Tuesday, 14 April 2020

New Cover Reveal: Winter's Gift by Florence Keeling

Winters' Gift by Florence Keeling

Genre: Women's fiction / romance / chick lit
Standalone Novel

Author Content Warnings: Sudden death of mother. Secondary character miscarriage, briefly mentioned. Adoption. Not knowing father

Bea Winters is in desperate need of a fresh start. Being bullied at work is not her idea of fun and she longs to follow her dream of becoming a published author. When an advert appears in her local paper to work in a publishing house in the sleepy village of Bloomsdale, it sounds too good to be true. 

She strikes up an instant friendship with gorgeous aspiring author, Eddie Richards and her dashing millionaire boss Scott Summers

But all isn’t as it seems in the sleepy village of Bloomsdale.

How does the local clairvoyant know her name? Who does the little black dog that keeps appearing belong to and why does she keep bumping into the mysterious Charlie? 

As she starts to unravel the truth, it seems that everyone in Bea’s life is keeping secrets. 

Amazon US          Amazon UK

Florence Keeling adopted for her pen-name her Great Grandmother's name, chosen because of the shared birthday of April Fool's Day.  She is married with two teenage chidren.  Born and raised in Coventry, England she now lives just outside in Nuneaton.  Reflected Destinies is her first novel.

Florence Keeling also writes for children under the name of Lily Mae Walters.

New Release Spotlight & Review: Daughters of Wild Rose Bay by Susanne O'Leary

Title: Daughters of Wild Rose Bay          
Author:  Susanne O’Leary  
Publication Day: April 8th 2020

A heart-warming page-turner set on the Irish coast, where secrets hide, romance is waiting and there is every chance to make a new beginning…

Jasmine Delon feels completely lost: having just broken up with the man she thought was the love of her life, all she knows is that she can’t face living alone in her empty apartment in Paris.

When she turns up at her mother’s curiosity shop, nestled in Sandy Cove in Ireland, she hopes time with Sally will help heal her broken heart. Walks along the rugged coastline and nights under endless stars immediately make her feel at peace, and then she meets Aiden, a handsome chef in town, and sparks fly between them.

But a lot has changed since Jasmine last saw her mother. Sally is happier than ever with a charming new man in her life and Jasmine’s not sure where she fits in. Then she’s told about the ruins of an old village in a place nearby called Wild Rose Bay. The locals say it holds secrets about her mother’s side of the family…

Is delving into their history the thing that can bring Jasmine and Sally back together or will it drive them further apart? And is Jasmine brave enough to give in to the call of the Irish sea for another chance at love?

Daughters of Wild Rose Bay is a warm, feel-good novel set on Ireland’s gorgeous Atlantic coast. For fans of Sheila O’Flanagan, Debbie Macomber, Mary Alice Monroe and anyone who loves a story about second chances.


A cosy and feel-good novel, Daughters of Wild Rose Bay is book four of the Sandy Cove series. 

Jasmine Delon heads to Ireland to stay with her estranged mother, Sally. She's fleeing Paris after her fiancé, Damien deceived and cheated her out of her savings. It's a bitter-sweet journey but made better when she meets up with her best friend from her Parisian school, Aiden Daley. She's not seen him since their graduation and now he's working as a chef in the town's newly opened restaurant. They quickly become reacquainted, but it's Aiden's boss, Connor Flanagan who catches her eye.

Set in the beautiful West of Ireland, the author fills the pages with descriptions of the dramatic rugged coastline of County Kerry. The focus is the relationship between Jasmine and her mother, Sally. However, both women are distracted by the men in their lives…

For a short while, I did wonder if this novel was going to involve a love triangle (it doesn't) as two men show an interest in Jasmine. It's clear from the beginning who is most suited to her, but love is blind and not everyone can see the right way to their own heart. There's also the fallout from Paris. Not surprisingly it catches her up in the sleepy Irish village and is swiftly dealt with. Playing the role of a former spoilt child, Jasmine shows her immaturity. It shines through in her attitude making her look shallow and critical. However, despite this, you can see why she is the woman she became after we learn about her background and upbringing. Thankfully, when the truths from the past are revealed, She's thrilled with the outcome, not only for herself but her parents too.

A large cast of eclectic secondary characters blends well into the narrative. For those already familiar with the series, they'll enjoy seeing favourites again and a glimpse or two of how life has treated them. I read this as standalone and didn't feel I lacked any understanding by not reading the previous three novels. Of course, if you're like me, you'll want to catch-up and read their stories too.

***arc generously received courtesy of the publisher, Bookouture via NetGalley***

Susanne O'Leary is the bestselling author of more than twenty novels, mainly in the romantic fiction genre. She has also written three crime novels and two in the historical fiction genre. She has been the wife of a diplomat (still is), a fitness teacher and a translator. She now writes full-time from either of two locations, a ramshackle house in County Tipperary, Ireland or a little cottage overlooking the Atlantic in Dingle, County Kerry. When she is not scaling the mountains of said counties, or keeping fit in the local gym, she keeps writing, producing a book every six months.

New Release Spotlight and Review: The Authenticity Project by Clare Pooley

By Clare Pooley
2nd April 2020 | Bantam Press | Hardback | £12.99

Won in a hotly-contested 6 way auction within 6 weeks of submission, The Authenticity Project has now been sold in 28 territories around the world and is a Editors Pick for April 2020 in The Bookseller.
The novel combines the tenderness of The Lido and The Keeper of Lost Things with the narrative structure of Love Actually, all while exploring loneliness, motherhood, addiction, love, and the importance of truth, connection and friendship in society today.

‘I loved it…such an intriguing premise…a clever, uplifting book that entertains and makes you think.’ Sophie Kinsella

‘This book has a great concept and follows it through with warmth and heart…If you’re a fan of Eleanor Oliphant, read this!’ Fabulous Books to look out for 2020

‘A quirky cast of characters you can’t help but root for.’ Woman & Home Books of 2020
‘One of the best books I’ve read in a long time. Original, engaging and unforgettable.’ Sarah Morgan

‘It reminded me of those classic Richard Curtis films…Fab characters and just the right amount of romance, humour and weepy moments.’ Rachel Marks, author of Saturdays at Noon

Everybody lies about their lives. What would happen if you shared the truth instead?
Julian Jessop is living a lie. He's lonely but refuses to speak to neighbours. He loved his wife when she was alive, but he didn't tell her. (In fact, he wasn't very kind to her at all.)
He feels invisible to the world but he doesn't want to go out.
But now he wants to be honest.
So he writes his truth in a small green notebook and leaves it in his local cafe.
Monica gave up a high-flying career as a lawyer to open her own cafe,
but it isn't going as well as she hoped.
On finding the notebook, she's both inspired to write her own truth and to help Julian out of his loneliness.
Little does Julian know that his one small act is about to bring a whole group of people together as they discover the power, and the danger, of honesty.

Further praise for The Authenticity Project:
‘Full of life’s truths, funny, poignant and ultimately uplifting.’ Fanny Blake

‘Beautifully written, thought provoking and uplifting…a joy to read.’ Mike Gayle

‘A rich roast of great characters…If Monica’s CafĂ© were a real place, I’d stop by every day.’ Laurie
Frankel, author of This Is How It Always Is

‘Like hanging out with a rowdy, affectionate bunch of friends where you don’t want the party to stop.’ Beth Morrey, author of Saving Missy

First off, I admire the originality of the concept for The Authenticity Project. The idea provokes the reader to think about how they might deal with similar situations to the characters, pausing to consider if they would do things differently. All the while wondering what they would write if they were to pick up the pale-green notebook?

Actions have consequences and in this case, a helping hand doesn't necessarily mean it's the right thing to do. Yet, The Authenticity Project is a feel-good novel. It's a fascinating blend of characters; people who you wouldn't necessarily associate together. The simple green exercise book provokes each new owner to write the truth about their lives; warts and all. It's a way of offloading the burden and the reality in their life. More importantly, it triggers a need to find and help the previous mystery writers whilst hoping they are doing them a favour. What could possibly go wrong?

I've always enjoyed reading about flawed characters and this novel's packed with them. The outside world may think these six people are leading exemplary lives, however, the reality of how they project themselves to the outside world is a sham. Not surprisingly, as the layers of deceit are revealed the outcomes offer relief and new perspectives.

The ending is poignant but looking at the bigger picture, those who picked up and contributed to The Authenticity Project find the closure they need to continue their lives and more importantly to use their new-found courage to be better people than before.

Overall, if you're looking for something "just a little bit different", you won't go far wrong with this gem
of a book.

***arc generously received courtesy of the publisher Transworld via NetGalley*** 

Clare Pooley graduated from Cambridge and spent twenty years in the heady world of advertising before becoming a full-time mum. She is the author of the hugely popular blog, Mummy was a Secret Drinker, under the pseudonym Sober Mummy and her memoir, The Sober Diaries was published by Hodder in 2017 to critical acclaim.

Her blog has had over two million hits and she recently gave a TEDx talk titled Making Sober Less Shameful.

Clare’s debut novel The Authenticity Project is inspired by the time Clare spent in advertising, a world where the line between authenticity and fiction is constantly blurred, and by her own experience of exposing truth about her seemingly perfect life in her memoir.

Speaking about the book, Clare commented: "Four years ago, my world, as portrayed on social
media, seemed pretty perfect; in reality, it was falling apart. When I finally plucked up the courage to tell the truth, it transformed my life, and helped many other people. That got me thinking: everybody lies about their lives. What would happen if we told the truth instead? Perhaps nothing, but maybe something magical. That thought led to The Authenticity Project. I hope that the book gets everyone asking themselves ‘what truth would I tell?’"

Clare writes from her kitchen table in Fulham, London where she lives with her longsuffering husband, three children, dog and an African pygmy hedgehog.

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