Wednesday, 31 October 2012

Happy Endings by Trisha Ashley

I did enjoy this book, but it was written in a very strange style, and the story would have been better if written in a different way, I feel. It was written as the ramblings of the main character as she is talking into a dictaphone, which meant she was far too familiar with me and the book was split into lots of random paragraphs and sections that flitted from one thing to another. I realise that this is probably how it was meant to be written, but it just didn't feel right to me. I'm not sure if I ever really liked the main character, Tina, who seemed a little big headed and also a little annoying. The ending was a real disappointment in how things were resolved with Sergei. I really disliked Sergei throughout the book, from start to finish, and he never endeared himself to me. Tina would have been better off without him. But I did enjoy the letters written by Tina to her clients, some of which were very comical. And some of the story lines were interesting, so I did find myself wanting to know what would happen. But it's definitely not as good as Trisha Ashley's newer novels. I give this book 5/10.

Sunday, 28 October 2012

The Parisian's Return by Julia Stagg

I really enjoyed this book, not really knowing what to expect from the synopsis, but being pleasantly surprised. The book had me gripped from the first few pages. A few pages in I was concerned because when conversations were spoken in French, the characters spoke normally, but when they were speaking to their English friends their speech began to change to portray an accent eg "Jacques, ze 'usband of Josette", which was very irritating. But luckily this wasn't featured much in the book. There were lots of characters in the village where the book is set, all of whom were quirky but loveable, especially the main characters Stephanie, Josette and Fabian. There were a lot of intriguing story lines. For example, who is Veronique's father? Is Fabian just a money-grabber? Who is the mysterious man driving around in the green van? It kept me guessing throughout and often surprised me! There were times during the book where I just couldn't put it down wanting to know what would happen next! Therefore I give this book 9/10.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Second Time Around by Erin Kaye

I quite enjoyed this book - there was something about it that made me not want to put it down. However, I can't quite put my finger on what! I didn't really like the idea of the 'cougar' relationship, especially because Jennifer and Ben hardly seemed to know each other when they declared their love for each other. The whole point of the book seemed to be to point out that age doesn't matter, but the relationship seemed too fake and they didn't seem to have bonded enough. However, I did enjoy some of the other plots, such as Lucy's relationship with Oren, with some of the plot twists genuinely surprising me. And there was something about the way the book was written that had me hooked. I give this book 7/10.

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Hidden Talents by Erica James

I really enjoyed this book and found myself hooked. The four main characters - Beth, Jaz, Dulcie and Jack - were all loveable because they all had vulnerabilities and problems which they had to face. I enjoyed reading how all of these characters came together through their love of writing, and how they helped each other find peace with their troubles. Victor was a character meant to be hated at the start, but Erica James did an excellent job of making me change my view of him throughout the book by revealing his side of the story from his point of view. There were a few plot twists which made the story interesting, and there was a particularly huge surprise towards the end which really shocked me and ensured that the story wasn't just a predictable plot. I give this book 9/10.

Monday, 15 October 2012

Pastures New by Julia Williams

This was such a lovely book, perfect for curling up with as the weather gets colder and the nights get darker. What I love about this book is that a lot of the story is set around the allotments, which allows for the changes in season to be used as part of the story. I loved the main character, Amy, and her son, Josh. The old man, Harry, from the allotments was also a lovely character. The love story between Amy and Ben was nice to read, although the reasons stopping them getting together did seem to go on a bit, and some of it could have been cut out to make the story shorter. But overall, it was a lovely read. I give it 9/10.

Monday, 8 October 2012

The Real Thing by Catherine Alliott

I'm sad to say that I didn't finish this book. I got about three quarters of the way through it and decided to give in because it was becoming a bit of a chore to read and I thought that life's too short! The main issue that I had with this book is that I hated the main character. She had nothing about her which I liked. She almost seemed to think it was ok to have an affair and she had very strange morals. And even though she kept denying that she would ever go back to Patrick, mostly because she was married, it is quite obvious that she was going to by the end of the book. In fact, I didn't like a single character in the book, and I didn't like most of the storylines. It was a shame, because this book had a lot of potential, and I've enjoyed all of the other Catherine Alliott books that I've read before. Therefore I give this book 2/10.