Book Review: The Idea of You by Amanda Prowse.

Image result for the idea of you amanda prowse

Read between: 15th-20th March
Format: ebook
Published: 21st March 2017
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Synopsis: What if the one thing you want is the only thing you can’t have? With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter thinks she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance to have a precious baby of her own. Life couldn’t be more perfect. But becoming parents proves much harder than Lucy and Jonah imagined, and when Jonah’s teenage daughter comes to stay, she becomes a constant reminder of what Lucy doesn’t have. Jonah’s love and support are unquestioning, but Lucy’s struggles with work and her own failing dreams begin to take their toll. With Camille’s presence straining the bonds of Lucy’s marriage even further, Lucy suddenly feels herself close to losing everything…
Rating: 3-5-stars

Review: Firstly, thank you to the author, publisher and Netgalley for this book!

Lucy is 39, desperate for a man. Then she meets Jonah Carpenter at a christening and the rest is history! After a whirlwind romance, they get married and start trying for a baby.

Jonah already has a sixteen year old daughter from his last marriage but is desperate to start one with Lucy, and with both of them nearing their forties, it’s better late than never!

This is where the story takes a heartbreaking turn, and the author really understood how the characters felt. It felt real.

Lucy suffers three miscarriages throughout the story and each one felt worse than the one before. For me, it wasn’t the fact she lost the baby- it was the fact she lost hope.

It doesn’t help that Camille, Jonah’s daughter, is now living with them for the summer.

Lucy is very fragile character- she gets upset and jealous very easily and when Jonah tells her that she gets very defensive. However, the notes between her and her lost baby really reveal her heart…

…and they made a lot more sense after a huge secret was revealed.

As a reader, you know something happened to Lucy in her teens. It’s how the book starts! What you don’t know though, is exactly what happened.

It’s both shocking and sad.

It was a good read and I flew through the story. I wanted to know what would happen to Jonah and Lucy.

This is the first book by Amanda Prowse that I have read and I really liked it. I really like the way she writes.

3.5/5 Stars!

Thanks for reading!



March Book Haul!

So I decided to post up a March Book Haul before the month was over, as I have accumulated seven books this month! Technically I am still on a book buying ban, but apart from the two books that came in a subscription box, I didn’t buy any of these books. 🙂

So let’s start with the physical books!


Blood and Sand by C.V. Wyk. This was the main novel in my February Illumicrate. It is basically the re-telling of Spartacus, with a female protagonist. The synopsis from Goodreads reads: Roma Victrix. The Republic of Rome is on a relentless march to create an empire―an empire built on the backs of the conquered, brought back to Rome as slaves.

Attia was once destined to rule as the queen and swordmaiden of Thrace, the greatest warrior kingdom the world had seen since Sparta. Now she is a slave, given to Xanthus, the Champion of Rome, as a sign of his master’s favor. Enslaved as a child, Xanthus is the preeminent gladiator of his generation.

Against all odds, Attia and Xanthus form a tentative bond. A bond that will spark a rebellion. A rebellion that threatens to bring the Roman Republic to its end―and gives rise to the legend of Spartacus…


Also in my Illumicrate I got an ARC of The Smoke Thieves by Sally Green. It’s such a pretty book and the premise is right up my alley! The synopsis from Goodreads says:

A princess, a traitor, a soldier, a hunter and a thief. Five teenagers with the fate of the world in their hands. Five nations destined for conflict.

In Brigant, Princess Catherine prepares for a political marriage arranged by her brutal and ambitious father, while her true love, Ambrose, faces the executioner’s block. In Calidor, downtrodden servant March seeks revenge on the prince who betrayed his people. In Pitoria, feckless Edyon steals cheap baubles for cheaper thrills as he drifts from town to town. And in the barren northern territories, thirteen-year-old Tash is running for her life as she plays bait for the gruff demon hunter Gravell.

As alliances shift and shatter, and old certainties are overturned, our five heroes find their past lives transformed and their futures inextricably linked by the unpredictable tides of magic and war. Who will rise and who will fall? And who will claim the ultimate prize?

It’s not released until May but I’m looking forward to reading it!
The final physical book I got this month is also an ARC, and that is an ARC of Days of Wonder by Keith Stuart. I loved his last book, A Boy Made of Blocks so I’m hoping this one will be just as good!
I’m taking part in the blog tour in June, so if I read it before then, the review will be scheduled.
Synopsis:Tom, single father to Hannah, is the manager of a tiny local theatre. On the same day each year, he and its colourful cast of part-time actors have staged a fantastical production just for his little girl, a moment of magic to make her childhood unforgettable.

But there is another reason behind these annual shows: the very first production followed Hannah’s diagnosis with a heart condition that will end her life early. And now, with Hannah a funny, tough girl of fifteen, that time is coming.

Hannah’s heart is literally broken – and she can’t bear the idea of her dad’s breaking too. So she resolves to find a partner for Tom, someone else to love, to fill the space beside him.

While all the time Tom plans a final day of magic that might just save them both.


I also got four ebooks this month, and all of them are from Netgalley. I picked the first three because the March challenge for the Penguin Read the Year Reading Challenge is to read a book about a woman you hadn’t previously heard of so…..


The Woman Who Fought an Empire: Sarah Aaronsohn and her Nili Spy Ring by Gregory. J. Wallace. This book sounds so interesting- it’s about a female spy and very curious to find out more about her!
Though she only lived to be twenty-seven, Sarah Aaronsohn led a remarkable life. The Woman Who Fought an Empire tells the improbable but true odyssey of a bold young woman—the daughter of Romanian-born Jewish settlers in Palestine—who became the daring leader of a Middle East spy ring.

Following the outbreak of World War I, Sarah learned that her brother Aaron had formed Nili, an anti-Turkish spy ring, to aid the British in their war against the Ottomans. Sarah, who had witnessed the atrocities of the Armenian genocide by the Turks, believed that only the defeat of the Ottoman Empire could save the Palestinian Jews from a similar fate. Sarah joined Nili, eventually rising to become the organization’s leader. Operating behind enemy lines, she and her spies furnished vital information to British intelligence in Cairo about the Turkish military forces until she was caught and tortured by the Turks in the fall of 1917. To protect her secrets, Sarah got hold of a gun and shot herself. The Woman Who Fought an Empire, whose setting is the birth of the modern Middle East, rebukes the Hollywood stereotype of women spies and is at once an espionage thriller and a Joan of Arc tale.


Being a history buff, I was drawn to this. I’m hoping there will definitely be some interesting women in here! The synopsis doesn’t give anything away, but it sounds great!
Trailblazing Women of the Georgian Era offers a fascinating insight into the world of female inequality in the Eighteenth Century. It looks at the reasons for that inequality – the legal barriers, the lack of education, the prejudices and misconceptions held by men – and also examines the reluctance of women to compete on an equal footing. Why did so many women accept that ‘a woman’s place was in the home?’ Using seventeen case studies of women who succeeded despite all the barriers and opposition, the author asks why, in the light of their success, so little progress was made in the Victorian era. Representing women from all walks of life; artists, business women, philanthropists, inventors and industrialists, the book examines the way that the Quaker movement, with its doctrine of equality between men and women, spawned so many successful businesses and helped propel women to the forefront. In the 225 years since the publication of Mary Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, questions remain as to why those noble ideas about equality were left to founder during the Victorian era? And why are there still so many areas where, for historical reasons, equality is still a mirage?


Paulette, is actually a memoir, about the author’s mother. So, a woman I’ve never heard of but hopefully I’ll still enjoy it. We shall see!

Paulette Tourdes was born in Jussac, a village in south-west Auvergne, in 1916. She spent half of her childhood there and half in the nearby town of Aurillac, growing up as part of a large extended family in typically rustic rural France.

She went to Spain for several months at the start of the Civil War, and not long after moved to England, having met her future husband in France; they were married in 1941. This is her colourful story, based in part on recordings she made in 2002, told by the eldest of her children, Martin.

It is a tale of two languages and two cultures, overshadowed by two World Wars, political activism and mental illness. It examines what it means to leave your homeland and to embrace another and, for the children, the challenges of growing up bilingual. Sometimes funny, parfois triste, this is a story that explores the strong bonds between the two countries from a deeply personal level.

And finally, the last book I recommended from Netgalley because of the cover because it’s so cute!


Look at the little doggie! ❤

The synopsis says its similar to A Streetcat Named Bob .

Like A Streecat Named Bob before it, Finding Gobi is a truly heart-warming story for animal lovers worldwide…

In 2016, Dion Leonard, a seasoned ultramarathon runner, unexpectedly stumbled across a little stray dog while competing in a gruelling 155 mile race across the Gobi Desert. The lovable pup, who earned the name ‘Gobi’, proved that what she lacked in size, she more than made up for in heart, as she went step for step with Dion over the treacherous Tian Shan Mountains, managing to keep pace with him for nearly 80 miles.

As Dion witnessed the incredible determination of this small animal, he felt something change within himself. In the past he had always focused on winning and being the best, but his goal now was simply to make sure that his new friend was safe, nourished and hydrated. Although Dion did not finish first, he felt he had won something far greater and promised to bring Gobi back to the UK for good to become a new addition to his family. This was the start of a journey neither of them would ever forget with a roller coaster ride of drama, grief, heartbreak, joy and love that changed their lives forever.

Finding Gobi is the ultimate story of hope, of resilience and of friendship, proving once again, that dogs really are ‘man’s best friend.’

And that’s it!

That is all the books I got this month. Which one should I pick up first?
Thanks for reading!


Book Review: On the Other Side by Carrie Hope Fletcher

Image result for on the other side

Read between: 9th-15th March
Format: Hardcover
Published: July 14th, 2016
Publisher: Little Brown and Company
Number of pages: 345
Synopsis: Evie Snow is eighty-two when she quietly passes away in her sleep, surrounded by her children and grandchildren. It’s the way most people wish to leave the world but when Evie reaches the door of her own private heaven, she finds that she’s become her twenty-seven-year-old self and the door won’t open.

Evie’s soul must be light enough to pass through so she needs to get rid of whatever is making her soul heavy. For Evie, this means unburdening herself of the three secrets that have weighed her down for over fifty years, so she must find a way to reveal them before it’s too late. As Evie begins the journey of a lifetime, she learns more about life and love than she ever thought possible, and somehow , some way, she may also find her way back to her long lost love . . .

On the Other Side will transport you to a world that is impossible to forget.

Rating: 5521e-4stars

Review: Evie Snow has just passed away. However, in most stories, this would be where it ends- but in fact, this is where it begins. You see, before Evie can pass over to the other side, she must first let go of the secrets she has kept throughout her life to lift the burden and lighten her heart.

The main story follows Evie in her 20s, her struggle to find and stick to a career to keep her mother of her back (to stop her finding her a husband!), and the way she falls in love with a busking violinist she meets in the train station. The rugged, and talented, Vincent Winters.

I really enjoyed this story, despite picturing the author a lot of the time- the description of 27 year old Evie makes her look a lot like Carrie herself, as well as trying to work out what the time period was. It read like a modern day novel- escalators, tube stations etc but I think a young Evie Snow was living through the 1920s and there wasn’t too much to clarify that.

However, the aspects of the fantastical and magical realism took this book to another level I didn’t expect. There is definitely some inspiration from TV shows such as Once Upon a Time (I won’t say for what as that’s a spoiler) but the reason I didn’t give this book five stars was because of this element, I didn’t really feel like it fit…

I did like the inclusion of various LGBTQ+ characters though, including Vincent himself, because it gave the book more heart- and it was also interesting to have another perspective on how people were very anti the idea back then. Especially with one scene involving Evie’s parents and her brother coming out to them.

It’s definitely a lovely story. Evie is a wonderful character, whose love remains undivided even while she’s in, what is technically, purgatory. I love a character with a big heart, because then they make me feel all warm inside.

It’s not a perfect book, I’ll admit, but it’s heartwarming, which I think sums the book up rather well. It ended just the way I wanted it to, too. So I wasn’t disappointed!

A beautiful read.
4/5 stars.

Thanks for reading!


Book Review: Child of the Hive by Jessica Meats

Read between: 28th February- 9th March

Format: ebook

Published: 1st February, 2013.


Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️

Review: Set in the distant future, Child of the Hive, is set during a war between a government agency known as the Beeks and the Hive, a scientific organisation who are using computers to brainwash the population and controlling what they think and how they act. In other words, they can program them to change their minds!

Will is in hiding so he’s not caught up in the war- he’s been in hiding ever since his brother was killed. Unfortunately, when an old friend, Sophie, finds his photo on a website for a school maths competition- he, and his friends Ben and Alex, find themselves on the run.

It was much more action packed than I thought it would be- mainly because I was expecting it to be science fiction rather than dystopian. It’s much more about the focus of relying on technology and how technology will one day end up controlling our lives.

A scary thought- but not that far off from today!

There was such a wide range of characters. I loved Sophie, who is a genius like Will, but also the main character under the control of the HIVE. She has so many voices on her head and you think it would make her crazy.

There’s a suggestion in the books that she’s on the autistic spectrum because she’s ‘special’ and I wasn’t a fan of how that was worded….

However, sometimes it got a bit confusing but the second half was much better than the first half! That was probably because Sophie is so clever and it was really interesting to follow her theories…although, for a futuristic book it has a sad ending.

I definitely enjoyed this book, it was a slow read but I’m glad it was because it meant I was able to understand the story better.

It’s a relatively unknown book but I’d definitely recommend it!

3/5 Stars!

Thanks for reading!


Top Ten Tuesday: Favourite Book Quotes

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme over at That Artsy a Reader Girl. This week, the theme is quotes and there are definitely some quotes that I love!

So without further ado, here they are.

“Life is infinitely stranger than anything which the mind of man could invent.” – Arthur Conan Doyle

“Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, as long as one remembers to turn on the light” – J K Rowling

“Books have to be heavy because the whole worlds inside them” – Cornelia Funke

” I want everyone to meet you. You’re my favourite person of all time”- Rainbow Rowell

“For what you see and hear depends a good deal on where you are standing: it also depends on what sort of person you are” – C.S Lewis

“Why sometimes, I believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast” – Lewis Carrol

“And so the lion fell in love with the lamb” – Stephenie Meyer

“You don’t forget the face of the person who was your last hope” – Suzanne Collins

“It is truth universally acknowledged that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife” – Jane Austen

“Maybe okay will be our always” – John Green

February 2018 Wrap Up

February whizzed by in a flash!

Image result for the flash gif

Bye February!

Being the shortest month of the year, it always does, but compared to January, I didn’t read as much this month. However, I did manage to read a large book this month, so my page count makes up for the book count.

I read four books this year- as well as completing some categories of the Reading Challenges I have set myself to follow this year.


The first book I read in February was The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger. I gave this book 2.5/5 stars as it was disappointing. If you’d like to hear why I thought that my review is here: Book Review: The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger.

The second book I read was also the longest book I read this year, which was Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy. It’s a Russian classic, and I can see why. I gave it 4/5 stars and my review is here: Book Review: Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy.

The third book wasn’t on my TBR, but as the TV adaptation was released at the weekend, I set myself a task to finish it and I did! It was Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith and I rated this 5 stars. Thoughts here: Book Review: Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith.

The final book I read this month was a re-read to complete one of the categories of the Penguin Read the Year Challenge- more on that in a second. It was Twilight by Stephenie Meyer, and I rated 3/5 stars. Much different than my original rating of 5 stars. My review is here: Book Review: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer if you would like to read it.


As for reading challenges, I completed the monthly task set in the Penguin Read the Year challenge, which was to read a book about obsessive love. Anna Karenina could have fit here but I thought this was the perfect scenario in which to re-read Twilight.

I also completed five of the categories of the Popsugar Reading Challenge. These were:

  • A book made into a movie you’ve already seen- Devil Wears Prada/ Anna Karenina/ Twilight
  • A book with a time of day in the title- Twilight
  • A book by a female author using a male pseudonym- Career of Evil
  • A book that is also a stage play or musical- Anna Karenina (okay so I swung this one a bit but Anna has been adapted for stage so it counts!)
  • A book with song lyrics in the title- Career of Evil (from the song by Blue Oyster Cult- relevant to the story if you’ve read it!)

And that’s my reading month!
Thanks for reading 🙂

Book Review: Twilight by Stephenie Meyer


Read between: 21st-27th February
Format: Paperback
Number of pages: 434
Published: September 26th, 2006
Publisher: Atom
Synopsis: About three things I was absolutely positive.

First, Edward was a vampire.

Second, there was a part of him—and I didn’t know how dominant that part might be—that thirsted for my blood.

And third, I was unconditionally and irrevocably in love with him.

Rating: 003d1-threestar

Review: I’m doing the Penguin ‘Read the Year’ Reading Challenge, and I was stuck for a book for February, which the category was ‘Get lost into an obsessive love story’ and I knew that I had to re-read Twilight.

I last read Twilight when I was about 14, so it’s been nearly ten years since I first read the book- and back then, it was a five star read. As you can see from my rating, my opinions on the story have changed slightly.

The lower rating isn’t because I dislike the book now, I still enjoyed it, it’s just because now I am seeing things through older eyes, there were things that Edward and Bella either said or did that made me laugh or roll my eyes. They’re a funny couple of characters, but I still love them!

For example, the line “Hah! You’re as white as a ghost—no, you’re as white as me!”

As well as the insta-love. Bella thinks Edward hates her, and then the next minute, she is head over heels in love with him, even though she keeps being warned to stay away from him. Women eh? They never listen. (That’s a joke by the way!)

It was great to re-read this book as an adult, because it’s definitely opened my eyes as to why some people either hate or dislike this book, because it’s super cringe, but it’s also your generic YA supernatural love story- so the cringey stuff is to be expected really!

I love Edward and Bella (I’m still on Team Jasper though), well, most stuff about them. Their relationship is actually kind of cute but sometimes I just…couldn’t with them. Like Bella wanting to die so she could be with Edward forever- girl, don’t throw away your life for some boy! There’s also the fact that Edward breaks into Bella’s bedroom to watch her sleep- as a 17 year old boy, that’s creepy, but as a 100 year old vampire, that’s all kinds of perverted!

C’mon Edward, don’t be a creep yeah?

Obviously, everyone knows the story, but I was surprised when I was reading it how much I had actually forgotten- like Jacob being younger than Bella, or Jasper actually being extremely kind to Bella when there was drama going on. (Hence Team Jasper <3)

Nevertheless, I am glad I picked up this book again, because I was able to relive the memories as well as looking at the story through a different perspective.

It’s made me really want to watch the movie again now.

Twilight is definitely one of my guilty pleasures!

Thanks for reading!