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If You Could Go Anywhere By Paige Toon

If You Could Go Anywhere‘If You Could Go Anywhere’ is the latest book by Paige Toon.

Angie has always wanted to travel. But at 27, she has still never left her small mining town in the Australian outback. When her grandmother passes away, Angie finally feels free to see the world – until she discovers a letter addressed to the father she never knew and is forced to question everything. As Angie sets off on her journey to find the truth – about her family, her past and who she really is – will enigmatic stranger Alessandro help guide the way?

Everytime I read a Paige Toon book, I always come away with the same conclusion, this is Paige’s best book and with ‘If You Could Go Anywhere’ I totally had the same reaction, I read this book in two seatings and my only regret was that I didn’t read it in one!

The story is seen solely through the narrative of Angie, stuck in small Australian mining town, she always wanted to see the world but became the sole carer for her grandmother and any dreams of travelling the world were quickly shelved when her grandmother became ill. When her grandmother passes, Angie wonders what’s next for her in life now that all her family are gone until she discovers a letter and finds out her father is alive and well in Italy.

So begins the opportunity of a lifetime, to finally travel and meet the family she never knew she had. It’s on this journey that Angie really begins to figure out her place in life as well as meet Allesandro, a man who who is part of her family and who has taken Angie underneath his wing, so much so that she wonders if she really wants to return to the old life that she had back in Australia.

I genuinely loved this story. Angie is a fantastic character, she’s funny, warmhearted and completely unaware of the effects of her simple, kind gestures has on others. As she settles into life in Italy, we see her develop into a confident woman, discovering her roots as well as understanding her heritage. Her interactions with her father, are emotional and occasionally awkward as he shares stories of her mother, that she tragically never met and likes her understand the type of woman she was. Allesandro was also a great character, not only was he Angie’s tour guide of the city, he was also the person that she felt most comfortable with.

Paige’s stories are always emotional and inspirational journey’s but I found it much more with her latest book. This story isn’t just a romantic tale, it’s magical, charming and with the vivid descriptions of Rome that made me instantly want to book a holiday! A brilliantly written story of love, grief and new horizons, ‘If You Could Go Anywhere’, is an uplifting and poignant story about finding your way in life.

You can buy If You Could Go Anywhere from Amazon and is be available to buy from good bookshops.

A Perfect Cornish Summer Book Tour – Extract

A Perfect Cornish SummerToday on the book tour for Phillipa Ashley’s latest book called ‘A Perfect Cornish Summer’, sit back and enjoy an extract from the summery tale.

‘I just hope Porthmellow will be good enough for him. If not, it’s tough,’ said Sam. A raindrop ran down her nose. Time was racing by and she had to finish the posters and get to work in Stargazey Pie. ‘There’s no rest for the wicked, eh?’

Chloe nodded. ‘Then I must have been very wicked indeed.’ She tugged her hood forward as the rain came down harder. ‘I must admit the festival is a much greater demand that I expected. No one has any idea of how much work is involved. I’ve run events but none as big as this. Even though we’re all volunteers, it’s still serious stuff.’

‘I don’t think I’ve really thanked you for joining the committee, by the way,’ Sam said. ‘I don’t know what we’d do without you and the other volunteers.’

‘Oh, I wanted to get involved. I can’t bear to sit around doing nothing and it’s been a great way to meet new people.’ Chloe’s eyes lit up at the praise.

Sam agreed. The festival had helped Sam make new friends too and cement relationships with people of all ages and backgrounds. Chloe had said she’d chosen Porthmellow because of the happy holidays she, her daughter, Hannah, and her ex had spent in the area, and the fact that Porthmellow was still was a real community where people lived and worked year-round, not simply full of holiday homes or deserted in the off-season. Even so, Sam thought it must have been hard for Chloe to move so far from home, especially as Hannah was in her first year at uni in Bristol. Chloe clearly adored her daughter, but Sam had yet to meet her. Sam thought, not for the first time, that Chloe must have been quite a young mother to have a daughter at uni. She didn’t look a day over thirty-five.

‘Thanks, Chloe. Will Hannah be coming to the festival?’

Chloe hesitated. ‘I don’t know. I doubt it. She’ll have exams, I expect, and she said something about wanting to go travelling afterwards. I’d be way too busy to see much of her anyway.’

‘I guess so,’ said Sam, detecting an edge of disappointment in Chloe’s voice. Perhaps she shouldn’t have asked. Hannah had shown no signs of making an appearance in Porthmellow since Chloe had arrived eight months ago, so perhaps it was a source of family tension. Sam certainly knew all about that.

You can buy ‘A Perfect Cornish Summer’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

The Girl Before You By Nicola Rayner

The Girl Before You‘The Girl Before You’ is Nicola Rayner’s debut novel.

Alice has always been haunted by the women from her husband’s past. As an MP and now a TV personality, George Bell’s reputation as a ladies’ man precedes him. But when Alice falls pregnant, her unease becomes an obsession. And there’s one ex in particular she can’t get out of her head: a beautiful student George dated in his first year, who went missing before they finished university. Ruth. When Alice sees a woman who looks just like Ruth, she can’t shake the feeling that there’s more to her disappearance than George has been telling her. But does she really want to know what her husband has been getting up to behind her back all these years?

This is Nicola’s debut and it really is an interesting read. The story flows in the past and present tense leading up to the disappearance of Ruth Walker, an adventurous young woman who disappears when one night and everyone assumes she is dead after her shoes and bag were left on the beach.

The story is seen from the narrative of Kat, Ruth’s friend, her sister Naomi and Alice, who’s convinced she saw has seen Ruth on her train.

She’s convinced that she saw one day and begins to investigate Ruth’s disappearance as well as her husband’s behaviour when he was at the same university as them. Her George is quite an unlikable character, he’s cocky, arrogant and has quite the disregard for women. Kat is best friends with Ruth, even though she’s in love with the man who’s besotted with Ruth. The scenes with Kat are the past tense leading up to Ruth’s disappearance and give an insight into Ruth’s personality and the mystery surrounding her.

As the three women tell their story, there’s a sense of paranoia and suspense throughout the story, as the women question whether Ruth died on that fateful. But as their obsession develops, we see them delve into something much darker and sinister than they ever imagined.

A cleverly written thriller that really pulls the reader in, ‘The Girl Before You’ is filled with interesting and complex characters that are all quite unreliable at times that they all become suspects in the story, that leaves the reader on the edge of their seats throughout.

You can pre-order ‘The Girl Before You By Nicola Rayner’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 22nd August 2019.

Degrees Of Guilt By HS Fields

Degrees Of Guilt‘Degrees of Guilt’ is HS Fields debut novel.

Maria is on trial for attempted murder. She has confessed to the crime and wanted her husband dead. Lottie is on the jury, trying to decide her fate. She embarks on an illicit affair with a stranger, and her husband can never find out. You will think you know who is guilty and who is innocent. You will be wrong.

I’ve really come to enjoy Helen Fields writing over the years, with her DI Callanach series, so when a new book was released called ‘Degrees Of Guilt’ by Orion Publishing, I was curious to see what this court room drama had to offer. I started reading it on Saturday morning and didn’t put down until it was finished, as it was a bloody brilliant book.

The story is seen from two perspectives. It starts with Maria Bloxham phoning the police to tell them that she has killed her husband. Her husband, Dr Edward Bloxhom is a highly regarded consultant on environmental issues with a huge following, but he survived her attack with life changing injuries and Maria has been charged with attempted murder. The perspective is from Lottie, a young married mother who has been called for jury service on this complex case. She’s looking for more in her life than to be recognised as a mother and wife and finds herself relating to Maria in some ways. But as the story develops and Maria’s life is revealed, the jury finds themselves conflicted with their emotions and morals and unable to agree on their verdicts. It’s within this jury that Lottie meets Cameron, a passionate and outspoken man who brings out a new side in Lottie and has left her questioning the life that she’s currently leading.

Maria was a character that I felt a huge amount of empathy and sympathy towards. A deeply unhappy woman who thought she had found her Prince Charming over twenty years ago and instead was subject to years of emotional and psychological abuse with no one to confide in and reach out to. When she finally thought she was free from his grasp, she felt relief but instead was then subject to intense interrogation questioning her sanity in a crowded court where people are judging her.

There are so many reasons that I enjoyed this book, the story is cleverly weaved with two very different women, one the defendant and the other in the jury but both ultimately looking are for the same things in life. I loved Maria, she’s a strong woman, a voice for the people out there who have been subject to abuse and finally decided this was her time and she didn’t really matter what her future held as long as it didn’t feature Edward.

An addictive story of revenge and justice, ‘Degrees Of Guilt’, is a deeply dark and thrilling story that grips the reader from the very first sentence.

You can buy ‘Degrees Of Guilt’ from Amazon as an ebook and will be available from good bookshops from 5th September 2019.

The House On The Edge Of The Cliff By Carol Drinkwater

The House On The Edge Of The Cliff ‘The House On The Edge Of The Cliff’ is the latest book by Carol Drinkwater.

Grace first came to France a lifetime ago. Young and full of dreams of adventure, she met two very different men. She fell under the spell of one. The other fell under hers. Until one summer night shattered everything. Now, Grace is living an idyllic life with her husband, sheltered from the world in a magnificent Provençal villa, perched atop a windswept cliff. Every day she looks out over the sea – the only witness to that fateful night years ago. Until a stranger arrives at the house. A stranger who knows everything, and won’t leave until he gets what he wants.

This is the first book that I’ve read by Carol and I must say that I really enjoyed it. The story is seen through the narrative of Grace and flows back and forth in past and present tense. Set in France, Grace has a content life with her husband, her primary concern as he prepares for an operation, until one day an old face from her past reappears and brings old ghosts back to life.

The past aspects of the story are the background of Grace’s life as she moves to France hoping to become a world famous actress. Alone in the country, she finds help from kind stranger, Peter and together they travel hoping to escape the riots. These narratives give an insight into Grace and the kind of character she is. She’s a kind and adventurous soul but as the story progresses, we see her develop through the years into the older woman that she’s become. As the story develops, it gets darker and grittier which is really interesting reading. The present moments were quite thrilling in parts and you couldn’t help but feel an empathy towards her.

A compelling story of secrets and suspense and riddled with drama throughout, set against a picturesque background, ‘The House on the Cliff Top Edge’ is a romantic story that really pulls the reader in with its mystery and charm.

You can buy ‘The House On The Edge Of The Cliff’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.