GREAT and PRECIOUS THINGS by REBECCA YARROS

‘I wanted to paint this moment, to capture this exact feeling as I watched him at peace. A peace I knew would vanish the moment he opened his eyes and the world beat its way in. ‘

Great and Precious Things is our second book by Rebecca Yarros and once again, we were moved by her stellar writing in a heart wrenching, sincere and beautifully emotional story of family secrets, deep love, choices and second chances. Our hearts broke and soared in equal measure.

Great and Precious Things is a beautiful story, it’s a story that’s poignant, topical and told with so much heart. We can always feel when an author pours so much of themselves into a story, it jumps off the pages into our hearts and that certainly happened with this story. Told with a smattering of drama and family intrigue, we were present for every moment.

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GREAT and PRECIOUS THINGS by REBECCA YARROS

REVEREND OF SILENCE by PAMELA SPARKMAN

5 magnificent stars!

“Lord, am I old enough to have a broken heart? Because I think Lucy Hallison broke mine tonight.”…And something in me believed she probably always would.

The Reverend of Silence is one of the most stunningly written coming of age stories we’ve read in a long time. Pamela Sparkman transported us back to where this story begins -1814- with her words and we were enthralled from the very first page. 

A wonderful depiction of a time in history written so powerfully, yet exquisite in its vivid imagery and intense emotion. Reverend of Silence is a work of art as a historical fictional romance which showcases the judgement of society. The romance was breath-taking, the struggles and condemnation frustrating, yet it was also inspirational with its human perseverance and unwavering hope for a better future for those we love. We not only cried at the beauty, but we also cried at the injustice of it all. Pamela Sparkman is a magnificent writer and we cannot adequately express our overwhelming love for Sam and Lucy’s story which is one of beautiful friendships, survival and love.

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REVEREND OF SILENCE by PAMELA SPARKMAN

THE TWO LIVES OF LYDIA BIRD by JOSIE SILVER

‘That’s the deal we make when we love someone, isn’t it? Somewhere along the path, one person is always going to have to find a way to carry on without the other.’

Anyone who has experienced a loss will connect to Lydia’s story and share in her desperation to keep the memory alive of her first and only love, Freddie Hunter, a man who entered her life in a whirlwind when they were only 14.  A love that began at innocent and clumsy adolescence to present time when they’re on the cusp of marriage, ready to spend the rest of their lives together, sharing a true and unwavering love; when it’s all cruelly ripped away.

Josie Silver is such a gifted and beautiful storyteller, and her way of infusing so much feeling into her stories have thus far, held us captivated as we once again fell under her talented spell. The Two Lives of Lydia Bird is a powerfully reflective story and it’s one that will make you smile, ache, laugh and cry as you champion for Lydia to find the will to find herself in the face of crippling grief.

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THE TWO LIVES OF LYDIA BIRD by JOSIE SILVER

RELEASE by ALY MARTINEZ

‘To explain how I fell in love with Thea Hull, I’d need to go back to the beginning. Fair warning, this is not a story of hearts, flowers, and romance. That would call come later. But in the beginning, my love for Thea was born out of death, broken hearts, and desperation.’

Release by Aly Martinez is an achingly beautiful and tragic love story about two young lovers whose lives would be forever altered in one tragic night. It is an emotional standalone that tells a story of childhood friends to lovers, sacrifice and second chances.

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RELEASE by ALY MARTINEZ

BEARD NECESSITIES (Winston Brothers #7) by PENNY REID

5 'it was everything we could have hoped for and more, STARS!

‘I did what I did because I loved her. I love her. She doesn’t owe me a damn thing, but she’ll never see it that way, it’s not how she’s wired. Everything is in trade, everything is a debt to be paid. If she feels indebted, I can’t trust her to make a clear-headed decision based on what she actually wants. This truth will not set her free.”

This is the book we’ve been waiting for since the beginning of the Winston series, and with a sneak peek of the origin of Billy and Scarlet in Beard with Me, which had us overwhelmed with a myriad of emotions, we were beyond ready for Beard Necessities. We were not disappointed! Scarlet St. Claire (Claire McClure) and Billy Winston have been waiting such an awfully long time for their –happy- and for their soul mate hearts to be at peace, free of guilt, pain and remorse. It was no surprise that their story was to be one of the most EPIC stories of love, in the Winston Brothers series.

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BEARD NECESSITIES (Winston Brothers #7) by PENNY REID

A FAERIE STORY by BARBARA ELSBORG

5 Wonderful stars! (M/M/M)

“Is that what you’re searching for? Happiness? Peace?”
“Aren’t we all?” I want to be needed, loved. That would make me happy, give me peace.

A Faerie Story by Barbara Elsborg is like three stories in one, we say that because the three male characters; Keagan, Aiden and Pascal had such immense stories to tell that it felt so comprehensive it was not just about one man’s journey. It was three journeys which culminated into one epic story. As per usual Barbara Elsborg throws down the gauntlet on how many agonising rounds of pounding your heart can take before it shatters. There is not one single character who doesn’t bring an emotional story to the mix. Rather, each character carries internal or external scars as well as burdens from their past, with one or two more horrific than the other. We cried so many tears.

Combining a story of paranormal and mystical settings with an intense love affair between three men is quite the feat. It felt so real and tangible, it was as if we were there. And oh how we wanted to be. We wanted to gather these three lads up and bring them home.

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A FAERIE STORY by BARBARA ELSBORG

JUST TEN SECONDS by JEANNINE COLETTE

‘Time stops when you’re in love. There is no hourglass spilling the seconds. The looks are long; heartbeats are quick. A touch is a lifetime. …’

Just Ten Seconds was a slow burn meticulous story which uncovered some unexpected twists along the way. A story of love, healing, friendship, redemption, grief and hope. It’s also a story about believing in yourself and confronting your flaws and opening your heart to second chances.

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JUST TEN SECONDS by JEANNINE COLETTE

KISS AN ANGEL by SUSAN ELIZABETH PHILLIPS

5 'I'm absolutely in love with this book' Stars!

"You're such a damned romantic. Sometimes when I see you looking at me, I have the feeling you're not seeing me at all. Instead, you're seeing the way you want me to be."

One of my reading pleasures is revisiting SEP's stories I've read and loved. Imagine when I discovered one I hadn't read before! It was like winning the book lottery. Seriously, these books are like a nice warm hug, they're like coming home and I loved this book so, so much! I loved Daisy, Alex, the circus setting and the circus animals…oh little Tater completely stole my heart!

If you haven't yet experienced the incredible work of Susan Elizabeth Phillips, you really are missing out. I could sit and read an SEP book every day. They're emotional, passionate, sweet, humorous, swoony - well, everything you could want in a romance book! Another winner from one of my all-time fave authors.

SEP has a knack of writing a really good hero. One who makes us work for his affection, for his love, they're as tough as they are soft, as prickly as they are loving…once you scratch beneath the surface, that is. And Alex Markov struck quite the wounded hero who was certainly a bit of an arse, but to see him crack….oh just take my heart and shred it right now!

Daisy Devreaux, what a doll! Sure she could be a bit whimsical, and she had the tendency to lead with her heart - but scatty Daisy was an absolute sweetheart. There was a time I was reading with choked up emotion clutching my heart because Daisy’s hurt was so palpable and I felt it.....I mean I really felt it. So absorbed was I in the moment I didn't even realise the tears were streaming down my cheeks. 

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KISS AN ANGEL by SUSAN ELIZABETH PHILLIPS

BEFORE YOU by MARNI MANN

‘Some stories had the power to change lives forever. This story changed an entire town.’

Marni Mann wowed us again with the dark emotional romance Before You, absolutely blindsiding us with a compelling and thrilling story-line that had us guessing until the very end. It was oh so very clever and packed an incredible emotional punch. We urge you to go into this story blind so we will not be telling you anything about the actual story in this review, we’d rather tell you about how we felt on this brilliant reading journey.

We cannot explain how much we loved this story, how it was written and the way in which the story developed and played out. It was literally riveting to the point that both of us read it from start to finish, in one sitting. We loved the characters so much that we wholeheartedly felt their every emotion, their pain, their devastation, their hope and their love.

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BEFORE YOU by MARNI MANN

BEARD WITH ME (Winston Brothers #5.5) by PENNY REID

5 emotional and heartbreaking stars!

‘It felt so good. It felt more than good. It felt like the beginning of something terrible and beautiful and dangerous and wonderful.’

This was the story we always wanted but were in no way prepared for. We were rendered speechless breathed in with every word. Although acutely painful, it still maintained the warmth and wit synonymous with Penny Reid’s stories. The Winston’s with their quirks and quick tempers exude the family loyalty and love that continually steals a little more of our hearts with each book.  

This agonisingly heartbreaking story harboured a pain that spanned nearly twenty years and was a difficult story to read. We can only surmise the pain the author went through bringing this story to life, and we applaud her for telling it in all its raw, gritty, ugly and beautiful glory. Billy Winston – this boy – he made us believe that not all hero’s wear capes. He was written to perfection.

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BEARD WITH ME (Winston Brothers #5.5) by PENNY REID