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Laura Bambrey Books

It's all about the books... News. Reviews. Interviews

Thursday, 22 June 2017

Blogtour: Review: Summer at the Little Wedding Shop by Jane Linfoot

I’m thrilled to be the first stop on the fabulous blog tour for  Summer at the Little Wedding Shop (The Little Wedding Shop by the Sea, Book 3)- and what a joy of a book it is.

Lilly is back  home in Cornwall- her high-flying job has disappeared and she finds herself back where it all started- at Brides by the Sea. Jess and her team are thrilled to have her back and have big plans for Lilly’s future- which would be great if only Lilly planned on staying put for longer than the summer.

Lilly is struggling enough with life- but add in a newly engaged nightmare of a mother, her new role as wedding stylist that puts her slap-bang in the middle of the wedding wars between two local venues as well as between one of her best friends and her most challenging client- and it’s confetti at dawn.

This might be book three in the series, but it works perfectly as a stand-alone story, and having enjoyed it so much, I’ll definitely be delving back into the first two instalments of the series.

Jane Linfoot’s writing is laugh-out-loud funny, and she places her characters into some brilliantly impossible positions. Oozing romance and possibility, this book is a must-read for any wedding-addict’s summer suitcase.


Grab your copy here:


Kindle:                         Paperback:
    

The Blurb:

When the owner of Brides by the Sea, Cornwall’s cutest little wedding shop, offers Lily a job as their new wedding stylist, her first thought is – can she possibly pull it off?

Before she’s even sourced a fairy light or tasted a cupcake, Kip Penryn hires her services – but he’s opened an exclusive wedding venue in direct competition to her friend Poppy!

Lily feels like a traitor working for Kip, only everyone knows Penryn men are gorgeous but unreliable. All she has to do is sit back and watch him mess it up…doesn’t she?

Love is in the Cornish sea breeze this summer as the girls tackle their busiest wedding season yet. There’s plenty of bunting, bubbly and baking – but who is going to catch the bouquet?

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Blogtour: Guestpost: Why a Girl's Best Friend is a Man with a Dog by Zara Stoneley

I'm thrilled to welcome Zara Stoneley to the blog today with a guest post as part of her publication blogtour for Summer With The Country Village Vet - which was released on the 26th May.

Why a Girl's Best Friend is a Man with a Dog by Zara Stoneley


Dogs don’t love everybody, they have standards. You know that if a dog loves his master, then the
guy is doing something right. Whether he’s the strong silent type, or as lively as a basket of spaniels, there’s a good chance you can rely on him.

A man with a dog understands rewards – he’ll bring you chocolate, or flowers. He understands that the little gestures are important, that a relationship is about give and take.


He’ll be patient, and used to putting somebody else’s needs first. A man with a dog isn’t all about ‘me, me, me’ he’s not selfish, and he knows what it’s like to be in love.

He’ll let you put your feet up on the sofa, or his knee, if the dog hasn’t got there first. He won’t be so house-proud you’ll be scared of making a mess (though if you do drop crumbs, he’s got a four-legged hoover on hand to eat the evidence), and he won’t spend more time in front of the mirror and ironing his clothes than you do.



He won’t be a couch potato. It’s a fact that having a dog reduces cardiac stress, and promotes a healthy lifestyle. So he’ll be healthy, and fit, in all senses of the word.


If a man has a dog, you know he understands commitment and responsibility. He can take care of himself, and his four-legged friend, and a whole lot more.



He’s not going to be a workaholic – unless he works at home, or takes the dog into the office. A man with a dog likes to spend time with his best friend.

And last but far from least…there’s a very good chance he’s got a soppy, silly side. He likes hugs, he likes kisses, he’s not afraid to let his feelings show, and he’ll be kind. And however bad your day has been, your heart will melt when you watch him enjoy doggy cuddles.




Summer With the Country Village Vet: Blurb



Fall in love with a brand new cosy romance series from bestselling author Zara Stoneley.

When Lucy Jacobs is made redundant from her inner-city teaching job she fears her career is over. Teaching is all Lucy knows and she's determined to get back in the classroom as fast as she can.

Except the only job on offer is at an idyllic village school in the middle of nowhere – Lucy's idea of hell. Where are the disadvantaged kids who need saving, where is the challenge.

But as Lucy finds herself welcomed into the warm-hearted community of Langtry Meadows, she begins to realise new challenges await – like frogs in the classroom, a rather difficult donkey, and a very brooding local vet…

Local boy Charlie Davenport has his own issues about living in the close-knit village of Langtry Meadows. His private life is already fuel for the well-meaning gossips and the very last thing he needs is to get close to the new school teacher…no matter how lovely she is.

But as summer days drift away Langtry Meadows weaves its magic, Charlie and Lucy both get the chance to turn over a new leaf and start anew…maybe with each other?

A fun, romantic story to make you smile and long for your own country escape.

Grab your copy here:


Kindle:                              Paperback:
       



Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Blogtour: Review: Deadly Alibi by Leigh Russell

I’m excited to be today’s blogtour stop for Leigh Russell’s Deadly Alibi, which is due for paperback release tomorrow. This is the first of Russell’s books that I’ve read, and I’ve been looking forward to sharing my review ever since I finished the last page.

Deadly Alibi is a book that didn’t let up its pace for even a second- it has you desperately trying to solve the murders alongside DI Steel and her team- whilst practically jumping up and down when you think you seen something that they haven’t. Russell is an incredibly clever author- packing in suspects, red herrings, extra plot and complications- without once making you feel like you’ve been left behind. As a reader you’re in on every single bit of the action- gasping for breath- enjoying the ride. A relaxing read this certainly isn’t!

Deadly Alibi is book 9 of Russell’s hugely popular DI Geraldine Steel series – for which I’m very grateful as it’s one of those books you come to the end of and instantly want to read more about these brilliant characters. I’ll be delving straight back into the rest of the series- though I have to say that Deadly Alibi worked perfectly as a standalone novel- and I didn’t feel like I was missing anything having jumped straight in so far through the series.

If you like your crime peppered with some seriously disturbing suspects, a good dollop of police procedural, a fantastic Detective Inspector with a story to tell and some fantastically plotted nastiness- I recommend you pick up Deadly Alibi.

Grab your copy:


The Blurb:


The ninth novel in the DI Geraldine Steel series
A hand gripped her upper arm so suddenly it made her yelp. Biting her lower lip, she spun round, lashing out in terror. As she yanked her arm out of his grasp, her elbow hit the side of his chest. Struggling to cling on to her, he lost his footing. She staggered back and reached out, leaning one hand on the cold wall of the tunnel. Before she had recovered her balance he fell, arms flailing, eyes glaring wildly as he disappeared over the edge of the platform onto the rails below. . .

Two murder victims and a suspect whose alibi appears open to doubt... Geraldine Steel is plunged into a double murder investigation which threatens not only her career, but her life.

When her previously unknown twin Helena turns up, her problems threaten to make Geraldine's life turn toxic in more ways than one.


About Leigh Russell

Leigh Russell has sold over a million crime fiction novels, and writes full time. Published in English
and in translation throughout Europe, her Geraldine Steel and Ian Peterson titles have appeared on many bestseller lists, and reached #1 on kindle. Leigh's work has been nominated for several major awards, including the CWA New Blood Dagger and CWA Dagger in the Library, and her Geraldine Steel and Ian Peterson series are in development for television with major television production company Avalon Television.

Leigh writes the Lucy Hall mystery series published by Thomas and Mercer.


Find out more about Leigh on her website http://www.leighrussell.co.uk where news, reviews and interviews are posted, with a schedule of Leigh's appearances.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Blogtour: Summer at Conwenna Cove by Darcie Boleyn


Good morning my lovelies- long time no news!

I have the pleasure of being today’s tour stop for a very special book- Summer at Conwenna Cove by Darcie Boleyn – but I have to admit that today is a bit of a first for me and I need to explain a bit about it before telling you more about the book.

So, you might have noticed that I’ve been AWOL from the blog for a couple of weeks. I hit a complete reading desert. It wasn’t that I wasn’t enjoying reading- more that I haven’t been reading at all. For some people, I guess not picking ing a book for a couple of weeks or even a month isn’t a source of worry. For me, where I’m used to devouring four or five books a week, it’s a bit of a shock to the system- and the fear sets in - what if this is it... what if I don't get it back? I’ve seen various other bloggers talk about burn-out where they become overwhelmed and disenchanted by the amount they have been reading and posting. I guess that this has been my form of burnout.

I have experienced this a couple of times before, and oddly, it seems to hit around the same time of year. Whether it’s an up-swing in real-life business or the weather or the change in light- I just stop wanting to read for about a month. I try not to let it worry me and ride the wave and tell myself that I know I’ll get back to reading sooner or later- and I try not to let the guilt of not posting here from kicking my bum (I’m very good at guilt!) It's almost like I've eaten too much and need to take the time to digest all of those stories and characters before I can add any more.

The thing is, it takes a really special book to lift me out of the reading desert, and this time around, my book-saviour is Summer at Conwenna Cove by Darcie Boleyn.

As I mentioned above- this blog tour is a first for me. Obviously, as a blogger you sign-up for a tour weeks or even months in advance- when you have no clue that the dreaded blogger-drought is going to hit again. I promised a review but I’m not going to be able to deliver- not yet. You see I haven’t finished reading the book yet. I’m at about 60% and every page is like a gift. I absolutely refuse to rush this gem of a book- this gorgeous piece of writing which is- word by word- putting my world to rights, reigniting my passion for fiction and letting me fall in love with characters all over again.

Selfish? Maybe. But right now, that’s possibly the most glowing accolade I could give to any book- I want to continue to savour the story and allow it to work its magic on me. I want to give Eve and Jack and Gabe the time they deserve. I don't know how else to put it other than... slowing down enough to show how much you love something. I think Eve would understand.

If you’re looking for a beautiful, funny read that will make you believe that anything is possible, no matter how dark your days have been – this is the one for you. Thank you Darcie for bringing reading back to life for me. I’ll have a full review up later in the week.

Grab your copy here:



The Blurb:


In a gorgeous Cornish village, two brokenhearted people fall head over heels. But can the magic of Conwenna Cove heal the hurt of the past? A feel-good summer romance perfect for fans of Holly Martin, Phillipa Ashley and Jenny Hale.

Eve has a glittering career, a loving husband and a future. But a terrible twist of fate means she loses it all, and with nowhere left to turn she flees to her Aunt Mary’s home in Cornwall. The last thing on her mind is romance – until she meets Jack.

Jack has seen the worst things people can do to each other and realised he is better off alone. He settles in Conwenna Cove, and saves his affections for the rescue dogs he cares for. But when Eve arrives in the village he can’t deny his attraction to her.

Eve and Jack are both scared to trust, but when they come together it’s impossible for either to ignore their feelings. Can they put their fear aside and learn to love again?

Summer at Conwenna Cove is an emotional and heart-warming holiday read about being brave enough to take a chance on love.

About Darcie Boleyn:

Darcie Boleyn has a huge heart and is a real softy. She never
fails to cry at books and movies, whether the ending is happy or not. Darcie is in possession of an overactive imagination that often keeps her awake at night. Her childhood dream was to become a Jedi but she hasn’t yet found suitable transport to take her to a galaxy far, far away. She also has reservations about how she’d look in a gold bikini, as she rather enjoys red wine, cheese and loves anything with ginger or cherries in it – especially chocolate. Darcie fell in love in New York, got married in the snow, rescues uncoordinated greyhounds and can usually be found reading or typing away on her laptop.

Friday, 12 May 2017

#Friday5: Interview With Fallen Author Lauren Kate

Hi Lauren! Thank you so much for taking part in this week’s #Friday5. Huge congratulations on the DVD release of Fallen here in the UK – the film is beautiful and it was really exciting to watch your characters brought to life. So… now to pick your brain a little…

1. Can you tell us a bit about how much involvement you had in the creation of the film version of Fallen, and what this experience has been like for you as the author?

I'm an executive producer and have worked closely on the movie. I've loved collaborating with Scott Hicks on bringing the story to the screen. I worked on the script (and wrote the voice over for the opening scene of the movie, with Miss Sophia's introduction to the world), and spent time on set with the cast and crew. It's been a beautiful experience and I'm proud that we ended up with a beautiful movie.

2. I’ve seen on your blog that Cam is the only Fallen character based on someone in real-life – your husband. What was it like choosing an actor for this role and seeing Cam come to life on the screen?

I was most nervous to cast Cam. I can't express my fondness and gratitude to Harrison for being as thoughtful, devoted, inquisitive, and damn hot as he is. He's perfect and he makes the movie, in my opinion.

3. What about the other characters? Though they’re not based on individual real-life people, you’ve known them for more than 7 years. Do you have a favourite character / actor match-up?

Addison is so rawly talented. I have a deep appreciation to her for bringing Luce to life on screen.
She cares about the character, the story, and the love as much as I do, as much as Fallen's greatest readers do. And she's hilarious and extremely cool. She has an intuition about people that I think makes her so good at what she does. The whole cast is truly great, but I also must give a shout out to Lola Kirke for stealing scenes.

4. Having seen the film last week, I thought that some of the design elements were stunning- and for me, the depiction of the angel’s wings was absolutely beautiful. Luce running her fingers through the feathers is one of those images that will stay with me for life! It must have been an incredibly tough job translating such mythical elements of your books into visuals. Do you have any favourite moments from the film that you feel captured everything you imagined as you were writing?

I completely agree with you. The wings moment is breathtaking, perfect. It could have gone so badly, but it's one of the film's greatest achievements.

5. Having worked closely on the film of Fallen and seen the finished product- will the experience creatively influence the way you write your future books?

I don't think so. I've loved working on this movie, but writing the books is its own thing. I do, however, keep in mind my readers. It has shaped the way I write some to know the people who are waiting to read my books. They inspire me all the time.

Lauren, thank you so much for taking the time to join me on the blog today!


Book Blurb:


SOME ANGELS ARE DESTINED TO FALL.

Instant. Intense. Weirdly familiar . . .

The moment Luce looks at Daniel she knows she has never felt like this before. Except she can't shake the feeling that she has . . . and with him - a boy she doesn't remember ever setting eyes on.

Will her attempt to find out why enlighten her - or destroy her?

Dangerously exciting and darkly romantic. Fallen is a thrilling story about forbidden love.


Kindle:                          Paperback                  DVD
       

Friday, 21 April 2017

CassaStar, CassaDawn, Alex J. Cavanaugh and Non-Romantic Love Stories

In yesterday’s review of the lovely The A to Z of Everything by Debbie Johnson, I touched on the fact that the relationship between Andrea and Louis was one of the most moving testaments to the different forms of true love that I’ve come across in a book. Despite being in a completely platonic relationship, Andrea is Louis’ love of a lifetime. And that got me to thinking about other books that have showcased true love that exists in forms other romantic love.

The one that instantly springs to mind actually comes from a genre that sits outside of my usual comfort zone. Cassa Star by Alex J. Cavanaugh is pure sci-fi, but it’s a book that I have now re-read over half a dozen times for the central relationship  - the friendship of the young pilot, Byron, and the older, more experienced navigator, Bassa. Cavanaugh crafts their story in such a way that, although they may be training and fighting in the far reaches of the galaxy, their friendship develops like a classic romance. And every single time I’ve read it, it has reduced me to an emotional, sobbing wreck.

Cassa Star is the first in a trilogy – all fantastic reads, but it will always be my favourite. The great news is, Cavanaugh has released a prequel to the series in the form of a 5000 word short story, which is currently free to download on Amazon here – so if you fancy a little introduction to his fantastic writing and Byron’s world- I highly recommend you delve into this space-opera this weekend. I warn you- if you pick up CassaStar- you’re going to need the Kleenex!

How about you? What’s your favourite fictional non-romantic love story / relationship? Have you read and fallen head-over-heels for a book in a genre that stretches your comfort zone recently?

Have a wonderful weekend,
Laura x

Grab your copies here:

As mentioned above:
Book 1:                     Prequel
  

Also in the series:
Book 2                         Book 3
     


The Blurb for CassaStar:


To pilot the fleet’s finest ship…

Few options remain for Byron. A talented but stubborn young man with a troubled past and rebellious attitude, his cockpit skills are his only hope. Slated to train as a Cosbolt fighter pilot, Byron is determined to prove his worth and begin a new life as he sets off for the moon base of Guaard. 

Much to Byron’s chagrin the toughest instructor in the fleet takes notice of the young pilot. Haunted by a past tragedy, Bassa eventually sees through Byron's tough exterior and insolence. When a secret talent is revealed during training, Bassa feels compelled to help Byron achieve his full potential.

As war brews on the edge of space, time is running short. Byron requires a navigator of exceptional quality to survive, and Bassa must make a decision that could well decide the fate of both men. Will their skills be enough as they embark on a mission that may stretch their abilities to the limit?


About Alex J. Cavanaugh:

ALEX J. CAVANAUGH works in web design, graphics, and technical editing. A fan of all things science fiction, his interests range from books and movies to music and games. Online he is Ninja Captain Alex and founder of the Insecure Writer's Support Group and website. 

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Review: The A to Z of Everything by Debbie Johnson

Today is publication day for one of my strongest contenders for Book of 2017 so far- The A to Z of Everything by Debbie Johnson. 

At its heart, The A to Z of Everything has a broken family. Poppy and Rose may have been close as kids, but the sisters are now estranged following one epic mistake which tore their little family unit of three apart

Now the sisters have both learned to live with this, their lives continuing, both of them… happy. But Andrea, their mother, still feels the gaping hole that the loss of her tight-knit family has left in her heart. Knowing that her time is short, Andrea isn’t about to give up on her last wish- of seeing her daughters reconciled- and leaves a gift to both of them. The A to Z of Everything.

The four key characters in A to Z are truly brilliant. Andrea’s larger than life character makes for a fantastic, ultimately tragic, ringleader. I cried buckets over Andrea. I completely fell in love with her- and through her- with her daughters too.

Louis, as Andrea’s very best friend and confidante, is exquisite in his grief. His viewpoint adds an unbiased and not always favourable take on the sisters and their past behaviour. A dose of reality which plays a useful counterpoint to Andrea’s never-ending, unconditional love for her girls.  Andrea and Louis’s story is the most beautiful testament the different faces of love- and where true love can be found in your life.

And then we come to Poppy and Rose. So far estranged that being in the same room is so painful that it’s almost impossible. Poppy, who has locked down all emotion and softness from her life. Rose, who is a mother herself. Who can’t value herself. Who is still clinging to the past. Both sisters go through intense personal journeys throughout the book and emerge as completely different characters. Two voyages of re-discovery.

I finished the last page of The A to Z of Everything and instantly called my family– you know– made the connections that I might have been putting off for whatever reason. I love fiction that is so powerful that it pushes you to make changes in your own behaviour and real life- and The A to Z of Everything is one of the strongest examples of this. Debbie Johnson is a genius.

Stunning – a truly gorgeous book that I know I’ll be reading again and again.


Grab your copy here:

Paperback:                     Kindle:
      

The Blurb:

P is for Paris where it all began. J is for Jealousy where it all came undone. But the most important letter is F. F is for Forgiveness, the hardest of all.

Sisters Poppy and Rose used to be as close as two sisters could be, but it’s been over a decade since they last spoke. Until they both receive a call that tells them their mother has gone – without ever having the chance to see her daughters reunited.

Andrea, though, wasn’t the kind of woman to let a little thing like death stand in the way of her plans. Knowing her daughters better than they know themselves, she has left behind one very special last gift – the A-Z of Everything.


About Debbie Johnson


Debbie Johnson is an award-winning author who lives and works in Liverpool, where she divides her
time between writing, caring for a small tribe of children and animals, and not doing the housework. She writes romance, fantasy and crime - which is as confusing as it sounds!

Her best-selling books for HarperCollins include The Birthday That Changed Everything, Summer at the Comfort Food Cafe, Cold Feet at Christmas, Pippa's Cornish Dream and Never Kiss a Man in a Christmas Jumper. Debbie's next title is The A-Z of Everything, released on April 20.

You can find her supernatural crime thriller, Fear No Evil, featuring Liverpool PI Jayne McCartney, on Amazon, published by Maze/Avon Books.

Debbie also writes urban fantasy, set in modern day Liverpool. Dark Vision and the follow-up Dark Touch are published by Del Rey UK, and earned her the title 'a Liverpudlian Charlaine Harris' from The Guardian.