Monday, September 20, 2021

PRE-ORDER TOUR - Love, Comment, Subscribe

We have an exciting announcement! Cathy Yardley’s highly anticipated rom-com, LOVE, COMMENT, SUBSCRIBE is one of the Amazon First Reads for September! Prime members can read for free early--grab your copy today!

Title: Love, Comment, Subscribe

Author: Cathay Yardley

Genre: Romantic Comedy

Release Date: October 1st

Prime Members Read Free Today!

About Love, Comment, Subscribe:

Back in high school, Lily Wang wanted to be popular, but she considered herself lucky to be part of a tight group of oddballs and honors students called the Nerd Herd. Now, at twenty-eight, she feels like she’s finally on the cusp of succeeding as a beauty influencer—if she can hit five million subscribers, brands will take notice and she could get her own makeup line.
Fellow Nerd Herd alum Tobin Bui has had a lot of success as a YouTube gamer. But the road to online stardom has been rocky. First, he disappointed his parents by dropping out of college, and now, after years of pranks, skits, and playthroughs, he’s struggling to come up with new content to satisfy his ever-growing fan base. His agents say he needs cross-audience appeal, a new twist. When Nerd Herd frenemy Lily approaches Tobin about teaming up to do a video to bolster her brand and reinvigorate his, he agrees. But when their first collab video goes viral, their relationship heats up too. With the whole internet watching, will these two former misfits finally realize they’re perfect together?

Prime Members Read Free Today!

About Cathy Yardley:

Cathy Yardley is an award-winning author of romance, chick lit, and urban fantasy, who has sold over 1.2 million copies of books for publishers like St. Martin's, Avon, and Harlequin. She writes fun, geeky, and diverse characters who believe that underdogs can make good and sometimes being a little wrong is just right. She likes writing about quirky, crazy adventures, because she's had plenty of her own: she had her own army in the Society of Creative Anachronism; she's spent a New Year's on a 3-day solitary vision quest in the Mojave Desert; she had VIP access to the Viper Room in Los Angeles. Now, she spends her time writing in the wilds of East Seattle, trying to prevent her son from learning the truth of any of said adventures, and riding herd on her two dogs (and one husband.)

Connect with Cathy:

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BLOG TOUR - The Bookbinder's Daughter


The song surrounded her now, the murmuring of the library insistent, and her foot took the first step on the winding stairs. She knew it wasn’t entirely a dream. It was the library calling her, its magic driving her.

When Sophie is offered a job at the Ayredale Library – the finest collection of rare books in the world, and the last place her bookbinder mother was seen when Sophie was just a teenager – she leaps at the chance. Will she finally discover what happened to the woman she’s always believed abandoned her?

Taking in the endless shelves of antique books, the soaring stained-glass windows, and the grand sweeping staircase, usually shy Sophie feels strangely at home, and is welcomed by her eccentric fellow binders. But why is the Keeper of the Library so reluctant to speak about Sophie’s mother? And why is Sophie the only person who can read the strange spells in the oldest books on display, written in a forgotten language nobody else understands?

The mysteries of the library only deepen when Sophie stumbles upon an elaborately carved door. The pattern exactly matches the pendant her mother left behind years ago, engraved with a delicate leaf. As the door swings open at her touch, Sophie gasps at the incredible sight: an enormous tree, impossibly growing higher than the library itself, its gently falling golden leaves somehow resembling the pages of a book. Amidst their rustling, Sophie hears a familiar whisper…

‘There you are, my Sophie. I knew you’d come back for me.’

An absolutely spellbinding read about long-hidden family secrets and the magic that lurks between the pages of every ancient book. Perfect for fans of The Ten Thousand Doors of January, The Night Circus and The Binding.


Title:   The Bookbinders's Daughter
Author:  Jessica Thorne
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Sci Fi & Fantasy/Women's Fiction
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   248
Date of Publication:   September 20, 2021
My Rating:   4 Stars

Sophie has much more to prove than she ever expected after accepting a job as a bookbinder, pleased to be following in her mother's footsteps. Working with rare books has always been one of her dreams, but there is much more than taking the job. Sophie hopes to find out once and for all what happened to her mother. One day her mother was there. The next day she wasn't, and Sophie wants answers.

When Sophie finds herself surrounded by shelf after shelf of rare and antique books, she feels a rather unusual sense of calm. She is not the only bookbinder there, and there is even a "Keeper of the Library". Perhaps one of them will enlighten Sophie about what happened to her mother?

Despite being dyslexic, Sophie finds a particular book, the oldest book on display actually, and it is full of spells - spells that apparently only she can read. How is it that she cannot read even the simplest of things without difficulty but she can read these spells in what is most certainly a forgotten language?

This unique ability of Sophie's opens a pandora's box and reading these spells is only the first of many strange things happening to her in rapid succession. In fact, Sophie begins to feel her mother's presence. What is more is that a maelstrom of events begin to occur, presenting danger to Sophie as well as to others. Will she be able to control what is happening or will she face her mother's same fate?

What a thrilling ride this book proved to be! I was captivated from the very first page and was completely drawn into the drama and magical mysteries that were happening. 

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Jessica Thorne saw Star Wars at an impressionable age and life was never the same. She’s loved fantasy, romance and science fiction ever since and spends her time looking for adventure – in the pages of her books.

Sometimes she is Ruth Frances Long and won the European Science Fiction Society Spirit of Dedication Award for Best Author of Children’s Science Fiction and Fantasy, 2015.

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Sunday, September 19, 2021

Review - What She Did

Title:  What She Did
Author Carla Kovach
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   256
Date of Publication:   September 20, 2021
My Rating:   4 Stars

Marissa lives alone in her tiny one-bed apartment. It’s quiet and safe; all she’s ever wanted since the night her mother was killed in front of her. But when the police knock on her door with the news that her last remaining family member has been murdered, she comes face to face with the trauma she has spent a lifetime running from.

A witness saw her car outside his house that day, but Marissa knows she’s innocent. She hasn’t seen her uncle in years and remembers going to bed in her own home that night. But she’s had blackouts before and can’t always trust her memory.

Days later, Marissa’s neighbour is found dead in his home with stab wounds all over his body, exactly like her uncle. It was no secret that Marissa didn’t get on with her neighbour, but she’d never want to see him hurt. How can she convince the police that she isn’t a killer? And, as the secrets from her past take hold of her present, is there anyone in her small world she can trust?

As you read, you’ll believe every word Marissa says. You’ll think you know where to draw the line between innocence and guilt. But blame is a dangerous thing, and nothing is ever what it seems…

Perfect for fans of C.L. Taylor, Teresa Driscoll and Lisa Jewell, What She Did is a dark and twisty crime thriller that will keep you up all night!


Marissa has led a quiet life since the murder of her mother when she was a young child. She was taken in by relatives after that tragedy. She was 
powerless as a child and is still powerless as an adult. Years later, Marissa gets notified that one of her previous guardians has been found dead. In fact, there is a witness that says that they saw Marissa's car in the area. Marissa knows she didn't kill anyone. Did she? But she cannot prove it. Her memory fails her, and for quite a specific reason.

Too add to that, recently Marissa has new neighbors, and one of them is soon found dead. Again, Marissa thinks that she couldn't have done it. Why have these two murders occurred and why is Marissa unable to trust her memory? What can Marissa do to prove to the police that she is not a killer? Or can she prove that she is not a killer, since her memory cannot be trusted?

What a conundrum to be sure! Is this book a case of an unreliable narrator? Meaning, can Marissa be trusted? Well, read this thrilling story by Carla Kovach and you just might find yourself flipping back and forth with wondering what is really going on. What a riveting read! I loved reading about someone that we are not sure could be trusted. 

This book definitely had some tough emotional moments concerning Marissa's experiences. Then there is the fact that all along Marissa is rather certain that she is being stalked. That definitely brings a creepy edge to what proved to be an utterly remarkable book. Oh, and the ending! Shocking beyond belief!

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Carla Kovach is a crime and horror author from Worcestershire. Her most popular work, the DI Gina Harte series is published by Bookouture. As well as books, she also writes stage and screenplays.

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Friday, September 17, 2021

EXCERPT TOUR - Serve 'N' Protect

SERVE ‘N’ PROTECT by Tee O’Fallon is coming in one week! Check it out and grab your copy today!

Title: Serve ‘N’ Protect

Author: Tee O’Fallon

Genre: Romantic Suspense

Release Day Blitz: September 20th

About Serve ‘N’ Protect:

Ambushed and left for dead, U.S. Secret Service K-9 Officer Markus York is on the mend and laying low in a safe house while his team tracks down his attacker. But Markus isn’t good at sitting still. Even with his K-9, Ghost, for company, he gets restless and decides now is the perfect time to do some repairs around the house…and inadvertently tears open his wounds.

Fresh out of a bad relationship that ended after a car accident left her with limited mobility, freelance accountant Cassidy Morgan has sworn off men. At least, that’s the plan. Until a frantically barking dog leads her to a neighbor’s house where she finds a mysterious man out cold and bleeding on the floor...and mumbling things like “no, they’ll find me” when she tries to call an ambulance.

Yeah, that’s not at all concerning.

Despite Markus’s surly attitude, Cassidy senses there’s something else at work beneath his rugged, keep-your-distance exterior. Whatever it is, it’s sexy as hell.

With someone still trying to kill him, Markus doesn’t want an innocent to get hurt, let alone take care of him.

If only his dog wasn’t crazy in love with her.

Pre-Order Your Copy Today:

Amazon | Nook | BAM! | AppleBooks | Kobo | Google

Read the Standalone Series:

Trap ‘N’ Trace

Dark ‘N’ Deadly

Armed ‘N’ Ready

Locked ‘N’ Loaded


Exclusive Excerpt:

Fear snapped her into action and she threw her legs over the side of the bed. No sooner had the alarm kicked on than it abruptly kicked off. The barking eased to an occasional snarl. What she heard next frightened her more.

Voices. Lots of voices, and she knew whose they were.

Her entire family was downstairs. All six of them.

And Markus is alone with them.

With her heart racing at what she could only imagine in her worst nightmares was happening downstairs, she snatched up her clothes then opted for the more expeditious option—her robe.

Still tying the robe around her waist, she all but ran from the bedroom. Halfway down the stairs, she froze. Heat scorched her face.

Markus’s expression was grim as he stood in front of the keypad in nothing more than his jeans and a gun tucked into the small of his back. Ghost sat obediently beside him, with only the slightest rumble coming from the back of his throat. Her father, mother, two brothers and sisters stood in front of the open door.

“What’s doing, sis?” her oldest brother, Jimmy, asked in a frosty tone.

Wearing only her robe, it was pretty darned obvious exactly what she and Markus had been doing.

“Merry Christmas, Cassidy,” her younger sister, Kaitlyn, said, flipping back her unruly head of red curls and grinning as she cast an unabashedly appreciative eye at Markus. “Merry Christmas to you, too.”

While she totally understood her sister’s sentiments because, well, Markus was hotter than hell in his bare feet and the top snap of his jeans still undone, it irked to have her sister drooling over her new boyfriend. 


She shook her head to clear it. Deciphering what she and Markus were exactly would have to wait. Especially after last night’s conversation. Right now, there were more pressing matters at hand. Like keeping her father and brothers from pounding on Markus all at once.

Cassidy took the rest of the stairs in record time, stepping in front of Markus and Ghost as if they needed protection. He might not know it, but he does. “What are you all doing here?”

Sean, the second oldest sibling of the family, tapped a finger on his watch. “It’s ten o’clock, Cass. On Christmas Day.”

She gasped. Oh my gosh.

Her father pursed his lips as he glared at Markus. “We were worried about you, lass,” he said in the same thick Irish brogue that hadn’t diminished much, even after decades of living in the U.S.

Jimmy crossed his arms. “You’re always the first under the tree. When you didn’t show at nine on the button, we were surprised.”

“When you didn’t show by nine fifteen,” her older sister, Brianna, chimed in, “we got a little worried.”

“By nine thirty,” her mother added in a lilting brogue and coming to wrap an arm around her shoulder and give her a good squeeze, “we decided to come by and check on you. You can blame me for that. I insisted.”

Then and there, she made a New Year’s resolution to collect every single one of her house keys from every single member of her family so this would never, ever happen again. “I’m sorry to have worried all of you, but you could have called or at least texted.”

“Between all of us”—Sean swept his arm to encompass the family—“we probably called ten times.” He pointed to her phone which was right where she’d left it last night. On the kitchen counter.

She smacked a hand to her forehead. “You did call, didn’t you?”

As if sensing there were no words he could say to pacify her family at finding a half-naked man and a snarling dog in her house, Markus wisely remained silent. She couldn’t be sure whether the slight upturn of his lips was a grimace or a smile. Given the awkwardness of the situation, she’d go with grimace.

Her father arched a brow. “Care to introduce us, lass?”


About Tee O’Fallon:

Tee O'Fallon is the author of the Federal K-9 Series and the NYPD Blue & Gold Series. Tee has been a federal agent for twenty-three years and is now a police investigator, giving her hands-on experience in the field of law enforcement that she combines with her love of romantic suspense. When not writing, Tee enjoys cooking, gardening, chocolate, lychee martinis, and spending time with her Belgian Sheepdogs, Loki and Kyrie. Tee loves hearing from readers and can be contacted via her website where you can also sign up for Tee’s newsletters.

Connect with Tee:

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram | Amazon | Goodreads | Bookbub


Thursday, September 16, 2021

BLOG TOUR - The Couple Upstairs


Our new home was supposed to be a chance to leave our past behind. But was moving here the worst mistake of our lives?

All our friends and family were gathered, glasses raised to toast our fresh start. It should have been a night for happiness and celebration. Zac and I had worked so hard for this: our first home together, just minutes from the sea. But the dream quickly turned into a nightmare…

We’d invited our neighbours too. I wanted to make a good impression – to show them we’re exactly the sort of people they want living on their street.

I hadn’t thought about who they might be, the strangers I was letting in.

It was going so well. There was laughter in the air and the wine was flowing. But then I noticed the narrowed eyes, the whispers.

And then the lights went out.

As my heart thumped in my chest, all the little things that had been going wrong since we moved here flashed through my mind: the food poisoning, the arguments, the flood of nasty reviews shaking my business.

Am I going crazy? Or is someone trying to destroy us?

From the USA Today bestselling author Shalini Boland comes an absolutely heart-thumping psychological thriller with a twist you won’t see coming. Perfect for fans of The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl and The Wife Between Us.


Title:   The Couple Upstairs
Author:  Shalini Boland
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   263
Date of Publication:   September 13, 2021
My Rating:   5 Stars

Nina and Zac move into a lovely two-flat and they have their entire future ahead of them. Their eagerness and excitement about the move soon begins to fade, especially for Nina as she quickly becomes concerned about the actions of her neighbors upstairs. The wife, Vanessa, is pregnant and more than a bit quiet, but Nina still holds out hope that they will become friends. However, Nina doesn't like the husband, Chris. Something about him rubs her the wrong way. What is more is that Nina often hears arguments, as well as furniture being tossed about at all hours. What is going on upstairs?

Meanwhile, Nina has a business that she is struggling to get off the ground. When she hosts a dinner for Vanessa and Chris that does not go well, she offers Vanessa a part-time job performing clerical duties. Nina hopes that by working together that Vanessa will be comfortable confiding in her. Nina knows things are not right upstairs and she hopes to do something about it.

Meanwhile, her business is hitting the wall. One neighbor complains about deliveries. Some customers are complaining. Other things go wrong. Nina's partner Zac is completely unconcerned. However, Nina starts to query as to all of these things happening at the same time and if there could be any possible connection.

As this is a psychological thriller, we can expect there to be at least one nefarious character. I was more than drawn into the story the more it progressed, and found myself quite surprised as to who that individual was. I loved being on the edge of my seat while struggling to work things out, especially as Nina's frustrations were so utterly palpable.

If you are looking for a thrilling story that will garner you attention from beginning to end, then this is the book for you. Shalini Boland never disappoints, and The Couple Upstairs most certainly proves that.

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Shalini lives in Dorset, England with her husband, two children and Jess their cheeky terrier cross. Before kids, she was signed to Universal Music Publishing as a singer songwriter, but now she spends her days writing suspense thrillers (in between school runs and hanging out endless baskets of laundry).

Wednesday, September 15, 2021



‘Hugely confident … harrowing, visceral … recommended’ Ian Rankin on Dead Inside

A brutal murder…

When a burned body is found with its teeth missing, DC Maggie Jamieson discovers that the victim may be the husband of one of her probation colleagues.

A dark history…

As the body count rises, the team becomes increasingly baffled by how the victims could possibly be connected until a clue leads them to a historical case that was never prosecuted.

A terrible secret…

In order to catch the killer, Maggie must piece together what happened all those years ago before it’s too late.

Author Bio:

Noelle Holten is an award-winning blogger at She is the PR & Social Media Manager for Bookouture, a leading digital publisher in the UK, and worked as a Senior Probation Officer for eighteen years, covering a variety of risk cases as well as working in a multi agency setting. She has three Hons BA’s – Philosophy, Sociology (Crime & Deviance) and Community Justice – and a Masters in Criminology. Noelle’s hobbies include reading, attending as many book festivals as she can afford and sharing the booklove via her blog. Dead Inside – her debut novel with One More Chapter/Harper Collins UK is an international kindle bestseller and the start of a new series featuring DC Maggie Jamieson.

Connect with Noelle on Social Media here:

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Tuesday, September 14, 2021

BLOG TOUR - A Lesson in Murder


When Lady Swift is invited to her old school, she walks through familiar classrooms, finds her favourite books in the library… and surely that’s not a body? Time for a lesson in murder!

Autumn, 1921. Lady Eleanor Swift is invited to her old school, St Mary’s, as a guest speaker. Her favourite teacher, Mrs Wadsworth, has asked that Eleanor talk about her intrepid travels around the globe – travelling the Silk Road by bicycle, crossing the Himalayas and even befriending the Maharaja of India. But in the circumstances, perhaps it would have been a good idea to talk about her career as a daring detective…

Because no sooner has Eleanor brushed up on her times tables then she is greeted by terrible news: Mrs Wadsworth has been murdered. Eleanor is utterly devastated but she owes it to her dearest teacher to find out who killed her and why. So, alongside Gladstone the bulldog, it’s best paw forward to track down a villain.

But when the art teacher is also found dead, Eleanor is sure someone is trying to do away with the people who taught her everything. As Eleanor delves into possible motives, she discovers a clue in the most unlikely place: her mother’s old school diary. Does the route to the murderer lie within a secret passageway her mother uncovered? Can Eleanor nail the culprit in time or is the killer coming for her next?

A totally gripping and glamorous 1920s cozy! Fans of Agatha Christie, T.E. Kinsey and Rhys Bowen are in for a treat.



:   A Lesson in Murder
Author:  Verity Bright
Series:  Lady Eleanor Swift #7
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Cozy Mystery
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   277
Date of Publication:   September 14, 2021  
My Rating:   5 Stars

From a pre-arranged Speech Day to an unexpected death. Lady Eleanor Swift is at the boarding school where she went as a child to deliver a motivating speech to young students. However, even before she can begin, Mrs. Wadsworth, her favorite teacher when from those years ago, was found dead. No clear evidence proves that it was murder. The police have been called, most notably Chief Inspector Hugh Seldon. However, due to the privacy of the students, inquiries from him could be rather upsetting. So, it has been determined that Eleanor would stay on at the school as Mrs. Wadsworth temporary replacement while secretly trying to determine the cause of her death.

Eleanor is not alone. Her butler Clifford is staying nearby on the premises while caring for her ever present bulldog Gladstone. Eleanor has a lot of memories of her time at the school. She was not the easiest student by far. But there is more that she will learn about her history there. Eleanor is a titled peer who has enjoyed quite an independent life of adventure. Well traveled with amazing experiences, Eleanor now has a whole new challenge facing her acting as housemother to preteens.

I really enjoyed this installment in the Lady Eleanor Swift Mystery series. The time she spends with her new young charges proves rather touching. However, there is the nasty business of finding out about possible foul play. Will Eleanor be able to ask enough questions, even if it means uncovering well-hidden secrets to find the person responsible for Mrs. Wadsworth's death? I love the early 1900s time frame, as well as Eleanor's age at around thirty with not giving into convention, as her independent spirit has shown. I have thoroughly enjoyed this series from the beginning, but this one has proven to be my favorite.

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Verity Bright is the pseudonym for a husband-and-wife writing partnership that has spanned a quarter of a century. Starting out writing high-end travel articles and 0236ooks, they published everything from self-improvement to humour, before embarking on their first historical mystery. They are the authors of the fabulous Lady Eleanor Swift Mystery series, set in the 1920s.

Monday, September 13, 2021

RELEASE DAY BLITZ - Becoming Wilde

HK Jacobs is joining us today for the blog tour of her women’s fiction, Becoming Wilde audio release! Check it out and be sure to get your copy today!


Author: HK Jacobs

Genre: Women’s Fiction

About Becoming Wilde:

Is this the beginning of our epic love story?   Alexandra Wilde's life is beyond her wildest dreams. After a tumultuous year, she has returned to Botswana as a full-fledged pediatric ICU doctor and reignites a consuming romance with Ian Devall, the privileged philanthropist who has captured her heart. Her new position at the hospital is fraught with challenges as saving lives pushes her resourcefulness to the brink. Meanwhile, her connection with Ian deepens, and she realizes that forging a commitment with him will require a sacrifice she isn't ready to make. As she teeters on the precipice of decision, tragedy strikes and sends her into a spiral of grief where she must find hope in adversity...or risk losing everything she has become.

Get Your Copy Today!

Audio | Paperback | Amazon

Catch Up on the Series with Wilde Type Today!


About H.K. Jacobs:

HK Jacobs is native to a small town in Texas that gave her both wings and roots. She holds a Doctor of Medicine from Baylor College of Medicine and a Master of Public Health from the University of Texas. She is a board certified pediatric critical care physician whose passion is traveling the globe caring for seriously ill children in low-middle income countries. She currently resides in Texas where she continues to balance the many roles in her life—mother, physician, humanitarian, dreamer, and author.  


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BLOG TOUR - The Italian Girl's Secret


Italy, 1943. In the hills outside Naples, the silver moon shines brightly on a whitewashed farmhouse. An urgent knock on the door breaks the silence: and in that moment, one young woman’s act of incredible bravery changes the course of the war.

For Carmela del Bosco, a farm girl in a remote Italian village, sheltering an English spy is the most dangerous thing she could do. If she’s caught by the fascists it would be the end, especially for her beloved grandmother sleeping soundly upstairs. But taking in the pleading brown eyes of the man calling himself Sebastiano slumped at her door, and his terrible injuries inflicted by the Nazi occupiers, Carmela remembers how Nonna always taught her right from wrong. Risking everything, she hides him in a ruined tower on the edge of the farm.

Each day Carmela tends his wounds, and the passion that kindles between them is a light in the darkest time. Sebastiano has information that could end the war, and needs her help to send it. But tracking down fellow members of the resistenza in the mountains means risking her life and bringing danger to everyone she knows.

Carmela knows she must find the courage to do what’s right for her country. But if she leaves the farm, will she ever see her beloved nonna again? And will her sacrifice tear her away from the only man she’s ever loved, forever?

An absolutely stunning and heartbreaking historical novel about the impossible choices people are forced to make in wartime. Fans of The Nightingale, All the Light We Cannot See and Rhys Bowen will be captivated.


:   The Italian Girl's Secret
Author:  Natalie Meg Evans
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Historical Fiction
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   306
Date of Publication:   September 10, 2021
My Rating:   5 Stars

It is Italy, 1943, and the world is in the grips of World War II. Carmela is living a quiet life on her nonna's tomato farm when asked by illegitimate half-brother Danielo to hide a fugitive named Sebastiano. Carmela reluctantly agrees, despite knowing that the Germans will kill anyone in their path considered an enemy. There is now change at every turn for Carmela, including the cruel and vengeful attention from her second cousin Tino. So, not only must Carmela hide Sebastiano from the Germans, but from Tino as well.

Soon Sebastiano escapes and then Carmela is forced to flee to Naples to the home of her estranged father. It is in her father's home that Carmela again meets Sebastiano. In this riveting story of the resistance in Italy, there is danger facing Carmela and Sebastiano. His work as a spy is more dangerous than ever, and Carmela finds herself fighting as best she can, despite times when betrayal plays a cruel hand.

Carmela is a fabulous character, and her love for her dog Renzo all but broke my heart. Of course her donkey Nearco was impressive as well, and played a small role when it came to their safety. Sebastiano was incredibly strong, despite bearing many wounds and a betrayal that floored him. The Nazi occupation was awful for anyone concerned. The level of cruelty was so heartbreaking, but the level of bravery shown in this story was incredible. The fact that Carmela and Sebastiano could find love amidst the darkness was incredibly touching. 

Borne of war and many of its devastating effects, The Italian Girl's Secret is a touching story of a war-time romance. However, it is far, far more. This is a story of bravery, sadness, horror and death.
Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Natalie Meg Evans has been an art student, actor, PR copywriter, book-keeper and bar tender but always wanted to write. A USA Today best-seller and RITA nominee, she is author of four published novels which follow the fortunes of strong-minded women during the 1930s and 40s. Fashion, manners and art are the glass through which her characters’ lives are viewed. Each novel is laced with passion, romance and desire. Mystery is never far away.

An avid absorber of history – for her sixth birthday she got a toy Arthurian castle with plastic knights – Natalie views historical fiction as theatre for the imagination. Her novels delve behind the scenes of a prestige industry: high fashion, millinery, theatre, wine making. Rich arenas for love and conflict. Most at home in the English countryside, Natalie lives in rural Suffolk. She has one son.

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Sunday, September 12, 2021

BLOG TOUR - The Trapped Wife


The rain hammers the glass outside. My husband has stoked the wood burner with a fresh supply of logs, and I’ve just put a joint of beef in the oven. It’s the most clichéd Sunday afternoon ever, and it’s the most heavenly one, too. Little do I know that days later, the ash in the fire will be all that remains of us…

My perfect life…

I thought I had it all – a dream job as a doctor in small town, a stunning home and a family I adore – but that illusion shattered the moment my husband Jeremy left on a work trip and vanished without a trace. Now my son and I are all alone in the world.

My missing husband…

My best friend thinks Jeremy had an accident up in the mountains, that I’ll never see him again and need to move on. I know he loves us too much to ever abandon us, but my head is still spinning with the texts I found on his phone before he left. Did I ever really know the man I married?

The night I can’t remember…

Everything changed the night of the medical conference weeks before Jeremy disappeared. I wrack my brains for answers, but my memory goes blank after my first drink. Ever since, I’ve felt like I’m being followed and can’t explain why panic thunders in my chest every time I see my newest patient. If he’s not local to the village, then why does he seem so familiar? And so dangerous?

As I piece together the shards of what really happened that fateful evening, only one thing can possibly be true: everyone is lying, even me…


:   The Trapped Wife
Author:  Samantha Hayes
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Psychological Thriller
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   268
Date of Publication:   September 8, 2021
My Rating:   5 Stars

Jen Miller, a respected physician, is now a widow and has a teenaged son. What is more is that she has found out that she is pregnant. However, for several months, even before her husband's passing, they were not intimate. Who is the father of her baby? Why is that so unclear to her? As she starts to piece things together, her best friend Rhonda is also doing the same.

Intriguingly, Jen soon finds that she must keep a secret, although she is not even sure of why she has to keep the father of her baby a secret. Then there is the fact about why Jen and her husband were having problems before he died. Factor in her teen son and Rhonda's teen daughter and nothing at all is clear in this story. In fact, convoluted is the best word to use for this story, especially with regard to another character.

Secrets and lies, as well as the past and the present that soon spirals out of control leaves Jen in an incredible quandary. Then there is the reason why this story is named The Trapped Wife, but I am not going to mention any of that in this review. 

As this story evolved, it was like pieces of a puzzle falling into place. It is often said that a story is full of twists and turns and that is certainly the case with this thrilling book. The tension in this story was top notch. However, the final twist really knocked me for a loop, one that I never saw coming and the conclusion truly shocked me. Kudos to a fabulously written story that will not soon be forgotten.

Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Samantha Hayes grew up in a creative family where her love of writing began as a child. Samantha has written eight thrillers in total, including the bestselling Until You’re Mine. The Independent said “fantastically written and very tense” while Good Housekeeping said “Her believable psychological thrillers are completely gripping.” Samantha’s books are published in 22 languages at the last count.

When not writing, Samantha loves to cook, go to the gym, see friends and drink nice wine. She is also studying for a degree in psychotherapy. She has three grown-up children and lives in Warwickshire.

Friday, September 10, 2021

BLOG TOUR - The New Home


You never know what’s happening behind closed doors…

Freya loves her new home on a quiet suburban street. And her beautiful neighbour Emily is everything she’s ever wanted in a best friend. Finally, she has somebody to share her secrets with over a glass of wine. But as Freya watches her new friend setting the table for dinner one evening, she sees something shocking that makes her think that Emily’s life might not be as perfect as it seems. Days later, Emily and her daughter vanish…

When you meet Emily’s husband, you will think you know what he’s hiding.

You will ask yourself whether Emily and Freya really did meet by chance.

You will think you know what happened to Emily and her little girl the night they went missing.

But when you discover the truth, it will shake you to your core and you will lie awake at night wondering if you can ever really trust the people in the house next door…

Fans of Claire McGowan, Shalini Boland and Lisa Jewell will love the gripping tension and unexpected twists of The New Home. Once you start reading, you’ll be hooked!

:   The New Home
Author:  Chris Merritt
Publisher:  Bookouture
Genre:   Mystery/Thrillers
Format:  Kindle ARC
No. of Pages:   332
Date of Publication:   September 7, 2021
My Rating:   4 Stars

Freya is excited to be moving into her new home with her fiancĂ© Jack. As a cardiologist, Jack's new job moves them into a London suburb. Freya makes documentaries, especially for women in desperate cirumstances. However, she is currently not working on anything. When she meets new neighbors Emily and Michael, she gets a strange vibe from Michael. Another neighbor that raises her hackles is the elderly Cathy. 

Despite these concerns, Freya is determined to settle in and for her and Jack to begin renovating their new home, especially as they left their friends behind in London. Perhaps Freya has found a new friend in Emily. However, after a few months Emily and her young daughter Thea disappear. With his prior film experience and working with women, Freya is certain that foul play has occurred with Emily and Thea and that Michael had everything to do with it. Freya relies on her past experiences to solve the mysterious disapperances.

Freya doggedly pursues her ideas, much to Jack's consternation and to the police's annoyance. Not sure she can trust her own instincts and the other neighbor Cathy's odd statements from time to time, she still plows forward. Meanwhile, Freya herself has a past, and this is where this already thrilling story takes a sharp twist.

How much of who Freya is and who Michael and Emily are have to actually do with what is going on? A tangled web to be sure, but what a delight watching it all play out in this thrilling story. Freya's character was intriguing and I found myself drawn into her drama and that of the unnamed narrator, which gave the story a different edge, thus creating a tension-filled read from beginning to end.
Many thanks to Bookouture and to NetGalley for this ARC for review. This is my honest opinion.


Chris Merritt is a British author whose crime thrillers combine psychology, suspense, and characters you care about.

All his novels are set in London, where he lives. He began writing fiction in 2014, after previous careers as a diplomat, based in Iraq and Jerusalem, and later as a psychologist working with victims and perpetrators of crime. He specialised in treating Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), which sparked his interest in telling stories about how people cope when faced with extreme adversity.

Now, he spends most of his time writing novels and drinking coffee while *thinking* about writing novels. When he's not writing, he loves climbing and playing basketball.

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