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Christmas For Beginners By Carole Matthews

Christmas For Beginners‘Christmas For Beginners’ is Carole Matthews Christmas themed book for 2020.

Christmas is fast approaching at the new Hope Farm. Owner Molly Baker has been convinced to organise an open day to raise some much-needed funds ahead of the New Year, but the nativity tableau is proving challenging. With anti-social sheep, awkward alpacas and a seriously sequined Santa Claus to assemble, Molly is feeling overwhelmed, and in desperate need of some Christmas spirit. Despite the chaos of the farm getting in the way of her event planning, Molly is looking forward to spending the holidays with boyfriend Shelby and his son, Lucas, hopeful that a happy family Christmas is exactly what they need to draw them all together. But while she is busy making plans on the farm, Shelby, it seems, has ideas of his own. As the nativity draws near, the team are working hard to pull off a spectacular festive fete – and make sure the animals and humans remain on their best behaviour. Will this Christmas be merry and bright… or is there more than one surprise in store for Molly and Hope Farm?

If you’re looking for a book that is pure Christmas, then look no further as Carole Matthew’s is back with a warm story of love, friendship and new beginnings.

In this story, we see the return of Molly Baker, who we met in Carole’s previous book called ‘Happiness For Beginners’.

The story is seen through the perspective of Molly as she enjoys life on her farm along with the moody teenage son of her boyfriend Shelby, who she looks up like a son. Shelby is the popular character on a soap series and is always noticed when out and about. When his role is cut from the show, Shelby takes on the role of a villain in the Christmas pantomime and all his time is taken up with rehearsals. Whilst Shelby loves his life in the spotlight, Molly shies away from it and feels at her most happiest at the farm surrounded by friends, the animals whilst getting the farm ready for Christmas along with the help from the new handsome mayor.

I really enjoyed this story, it was warm-hearted and entertaining and was able to get back into easily after returning to read it. Molly is a sweet character and the polar opposite to Shelby who loves the attention whereas she’s at her happiest when she’s up to her wellies in muck. She has a kind heart and spends her time helping others, particularly Luke, who has a troubled relationship with Shelby, but finds solace in Molly’s kind nature.

There are many stories weaved throughout the book, there’s the relationship between Molly and Shelby, Luke finding love for first time as well as Molly getting Hope Farm ready for children who come from troubled backgrounds and suffer from disabilities. The story also touches on difficult subject of domestic violence and the impact it has not only on the adult but also on the children too.

Brimming with warmth and festive fun, Carole’s latest book is another enchanting story from the author. ‘Christmas For Beginners’ is a sweetly and wittily written story of hope, contrary animals and new beginnings.

You can buy ‘Christmas For Beginners’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

A Place To Lie By Rebecca Griffiths

A Place To Lie ‘A Place To Lie’ is the latest book by Rebecca Griffiths.

In Summer 1990, Caroline and Joanna are sent to stay with their great aunt, Dora, to spend their holidays in a sunlit village near the Forest of Dean. The countryside is a welcome change from the trauma they know back home in the city; a chance to make the world a joyful playground again. But in the shadowy woods at the edge of the forest hide secrets that will bring their innocence to a distressing end and make this a summer they will never forget. Years later, a shocking act of violence sends Joanna back to Witchwood. In her great aunt’s lonely and dilapidating cottage, she will attempt to unearth the secrets of that terrifying summer and come to terms with the haunting effects it has left on her life. But in her quest to find answers, who can she trust? And will she be able to survive the impending danger from those trying to bury the truth?

For the last few days, I’ve had my head buried in this book and I have to admit it’s quite the thriller that really takes the reader on an unexpected journey.

The story is written in the past and present tense and is primarily seen through the narrative of successful pianist Joanna, who has just discovered that her troubled older sister has been killed in an attack. As Joanna tries to piece together Caroline’s last steps before her sudden death, she finds herself on a journey back to a place that brings back many unhappy memories and times. The past sequences is seen from the perspective of a young teenage Caroline, who’s fallen for Dean the older barman in the pub she works and when his younger stepsister suddenly disappears, Caroline is the only witness.

I loved this story, its flows seamlessly in the past and present sequences and really keeps the reader on their toes, as they try to piece together why she was suddenly killed and what has left her to be so paranoid. As Joanna delves deeper in her estranged sister’s life, she realises that she really didn’t know and how much was going on in the woman’s life.

The past sequences are located in a small picturesque village and they really set the scene for the disappearance of a little girl, with suspicious characters that leave the reader unsettled in parts, everyone was suspicious of each other and with such a small community, everyone knew each other’s business.

Caroline is an interesting character, she’s young and immature but thinks she knows it all and is scornful of Joanna and her friend Ellie. She’s complex due to her mother’s attempted suicide and that is often seen in her actions and the way she treats people, whereas Joanna is innocent and kind towards others.

With an intriguing narrative that had me hooked from the first page, this book is the perfect, twisty tale to curl up with. Atmospheric, eerie and with a shocking introduction that pulls the reader in, ‘A Place To Lie’ is a rural noir that is cleverly written and keeps the reader engaged throughout.

You can buy ‘A Place To Lie’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Jenny Colgan Reveals New Book – The Bookshop On The Shore

The Bookshop On The Shore‘Jenny Colgan is back on our bookshelves in 2019 with a new book called ‘The Bookshops On The Shore’

What the back cover says –

Zoe, a professional child care worker, and single mother to Hari, 4, who has selective mutism, is sinking beneath the waves trying to cope by herself in London. Then her ex sister-in-law suggests she move to Scotland to help run a bookshop…

There her path crosses that of Ramsay Urquart, a widower and antiquarian bookseller, who has a band of difficult children he can’t manage. Can two very damaged people help heal each other?

With a pretty cover and a delicious synposis, this book certainly sounds like a treat!

You can pre-order ‘The Bookshop On The Shore’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 13th June 2019.

My Sisters And Me By Lisa Dickenson

My Sisters And Me‘My Sisters And Me’ is the latest book by Lisa Dickenson.

When Willow Lake asks her daughters for help renovating the family home, each has a reason to hesitate about returning to Maplewood. For quiet and bookish Emmy going back to the town that ridiculed her fills her with dread. The youngest Noelle is perfectly comfortable in herself now, but once wanted to fit in so badly that she walked away from her first love. A first love who still lives in Maplewood. And outspoken Rae is painfully aware of how much the townspeople hurt her little sisters growing up. She didn’t protect them then, but there’s no way she’ll let history repeat itself. The sisters agree to go home and make the best of it. After all if they’ve changed over the years, it’s possible the townspeople have too.

‘My Sisters And Me’ is a fun and playful book that really makes for entertaining reading. It’s seen through the perspective of three sisters, Emmy, Noelle and Rae as they take on the hard task of returning home and sorting out all their childhood memories.

As they return to their old town, old memories are stirred up bringing up some happy feelings of nostalgia as they remember growing up and reconnecting with old friends. But for the sisters, who lived in the middle of the woods during the era of ‘The Blair Witch Project’, they were seen as weirdos with hippy parents. This led to years of abuse and ridicule and when the women returned home, thought that opinions would have changed. But it, seems that even though they have moved on and grown up, the town is still stuck in the past and have kept their opinions.

As well, as having to deal with the small minded townsfolk, the sisters have their own issues to deal with. As Emmy, the baby of the trio, is an intelligent young woman who dreams of one day going to space becomes awkward when her first, unknown love enters her life, whilst Noelle has embraced her sexuality and wants to repair old bridges and outspoken Rae wants to tell everyone what she really thinks of them.

An uplifting story about the strong bond of the sisterhood and putting old ghosts to rest, ‘My Sisters And Me’ is a witty and heartwarming story about love and friendship, that will have you giggling throughout at the funny characters and hilarious situations.

You can buy My Sisters And Me from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Ali McNamara Reveals New Book – Secrets And Seashells At Rainbow Bay

Secrets And Seashells At Rainbow BayAli McNamara has revealed her new book for 2019 called ‘Secrets And Seashells At Rainbow Bay’ and I’m absolutely in love with the cover!

What the back cover says –

Amelia is a single mother, doing her very best to look after her young son, Charlie – but money is tight and times are tough. When she first hears that she is the last descendent of the Chesterford family and that she has inherited a Real-Life Castle by the sea, Amelia can’t quite believe her ears. But it’s true!

She soon finds that owning a castle isn’t quite the ticket to sorting out her money problems that she’d first hoped: she can’t sell, because the terms of the ancient bequest state that any Chesterford who inherits the castle, must live there and work towards the upkeep and maintenance of the family home. So ever-practical Amelia decides to uproot her little family and move to this magnificent castle by the sea.

Living in a castle on the beautiful Northumberland coast is fun at first, but organising the day-to-day running is a lot more complicated than Amelia first imagined. Luckily she has help from the small band of eccentric and unconventional staff that are already employed there – and a mysterious unseen hand that often gives her a push in the right direction just when she needs it most. It’s only when she meets Tom, a furniture restorer who comes to the castle to help repair some antique furniture, that Amelia realises she might get the fairy-tale ending that she and Charlie truly deserve…

With a stunning cover and synopsis, this book sounds like an absolute treat!

You can pre-order Secrets and Seashells at Rainbow Bay from Amazon and will be availalbe to buy from good bookshops from 27th June 2019.