Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

Return To Virgin River by Robyn Carr [BLOG TOUR]

Return To Virgin River by Robyn Carr [BLOG TOUR]

This January, I read Virgin River and watched Season 1 of the Netflix TV Show. And I fell in love. With the small town, with the characters, with Robyn Carr’s writing. When the team at Mills & Boon offered me a chance to Return to Virgin River, I couldn’t say no.

Return To Virgin River by Robyn Carr [BLOG TOUR]

★★★★

Synopsis:

Return To Virgin River is actually the 19th book in the series. But the amazing thing is that you can read each book as a standalone as well. Each book is set in Virgin River, but it focuses on different characters and their lives in the same town. It is just the chronological part that changes.

In this book, we follow Kaylee. Her mother passed away recently and she rents a house in Virgin River to try and get back to writing and to cope with her grief. But as she arrives, she finds out that the house had burnt. Devastated, she goes to Jack’s bar to figure out what’s next. Yes – the same Jack we meet in the first book. He still has his bar, and the same old charm.

As she meets more people and spends more time in Virgin River, Kaylee slowly starts to heal. And not only she heals, but she starts to find happiness, love and motivation again. Because there is no better place to mend a broken heart than Virgin River.

My Thoughts:

I loved Virgin River, but I loved Return to Virgin RIver even more. Coming back to this town and reading again about Mel, Jack, Preacher and the other characters felt good. It felt like seeing your long distance cousins for Christmas, and talking like no time has passed. And I felt this, after only reading the first book. I can only imagine how people that have read all the books might feel.

I think it was also the happy tone of the book that I loved as well. Despite the sadness, grief and stress Kaylee was going through, this book shouts with positivity. The long walks, the caring people, the caring for the animals and the kindness – it filled me with positive vibes. And reading it during the Covid pandemic felt like the perfect escape. There is something about a small, fictional village that offers second chances that feels like home.

I highly recommend it to everyone that may need to find a little bit of escape. Or to people that love heartwarming stories, and second chances in life and love.

And don’t forget that there is a Netflix TV Show of this as well – with the new season coming out. Season 1 was incredible, and I cannot wait to see Season 2 as well – I am sure it will as good!

Purchase Links:
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Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

The Searcher by Tana French [BLOG TOUR]

The Searcher by Tana French [BLOG TOUR]

I am so happy to be part of this blog tour for the very much anticipated book release of The Searcher by Tana French. Huge thank you to the Penguin and Viking team, for this amazing opportunity!

The Searcher by Tana French [BLOG TOUR]

★★★

Synopsis:

Cal Hooper is a retired detective, and he moves to a remote village in rural Ireland. He’s fixing up this old house, and is getting used to this new mountain life, trying to forget about his previous profession of chasing criminals.

That is, until one day, a kid comes to his door and asks for help. His brother is missing, and he knows something must’ve happened to him. But no one else in the village seems to care. Unable to leave this a mystery, Cal starts to ask questions.

But the whole village seems like they don’t want new people messing up with whatever secrets they may have.

My Thoughts:

The Searcher was a true slow burner. At times, it was even too slow for me, and I was struggling. However, I have never before read a book so well built, and despite the slow pace, I kept returning to it.

This is my first book from Tana French, and I will definitely be reading more from her. I think the next one will be The Wych Elm, as I already have that one in my library. Tana French did such a good job at describing this rural village in Ireland, and its people. From the cold mountains, to the lovely cottage in need of renovating, to the pub and the people living in the village, it felt as if I was there. Even though I’ve never been to Ireland before.

Cal Hooper was an intriguing character, and I loved his story. The reason he moved to the mountains, and the ongoing experiences helped me understand the issues he was facing, and I loved how he started to personally grow throughout the book, with Trey’s help. And as for Trey, I loved his personality too. The quiet, but also savage and arrogant character, that wasn’t afraid to be nosy. But also the innocent child that desperately wanted help and support, when they didn’t receive it before.

The book was very dark and eerie throughout all times.

And the people are savage and brutal, and you can feel this even when the conversations are about happy things. There was a certain eerie cloud surrounding this book, and I really loved that. I don’t think another book has made me feel this way before.

As for the mystery, I feel that part was a bit weak. I loved the search itself, and the moments when Cal would try and dig deeper into what actually happened. But as any informal investigation, he couldn’t get too far. And the villagers didn’t try and help him too much. It was an interesting dynamic I really enjoyed. But the ending and the revelation weren’t too satisfying for me.

The Searcher by Tana French is truly one of a kind. With its description, the rural scenery and brutality of the people, it’s one of those books that will give you slow chills down your spine.

Purchase Links:
Amazon UK | Amazon US

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Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

Meet Me in London by Georgia Toffolo [BLOG TOUR]

★★★★★

I am so happy to be part of the blog tour for Meet Me in London by Georgia Toffolo. And not only am I participating, but I also have the privilege to kick it off! Thank you to the amazing team at Mills & Boon, for this opportunity. Below is an image of the Blog Tour Banner – please check out the rest of the book bloggers that are participating as well:

The team were so kind to send me a very beautiful personalised package, including some handmade gifts as well. The beautiful biscuit is by PippingGoodBiscuits. The personalised bauble with my name by Claires.Crafts. And the handmade clay earrings by OchreHandmade. These are all amazing small business that deserve your attention. And if you cannot support them at this time, at least give them a follow. They are amazing!

Synopsis:

Meet Me In London is a beautiful and emotional Christmas book. It follows Victoria, a designer that hopes to one day showcase her work. And it also follows Oliver, a millionaire and an owner of a big business, who is under pressure from his family to find a woman and settle down.

Oliver makes a deal with Victoria. He will help her showcase her designs and help the children she teaches. In return, she will pretend to be his fiancee on the opening day.

But, as you can imagine, things won’t go to plan. They will start developing feelings towards each other. Furthermore, an accident that happened in the past has scarred Victoria for life, and because of that, she is afraid to open up and trust another man.

My Thoughts:

The romance is beautiful, because it is raw and real. I felt the love, care and lust, as much as I felt the pain, the hurting and the need to protect the other person. The slow-burn pace was also something I really enjoyed. I loved how caring Victoria is, not only with Oliver, but with everyone in her life. Especially the children that she teaches. All she does in life is just give and give, without expecting anything in return. And the fact that she has been so hurt in the past for various reasons is so heartbreaking, and it does make you root for her all the way through.

And I also loved the respect that Oliver showed, always ensuring Victoria is okay and in agreement with whatever comes next. I don’t think this happens too often in romance novels, and it was a really important moment to note. The character development between Victoria and Oliver is amazing, and it all ends up in happy tears. I love how she makes him care more about the people and the community, rather than just his business.

I also loved Oliver’s family. When a millionaire’s family with a family business is represented, we usually see them as bitter and arrogant. And very often, they are rude to the person their son is dating. So I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t expecting that. But this book surprised me in a very positive way. The family of Oliver were very supportive of Victoria (minus the annoying cousin). They made her feel welcome and very loved from the start. She even got along very well with the mother.

The friendship in this book is precious! The lovely bond that Victoria shares with Zoe, Lily and Malie is beautiful! Since the accident in which they all were involved, they have become closer than ever and always supported each other through thick and thin. The friendship that these girls share is something every girl dreams of.

I loved this book so much! It put me in a wonderful Christmas mood, and made me want to decorate my Christmas tree, even though I need to put pumpkins first. 🙂 I really hope Meet Me In London by Georgia Toffolo is made into a Christmas movie. I swear, I will be the first person to watch it!

Also, there is a new book coming out in Spring 2021 called Meet Me in Hawaii, with Malie, one of Victoria’s best friends. It has surfing and I cannot wait for it!

Purchase Links:
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Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek [BLOG TOUR]

the high moments sara-ella ozbek blog tour fashion simon  & schuster blog diary of difference

★★★★

I am very excited to be part of the Instagram Tour for The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek. Thank you to Kaleidoscopic Book Tours for this amazing opportunity, and for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

The High Moments is a book about Scarlett.

She’s not perfect and she has a very tricky relationship with her mother. All she wants is to be successful and for people to like her. 

She is one of those people that make goals on New Year’s Eve, and then reflect back one year later, just to realise that nothing has changed. But one day, she does decide it’s time for a change. So she moves to London. She doesn’t have a particular plan, but she does want to be a designer. 

She ends up getting a job at a modeling agency with a very low salary. But the fashion industry is the worst place you can go to, if you are willing to change yourself, just to appeal to others. 

Which is something Scarlett, obviously, does. 

She makes friends that aren’t that real. She hands out with the wrong crowd. And she sleeps with men she shouldn’t. She takes drugs. She consumes alcohol. Way more than she is supposed to. But at least people start to recognise her. They invite her to parties she could only have dreamed of. Surely that can’t be all that bad? Well – it is. 

And she doesn’t really learn from it, until it’s way too late. 

This book was compared to The Devil Wears Prada, and I don’t agree with that comparison. The Devil Wears Prada is a gem, and the first of its kind, so it shouldn’t be a very easy story to compare. Just because this book follows a woman that works in a very fast paced fashion industry it doesn’t mean comparisons should be thrown left right and center. 

Additionally, Scarlett is a very insecure person. And despite her goal in design, she doesn’t show a lot of determination. She seemed to care way more about her parties, than to be good at her job and get promoted in her career. But I think that her immaturity comes with her age, and the story was captured in a time when she still needed to experience everything and grow. Which she does, at the very end of the book, even though it’s a slow start. 

Aside from this, I really enjoyed the book, and it only took me one day to finish it. I was very invested and entertained, and I have only praise for that. The scenes were very realistic and the characters were very real. The plot was predictable, but I expected that. Every time Scarlett would make a bad decision, I knew it would come back to bite her. And I also knew she would learn to grow from all the mistakes she made – which she does. And that pleases me. 

“Everyone always wonders how good people can do terrible things, but bad behaviour is the easiest thing in the world, really. You just don’t think about it.”

If you love fast-paced books, filled with humour and fashion, I promise you will enjoy The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek. It will lift your spirits and make you giggle. And on top of that, it will make you discuss Scarlett’s choices in life with your best friend. What more do you want in a book? 🙂

Purchase Links:
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Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh [BLOG TOUR]

★★★★

Thank you to Mills & Boon, for sending me a copy of Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh, and for the opportunity to participate on this blog tour. 

Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh is the second book in the Union of the Rakes series. It can be easily read as a standalone though.

Synopsis:

This is the story of Jessica McGale. Her family business is in need of investors, after it collapses due to a fire. Jessica is determined to acquire investors for her business at any cost. When she realises that London’s elite will never give a chance to a humble farm girl like herself, she does the unthinkable. She poses as “Lady Whitfield” and joins the elite on the table. She especially tries to get close to the Duke of Rotherby, as his influence and support could save her company. But one thing Jess never expected to happen, is to grow feelings for him. 

Noel is the carefree and notorious duke, but only his close friends truly know him. When he meets Lady Whitfield at the business bazaar, his world shifts. She makes him want to obey every command she tells, which is something he never imagined doing. He struggles to trust people, but trusting Jess is so easy. 

But what happens when the business bazaar is over, and so is the fake portrayal of Lady Whitfield? How do you cope when someone has lied to you, but you want them in your life forever? Read this amazing book to find out! 

My Thoughts:

I was so hooked about this book, and I finished it in two days. While the plot is a bit predictable and it has a Cinderella vibe to it, I still enjoyed it a lot. 

I could completely understand where Jess was coming from, and in order to save her business, I don’t think there were any other options, given how much rejection she faced in the first chapters. But as soon as she started developing feelings, she should’ve been honest with Noel. The person in me felt uncomfortable for her every single time she would deliberately put herself in an awkward situation and not tell the truth when she had a chance to. And the business trip to the farm? Oh, that got me biting my nails again. I also understand that continuing with the deception was a crucial part of the plot, to produce the drama that it did, but I am just not a fan of dishonesty. 

Noel was an amazing character, even though, at times, he seemed like the typical rich boy.

I loved the way his relationship with Jess progressed during the couple of days, and how he started opening up. Honestly, I didn’t believe it at first, given that it was based on a lie. I thought that given the fact how much trust issues he had, he could never get past her betrayal. And for me, his way of coping and resolving the issue didn’t fit with his character. I have the feeling that people who are lucky enough to have a high income and live in the elite societies are much more wary of “gold diggers”, and everything Jess does (even though for a good reason), seems to be for her business. So I wouldn’t have blamed him if he reacted in a way more different way and just told her to “bugger off”.

Overall, I enjoyed Would I Lie to the Duke and it was a very pleasurable short read to get me away from reality. I don’t always dive into historical romance, and this was a surprising change that ended on a positive note. Honestly, I am glad that it sparks a debate in my mind and makes me think of “what I would have done” on either side of the relationship. I would have acted very differently. And maybe that’s the reason I’m not married to a duke (yet). 😀 

Purchase Links:
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