Summer reading in Tremarnock

I was lucky enough to win a copy of Tremarnock Summer – thank you Emma Burstall. When I read the first of the series I fell in love with the Cornish coastal town of Tremarnock and it’s residents especially Liz and her daughter Rosie. It was a pleasure to revisit this delightful place. Her descriptions capture the sea air, stunning scenery and atmosphere of living near the sea so even if you can’t go on holiday, it provides a respite from real life.

Tremarnock Summer

Her relaxed style of writing lulls you into the calm and more relaxed pace of life  in Cornwall. The Tremarnock series, including this one, make perfect holiday reading.

Unlike the other books it took me a while to connect to Bramble, the main character,  but until then, the other characters drew me in including old favourites such as Liz, Loveday and Pat and new ones like Fergus and Shannon. Bramble is a young woman from Chessington living a normal life when she inherits Polgery Manor in the village. On coming to live far from home, she gets more than she bargained for. I  assumed I knew where her story would lead but I was wrong because the story thankfully, twisted in another direction.

Emma Burstall has a way of making the story about whole town not just the star of the current book, like a chilled out  soap opera.  I can’t wait for next year’s arrival to see how everyone are doing.

 

Have you read this series? What did you think?

Happy reading!

Book Lovers Day Favourites

There is nothing quite like a new book with its fresh pages, disintinctive smell, unblemished spine yet to be opened and a story waiting inside to be released for the first time into your imagination. That said, favourite books which are old and shabby with multiple rereads  have  a special place in a book lovers heart  and they deserve to be celebrated on Book Lovers Day. On days when it is miserable outside, life is hard or the duvet is refusing to let you get up, immersing yourself into a familar world with well known characters is a pleasure and soothes the soul.

Some of my favourites are:

The All Souls series by Deborah Harkness. I have them all on my Kindle, phone and paperback just in case I need to visit Diana, Matthew and Hamish. 

The Path Keeper by  N J Simmonds – a new one on my list and I am only halfway through it but within the first few chapters, I knew this was a forever book.

The Shadow Sister by Lucinda Riley –  part of another series I love “The Seven Sisters”. It was love at first sight when I saw the hardback cover on the shelf with its gold leaf constellations.

Marshmallows for Breakfast by Dorothy Koomson. A read from one of my favourite authors and its title alone means I can justify eating marshmallows at 8am with no guilt.

Lost for Words by Stephanie Butland – another new read for me but the characters, the bookshop and its local settings made me fall in love with it.

Audrey Rose by  Frank de Felitta – an in depth read on reincarnation. It is heartbreaking  as well as enlightening. I fell in love with the 1970s film of the same name first and was overjoyed when I discovered the book in a secondhand book shop. 

Remember me by Sophie Kinsella – a go to read for rainy days when you need to be uplifted. Everytime I plant sunflowers in the spring I remember these characters.

Hiding from the Light by Barbara Erskine – All her books should be included on my list but this one with Witchfinder General Matthew Hopkins  beats them all. It quarantees a restless night with the light kept on. 

Angelology by Danielle Trussoni – Angels as you have never seen them before, a convent with a secret and a race against the clock adventure what more do you need? It is the first of a trilogy but works well as a standalone which is handy because the third book has yet to be released and  many readers  wonder whether it will ever be. 

Dark Dividing – A story about twins. It is creepy, clever and deserves to be read over again.  

Sacred and Profane by Marcelle Bernstein – a story surrounding twins again and the mysterious connection they have. One is in jail while the other hides in a closed convent. What secrets do they both hide? I have read it many times and I am still unsure whether I know. 

As I searched my bookcase for my fave books I discovered many reads I needed to visit again; not good for my overlarge TBR pile including The Dead Zone by Stephen King and Dean Koontz’s Lightening.

What do you love reading again and again?

Happy Book Lovers Day and happy reading!

Love Kate

The problem of the ever growing TBR list

The problem with online book clubs, reading reviews and Kindle deals as well as library browsing and retail shopping, my TBR list is growing faster than I can physically keep up with. My reservation list at the library is full, my bookshelves are overflowing and books are now hiding unsucessfully under the bed. Luckily this month, the theme is to read something from your pile of books waiting to be read. – phew!

I am now faced with the dilemma of what to read? In my stash, there are books from new authors, favourite authors alongside old favourites that long to be revisited, it is difficult to choose. So far I have:

The Gift by Louise Jensen

The Path Keepers by NJ Simmonds

The Other Sister by Rowan Coleman

Angelology by Danielle Trussoni

The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

Lyrebird by Cecelia Ahern

Last seen alive by Claire Douglas

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

Drowning Ruth by Christina Schwarz

The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley

and many more. If you have any recommendations on which to read, comment below.

 

What are you reading this month?

Meet the Author – M J Smith

This month we were pleased to catch up with MJ Smith, the author of one of our favourite reads this year, Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: The Journey Begins. This is a 5 star rated book and it deserves every star with its brutally honest, yet heartwarming account of being diagnosed with a rare illness and the consequences it brings. If you have been touched by chronic illness, you will identify with much he says. The relaxed and humourous style makes the book that could have been difficult to read, a joy to read in one sitting with a cup of tea.

m-j-smith-pic

M J Smith

About MJ Smith

In 2013, M J Smith was diagnosed with a rare life threatening genetic disorder that changed his life forever.  In his effort to gain knowledge of Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (vEDS), it quickly became apparent that there was little in the way of help or awareness.

Being a fond reader, he decided it was time to follow his dreams and pursue his passion for writing. Over the months that followed the diagnosis, M J Smith penned “Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: The Journey Begins”.  His first novel. But this wasn’t just any novel, this was his story as told through the eyes of David Malarky. It is now used as a tool to spread awareness and in some ways help others in similar situations to show that no matter how few we may be, we are never alone.

Whilst juggling a full-time job and studying for a Bsc (honours) in Health Sciences, M J Smith continues to work on his ultimate dream of releasing a fictional story direct from his own imagination.

What is your favourite book?

I find it hard to answer this as I love many books and not really one title sticks out. Anything that fires up my imagination and takes me deep into another realm. The book I’m currently reading is “Midnight” by Dean Koontz. If I’m honest, I see most books as a work of art, as I know the challenge it can be to actually write one to a point of completion.

Who is your favourite author?

Well, my favourite authors are Stephen King and Dean Koontz. I love the way Mr King creates his characters, and the way Mr Koontz makes you visualise his world. These chaps really know how to write. Of course for a little bit of magic I don’t think you can beat a bit of Roald Dahl.

Is your writing influenced by the books you have read?

In a sense yes. When writing “Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: The Journey Begins”, it was a deep, emotional experience. Reliving past events that weren’t so pleasant wasn’t the easiest of tasks. In order to keep it light, I wanted to add in a little humour, which seems to have come across well. I have found in many books, especially from the likes of Stephen King there is always an undertone of humour to be found.

Where is your favourite place to read or write?

To read has to be bed. To write, then that’s mostly at some stupid hour of the morning when the rest of the world is asleep, sat at my computer desk. The brain always seems to get the words flowing when the moon is shining high.

When did you begin writing and how did being published come about?

Originally I wasn’t going to publish “”. It started as a tool to help myself come to terms with the diagnosis. However, the more I tapped away at the keyboard, the more of a book it became. After a few people read samples of it, they urged me to get it published. After lots of ummming and arrrggghhhing I took the plunge and released it through Amazon. So far the response has been great, with some fantastic heartfelt messages and some brilliant 5 star reviews.

Has being chronically ill influenced your writing and changed its direction?

Oh yes. I had been wanting to write a novel for years. I tried a few times but never finished. I would have never of guessed that my own story would become my first story!

I think without the diagnosis, I wouldn’t have sat down long enough to get anything written and it would have remained a dream rather reality.

To find out more:

m-j-smith-journey

MJ Smith’s book Vascular Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome: The Journey Begins is available at Amazon

Read and follow his  blog

Or catch up with him on Facebook or Twitter

 

From weird books to beautiful covers!

October’s book club party has come to an end and with a theme of ‘weird’ some strange books and characters have materialised. These include the popular Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs to the macabre tale of Perfume by Patrick Süskind.

What is the weirdest book you have read?

20161028_100151.jpg

 

November is nearly here with its cold days and long nights, perfect for snuggling up with a good book and hot drink. The theme is ‘Beautiful covers’ so this month you can judge a book by it’s cover.  Books have a different covers to entice us to read them. This month, let’s choose a stunning book  that stands out on the shelf and see if the story is as good as the cover promises.

m-j-smith-pic

M J Smith

 

Look out next month for more member book reviews, themes for 2017 and a Meet the Author interview with M J Smith. We have read his book which has 5 star reviews on Anazon  and can’t wait to find out more.

 

 

Happy reading!

Book Club Party dates

November 25th 2016