blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: No Room at the Little Cornish Inn – Nancy Barone*

Rosie Anderson was hoping to whisk her young son Danny away for a lovely Christmas with family, far from the hustle and bustle of her life in London.

But then her boss at the head office – aka Susan the Sacker – suddenly assigns her to go in
incognito and save a tiny inn in Cornwall from being closed permanently. Rosie doesn’t know why The Old Bell Inn is performing so badly but it’s on her to sort it out!

Hours in the car later, Rosie arrives at the inn to find she’s been double booked – there are no rooms left. And she isn’t there for more than a minute before she’s butting heads with the manager, Irishman Mitchell Fitzpatrick. He seems to dislike her on
sight, so it’s confusing that he seems to get on so well with Danny…

But if he’s as terrible as his reputation, Rosie will have to be the one to fire him.
This really isn’t the Christmas Rosie was dreaming of. But maybe, just maybe, it could be a whole lot more…

A sweet and uplifting Christmas romance, No Room at the Little Cornish Inn is perfect for fans of Philippa Ashley, Holly Martin and Jenny Hale.

Amazon Kobo
Google Play iBooks

Nancy Barone Wythe grew up in Canada, but at the age of 12 her family moved to Italy. Catapulted into a world where her only contact with the English language was her old Judy Blume books, Nancy became an avid reader and a die-hard romantic.

Nancy stayed in Italy and, despite being surrounded by handsome Italian men, she married an even more handsome Brit. They now live in Sicily where she teaches English.

Nancy is a member of the RWA and a keen supporter of the Women’s
Fiction Festival at Matera where she meets up once a year with writing friends from all over the globe.

Twitter Instagram

My thoughts:

This was a lovely, romantic, will they won’t they, of course they will, sort of book, with a Christmas setting in lovely Cornwall (one of my favourite places to visit), in a rustic country hotel.

Rosie is all stressed out being forced to spend Christmas “inspecting” this hotel and trying to find dirt on the manager for her ghastly boss. Plus her son’s birthday is on Christmas Eve and she feels bad about him not getting to have a party. Luckily everyone at the inn is actually delightful and Danny suddenly has all these adults who adore him, and horses to ride. Rosie discovers the supposedly terrible manager is really a delicious hunky Irishman and kind too. What is her awful boss on about?

Sensing a conspiracy Rosie starts to investigate and tries hard not to fall in love. But, as this is Christmas rom com, she fails and soon there’s kissing under the mistletoe and it’s lovely.

A lovely warm hug of a book, perfect for this cold and wet Advent, so snuggle up under a warm blanket with your favourite seasonal drink and enjoy.

*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

Book Blitz: Just for Christmas – Emily Harvale

Could this be true love? Or is it just for Christmas?

Finding an abandoned dog beside the road isn’t the Christmas surprise interior designer, Molly Ford is hoping for. But when the local vet can’t find a space for the bedraggled dog, Molly makes a rash decision.

The problem is, she’s spending Christmas with her brother, Terence, and his girlfriend is allergic to dogs, so the bundle of wet fur, which Molly has named Miracle, might not be the only one needing a home this Christmas.
And Miracle causes chaos wherever he puts his paws. He pees on the Christmas tree, shreds the Christmas presents and eats the honeyed ham. That’s just the first night.

When Terence’s best friend, Chance offers Molly and Miracle a place to stay for Christmas, Molly is ecstatic. She doesn’t mind at all when he informs her there are strings attached. She’d rather like a festive fling with gorgeous Chance.
Now Molly’s in for another surprise. Chance is about to pop the question. Except it’s not to Molly. In fact, he needs her help to get the dilapidated cottage he’s bought, all clean and sparkly in time for his girlfriend’s impending arrival on New Year’s Eve.

But as Molly and Chance grow closer, spending time together beneath the stars in a winter wonderland and enjoying the Christmas festivities, they realise they have feelings for each other.

Could this be true love? Or is it just for Christmas?

Amazon UK
Amazon US

Emily writes novels, novellas and short stories about friendship, family and falling in love. She loves a
happy ending but knows that life doesn’t always go to plan. Her stories are sure to bring a smile to your face and a warmth to your heart.

Emily loves to connect with her readers and has a readers’ group in which many have become good
friends. To catch up with Emily, find out about the group, or connect with her on social media, go to
her website.

Having lived and worked in London for several years, Emily returned to her home town of Hastings where she now writes full-time. She’s a member of the SoA, an Amazon bestseller and a Kindle All Star.

When not writing, she can be found enjoying the stunning East Sussex coast and countryside, or in a wine bar with friends, discussing life, love and the latest TV shows. Chocolate cake is often eaten. She dislikes housework almost as much as she dislikes anchovies – and will do anything to avoid both.

Emily has two mischievous rescue cats that like to sprawl across her keyboard, regardless of whether Emily is typing on it, or not.

Facebook Instagram Twitter

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: Christmas Cookie Cozies – Anthology of Mystery Stories*

2020 is going to be the coziest holiday season yet with cozy mysteries from Ava Mallory, Summer Prescott, Jenna St. James, Laina Turner, Gretchen Allen, Laina Turner, Joanna Campbell Slan, S. C. Merritt, Minnie Crockwell, Mona Marple, Rachael Stapleton and Loraine Hudson – along with their favorite holiday cookie recipe!

🎅Gretchen Allen – Lost Claus☃️

Charlotte Moss is one tough cookie, but her new job as Mrs. Claus isn’t what she expected. When Santa goes missing and a body is found, the most wonderful time of the year looks bleak.

🎅Joanna Campbell Slan – How the Cookie Crumbles☃️
Cara Mia Delgatto never met her maternal grandmother. But Nonie Josephina reaches out from the grave with a message for Cara: I left behind a treasure! Can Cara Mia find it before Santa comes to town?

🎅S.C. Merritt – Caramelized Casualty☃️
With the annual holiday unveiling of a giant gingerbread village quickly approaching, Kate Kennedy’s stress level is sky high. When one of the event’s diva celebrity chefs turns up dead, Kate decides she has no choice but to team up with the town’s newest detective if she’s going to pull off the big event. Can she expose the killer in time to save the event?

🎅Minnie Crockwell – Death By Cookie☃️
Widow Sallie Chilcoat decides to get into the holiday spirit by baking up a batch of cookies for her lakeside condominium neighbors only to have one of them turn up dead – with the remains of her cookies! Did Sallie kill her neighbor with her vegan cookies?

🎅Ava Mallory – Christmas Cookie Catastrophe☃️
When Consuelo “Cookie” Alvarez inherits a bakery from her aunt Birdie, she doesn’t expect to take her late aunt’s place in the Christmas Cookie Bake-Off. Now she has two weeks to perfect the super-secret recipe, but there are major obstacles in her way: she can’t bake, the recipe is missing, and her competitors are a who’s who of shady characters.

🎅Summer Prescott – Hang Out The Stalkings☃️
Someone is stealing Nancy’s cookies…will they steal her holiday spirit too?

🎅Jenna St. James – Christmas Cookie Caper☃️
When Ivy O’Brien learns her mother has been injured at the annual Couples Christmas Cookie Contest, she runs to the rescue. Looks like she needs to fill in for her mother and hunky policeman Anthony Romano has to help bake the cookie and question the suspects. Between dough-making disasters, nips of peppermint Schnapps, and rolling pin thefts, the pair slowly whittle down their suspect list.

🎅Mona Marple – The Santa Run Is Murderous Fun☃️
Emily Monk’s run out of excuses not to take part in the annual Santa run, but the festivities are threatened when the long-running Santa Run champ is found dead the day before the race.
With a killer to be caught, and a Christmas dinner to be bought, Emily needs to think fast if she’s going to solve this case before Santa comes.

🎅Rachael Stapleton – Christmas, Corpses & the Gingerdead Flip-Flop☃️
When house flippers Jack Young and Juniper Palmer purchase a colorful Queen Anne home, Juniper assumes the exterior gingerbread trim will be the most outlandish thing to see. That is until a prominent wine merchant dressed as Santa is murdered, and Jack’s mother is caught on the naughty list.

🎅Loraine Hudson – Holly, Jolly Misdeeds☃️
First, it’s a thieving Santa. Next, it’s a prowler that threatens Jenny’s peace. It all seems to revolve around a box of cookies. Why? And what’s next?

🎅Laina Turner – Cookies and Crime☃️
What is supposed to be a joy-filled awards ceremony for the Romero Boy Scouts turns out to be anything but when Jean Sartor, Scout co-leader, drops dead on stage.
Trixie lands herself on the suspect list since she baked Christmas cookies for the ceremony. She knows she didn’t poison Jean, but who did?

US Amazon

UK Amazon

My thoughts:

This were all fun short Christmas themed crime capers, mostly murders with a few thefts and the odd burglary thrown in.

Each story ends with a recipe for festive biscuits (cookies if you’re American), some of which feature in the stories!

A great collection for the season and everything resolved just in time to celebrate.

*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 Silent Stars Go By – Sally Nicholls*

Seventeen-year-old Margot Allan was a respectable vicar’s daughter and madly in love with her fiancé Harry. But when Harry was reported Missing in Action from the Western Front, and Margot realised she was expecting his child, there was only one solution she and her family could think of in order to keep that respectability. She gave up James, her baby son, to be adopted by her parents and brought up as her younger brother.
Now two years later the whole family is gathering at the vicarage for Christmas. It’s heartbreaking for Margot being so close to James but unable to tell him who he really is. But on top of that, Harry is also back in the village. Released from captivity in Germany and recuperated from illness, he’s come home and wants answers. Why has Margot seemingly broken off their engagement and not replied to his letters? Margot knows she owes him an explanation. But can she really tell him the truth about James?My thoughts:This is a lovely, bittersweet story of young love, war, family, hope and redemption. Having given her son James to be raised by her parents as theirs, Margot’s heart is breaking. Her fiancé Harry has somehow survived the war, despite being reported as missing, and now she must decide whether to tell him the truth about James.Margot returns home for Christmas, seeing James happily ensconced as the baby of the family and coming face to face with Harry for the first time.She wrestles with her decision, spends time with her siblings, parents and friends, trying to decide what the right thing to do is.This was a truly lovely book, the story was moving and a little heartbreaking, it was also educational – I didn’t know adoption was legal until the 1926 Adoption Act – and the thought of all those young women forced into giving away their babies before then were wronged.Although James is one of the lucky ones, his grandparents love him and treat him as they do the rest of their children, which makes Margot worry even more – will this destroy his happiness, if she and Harry married and took him with them?I was gifted a copy of this book by the publisher and if you’d like to see the special edition I received, I’ve shared it over on Instagram.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: One Kiss Before Christmas – Emma Jackson*

A romantic festive read from the author of A Mistletoe Miracle, guaranteed to warm your heart this Christmas!

Could it be the start of her happy ever after?
Ashleigh could use a little Christmas magic. She’s still living in Brighton with her Nan — who could
give the Grinch lessons in how to be miserable — her acting career has been reduced to playing one
of Santa’s elves, and not even the prospect of a friend’s winter wedding can cheer her up…

That is until Olivier, the gorgeous French chef, reappears in her life. Or more accurately, next door.
When they were teenagers, Olivier would spend every other Christmas with his mother, who just happens to be Ash’s neighbour and owner of the best chocolate shop in England.
If anyone can bring a little sparkle back to Ash’s life, it’s Olivier. All she needs is one kiss before Christmas…

Feel-good and festive, this is the perfect romance to curl up with this winter!

Buy

Author of the Best Selling A MISTLETOE MIRACLE and contender for the Joan Hessayon Award 2020, Emma has been a devoted bookworm and secret-story-scribbler since she was 6 years old. When she’s not running around after her two daughters and trying to complete her current work-in-progress, Emma loves to read, bake, catch up on binge-watching TV programmes with her partner and plan lots of craft projects that will inevitably end up unfinished. Her latest romantic
comedy, SUMMER IN THE CITY, was released in June 2020.

Emma also writes historical and fantasy fiction as Emma S Jackson. THE DEVIL’S BRIDE was published
by DarkStroke in February 2020.You can find out news about Emma via her website, by signing up to her newsletter.

Website Twitter
Instagram Facebook

My thoughts:

A lovely festive romance, complete with ice skating, elves and lots of chocolate.

Ash’s acting career has stalled and this Christmas she is once again playing Santa’s Helper, while struggling to get into the spirit. Until dashing French pastry chef Olivier comes to spend the festive season with his mum, right next door! Cue hearts and Hollywood montages.

Basically this is adorable, and also funny, with a grumpy Grandma, an over-affectionate dog, a lovely pair of gay best friends, a wedding, fairy lights galore and a Happily Ever After.

Perfect for reading under a blanket while the wind howls outside, just have the chocolate handy as this book makes you hungry!

*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 More For Christmas – Sarah Morgan*

For sisters Samantha and Ella Mitchell, Christmas is their most precious time of the year—a time for togetherness, love and celebration. Most of all, it’s about making up for everything their childhood Christmases lacked. But this year, they’ll be buying presents for the most unexpected guest of all—their estranged mother. It’s been five years since they last saw each other. But when their mother calls out of the blue and promises that this Christmas will be different, Samantha and Ella cautiously agree to spend it all together…

Gayle Mitchell is at the top of her career, but her success has come at a price—her relationship with her daughters. She never seemed to say or do the right things. Her tough-love approach was designed to make them stronger, but instead managed to push them away…until a brush with her own mortality forces Gayle to make amends. As the snowflakes fall on their first family celebration in years, the Mitchell women must learn that sometimes facing up to the past is all you need to heal your heart…

My thoughts:

Sarah Morgan’s Christmas books are like a lovely hug, warm and friendly and they make you toasty inside. This is no different.

Families are complicated, difficult and Christmas can exacerbate all the things we hate about ourselves and our relatives.

Samantha and Ella have essentially no relationship to their work focused mother Gayle, but an accident brings them back together and soon they’re off to Scotland to spend Christmas in a remote manor house with the owners, a possible new experience for Samantha’s bespoke holiday company.

There’s a lot the three women need to talk about and a lot they need to deal with if they’re to rebuild their relationship, and being stuck in the snowy Highlands is perfect for long talks by the fire and healing.

This is a delightful book, enlivened by the presence of four year old Tab, reindeer and a spot of romance. Plus some delicious home cooked meals.

It really does have a cheering effect and makes the grey and miserable day melt away and leaves you feeling all cosy inside.

*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 Winter Garden – Heidi Swann*

Freya Fuller is estranged from her parents and has been following her childhood dream of becoming a gardener ever since.When an opportunity to design a winter garden opens up at a Victorian property in Nightingale Square, Freya jumps at the chance to make a fresh start.But while the majority of the residents are welcoming, local artist Finn seems determined to shut her out, and when Freya’s family make a surprise appearance, it seems that her new life is about to come crashing down . . .

My thoughts:

I am utterly useless with plants and can just about keep a cactus alive but I do enjoy a beautiful garden and I could easily picture the stunning one Freya creates in this delightful book.

Perfect for curling up and getting cosy with this winter, the love story between Freya and Finn, the lovely little Nell, the kind and welcoming locals, the healing of nature, the crafts and creations people make, it all adds up to a really pleasurable 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.

blog tour, books, reviews

Blog Tour: The Ticklemore Christmas Toy Shop – Liz Davies*

You’re never too old to fall in love…

There is a disturbance in the force and octogenarian Hattie Jenkins can feel it in her water. Still active and spritely, she guesses that the miserable-looking gentleman sitting morosely in the café where she works, might be the reason.

Widowed Alfred Miller has recently moved in with his daughter because she is worried that he’s becoming too frail and forgetful to look after himself. And he’s not in the least bit happy about it, especially since his home is soon be cleared and sold.

But when he enlists Hattie’s help to save some of his precious belongings, he doesn’t realise that Hattie’s mission is to save more than a few sticks of furniture. She’s on a mission to save him, too.

Amazon UK
Amazon US

Liz Davies writes feel-good, light-hearted stories with a hefty dose of romance, a smattering of humour, and a great deal of love.
She’s married to her best friend, has one grown-up daughter, and when she isn’t scribbling away in the notepad she carries with her everywhere (just in case inspiration strikes), you’ll find her searching for that perfect pair of shoes. She loves to cook but isn’t very good at it, and loves to eat – she’s much better at that! Liz also enjoys walking (preferably on the flat), cycling (also on the flat), and lots of sitting around in the garden on warm, sunny days.
She currently lives with her family in Wales, but would ideally love to buy a camper can and travel the world in it.

Website Facebook Twitter

My thoughts:

This was a lovely, warm, feelgood story, definitely one for the festive season, all snuggled up in the house while the winter freezes outside.

Proving love is for every age are Alfred and Hattie, neither are young but don’t count them out yet. Hattie works in the café and that’s where she meets Alfred, a widower recently come to live with his daughter and her husband.

He’s lonely and a bit lost, but meeting Hattie helps give him a new lease of life and together they set up a special shop to sell Alfred’s handmade toys and raise money for charity.

The community rallies around them to help get it going and Alfred’s sadness lifts.

Like a warm mug of hot chocolate or a good hug, this book is just the right amount of sweet and cheering. Put it on your Advent reading list.

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

books, reviews

Book Review: The Bad Mother’s Christmas – Suzy K Quinn

Juliette and Alex are finally getting hitched, which should be joyous news. But Juliette is now entering `blended family’ territory: Alex will be Daisy’s stepfather – and Daisy’s real father is not happy about it. Yes, after messing up Juliette’s family the first time round, Nick is still trying to elbow his way back into her life, doing everything he can to stop her being with Alex. And Alex’s family are hardly rolling out the red carpet. To them, their new daughter-in-law is a slattern with a Jaffa Cake addiction. But Christmas is the thing that will bring them all together. And Juliette is determined that this Christmas will be a wonderfully happy family affair. Determined. Now where did she put that Jaffa Cake? The fourth in Suzy K Quinn’s bestselling Bad Mother series is a sparkly, shiny Christmas romantic comedy for mothers, and the perfect Yuletide treat.

My thoughts:

This is laugh out loud hilarious, I haven’t read the previous books in this series, and to be honest I don’t think it’s essential to do so. I was kindly gifted this book to read and review, but I think I would have picked it up anyway as it’s so entertaining.

The book feels like one of those sitcoms you find on Netflix that just cracks you up every time you watch an episode. I had to try really hard not to wake my husband while I was reading this in bed, purely as it was cracking me up so much.

There are some more touching, sad parts too, balancing the plot quite nicely. The supporting characters are well developed, even though it’s written as a diary, and you see everyone through Juliette’s lens. Her family in particular are great fun, and I would love a book just about them all running their pub.

If you’re looking for a light-hearted, entertaining read for the holiday season, this one is fantastic – just make sure you put your mug down first so you don’t spill while laughing!!

art, Christmas, gift guide, reviews

Under the Tree: Print Panoramics

Another day, another excellent option for your Christmas shopping.

Print Panoramics are a cool online company that help you create amazing prints from your photos – something that would make a fantastic gift for a loved one.

You pick the size, style and type of print, upload your image and the team will print it for you, ensuring it looks the best.

The team at Print Panoramics have kindly offered my readers a 15% discount, valid until 31/12/2018 (UK only, includes shipping, minimum spend £50). Enter code MADSPP15

You can also follow Print Panoramics on Instagram and see some of their great images.