Tuesday, 28 November 2017

BOOK TOUR; Power Struggle ( Detective Madison Knight Series #8) - Carolyn Arnold


Synopsis:

One hit man who’s back for revenge.
One detective who’s not going down without a fight.

It’s been ten months since Detective Madison Knight almost died at the hands of Russian Mafia hit man Constantine Romanov. She hasn’t seen hide nor hair of him since he escaped police custody and fled to Russia soon after his arrest, except now her latest murder investigation gives her reason to believe he’s back in town. Seeing as the victim is the man who killed her grandfather, her perspective may be a little skewed, but with the MO smacking of Constantine and the victim’s connections to the mob, she finds it hard to be objective. Still, she’s doing her best to consider all the evidence.

When she receives a threatening letter from Constantine, however, her suspicions are confirmed. And he’s made it abundantly clear that not only does he plan to finish what he started but he has her family and loved ones in the crosshairs, too. Madison vows to do whatever it takes to save them, but as the hours race by, the body count rises. And the stakes only get higher when Madison’s sister, Chelsea, goes missing.

Now, Madison’s only play is to take Chelsea’s disappearance for what it really means: Constantine is calling Madison out for one final showdown. And they won’t both survive…


Review:

10 months previous to where this story begins, Madison Knight was almost killed by a Russian mob hit man by the name of Constantine Romanov and she is just about managing to pull herself back together. With the help of her therapist and the love from her boyfriend she is managing to get better. But suddenly Romanov is back and he wants to finish what he started. 

He announces his arrival to Madison via a letter, in which he threatens to kill her family and all those that she loves. The whole police department and Madison are out looking for him but when Madison's sister, Chelsea goes missing Knight knows that the end is coming.

Having not read this series before now, as it makes a great stand alone I can only assume that this instalment is a brilliant addition to the series. The characters are well defined and I just wished I had read the other books in the series to watch the characters grow and more particularly see Madison tested in her personal and work life. I feel as though if I had read more than one of these books that I would have formed a stronger bond with the characters although this time I felt I had a strong bond with Madison anyway

Although I read this book as a stand alone, and it worked really well, I would recommend starting at the beginning so those things that make a good series aren't missed. 

It's ard not to love a book with a cold hearted villain so with that point alone the book is a high recommendation from me but it's exciting and put me on edge ever so slightly, bodies fall and there's just a great book to be read right there and I can't give it any less than a 5/5. One day maybe I'll go back and read this series from the start. Only having read one book from Carolyn in the past, from her Brandon Fisher FBI series, it's easy to see that Carolyn has a way with words and creates such wonderful and enjoyable books.  Any of Carolyn' work is an easy recommendation to anyone wanting to dip their toes into reading crime or to anyone who already loves reading crime novels and wants to add another book or indeed another 3 series of them to their book shelves. 


Saturday, 11 November 2017

Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng - Blog Tour Review

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Synopsis:

In Shaker Heights, a placid, progressive suburb of Cleveland, everything is planned -- from the layout of the winding roads, to the colors of the houses, to the successful lives its residents will go on to lead. And no one embodies this spirit more than Elena Richardson, whose guiding principle is playing by the rules.

Enter Mia Warren -- an enigmatic artist and single mother -- who arrives in this idyllic bubble with her teenaged daughter Pearl, and rents a house from the Richardsons. Soon Mia and Pearl become more than tenants: all four Richardson children are drawn to the mother-daughter pair. But Mia carries with her a mysterious past and a disregard for the status quo that threatens to upend this carefully ordered community.

When old family friends of the Richardsons attempt to adopt a Chinese-American baby, a custody battle erupts that dramatically divides the town--and puts Mia and Elena on opposing sides. Suspicious of Mia and her motives, Elena is determined to uncover the secrets in Mia's past. But her obsession will come at unexpected and devastating costs.


Review:

Little Fires Everywhere absorbed me by the very first page, I had very little to no idea what I was really going in to when I opened this book and that added to my excitement of actually reading it. LFE begins with a fire destroying the Richardson house, and from there the action takes us back to the day that Mia and Pearl arrived in Shaker Heights which really pulled me in and held me down.

Set in the suburb of Shaker Heights, where everything is carefully planned and controlled by it's many rules that the residents must stick to. Your house depending on its type can only be painted a certain colour, your rubbish cant be collected from the front of your house and grass must be cut promptly just to name a few of the restrictive rules. Its clear to see from the to see that any person to move into Shaker Heights who doesn't always fully conform or never does, the effects they would have would cause great damage.

Mrs. Richardson lives by the rules which having been raised by them is no surprise, and she has raised her four children (Lexie, Trip, Moody and Izzy) to abide by them as well. She rents a little apartment in the suburb to Mia Warren and her daughter Pearl who are in comparison, less fortunate. Mia is a free spirited artist who lives her life to the fullest. These women have one thing in common and only this thing and that is that they love their children immensely and accept each other's as their own. These mothers relationships with each other and their family and everyone in the town is threatened when a custody battle ensues between a friend of the Richardsons, Mrs. and Mr. McCullough, who are in the middle of adopting a Chinese American baby and a friend of Mia's, Bebe, who is the birth mother. The battle wrecks havoc on the town and causes incredible strife between the families involved.

As the youngest child of my family this book gives me such an insight and with remain with me for a long time, it has an effect I cant quite explain but it has helped me see things in an ever so differently light which was no surprise but at the same time it was just as much of a surprise.

Little Fires everywhere brought laughter and plenty of tears. It is just that kind of read. I can't recommend this book enough, it's captivating, compelling and full of heart. Celeste Ng's has a wonderful ability to intertwine characters and storylines in a way that is both brilliant and beautiful. I loved every second of this book and cant recommend it to anyone enough, its a definite 5/5 from me and I hope anyone, mother or child would pick up this book and dive into the deep behind the bonds of parent and child.

Thanks to Grace Vincent for allowing me onto this book tour. For this day the following blogs are also taking part.






Tuesday, 31 October 2017

Inkitt launches a free program to help you turn your idea into a novel within 30 days.

Have you ever thought about writing a novel? There are millions of people in the world who have ideas floating around in their heads that they want to write down but never find the time. Inkitt, the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, will be launching their first ‘Writers Write Program’ on November 1st to help you turn your idea into an original novel. The 30-day program is completely free and filled with special benefits such as:

  • Free, 30 min private sessions with professional writing coaches (including the editor of The Martian)
  • Events and tips with bestselling authors like Andy Weir, Lauren Kate, and Gayle Forman
  • A variety of community features such as the choice to get a writing buddy who you can exchange manuscript feedback with.

“Our intention is to enlarge the writing community by encouraging more people to become writers,” said CEO of Inkitt, Ali Albazaz. “The program is completely free so for us this isn’t about making money; it’s about encouraging talented and committed writers to keep going and finish what they started.”

If you are serious about taking on the challenge or want to finish (or start!) a manuscript then make sure to get your spot in the program now. There is less than a week left before it starts.

For more information click here

Saturday, 21 October 2017

How To Stop Time - Matt Haig

Synopsis:

I am old. That is the first thing to tell you. The thing you are least likely to believe. If you saw me you would probably think I was about forty, but you would be very wrong.

Tom Hazard has a dangerous secret.

He may look like an ordinary 41-year-old, but owing to a rare condition, he's been alive for centuries. From Elizabethan England to Jazz Age Paris, from New York to the South Seas, Tom has seen a lot, and now craves an ordinary life. Always changing his identity to stay alive, Tom has the perfect cover - working as a history teacher at a London comprehensive. Here he can teach the kids about wars and witch hunts as if he'd never witnessed them first-hand. He can try and tame the past that is fast catching up with him.

The only thing Tom mustn't do is fall in love.

Review:

Matt Haig is a wonderful writer, i mean most of the bookish community know that right? if not all of it. So when i heard How To Stop Time was coming out and people were so pleased with the book itself I couldn't not grab a copy and i honesty can't even say I regret it.

We follow Tom who is 400+ years old yet he looks 40, we follow him as he tries to get on with life in London as he takes up a job as a History teacher. Being how old he is he has experienced alot of history and you can see how incredible Matt is just by even making this a concept.  We get to see the past of Tom as he journeys through time and history to help us understand his character and it's incredible to see the interactions and pieces of history woven so neatly into a story.

The characters we see and interact with throughout the story seemed to take up a place in my heart, both whether they were particularly nice or not, they still had a part of me.  We see several famous people woven through time in this book, great famous people whom i shall not name in case it may ruin part of the book for you.  To create such a wonderful character such as Tom and those whom he meets in the current time is brilliant and to go as far as to interpret and portray people of the past is amazing.

Matt shows off his incredible writing talent in this book, taking us on a roller coaster ride that is a hell of a lot of fun. Reasons To Stay Alive had me hooked on Matt and to then go on to read The Humans and now How To Stop Time, I don't think I'll be walking away from Matt's writing anytime soon.

How To Stop Time is a tale of belonging, love, loss and so much more. Rich in history and love its surely a book you wont want to put down until the last page has been turned. Its yet again another great book from an amazing Author and i hope that if you haven't picked up a copy.read it yet that you will  I hope you'll fall in love with it as quickly and as easily as I did.  Easily a 5/5 from me without any doubt.








Thursday, 12 October 2017

Introducing; Have It, Haven't Read It Yet Tote Bag




More Info and Buying Link: http://daydreamersthoughts.co.uk/introducing-have-it-havent-read-it-yet-tote-bag/ 


PRE-ORDER RULES
So I am selling these tote bags from today until 29th October 2017. After that date, this bag will no longer be available to purchase meaning this bag will be totally exclusive!

However, the bag also has not yet been created. Because I want to make sure that this will work and not fail, I will only be creating this bag if I reach a minimum number of sales. So if you’re REALLY excited for this bag and want to make sure that you get one, make sure to spread the news that it’s available to buy!

So while the button below does say “Buy Now”, what you’re actually doing is pre-ordering the bag. It will then be sent to your address after the 29th October 2017.

You will get a FULL REFUND if the bag does not get made.

I will also let you know if we’re nearing the date and we’re close but not quite at minimum. I will also advise you as soon as the bag is definitely, 100% going to be made!


THE MINIMUM SALE
I need to sell 50 bags


THE REP SEARCH
To help sell the products, I am also doing an Instagram rep search! If you have an Instagram and want to get involved, all you need to do is share my rep search image and tell the world I’m looking for reps!

If you wish to be a rep, share the image with some of your own images and in the description, let me know why YOU would make a perfect rep.

Every Rep will get every product I create to share/review on their Instagram/blog! And they may even be invited to view the products BEFORE EVERYONE ELSE.

Reps will be decided as soon as I reach my minimum sale target.


Saturday, 7 October 2017

I Am Missing (David Raker #8) - Tim Weaver

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Synopsis:

'Tim Weaver is the rising star of British crime and I Am Missing will haunt your dreams'
Tony Parsons, Sunday Times Number One bestselling author of the DC Max Wolfe series

When a young man wakes up bruised, beaten and with no memory of who he is or where he came from, the press immediately dub him 'The Lost Man'.

Ten months later, Richard Kite - if that is even his real name - remains as desperate as ever. Despite appeals and the efforts of the police, no one knows this man.

Kite's last hope may be private investigator David Raker - a seasoned locator of missing people. But Raker has more questions than answers.

Who is Richard Kite?

Why does no one know him?

And what links him to the body of a woman found beside a London railway line two years ago?

I Am Missing is the outstanding new novel from Sunday Times bestselling author Tim Weaver.

'Tim Weaver writes books so meticulously researched that the reader is educated as well as entertained, enthralled and intrigued. David Raker is a most complex and engaging investigator, each case leaving its mark on his soul, and ours' Liz Nugent, Sunday Times bestselling author of Lying in Wait
 


Review:

I liked what this book was promising, I was really looking forward to reading it and diving in deep with this one, it was so promising I was really praying it paid off and I'd come away satisfied with whatever it was that lay on the pages. However that was clearly not meant to be for me in this case, out of 47 books I've read this year I Am Missing is the only one I didn't finish. 

Let me explain something really quickly so its clear, I was excited as I had heard so much about this book. So many good things that boosted my expectations and I went it ready for it all however the book just seemed to drag on for a long time without really giving me anything to hook me.  I do hope I will return to this book soon and start all over with neutral expectations and a clean slate from this experience, I have nothing against Tim and his writing as what I read of the book was great enough to give it a 4.5/5 I just wished I would have been able to get hooked and drawn in quickly.

Please do not let my opinion or review here dent your decision on whether you pick up a copy of this book and read it or not as this is just my opinion and you must find yours for yourself. If you love thrillers, mystery or crime this book is for you and I hope you'll enjoy it if you ever come to pick up a copy and read it. 

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Death In The Stars - Frances Brody Blog Tour Review




Synopsis:

Yorkshire, 1927. Eclipse fever grips the nation, and when beloved theatre star Selina Fellini approaches trusted sleuth Kate Shackleton to accompany her to a viewing party at Giggleswick School Chapel, Kate suspects an ulterior motive.
During the eclipse, Selina's friend and co-star Billy Moffatt disappears and is later found dead in the chapel grounds. Kate can't help but dig deeper and soon learns that two other members of the theatre troupe died in similarly mysterious circumstances in the past year. With the help of Jim Sykes and Mrs Sugden, Kate sets about investigating the deaths - and whether there is a murderer in the company.
When Selina's elusive husband Jarrod, injured in the war and subject to violent mood swings, comes back on the scene, Kate begins to imagine something far deadlier at play, and wonders just who will be next to pay the ultimate price for fame . . .

Review:

So you all know I absolutely loved Death at The Seaside by Frances Brody when I read it what feels like such a long time ago now, so when I was approached to take part in the Death In The Stars Blog Tour providing a review I simply could not pass the opportunity up.

It feels great to be seeing the familiar faces once again, like a reunion party of sorts. I still love Kate, she remains as intelligent, blunt and beautiful as she was when I last saw her. We also meet some great characters, Selina for starters is an amazing singer, elegant and beautiful and yet i was suspicious about her from square one. Billy is a comedian/performer and hes bubbly and lovely and i warmed to him and felt quite attached to him unaware of his fate. I felt a punch to my gut and heart when I read it. Quite emotional for a character I had only known of for a short time. There are more to talk of but I don't wish to make this paragraph too long. Each character intrigued me and found a part in my heart no matter the outcome of te book which sounds odd but its the way it is.

Upon opening the book i was instantly sucked in, its was incredibly hard to put it down and rest or anything of the sort. Frances has once again created a gripping book, one of which takes ahold of you and refuses to relieve its grip until the very end. My mind was constantly going into overdrive, trying to put the puzzle together before I was told of anything, i admit i was only slightly capable of that. Frances is a great writer, her plots and characters are beautiful, unique and immersive. What is also lovely about this book is how well Frances was able to portray the stage/theatre life back in the 1920's it's beautiful and she did a great job at bringing it back to life for us as readers.

I must delcare this but in my review of Death by the Seaside i said the following:
I didn't feel very connected to any character in the book at all, although Kate is really vivid in my head, I just didn't forge any connection with her, she was just an important role in the book. To find out Kate has a series really makes me wonder if I read more about her will I make connections. It's a really big issues with me, if I can't forge a connection then I really find it hard to read these characters for a long time. Kate is clearly intelligent and resilient and those qualities are great to have I just wished I loved her as a character as much as other have said they do.
Every inch of me takes that back, I fell for Kate and Its undeniable. I'm lookig forward to seeing her again in any books to come.

Frances Brody is a great addition to the Crime writing business, bringing unique and complicated plots to the table. Its a 5/5 from me, a reccomendation to all who love twisty turny plots and crime novels and maybe crime novels with twisty turny plots.


 About The Author

Frances Brody is the author of the Kate Shackleton mysteries, as well as many stories and plays for BBC Radio, scripts for television and four sagas, one of which won the HarperCollins Elizabeth Elgin Award. Her stage plays have been toured by several theatre companies and produced at Manchester Library Theatre, the Gate and Nottingham Playhouse, and Jehad was nominated for a Time Out Award.




Want to see the other posts this blog tour? check them all out by using the banner below.












Saturday, 30 September 2017

They Both Die At The End - Adam Silvera


Synopsis:

When Mateo receives the dreaded call from Death-Cast, informing him that today will be his last, he doesn't know where to begin. Quiet and shy, Mateo is devastated at the thought of leaving behind his hospitalised father, and his best friend and her baby girl. But he knows that he has to make the most of this day, it's his last chance to get out there and make an impression.

Rufus is busy beating up his ex-girlfriend's new boyfriend when he gets the call. Having lost his entire family, Rufus is no stranger to Death-Cast. Not that it makes it any easier. With bridges to mend, the police searching for him and the angry new boyfriend on his tail, it's time to run.

Isolated and scared, the boys reach out to each other, and what follows is a day of living life to the full. Though neither of them had expected that this would involve falling in love...

Another beautiful, heartbreaking and life-affirming book from the brilliant Adam Silvera, author of More Happy Than Not and History Is All You Left Me.


Review:

I actually won a proof copy of this book through twitter I believe it was and I couldn't believe I had actually won it after all of the great things I had heard about it I was just excited to be finally experiencing all that was going to come from the pages.

So the synopsis tell you the first part of the book, both boys are now aware they are in their last day and are both experiencing 2 very different situations once the call ends. Mateo doesn't want to leave the flat, he's analysing all the ways he could die if he did in fact leave the flat but find himself on the app used by those in their last day and those who want to make a persons lasts day the best they can. There after many shots Mateo finds Rufus, to me they both automatically click, I knew instantly both of their days were going to be the best they could be but by this time I was already sobbing so I was just happy they fund each other.

I don't want to spoil anything for anyone so ill leave that there but this books takes you on a roller coasted of emotions, both of them are in their last day facing inevitable death butt hats okay because they have each other and are both brining the best out of the other. Thee are moments I've been on edge throughout this book I can safetly say I think I'm permanently emotionally affected by this book. I can't say whether that's a good or bad thing but maybe its both right?

Both characters are amazing, from 2 different ways of life, both very different from the other and totally unique and awesome. There's so much to this story that its hard to put into words. I guess most readers of the book know its theme, it focuses on death sure but I screams of how we must make the best of every day because unlike these 2 characters, we don't know when our time will come and we cant go regretting having not done more so we must take each day as they come and make them the best for ourselves.

I cried so man times throughout this book, I read it in one sitting and I'm never going to be fully over it. The boys in this story are so relatable and well written it breaks my heart to even read the title now. If Adam can write this well which he obviously can, I now want to read his other works, truly a masterpiece and something I will continue to think about for many more days even years to come. I wish I could give this book a 100/100 but I only go up to 5 so its undoubtedly a 5/5 for this and I hope anyone out there will be willing to pick up this book and go on this journey to the end of the line with Rufus and Mateo.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Stories for Homes volume 2 Short Stories Collection Blog Tour Review












Information about the Book
Name: Stories for Homes volume 2
Release Date: 28th September 2017
In Support of: Shelter Charity
In Response to: Grenfell Tower
Format: Ebook












Summary:

Published and unpublished writers come together to create an anthology of stories about what ‘home’ means.

55 writers are included in a second charity anthology that brings issues around housing, poverty and crisis to life through the power of storytelling. Volume One of the Stories for Homes Project raised over £3K for housing charity Shelter and raised awareness of housing issues. Volume Two of the anthology includes stories, poems and flash fiction and again all proceeds will be donated to the charity.


Review:

Seriously fell in love with these stories, there is a lot of material to go through in this volume but the ones I've read so at, as I haven't finished it all for the above reason, have been fantastic in so many ways. They're so raw and heart breaking and beautiful and warm and so many emotions its hard to say.

This anthology covers a large range of subjects and showcases many writing styles whilst never once really telling you the real meaning of a home or home. The thing is a home can be anything or anywhere, someone's arms, a certain location, it's just lovely to be able to see how homes can be in anything through these stories.

These stories are also great because they give you insight into the lives of people from different cultures and backgrounds which I feel is an important thing to have done. It's incredibly hard to express how much this book makes you feel, this is an incredible way to help those with no homes etc. by playing with the meaning of a home like many clearly skilled writers have come together to do here.

It's a 5/5 from me due to its perfect mix of emotions that were throughout, the pure range of skill and such and for the fact all of this work will be helping out so many people, I hope you will check out these stories and help some people out.

I clearly cant express my love for this read clear enough so here is more praise for the book and the stories within.


Praise for the Book

Emma Darwin, author of The Mathematics of Love, commented on the quality of writing in the anthology as: “A cornucopia of witty, tragic, elegant, raw, heart-warming and terrifying stories that take the idea of Home, play with it as only truly talented writers can, and all to help those who have no home at all."

Joanne Harris, author of Chocolat, said: “Stories give our imaginations a home. It's good to see them helping to give people shelter in the real world, too...” reflecting the connection between the immediacy of housing crisis and the stories people tell about their lives around and within it.

Sally Swingewood, who also edited the collections, commented: “The Stories for Homes collections would not be possible without the generosity of a huge number of volunteers. By working together we have produced a book which will not only delight but also help address one of the biggest humanitarian crises facing modern society. In a world where migration, identity and belonging are in the news daily we have a duty to help everyone have a home in which they feel safe and settled. Stories for Homes is one way we can be part of the solution”


Further Stories

A dedicated website includes a further collection of flash fiction and poetry, real life experiences from people who have had housing problems or have experienced homelessness, as well as a series of articles from a professional working with homeless people. 



Tour Schedule:



Sunday 24th September

Monday 25th September

Tuesday 26th September

Wednesday 27th September

Thursday 28th September

Friday 29th September

Saturday 30th September

Sunday 1st October

Monday 2nd October

Tuesday 3rd October

Wednesday 4th October

Thursday 5th October

Friday 6th October

Saturday 7th October

Sunday 8th October

Saturday, 23 September 2017

Her - Shelby Lamb


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Summary:

Tinsley had always been a free spirit, until one side of her face and body got badly disfigured in an accident that killed her bestfriend. She's always blamed hersel for Becky's death, as she had been the one behind the wheel. Now twenty-five, she's down and out, most of her past friends are marries or engaged, and she hardly leaves the house.

Then everything changes when she meets Jax.

Jax is sexy, tall, dark and handsome, and a dream all wrapped in one. He fills her with more hope than she'd ever imagined. But Tinsley is not used to feeling so close to someone and she's going to need all of Becky's help to be true to her heart.

Luckily, Becky is all around. She's in the trees, the grass, the earth. Becky is the oly outside love Tinsey has ever known, and she's saying it's time to discover something new.

But can and should Tinsleey really let go of her.


Review:

How is a wonderful 1 hour story told from the perspective of Tinsley who is still mentally recovering from the crash that claimed her best friends life which se holds herself solely responsible for. As a character I fell for her immediately, I just wanted to hug her and comfort her. You can feel the pain she s felt and continues to feel as she recovers. Jax feels like a ray of sunshine to me and clearly to Tinsley.

Her care worker wants desperately to help her and ease her out of the shell she has put herself in to hide her scars from everyone. In the early mornings she runs ad that's where she see's a male whom wants her to get home safe, reassuring him she will get home just fine they part ways and unknown to Tinsley she would later meet this jogger in a store she's trialling at and following a last minute set up date by her care worker all she wants to do is go home but he seats himself opposite her and gives her compliments but when he takes her hand and sees the scars there that she hadn't covered she darts away leaving him behind.

I feel like there is more to this story than what we see so I'm very excited to see what is to come in the next instalment. Tinsley is such a delicate person I want to care for her so I'm definitely going to bethinking about her until I see her again and become further aware of her story.

As I've said before, Shelby has a unique way of writing and it shows again here which I love, I feel like this sort of series is unique and is going to be one of the best I come to see. If you ever get to read any of Shelby's work please take it because you wont regret it. It's definitely a 5/5 from me without a second thought.

Thursday, 21 September 2017

The Red Thread (The Straits Quartet #1) by Dawn Farnham Blog Tour Review







Information about the Book

Title: The Red Thread (The Straits Quartet #1)
Author: Dawn Farnham
Genre: Asian Historical Fiction
Publisher: Monsoon Books
Format: Paperback
Published: 7th April 2015






Summary:

Set against the backdrop of 1830s Singapore where piracy, crime, triads, and tigers are commonplace, this historical romance follows the struggle of two lovers Zhen, a Chinese coolie and triad member, and Charlotte, an 18-year-old Scots woman and sister of Singapores Head of Police. Two cultures bound together by the invisible threads of fate yet separated by cultural diversity.


Review:

I love learning about new cultures and countries so when I was asked if I wanted to read The Red Thread and write an honest review for the upcoming blog tour I simply couldn't resist. The Synopsis excited me as I wanted to know how everything would play out but firstly how everything would come to be. As a genre that I don't read, I'm actually pretty sure this is my first Asian Historical Fiction book I've ever read and it was an enjoyable first experience.

Set in the Singapore of the 1830's, the story follows Charlotte and Zhen in their different, yet intertwined paths, the Red Thread of the title binding them together. Charlotte is young and now in a foreign land which is not like the Singapore we know of today and Zhen  who's portrayed as super sexy, both of them I cared for and sympathised with them but part of me didn't feel all that invested in them in the end. They were both great characters in a great story I just didn't fully connect with them but I loved them all I could. Alongside our two main characters Dawn mixes a number of real-life characters from 1830s Singapore into the pages,  George Coleman and his partner Takouhi most notably, Coleman was an Irish architect who was responsible for the infrastructure of Singapore 

As a whole I thought the story was very well written, with some good prose and some suggestive passages, so I did enjoy the book, its a great mix of love and culture which in the set period of time and place are conflicting things. There has clearly been a large amount of research into each aspect of the cultural and historic moments within the story. Dawn has done a great job and I can understand why she has gone on to write another 3 books under The Straits Quartet series title.

I love the whole belief in the red thread.'The two people connected by the red thread are destined lovers, regardless of place, time, or circumstances. This magical cord may stretch or tangle, but never break. This myth is similar to the Western concept of soulmate or a destined flame.'

Despite not fully connecting with the characters but loving the plot and the history of the book I can easily give this book a 4 out of 5. Although I have read a few reviews which pointed out many negatives I didn't feel as though they were negatives to me in the situations regarding the plot and the time frame. One day I hope I'll be able to pick up more of Dawns books and enjoy them as I did this one. I recommend this book to anybody who loves history and/or romance. 






About The Author








Dawn Farnham is the author of The Straits Quartet (The Red Thread, The Shallow Seas, The Hills of Singapore and The English Concubine), as well as numerous short stories, plays and children’s books. A former long-term resident of Singapore, Dawn now calls Perth, Australia, home. Her new book, Finding Maria is published in October 2017. Learn more about Dawn at www.dawnfarnham.com.







*PLEASE NOTE* The Red Thread is going to be FREE on Amazon from 17th - 25th September



Monday 18th September



Tuesday 19th September



Wednesday 20th September



Thursday 21st September



Friday 22nd September



Saturday 23rd September



Sunday 24th September



Saturday, 16 September 2017

Mindless (Short Story) - Louise Cole




Synopsis:

‘My parents chose who they wanted to be and I knew it would end badly. What I didn’t see is I’d be the one to pay the price.’


Everything changes the day Stella is hit by a car outside her London council flat. It’s not an accident. It’s a warning. Her dumb, drug-dealing father and her soppy mother don’t have the sense between them to keep Stella and her little brother safe. Her father Joe has stolen from local mob boss Horse - and then his scheme to repay Horse goes south, and lands Joe in prison. Where he starts to talk.
Horse is coming for them. If anyone is going to protect her family, it will have to be Stella herself. But how far will she go? And who must she become in order to survive?

Tense, gritty and beautifully written, Mindless is the story of a clever girl trapped in a stupid, violent world. It will appeal to young adults and adults alike. Told by Stella itself, the story alternates between the thriller narrative and her later conversations with her psychiatrist.

Review:

Firstly I'd like to thank Louise for providing me a copy of Mindless for a honest review, I hope she likes what I have to say.

So we follow Stella who's clearly an intelligent young woman, she tells us her story and its a tense one at that. Her life isn't perfect but it is what it is and things change one day when Stella gets hit by a car right outside of her council flat in London and I have to admit I flinched at this scene, I physically recoiled which was a clear sign I was really into the book. Stella ends up in the hospital and goes on to recover from the incident and she becomes aware soon after that it wasn't an accident, instead it was a warning for her Father.

Stella clearly has more sense than both of her parents put together and her brother isn't like Stella, she quickly puts together the proof in her mind and a plan to execute, going on to confront her dad and he reassures her he's going to fix it all, but things goes south when the scheme he made to fix it all goes south and puts him behind bars where he can't keep his mouth shut and Stella remains aware throughout, figuring it out that if they can't do a good job of getting to Joe whilst behind bars, they'll hurt him through the people outside of prison whom he loves but Stella is already ready for this as her mind is the only one functioning.

The last part of the middle and the ending of the book blew me away, it was intense action and utterly jaw dropping. Stella is clearly a very strong and determined character well built and portrayed. Although only a short story I utterly loved it, I'd easily fall in love with Stella all over again if she ever resurfaced in any more work of Louise'. A short story indeed, immersive more so, action packed and wonderful I have to give it a 5/5 which it truly deserves. Louise has a great writing style which I fell in love with in The Devil's Poetry when I read it not so long back.

Champions: At Fires End (Champions #1) - Charlotte Jain

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Synopsis:


Seventeen-year-old best friends, April and Kyle, are thrown into the final battle of the Titan and Olympian war. Locked into an endless struggle, the Immortals have finally reached a solution - bestow mortal Champions with control over the elements to wage their final campaign.

Bestowed with control over fire and water, April and Kyle were raised by Immortals with a single purpose - win the war. After finally uncovering the remaining Champions' identities, April and Kyle must launch themselves into their final battle for survival. Winner takes all. But the Immortals are growing restless, and time is running out.
 

Review:

Thanks to Charlotte whom provided me with a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

The story follows April and Kyle, two 17-year olds who've been chosen as two of the four Champions to wage the war for the Olympians against the Titans on earth. Both teenagers were raised and trained by Immortals, and both hold powers given to them at birth which allows them to control fire and and water along with several other abilities which are a little sprinkle pf surprise when they make an appearance. April and Kyle are on a mission to find the remaining two Champions as they come in pairs, but they’re supposed to train and then go on to destroy them. As both of them come to struggle to control their abilities that are slowly but surely wearing them down the inevitable war moves closer and closer and that's all they think about.

First of all, I went in to this book without any expectations, that's mostly down to me not knowing what to truly expect from the book. I really liked how Charlotte's story played out in the end, I loved the vivid descriptions which allowed me to, without much effort imagine each and every setting. Both the main characters and the side characters were well developed and portrayed, I wasn't too fond of Kim for some reason but I was inevitably drawn to Noah whom had this dark presence about him but that's a whole new can of worms that we definitely wont be opening here.

I used to love Greek Mythology as a kid so the mention of it within this book kind of re-awoke the child in me and loved it just as much as I did. I loved each part of the story and definitely wasn't expecting the ending. I got completely lost in the book, fully immersed and in love with what I was reading. April felt like a best friend for me I really hooked onto her or her to me and I was simply unable to not get any sort of emotional or on edge when she was involved in something. I did remain neutral on Kyle though, at first I loved him and all he was and brought to the story but by the time it ended, after all that had happened throughout the book I didn't hate nor love him. But all the characters were greatly written and portrayed and id happily give this book a 4/5 and ill definitely be wanting to see how the rest of this series goes.

If you’re a fan of Greek Mythology like my inner child and Percy Jackson, you may want give this series a go.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Retrograde - Peter Cawdron



Synopsis:

The international team at the Mars Endeavour colony is prepared for every eventuality except one—what happens when disaster strikes Earth?

Mankind has long dreamed of reaching out to live on other planets, and with the establishment of the Mars Endeavour colony, that dream has become reality. The fledgling colony consists of 120 scientists, astronauts, medical staff, and engineers. Buried deep underground, they’re protected from the harsh radiation that sterilizes the surface of the planet. The colony is prepared for every eventuality except one—what happens when disaster strikes Earth?

Review:

I love diving into more genres when I read, Sci-fi isn't a genre I often dive in to so when I first got this book I was apprehensive about how I would feel as I read this book but I was pleasantly surprised by it and actually loved it a lot more than I thought I would. I'm going to try and write this review without spoiling any of the story so please stay with me if at first it doesn't make sense.

We follow Liz and the other 119 people who are living in a colony on Mars. There are the Russians, Americans, Chinese and Eurasia - including UK, Japan, Spain and other countries. Told from the point of view of Liz we get to see the other colony inhabitants that she interacts with which provides us with a few main and some minor characters. Although we have all of these countries to interact with throughout the story there is an understanding that we don't have anything to do with several of the inhabitants. Writing it like this is so clever, it helps us gain a perspective on the size of the colony and its crew without having to make every person a main or minor character. They are all very intelligent characters and every time they do something that i see as incredibly cool or smart which is basically everything the do, it blows me away.

The characters are strong and well developed, I instantly loved Liz and all of those we read about, even those who aren't shown in the great light we wished everyone was. We have US Commander Connor, who is the ex military self taught astronaut who is right hand man to Harrison who's the gruff loud type who is soft underneath. We have more people, James and Michelle are the most notable. We see a small amount of the Eurasian contingent but of the Russian contingent we see their leader Vlad and their Dr, Anna. The other group we see more of compared to the Eurasians and Russians are the Chinese, with Doi as their commander and Jaiyun who is Liz's love interest. With all of these people interacting together throughout the story it's a great interplay of culture, emotions and personalities and it's done perfectly.

The plot is brilliant and maybe that's because the statement is coming from a girl who hasn't read much Sci-fi in her life? or maybe it is brilliant because well...it just is? the jury is still out on that one. As I read the first chapter I was just praying to myself that the book wasn't going to be hard to get into and wasn't going to drag out but it was a pleasant surprise to be hooked by the first chapter and every other chapter after. I was automatically trying to figure out what was going to come but I wasn't right with what I ended up with. There are so many great things about this book, most notably the great twists it holds, its incredibly suspenseful in parts. I feel like there are undertones of uniting no matter who we are, where we come from or the political issues going on that continue to have a hold on our world.

You can easily tell how much research and thought went into this book, it screams volumes and is incredibly effective. I think I had a mini emotional roller coaster as I read this novel and part of me wants way more from Peter that goes with this book, I'd happily have a 20 part series really and that's no lie. Thanks to Peters high volume of accuracy in detail it was easy for me to put the book down and still see all of what had happened. I was hooked and in love, the imagery was beautiful an I couldn't control myself when it came to talking to my mother about this book.

Cawdron has done an amazing job with this novel, its an easy 5/5 from me and I definitely want to check out more of his work.