April Reading List

Just a quick one from me today. This post is about keeping me accountable. I’m trying to get myself back on track with my 2018 reading goal. At the start of the year I vowed I was going to read 24 books, which breaks down to two a month. So far I’m only a quarter way through my 4th book. Not great progress then as I should be starting my 7th by now. 

The plan for April is to finish Jo Jo Moyes After You, and then two further books. 

Those books will be; 

Who’s That Girl?  – Mhairi McFarlane 

This is a Call: the life and times of Dave Grohl – Paul Brannigan 


I do not seem to be be able to pick short books which could be why I’m finding it so hard? Perhaps I will have to find a couple of short stories to help me out? If anyone has any suggestions please help a girl out and drop them in the comments section. 

2018 Personal Goals – 1st quarter update. 

At the start of 2018 I set myself a moderate list of things I wanted to achieve this year. You can see the full list here. Now that we are three months into 2018 I decided to revisit the list and share with you some items I have ticked off.

Last Thursday I finally went to see the musical Wicked. My sisters surprised me with tickets for my birthday (much better than a physical present). 

Having wanted to see the show for such a  long time I am pleased to report that it didn’t disappoint. The alternative look at the world of Oz is clever, thought provoking and very funny. 

On this occasion Elphaba was actually played by the understudy Laura Pick. She was brilliant, and to be honest, If my sister hadn’t told me she was actually the understudy I never would have known. 

If you love musicals but haven’t seen Wicked yet book it up, you won’t be disappointed. 

I can now officially say that I can cable knit. Surprisingly It is actually pretty simple once you know how. That is provided you stick to the pattern you are following. I rely heavily on a stitch counter and may have had to un pick my mistakes a few times. 

I’m currently working on a cardigan for my Manager’s new baby. I really need to pull my needles out and finish that one whilst on annual leave this week otherwise he will be too big for it. Did I ever tell you that I deserve an award for advanced procrastination? 

That will be why I have unfortunately fallen behind with my reading schedule. I love reading however I just seem to have got out of the habit. My goal of reading 24 books in 18 is going to be tough to achieve. I’m currently on my 4th book at the moment, whereas I should be starting my 7th by now. Oops! 

Note to self…Step away from Twitter! 

So that’s my quarterly update. I don’t think I’m doing too badly but there is definitely room to pull my proverbial socks up.

The One We Fell In Love With – Book review

 

The Blurb

PHOEBE  is caught between a rock and a hard place. Settle down and get married, or return to the French Alps to pursue her passion?

ELIZA is in love with someone who is no longer hers. In fact, he probably never was…And her dream of becoming a successful musician seems to be vanishing before her eyes.

ROSE is out of a job and out of a boyfriend. to make matters worse, she’s been forced to move back in with her mother…

But these very different girls have one thing in common. ANGUS. The one they fell in love with…

This is probably my favourite story that Paige Toon has written. From the very begining the plot is intelligent, its gets very messy and complicated. I found I didn’t always fully like the main characters as I didn’t agree with their reasoning behind certain actions and behaviours. There is a lot of secretiveness and sneakyness. Having said that It does have me questioning how I would behave in a similar situation. For example, given the chance, would I give in to the temptation of reading someone elses diary. Would I continue with a relationship that I knew was making my sister unhappy?

Mid way through the story there is a very major plot twist that completely changes the tone and direction of the story. It is definately a bit of an ‘Oh shit!’ moment which I didnt see coming. It actually does make me sympathise with and grow to like the characters more. I want everyone to have a happy ending.

I do feel that the way the last chapter has been written that individual characters stories are not finished. I would like to hear more from them in the future. This is actually something Paige does regularly. In this story we briefly catch up with Lucy and Nathan from her first book Lucy in the Sky. Im pleased to report they are doing well.

I don’t want to give too much away so am going to leave my review there. If you have never read a Paige Toon book before this is  good place to start. It is classic Paige writing at he best!

Let me know whether you have read this book and what you thought of it .


 

 

February’s Reading List 

At the start of the year I set myself a few personal goals. One of those goals is to get back into reading by finishing up 26 books throughout 2018. 

So far I’ve finished two books;

Helen Forrester Lime Street at Two 

Paige Toon All about the hype 

Both of these books are part of mini series’ that I have now finished. They are very different but both equally great reads. Let me know if you would be interested in a book review on either of these. 

In order to stay on track and keep myself accountable I have decided to share my monthly reading list here on the blog. 

These are the books I plan to read in February; 

Paige ToonThe one we fell in love with 

Paige Toon is my favourite author. I received this book from my husband for Christmas… I just haven’t got round to reading it yet 

Jo-Jo MoyesAfter You 

I read Me Before You last year and really enjoyed it. It’s about time I read the sequel then. I also have the book on loan from my little sister so need to hurry up and give it back to her. 

I’m open to pushing my reading comfort zone so if you have any suggestions for books that you think I should be adding to my reading list please leave them in the comment section.

Book Review of Park Lane written by Frances Osbourne

I did it, I’ve finally finished another book!

So here I am then with another book review.

Published in 2012 Park Lane was the first novel from Frances Osbourne, who has  since had work featured in Richard & Judy’s book club.

The book is set in London between the years 1914 and 1923. It focuses on the lives of two young women from contrasting class backgrounds. Both girls are hiding secrets about their lives that conflict with conventional duty.
The book provides an insight into the campaign for women’s right to vote from both the Suffragist and Suffragette view point. Personally I hadn’t realised before that there was a difference, so I have learnt something new.

It also demonstrates how the effect of the great war on the people of London didn’t discriminate between classes.

As a fan of novels in historical settings this didn’t disappoint. I was particulate captured by the character Bee’s accounts as she becomes more embroiled in the more extreme and dangerous suffragette movement and how this conflicts with her upper class prim and proper background.

I also enjoyed how the characters lives are all inter-woven  in some way , though they are not aware of this. This brings up complications and misunderstandings in the later part of the book.

I found the book to be well written, engaging and historically accurate as far as it could be, considering the main characters are fictional. Without giving too much away, there isn’t necessarily a happy ending for all the main characters which I found very honest.

I highly recommend this book to anyone that enjoys early twentieth century history or has an interest in learning more about the early ideologies of feminism.

Thanks for stopping by!

If you have any book recommendations for me do let me know in the comments section.

A #Fabulousnight in with Fabulous Mag

On Tuesday evening myself and little sister, fellow blogger Ashliegh,  took a trip up to London to attend Fabulous Magazines #Fabulousnightin.  Do go check out her blog, she writes about a wide variety of topics. 

The event was held on the top floor of News UK’s rather swanky building in London Bridge. The views from the 17th floor are quite amazing. With floor to ceiling Windows you get an amazing panaramic view of Londons Southbank. I tried to get some photos to share but as it was dark the internal lights kept reflecting in my lense. Bummer! 

When we arrived we had the opportunity to enjoy a glass of wine from i heart WINES. Don’t mind if I do! 

If you want to find out more about the brand then check out their website

Whilst sipping on our drinks we sat down to watch the Q&A session led by Claire Frost. 

The panel of authors included Lindsey Kelk (I’m a bit of a fan girl), Giovanna Fletcher and last but not least Mhairi McFarlane. This was live streamed on Fabulous Magazines Facebook page. 

There was plenty of laughter and valuable advice for aspiring authors. The video is worth a watch if you want some advice and industry insider tips. 

We then had the opportunity to meet each of the lovely ladies in person and have our books signed. They were fab and took time to have a chat and pose for a photo with everyone. Well done ladies! 

Posing with Lindsey Kelk

So with some new books to read (other than my business studies textbooks) I will do my best to share some reviews with you in the new future.

Book review | Bridget Jones, Mad about the Boy

Apologies, I am way behind schedule with my summer book challenge. I have finished my second book though, Helen Fieldings Bridget Jones, Mad about the Boy. It’s time then to share my thoughts about the book. 

I’m not going to lie I had pre-misconceptions about this book. I wasn’t quite sure where Helen was going to take Bridget’s story next. She was no longer in that thirtysomething singleton position that the two previous books were famous for, and she had had her happy ever after and settle down with Mark. Well, let’s just say I was very very wrong. 

The book picks up with Bridget who is now 51 and unexpectedly a single mum of two. I’m not going to lie I was devastated with how we had come to this point. What had happened to Mark? I don’t want to ruin it for anyone who hasn’t read the book and intends to do so I’m not going give any more details away about those particular details. 

With an absent Mark, Bridget finds herself back in the minefield of dating. This time though she has online dating websites, Twitter, nit infestations and militant mummies on the school run to contend with.

This is a Bridget I could relate to far more than in Helen’s previous books. I’ve often found myself in crazy kid related situations wondering what the hell i’m doing. 

My own kids have now decided I’m slightly nuts as I spent a lot of time laughing out loud to myself.

If you were a fan of the original Bridget Jones Diaries then you won’t be disappointed by this latest instalment. 

Have you read this book? Let me know what you thought in the comments below. 

Book Review | The Longest Holiday by Paige Toon

Already I am one week into my summer reading challenge. Oh and guess what? I’ve finished my first book The Longest Holiday by Paige Toon. As promised then here is my attempt at a legit book review. 


The Longest Holiday is primarily set in the sunny Florida Keys. Newly wed Laura is seeking solace from her recent troubles. Her new husband Mathew made just one mistake prior to their big day but the consequences of it are huge. 
Laura’s time in the Florida Keys is meant to be a carefree holiday to give time for Laura to gather her thoughts before deciding on the future of her marriage. 

Laura then meets Leo the dark and brooding scuba diver, who has his own troubled past. Supprised and confused by her intense attraction towards Leo and the welcome distraction he provides from her troubles Laura doesn’t want to leave the Florida Keys. 

 That’s as much as I’m saying as I don’t want to ruin the story for anyone that hasn’t read it. 

I absolutely loved reading this book and was actually sad to have to say good bye to the characters at the end. I am a bit of a Paige Toon fan girl so my opinion could be considered a little bias. 

Biased opinion or not my love for this book is well earned. Paige has a talent for drawing you into her characters minds so you are absorbed by the intensity of their  emotions. I sometimes felt that I was actually in Laura’s headspace. 

I also love how there is often a link between the main character of a new story with those featured in previous Paige Toon novels. Laura was the girlfriend of Formula 1 racing driver Will Trust who features in Chaising Daisy

This is not your average straight forward chick-lit romance. The story is intelligently written with a good balance of confronting confused emotions with laid back escapism. 

If you haven’t read a Paige Toon novel before do it soon as you are missing out. 

Next weeks review is Bridget Jones Mad about the boy by Helen Fielding. 

Summer reading challenge | The reading List 

I used to be something of a bookworm. As kids,my sisters and I used to spend so much time at our local library selecting books to read. We would compete with each other, challenging ourselves to see how many we could get through during the summer holidays. 

As an adult I haven’t lost my love for reading however I just seem to have gotten out of the habit of it. 

Fortunately my children have developed atheir own love for reading and regularly visit the library. So much so that signing on for the Big Friendly Summer Reading Challenge was top of my Son’s list of things to do this summer. His enthusiasm has inspired me to do my own little reading challenge and share it through the blog. 

I’ve selected six books that I want to read this summer. I then intend to write a review for each one, which I will share each Sunday on the blog. That means I need to be getting through one a week. Wish me luck. I think I must have read that many books all year? I told you I’d got out of the habit. 

Here’s my reading list for this summer. 

  1. The Longest Holiday – Paige Toon.
  2. Bridget Jones, Mad About The Boy – Helen Fielding.
  3. This is a Call: the life and times of Dave Grohl – Paul Brannigan.
  4. Wedding Night – Sophie Kinsella.
  5. Park Lane – Frances Osbourne.
  6. The Illusionists – Rosie Thomas.


All of these books I have had a home for a long time, just waiting to be shown some love. Im actually half way through The Longest Holiday already and I’m loving it so far. Paige Toon is one of my favourite authors though and is yet to disappoint. 

If you fancy joining in let me know in the comments section below. I’d love some recommendations as well for other books I should be reading in the future. 

Mummy Monday – Darkmouth Worlds Explode A Book Review & Give-away

A couple of weeks ago I was sent a copy of the newly released children’s book Darkmouth Worlds Explode by Shane Hegarty, to share with my two boys Harrison (11) and Jed (8).

   We have spent the past couple of weeks enjoying cuddling up on the sofa and reading this book before bed.  Although they are both very good readers themselves you are never too old for a bed time story, right?

This book is the follow-up to the much praised original book Darkmouth.  So what is it about?

Set in the fictional town of Darkmouth, 12-year-old Finn is faced with difficult task or finding his father, A Legend Hunter, who never returned from the ‘Infested side’. This is a world full of monsters known as legends who threaten the safety of Darkmouth. Accompanied by his best friend Emmie and the reluctant Estravon they face a journey that though full of adventure is fraught with danger and mystery.

How did we get on?

Jed – 8  

 

I really enjoyed this book, I like that it is exciting with  lots of monsters.  I like the pictures as I can see what they look like aswell. 

Harrison – 11 

 

I really liked the book as at the end of  most chapters there were cliff hangers which always made me want to read on. It is a great action/ adventure book as it includes monsters (legends). The book is set in the present,  unlike a lot of books like this that are set in the past, so it makes it a little different, which I liked.

As you can see both of my boys loved this book. I have to say as an adult reading it to them I did too, and was keen to read on and see what happens . Hegarty has a real talent for creating suspense.

If you fancy checking this out for yourself or know someone that would enjoy this book you can pick up a copy for only £6.99 from Amazon, a £3 saving on the cover price.

I also have been sent an extra copy  that 1 lucky reader can win. Entering couldn’t be easier just use the rafflecopter form below.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!!