Following on from my recent post about stepping back from reviewing (see here), one of the things that concerned me was the books I’d read and not reviewed. I wanted to give the authors the shout out they deserved, especially when in some cases I’d agreed a review.
Now I know that some people do a mini-review, but with the number I have that puts me right back in the pressure firing line to even do those. So I’ve decided to simply shout out, over the course of several posts, and say, I really enjoyed these books and thoroughly recommend them. Had I written a review, I can assure you it would a been a glowing one. So have a look and see what takes your fancy.
This was Gina’s debut when I read it, happily already followed by book 2 with a third due in October. It offers a wry look at policing in the 1980’s set against Mavis’s personal life and struggles. It is witty, snort inducingly funny and full of heart.
Meet Mavis Upton. As mummy to 7-year old Ella, surrogate to far too many pets and with a failed marriage under her belt, Mavis knows she needs to make some life-changing decisions. It’s time to strike out into the world, to stand on her own two feet … to pursue a lifelong ambition to become a Police Officer. I mean, what could go wrong?
Supported by her quirky, malapropism-suffering mum, Mavis throws herself headlong into a world of uncertainty, self-discovery, fearless escapades, laughter and extra-large knickers. And using her newly discovered investigative skills, she reluctantly embarks on a search to find her errant dad who was last seen years before, making off with her mum’s much needed coupon for a fabulous foam cup bra all the way from America.
Follow Mavis as she tackles everything life can throw at her, and revel in Gina Kirkham’s humorous, poignant and moving story of an everyday girl who one day followed a dream.
A catch up with the Lizzie and her family five years on from 183 Times a Year (see my review here). A warm, yet raw and honest slice of modern family life.
Lizzie is fast approaching 50. Her once angst ridden teenage daughters, now grown and in their twenties, have flown the nest, Cassie to London and Maisy to Australia. And, although Connor, Lizzie’s sulky, surly teenage son, is now on his own tormented passage to adulthood, his quest to get there, for the most part, is a far quieter journey than that of his sisters. The hard years, Lizzie believes, are behind her. Only, things are never quite as black and white as they seem… A visit to her daughter in London leaves Lizzie troubled. And that is just the start. Add to that an unexpected visitor, a disturbing phone call, a son acting suspiciously, a run in with her ex husband plus a new man in her life who quite simply takes her breath away; Lizzie quickly realises life is something that happens while plans are being made. Gritty but tender, thought provoking but light-hearted, dark but brilliantly funny, this is a story of contemporary family life in all its 21st century glory. A story of mothers and sons, of fathers and daughters, of brothers and sisters, and friends. A tale of love and loss, of friendships and betrayals, and coming of age. Nobody said it would be easy and as Lizzie knows only too well, life is never straightforward when you see all the colours in between.
The second in the brilliant Charles Holborne series (see my review of the first – The Brief here) Re-branded and due for re publication this month, this sees Charles back in the fight against corruption in 1960’s London.
Corruption is at the core of the English justice system…
Barrister Charles Holborne may have just escaped the hangman by proving he was framed for murder, but his life is now in ruins.
His wife is dead, his high-flying career has morphed into criminal notoriety, and bankruptcy threatens.
So it seems too good to be true when the brief of a lifetime lands on his desk – with a pay check to match.
But as Charles delves deeper into the police corruption and warring criminal gangs involved in the case, he realises his reputation – and his life – could once more be on the line…
Can Charles win the case without compromising his integrity?
Or will he fail to remain An Honest Man…?
An uplifting story, with members of the newly formed Ladies Choir at it’s heart. Told via letters and diary entries it offers a nostalgic look at village life during WW2. As the war progresses, alliances are formed, barriers broken, friendships forged and secrets revealed. A perfect anytime read.
IN WARTIME, SURVIVAL IS AS MUCH ABOUT FRIENDSHIP AS IT IS ABOUT COURAGE…
Kent, 1940. In the idyllic village of Chilbury change is afoot. Hearts are breaking as sons and husbands leave to fight, and when the Vicar decides to close the choir until the men return, all seems lost.
But coming together in song is just what the women of Chilbury need in these dark hours, and they are ready to sing. With a little fighting spirit and the arrival of a new musical resident, the charismatic Miss Primrose Trent, the choir is reborn.
Some see the choir as a chance to forget their troubles, others the chance to shine. Though for one villager, the choir is the perfect cover to destroy Chilbury’s new-found harmony…