Review

Review: The Corner Shop in Cockleberry Bay by Nicola May

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Genre: woman’s fiction, romance
Pages: 403 pages
Format: E-Book, paperback
Publisher: Nowell Publishing
(I have received a free copy of this book)

Rosa Larkin is down on her luck in London, so when she inherits a near-derelict corner shop in a quaint Devon village, her first thought is to sell it for cash and sort out her life. But nothing is straightforward about this legacy. While the identity of her benefactor remains a mystery, he – or she – has left one important legal proviso: that the shop cannot be sold, only passed on to somebody who really deserves it.

Rosa makes up her mind to give it a go: to put everything she has into getting the shop up and running again in the small seaside community of Cockleberry Bay. But can she do it all on her own? And if not, who will help her succeed – and who among the following will work secretly to see her fail?

There is a handsome rugby player, a sexy plumber, a charlatan reporter and a selection of meddling locals. Add in a hit and run incident and the disappearance of a valuable engraved necklace – and what you get is a journey of self-discovery and unpredictable events.

With surprising and heartfelt results, Rosa, accompanied at all times by her little sausage dog Hot, will slowly unravel the shadowy secrets of the inheritance, and also bring her own, long-hidden heritage into the light.

~Review~

When I said yes to reviewing this book, I didn’t thought that this book will be like this. Our main character, Rosa, isn’t your usual heroine; the one who has a completely supportive family and friends. In fact, her upbrining wasn’t in the family at all. She is unable to feel happy and doesn’t let herself be loved. What I loved about her a lot is that she won’t let anyone look down on her, she will fight for herself.

Her whole life turns around when one day she gets contacted that she has inherited a shop at the place she’s never even heard of. The timing was perfect; she was just fired from another job. She goes down to the village with he sausage dog named Hot. Slowly, she starts clearing up both the shop and the flat above it so that she has a place to stay instead of paying a room.

She starts settling down slowly but few things happen along the way and we get to see how the village is “working”. We see how close people are and that they would do everything for each other. She falls in love but finds out that she was having a false hopes. Even if she thought that the village will be nothing but quiet and sleepy place, it is nothing like that.

The book is no way boring. It has enough mysteries to keep you going and enough romance for you to enjoy. This book is really worth reading in my opinion. Romance is my favorite genre to read and this book is one of the gem pieces in this genre.

Rating: 4,5 out of 5*

With love,

Ana

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Review

Review: Body Positive Power by Megan Jayne Crabbe

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Title: Body Positive Power
Author: Megan Jayne Crabbe aka bodypositivepanda
Genre: non-fiction, self-help
Pages: 288
Publisher: Vermilion

We’ve been convinced that happiness is something that only comes once we hit that goal weight, get those washboard abs, shrink ourselves down and change every part of ourselves. We believe that our bodies are the problem, but the truth is that our bodies are not the problem. How we’ve been taught to see them is the problem… it’s time for us all to stop believing the lies, and take our power back.

Megan’s body image issues began when she was five years old. She spent her childhood chasing thinness, and at fourteen found herself spiralling into anorexia. After recovery she spent years dieting, binging, losing and gaining weight. Then she found body positivity, quit dieting, and finally escaped the cult of thin. Now she’s determined to let as many people as possible know the truth: that we are all good enough as we are. If you’re tired of being at war with your body, then this book is for you.

With her inimitable flair, whip-smart wit and kickass attitude, Megan argues for a new way of seeing ourselves, and a world where every body is celebrated. Where there is no such thing as a ‘bikini body diet’ and 97% of women don’t hate the way they look. 

A powerful call to arms as much as it is inspirational and practical, this book is the life-changing answer you’ve been looking for.

Review:

This book is the first one I’ve read on body positivity and self love and I’m glad it is. It is a huge eye opener to the number 1 problem in the world. The one that mostly hits girls but the boys as well. The dieting problem! The I-Need-To-Lose-Weight problem!

Everything that you have believed about diets and everything that you thought you knew about dieting will probably fall in water. And by dieting, I mean the diets where you restrict yourself of the food(s). Did you know that the girls at the age of 8 start dieting and losing weight? Just because they are constantly bombarded with photos of the thin and photo-shopped bodies, bodies got only with working out and having an addiction to it, bodies that only 5% of people own.

Remember how often you have seen some ad where the person wasn’t thin and was perfect in any way possible. Not really that often, right?! It is not only weight but the hair, nails, eyes, skin.. Everything is attacking us and, yet, we asks ourselves why majority of people have body image issues. How often have you heard from your family members that you need to lose weight? As if your weight is the most important thing in the world and nothing else matters. I know that I’ve heard it more than enough to have body image issues with 25 years and that it is hard to get rid of them. Let’s also start from ourselves; how often have you acknowledged someone losing weight and how they look like before we acknowledged something else?

Do you really know what’s, or better said who’s, behind all those dieting programs? The multi billionaire companies ready to get your money from diet programs, pills, teas and so on.

Throughout the books, you will find the stats that support something that is written; which I find amazing. Also, all those Belly love tips! I loved those a lot because we are often attacking our belly as if it has done everything wrong in our life. Instead showing it love and care. Instead showing our whole body love and care that it deserves.

So, may 2018 be the year where you will fall in love with yourself. And read this book, find Megan on youtube and other social media (bodyposipanda on Instagram).

Rating: 5* out of 5

With love,

Ana

Review

Book tour & Review: Perfect match by Zoe May

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Title: Perfect match
Author: Zoe May
Genre: Chick lit, Romance
Pages: 252
Format: ebook
Publisher: HQ Digital

Can you ever find true love online?
Sophia Jones is an expert in all things online dating: the best sites, how to write a decent bio, which questions to ask and the right type of photos to use. The only thing she’s not so great at? Picking the guys…
After sitting through yet another dreadful date with a man who isn’t quite what she expected, Sophia is just about ready to give up on the whole dating scene. But her flatmate, Kate, persuades her to give it one more chance, only this time she must create a profile describing her ‘perfect’ man.
Yes, he must look like Robert Pattinson and needs to own a multi-million pound business, but there are a couple of other deal breakers, too! So, when a guy comes along who ticks every box, surely there’s got to be a catch?
A laugh-out-loud romantic comedy, perfect for fans of Catherine Bennetto and Rosie Blake!

Review:
I couldn’t really believe that this is a debut novel. It is surely very well written for a debut novel and all praise to Zoe for that. I could only hope that my debut novel can end up being great like this.

Although, I bet there are a lot of books written with a theme of online dating, this was my first one that I’ve ever read with this subject. Online dating is something almost completely normal in today’s world and society. People don’t have time to go out and meet other people. Others are just using it for sex. Others to just have fun and enjoy embarrassing people. That’s why, you have to be careful. As if you don’t need to be careful outside of online dating but you know what I mean.

Our main character, Sophia, has been doing online dating for a long time already (she has been to almost 80 dates!) but she has yet to meet her perfect guy. This is a very well written character and I really could’ve find myself in her. There were a lot of points where I was like “I feel you girl, I feel you”.

I enjoyed the way this book is written; it was funny, easy to read but yet it had depth. I’ve read somewhere that this is a perfect book for those who aren’t familiar with romance genre to read it. And I totally agree! The theme is modern and it has a nice strong message for all the women (and, of course, men) out there.

We often are looking for a perfect partner; height, weight, built, eye color, work place, money.. We are looking for that and while looking for that, we don’t realize that our perfect partner is actually standing in front of us or has been standing all this time. Someone who understands you and has been your friend maybe. Or someone you have just befriended? Ideal partner is there to be ideal but it is hard to find that ideal! And if we find one; if it sounds too good to be true, then it is.

I recommend this book to anyone who is interested in romance or maybe wants to try reading it for the first time. Amazingly written novel!

Rating: 4* out of 5

With love,
Ana

Review

Book tour & review: Christmas at the Dancing Duck by Daisy James

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Title: Christmas at the Dancing Duck
Auhor: Daisy James
Genre: Chick lit, Romance, Christmas
Pages: 337 
Format: ebook
Publisher: HQ Digital

A wonderfully festive romantic read to curl up with this Christmas.
The most wonderful time of the year!

Kirstie Harrison is finally coming home for the holidays. Ever since tragedy struck a few years ago, Christmas hasn’t felt the same – but she’s determined that this year will be different…
And staying at the family pub, The Dancing Duck, means it’s impossible not to get caught up in the little village of Cranbury’s festive traditions. And it’s equally impossible to avoid her ex, Josh Turner!
Kirstie is torn between making this the best Christmas yet and knowing that she can’t stay forever. Maybe it’s time to make a holiday wish of her own…?
Perfect for fans of Christie Barlow, Debbie Johnson and Cathy Bramley.

Review:
Some people really hate Christmas and everything about it; from how people to act to the smells associated with Christmas. Kirstie is one of those people. But when her hate ruins her career what should she do then?

I have to admit that when I started reading the book, I wasn’t that sure will I like it or not. I was slightly annoyed by Kirstie and how is she acting. She was grieving and was in pain because of what has happened. But to me, she sounded like a whiny girl. But throughout the book, I started to love her. She had her moments where she annoyed me but they were less than in the beginning.

The Dancing Duck seems like a sort of a pub that I would like to visit; it is homey and welcoming and they seem to have a nice drinks. It is that sort of a pub that a small village has and everyone just gathers there to drink and chat. My grandma is coming from a small island and they also have a bar like that. In the evenings, everyone gathers there to talk. But that is happening in the summer since there is almost no one living there in the winter.

Josh as a main guy was sadly a bit plain. I wanted to see and hear more of him. For me, he wasn’t in the book enough. He was hurt by Kirstie and it is understandable that he is mad at her. But their love-comeback was a bit too quick. I wish that we have heard more of his side and how was he feeling through the time and how was he feeling as she was going out with the other guy.

I loved everything they did with The Dancing Duck at the end; all of those festivities and contests that were held there. And all the festive food! It was amazing how community can make a lot of things different. Thankfully, the pub was saved in the end by one boring painting (or so at least everyone thought).

I loved the character of Emma! I loved her so much! Her energy and her persona was amazing. She seems to be sort of a care-free spirit/person and it pulled me towards her. And I wish to see her jewelry collection and what is she making. She seems to be a great friend to Kirstie as well which is we all need when we are going through the shit.

All in all, I loved this story. It wasn’t my favorite but it wasn’t the complete fail either. The setting was amazing, the way story worked was really good. The village community is the bomb! 🙂 Food? Have I talked about the food made by that french chef? Where does he live so that I can visit him and eat that delicious food that he is making?!

Thanks to HQ Digital for this blog tour and a chance to review this wonderful book.

Rating: 4*out of 5

Please, make sure to check out other reviews on this blog tour:
Dancing Duck blog tour

With love,

Ana

Review

Book tour & review: Christmas at Butterfly Cove by Sarah Bennet

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Title: Christmas at Butterfly Cove
Author: Sarah Bennett
Genre: Chick lit, CHRISTMAS
Pages: 139
Format: pdf
Publisher: HQ Digital

All she wants for Christmas…
When talented artist Nee Sutherland returns to Butterfly Cove for her sister’s wedding, it’s only a matter of time before she has to face her own bridegroom – Luke Spenser – the man she impulsively married, then left in the middle of the night.
Nee hasn’t picked up her paintbrushes in months, a part of her is broken. She knows Luke might never forgive her, leaving him was the biggest mistake of her life – but could coming home for Christmas be the best decision she’s ever made?
Maybe all she needs is a little Christmas miracle…
 

Review:
When I started reading this book, I didn’t know it is a part of a series (trilogy) but I can say that it can totally be read as a stand alone. I plan to purchase first two books because I really want to see the character development first hand. The characters are great in this story, don’t get me wrong, but I need to read the first two books.

I really LOVED this book. In the beginning, I wasn’t sure how I feel about it but deeper I went into it, the more I fell for it, for the characters. The story is chick-lit and romance but it is nothing typical or something I’ve came across already. I know that I have a lot of romance books to read yet, but I’ve read a lot of them as well. I was glad that this story left me surprised at some parts and at others left me laughing and crying.

What got me to love this books are two things. Aside the setting and the idea and everything surrounding it. I couldn’t help but imagine the Butterfly Cove and having a big huge Christmas with so many people. It must be stressful, yet so beautiful to spend Christmas with a family and friends. But let’s go back to those things:

  1. Character development of Nee – My gosh! I wasn’t sure will I like her at the beginning but, damn it, as her story unfolded I couldn’t help but to fall for her. The way her art was taken away from her is something that sadly happens often. Not the stealing of art but the way what led her to lose her motivation to paint. Every week, we have a case of this happening and yet nothing has been changing in the world. But even after all this happened, I was proud that Nee has found strength to go back to her art and to let it all out through her art. I’m not a painter, I’m a writer so I often get my emotions out with putting them on the paper. My mom is a painter and I can’t really imagine her anymore without painting. Nee is one of a hella strong characters out there and all the props to her for overcoming what she overcame with support of others.
  2. Male character that is not wearing pants in the marriage – Okay, this may sound weird but I loved how one male character (that’s often mentioned in the book) is actually full of emotions and shows them. And openly says that he loves when his wife takes a lead of keeping their household together and being all organised. In some parts of the world, it is still looked down upon when the women are taking a lead so I think that this being a part of a chick lit novel is an awesome thing. The woman character I’m talking about here (K), is an awesome and strong character. One more reason why I want to read the other two books in a trilogy.

I suggest everyone to read this book if you want something cosy to read why you are curled up with a cup of tea in your hand.

I want to thank HQ Digital for sending me this book for a review.

Rating: 5* out of 5

With love,

Ana

Review

Blog tour & Review: Meet me under the Mistletoe by Carla Burgess

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Title: Meet me under the Mistletoe
Author: Carla Burgess
Genre: Romance, (CHRISTMAS)
Pages: 188
Format: pdf
Publisher: HQ Digital
A fabulously festive romantic read, perfect to curl up with by the fire this Christmas!
It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas at the little flower shop…
Florist Rachel Jones might spend every day making beautiful bridal bouquets at her little flower shop, but her own love life is wilting as quickly as a bunch of dead roses.
Luckily, the arrival of handsome detective Anthony Bascombe, the new tenant upstairs is the perfect distraction! Although there’s a catch, Anthony isn’t looking for love – he’s looking for her ex-fiancé, Patrick…
But as the snow begins to fall and her little shop fills with mistletoe ready for Christmas, will Rachel manage to melt Anthony’s heart?
Fans of Debbie Johnson, Holly Martin and Christie Barlow will love this heartwarming read from the bestselling author of Marry Me Tomorrow.

I have to admit that I have never read anything by Carla Burgess but I’m sure that after this book it will change. I mean, it already did change since I’ve read this book. But I seriously loved her writing style. It was so light and yet, it was hard for me to put this book down and stop reading it.

This was perfect book to read now before Christmas and before December is starting because the book is taking place before and during Christmas holidays. I found the timing perfect for me. I have an urge to read some romance and Christmas books. Heh, huge romance lover right here.

Rachel is a character that I adore; I love her red hair (hello there!) and I love her vintage style. To be honest, I wished that it was described more than it was since I’m a sucker for a vintage style even if I’m not wearing it. But she is also a really nice and charming character, always willing to help which we encounter multiple times during the book.

At the beginning, I wasn’t sure will I like Anthony cause I had a feeling that he is hiding something (and he did). But I just had this unsettling feeling about him that he could play with Rachel. I won’t spoil too much or at all, I will leave it to you, my dear readers, to read this book and see if Anthony really played with Rachel. I liked him as a character a lot. In my mind, he looks like a hella sexy guy (that he is supposed to be anyway). I mean, who doesn’t love a guy that’s wearing a suit on a daily basis?!

The plot is amazing and really nice laid out so to say. I mean, yes, it is this typical romance type where the awesome attractive guy comes and falls in love with so-to-say normal girl. As much as it was typical, it wasn’t in a way. The way they met could be typical but when you find out the reason why they met, you get mad and slightly hurt cause the main character has been lied to (in a way *stares at Anthony in my mind*). In the end it was really different where the girl didn’t fall in love right away and just declared her love and then he was like “I love you too”. No, that wasn’t like that and I think that’s what was really interesting for me about this book. The difference to all those books I’ve read. And I have to say that I’m giving a huge applause to Carla for that.

In the end: Did I love this book? YES! Do I want more? HELL YES!! Give it to me!! I really hope that this book will get a sequel. I should probably go and ask Carla on the social media for that. Hang on, I will go do it right away. If you follow me on Twitter, you will get your answer as well (if Carla replies me).

Rating: 4,5* out of 5

Greetings,
Ana

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Blog tour dates

Hello everyone!

This week I’m hosting a blog tour for a book “Meet me under the Mistletoe”. My review is coming up on 30th and the rest of the dates and blogs, you can see on the picture.

Meet me under the misteltoe blog tour

Thank you all very much for supporting me.

With love,

Ana