Title: The Thunder Girls

Author: Melanie Blake

Pages: 416 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

The Blurb

Jackie Collins for a new generation. The Thunder Girls is a blockbuster novel, filled with obsession, addiction, betrayal and revenge, that charts the rise and fall of an 80s girl band from Melanie Blake, a true insider of the music business.

Perfect for fans of Tasmina Perry and Daisy Jones and The Six. Soon to be a nationwide play with an all star cast.

THE

Chrissie, Roxanne, Carly and Anita, an eighties pop sensation outselling and out-classing their competition. Until it all comes to an abrupt end and three of their careers are over, and so is their friendship.

THUNDER

Thirty years later, their old record label wants the band back together for a huge money-making concert. But the wounds are deep and some need this gig more than others.

In those decades apart life was far from the dream they were living as members of The Thunder Girls. Breakdowns, bankruptcy, addiction and divorce have been a constant part of their lives. They’ve been to hell and back, and some are still there.

GIRLS

Can the past be laid to rest for a price, or is there more to this reunion than any of them could possibly know? Whilst they all hunger for a taste of success a second time around, someone is plotting their downfall in the deadliest way possible . . .

(AMAZON BLURB)

The Review

All I wanted to be in my 20s was a rock star. I’m in my 30s now and much like my 20s there is zero chance of it ever happening but man I can still dream.

That is what is absolutely fantastic about The Thunder Girls by Melanie Blake. I am given the opportunity to live the rock star lifestyle vicariously through the girls in the band: Chrissie – your typical egotistical bitch with a heart of gold hidden under her icy exterior, the scorned Roxanne – I wouldn’t like to get on her bad side, the peacekeeper Carly – just because she is quiet doesn’t mean she doesn’t have secrets, and Anita – the feisty kick ass member of the band who may in fact be the glue that keeps them all together.

Melanie Blake has written an absolute page turner about what the music industry is like. She uses her real life experiences which give the book a verisimilitude and dammit she has made me want to continue the dream of being a rock star.

I really wish that I could unread this book so I could read it all over again.

Absolutely fantastic.

The Thunder Girls by Melanie Blake is available now.

For more information regarding Melanie Blake (@MelanieBlakeUK) please visit www.thethundergirls.co.uk.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@Panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

 

Title: Fierce Fragile Hearts

Author: Sara Barnard

Pages: 354 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

The Blurb

A powerful new novel from the YA author of Beautiful Broken Things, A Quiet Kind of Thunder, and Goodbye, Perfect.

The stunning companion novel to Sara Barnard’s bestseller Beautiful Broken Things – which was shortlisted for the YA Book Prize and a Zoella’s Book Club Selection – Fierce Fragile Hearts is about leaving the past behind, and learning to find love, in all its forms.

Two years after a downward spiral took her as low as you can possibly go, Suzanne is starting again. (Again.) She’s back in Brighton, the only place she felt she belonged, back with her best friends Caddy and Rosie. But they’re about to leave for university.

When your friends have been your light in the darkness, what happens when you’re the one left behind?

The Review

Sara Barnard is one of those authors whose books I anticipate. I think she is one of the best YA fiction writers and I get swallowed whole by her stories. Fierce Fragile Hearts is no exception to this praise.

In Fierce Fragile Hearts we return to Brighton and to the life that Suzanne once knew. Fresh and optimistic she is trying to become an adult and even though things haven’t been easy for Suzanne so far it turns out that adulthood is no easy picnic. It is especially hard when her support system – her friends Caddy and Rosie – are off to pastures new for university.

Feeling alone and a little bit lost Suzanne starts to fall back on old, dangerous habits.

Fierce Fragile Hearts was a brilliant sequel to an already amazing book. Barnard manages to capture the loneliness and isolation of Suzanne, the struggles with being a child of ‘the system’ and also the difficult journey of trying to grow up. It encapsulates all the things I love, a book with friendship at its core, a coming-of-age tale and an awesome soundtrack to accompany it. If there was an extended road trip added then I would have been in book nirvana.

Fierce Fragile Hearts by Sara Barnard is available now.

For more information regarding Sara Barnard (@saramegan) please visit www.sarabarnardofficial.com.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

Title: The Burning Chambers

Author: Kate Mosse

Pages: 608 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan/Mantle Books

The Blurb

Bringing sixteenth-century Languedoc vividly to life, Kate Mosse’s The Burning Chambers is a gripping story of love and betrayal, mysteries and secrets; of war and adventure, conspiracies and divided loyalties . . .

Carcassonne 1562: Nineteen-year-old Minou Joubert receives an anonymous letter at her father’s bookshop. Sealed with a distinctive family crest, it contains just five words: SHE KNOWS THAT YOU LIVE. But before Minou can decipher the mysterious message, a chance encounter with a young Huguenot convert, Piet Reydon, changes her destiny forever.

For Piet has a dangerous mission of his own, and he will need Minou’s help if he is to get out of La Cité alive. Toulouse: As the religious divide deepens in the Midi, and old friends become enemies, Minou and Piet both find themselves trapped in Toulouse, facing new dangers as sectarian tensions ignite across the city, the battle-lines are drawn in blood and the conspiracy darkens further. Meanwhile, as a long-hidden document threatens to resurface, the mistress of Puivert is obsessed with uncovering its secret and strengthening her power . .

The Review

I was genuinely scared to read The Burning Chambers by Kate Mosse. I loved her Languedoc series but I hadn’t quite come to terms with Citadel yet – seriously, it was a bloodbath. So with trepidation I picked up The Burning Chambers and literally within paragraphs – not even pages or chapters but paragraphs – I was hooked.

What is so impressive with Kate Mosse’s storytelling is just how immersive it is. I felt like I was part of the Joubert family. I was dealing with the family secrets, I was battling in the war between the Catholics and the Heugenots, I was travelling the very roads between Carcassonne and Toulouse. I was there. Even though it took place a very long time ago and I was reading from the comfort of my modern day home.

The Burning Chambers was a pleasure to read, a book that I will be recommending to the all historical fiction buffs that I know.

There really is only one true master of historical fiction, and that, ladies and gentlemen, is Kate Mosse.

The Burning Chambers by Kate Mosse is available now.

For more information regarding Kate Mosse (@katemosse) please visit www.katemosse.co.uk.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

For more information regarding Mantle Books (@MantleBooks) please visit www.mantle.panmacmillan.com.

The Last Act of LoveTitle: The Last Act of Love – The Story of My Brother and His Sister

Author: Cathy Rentzenbrink

Pages: 256 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan/Picador

The Blurb

In the summer of 1990, Cathy’s brother Matty was knocked down by a car on the way home from a night out. It was two weeks before his GCSE results, which turned out to be the best in his school. Sitting by his unconscious body in hospital, holding his hand and watching his heartbeat on the monitors, Cathy and her parents willed him to survive. They did not know then that there are many and various fates worse than death.

This is the story of what happened to Cathy and her brother, and the unimaginable decision that she and her parents had to make eight years after the night that changed everything. It’s a story for anyone who has ever watched someone suffer or lost someone they loved or lived through a painful time that left them forever changed.

Told with boundless warmth and affection, The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink is a heartbreaking yet uplifting testament to a family’s survival and the price we pay for love.

The Review

The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink is a beautifully heartbreaking story of a life cut short and how to deal with death, and indeed, life and how to carry on.

Cathy Rentzenbrink was 17 when her younger brother was knocked down by a dangerous driver. Her brother, Matty, spent eight years in a permanent vegetative state. The Last Act of Love her story of how she and her family dealt with Matty’s condition and how eventually it became clear that it was crueller to keep him alive when he wasn’t living.

I have enormous respect for Cathy Rentzenbrink. Not only for the horrible decision that she had to make along with her family but that she had the courage to do it and then write about it. She has bled her feelings onto the page and she has done so with such dignity and grace.

The Last Act of Love is so cathartic and a deeply elegant story that is a beautiful read. I must for anyone who is dealing with loss.

The Last Act of Love by Cathy Rentzenbrink is available now.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

For more information regarding Picador (@picadorbooks) please visit www.panmacmillan.com/picador.

35 Stars

Children of Blood and BoneTitle: Children of Blood and Bone

Author: Tomi Adeyemi

Pages: 531 Pages

Publisher: Pan Macmillan

The Blurb

They killed my mother.
They took our magic.
They tried to bury us.

Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

The Review

Ok, so I fell for the hype yet again. There has been so much on social media about Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi that I had to buy a copy and read it. I knew it was going to be an uncomfortable read, mainly because fantasy isn’t my strong subject when it comes to book genre but give it a go I did. I have to admit, I was impressed.

I was sucked into this mystical world of African legend and folklore; into the world of subjugation and uprising. It was just so engaging. Even though this world was so very alien to the world I live in I couldn’t help but empathise with the battle that the characters had.

What is more powerful is when you learn that Children of Blood and Bone is an allegory for society today. Below the surface of the story is an extended metaphor that shouldn’t still resonate but does.

Seriously, if you want a fluffy fantasy drama then Children of Blood and Bone is not for you. But if you want to challenge yourself and to use YA fiction to push yourself to looking at deeper more prevalent topics then you need to pick this book up.

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi is available now.

For more information regarding Tomi Adeyemi (@tomi_adeyemi) please visit www.bit.lt/2DRI6sc.

For more information regarding Pan Macmillan (@panmacmillan) please visit www.panmacmillan.com.

4 Stars