Friday, 2 September 2016

Mini Reviews

Genre: Women's Fiction
Publication Date: November 2013
Publishers: CreateSpace

Robert Bryndza's  debut thriller novel, THE GIRL IN THE ICE is one of my top favourites of this year, so, I snatched a couple of books from his chick lit series, COCO PINCHARD, hoping to find out how good he was at writing women's fiction. A VERY COCO CHRISTMAS is a short novella from the aforementioned series. In this book, the author weaves a short festive story, full of warmth, love and laughter. Set in the backdrops of 80's, it paints an authentic rural English Christmas for reader's enjoyment. I warmed to Coco immediately, for her character appealed to me as a genuine one. This quick short novella also has a group of funny, likeable characters and a string of anecdotes, certain to amuse you. The Christmas Dinner part is hilarious and is, of course, my favourite part of this book. I'm certainly planning to read more books by Robert Bryndza now. Give this a book a shot, if you are in a mood for a delightful festive short story. 

RIGHT UNDER YOUR NOSE by Holly Tierney-Bedord
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publication Date: November 13th, 2015

RIGHT UNDER YOUR NOSE is a cheerful Christmassy novella, it's warm, fuzzy and light-hearted. The heartbroken Ariadne decides to skip Christmas this year, and her best friend Jess tries his best to get her in the festive mood. When all effort falls apart, a mysterious bookshop owner manages to help them find what they are looking for and celebrate Christmas. The author has managed to pull off a good festive story within these few pages. Her characters are easily likeable, so is the setting of the story. Incorporating the 'guardian angel' theme to this novella was brilliant, for it makes the story sounds interesting. I want to read more stories from this author now :) This novella certainly is a good choice for a light, quick, and a cheerful festive read!

THE SECRET BY THE LAKE by Louise Douglas
Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction
Publication Date: November 19th, 2015
Publishers: Black Swan

THE SECRET BY THE LAKE is a gripping, nerve-wracking and spine-chilling mystery, set in the 1960's. A ghost story, actually. Amy finds herself needed by the Laurent family and goes to stay with Mrs Laurent and her daughter, in their lakeside cottage, the house that witnessed two awful deaths in the past, at Somerset. The reservoir cottage is tumbling down, rooms still having the coldness and eerieness of the past. Vivienne befriends an imaginary friend, Caroline, who happens to be Mrs Laurent's dead sister. Amy risks herself to save the Vivienne from her troubled mind, but soon, she realises the truth behind Caroline, the noisy room in the upstairs and the nasty secrets of the villagers. Can she set the spirit free and solve the pieces of the puzzle? 

From the very first chapter, I was hooked by the story. More than the characters, it was the storyline and the spooky settings, that the author has perfectly built throughout, are what attracted me. The writing is mesmerising, capable of taking the readers back to 60's, making them feel as if they are there at Somerset witnessing all incidents and transfixing them with fear. I was afraid to be alone in the room and of all those slight movements and sounds, whilst reading this novel. Even though, I was burning with curiosity to know how the story pans out and didn't dare to put it down until the mystery was solved. THE SECRET BY THE LAKE is a riveting and breathtaking mystery and the vivid descriptions and the eerie feeling will keep you glued to it until the end. The ending was unexpected, yet sorrowful. But, definitely, a MUST read for mystery lovers! 

BILLY AND ME by Giovanna Fletcher
Genre: Women's Fiction
Publication Date: April 5th, 2016
Publishers: Penguin

I was sceptical before, but not now. BILLY AND ME is an awesome debut book by Giovanna Fletcher. The theme of the story was a breath of fresh air to me, I really enjoyed it, though, it took me a while to get into the story. The story shed light on the showbiz industry and the life of actors, a unique trope, to be told. The characters were amazing too, their warm personality did win my heart straight away. Though the attitude of Sophie irked me a few times, I was able to relate to her with myself and couldn't find any fault with her ;) Each character has their own reasons for being in a certain way, and it reminds readers not to judge anyone knowing a little about anyone. The story also teaches us to believe in ourselves, when the adversity strikes. The entire storyline is absorbing, it makes you think sometimes or weep for the characters. BILLY AND ME is a wonderful story which reminds each of us to celebrate the life we have surrounded by our dear ones. The life is unpredictable, live each moment you have without any regrets.
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