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frankiecesca

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466

The Widow - Fiona Barton 20/04/2017

Fabulous!

The Widow - Fiona Barton I saw this book in WHSmith’s whilst I was in work so I added it to my Amazon book list to by another time. When I had a few Amazon vouchers, I purchased a load of books from my list; this being one of them. This is a new author so I had nothing to go on and was taking a chance on buying this book however, the blurb on the back made it sound right up my street. The author: Fiona Barton is a new author; previously a journalist working on high profile cases and she was also a senior writer at the Daily Mail. She also worked as chief reporter for the Mail on Sunday and won reporter of the year. This book became a Sunday Times and New York Times bestseller and has been published in 35 countries to date as well as being optioned for television. Born in Cambridge, she now currently lives in South-west France. Her second novel is due out mid this year (2017). The plot: Jean Taylor has spent her married life devoted to her Husband Glen; when he is accused of the most terrible crime, she knows he cannot have been involved. When Glen is killed in an accident, everybody now wants to talk to the Widow and find out her side of the story. Characters: What a great selection of main characters in this book….starting off there is of course the lead named person, the Widow herself. Jean or Jeanie as so often called by Glen comes across as quite a soft person who is happy to plod along in life with Glen by her side. Happy to be the homemaker whilst Glen works, she is adamant that her Glen ...

Finding Audrey - Sophie Kinsella 30/03/2017

Find this book

Finding Audrey - Sophie Kinsella Another book for me and another favourite author of mine; this book is aimed at young adults, but this makes no difference to me as I will always try her books anyway. I finished another of my favourite author’s new books before this so made a start on this thinking that with it being a shorter book, I could probably finish it during my leave from work. The author: Sophie Kinsella is a very well-known author. Most famous for her Shopaholic series of books which was also made into a film, she has also written a few standalone books under this name and she has also had a number of books published under the name of Madeleine Wickham. Plot: Audrey is a young girl who has suffered from a major anxiety attack triggered by an event in her life. Still recovering and unable to make eye contact with people or communicate with those outside her family. Now trying to get her life back to normal and to get back to school, we get to experience her journey as told by her. Her family life is portrayed in the everyday way of a family with various stuff going on including a brother obsessed with his computer game, a baby brother who knows no different and a set of parents that are trying to do the best they can for all their children. Can Audrey find herself with the help of those around her? Characters: Audrey is such an interesting character as from the inside where we can see life how she sees it, she does actually come across as your normal teenager who has a love/hate relationship ...

Cuckoo in the Nest - Michelle Magorian 17/03/2017

Cuckoo!

Cuckoo in the Nest - Michelle Magorian When I was younger, my English teacher introduced to me to a book that many people will have heard of which is the famous ‘Goodnight Mr Tom’. I absolutely loved it and I then went on to read another book by the same author called ‘Back Home’. For some stranger reason, I never followed these two books up which I am not really sure why since I enjoyed both immensely. So it was with great joy recently that I came across this gem of a book by the very same author. I couldn’t wait to get stuck in with this one. The author: Michelle Magorian is an English author who was born in 1947. Even though, she was raised after the war ended, this era plays quite a big part in this book. She has written mainly books aimed at teenagers and young children as well as some poetry books. The plot: It’s the 1940’s and Ralph dreams of one day performing at the Palace theatre, but his father wants him to get a real job. With no training and struggling to show his father that he his hard working and deserves to be happy, there is only one way to make it onto that stage. Start knocking on doors and working his way up. With a huge amount of drive and determination, he sets about trying to make his dream a reality; can a working class lad with no money who still shares a bed with his younger brother ever really make it as an actor? Characters: Ralph Hollis is a great character that is full of zest for the theatre and he is quite strong willed too. I like how the author has developed him to be the ...

What to Do When Someone Dies - Nicci French 20/01/2017

What to do with this book, but crack on and read it!

What to Do When Someone Dies - Nicci French I have read a few Nicci French books now and always find them to be very goods I always keep my eye out for new ones or any older ones I haven’t yet read. This particular one was bought when I spotted it for sale in Tesco on the shelf containing older titles. It was therefore not part of the two book deal instead priced at five pounds so I decided it was still worth it and added it to my basket. The author: Nicci French is not actually one writer, but a husband and Wife team made up Nicci Gerrard and Sean French. They have now written many novels together all in the crime/thriller type genre and they have all been international best sellers. The plot: Ellie Faulkner’s world is turned upside down when her Husband Greg dies in a car crash; to add to her already devastating grief, it turns out there was a woman in the car with him who neither Ellie or any of his other family and friends has heard of. Refusing to leap to the obvious conclusion despite the whispers and rumours of those surrounding her, Ellie must find out who this woman was and prove that Greg wasn’t having an affair. Soon she is certain their deaths were no accident, but is this just her way of avoiding the truth of what was happening or is there a more sinister reason behind Greg and the mystery woman’s death? Characters: Ellie is a great central character and I love how well developed she is. The grief from her is obvious and yet she is an intelligent woman who spurred on by her grief and anger that ...

What The Nanny Saw - Fiona Neill 05/01/2017

What did the Nanny see?

What The Nanny Saw - Fiona Neill I have read a few books by this author now and enjoy them so it was no surprise that I bought this book; I bought it straight away and then it was sat on my book case for qite some time before I got around to reading it. The Author: Before she released her first book Fiona was a journalist and as far as I can tell, she also writes a regular column in the Saturday Times magazine; in fact, this was what led to her first book as it was a very popular column. She has now written four books. The plot: Penniless student Ali Sparrow answers the advert for a Nanny to the children of Bryony and Nick Skinner; with four children including a son who is almost Ali’s age, a teenage girl with weight issues and twins who speak their own language, it is certainly a job that has demands. Bryony constantly has one eye on her and another on her dazzling career so when the boom turns to bust and a scandal erupts that looks like it has been hatched behind the skinners door, their private life is suddenly public and Ali becomes indispensible. She realises she is witness to things she probably shouldn’t be; will she keep the family secrets when the press start circling or will she dish dirt on a family who only ever saw her as part of the scenery? Characters: Ali was such a well written and interesting character I personally found; she came across as quite normal and found the family very intimidating at first. However, she was also very intelligent and this was very well shown in the way she ...

A Merry Little Christmas - Julia Williams 04/01/2017

Merry little book!

A Merry Little Christmas - Julia Williams I have quite a few Julia Williams books now and enjoy them so I always try and get her new ones when they come out. I also like reading Christmassy themed books during December so this particular book I have had for a few years and that is why I have only just read it as if I don’t read it during that time, I’ll save it for the following Christmas! I finally read it this year and this is my review of it. The author: Julia Williams has now written 13 fictional chick lit books including this one. She has also written an array of short stories and regularly writes in her blog. Julia is an English author who has written both adult modern fiction books and also children’s books. Plot: The village of Hope Christmas should be magical at this time of year; after all with a name like that, it should be the perfect place for the festive season! However, not all is always well and for three different families, the year has been a tough one. Cat Tinsall has a busy time with four children and a cookbook to write, not to mention her mother’s dementia is getting worse and her teenage daughter is going off the rails. Marianne is balancing her job as a teacher with her still young twins and whilst being a step mother to Steven is usually a delight, his Mum and her husband’s ex is intent on causing problems for them all. Pippa adores her family and even when her hands are full, she doesn’t mind because she couldn’t ask for a better Husband in Dan; however, when he is involved in a ...

MAC Matte Lipstick 27/12/2016

MAC Matte power

MAC Matte Lipstick I occasionally like to wear bold lip colours when I’m going ‘’out, out’’ and I like them to be Matte. I recently attended a discounted staff event where I can purchase different branded products at highly reduced prices. This time, they had quite a few MAC products available, mostly lipsticks and this particular MAC matte lip colour in the shade ‘All fired up’ was one of the ones I picked up. The brand: MAC is a very well known make-up range that began in Toronto by two men; one a photographer and the other a beauty salon owner. They found traditional makeup not that great for using on photo shoots and they literally began by cooking up their initial range in their own kitchen! In March of 1984, the duo managed to open their first official counter in a department store and as an industry first, it was actually staffed by professional make-up artists and all the products were different to the norm with everything looking chic in black boxes. They went from strength to strength as they blended street savvy looks with glamorous style and not only that; they were the first company to invest in proper staff training and helping the customer with make-up guidance. Now owned by the Estee Lauder companies, they are still going strong and are a prominent and recognisable brand within the market. This packaging: MAC Cosmetics are very sleek and designed with a very easy to recognise logo. The MAC logo is all in upper case and the casing for the products are black. Some with have ...

Trust Your Eyes - Linwood Barclay 12/12/2016

I trust you'll enjoy this book

Trust Your Eyes - Linwood Barclay I never used to like crime or thriller books and yet now here I am reviewing yet another one. It was Ciao that started me off as I read a review of a book years ago and thought I would try it…..since then I have attempted other authors and come to love a select few. This particular book I bought after reading a few of his others and really enjoying them. The author: Linwood Barclay is a Canadian author who lives near Toronto. He has written seven previous novels which are also both in the thriller genre. His first book ‘No time for goodbye’ was the Richard and Judy summer read winner of 2008 and ‘Too close to home’ was also a number one best seller. This particular book ‘Trust your eyes’ was the one of the 2013 selected books for the ITV3’s crime thriller book club. The plot: Thomas is obsessed with maps and it has taken over his and his family’s life ever since he was a young child. He spends all day at his computer looking at maps, printing them out and also using touring the world using virtual maps on the internet. He believes he must store every detail of every town and he can name most streets anywhere in the world. However, one day he sees something that he thinks isn’t right; a woman being murdered on a street in New York. When he tells his brother Ray, he humours him with a half hearted investigation; until he realises that Thomas may have actually stumbled upon something and now that may have put them both in danger. Characters: Ray is really the main ...

Blue Monday - Nicci French 07/12/2016

You'll feel less blue when reading this great book!

Blue Monday - Nicci French I’ve now read quite a few Nicci French books and really do enjoy them. I have no bought a few others over the years and some are still sat on my book cases waiting to be picked as my next read. This one is one of the newer ones even though t was actually published over 5 years ago now and I recently took this on holiday with me. The author: Nicci French is not actually one writer but, a husband and Wife team made up Nicci Gerrard and Sean French. They have now written many novels together all in the crime/thriller type genre and they have all been international best sellers. The plot: Monday afternoon and five year old Matthew Faraday is abducted. His face splashed across the media and his parents and the police are desperate; can anybody find this missing boy before it is too late? Psychotherapist Frieda Klein may just know something that would help. One of her patients describes dreams of seizing a boy who is the spitting image of the missing child. Convinced the police will dismiss her fears, she wants to try and help anyway. Then a new lead on a different abduction from over twenty years ago arises and only Frieda, an expert on the minds of disturbed individuals, can uncover it. She is about to face her darkest fears in the hunt for a very clever and brutal killer. Characters: Frieda is such an interesting character and one that has been cleverly thought out…in fact she has to be as this book is the first in a series of new books by the author. I liked how even ...

Caught - Harlan Coben 18/11/2016

Catch this book

Caught - Harlan Coben I have read a few Harlan Coben books now and really enjoy them so I look out for new ones as well as try to get hold of any already published that I just haven’t read yet. This particular book, I bought ages ago and it just got put on my shelf for ages until I decided I fancied making a start on it. It was first published in 2010 so it is already getting old. The author: Harlan Coben is an American author who has been writing crime novels for years. He has over 60 million books in print worldwide which is very impressive indeed. One of his novels, Tell No One, has been turned into a French film and was top foreign language film in the USA and is now in line for hopefully being made into an American version. He has written fiction for the New York Times op-ed page which was the first time in a decade that a writer was asked to do so and he also written pieces for many top magazines columns. The plot: Wendy Tynes is a reporter and her current mission is to bring down sexual predators via televised sting operations; her latest target is a social worker known as a friend to troubled teens. A seventeen year old girl has disappears and for three months the family hear nothing……as the community struggles to cope with the loss of the missing girl and they know the person Wendy has taken down may be the one to blame, it becomes apparent to her that she may not be able to trust her own instincts anymore or the real motives of those people around her. Can she fit the pieces of the ...

The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins 12/10/2016

Girl in circles

The Girl on the Train - Paula Hawkins I had this book on my unread shelf from when it first came out last year as I saw a few reviews on it and thought it sounded good. I then just kept picking others to read over it until my friend mentioned how good it was and said I should read it next. I promised I would and so I made a start on it as soon as I finished the last book I was reading. The Author: Paula Hawkins is a new author on the fiction scene. She was previously a journalist for fifteen years before turning to writing fiction. She released this book in May of 2016 and it was immediately read by thousands who rated it highly. The reviews of it are phenomenal and DreamWorks have already made a film of the book which was released this week in UK cinemas (Oct 2016). I cannot see any details on her own website of any new books yet to be released. The plot: Rachel catches the same commuter train each day and it passes the same row of houses each day. Most days it will stop at a certain signal that means she gets a view of the houses and their occupants for a few moments. She starts to feel like she knows the couple who live in one of the houses. Their life, as she sees it; is perfect and she wishes she could be that happy. Then one day, she sees something shocking and in that one small moment everything changes. Now Rachel finally has a chance to become part of the lives she has watched from afar and hopefully they’ll start to see she is more than just the girl on the train. Characters: The author has done an ...

After The Party - Lisa Jewell 30/09/2016

After this book?

After The Party - Lisa Jewell I have always loved Lisa Jewell books and read her first ever book years ago now. This particular book is the follow on from that very first book she wrote all the way back then. I couldn’t wait to buy it when it was released and then for some daft reason, it just sat on my book case for simply ages before I decided to take it away with me on holiday with my mum. The Author: Lisa Jewell has been around now for quite some time and is a prominent author that has written some fantastic books. I believe she now has fourteen books published with another due out this month (July 2016). Her first book, named ‘Ralph’s Party’ was actually written as a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in 1998. It went on to become the bestseller of that year and from there it all took off for her. The plot: Eleven years earlier Jem Catterick and Ralph McLeary fell in love and they thought it would be forever and their life was now perfect. Then two became four and the flat became a house and suddenly those romantic nights out became sleepless nights in. Life isn’t quite so simple anymore. So now, these two people who thought they had the perfect life and thought they were perfect for each other, are suddenly starting to drift apart. Jem is losing herself and Ralph is stood out on the sidelines f his family. As they try to go back to what they had, they become dangerously distracted….is it too late to go back to happily ever after? Characters: I remember ...

Spare Brides - Adele Parks 11/08/2016

A great 'spare'book!

Spare Brides - Adele Parks I have some authors I can rely on to provide a good read and Adele Parks is one of those authors. I bought this book some time ago, but it was only recently that I actually got around to reading it. I saved it for a while to take it on holiday with me. The author: Adele Parks is an English author who has now written 16 books. She has also written various short stories. She published her first book in 2000 and every book she has written has been in the Times top ten best sellers. Her books have also been translated into 25 languages which is very impressive indeed! The plot: Four young women, 1920’s and the war has passed, but not all the men came home and now these are the young women who are all expected to carry on or marry. If it was only that simple though. Ava, beautiful and enjoying the single life; not willing to be tied down. Sarah who feels she could never replace her hero husband who was also her true soul-mate. Beatrice finds it hard to shine next to her dazzling friends and then there is Lydia, the only one who is married and should be one of the lucky ones. Everything changes though when Edgar arrives on the scene; angry, damaged, but also dangerously attractive, he is an irresistible temptation and suddenly all the normal rules no longer apply. Characters: Wow, what a very different set of women that this book has for its main characters. Each young lady is so different and brings so much to the book. Ava is so independent and glamorous; ahead of the times ...

The Girls - Lisa Jewell 22/07/2016

The Girls of this book make an interesting read

The Girls - Lisa Jewell Lisa Jewell has always been one of my favourite authors and so after finishing one of her books that I’d had for a while, I decided to start another one straight away. This one is a little more recent and as per usual with her books, the reviews on it are good. I couldn’t wait to get started. The Author: Lisa Jewell has been around now for quite some time and is a prominent author that has written some fantastic books. I believe she now has fourteen books published with another due out this month (July 2016). Her first book, named ‘Ralph’s Party’ was actually written as a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in 1998. It went on to become the bestseller of that year and from there it all took off for her. The plot: A community green and gardens where everybody knows the neighbours and they trust each other. The children play out; the adults trust each other and feel they are safe. They should be as well, but then one mid-summers night, a girl is found unconscious in the communal gardens. What has happened to her and who is to blame? Suddenly, things are different and nobody feels they can trust anyone, certainly not those in the neighbourhood anymore and will they ever find out what happened to the girl? Characters: I found it very easy to like the main characters of Clare, Grace and Pip as they came across as quite vulnerable, but nice people. I felt that Clare was a great character struggling to fit her family in with a new ...

The Making of Us - Lisa Jewell 08/07/2016

Make this book a priority

The Making of Us - Lisa Jewell I recently took a holiday abroad and it meant lots of books that I have had for ages could now finally be paid some attention. I picked out quite a few to take with me and this particular one was one of the lucky ones; an author I enjoy reading. The Author: Lisa Jewell has been around now for quite some time and is a prominent author that has written some fantastic books. I believe she now has fourteen books published with another due out in July 2016. Her first book, named ‘Ralph’s Party’ was actually written as a bet in 1996. She finished it in 1997 and it was published by Penguin books in 1998. It went on to become the bestseller of that year and from there it all took off for her. The plot: Three individuals that do not know each other and are going through life feeling that something is missing or that there should be more to life. Unbeknown to them, they are about to receive news that will change their lives forever and suddenly bring them together in a way they never expected. Can they learn to adapt and start living properly? Big changes can sometimes be bad things, but sometimes they can change your life for the better and it’s up to these three to try to do exactly that. Characters: The first main character we meet is Lydia and she is the oldest of the three main people the book centres around. Living in a huge home on her own with not many friends and tonnes of money, she feels like she is lost and life is missing something important. Coming from nothing and ...
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