Book Review: The Christmas Project by Maxine Morrey

Book number 2 in my Goodreads Reading Challenge is The Christmas Project by Maxine Morrey.  Despite Christmas having been and gone, I was not quite ready to let go of the festive cheer so I started working my way through a collection of festive novels I had saved up for Christmas and then had no time to read. I should also warn you all that I have been loving a good fluffy romance, so expect a few reviews in the coming days and weeks.

‘Professional organiser Kate Stone has never – NEVER – been tempted to hit a client over the head with a snow shovel, but Michael O’Farrell is the most obnoxious – and heart-stoppingly gorgeous – man she has ever met. If he weren’t her best friend’s brother, she would not have waited on his doorstep in the freezing cold for five minutes, let alone an hour.

Kate knows, however, that her job isn’t just about tidying up, sometimes she needs to be part therapist too, and Michael clearly needs her help to declutter his heart as well as his home.

But with the festive season just around the corner there isn’t much time to get Michael’s house ready for the O’Farrell family celebrations, but everyone knows that at Christmas anything can happen…’ (Thanks Amazon!)

There are no surprises in this novel, but that is not what I was looking for when I picked up this book.  In fact this novel completely ticked all the boxes for me; it has an organised, albeit slightly neurotic Kat who is expecting to spend Christmas alone (despite having an ‘amazing’ boyfriend who is always too busy to see her); it has the heartbroken but devastatingly handsome Michael, who needs his life and heart pieced back together; it has the very loving O’Farrell’s, the family Kat has never had; and it has the meddling but good-hearted best friend (and sister of said devastatingly handsome Michael), Janey.  So all the pieces are there for a lovely, feel-good Christmas novel.  All I had to do was kick back and watch Kat and Michael fall in love, despite their differences.  An added bonus was that Kat and Michael spent their time re-organising Michael’s beautiful home – I have a thing for home interiors!

I appreciate that it is now February (I did read this in early January), however I think we can all do with a little love and festive cheer at any time of the year.  So get reading!

Rating: 📖 📖 📖 📗

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Book Review: Hunger by Michael Grant

So my 2016 Goodreads Reading Challenge was pretty unsuccessful – I binge read and then loose my mojo.  Sometimes that’s because of a book, other times real life gets in the way.  However I am not one to give up, and so I am attempting it again in 2017.  50 books…let’s go!

Book number 1 in my Goodreads Reading Challenge is Hunger, the second book in the Gone series by Michael Grant.

‘Food supplies are dwindling and Sam Temple is facing mutiny from the kids in Perdido Beach. Driven into town by hunger, Caine and his psychotic sidekick are spreading fear and violence.

And deep in the ground, the biggest danger of all is getting hungry.’ (Thanks go to Amazon)

So firstly I would say that Hungry is darker than book one in the series, Gone (if it can get any darker than the disappearance of anyone aged 15 and over).  Children dealing with starvation, hunger and many other issues that children would not and should not be expected to deal with.  All issues that are faced by the children in the Fayz are further compounded by the fact that more and more children are discovering they have powers, splitting this young community in two as those without these powers grow ever more fearful of their peers.

There are some powerful messages and lessons within this book – it deals with life and death, power and fear, uncertainty and outright violence.  Despite being a YA book, I have to say I was gripped.  I do love a dystopian novel, and this one doesn’t disappoint.  You will need to read the first book Gone as it gives the background and context to this continuing story, but please do that.  I will certainly be reading my way through this series.  The characterisation is strong as you follow the characters on both side of the conflict, and Drake’s increasingly psychotic behaviour is, quite frankly, a little scary.  I’m hopeful that the next book in the series, Lies, continues to live up to it’s predecessors.

Rating: 📖 📖 📖 📗

parTea #6 Perrywoods

As my blog is supposed to be all about books AND cake, it seems only right to direct you all to this fab new blog aimed entirely at afternoon teas – with any luck Rach will point me in the right direction for a an afternoon tea setting where I can read my latest book AND enjoy some amazing cakes! Enjoy!

Rachy friendly treats

img_1025 28th January 2017

Next stop is Perrywoods Garden Centre in Tiptree, if you have never visited this garden centre it’s one to go to – it has a very large selection of both indoor and outdoor plants and lovely homeware throughout the shop (I can recommend the flavoured Tiptree Jam Factory gin which can be purchased here ;o) ). Now, before we have even arrived I am already concerned about the setting, I love a traditional tea room and this is a garden centre – I was sure the atmosphere was just not going to be the same, however the end of the coffee shop was reserved for afternoon teas, we were sat right next to the window and assigned a waitress who was in charge of all afternoon teas for the day. We were offered tea or coffee and then had the choice of numerous jams, this is a…

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