Blog Tour- I Have Never by Camilla Isley

I Have Never (First Comes Love, #2)

How did I get it?:
It was sent to me for the blog tour!

Camilla is an engineer turned writer after she quit her job to follow her husband in an adventure abroad. She’s a cat lover, coffee addict, and shoe hoarder. Besides writing, she loves reading—duh!—cooking, watching bad TV, and going to the movies—popcorn, please. She’s a bit of a foodie, nothing too serious. A keen traveler, Camilla knows mosquitoes play a role in the ecosystem, and she doesn’t want to starve all those frog princes out there, but she could really live without them.

Website | Twitter: @camillaisley | Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest

Previously reviewed by the same author:

Synopsis:

Twenty-nine-year-old Blair Walker is a girl with a plan, or more a girl with a list. A list of dos and don’ts to live the perfect life, land a dream career, and marry Mr. Right. 

When Blair loses her job and gets dumped by her boyfriend all in one day, she starts to wonder if she’s had it all wrong. And what better way to find out than experience everything the list forbade?

Never Lie
Never Pick a Fight
Never Make a Scene
Never Make the First Move
Never Make Impulse Decisions
Never Mix Business and Pleasure…

With hilarious consequences, Blair will discover some items are trickier to tick off than she’d thought… 

Thoughts:

I really enjoy Camilla Isley’s writing. I have read several books from her now. I always know that it’s going to be a highly enjoyable read. This book is no exception! If you’re into Sophie Kinsella then I think you’d like Camilla’s writing. Her light-hearted books with relatable characters are incredibly easy to read.

I Have Never centres around Blair who has been having a pretty horrendous time. She’s lost her job when she thought she was going to be promoted and lost her boyfriend when she thought he was going to propose. Blair is so used to her life being controlled by lists of ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ that she decides to sort things out, once and for all.

The chapter titles are cleverly from Blair’s ‘Do’s and Don’ts’ list. Within that chapter, we find out whether Blair does or does not do the things mentioned. I really liked this element of the story! I liked to predict whether Blair would do the thing listed!

I loved that the story tied into the first book in the series so seamlessly. We meet Richard, who features in the first book, as Blair’s new boss. Blair now works at an online magazine. She has the opportunity to build a magazine from scratch and although it may not be in print, she gains much more satisfaction from it than she had even anticipated. Blair is incredible happy with her new friends and new job. Also contributing to her happiness is Richard… who she has a massive crush on. Having being jilted at the altar, Richard isn’t big on commitment. However, Blair is determined to find out if their relationship can become more than professional.

I don’t think you necessarily need to read the first book in order to enjoy this one, but it enhances your reading experience if you have read the first book in the series! This book is a lot of fun. There’s drama within, but never too much. There’s a good balance between relationships, friendships and humour. I totally bought into Blair and Richard’s relationship.

I didn’t take long to read this book and can imagine that many will enjoy it as a light, summery read!

Would I recommend it?:
Yes! 3.5 stars!

Goodreads | AmazonUS | AmazonUK | Google Play | Kobo | B&N | Apple

Follow the rest of the tour:

July 16th
One Book At A Time – Spotlight Post
CosyCuteKnits – Book Review
The Writing Garnet – Book Review
July 17th
The Belgian Reviewer – Book Excerpt
Girl vs Books – Book Review
kraftireader – Book Review

July 18th

Reading Is My SuperPower – Book Review
THE CHLOE DOUGLAS BLOG – Book Review
July 19th
Simona’s Corner of Dreams – Author Guest Post
Bookish – Book Review
July 20th
TheBlossomTwins – Book Review
Grass Monster – Book Review
Chick Lit Central – Author Q&A
Living Life with Joy – Author Guest Post
July 21st
ItaPixie’s Book Corner – Book Review
Rae Reads – Book Review
Novelgossip  – Book Review
Whispering Stories – Book Review
Ali – The Dragon Slayer – Book Review
A Daydreamer’s Thoughts – Book Review
Steamy Book Momma – Book Excerpt
July 22nd
BookLoverWorm – Book Review
Pretty Little Book Reviews – Book Review
Book Lover in Florida – Book Excerpt

Blog Tour- Illusionary Review

Illusionary Blog Tour Banner

I am thrilled to be part of the blog tour for Illusionary by Desiree Williams.

Illusionary

How did I get it?:
I received a copy from the author for the blog tour.

Synopsis:

Dorothy got sucked into a tornado.
Alice fell down a hole.
Wendy flew to Neverland.
Kamryn? She tripped down the stairs.
Now, Kamryn Kensington finds herself in a strange new world. Within minutes of her arrival, she dodges an archer’s arrow and avoids getting sliced up by a cosplay reject holding a dagger to her throat. And that’s before the storyteller’s breath brings stories to life.
Home is the mission—to return to her family and pursue her life’s dream of art and travel. Yet the longer she’s in the Land of Ur, the harder it is not to feel for the people she meets. Even her artistic side can’t help but breathe in the beautiful wonder and magic of this new world. So when the Oracle hands her a different quest, she takes it on the condition he sends her home afterward.
No one thought to warn her of a jealous queen and her dragon minions. Or that, by helping her, the cute storyteller would go crazy. Or that her heart would rip in two when she left. Those would’ve been great facts to know ahead of time.
Considering that nothing in Ur is what it seems, the mission proves to be more than she ever imagined. But more than her own future will be in jeopardy if Kamryn doesn’t succeed.
  

Thoughts:

I was asked if I’d be interesting in joining the blog tour for this book. As soon as I read the synopsis, I knew that I wanted to read this book. If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you’ll know that I absolutely adore fairy tales and all things magical realism. Illusionary certainly fits that bill.

Kamryn is our main character. She’s an adult, but she’s struggling with adapting to all things adult. Don’t we all? Kamryn’s dreams are taking her in different directions which makes her older sister despair. Her older sister wants the best for Kamryn but Kamryn wants to pursue her passion. Kamryn and her sister fight resulting in Kamryn tripping and finding herself at the bottom of the stairs. When Kamryn comes around, she’s in the land of Ur. She has some questions to ask but answers are not given. She is given a mission to carry out with Reese, a storyteller in Ur. They’re hoping to rescue the Maker of Ur so he can send her home. Of course, it’s not as easy as Kamryn wants and they end up everywhere…

I enjoyed reading this story, which didn’t take long for me to read! I was intrigued by the adventure. I really enjoyed reading the nods to other famous books e.g. The Wizard Of Oz. It’s a bookworm’s dream to read such a bookish story. I also enjoyed the romance in this story. It wasn’t cheesy or overdone. It was just right.

The only reason I didn’t rate this book any higher was because I didn’t enjoy the character of the evil queen as much as I wanted to. I would have enjoyed it more if the character was more fleshed out, but that’s my personal opinion and I think many people would still enjoy the character!

Would I recommend it?:
Yes!

Desiree is kindly offering a giveaway for this blog tour. email): a “Make everyday an adventure” pillow, “Don’t Grow Up! It’s a Trap!” metal sign, book cozy, signed paperback of Illusionary, notebook with pens, sketch book with colored pencils, and a “Eat Cake for Breakfast” travel cup. 

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Desiree’s social media

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Purchasing Illusionary

 

Blog Tour- My Sister’s Bones

How did I get it?:
I received a copy from the publishers! Thanks to Penguin Random House

Synopsis:

ARE YOU BRAVE ENOUGH TO GO BACK?

Kate Rafter is a successful war reporter. She’s the strong one. The one who escaped Herne Bay and the memories it holds. Her sister Sally didn’t. Instead, she drinks.

But when their mother dies, Kate is forced to return to the old family home. And on her first night she is woken by a terrifying scream.

What secret has Kate stumbled upon?
And is she strong enough to uncover the truth . . . and make it out alive?

Thoughts:

Well, well, well…I have to admit that this book surprised me. I have read a lot of psychological thrillers over the last few years and I felt like some were becoming a little same-y until Nuala Ellwood stepped forward with My Sister’s Bones. I was really impressed with this psychological thriller. As soon as I got into the story, I didn’t want to put it down. It was utterly readable. The story is told in three parts which I found to be so easy to read.

It mainly centres around Kate Rafter. Kate is a successful reporter. She has covered the awful events in Syria and has been deeply moved but at the same time a little disturbed from what she has seen. After Kate’s mother died, Kate had to return to sort out some business at home. Her younger sister, Sally, was at home, but Sally has fallen to pieces since their father died prior to their mother dying. Sally spends her days completely drunk. Sally’s own family is fractured. Her daughter Hannah has left home, unable to cope with her mother’s alcoholism. Sally’s husband, Paul, is desperate to encourage Sally to become sober, but there’s so much in the family’s past, it’s certainly a tough job.

This book isn’t particularly a light read but it’s so easy to keep reading despite its horrific content in some places. There’s so much going on in the story. There’s the awful events in Syria (which are incredibly evocative), domestic violence and even more awful things which I can’t begin to explain without ruining the story and that I certainly don’t want to do.

I loved this book because I didn’t know whether to trust Kate, our main protagonist. There are certain moments of the book where I believed in her and other moments which made me question her. I adore that in a book. I love uncertainty. It keeps me thinking and guessing. It certainly wasn’t same-y compared to others in its genre. I may have predicted some of the twist and turns in the story, but I didn’t predict all of them!

I absolutely loved this book which kept me turning the pages. It can feel a little slow to start, but trust me, stay with it and I’m sure you’ll enjoy the read!

Would I recommend it?:
Of course!

If you’re looking for a fabulous psychological thriller then this one could be for you!

Heartbreak Cafe- The Synopsis!

 

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Heartbreak Cake by Cindy Aroraheartbreakcake

Business is sweet for pastry chef Indira Aguilar. Her indie bakery, Cake Pan, is fast becoming the talk of the wedding circuit for its unique take on cakes and homespun creations for the modern bride, garnering national recognition and drawing in celebrity clients. But while her professional life is blossoming, her personal life is crumbling. Indira may have a talent for blending buttercream into bliss, but when it comes to relationships, she’s got a lot to learn. Considering that the love of her life, Josh Oliver, is not only married, but also runs the award-winning pastry department of her fiercest competition, Crystal Cove Resort, Indira puts much more at stake than just her heart when she ends her affair with him. Rumors begin to fly as the small seaside community of Long Beach learns of her secret relationship, and Indira must defend not only her actions, but her wedding business and her reputation while trying to maneuver the choppy heartbreak waters of starting over, finding new love, and facing her past. With the support of friends and family, a fondness for butter, and a determined spirit, Indira may just bake her way back to happiness and possibly into the heart of Crystal Cove’s dishy new chef, Noah. But one thing is certain. Where there’s heartbreak, there must be cake.
 
Add Heartbreak Cake to your Goodreads shelf! Follow along with the Heartbreak Cake Blog Tour via Fictionella! Visit publisher Simon & Fig for more information about the book, and connect with Cindy at cindyarora.com!

Blog Tour: Sia by Josh Grayson

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Synopsis:

When seventeen-year-old Sia wakes up on a park bench, she has no idea who or where she is. Yet after a week of being homeless, she’s reunited with her family. At school, she’s powerful and popular. At home, she’s wealthy beyond her dreams. But she quickly realizes her perfect life is a lie. Her family is falling apart and her friends are snobby, cruel and plastic. Worse yet, she discovers she was the cruelest one. Mortified by her past, she embarks on a journey of redemption and falls for Kyle, the “geek” she once tormented. Yet all the time she wonders if, when her memories return, she’ll become the bully she was before…and if she’ll lose Kyle.

Thoughts:

Sia completely grabbed me with the cover and the synopsis. I thought it sounded like a fantastic read and something that I’d really enjoy reading. Sia was an incredibly easy book to read, but at times it was too simplistic and Disney-esque for me to truly believe.

The story begins with Sia waking up on a park bench. She’s not sure where she is or who she is. She spends a week surviving on the streets with the help of Carol, a homeless lady that approaches her. After the week, she is reunited with her parents. Her parents are incredibly rich but come with their problems. They might have to become bankrupt and her mother is an alcoholic. Sia begins to learn what she was like before the memory loss and she doesn’t like her old self at all.

I have to say that I didn’t initially warm to Sia. I thought she was incredibly shallow. I know this was the writer’s intention though, as Sia came to realise how shallow her life was. I just could have done without the constant reminders about how beautiful she was. Sia has such a dramatic turnaround rather quickly in the story that it doesn’t come across as very credible and this is the Disney-esque feel that I mention. That’s not a negative comment though, I have no problem with Disney, but with real issues like the ones mentioned in this book, it’s not what I look for. However, I know that loads of people will love Sia. It’s just so easy to read and it does have that fairy tale feel.

My other problem with the book was the dramatic turnaround a lot of the other characters have. I don’t mind a happily ever after ending, but again, I had problems with the believability of the story. It didn’t seem true to what happens in real life.

I didn’t dislike Sia though. I read it quickly and I was intrigued to know what happened next. I thought Josh Grayson’s writing was good and incredibly readable. I just didn’t buy into the story. It was too neatly and easily solved.

NOTE: I’ve just read that Josh is submitting the screenplay to Disney and ABC Family next year. I do think Sia would be perfect for Disney!

Would I recommend it?:
Yes!- I think fans of a feel-good, fairy tale, young adult read would enjoy this!