Holly Martin is back with another delicious read that makes me feel all warm and fuzzy. We are once again back on the gorgeous and idyllic Hope Island, this time with the focus on Freya and Roma; both of whom appeared in Spring at Blueberry Bay. We also meet up with some of our old favourites and get to see what has happened since we last visited.
Freya arrived on Hope Island following her relationship break down, she finds a job with Rome and discovers a love of working with glass. Her whole life becomes entwined with Rome and Hope Island. Rome is her best friend and despite knowing from past experience that she shouldn’t have all her eggs in one basket, Freya is drawn to Rome. But as her feelings blossom she is unsure of Rome’s feelings for her and begins to second guess the briefest of touches and the looks. WIll Freya get her happy ending? Rome comes with some painful baggage and is he ready to open his heart again?
I loved Summer at Buttercup Beach, from the beginning I was drawn in to the beautiful beach setting and the beautiful Hope Island. Holly creates a magical atmosphere where it feels as though anything is possible. I loved being able to revisit the Island and its picturesque setting. Holly’s description are so beautiful and paint such a vivid picture I could easily imagine the scenes.
The characters as always are easy to love, I love meeting old and new characters and discovering their pasts. We met Freya and Rome previously so it was nice to have that back knowledge but then building on that information and discovering this whole other side to the person. I love the fact that Holly uses dual perspective, enabling me as the reader to see the story from both sides and discovering little gems of information.
I loved Freya from the start, she had this likeable quality to her and I felt the need to protect her. I could see early on she had feelings for Rome and I was desperate for her to act on these feelings and hopefully get her happy ending. It was clear he adored her but her vision was clouded by her past. As for Rome, oh man he is literally a god. He is the man of my dreams. Rome, like Freya has a past which has left him heart broken, but it was clear early on that him and Freya were destined to be together. I was desperate for them to realise this fact and that both had feelings for each other.
But things are never simple! Holly has a plot which flows beautifully, building suspense and throwing in some wicked plot twists which kept me on the hooked and desperately reading on late in to the night, desperate to see where their story would take me next and whether they would finally both get the happy ending they deserved.
Summer at Buttercup Beach is a beautiful summer read, perfect for those long summer days. This book delivers on every level, with suspense and plot twists, as well a magical romantic feeling weaving its way through the pages.
Holly is one of my favourites authors and never fails to put a smile on my face. I hope to catch up with Hope Island and its residents again soon.
Summer at Buttercup Beach
Pull up a deck chair and bask in the beautiful sunshine on Buttercup Beach. The sand is warm, the sea is sparkling blue and romance is sizzling in the air…
For two years Freya Greene has hidden the fact that she’s totally and utterly in love with her best friend Rome Lancaster. It’s not been easy – they work together in his glasswork business, she lives above his workshop and, he’s completely gorgeous. But Rome has never shown any sign of returning those feelings. Until now…
Lately they’ve shared affectionate touches and words heavy with meaning. Yet Freya knows Rome has a damaged heart. After losing his fiancé in a tragic accident, he’s not allowed himself to fall in love.
Freya has already had her heart broken by a man who couldn’t let go of a past love. Can she risk it happening again? Rome and Freya have a friendship that could blossom into something more. Are they both brave enough to take that chance?
Fall in love on Hope Island with the perfect romantic story to escape into this summer. For fans of Miranda Dickinson, Sarah Morgan and Jane Costello.
Save The Date is the latest instalment in Aven Ellis’ Chicago on Ice hockey series and is my favourite to date. As always Aven delivers us real and likeable characters which you grow to love as you uncover their stories. With every book I grow to love the characters more and more and this is no exception, Luca; need I say more?
Aven has a way with words which is quite literally mesmerising enabling her to form such beautifully description characters full of personality and with such full and intricate life stories it literally leaves me breathless. I love how she manages to entwine their lives and their backstories to create plot which are warm, funny and full of love and romance. I always know a book by Aven will leave me with a smile on my face and a warm fuzzy feeling and I am always eagerly awaiting the next instalment to catch glimpses of old favourites.
This is a sweet, warm and beautiful tale about Luca, a gorgeous, sexy hockey player who is so much more than meets the eye and is certainly my idea of the perfect man. I could literally weep that this man is not real 🙁 and Collin’s, as always we are left with the female I can’t help but love and hope for all her dreams to come true, and to share her journey to her happy ever after.
As always Aven has delivered the perfect read, one I devoured and was left bereft when I finished as I wanted to much to be back in this warm and fuzzy world where all is good. As always the hockey is on point and really adds to the drama and sexiness of this book.
Save The Date is a book which doesn’t disappoint and delivers on every level. So stop what you are doing right now and slip in to this beautiful story and enjoy the pure escapism.
About the author:
I live in the Dallas area with my family. I enjoy clipping out recipes I will never get around
to trying, working out, and chatting with friends on social media. I’m a hockey nut (Go
Stars!) and watch as much as humanly possible. I also love shopping and fashion and admit
to being obsessed with whatever the Duchess of Cambridge is wearing. In addition to be
obsessed with the Duchess, I’m equally obsessed with any show or cookbook featuring
Save The Date
Chicago on Ice Series Book 3
Soul Mate Publishing
Chicago event planner Collins Brady knows how to make the magic happen for her clients. From elaborate weddings to cute baby showers, Collins knows what to do to make an experience breathtakingly perfect. In her mind, she adds the sparkle that makes everything shine.
If only she had that same sparkle in her personal life.
While she’s good at her job, her true career dreams lie elsewhere. If she could do anything, it would be to become an equestrian riding instructor. That dream, however, is shelved due to practicality. And that’s not the only thing Collins has shelved. After ending a relationship with her college sweetheart, Collins has taken her heart out of the game, too. She wonders if that magical kind of love can exist. But maybe it’s only a fantasy.
Or is it? All of that changes the night she meets Luca Ballerini, the rookie goalie for the Chicago Buffaloes. Passionate and fiercely determined, Luca has only made time for hockey in his life—until he meets Collins. Her spark hasn’t escaped him, and now Luca wants something other than his hockey career.
But following their dreams and hearts isn’t always easy. Can Collins and Luca find a way to live their dreams with each other?
Will love get past them? Or will this goalie make a perfect save of Collins’ heart?
Another book purchased in the wake of Fab Mag’s Fabulous Night in – I’ve not read any of Mhairi McFarlane’s books before, but having seen her chat about her work I was intrigued in this book and grabbed a copy from the popular depleting pile.
In who’s that girl we encounter Edie as she attends the wedding of 2 work colleagues, everything is going wonderfully, embarrassing bridesmaid singing aside and then the groom kisses Edie and they’re caught by the bride. The ensuing fall out sees Edie returning home to Nottingham side-lined on a copywriting project. Here she finds ghost writing the autobiography of rising acting star Elliot Owen maybe more challenging than anticipated.
A heart-warming story that looks at the fallout and trolling of someone through social media along with an almost comparison of the negative aspects of fame. The budding friendship between Edie and Elliot is genuine and was great to see the sharing of secrets between the two of them along with the sharing of advice. Edie’s downfall turns out to be a learning experience as she takes a look at her life and learns about herself and her genuine friends, making a decision on how to deal with the future.
A genuinely laughed and cried at this book – the first book in a while that I couldn’t leave till the next day and had to finish in one go. Will definitely check out more from McFarlane
Who's That Girl?
7th April 2016
When Edie is caught in a compromising position at her colleagues’ wedding, all the blame falls on her – turns out that personal popularity in the office is not that different from your schooldays. Shamed online and ostracised by everyone she knows, Edie’s forced to take an extended sabbatical – ghostwriting an autobiography for hot new acting talent, Elliot Owen. Easy, right?
Wrong. Banished back to her home town of Nottingham, Edie is not only dealing with a man who probably hasn’t heard the word ‘no’ in a decade, but also suffering an excruciating regression to her teenage years as she moves back in with her widowed father and judgy, layabout sister.
When the world is asking who you are, it’s hard not to question yourself. Who’s that girl? Edie is ready to find out.
Liv and Adam are about to enjoy the last night of their holiday in Mexico – Liv has pulled out all the stops with her dress and high heels, because though it’s meant to be a secret her best friend Cass let it slip that Adam is going to propose. She’s been waiting all holiday so tonight has go to be the night. Meanwhile Adam has gone to long lengths to make it the perfect proposal, but when a simple error in calculating how long it will take to get the restaurant puts a spanner in the works he starts to second guess his plan and things go from bad to worse when instead of the expected proposal instead he declares he ‘wants a break’.
Neither Adam or Liv can quite work out what’s gone wrong and neither of them are able to work things out, instead things get worse, friends are involved, things are assumed and blown out of proportion and soon it seems like the break could be permanent as they wonder what could be if they weren’t together.
Another wonderful novel by Lindsey which is full of the humour you expect from her style whilst also being true to the characters. There are some real light hearted moments (a cat called Daniel Craig wearing a thong…), amongst other serious moments exploring miscommunication and unneeded involvement by friends and family.
I loved the character of Liv, a hard working vet who doesn’t realise how loved she is by those around her and is made aware of just how unsure she is of what she wants from life. I think I changed my mind throughout the book several times on how I wanted it to conclude – a thoroughly enjoyable read!
We Were On a Break
6th October 2016
I was delighted when I was asked to read and review the new Holly Martin book. I am a massive fan of Holly and have fallen in love with her writing style more with every book. Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky was no exception, in true Holly style it had me both laughing and crying and ticked all the boxes for the perfect read.
Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky follows Piper, a travel reviewer who finds her self heading to the most Northern Island of the British Isles, to review a new Christmas resort and town. Piper “Pip” had visited the Island once as a child with her best friend Gabe, and is keen to revisit as she has fond memories. Pip and Gabe are no longer friends, we learn early on that they had a blossoming romance as well as being best friends, but some unfortunate timing and dramatic events saw Pip leaving her old home and life, moving away forever and spending the next ten years travelling the world.
But of course things are never simple and as Pip arrives at the resort, she soon discovers that the new owner is none other than Gabe, who now has a young daughter Wren. We soon learn all of the misunderstandings that occurred on that fateful day which tore the young lovers apart, it soon becomes apparent that they still have a spark between them but is it too late? And do Gabe and Pip really want to open those old wounds? Wrap this all up with that Christmassy feel and you know you are on to a winner.
I loved Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky from page one, I was hooked and found myself desperately reading on to find out what would happen next. I could easily have read this in one sitting if it wasn’t for the need to sleep (02:30 I eventually put it down). There was something magical about this book and I was immediately drawn to the characters. I adored Pip and Gabe, they seemed so perfect for each other and they have to be my two favourite characters of all time. I loved their shared history, I loved the lives they had led and he people they had become despite all the heart ache, but most of all I loved that they so obviously fit together. I was desperate for a happy ending and to see these two people so perfect for each other back together.
Then we have the delightfully cheeky Wren and her innocence and ability to put a smile on my face. Her love of Frozen reminds me so much of my daughter, I could picture her so easily, cheeky face and all. Wren added that little extra something and really made the story.
There were plenty of twists and turns in the plot of Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky to keep me hooked and guessing where the story would take me next. There were some unexpected blips but each really added to the depth and reality of the book. I was also delighted to see the some old and familiar faces from previous novels, it was lovely to catch up with them.
This was a truly magically delightful novel which needs to devoured, you need to give yourself the day off as this is a book not to put down. It was easy to read and the words flowed easily from the page, leaving me both howling with laughter and sobbing. Holly has a way with words that makes the reader feel what the characters feel and imagine scenes with such clarity, you almost imagine you are really there. This is a Christmas cracker of a read and should be on any self respecting readers Christmas list. I sincerely hope I get to meet Pip and Gabe again one day. Now for book two, I have high hopes…….
Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky
A Town Called Christmas Book 1
Curl up with this gorgeously romantic tale and let the glistening snow and the roaring fires of Stardust Lake Hotel get you in the festive spirit this Christmas.
Piper Chesterfield lives a glamorous life travelling the world and reviewing the finest hotels. She calls nowhere home, she works alone and that’s how she likes it. For long ago Piper decided that to protect her heart she should lock it away.
So when Piper’s next assignment brings her to the newly opened Stardust Lake Hotel for the festive season, the last person she expects to face is Gabe Whitaker, the man who broke her heart so completely she could never love again.
But Piper isn’t the only one who has been frozen in time by heartbreak. Gabe hasn’t forgotten the golden-eyed girl who disappeared from his world without a trace.
Now fate has reunited them on Juniper island, can the magic of Christmas heal old wounds? And can this enchanting town be the one place Piper can finally call home?
I’m on a bit of an Erin Lawless roll at the moment, after reading Somewhere only we know (http://compellingreads.co.uk/somewhere-only…w-erin-lawless/), I had to check out The Best Thing I Never Had, so I bumped it up my now rather long Kindle list.
In the Best Thing I Never Had Nicky & Miles are getting married and out go the invitations on a long ago made promise to their friends to be best man and bridesmaid. There’s just one problem, 5 years ago they were all the best of friends enjoying Uni life, but then a secret came between them all and the fall out was messy and painful and led to some of the group not speaking to us since. it’s only Nicky that has remained a constant between the group and with a wedding bringing them back to their old University groups and face to face with each other and the memories from that time it’s sure that drama can ensue.
This has been my favourite Erin Lawless book so far I was transported along with this group of friends into their world and carried along in their group. The friendship between Harriet and Adam was beautiful and *spoiler alert* I was rooting for them throughout the novel, so I was a bit disappointed that there wasn’t a definate outcome to them… I need more, I want to know if they lived happily ever after & ashamedly I want Leigha to get more of a comeuppance. A sign of an excellent book that left me wanting more of the character! Well done Erin!
Best Thing I Never Had
5th December 2013
Five years ago at university they had been seven friends that laughed hard and loved harder.
Nicky and Miles were the couple that were always meant to be… Leigha and Adam, not so much…
So when Adam and Harriet grew close during endless days in the library, they did the one thing that changed everything – they kept a secret. And when it came out, it all fell apart.
When the day comes for bridesmaids to be chosen and best men to fulfil drunken promises, Nicky and Miles’ wedding isn’t just a wedding, it’s a reunion – loaded with past hurts, past regrets, past loves…
The Best Thing I Never Had is in turns funny and sad, but always honest, about friendship in all its forms and the practicality of second chances.