Synopsis: Molly Baker is living her best life.
Thirty-eight years old, she lives on the twenty-five-acre Hope Farm in Buckinghamshire, surrounded by (mostly) four-legged friends and rolling hills. There’s Anthony the anti-social sheep, Tina Turner the alpaca with attitude, and the definitely-not-miniature pig, Teacup.
Molly runs the farm as an alternative school for kids who haven’t thrived in mainstream education. It’s full on, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. So when the well-groomed Shelby Dacre turns up at Hope Farm asking to enrol his son Lucas, Molly isn’t fazed.
But Lucas is distant and soon Molly realises he might be more of a handful than she anticipated. And then there’s the added problem that his dad is distractingly handsome. Molly has her beloved farm to think of – could letting Lucas and Shelby in be a terrible mistake, or the start of something wonderful?
My Rating: 3/5
My Review: I have been reading Carole Matthews for over 20 years and rarely dislike a book she writes. I certainly didn’t dislike this book but it just wasn’t as good as some of her other books. The main character Molly just seemed a little flat and to be honest a little annoying. Shelby is the other main character and I didn’t feel like he was any more endearing. A well known actor with a son who he frankly couldn’t be bothered to look after. Therefore he drops him at Hope Farm where Molly runs the place with the help of her colleagues Bev and Alan.
The story was okay and it was certainly an easy read. However it was super predicatble and along with the fact I didn’t care for the characters meant I just wasn’t that bothered what happened. I finished it but being totally truthful it was just unmemorable and I couldn’t help but feel a little dissapointed.
Synopsis: When Rachel Mullen is found dead by her only sister Beth, her body twisted in an arc of pain, Detective Lottie Parker knows that she has been murdered the minute she enters the bedroom. Lottie’s heart aches for Beth, all alone in the world, whose last memory of her sister will forever be the brutal way she was taken. And when Lottie finds a shard of glass placed in the young girl’s throat, she fears that Rachel may be just the first victim. The night before, Rachel had attended a party at a luxurious new restaurant in Ragmullin, and Lottie wastes no time in tracking down the other guests. But there are several things troubling her: Rachel’s handbag and keys are nowhere to be found, and no one at the party seems to have seen her leave.
Just as Lottie thinks she’s onto something, her worst fears are confirmed: another woman is found murdered… with glass in her throat. The brilliant, young doctor wasn’t a guest at the party and Lottie is forced to question everything. Desperate to find proof of what really happened that night, Lottie gets close to the hostess of the party, whose two daughters were friends with Rachel. But Lottie’s hunt for the truth must be getting under the killer’s skin, because then her beloved fiancé, Boyd, goes missing. Can Lottie get in the mind of this twisted killer before it’s too late? Or will the man she loves be silenced forever?
Kat’s Rating: 3/5
My Review: I am thoroughly enjoying this series and this book was another good addition, however it wasn’t quite as good as previous books in the series for some reason. The main storyline features the death of a young woman Rachel Mullen. Although we have the usual suspects back in this book such as Boyd, and Lotties other colleagues they featured very little in comparison to other books. In addition it feels like Lottie has an air of irritation throughout this book and I couldn’t quote understand why.
The storyline was okay but I felt like it fell short of other stories in the series. It gathers a little momentum towards the last quarter of the book however I felt like it didn’t have the same connections that were in previous books whether that be to family or colleagues. I definitely recommend this series andlook fotrward to the next book, but in all honesty this wasn’t my favourite.
Synopsis: Lissa loves her job as a nurse, but recently she’s been doing a better job of looking after other people than looking after herself. After a traumatic incident at work leaves her feeling overwhelmed, she agrees to swap lives with someone in a quiet village in Scotland.
Cormac is restless. Just out of the army, he’s desperately in need of distraction, and there’s precious little of it in Kirrinfief. Maybe three months in London is just what he needs.
As Lissa and Cormac warm to their new lives, emailing back and forth about anything and everything, finally things seem to be falling into place. But each of them feel there’s still a piece missing. What – or who – could it be?
My Review: I am weirdly shocked by how indifferent I felt about this book. I am a HUGE fan of Jenny Colgan books and normally devour them but for some reason this one just didn’t hit the mark. There are a few books I think featuring this part of Scotland and from memory I enjoyed them but again they weren’t maybe favourites of hers that I recall. Lissa is the main character and she is a nurse who is involved in a traumatic incident at work. This is the catalyst for her being asked by her work to do a placement swap meaning she would swap homes and jobs with somebody up in Scotland.
Cormac is the person Lissa ends up swapping with and as Lissa moves to the small village up in Scotland, Cormac makes his way to London. Don’t get me wrong the story was okay and I didn’t dislike this book but it just didn’t feel like JC other books. It didn’t flow as well and frankly I didn’t really care what happened to the characters. I am struggling to find many positives within this as it just felt the opposite of everything I normally feel when I read one of her books. I can only hope this was just one of those books I didn’t gel with and the next one returns to her usual kind of book that I love
Synopsis: When Amy Whyte and Penny Brogan leave a local nightclub in the early hours of Sunday morning and don’t arrive home, their families are beside themselves with worry. Conor Dowling has just been released from prison, a man full of hatred for Amy, the girl who put him behind bars in the first place.
The case is given to Detective Lottie Parker, when the girls’ blood-soaked bodies are found, days later, in a derelict squat. Chillingly, both girls are clutching silver coins in their hands – what message is this killer leaving behind? All the signs point to Conor but his alibi is water tight.
As Lottie examines Penny and Amy’s final days alive in a desperate search for clues, two more girls are found stabbed to death in a luxury apartment complex. Caught up in what is fast becoming her toughest case yet, Lottie is unaware that somebody is watching her every move.
Then Lottie’s two daughters, Katie and Chloe suddenly disappear from the town centre. Terrified that the killer has her girls, the stakes have never been higher for Lottie.
But as Lottie puts everything on the line to find her daughters and solve the case, she’s about to find herself in terrible danger – someone has a personal axe to grind with her and they know the best way to get to her is to hurt the ones she loves the most.
My Rating: 3/5 Continue reading “Final Betrayal by Patricia Gibney (Lottie Parker #6)”
Synopsis: She’s been waiting her whole life to meet a man like Alex. But he’s been waiting too. And once he has her, he’ll never let her go…
Hannah has done everything to make sure her life is safe and secure. A long way from her unstable childhood growing up in foster care, she’s content with her sweet, little, messy apartment and her satisfying job as a social worker. She quietly worries that, aged 36, she might never fall in love. But otherwise her life is where she wants it to be.
Until, encouraged by her best friend to join a dating app, she meets Alex. He’s irresistibly handsome. He loves the same music as her. The same food as well. They both dream of travelling the world but agree they’d be equally happy escaping to a cottage by the beach in Devon. Both of them would love to own a Labrador one day. It’s like he’s made for her. It’s like he’s too good to be true. Hannah’s friends aren’t so sure about him. But Hannah thinks he’s perfect.
Which is good. Because Alex knows she’s perfect for him too. In fact, she’s exactly the girl he’s been looking for…and nothing Hannah’s done to make her life safe will ever be enough. Continue reading “First Date by Sue Watson”
When a homeless man is found strangled to death, Detective Sergeant Geraldine Steel is caught off guard by the cold-blooded nature of the crime. A second murder suggests the existence of a killer whose motive is as elusive as he is dangerous.
In an investigation plagued by police scepticism, only Geraldine is relentless in her pursuit of the truth. As she is forced down unexpected avenues into the lives of three people caught in a toxic triangle of love and deceit, she discovers there is more to this case than any of them could have imagined.
My Rating: 3/5 Continue reading “Deathly Affair by Leigh Russell (Geraldine Steel #13)”
A man is killed in apparently random attack, and suspicion falls on a gang of muggers. Only Detective Sergeant Geraldine Steel thinks this is the work of a more deliberate murderer.
Two more victims are discovered, after further seemingly indiscriminate attacks. The muggers are tracked down, with tragic consequences. And all the while the killer remains at large. When Geraldine finally manages to track down a witness, she finds her own life is in danger…
My Rating: 3/5
My Review: I have been reading this series since the beginning and am definitely a fan, however this latest instalment I wasn’t that keen on, and I will tell you why. The main story features Gerladine in her position as DS following a demotion in York where her previous colleague Ian works. I feel like Geraldine has lost her mojo a little bit and for me it left me feeling like this book just didn’t fit with the Geraldine I have come to know and love.
When a man is killed the suspicion falls firmly at the feet of a gang of muggers. The main storyline was okay, but I felt like all of Geraldine’s colleagues are pretty simple and none of them cared all that much and had no oomph to get things done. This constantly distracted me from the usual feel of these books which is where everybody rolls their sleeves up and gets stuck in.
Don’t get me wrong, it certainly wasn’t a bad book, but for me at this point in the series I felt like Geraldine is at a bit of a crossroads and as such she has lost the sparkle of her personality. I am really hoping that things change for her as this left me scratching my head wondering where the real Geraldine was.
Synopsis: As Christmas cheer fills Sparrow Street with excitement, grieving widow Nina is having a hard time. December is always a difficult month to face without her beloved husband Gray, the days feel long and bleak, and to cap it all, she’s just lost her job.
So when Nina hears that Sparrow Street’s Community Garden, one of Gray’s favourite places, is to be put up for sale she knows she must do something. Filled with purpose, she gathers the residents of Sparrow Street around her to turn the neglected patch of land into a Garden of Memories.
Continue reading “The Garden on Sparrow Street by Tilly Tennant”
Synopsis: Sometimes life can be bittersweet . . .
Between tending to the whims of her seven-year-old and the demands of her boss, Viv barely gets a moment to herself. It’s not quite the life she wanted, but she hasn’t run screaming for the hills yet.
But then Viv’s husband Andy makes his mid-life crisis her problem. He’s having an affair with his (infuriatingly age-appropriate) colleague, a woman who – unlike Viv – doesn’t put on weight when she so much as glances at a cream cake. Continue reading “When Life Gives You Lemons by Fiona Gibson”
Synopsis: When Ollie Sweet is very publicly dumped by ‘The One’, his seemingly perfect world dissolves into misery, self-pity, and a bizarre rooftop meeting with a suicidal man in flip-flops. While most would seek out the support of loved ones at such a torrid time, natural-born journalist Ollie asks the subscribers of his website: how did they get over their failed relationships?
When Ollie follows some of their more extreme advice, chaos inevitably ensues, including accidentally exposing himself to some unsuspecting wildlife, jumping out of a perfectly serviceable aeroplane, and suffering from an extremely painful bottom, courtesy of a maniacal Scotsman. Continue reading “Dumped Actually by Nick Spalding”