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Daughters of Paris, by Elisabeth Hobbes

Daughters of Paris book cover
Colette lives a life of privilege but values her friendship with the orphaned niece of her housekeeper. Their close relationship is damaged by an enforced separation but the looming war brings them back together.
Daughters of Paris is an historical novel set in France during the 1930s and 40s.
There is a class difference between the main two characters that impacts significantly on their lives and friendship. The war both unites the pair and separates them as their experiences diverge but their love for each other endures. Both women want to contribute to the war effort against the Nazis and this adds a tension to the plot as danger is anticipated.
I found it much easier to like Fleur than Colette. Her life is full of loss yet she is resilient. She is not confident with men and the path of love does not run smoothly for her in this book. In contrast, Colette has a self assured confidence despite feeling unloved by her mother. She throws herself into relationships as well as enjoying the finer things in life.
I enjoyed the historical aspects of the books and felt that the class and gender norms brought the culture and period to life. The risks that the women take in their personal lives but also in the undermining of the Nazi regime make the reader care about their safety.
Daughters of Paris was an enjoyable novel about female friendship against the backdrop of the Nazi occupation of Paris.

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Daughters of Paris
Paris 1930s
A promise that binds them together. A war that pulls them apart.
Childhood companions Fleur and Colette make a vow, under the trailing ivy of their secret garden, that they will be secret sisters forever. But as they grow up, the promises of childhood are put to the ultimate test. For Colette is the daughter of the house, and her life is all jazz clubs, silk dresses and chilled champagne, while Fleur is the orphan niece of the housekeeper and doesn’t feel like she belongs anywhere.
Years later, in 1939, life as they know it will never be the same. As the German tanks roll in and Paris becomes an occupied city, the promise they made as children will have consequences they could never have imagined…
Purchase Link – https://getbook.at/DaughtersOfParis
 
Author Bio – Elisabeth began writing in secret, but when she came third in Harlequin’s So You Think You Can Write contest in 2013, she was offered a two-book contract, and consequently had to admit why the house was such a tip.  Elisabeth’s historical romances with Harlequin Mills & Boon and One More Chapter span the Middle Ages to the Second World War and have been Amazon bestsellers and award shortlisted.
Elisabeth is a primary school teacher but she’d rather be writing full time because unlike five-year-olds, her characters generally do what she tells them.  When she isn’t writing, she spends most of her spare time reading and is a pro at cooking one-handed while holding a book.
She was born and raised in York but now lives in Cheshire because her car broke down there in 1999 and she never left.
 
Social Media Links – https://twitter.com/ElisabethHobbes
https://www.instagram.com/elisabeth_j_hobbes_author/
https://www.facebook.com/ElisabethHobbes
https://www.bookbub.com/profile/elisabeth-hobbes?follow=true
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Giveaway to Win a signed copy of Daughters of Paris by Elisabeth J Hobbes (Open to UK Only)
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.
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Holiday 2022: Torquay: Kents Cavern and Dinosaur World

Our first of two trips to Torquay saw us exploring the prehistory of the region. We began in Kents Cavern which is a truly humbling experience as we learn about the origins of humanity. The cavern is beautiful but difficult to photograph!

 

The total cost for the five of us was £67. We had an amazing guide called Kristina who was funny and so full of information which she delivered in an entertaining way to appeal to adults and children alike. The tour lasts between 45 minutes and an hour.

There are also things to explore outside the caves. The children admired displays of artefacts and explored in sand for their own. Then outside was a woodland trail with life sized models and information.

Next we went to Dinosaur World which cost £6.95 per ticket. There was a fun mix of dioramas and fossil displays.
We were given a quiz for children to complete as well as the attraction having a range of models for them to climb on. I really loved the recreation of the kitchen scene from Jurassic Park. Zach compared himself to a dino bone and Matthew put his head in a T Rex mouth!


The Ex Between Us, by Nicola Marsh

The Ex Between Us book cover
Abi and Jo have been friends since school. Abi’s life is set to change as her son goes off to college and Jo is ready to support her at this difficult time. But Jo has plans to move her own life forward and it involves Ali’s ex making her love interest Tom jealous…
The Ex Between Us is a domestic drama and psychological thriller set in America. It centres around female friendship, unrequited love, and facing the future.
The two main characters Ali and Jo are firm friends but they have overcome issues that threatened their friendship in the past. In their teens, Jo was mad with unrequited love for Callan but Ali slept with him during a drunken party and became pregnant. Now they are a foursome of friends and Jo has set her sights on Tom so uses Callan to make him jealous. Meanwhile Ali has the chance of a new relationship.
In a separate plotline, Jo’s property is being vandalised and Ali’s work is being sabotaged. They feel threatened and anxious which was very easy to relate to. Two mean girls from the past are the main suspects but the friends need to find proof as the incidents escalate. There is plenty of mystery, and the drama and thriller elements are maintained until the end.
The book is mostly written from three alternating perspectives: Ali and Jo in the present day and Jo in the past. All are written in the first person so we experience their emotions directly. The final quarter of the book was packed with twists, some of which I anticipated and others that surprised me completely.
The Ex Between Us was thoroughly entertaining.

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MEDIA PACK
Book: THE EX BETWEEN US
Author:  NICOLA MARSH 
Pub Day: AUGUST 12th 2022
Buy Links: 
Amazon: https://geni.us/B0B4BNPGV9cover
Apple: http://ow.ly/hwAV50JBghg
Kobo: http://ow.ly/O54y50JBg8q
Google: http://ow.ly/lrO750JBgo8
About the Book: 
You can always trust your friends. Can’t you?

Abi is starting a new chapter of her life. Her son is leaving for college, she has her dream job and she is finally ready to find love again after her relationship with her ex Cal has ended.

Jo has been by Abi’s side for years. They’ve navigated all of life’s ups and downs together. Even when Abi betrayed Jo with Cal all those years ago, she forgave her and the three remain close.

So when Abi starts dating again, Jo and Cal begin to spend more time together. But soon Jo receives threatening messages telling her to stay away from him. And when Abi comes to her terrified, clutching a note that says “I want your life,” it becomes clear that someone wants to cause the friends harm.

Because in Jo and Abi’s close-knit circle someone has been living a lie for years and it’s about to come to light. But when it does, who will make it out alive?

An utterly addictive psychological thriller which is packed with twist after twist from the USA Today bestselling author of My Sister’s Husband. Perfect for fans of K.L. Slater, The Wife Between Us and Gone Girl.

Author Bio
USA TODAY bestselling & multi-award winning author Nicola Marsh writes page-turning fiction to keep you up all night.
She has published 80 books, sold over 8 million copies worldwide and been translated into 25 languages.
She currently writes contemporary romance and domestic suspense. You can find some of her series romance under the pseudonym Nikki North.
A physiotherapist for 13 years, she now adores writing full time, raising her two dashing young heroes, sharing fine food with family and friends, barracking loudly for her beloved North Melbourne Kangaroos footy team, and her favourite, curling up with a good book!
Social Media
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/NicolaMarshAuthor
Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/nicolamarshauthor
Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/NicolaMarsh
Bookouture Email Sign Up: https://www.bookouture.com/nicola-marsh
Website: http://www.nicolamarsh.com

Get set, go with Action Heroes

*We were sent these toys for the purpose of this review

There is a cool new collectable released this summer: meet the Action Heroes! We received the huuuuuge SWAT Truck as well as two smaller sets with extra characters to expand the options for imaginative play.

The figures have so much play potential as they can be split into parts (head, torso, legs) to mix and match. Each head has two faces so that a range of emotions, expressions and scenarios can be enacted. The characters all come with related accessories which fit into the hands for posed play.

The only limit is your imagination as there are so many different ways to assemble the figures to suit your play. There are also a range of vehicles included in both the bigger and smaller sets.

The SWAT Truck set has an RRP of £36.99 It contains over 25 pieces and I loved how parts of the truck opened up for play as well as storage. The driver can be steadied in the cab by using a stud to place the figure. There are stickers to apply but Zach was too keen to start playing!
The police character set has a Segway type vehicle and again a stud is used to affix the character. The accessories included handcuffs and riot gear. The superhero and sports hero set also have a range of accessories to increase the play potential.

The characters all work well together to spark imagination and encourage cooperative and extended play opportunities. As I’ve already mentioned, the faces and body elements can all be swapped around to create new play ideas. But the police theme was definitely popular in our home.

The sets are good value for money thanks to the wealth of accessories with each set. The collection is aimed at children aged 4 and over and I think this is age appropriate in terms of content and size. The characters fitted perfectly into Zach’s 6 year old hands and he was able to pose the characters with the vehicles and accessories.. The Action Heroes range was created by Flair and is available from retailers online and instore.

Local Girl Missing, by Lisa Regan

Local Girl Missing book coverJosie and Noah are heading back from their honeymoon when they see a teenaged girl running across the road. They pull over and find another girl being murdered. The perpetrator runs away so the detectives are hunting for the missing teen and her attacker…
Local Girl Missing is the 15th book to feature Josie Quinn, her new husband and colleague Noah, and the rest of their police department.
The majority of the book is set in the present day and focuses on Josie and the investigation. However there are some chapters showing a little girl’s experiences growing up. Gradually we get clues as to how this connects to the case.
Josie is thoroughly frustrated with the lack of cooperation from the missing girl and her attacker. Both are keeping secrets, fearful for their lives, but this only serves to prevent Jodie and her team from making any progress in the case.
The pace of plot developments is fast and furious as always. There is plenty of drama and fans of the series will enjoy how Josie and Noah throw themselves into danger. Now there is an extra tension as they are married so need to keep their personal feelings separate whilst they fulfil their professional roles.
Local Girl Missing is a solid addition to the series and I look forward to the next book.

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Media Pack Info Sheet:
Title:         Local Girl Missing
Author:     Lisa Regan  
 
Publication Day: August 11th 2022
 
 
Buy Links :
Amazon: https://geni.us/B0B2KBS3WLsocial
Apple: http://ow.ly/FYtm50JkHlz
Kobo: http://ow.ly/zsOF50JkGCk
Google: http://ow.ly/VwyB50JkHnG
Audible:
UK: http://ow.ly/t6hq50Kal5Z
US: http://ow.ly/VTsA50Kal5Y
Listen here: http://ow.ly/6zCM50Kal60
Description:
Through swirling dawn fog, they follow the trail of discarded items at their feet: a tube of glittery lip gloss; a cell phone; a cracked make-up compact, broken chunks of ivory powder spilling into the grass. Then the mist partsjust for a secondto reveal a beautiful young girl on the ground, her pale lips frozen forever in a silent scream…
On a winding mountain road into the small town of Denton, Pennsylvania, Detective Josie Quinn finds the body of a local teenage girl, Dina Hale. The sight of plum-colored bruises gathering around the girl’s neck pierces Josie’s heart, but the discovery of a second girl’s empty purse in the dirt nearby gives her a flicker of hope that one person, at least, made a lucky escape.
Dina’s parents are grief-stricken as the town rallies together in a desperate search for the second girl, Alison Mills, who waitressed with Dina at a local hotel. The two best friends were on their way to a shift when they were attacked. Josie was too late to save Dina, but she won’t rest until Alison is home safe.
Hitting a dead-end with interviews, Josie thinks she’s on to something when a photo surfaces suggesting Alison was romantically involved with one of the hotel staff. But when Josie arrives at the man’s house to find a bullet in his head, and the house ransacked, the case comes crashing down.
Evidence of frantic searching at both crime scenes has Josie convinced a twisted killer is on a hunt for something very personal and precious. And that they won’t stop until they find it. But how many innocent lives will be destroyed before Josie can uncover the missing piece at the heart of this deadly puzzle? And what sacrifices will she have to make to find Alison alive?
An absolutely unputdownable crime thriller from an Amazon, USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author. Perfect for fans of Angela Marsons, Robert Dugoni and Rachel Caine. WARNING: will keep you up all night flipping pages until dawn!

Author Bio:
Lisa Regan is the USA Today and Wall Street Journal bestselling author of the Detective Josie Quinn series. Lisa is a member of Sisters In Crime, International Thriller Writers, and Mystery Writers of America. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in English and Master of Education Degree from Bloomsburg University. She lives near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in the U.S. with her husband, daughter, and Boston Terrier named Mr. Phillip. Find out more at her website: www.lisaregan.com
 
Author Social Media Links:
FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/Lisa-Regan-189735444395923/
TWITTER: https://twitter.com/Lisalregan
WEBSITE: www.lisaregan.com
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/6443334.Lisa_Regan
Bookouture Email Sign Up: https://www.bookouture.com/lisa-regan