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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Phoebe Smith's Private Blog by Lynda Renham - Book Review & Interview

Book review

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Review by Tanya

Phoebe is going having a tough time after her boyfriend and work colleague, Ashby, finished with her before Christmas. That's why in the New Year she decides to set up a Private Blog. On the blog she writes about her efforts to find a boyfriend/partner/someone to accompany her to a Celebratory ball, which is being held by Lynworths department store, where she works. She also records her thoughts, feelings and outings with her friends and family, as well as the neighbour. Her best friends, Imogen and Mak, also work for Lymworths and are there to support her all the way. Phoebe is determined to dislike her neighbour Harry Bloom because his dad's company, Bloom Properties, is trying to buy the building she lives in, so that he can renovate the flats and increase the rent.

Phoebe is very opinionated and open in her blog posts, which is amusing as well as cringe worthy. She really does have some disastrous dates, which are great to read about. I was glad those things were happening to someone else. She even resorts to hiring a date for an engagement party, because she doesn’t want to be the only single one. Unfortunately her problems aren't only related to finding a many she likes, she also has to put up with sexual harassment in the work place, which was really hard to read about without wanting to shout at the man in question. Another thing Phoebe writes about is her diet, she is always starting her healthy eating tomorrow, a topic I think a lot of women can relate to.

Harry, what can I say except open your eyes Phoebe, is gorgeous, kind, caring and generous. I kept wanting to tell her, don’t prejudge him and take what you read on Google as gospel. Listen to your friends instead, they are trying to give you good advice. The amazing fizz they have between them has got to be a sign of something. Phoebe Smith's Private Blog is a book that constantly made me want to jump into the story to tell Phoebe exactly what I thought. I love it when an author manages to create something that has such a strong effect on me.

Of course the ideas for the blog and finding a boyfriend don’t always go according to plan, but Phoebe and her friends show themselves to be a tight-knit group that generously allows other deserving members in. Phoebe also has a flare for fashion and a love for designer or fake designer clothes. I loved Lynda Renham's vivid descriptions of her personality. Phoebe Smith's Private Blog is a good easy read that will have you giggling in all the right places.
Phoebe Smith's Private Blog is the perfect book for readers who love humoristic romantic stories.
About Lynda Renham
Lynda Renham has been writing for as long as she can remember and had her first work published in a magazine at age nine and has continued writing in various forms since. She has had several poems published as well as articles in numerous magazines and newspapers. Recently she has taken part in radio discussions on the BBC.

She has studied literature and creative writing and has a blog on her web page:

Lynda lives with her second husband and cat in Oxfordshire, England. She is Associate Editor for the online magazine The Scavenger and contributor to many others. When not writing Lynda can usually be found wasting her time on Facebook.

1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself? 

I’m a writer of romantic comedy. I live in Oxfordshire with my husband and one cat named Bendy. His real name is Bendrix named after a character in a Graham Green novel. I’m slightly eccentric and scatty. I spend much of my day looking for my glasses in between eating and trying to write novels.

2. You also write under the name Amy Perfect. Why did you choose to write A Christmas Romance under a different name?

A Christmas Romance is the first book in the Little Perran romance series. The other two are A Village Romance which is currently free on Amazon and A Summer Romance. I chose to write them under a different name because the genre is slightly different. They are romance novels and although there is a little humour in them it is not as much as the romantic comedies.

3. What does your perfect Christmas look like?

Mostly peace and relaxation with my husband and cat. Christmas Day is often just the two of us. The lead up is very busy however with lots of village festivities going on. We also have a annual Christmas evening at our house. Boxing Day is usually spent with close family and later in the Christmas week we get together with extended family.

4. Perfect Weddings is one of your most successful books. Could you tell us about your own wedding?

We had a humanist wedding in our back garden. A humanist celebrant conducted it. We chose to have a hand fasting which is the tying together of the hands with different ribbons. We then followed it with a reception on the village green where we live and food in the local pub.

5. You've written The Confessions of a Chocoholic, which is a collection of short stories about your mad life. What's the craziest thing about your life?

I am the craziest thing about my life. Every day something mad happens. The stories in ‘Chocoholic’ are only a few. There are tons I haven’t told.

6. If you could choose a superpower which would you choose?

To make people see everyone as their equal no matter what race, religion, creed, sexuality. Everyone would see everyone the same.
7. What's your superpower in real life?

Determination. I never give up.

8. Could you name some of your own favourite writers?

Iris Murdoch, Virginia Woolf, The Brontes. I don’t have any favourite modern writers aside from Richard Curtis.

 10. Can you tell us about the most romantic thing that ever happened to you?

My husband telling me he was taking me for an Italian meal on my birthday. He just failed to mention it would be in Rome. He kept the secret right up until the day before. I’d always wanted to go to Rome.
11. What does romance mean to you?

Doing things that mean the most to your partner. Not flowers and chocolates but more bringing out the best in the one you love. Helping them to achieve their dreams.

12. What can we expect from you in the future?

Something very different, I hope.


  1. This sounds like a really fun one!


  2. Amen to number 6 ... perhaps one day.

  3. Sounds like a fun book, than you by the review.

  4. This sounds like a great book. I will have to check it out. Thanks for the review.

  5. This really sounds great and Phoebe sounds like a really interesting character.

  6. A surprise trip to Rome - very romantic & sweet.

  7. I love books like this! Reminds me of Bridget Jones - which is one of my favorite girlie movies/books ever.

  8. I love the sound of this story.

  9. This book sounds like a really fun read! I'm gonna have to check this out for sure.

  10. This sounds like a book that I will love.

  11. Phoebe Smith's Private Blog sounds all too familiar lol so many of us have had similar thoughts, feelings, & desires. In past times we would have written our angsts in diaries, under lock & key. Love how Linda Renham has re-imaged those hidden diaries into Phoebe's modern day private blog. Can't wait to read!

  12. I love Christmas romance books, they make me feel really good.

  13. Wow surprise dinner in Rome! That is so romantic.

  14. I'm used to seeing lots of books written in the format of private (written) diaries - I'm glad someone decided to bring things into the 21st century now that blogs are more popular than ever.