Time for surprises is a very apt title for this gentle romance set in Norway. It starts with a family inheriting a hotel from their father. Miranda our main character is set to run the operation as per her father’s wishes, as her husband, Vidar, gets the lowly job of janitor. The sisters Miranda, Isabel, Jasmine, brother Tony and recently revealed half-sister Celine are forced to work together. The fact that they are all very different characters adds to the tension. There is a lot to get on with and the disasters and mishaps follow quickly. There are good characters here and they are quite well developed. My issue was mostly with the tone of the book, the translation from Norwegian might be a factor. There was humour and romance there but at somewhat inappropriate moments; for instance a fat policeman having a rather slapstick moment before a rather grisly discovery. I would like to read more of this writer as her character development is good, maybe a more out and out romance would suit me better.
Saturday, 17 November 2018
I picked this book up as it was by a Norwegian writer set in Norway. I wasn't disappointed in the descriptions of the beautiful scenery or the characters in the book. But the whole book felt a bit disjointed and the romance and humour where in the wrong places. I think a lot went wrong in translation here. This is part 4 in a series, but it stands alone and not having read the other books was not a problem. I gave it 3 stars.
Sunday, 14 October 2018
I wanted to like this book as it was set in the North of Scotland and it was historical fiction, but ultimately I was left a bit frustrated by the pace of the book and some of the characters decisions. But if you like a slow paced coming of age story, this one will be for you. I gave it 3 stars as it does have a lot of good points too. Here is the review and click on the pick to take you to Amazon.
This was a nice story set in the north of Scotland, England and France. Three young people: Mary, Johnny and Liesl find their lives irrevocably changed by war. We mostly follow Mary and her growth from a 17 year old Caithness country girl into a serious woman shaped by World War two. My problem with the book was mostly with pace. Mary to me wasn’t the most interesting person in the book. I found her mother far more intriguing. Her past was never fully developed and her budding romance with Sinclair again not quite fully explored. The relationship between Mary and Johnny was described at great length and its conclusion rather unsatisfying. (I don’t want to give the plot away, but the end left me a bit puzzled as to Mary’s decision.) Liesls time in Germany was dealt with in a chapter and Johnny’s time in France was equally quickly dealt with. For me they were exiting story lines with I would have liked to have seen much further explored. Gentle read for lovers of clean romance with just a little adventure.
Saturday, 11 August 2018
I'm getting through my books a bit slowly these days. Work is getting in the way and I stopped taking the kindle to the beach as it was giving me a sore neck. So a bit more time between reviews. This week it was back to my favourite genre; Historical fiction. Johanna Craven has become a favourite of mine and this book was very good, but I preferred her other 2 books I've reviewed.
This is the third book I read by Johanna Craven and like her other books it is meticulously researched. She has set her story in 1740’s cornwall , a time when taxes where high and smuggling therefore rife. We are introduced to Isaac Bailey and his much younger sister Scarlet. After the death of his parents, Isaac does not only have to care for his sister but also has to pay of his father’s debt. The writer has put her characters in some desperate situations and they don’t always take the noblest way to get them out of these situations. This is what I like about this writer; her characters are flawed and complex in their motives. Like Scarlet who is innocent and trusting of her fellow man, but often finds herself descending into a dark and uncontrollable rage. The wild country side and the unpredictable sea form an atmospheric back drop and we can understand why the villagers are so superstitious. People where ill-informed and couldn’t explain the strange events Mother Nature had in store for them. This is the first of a trilogy and I can’t wait to see where the next book takes the Baileys
Friday, 27 April 2018
Unlikely Soldiers Book One (Civvy to Squaddie): (A coming of age novel about life, love and friendship) by Deb McEwan
You know by now that if a book is free I read just about anything. Drawing the line at erotica and gory horror. I read a lot of YA, it isn't my favourite genre but if it has a good story line I don't mind. This one grabbed me as it is set in 1970's Britain. The title is somewhat misleading as it made perfect sense to me that Guy would join the army, Michelle maybe more unlikely but not that much. Anyway, I enjoyed the read and gave it four stars.
Click on the picture to take you to Amazon. Currently still free.
Click on the picture to take you to Amazon. Currently still free.
Two youngsters with some problems in their personal lives decide to join the army. I liked the fact that this book is set in late seventies Britain and the Armies role in Northern Ireland and the thread of the IRA form an important backdrop. It adds tension to the decisions these youngsters are taking. I also liked that the story is told from Guy’s perspective and also from the perspective of a girl; Michelle also known as Mouse. The writing was YA and it would suit a younger person, but not too young as the book deals with issues like being gay in the military, rape, domestic assault and sex. It does steer clear of anything too graphic and I only counted one mild swearword. The romance is rather sweet and I was rooting all the way for Michelle and Guy to get together. There is a follow up and I would like to find out what happens to our young heroes. The title left me a bit confused though as both Guy and Michelle are not that unusual for joining the army, just ordinary kids hoping to get away from home and making something of their lives.
Sunday, 31 December 2017
What I like about this author is her sense of humour. It made this book such a easy fun read. If you like historical romance that has some naughty bits but doesn't stray into full erotica, this writer will be for you. This is the second book I've reviewed by Jackie Williams and the writing is such that I won't mind picking up another of her books soon. I gave this 5 stars. Click on the picture to take you to Amazon.
I love romances that are set in a more innocent time. A time where a lady’s shapely ankle could turn a man’s head and an innocent kiss could lead to being assaulted by the girl’s brother. There are many comedy moments as overprotective brother Brendon clobbers best friend Algernon because of some misunderstandings. Felicity is a feisty heroine with a heart of gold and we feel for her when Algernon struggles with his pride and fears for her safety. What should have been a straight forwards romance is anything but; due to a greedy uncle that will do anything to get his hands on Algernon’s estate.
When I say that this is set in a more innocent time; we do all know that behind closed doors things were less innocent! It is clear Algernon and Felicity share an attraction that leaves them both rather hot and flustered. Some off the scenes are sizzling hot and the writer correctly advises that this book is not for the younger reader. For any other fan of historical romance I recommend it. Fun, hot and a good read.