Tag Archives: womans fiction

Secrets She Left Behind – Diane Chamberlain

18 Nov

Finished – 18/11/2014

Synopsis – What if you did something so devastating, you regretted it for the rest of your life?

Nineteen-year-old Maggie Lockwood spent a year in prison for her part in a fire that cost three lives. The scars carried by the surviving victims – inside and out – are still raw and Maggie’s release from jail does nothing to free her from the guilt.

Returning home, Maggie hides herself away, too afraid to see Keith, the boy she grew up with, played with as a child – and recently learnt is her half-brother.

Keith nearly lost his life in the fire and the emotional and physical wounds he carries have changed him forever. With childhood innocence gone, Maggie and Keith must learn to come to terms with their new lives, but trying to move forward will have deadly consequences…

My Thoughts – Diane Chamberlain is fast becoming one of my favourite authors as her stories have me hooked from the start and this one was no different. The only thing that annoyed me a little was it was the follow up book to another and i didnt realise until I started to read it. It worked well as a stand alone book and everything was explained clearly but me being me I would have liked to have read the first one first! This book had me hooked and I read most of it in one sitting! A very much recommended book.

Rating – 4/5

The Devil Wears Prada – Lauren Weisberger

11 Dec

Started – 27/11/12

Finished – 5/12/12

Format – Paperback Book

Synopsis – Andrea Sachs, a small-town girl fresh out of college, lands the job “a million girls would die for.” Hired as the assistant to Miranda Priestly, the high-profile, fabulously successful editor of Runway magazine, Andrea finds herself in an office that shouts Prada! Armani! Versace! at every turn, a world populated by impossibly thin, heart-wrenchingly stylish women and beautiful men clad in fine-ribbed turtlenecks and tight leather pants that show off their lifelong dedication to the gym. With breathtaking ease, Miranda can turn each and every one of these hip sophisticates into a scared, whimpering child.

THE DEVIL WEARS PRADA gives a rich and hilarious new meaning to complaints about “The Boss from Hell.” Narrated in Andrea’s smart, refreshingly disarming voice, it traces a deep, dark, devilish view of life at the top only hinted at in gossip columns and over Cosmopolitans at the trendiest cocktail parties. From sending the latest, not-yet-in-stores Harry Potter to Miranda’s children in Paris by private jet, to locating an unnamed antique store where Miranda had at some point admired a vintage dresser, to serving lattes to Miranda at precisely the piping hot temperature she prefers, Andrea is sorely tested each and every day—and often late into the night with orders barked over the phone. She puts up with it all by keeping her eyes on the prize: a recommendation from Miranda that will get Andrea a top job at any magazine of her choosing. As things escalate from the merely unacceptable to the downright outrageous, however, Andrea begins to realize that the job a million girls would die for may just kill her. And even if she survives, she has to decide whether or not the job is worth the price of her soul

 

My Thoughts – This book has been on my shelf for far too long and its one of those books that ive wanted to read for a long time but never got around to reading.

This book is about Andrea, fresh out of school and looking for a job. She isnt too sure where she wants to go with her life. She lands an interview at Runway magazine, which I’m sure somewhere i read that is loosely based on Vogue! Its here that she encounters Miranda, someone that she doesnt know who she is, which really shocks everyone present and manages to get the job as PA. Its now that her life changes. Miranda wants Andrea to be at her beck and call 24/7 with any number of requests, whether it be getting the new unreleased Harry Potter book for her twin daughters the day before its released or doing the dry cleaning or going to fashion shows in Paris.

I got hooked into this book almost as soon as i read the first few pages. It is very well written and has a very engaging storyline. I think why i enjoyed this book so much is that my boss is literally like the male version of Miranda with unreasonable demands and expecting me to be able to do them at once. I did have to giggle at the part with the dry cleaning as thats the sort of thing that happens to me on a regular basis.

I did feel very sorry for Andrea. She had just got her first proper job and trying to make her way in the world and managed to get the job from hell and in the process almost loose everyone close to her.

This book is very good and very funny. Although it could be classed as chick lit i do think it will appeal to a much wider audience and i would recommend it to anyone!

Rating – 4/5

Change of Heart – Jodi Picoult

6 Oct

Started – 29/9/12

Finished – 6/10/12

Format – Paperback Book

 

Synopsis – June’s first husband was killed in a car crash. Against all the odds, her daughter was uninjured and, in another miracle, June found love again with the policeman who rescued them. Six years on they are a happy family, June pregnant with their own child.

But now June’s second daughter is dying without the new heart she so urgently needs. And her first daughter, along with her husband, is dead, killed by Shay Bourne, an itinerant workman they welcomed into their home. The crime was so heinous that Shay has been given the death penalty for the first time in 69 years in New Hampshire. Shay is going to die, and he is looking for redemption. He wants to give June’s daughter his heart . . .

 

My Thoughts – I am a massive fan of this authors work i have read a lot of her books and intend to read them all some day. Her books always seem to hook me in and i cant put it down until i finish it and get to the bottom of the story.

This book is about a wide range of characters such as June who has lost a lot of important people in her life. Her first and second husband and her young daughter Elizabeth. All she has left is her daughter Clare, who is very sick and needs a heart transplant to survive. Then there is Shay, the man that took her daughter and husband away from her. Theres Maggie a lawyer and Micheal a priest.

This book has all the usual marks of a Picoult novel. The change in character for every chapter, which i love! I always like to get the different perspectives on all the events by the different people involved in the situation. It doesnt follow a chronological pattern and events are revealed throughout the book which kind of adds more to the story and makes you think about which character is the more truthful about the events. Also it has a massive twist in this book again like other books by the author and i did not see this one coming. It really knocked me for six and i think i need to revisit some parts of the book with this new information revealed.

It also has the courtroom scenes which are quite familar in this authors books but this time round i didnt find them to heavy going and i got really fascinated by them. There is a massive theme of religion in this book and to be honest this didnt put me off either. It was done very well and tastefully and not at all shouting about it as sometimes i think religion in books can be quite overwhelming.

I really enjoyed this book and its one of this authors books that i like the most. its one of her more recent books and i seem to like these better than her early books. I cant wait to read more by her.

Rating – 4/5

The Difference A Day Makes – Carole Matthews

5 Jun

Started – 22/5/12

Finished – 5/6/12

Format – Paperback book

Synopsis – William and Amy Ashurst are typical townies, dedicated professionals at the top of their tree, with two adorable children and an au pair who cooks, cleans and cares for them all. Then one day Will collapses on his way into work and he decides he’s never going back.

So it is that, three months later, Amy is standing outside Helmshill Grange, a sullen monstrosity of a house, deep in the Yorkshire moors, with their own land as far as the eye can see. It’s what William says he’s always wanted, which is slightly worrying as he couldn’t be bothered to do his own gardening in Notting Hill, and would rather pick up a book than a spade. Within days, Will’s traded in their brand new Audi for a clapped out Land Rover, and brought home chickens, goats, sheep, a serial-killer cat and a mad dog. Then tragedy strikes and Amy learns that it’s one thing living the dream, but when the dream’s not your own, how long can it last?

My thoughts – I brought this book back in 2010 as i am a huge fan of Carole Matthews books as they are always fun but with a serious message behind them. Its nice to read a chick lit book with a bit more substance to it and not just all fluff to it.

The Difference A Day Makes is about Amy and Will, a happily married couple who both work at a british television company in London. They have two children who are looked after by a nanny as both parents are workaholics. During a normal tube ride to work Will has a health scare and is rushed into hospital. Due to the fact that all his family have died young from heart attacks and the simular, he wants to have a complete change of lifestyle and wants to move with his family out to the countryside and give up his stressful job.

Amy doesnt share his vision in this, but gives in and soon they move to the countryside and move into a desolate country home that needs lots of work doing on it to make it habitable. Not only does Will buy a new home, he buys chickens that cant lay eggs and are blind, three sheep that are a bit old, a goat, a cat and a very unmanagable dog.

Then the unthinkable happens Will dies suddenly from a heart attack. Amy is left alone to bring up two children with no husband, no job and living in a place that she doesnt want to be. When the handsome vet is introduced into things, a handyman that becomes more than that to the children, and the adjustment to villiage life it is definitaly a recipe for a good book.

To start with i didnt really get into this book. I struggled a little to connect with the story, it wasnt until Will died that i started to really get into the story of this book. Once WIll had passed away their was lots of different story lines going on like the vet, the children, the animals to get my attention.

I didnt always like Amy. I felt at times she was very selfish and only wanted to do what she wanted and not what was best for the family. However, towards the end i warmed to her. I really enjoyed this book and i read 3/4 of it in one night, i just had to know how it ended.

I was quite glad that this was a happily ever after book, most of the time i dont like that particular ending, but this time it really worked for the book.

I would recommend this book to fans of chick lit and to those readers that like books with a bit of a serious message to them.

Rating – 4/5

Out of Time – Deborah Truscott

28 Feb

Started – 12/2/12

Finished – 25/2/12

Format – Kindle e-book

 

Synopsis – Kathleen Findlay is married to a cad, her mother is driving her crazy and her life is falling apart. Then her uncle dies, leaving her the family’s Revolutionary-era home and, she believes, an escape from her chaotic marriage. But one afternoon, while searching for a rake, she discovers a man in her garden shed — and a free fall through the centuries.

As her life spins wildly out of control, Kathleen finds her heart and in the process, her own place in time.

 

My Thoughts – This was on offer in the kindle store so i decided to download this and give it a go. This book is basically three books in one. It is fantasy, romance and historical fiction. To start with i almost gave up on this book, but i am so glad that i didnt, although it had quite a slow start it went on to be a really good book.

 

Basically Kathleen (or Kathy) finds a man in a garden shed (Robert) who has fallen through time. Then there is all sorts of issues, how did he get there, why is he there and what happens now that he is? I thought that this was delt with really well and it really hooked me in. There is also a huge element of mystery within the book, who is making the mystery calls? why was the door left open? who is the man in the car? These questions really kept me reading.

 

I am not sure if the historical facts are acurate, i never studied that era in American history, but it sounds pretty acurate and the detail that the author went into about this time period was fascinating.

 

The ending was brilliant, i never saw that part of the story coming and thought it was the perfect ending for this book. Unfortunatly, the author hasnt written anything else, as far as my searches will allow, which is a shame because this book is good.

 

Rating – 4/5

Things I Want My Daughters To Know – Elizabeth Noble

31 Jan

 

Started – 24/1/12

Finished – 27/1/12

Format – Paperback

 

Synopsis – ‘My beautiful girls. If you’ve read this, you’ll know it contains some – not all, but some – of the things I want my daughters to know. And the greatest of these is love …’How would you say goodbye to those you love most in the world?Barbara must say a final farewell to her four daughters. But how can she find the words? And how can she leave them when they each have so much growing up to do? There’s commitment-phobic Lisa. Brittle, unhappily married Jennifer. Free-spirited traveller Amanda. And teenage Hannah, stumbling her way towards adulthood.Barbara’s answer is to write each daughter a letter, finally expressing the hopes, fears, dreams and secrets she couldn’t always voice. These words will touch the girls in different – sometimes shocking – ways, unlocking emotions and passions to set them on their own journey of discovery through life.

 

My Thoughts – Wow, this book is such a tear jearker. I was in tears reading it within about 5 or 10 pages. It tells the story of a family who is devistated by cancer, and how it affects all the members of a family. The mother, who was dying of cancer wrote the four different daughters letters and this is told throughout the book.

 

These letters made me cry a lot. It made me realise that life is so precious, and also so short. You never know what be waiting round the corner for you, so live your life to the max.

 

The story was very easy to read and get into. I think this should go on my list of definitate books that you should read.

 

I cant actually say much more about this book, but it is very good.

 

Rating – 4/5

 

 

Thanks For The Memories – Cecelia Ahern

27 Dec

Synopsis – Lose yourself in the magical new novel from Cecelia Ahern – the No.1 bestselling author of PS, I Love You How can you know someone you’ve never met? Joyce Conway remembers things she shouldn’t. She knows about tiny cobbled streets in Paris, which she has never visited. And every night she dreams about an unknown little girl with blonde hair. When she leaves hospital after a terrible accident, with her life and her marriage in pieces, Joyce moves back in with her elderly father. All the while, a strong sense of deja vu is overwhelming her and she can’t figure out why! Justin Hitchcock is divorced, lonely and restless. He arrives in Dublin to give a lecture on art and meets attractive doctor Sarah, who persuades him to donate blood. It’s the first thing to come straight from his heart in a long time. When Justin receives a basket of muffins with a note simply saying thank you,he is sure someone is playing a trick on him. But then a series of gifts begin to arrive. Intrigued and disturbed, Justin is determined to find out who is sending them. What he discovers will change his life forever.

 

My Thoughts – I am a huge fan of Cecelia Aherns books i find they never fail to disappoint and are always a good read. This book centres on Joyce, who through loosing a baby has to have a blood transfusion. In another part of Ireland, a lecturer gives blood in the hope of impressing a female doctor. Following on from that strange things keep on happening. I wont go into what happens as I don’t want to spoil it for anyone that wants to read it in the future.

 

I thought this book had a fantastic plot to it, it was a lovely story with an element of magic or something not all that normal thrown into it. A little bit like If You Could See Me Know. It makes a nice change to read something that has that sort of twist to it. Another thing that i liked was the story was told by the two main characters, Joyce and Justin, I always think its nice to get different perspectives within a book .

 

Cecelia Ahern has a beautiful way of writing and is fast becoming one of my favourite authors. Although this book wasnt on the same level as PS I Love You or Where Rainbows End, it was still a fantastic storyline that i kept delving into. A really good book, highly recommended to anyone that hasn’t yet read it.

 

Rating – 4/5