[ AD – G i f t e d  f o r  r e v i e w ]

Being a mood reader is not always easy. You get stuck with a genre or a trope and you just want more and more and more! This has been my situation since February: slow burn romance has tainted almost every read of mine and I’m absolutely sure I could name myself the Jessica Fletcher of the slow burn ( I can see that plot twist miles away, bro!(?) ) But, for how much I love being a mood reader and that allows me to be particularly quick and to dive in a book as deep as humanly possible sometimes I have to forcibly tear myself away from my stream so not to miss opportunities, opportunities like Titan books presenting you with the latest instalment of the Warlock Holmes series.

THE SIGN OF THE NINE

“If you ever wondered how much better Sherlock would be if people could hurl hellfire at each other, well this one is for you.” Starburst Magazine on A Study in Brimstone

Warlock Holmes may have demons in his head, but now Dr. John Watson has a mummy in his bloodstream. Specifically that of the sorcerer Xantharaxes, who when shredded and dissolved in an 8% solution, results in some extremely odd but useful prophetic dreams. There’s also the small matter of Watson falling for yet another damsel-du-jour, and Warlock deciding that his companion needs some domestic bliss…

And there is nothing else you can do but thank them and try to stay away from your current obsession long enough to read through it and enjoy it enough even while feeling the pull of your current mood. Because, frankly, some books are simply worthy!

I had never read a book in this series, but I had heard so much about it and so many peoples had recommended it so I couldn’t pass it on! So book in hand I downloaded the rest of the ebooks and I started my reading of this amazing saga and I never laughed so much!

Generally speaking, stripped to the bone this is a Sherlock Holmes retelling, where Holmes is a scatterbrained warlock ( called Warlock) which powers of deductions are more powers than deduction at all! And the only true policemanship is administered by a doctor. Doctor Holmes is a delight and my favourite character all around, even when accidentally or voluntarily dosed in mummy remains! His willingness to accept and move forward, to put himself to work and to make himself useful, his wit and intelligence make him an easy character to love.  Grogson follows him right behind in my list of favourites. His absolute brainless humour makes me just want to hug him! I love every person we encounter, villain and heroes alike, every vision, every supernatural myth or creature that those books shows you and it feels like you are given a window into the past and right into an alternate reality which you can laugh about from the comfort of your own sofa – because if you were there your forehead would be red by facepalming!

C o n c l u s i o n s:

Would I read it again? Yes, maybe in a different mood I will enjoy this books more thoroughly but I will also recommend them hands down, they are lighthearted and outright funny, they’ll make you laugh out loud and that’s a  difficult thing to do for me! The writer has the special talent to be able to take something classical and twist and spin it enough to present you with a delightful new book that still presents the ground bases of the classic work it’s based upon. like coming home and realising you stepped into an alternate universe! It’s funny and Gruesome, cruel and silly, murderous and comic! In fewer words? A delight.

 

3.7/5
Would absolutely recomend

[ AD - G i f t e d ]

At the beginning of the year I promised myself that I would try as much as possible to stay in my lane, to read almost only what I knew I would enjoy and to strive from it only if the offer was really alluring. I know It’s not the best way to spread the book word and it settles me to the possibility of loosing good books, but last year I found myself stuck in a lot of slump caused by books I had said to myself I’d read ( arcs and non) but didn’t really feel like it.

Being such a mood reader has it’s pro and cons, but at least I know that I’m following what I like and giving you guys a glimpse only of what I really think that has potential and that might be even if I end up not enjoying the book or finding it too difficult to read, remember, I’m not English!

The latter is the case of the book that I’m bringing to you guys today! Black and White Publishing was so kind to send me a copy and make me part of their Blog tour, but this book is so true to time that even the language of it – in a true scottish – makes it difficult to me to understand! I’m sure tho, that you native speakers won’t have a problem! But I thought I’d let you in, showing you an extract of this book that, in my opinion, has a lot to offer!


S y n o p s i s ;

The House on Rosebank Lane_RGB (1)Edinburgh, 1953. The war is over, a young queen has been crowned and it’s a time of great joy and unrest both in Scotland and beyond. Kirsten Mowat, eighteen-years-old and with a spring in her step, is glad to be out and about with her handsome, dark-haired sweetheart Duncan Armstrong. But there’s a secret in her heart that needs to be told – and when Duncan insists on a shotgun wedding, in the Leith register office of all places, it sets Kirsten’s life along a downward path no one could have predicted. Married life brings tragedy – the wrenching loss of two newborn triplets – which leads Kirsten’s husband and grudging mother-in-law to harden their hearts against the young bride. Soon, beset by grief, Kirsten finds herself alone with her two daughters and vulnerable baby Dixie to care for. She must seek out a haven for her precious children among the most unlikely of people, until the kindness of strangers and her own strength of will, create bonds that will draw this family together in new and unexpected ways


TWITTER_blog tour

e x t r a c t


On the morning of their special day Kirsten managed to secrete her handbag and purple Tammy hat, along with her loose three-quarter-length new tweed coat in a lovely soft shade of lilac, into a shopping bag. Discretely leaving the bag behind the outside door, she then waltzed into the kitchen of her mother’s home on Largo Place. ‘Mum,’ she began gaily, ‘I’m meeting up with Harriet at the baths. After we’ve had a swim we’ll be going to the pictures, so don’t worry if I’m home late.’ Her mother, Aileen Mowat, was a dumpy, canny woman. This being so, Kirsten was not surprised when she replied, ‘That’s just fine, my dear. But wait a wee bit and I’ll make you and Harriet up a shivery bite.’ ‘No thanks, Mum,’ Kirsten replied as she tucked her wrapped-up towel even tighter under her arm. ‘But, lassie, it’ll be a long day for you, and you won’t be wishing to embarrass yourself by fainting with the hunger.’ ‘I won’t be peckish because we’re having a chippie before going on to the Palace Picture House to see that Laurel and Hardy film,’ Kirsten answered before going forward and kissing her mum on the cheek. Truth was, Kirsten was swamped with guilt. Lying to her mum didn’t come easy. That was because her mum was so very truthful in her dealings with people. Added to that was the important fact that Kirsten was the youngest of Aileen’s three children. She was also her only daughter. Kirsten’s heart sank as she remembered that her mum was putting a little bit by every week so her ‘baby’ could have a wonderful white wedding. Aileen was about to respond further, but before she could start the outside door had clicked shut, leaving her with nothing but the fading echo of Kirsten’s high heels as they raced from Largo Place. Before going into the registry office Kirsten nipped into Leith Victoria Swimming Baths so she could don her finery in a damp little changing cubicle. Finally, as she fitted on her hat, the guilt that had swamped her all morning disappeared to be replaced by a surge of utter elation. Within an hour she would be Duncan’s legal wife. Her treasured dream would come true. She was not simply in love with him, but was completely besotted. As she emerged from the swimming baths, she caught a glimpse of Duncan waiting for her at the registry office door. Today, if it was possible, he looked even more handsome and desirable, with his dark hair shining in the sun. Kirsten pushed aside the thought that she had been keeping a secret from him for two days: it was the right thing to do. To be his wife was all that mattered to her. Before entering the wedding booth to pledge themselves to each other, they had to ask two passing strangers if they would assist them by being their necessary witnesses. And then it was done. With none of the finery of Kirsten’s dreams, but her heart swelled at the sight and feel of the pale gold band on her finger. Then, after a celebratory cup of tea and slice of shortbread in the café on the corner, the newlyweds decided to face the music. Duncan rightly insisted that his mother should be the first to be told that they were now husband and wife. It would take some doing to tell Jessie Armstrong that her precious son, Duncan, was now a married man. Big and buxom, Jessie had been the stair-heid bully of 35 Admiralty Street before she had been rehoused a year or two back in Edinburgh Corporation’s new Granton Housing Scheme. It wasn’t just that Duncan would be leaving the family home that was the problem. Oh no. What mattered was that his earnings would now be going to support Kirsten and not Jessie. This being the case, Kirsten decided that this was the moment, before they boarded the number 16 bus on Great Junction Street, to tell Duncan the secret she had been keeping. She prayed he would welcome it and see that it could soften the blow for Jessie when Duncan told her of their marriage. She sidled up close to him. ‘Duncan, darling,’ Kirsten began, coyly. ‘Know how I said that I was expecting, and believe me I probably will be soon, but as from the day before yesterday, well . . . I’m just not!’ Wrenching himself free from Kirsten, Duncan stared at her with incredulity before hissing, ‘You’re not? Don’t flipping tell me that you knew there was no need for us to rush into a shotgun wedding and you still let us go ahead with it!’ He tore at his hair. ‘Kirsten, are you saying that you’re not?’ Tearfully, she nodded. ‘No, no,’ he stammered. ‘I can’t believe you allowed me to go into that registry office when there was no need! Are you mad?’ Taken aback, Kirsten desperately felt for the wall. Driving herself hard against the rough brick, she mumbled, ‘But, but, we are in love. So it’s only right that we became husband and wife. Duncan, our marrying means that we can do anything we please. So what’s the problem . . . darling?’ ‘The problem, sweetheart, is that you trapped me. And now I have to face my mum and tell her I got married, and not because I had to do the decent thing by you. Kirsten, she would have accepted that.’ He paused. ‘Och, can you no’ see that your mum and mine would have been able to cope with us having made a mistake, but now it will look as if we’re sticking two fingers up at them.’ But if Kirsten thought that Duncan’s reaction was fearsome it was nothing to what she experienced when they told Jessie.

the book is out now and you can buy it here!


Ladies and Gentleman, I’m here to announce that You’d be mine is coming out today!

I’ve sat on this book for MONTHS trying to get my words together, trying to understand what I actually thought about it and I think I finally am able to do so and just in time!
What took me so long? I had too many emotions about this book, good and bad, but mostly I needed to prove myself with something that only time would tell and I wasn’t wrong.

So where to start? I think need to write a disclaimer first.
I love music, I enjoy it deeply, and Country is one of my favourite genres. I’m not, however, one of those people that can’t live without music, religiously carrying headphones with them or always blasting something in their ears. I’m the type of listener that get fixated with songs or albums and start listening to them in a loop until I know them so deeply that they become white noise.
That said I have enjoyed this book, It shines a light in the ugly and shiny parts of the life on the other side, the backstage and onstage life.
There is some crude aspects in the entertainment industry where you play a persona and nothing else matter to a lot of people, and you only need to remember who you are because no one else will.
I found this book way heavier than the romantic fresh frame it was planned to have. I feel like it should come with some trigger warnings, some pretty big ones if I am to be honest.

But let’s shine a light on it and let’s start with what I loved before getting into more details, shall we?.

  • PUTS COUNTRY ROAD ON PLAY


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Annie Mathers is America’s sweetheart and heir to a country music legacy full of all the things her Gran warned her about. Superstar Clay Coolidge is most definitely going to end up one of those things.

But unfortunately for Clay, if he can’t convince Annie to join his summer tour, his music label is going to drop him. That’s what happens when your bad boy image turns into bad boy reality. Annie has been avoiding the spotlight after her parents’ tragic death, except on her skyrocketing YouTube channel. Clay’s label wants to land Annie, and Clay has to make it happen.

Swayed by Clay’s undeniable charm and good looks, Annie and her band agree to join the tour. From the start fans want them to be more than just tour mates, and Annie and Clay can’t help but wonder if the fans are right. But if there’s one part of fame Annie wants nothing to do with, it’s a high-profile relationship. She had a front row seat to her parents’ volatile marriage and isn’t interested in repeating history. If only she could convince her heart that Clay, with his painful past and head over heels inducing tenor, isn’t worth the risk.


 

So, what do I love about this book? I love that the author gifted us with a double point of view, it allowed me to sympathise with characters I otherwise wouldn’t have, why? Because the characters in this story are onions! They have layers and public personas and more layers, they have traumas and charm and charisma and chips and crepe and it’s ok, they are human, they are young but way older than they should be, they are deep thrown into this wide-scale industry full of big names where everyone is tempting them with one or the other vice and not everyone can be strong, hell knows if I don’t know something about it! Clay is running from himself, he’s lost and clueless; Annie is done, a bundle of phobias and fears a set line of self-imposed don’ts that prevent her to ever step out of line. He’s using the damned way to run from his demons she’s using the merry way to stay away from hers, they are the Ying to their Yang and together they’ll find a balance that it’s actually quite perfect.

I Loved how in this book Love takes the centre stage and then bows and take a step aside for self-growth and self-love. I love how they need to be a better person for themselves in order to be so for each other, I just really liked it. It lightened up my Sunday and It trapped me from the very beginning.
I loved the alternate chapters, I think it was the best choice ever, It helped us have an insight on a character that, otherwise, would’ve been simply judged and not truly understood. As well as open our eyes to grief, sorrow and loss.

This book made me cry, swoon and feel so much, so… why only 3.5 stars?

[SPOILER- ISH]


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I
blame it on the ending.

After months I have Just realised I don’t miss it, I don’t have a clear image in my mind of it, it wasn’t epic, it wasn’t THAT BOOK that I will remember when I think about my books of 2019, that ending felt bland, almost anticlimactic, It was nice as a thought and I applaud the virtue behind it, but didn’t feel like in par with the rollercoaster that was the rest of the book! And that, for me, is the difference between a memorable book and… well, a not so memorable one.

 

3.5 /5 ☆
W
OULD I RECOMMEND IT?
Yes, why not? It’s cute, it’s pretty and It’s well thought, I think a lot of people would love it, especially if they read it while listening to country music!

The e-copy of this book was gifted to me on Netgallery in exchange for an honest review