Friday, November 24, 2017

Book Review - Lucy's Book Club for the Lost and Found by Emma Davies

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Review by Suze

Lucy loves books and she likes being among people, so working at a library is exactly the right kind of job for her. She organizes a book club, so she can get to know her visitors better. Lucy loves helping people, she's always trying to solve other people's problems, and her members are grateful subjects. There's Lia, who's taking care of her sick mother every single day and needs a break every now and then. Oscar has lost his beloved wife and needs a distraction from the grief. Hattie is a single mother with family problems who's trying to start her own business. Callum is looking for a job and is dreaming of a fulfilling future being content and secure. They could all use Lucy's help, however, will Lucy's plans to make their lives better actually work and what will be the effect on her own life?

Lucy's Book Club for the Lost and Found is a wonderful heartwarming story. I immediately loved the main characters. Lucy is adorable. She's smart and capable and has a very special personality. Callum is gentle and friendly. His goodness is absolutely amazing. Lia is dedicated and caring. She wants her mother to be happy and is taking such good care of her. Hattie is a loving mother, she's someone with a kind personality who's going through great lengths to make other people happy. Oscar is a nice and chivalrous man with impeccable manners. He's a bit lonely, but he makes an effort to fight the emptiness, which is admirable. Emma Davies writes about such a fantastic group of people, it's easy to love them and reading about such precious souls put a big smile on my face.

Lucy's Book Club for the Lost and Found is an original story about being there for one another, helping others and finding that special person to love and cherish. It's a real treasure of a book. Even though every main character has gorgeous personality traits they have their problems and flaws as well and therefore the story never becomes too sugary, it has exactly the right dosage of pleasantness and warmth. Emma Davies combines this with an engaging and compelling plot and the result is absolutely amazing.

Emma Davies knows how to create the right atmosphere. It's what I love the most about her stories. She uses both her settings and the interaction between her main characters to achieve this and they're always perfectly in tune. I love a great feelgood story and Lucy's Book Club for the Lost and Found definitely falls into that category. It's a multilayered story with plenty of unexpected twists and turns and many fabulous surprises. The ending is delightful and fitting, precisely as it should be. I really liked this beautiful book and highly recommend it.

Advice

If you love reading about gorgeous people inside and out and like feelgood stories Lucy's Book Club for the Lost and Found is an absolute must-read.

30k Twitter Followers Kindle Fire, Amazon Gift Card, Unicorn Pillow, Coin Purse, Mirror, Tote Bag, Wash Bag & Notebook & Lucky Dip Bookish Surprise Box Giveaway


Enter this giveaway for a chance to win a blue Kindle Fire 7 with a $10 (or your country's equivalent) Amazon gift card, a Sass & Belle Unicorn tote bag, wash bag, coin purse, notebook, mirror and pillow set and a Fable & Black Lucky Dip bookish surprise box. Good luck!


The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.

Book Review - Jane Scare by Mark Bandey

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Review by Anniek

Jane hasn't left the house since her husband died under suspicious circumstances. Jane and her husband did everything together and she's having a hard time coping with her grief. Jane wants to sell the house and has put up a for sale sign in the yard. Why was her husband's body never recovered and is Jane really as helpless as everyone thinks?

Jane Scare is a short story about a mysterious widow. I always love a good scare and I was curious to find out more about Jane. Mark Bandey created a creepy atmosphere from the very first lines that fits the cover and the title perfectly. Mark Bandey is a new author for me and I liked this first story, so look forward to reading more of his work.

Advice

If you're looking for a creepy story that you could easily read during a short break I think Jane Scare would be a great choice.

Free book

Jane Scare is free on Amazon on November 24th.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Paintbrush by Hannah Bucchin - Book Review, Interview & Giveaway

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Review by Suze

Josie and Mitchell are living at the Indian Paintbrush Community for Sustainable Living, a commune in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina. Josie and Mitchell used to be best friends and they do still spend time together at Paintbrush, but at school they never interact. Josie loves everything about Paintbrush. She likes being outside, she loves working in the communal gardens and she enjoys spending time with everyone in the community. Mitchell can't wait to leave Paintbrush behind, he wants to go to a good university and is always working on his grades.

When Mitchell's world falls apart he needs someone to lean on and surprisingly that person is Josie. He begins to see her in a completely different light. However, Mitchell wants to get away from Paintbrush straight after graduation and Josie isn't planning on going anywhere, will they ever have a chance to find out if they can be more than just friends?

Paintbrush is an original romantic story. Josie is a wonderful person. She's kindhearted and caring and she's perfectly at ease with herself, which is something I greatly admired about her character. Mitchell is going through a lot and his emotions are all over the place. He thought he had everything figured out, but life at home messes things up for him completely. I could feel his pain and hoped he'd eventually find peace with his new situation. Mitchell and Josie are both dealing with family problems, which makes them become even closer. I liked that even though their connection started because of limited availability it develops into something much more. They have a gorgeous precious bond that I loved reading about.

Paintbrush is a unique setting and Hannah Bucchin makes it come to life incredibly well. I loved the community spirit. Everyone is looking out for each other and people are generally friendly. When there are problems they solve them in a peaceful way. I could easily imagine that being part of a large community would be overwhelming for Mitchell, but could also see the other side, the safety that can be found in being cared for by many others, which is part of what Josie finds so appealing about it. Hannah Bucchin uses their feelings and opinions to paint a complete picture of the setting that plays such a vital part in her story and she does this incredibly well. I really loved Paintbrush and highly recommend this special book.

Advice

If you love romantic YA stories with an original setting you will definitely like Paintbrush.

About Hannah Bucchin


Hannah has spent her life falling in love with beautiful places, both real and fictional. She grew up in charming Bethlehem, PA, went to college in sunny Chapel Hill, NC, spent a summer studying wildlife in Tanzania, volunteered on organic farms across New Zealand, and hiked all over Acadia National Park in Maine. When not writing, reading, or adventuring, she likes to daydream about the dog she'll adopt someday, listen to music from the sixties, and exchange ridiculous texts with her parents and siblings. Paintbrush is her debut novel.

Links


Interview

1) Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself?

Of course! I'm an avid read, writer, and lover of the outdoors. Going on adventures is my favorite thing to do - both literary and in real life. I grew up in Pennsylvania and currently live in Asheville, North Carolina. I love dark chocolate, weird-looking dogs, and books about friends and love and friends in love.

2) Paintbrush is set in a commune, where did you find the inspiration for your setting?

The commune setting in Paintbrush was inspired by the scenery and culture of Western North Carolina, where I currently live. The mix of hippie life and country life, combined with the beautiful mountain scenery, inspired me to come up with the idea of two teenagers growing up in a hippie commune, and the characters and story grew from there.

3) Could you describe the main characters of Paintbrush in six words each?

I love this question! It's a tough one, but here goes:
Josie: Introspective, loyal, protective, kind, compassionate, practical
Mitchell: charming, stubborn, diligent, ambitious, adventurous, impulsive

4) What's the most special thing about falling in love with your best friend?

Falling in love with your friend is so unique, because it's like discovering an entirely new person. It's sort of like opening a present that you were certain was one thing, and discovering something completely different and even more awesome than you thought.

5) You've traveled quite a lot, what was your best experience?

The places I've been lucky enough to experience are all so different, so this is a difficult question. In New Zealand, I got to hike a four day, 30 mile trail along the coast, which was amazing. Going on safari in Tanzania was pretty spectacular as well. Plus, baby elephants are hard to beat.

6) What did you learn from your travels?


The short answer is: a lot.
Longer answer: Be flexible, because the world doesn't always run according to your schedule. Be extra kind to other people, even rude ones - you never know what kind of day, or week, or year they're having. Old people have the best stories. Be patient when people make assumptions about you and gently correct them. Don't make assumptions about other people, and don't be offended when someone corrects you. Smile a lot. You can still have fun if you have no money. Good shoes are important. I could go on and on and on...

7) Paintbrush is your first story, what was the writing process like?

Since this was my first time writing a full novel, I had to discover my writing process through trial and error. I quickly discovered that I needed to be on a schedule to make any real progress, so I fell into a weekly routine. I also discovered that I could only write a maximum of 2,000 words in one sitting. No matter how determined I was to write 5000 words in one day, no matter how long I sat at my computer, I was never going to write more than 2000 words that were actually good and usable. This was an important lesson for me to learn, so I was able to stop beating myself up for not getting more done. The most important lesson was that writing is more important than outlining (at least for me personally). I get easily overwhelmed with trying to create a perfectly accurate and detailed outline. The truth is that sometimes characters have a mind of their own. Overplanning actually inhibits my writing, so I try to just give myself a very basic outline.

8) You like going on adventures, what are the best kind in your opinion?

For me, the best kind of adventures are the kinds that have a mission to complete. I know that's not very spontaneous of me, but I love having a goal and accomplishing it - whether the goal is to reach the top of the mountain or to find the best milkshake in town, I love having a feeling of accomplishment at the end.

9) How did you translate your love for nature into your story?

Mitchell and Josie spend a lot of time out in nature, and many of the places they travel to are inspired by real-life places I've been to. The lake, the cave, the mountain swimming hole - none of those actually exist, but they are heavily based on real places I've explored.

10) What are your plans for the future?

I am currently in the process of writing another novel. This one follows the lives of two sisters over one summer in Maine. It's still YA Contemporary, and it still has a romantic storyline!

Giveaway

One very lucky reader of With Love for Books will receive a kindle copy of Paintbrush.

The winner will be notified by email and has 3 days to respond. All of our giveaways are international.

Book Review - Santa Kisses for Sale by Kelly Moore

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Review by Anniek

Pacey and Vicky are drooling while looking through the window at their new neighbor Ryan. After some friendly encouragement from Vicky, Pacey goes outside to introduce herself. Instead of the nice conversation she was hoping for, Ryan is rude and grumpy. This was not what Pacey was expecting. Being neighbors means that they're bound to run in to each other every once in a while. Will Pacey ever see the real Ryan, the person who's carefully hidden behind his rough exterior?

Pacey has been blessed with a solid foundation in life provided by her parents. After she graduated Pacey worked hard. Being a smart business woman made her financially stable. Pacey and Vicky opened up their own bakery and are very successful. Ryan chose passion over money. His son inspired him to set up a business that helps children with a physical disability. This decision cost him his marriage since his wife loved money more than him. Pacey and Ryan are both kind and loyal. Once they got past their prejudices against each other they couldn't deny their obvious attraction anymore. Now that Christmas is coming, will this magical season show them true love?

Santa Kisses for Sale is a fun and sweet love story. I loved the main characters and how much they're a part of their community. Kelly Moore promised me that Santa Kisses for Sale would make me laugh and it certainly did. I had a constant smile on my face while I was reading this wonderful story. Christmas is my favorite time of the year and I really enjoy to read books with a Christmas theme. I always love Kelly Moore's books and this is another story by her that made me incredibly happy.

Advice

If you love to read sweet and lighthearted love stories Santa Kisses for Sale would be a perfect choice.

Free book

Santa Kisses for Sale is free on Amazon until Saturday.