blog tour, books, reviews

Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize Longlist Review: I’m a Fan – Sheena Patel

Celebrating the international world of fiction in all its forms including poetry, novels, short stories and drama, the annual Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize is one of the most important awards for young writers, aimed at encouraging raw creative talent worldwide. The prize is named after the Swansea-born writer, Dylan Thomas, one of the most influential, internationally renowned writers of the mid-twentieth century, and invokes his memory to support the writers of today and nurture the talents of tomorrow.

The full longlist for 2023 is:

–               Limberlost byRobbie Arnott (Atlantic Books) – novel (Australia)

–               Seven Steeples by Sara Baume (Tramp Press) – novel (Ireland)

–               God’s Children Are Little Broken Things by Arinze Ifeakandu (Orion, Weidenfeld & Nicolson) – short story collection (Nigeria)

–               Maps Of Our Spectacular Bodies by Maddie Mortimer (Picador, Pan Macmillan) – novel (UK)

–               Phantom Gang by Ciarán O’Rourke (The Irish Pages Press) – poetry collection (Ireland)

–               Things They Lost by Okwiri Oduor (Oneworld) – novel (Kenya)

–               Losing the Plot by Derek Owusu (Canongate Books) – novel (UK)

–               I’m a Fan by Sheena Patel (Rough Trade Books) – novel (UK)

–               Send Nudes by Saba Sams (Bloomsbury Publishing) – short story collection (UK)

–               Bless the Daughter Raised by a Voice in Her Head by Warsan Shire (Chatto & Windus) – poetry collection (Somalia-UK)

–               Briefly, A Delicious Life by Nell Stevens (Picador, Pan Macmillan) – novel (UK)

–               No Land to Light On by Yara Zgheib (Atlantic Books, Allen & Unwin) – novel (Lebanon)

Worth £20,000, the Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize is one of the UK’s most prestigious literary prizes as well as the world’s largest literary prize for young writers. Awarded for the best published literary work in the English language, written by an author aged 39 or under, the Prize celebrates the international world of fiction in all its forms including poetry, novels, short stories and drama.

American poet, novelist and essayist Patricia Lockwood received the award in 2022 for her inventive debut novel, No One Is Talking About This (Bloomsbury Publishing). Chair of the 2022 Judges, Namita Gokhale, said: “No One Is Talking About This is a vital reflection on online culture today. A deeply timely winner, Patricia Lockwood is the voice of a generation of new writers who grew up under the constant pressures of real-time news and social media.”

The Swansea University Dylan Thomas Prize shortlist will be announced on Thursday 23 March followed by the Winner’s Ceremony held in Swansea on Thursday 11 May, prior to International Dylan Thomas Day on Sunday 14 May.

In I’m A Fan a single speaker uses the story of their experience in a seemingly unequal, unfaithful relationship as a prism through which to examine the complicated hold we each have on one another. With a clear and unforgiving eye, the narrator unpicks the behaviour of all involved, herself included, and makes startling connections between the power struggles at the heart of human relationships and those of the wider world, in turn offering a devastating critique of access, social media, patriarchal heteronormative relationships, and our cultural obsession with status and how that status is conveyed. In this incredible debut, Sheena Patel announces herself as a vital new voice in literature, capable of rendering a range of emotions and visceral experiences on the page. Sex, violence, politics, tenderness, humour—Patel handles them all with both originality and dexterity of voice.

Sheena Patel is a writer and assistant director for film and TV who was born and raised in North West London. She is part of the 4 BROWN GIRLS WHO WRITE collective, has been published in 4 BROWN GIRLS WHO WRITE (Rough Trade Books) and a poetry collection of the same name (FEM Press). In 2022 she was chosen as one of the Observer’s Top 10 best debut novelists. I’m a Fan is her first book.Follow her on Twitter @Sheena_Patel_

My thoughts: I’m from the same part of North West London as the author and the narrator of this book, so every now and then as a place was mentioned I’d get a little surprise jolt of nostalgia. But otherwise the narrator and I are nothing alike. I couldn’t tell if this was purely fictional, autofiction or a mix of the two.

The obsession with “the man I want to be with” and his many girlfriends, especially the one she’s stalking on Instagram, the fact that he’s serially unfaithful to his wife, the way he toys with the narrator’s feelings and she never seems willing to just get away from him, the boyfriend she clearly doesn’t love anymore. All of it left me cold, we would not be friends.

The stream of consciousness style was interesting, the way it felt like the inner monologue of a young woman’s mind, her constant sense of being unbalanced, she knows none of this behaviour is healthy but yet can’t seem to break out of the cycle.

We all use social media to look at lives we want to live – the comparison, the shameless “where is that from?” and the copycatting of bits of other lives we can afford and hope will somehow make us more like them. This I could totally relate to. But her stalking of the other other woman, that I found a bit much.

As a story of obsession, emotional self harm this totally hits the mark. You’re not a fan, you’re obsessed and it needs to stop. Though I am now a fan of Sheena Patel, can’t wait to see what she writes next.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: Reservoir – Livi Michael

Acclaimed novelist Livi Michael returns with a tense novel about memory, guilt and reinvention, and the dangerous power games played by children and adults.

At the International Conference Centre in Geneva, Hannah Rossier, formerly Annie Price, comes face to face with Neville Weir, someone from her childhood whom she never expected, or wanted, to meet again. As Neville’s reasons for attending the conference become clear, the dark waters of Hannah’s past start to rise. Hannah is a psychotherapist, with a specialist interest in memory and how connections are made between past and present. She has reinvented herself successfully, moving from a small northern town in England to Lucerne, Switzerland, with her husband, Thibaut.

Nobody, not even Hannah, knows the full truth about herself. Her ‘memories’ consist of glimpses of the place where she played in childhood, known simply as ‘The Wild’. Over the three days of the conference, she has to decide whether she can avoid Neville, or whether she should submit to an encounter with him and with her past. And in her keynote lecture about the neuroscience of memory, how much to conceal or reveal. But can her specialism save her from drowning?

LIVI MICHAEL has published seven previous novels for adults: Rebellion; Succession; Accession; Under a Thin Moon which won the Arthur Welton award; Their Angel Reach which won the Faber Prize; All the Dark Air which was shortlisted for the Mind Award; and Inheritance, which won a Society of Authors Award.

She has also published several novels for young adults and children and her short stories have been published in several magazines and anthologies. Livi has two sons and lives in Greater Manchester. She teaches creative writing at Manchester Metropolitan University and has been a senior lecturer in Creative Writing at Sheffield Hallam University.

My thoughts: a terrible incident from her childhood haunts Professor Hannah Rossier but she has been able to bury it deep enough to work, marry, build a reputation, until now when an unfriendly face from the past tries to bring her world down.

Neville was a slightly strange little boy who followed Hannah (then known as Annie) and her friend Joanna around, spying on them in the way of lonely, socially awkward kids. He was caught up in the incident and blames Hannah for the shape his life took. Although she was also a child at the time.

This was incredibly fascinating, I used to play in the woods with my friend at about the same age, and we were forever coming home soaking wet or coated in mud, famously once without a shoe (left in the sinking mud that took it) but luckily nothing serious ever happened. Children’s memories are often terrible and since we know that the part of the brain that understands consequences doesn’t develop till later, they can’t always explain their actions.

To place so much blame, although Neville insists it’s not about blame, on another child, is very wrong. It was the adults (his parents, teachers, social workers, police) who let him down, who punished him wrongly, who didn’t see that he was innocent, not Hannah. Indeed they hadn’t seen each other for 40 years and she had no idea what had happened to him. Her own experience was difficult enough.

The events at the conference, the confrontation, when it comes, is shocking. Neville carries so much anger, despite overcoming it all, despite his career and life now. It would be like carrying resentment of our childhood slights or bullies all our lives – it’s not healthy.

Hannah is confused and hurt by his accusations, by his genuine anger. He can’t even really say what it is he wants from her. He insists it’s not an apology he wants, but can’t articulate it. Jopi, the conference host, attempts to resolve things, but I don’t know if it actually makes it worse. There’s still a lot unresolved at the end and I found it unsettling not knowing how any of the characters were going to move ahead.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: The Garnett Girls – Georgina Moore

Love makes you do things you never thought you were capable of…

Forbidden, passionate and all-encompassing, Margo and Richard’s love affair was the stuff of legend—but, ultimately, doomed.

When Richard walked out, Margo locked herself away, leaving her three daughters, Rachel, Imogen, and Sasha, to run wild.

Years later, charismatic Margo entertains lovers and friends in her cottage on the Isle of Wight, refusing to ever speak of Richard and her painful past. But her silence is keeping each of the Garnett girls from finding true happiness.

Rachel is desperate to return to London but is held hostage by responsibility for Sandcove, their beloved but crumbling family home.

Dreamy Imogen feels the pressure to marry her kind, considerate fiancé, even when life is taking an unexpected turn.

And wild, passionate Sasha, trapped between her fractured family and controlling husband, is weighed down by a secret that could shake the family to its core…

The Garnett Girls, the captivating debut novel from Georgina Moore, asks whether children can ever be free of the mistakes of their parents.

My thoughts: I had been waiting for this book for a while as I follow the lovely Georgina Moore on Twitter and in her other guise as a publicity guru she has sent me a few books to review. Every little hint dropped told me this would be a great read, and it was.

I am drawn to books about complicated, messy families, probably because mine is pretty boring! The Garnetts are an all female clan, plus a few husbands, boyfriends and hangers on. After Richard, Margo’s husband, leaves her with three small children, she reclaims her maiden name and forbids discussion of what has happened.

This does not do anyone any good – all of the girls have questions and eldest daughter Rachel has some pretty sad memories too. Of her mother’s breakdown after he leaves, of trying to parent her little sisters far too young. Now she’s feeling trapped in the family home, miserable and worried her husband might be drifting away.

Middle child Imogen is struggling with her identity, used to playing peace keeper, she’s not willing to rock the boat but needs to be honest with herself. And her family.

Youngest Garnett, Sasha, is harbouring secrets, and stuck with a horrible husband, in love with childhood friend Johnny, and furious with her mother.

It’s all going to come out in the end, the closeness of the Garnett Girls will force these bubbling issues to the top, and finally the air will be cleared. But it’s not going to be easy.

For all Richard is not really part of this story – it all revolves around him. Around his absence, around the love story his children have created, around the tiny glimpses they’ve had from other people – their aunt, neighbours, family friends, memories that they don’t all share due to their ages.

The relationship between the sisters, and their mother, and her sister Alice too, another Garnett, is what the story centres around. The secrets and lies of the past catching up with them, the things that have long needed talking about. There’s a lovely scene where the men are standing on the beach watching the Garnetts swim and realising that they don’t really matter in the grand scheme of the family. It’s sad but also pretty true.

Instead of all the parties and drinking, what Margo needs to do is just talk to her beloved daughters. But protected by their close knit community on the Isle of Wight (a character all of its own too) and sheltered by the old house, inherited from her parents, there’s always someone else or something that needs attending to and conversations are avoided.

The writing is clever and funny and crackles along, full of life and the complicated messiness of things. I really enjoyed reading The Garnett Girls and I think you will too!

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: God’s Country – Kerry Hadley-Pryce

‘‘I was born in the Black Country and have lived there most of my life. I’ve
always felt that it, and the texture of its part-industrial, part-rural landscape
provokes a unique sensation of place, and I try to emulate that in my writing.
In God’s Country, the Black Country doesn’t just operate as background
scenery, but as a resonant, ever-present figure, and my characters have to
deal with that’ – KERRY HADLEY-PRYCE

Kerry Hadley-Pryce has become synonymous with menacing fiction from the Black Country. In this delicious tale a funeral provides the impetus for a
claustrophobic narrative packed with threat and paranoia.
Guy Flood returns to the Black Country with his girlfriend, Alison, to attend his
identical twin brother’s funeral. The reasons he left, and the secrets he left
behind, slowly become clear. A chilling dark fiction, dominated by unknown
and all-seeing narrator.

KERRY HADLEY-PRYCE was born in the Black Country. She worked
nights in a Wolverhampton petrol station before becoming a secondary
school teacher. She wrote her first novel, The Black Country, whilst
studying for an MA in Creative Writing at the Manchester Writing
School. She is currently a PhD student at Manchester Metropolitan
University, researching Psychogeography and Black Country Writing.
God’s Country is her third novel She lives in Stourbridge and tweets

My thoughts: this is a strange and woozy novel, written in the second person, making it hard to fully understand the characters and relate to them, at a remove. Having returned to his family’s farm for his twin brother’s funeral, Guy is truculent and remote. His girlfriend Alison isn’t sure what to expect as Guy doesn’t speak about where he comes from, he’s changed his accent, and she’s surprised at how he reacts to his relatives.

There’s secrets and old resentments boiling away as the family gather, Guy’s father is gruff, bordering on hostile and his sister seems to be mentally elsewhere. Alison feels awkward and unwelcome as father and son circle one another.

She’s trying to find out why Guy left, why his relationships turned so sour but he’s shutting her out, and in the remote farm, there’s little relief to be had. Soon it all comes to the surface, none of it pretty.

Written in the distinctive Black Country dialect, Alison is an outsider who can’t always understand what’s being said, who doesn’t understand the ripples between the family, much like the reader, she’s kept at bay. An unsettling and unusual read.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

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Blog Tour: And I Was Like November – Rachael Biggs

AndIwaslikeNov copy

Welcome to the book tour for And I Was Like November, a “beautifully writtern bummer” by Rachael Biggs. Read on for more info!


And I Was Like November

Expected Publication Date: January 31, 2023

Genre: Womens Fiction/ Black Humor/ Short Stories

20 October 2022… In a world where hyper-positivity and woke culture abounds, Rachael Biggs’ And I Was Like November offers a glimpse of the other side, while navigating themes of isolation and longing.

These are stories of what happens to the women that didn’t get their happy ending—the ones who don’t believe the cliches about family being everything and who know that live-laugh-love isn’t the cure all. Taboo topics that embrace a gritty reality include transactional sex, romantic obsession, maternal disdain and teenaged drug dealing are linked by the need to survive in the midst of questionable sanity and deep loneliness.

“This is what happens when things don’t work out and the consequences and feelings we have in private as a result. They’re stories about women whose lives aren’t glossy, filtered, and Instagram ready, and the contrast of their brushed-under-the-rug realities is maybe more interesting and relatable. In a world where we’re bombarded with shiny fallacies, this is the beautiful side of ugly,” said Rachael.

Available on Amazon starting January 31st!

About the Author

Rachael Biggs is an author, screenwriter, copywriter and journalist. She studied creative writing at UBC, UCLA, and with masters of the craft Syd Field and Robert McKee. In 2016 she earned a screenwriting diploma from Vancouver Film School with a focus on television.

Her memoir Yearning for Nothings and Nobodies debuted to critical acclaim and was adapted for the screen as Behind the Eight Ball.

She is a frequent contributor to print and on-line publications and her short fiction appears regularly in literary magazines including Door is a Jar, Angel City Review and Charge Magazine.

She divides her time between Vancouver and Los Angeles.

Rachael Biggs

Book Tour Schedule

January 30th

R&R Book Tours (Kick-Off)

Stine Writing (Spotlight)

@read_dog_reviews (Spotlight)

Riss Reviews (Review)

January 31st

Breakeven Books (Spotlight)

Timeless Romance Blog (Spotlight)

Heidi Lynn’s Book Reviews (Spotlight)

February 1st

@wolves_perception (Spotlight)

@vinamkent_author (Spotlight)

The Faerie Review (Review)

February 2nd

Rambling Mads (Spotlight)

@evelovesbooks_travel_art (Review)

@ofbooksandromance (Review)

@latishaslowkeylife (Spotlight)

February 3rd

@booknerd_jen22 (Spotlight)

Liliyana Shadowlyn (Spotlight)

@the.brooke.library (Review)

Book Tour Organized By:

R&R Button

R&R Book Tours

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Blog Tour: Nothing Can Hurt You Now – Simone Campos, translated by Rahul Bery

Lucinda has lived her whole life in the shadow of her glamorous and outgoing high-end model sister Viviana. But when Viviana suddenly disappears on a trip to São Paulo, Lucinda drops everything to track her down.

Met with indifference from the police, Lucinda joins forces with Viviana’s girlfriend Graziane to launch her own investigation. When she discovers that her sister had a thriving career as a sex worker, the list of possible suspects widens.

Then a cryptic text suggests that Viviana is still alive but being held hostage. With the minutes ticking by, Lucinda and Graziane must track down the men from Viviana’s past to discover who might want to do her harm.

A furiously contemporary and vibrant thriller that crackles with danger.

My thoughts: the relationships between the three women at the heart of this gripping thriller are vital to the plot. Lucinda’s decision to hunt down and rescue her sister from whatever danger she’s in, even after discovering the secrets Viviana has been keeping (sex work, a girlfriend, visiting their estranged dad) and reading the book Viviana is writing, is because of the love she has for her glamorous sister, but also the complicated childhood they shared. Graziane loves Viviana, and knows her secrets already so their connection is more straightforward.

Putting their own lives in possible danger, interviewing exes, looking into Viviana’s most recent movements, and then heading out to a remote place, where she’s most likely being held, with no real idea of the risks, is incredibly brave.

Viviana’s chapters are full of unexpected violence, terror and her desperate attempts to stay alive, escape and stop an increasingly fragile situation from falling apart. Caught in a complex web between two men, Davi and Cesar, who have clearly got a lot of their own issues, she’s afraid for good reason.

The flashbacks to how Lucinda and Viviana grew up, filling in gaps to who they are now, helps the reader understand their relationship, and as Lucinda confronts the fact that she actually doesn’t really know her sister as well as she once thought, all three women are heading for a dangerous confrontation on a remote ranch.

A short but compelling story of the dangers that lurk beneath the exterior and of the relationships that most connect us. Viviana never loses hope her sister and girlfriend will help her, even as the farmhouse becomes more terrifying.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: One Day With You – Shari Low

One day, five lives, but whose hearts will be broken by nightfall?
It started like any other day in the picturesque village of Weirbridge.
Tress Walker waved her perfect husband Max off to work, with no idea that she was about to go into labour with their first child. And completely unaware that when she tried to track Max down, he wouldn’t be where he was supposed to be.
At the same time, Max’s best friend Noah Clark said goodbye to his wife, Anya, blissfully oblivious that he would soon discover the woman he adored had been lying to him for years.
And living alongside the two couples, their recently widowed friend, Nancy Jenkins, is getting ready to meet Eddie, her first true love at a school reunion. Will Nancy have the chance to rekindle an old flame, or will she choose to stay by Tress’s side when she needs her most?
One Day with You – two fateful goodbyes, two unexpected hellos, and 24 hours that change everything.
Purchase Link

Shari Low is the #1 bestselling author of over 30 novels, including My One Month Marriage and One Summer Sunrise and a collection of parenthood memories called Because Mummy Said So. She lives near Glasgow.

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My thoughts: Shari Low knows how to play on your emotions – this book made me laugh out loud and then want to sob, so keep some tissues handy.

On an ordinary day several lives will be changed forever. Births, deaths, old flames and new loves, truths revealed and lies told. The people at the centre of this story will go through it all in 24 hours.

Tress is pregnant with her first child, but not due for a couple of weeks, so waves husband Max off on a business trip. A trip his best friend Noah’s wife, Anya, is also on, she and Max work together.

Next door neighbour Nancy is getting all dressed up for a high school reunion that will bring her together with old boyfriend Eddie. She’d love pal Val (a familiar face if you know Low’s other books) to join her but husband Don has dementia and she worries about leaving him at home.

Things aren’t going to go to plan and a lot will happen to everyone before the end of the story and both characters and reader will be feeling differently by the end.

Another excellent, funny, sweet, clever and moving read from expert storyteller Shari Low.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: The House That Made Us – Alice Cavanagh

One Day meets UpThe House That Made Us is a love story – and a life story – told through a series of photographs and inspired by a true story

When Mac and Marie marry and find a home of their own, Mac takes a snap of them outside their newbuild bungalow, the garden bare and the paint on the front door still wet. It becomes a tradition, this snap, and slowly the photographs build into an album of a fifty-year relationship.

Every year they take a photo and though things change around them – the garden matures, the fashions change, they grow older – the one constant is their love. Every year, come rain, come shine, from the Seventies through the decades, every photo tells the story of their love. But life never travels the path you expect it to, though they know that a life with love is a life lived to the full.

Now, in the present day, the photo album belongs to someone who doesn’t know the people in its pages. As they watch the lives from the past unfold, will the truth of their love story be told…?

A heart-breaking story about life and love for readers who love Holly Miller, Jojo Moyes and Hazel Prior.

My thoughts: this was a moving and heartfelt book about love, family and the bonds that hold us to one another. Every week our narrator visits an elderly woman and they look at a photo album, a yearly picture of a couple (and then a varying number of children and pets) each year taken in front of their house.

Who they are, and indeed who our narrator and his listener are, is slowly revealed through the pictures and the story behind them. The story of Mac and Marie, and their home.

At times very sad, and at others laugh out loud funny, the ups and downs of the couple and their extended family is a true celebration of what it is to build a life and make a house a home.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: The Village Vicar – Julie Houston

Fans of Katie Fforde, Phillipa Ashley and The Vicar of Dibley will love this heartwarming and witty new novel from Julie Houston.

Three devoted sisters… One complicated family.
When Rosa Quinn left her childhood home in Westenbury, she never expected to return over a decade later as the village vicar. But after a health scare and catching her boyfriend cheating, Rosa jumps at the chance to start over and live closer to her triplet sisters Eva and Hannah.
But Rosa’s isn’t the only old face in the village, and when her role in the parish throws her into the path of her ex, she begins to wonder if she’s made a terrible mistake. Meanwhile, Eva and Hannah
face their own troubles, as secrets about their family threaten to emerge.
Can Rosa make a life for herself in Westenbury? Or will the sisters discover you can’t run away from the past?

Buy from Amazon
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Praise for Julie Houston:
‘A warm, funny story of sisters and the secrets they keep’ Sheila O’Flanagan
‘Warm, funny and well written, with a page turning plot, this book has everything! I loved it!’ Katie Fforde
‘Julie Houston at her best – heartfelt and hilarious’ Sandy Barker
‘Laugh-out-loud hilarious and heartwarming!’ Mandy Baggot
‘This book is an absolute gigglefest with characters you’ll fall in love with!’ Katie Ginger

Julie Houston lives in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire where her novels are set, and her only claims to fame are that she teaches part-time at ‘Bridget Jones’ author Helen Fielding’s old junior school and
her neighbour is ‘Chocolat’ author, Joanne Harris. Julie is married, with two adult children and a ridiculous Cockerpoo called Lincoln. She runs and swims because she’s been told it’s good for her, but would really prefer a glass of wine, a sun lounger and a jolly good book – preferably with Dev Patel in attendance.

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My thoughts: Westenbury sounds so delightful every time I read one of Julie Houston’s books and this is more of the same. Despite how complicated the family at the heart of this book is (and it really is!) they all love one another and Rosa and her sisters have a tight bond.

They all have their ups and downs, their struggles and tragedies and wins, just like all of us. Rosa has swapped a life of City success for a dog collar and the rambling old vicarage her grandfather once ruled, but she’s a different kind of incumbent. She enjoys a glass of wine and a gossip, and still wants to find love too. It’s not all fire and brimstone from the pulpit. Her sister Hannah has similar romantic dreams – but with complications and then there’s Freya – is her marriage really so perfect? Throw in troubled teens, exes, elderly parents, local gossips and a new dentist and well, it’s all a lot of fun.

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Daisy Does It Herself – Gracie Player

Sometimes, the Last Place You Intended to Go is Exactly Where You Need to Be.

When 26-year-old Daisy’s life in London comes crashing down around her, the only thing she canthink of is getting away – far away. That’s how she found herself stumbling off a train in England’s
picturesque Peak District – 150 miles from home, with no idea why she’d gone there and even less idea how she intended to get home.
As Daisy explores the gorgeous village of Upper Finlay, she glimpses the possibility of a different life.
The Derbyshire Dales offer up new friends, new opportunities, and a distractingly dishy object of attraction in the form of local bookstore owner Alex (and his bumbling Great Dane.) When Daisy
discovers Alex’s business is in trouble she steps in to save the day.
But London’s Calling – literally. The life Daisy ran away from is calling her back. Why then, is she so reluctant to heed its call?
Daisy’s got a decision to make: Will she play it safe, and return to what she knew? Or is she brave enough to take a leap of faith and create a bold, new life for herself in the last place she’d ever expected?
Daisy Does it Herself is a sweet, uplifting romantic comedy about the power of self-confidence, friendship and of course love! Fans of warm and witty romantic comedies with a guaranteed
happily-ever-after will be entranced.

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Universal Link

Gracie is the author of the romantic fiction novel Daisy Does it Herself.
Gracie loves to create strong, quirky heroines and hopes to introduce you to your latest book-boyfriend crush.
She makes her home in the stunning Peak District in Derbyshire. Where she lives with her partner — amid ongoing negotiations over the size of her book collection and whose job it is to take out the bins!

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My thoughts: this was a lot of fun and I really liked Daisy. She loses her job, her (actually quite awful) boyfriend all in the same day and finds herself in Derbyshire after falling asleep on the train.

A bookshop offers her shelter and there she meets Wolf the dog and Alex the bookshop owner. Offering to stay for a month for room and board in exchange for helping out in the shop, designing a website and generally avoiding the mess of her London life, Daisy stays put. And has a wonderful, happy month. And even comes up with a way to save the bookshop for closing. She’s basically awesome. And her stupid boyfriend who belittles her belongs in the bin.

Luckily she realises that she doesn’t want her old life when she can make herself a new, happier one with new friends and perhaps a new love in Upper Finlay. Thank goodness. Honestly if she’d gone back to stupid Phil I’d have been cross. Daisy feels like someone I’d want to be friends with, a fellow bookworm and a fun person. More Daisy please!

*I was kindly gifted a copy of this book in exchange for taking part in the blog tour but all opinions remain my own.