Synopsis: When Evelyn Dooley married her high-school sweetheart, James, she thought she was set for life. Now she’s twenty-eight, single, and fleeing to Dublin from her hometown to avoid the gossip surrounding their break-up. And all because of a test-your-relationship board game.
This was not in her five-year plan.
Then a chance encounter with gorgeous musician Danny leads to an unlikely friendship, and soon the pair are running music nights together in one of the oldest pubs in Dublin. For the first time Evelyn is following her dreams rather than someone else’s – and sparks are beginning to fly between her and Danny…
But when her savings run out and home beckons, Evelyn has to choose. The safe, comfortable life she left behind, or a new adventure with Danny? Will Evelyn flee back to the familiarity of her ex, or reach for the stars and take a leap into the unknown?
Synopsis: The murder of a young prostitute and a baby found abandoned on the same winter night signals the start of a disturbing investigation for Detective Kim Stone – one which brings her face to face with someone from her own horrific childhood.
As three more sex workers in the Black Country are murdered in quick succession, each death more violent than the last, Kim and her team realise that the initial killing was no one-off frenzied attack, but a twisted serial killer preying on the vulnerable. At the same time, the search begins for the desperate woman who left her newborn baby at the station – but what at first looks like a tragic abandonment soon takes an even more sinister turn.
When another young woman goes missing, the two investigations bring the team into a terrifying, hidden world, and a showdown puts Kim’s life at risk as secrets from as secrets from her own past come to light.
As Kim battles her own demons, can she stop the killer, before another life is lost?
Kat's Rating: 4/5
I'm a fan of this series like many others and was looking forward to installment number 7. The murder of a young prostitute Kelly Rowe is the main focus of this latest book however this may seem like a bog standard story line which has done many times before but as usual Angela Marson's has an amazing way of depicting a story line and making it so much more real, by and large by how good the characters are. Kim's colleagues Kev, Stacey and Bryant are back where they belong in the middle of the team and in the thick of the plot. These guys make a cracking team and they each have their part to play in these books.
In addition to the murder of Kelly Rowe an abandoned baby is left at the station and also becomes and integral part of the story. It seems the team have their hands full and as usual it makes for a compelling read. The story line itself is not the nicest of subjects but is done in a way that draws the reader in. There is quite a lot of action going on with this latest book but for me I loved the fact that it felt like we got to know Stacey and Kev that little bit more.
I read this in two sittings because the writing flows so well and it's such an easy and enjoyable read. However, for me this wasn't my favourite of the series so far. There was absolutely nothing wrong with this book, I guess I just have such high expectations as Angie Marson's is such an amazing author. This is definitely a series I would recommend.
Synopsis: It’s the week before Christmas and Isla McCoy has just received an unexpected gift: a letter announcing she is due a life-changing inheritance, but only if she’s willing to make amends with the father who abandoned her.
She has absolutely no intention of forgiving him, but who could resist an all-expenses-paid trip to the French resort of St Martin-de-Belleville?
There she meets smooth-talking Justin and nerdy glaciologist Sebastian; two very different men, with two very different agendas. Torn between her head and her heart, Isla finds herself utterly lost in a winter wonderland of her own feelings.
Surrounded by twinkling candles and roaring log-fires, Isla’s resolve finally begins to melt. But will she learn how to reconnect, not only with a whole new family, but with herself and her heart?
Kat's Rating: 5/5
Kat's Review: I really enjoyed the last book by Tilly featuring Isla's friend Dodie. However I wanted to get stuck in with this book as I was curious about her best friend Isla. This book moves on to the same time period as Dodie, but we get to catch up with what Isla has done. Isla has had a strange phone call saying that her Grandmother she never knew has left her something in her will. However, that means visiting the French resort of St Martin-de-Belleville and seeing the Father who walked out on her and her Mum when she was a girl. <blog_break>
As Isla arrives in the resort she has no idea but upon meeting Dahlia the owner of the place she is staying, and geeky but loveable Glaciologist Sebastian things seem to take a turn for the better. I absolutely adored Sebastian and although Isla is quite prickly and defensive you could tell that she was thawing to both him and the lovely Dahlia that owns the hotel. Tilly does a cracking job describing this beautiful place and it was easy to fall in love with it all as you read.
There are certainly some hairy moments as Isla faces her fears and meets not only the Father she doesn't know but the new step mother and half siblings. There are a couple of curveballs going on and you get the feeling that all is not as it seems on the surface. However, Isla doesn't suffer fools gladly and you can see her battling to do the right thing. What I did love was that the process wasn't shown to be easy. If she would have met her Dad and everything was instantly wonderful it wouldn't have had the same impact.
I read this book in just two sittings and absolutely loved it. As much as I enjoyed reading about Dodie in book 1, geeky Seb and stern Isla stole the show and this book was definitely my favourite of the 2. A wonderful book and a perfect Christmas present!
Synopsis: Katy’s been stuck in the office away from her family so she wants it all: snow (fake or real), the Michael Bublé Christmas album, whatever it takes.
There’s only one thing missing as far as her husband Ben is concerned: another baby to complete their family. But Katy isn’t so sure she's ready yet…
Ben may be playing the role of Master Elf in the pre-school nativity but he is struggling to master his own family life. With romantically-challenged friends, an ex who refuses to go away and Katy's mum's 64-year-old toy boy thrown into the mix, Christmas looks like it could be going off the rails… Never mind family planning, can Katy and Ben even plan to make it to the end of Christmas Day?
Kat's Rating: 4/5
Kat's Review: I have really enjoyed some of Tracy Bloom's books and especially since I read the previous book featuring Katy and Ben I was keen to see what had happened to them. Even if you haven't read that book you can certainly read this as a stand alone, but I found it so much more enjoyable to go back and see where they had got to.
Synopsis: Escape to the cosy little village of Appledore for hot chocolate with extra marshmallows and a second chance at love. Will this Christmas prove that miracles really can happen?
A year after she separated from her husband, Gianni, on Christmas day, Chloe’s heart is finally on the mend as she unpacks the decorations for her first ever festive holiday alone. That is, until the phone rings…
It’s the manager of Gianni’s new seaside restaurant in Appledore, begging for Chloe’s help. Equally famous for his gold-leaf Christmas puddings and his explosive temper, Gianni has been really stirring up a sensation with the locals – and not in a good way! It’s the last thing she wants to do, but Chloe knows she is the only one that can help.
As pans fly and the temperature in the kitchen rises, Chloe’s calming influence and magic touch might just get critics back on side in time to save the restaurant from sinking like a sad soufflé. But as Chloe’s eyes meet Gianni’s as they tussle over a plate of turkey tartlets, could there also be a chance for new romance on the menu?
Synopsis: Christmas has always been a special time for Noelle Parker. Winter evenings spent with family and friends, drinking hot chocolate and eating cookies at her family’s cozy bakery have shaped her love for all things festive. But this year everything is changing…
The beloved bakery is facing closure and Noelle needs a miracle to save Christmas.
Determined to raise funds for the family business, Noelle sets about revamping the bakery while juggling a surprise new job, caring for the elderly and cantankerous William Harrington in his luxurious, sprawling mansion.
As Noelle melts the frostiness of the house with cake baking, snowball fights and glittering decorations, she helps William to reconnect with a romance that has spanned decades and unexpectedly finds herself falling for his grandson - the gorgeous but mysterious Alexander Harrington…
In the countdown to Christmas, can Noelle save the bakery, reunite a family andcreate some magical memories of her own along the way?
Synopsis: The fairy lights are up and shoppers are flooding the snowy seaside promenade. It’s going to be a busy month at Forget-Me-Not Vintage, a magical shop with a warm heart where every item has a story to be told.
With bright red hair and an infectious smile, Dodie is a hopeless romantic and absolutely one of a kind, just like the pieces in her shop.
When Dodie finds a love letter in the pocket of an old woollen coat, she makes it her mission to deliver it to its rightful owner. Following the address, she manages to persuade the handsome but reluctant new tenant, Edward, to help her with her search.
As the story of the letter unfolds, Dodie is there, as always, to pick up the pieces and make things right. But who will be there for her when her own love story needs a helping hand?
Is it too much to dream of a happy ending like the ones in the black and white movies she adores?
Synopsis: Growing up on Hope Island, Eden Lancaster always believed that if you wished hard enough for something, dreams really could come true. But Eden’s greatest wish is also her biggest secret: she has been completely in love with her childhood friend, the charming and attractive Dougie Harrison, for as long as she can remember. And he has no idea.
When Dougie leaves his successful life in New York to return home to Hope Island for good, Eden can’t escape her feelings. Her heart is full of hope that her romantic dreams are finally, at long last, going to come true…
This Christmas could change everything. But can a lifelong friendship really turn into the perfect romance? And will Eden get the happily ever after she’s always wished for?
Kat's Rating: 5/5
Kat's Review: This is the third book set on Hope Island and although I have loved and would recommend the first 2, this can also be read as a standalone. Eden and Dougie are the stars of this show although characters from the other 2 books (Bella and Freya) also get a look in too. Hope Island is a small (but beautiful sounding) place and everybody knows everybody. Eden has been in love with Dougie since she was a young girl but when he left for America she assumed she would get over him. For all the years he has been away their friendship continued and for Eden it just got more difficult seeing him on his flying visits back to Hope Island. However, this time around his visit will be the last as he is planning on staying for good this time.
I have loved all the characters featured since the first book and because I have read the other 2 I felt like I already knew Eden and have been rooting for her since the beginning. We see Eden battle against all of her instincts and she struggles to face what could become her new reality. As always Holly Martin has created a wonderfully warm and romance packed book that makes the perfect Christmas Gift. I love this series of books and thoroughly enjoyed this. One set of character should that are excellent are Eden's Mum and Day they are hilarious and totally deserve their own book. Another cracking read where the perfect accompaniment would be a roaring fire and a mug of hot chocolate!!!