Monday, 21 May 2018

The Last Of The Bonegilla Girls

The Last Of The Bonegilla Girls

Victoria Purman

The Last Of The Bonegilla Girls by Victoria Purman

Reviewed by Helen

This is an emotional story set across the years from 1954 to 2018 a story of families coming to Australia for a new life but that doesn’t always come easy there are lots of bridges to cross a new language to learn and new foods to get used to, sixteen year olds Elizabeta, Vasiliki, Iliana and Frances come together in this story that endures such strength, love and friendship and such caring for each other, this one had me turning the pages feeling emotional and teary at times but also feeling fortunate to get to know these girls and the joy that they shared, I hope that you will pick this one up and also enjoy their journey.

Elizabeta and her family have arrived from Germany after being taken from their country of Hungry she has a younger sister and this family has struggled since the war and being German can sometimes make it harder for them.

Vasiliki is from a Greek family she is the only daughter, they are hard workers and are looking forward to their new lives but of course giving up the Greek life is not easy for them.

Iliana is Italian again the only daughter with three brothers they too have been through a lot during the war and making the decision to move to Australia is a big one.

Frances is Australian the daughter of the director of Bonegilla Migrant Camp where the families have arrived and Frances sets out to help these girls as much as she can teaching them English and becoming their friend, together they can accomplish much.

This is the story of a bond so strong between four girls from totally different backgrounds that lasts across years, through thick and thin, with years not getting in touch with each other but always knowing that they will be there for each other, there is a lot of heartache in these years, secrets that have been kept and although the girls move to different states the line of contact is always there. Their strength carried throughout, there is love, laughter tragedy, pain but a true friendship, and this is an emotional roller coaster that had me in tears and I am not going to forget this one for a while.

I thoroughly enjoyed this story, I grew up with a lot of girls from these countries myself and it was hard for them to meld to the Aussie way but still be themselves and I counted a lot of them as my friends, thank you MS Purman for a fabulous story, this is one that I highly recommend.

5/5 stars for a fabulous story

Published April 23rd 2018 by HQ Fiction

Monday, 14 May 2018

The Parsi Seamstress

The Paris Seamstress

Natasha Lester

The Paris Seamstress by Natasha Lester

Reviewed By Helen
I am left speechless and emotional after reading this awesome story WOW, this is the first Natasha Lester book I have read and I need to fix that because here is an author that you don’t want to miss, this is just so beautifully written, moving, emotional I loved it, a story across two timelines World War 11 1940’s and 2015, fabulous characters that show love, strength and what they go through, secrets to uncover and love to find. I do highly recommend this book.

The story starts in 1940 in Paris the Germans are coming to Paris and Estella Bissette a young seamstress is sent to Manhattan by her mother after she helps with secret papers and meets a man she will never forget, she has very little in her pockets but she has a sewing machine and hope and strength, she meets Sam on her way over and then Janie when she gets there and then her life changes when she meets Lena and Alex and there is a lot to learn and fashions to create.

It is now 2015 Australia and a young curator Fabienne Bissette is travelling to New York for her beloved grandmother’s Gala exhibition of her fashions, a lot has happened in the past year for Fabienne, the death of her father she has just taken on a new job and sadly her grandmother is getting frailer as she gets older. Fabienne has doubts on whether she could take over Stella Designs as her grandmother wishes and is sent to Paris for the weekend where she meets Will and these two inspire each other. When her grandmother suffers a stroke and is trying to tell her things that she needs to know, life again changes when she uncovers heartbreaking secrets that in the end will make her stronger.

Really this is such an emotional story I loved it from page one I savoured every word every trip to Paris and Manhattan and from the 1940’s to 2015 from Estella and Fabienne and all of the characters that we get to know and love. The love the strength the pain the heartache and yes the joy that is there, I bow down to you MS Lester this story is going to stay with me for a long time to come I have tears in my eyes typing this review and cannot highly recommend it enough thank you for a fabulous story.

5/5 stars for a fabulous story

Published March 27th 2018 by Hachette Australia

Saturday, 28 April 2018

The Juliet Code

The Juliet Code

Christine Wells

The Juliet Code by Christine   Wells

Reviewed by Helen

Oh my this is another brilliant story from MS Wells I do hope I can do it justice with this review, it is a poignant, heart-rending at times, a tale of a real hero a woman sent behind the enemy lines in occupied France during WW11 and the things she went through, but also the strength that holds her together and the love that she has for the man who will always love her, this story is a must read I am sure you will not be disappointed.

Juliet Barnard becomes a British agent with the Special Operations Executive SOE as a radio operator she is fabulous at codes but according to her superiors reports not so good in other areas but they are in desperate need of radio operators, so Juliet meets code breaker Felix Mortimer and there is a spark instantly, he devises special plans for Juliet in case she is ever caught and then off to France she goes for a dangerous and mind changing time but through thick and thin and being caught and tortured Juliet stays strong. While at home Felix keeps his hopes high and always believes in her.

Juliet makes it home and after all that she has been through is not the same person that left England, it is now 1947 and Juliet has a lot that she keeps locked away hopefully never to spoken about again but with a lot of other SOE agents missing when SAS officer Mac finds her and asks for her help this brings Juliet back to France the last place she wants to be but with Felix by her side and some sheer determination Juliet finally opens up and comes to terms with the guilt that has kept from looking to the future.

There is a lot happening in this story, the pain and struggle that Juliet and others went through and what the Nazis did to them the mind torture as well as physical torture was horrible but I loved the strength that shows through and MS Wells has made these characters so real and alive I was turning the pages, savoured every word to see what happened, and what an ending it is just so fabulous after everything that had happened, really I cannot highly recommend this book enough so emotional and moving it will be a long time before I stop thinking about Juliet, Felix and so many awesome characters, thank you MS Wells for another fabulous keeper.

5/5 stars for a fabulous story

Expected publication: April 30th 2018 by Penguin Random House

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Lord Garson's Bride

Lord Garson's Bride

Dashing Widows #7

Anna Campbell

Lord Garson’s Bride by Anna Campbell

Reviewed by Helen

MS Campbell never fails to take me on a journey that is filled with sensual romance, dashing heroes that warm me up and heroines that know what they want, her stories are must reads and I highly recommend them, we first met Hugh in Catching Captain Nash and now he finally has his HEA but there is a rocky path to get there first with Jane.

Hugh Rutherford, Baron Garson was left devastated when Morwenna Nash is reunited with her long lost husband instead of marrying him, but he gets on with life and over his notoriety in the ton, and now he needs to think of the future and marry and start a family and he has decided that his old friend Lady Jane Norris would make the perfect wife to give him what he needs, she is sure to accept his proposal, and understand that it will be a loveless marriage.

Lady Jane is packing up her family home and just finishing mourning after the death of her father she is twenty eight now and ready to move to the sea and live a quiet life with a companion on the shelf, that is until her old friend Hugh makes a proposition to her, she is well aware of what has happened to him, and yes they are friends but can she be happy with a loveless marriage?

Their marriage starts on shaky ground and Hugh being the gentleman he is has decided to court Jane after they are married and this is a very slow and sensual seduction of both of them and Jane finds herself very much enjoying married life and finally arrives in London for the season with a very happy Hugh, however life and love doesn’t always run smoothly and with Hugh and his “loyalty until death” attitude and never forgetting Morwenna this draws a line between them. Then when Jane stands up for herself and wants love Hugh is beside himself, really you must read this one to see what happens between them it is sure to have you cheering them on, this one left me beaming with joy another keeper MS Campbell thank you.

5/5 stars

Published February 28th 2018 by Anna Campbell

Sunday, 25 March 2018

Marry in Scandal

Marry in Scandal

Marriage of Convenience #2

Anne Gracie

Marry in Scandal by Anne Gracie

Reviewed by Helen

It is no secret that Anne Gracie is one of my favourite authors and this story is going on my favourite list as well, I savoured every word in this delightfully beautiful story I made it last because, although I wanted to get to that HEA I wanted to stay with Lily and Edward as long as I could, actually it was fabulous being with Cal and Emm, and Lily’s sister Rose and niece Georgiana again. Do yourself a favour and make yourself comfortable for a journey that is sure to leave you smiling.

Lady Lily Rutherford is young shy and has a disability that that causes her shame and problems but her family are there to support and help her and this is one reason why Lily is in no hurry to marry another reason she wants to marry for love, even though her aunt is pushing for her find a suitable husband. While Lily is at a ton rout disaster happens and Lily is abducted and whisked away by a no good cur. Lily shows such strength though her ordeal and is rescued by Edward Galbraith a cold hearted rake or is he?

Edward is shocked to see the woman standing in the freezing rain on the road, as a gentleman he rescues her and saves her not realizing who she is, but of course a gentleman and a Lady of the ton do not travel together even in these circumstances without scandal, and Edward is drawn to her, a sister of his friend although she is so very innocent that first kiss sets sparks flying and when Edward proposes marriage a marriage of convenience and Lily after some thought accepts this starts a journey for Edward, will Lily get under that brick wall that Edward has built around himself since the war?

MS Gracie has a knack at bringing the regency period and her characters to life on the pages, humour abounds as does love and a sensuality that will have you falling into the story and falling in love with her heroes and heroines, in this case Edward and Lily, this one is a beauty moving, emotional and so very delicious, I loved it from page one, seeing Lily and then Edward fall for each other is a dream and I highly recommend it and woohoo I look forward to more in this series George and Rose’s stories are sure to be another hit. Thank you MS Gracie you have left this reader so very happy fabulous story.

5/5 stars for a fabulous story

Expected publication: April 3rd 2018 by Berkley

Thursday, 22 March 2018

The Laird of Blackloch

The Laird of Blackloch

Amy Rose Bennett

The Laird of Blackloch by Amy Rose Bennett

Reviewed by Helen

This one took me back to 1750’s Scotland and what a trip it was, there is so much happening a hero trying to get his title back and seek revenge on the man that caused so much hurt and devastation and the heroine caught up in the revenge plot proves to be a feisty and strong woman and when they spend so much time together love grows and happiness finally flourishes, this really is a story that will grab you from page one.

Alexander MacIvor has reinvented himself after the battle of Cullodon the Jacobite uprising, it has taken him ten years and lots of travelling, but now is the time to seek revenge and try for a pardon so he can reclaim his title as Laird of Blackloch. Firstly destroy the Earl of Tay head of The Campbell clan and to do that he is going to kidnap his fiancé Sarah Lambert, oh but there is a spark between them on their first meeting and this grows as they spend time together, for the first time in a long time Alex feels emotion again and the need to open up to Sarah.

Sarah Lambert is to marry Malcom Earl of Tay she is a wealthy heiress and is looking forward to her wedding, that is until she is kidnapped and learns the truth about her fiancĂ© but that doesn’t happen straight away there are a few escape attempts and attempts on her life as well, Sarah shows her true strength while being held captive and she also learns a lot about Alex and what he has been through and willingly gives herself to the man that she falls for Alex.

This is a fast paced story, a story of love and the battle to get to the truth for there are many secrets that need to be uncovered and Alex and Sarah have a rough journey to get to their HEA, Malcom is the villain and Alex will go to extreme lengths to protect Sarah throw in a twist here and there and this is a story that I highly recommend, sensual and moving. Although the second in MS Bennett’s Highlander Rogue series it can be read as a standalone and I thoroughly enjoyed it thank you MS Bennett for a fabulous story.

4/5 stars for a great story
Published March 1st 2018 by Escape Publishing - Harlequin Enterprises, Australia Pty

Friday, 16 March 2018

The Devilish Duke

The Devilish Duke

Maddison Michaels

The Devilish Duke by Maddison Michaels

Reviewed by Helen

This is an amazing debut, I fell in love with Devlin Markham, Devil Duke of Huntington from the moment I met him when the charming Lady Sophie Wolcott fell from a tree and made her acquaintance with him and here starts a journey with suspense, fabulous banter and a slow and steady sensual pull from two people who never meant to fall in love, do yourself a favour pick this one up and have a very enjoyable time and trip back to Victorian England you will not be sorry.

Lady Sophie is single and four and twenty some would say on the shelf already and she is happy to stay that way, after the man that she felt she loved married someone else, her father was a rake and broke her mother’s heart and so Sophie throws all of her energy into the orphanage where she helps orphans learn to read and acquire positions. But meeting the Devil Duke is about to upend her life in many ways and when she is convinced to marry Devlin to save the orphanage and mystery abounds regarding one of her charges from the orphanage he is the man to turn to.

Devlin is a man that goes out and gets what he wants in life, he has secrets that have been kept for many years and has the worst reputation in the Ton as a rake, and he in in trade would you believe and when he wants Queen Victoria to sign off on a deal her answer is get married first. There is one woman that has taken his interest after meeting her in a situation not normal for Ladies of the ton but their easy banter makes him think that he could live with her, plan settled he is out to get her anyway he can, never realizing what will happen with his emotions.

This is a fast paced incredibly good story one that I fell into from page one MS Michaels has written a story that bought Devlin and Sophie to life on the pages as well as the other characters, the mystery, the sensual pull and the dialogue, murderers after revenge their business marriage starts to change and seeing Devlin cope when Sophie stands up to him, oh my what a story I loved it and truly I highly recommend this one. Thank you MS Michaels this one is a keeper and I do hope there are many more to come.

5/5 stars for a fabulous story

Published February 26th 2018 by Entangled Publisher