BOOK REVIEW: Strictly My Husband by Tracy Bloom

I've been a fan of Tracy Bloom's novels since reading her first, No One Ever Has Sex on a Tuesday. Tracy's books are light, witty and brilliantly addictive, which evidently made her a bestselling author and published internationally. Strictly My Husband is Tracy's latest offering.

First of all, let me just say that I am not a fan of Strictly Come Dancing. Not at all. So I was a bit concerned that this novel would be heavily inspired by the show, which I feared I wouldn't enjoy. However, I love Tracy's books so I chose to read it regardless, and as it happens there are not many Strictly references.

But there is dancing! And even us non-Strictly fans don't mind a bit of dancing...

Laura and Tom love to dance around the kitchen when nobody's watching - well, at least Laura, given that she's not that good at it. Nothing like Tom, a trained performer and now an entertainment manager at the theme park in their hometown. Laura's dancing prowess doesn't seem to matter - not when the lovely Tom only has eyes for her! That is, until he turns up one day with a beautiful young woman in tow. Worse still, he's offered her the spare room.

Carly - a  stunning, blonde and bubbly dancer - has bagged the lead role in Tom's upcoming Halloween show, and has just split with her boyfriend. So with nowhere to stay, Tom kindly invites her to be a temporary lodger.

Carly's looks and penchant for getting personal with Tom instantly put Laura on edge. After all, Laura's unglamorous life as a market research analyst is hardly on par with the glittery demeanor that Carly possesses. Scared, and convinced that the pair will be doomed to the 'Strictly Curse' in which dancers fall for their partners, Laura confides in sister-in-law Hannah, whose relationship with Jerry isn't exactly going well either...

As Tom prepares for his show with Carly, Laura is intent on finding out the truth. And when the show's success partly relies on Laura's work, what will she choose to do?

Yet again, Tracy Bloom's wit shines through in this novel. She has a real knack for fun, romantic comedy and relateable characters. After all, what would you do if a stunning woman turned up on your doorstep and miiiight just risk stealing your husband? I really liked Laura, and even though she was abrupt at times, could totally understand why! Each chapter focuses on a different character, so you get to see all sides of the story; Laura, Tom, Hannah, and Jerry. I won't delve any further in case of potential spoilers, but if you're looking for something light and funny (and okay, with a bit of drama), Strictly My Husband is the perfect read.

Rating: 5/5

COMING SOON: A Season of Ruin by Anna Bradley

Anna Bradley, author of A Wicked Way to Win an Earl, returns on 6th September with new regency romance, A Season of Ruin (which, I have to add, has a stunning cover!)

Lily Somerset's plan for the London season is simple: courtship, marriage to a respectable gentleman, then the comfortable existence of a proper Lady. That is, until one tiny misstep leaves Lily on the edge of social ruin, forcing her to depend on a wicked rogue to save her reputation.

Robyn Sutherland doesn't save reputations-he sullies them. He'd rather be drawn and quartered than find himself spending the season as Lily's escort. But he has no choice but to stay until her tattered standing is mended.

What begins as a ruse to deceive London soon flames into an uncontrollable passion. Robyn calls to the wild spirit that lurks beneath Lily's prim exterior, and Lily awakens the hero's heart within Robyn. But can these unlikely lovers trust themselves enough to let desire overrule reason?

BLOG TOUR: Patricia Mar stops by for a guest post!

Today, Patricia Mar stops by as part of her blog tour for new novel, Stuck On You. Read on for her guest post about what inspired her to write the book...

The idea for "Stuck on You" was born by chance. A friend of mine showed me a photo shoot by Miriano Vivanco featuring David Gandy, who looked very comfortable with his graces, so to speak. I immediately thought: if I were his girlfriend, I would be so jealous. Something clicked in my mind. I imagined a girl  desperately  in love with a famous model, a model at ease with his body and adored by women all over the world. I imagined her to be one of us – an ordinary girl with small dreams, goals to achieve and looking for a real and lasting love. But I also thought that that model was not only a man, but had a universe within him, a depth he wanted to protect. 

It felt as though their love could become a fairy tale only in dreams, but I wanted to contextualise it in the real world, with real friends, families and problems to make it appear almost possible. However, since these two characters actually lived in two  very different worlds, I had to invent a funny situation that would make them meet and that allowed them to lay the groundwork for a future meeting. I have always believed that true love can overcome any obstacle with tenacity, patience and trust. Daniel and Sara are the result of these ideas. Also the name of the protagonist, Daniel Gant, is a sincere tribute to David Gandy, who was unintentional muse of my novel.

One of my greatest dreams has always been to write a novel that should somehow honour a genre that I love. Films like "You've Got Mail", "The Wedding Date", "Made of Honour," and "The Holiday" to mention a few, are a symbol of style and romance. So I tried to recreate the spirit: romance and humour, brilliant dialogue and feelings, elegance and joy. I so enjoyed writing about Daniel and Sara’s lives – a beautiful and perfect moment of my creative life.  

I sincerely hope that Daniel and Sara give you joy and leave you with lasting memories.

Stuck On You by Patricia Mar

At last, it’s the day of the interview, and Sara absolutely must get the job. It’s two years since she graduated, and she’s not had much luck in her personal or professional life. Much to her dismay she is desperately late, teetering on her heels, soaking wet and out of breath by the time she arrives at the offices of Inside Look magazine.

Things are going from bad to worse and when the receptionist tells her the job has already been given to someone else, Sara tries to slip away without being noticed. But she finds herself stuck in the lift with none other than the dazzling model Daniel Gant. After being thrown together by chance, Sara can't believe it when Daniel wants to see her again. Is her luck beginning to change?

MOVIE NEWS: Liane Moriarty's novel 'Truly Madly Guilty' optioned for film

Nicole Kidman and Reese Witherspoon have optioned the movie rights to Truly Madly Guilty, the 2016 novel by Liane Moriarty (also author of The Husband's Secret and What Alice Forgot).

According to The Bookseller, the movie will be produced by both Witherspoon's production company, Pacific Standard, and Kidman's company, Blossom Films.

Moriarty’s UK agent Jonathan Lloyd said: “I am thrilled that there is now an opportunity for fans of the film to discover the magic of Liane Moriarty’s writing and if they haven’t already done so, to go out and acquire all her books.”


 The Holiday Swap is the new novel by Zara Stoneley, in which two women are led to spend the festive season away from their very different lives. Zara joins us for the weekly Q&A to share more about her writing.

Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
Buzzy Barcelona or cosy Cheshire? Plan your perfect escape this Christmas!

What inspired you to write The Holiday Swap? 
I was initially inspired by one of my favourite Christmas films - 'The Holiday'. I love the idea of swapping homes (and lives) with somebody. There are two places that are very special to me - the UK countryside, and glamorous Barcelona - they're very different places at Christmas, both magical in their own way, and so I couldn't resist the idea of writing a book set in both locations.

Where do you do most of your writing? 
If I'm in the UK I love to sit at my kitchen table (unless it's nice enough to sit outside) as it's lovely and light and I can gaze at the garden when I need inspiration. If I'm in Barcelona I do lots of scribbling ideas down on the beach, but I do the actual writing in the apartment with the doors open - I can hear the gentle buzz of chatter outside, and quite often there are buskers to listen to which I love.

What is your favourite book? 
There are so many brilliant books it's hard to name a favourite. The best book I've read recently has to be 'Me Before You' - it's quite different to the type of book I normally read these days, because I like something light and funny, but I really enjoyed it. It's impossible to name an all time favourite though - I'd need to give you a top ten!

Which part of The Holiday Swap did you enjoy writing the most?
Now that is a really difficult question to answer! I loved writing about the really cosy side of Christmas in the UK, snow and roaring fires, but I also really enjoyed writing about buzzy Barcelona! I suppose if I really had to single one bit out, it has to be the very last chapter, in Barcelona on New Year's eve... and a very special ending that caught even me by surprise!

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Bridget Jones. Does she qualify as 'literary'? She might not be a role model in the way somebody like Elizabeth Bennet might be (is she the modern day equivalent?), but I can relate to her, and she makes me laugh, cry and hope that things will work out.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Find your voice - once you find your writing style, and the stories you really love writing then things will start to fall into place. I think the hardest part of writing is patience, and not expecting too much too soon - take your time, read lots of different authors and keep writing until you hit your stride. And write the story that you want to tell, in your own way - publishers aren't looking for copycats, they want unique voices that can put a new spin on old themes.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
I can't say much at the moment, but it does involve an absolutely gorgeous little village (even more lovely than Tippermere - I never, ever thought I'd say that!), a hunky vet, and a school teacher who thinks she's a city girl at heart but might be about to find out she's wrong!

Thanks, Zara!

You can find out more about Zara at her website, Twitter, Facebook and Amazon.

The Holiday Swap by Zara Stoneley

Two women, two very different lives – one perfect solution to a Christmas holiday fraught with potential pitfalls.

Florence Cortes has the perfect life – an apartment in the trendiest district of Barcelona, a job she loves and a boyfriend who’s whisking her away on a romantic break to Paris to no doubt propose.
Only, he’s planning something far different, and Flo soon realises her life isn’t so perfect after all.
Home loving Daisy Fischer is perfectly happy in her idyllic home in the Cheshire countryside, with an on-off boyfriend who might be slightly dull but is totally dependable. Until he issues an ultimatum, and Daisy suddenly realises that there might be a whole different world out there that she’s missing out on.

Have Flo and Daisy come up with the perfect solution to escape festive heartbreak?

Can a snowbound Christmas in Cheshire – with aristocratic, handsome Hugo as her neighbour, a house full of animals and a leaking roof – help Flo mend her broken heart, and remind her of what she really wants in life?

Can a sunny break in beautiful Barcelona – with the dishy but brooding Javier, a never ending supply of cava, and a sea view to die for – prove to Daisy that playing safe isn’t always the answer?
Love actually does seem to be all around this Christmas – and in the places Flo and Daisy least expect to find it, but where will they be for New Year?

BOOK NEWS: The Weekends of You and Me by Fiona Walker

The Weekends of You and Me is the new novel by Fiona Walker (author of The Summer Wedding and The Woman Who Fell in Love for a Week). Released in September, the novel follows newly-single thirty-something Jo and divorcee Harry, who meet up every year for one weekend only...

Can your final fling become your Happy Ever After?

When Jo Coulson finds herself single again in her late thirties, she finally resigns her membership to Last of the Hopeless Romantics, fully intending to tackle midlife and motherhood alone. First, she plans one legendary last fling...

In walks Harry Inchbold, and the connection is electric. Passionate, unpredictable and messily divorced, Harry is the perfect antidote to cosy coupledom. Known as The Sinner, drama follows him around with a clapper board.

Harry's favourite holiday hideaway in the wilds of South Shropshire puts the mud and fun into the perfect dirty weekend. But at the cottage Harry reveals a very different side, melting Jo's resolve. What better combination to face an uncertain future than two cynics who have learned from their mistakes?Together they make a pact; 'same time next year'; they can promise no more than that.

Through life's most stressful decade, Harry and Jo return to the Shropshire hills for one weekend each year to rediscover passion and make peace. As career, family and home crises all threaten to bring them unstuck, the cottage is their glue. Here, different rules apply: the day to day world is not allowed to intrude.With Harry and Jo, however, it's only a matter of time before rules get broken. As real life gets increasingly complicated, can they keep renewing their promise?

BLOG TOUR: The House in Quill Court by Charlotte Betts (Review)

1813. Venetia Lovell lives by the sea in Kent with her pretty, frivolous mother and idle younger brother. Venetia's father, Theo, is an interior decorator to the rich and frequently travels away from home, leaving his sensible and artistic daughter to look after the family. Venetia designs paper hangings and she and her father often daydream about having an imaginary shop where they would display the highest quality furniture, fabrics and art to his clients.

When a handsome but antagonistic stranger, Jack Chamberlaine, arrives at the Lovell's cottage just before Christmas bringing terrible news, Venetia's world is turned upside-down and the family have no option but to move to London, to the House in Quill Court and begin a new life. Here, Venetia's courage and creativity are tested to breaking point, and she discovers a love far greater than she could have ever imagined...

Fans of historical romance may already be familiar with Charlotte Betts, author of The Chateau on the Lake, The Spice Merchant's Wife and The Apothecary's Daughter. Her latest novel, The House in Quill Court, is officially released tomorrow. Having enjoyed The Chateau on the Lake, I was delighted to receive a copy of Charlotte's latest offering.

Creative, young Venetia lives with her family in Kent, with her father Theo, an interior decorator for the wealthy who often travels out of town. Life is good for the family - until they are brought some news by a handsome stranger known as Jack Chamberlain. It's revealed that Theo had been leading two lives, with a secret family in London. The family are forced to move out of their seaside home and relocate to London to live in Quill Court, along with Theo's other family.

I don't want to delve too far into the plot as I don't wish to reveal any spoilers, but I will say this - The House in Quill Court is a beautiful novel, wonderfully written and full of intrigue in every chapter. The book doesn't simply focus on Venetia's family and their lives, but also that of Kitty the maid. At first I had envisioned this novel to have more of a romantic tone going by its cover (which I love, in fact), but it is much more; an incredibly written historical tale with a plot that makes it very hard to put down.

Rating: 5/5

UNCOVERED PICKS: Ready for Christmas!

It may seem as though Christmas is quite some time away, but news of festive novels is already starting to make its way to readers. Which means that my Christmas to-be-read pile is becoming even longer - not that I'm complaining! I always love a good winter tale to snuggle up with on a cold evening, and so here are five upcoming festive treats from authors such as Chrissie Manby, Aimee Duffy and more.

A Winter Affair by Minna Howard
With a recent divorce and empty nest Eloise Brandon is facing Christmas alone until a harried phone call from her godfather changes everything.

Accepting his challenge, Eloise finds herself en-route to Verbier and to her godfathers chalet in the beautiful Swiss Alps to help cater for some seriously rich, high rolling guests.

What ensues makes it a Christmas to remember. A heady alpine mixture of old friends, ex-husbands, mega-rich, super demanding guests, a dishevelled proprietor and Bert the dog.

A Fairy Tale for Christmas by Chrissie Manby
What could be more magical at Christmas than a fairy tale come true?

It's the festive season and the members of the Newbay Theatre Society, more commonly known as the NEWTS, are preparing to put on a show. Being cast as Cinderella is the realization of a dream for newcomer Kirsty, not least because she hopes starring in a panto under the direction of her boyfriend Jon will bring them closer together.

But Kirsty soon learns that it's not all glitter and good cheer behind the scenes at the amateur theatre as bitter rivalries nurtured through decades, wardrobe mishaps and suspicious near-fatal accidents threaten to derail the production. And then there's Prince Charming himself. Will working together with Jon bring Kirsty her happy ever after... or reveal their love to be nothing but a 'showmance'?
With Christmas just around the corner, it's going to take more than a Fairy Godmother to get Kirsty and her cast-mates to the ball.

The Office Christmas Party by Aimee Duffy
Natalie Taylor and Dean Fletcher are serial Christmas party crashers. But when they start crashing the same parties, the mittens are off!

As much as she loves Christmas, after her mother’s death, events planner Nat can’t face the jolly season anymore. So to get her festive hit she crashes everyone else’s party. It’s a sweet gig, until she meets her competition, tech empire millionaire, Dean, under the mistletoe…!

When it comes to relationships, Dean doesn’t do serious―being left at the altar will do that to a guy. So when he meets feisty Nat, the first woman in ten years to pique his interest, he’s tempted to break his one-night rule…just for the holidays!

Nat and Dean might get more than they bargained for in their stockings this Christmas!

Christmas in Paris by Anita Hughes
Isabel Lawson is standing on the balcony of her suite at the Hotel de Crillon as she gazes at the twinkling lights of the Champs-Élysées and wonders if she’s made a terrible mistake. She was supposed to be visiting the Christmas tree in the Place de la Concorde, and eating escargots and macaroons with her new husband on their honeymoon. But a week before the wedding, she called it off. Isabel is an ambitious Philadelphia finance woman, and Neil suddenly decided to take over his grandparents' farm. Isabel wasn't ready to trade her briefcase for a pair of rubber boots and a saddle.

When Neil suggested she use their honeymoon tickets for herself, she thought it would give her a chance to clear her head. That is until she locks herself out on the balcony in the middle of winter. 

Thankfully her neighbor Alec, a French children’s illustrator, comes to her rescue. He too is nursing a broken heart at the Crillon for the holidays. With a new friend by her side, Isabel is determined to use her time in the "city of lights" wisely. After a chance encounter with a fortune teller, and a close call with a taxi, she starts to question everything she thought was important.

Anita Hughes's Christmas in Paris is a moving and heartwarming story about love, trust, and self-discovery. Set during the most magical week of the year, the glorious foods and fashions of the most romantic city in the world are sure to take your breath away.

Lizzie's Christmas Escape by Christie Barlow
A gorgeous country house hotel, a liberal dusting of snow, a cosy weekend away…what more could Lizzie ask for at Christmas? 

Every Christmas Lizzie promises herself that things will change and she will leap into the new year a new woman. And yet here she is again, at the beginning of December and nothing is different. Her girls have grown up and left home, her husband Henry is slumped in front of the TV and she is alone in the kitchen, seeking refuge in the cooking sherry and talking to her Gary Barlow calendar. She’s also been very diverted by handsome new neighbour Marcus and she knows she shouldn’t be … 
So when best friend Ann suggests a weekend away in the country, Lizzie jumps at the chance. Will this Christmas escape give Lizzie some much needed perspective and allow her to mend her marriage? Or will Marcus prove to be too much of a distraction? 


Allison Morgan, author of The Someday Jar, joins us this week for a Q&A about her new novel Can I See You Again, in which successful matchmaker Bree finds her own love life in trouble...

Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
A matchmaker who’s an expert at matters of the heart—except when it comes to her own...

What inspired you to write Can I See You Again?
I thought it'd be fun to write about a secure, confident character who's thrown into a situation where's she's anything but confident or secure. I find as I grow older, my comfort zone is shrinking. So, I wanted to write about a woman who steps out (or is forced out) of her comfort zone. Sometimes we need to get out of our own way and enjoy life.

Where do you do most of your writing?
Hmmm...wherever and whenever. I'd be much more organized and efficient if I had a specific time and place for writing. But, life gets in the way. So, I write at the kitchen counter, on the couch, in bed...whenever and wherever I have the chance. The only thing consistent about my writing is there's always a cup of green tea nearby. And, Chips Ahoy (obviously).

What is your favourite book?
I have two: This I Believe. It's a lovely compilation from eighty people writing about their beliefs - political, religious, moral, family, you name it. The book made me think about my own beliefs and how I've come to them. I also enjoyed Humans of New York. Not only are the author's photographs captivating, but his subjects share their stories. It's inspiring to know we live among such truly remarkable individuals.

Which part of Can I See You Again did you enjoy writing the most?
The Tough Mudder scene was my favorite. A few years ago, I foolishly agreed to attempt a similar 12-mile obstacle course/run with a group of friends. It was torture. But, I have to admit, it was one of the funnest (and muddiest) things I've ever done. Not to mention, the well-deserved beer at the end tasted like heaven-in-a-cup. I enjoyed reliving that day when writing that particular chapter.

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Honestly, I don't have a specific favorite, except to say I enjoy fun-loving, self-deprecating characters that don't take themselves or life too seriously. If a character can justify their actions, regardless how outlandish, then I'm hooked.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers? 
I know this is such a cliché, but do not give up. DO. NOT. GIVE. UP. Also, I found entering writing contests (listed toward the back of writer's magazines) very beneficial because the nominal entry fee typically includes first-impression feedback on the submission. So, for $10 or $20, an author can receive candid (and, sometimes harsh) comments. This objectivity helped clarify my weaknesses in my opening pages.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
I'm tossing a few ideas around with my agent. Nothing decided yet. Hopefully soon.

Thanks, Allison!

To find out more about Allison Morgan, you can follow her on Twitter, Facebook, or Instagram.

Can I See You Again? by Allison Morgan
Matchmaker Bree Caxton has a 98% success rate, a book about to hit the stands, and an amazing boyfriend. Until, that is, he gets cold feet about their future and runs from their relationship.
Afraid no one will buy a book on love from a woman whose love life is a mess, Bree begs her one matchmaking failure, Nixon Voss, to pose as her boyfriend. But when they become a hit with readers, they must carry on their charade just a little longer. Fortunately, they’re both having fun...

But then Bree’s ex decides he wants her back and a newspaper presents a challenge that could expose the truth about her rocky love life. Now she must find the courage to embrace what is, or risk losing something much bigger than her reputation: her heart... 

BOOK REVIEW: You Had Me at Merlot by Lisa Dickenson

It's always a treat when a book from a much-loved author arrives at your door, so I was excited to receive a gorgeous paperback copy of Lisa Dickenson's latest novel, You Had Me At Merlot. I loved her previous summer novel Catch Me If You Cannes, and festive read The Twelve Dates of Christmas, so I already had high hopes for this one!

Like Catch Me if You Cannes, You Had Me at Merlot was released in four parts, but the full novel is now available in paperback and ebook formats.

Elle is single, and perfectly fine with that fact. Unlike best pal Laurie who is determined to find Mr Right, Elle is happy just the way she is, with her friends and advertising job in the city that she plans to work her way up in. So when Laurie proposes a much-needed break abroad, she's fond of the idea...until Laurie reveals that it's a singles' holiday that she had in mind!

Fearing the worst, Elle's reluctant to go, but after chatting to her married and mothering friends, Elle realises she should make the most of her freedom, so agrees to the holiday  -a wine-tasting break at a vineyard in Tuscany called You Had Me at Merlot.

The pair set off, and after an amusing flight, they touch down in Tuscany ready to begin their wine-inspired adventure. After the initial round of introductions, including George, an older American man who takes an instant liking to Elle, and Jamie, the gorgeous son of the Bella Notte vineyard owners.

But there's trouble when a new guest arrives - a very angry one at that - and Elle is horrified to discover that it's none other than her boss, Donna.

With work, the one thing that Elle wanted to escape, turning up in Tuscany, can Elle and Laurie truly enjoy themselves? And will Elle experience more than just wine and sun at Bella Notte?

You Had Me at Merlot is a fabulous read. Lisa's characters are always charming and funny (in this case, Laurie especially!) Her wonderful writing will take you straight to the vineyard, set beautifully in the Italian sun. I expected this to be a romantic read, but there's a whole lot more - especially with the arrival of Donna (and Elle's attempts to fend off the annoying George!). I'd love to go into more detail, but don't want to spoil this book - however,if you are looking for a fun, romantic read, especially on a gorgeous sunny day, then this is perfect.

Especially with some Merlot!

Rating: 5/5

BOOK NEWS: Who We Were Before by Leah Mercer

Talli Roland, author of many romantic comedies including Build a Man, The Hating Game and The Pollyanna Plan, will return with a new offering, though this time writing as Leah Mercer. Who We Were Before will be released in October.

Zoe knows that it wasn’t really her fault. Of course it wasn’t. But if she’d just grasped harder, run faster, lunged quicker, she might have saved him. And Edward doesn’t really blame her, though his bitter words at the time still haunt her, and he can no more take them back than she can halt the car that killed their son.

Two years on, every day is a tragedy. Edward knows they should take healing steps together, but he’s tired of being shut out. For Zoe, it just seems easier to let grief lead the way.

A weekend in Paris might be their last hope for reconciliation, but mischance sees them separated before they’ve even left Gare du Nord. Lost and alone, Edward and Zoe must try to find their way back to each other—and find their way back to the people they were before. But is that even possible?

GUEST POST: Carli Palmer

Carli Palmer, author of Down the Aisle with Bridezilla, is back with new book Shore House Slumming. In the novel, editor Dana finds herself facing new adventures (and pitfalls!) when she embarks on a new life in Florida after her happy life in Seattle goes awry.

Where would you go if you suddenly had to choose? Here's Carli's choice!

One free plane ticket…looks like I’m heading to Venice!

What if you received a free plane ticket to go anywhere in the world? Where would you go? After much pondering I decided that Venice is the city for me! Where else can you go where the atmosphere is romantic and adventurous at the same time all the while living on the sea? The streets become water, your car becomes a gondola, and your beverage of choice is a delicious espresso served in a tiny white porcelain cup accompanied by a buttery croissant with jam. I’d walk around in Piazza San Marco taking pictures, stroll over the bridges that crossed the canals, and view films at the Venice Film Festival. To me there is nothing more relaxing than sitting at an outdoor café’, reading a book, and listening to the lapping of water. What better place to do it than a city filled with mystery and intrigue? Who knows what’s lurking around the corner of a building’s foundation as you’re venturing down the waterways?

And the city at night? Don’t even get me started. It would take all my mind’s memory to capture the magic and romance that is the nighttime lights dancing down on the canals. Because it seems so cryptic and alluring is the reason I want to go besides exploring the entertainment (especially carnival and an opera at Teatro La Fenice) and the local food. A fantasy destination should be a place that draws you not something you book because you have to cross it off your bucket list. My fantasy city is just waiting for me to arrive.

Shore House Slumming by Carli Palmer

Working as an editor in Seattle, Dana Kline led a happy life. She had great friends, a career she adored, and her health couldn’t be better. But everything about it was mundane and safe. EVERYTHING. No gamble would have made her change her ways, so life was going to change it for her. After an unexpected release from her job and then finding out that she would become practically homeless for the summer, Dana gathered her courage and found herself ready to try a new life in Florida. The only problem was getting herself across the nation on a tight budget, hardly any connections, and an unadventurous self. After many stops along both coast lines Dana finds out that it’s okay to let her hair down, meet new people, and try new escapades. Just as long as her sanity doesn’t fly away with the seagulls.


The Honey Trap by Mary Jayne Baker is released this week, in which a journalist is sent to do an expose on a famous, married movie director. Mary Jayne joins us this week to tell us more about the novel and the inspiration behind her writing.

Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
Romance blossoms between a journalist and the director she sets up. If Leveson did chicklit...

What inspired you to write The Honey Trap?
It was an ambition when I was younger, going back to schooldays even, that I could write a romantic novel, but after a couple of false starts I eventually lost confidence in my writing and abandoned the dream. Then a chance comment to my boss and his encouragement to give it another go made me decide to sit down and just do it, rather than regret it for the rest of my life. That was in October last year. Googling for writers' forums, I discovered the NaNoWriMo event just in time to take part. Their site turned out to be just what I needed to get over my confidence problems.

I'm not sure where the plot came from, except from wanting to write what I knew. I made Angel, the heroine, a journalist because I work in media in my day job, and I decided the hero, Seb, would be a talented film director because I just love film. In the story, Angel and Seb bond over a shared love of vintage movies, which are something I'm passionate about myself so I wanted them to share that.

Other elements of the plot came to me as I wrote - Seb's charity ReelKids, for example, which seemed to pop up out of nowhere. And then there's Groucho the cat, a fictional version of my cat Harpo in the hope he might stop pestering me if I let him be in the book (he didn't)!

One theme I really enjoyed exploring was press ethics, and Angel's struggle to make the right choices in her career. Her unprincipled boss Steve was probably my favourite character to write for, he's just so deliciously horrible.

Where do you do most of your writing?
I have quite a long commute so I do a lot on the train. I try to write 2000 words a day usually, although that doesn't always work out when day job deadlines loom. I write at home in the evenings often too, wearing my special writer's hat so my other half knows not to disturb!

What is your favourite book?
Wuthering Heights is my go-to book when I want cheering up - odd really as it's not a cheery book, but I love it so much. Plus it was written four miles from where I live, and us West Yorkshire lasses have to stick together...

I'm a big fan of Catch-22 as well, which I've read several times and am reading again at the moment. Harrowing but hilarious - not many books you can say that about!

Which part of The Honey Trap did you enjoy writing the most?
I loved writing the dialogue between characters. It was when they were talking I felt I really got to know them, and it gave them the chance to be quite witty too. I think my favourite parts were with Seb and Angel in the abandoned 1920s cinema he owns - lots of great dialogue where we find out more about them, and their classic film nights with a flirty twist were definitely wish fulfilment for me!

I thought I'd struggle with the more, er, racy scenes in the book (if my mum's reading, it's just tea and cake at the vicarage, I swear), and I did find it hard at first. But by the end of the story I was quite relaxed about them, found they flowed easily and were enjoyable to write. I loved getting the chance to show Seb and Angel in their most intimate moments, and how their relationship developed in that respect.

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
I like a defiant heroine who refuses to be dictated to or told what her place is. I've got a soft spot for anti-heroine Becky Sharp in Vanity Fair, despite all her bad deeds, because she plays the world instead of letting it play her. And I really liked Katniss is The Hunger Games, which I read recently, too. I think she's a complex character and a great role model for young girls.

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Don't stop writing!

Someone on the NaNo forums gave me a great bit of advice, "push on into the white space". You can't edit nothing - just keep writing until you've got something to play with, and don't let confidence problems hold you back.

Secondly, don't skimp on the edit. If you can show agents and publishers something that isn't just a great story but polished enough to be almost submission-ready, that will help your chances no end.
A book I read after writing The Honey Trap was very useful in the edits, Self-editing for Fiction Writers. I've read it twice now and found it really helped me hone my style. No doubt there are lots of other great books on writing out there, but that's the one I keep by the bed.

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
Don't know if I should but I will because I can never help talking about works in progress, I get too excited about them!

I've got two completed manuscripts I'm sitting on at the moment while I look for an agent. Both are romcoms set in my own lovely Yorkshire. The first is the story of a Yorkshire Dales pub quiz team, with the hero betting his best friend Clarrie a date that their team will win the quiz league. I love this story, the characters had me laughing out loud! The second is about two old schoolfriends who haven't seen each other in ten years, teaming up to renovate a broken-down Victorian lighthouse as an offbeat music venue. Of course, they soon find themselves falling in love...

I'm also about two-thirds through a draft tentatively titled Don't Fence Me In, about a runaway bride who hooks up with an Irish loner and his karaoke-singing dog to travel the country in a VW camper van. Watch this space!

If you'd like to follow me on Twitter you can find me at @MaryJayneBaker, and on Facebook at I also have a website,

Thanks, Mary Jayne!

The Honey Trap by Mary Jayne Baker
The trap is set – but which one of them is the bait?

Journalist Angel Blackthorne is looking for her next big scoop. When her sleazy editor asks her to use her charms on super successful – and married – film director Sebastian Wilchester for a juicy exposé, Angel thinks what the hell? There’s a staff job on the horizon, and, let’s be honest, no one can make a cheater cheat if they don’t want to, right?

After the scandal breaks, Angel tries to put the story – and Seb – behind her, but fate seems to have other ideas. A near miss at a premiere after-party and a shared love of vintage film brings the honey closer to the trap.

But what happens when pretence leads to passion, and a ‘kiss and tell’ becomes something real?

BOOK NEWS: The One Real Thing by Samantha Young

The new novel from Samantha Young, the New York Times bestselling author of On Dublin Street, is out in September. The One Real Thing is the first in a romance series set on the Delaware coastline.

Welcome to Hartwell, a quiet seaside escape where uncovering old secrets could lead one woman to discover the meaning of a love that lasts...

While Doctor Jessica Huntington engages with the inmates at the women's correctional facility where she works, she's always careful to avoid emotional attachments in her personal life. Loss and betrayal taught her that lesson long ago. But when she comes across a set of old love letters in the prison's library and visits the picturesque town of Hartwell to deliver them to their intended recipient, she finds herself unable to resist the town's charm-and her attraction to the sexy owner of a local bar proves equally hard to deny.

Since his divorce from his unfaithful ex-wife, Cooper Lawson has focused on what really matters: his family and the boardwalk pub they've owned for generations. But the first time Jessica steps into his bar, Cooper is beyond tempted to risk his heart on her.

Yet as their attraction grows hotter and Jessica remains stubbornly closed off, he begins to realize it will take more than just passion to convince her there's only one real thing in life worth fighting for....

BOOK REVIEW: The Ex Factor by Eva Woods

Would you ever date a friend's ex? Personally I always thought of it as a no-go area, but in The Ex Factor, the new novel by Eva Woods (author of The Thirty List), a group of friends does exactly that.

Marnie, Rosa, Ani and Helen are all unlucky in love. When Marnie returns to London after living abroad, the group reunite for drinks and a catch-up. Rosa has recently split from her husband due to his inability to stay faithful. Successful lawyer Ani steers clear of dating seeing as her day job, dealing with messy divorces, proves just how love can go wrong. Freelancer Helen hasn't dated in a long time. Her somewhat secret job - working on a website for married people looking for affairs - doesn't exactly provide a promising outlook. Plus, she still hasn't completely got over her ex. And when Marnie arrives, she might be in a bit of trouble...

Shocked at their lack of love, and fed up with the annoyances of online dating, Marnie comes up with a plan - to each date a friend's ex. After all - the potential date would be 'pre-screened' by a good friend, thus not coming with the chance of dating a potential oddball from an exaggerated dating profile. It's the perfect plan...or is it? Especially when journalist Rosa is asked to write about her latest project in 'freecycling' exes.

I don't want to go on and risk spoiling the book, but when the four pals begin their dates, things begin to get fun. But what about when it gets serious? As Rosa embarks on her latest article, the group start to realise that along with some rather interesting dates, there can be a risk in actually falling for the ex of one of your best friends.

The Ex Factor was an enjoyable, romantic read that I finished quite quickly. Granted, in my many years of reading chick-lit I have read numerous novels focusing on dating, however this one does come with a very interesting premise! I liked each of the characters, especially Helen, and of course, reporter Rosa with her article, as she worked alongside her cheating ex. If you're looking for a warm, lighthearted read then definitely pick up The Ex Factor. (I'm now going to check out The Thirty List!)

Rating: 4/5

UNCOVERED PICKS: Three New Thrillers

As a big fan of thrillers I'm always looking for the next gripping read! Here are three new thrillers from authors Louise Jensen, SJ Watson and Louise Candlish (author of Other People's Secrets and The Sudden Departure of the Frasers).

The Sister by Louise Jensen
‘I did something terrible Grace. I hope you can forgive me...'

Grace hasn’t been the same since the death of her best friend Charlie. She is haunted by Charlie’s words the last time she saw her, and in a bid for answers, opens an old memory box of Charlie’s. It soon becomes clear that there was a lot she didn’t know about her best friend.

When Grace starts a campaign to find Charlie’s father, Anna, a girl claiming to be Charlie’s sister steps forward. For Grace, finding Anna is like finding a new family and soon Anna has made herself very comfortable in Grace and boyfriend Dan’s home.

But something isn’t right. Things disappear, Dan’s acting strangely and Grace is sure that someone is following her. Is it all in Grace’s mind? Or as she gets closer to discovering the truth about both Charlie and Anna, is Grace in terrible danger?

There was nothing she could have done to save Charlie...or was there?

The Swimming Pool by Louise Candlish
'I can't take my eyes off the water. Can you?'

It's summer when Elm Hill lido opens, having stood empty for years. For Natalie Steele - wife, mother, teacher - it offers freedom from the tightly controlled routines of work and family. Especially when it leads her to Lara Channing, a charismatic former actress with a lavish bohemian lifestyle, who seems all too happy to invite Natalie into her elite circle.

Soon Natalie is spending long days at the pool, socializing with new friends and basking in a popularity she didn't know she'd been missing. Real life, and the person she used to be, begins to feel very far away.

But is such a change in fortunes too good to be true? Why are dark memories of a summer long ago now threatening to surface? And, without realizing, could Natalie have been swept dangerously out of her depth?

Second Life by SJ Watson
She loves her husband.
She’s obsessed by a stranger.

She’s a devoted mother.
She’s prepared to lose everything.

She knows what she's doing.
She’s out of control.

She’s innocent.
She’s guilty as sin.

She’s living two lives.
She might lose both.

BOOK REVIEW: Melody Bittersweet and the Girls' Ghostbusting Agency by Kitty French

I'd been waiting to read Melody Bittersweet and the Girls' Ghostbusting Agency since I heard about its release, mainly because I adore chick lit with a paranormal twist. Kitty French is a USA today bestselling author, known for her popular Lucien Knight series, and romantic reads including The Piano Man Project and One Hot Summer. Melody Bittersweet was released at around the same time as the new Ghostbusters movie. And why not? Melody is pretty awesome and hilarious, just like the all-new movie cast.

Okay, so Melody is a ghostbuster - but minus the suits and the specialist equipment, and customised hearse...although Melody's car, Babs, does have a lot of character. Melody is a psychic, hailing from a family all born with the same gift, renowned in their home town for their long-standing business of bringing messages to loved ones from the deceased.

Approaching twenty-seven, single, and still living with her mum and slightly crazy gran, Melody decides it's finally take more control of her life and start a new business. Thus, the Girls' Ghostbusting Agency is created. Joined by best friend Marina and shy new recruit Artie, the agency's goal is to help spirits with unfinished business pass on. It's not long before the crew take on their first project - the stately Scarborough House, which is plagued by three ghosts, unable to leave their family abode until a long-standing murder case has been solved.

But it's not just the ghosts in Melody's way. Also hanging around Scarborough House is Leo Dark, arrogant TV psychic, Melody's ex, and now, her new business rival. And there's journalist Fletcher - a notorious enemy of the Bittersweets who's on a constant mission to disprove anything supernatural. Fletcher proves troublesome not just because of his nosy tendencies, but because he's terribly attractive...

When the owner of Scarborough House agrees to pay whoever gets rid of the ghosts first, Melody and her team set out to solve the mystery. But will they figure it out before Leo?

I have to say, I fell in love with this novel minutes after reading. I hadn't read any of Kitty's books prior to this one, so I didn't know what to expect (I had fallen in love with the premise!) but it really is fantastic. Kitty's writing is funny, punchy and downright hilarious, with a lovable cast of characters. Melody is a geeky, fun, determined woman who I instantly adored - along with her family!  The novel has everything you could want; a fun, positive heroine, great friends, romance and an intriguing, perfectly-paced mystery. Frankly, I found it hard to put down, and I'm hoping that there are more Melody Bittersweet books in the pipeline because a series would be brilliant!

Rating: 5/5

UNCOVERED PICKS: Three Summer Reads

Cornwall, Tuscany, or Manhattan - what's your dream escape? If you're looking for a romantic holiday-themed read to enjoy in the sun, then here's a selection of three new travel-themed reads, from Samantha Tonge (author of Doubting Abbey), Lisa Dickenson (Catch Me if You Cannes), and Sarah Morgan (First Time in Forever).

Breakfast Under a Cornish Sun by Samantha Tonge
Kate Golightly needs to move forward and what better way to do that then with a trip to the Cornish coast with best friend and boss, Izzy.

The sea wind is just what Kate needs to finally relax and begin to let go of her past. Except she’s suddenly got one big reason to panic! She RSVP’d ‘yes’ to the Queen Bee of her high school’s wedding saying she’s bringing her boyfriend (she doesn’t have one) who looks just like Ross Poldark!

With only two weeks to find the Poldark look-alike of her dreams Kate is under a lot of pressure for the Cornish coast to deliver...

You Had Me at Merlot by Lisa Dickenson 
Elle and Laurie are the last ones standing: they're single, they're not having babies any time soon and their weekends aren't filled with joyful meetings about mortgages. For Elle, this is fine. She likes her independent life, but Laurie wants love and she wants it now.

So when Laurie begs Elle to come with her on a singles holiday to a beautiful vineyard in Tuscany, Elle is reluctant. She has no intention of swapping her perfectly lovely life for someone else's idea of her Mr Perfect, but ten days under the Italian sun with her best friend and lashings of wine? How bad could that be?

Sunset in Central Park by Sarah Morgan
Love has never been a priority for garden designer Frankie Fisher. After witnessing the fallout of her parents’ divorce, she’s seen the devastation an overload of emotion can cause. The only man she feels comfortable with is her friend Matt—but that’s strictly platonic. If only she found it easier to ignore the way he makes her heart race…

Matt Walker has loved Frankie for years but, sensing how fragile she is beneath her feisty exterior, has always played it cool. But then he uncovers new depths to the girl he’s known forever, and doesn’t want to wait a moment longer. He knows Frankie has secrets and has buried them deep, but can Matt persuade her to trust him with her heart and kiss him under the Manhattan sunset?

BOOK REVIEW: Fudge Berries and Frogs' Knickers by Lynda Renham

What do you do when you're extremely rich and all of a sudden, your wealth disappears? London socialite Poppy Wellesley quickly find herself in a bit of a tricky situation in Lynda Renham's hilarious novel, Fudge Berries and Frogs' Knickers.

Lynda is the author of many romantic novels including Pink Wellies and Flat Caps, Coconuts and Wonderbras, and The Dog's Bollocks. Fudge Berries was recommended to me, and after two chapters I was already downloading more of Lynda's books, because frankly? This lady is hilarious.

Poppy Wellesley finds herself penniless within hours when her millionaire minister father is charged for fraud. With her bank account now frozen, Poppy has to fend for herself, without the help of her daddy and his vast amount of cash. Now an outsider to her usual crowd of equally rich It-girls, Poppy is forced to begin a new life. Very reluctantly. And with no money, there's no swanky penthouse apartment - she'll have to downsize. Though when she lays eyes on the slightly dishevelled houseboat on Regent's Canal that's now her new home, she wonders if she'll ever be able to get her old life back.

Especially as she doesn't immediately seem to get on with the neighbours...

Marrying her millionaire fiance is a possible solution to the cash-flow problem - though with her current predicament, will the marriage still be on the cards? With sly Pandora making a move on Poppy's only potential way to regain her status, Poppy realises that she's going to have to fight for it. With the help of fun (yet extremely ditzy) Chelsea, Poppy puts her plan into action, however there's juat a little setback; her handsome and quite mysterious neighbour on the next boat...

Fudge Berries has a wonderfully funny cast of characters (including gangster Jack Diamond and Lord Wyndham-Price - aka 'Balls') and Lynda's witty writing style just makes this book perfect. At first, I thought I would hate Poppy - after all, she's a socialite, reliant on her family's cash to get by. But I couldn't help but love her and root for her throughout. I found it impossible to put this book down until I had finished it. (I am now halfway through The Dog's Bollocks, which is just as funny!)
If you are looking for some witty, blunt humour, great characters and of course, some romance, then I highly suggest checking out Fudge Berries and Frogs' Knickers.

Rating: 5/5

BOOK NEWS: Bridget Jones's Baby: The Diaries

There's been some great news today for fans of Bridget Jones! Helen Fielding's much-loved heroine will be returning in October in Bridget Jones's Baby: The Diaries. The book is based on the original columns published in The Independent newspaper, and follow Bridget on her journey into motherhood.

The book will be released in October - one month after the Bridget Jones's Baby movie hits the screens. If you're not familiar with Bridget's next on-screen adventures, here's the synopsis from the official movie site:

Oscar® winners Renée Zellweger and Colin Firth are joined by Patrick Dempsey for the next chapter of the world’s favorite singleton in Bridget Jones’s Baby. Directed by Sharon Maguire (Bridget Jones’s Diary), the new film in the beloved comedy series based on creator Helen Fielding’s heroine finds Bridget unexpectedly expecting.

After breaking up with Mark Darcy (Firth), Bridget Jones’s (Zellweger) “happily ever after” hasn’t quite gone according to plan. Fortysomething and single again, she decides to focus on her job as top news producer and surround herself with old friends and new. For once, Bridget has everything completely under control. What could possibly go wrong?

Then her love life takes a turn and Bridget meets a dashing American named Jack (Dempsey), the suitor who is everything Mr. Darcy is not. In an unlikely twist she finds herself pregnant, but with one hitch…she can only be fifty percent sure of the identity of her baby’s father.

The much-anticipated third installment of the Bridget Jones franchise welcomes fellow Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson to the cast. Longtime collaborators Tim Bevan and Eric Fellner of Working Title Films produce alongside Debra Hayward. Universal Pictures will distribute Bridget Jones’s Baby in North America and select international territories.

BOOK NEWS: A Portrait of Emily Price by Katherine Reay

A Portrait of Emily Price is the upcoming novel from Katherine Reay, author of The Bronte Plot and Lizzy & Jane. Released in November, A Portrait of Emily Price focuses on determined artist Emily, who finds herself in Italy with chef Ben.

Art restorer Emily Price has never encountered anything she can’t fix—until she meets Ben, an Italian chef, who seems just right. When Emily follows Ben home to Italy, she learns that his family, however, is another matter...

Emily Price—fix-it girl extraordinaire and would-be artist—finds herself in Atlanta, repairing objects damaged in a house fire. As she works to restore the home and dreams of one family, she strives to keep the pieces of her own life in perfect order and secure her own happy ending—a gallery show of her own. There is no time for distractions, especially not the ultimate distraction of falling in love.
But Chef Benito Vassallo’s relentless pursuit proves hard to resist. Visiting from Italy, Ben works to reconnect with his brother and breathe new life into his aunt and uncle’s faded restaurant, Piccolo. And soon after their first meeting, he works to win Emily as well—inviting her into his world and into his heart.

Emily astonishes everyone when she accepts Ben’s proposal and follows him home. Upon landing in Rome, she is enchanted with Italy. But instead of allowing the land, culture and people to transform her, Emily imposes her will upon everyone and everything around her, alienating Ben’s tightly knit family. Only Ben’s father, Lucio, gives Emily the understanding she needs to lay down her guard. Soon, Emily’s life and art begin to blossom, and Italy’s beauty and rhythm take hold of her spirit.
Yet when she unearths long-buried family secrets, Emily wonders if she really fits into Ben’s world. Will the joys of Italy become just a memory, or will Emily share in the freedom and grace that her life with Ben has shown her are possible?

BLOG TOUR: Danielle F White

Danielle F White joins us today for a Q&A as part of her blog tour for new novel Coco Chanel Saved My Life, which was released on Monday...

Tell us about your latest novel in 15 words or less.
Rebecca, thanks to Coco Chanel discovers that a fabulous life is not all about love.

What inspired you to write Coco Chanel Saved My Life?
I read a biography of Coco Chanel at a time when I suffered desperately for love and I began to realise that what was missing from my life was not a man but a bigger dream. So I invented Rebecca, a girl very different from me, but ready with her tweed sheath dresses to become a great woman.

Where do you do most of your writing?
I write at my desk at home at night. I'm not very comfortable in sharing my workplace with others, especially because I need complete silence to work.

What is your favourite book?
"Too Loud a Solitude" by Bohumil Hrabal. It's been my favourite since I was a little girl. I’ve read it at least 10 times.

Which part of Coco Chanel Saved My Life did you enjoy writing the most?
I really enjoyed writing the dialogues. I think they are the most fun part. And I also loved writing all of the biographic notes about Coco Chanel. There are so many things to tell about her unbelievable life.

Who is your favourite literary heroine?
Jo March, of course!

Do you have any tips for readers who are looking to become published writers?
Read a lot, write a lot and find someone you trust to edit your work (editing is really important!).

Are you working on anything else at the moment and if so, can you tell us?
I just finished a new novel that will be published in Italy in September. And for the UK readers...well, the story of Rebecca/Coco may continue...

Thanks, Danielle!

Be sure to check out the rest of the stops on Danielle's blog tour below.

Coco Chanel Saved my Life by Danielle F White
Rebecca is thirty-three years old, has a wardrobe full of tweed trouser suits and a boundless passion for the splendid Coco Chanel.

She is romantic, dreamy, and madly in love with Niccolò, whom she is about to join in Milan. On arrival, Niccolò confesses to have fallen in love with another woman.

After spending several days confined in her flat, Rebecca plunges herself into the intense Milanese social life with the stylishness of her heroine.

Will Rebecca remain an eternal Mademoiselle, like the ageless Coco? Or does destiny have an unexpected surprise in store for her?

NEW RELEASES: Strictly My Husband by Tracy Bloom

You may remember Tracy Bloom for her hilarious novels No-one Ever Has Sex on a Tuesday and Single Woman Seeks Revenge. Tracy's back with new offering Strictly My Husband (which I can only imagine was inspired by a certain TV show!) in which Laura's partner Tom brings home a professional dancer to rent the spare room...

Laura loves it when Tom takes her for a late night tango around the kitchen after their friends have gone home and they’re avoiding the washing up. She can’t dance but who cares when no one is watching?

All that changes when Tom arrives on the doorstep with Carly, a professional dancer, and announces he’s offered her the spare room to rent while she performs in a show that Tom is directing.

An outraged Laura doesn’t feel like dancing with Tom anymore but Carly does. It only takes two to tango, and given Tom’s history who knows where it could end? Will Laura be the one left watching from the sidelines whilst Carly waltzes off with her husband’s heart?

Couples who dance together stay together – or do they?

NEW RELEASES: Love Me Tinder by Nicola May

Love Me Tinder is the new novel from Nicola May (author of The School Gates, The SW19 Club and Working It Out), in which shy Carli embarks on a dating adventure with the help of a popular app...

Dull security or risky freedom - which would you choose? 

With her marriage in pieces, shy Cali Summers is faced with this decision and hits the world of fast love on an internet dating app. 

Using room 102 in the hotel where she works as her dating 'lair', she opens herself up to a world of sex, lies, deception, as well as personal discovery and passionate love. 

With a charming F1 engineer, a handsome army officer and her adulterous ex all on the scene, a predictable love match is far from on the cards.

Love Me Tinder is available now.

UNCOVERED PICKS: Five August Releases

Uncovered is back from a summer hiatus, and back into a month of great new reads! Here's a selection of five new and upcoming titles for the month of August...

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome
2) A person's undoing
3) Joshua Templeman

Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She prides herself on being loved by everyone at work - except for imposing, impeccably attired Joshua Templeman.
Trapped in a shared office, they've become entrenched in an addictive, never-ending game of one-upmanship. There's the Staring Game, The Mirror Game, The HR Game. Lucy can't let Joshua beat her at anything - especially when a huge promotion is on offer.

If Lucy wins, she'll be Joshua's boss. If she loses, she'll resign. So why is she questioning herself? Maybe she doesn't hate him. And just maybe, he doesn't hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game...

Can I See You Again? by Allison Morgan
Matchmaker Bree Caxton has a 98% success rate, a book about to hit the stands, and an amazing boyfriend. Until, that is, he gets cold feet about their future and runs from their relationship.

Afraid no one will buy a book on love from a woman whose love life is a mess, Bree begs her one matchmaking failure, Nixon Voss, to pose as her boyfriend. But when they become a hit with readers, they must carry on their charade just a little longer. Fortunately, they’re both having fun...

But then Bree’s ex decides he wants her back and a newspaper presents a challenge that could expose the truth about her rocky love life. Now she must find the courage to embrace what is, or risk losing something much bigger than her reputation: her heart...

Results May Vary by Bethany Chase
She never saw it coming. Without even a shiver of suspicion to warn her, art curator Caroline Hammond discovers that her husband is having an affair with a man—a revelation that forces her to question their entire history together, from their early days as high school sweethearts through their ten years as a happily married couple. In her now upside-down world, Caroline begins envisioning her life without the relationship that has defined it: the loneliness of being an “I” instead of a “we”; the rekindled yet tenuous closeness with her younger sister; and the unexpected—and potentially disastrous—attraction she can’t get off her mind. Caroline always thought she knew her own love story, but as her husband’s other secrets emerge, she must decide whether that story’s ending will mean forgiving the man she’s loved for half her life, or facing her future without him.

Compassionate and uplifting, Results May Vary is a bittersweet celebration of the heart’s ability to turn unexpected troubles into extraordinary strength.

Coco Chanel Saved My Life by Danielle F White
Rebecca is thirty-three years old, has a wardrobe full of tweed trouser suits and a boundless passion for the splendid Coco Chanel.

She is romantic, dreamy, and madly in love with Niccolò, whom she is about to join in Milan. On arrival, Niccolò confesses to have fallen in love with another woman.

After spending several days confined in her flat, Rebecca plunges herself into the intense Milanese social life with the stylishness of her heroine.

Will Rebecca remain an eternal Mademoiselle, like the ageless Coco? Or does destiny have an unexpected surprise in store for her?

The House on Sunset Lake by Tasmina Perry
A family secret. A house in ruin. A mystery to unravel...

1995. Savannah, Georgia, where the sunsets are long and golden and the air is hot and heavy with promise. Student Jim Johnson isn't happy when he has to abandon his plans of a carefree month of inter-railing to spend the summer in the Deep South with his mother and his father, a down-on-his luck author who has been sent to Savannah to rediscover his muse. But when Jim meets the beguiling Jennifer Wyatt, the daughter of the owners of Casa D'Or, the mysterious plantation house on the shores of a lake, Jim knows he has made the right decision in coming along. Until an event happens that shatters Jim and Jennifer's lives for ever and sets both their lives on a different course. 2015. Twenty Years later Casa D'Or stands abandoned and neglected, a victim of tragic events that everyone wants to keep buried. But when Jim Johnson's boss buys it as the latest acquisition to his hotel chain, Jim is forced to return to the house and restore it to its former glory. Fate throws him back into the orbit of Jennifer Wyatt, the woman his heart has never truly got over, but as he tries to put the ghosts of the past behind him, he unearths a chilling secret that makes him wonder what he has ever really known about the people he loves.