Renee Conoulty: September 2015


Tuesday, 29 September 2015

In Search of Unicorns: Modern Fairytales for Modern Women by Youlanda Brewster

Romance is in the air, and its heartbeat sounds of laughter.

If you or anyone you've known has ever enjoyed a Harlequin romance novel or a Hallmark card, you will fall in love with this collection of tales. Fall into 'The Bag's...a Lady' and watch a sweet but persistent bag lady find a young New Yorker the perfect mate, whether she likes it or not. Sample 'No Greater Love' and laugh over the exploding turkey as Silicy Tucker finds herself caring for her ex-husband with cancer and serving as guardian of his new wife. Hold your breath as a young woman fights to keep from falling in love with her ex-husband in 'Love Can Build.' I dare you not to laugh at 'Nappy & Me' as a young woman recounts her life with a very special friend who has a habit of coming out of nowhere and returning there. See if you can withold the laughter...and a few tears when a young woman loses her fiance to another woman on her wedding day, but they make it up to her by giving her their daughter in 'The Gift'.

Hey! Here's my review.

This collection of short stories had less of a magical fairytale feel than I was expecting, more general women's fiction. I enjoyed some of the shorter quirky ones the most, though none in particular stood out to me.

I listened to the audiobook edition of this book, which I received free in exchange for an honest review. The narrator was fantastic, enhancing my enjoyment of the stories.


  • Where: Audiobook Blast
  • Format: audiobook

Purchase links

Monday, 28 September 2015

The Good Neighbor by A.J. Banner

From a phenomenal new voice in suspense fiction comes a book that will forever change the way you look at the people closest to you…
Shadow Cove, Washington, is the kind of town everyone dreams about—quaint streets, lush forests, good neighbors. That’s what Sarah thinks as she settles into life with her new husband, Dr. Johnny McDonald. But all too soon she discovers an undercurrent of deception. And one October evening when Johnny is away, sudden tragedy destroys Sarah’s happiness.
Dazed and stricken with grief, she and Johnny begin to rebuild their shattered lives. As she picks up the pieces of her broken home, Sarah discovers a shocking secret that forces her to doubt everything she thought was true—about her neighbors, her friends, and even her marriage. With each stunning revelation, Sarah must ask herself, Can we ever really know the ones we love?

Hey! Here's my review.
This is a good debut novel that kept me interested in the story and trying to differentiate the clues from the red herrings. I didn't figure out who was responsible before it was revealed, though with the 20:20 vision of hindsight, I could see the clues were all there. I liked the characters, but didn't feel particularly attached to any of them. 

I listened to the audiobook edition, which I received free in exchange for an honest review. The narrator spoke clearly and at a good pace, giving each of the characters a unique voice
  • Where: Audiobook Blast
  • Format: audiobook
Purchase link

Saturday, 26 September 2015

Zach's Secret by Matthew W. Grant

From Matthew W. Grant, the Amazon Breakthrough Novel Award Semifinalist Author of Secrets Of Slaters Falls...

Can a young man come out, find love, and survive senior year all at the same time?

Senior Zach Denham, the editor of the high school newspaper in a small New England town, struggles to act like a "normal" guy by dating Meghan, his religious friend. Key, the school's newly arrived attractive jock, forces Zach to confront the truth about his sexual identity. Still unsure of himself, Zach is reluctant to help start a support group for gay students at the high school.

Friends will become enemies when the explosive issue divides the school community. Opposition to the group mounts from the school administration, other students, Zach's friends, and even his own mother. 

As Mrs. Trevott, Zach's trusted and sharp-tongued English teacher, advises, some of them will stand up for what they believe in even if they are standing alone. Some will face the darkest parts of themselves when they witness first-hand how destructive their own prejudice can be. 

Matthew's screenplay version of Zach's Secret was a finalist in a Script Magazine screenwriting contest.

Hey! Here's my review.

A clean, young adult m/m romance. Zach's journey of self discovery coming out and dealing with prejudice. I found this book very relatable and saw some familiar scenes from my highschool years when my best friend came out. A great book to remind you stand up for what you believe in and to "think about that".

I listened to the audiobook edition, which I received free in exchange for an honest review. The narrator was great, speaking clearly and at a good pace.


  • Where: Audiobook Blast
  • Format: audiobook

Purchase links

Friday, 25 September 2015

Quote - Stephen King

Hey Everyone!

Do you read other people's reviews before you read the book? 

Wednesday, 23 September 2015

A Story of Like by Courtney Clark **Guest Post & Review**

A story of likeHey Everyone!

I'd love to introduce you to Courtney Clark who stumbled upon my blog and asked me if I would be interested in reviewing her debut novel.  A Story of Like sounded interesting, I liked the idea of reading about a couple of regular people instead of all the gorgeous alpha billionaires that keep coming up. I'm so glad I said yes, I absolutely adored this book! Keep reading for a guest post from Courtney and my review.

A bit about Courtney. 

Besides aspiring to use my wit and, yes, sometimes sarcastic comments to write comedy gold, I am a proud pet parent to two awesomely neurotic dogs, a book nerd, and my parents' favorite child (just don't tell my brother that). You can check out my book, "A Story of Like: A Decidedly Unromantic Romance Novel", on both Amazon and Nook (please and thank you).

Connect with Courtney via

Guest Post

When Chick Lit Comes to Life…

Over the years, my love for Chick Lit has remained steadfast and true, making it both my longest and most functional relationship.  When I’ve had a bad week, Chick Lit has been there to make me laugh.  When I have needed advice, I’ve found wisdom in the pages between those pastel colored covers.  Chick Lit has taught me to persevere through utter humiliation, to give people a chance despite awkward beginnings, and to keep the faith that happy endings are out there.  I have wished many times that my life was a Chick Lit novel, that is, until my wish came true.

 The first thing we learn in every Chick Lit novel is that our heroine is experiencing big changes in her life; from a break up to losing her job, something is throwing the plucky character off kilter.  Although I may not have mastered the plucky persona (I’m more the sassy, sarcastic type), I have definitely experienced my life altering experience in losing over 100 pounds this past year.  Seeing a different person when I look in the mirror has made me ponder other changes I want to make in my life, leading me to the second thing all Chick Lit ladies have in common—a goal.

Chick Lit girls know what they want out of life, even when the characters around them may not share their vision.  I had always told myself that I wasn’t the type of girl who wanted a husband and kids.  Even during my college years, it was not uncommon to discuss my inevitable spinsterhood at my parents’ dinner table.  Seeing  my physical transformation this past year and deciding to make other changes in my life—changes like writing the awesomely funny novel I had always talked about (now available on Amazon, hint, hint)—made me more honest about what I wanted for my personal life: my own family.

Soon after this revelation, I had dinner with my brother, where I made the bold proclamation, “I’ve decided to get married.”  To which he responded, “Are you even dating someone right now?”  Apparently the paradigm shift alone was not going to cut it.  Like any other Chick Lit character, I was going to have to be brave and put myself out there—a spectacle for possible public humiliation.   The results have been nothing less than terrifying. 

While our Chick Lit heroines may adequately describe the my-face-now-looks-like-a-giant-tomato level of blushing that occurs when your boss starts pointing enthusiastically and obviously at all of your single male coworkers—not so subtly mouthing the words “what about him” behind their backs—what is usually missing from the novels I love so much is the panic inducing horror that accompanies the raw vulnerability that comes with taking personal risks.  Experiencing this terror first hand has given me a new appreciation for the strength of the Chick Lit heroine, plucky persona and all, because living the life of a Chick Lit novel is not for the faint of heart.

A Story of Like by Courtney Clark 

He's every woman's idea of the perfect man: a middle income job, a receding hair line that only Mr. Clean would envy, and a body fit for the beer Olympics. 

Who could resist? 

Meet Addison Anderson. Although Addy is happy with her life—she has a job she loves, family and friends who support her, and her very own sidekicks in her neurotic Superdog named Lola and a nefarious looking cat named Moustachio—she’s missing the one thing that every girl wants, a plus one to couple's game night. Enter Charlie. Not exactly the man of her romantic fantasies, Addy is quick to put him in the friend zone, but as he rapidly becomes an invaluable part of her life, Addy must make a big decision: which is more important, that elusive spark or someone to share her life with? Join Addy on her comic voyage as she discovers that not every story is a story of love, sometimes it's a story of like. 

Hey! Here's my review.

Growing up as Renee Ryan, I appreciated the alliterative humour of a book written by Courtney Clark about Addison Anderson. This is a fantastic debut humorous chick lit novel that had me giggling and falling in like (ok, I admit it, falling in love) with the characters. 

It's written in the first person with the occasional aside directed at the reader. I particularly enjoyed the way Courtney kept the bedroom scenes clean, no fade to black - she just slammed the door in your face. I loved the cast of quirky characters, including the pets. There was great character development and I was able to connect with Addison and Charlie. I loved the ending so much that I immediately reread the last bit.

I received this book free in exchange for an honest review. I can't wait to read more from Courtney.


  • Where: Author Invitation
  • Format: ebook

Purchase links

Tuesday, 22 September 2015

Books Go Social

Hey Everyone!

I was flitting around on twitter the other day when BooksGoSocial popped up and caught my attention. I like books. I like to be social. So I decided to see what they were all about. They lured me in to sign up for email notifications with the chance to win a Kindle Fire HD every month. I haven't felt bombarded with emails, just one a week with one book suggestion from a featured author. Once a month the winner of the Kindle Fire is announced, and you have to read the email to find out if it's you. If you don't read the email and respond, then you will miss out.

You can also have a look around the BooksGoSocial website and browse by genre. This website isn't all about free books though. It is an advertising platform for authors to pay to have their books brought to the attention of lots of people. Instead of the regular blurb description, the books on the website are accompanied by a short excerpt. If you like to get a feel for the author's writing style, this might be right up your alley.

If you like the social aspect, they also have a BooksGoSocial Facebook group.

Monday, 21 September 2015

The Unbelievers by Lisa M. Lilly

Tara Spencer is the new mother of a baby girl—one who, by all accounts, should not exist.

And though her worries go far beyond diapers and feeding times, she finds herself settling comfortably into the community of Willow Springs, away from the prying eyes of The Brotherhood religious order and former-flame-turned-betrayer Cyril Woods.

But when her daughter goes missing and her best friend is violently attacked, Tara’s newfound sense of security comes to a screeching halt. She realizes that nowhere will be safe until she solves the mystery of her virgin pregnancy once and for all.

While DNA testing seems to lead to more questions than answers, Tara struggles to separate friend from foe—until a series of shocking discoveries finally sheds light on the greater meaning behind her unusual situation.

In the stunning second installment of The Awakening series, societal roles are tested and religious norms questioned—in a thrilling paranormal page-turner combining elements of Rosemary’s Baby and The Da Vinci Code.

Hey! Here's my review.

This is the second book in The Awakenings series. I recommend reading book one before this one. 

I found it fascinating to see how a story of immaculate conception might play out in today's society. In the first book, Tara finds out she is pregnant. This book continues her story after the baby is born, maintaining the feeling of suspense throughout the book.

I liked and related to the main character. This book answered some of the questions left hanging after book one, but then left me dangling by my fingertips from the edge of the cliff with many more questions. 

I listened to the audiobook edition which I received free in exchange for an honest review. There is a different narrator to book one, she spoke clearly and at a good pace.


  • Where: Audiobook Blast
  • Format: audiobook

Purchase links

Sunday, 20 September 2015

Luna Tango by Alli Sinclair

Tango, like love, is complicated

Journalist Dani McKenna delves into the world of tango to expose the decades of lies and deception that threaten three generations of her family. She’s desperate to understand the reason her mother abandoned her twenty years ago to become a world-class tango dancer, why her grandma lives in fear of all things tango, and how the brutal murder of a tango music legend in 1950s Buenos Aires now affects her family.

Dani meets the enigmatic Carlos Escudero, a revered tango dancer and man of intense passion, who helps her unravel tango’s sordid history. Despite Dani’s lack of rhythm, they create their own dance of the souls until the differences in their cultures causes a deep rift. As she seeks to reconnect with Carlos and rebuild her family, tango – the dance of passion – becomes a complicated dance of betrayal.

Hey! Here's my review.

I am always on the lookout for books that feature dancing, especially partner dancing. I had my eye on Luna Tango for a while, and how could you not with a cover like that! The passion displayed on the cover continued in the novel, and had me longing to read the sensual dance scenes even more than the bedroom ones (though they were swoon worthy too).

I related most to the modern storyline and enjoyed seeing how the two timelines came together. I loved Carlos voice - I could just hear him speaking in that sexy, Argentine, English-is-not-my-first-language way. Swoon. I just wanted to throw myself at him and tango! Vertically, horizontally, either way would be fine with me!

This was a fantastic debut from Alli and I can't wait to read the next book in the Dance Cards Series. I was so excited to win an autographed copy of Luna Tango in a competition on Facebook and I loved using one of the matching bookmarks while reading it.


Purchase links


Saturday, 19 September 2015

Swing Dance by Scott Cupit **Interview & Spotlight**

Swing Patrol Swing dancing lindy hopHey Everyone!

I would love to introduce you to Scott Cupit, who is on tour with his newly released book, Swing Dance. I first met Scottie back in 2000 in the social swing dance scene in Melbourne, and I always had a fantastic time dancing with him.

Scott Cupit founded Swing Patrol in Australia in 1998 and it is now regarded as the world's largest swing-dancing school, with weekly classes held in Melbourne, Sydney, Tasmania, Berlin and London. Swing Patrol London, which launched in 2009, now has more than 1,400 students a week through its many venues and weekly social dances.

Scott achieved global media attention in 2009 with his interactive swinging hour on the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square, which was voted one of the top ten hours of the project by the Evening Standard. Since Swing Patrol's successful pitch on BBC2's Dragon's Den in July 2014, with three of the four dragons making an offer, the company has enjoyed a second wave of media attention, with various major fashion brands interested in collaborations - Keds footwear is now a sponsor.

As well as running Swing Patrol, Scott continues to teach weekly classes and regularly leads workshops in the UK and abroad. After sixteen years, he still thinks he has the best job in the world.

Connect with Scott via


What inspired you to write Swing Dance - The Book?

I truly believe the swing dance scene, it’s growth, it’s talent, fashion and the community is a positive hidden gem that someone should be telling the story about.
It feels like a global underground movement that the public are not aware of. I am super proud to be part of it.
It is a story full of fun anecdotes and it was a fun and challenging project.

How long did it take you to go from first idea to publication of Swing Dance - The Book?

I appeared on Dragon Den on July 20 2014, I was approached by a publisher just after that. The green light didn’t happen though until after my two draft chapters were well revoked at the Frankfurt book fare in October 2014. I then had the first half of 2015 to write the book ;)

How did you first get into swing dancing?

I was back packing across the US and stumbled across it twice in a week and that was a sign to me. I first saw it at Disneyland in California and then at the Glen Echo Ballroom in Maryland A few days later. I was absolutely addicted after these two chance encounters. :)

What styles of dancing can you do and which one is your favourite?

I am first and foremost a Lindy Hopper. It’s the dance that changed my life and my number one love.

What are your top three tips for swing dance beginners?

Enjoy the journey and don’t rush to learn it all at once.
Laugh at your mistakes and be chilled about your journey.
Listen and dance to the music :)

What are your current top three favourite songs?

Shufflin’ & Rollin’ Buddy Johnson
Mack the Knife by Ella Fitzgerland 1936
Two O’Clock Jump by Harry James

Here's Scottie dancing to Shufflin’ & Rollin’ Buddy Johnson

Is there anything else you would like to share with us?

I think I have the best job in the world and have loved every step I have taken on this journey. I just hope this book inspires people to try it out and do something new. These old world dances have given such joy to so many. ::)

 Here's Scottie dancing with the famous Jena Veloz who is in the book

Swing Dance by Scott Cupid

lindy hop dancing With all things vintage enjoying a boom worldwide, swing dancing has well and truly swung back into fashion. From vintage festivals and tea dances to weekend socials and hundreds of weekly classes held around the world, multiple forms of the dance that was created in 1930s Harlem by Frankie Manning are growing ever more popular.

Swing Dance explores the vibrant contemporary swing-dancing scene, looking at the different dance styles and the associated culture, community and fashion. Illustrated with vintage and contemporary photography, as well as specially commissioned step-by-step guides, it provides everything you need to know, whether you fancy kicking up your heels in the Charleston or mastering the Lindy Hop 'swing out'.

The four major dance styles are covered - Charleston, Collegiate Shag, Balboa and Lindy Hop, including the Strolls, which are guaranteed to fill the dance floor. Each chapter begins with an overview of the fascinating evolution of the dance style. 'Get the Look' examines the fashions for guys and girls, including hair and make-up, and a clothing, shoes and accessories checklist, while 'The Music' suggests the top ten tunes to practise to. Then follows a breakdown of the basic step patterns upon which the dance is built, and a guide to some of the key moves. There are also insider tips from old-timers and today's leading swing dancers as well as fun, easy-to-follow page-embedded video demonstrations produced exclusively for the book and accessible via scannable QR codes.

Purchase link
Amazon | Kobo | iBooks | Book Depository

You can now read my review HERE

Friday, 18 September 2015

Kissing Frogs by Rich Amooi

Warning: May cause happiness and laughter.

Summer is finally here and Geography teacher Sara Larson has exactly one month to find the perfect date for the wedding of a high school rival. The odds seem stacked against her, but the last thing she wants is to sit at the kids’ table again. Or even worse, the singles’ table. While trudging through an assortment of certified losers, Sara fights her attraction towards Ian, the irresistible guy next door.

Art teacher Ian McBride has a dream of opening his own gallery, but for now he’s focused on sculpting a gift for his grandparents’ fiftieth anniversary and enjoying a relaxing summer. However, Ian is blind-sided when crazy, beautiful Sara and her giant dog move in next door and rock his world. Too bad she wants nothing to do with him.

How can Sara avoid the attraction that sizzles between them and stick to her rule of not dating neighbors? As far as Ian’s concerned, the prince Sara is looking for is right under her nose. And one kiss just might change everything.

KISSING FROGS is a fun, fast-paced romantic comedy guaranteed to put a smile on your face. Let the fun begin!

Hey! Here's my review.

I have devoured all of Rich Amooi's romantic comedy novels, and I think this is my favourite (so far). Sometimes you have to kiss a few frogs before you find your prince. Sara has found the frogs alright, but will she find her prince? (Of course she will, this is a rom com, it has to end happily ever after!)

I work in a school, so I particularly related to the two main characters, who were school teachers. I could imagine being friends with both of them. I was completely engrossed in this story and finished it in one day. Loved it!


  • Where: Amazon
  • Format: ebook

Purchase link

Thursday, 17 September 2015

The Patterson Girls by Rachael Johns

How can four sisters build the futures they so desperately want, when the past is reaching out to claim them?

When the Patterson daughters return home to Meadow Brook to be with their father after their mother’s death, they bring with them a world of complication and trouble.

The eldest sister, obstetrician Madeleine, would rather be anywhere but her hometown, violinist Abigail has fled from her stellar career, while teacher Lucinda is struggling to have the children she and her husband so desperately want. The black sheep of the family, Charlie, feels her life as a barista and exercise instructor doesn’t measure up to that of her gifted and successful sisters.

Dealing with their bereft father who is determined to sell the family motel, their loves old and new and a series of troublesome decisions doesn’t make life any easier, but when they go through their mother’s possessions and uncover the shocking secret of an old family curse, they begin to question everything they thought they knew.

A warm and wise novel about secrets revealed, finding your soulmate and the unique bond between sisters.

Hey! Here's my review.

Rachael Johns is a name I know well, but this is actually the first of her books that I've read. Many of her other books are more romance, whereas this one is more women's fiction. I loved her writing style and in depth characters, so I'll definitely track down more of Rachael's books when I feel like a romance hit.

I loved the familiar Australian setting and the specific little details that gave it a South Australian feel. I haven't spent much time in South Australia, but this book really got me in the mood for our family holiday down that way in a couple of weeks. The town we will be staying in got a passing mention. Speaking of passing mentions, I hunted down the chocolate coated apricot treat that one of the characters was craving (FruChocs) and I'm nibbling (OK scoffing) them while writing this review. That chocolate hit must have given me an energy boost, because I don't usually write reviews this long!

I loved the relationships between the four sisters and how they all came together to support their dad. The topic of infertility was dealt with sensitively and "The Patterson Curse" lightened the mood of the book, keeping it fun. If you like Liane Moriarty, you might enjoy this too.


  • Where: NetGalley
  • Format: ebook

Purchase links

Wednesday, 16 September 2015

INCONCEIVABLE! by Tegan Wren **Cover reveal**

Hey Everyone!

I'd love to introduce you to Tegan Wren, who has just unveiled the gorgeous cover to her debut novel, Inconceivable!

The best compliment Tegan Wren ever received came from her sixth grade teacher: “You always have a book in your hand!”
Guided by her love of the creative process, Tegan grew up acting in theatre productions and writing poetry, short stories, and plays. She turned her eye to writing about real life when she worked as a journalist, producing reports for various radio and television stations in medium and large markets in the Midwest and also filing some stories for a major national news network. She spent several years writing online content, which ranged from creating descriptions of toilets for a retail website to composing a blog post about visiting Maui.

She’s had the opportunity to travel overseas, and uses those adventures to inform her writing. She also draws inspiration from her own struggles and life experiences. Tegan and her husband, Patrick, experienced infertility for five years before becoming parents through adoption.

Tegan is excited to have her debut novel, INCONCEIVABLE!, included in the launch of the new romance imprint Curiosity Thrills. She's a proud member of Romance Writers of America.

A popular, young royal couple can't produce an heir? INCONCEIVABLE!

Connect with Tegan via

Now here's the bit you've all been waiting for **cues trumpets**

The Cover!

And while I'm at it, here's a bit more about the book.

When Ozarks native Hatty goes “whole hog” during karaoke, she catches the eye of Prince John. He isn’t what she expects the heir to a small European nation to be: he's affable, witty, and isn’t put off by her tell-it-like-it-is demeanor. Their flirtation should be short lived, but a force stronger than fate—Hatty’s newspaper editor—assigns her to cover the royals. After spending time together, she and John soon begin dating, and Hatty finds herself making headlines instead of writing them. 

But challenges loom that are even more complicated than figuring out how to mesh Hatty's journalism career with life at Belvoir Palace. Hatty and John soon find themselves embroiled in an unusual sex scandal: they can't produce an heir. Tabloids dub Hatty a “Barren-ess,” and the royals become irate. Hatty politely tells them to shove it. But beneath her confident exterior, she struggles to cope with a heartbreak that invades her most intimate moments with John. Pressured to choose between invasive medical procedures and abandoning John’s claim to the throne, the couple feels trapped until a trip to Ethiopia shows them happy endings sometimes arrive long after saying “I do.”

I've had a sneak peek at the book too, and really enjoyed it, but you'll have to wait until November 16 for my full review.

INCONCEIVABLE! is available to pre order from Amazon.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Solace by Therin Knite

Corina Marion has a father problem—namely that her Red Cross doctor of a dad has finally returned home from sixteen years of war... a body in a box to be buried. 

Her mother is devastated, her friends shocked and saddened, her hometown in mourning at the loss of its local hero. And Corina, indifferent to the man she never met, is trapped in the middle of an emotional onslaught she isn't prepared to handle.

But when a strange old man confronts Corina at her father's funeral, he offers her an impossible opportunity: the chance to know the late Luther Marion. And in a moment of uncertainty, Corina makes a choice with consequences she can barely fathom. 

A choice that sends her twenty-five years into the past. To the heyday of her father's hometown. Right on the cusp of the harrowing events that will shape his life...and his death.

And in order to return to her damaged home, supportive friends, and uncertain future, Corina will have to fight tooth and nail alongside the man she's resented her entire life. Because if she doesn't help fix the past she's inadvertently changed with her presence, Luther Marion may not live long enough to become a hero at all.

Hey! Here's my review.

Set in the not too distant future in a realistic depiction of a world at war, Solace tells the story of a girl who has never met her father. She is bitter toward him for choosing to spend her whole life overseas working for the Red Cross, and then being killed. She is given the opportunity to travel back in time and get to know him. 

I loved the time travel element and found the main character likable. I could understand why she felt bitter and my opinions of her father developed along with hers as we travelled this journey together. 

I listened to the audiobook edition of this novel, which I received free in exchange for an honest review. The narrator was fabulous, bringing the story to life.


  • Where: Audiobook Blast
  • Format: audiobook
Purchase links

Monday, 14 September 2015

Girls Under Pressure by Jacqueline Wilson

Magda is tall and glamorous, Nadine is willowy and 'gothic'. And Ellie . . . well, Ellie is just plain normal. The three girls have been best friends forever, but now Ellie is convinced she's fat, Nadine wants to be a model, and Magda worries that her appearance is giving guys the wrong idea. The pressure is on for them to change the way they look - but can they learn to love themselves, just the way they are?

Hey! Here's my review.

This young adult novel gives a first person account of a 14 year old girl who develops an eating disorder. It gives a very simplistic version of a rapidly escalating and easily resolved case, that may not be particularly relatable to people suffering with an eating disorder. It does demonstrate how irrational the thought process can become and is a great book to raise awareness of eating disorders and what signs to look for.

I didn't personally relate to any of the characters, but I did empathise with them and hoped they would be able to work through their issues. 

I listened to the audiobook edition. The narrator spoke clearly and at a good pace, but I feel the book would have suited someone with a younger sounding voice as it was written in first person from the view of a 14 year old girl rather than a third person narrator.


  • Where: Borrowbox
  • Format: audiobook
Purchase links

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Fairytale Beginnings by Holly Martin

Fairytale Beginnings: A heartwarming romantic comedy

Love is an open door…except when it keeps slamming in your face.

Hopeless romantic Milly Rose has had her fair share of heartbreak. Obsessed with all things Disney, she refuses to give up on finding her Prince Charming – he’s out there somewhere, isn’t he?

When Milly is given a job to investigate the origins of an historical building in the village of Clovers Rest, she’s not sure what to expect. What she discovers takes her breath away - a beautiful real life Cinderella castle, complete with turrets, a magnificent drawbridge AND a very handsome owner…Cameron Heartstone.

As Milly and Cameron begin to unearth the secrets of Clover Castle, they can’t ignore the intense chemistry building between them. But they’ve both been hurt badly before. Can they take a big leap of faith and find their own happily-ever-after?

Hey! Here's my review.

Yes, it was a comment on twitter about "all the willies" that drew my attention to this book (and oh, what a scene that was!) But it was the promise of a fairytale that made me jump right in. 

Set in a haunted castle, with a Disney obsessed heroine and a slightly gruff, ladies man hero, eccentric villagers and a curse, what more could you want from a chick lit style fairytale? Lots of willies? Yep, got that too!

I loved the sexual tension (and relief of said tension - spoiler alert - only one willy there), as well as all the giggles. I found the characters likable and I was cheering for them the whole way through. If you're looking for an entertaining bit of escapism, give this a go.

I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.


  • Where: NetGalley
  • Format: ebook
Purchase links

Saturday, 12 September 2015

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury

The terrifyingly prophetic novel of a post-literate future.

Guy Montag is a fireman. His job is to burn books, which are forbidden, being the source of all discord and unhappiness. Even so, Montag is unhappy; there is discord in his marriage. Are books hidden in his house? The Mechanical Hound of the Fire Department, armed with a lethal hypodermic, escorted by helicopters, is ready to track down those dissidents who defy society to preserve and read books.

The classic dystopian novel of a post-literate future, Fahrenheit 451 stands alongside Orwell’s 1984 and Huxley’s Brave New World as a prophetic account of Western civilization’s enslavement by the media, drugs and conformity.

Bradbury’s powerful and poetic prose combines with uncanny insight into the potential of technology to create a novel which, decades on from first publication, still has the power to dazzle and shock.

Hey! Here's my review.

A dystopian novel written in the 1950's, telling the tale of a world where telling a tale is forbidden. Independent thought is suppressed and books are burned. The main character is a fireman, whose job is not to put out fires, but to start them. 

The story is told like a stream of consciousness, the main character rambling on as he begins to question the way things are done. I listened to the audiobook narrated by Tim Robbins. It was a quick read, and many of the concepts are still relevant today.


  • Where: Borrowbox
  • Format: audiobook
Purchase links