blog tour · book review · books · Christmas · Contemporary Romance

Blog Tour ‘n’ Book Review – Christmas at the Borrow a Bookshop

Christmas at the Borrow a Bookshop

‘Tis the season for finding love… and the perfect book

With just two weeks until Christmas, everything in Clove Lore should be perfect. But the latest holidaymaker to the Borrow a Bookshop is feeling far from festive…

Icelandic ex-bookseller Magnús Sturluson might be surrounded by love stories in the Bookshop, but he’s nursing a sadness that not even fiction can fix.

When Alexandra Robinson finds herself stranded in Clove Lore, she finds a safe place to hide from heartbreak. After all, all that’s waiting for her at home is a cheater boyfriend and the memories of her parents. As Alex finds herself embraced by the quirky village community, she finds her tough exterior thawing – and as she grows closer to Magnús, she finds an equally soft heart under his gruff shell.

It seems that Clove Lore is working its magic once again – until a great flood on Christmas Eve brings devastation in its wake. It’s up to Magnús and Alex to batten down the hatches and help bring the village back together again, while also introducing the locals to the Icelandic tradition of the jólabókaflóð – Yule book flood – where families and friends gather on Christmas Eve to exchange books and read together.

But can Magnús and Alex truly rescue the ruins of the village, and salvage their Christmas spirit? Or is there another complication lurking even closer than they thought?

Purchase Links

AMZ: https://amzn.to/39v0coN

Kobo: https://bit.ly/3QpSgpj

Apple: https://apple.co/3Oewbs0

Hive: https://bit.ly/3HI1olz

Author Bio

Kiley Dunbar writes heart-warming, escapist, romantic fiction set in beautiful places, with One Winter’s Night being shortlisted for the RNA Romantic Comedy Novel Award 2021.

Kiley’s five novels include: The Borrow a Bookshop Holiday (May 2021), One Winter’s Night (September 2020), Summer at the Highland Coral Beach (2020), Christmas at Frozen Falls (2019) and One Summer’s Night (2019).


Social Media Links

‘Kiley Dunbar Author Book Page’ on Facebook
website and newsletter: http://www.kileydunbar.co.uk/

YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCI8wM4Fmkbyg4S_XGSnfUCA

https://twitter.com/kileydunbar

https://www.facebook.com/KileyDunbarAuthor/

My Review

The premise of this series is simply too wonderful for a booklover to ignore, and I have to admit to dreaming about running a bookshop, which makes this a must read. Book one introduced us to the village of Clove Lore in the summer, with its quirky villagers and the perfect ending for the “borrowers” of that story. Now, it’s winter, close to Christmas, and the “borrower” in question is not as excited as you might expect. Magnús once ran a bookshop in Iceland, but is disillusioned by the business that he was forced to close down. He hasn’t yet come to terms with what went wrong with his dream bookshop and figures he’s only going to fail again – so why bother hanging around?

When a river cruiser gets into trouble during a storm, the skipper Alex hunkers down in secrecy, refusing to give away even the barest details of her life. Fleeing a broken relationship, she’s convinced no one will be worrying about her anyway – so what’s the point of letting people in?

Two people struggling, holding in all their insecurities, fearful of failing at life and love. Well, doesn’t that just make Clove Lore the perfect place for them? Of course, it seems inevitable that they will find each other … but it’s not going to be easy. They will be tested, challenged and scrutinised by the villagers and the weather. Will the allure of Clove Lore and the bookshop work is magic at this most festive time of year?

With Magnús’s “baking”, the New Year’s eve tradition of Jolabokafloo, there’s a nod to Iceland that blends perfectly with a wintry bookshop, but it is the characters who power this story. Quirky villagers return to consolidate the village vibe of supporting each other and a “all hands to the deck” attitude during times of trouble. It’s sweet and idyllic, charming and heart-warming, yet also filled with poignant moments of how these secondary characters also develop and move on with their lives. The subplots strengthen the main plot and combine for a magical read that will make me a repeat visitor to Clove Lore for the duration of this series.

For more news and reviews,

As always,

Bloggers · books · Indie authors please · Reading Indie

A book blogger’s delight! – An update

BBNYA Panelist Logo by Jenn @JennieLy (JennieLy.com)

Book Bloggers’ Novel of the Year is an annual Indie book award hosted and judged completely by book bloggers from all over the world!

Well, the first round is over … and it was fab-u-lous.

Before we were allocated our first excerpts, we were given a chance to look at all the books entered this year and then we could select those which we really fancied reading. The great thing about this step in the process was that it meant I could either stay in my comfort zone (and read crime, mystery, and women’s fiction) or I could take a gamble on a new genre or two.

I know I’m not the best reader for Sci-Fi or fantasy, but there were some that crossed genres … and I could see myself enjoying the stories based on the blurbs presented. So, I made my selection and then received 24 excerpts of 2,000 words.

Whoa! It felt like a lot, but we had a month to read them so I nudged a couple of books down my TBR list to make room and got stuck in.

For the most part, I was not disappointed and wanted to read on in so many cases. Clearly, though, not every book can make it through, so we were asked to score each one on the following points: Writing style, Story, Characters and Emotional response (i.e. did the story evoke any emotional reaction?) Finally, we had to decide if we wanted to read on. In my case, I said yes to 16 of the 24, maybe to 5, and no to 3, the latter really not being a fit for my reading preferences. I will add that I only gave the top score to one book, but there were a few others that came close. Seems I can be choosy when I try 😉

So, now I’m waiting for round 2 in which we get to read a larger excerpt of 10,000 words of those stories that made the cut. It’ll be interesting to see how many of the ones I loved are in that group.

Please excuse the cloak and daggers aspect to this post, clearly I can’t name any of the stories or authors at this stage.

Watch this space until then!

As always

Bloggers · books · Indie authors please · Reading Indie

A book blogger’s delight!

BBNYA Panelist Logo by Jenn @JennieLy (JennieLy.com)

Book Bloggers’ Novel of the Year is an annual Indie book award hosted and judged completely by book bloggers from all over the world!

I’m so looking forward to being a panelist for 2022. It’ll be my first time taking part as a book blogger, but based on past years I know I’m in for a treat. Being an Indie author myself, I understand how easy it is to feel invisible in the sea of famous names and celebrity authors. Who knows, maybe one day I’ll be on the other side with one of my own books, but until then I’m more than happy to lend my support to other Indie authors with the help of the book blogging community.

It’s going to be amazing. I’ll keep you posted as much as I can but you’ll understand if I have to be cryptic until the winner is discovered.

As always

books · ebooks · Giveaways · humour · mystery

Mysteries with Humour – A Giveaway!

Today, I have a fun surprise to share with you…

I’ve teamed up with 30+ fantastic authors to give away a huge collection of Mysteries with Humo(u)r series starters to 2 lucky winners!

Oh, and did I mention the Grand Prize winner gets a BRAND NEW eReader? 😁

You can win my novel Just a Simple Little Holiday,

plus books from authors like Eliza Watson and Zara Keane.

Enter the giveaway by clicking here 👉 bit.ly/HumorousMysteries-Oct2020

Good luck and enjoy!

Thanks for reading,

books · cosy · crime · ebooks · FREE books · Free copies · Giveaways · mystery · suspense · thriller & crime

FREE Books – Mystery & Crime (plus: Win a $25 giftcard)

If you’re a fan of mystery and crime books, then this is going to be right up your street.

Find your next crime or mystery novel among these FREE ebooks.

From cozy mystery to cold cases, suspense to hard-boiled police procedural, there is sure to be something to take your fancy.

You’ll be asked to sign-up to the authors’ newletters in return for your free book(s), but you can unsubscribe at any time. Although, hopefully you’ll be keen to see what else these authors have to offer and newsletter subscribers tend to get access to advanced copies and other freebies. Oh, and did I mention there’s a chance to win a $25 giftcard too.

What have you got to lose?

 

Follow this link for more details. You may even find you next new favourite author too.

Many thanks to Book Cave and author, Christer Tholin for organising this awesome deal.

 

PS – the prequel to my cold cases cosy mystery series is included in this promotion. This story is currently only available to my newsletter subscribers, so if you’re interested, please check out “Never Forgotten” under my pen name bea kendall.

As always,

 

 

Audiobook · book review · books · challenge

My Year in Books – 2019

I’m a list person – to do lists, to buy lists, to cook lists, to read lists … you name it, I’ll put it in a list. Which is why I absolutely love Goodreads and my “what I read” list for 2019.

I’ve been doing the Goodreads reading challenge for a few years, and each time I start off with a cautious but doable figure in mind. You might say it’s the easy option, and you’d be right … but I hate not meeting a challenge. Please, don’t mention NaNoWrimo this year! 😦 😦 😦

So, in January 2019 I set the challenge at 60 books, which I then extended to 75, then to 90 and finally to 100. Yep, I did write that with a smug grin on my face 😉

 

The results are now in …

Don’t you just love numbers, and stats? Okay, it’s just me, isn’t it? 😀

 

 

So, how did I rate them?

I gave 34% of the books I read a fabulous 5 stars

56% got 4 stars from me

5% got 3 stars

1% got 2 stars

and 4% got only 1 star – don’t judge me, I’m giving my honest opinions here. Not every book suits everyone, and I will admit to being drawn in by a book’s description only to wonder if I’d been reading the same book!

All in all, I don’t reckon those stats are too shabby. In fact, I’d say I had a fabulous year of reading, because it’s true.

Talking of fabulous, here they are in all their bookerlicious glory ….

 

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My fist review was …

My last was …

All in all, an eclectic mix. From cosy mysteries and doggy tales, to historical fiction and time-slips; from rom-coms to feel-good fiction; from tense thrillers to conspiracy theories, and from satire to sarcasm. I even renewed my interest in audiobooks too.

I probably wouldn’t have read quite so many if I hadn’t signed up to review books for some fabulous book tours. I’ve discovered so many new (to me) authors and have stretched my TBR list for 2020 to beyond stupid. But, a book lover’s got to do what a book lover’s got to do. And what better way to spend the year than lost in a wonderful book.

I have to thank Rachel @rararesources and Shannon @RRbooktours1 for providing so many excellent tours. I’ve recently joined the Partners In Crime tours (@partnersincr1me) and audiobook tours came from @AnAudiobookworm, both of which have been amazing already with their offerings. Of course, NetGalley (@NetGalley) needs a mention too, as does my good friend and author buddy, Felicia (@MsFelicia) . Together these have sent my TBR list into overdrive and my Kindle into a happy state of overflowingness!

Thanks to everyone who’s read, liked and commented on my reviews. It’s great to hear that someone has picked up a book based on what I’ve written about it. Hope you all enjoyed the stories as much as I did.

Here’s to a marvellous 2020 in the world of books, and to those amazing authors out there …keep writing!

PS, keep an eye out for my Top Ten books of 2019 too. Bet you can’t guess which ones here made the the cut 😉

As always,

books · Reading for Fun · summer reading

For my reading pleasure

It’s fair to say I read a lot of books, many as part of blog tours, but as a reader I also have a selection of books that I choose for my own reading pleasure.

Here’s a shortened version of my summer line up (in no particular order):

After Melanie

Can they start again, or will they lose one another forever? David and Judith’s fragile marriage is threatened by the sudden death of their beloved thirteen-year-old daughter, Melanie. As they struggle to cope with their loss, they confront bewildering challenges. But instead of turning to each other, they find comfort with others. David is drawn to Nancy, a colleague and single mother, and a survivor of her own personal tragedy, while Judith grows close to Jeffrey, a recently widowed physician whom she meets through her volunteer work at a thrift shop, itself the scene of multiple daily dramas. As their grief drives them further apart, does their future lie together ‘after Melanie’, or are they destined to lose one another for ever?

What She Saw

How far would you go to keep your daughter safe?

Everyone knows Leona would do anything for her daughter, Beth: she moved to Church Langdon to send Beth to the best school, built a business to support them and found the perfect little cottage to call home. They hike together, shop together, share their hopes and fears. It’s the relationship every mother dreams of.

But Leona never talks about why they moved to the Lake District.

She’s never told Beth anything about her father.

She says Beth should never speak to strangers. She says Beth doesn’t need friends.

She’s only trying to protect her daughter.

When Leona answers the phone one morning, her heart stops as she hears a voice from her past.

She’s given her daughter everything, but now she must tell her the truth. And once it’s out, can she keep her little girl safe?

What She Saw is a gripping psychological thriller with an incredible twist that will make your jaw drop. If you love The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl or Behind Closed Doors you’ll be consumed by this.

One Summer in Santorini

There was something in the air that night. . .

Sarah has had enough of men. It’s time to rekindle her first true love – travel – so she books a sailing trip around the Greek islands with a group of strangers.

The very last thing Sarah wants is to meet someone new… But then a gorgeous American man boards her yacht and she knows she’s in trouble. And when she also encounters a handsome silver fox who promises her the world, she realises that trouble really does come in twos.

Will Sarah dive into a holiday fling, embark on a relationship, or stick to her plan – steer clear of men, continue her love affair with feta, and find her own way after all?

The Doctor

How much do you know about the couple next door?

When Emily and Ben move in next door to Dr Burman and his wife Anita, they are keen to get to know their new neighbours. Outgoing and sociable, Emily tries to befriend the doctor’s wife, but Anita is strangely subdued, barely leaving the house, and terrified of answering the phone.

When Emily goes missing a few weeks later, Ben is plunged into a panic. His wife has left him a note, but can she really have abandoned him for another man? Or has Emily’s curiosity about the couple next door led her straight into danger?

Two Little Girls

An innocent girl is taken. The killer confesses.
But that’s not the whole story. That’s not even the beginning…

It’s 1985 and the disappearance of ten-year-old Lisa Cook shocks the nation. Her best friend, Kirsty, traumatised and fearful, gives evidence that helps to put the Cook family’s lodger behind bars.

…But what if Kirsty made a mistake?

Now, decades later, Kirsty leaves a life she loves to move back to the hometown she hates – tortured by her memories, she’s determined to finally uncover the truth about what happened to Lisa that day. But someone is waiting for her there, someone close to her family. Someone who is hoping to finish off a job that was started years ago…

Mom’s Perfect Boyfriend

A smart romantic comedy about mothers and daughters, and the hilarious consequences of a white lie.

Crystal has trouble saying no to her lonely, single mother. For 25 years, it wasn’t a problem. But when one small mistake leaves Crystal jilted, homeless and unemployed, she has to move back in with the one person who caused it all: her mother.

Soon Crystal is sucked into her mother’s vortex, partying with boomers and hawking misshapen marshmallows. Desperate for some independence, she hatches a foolproof plan: get an experimental android to play her mom’s “perfect” boyfriend. It’s only a matter of time before her mom finds out, and Crystal will never live down the hilarious and disastrous consequences.

It’s going to be one helluva summer.

What’s on your reading pleasure list?

As always,

books · justice · suspense · thrillers

Ooh, this looks good …

Isn’t it always the way … you just close Amazon after buying a couple of books (seriously, only two this time) and then you see another one that you really must have!

Dead to Me: A Serial Killer Thriller (Detective Kate Matthews Book 1) by Stephen Edger Genre: Mystery, Thriller & Suspense/Vigilante Justice/Police Procedural 2.99 at time of posting! How do you catch a killer who knows your every move? The woman lay flat on the table, her face to one side, her wrists bound with […]

via “Dead to Me” by Stephen Edger — Nesie’s Place

awards · books · DM Wolfenden · Felicia Denise · Iris Chacon · L S Fellows · Nicole Fitton

Award Season – the BLU:RBS are here …

After the Golden Globes, the BAFTAs, the NTAs and now the Oscars, it seems only appropriate to give some recognition to another form of entertainment: READING!
So, here’s my nod to Award Season, with my own specially-crafted statue:

BOOK LOVER’S UNION: RECOMMENDED BOOKS STACK

or the BLU:RBS, as I affectionately call it 😉

Now, before anyone takes this at all seriously, it’s a fun post designed to show off my books and those of my author buddies. No nominations or voting took place. It’s just for laughs 🙂

Let’s get started:

The BLU:RB statuette for best cover goes to: FORBIDDEN COLOURS

Forbidden Colours

What if your memories were not your memories? What if the drug hailed as a cure became a curse and ultimately your destruction?
Midori Yates works for pharmaceutical giant KLD. The launch of new drug Centoria has revolutionised the treatment of amnesia, with outstanding results. Trials exploring its use in the treatment of Alzheimer’s are on the horizon. But is it really as good as the data suggests?
Neurologist Dr. Nick Campbell has seen amazing results with his patients and is ready to believe in Centoria’s transformational abilities…that is until his patients start displaying strange and worrying symptoms with drastic results. Determined to uncover the truth, Midori and Nick find a conspiracy that is to have devastating consequences for both of them. A dark world threatens to engulf them. Can they survive?
This contemporary thriller will have you turning the pages long into the night.

The winner of the BLU:RBS for best leading lady goes to: OLIVIA CHANDLER (In the Best Interest of the Child)

In the Best Interest of the Child

Severely injured in an accident that forever changed her life, 10-year-old Olivia becomes another faceless, underserved child in foster care. With no time to mourn or grieve, the young girl is easy prey for uncaring social workers and ambivalent foster families.

Olivia quickly learns to hold her tongue and mask her emotions. Even when exposed to neglect, bullying, and assault, no one seems to care. Holding fast to the teachings of her late father, Olivia ages out of the system broken, but no longer a victim.

Now a successful child advocate attorney, Olivia is a passionate voice for children. However, a routine case assignment by the court plunges Olivia back into the trauma of her childhood. If she doesn’t face her demons, a child will be sent into foster care, and Olivia will lose the only chance at love she’s ever had…or wanted.

Foster care for her young client is not an option. But Olivia’s emotional scars run even deeper than she realized. Reconciling with her past means Olivia must confront the one woman she blames for her battered soul.

A woman who has no idea who Olivia is.

For best male lead, the BLU:RBS goes to: ARCHIE ROYLE (Magic O’Clock)

Archie Royle is a kind, funny, gentle man.
He’s also my dad. My storyteller. My hero.

Except he doesn’t remember my face any more.
His world, these days, doesn’t include me or his family.

Life may have changed for him, but he hasn’t given up on life.
Not at all.
It’s just different.

Dad still tells his stories, albeit for a new audience.
He makes people smile and chuckle. As he always did.

He’s a fighter, a survivor and maybe sometimes too clever for his own good! He’ll surprise you. I can assure you of that.

Welcome to Magic O’Clock, where time is irrelevant and hope is unlimited.

Of course, this being my blog there has to be an animal category … and the BLU:RBS goes to: DAVE (Finding Miranda)

Finding Miranda

Miranda Ogilvy is accustomed to being invisible. Sometimes people actually see her, but they forget her almost immediately. It’s not a bad life for a ghost, but Miranda is not a ghost. She’s a librarian.

Nobody “sees” Miranda Ogilvy except the hunky blind deejay (Shepard)next door and the men hired to kill them both. Shep has been blind since birth. His best friend (and guide dog), Dave, goes everywhere with him, including on the morning run. (Shepard’s the cute one; Dave’s the smart one.)

Murder, political corruption, quirky small-town neighbors, and Dave the Wonder Dog work together to make this mystery fun, romantic, and satisfying.

When it comes to Miranda and her new next-door neighbor, Shephard, not since the owl and the pussycat has there been a more unlikely pair.

Not forgetting, the BLU:RBS for the best setting goes to: PORTUGAL (The Fifth Wheel)

The Fifth Wheel

Fern Mortimer has mastered the art of being invisible. Since a hit and run accident five years ago left her wheelchair-bound, she has become a recluse in her parents’ home.
After finally venturing back into the real world, she struggles to make friends and trust anyone. Getting the nickname of The Ice Queen at her new place of work does little to build her confidence.
However, one young woman, Nessa Sullivan, sees through Fern’s mask and is determined to be her friend. A mission that only months later sees Fern joining Nessa and three others on a well-deserved and much-needed holiday to the Portuguese Algarve.
During the holiday, Fern is seduced by a handsome restaurant manager, raising her mood and her hopes of a romantic entanglement whilst also robbing her of her usual common sense and sound judgement.
So, why is her wheelchair now lying capsized in the infinity pool and a body is spotted out at sea? Where is Fern Mortimer?

and finally, there is a tie for the next category: Most anticipated book of the year.

A BLU:RBS is awarded to

Family Matters – by Felicia Denise

Jane – by DM Wolfenden

Ladies, time’s a-ticking …, and I’m a-nagging LOL

Thank you for humouring me – I realise it’s not always easy to follow my train of thought 🙂

Enjoy these books – I know I did.

Yes, I know, of course, two of them are mine, Cheeky, aren’t I?

Thanks for reading 🙂

books · boxsets · cosy · familial abduction · grammar · punctuation · reading · real goals

2018 Reading Challenge

Last year, I set a goal of 60 books on the Goodreads Reading Challenge, a figure I passed some time in September. I ended the year having read 92 books. Now the time has come to set a goal for 2018.

You’d think I’d go higher, wouldn’t you? Maybe aiming for 100 books this year?

It was a tough decision – but (and this is rather a first for me) I actually considered the books I’d be reading in the coming months before coming up with a number.
Yep, I know – forward thinking – me? I surprised myself too.

As I’m currently writing a cosy mystery series, the first in the series featuring familial child abduction I thought I’d see how others have tackled the subject. So, I’m reading a few boxsets to get into the right mindset.

I’m still working through The 12 Slays of Christmas – a selection of 12 cosy mysteries, but as I finish one of those mysteries, I’m jumping headfirst into another boxset: Missing Ones Super Boxset – another 12 novels with a kidnapping theme. Then I’ll check out a third boxset: Winter Whodunnits – 12 more cosy mysteries before returning to 12 Slays.

In total, that’s 36 books, but only counting as 3 in the Goodreads Challenge.

You can see where I’m going now, can’t you?

Consequently, I’ve downgraded my goal to 75 books – it’s still up on last year, so not really a cop-out.

Besides the boxsets, I intend to read more craft books this year too.

Starting with Eats, Shoots & Leaves and its accompanying workbook.

Okay, so I’m a bit of a nerd when it comes to grammar and punctuation – and I do know my own skills are far from satisfactory. Hence the need to improve. Also, this looks like a fun read – not your typical, dry guide to commas, semi-colons and the like.

(I know – I hear you – my kind of fun is not to everyone’s taste. Each to their own, I say 🙂 )

Anyway, that’s my reasoning and I’m sticking to it.

There’s plenty of room for some gripping thrillers, some emotional women’s fiction and a smattering of historical fiction.

It’s going to be a great year.

By the way, if you have any recommendations I’d love to hear them. Or, if you’ve set yourself a reading goal, how did you decide on a number, and what do you intend to read this year?

In the meantime, thanks for reading 🙂