Rachel's Book Corner

10. Jun, 2016

Hayley Cooper, a powerful but now struggling lawyer, fantasizes about what her life would be like if only if she’d made different choices. It’s understandable; the past two years have been hell. She barely sees her kids, her boss is trying to sabotage her, and her marriage is falling apart.

Burnt out, Hayley goes to sleep wishing for a different life. When she wakes up married to her first boyfriend, one she has not seen in over twenty years, she realizes there might be some truth in the saying “be careful what you wish for”. Over a single weekend, like Ebenezer Scrooge, Hayley gets to see her life on other side of the white picket fence – not just with her first ex, but with each of her past loves. But is the grass always greener, and will she ever want to go home?

Review

Have you ever wondered what your life would be like, had you married your first ever boyfriend? Ever wondered where you’d be now, had you gone down a different path? Well Hayley Cooper did - but she didn’t factor in front row seats to the spectacle of what her life could have been, if she hadn’t married her husband, Rick.

Married with two kids, Hayley is stuck in a bit of a rut. She’s working all hours to provide for her family and rarely gets home in time to see her children before they go to bed. Her boss is out to get her and is making her working life a living hell.

After an argument with her husband, she storms out to her best friend Ellen’s house, where she gets drunk and ponders the what ifs of her life. Ellen has been Hayley’s best friend since - forever and, with her husband - Mark, is the perfect shoulder to cry on, the voice of reason. They have been with Hailey through all of her relationships and they just want her to be happy, which they know, deep down, she is with Rick - despite the rough patch they seem to going through.

The next morning, hungover, Hayley wakes up ready to make things right with Rick - only it’s not Rick in bed beside her and so begins the weekend of what could have beens, waking up beside each of her ex-boyfriends and starting Saturday all over again - in a very Groundhog Day meets Sliding Doors kinda way.

I enjoyed this book immensely, it was something different, from the normal chick-lit genre, and it had me laughing one minute and in tears the next. It definitely got me thinking about my own life, leaving me feeling very grateful for my own husband and children.

I thought Hayley was a strong, likeable character and she made a great leading lady. She was a bit lost but, with the help of the ghost of what could have been, she managed to get back on track of where she wanted to be. I really enjoyed switching from the past to the present, and it definitely helped me understand the story better and see why things went wrong the first time round.

A fantastic debut novel by Hannah, I really can’t wait to see what she comes up with next!

A well-deserved 5 stars!

Meet Hannah

I was born in 1971 in Manchester, UK to British & Swiss parents. A year later they moved my older sister and I to Switzerland. Rather unsurprisingly I love mountains, chocolate and cheese... or mountains of chocolate and cheese, and my sister, of course.

As a slightly rebellious, rather moody and very ambitious teenager, I remember telling Dad I'd own a company one day. "What kind of company?" he asked. "I don't know," I replied, "but I'll have one." Well, that dream became partially true at least, but it took me a while to get there.

After finishing commercial studies in Geneva I worked as a PA for DuPont. A year later I moved to Neuchâtel and became the Purchasing Manager for an ultra-cool company that made motors for industrial and space applications.

Finding myself lacking in theoretical knowledge, I returned to university, studying part-time for a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration. And then a friend of a friend introduced me to another friend who'd started up an IT recruitment business. BANG! That took care of my career for the next fifteen years as I rose through the ranks to become CEO and a shareholder. And I finally owned (okay, okay, a tiny bit of) a company.

Things outside of work were never boring either. A chance encounter back in the dark ages of the Internet in 1999 led me down the aisle with Rob, my Canadian rock, just five months later. Actually it was exactly ten weeks after we met face-to-face at the Saint John airport in New Brunswick, Canada - and we're still married. True story. Our first son was born in 2003, followed by identical twin boys just sixteen months later, which means I'm heavily outnumbered.

In 2010 Rob and I decided to move to Oakville in Ontario, Canada. Maybe it was the failed attempt at a start-up company, or the fact I suddenly found myself in my forties, but one morning I decided to follow my oldest passion, started writing, and never wanted to look back.

I write fiction for adults and children's books, and sometimes I think I'll never have enough time to get all of the crazy ideas out of my head and on paper. I also have a soft spot for short stories and mud runs. I love mud runs... hey, wait... that's another story I could write...!

Follow Hannah on twitter @MrsElectrilight

22. May, 2016

Darcy Davenport is ready for a fresh start. Determined to leave a string of disastrous jobs and relationships behind her, she can’t wait to explore White Cliff Bay and meet the locals.

When Darcy swims in the crystal clear waters of the bay, she discovers the charming Rose Island Lighthouse. But it’s not just the beautiful building that she finds so intriguing…

Riley Eddison doesn’t want change. Desperate to escape the memories of his past, he lives a life of solitude in the lighthouse. Yet he can’t help but notice the gorgeous woman who swims out to his island one day.

Darcy is drawn to the mysterious and sexy Riley, but when it seems the town is trying to demolish his home, she soon finds herself having to pick sides.

She’s fallen in love with White Cliff Bay. But is that all Darcy’s fallen for?

  Over the last year I have become a big fan of Holly Martin, she is a fantastic writer and her books always seem to take me on a bit of an emotional roller coaster - and Summer at Rose Island was no different.

  This is the third book by Holly that I have read and, just like the others, I was gripped by the first chapter, where we meet Darcy Davenport. Darcy has moved to the seaside town of White Cliff Bay to escape London and her rather disapproving parents, who find disappointment in almost everything Darcy does. Darcy has spent her whole life trying to please her parents and, after losing her job as a Marine Biologist, she decides enough is enough, she needs a fresh start and so she heads off to White Cliff Bay - a place she spent many summers as a child with her aunt, a place she has many fond memories of. 

  Within a few days of arriving at White Cliff Bay, Darcy swims out to Rose Island, where the old light house is situated, and meets the gorgeous Riley Eddison, who may be extremely easy on the eye, but is not so friendly to our Darcy.

  Riley has moved from Texas to White Cliff Bay, the town where his father grew up, to escape his past. He’s keen to keep himself to himself but, when Darcy rocks up on his island, all that goes out of the window, as she’s hell bent on saving his light house, which the council want to demolish.

  Darcy isn’t the only person wanting to save the light house, which has been in Riley’s family for generations, the whole town get behind Darcy. White Cliff Bay is the kind of place where everyone knows everyone. It’s a friendly town and they all want to take care of each other. Though it makes for some hilarious reading, when certain things Darcy and Riley would rather keep to themselves, get out and spread around the town. Everyone knows everyone’s business and Riley struggles with this.

  Darcy makes a big impression on the people of White Cliff Bay, especially on a certain light house keeper, and is soon leading the way in the Save Our Light House campaign.

I absolutely loved this book, and even though I was disappointed that it had ended, it left me with a big soppy smile on my face.

You won’t be able to stop yourself from falling in Love with White Cliff Bay, the story pulls you in in such a way that you’ll want to spend your own summer there.

Holly Martin is a fantastic writer, and I would highly recommend this book. Although it’s the third book in a series, it can be read as a standalone story and I’m really disappointed that I didn’t read Christmas at Lilac Cottage and Snowflakes on Silver Cove first.

Well done, Holly, I’m off to down load Christmas at Lilac Cottage and Snowflakes on Silver cove.

A well deserved  five stars from me.

 

Holly lives in sunny Bedfordshire in a house with round windows. She studied media at university which led to a very glitzy career as a hotel receptionist followed by a even more glamorous two years working in a bank. The moment that one of her colleagues received the much coveted carriage clock for fifteen years' service was the moment when she knew she had to escape. She quit her job and returned to university to train to be a teacher. Three years later, she emerged wide eyed and terrified that she now had responsibility for the development of thirty young minds. She taught for four years and then escaped the classroom to teach history workshops, dressing up as a Viking one day and an Egyptian High Priestess the next. But the long journeys around the UK and many hours sat on the M25 gave her a lot of time to plan out her stories and she now writes full time, doing what she loves.

Holly has been writing for 6 years. She was shortlisted for the New Talent Award at the Festival of Romance. Her short story won the Sunlounger competition and was published in the Sunlounger anthology. She won the Carina Valentine's competition at the Festival of Romance 2013 with her novel The Guestbook. She was shortlisted for Best Romantic Read, Best eBook and Innovation in Romantic Fiction at the Festival of Romance 2014.

Follow her on Twitter @hollymartin00

22. May, 2016

  Over the last year, since joining twitter, I have become rather fond of reading book blogs and I blame them for the amount of books I’ve read in the last year or so. And so I thought it was about time I waded into the scary waters of blogging myself, especially given the amount of books I read on a weekly basis.

  When I read a book that captures me, one that draws me in and hooks me from the first page, a book that when I’ve finished reading, makes me feel quite lost and bereft because it’s over, I tend to pester certain friends and family that they HAVE to read this book and so I thought starting a blog and sharing my thoughts on these kind of books was the best way forward. Certain friends and family members will be glad of the peace I think - I can be a bit of pain.

  The main subject of this blog is going to be all things books, but on occasion I might have the odd random ramble.

  As an independent author myself, I am hoping to spotlight some fellow Indie authors, we need all the help we can get in the big scary world of publishing and I’m hopefully going feature some guest posts and Q&A’s with them, along with traditionally published authors.

  Anyway, welcome to Rachel’s Book Corner, I really hope you enjoy my blog and find a book that you enjoy just as much as I do!