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Guess who’s written what: Book Review

The Bewitched Family Book Cover The Bewitched Family
Iman's Journal Book 2
by Emily Flowers
Romance | Sci Fi & Fantasy
BooksGoSocial
Pub Date 30 Jun 2020

A tough battle between the wizards and the witches is ahead! When Iman meets Troy's family, his mother comes across as really sweet and kind in the beginning. However, Iman sees beyond her fake smile and senses there is something sinister about this family. She decides to investigate and the more she finds out, the more she puts herself and Troy in danger. Standing by is not an option. Iman must confront the dark force head-on or humankind is doomed. The spell book and the wizard's wand are ready. A duel is inevitable. But that also means Iman may lose Troy for good ... What is Troy’s mother up to? Is there hope for humanity? Will Iman be able to protect the love of her life?

Witches have nice grandfathers who give them recipe books it seems, who give them jewels too, and sometimes they are wizards too, but meeting the boyfriends’ family is an whole ‘nother matter… But still, you take a pie, don’t you? Especially one made from Grandpa’s recipe book.

And it isn’t good when Iman finds that her boyfriend’s sisters are witches too and want something, she has that Grandpa gave her, and no, it isn’t the recipe book.

Iman hadn’t expected this as Troy is a normal and she had thought all his family were too, unlike hers – after all Grandpa was chief wizard (see Book 1 for details of their romance).

It is a short book – but part of a set of 5 – only 40 print pages – thus good for young adults who prefer not to read complicated story lines. Consider all 5 as one book. This is book 2 in the series which is easy enough to enter as a standalone.

The writing is light and moves along at a good pace with short chapters, a magical battle, and enchanted objects. The ending could leave you wanting more – and if you want it enough there are 3 more to read…  I wasn’t bothered. .

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Bridesmaid for purchase: Book Review

The Secret Bridesmaid Book Cover The Secret Bridesmaid
Katy Birchall
Women's fiction, Contemporary fiction
Hodder & Stoughton
13 May 2021

Sophie Breeze is a brilliant bridesmaid. So brilliant, in fact, that she's made it her full-time job.

As a professional bridesmaid, Sophie is secretly hired by brides to be their right-hand woman, ensuring their big day goes off without a hitch. From wrangling rowdy hen dos to navigating last minute portaloo cancellations, there's no problem she can't solve.

So when she's employed by an actual Marchioness to help plan the society wedding of the year, it should be a chance for Sophie to prove just how talented she is.

Of course, it's not ideal that the bride, Cordelia, is rude, difficult and determined to make Sophie's life a nightmare. It's also a bit inconvenient when Sophie finds herself drawn to Cordelia's posh older brother, who is absolutely off limits. And when a rival society wedding is announced, things get even more complicated . . .

Can Sophie pull off the biggest challenge of her career, follow her heart and maintain her reputation - all while keeping her true identity hidden?

A job as a bridesmaid/ wedding planner in disguise. Interesting take on how to undertake a job when disguised. Hair dyed, name changed, relationship with bride changed – and then she is doing this multiple times all at once! How does she remember which story to tell to which set of friends and relations?
Of course, there comes a time when things don’t work smoothly. The bride doesn’t want her as her bridesmaid/planning helper. And finds inventive ways to try and persuade her to leave, but as the bride wasn’t the employer it was difficult. And of course, the bride had a dishy brother and…
Nicely written I thought, and I particularly liked the innovative use of a large blue IKEA shopping bag – and a dress – but I’ll not spoil it by telling you how.
My main concern with the story is that it again encourages the ‘Princess’ wedding. The idea that the wedding day is all about the bride and how she wants it to run and how much money – lots – will be spent on a fantasy day.
My husband and I were talking about this earlier this week. A wedding is not about the bride. It is a joining of families and two best friends in a compact for life. What she or he wears is pretty irrelevant to this, as is the colour of the napkins or bows on the chairs. Or where the wedding is held or or or… If the wedding itself is that important than why do all the fripperies matter? A simple ceremony with family and friends and maybe a meal together afterwards is all that it needs. What is worn can be anything that they all feel good in and needn’t be designer, frothy or… My wedding photo below!  

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Secrets not always best kept: Book Review

The Earl With The Secret Past Book Cover The Earl With The Secret Past
Janice Preston
Fiction, Historical, Regency
HarperCollins UK, Mills and Boon, Harlequin
June 25, 2020
368

An unexpected inheritance An explosive reunion. Hardworking architect Adam Monroe’s world is shaken when he inherits an Earldom! Thrust into the ton, he bumps into widow, Kitty Fenton – his lost love. Years before, he’d refused to elope with Kitty to save her from ruin, and was heartbroken she’d married so soon after he left. Perhaps fate has given him a chance to discover the truth – after all beneath the hurt the sparks of attraction are as strong as ever…

This is another version of the historical trope with an unexpected inheritance of a title. The Earl as he becomes, was not expecting to inherit but instead to work for a living, but a death up the line – his father in fact, thrust him into the role. It turns out his mother had been lying to him all his life about who is was…
And the horror of this lack of knowledge had meant that he had paid the price in his youth for not marrying the girl he loved, as he thought himself too lowly in society for her. And of course, she then went on to marry someone else.
But now she was a widow and he had the chance to gain her back. So the trope begins. But Kitty was not the girl he remembered. In her marriage she had grown up to be a woman of strength and ideas, and marrying again was not one of these ideas. So a courtship begins. And ends as we all expect with a marriage.
Nicely written with the nice initial plot twist layering onto the trope.  

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Who has time to Date? Book Review

Nicole Book Cover Nicole
(Sewing in SoCal book 3)
Sarah Monzon
Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Humour
BooksGoSocial, Radiant Publications (29 Nov. 2020)
January 7, 2021

Who has time to date when she’s trying to raise a miniature human by herself AND save the planet from its irresponsible inhabitants? Not to mention my winning personality (snort) and my curves-have-curves figure (eyeroll) don’t exactly attract the opposite sex. Unfortunately, none of these reasons have stopped my best friends and SoCal sewing sisters from taking on the archaic role of matchmakers, and they’re not beneath a little bribery if that’s what it takes to get my cooperation. Let’s just say everyone has their weak spot, and donations to my favourite charities is mine. If I were to consider a romantic relationship, my dream guy certainly wouldn’t be immature, everything-is-a-game Dr. Drew Bauer. The man raises my body temperature faster than global warming does the Earth’s! But life seems determined to keep throwing us together, especially now that one of my SoCal sewing sisters is engaged to his best friend, in which case there can only be one of two outcomes: 1. I kill him in a fit of annoyance. 2. My common sense escapes me, and I fall in love with him. Honestly, I'm not sure which would be worse.

The story starts with the Blind Date.
You know the one.
Set up by your friends who are worried about you and you agree to go under protest – and here because they promise to make a donation to your favourite charity.
And you are curvy and your date doesn’t believe you don’t eat a lot – especially fatty fried food – and orders for you. Food you don’t want.
And he flirts with the waitress, makes derogatory remarks and implications about your shape and size and then leaves.
The story is told by both characters, Nicole and Drew, so we learn early on that he really likes her in an sort of she irritates him and he keeps thinking about her sort of way – and so the trope begins.
I liked the storyline. I liked Nicole and her values and her daughter and her mother too.
I approve of environmental concerns and definitely saving the whale and reducing plastic use. Nicely written and fun to read.

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Do you love Food? Book Review

Lindsey Love Loves Book Cover Lindsey Love Loves
LLL Book 1
Sophie Sinclair
Fiction, Contemporary Romance, Humour
Sophie Sinclair
October 8, 2020
332

Lindsey Love's career as a food critic is suddenly taking off when she's approached by Food and Travel to take her show to Europe. What could be more fun than to travel with her best friend Patrick, eat amazing food, and see the sights? What she doesn't bargain for is the surly, egotistical producer with the icy glare, dimples, and a penchant for questioning her every move. Nick Elliot, ex-Navy SEAL turned producer, finds himself suddenly thrown into a project he doesn't want to take on. Producing a snotty food critic's show over in Europe is not at the top of his agenda. She's stubborn, sassy, and he finds himself inextricably drawn to her. When things go awry abroad, Nick has to make the decision to save his own future or give up everything to protect Lindsey.Lindsey Love Love is a stand alone Romantic Comedy with a little bit of suspense.

Lindsey starts this story 8 weeks before the main events when she is living in a small apartment above a battle-axe.

Lindsey is a Food Blogger and plays on her name Lindsey Love for the name of her blog. And she is getting known in the media and TV shows are…

And the show that they want her to do next involves a Producer who doesn’t want to produce for his ‘friend’ as the last show he did for him was – well let’s just say he got naked a lot in that one!

So we have anguish, dislike, anger and lots of steam in various forms.

And a nicely written book about food. Little cafes, interesting places to go to visit in Europe, and a love story in the end.

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