Tag Archives: Letters to the Lost

Favourite Reads of May

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My Favourite Reads image

I seem to be reading a lot of good books lately, which is lovely. It’s such a pleasure to settle back and immerse yourself in a great story, especially if it’s one that moves you. My read of the month did that and more. So much so I’m tempted to call it the read of the year, but that might be going a bit early (and if I think about it, Iona Grey’s Letters to the Lost might still be a nose in front).

Anyway, enough speculation. Without further ado, my favourite read of May was…

A Man Called Ove by Fredrick Backman

A Man Called OveOh. My. God. This book! I laughed out loud and I bawled like a baby. It was funny, endearing, quirky, uplifting, topical, poignant and everything in between. I couldn’t stop laughing over the opening scene with Ove in the computer store. I could picture my dad behaving with similar ineptness (except not as grumpily – he’s more of a cheeky grinner than a scowler, my dad) and alarming a poor shop assistant with his technical ignorance. But this novel isn’t all giggles. There are some truly heart-wrenching moments that will have you sobbing and reaching for the tissues, and some wonderful ones that will have you smiling and thinking, ‘You’re a deadest legend, Ove.’

Ove starts out the crankiest, most taciturn old man you could imagine but beneath that prickly exterior lies a heart of gold. I guarantee Ove will capture yours as his marvellous life is slowly and cleverly revealed.

The Fireman by Joe HillThe Fireman by Joe Hill

My second favourite read and a monster-sized one. It’s a real skill to keep a reader turning 768 pages until The End and Hill nails it with The Fireman. This is action-horror-thriller territory but I loved the touches of humour, of which there were many. I had quite a few Lord of the Flies thoughts too during some parts. If you’re a fan of Stephen King, then you’ll love Joe Hill’s work. Which is kind of no wonder given they’re father and son. This was very, very cool but Horns is still my favourite Joe Hill so far. Oh, and I should add my huge thanks to The Reading Room and Hachette Australia for my copy of The Fireman.

The Peppercorn Project by Nicki EdwardsThe Peppercorn Project by Nicki Edwards

A sweet rural romance set in South Australia’s Flinders Rangers. Edwards really knows how to make you feel warm and fuzzy – the townsfolk of Stony Creek are adorable – but she also doesn’t shy away from some of the problems rural communities face. This will tug your heartstrings and make you hunger for an outback journey. Maybe even your own treechange!

Pretend You're Mine by Lucy ScorePretend You’re Mine by Lucy Score

I sobbed pretty badly during the ‘black moment’. I also had a good time throughout and read this fast, which surprised me because this had an uber alpha male hero and they normally leave me cold. Or wanting to thump them one. Great town, great characters and fantastically sassy heroine. Plus dogs. I can see why this has so many 5 star ratings on Goodreads.

Nacho Figueros Presents High Season by Jessica WhitmanNacho Figueras Presents: High Season by Jessica Whitman

As any good Jilly Cooper fan would be, I’ve been hanging out for this book ever since I first heard about it and was thrilled to bits to score an advance review copy from The Reading Room and Allen & Unwin (thank you, thank you!). Polo, ridiculously rich people, horses, glamour, and a wonderful romance combine for a rollicking tale that I romped through. Great fun. Can’t wait for the next two in the series, Wild One and Ride Free, coming veeeery soon. I’ll be buying. You should too.


What were your favourite reads?


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Favourite Reads of March

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My Favourite Reads image

I had a fantastic reading month in March, with every book a page-turner. As usual the list is a bit eclectic but I really enjoy reading different genres and think it keeps me fresh and inspired. I also tried a few new-to-me authors and returned to the comfort of a couple of beloved series.

Two stories stood out, which made it hard to choose my favourite, but that title has to go to…

Letters to the Lost by Iona Grey

Letters to the Lost by Iona GreyThis book was amazing. I wept in the opening, sniffled a bit throughout and spent the last part bawling. I loved everything about this story – the characters, the dual timeline, the writing, the vivid settings. Most of all I loved the way it took my heart and squeezed it tight from beginning to end.

Letters to the Lost won the UK Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Goldsboro Books Romantic Novel Of The Year 2016 and I can see why. It’s simply beautiful. And because of the two timelines, one set during World War Two and the other contemporary, you get two romances in one. Bonus.

Perfect for Mother’s Day. Perfect for any day, really. Read it, but keep those tissues handy!

I also read…

The Lie Tree by Frances HardingeThe Lie Tree by Frances Hardinge

My second favourite read of the month. Not a romance, but a wonderfully creepy Gothic tale set in Victorian times and featuring a unique premise and incredible writing. Another award winner too. The Lie Tree took out the prestigious 2015 Costa Book of the Year.

I want to read everything this author has written now. Next stop, Cuckoo Song.

Oh, and don’t be put off by its children’s book classification. The book felt about as child-suitable as a Stephen King novel to me!

The Last Sherlock Holmes Story by Michael DibdinThe Last Sherlock Holmes Story by Michael Dibdin

Regular followers will know what a Sherlock Holmes fan I am so I was never going to resist this one, especially when it also features the Jack the Ripper murders. The story rollicked along and was very entertaining but there’s a huge twist at the end that, while cleverly done, did leave me pretty gobsmacked. Can’t say more. You’ll have to find it out for yourself.

The Widow by Fiona BartonThe Widow by Fiona Barton

A mystery-thriller which follows the tale of a man suspected of a terrible crime, and how much, if anything, his wife knew about it. It’s something you wonder yourself, when you read about murderers and other terrible criminals.

A Vow To Secure His Legacy by Annie WestRebel’s Bargain by Annie West & A Vow To Secure His Legacy by Annie West

Annie is a friend and kindly sent me copies of her two books to read, and what fun I had! Arrogant alpha males usually leave me cold but Annie has the gift of keeping them real and relatable, as well as super sexy. I particularly enjoyed A Vow To Secure His Legacy. That one made me cry.

Odd Hours by Dean KoontzOdd Hours by Dean Koontz

I adore this Odd Thomas series, and while Odd Hours didn’t rate as a favourite it was still a good read. I’ve already bought Odd Apocalypse, the next in the series, and will be reading that soon. I need to know what happens to poor Odd!

Kings Rising by CS PacatKings Rising by CS Pacat

And, sadly, with this book the journey ends. What a stunner of a series. Unique and brilliantly written. Can we have more please, Ms Pacat? Pretty please?

Tempting Mr Townsend by Anna CampbellTempting Mr Townsend by Anna Campbell

I’ve loved all the books in the Dashing Widows series, and maybe it’s because it’s still on my mind but I think this one is my favourite so far. Anthony was gorgeous (I’m a sucker for a big man) and Fenella’s anguish and guilt over her burgeoning attraction for him very real.


What were your favourite reads?

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