

One little lie. A guilty secret. And the man she mustn’t love…

It’s been six years since Isy Forrester left home. In that time, she’s strived to forge a new life for herself in London, away from Jack Mancini, her father’s adopted son, and his devastating betrayal of everything she thought they had.

Only now her father’s in hospital, and the house that’s been in her family for generations is at risk. Forced to return to Devon, she finds Jack as infuriating and stubborn as ever, and just as irresistible. Soon she realises the bright lights of London can’t hold a candle to him.

But Jack has a past, one which he refuses to share with her. And until he can trust her with these deepest secrets, how can she risk her heart? How can she even begin to help him, when he won’t tell her what happened all those years ago – before her father brought him home to Hambledon Hall?

 

Elly has shared an extract from In Too Deep today. Enjoy! 

 

***** beginning of extract*****

 

Jack is waiting for Isy to return from a brief stay in London to Hambledon Hall

‘You’re quiet tonight, my lad,’ Frank said, as Jack stared down at the iPhone in his hand. ‘And checking that constantly isn’t going to bring her back any sooner.’

Jack knew that. Of course, he knew that and part of him wished the damned thing hadn’t been invented. Only he was waiting for a text that hadn’t come. A WhatsApp message to tell him she’d left and was on her way home.

‘It’s almost seven o’clock,’ Frank said, checking his watch. ‘Why don’t you try to phone her and tell her to wait until tomorrow? Then you can go out with your mates, and I won’t have to worry about her driving back in the dark?’

‘I tried,’ he said, trying to shrug it off, as though it was of no consequence. ‘She didn’t pick up.’

‘You’ve got to stop doing this, you know,’ Frank said, leaning towards him. ‘You’ve got to let her go. You did it before. You can do it again.’

Jack wasn’t so sure. She’d been gone two days now and it seemed like forever. ‘I should have told her everything before she left for London the first time. We should have told her everything when you took me in.’

‘She was too young. She wouldn’t have understood.’

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Novel Kicks is a blog for story tellers and book lovers.

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