‘What Would Mary Berry Do?’ by Claire Sandy

What Would Mary Berry Do? Book Cover What Would Mary Berry Do?
Claire Sandy
Chick Lit
450

For fans of The Great British Bake Off, this is a story about family life, unfriendly rivalry and flat Victoria sponges.

Marie Dunwoody doesn't want for much in life. She has a lovely husband, three wonderful children, and a business of her own. Except, her cupcakes are crap. Her meringues are runny and her biscuits rock-hard. She cannot bake for toffee. Or, for that matter, make toffee.

Marie can't ignore the disappointed looks any more, or continue to be shamed by neighbour and nemesis, Lucy Gray. Lucy whips up perfect profiteroles with one hand, while ironing her bed sheets with the other. Marie's had enough: this is the year it all changes. She vows to follow - to the letter - recipes from the Queen of Baking and at all times ask 'What would Mary Berry do?'

Husband Robert has noticed that his boss takes crumb structure as seriously as budget sheets and so puts on the pinny: serious redundancies are on the horizon. Twins Rose and Iris are happy to eat all the half-baked mistakes that come their way, but big brother Angus is more distant than usual, as if something is troubling him. And there is no one as nosey as a matching pair of nine-year-old girls . . .

Marie starts to realise that the wise words of Mary Berry can help her with more than just a Victoria Sponge. But can Robert save the wobbling soufflé that is his career? And is Lucy's sweet demeanour hiding something secretly sour?

This is a delicious feast of a funny novel, perfect for fans of Jenny Colgan and Allison Pearson.

If you’re a die-hard Great British (or Australian!) Bake Off fan, and love a bit of chick lit, then this is the book for you. Leading lady Marie is tired of being the Mum who brings the store-bought treats to school fetes, so embarks on a year long journey to learn from the Fairy Grandmother of baking – Mary Berry.

As a great admirer of the spunky Mary myself, I was drawn to this book and wasn’t disappointed. Marie was a great character. She wasn’t perfect, but she was REAL. A mother, a wife, a dentist, a homemaker; Marie was trying to keep the family running smoothly while dealing with job security worries, a perfect next-door neighbour who seems to one-up her on everything, a moody teenager and mischievous twin girls, a worried husband and the promise of a croquembouche to be delivered on New Years Day!

As the story developed, all the characters were well developed and I grew to love them all. The overarching theme of the book questioned whether the grass really is greener on the other side, and I liked how the author dealt with exploring  that. I know I think about the green grass in other people’s yards often, so this was something I related to.

I really loved this book. I couldn’t put it down, was invested in all of the story lines, and was glad it was a longer read so that I could really get my teeth stuck into it. DEFINITELY worth a read on a cozy night, with a cuppa tea and a scone!

Amazon | Book Depository

I received a copy of What Would Mary Berry Do? from Netgalley in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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The Pitch by Belinda Williams

The Pitch Book Cover The Pitch
Belinda Williams
Chick Lit
306

She's in a long-term, committed relationship. With her business.

In three years Madeline Spencer has single-handedly grown her marketing agency, Grounded Marketing, into one of the country's fastest growing companies. But her success has been at the expense of her social life, and her girlfriends have had enough. They'll do whatever it takes, from speed dating to blind dates, to show her there's more to life than work.

Only Maddy is having a hard time forgetting about her business. She's about to pitch for her biggest client ever and the mysterious media mogul, Paul Neilsen, has volunteered to mentor her. Maddy might just be in with a shot of landing the account – if she can keep her mind on the job. Working with Paul is not at all what she'd imagined, and Maddy finds herself torn between her ever increasing workload and her feelings for Paul. She's discovering playing in the big league means making sacrifices ... and Maddy must decide what she can't live without.

I love a good chick lit read (no surprise there!), and The Pitch was no disappointment. I immediately warmed to Maddy, with her business savvy and take-no-prisoners attitude. Her self-starter, a rapidly growing environmentally focused marketing business, was the kind of business I’m interested in, which probably attracted me to the book even more.

As the book progressed, Maddy did too. Her single minded work-attitude softened as she discovered the benefits of a work-life balance, and her friends helped to keep her sane as an unexpected romance turned everything she knew on its head.

The one thing that rankled as I read was Maddy’s physical description; Williams describes an Amazonian goddess, completely flawless… Her beauty was a recurring element in the book, and at times I just wished she was more ‘regular’.

But, that aside, I loved gentlemanly Paul, his sweet children, and Maddy’s gaggle of girlfriends – I was excited to discover that Williams has already written one book from the perspective of Maddy’s best friend, which I am on my way to download as soon as I post this review!

On the whole, this book left me feeling cheery and all plot twists were wrapped up nicely (leaving room for another book in the series, of course!). Really, what more do you want than to put down a book and feel happy!?

Amazon

I received a copy of The Pitch by Belinda Williams in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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REVIEW: French Fry by Glynis Astie

French Fry Book Cover French Fry
French Twist
Glynis Astie
Chick Lit
322

Sydney Durand had finally achieved the perfect life she had always wanted. After a whirlwind romance with a charming Frenchman, she endured the three weddings it required to satisfy the members of the newly formed Bennett-Durand clan. All she had left to do was stroll into the sunset with Louis to enjoy their long-awaited happily ever after.

But everything changed when the stick turned blue. Suddenly, Sydney finds herself facing the daunting task of becoming a mother before she has even returned home from her honeymoon. Keeping a tenacious hold on her hard-won happiness, Sydney is determined not to give up without a fight – no matter what or who is thrown in her path…and that includes an overbearing mother-in-law, a know-it-all father and her own anxiety about having a baby.

Will she finally be able to tame her neuroses for the sake of her unborn child? Or will her hormone-induced panic cause a meltdown of epic proportions? One thing is clear: Sydney and Louis’ nerves are going to fry…

As promised, here is my review of the lovely Glynis Astie’s latest book, French Fry! 

For the last book in the French Twist series, we return to Sydney Durand’s whirlwind life to find her pregnant – naturally, a little ahead of schedule, and definitely unexpectedly. What follows is nine months of trying to keep crazy pregnancy hormones under control, juggling a best-friend bridezilla, dealing with the unexpected arrival of an eccentric French mother-in-law, and everything else a pregnancy throws at you!

I loved diving back into Sydney’s world. Having already read French Twist and French Toast (you can read my review of the first two books in this series here!), I already knew all of the wonderful characters and was excited to read what happened next in this semi-biographical whirlwind romance. So, I was able to completely enjoy every page from the get go.

Astie writes in a friendly, honest way, including the reader by giving them a peek into Sydney’s head and sometimes addressing them directly. It was lovely to pick up this book and feel like I was being welcomed back into her family.

This trilogy is a great example of great chick lit. It’s different from the same-same mould so many books follow, with plenty of twists and hilarity. Frankly, I’m a little sad to be saying goodbye to Sydney and her life! These books are definitely worth reading.

Amazon

I received a copy of French Fry from author Glynis Astie, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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Book Release! French Fry by Glynis Astie

Almost a year ago, I read the first two books in a trilogy, and I was hooked. French Toast and French Twist were the first two books in a series by Glynis Astie, based on her quirky meet-cute and shotgun marriage with a handsome Frenchman and the chaos that ensued. I really enjoyed the two books (you can read my review here), so I was excited when Astie reached out about the launch of the final book in the series, French Fry!

Here’s an overview of what happens when three weddings end in a looming patter of tiny feet…

Sydney Durand had finally achieved the perfect life she had always wanted. After a whirlwind romance with a charming Frenchman, she endured the three weddings it required to satisfy the members of the newly formed Bennett-Durand clan. French Fry by Glynis AstieAll she had left to do was stroll into the sunset with Louis to enjoy their long-awaited happily ever after.

But everything changed when the stick turned blue. Suddenly, Sydney finds herself facing the daunting task of becoming a mother before she has even returned home from her honeymoon. Keeping a tenacious hold on her hard-won happiness, Sydney is determined not to give up without a fight – no matter what or who is thrown in her path…and that includes an overbearing mother-in-law, a know-it-all father and her own anxiety about having a baby.

Will she finally be able to tame her neuroses for the sake of her unborn child? Or will her hormone-induced panic cause a meltdown of epic proportions? One thing is clear: Sydney and Louis’ nerves are going to fry…

I’m keen to know what happens, and you should be too! If I haven’t convinced you yet, come back on Thursday when I post my official review. For now, I’m lucky enough to be able to give you some words from Glynis Astie herself, about how her travel and marrying a Frenchman impact her writing and inspire her!

Travel Inspiration

One of the biggest difficulties I have as an author is finding inspiration. I wish I could be one of those people who has ideas spilling out of her head; someone who has characters fighting in her mind to get their stories told. Well, not in a creepy way. I’m not looking to pad my husband’s file for my commitment hearing or anything, but I wouldn’t mind a little stroke of brilliance–courtesy of a fictional character–now and then. Alas, this has yet to happen.

The truth is, I never planned to be a writer. I toiled away in corporate America for years, until my second son was born and I somehow fell into writing. My new career began when I decided to write a series of books based on the whirlwind romance my husband and I experienced, regaling the world with our swoon-worthy story. A big part of this epic tale is our cultural differences which result from our being raised in two very different countries. He is a charismatic Frenchman and I, well, I am a neurotic American. We make for quite the interesting pair!

Clearly, I added a dose of France to my life in the form of my husband, so inevitably, I would travel to this majestic country on a regular basis to visit his family. Meeting my new French relatives for the first time opened my eyes to a whole other way of living. The laid-back attitude, flexible nature and raucous sense of humor exhibited by my husband’s father and uncles took my breath away. Nothing seemed to faze them! His mother and aunts took me into the fold immediately and did everything possible to make me feel welcome–including sharing the family’s top secret cream puff recipe. The outpouring of love I was lucky enough to experience on that first trip made me want to be a better person. I knew there was a more relaxed, trusting and perhaps adventurous version of myself in there somewhere.

After a few days in my husband’s childhood home, I found myself affected not only by the interaction I had with his family, but also with the country itself. I discovered breathtaking scenery, exquisite architecture and riveting history. But what threw me the most was the extremely fluid sense of time. Things will get done when they get done. If an opportunity to do something great shows itself, a deadline may have to be pushed. Beauty, wonder and fun are rather unpredictable. For someone who lives and dies by her datebook, this concept was decidedly foreign.

And then there’s the food! I’m a girl who LOVES to eat. You can’t turn a corner in France without running smack into something delectable–be it cheese, bread, confection, wine… Oh, the list goes on and on! Given the astounding quality of the boulangeries and restaurants (don’t get me started on the patisseries), I know I could never live in France. There aren’t enough exercises in the world to combat the pounds I would pack on in the presence of such delicious offerings, but it’s comforting to know I have a place to visit which will inspire me to do great things!

We’ll be taking a trip to visit our French relatives this summer and the timing couldn’t be better! I’m ready to start writing my fourth novel and I’m convinced there is great insight waiting for me in those rolling hills, gorgeous beaches, historic villages and, of course, my mother-in-law’s kitchen. It may take longer than expected to find said inspiration, so I’ll have no problem extending the trip if necessary. That’s how dedicated I am to my craft.

Thanks for coming to share Glynis! I’m super excited for French Fry, and have my fingers crossed that this weeks book launch goes well. If you’d like to win your very own copy of this trilogy, you can enter a Rafflecopter Giveaway here (US only) – or, you could by a copy for yourself on Amazon.

I’ll see you back here on Thursday to give you some more reasons why you shouldn’t miss out on this great chick lit read!

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REVIEW: Noise by Brett Garcia Rose

Noise Book Cover Noise
Brett Garcia Rose
Crime/Thriller
236

The world is an ugly place, and I can tell you now, I fit in just fine.

Lily is the only person Leon ever loved. When she left a suicide note and disappeared into a murky lake ten years ago, she left him alone, drifting through a silent landscape. 

Or did she?

A postcard in her handwriting pulls Leon to the winter-cold concrete heart of New York City.

What he discovers unleashes a deadly rage that has no sound.

A grisly trail of clues leads to The Bear, the sadistic Russian crime lord who traffics in human flesh. The police — some corrupt, some merely compromised — are of little help. They don’t like Leon’s methods, or the mess he leaves in his wake.

Leon is deaf, but no sane person would ever call him disabled. He survived as a child on the merciless streets of Nigeria. He misses nothing. He feels no remorse. The only direction he’s ever known is forward.

He will not stop until he knows.

Where is Lily?

As the cover suggests, Noise is a novel full of darkness and anguish. The true sadness of the story was contrasted with the beautiful writing, with Garcia Rose using words to create images and emotions in this fast-paced thriller.

Leon is a fearsome character. Born and raised in Nigeria, deaf and gun in hand, he was saved by an American family. It was then that he met Lily, his new sister, and instant champion. While Garcia Rose goes into frustratingly few details about his adoption, life in America, and how he forms such a strong bond with Lily, it’s clear that Leon would do anything for her.

However, Lily disappeared ten years ago and Leon hasn’t heard from her since he read her farewell letter and learned that she had run away to make a life for herself in New York. One day, he receives a postcard from her and knows she’s in trouble.

When we meet Leon, he’s turning New York City upside down in his search for his sister. His ‘disability’ does not disable him at all – in fact, the fact that Leon is deaf does not really change the way the story unfolds at all, except to add to his mysterious, fearsome demeanour. Not afraid to shed blood in his quest to find his sister, Leon breaks all of the rules.

The novel is quite short – somewhere between short story and novel. So, the action happens rapidly. One lead turns into another, and then suddenly the story is at it’s end, and everything comes to a head.

Never really about a happy ending, or coming out unscathed himself, Noise reads somewhat like a mission of self-destructive, and is definitely not a light read. Emotionally, it is intense. I’d have loved a little more background, and a bit more character development, but overall the story was very unique and riveting. I was also particularly interested by Leon’s childhood in Nigeria, as I work closely with South Sudanese refugees who faced a similarly troubled upbringing. For a darker read, Noise is definitely worth a look.

Amazon

I received a copy of Noise from Kelsey at Book Publicity Services, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion.

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REVIEW: Secrets in the Sky by Pauline Wiles

Secrets in the Sky Book Cover Secrets in the Sky
Saffron Sweeting
Pauline Wiles
Chick Lit
340

How far should you go to keep a secret?

No-one ever accused Sophie Campbell of being a coward. From caving trips to rooftop pranks, it appeared nothing could hold her back, especially once she landed a dream job promising travel all over the world.

But Sophie’s jet-setting lifestyle is not what it seems and she’s been spending more time in the quiet English village of Saffron Sweeting than she cares to admit. When her beloved Great Aunt Wol dies suddenly, Sophie loses one of the few people who truly know her. As friends, family and an old flame gather for the funeral, questions soon follow. Worse, Sophie finds herself increasingly attracted to the man most likely to expose her secrets. Can she manage to guard her past, yet finally follow her long-held dream?

Featuring both new and familiar characters, this stand-alone romantic comedy is set two years before Saving Saffron Sweeting. With side helpings of British tea, cake and wit, Secrets in the Sky explores how finding the courage to be yourself can be the toughest challenge of all.

Secrets in the Sky had a lot going on. Family death, unexpected inheritance, at least two family secrets, some blackmail, old friends, a phobia, romantic misunderstandings and gossipy neighbours. That said, Wiles combined all of these elements to make a great chick lit read.

Sophie was a layered, complex character who’s life was really in a bit of a mess. Thanks to reconnecting with Bella, an old friend, she starts getting help with her crippling fear of flying – a great idea, seeing as everyone in Saffron Sweeting thinks that she is a flight attendant! Slowly, as Sophie’s well-meaning lies begin to unravel, she starts to find her way back to who she really wanted to be.

Saffron Sweeting was filled with quirky characters that helped flesh out the story, but didn’t overwhelm it. Some secrets lasted until the last pages, others came out along the way, with the help of an old flame and a helpful pilot.

I really enjoyed this book, and would love to read more about what happens to them next. I know Wiles has written another book, Saving Saffron Sweeting, which is set in the same town but features different main characters… but I want to know more about what happens to Sophie, Tom, and Bella!

Amazon | Book Depository

I received a copy of Secrets in the Sky by Pauline Wiles from the lovely Samantha at Chick Lit Plus, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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REVIEW: The Marrying Type by Laura Chapman

The Marrying Type Book Cover The Marrying Type
Laura Chapman
Chick Lit
322

Always the wedding planner, never a bride, Elliot Lynch is famous for orchestrating the splashiest weddings in Charleston, South Carolina. When her father’s sloppy management practices leave them on the brink of bankruptcy, Elliot will do whatever it takes to save the family business. When asked to appear on “The Marrying Type,” a reality TV show about the people behind the scenes as couples exchange I dos, she says yes to the invasion of privacy (and the hefty paycheck that comes with it).

With a camera crew capturing every detail of her life, Elliot faces her most challenging contract yet: planning a wedding where her ex is involved in every part of the process. Add in a lazy assistant, liquor-loving bridesmaid, and rival planner encroaching on her turf, and Elliot’s wedding season goes from high-end to high-stress.

Forced to confront her past, Elliot must live out her troubled present on national TV if she has any hope of saving her future.

My test of whether an e-book I read is truly good or not is whether or not I pop over to Book Depository and put it on my (rather long) wishlist, so that I can add a hard copy to my library. Guess what? I just added The Marrying Type by Laura Chapman to my wishlist.

Straight off the bat, I loved Elliot, the main character. She sees a problem and sets her mind to fixing it, showing a strength of character that I really appreciated. My heart ached for her losses and the crap her family pulls on her, and sang when things went her way.

As much as I loved Elliot, she was by no means the only great character in this book. Handsome, philanthropic, successful and kind Eric was a dream (it’s so unfortunate that fictional men aren’t on the market in reality), crazy Heloise would remind any girl of someone she knows, and beautiful bride-to-be Sadie was a darling, and gay bestie Smyth was a hoot. With such a great cast of characters, it would’ve been hard for Chapman to go wrong.

Luckily, the plot was also strong. Not everything was about romance romance romance. Elliot was a business woman, and it was interesting to read about how she pulled weddings together. Plus, the added element of being on a reality TV show at the same time gave another dimension and was quite interesting.

This book was hard to put down, and left me with a smile on my face – albeit a little sad that I don’t have an Eric of my own to live happily ever after with! I’d love to read more about what happens to these characters after this book ends (Laura, that’s a hint to write a sequel!!), and definitely recommend this one to chick lit lovers everywhere.

Amazon

Keen for some goodies, and copies of Chapman’s other books? Click the link below for a giveaway!

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I received a copy of The Marrying Type by Laura Chapman from the lovely Samantha at Chick Lit Plus, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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REVIEW: The Boardwalk Antiques Shop – a novel in 3 parts

The Boardwalk Antiques Shop Book Cover The Boardwalk Antiques Shop
Tangerine Street
Julie Wright, Melanie Jacobson, and Heather B. Moore
Chick Lit
315

Welcome to Tangerine Street

Tangerine Street is a must-see tourist stop with a colourful mix of one-of-a-kind boutiques, unique restaurants, eclectic museums, quaint bookstores, and renowned bed-and-breakfasts. The Boardwalk Antiques Shop is an exclusive shop where every antique has a story, and each story possesses the gift to match true love. The customer who buys an antique also buys its story and soon discovers that its story unites the past with the present, creating an unexpected romantic future…

“Where Every Antique has a Story”

MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE: Jennifer is newest owner of The Boardwalk Antiques Shop, inherited from her aunt. When Jennifer arrives in Seashell Beach, her first priority is to meet with a realtor to sell the place. She laughs out loud when she discovers the realtor’s name is Mr. Studly. But the more Jennifer gets to know Paul Studly, the more she finds reasons to stay and run the antiques shop herself.

SOLVING FOR X: Abbie is only a little bit obsessed with antiques, okay, a lot. So when Holden, an out-of-town business executive, tries to purchase the tin soldiers that Abbie’s had her eye on, Abbie refuses to back down. The antiques shop owner issues a challenge: whoever comes up with the best story for wanting the soldiers, will become the new owner. Abbie isn’t about to let some fancy executive beat her out, no matter how charming he is.

A STITCH IN TIME: When Cate learns that antiques dealer Henry Lancaster has purchased the sewing machine left to her by her grandmother, Cate is determined to get it back. What she isn’t counting on is that Henry has just as much claim as Cate. And it doesn’t help that Henry is good-looking and apparently single. Getting to know Henry becomes an unexpected surprise, sending her life into a sudden detour.

The Boardwalk Antiques Shop, by Julie Wright, Melanie Jacobson, and Heather B. Moore, was written in a very unique format. It is made up of three short stories, set in a small town. Each story is written by a different writer, but each story overlaps, and has a connection with the Boardwalk Antique Shop.

I love books about women running creative small businesses, but I’m not always sold on short stories. So, I started this novel with mixed expectations. Pleasantly, I was surprised! Each short story had very different leading women, and I quickly got involved with their stories and decisions. While each story was short, they were self contained and loose ends were nicely tied up. Of course, there’s an element of suspended reality when a couple can meet and fall in love within a hundred pages, but that was helped by the fact that the stories took place over the span of months, not days. We might just have read a snipped of their story, but in their timeline there was more than a few days between first-sigh and love.

Although each story was written by a different writer, their styles were very similar and they flowed together nicely. That said, the main characters were all very unique, which meant that the stories were set apart from one another. In fact, the stories were interesting enough that I would have liked to seem them expanded into full length stories, particularly the story of Jennifer taking over her Aunt’s antiques shop.

For lovers of chick lit and happy endings, I would recommend stepping into the world of Seashell Beach. The Boardwalk Antiques Shop was the centre-point for this novel, but there is another book in the series, featuring the Fortune Cafe, with the same three-part format, aptly named The Fortune Cafe. I’ve already downloaded it, and am looking forward to reading about more of the characters in Seashell Beach!

Amazon

I received a copy of The Boardwalk Antiques Shop, by Julie Wright, Melanie Jacobson, and Heather B. Moore from Inspired Kathy of Book Blasts and Blog Tours, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion.

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REVIEW: Cost of Life by Joshua Corin

Cost of Life Book Cover Cost of Life
Joshua Corin
Thriller
294

Happy Independence Day. You’re all going to die.
 
Life can’t be better for veteran pilot Larry Walder. He has a great job, a terrific kid, a gorgeous wife—and no inkling that tonight will be the end of the world as he knows it. In the early hours before the Fourth of July, three men break into Larry’s home. And as the day lurches on to its terrifying course, a life is taken, and Flight 816 from Atlanta to Cozumel, Mexico, vanishes off the radar.
 
In the air, Larry must find a way to save his family, his crew, and his passengers. On the ground, disgraced FBI agent Xanadu Marx goes rogue, making it her mission to track down the missing flight before the hijackers reach their diabolical endgame. With the casualties racking up and the world’s busiest airport under lockdown, a message arrives: This is no ordinary hijacking, no typical hostage crisis. This ransom is a totally different beast—the first hint of a conspiracy that might bring America to its knees.

Cost of Life started with a ‘regular’ plane hijacking. You know, man flies plane off course to save his kidnapped wife and child. Coupled with some pretty flowery descriptions, I wasn’t 100% hooked. However, then things took a very interesting turn.

Picking up the pace, we learn why the Pilot, Larry, was blackmailed into taking the plane off course. In a Hunger Games twist for the modern age, the hijackers pit humanity against itself, in an aim to demonstrate America’s philosophy that money can buy anything – and everything.

As the plot unravelled, the events on the plane were by far more coherent and interesting than the action taking place outside of it; rescue attempts, and bureaucracy. There were some interesting characters, some of whom I can see being in future books and developed further. However, there were a few plot holes, and a slightly strange ending – in that is was very perhaps too neat and tidy, too happy, given the threatened carnage.

Overall, the unique reason for the hijacking was the best part of the book, and I was invested in finding out how it turned out. That said, some of the other story details were a little weak. I’d read more of Corin’s books, but I wouldn’t say that this was a smash-hit. Still, worth reading for the interesting notion raised in the hijacking!

Amazon

I received a copy of Cost of Life by Joshua Corin from Lisa at TLC Tours, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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REVEIW: The Kill Shot by Nichole Christoff

The Kill Shot Book Cover The Kill Shot
A Jamie Sinclair Novel
Nichole Christoff
Thriller
282

Jamie Sinclair’s father has never asked her for a favour in her life. The former two-star general turned senator is more in the habit of giving his only child orders. So when he requests Jamie’s expertise as a security specialist, she can’t refuse—even though it means slamming the brakes on her burgeoning relationship with military police officer Adam Barrett. Just like that, Jamie hops aboard a flight to London with a U.S. State Department courier carrying a diplomatic pouch in an iron grip.
 
Jamie doesn’t have to wait long to put her unique skills to good use. When she and the courier are jumped by goons outside the Heathrow terminal, Jamie fights them off—but the incident puts her on high alert. Someone’s willing to kill for the contents of the bag. Then a would-be assassin opens fire in crowded Covent Garden, and Jamie is stunned to spot a familiar face: Adam Barrett, who saves her life with a single shot and calmly slips away. Jamie’s head—and her heart—tell her that something is very wrong. But she’s come way too far to turn back now.

A few months ago, I reviewed The Kill List, the first novel in the Jamie Sinclair series. I liked the feisty female security specialist with a take-no-prisoners attitude. The Kill Shot is the second book in the series, and Jamie returned in full force.

The Kill Shot saw Jamie off-balance from the beginning. When her father, a hard-ass senator whose approval Jamie desperately desires, asks her to do a ‘favour’, she finds herself in London. What was supposed to be a basic security detail job turns into a race against time to keep a Middle Eastern defector safe from the political forces who want to see her dead – or kept alive to be used as a bargaining tool.

I like political thrillers, so was familiar with the shady way that the players were conducting their business throughout this novel. However, there were times when Jamie, a professional, seemed a little behind the eight ball. Perhaps it was all the romance throwing her off balance…

While there were romantic undertones to the first book (the lovely Barrett was quite the charmer), in this book Barrett faced competition in the form of posh, gorgeous, cheeky Philip (who also was quite the charmer). With the two men vying for her attention, Jamie was at best a little distracted during her time in London. Understandable, I would have had trouble choosing between these two guys!! That said, there was a fair bit of focus on the romance in this book, perhaps at the detriment of the thriller aspect. However, it was well written, and kept me hooked… though perhaps a little more invested in the Barrett/Philip storyline than the political aspect!

While I enjoyed this book, I must admit that I preferred the first book in the series. It seemed a little more focused, and the mystery was more developed. That said, I’m partial to a little chick lit, and don’t mind when romance pops up amid gunfire! This book is definitely still worth a read. I’m looking forward to seeing where Christoff takes the character next!

Amazon

I received a copy of The Kill Shot by Nichole Christoff from the lovely Lisa at TLC Tours, in exchange for a review and my honest opinion. 

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