Posts Tagged ‘HQ’

The Wolves of Winter BlogTour

January 8, 2018 - 6:01 pm No Comments

I have been asked to get involved in the The Wolves of Winter blog tour. A post-apocalyptic book set in the cruellest season. Below is my review:

The Wolves of Winter by Tyrell Johnson
Published by HQ on 11th January 2018
384 pages
Reviewed by Yvonne Davies

First came the fires, then the nuclear bombs and finally when the world could not take anymore the Flu, not just the sniffles but full-blown flu which in some cases resulted in death. Gwendolynn (Lynn) her brother and parents fled from their home, after it got too dangerous to live there. Losing her dad to the flu, they eventually ended up in Yukon, they had a simple life, keeping themselves to themselves until a stranger entered their lives bringing trouble directly to their door.
The story is told from Lynn POV and with the detailed description, you understand how basic her life was. She was a strong and determined young woman and this really showed when she crossed paths with Immunity. Her memories that run through the story help explain how she became the woman she was and just how close she was with her father and the part that he played in the world’s destruction. When she came across Jax, you realise just how much she needed company from outside her little community.
Jax was a mysterious character, a loner who’s only companion was a husky. When we first meet him, he is portrayed as a regular joe who is trying to get away from the conflict, but as the story continued, you soon realise just how special he was. The longer he stays with Lynn and her family, the more you discover how much he needed human contact.
The authors style of writing was descriptive, and you could imagine just what sort of life Lynn and co had. Set over the winter months, with no electricity and little fresh food, just showed how hard it was for the family to survive. The story flowed easily, the scenes involving Immunity were intense, highlighting the dangers the family were in. There was always something going on in this story. I found this book compelling and I was reading it into the middle of the night, waking up with a book hangover. Saying that I did not want the story to finish and hope there will be a second one to come. One of my favourite quotes in the book was “Grief isn’t the footprints in the snow. It’s the empty space between”. As a lover of post-apocalyptic stories, I knew that I would enjoy, however I did not expect it to love it so much. Will look out for other books written by this author.

Holiday in The Hamptons- Sarah Morgan

May 30, 2017 - 1:22 pm No Comments

Holiday In The Hamptons
Author: Sarah Morgan
Publisher: HQ
Page Count: 384pp
Release date: 15th June 2017
Reviewer: Theresa Derwin

 

Fliss’ eighteenth birthday wasn’t the joyful experience she expected; not with her father returning to their beach home in a storm of anger.
Every summer, their mom took her, her twin sister Harriet and brother Daniel (New York Actually) to their holiday home in the Hamptons, to escape the ire and tyranny of a bully; their father.
When her father follows them and turns up unexpectedly at her eighteenth birthday with his usual insults and degradation, young Fliss flees to the beach, where Seth, Daniel’s friend, finds her.
Seth Carlyle, five years older than her, looks at her like she’s a woman, treats her like a woman. The chemistry sizzles between them, until it ends. Then she sees him again, ten years later.
Seen in a series of flashbacks and memories, we discover that they marry young and divorce just as quickly.
Ten years later, when Fliss is buried in work at Bark Rangers (fans will know the dog walking service family from from the other ‘Manhattan’ books by Sarah Morgan),
she is a workaholic wanting to expand the business, hiding her constant hurt and loss in Bark Rangers. Where Fliss is vivacious, opinionated and hardly shy, twin Harry (Harriet) is the opposite (introverted and lacking in confidence despite her talents, having been bullied about her childhood stammer). Though there is a steel to a Harry that her twin Fliss doesn’t realise exists.
Together the sisters own and run the business, Harry’s natural affinity for animals being perfect for their success, whilst Fliss’ no nonsense approach sortes the finances and the piles of paperwork.
When ex husband Seth turns up unexpectedly in Manhattan to do a stint at her local vets, Fliss flees to see her Grams in the Hamptons, taking on Harry’s identity to look after her Grandmother whilst she recovers from a fall.
Then the worst thing she could possibly imagine happens.
Seth turns up in the Hamptons; where he actually lives.
In a panic, she continues her charade pretending to be her twin.
Of course, all Seth talks about to ‘Harriet’ is ‘Fliss’. And her defences start to crumble just a little.
“Maybe she’ll be the first woman in history to break up with a guy because she’s jealous of herself.” friend and former Best Man Chase remarks.
So, in a funny, warm and romantic twist on The Parent Trap, Fliss and Seth find themselves spending lots of time together. And as the old adage says ‘the truth will out’.
This book is about secrets, family, love, friendship; the things that matter. It also tackles the difficult subject of bullying.
As a child and teen, Harriet is the subject of bullying at school, whilst at home through their younger years, Harriet, Daniel, Fliss and their mother are all victims of bullying too.
Morgan deals with the issue sensitively, and whilst we later learn some of the reasons for the bullying, the behaviour is not excused.
Though we do learn to understand one important message; honesty is key to any relationship. Keeping things – emotions- bottled up inside will lead to an unfulfilled life.
There’s a lot, as usual with a Sarah Morgan book, going on in this one. Emotional trauma, romance, social and human issues, humour and shock. But what I love most about this book, and the Manhattan series, is the use of animals, particularly dogs.
Each ‘doggy character’ is fully fledged and brings a smile to the readers’ face, or a gasp when they are injured. Hero is awesome, a massive, friendly against stereotyping Doberman and he’s adorable, whilst Lulu is hilarious. And also adorable.
The humans, and the animals, are living breathing characters in her skilled hands.
Reading Sarah Morgan is like being wrapped up in a warm blankie, candle lit, with chocolate cake being served by Ryan Reynolds; who puts on your fluffy cat slippers for you.
Sheer bliss, sheer delight, sheer comfort.