Book Haul 2 weeks ended 30 September 2017

Despite an intermittent WiFi while on holiday I still managed to acquire more books than are probably good for me – so business as usual.

Kindle Purchases


On Turtle BeachOn Turtle Beach by Lynne Fisher

Struggling artist, Lucy, and her successful sister, Rhea, make the bold decision to go on holiday together to Dalyan in Turkey, to try to heal their relationship and so fulfil their father’s dying wish. But despite their best efforts, the bereaved sisters soon realise that Lucy’s passionate nature and Rhea’s restraint means it’s difficult to find comfortable common ground. Lucy wants to bond, but Rhea would rather read her novel. When Lucy tries to get Rhea to talk about their childhood and why their relationship suddenly deteriorated, Rhea refuses to discuss it and Lucy becomes suspicious Rhea is hiding something.

Against the backdrop of the beautiful turtle beach, tensions soon escalate between them, while other characters help or hinder, and Lucy is finally forced to come up with a plan to get her sister to open up. She plots to get Rhea alone and stranded where there will be no escape. Can Lucy discover what family secrets her sister is hiding, the revealing of which could actually threaten to destroy them both?


Orange Blossom DaysOrange Blossom Days by Patricia Scanlan

In a beautiful southern Spanish town, where the sea sparkles and orange blossoms scent the air, the gates of a brand new apartment complex, La Joya de Andalucía, glide open to welcome the new owners. 

Anna and Austen MacDonald, an Irish couple, are preparing to enjoy their retirement to the full. But the demands of family cause problems they have never foreseen and shake their marriage to the core.  

Sally-Ann Connolly Cooper, a feisty Texan mother of two young teenagers, is reeling from her husband’s infidelity. La Joya becomes a place of solace for Sally-Ann, in more ways than one.

Eduardo Sanchez, a haughty Madrileño, has set out with single-minded determination to become El Presidente of the complex’s management committee. But pride comes before a fall.

Jutta Sauer Perez, a sophisticated German who aspires to own her very own apartment in La Joya, works hard to reach her goal. Then the unthinkable happens.

As their lives entwine and friendships and enmities develop, it becomes apparent that La Joya is not quite the haven they all expect it to be…


Meet me at Willoughby CloseMeet me at Willoughby Close by Kate Hewitt

Welcome to Willoughby Close… a charming cluster of cozy cottages, each with a story to tell and a happy ending to deliver…

Ellie Matthews has come to Wychwood-on-Lea to find a new start for her and her daughter Abby. But, life there doesn’t start out as idyllic as she had hoped. While Ellie loves her cute cottage in Willoughby Close, the Yummy Mummies at the primary school seem intent on giving her the cold shoulder, Abby has trouble fitting in, and her boss, Oliver Venables, is both surprisingly sexy and irritatingly inscrutable.

But miracles can happen in the most unexpected places, and in small, yet wonderful ways. Slowly, Ellie and Abby find themselves making friends and experiencing the everyday magic of Willoughby Close. When Oliver’s nephew, Tobias, befriends Abby, the four of them start to feel like family… and Ellie begins to see the kindness and warmth beneath Oliver’s chilly exterior, which awakens both her longing and fear.

Ellie knows all about disappointment, and the pain of trying too hard for nothing, while Oliver has his own hurts and secrets to deal with. When the past comes rollicking back to remind both of them of their weaknesses and failings, will they be able to overcome their fears and find their own happy ending?


ArrangementThe Arrangement by Sonya Lalli

Would you let your grandmother play matchmaker?

You can’t choose who you fall for…but it helps if there’s a list

When you’re approaching thirty it’s normal (if not incredibly annoying) for your family to ask when you’ll tie the knot and settle down. But for Raina there’s a whole community waiting for someone to make her a wife – and a loving grandmother, Nani, ready to play matchmaker with a comprehensive list of potential husbands.

Eager not to disappoint her family, Raina goes along with the plan but when the love of her life returns – ex-boyfriend Dev – she’s forced to confront her true feelings. Now her ‘clock is ticking’, it’s time for Raina to decide what she actually wants.

Will Raina let her family decide her future, or can she forge her own path?


Lies WithinThe Lies Within by Jane Isaac

Be under no illusions by her kind face and eloquent manner… This woman is guilty of murder.

Grace Daniels is distraught after her daughter’s body is found in a Leicestershire country lane. With her family falling apart and the investigation going nowhere, Grace’s only solace is the re-emergence of Faye, an old friend who seems to understand her loss.

DI Will Jackman delves into the case, until a family tragedy and a figure from his past threaten to derail him.

When the police discover another victim, the spotlight falls on Grace. Can Jackman find the killer, before she is convicted of a crime she didn’t commit?


Sea of StrawA Sea of Straw by Julia Sutton

Set in the 1960s, the story of Jody, her little daughter Anna and Zé, veers between an unhappy marriage in the North of England and a journey to find love amid the vivid landscapes of Portugal, while exposing the darkest shadows of Europe’s longest-running dictatorship. A Sea of Straw is a haunting debut that will linger in the memory.




ThreatThreat by Hugh Fraser

‘How far would you go to protect the innocent?’
London 1961. In the dying days of the Macmillan government, George Preston is in control of crime in West London and Rina Walker is his favoured contract killer. When Rina is hired by Soho vice king Tony Farina to investigate the disappearance of girls from his clubs she discovers that they are being supplied to a member of the English aristocracy for the gratification of his macabre sexual tastes. Rina’s pursuit of the missing girls and her efforts to save the innocent from slaughter become increasingly perilous as she grapples with interwoven layers of corruption and betrayal and makes her way, via the louche nightclubs of Berlin, towards a final confrontation with depravity.


Running with BullsRunning with the Bulls by David Kitching

Imagine languishing on your death bed. In your fevered state you judge yourself. You’ve led a pretty decent life, worked hard, always provided for the family. But there’s one thing missing. A country you never visited perhaps, an activity or experience you never got to try. Something you always wanted to do but life and duty got in the way. How would you feel? Helpless, frustrated, angry with yourself even ….

At the premature funeral of his best friend the author has a revelation, an epiphany. He decides enough is enough. His fateful decision launches him on a marathon trip of self-discovery spanning Patagonia to Easter Island. If this book is anything, it’s about the importance of achieving your goals in life whilst you still can. It’s about ensuring you never look back in anger.


HomeHome by Harlan Coben

For ten long years two boys have been missing.

Now you think you’ve seen one of them.

He’s a young man. And he’s in trouble.

Do you approach him?
Ask him to come home with you?
And how can you be sure it’s really him?

You thought your search for the truth was over.
It’s only just begun.


Hope to DieHope to Die by David Jackson

On a bitterly cold winter’s night, Liverpool is left stunned by a brutal murder in the grounds of the city’s Anglican Cathedral. A killer is on the loose, driven by a chilling rage.

Put on the case, DS Nathan Cody is quickly stumped. Wherever he digs, the victim seems to be almost angelic – no-one has a bad word to say, let alone a motive for such a violent murder.

And Cody has other things on his mind too. The ghosts of his past are coming ever closer, and – still bearing the physical and mental scars – it’s all he can do to hold onto his sanity.

And then the killer strikes again . . .


Englishwoman in ParisAn Englishwoman in Paris by Jenny O’Brien

Englishwoman in Paris; the new romance series from Jenny O’Brien, writer of the popular Ideal Girl Trilogy. For Downton Abbey fans (Second Edition, published August, 2017) NB: Free prequel now available, ‘Englishman in Blackpool’. 

22 year old Lady Sarah Cosgrave is a student at the Sorbonne and heiress to millions, but only if she’s engaged by the time she reaches 23. She’s in urgent need of a fake boyfriend to appease her parents. Anyone will do as long as he has long vowels and a long pocket.
Handsome French builder, Pascal de Sauvarin is neither, but as he’s the only man available he’ll have to do. Can their love overcome the demands polite society throws at it or will she be forced to marry rancid Rupert?


Turning BlueTurning Blue by Benjamin Myers

The depths of winter in the isolated Yorkshire Dales and a teenage girl is missing.

Steven Rutter, a destitute loner, harbours secrets. Nobody knows the bleak moors better than him, or their hiding places.

Obsessive, taciturn and solitary, DS Brindle is relentless in pursuing justice. But he is not alone in his growing preoccupation with the case. Local journalist Roddy Mace has moved north from London to build a new life. Can this assignment be his redemption?

As Brindle and Mace begin to prise the secrets of the case from tight-lipped locals, their investigation leads first to the pillars of the community and finally to a local celebrity and fixture of the nation’s Saturday-night TV. ‘Lovely Larry’ Lister has his own hiding places, and his own dark tastes.


Seven LettersThe Seven Letters by Jan Harvey

When Claudette Bourvil is recruited to the French Resistance the last thing she expects is that she will be sent to work in the heart of Paris to spy on senior Nazi officers.

Claudette learns how to survive in a city ravaged by war, where the citizens are murdered on the whim of the occupying force. Constantly under threat of discovery, and in danger of losing her life, Claudette risks everything when she falls in love with the wrong man, the worst kind of man.

Over seventy years later, in rural Oxfordshire, Connie Webber discovers seven letters linked to a famous playwright, Freddy March. The letters will eventually lead her to Paris where she discovers the horrific reason behind Freddy’s life long depression. As his mother’s story unfolds Connie uncovers a dark past that the city has tried to erase from history.


Lost DaughtersThe Lost Daughters by Jeanne Whitmee

Children of single parents in post-war London, Cathy Oldham and Rosalind Blair’s young lives are blighted by loss. As the 1960s begin, and her loving father Daniel dies, Cathy is left in the care of her godfather Gerald Cavelle, a glamorous concert pianist. She and Gerald marry but the security she craves continues to elude Cathy: confined to their remote hideaway in Suffolk, she feels lonelier than ever before. Rosalind, too, finds the transition to adulthood fraught with difficulty. Even her hard-won career in hotel management looks threatened by her mother’s domineering theatrical ways. Then an unexpected reunion with Cathy gives her new impetus to break free. Together, they enter the hazardous world of business — and start to become independent women…


Long Way HomeThe Long Way Home by Jeanne Whitmee

Nothing can replace a mother’s love… 

The cruel betrayal of the man she loves forces Marie O’Connor to make the heartbreaking decision to give up her twin daughters at birth. And so begin Leah and Sarah’s personal stories. 

Separated from one another a mere few days after their birth, the two girls reach adulthood unaware of a twin sister and their tragic background. Shifted from one foster home to another, Leah is finally brought up by misguided parents trying to replace the loss of their own daughter. And Sarah is adopted by an adoring couple who smother her with love.

But neither girl feels she truly belongs. 

Then – after an explosive row – the rebellious Leah is sent packing. Realising what she has been missing all along, Leah leaves home, determined to find her natural mother and uncover her past. 

Meanwhile, Marie has picked up the tattered threads of her life and achieved a successful career running a chain of hotels on the South-East coast. But hardly a day goes past by without her thinking of her lost little girls. 

It is not until the past and present come together in one terrifying moment of reckoning, that Marie and her daughters are free to share the love they have so long denied. But with all three women being strangers, can they trust one another to put the past behind and become a family?


Certain AgeA Certain Age by Beatriz Williams

New York in the Roaring Twenties – a time for love, secrets and scandal…

As the freedom of the Jazz Age transforms New York City, the iridescent Mrs Theresa Marshall of Fifth Avenue – a beautiful socialite of a certain age – has done the unthinkable: she’s fallen in love with her young lover, Captain Octavian Rofrano, a handsome aviator and hero of the Great War. But though times are changing, divorce for a woman of Theresa’s wealth and social standing is out of the question.

When Theresa’s bachelor brother, Ox, decides to tie the knot with the youngest daughter of a newly wealthy inventor, Theresa enlists her lover to present the family’s diamond rose ring to pretty ingénue, Miss Sophie Fortescue – and to check into the background of this little-known family. Yet even as he uncovers a shocking secret, Octavian falls under Sophie’s spell…

Divided loyalties and dangerous revelations lead to a shocking transgression and eventually Theresa must make a choice that will change them all forever.


Under Heaven's Shining StarsUnder Heaven’s Shining Stars by Jean Grainger

One is poor but loved. Another born with a silver spoon. The last has seen too much.

For three young boys, Liam, Patrick, and Hugo, life in Ireland of the 1960s proves to be both idyllic and flawed. Living in close proximity but leading vastly different lives, the bonds of friendship bind these young men as they grow, dream, and navigate the storms of youth.
In a world where the Catholic Church is a looming and pervasive presence, the dreamy ideal of childhood is staunchly contrasted against the backdrop of suffering and darkness in the lives of these three boys. Will their friendship be enough to weather the gale? Or will their separate struggles tear them apart?
In Under Heaven’s Shining Stars, author Jean Grainger brings to life the struggles and simplicity that often go hand-in-hand with growing up. Experience the gambit of emotion as you witness the journey of Liam, Patrick, and Hugo as they face the beauty, turmoil, and endless possibilities of life under the turbulent Irish sky.


UnseeingThe Unseeing by Anna Mazzola

Set in London in 1837, Anna Mazzola’s THE UNSEEING is the story of Sarah Gale, a seamstress and mother, sentenced to hang for her role in the murder of Hannah Brown on the eve of her wedding. Perfect for any reader of Sarah Waters or Antonia Hodgson.

After Sarah petitions for mercy, Edmund Fleetwood is appointed to investigate and consider whether justice has been done. Idealistic, but struggling with his own demons, Edmund is determined to seek out the truth. Yet Sarah refuses to help him, neither lying nor adding anything to the evidence gathered in court. Edmund knows she’s hiding something, but needs to discover just why she’s maintaining her silence. For how can it be that someone would willingly go to their own death?





  1. Hope you enjoy The Lies Within, I loved it. And I have Home on my list, in fact a few Harlan Coben’s books after I read Don’t Let Go, which was amazingly my first. Can’t believe I waited so long to begin reading his books!

    Liked by 1 person

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