Tag: chick-lit

Review: The Friendships Online Series Parts 1&2 by Anne John-Ligali

The Friendships Online series is a three part novella series and the blog tour for the third has started. I am part of the blog tour for The Dinner in the Sky, with my review being on June 13th. To prepare for Dinner in the Sky, I read the first two novellas of the series and I will be sharing my review for them today. The Dinner in the Sky was released yesterday, May 31st.

Books in the Series:
The Big Event
The Weekend Spa Break
The Dinner in the Sky


The Big Event
Published: November 30, 2017
28 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Date Read: May 16, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

You are cordially invited to the party of the season where you’ll meet Constance and friends in action.

Constance Jeffries is excited when she gets the chance to meet up with virtual friends at a get-together in a London hotel. She’s been tweeting and messaging her lovely friends for years and feels they must be just as excited to finally meet her in person too. Or so she hopes.

The Big Event is first part in a short story series about the importance of ‘real’ friendships and how it’s the little things that matter the most.

A Gorgeous Venue, A Room Full of Friends, What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Jessica’s Review:

The Big Event is the short story beginning to John-Ligali’s Friendships Online trilogy series. Constance is a writer and has been online friends for years with several fellow authors and finally has a chance to meet them at a party!  But things don’t go quite as she expected, in good and bad ways.  This short story introduces us to a variety of characters that we are sure to get to know over the course of the series.

The Big Event also shows how much of a hindrance social media has become in our world. Do we really need to be sucked into our phones all the time?

This is a short read at 28 pages and can be read in less than an hour. Do read it and get to know Constance and be ready for the second in the trilogy: The Weekend Spa Break.

Purchase Links:
**This one is FREE!**
Amazon US
Amazon UK

The Weekend Spa Break
Published: April 30, 2018
148 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: May 19-23, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Book Description:

After finally meeting in person at the publishing party of the season, Constance and Estelle are determined not to let their friendship return to mere virtual champagne bottles and uploaded pictures of food.

It’s been a busy year, and Constance feels it’s time to reward herself with the spa break Estelle gave her for Christmas. Naturally, Constance wouldn’t dream of taking anyone other than Estelle, and this will provide the perfect opportunity to bond with her new chum.

As the excited pair spend some quality time together, they realise it’s not just writing books they have in common, but something that goes much deeper. After a few Jacuzzi sessions, facials, pedicures, and a massage by sexy Senior Therapist, Julio, everything seems to be peachy until an unexpected visitor turns Constance’s weekend of bliss … on its head.

A two-day spa break.
Sparkling water on tap.
And the perfect massage.

But who’s rubbing who up the wrong way?

Jessica’s Review:

The Weekend Spa Break is the second in the Friendships Online short story trilogy. Weekend picks up where The Big Event Ends. We are with Constance and Estelle and they are having a wonderful spa weekend relaxing and getting to know each other better and discovering how much they actually have in common!  And who is this hottie that Constance keeps seeing around and exchanging glances with?

Every woman needs a spa break getaway with her girlfriends. After reading this I found myself thinking how much I really could use one!  This is an enjoyable story that goes in an unexpected direction that wants you  to start the next in the series: Dinner in the Sky to see how this story ends!

Social media is still an integral part of the story and really makes you think how much should we really be sharing to and who might be seeing our updates?!?!?!

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

Audiobook Blog Tour: The Start of Something Wonderful by Jane Lambert

Today I share my review as a part of the blog tour for the audiobook The Start of Something Wonderful by Jane Lambert.

Book Description:

It’s never too late to follow your dreams….

Forty-year-old air stewardess Emily Forsyth thought she had everything a woman could wish for: a glamorous, jet-set lifestyle, a designer wardrobe and a dishy pilot boyfriend. Until he breaks up with her…

Catapulted into a midlife crisis she wishes she’d had earlier, she decides to turn her life upside down, quitting her job and instead beginning to chase her long-held dreams of becoming an actress!

Leaving the skies behind her, Emily heads for the bright lights of London’s West End – but is it too late to reach for the stars?

Author: Jane Lambert
Published: January 8, 2018
Audiobook

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: Feb 15-20, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 4 stars

Jessica’s Review

The Start of Something Wonderful to be called Start for the rest of this review, is about starting over with new beginnings and second chances at life for 40 year old Emily who finds herself in a midlife crisis that she never expects.

Emily thought she had it all: a job as a flight attendant (travel worldwide and the finer things in life are at her hand)  and a pilot boyfriend…. Then he breaks up with her.  She tailspins out of control, quits her job, and decides to finally give acting a try: She has always wanted to act!  But becoming an actor is easier said than done. Emily finds herself struggling for jobs and taking on anything she can get.  We see the growth Emily goes through from being a whiny/feeling sorry for herself woman after Nigel breaks up with her to the new person she is at the end of the novel. It is quite the transition.  Will Emily succeed in her new chosen career of acting? You must read this novel to find out!

I listened to the audiobook version of Start and enjoyed it. The author, Jane Lambert,  is also the narrator and she captured Emily’s voice and feelings well. I listen to many audiobooks and what I really liked about Start was that it added ‘sound effects’ to enhance the story.  The effects really worked with this novel.  But listener beware if you are driving: There are a few times the sound effects were unexpected and scared me. For example: at one point car horns honk fast and I thought it was a real car honking at me. I didn’t know what I was doing.  I laughed at myself once I realized it was the audiobook.

I decided to listen to this novel as I am nearing the age of Emily (OMG, I will be 39 at the end of this month! I think I see an upcoming  midlife crisis for me as I don’t feel I am nearing…. 40) and I thought I could identify with her. This was an enjoyable listen as all chick lit is and it is recommended.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

About the Author:

Jane taught English in Vienna then travelled the world as cabin crew, before making the life-changing decision to become an actor and voiceover artist in her mid-thirties. She has appeared in “Calendar Girls”, “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time”, “Deathtrap”,  and most recently “True West” in London’s West End.  She has recorded audiobooks for BBC AudioGo, Isis Publishing and HarperCollins. She is currently adapting “The Start of Something Wonderful” into a 6-part comedy drama for TV.

Contact Jane:
Twitter: @janelambert22

 

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I Owe You One

Author: Sophie Kinsella
Published: February 5, 2019
448 Pages

Reviewed By: Jessica
Dates Read: February 22- March 5, 2019
Jessica’s Rating: 2 stars

Book Description:

Fixie Farr has always lived by her father’s motto: “Family first.” But since her dad passed away, leaving his charming housewares store in the hands of his wife and children, Fixie spends all her time picking up the slack from her siblings instead of striking out on her own. The way Fixie sees it, if she doesn’t take care of her father’s legacy, who will? It’s simply not in her nature to say no to people.

So when a handsome stranger in a coffee shop asks her to watch his laptop for a moment, Fixie not only agrees—she ends up saving it from certain disaster. Turns out the computer’s owner is an investment manager. To thank Fixie for her quick thinking, Sebastian scribbles an IOU on a coffee sleeve and attaches his business card. But Fixie laughs it off—she’d never actually claim an IOU from a stranger. Would she?

Then Fixie’s childhood crush, Ryan, comes back into her life and his lack of a profession pushes all of Fixie’s buttons. She wants nothing for herself—but she’d love Seb to give Ryan a job. And Seb agrees, until the tables are turned once more and a new series of IOUs between Seb and Fixie—from small favors to life-changing moments—ensues. Soon Fixie, Ms. Fixit for everyone else, is torn between her family and the life she really wants. Does she have the courage to take a stand? Will she finally grab the life, and love, she really wants?

Jessica’s Review:

I adore Sophie Kinsella. In fact, it was her book, Can You Keep a Secret?  That got me reading again. Unfortunately the last couple of her books have not been for me.

The premise of I Owe You One had me intrigued, but the delivery failed.  For a start, I did not connect with the characters at all. Fixie’s name did not work for me and she constantly let everyone walk all over her.  Her siblings were very annoying and I did not like Ryan at all.  I suspected him of ill will.  All of the characters had issues of some kind, and the combination just did not work. 

Yes, the scene where the ‘certain disaster’ where Fixie saves the laptop is hilarious and left a lot of promise for the novel. This scene is classic Kinsella.   Despite I Owe You One not being for me, I will continue to read Kinsella novels, I just may need to stick to her older novels.  I think I might need to give Can You Keep a Secret a re-read this year. 

Special thanks to NetGalley and the publisher  for granting me a copy to read and review. I wish I could have given it a favorable review.

Purchase Links:
Amazon US
Amazon UK

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