When Leah Harvey catches her fiancé Doug having sex with her bridesmaid the day before the wedding she flees in anger. Things continue to go pear shaped when the car she steals (from her now ex-fiancé) breaks down. In the middle of rural Scotland. During a freak blizzard. Whilst she is still wearing her wedding dress and heels. Deciding that there is no other option but to walk to the light flickering in the distance, Leah braves the storm and heads towards a lonely cottage in the middle of a field.
In said cottage is Rob, American but from Italian descent, he has come to Scotland for the chance to be alone. To wallow in self pity. To drink himself silly on whisky and hide away from all the Christmas cheer. That is until a half frozen bride turns up on his doorstep, passes out and ultimately turns his world upside down.
Cold Feet at Christmas by Debbie Johnson has to be classed as one of the better Christmas based novels that I have read as part of my #Festive Feature. This is not to say that the others were not good, some of them were brilliant but Cold Feet at Christmas just had so much warmth and heart to its story.
I couldn’t help but fall in love with Rob and Leah. However, as much as I loved them I wanted to bang their heads together for both being so similar, so stubborn and so damn argumentative. Yet this is what is great about this romance novel. The build up to their union was so delicious. We can see how much they are meant to be together; their sexual trysts provided the proof of that but like all good writers Debbie Johnson left us wanting more with each chapter until the tension reached its sparkling crescendo.
This book did truly leave me satisfied as a reader of the romance genre. I finished reading it feeling the frisson of magic, the warm and fuzzies through the love and with a smile on my face that comes with the comforting knowledge that the writer hasn’t left you with anything ambiguous to darken your day.
Cold Feet at Christmas by Debbie Johnson is available now.
You can follow Debbie Johnson (@debbiemjohnson) on Twitter.
Long distance relationships are never easy. It is even more difficult when 50% of the partnership is in prison. Yet this is what happened in Yours for Eternity, the real life story of Damien Echols and Lorri Davis. Echols was wrongly accused of murder and spent a total of 18 years in jail and on death row. After watching a documentary about the case Davis was inspired to write to Echols and what began as friendship developed into love.
Echols and Davis’ love story is the focal point of this narrative. It is almost incomprehensible that the couple managed to sustain their love in such dire and murky circumstances. However, that is the one thing that you do not doubt in Yours for Eternity. It is almost overwhelming and I guess at times it is also a little scary. Their love is so powerful it almost jumps off the page.
Some could argue that it is in poor taste to release a book like this – exposing not only themselves but also their love, something that is personal but overall it kind of gives people hope. If a love can be sustained in such desperate measures then surely other people in the world can make their relationships work?
The book was a fascinating account of the American judicial system and how sometimes we put our trust in things and people and they can let us down. It was also an eye opener in the sense that having never been in prison myself I was invited into a world – a truthful real life account – which I have no other way of knowing about. The loneliness, isolation and sheer depressing nature was cleverly – yet I am guessing, not intentionally – juxtaposed with the hopeful optimism of bourgeoning love. It was very dramatic.
I won’t lie to you, this wasn’t an easy book to read and unlike a fictional story there is no easy build up to a conclusion. You begin to feel as desperate as you would imagine Echols and Davis to have felt. There seemed to be no reprieve from the prison sentence. Yet the ending just appears – bang – out of nowhere and you feel like the story is done. And as much as I have sung the praises for the love story between these two characters, once again, it isn’t easy to read about. Love hurts and this is an even more harsh account of the daily toils of a relationship. So if you are looking for something that is light and fluffy, this isn’t the book for you, however, if you want something gritty, experience expanding and don’t mind a little realism then pick up your copy today.
Yours for Eternity by Damien Echols and Lorri Davis is available now.
Ho ho ho!
Yes folks we have reached December and I am feeling festive. This could be because I have been super organised this year and have nearly all my Christmas presents bought (it helps that I started buying them in August) and the majority of them wrapped. Please don’t feel too envious because this isn’t how I usually do things; usually I am running around on my final payday in a mad panic.
Anywho, before I go into what I managed to read this week and indeed what I plan to read in this upcoming week I have to talk about The Fault in our Stars. I read the book last year and I was broken. Only a few books have ever managed to do this to me; A Walk to Remember and Me Before You are included in this list. This weekend, my mother and I decided to watch the movie. Oh my wow. I spent the last forty minutes a crumbling mess: tears, red face and yes the ever attractive snot bubbles. I must give kudos to the filmmakers because they stuck so very closely to the John Green book. It is absolutely stunning. If you haven’t read the book then read it, then watch the movie. Have tissues handy, you have been warned!
Back to matters at hand, my week of books. This has been a pretty good week for reading. I have read:
Waiting for Doggo by Mark B. Mills
Skating at Somerset House by Nikki Moore
Both of these have been reviewed this week. I have also read:
Yours for Eternity: A Love Story on Death Row by Damien Echols and Lorri Davis (02.12.14)
Losing Heart by Donna Brown (06.12.14)
Cold Feet at Christmas by Debbie Johnson (03.12.14)
This week I plan to read:
It Happened on Broadway by Myra Katz Frommer and Harvey Frommer
The Lies We Tell Ourselves by Talli Rowland
Girl Online by Zoe Sugg
The Shape of Shit to Come by Alan McArthur and Steve Lowe
Let’s hope it is a good easy reading week.
Ooh and for those who are keeping tally on things, my NetGalley percentage is now up to 29.4% – only 0.6% until I get to 30% – whoop whoop!
Have a good reading week.
Title: Skating at Somerset House
Author: Nikki Moore
Pages: 40 pages
They say that opposites attract but with Holly and Noel it would almost seem their differences are too intense for them to ever find a common ground. Holly is vivacious, a lover of Christmas and tries to find the good in every situation. Whereas Noel is a bit of a Christmas curmudgeon; he scowls, hates anything to do with the festive period and would rather it be summer.
However, they both come with emotional baggage and slowly we see a friendship blossom between the two. Can they put their differences aside to take advantage of their mutual feelings?
I really enjoyed this short story. It is the first in the #LoveLondon series and I genuinely cannot wait to read the rest. What I loved most about it is that it did not feel like a short story. I didn’t feel robbed or let down. I was given what I wanted. The love story blossomed nicely with the classic will-they-won’t-they drama; the misunderstandings and the soft gentle changes made by both Holly and Noel; both of them giving just a little bit more of themselves with each page and bending their views and opinions to allow themselves to experience something great.
This was a warm hearted winter tale that had me engaged from the very beginning. Part of me hopes that the story of Holly and Noel will continue in a fully fledged novel, however, if it doesn’t (boo hiss) I will be more than ok with this being the only story about them because it gave me everything (and more) that I need in a good winter warmer.
Well done, Nikki Moore.
Skating at Somerset House by Nikki Moore is available from the 4th December 2014.
You can follow Nikki Moore (@NikkiMoore_auth) on Twitter and follow the series of short stories with the hashtag #LoveLondon