Wednesday, 16 December 2020

Molly Cooper's Dream Date by Barbara Hannay - Book Review



Publisher:  Mills & Boon Modern Heat
Published:  March 2011

Molly’s Diary April 10th

So, I’ve finally done it. I’ve house-swapped my little cottage in Australia for a snazzy bachelor pad in Chelsea. I can’t wait to explore London. Most of all I’m hoping to meet my dream man, my secret fantasy: a perfect English gentleman. Though I’m starting to wonder whether Patrick, my house-swapper, might actually be HIM! Is that ridiculous?

We’ve been e-mailing – and he sounds HOT! Oh, hang on, there’s another e-mail now – can’t wait to find out what Patrick’s been up to… What do you do when you realise the one you want is half a world away – living in your home, sleeping in your bed…?

The story is told mainly through a series of emails and diary entries which I found a little unusual to begin with but, once I'd got used to the style of writing, I enjoyed this way of communicating.

Starting slowly at first, the emails between Patrick in Australia and Molly in London were mostly about how they were settling in and details about the area the houses were situated in etc. 

Then Patrick's mother called to see Molly, well she was being nosy really!  And she helped Molly with her fear of the Tube.  

Then, over time, their emails started becoming friendlier and they joked with one another.  Patrick was writing a novel and he asked Molly for some advice on the female mind and then Molly started to confide her innermost thoughts to Patrick.

It was all very sweet and heart-warming.  This is a lovely easy read and I enjoyed the descriptions of the idyllic beach where Molly lived, they were such a contrast to Patrick's life in London.

Molly Cooper's Dream Date is a romantic tale that will lift your heart and make you forget your woes.

My thanks to publishers Mills & Boon for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for an honest review.

Available to buy from

Amazon UK

Molly Cooper's Dream Date has now been turned into a Movie!

It is called A Christmas Exchange and the details can be found here

There is also a video on YouTube here

Thursday, 10 December 2020

Becoming Alfie by Neil Patterson - Exclusive Extract - Blog Tour

I'm delighted to be involved in the Blog Tour for Becoming Alfie, the first novel in a new series by Neil Patterson, with an exclusive extract

Alfie Norrington was born into poverty in London’s East End in the first minute of the twentieth century. His life was a battle. From the Brick Lane markets where young Alfie pilfered and pickpocketed, to the trenches of Flanders, Alfie fought every step of the way. 

Almost killed by a trench bomb he battled to recover and while in a military hospital Alfie made a promise that dramatically changes his life. A true East End hero, Alfie begins his journey away from poverty armed with a robust moral compass and an open heart.

Becoming Alfie is the first in the Alfie Norrington series. It follows the life of a man who positively influenced thousands of people. The world needs more individuals like Alfie Norrington, that give much more than they take.

Purchase Links


The following segment of Becoming Alfie occurs early in the book, at the start of chapter 5. Alfie has joined up to fight in Flanders, departing in a couple of days. He had also met a young woman and the following describes part of their first sexual encounter. Alfie was the student and Adeline the teacher in this respect. I hope you all enjoy this little read.

March 1916

Alfie’s call-up papers were delivered six days later by the local postman, who could always be heard approaching as his tuneful whistling pierced the East End air. It was an anxious wait, as all those in the Cromwell Street tenement were living on an uncomfortable knife’s edge; that knife’s edge being Alfie’s departure, which was happening in just two days. That evening, the girls stifled their tears as they looked at Alfie from across the table where they all ate. Elsie was comforted by Tommy, whose style was down-to-earth and matter-of-fact. 

“Well, Alfie lad, won’t be long now until you get to the front and give the ’un a bloody good hiding,” he said. “I was reading today that just over twelve percent of Tommies fighting at the front have been killed in combat, so your odds are really good.”

 “I’ll give you twelve percent, you daft man,” said Elsie. “Look, you are upsetting the girls, so please shut up wiv the war. Can I get you another cuppa tea, Alfie love?” 

“No fanks, Mum, I’m going out in a minute or two, so it’ll be wasted.” 

“Wot, you got a fancy bit, ’ave you, Alfie?” said Rose. 

“Yeah, you ’ave – going out every night for the past week, Alfie boy. Wot’s her name, wot does she look like?” chimed in Lily. 

“Leave it out, girls, I’m just going training, then down the boozer afterwards for a couple,” said Alfie, with a smile he couldn’t conceal and a visible glint in his eye. “You’ll both be snorin’ by the time I get ’ome, like you are every night. Oh, and Rose, you know you talk in your sleep?” 

Rose blushed. Alfie giggled as he put on his cap and coat and said, “I’ll be off. ’Ave a nice night – and stop that talking in your sleep, Rose, as you’re givin’ away all your secrets.”

With that he closed the door behind him, smiling to himself as he walked down the road to Adeline’s gaff.

It had been just over a week since Alfie met this beautiful young woman, who had quite simply mesmerised him. Apart from having a gorgeous face, lovely soft skin, a smell like a lavender patch and a warm heart, Adeline had deep black pools for eyes, like her sister’s, but much more unbelievably intoxicating. Alfie could easily get lost in them, and often did. 

The first night that they met, they kissed. With her gentle manner, Adeline guided him in the art of kissing. It was an art she had perfected. Adeline tasted delicious to Alfie. He was quite content to let her be the master and he the pupil. The next night they kissed again until Adeline pulled away and said: “I know you like kissing, Alfie, and now I will guide you in kissing my body.” 

She undid some buttons and allowed her dress to fall to the floor. Under it she wore nothing but a smile. Alfie wanted to devour her in one bite. She slowed down his ardour, gently coaching him in what to do with his hands and his mouth. Her body was magnificent. It felt like satin, smelled like beauty and looked just sensational. Alfie followed her instructions to the letter. “Gently kiss my neck and my back, gently now. Move down to my breast with your lips, and your hand down towards my nether regions, past the hair until – yeah, that’s it, Alfie, nice and gentle. Stroke my legs, that’s nice. Now look up at me. I want you to kiss everywhere, particularly – yeah, that’s it, Alfie, just there, that is so lovely. Use your tongue – that’s lovely – keep doin’ it, Alfie, keep going.” 

Considering his total lack of experience up to this point, Alfie was more than willing to do as she said. He knew his enjoyment and Adeline’s enjoyment were linked.

 “Let me take your clothes off, Alfie, as you are a little overdressed for what I have planned.”

“What do you have planned, you beautiful woman?” 

Adeline bit her bottom lip, looking directly into Alfie’s eyes. “You’ll just have to wait, my lover, wait and see.” 

Meet the Author - Neil Patterson

Born in South Essex close to the River Thames and directly East of London, my childhood was peppered with memories of the mighty river itself.

We would swim, fish and discover hidden treasure in the tidal mudflats with the fragments of clay pipes we found taking us back to another era. It was here that my inspiration for writing was born. I began to keep a diary of my observations from life and documented my feelings and thoughts.

My wife was twenty two and I was twenty four when we migrated to Australia with a glorious expectation. The sun was shining, the people were friendly and Sydney Harbour simply magnificent. Together we were committed to making the most of this opportunity beginning the next step in our lives. Everything was new which gave me endless writing opportunities that I recorded in my diary which had spilled over into a number of books. We travelled around this incredible country meeting people from all walks of life and from many nationalities. We lived and worked in a variety of capital cities enjoying each and every experience. All this was tremendous fodder for my writing.

I began to write short stories and poetry, none of which I sought to publish. By my fifty second birthday I was able to finish working and focus full time on my writing, the results so far are The Alfie Norrington Series with Becoming Alfie the first in the series of four. I hope that you enjoy reading Becoming Alfie as much as I did writing it.

Social Media Links 

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Check out all the other Book Bloggers on the Tour for exclusive content

Saturday, 5 December 2020

You Never See Rainbows at Christmas by Elaine Spires - One Day Blog Blitz


You Never See Rainbows at Christmas
Elaine Spires

Like a rhinestone Miss Havisham Eloise plans to spend Christmas alone, lying on the settee, crying her eyes out and listening to Dolly Parton’s Greatest Hits.  But a fall in the sleet two nights before Christmas lands her at the feet of rough sleeper Adam who is fighting his own demons.  Limping, cut and bruised, she has no alternative but to accept his offer of help. And instead of rejection and solitude there’s friendship and company and the festive season suddenly seems brighter.  Eloise’s never seen a rainbow at Christmas... Until now.

Purchase Links 

UK - 

US -

Meet The Author

Elaine Spires is a novelist, playwright and actress. Extensive travelling and a background in education and tourism perfected Elaine's keen eye for the quirky characteristics of people, captivating the humorous observations she now affectionately shares with the readers of her novels. Elaine spends her time between her homes in Essex and Five Islands, Antigua (W.I.).

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Monday, 23 November 2020

The Heart of Doctor Steele by Colette Dixon - Extract

I have a teasing extract from The Heart of Doctor Steele by Colette Dixon on my blog today ...... I hope you enjoy it! 




Are the rumors about him true? She intends to find out. 

The mysterious Dr. Steele has taken up residence next door, and scandalous rumors about him are spreading through Margaret Landeau’s small Massachusetts town. Rumours of women he’s ill-used and exploited for his experimental surgeries. Never one to believe gossip, Margaret arms herself with a basket of baked goods and ventures to discover the truth from the man himself.

John Steele has lost everything. His parents, his aunt, too many women he intended to save, and his good name. All he has left is his aunt’s home in a far-flung village and a library he’s stocked with whiskey. He has nothing to offer anyone. Especially not the bold woman next door whose passion for healing reminds him of the man he once was.

But when a dangerously ill girl arrives on his doorstep, pleading for help, Margaret is thrust into his world. She will learn who the real Dr. John Steele truly is, and soon, not even his dark past can stop her from fighting for the brilliant doctor she now loves. But he must deny his crushing desire for her—loving a man like him can only cast a shadow over her own bright future.


Margaret has just delivered a welcome basket to her intriguing new neighbour who she found to be extremely rude—she told him as much before he closed the door on her face.

He stood and moved to the curtain again, once he was sure she could no longer be on his property. After a visual confirmation of this, he opened the door and brought in her damned basket. 

A righteous church do-gooder. That’s likely all she was. He’d been right to close the door on any entanglement with the neighbours. But he found he was curious what these goods were that she’d so proudly forged with her own hands. 

On the dining room table, he placed the basket and his drink in close reach. She’d tied the twisted reed handle with a bow of lavender ribbon. He let the silky feel of the fabric smooth over his fingers as he toyed with untying the bow. Brought it to his nose, once freed, and inhaled. 

A sharp scent of dye mingled with the softer scents of thread and a musky citrus—bergamot, he realized. The same familiar smell that had drifted toward him from her person when she’d stood at his threshold. 

He twined the ribbon into a coil and placed it in his pocket. Beneath the hinged door of the basket lay a collection of goods. A jar of jam—strawberry. Little cakes studded with dried fruit wrapped in waxed paper. 

He allowed himself a bite. The flavors of cardamom and apricot exploded on his tongue. He dropped into the chair and greedily finished off all four little cakes. Then he unscrewed the jar lid and dipped a finger into the fruit gelatin. 

A sense of comfort bloomed beneath his ribs. 

Quickly, he refitted the lid and reached for his drink. One abundant swallow of burning liquid chased away the soft yearning. 

He must not succumb to the temptation of her. 

He couldn’t want her. He was already beyond repair.

Purchase Link -

Meet the Author

Author Bio – Colette Dixon writes steamy stories with heart and humour about slightly tortured people who learn how love can heal. For more years than she cares to admit, she worked in a hospital while dreaming up love story plots. A farm girl who landed in Chicago, she loves to eat (food made by others), drink tea, and sun herself at every chance she can get to survive the Midwest winter.

Social Media Links –

Thursday, 19 November 2020

Cover Reveal - The Mystery of Montague House by Emma Davies

I'm delighted to be involved in revealing the cover of the first book in a new mystery series 

The Mystery of Montague House

When Summer meets Wynter...

With enough rooms to fill a Cluedo board several times over, Montague House has often been the subject of rumour and gossip. Tales of strange goings on, an owner who disappeared one day and was never seen again, not to mention the treasure that rumour has it lies at its heart... But now the present owner has died and the house is to be sold. It looks as if the opportunity has come to finally settle the stories once and for all.

Clodagh Wynter doesn’t believe in ghostly goings on and tall tales of secrets. She has her feet very firmly on the ground and, tasked with the job of valuing and cataloguing the house and all its contents, she’s simply looking forward to working in such a glorious setting. And if she happens across a priceless painting, well, that’s just icing on the cake.

Andie Summer is a Finder of Things and desperately needs this job; she’s down to her last few tins of baked beans. So looking for hidden treasure sounds right up her street, even if there was something very fishy about the mysterious Mr Mayfair who hired her. Because it’s just like she said to her faithful Basset Hound, Hamish; I saw something out of the corner of my eye as I was leaving, and you know what that means. It’s never good news when I see something out of the corner of my eye...

As the unlikely pair are thrown together, it soon becomes very clear however that they are not the only ones searching for the treasure. And they’re going to need all their ingenuity, resourcefulness, not to mention chocolate biscuits, if they’re ever going to untangle the web of secrets that surrounds Montague House. One that reaches even further than they ever thought possible...

Purchase Link -

Meet the Author

After a varied career, Emma Davies once worked for a design studio where she was asked to provide a fun and humorous (and not necessarily true) anecdote for their website. She wrote the following: 'I am a bestselling novelist currently masquerading as a thirty-something mother of three.' Well the job in the design studio didn't work out but she's now a fifty-something mother of three and is happy to report the rest of her dream came true.

After many years as a finance manager she now writes full time, and is far happier playing with words than numbers. She lives with her husband and three children in rural Shropshire where she writes in all the gaps in between real life. 

Social Media Links – 


Tuesday, 17 November 2020

A Very Vintage Christmas by Tilly Tennant - Book Review


A Very Vintage Christmas

Published:  September 2017
Publisher:  Bookouture

The fairy lights are up and shoppers are flooding the snowy seaside promenade. It’s going to be a busy month at Forget-Me-Not Vintage, a magical shop with a warm heart where every item has a story to be told.

With bright red hair and an infectious smile, Dodie is a hopeless romantic and absolutely one of a kind, just like the pieces in her shop.

When Dodie finds a love letter in the pocket of an old woollen coat, she makes it her mission to deliver it to its rightful owner. Following the address, she manages to persuade the handsome but reluctant new tenant, Edward, to help her with her search.

As the story of the letter unfolds, Dodie is there, as always, to pick up the pieces and make things right. But who will be there for her when her own love story needs a helping hand?

Is it too much to dream of a happy ending like the ones in the black and white movies she adores?

My Thoughts

A Very Vintage Christmas has just the right amount of heart-warming romance and mystery mixed all together with a little surprise or two.

I loved the setting of a little vintage clothes shop in a seaside town.

"Forget-Me-Not Vintage was so far from the main shopping streets of Bournemouth town centre you could almost argue it wasn't in the town at all.  Flanked by a decent sprinkling of bars and restaurants, however, ...... it promised just enough passing trade to make the location work."

With her red bobbed hair and her taste in vintage attire, Dodie thought she was a bit of a wallflower and I warmed to her straightaway, she was such a kind and thoughtful person who brought out the best in people, and when she finds an old love letter in the pocket of one of her vintage coats she just wants to seek out the owners and return it if she can, and if she meets someone new along the way then that can only be a good thing.

One of my favourite characters was Dodie's gran, "a complete loon" who drove her mad with her eccentric ways and her sense of fun but who Dodie would do anything for..........I really enjoyed their interactions.

This was a lovely charming story which really put me in a festive mood.

I received an ebook copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Available to buy from

Sunday, 15 November 2020

A Wing and a Prayer by M.W. Arnold (The Air Transport Auxiliary Mystery Club) Video Prologue





When Betty Palmer's sister dies under suspicious circumstances whilst landing her Tiger Moth, Betty and three other women pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary in WWII England unite to discover who killed her and why.
Estranged from her family, Penny Blake wants simply to belong. American Doris Winter, running from a personal tragedy, yearns for a new start. Naturally shy Mary Whitworth-Baines struggles to fit in. Together though, they are a force to be reckoned with as they face the mystery that confronts them.

Against the backdrop of war, when ties of friendship are exceptionally strong, they strive to unravel the puzzle's complex threads, risking their lives as they seek justice for Betty's sister.

Purchase Links 

Amazon UK- 

Amazon US- 

Amazon Aus- 


Nook -

Click the link below to watch a video of author M.W. Arnold reading the prologue of his new novel A Wing and a Prayer

Author Bio – 

Mick is a hopeless romantic who was born in England and spent fifteen years roaming around the world in the pay of HM Queen Elisabeth II in the Royal Air Force before putting down roots and realizing how much he missed the travel. This he’s replaced somewhat with his writing, including reviewing books and supporting fellow saga and romance authors in promoting their novels. 

He’s the proud keeper of two Romanian cats, is mad on the music of Brian Wilson and the Beach Boys, and enjoys the theatre and loving his Manchester-United-supporting wife. 

Finally, Mick is a full member of the Romantic Novelists Association. A Wing and a Prayer will be his second published novel, and he is very proud to be welcomed into The Rose Garden.

Social media links –

Twitter – Mick859

Instagram – Mick859


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