Sunday, 29 June 2014

Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes (Rose Gardner Mystery Book #1) by Denise Grover Swank

This was another of the amazon top 100 free ebook downloads that I tried for my Kindle.  To be honest, I totally judged this book by it's cover and the fact it was free and in the amazon top 100.  This is what it is about.....

"For Rose Gardner, working at the DMV on a Friday afternoon is bad even before she sees a vision of herself dead. She’s had plenty of visions, usually boring ones like someone’s toilet’s overflowed, but she’s never seen one of herself before. When her overbearing momma winds up murdered on her sofa instead, two things are certain: There isn't enough hydrogen peroxide in the state of Arkansas to get that stain out, and Rose is the prime suspect. 

Rose realizes she’s wasted twenty-four years of living and makes a list on the back of a Wal-Mart receipt: twenty-eight things she wants to accomplish before her vision comes true. She’s well on her way with the help of her next door neighbor Joe, who has no trouble teaching Rose the rules of drinking, but won’t help with number fifteen-- do more with a man. Joe’s new to town, but it doesn’t take a vision for Rose to realize he’s got plenty secrets of his own. 

Somebody thinks Rose has something they want and they’ll do anything to get it. Her house is broken into, someone else she knows is murdered, and suddenly, dying a virgin in the Fenton County jail isn’t her biggest worry after all."

When I first started reading, I found Rose and her American drawl really quite annoying.  It bothered me; I could really feel the accent coming off the page and didn't really get any other vibe from it.  But I stuck with it, and after a while, I must have adjusted because whilst the story line is totally out of this world ridiculous, I somehow found myself totally addicted.  I just had to keep reading to find out who the new guy living next door is, whether he is a goodie or a baddie, and who the hell is after Rose Gardner and why?  

Having overcome my initial reservation, I found the book gripping, tense and funny.  I will definitely have to delve in to Rose Gardner's next mystery book to see what else could possibly happen to Rose.....and I definitely don't mind paying to do so!

To Catch a Butterfly by T.M. Payne

This was a book that was free from the amazon eBook Kindle store, featuring, at the time, in the "top 100 free books".  Not knowing anything about the book, or the author, I probably wouldn't have read it had I had to pay for the book, but the synopsis caught my eye so I thought I would give it a try.

"Stevie Buchanan's family has a secret. 

Catherine Stone has a secret. 

Stevie knows nothing. Catherine knows everything. 

Set between Hampshire and the Isle of Wight, this is the story of an innocent life thrown into the deep. 

When their worlds collide and the real truth is laid bare, no one could have imagined how very dark the secret really is. 

As Stevie grows from a curious little girl into a strong young woman, the secret is revealed. And so her journey begins. A journey that takes her to Catherine's door."

I was captivated by the dramatic start to the book, following which the book immediately jumps forward, leaving you totally clueless about the situation you have just witnessed.  Once the book jumped forward, I found it didn't hold my interest as well.  It jumped between characters, and between locations, and I couldn't keep track of who was who or how the characters were linked to each other.

The author does well to make you love Stevie, and there are some really difficult scenes in the book that made me hold my breath as I read.

I felt more involved in the narrative once the story began to really unravel and the main thread begins to tie in with that amazingly gripping first chapter.  The outcome wasn't at all what I imagined, so in my opinion, not predictable.

A good read, but it does have its flaws.

Thursday, 26 June 2014

Two Weddings and a Baby by Scarlett Bailey

I love Scarlett Bailey, and hadn't realised until after I finished Two Weddings and a Baby that it features some of the same characters as Just for Christmas.  Just for Christmas is the first Scarlett Bailey book I have missed, and now, of course, I have to go and immediately get my hands on a copy.

Scarlett Bailey is one of my favourite authors, and historically writes Christmas-themed books.  Well Bailey's latest book has nothing to do with Christmas, but it's just as romantic and it's just as fabulous.

"From reluctant bridesmaid, to accidental mother…

Tamsyn Thorne has not been back to her home town of Poldore for five long years.

But now her brother, Ruan, is about to get married and she has no excuses left.

Her plans to arrive in Cornwall looking chic and successful are dashed when a huge storm turns her from fashion goddess to a drowned rat. Worse, she ends up insulting the local hunky vicar – and then finds a tiny baby abandoned in his churchyard…"

Readers will no doubt find Tamsyn slightly irritating at the beginning, but she grows throughout the book and the wedding and the baby allows her to show everyone the person that she really is.  The storyline twists and turns throughout, and I absolutely adored it.  I loved the twins, the hunky vicar, thr bride and groom, the baby.....everyone!

Quite simply, Scarlett Bailey writes the absolute best "chick-lit" and I can't wait for more....

P.s. How did I miss the fact that Scarlett Bailey IS Rowan Coleman??!!