London, Actually is book 5 in Clare Lydon’s the ‘London Romance’ series. This one takes us to a corporate setting involving Rachel’s younger sister, Becca. Becca has landed her first job since graduating from college working for an event planning firm. One big problem for Becca upon starting her dream job is that she just made out with her new boss Saturday night.
Cleo Nightingale is a 39 year old is the head of events for Workplace as global office space company. On Monday morning she is reeling from an unexpected yet amazing Saturday evening. Saturday, Cleo and her brother Duncan attended the wedding of their childhood neighbor. At the wedding, Cleo met the most amazing woman, 23 year old hottie, Becca. They enjoyed each other’s company went out after the nuptials for drinks and had a fabulous drunken goodnight kiss. One she was still thinking about later.
Becca and Cleo are caught up in a workplace romance neither expected. They both try like hell to put their kiss behind them but as they learn more about each other the attraction only intensifies. As much as Cleo does not want to date a younger woman she just cannot deny the sexual chemistry. Clare Lydon’s always writes a clever, fun-loving story with well-defined characters. Overall, London, Actually is a very good addition to this wonderful series. A good romance to unwind with after a long week!
Slow burns are one of my favorite tropes in romance. I love that will they or won’t they, the delicious pull that both characters keep denying for whatever reason. Totes love it! What you need though to make this work and really pull in the reader is that dazzling chemistry and allow the characters to really develop over the course of the book. Not an easy feat!
Megan Palmer is a new tenant to a Victorian conversion in London. Megan is a fitness trainer who is laid back and loveable but easily rolled over by dominating personalities. Enter her neighbor, accountant, Lena Shah. Lena is the direct opposite of her new neighbor. She’s a loner by nature, easily irritated and has OCD. Megan and Lena get off on the wrong foot and Megan does everything in her power to appease Lena, except with every forward step she takes she then will make another mistake in the eyes of her neighbor. A leaky roof forces these two to cohabitate and this changes the dynamic of their relationship.
I think what grabs me the most about this book is Lena’s character. She’s bitter, at times cold and prickly. She is not easy to love when she feels embarrassed or out of sorts she is quick to lash out. Megan takes a lot of lashes that would be hard for anyone to take. She has redeeming qualities, they just tend to be overshadowed by her other personality traits. She teeter-tottered right on the edge of unlikeable. What I did like about her is that she does have a great amount of self-awareness in regards to her behavior. She knows what she had done wrong she is a work in progress on changing her quick reactions.
More than anything I wanted more dialogue and a little less repetitiveness in regards to Lena and Megan’s daily interactions. A slow burn that just needed a bit more.
“You had me at hello”, right, that’s what Dorothy says to Jerry in Jerry Macguire. This is what happened to me with this book, A Girl Called London. From the very first chapter, I was hooked, entranced really, by a great dynamic romance. We all know how much I love these. This book is a true romance, there are no other moving pieces to distract or further the plot. This my friends is a great book, with fantastic dialogue, and superb characters that are sexy and fun and filled with…yeah you guessed it ROMANCE!
Tanya Grant is a corporate lawyer who is a bit reluctant to put herself out there again. After her one and only relationship crashed and burned, Tanya has focused on work and not much else. At the insistence of her ill-grandmother, Tanya takes the leap and begins the search of purchasing a flat in London. A chance meeting in an elevator introduces the reluctant, self-reliant lawyer to a gorgeous tenant name Sophie. Sophie is a knockout, the only problem Tanya makes a complete ass out of herself and will have an uphill climb to impress her new neighbor.
Sophie London has had it up to here with rude, ill-mannered Londoners. Her philosophy is it doesn’t cost anything to have good manners. When she stops to help a gorgeous brunette who fell exiting the Tube blows her off, she a bit pissed. When the same woman barrels into her in her elevator knocking her back, she is downright angry. The only problem is she is going to run into Tanya all the time now, once she discovers they live in the same building.
A chance encounter throws these two opposites into each other’s path, time and time again. Every time the encounter softens and they feel that pull of attraction getting stronger. A slow burn romance, I love it! Throw in adorable characters, I dig it. Make the dialogue real and fantastic, you will have me forever. You couldn’t have taken this one away from me if you tried. I adored everything about this book, I live for these type of pure romance novels. Sexy, witty and fun! A wonderful read!!!
5 out of 5 stars
Publisher: Custard Books
A Girl Called London (A London Romance)
by Clare Lydon Link: http://a.co/eV3mVwr
Silly, witty, zany. All adjectives, yes, but that all could easily describe the cast of characters you meet in Gill McKnight’s’ newest book. Welcome to the Wallops. McKnight is an author who always gives the reader characters that are as amusing as they are interesting. This one is no exception.
Jane Swallow is Lesser Wallops resident do-gooder. Raised by a single father, who is a petty thief and all out drunkard, Jane has spent her life giving back. She is friends with everyone, always offering advice and helping in any way possible. This former Army chaplain is now the pastor of the Lesser Wallops only church, Saint Poe’s. Saint Poe’s is a small historical church that dates back to 1348. The church has lost most of it parishioners, many choosing to go to the newer church in High Wallop, mainly because its location next to the mega supermarket. Jane is embroiled in a struggle to keeps the town she lives in original, historical, and honest even when most of the people she works with wants to steal its identity and make it as faceless as High Wallop.
Renata Braak is Jane’s new next door neighbor. Even before Renata moves in she has become the source of Jane’s ire. Renata has hired workers to tear down willow trees, erase a beautiful garden all for the sake of a garage monstrosity that does not in any way fit in with the beautiful historic cottages on Jane’s street. Jane is not feeling neighborly to this new development. The irritation it only gets worse when she discovers the new tenant is actually her ex-girlfriend.
This book is fun, it’s lighthearted and the characters are just amusing. This is a fantastic choice for a summer afternoon when you just want relax and have an entertaining read.
3.75 stars out of 5
I was given this novel by Ylva Publishing in return for an honest review.
Flight SQA016 by A.E. Radley is a curious story of two women who meet on a transatlantic flight. These two women couldn’t be more different, I am talking polar opposites. Opposites attract in a big way!
Emily White is living the American dream. Just kidding this young mother is in debt up to her eyeballs. Her credit card’s credit card is maxed out. Every penny is accounted for and there are just not enough of them to live on. So, Emily starts working for Crown Airlines as a flight attendant in first class. Her weekly schedule is packed full of flights from London to New York. Her grueling schedule will hopefully generate enough income to start to put a dent in the debt she has accumulated. She has no other choice, her five year old son has a heart condition, and she has to do what she has to do to get him the help he needs.
Olivia Lewis is the other main character in this tale. She is very different from most characters you have read before. She is abrupt, she has no filter, and she has zero concept of how to be subtle. With that being said she has an enormous heart and exudes kindness if you can get past her sometimes daunting behavior. Olivia is the owner of a major corporate finance company. She has more funds in her bank account than some small countries. Every week she takes two transatlantic flights. Her home is New York but her company is in London. This is how Olivia and Emily become acquainted.
I vacillated back on forth on what impression this book left me with. First let me say the concept of the book is interesting and I loved that it was an original plot for this genre. Even more than that, is the fact that the writing is outstanding. The story flows perfectly and the transitions are smooth and seamless. I loved the main characters! I thought their interactions were stimulating and I was awestruck by their unlikely friendship. Even the secondary characters have a noticeable voice in the story and bring dimension to Olivia and Emily and their relationship.
So, for 90-plus percent of the book I love it, and then I realized wait there is only a handful of pages left. Perplexing! This is where I find myself frustrated and uncertain of my feelings. Upon finishing, Flight SQA016 leaves you with a giant cliffhanger. That’s it see you in a couple months kind of cliffhanger, season finale TV kind of ending. My guess is the book was a rather large one and they decided to cut it into two parts. I have to say I am not a huge fan of this concept. The book and the reader deserved to finish the story. I must say I think it would have been an awesome one. The last chapter made no sense. The characters and their reactions to one another completely deviated off course. I had a little bit of whiplash, where is my neck brace?
Overall, this book is great. I will undeniably read the sequel, Grounded. I am perturbed that I have to though. So read this book, it will hands down be worth it, you just need to gear yourself up for the conclusion and then the wait. Patience is a virtue!
When I Knew You by KE Payne is angst filled roller coaster. When I say angst, let me clarify, this is the ultimate angst fest and it was so good.
Ashley “Ash” Wells runs a tourist boat tour in Cornwall (yup in the UK). She never intended to come back to her hometown of London, but the death of her childhood best friend forces her hand. Ash has not returned to London since she fled the city when she was eighteen. Why did she run? Her girlfriend, Natalie Braithwaite broke her heart, and Ash has never recovered.
Dr. Natalie “Nat” Braithwaithe is a well respected, highly skilled heart surgeon. You would think she has it all, great career, tons of money, but no. While Nat may look like her would be ideal, she is literally coming apart at the seams. Panic attacks have left her in a constant state of stress and anxiety. Her one regret in life, letting her parents talk her into breaking up with Ash all those years ago.
This angst fest was a delight to read. It’s well written, the characters are interesting, and KE Payne really lets the reader feel their pain. These two ladies have one foot in the past and one in the present. Their breakup sixteen years ago has defined their lives in so many ways. So, when their friend that passed on, Livvy, asks them to fulfill her final wishes. They have no choice but to confront each other, no the pain they both carry.
Great book, I throughly enjoyed reading Ash and Nat’s journey. I love a good amount of angst in my stories, so this was spot on a fantastic way to spend some downtime. I will say, the angstyness goes way into the book, 80-plus percent. So, if that’s not your thing you may become frustrated. I throughly loved it, but maybe I’m just a weirdo though (no way I’m totally hip & cool).
The Fifth Gospel by Michelle Grubb is an absolutely wonderful book. From the first chapter you will be spellbound. Beginning to end this book is fantastic, it’s romantic, intellectual and everything you want in a book.
Felicity “Flic” Bastone is an investigative reporter that stumbled upon the ultimately secret of the Pope. She took this secret and turned it into a novel, that is on the precipice of becoming a best seller. Her book release is coinciding with the Pope announcing his love affair with his Camerlengo. Wowzers talk about a moment in history! Flic’s publishing company, Griffin is doing everything in their power to capitalize on this momentous event.
Flic is just a cool character. She is the epitome of a nice person. She is sweet, caring, thoughtful and highly intelligent. Flic is one of those characters that you wish in real life they existed so you could be their friend.
The other leading lady in the story is Anna Lawrence, marketing superstar of Griffin Publishing. Anna is Catholic, and as a devout follower of the Catholic Church she is not a huge fan of Flic’s book. She finds solace in her religion and she is terrified what this book might do to her beloved church. On the flip side, she will do everything in her power to market the hell out of this book, even agreeing to help Flic on her promotional tour of Europe. Oh yeah, you know what’s going to happen, the sexual tension is high!
The thing that is so awesome with this book is the conversations between Anna and Flic. Our two protagonists square off on so many subjects, and their conversations are enlightening and so engaging. Michelle Grubb did a fantastic job developing strong characters that are intelligent and witty. The author did a wonderful job showing how each character feels and why they feel the way they do. Anna is Catholic and never is she demeaned or ridiculed for her beliefs. She expresses why her faith is important to her, and Flic in turn respectfully accepts her feelings and explains her side. I loved how each character had her feelings about religion and that was okay. Never did I feel like the author’s personal beliefs came through or the proverbial soap box came into play.
There is also an element of a thriller in this book, I mean if you piss off some highly religious folks at least three of them of going to try to kill you, right! This part of the plot was a little thin in my opinion, but the romance and the intelligence of the two leading ladies more than make up for it. I read a lot of books, almost all in the lesbian romance genre, when a great one comes up, you cannot help but smile. This book made me excited to read, I smiled the whole way through. This one is solid gold!
Fragile Wings by Rebecca S. Buck takes us back to the roaring 1920’s via London. This is the story of a country girl who moves to big city to find herself and experience new opportunities. The book is descriptive, picturesque and overall a nicely written novel.
The Great War has come to an end and the young people of that time are bound and determined to live life to the fullest. Dancing, drinking, and carousing with other rebel rousers is the name of the game.
Evelyn Hopkins is a small town girl from West Coombe. Evelyn has always wanted more from life. She wanted to be educated, but her parents pulled her from school at the age of 14. Her closet friend is her older brother Edward, but he returned from the war shell shocked, badly wounded, and no longer able to communicate. Evie has lost her beloved Eddie even though he was one of the soldiers that made it home. She has an almost desperate need to fly from West Coombe and experience life’s pleasures, but like many women of her time she is held back by her station in life. Until one day, Edward breaks his silence and asks Evie for a favor. He needs her to deliver a letter from a fallen comrade, Frank Grainger, and take his parting note to his twin sister Lilian in London. This gives Evelyn her shot at the adventure she’s been dreaming of.
Upon leaving her family home Evelyn runs into a cast of characters all very different from any of the people she knew in West Coombe. These new friends and acquaintances will forever change the the way she views the world. She will experience true friendship, acceptance, betrayal, but best of all, true love.
This book is a very nice read. There were a few times it bogged down with an abundance of details and comparisons of cities. I thought the characters were a lively, spirited bunch. I loved their desire to push the limits and live their lives to the fullest. If you like romance with a lot of history built in this may be the book for you.
Never-Tied Nora is a quick, sexy read. This is a romance that leans heavily towards erotica. So if that floats your boat, you definitely want to give this one a whirl.
Nora Kelly is your love’em and leave’em type. Everybody knows Nora has no desire to settle down. Even her large Irish family gives her a hard time about her revolving door to the bedroom. Everything changes the very second she lays her eyes on Geraldine Flannery entering a local pub.
Geraldine is a junior architect, who has her heart destroyed once and has no desire to repeat the process. Her guard is up when it comes to women, she wishes she could let the past go, but finds it hard to put herself out there again. This all changes as Nora forces her to a share a glass of wine. The only problem is Nora is a Kelly and Geraldine is a Flannery and these two families hate each other.
This book is quick read and Cheyenne Blue does a great job of creating likable characters right from the start. You really want these two be each other’s happy ever after, feud be damned. One thing I would have liked to see is more of the feud in the later half of the book. The tension was wrapped up just a tad too quick and too easily.
If you are looking for a sexy read, with some majorly hot lady loving scenes this is your book. If you are more the slow burn uber-romance type, this book is not that. It’s hot right from the start. Fire extinguishers might be needed!!!
The Tea Machine by Gill McKnight is a fantastical tale of time travel. I found myself simultaneously enthralled and confused.
The main character of this novel is Millicent Abberly who hails from London via 1862. Millicent is a strong, sharped tongued, independent, super intelligent woman who is light years ahead of her time. Miss Abberly is a forward thinker, who is more than capable of handling a time traveling adventure. Good thing for her, her brother Hubert just invented a time traveling machine.
The story starts as Millicent takes an unexpected journey to 100 years into the future. No, she doesn’t end up in the 1960s, she goes to a parallel universe when Roman Empire is fighting to control the galaxy. There she meets up with Decanus R.J. Sangfroid, a handsome lady soldier, who is battling colossal squid that are hell bent on destroying the ship that Millicent just showed up on.
I told you this story was fantastical, and it doesn’t stop at a futuristic squid battle. Millicent, Sangfroid, Hubert and a handful of other characters have caused a ripple in time. Time travel has consequences and this crew must be dealt with the fallout.
I had to really think about this book upon conclusion. What could I say to a fellow reader, I asked? So here goes… This book has a lot going on. At times I was lost as to where we were going. Just when I thought I had figured it out, nope Millicent and company are off to another adventure. You have to read this book with a wide open imagination, don’t try to figure it out until it’s completed. I did enjoy my time with it. I loved Millicent, she is awesome. I do wish more of Millicent and Sangfroid’s love story was brought to the forefront of the story. McKnight did a good job of establishing chemistry between them in the beginning of the book, but it was like it became a side note in the final third of the story.
I think if you are really interested in science fiction you will find this book fascinating. If you are looking for a clear cut romance, this may not be the one for you. It’s definitely different, but different is not a bad thing. This book is what I would call unique!