Book Review; Meet Cute Series by Katey Lovell

Posted on 25 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Meet Cute Series by Katey Lovell

Hi Guys!
Today I have for you three mini-reviews of three mini-novellas in the Meet Cute series! Hope you enjoy them!


Title: The Boy at the Bookshop
Author: Katey Lovell
Publisher: Harper Impulse
Published: 29th October 2015
Pages: 19
Format: ebook
Source:: Bought from Amazon UK
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK

Summary:
Every Happily Ever After began with a Once Upon a Time…

It takes a lot to distract Jade from her books. But from the moment she spots Marwan browsing the shelves, she can’t concentrate on anything else…

A gorgeously romantic short story, part of The Meet Cute series.


The one thing that I absolutely love about all of these books is how cute (I know, it’s in the name!) they all are. They’re the most romantic moments where couples first meet. The emotions are high, the giddiness higher still and you just get a feeling of “awwwh” inside of yourself for just witnessing the meeting. In The Boy at the Bookshop I really got that cute feeling and loved the idea of meeting someone that way. This is a really quick but charming story.


Title: The Boy at the Beach
Author: Katey Lovell
Publisher: Harper Impulse
Published: 5th November 2015
Pages: 19
Format: ebook
Source:: Bought from Amazon UK
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK

Summary:
Every Happily Ever After began with a Once Upon a Time…

Can you fall in love with someone before you’ve actually met them? Toby and Lauren think you can…

A gorgeously romantic short story, part of The Meet Cute series.


Another great thing about the Meet Cute series is how quick they are to read. At only 19 pages long, they’re just a lovely dose of good feeling. Perfect to read while just waiting five-ten minutes for the bus and lifting your spirits up if you’re in a bad mood. The thing I loved most about The Boy at the Beach was how gushy it was. You could feel the emotions coming off the page and I feel that’s incredibly amazing to do with so few words to do it in.


Title: The Boy at the Bakery
Author: Katey Lovell
Publisher: Harper Impulse
Published: 12th November 2015
Pages: 19
Format: ebook
Source:: Bought from Amazon UK
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK

Summary:
Every Happily Ever After began with a Once Upon a Time…

It’s not the deliciously sweet cakes that draw Lily to the bakery every day. It’s the person selling them…

A gorgeously romantic short story, part of The Meet Cute series.


Touched upon in the above review but another thing I really like about the Meet Cute series is how emotional they are. Within moments of the book starting I feel connected to the characters and want everything to work out for them. I feel their feelings and I can relate to them too. What I loved about The Boy at the Bakery was how shy and nervous Lily was and how lovely the boy at the bakery was. It was, as above, incredibly cute and incredibly sweet and it makes me hope that things like this do happen in real life.

Four Stars

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Posted on 25 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


How I… Write

Posted on 24 July, 2016 by Faye - 1 Comment

How I…

Hi All!
Welcome to my new feature here at A Daydreamer’s Thoughts where I am going to write about how I do certain things. The idea is that they’re a little bit like “How To” posts but instead of telling you how to do things, I’m just going to explain what I do in the hopes that it might help you – but of course, if you think there’s an easier way to do what I do, do tell me!

So, here’s just a few topics I’m hoping to cover with this series;

How I… Organise E-mails
How I… Come up with and write Blog Posts
How I… Approach Publishers and Authors
How I… Organise and Schedule my Blog
How I… Share my Posts via Social Media

If there’s another topic you’d like to hear about, do let me know in the comments or on twitter!


How I… Write

Initial Inspiration

So to start this series off, I thought I would share with you all how I write, or rather, how I get that initial bit of inspiration to then create an entire novel from nothing. It’s a question I often ask other authors; where did your initial inspiration come from?

For some people they have a “what if” moment and then they just simply have to write the book. Some people have a character form in their mind and then create a story for them to fall into. Some people have something that they want to say, share or portray.

But for me, my initial inspiration always comes with a scene. A scene that flickers into my brain. I get them a lot. A little snippet of something random. Sometimes it’s an image of someone bending down to pick up a bloodied knife, or someone dancing in the rain or someone driving a car through the countryside with the sun in the sky and the wind blowing. These scenes happen to me all over the place and often I give them a little smile before sending them on their way again.

Daydreaming. That’s what I used to call it. I’d just have a little daydream of another place, time, person.

And then sometimes one of those many scenes will speak to me. It’ll force me to look a little further. Maybe when the person picks up the bloodied knife, I notice a locket on the grass beside it. A part of my brain then starts questioning why their is a knife covered in blood next to a locket. And it starts to fill in the answers. There’s been a fight. The locket was a treasured possession, belonging to someone who is now dead. Pulled free during the fight, off of the main character’s neck. He’s not dead. He’s curled up in a ball, too afraid to move. Hidden. The person picking up the knife is a stranger. But they’re there to help.

As you can see, the scene unfolds bit by bit. And then I learn more about the characters. Why they’re there, where they were before and essentially, where they’re headed next. And a plot starts to slowly unfold as a story starts to write itself in my brain until I can finally put pen to paper or fingers to keys to write.

But of course, this is usually just how a story starts. But I can also have these little scenes when I’m in the middle of writing too. I then try to see if I can fit it into the story I’m already writing. This isn’t always the case but often it works and can sometimes be that small little bit of inspiration or twist that I need to make the book that much better.

Fleshing Out the Story

Once I’ve had that initial flash and further exploration, I then sit down and work out the nuts and bolts of the story – but only vaguely. I work out who the characters are. Their backgrounds, their motives, their quirks. I get to know them as though they were my best friends. I want to understand them and to truly know what makes them tick and what doesn’t. And then I come up with what plot twists would work best for them, what journey to take them on and what I think might happen on the way.

And then I sit down and I write.

I vaguely plan but I don’t really plan. I have an outline, a few major moments I want to happen and then I just let my imagination take me away.

Which is how my story sometimes goes completely off course. In one of my stories, the best thing that ever happened was that one of my characters told me quite distinctly that a) he was not gay as he very much liked the female protagonist, and b) that he did not think the main protagonist should die. (Yes, I realise that a character talking to me sounds very odd, and probably like I may need medication, but I promise I am incredibly sane – well, mostly.) Thus I looked at the plot and changed a few things, tweaked a few bits and suddenly my book looked a lot different but also, a lot better.

This also means that some major scenes will never get written but that new ones will crop up too. It sometimes means that new characters are created that I have to really sit down and think about as well. It also means that I have to start at the beginning of a book because I am never one hundred percent sure about where the book will end.

The Editing Process

This is the one thing that I am very bad at doing. After writing the first draft without editing along the way. I put the book down and do something else for a short while. I stop thinking about the book completely and just leave it where it is. Then a month or two later, I return to the book and read through for grammatical errors. I know this seems a bit pointless as the entire plot may get changed but for me it’s a way to read the story again while looking at it with fresh critiquing eyes. By checking it for grammar errors, I treat it as though it is not my work.

Then once I’ve done that, I look at the plot. What I think needs to be changed, added to, etc. I get on with that. Then I send the book to beta readers and force myself not to think about the book anymore. Once again removing it from my mind and working on something else.

Finally, with the feedback I work the story further, more edits, more plot changes, more character development. Whatever is necessary to make it the best book it can be.

So far, I have not got this far. I have one book that needs to be polished and then it can be *gulp* sent to agents but I just need to do the final polish of it. So, if you have any suggestions of how I could find the motivation to do this, do let me know!


How do you write?

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Posted on 24 July, 2016 by Faye - 1 Comment


Book Tour: Random Acts of Unkindness by Jacqueline Ward

Posted on 22 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Random Acts of Unkindness by Jacqueline Ward

Random Acts Banner

Hi Guys!

Today is my spot on the Random Acts of Unkindness blog tour and I have for you my five favourite things about the book!

*disclaimer* I organised the blog tour for this book. However, all my opinions on the book are honest.

But first, here’s some more information!


About the Book

Random acts of unkindnessHow far would you go to find your child?

DS Jan Pearce has a big problem. Her fifteen year old son, Aiden, is missing. Jan draws together the threads of missing person cases spanning fifty years and finds tragic connections and unsolved questions.

Bessy Swain, an elderly woman that Jan finds dead on her search for Aiden, and whose own son, Thomas, was also missing, may have the answers.

Jan uses Bessy’s information and her own skills and instinct to track down the missing boys. But is it too late for Aiden?

Set in the North West of England, with the notorious Saddleworth Moor as a backdrop, Random Acts of Unkindness is a story about motherhood, love and loss and how families of missing people suffer the consequences of major crimes involving their loved ones.

Random Acts of Unkindness is the first in the DS Jan Pearce series of novels.

Goodreads. Amazon UK.


Five Favourite Things about Random Acts of Unkindness

DC Pearce

The absolute first thing that I must mention is how brilliant D. C. Pearce is as a protagonist. She is a fascinating character to follow and really manages to pull the reader into the story. She’s broken, struggling but she’s also fierce, loyal and determined. She bends the road between moral and wrong, consistently questioning her own decisions which just made me love her all that much more. She was wonderful to read about and definitely made this book that much more interesting because of her presence.

Intense, Gripping & Dark

These are just three words that can be used to describe Random Acts of Unkindness. The story starts with an old lady dead in her home, and her eyes have been eaten by Starlings. Gruesome. Dark. Addictive. Thrilling. From here the book spirals down a dark path as a case and a story unravels itself. It keeps the reader hooked at they weave through a story of missing people throughout decades. Is it just a coincedence? Or is there more going on than it seems?

Missing People’s Case

This book really focusses on missing people and it really hit me hard with empathy. When someone goes missing and is never found, the parents, friends and other family members are all just left wondering. Do they carry on with their lives or do they wait? This book dabbles with this dilemma, looking at the ways in which a person going missing can ruin so many things. It’s never simple and it never gets forgotten.

Past & Present Colliding

One of the things that this book does really well is jumping between the past and the present. With the two stories running side by side and connecting and colliding throughout the book, it helped to make this book that much more entertaining. I was enthralled with Betty’s story and Jan’s own story as well. I loved how it all twisted together to help mould the future as well. It definitely made the story that much more gripping and intriguing to read.

Addictive Writing

Last, but certainly not least, I also loved the writing style of this book. Right from the offset I found myself rapidly turning the page to find out what was going to happen next. Jacqueline Ward has done a brilliant job of writing a story that is both descriptive and compelling. It is full of vibrant characters, a fascinating plot and just wonderful writing. I, for one, am very much looking forward to the next book that she writes!


About the Author

Jacqueline Ward Jacqueline Ward writes short stories, novels and screenplays. She has been writing seriously since 2007 and has had short stories published in anthologies and magazines. Jacqueline won Kindle Scout in 2016 and her crime novel, Random Acts of Unkindness, will be published by Amazon Publishing imprint Kindle Press. Her novel SmartYellowTM was published by Elsewhen Press in 2015 and was nominated for the Arthur C Clarke Award in 2016. Jacqueline is a Chartered psychologist who specializes in narrative psychology, gaining a PhD in narrative and storytelling in 2007. She lives in Oldham, near Manchester, with her partner and their dog.

Website. Twitter. Facebook.


Follow the Tour

Random Acts Tour


What would you do if your child went missing?

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Posted on 22 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Blog Tour: The Couple Next Door By Shari Lapena

Posted on 21 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

Hi All!

Today is my stop on the blog tour for The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena and I am here to tell you all my thoughts on this Thriller book!

But first, here’s some information about the book!


The Couple Next Door You never know what’s happening on the other side of the wall.
Your neighbour told you that she didn’t want your six-month-old daughter at the dinner party. Nothing personal, she just couldn’t stand her crying.

Your husband said it would be fine. After all, you only live next door. You’ll have the baby monitor and you’ll take it in turns to go back every half hour.

Your daughter was sleeping when you checked on her last. But now, as you race up the stairs in your deathly quiet house, your worst fears are realized. She’s gone.

You’ve never had to call the police before. But now they’re in your home, and who knows what they’ll find there.

What would you be capable of, when pushed past your limit?

Goodreads. Amazon UK.


My Review

How Do

What first drew me to the book was the subject matter. A six-month old baby has been left alone in a house and while alone, it has been kidnapped. It sounded addictive, worrying and emotional and I simply had to find out what had happened. As the book flows through the storyline, you’re thrown from one suspicion to the next, truly unable to make a conclusion on what has actually happened until the very end. I absolutely loved that I was completely thrown by the final conclusion but thrown even further by the final chapter of the book. That definitely made the book that much more interesting. Shari has written a book with a very intense plot that really keeps the reader hooked.

You Find

What first drew me to the book was the subject matter. A six-month old baby has been left alone in a house and while alone, it has been kidnapped. It sounded addictive, worrying and emotional and I simply had to find out what had happened. As the book flows through the storyline, you’re thrown from one suspicion to the next, truly unable to make a conclusion on what has actually happened until the very end. I absolutely loved that I was completely thrown by the final conclusion but thrown even further by the final chapter of the book. That definitely made the book that much more interesting. Shari has written a book with a very intense plot that really keeps the reader hooked.

Your Baby

It can be tough with thrillers to really get into the heart of the characters but that is not a problem with this book. All of the characters have interesting backgrounds and stories which all come to light as motives are thrown around. The emotional state of the parents felt raw and real, the strength and weaknesses that flow from them were realistic and helped to make them more rounded charatcters. Even the grandparents were really well written as well. I connected so much to Anne as you witness her heart breaking over and over again. I cannot even imagine how terrible it must be to lose your baby. Marco was also a character that I felt for. He carried the weight on his shoulders and it was really interesting to see how he dealt with everything.

With No Clues

Overall, this book is addictive, conniving and fascinating. It pulls you in one direction and then spins you in another; a true rollarcoaster of a read that made it a brilliant read. I was constantly guessing what had happened and continuously getting it wrong. I loved how the narrative played out as well. Just getting to an interesting revelation but instead of revealing it, moving to a different character to keep you interested in the story. It was a brilliant thriller novel that will keep you on the edge of your seat as you read with an ending that will quite literally take your breath away. I would highly recommend this book if you like thrillers that fully take away from the real world.

Four Stars

** I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. **


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Couple Next Door


Will You Be Reading This Book?

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Posted on 21 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Blog Tour: Under Rose-Tainted Skies by Louise Gornall

Posted on 20 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Under Rose-Tainted Skies by Louise Gornall

Hi All!

Today I am here with you as the last day of the Under Rose-Tainted Skies blog tour. I have for you all a great guest post from Louise Gornall about how she got into novel writing.

Also, don’t forget to check out my review of this incredible book here.


Different kinds of storytelling…

by Louise Gornall

Hi guys. I’m super stoked to be your guest lecturer today… no, I’m kidding. No lectures. Promise. School’s out for the summer. But that is definitely a college grade title, right? In real time, I just wanted to have a chat with you about storytelling, and tell you a little bit about how I got from over there to right here.

So…

I think it’s fair to say that suffering from agoraphobia is no longer a secret, but something most people don’t know about me is that I used to be an actress. An amateur, still studying for my degree in performing arts, though I had an agent and an audition lined up. Woe, this was at the exact same time my mental health decided to roll over on me. BUT my love of storytelling, arguably, was a direct result of the acting career I never had.

I loved being on stage. Loved it. I loved having to physically portray someone else’s story, reading through a script and trying to figure out how each line should be delivered. Lady Macbeth was one of my favourite characters to read because that woman has more faces than Big Ben.

When I got sick, I had to readjust my life around all these new limitations, which meant no more college, no more acting…no more people. I literally shut myself off in my bedroom. I still wanted to be connected to film and characters though, and the only way I could do that from the safety of my bubble was screenwriting. This was my first real taste of storytelling. I made friends with this awesome guy who taught me all about authentic dialogue, different scripts, layouts, timing. Everything a newbie screenwriter needed to know. It was fun, but when I’d finally drafted a script to show him, he was like, you can’t have this much control in your action segments. You don’t need to write down ALL the things. That’s a director’s job. My action segments could span pages, so I guess he had a point, but…

Cut to: Me. Mortified.

Me: (stammering) but…but…but…

Screenwriter Guy: Have you ever thought about maybe writing a novel?

Me: (blink-blink) No. Should I?

Screenwriter Guy: You most definitely should.

End Scene.

The rest, as they say, is history. Novel writing was very different, though I loved — love– both. I think screenwriting taught me how to pace a story, and how to write dialogue. It also taught me how to apply an American accent to my writing voice which has helped me access American readers. It’s definitely something I’d recommend giving a go, even if you never do anything with it, which, essentially, I haven’t…yet!


About the Book

Title: Under Rose-Tainted Skies
Author: Louise Gornall
Publisher: Chicken House
Published: 7th July 2016
Pages: 368
Format: Paperback
Source:: Review Copy
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK, The Book Depository
Summary:
Agoraphobia confines Norah to the house she shares with her mother.

For her, the outside is sky glimpsed through glass, or a gauntlet to run between home and car. But a chance encounter on the doorstep changes everything: Luke, her new neighbour. Norah is determined to be the girl she thinks Luke deserves: a ‘normal’ girl, her skies unfiltered by the lens of mental illness. Instead, her love and bravery opens a window to unexpected truths …

An important and uplifting debut from a British author, which tackles mental health issues such as agoraphobia and OCD.


About the Author

louiseLouise is a graduate of Garstang Community Academy, and she is currently studying for a BA (Hons) in English language and literature with special emphasis on creative writing. A YA afcionado, flm nerd, identical twin, and junk food enthusiast, she’s also an avid collector of book boyfriends. Her debut novel, UNDER ROSE-TAINTED SKIES, will be published in July 2016.

Website. Twitter. Facebook.


Have you ever wanted to be a screenwriter?

Also don’t miss my review of this STUNNING book which can be found here.

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Posted on 20 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Book Review; Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

Posted on 18 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Behind Closed Doors by B. A. Paris

Behind Closed DoorsTitle: Behind Closed Doors
Author: B. A. Paris
Publisher: Mira
Published: 11th February 2016
Pages: 351
Format: ebook
Source:: Netgalley Copy
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK, The Book Depository

Summary:
Everyone knows a couple like Jack and Grace.

He has looks and wealth, she has charm and elegance. You might not want to like them, but you do. Though, you’d like to get to know Grace better.

But it’s difficult, because you realise Jack and Grace are never apart.

Some might call this true love. Others might ask why Grace never answers the phone. Or how she can never meet for coffee, even though she doesn’t work. How she can cook such elaborate meals but remain so slim. And why there are bars on one of the bedroom windows.

Sometimes, the perfect marriage is the perfect lie.


Sometimes There

This book has been siting on my kindle for far too long. I kept looking at the title and then choosing something else to read and when I finally got around to reading the book, I felt like kicking myself in the head because the book was incredible. I read it over two days because I physically could not put the book down. It was addictive, dark, intense and edgy. I needed to know how it was going to end. I had to know that it would all work out in the end and I just absolutely loved every single thing about this book and the way that it made me feel. This is the kind of book that makes me absolutely love reading thriller books.

Is More

Right from the very beginning of this book I got a bad vibe about the main couple in this story. Something wasn’t quite right but I wasn’t sure exactly what was going on. As the book continued, I had my heart pulled this way and that as I fell in love with the characters and wanted to help them. The plot jumped from the past to the present, keeping the reader hooked on the book and on the edge of their seats. It was a fantastic way of building tension and really helped to make this book even more intense. I love where this book finally went and how it finally ended. I think how it ended actually just made me love the book more.

Underneath The

One of the most wonderful things about this book was the characters. I instantly connected with Grace and wanted her to live the best possible life she could. She loves her sister so much and it is clear that she would do absolutely anything for her and I absolutely loved that about her. I loved Millie as well. She was really sweet, logical, amazing and kind-hearted. I wanted the best for her as well. I also thought Jack was incredibly well written. A very believable character who made this story so very interesting in the first place. B. A. Paris certainly does not shy away from creating vibrant and unique characters.

Shinning Surface

Sometimes you open a book and it reminds you why you love to read. This book did that for me. It was intense, addictive, emotional and gut-wrenching. It was a true page-turner that I thought about constantly when I wasn’t reading. It was dark, gruesome and hopeful all at the same time. I don’t want to say too much so as to spoil the book for you but you should really just heed my advice and make sure that you read this book, especially if you’re a thriller book lover. I guarantee that you won’t regret it.

five stars

** I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. **

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Posted on 18 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Blog Tour; Eden Summer by Liz Flanagan

Posted on 16 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Eden Summer by Liz Flanagan

Hi Guys!
I’m here today as the final stop on the Eden Summer blog tour and I have for you all a video from Liz herself!

First though, here’s some info on the book!


About the Book

Eden Summer Shy, gothy Jess and stunning and popular Eden are best friends. They’ve supported each other through some of the hardest things you can go through – death, bullying, love, heartbreak. They know everything about each other.

But then Eden goes missing and Jess knows she has to find her, and fast, because the longer someone is missing, the more likely it is they won’t be found. So Jess starts exploring her memories, things Eden said and did in the last few months and she starts to realise that maybe they don’t know each other as well as she thought.

Set in the beautifully described stunning countryside of West Yorkshire, an incredibly pacy page turner as the clock runs down on the likelihood of finding Eden alive.

Goodreads. Amazon UK. The Book Depository.


The Video


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Will you be reading this book this summer?

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Posted on 16 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Setting Inspiration by Eva Holland

Posted on 11 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

The Daughter’s Secret by Eva Holland

Hi All!

Today I am here to introduce you all to the lovely Eva Holland who has written a wonderful guest post for you all on the inspiration for the setting of her book, The Daughter’s Secret.

But first, here’s some more information on the book!


About the Book

My daughter is a liar. A liar, liar, liar. And I’m starting to see where she gets it from.

When Rosalind’s fifteen-year-old daughter, Stephanie, ran away with her teacher, this ordinary family became something it had never asked to be. Their lives held up to scrutiny in the centre of a major police investigation, the Simms were headline news while Stephanie was missing with a man who was risking everything.

Now, six years on, Ros takes a call that will change their lives all over again. He’s going to be released from prison. Years too early. In eleven days’ time.

As Temperley’s release creeps ever closer, Ros is forced to confront the events that led them here, back to a place she thought she’d left behind, to questions she didn’t want to answer. Why did she do it? Where does the blame lie? What happens next?

Goodreads. Amazon UK.


The Setting That Inspired The Daughter’s Secret

by Eva Holland

My debut novel, The Daughter’s Secret, is set in St Albans, Hertfordshire. It is not a city I have ever lived in, I don’t have any family connections to the area and I have never been on holiday there. So how did I come to set my story of the fallout of a relationship between a teenage pupil and a teacher in the city the Roman’s called Verulamium?

Many years ago I briefly shared a desk with a woman who lived in St Albans and commuted into London. We worked in a city PR agency and every day began with us scanning the papers for news relevant to our clients. As we drank our coffee we would flick through the tabloids, skimming page after page of reports of crimes, drug busts, and yobs on drunken rampages as well as the usual celebrity scandals and photos of the royals. Whenever my deskmate spotted something particularly bleak and upsetting she would point it out to me, always with a quiet murmur of ‘that wouldn’t happen in St Albans’. News of misfortunes suffered by colleagues – a stolen bike, a pickpocketed wallet – was greeted in the same way. I was never quite sure whether she was trying to convince herself that she was safe from the ills that plagued the rest of the world, or anxious to prove to us that her home was a cut above our shared houses in (pre-hipster era) Hackney.

Many years and many desks later, when I decided to write The Daughter’s Secret, I thought carefully about where to set it. At the heart of the novel is the sense of something terrible happening to a normal family and a seemingly idyllic domestic set up being ripped apart. It was these thoughts that brought me back to my former colleague and her mantra. What if she was wrong and it could happen in St Albans?

I spent some time in St Albans while I was writing The Daughter’s Secret. It is a charming city: compact, attractive and packed with history. If I wasn’t so firmly wedded to London I would very happily live there myself. But, just like any other city, it’s full of people so it is no more immune to the things people do to each other than any other city on earth. It’s comforting to think that bad things happen to other people in other places, but these things are as likely to happen here as they are to happen there, however beautiful and idyllic here may seem.


About the Author

A lifelong lover of words and stories, Eva Holland was the winner of the 2014 Good Housekeeping novel writing competition. She grew up in Gloucestershire and studied in Leeds before moving to London. When not writing or reading fiction she works as a freelance PR consultant and copywriter.

The Daughter’s Secret is Eva’s first novel.

Website. Twitter.


What do you think about the setting of this book?

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Posted on 11 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Nearly A Year Older

Posted on 10 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments

Nearly A Year Older

birthday-celebration-1322480-1279x1104

While I was trying to decide what to write about on the blog this month, all I could really think about was how I’d soon be turning another year older and how that was essentially making me feel in the long run. I do not feel ready to be another year older. I do not feel grown up enough to be turning 26. I feel like I should be more mature now. More settled. More… ready to face the world. But I’m not. Deep down inside I still feel like a scared 16 year old. I want to be able to just run home and let my mum help me. But from talking to other people, from reading books and watching TV, I realise that in a way we all feel like that. We’re all floundering in some way or another.

But we all also just get on with it. One way or another, we work out how to get past that point or crisis in our life and continue moving forward.

And it is because of this that today I wanted to look back on the last year. I want to show to you and to myself how much I have grown, how far I’ve come and how much I’ve tackled.

In Blogging

So first things first I obviously have to talk about this blog. This time last year I was struggling with the blog. I was struggling to read and as such struggling to find the motivation and energy to write blog posts. So it all sort of fell to the wayside. But I also wasn’t ready to let it all go so I turned it from a book blog to a lifestyle blog and while that didn’t instantaneously spark my creativity and passion, it is now starting to become a more exciting prospect to my blog. I love that I can talk about a variety of topics on this blog without worrying that you might all up and leave me! Now I’m scheduling posts left, right and centre. I’ve got my passion back. And I love it so much. I may go through a slump again but now I know I can make it through to the other side, it’s not quite so scary. Also, I’ve got something exciting planned for my fifth year anniversary in September, so keep an eye out for that!

In Business

There is absolutely no way that this time last year I could have predicted I would be where I am right now with my PR business. I have come so far. Helped so many authors and am rapidly growing my client list and just love everything single minute of it. Since last year I’ve worked as a freelancer for Scholastic, helped a non-fiction author, helped adult authors and acquired a long-term client as well. I’ve also increased my blogger list, been spotlighted on Maximum Pop, had an intern, and am currently very seriously looking into expanding my business even further. I am so proud of how far I’ve come and I am very excited for what the future holds.

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In Friendship

I’m not going to lie, I feel overwhelmed by the amount of support and close friends I currently have at the moment. I’m not trying to sound showy or proud or anything like that but I have never felt quite so loved as I have felt recently. I have three amazing ladies that I have grown incredibly close to this year who I would do anything for, could tell anything, and know that no matter what, they’ll always be there for me. I’ve grown closer to my flatmate this past year too. We have a fair few in depth conversations and it’s been really nice getting to know her that much more. I’ve also grown closer to another London blogger friend very recently and I’m so glad I did as he’s so wonderful and supportive and I really appreciate his friendship. I feel closer to someone who moved away. I feel closer to friends that I’ve known for years and I feel more loved than ever. I suddenly feel like I understand why friends can be so important. These people in my life now are the reason I’m still here, they’re the reason I am stronger than ever and they’re the reason I am still able to smile and I just hope they all realise how special they are to me.

In Personal Growth

I am not the person I was a year ago. I have definitely become a stronger person. More confident, more experienced, more able. I have support so I know that even on my hardest day or my lowest day, I am not facing the world and my struggles alone. I feel more grounded and stable now in a way I’m not sure I’ve ever felt before. I’m happier with my life despite it not being exactly what I want it to be or that I’m not where I wanted to be, but that’s okay. I feel more open and caring. I just feel like I’m a much better person today than I was last year. Maybe that’s not true, I could, for all I know, be worse, but I feel like I’m definitely better within myself.

The Bad Side

So, all of the above has been the positive things about the past year but my life isn’t without its negatives, just as everyone has bad things going on. In the past year the most notable thing to go down hill is my health. I’m getting better at dealing with it but the truth of it stares me in the face every morning when I wake up in pain. When I feel unable to walk for too long. When my arms get tired from writing a blog post. I know that I’m not healthy but I’m also glad that I’m taking positive steps to get better. With physio and potential rheumatology referrals, I’m glad I have the strength to not just let myself live like this. Along with the health there’s the job issue. I am really struggling at work at the moment. It’s not what I want to be doing, colleagues keep dropping like flies and with one government cut after another, it’s been difficult to keep the morale and motivation for work going. So it’s been tough. And with that comes a few financial issues too. Now, I’m certainly not going to be losing my house (hah!) anytime soon or the roof over my head either, but I’ve said no to a lot of events and trips because money isn’t coming in. It’s getting better now but it’s been an interesting few months recently. Then there’s family and friends with illnesses cropping up all over the place, and wanting to just make them all better with a wave of a wand.

Yet, with all the bad stuff going on, I’ve still found reasons to smile, reasons to continue, reasons to be, and that is good enough for me.

How have you grown this year?

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Posted on 10 July, 2016 by Faye - No Comments


Book Review; Deep Quarry by John E Stith

Posted on 8 July, 2016 by Faye - 3 Comments

Deep Quarry by John E Stith

Title: Deep Quarry
Author: John E Stith
Publisher: ReAnimus Press
Published: 1st July 2016 (Re-release)
Pages: 160 Pages
Format: Ebook
Source:: Review Copy
Add It: Goodreads, Amazon UK, Amazon US

Summary:
When a private eye undergoing a moral crisis uncovers a long-buried starship that’s still occupied by nasty aliens, he and woman he loves have to overcome them to survive.

Ben Takent is a private eye on a hot, dusty world at the edge of the civilized galaxy. When he’s asked to find out who is stealing artifacts from a 10,000-year-old archaeological dig in the desert, he reluctantly takes the case. Then, when it becomes clear that the artifacts are pointing to an ancient alien spacecraft, the stakes in the case go up—way up.


When One

This was the first John E Stith book that I’ve ever read and I have to admit that I really enjoyed it. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, and admittedly I probably would not have picked it up based on the old cover – because we do judge, unfortunately – but I’m really glad that I decided to give this book a go. It was a very quick read, fast-paced and I loved all of the characters as well. It went in a completely different direction that I thought it would and that really made it all the more enjoyable.

Investigation Leads

I actually wanted to read this book because I’ve been a real crime/thriller mood at the moment and so I read the words “private eye” and was certain I’d read it. I also have become a lover of sci-fi so was really intrigued as to how the two genres would merge. Personally I loved how they did. It was like having a book that was the best of both worlds – excuse the pun. I got to fulfil my mood of a thrilling read while also being situated on an alien planet with different species. It was really interesting to read as well as being incredibly well written too.

You To A

What helped to make this book entertaining was the characters. The main protagonist, Ben Takent was a vivid character. He had a very unique and brilliant voice and it was easy to see where his head space was. He spoke his mind, got affected by the world and just wanted to solve puzzles – something I love doing! I also thought Kate was a good character and liked reading about her. But I also just really loved all the side characters and different species and how it all came together. It was done really well and helped to make the book more interesting to read about.

New Discovery

Overall I found this book to be riveting and fascinating. I was hooked into the book from the first page and when it all changed around the half-way point I was pulled into another world that was fast-paced, intense, and a little bit frightening too. I loved how involved I became in the story and really enjoyed learning about the world it was set and the different species it described. John E Stith has created a wonderful piece of fiction that I really don’t think you should miss.

Four Stars

** I received this copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated nor was I required to write a positive review. **

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Posted on 8 July, 2016 by Faye - 3 Comments