One of the great things about writing a series like the Nightingales is that I never have to say goodbye to any of my characters. I can follow their stories from book to book and see how their lives develop. And judging from the feedback I get, readers enjoy it too. Everyone has their favourite Nightingale girl, and I often get requests to bring back a particular character.
Which is exactly what I’ve done in Nightingales Under The Mistletoe. The main character is Jess Jago, a feisty East End girl who made her first appearance in Nightingales On Call. Lots of readers enjoyed Jess’ journey from put-upon housemaid to student nurse and have been wondering what happened to her. So I was pleased to have the chance to bring her back and continue her story.
When Nightingales Under The Mistletoe begins in the winter of 1941, Jess is a qualified nurse working at the Nightingale Hospital in Bethnal Green. Unfortunately, most of the hospital has been bombed out during the Blitz, and several of the nurses, including Jess, have been sent down to a hospital in the country, along with many of the patients from London.
Jess isn’t happy about it. She feels her place is in her beloved East End, waiting for her soldier boyfriend Sam to come home. And she soon finds herself at odds with the Matron and staff of the country hospital, who clearly resent the London girls. Battle lines are drawn, and Jess isn’t one to back down from a fight!
But country life doesn’t stay quiet for long, with the arrival of an RAF bomber squadron in the village, as well as Jess’ old friend Effie O’Hara (another Nightingale favourite!). Effie is determined that she isn’t going to let a war stop her having fun, and Jess
finds herself dragged along with her friend’s plans. But with the prospect of death casting a constant shadow over them all, there is heartache as well as laughter for the nurses – and especially for Jess…
I hope you enjoy reading about Jess’ latest adventures in Nightingales Under The Mistletoe. It’s a festive feel-good read, with plenty of drama and some laughs, too!
Nightingales Under the Mistletoe
11th November 2015
Christmas 1941 and the nurses at the Nightingale are facing their toughest winter yet.
With shortages everywhere, and every news bulletin announcing more defeats and losses, the British people are weary and demoralised and The Nightingale Hospital is suffering too.
Millieis recently widowed and dealing with the demands of her family’s estate. It’s not long before her old world of The Nightingale begins to beckon, along with a long-lost love…
Jessis struggling with her move from East London to the quiet of the countryside.
Effiefinds herself exiled to a quiet village, but the quiet doesn’t last for long as she soon finds excitement in the shape of a smooth-talking GI.
As Christmas approaches, even the shelter of the countryside can’t protect the girls from heartache.
First of all I would like to say a big thank you to Holly for asking me to be a part of the blog tour for Christmas at Lilac Cottage.
And WOW! She’s done it again and delivered quite possibly the loveliest christmas book so far in the location of my dreams.
We meet Penny, an ice carver by trade who decides to rent out the annex of her cottage, the lucky tenants are Henry and his 16 year old daughter, Daisy. It becomes pretty clear early on that Penny and Henry are attracted to each other and that they have quite a spark, something which doesn’t go unnoticed by Daisy.
I love how their lives quickly became entangled with Daisy fast showing an interest in Penny’s ice carving. The sheer amount of research that must have gone in to the ice carving is immense, it was a truly fascinating career and I loved the ice-carving competition. It was definitely the perfect profession for a Christmas novel and certainly added to the magic.
I loved discovering more about Penny and Henry and their back stories, they certainly brought a tear to my eye and brought some of the most touching and poignant moments of the story. I loved the bond between between Henry and Daisy, it was a truly special relationship between a father and daughter that Holly managed to capture perfectly. As is always the case with a Holly Martin novel, the characters are beautifully described and are easy to fall in love with. Not to mention they seem to blend perfectly and are quite possibly a match made in heaven.
Add to that the picturesque location of White Cliff Bay, which straight away brings to mind snowy fields, quaint cottages and smoking chimneys with cosy fires and you know you are in for a real christmas treat. This was an exquisite book which really touched my heart and had me compelled to keep turning the page.
This is a real Christmas cracker that I wish I could read again from new so as to savour the magic and christmassy feelings it causes. I certainly can not wait for book 2 in the White Cliff Bay series.
Christmas at Lilac Cottage
White Cliff Bay
Welcome to the charming seaside town of White Cliff Bay, where Christmas is magical and love is in the air…
Penny Meadows loves her home – a cosy cottage decorated with pretty twinkling fairy lights and stunning views over the town of White Cliff Bay. She also loves her job as an ice-carver, creating breathtaking sculptures. Yet her personal life seems frozen.
When Henry and daughter Daisy arrive at the cottage to rent the annex, Penny is determined to make them feel welcome. But while Daisy is friendly, Henry seems guarded.
As Penny gets to know Henry, she realises there is more to him than meets the eye. And the connection between them is too strong to ignore …
While the spirit of the season sprinkles its magic over the seaside town and preparations for the ice sculpting competition and Christmas eve ball are in full swing, can Penny melt the ice and allow love in her heart? And will this finally be the perfect Christmas she’s been dreaming of?
Like a creamy hot chocolate with marshmallows, you won’t want to put this deliciously heartwarming novel down.
Spend the perfect Christmas in White Cliff Bay this year. Snowflakes on Silver Cove coming very soon.
First of all I would like to thank the publishers for sending me a copy in exchange for an honest review. It was brilliant to be a part of #TeamBea.
I’ll Take New York follows Bea, a Brooklyn bookstore owner and Jake, a psychiatrist. Both are recently singled, Bea after being let down once to many times by her boyfriend Otis, and Jake when his wife announces she wants a divorce. Their lives cross paths at a mutual friends party where as the only two singletons, decide to make a pact to remain free of relationships and enjoy life.
Well what can I say? I absolutely adored this book, it was a truly heartwarming and magical read. I was drawn in to both Bea and Jake’s world from the first word and couldn’t get enough of their lives and relationships. I was compelled to keep reading to find out what would happen to what was fast becoming two of my favourite book characters of 2014. With plenty of plot twists and turns to keep me guessing, this book had me hooked and I just could not predict where the story would take me next. Miranda wove magic with this book, I can hand on heart say there is not a single part of this book that I didn’t love.
I loved how Bea and Jake met through a truly chance encounter, fated to meet by the interlinking relationships of their nearest and dearest. It was like a modern day Romeo and Juliet, fated to meet and so obviously perfect for each other but life has other ideas. I was desperately hoping through out for that perfect ending.
This book has truly won me over as a fan of Miranda Dickinson, she writes with ease, the words flowing flawlessly from page to page. I loved how the story developed and how I was able to see both Jake and Bea’s take on events and their budding friendship. This book flowed beautifully between the characters and events of their lives, keeping me hooked and often sat up late reading as I was desperate for more of my favourite characters. This of course has one set back, I finished this book far too soon. I really hope there is more to come soon from Bea and James.
If like me you love a good will they/won’t they book, this is most definitely one to include on your TBR pile this year. It sparkles with magic just like the cover 🙂
I'll Take New York
The author of the Sunday Times bestselling Take a Look at Me Now, returns to New York with her most heart-warming, romantic story yet.
Have you ever given up on love?
When her boyfriend lets her down for the last time, Brooklyn bookshop owner Bea James makes a decision – no more. No more men, no more heartbreak, and no more pain.
Psychiatrist Jake Steinmann is making a new start too, leaving his broken marriage behind in San Francisco. From now on there'll just be one love in his life: New York.
At a party where they seem to be the only two singletons, Bea and Jake meet, and decide there’s just one thing for it. They will make a pact: no more relationships.
When I saw this pop up on Amazon over Christmas, I knew I just had to read this novella. I have loved the I Heart Series and it was brilliant to be able to catch up with some of the much loved characters from the series. I can only apologise for the belated review.
In Jenny Lopez saves Christmas, Jenny tackles Christmas with her usual style and attention to detail. Determined to make this the best Christmas ever for her friends, they head up to snowy Vermont with the worlds largest Christmas tree, with Jenny hoping to fix her friendship with Angela. But as to be expected, things never go to plan and this Christmas looks as though it is heading for disaster.
This was a lovely festive read which was easily consumed in a single sitting. With the usual disasters I’ve come to expect from any tale involving Jenny, this novella had me doubled over laughing at times but also on the edge of tears. This had everything you could hope for in a festive tale, snow, Christmas trees, friendship and love. Not to mention our old favourites; Jenny, Angela and a brief glimpse of the dashing Alex, to name a few. Oh and a few gorgeous new faces 😉
I do not want to say too much as I think this is a novella to be enjoyed, don’t worry that Christmas is over, download it now and get caught up once again with some old favourites and see where their lives are heading now. You won’t be disappointed, I just hope we aren’t kept waiting too long to meet up with them again.
Jenny Lopez Saves Christmas: An I Heart Short Story
I Heart short story: a new story starring Jenny Lopez. From the bestselling author of What a Girl Wants and I Heart Christmas.
Sleighbells ring, are you listening…
Who wouldn’t want to escape to a cabin in snowy Vermont for Christmas? Jenny Lopez’s year has gone wrong, and Vermont with champagne and a sparkly Christmas tree is going to mend everything, along with her best friend Angela.
She hits a few obstacles along the way, including a major work crisis and some unexpected Christmas companions. But this is Jenny Lopez. She’s determined to have the best Christmas known to man, even if it means dragging a turkey three miles in the snow. Single-handedly and in a Santa outfit Jenny Lopez is going to save Christmas - and have the best holiday season ever.
It’s our first Xmas at Compelling Reads so we wanted to say a huge thanks to those who have shared their books with us, read our reviews and all of you who have helped us! We hope you enjoy the day with your loved ones!
Thanks to Avon for letting us have a copy of this for review, having read Love me or Leave me I was looking forward to this.
All I want for Christmas is a sweet little stocking filler that gives a glimpse into the couples that we met in Love Me or Leave me before it all fell apart and lead them to their visit to the divorce hotel.
Dawn & Kirk (well Dawn) is trying to impress her mum and sister with a veggie feast and prove just her secure her marriage is.
Meanwhile Lucy is preparing for her wedding, but her step children are busy preparing her downfall.
Jo has her Xmas sorted, but it’s missing just one thing her husband Dave has disappeared.
This little short story will leave you wanting more! In which case if you haven’t already grab yourselves a copy of Love me or leave me!
All I Want For Christmas: A festive short story
25th November 2014
Dreams come true on Christmas day … don’t they?
It’s three days until Lucy and Andrew’s perfect winter wedding. Over Christmas dinner the two families will meet for the first time.
What could possibly go wrong?!
Jo has planned her first Christmas as a married woman with military precision. But it seems her new husband Dave has gone missing …
Strict vegans Dawn and Kirk slave away over a unique Christmas feast, but Dawn’s mum doesn’t like mung beans. And she certainly doesn’t like Kirk …
Will these couples survive the Christmas madness and get the day they dreamed of?
Treat yourself with this GORGEOUS FESTIVE SHORT STORY by the BRILLIANTLY FUNNY Sunday Times top ten BESTSELLING author Claudia Carroll!