#BookReview: A FLICKER IN THE DARK by Stacy Willingham @svwillingham @HarperCollinsUK @HarperFiction

Publication: 3rd February 2022 – HarperCollins UK

Chloe Davis’ father is a serial killer.
He was convicted and jailed when she was twelve but the bodies of the girls were never found, seemingly lost in the surrounding Louisiana swamps. The case became notorious and Chloe’s family was destroyed.

His crimes stalk her like a shadow.
Now Chloe has rebuilt her life. She’s a respected psychologist in Baton Rouge and has a loving fiancé.
But she just can’t shake a tick-tick-tick of paranoia that, at any moment, it might all come crashing down.

As does something darker.
It is the anniversary of her father’s crimes, and Chloe is about to see her worst fears come true – a girl she knows goes missing.  

The nightmare has started again…

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What a read! A Flicker in the Dark is quite an intriguing and intense debut novel. The pace is slow, the suspense is high from the very beginning, and the plot is character-driven with a protagonist I found determined and tough, a survivor who’s been through a lot, but also an unreliable narrator, so that you don’t know if what she’s telling you is real or born from the paranoia caused by all the Xanax that she swallows like candies.

The narrator and protagonist is Chloe Davis. When she was thirteen years old, Chloe’s father was accused and found guilty of kidnapping and killing six teenage girls in their small town in Louisiana. Her father ended up in prison, her mother in a care facility, and the only person Chloe can call family is her older brother Connor. Now in her thirties, Chloe has her own perfect life: her own practice as a psychologist, a beautiful house in Baton Rouge, and a handsome almost-too-perfect fiancé who she is marrying in one month. On the outside, Chloe’s life is perfect, but, in reality, she is still battling her inner demons – often with the help of a self-prescribed pill of Xanax – and when teenage girls start disappearing again, she knows that the nightmare that began when she was thirteen years old is not over…

I had a few suspicions about the crimes and while some of them were right, there were many twists that took me by surprise. The story is brilliantly-written and, as Chloe tries to figure out the truth, you could have cut the tension with a knife. I was on the edge of my seat, so engrossed in the story that I couldn’t stop reading (although, I was forced to by the battery of my kindle suddenly dying). I really enjoyed this dark, gripping, and chilling novel and I am already looking forward to the author’s next work!

A huge thank you to HarperCollins and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Stacy Willingham worked as a copywriter and brand strategist for various marketing agencies before deciding to write fiction full time. She earned her BA in Magazine Journalism from the University of Georgia and MFA in Writing from the Savannah College of Art & Design.

Her debut novel, A Flicker in the Dark, is optioned for film and television by Oscar-winning actor Emma Stone and entertainment company A24.

She currently lives in Charleston, South Carolina, with her husband, Britt, and her Labradoodle, Mako.

#BookReview: CASTLES IN THEIR BONES by Laura Sebastian @sebastian_lk @hodderscape

Publication: 1st February 2022 – Hodder & Stoughton

Born to rule. Raised to deceive.

The plot: overthrow a kingdom. The goal: world domination. The plan: marriage.

Empress Margaraux has had plans for her daughters since the day they were born. Princesses Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz will be queens. And now, age sixteen, they each must leave their homeland and marry their princes.

Beautiful, smart, and demure, the triplets appear to be the perfect brides – because Margaraux knows there is one common truth: everyone underestimates a girl. Which is a grave mistake. Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz are no innocents. They have been trained since birth in the arts of deception, seduction, and violence with a singular goal – to bring down monarchies – and their marriages are merely the first stage of their mother’s grand vision: to one day reign over the entire continent of Vestria.

The princesses have spent their lives preparing, and now they are ready, each with her own secret skill, and each with a single wish, pulled from the stars. Only, the stars have their own plans – and their mother hasn’t told them all of hers.

Life abroad is a test. Will their loyalties stay true? Or will they learn that they can’t trust anyone – not even each other?

Laura Sebastian stuns in this new trilogy from the New York Times bestselling author of Ash Princess. A spellbinding story of three princesses and the destiny they were born for: seduction, conquest, and the crown.

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What a fantastic and immersive read!!! Castles In Their Bones is my first novel by Laura Sebastian, even though I heard of her and her novels before, and I was hooked! It’s full of magic, political intrigue, secrets, and deceptions. And I loved the triple point of view, switching from one sister to another, that made it difficult to put the book down.

Castles In Their Bones is the story of three sisters, triplets, princesses. Since their birth, Sophronia, Daphne, and Beatriz were raised by their mother, Empress Margaraux, with only one goal: marry the prince/heir/king of a nearby kingdom and bring it down from the inside so that their mother could sweep in and easily conquer it.

After spending all their life together, Daphne, Beatriz, and Sophronia have to say goodbye to each other and travel to a foreign country to marry a man they barely (or not at all) know. Soon, they find themselves entangled with rebels, escaping assassination attempts, hiding magic, and finding love interests. Will they be able to accomplish what they were raised to do?

Even though they are triplets, Daphne, Beatriz, and Sophronia are very different characters, each with their different skills and abilities that make them whole. I liked all three of them, but if I had to pick a favourite, I would say Sophronia (Sophie), because I think she is the kindest and more generous of the three, the one with more morals.

The plot is engaging and gripping and full of many twists that I didn’t see coming. Most of all, I didn’t expect the ending that left me wanting for more. I can’t wait to read the sequel, because I do need to know what happens next.

A huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Laura Sebastian was born and raised in South Florida and has always loved telling stories-many apologies to her little brother who often got in trouble because of them. She currently lives in London with her two dogs, Neville and Circe. She is the author of the New York Times bestselling Ash Princess series, Half Sick of Shadows, and the upcoming Castles in their Bones.

#BookReview: A FATAL CROSSING by Tom Hindle @tomhindle3 @centurybooksuk @penguinukbooks

Publication: 20th January 2022 – Century

November 1924. The Endeavour sets sail to New York with 2,000 passengers – and a killer – on board…

When an elderly gentleman is found dead at the foot of a staircase, ship’s officer Timothy Birch is ready to declare it a tragic accident. But James Temple, a strong-minded Scotland Yard inspector, is certain there is more to this misfortune than meets the eye.

Birch agrees to investigate, and the trail quickly leads to the theft of a priceless painting. Its very existence is known only to its owner… and the dead man.

With just days remaining until they reach New York, and even Temple’s purpose on board the Endeavour proving increasingly suspicious, Birch’s search for the culprit is fraught with danger.

And all the while, the passengers continue to roam the ship with a killer in their midst…

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If you are looking for a thrilling and twisty novel with Agatha Christie vibes, then I highly recommend A Fatal Crossing by Tom Hindle.

There are murders, secrets, and theft. All the action happens on board of the Endeavour during its voyage from Southampton to New York. The time is November 1924, and the protagonist is Timothy Birch, a ship’s officer.

Timothy Birch is a complex and engaging character who carries a great guilt. After the end of the war, he found a job on the Endeavour, against his wife’s wishes as it keeps him away from his family for weeks, and it is during one of his absences that he suffered a great loss. Burdened by guilt and distress, Timothy focuses on his job and he is headed to New York to meet a friend who could help him. However, the crossing is far from peaceful when a man is found dead. The captain of the ship declares it an accident and is ready to forget all about it. However, a persistent and tenacious Scotland Yard detective, James Temple, is convinced that the man was murdered and insists on investigating. The captain accepts on the condition that Timothy will shadow him, so as not to cause too much disruption among the passengers.

As Temple and Birch investigate, we travel around the ship, which the author describes in precise details, from first class to the crew area, we slowly uncover the real reason behind Temple’s persistence in investigating the murder, and we are immersed in a world of art and priceless paintings, theft, and the wealthy’s private affairs.

I had a bit of a slow start, but then I found myself immersed in the story which is entertaining and suspenseful and there is a final twist that it was so unexpected that I gasped in surprise. All in all, a fantastic atmospheric debut novel!

A huge thank you to Century and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of the novel.

Tom Hindle is originally from Yorkshire and now lives in Oxfordshire, where he works for a digital PR agency. A FATAL CROSSING is Tom’s debut novel and was inspired by masters of the crime genre from Agatha Christie to Anthony Horowitz.

#BookReview: THE MAID by Nita Prose @NitaProse @HarperFiction

Publication: 20th January 2022 – HarperCollins

I am your maid.
I know about your secrets. Your dirty laundry.
But what do you know about me?

Molly the maid is all alone in the world. A nobody. She’s used to being invisible in her job at the Regency Grand Hotel, plumping pillows and wiping away the grime, dust and secrets of the guests passing through. She’s just a maid – why should anyone take notice?
 
But Molly is thrown into the spotlight when she discovers an infamous guest, Mr Black, very dead in his bed. This isn’t a mess that can be easily cleaned up. And as Molly becomes embroiled in the hunt for the truth, following the clues whispering in the hallways of the Regency Grand, she discovers a power she never knew was there. She’s just a maid – but what can she see that others overlook?

Escapist, charming and introducing a truly original heroine, The Maid is a story about how everyone deserves to be seen. And how the truth isn’t always black and white – it’s found in the dirtier, grey areas in between…

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If you liked Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, then you are going to ADORE The Maid. I definitely did. I read it in one day during which I laughed, I was a bit tense by the mystery, and I was also emotional.

The protagonist of The Maid is Molly Gray who did remind me a bit of Eleanor Oliphant, but is also a unique character. Her grandmother raised her and supported her and, even though she has passed away, Molly still looks for her help and wisdom (these were the emotional parts for me) and she goes through life following her grandmother’s sayings. Molly is smart and strong-willed, polite and precise, but she doesn’t understand sarcasm and she trusts easily so she is often taken advantage of. That’s how she finds herself in trouble.

Now, about the plot. Molly works as a maid at the Regency Grand Hotel, known for its important VIP guests. Molly’s job is to return “rooms to a state of perfection” and she does it meticulously. When one of the most important guests in the hotel is found dead in his bed, Molly finds herself entangled in the investigation, because the guests may not see her, but she sees everything…

“I am your maid. I am the one who cleans your hotel room, who enters like a phantom when you’re out gallivanting for the day, no care at all about what you’ve left behind, the mess or what I might see when you’re gone.”

The Maid is truly an incredible addictive novel. It is brilliantly-written, entertaining, and witty. It is also intriguing, with a bit of suspense and a final twist that I didn’t see coming. It is also a bit heartbreaking as we see Molly missing her grandmother and struggling with things that for others are easy or normal. I really felt for her in those moments.

The Maid is an unforgettable and immersive novel with a one-of-a-kind protagonist that you won’t be able to put down until the very end. A must-read!!!

A huge thank you to HarperCollins and NetGalley for providing me with an ARC of the novel.

NITA PROSE is a long-time editor, serving many bestselling authors and their books. She lives in Toronto, Canada, in a house that is only moderately clean.

www.nitaprose.com
@NitaProse

#BookReview: SURVIVE THE NIGHT by Riley Sager @HodderBooks

Publication: 23rd December 2021 – Hodder&Stoughton

Charlie Jordan is being driven across the country by a serial killer. Maybe.

Behind the wheel is Josh Baxter, a stranger Charlie met by the college ride share board, who also has a good reason for leaving university in the middle of term. On the road they share their stories, carefully avoiding the subject dominating the news – the Campus Killer, who’s tied up and stabbed three students in the span of a year, has just struck again.

Travelling the lengthy journey between university and their final destination, Charlie begins to notice discrepancies in Josh’s story.

As she begins to plan her escape from the man she is becoming certain is the killer, she starts to suspect that Josh knows exactly what she’s thinking.

Meaning that she could very well end up as his next victim.

A game of cat and mouse is about to play out. In order to win, Charlie must do only one thing… survive the night.

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I couldn’t have chosen a better book to finish the year. I knew I couldn’t go wrong with a novel by one of my favorite authors and I wasn’t disappointed.

Survive The Night is a chilling, suspenseful novel that kept me glued to the pages and I read in one day. The pace is slow, but everything happens during a long night road trip full of tension and twists.

The year is 1991, right before Thanksgiving. The protagonist is Charlie Jordan, a lover of movies in her second year of college. Charlie needs to go home. She needs to leave college and go home and forget what had happened two months earlier. She can’t wait for the holidays or for her boyfriend to drive her, so she finds a car share with fellow student Josh Baxter. They met at the college ride share board and he seems nice and polite, although as they talk, Charlie starts to notice that some of the things Josh says don’t match. This is 1990s, there are no cell phones to call for help, so Charlie needs to find a way to survive the journey. However, are Charlie suspicions correct or is it all a movie in her head?

I do love unreliable narrators and Charlie is, without a doubt, an unreliable character. Since the death of her parents a few years before, sometimes Charlie finds herself in a movie in her own mind and can’t distinguish reality from fantasy. So are her doubts real or did she imagine Josh’s ID under another name? Is he really a student? No matter if her suspicions are real or not, Charlie intends to survive the night.

The novel has a bit of noir element, helped by the many movie references throughout the story, which I loved and made it easy for me to imagine the scenes and the setting as I kept reading. There are many surprises and twists, one in particular that I suspected (and was proven right) that made me enjoy the novel even more, and the suspense is always high. Riley Sager has always been a must-buy author for me and Survive The Night simply confirmed it. Highly recommended!

A huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Riley Sager is the pseudonym of a former journalist, editor and graphic designer who previously published mysteries under his real name.

Now a full-time author, Riley’s first thriller, Final Girls, was a national and international bestseller that has been sold in 25 languages. A film version is being developed by Universal Pictures and Anonymous Content.

A native of Pennsylvania, he now lives in Princeton, New Jersey.

#BookReview: THE RED MONARCH by Bella Ellis @brontemysteries @rowancoleman @HodderBooks

Publication: 18th November 2021 – Hodder & Stoughton

The Brontë sisters’ first poetry collection has just been published, potentially marking an end to their careers as amateur detectors, when Anne receives a letter from her former pupil Lydia Robinson.

Lydia has eloped with a young actor, Harry Roxby, and following her disinheritance, the couple been living in poverty in London. Harry has become embroiled with a criminal gang and is in terrible danger after allegedly losing something very valuable that he was meant to deliver to their leader. The desperate and heavily pregnant Lydia has a week to return what her husband supposedly stole, or he will be killed. She knows there are few people who she can turn to in this time of need, but the sisters agree to help Lydia, beginning a race against time to save Harry’s life.

In doing so, our intrepid sisters come face to face with a terrifying adversary whom even the toughest of the slum-dwellers are afraid of . . . The Red Monarch.

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I was delighted when I found out that there would have been a third book in the Brontë Sisters Mystery series. I really enjoy this series and The Red Monarch didn’t disappoint.

The story starts when pregnant Lydia Roxby (née Robinson) wakes up to find men in her bedroom who kidnap her husband and tell her that she has a week to give them back the jewel her husband stole or they will both die. Desperate and alone, Lydia contacts the only person she knows that could help her, Anne Brontë.

In Yorkshire, Charlotte, Anne, and Emily are waiting to hear what critics think of their writing, while they worry about their brother Branwell, who is heartbroken over his affair with Lydia’s mother. So, when Lydia’s letter arrives asking for help, the three sisters decide to travel to London and help her, followed by their brother Branwell. The Brontë siblings quickly find out that London is very far from the quiet moors of Yorkshire. There is noise and danger everywhere, but the three sisters are not deterred and they will do anything to help Lydia and her husband.

In The Red Monarch, Charlotte, Emily, and Anne probably face their most difficult and challenging investigation which involves dangerous and armed men, subterfuge, and kidnapping. Because they are women in Victorian London they are underestimated, but they quickly prove that they are independent, strong-willed, and determined women who won’t stop until they manage to help those in need and they walk through the slums of London with their chin high and, in some cases, a pistol in their pockets.

The author kept me glued to the pages not only with her addictive writing, but also with the rising suspense, the unexpected twists, and the accurate and interesting historical facts. The Red Monarch is a thrilling, suspenseful, and gripping historical mystery featuring three fantastic authors-turned-detectives that will keep you on the edge of your seat. I am already looking forward to the next installment!

A huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

#BookReview: YOU’LL BE THE DEATH OF ME by Karen McManus @writerkmc @PenguinUKBooks

Publication: 2nd December 2021 – Penguin UK

Ivy, Mateo and Cal used to be close – best friends back in middle school.

Now all they have in common is a bad day. So for old time’s sake they skip school together – one last time.

But when the trio spot Brian ‘Boney’ Mahoney ditching class too, they follow him – right into a murder scene.

They all have a connection to the victim. And they’re ALL hiding something.

When their day of freedom turns deadly, it’s only a matter of time before the truth comes out . . .

It’s Ferris Bueller’s Day Off with murder, perfect for fans of One Of Us Is Lying and A Good Girl’s Guide To Murder. This explosive new thriller is impossible to put down.

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You’ll Be The Death Of Me is my first novel by Karen McManus and I was so hooked by the twisty plot, the author’s addictive writing, and the engaging characters that I read it one day and then ordered the author’s backlist.

The story is told from three different points of views: Ivy, Mateo, and Cal. Once upon a time, they used to be best friends, after they skipped a school trip to have the “Greatest Day Ever”, but then they drifted apart. One morning, they casually meet outside of school, but, each for their own reasons, they don’t want to go in, so they decide to skip school and try to have another “Greatest Day Ever”. When they spot another student skipping school, they follow him and they walk right into a murder scene. While they try to figure out what happened, they also have to deal with the secrets they are keeping from each other and with their old friendship.

I was so addicted to the story that I already want to reread it. The author’s kept me glued to the pages with her clear writing and the twists made me turn page after page. My list of suspects just kept getting longer, but I didn’t figure out the truth until it was revealed.

The characters are fantastic. I loved Ivy, Mateo, and Cal. They are flawed, they make so many make mistakes that I didn’t think they would find a way out of the situation, and they keep secrets from each other that only make thing more complicated. They are also relatable and authentic and very intriguing.

Engrossing, suspenseful, and unpredictable, You’ll Be The Death Of Me is a novel that I highly recommend and thanks to the thrilling ending that left a few things open I am really hoping for a sequel in the future!

A huge thank you to Penguin and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Karen M. McManus is the #1 New York Times and international bestselling author of young adult thriller/mystery novels, including One of Us Is LyingOne of Us Is NextTwo Can Keep a Secret, and The CousinsYou’ll Be the Death of Me will be her next novel, publishing December 2021. Her work has been translated into more than 40 languages worldwide.

Karen lives in Massachusetts and holds a master’s degree in Journalism from Northeastern University, which she mostly uses to draft fake news stories for her novels.
For more information, visit www.karenmcmanus.com or @writerkmc on Twitter and Instagram.

#BookReview: AUTOPSY by Patricia Cornwell @HarperFiction #Scarpetta

Publication: 25th November 2021 – HarperCollins UK

Kay Scarpetta is back, and this time she’s right in the path of danger…

World-renowned forensic pathologist Kay Scarpetta and her husband Benton, a psychologist with the US Secret Service, have returned to Virginia. They are headquartered five miles from the Pentagon in a post-pandemic world that’s been torn by civil and political unrest.

Just weeks into the job, Scarpetta is called to a railway track where a woman’s body has been shockingly displayed, her throat cut down to the spine. But the trail of clues will lead Scarpetta back to her own neighbourhood.

At the same time, a catastrophe occurs in a top-secret lab in outer space, endangering the scientists aboard. Scarpetta is summoned to the White House to find out what happened. As she starts the new investigation, an apparent serial killer strikes again, this time dangerously close to home.

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I’ve read quite a few books in the Kay Scarpetta series, although I may have missed a few books in the past years, so I will need to catch up. Autopsy is the latest novel in the series, the twenty-fifth book to be precise (wow!!!) and medical examiner Kay Scarpetta has a quite few mysterious cases to solve.

Kay Scarpetta was the first woman chief medical examiner of Virginia. Over the years, she’s solved many many cases, she’s often found herself in danger, and she’s changed jobs and cities. Throughout all of this, she’s always been surrounded by her family: her husband Benton Wesley, a renowned psychologist with the US Secret Service; Pete Marino, former police detective who now working privately; her brilliant niece Lucy with her high-tech computers and her helicopters.

In Autopsy, Kay Scarpetta and her family have left Boston and returned to Virginia where Kay has retaken her previous job. A brutal murder brings her closer to home, while she attends secret meetings at the White House to solve murders in outer space. She also must deal with office politics and an arrogant secretary still loyal to her former boss.

I really love this series. There is always a lot of the suspense and twisty and thrilling plots. It is also very insightful and informative about medical examiner and police procedure which I find very interesting. The writing is impeccable and addictive and the characters are realistic, well-developed and intriguing.

I will always recommend a Kay Scarpetta novel and this last one, Autopsy, is especially gripping and immersive.

A huge thank you to HarperCollins and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Patricia Cornwell is recognized as one of the world’s top bestselling crime writers and the author of the Scarpetta series. Her novels have been translated into thirty-six languages in more than 120 countries and won numerous prestigious awards, including the Edgar, Creasey, Anthony, Macavity, and the French Prix du Roman d’Aventure prize. Cornwell, a licensed helicopter pilot and scuba diver, actively researches the cutting-edge forensic technologies that inform her work.

#BookReview: LITTLE THIEVES by Margaret Owen @what_eats_owls @hodderscape @HodderBooks

Publication: 19th October 2021 – Hodder & Stoughton

Once upon a time, there was a horrible girl . . .

Vanja Schmidt knows that no gift is freely given, not even a mother’s love. The adopted goddaughter of Death and Fortune, Vanja has long made her own way in the world as the dutiful servant of Princess Gisele. Until a year ago, when her otherworldly mothers demanded payment for their care, and Vanja decided to steal her future back . . . by stealing Gisele’s life.

With the help of an enchanted string of pearls, Vanja transformed into her former mistress and took her place, leaving the real Gisele a penniless nobody. Now, Vanja leads a lonely but lucrative double life as princess and jewel thief, charming the nobility while emptying their coffers to fund her great escape. Until, one heist away from freedom, Vanja crosses the wrong god and is cursed to turn into jewels, stone by stone.

With a feral guardian half-god, Gisele’s sinister fiancé, and an overeager junior detective on her tail, Vanja has just two weeks to pull off her biggest grift yet, or she risks losing more than her freedom – she could lose her life.

In this delightfully irreverent retelling of ‘The Goose Girl’, Margaret Own crafts an unputdownable tale about stolen lives, thorny truths, and the wicked girls at the heart of both.

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I can definitely list Little Thieves among my favorite books of the year. I found it very difficult to put it down thanks to its fantastic cast of characters, the engaging story full of twists and surprises, and the author’s addictive writing style.

Little Thieves is the story of a young woman. Vanja Schmidt is an incredible anti-heroine. She was abandoned by her mother when she was only four years old, adopted by two goddesses who tried to force her to choose between one of them, who wanted her to become their servant, who sent her to work for a family who bullied and abused her. And finally, abandoned by the friend who she considered like a sister, Vanja decided it was time to think about herself by stealing her friend’s life. She was selfish, she did bad things, and yet I couldn’t help but really like her from the very beginning, and not only for her witty and smart-ass attitude, but because I felt for her and her desire for freedom.

Under her guise as Princess Gisele who is about to marry one of the most important men in the kingdom, Vanja is stealing from the rich and wealthy, until, one night, she steals a gift from a goddess who curses her. The only way to break the curse and not turn into a living jewel is to give back everything she stole, but it’s not easy when Junior Prefect Emeric Conrad is constantly on her heels investigating the thefts, her detestable “fiancé” is a villain who is planning something bad, and she is constantly watched over by Ragne, the goddess’s shapeshifter daughter. Will Vanja be able to redeem herself and save the kingdom?

I adored the characters created by the author (except the villain, of course). Vanja, Emeric, Gisele, and Ragne create an assorted, entertaining, and thick group of allies who get together to stop the villain. The characters are engaging and intriguing and I loved how each one of them develops throughout the story.

The plot is addictive, thrilling, and immersive. There is romance, friendship, and redemption with a brilliant world-building and a fantastic ending that promises more to come and I can’t wait for it!

A huge thank you to Hodder & Stoughton and NetGalley for providing me with a proof of the novel.

Margaret Owen was born and raised at the end of the Oregon Trail, and now lives and writes in Seattle while negotiating a long-term hostage situation with her two monstrous cats. In her free time, she enjoys exploring ill-advised travel destinations, drawing a lot of nonsense, and raising money for social justice nonprofits.

#BlogTour: I WISH IT COULD BE CHRISTMAS EVERY DAY by Milly Johnson @millyjohnson @simonschusterUK @TeamBATC @ed_pr #ChristmasEveryDay #paperbackpublication

Last year, I had the pleasure to read and enjoy I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day, the beautiful novel by Milly Johnson in which six strangers are forced to spend Christmas together in a remote cabin during a snow storm.

It is out in paperback on 11th November and I am happy to share again my review of this fantastic Christmas novel to kick off Milly Johnson’s 12 Days of Christmas Blog Tour!

Publishing date: 11th November 2021 (paperback) – Simon & Schuster UK

It’s nearly Christmas and it’s snowing, hard. Deep in the Yorkshire Moors nestles a tiny hamlet, with a pub at its heart. As the snow falls, the inn will become an unexpected haven for six people forced to seek shelter there…

Mary has been trying to get her boss Jack to notice her for four years, but he can only see the efficient PA she is at work. Will being holed up with him finally give her the chance she has been waiting for?

Bridge and Luke were meeting for five minutes to set their divorce in motion. But will getting trapped with each other reignite too many fond memories – and love?

Charlie and Robin were on their way to a luxury hotel in Scotland for a very special Christmas. But will the inn give them everything they were hoping to find – and much more besides?

A story of knowing when to hold on and when to let go, of pushing limits and acceptance, of friendship, love, laughter, mince pies and the magic of Christmas. 

Gorgeous, warm and full of heartfelt emotion, I Wish it Could be Christmas Every Day is the perfect read this winter!

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I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day is the perfect Christmas read, especially this year. It’s a beautiful and heart-warming story of love, friendship, and family and I was completely engrossed in the story and its characters.

Bridge and Luke are finally meeting to sign the divorce papers. They once loved each other, but it went all wrong. It took them five years to agree on the divorce and, once it is finalized, they can move on with their lives.

Jack and Mary are travelling for an important business meeting on Christmas Eve. Mary has been in love with Jack for years, but, for Jack, Mary is only his perfect and efficient PA and she is tired of being unnoticed.

Robin and Charlie have planned a special Christmas holiday to Aviemore. They have been together for more than thirty years and their love is beautiful and deep and, even if it’s not what they had planned, they won’t give up on their special Christmas.

These six people, all with their plans and on their way somewhere, find themselves together, stranded by the snow in the remote inn of Figgy Hollow. Forced to spend Christmas together, they decide to make it memorable and unique.

I loved the characters in this novel. Each of them is well-drawn and engaging. They are flawed and so authentic that, at some point or other, I wanted to shake one of them and say: “What are you doing?!”. As we read, we get to know each of them really well. We find out about their past, their hopes, their fears, and their secrets and, the more I read, the more I liked them.

The setting is atmospheric and very Christmassy. Imagine: a beautiful inn surrounded by snow, while inside the characters warm up in front of the fireplace eating delicious food, swapping stories, and listening to hilarious Radio Brian and his stories. What more would you want?

I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day is a joyous read. You will laugh and you will shed some tears and it will get you in a festive mood. If you have read Milly Johnson’s previous novels, you know what to expect and you won’t be disappointed. If you haven’t read them, what are you waiting for?

A huge thank you to SJV, TeamBATC, and Simon & Schuster UK for providing me with a copy of this amazing novel and to Ed Pr for inviting me to join the blog tour for the publication of the paperback.

MILLY JOHNSON was born, raised and still lives in Barnsley, South Yorkshire. A Sunday Times bestseller, she is one of the Top 10 Female Fiction authors in the UK with millions of copies of her books sold across the world. In 2020, she was honoured with the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Outstanding Achievement Award and was a featured author in the Reading Agency’s Quick Reads and World Book Night campaigns.

A writer who champions women and highlights the importance of friendship and community, Milly’s characters are celebrations of the strength of the human spirit. I Wish It Could Be Christmas Every Day is her eighteenth novel.

Her nineteenth novel, The Woman in the Middle, is published 14th October 2021 in hardback.