The Chateau by Karen Aldous

untitled (2)The Chateau by Karen Aldous

Can young hearts ease a restless spirit?

On the shores of stunning Lake Geneva, Gina Remy is celebrating her brother’s wedding – when the figure of a woman appears hovering above the water, beckoning to her. Ghostly visitations do not happen to Gina – a self-confessed control freak with her own successful property business, she prides herself on being level-headed. But as she is tormented by dreams and visions, her perfect life begins to unravel, and she knows she needs to help this ghost find peace if she’s to get any of her own!

Enter Ollie Martin, an Anglo-Swiss property developer who’s sexy as hell and knows it. His arrogance annoys Gina, but he’s the only one who will take her seriously… and the closer they come to understanding the quest the ghost has set for them, the closer they get to one another…”


The Chateau is a gorgeous read, from the stunning locations to even more delicious Ollie. I loved the supernatural aspect to the story; fate and love will always find each other no matter what the circumstances.

Gina attends her brothers wedding on the shores of lake Geneva, unfortunately she has brought some excess baggage in the form of Max, so to be ex. Ghostly apparitions appear and then she meets the arrogant and mysteries Ollie. Gina and Ollie are like oil and water, but a sensational sexual tension builds passionately.

The Chateau is often witty, with some zany moments, but at its heart, very romantic. Gina is a very strong character who knows exactly what she wants from life and is not prepared to settle for the crumbs she is offered. The mixture of the supernatural visits and Ollie, show her there is more to life and love than she ever expected,

Karen Aldous has a way of bring real life dramas to exotic locations and blends the two beautifully with her message that love doesn’t have to be perfect, it just has be felt- with that, it can defy all the odds. The Chateau is a wonderful read, with plenty of romantic tension and mystery, that I found it hard to put down.


Review: Mistletoe Mansion by Samantha Tonge

Mistletoe Mansion (1)Mistletoe Mansion by Samantha Tonge

Kimmy Jones has three loves: cupcakes, gossip magazines and dreaming of getting fit just by owning celeb workouts.

When Kimmy’s Sensible Boyfriend told her he didn’t approve of her longing for the high life or her dream of starting a cupcake company Kimmy thought she could compromise – after all, she did return those five-inch Paris Hilton heels! But asking her to trade in cake-making for a job sorting potatoes is a step too far.

So, newly single – and newly homeless – Kimmy needs a dusting of Christmas luck. And, masquerading as a professional house sitter, her new temporary home is the stunning Mistletoe Mansion. Soon she’s best buds with glamorous next door golf WAG Melissa, and orders are pouring in for her fabulous Merry Berry cupcakes! The only thorn in her side is handsome handyman Luke, a distraction she definitely doesn’t need. And talking of distractions, something very odd is going on at night…

Kimmy is finally living the life she’s always wanted. But will her glimpse into the glittering lifestyle of the rich and famous be as glamorous as she’s always imagined…?”


Mistletoe mansion is a delightful read! Kimmy is whacky and fantastic and Luke, is sexy as sin. This book has it all, heart-warming romance, spooky encounters, and fabulous cupcakes. It is the perfect winter’s read!

Samantha Tonge has a wonderful way of writing that her characters come alive, and now with her third book to date-  I really think she is a force to be reckoned  with, and I can not wait to see what she comes up with next.

Mistletoe mansion is a absolute treat of book! I highly recommend!


Mistletoe Mansion by Samantha Tonge Christmas Celebration

Mistletoe Mansion (1)

Mistletoe Mansion by Samantha Tonge

Kimmy Jones has three loves: cupcakes, gossip magazines and dreaming of getting fit just by owning celeb workouts.

When Kimmy’s Sensible Boyfriend told her he didn’t approve of her longing for the high life or her dream of starting a cupcake company Kimmy thought she could compromise – after all, she did return those five-inch Paris Hilton heels! But asking her to trade in cake-making for a job sorting potatoes is a step too far.

So, newly single – and newly homeless – Kimmy needs a dusting of Christmas luck. And, masquerading as a professional house sitter, her new temporary home is the stunning Mistletoe Mansion. Soon she’s best buds with glamorous next door golf WAG Melissa, and orders are pouring in for her fabulous Merry Berry cupcakes! The only thorn in her side is handsome handyman Luke, a distraction she definitely doesn’t need. And talking of distractions, something very odd is going on at night…

Kimmy is finally living the life she’s always wanted. But will her glimpse into the glittering lifestyle of the rich and famous be as glamorous as she’s always imagined…?





Doubting abbey Blog:




Chapter 1

Move your legs further apart. Tilt forward from the waist. Rock your hips in a rhythmic motion… Nice, gently does it. Now keep that stroke light. We don’t want a premature start. Remember what I said about balls…’

Keep your eye on them,’ I whispered back to the silky voice coming from the television. My jogging trousers slipped beneath my stomach as I swung my golf club (okay, broom handle). Having just chipped out of three virtual bunkers, I was practising my putting before re-doing the energetic teeing-off section.

You still not finished, Kimmy?’ asked Adam, as he came out of the bedroom, in T-shirt and boxers.

I smiled. Would the day ever come when I got tired of admiring his rock solid quads (thigh muscles to you and me)? They were like the physical representation of his personality – solid, secure, strong…

I thought you were meeting Jess for coffee.’

Almost done,’ I said. It had been no mean feat to follow my new exercise DVD without taking a chunk of plaster out of the ceiling or knocking a bauble off our bargain-priced Christmas tree. Indoor golf wasn’t the best hobby if you lived in a one-bedroom flat where you couldn’t swing a cat, let alone a four foot broom.

He rolled his eyes without their usual twinkle. In fact, he’d been low in the sparkle department for several days, now.

What?’ I stopped, secretly grateful for the break. Golf may be awesome for toning bingo wings but my back ached as if I’d played eighteen holes up Ben Nevis.

You already had that DVD by the bird off Strictly Come Dancing,’ said Adam. ‘Why buy this one? You should go to the gym, like me. It’d save you a bundle of money in the long run.’

I gazed back at the screen. Just as well he’d forgotten the DVD I’d bought by the winners of Britain’s Got Talent. Then there was the Hotpants Workout and the Bootcamp Bum-buster. Starchat magazine had recommended Melissa Winsford’s; said it would give me “the celebrity body of my dreams”.

I sighed. Her voice was all velvety and smooth, as if she lived on nothing but marshmallows and hot chocolate. With her firm boobs and flat tum, she was one of the most glamorous “Wags” (Wives and girlfriends for those who don’t know). Oops, better make that “birdies. Apparently Melissa hated it when “classy” golf was associated with “thuggish” football terms.

Give me a few minutes and I’ll make pancakes,’ I said hoping this might raise, if nothing else, a nod of appreciation. Our usual Saturday morning ritual was a late-morning cuddle to my Hits for Lovers CD, followed by pancakes and syrup. Except today I was meeting my best mate, to indulge in festive flavoured lattes at our favourite coffee shop. And in any case, Adam hadn’t been interested when I’d rolled over close for a quick snuggle-up. In fact he’d been moody all week and I don’t mean in a sexy Marlon Brando way.

You okay?’ I sat down beside him, on the sofa, stomach pinching a little at the empty expression on his face. ‘You’ve had a hard week. Let me give you a massage.’

At that moment the doorbell rang. I looked at the clock. Of course! Postie! I dashed to the kitchen worktop and grabbed a Tupperware box. It contained six rich brown cupcakes topped with dark butter icing and swirls of red and green cake glitter.

Morning, Matt.’ I grinned at his lopsided cycling hat and passed him the box. ‘Hope everything works out,’ I whispered.

Thanks, Kimmy,’ he said and in return handed me a brown envelope and some junk mail. He prised open the plastic box’s lid. ‘They look ace. Cool Christmas colours, as well. How much do I owe you?’

Think of them as an anniversary gift.’

What was that all about?’ asked Adam, in a flat voice, as I closed the door. ‘How come you’re so friendly with the postman?’

I’m on first name terms with a lot of people, since losing my job and working random temporary hours – including Dave, the window cleaner, and Sanjay who reads the gas meter.’ I sat down again. ‘Postie and his wife have been having problems. He almost moved out last month. Tonight he’s cooking a special meal. I offered to provide a dessert that would give them a bit of, um, oomph.’


Sweet basil – it’s an aphrodisiac. I disguised its taste with fresh mint which doubles as the perfect breath freshener. After a couple of those cupcakes, she’ll think he’s got the moves of Patrick Swayze in Dirty Dancing.’

Was Adam even listening? He stared at the brown envelope and didn’t even reach out for the junk mail, to flick through for money-off coupons.

Hungry?’ I put the envelope to one side. I had to meet Jess in one hour.

Aren’t you going to open it, Kimmy?’ he said, in tight tones.


That envelope. It could be important.’

He was right. Perhaps it was a bill and unlike Mum, I didn’t stash my mail, unopened, into the nearest drawer. I flicked off the telly before leaning back against the beige throw. I ran my acrylic nail along the seal and tugged out a document. Maybe I’d won that competition I’d entered last month for a Hollywood makeover. I sighed. No such luck. It was an application form.

Why didn’t you just bring this home with you?’ I left it on the sofa, stood up and walked a few steps over to the open-plan kitchen.

Work has procedures. Plus there’s been a freeze on recruitment. I just left your name with the personnel woman last week and crossed my fingers. I can’t believe your luck.’ A sparkle actually returned to his eyes.

You want me to work full time at CountryHouse Potatoes? But I thought we’d agreed – I’d temp until the right job came along. Can you really see me sorting spuds?’

Why not?’ he asked and raised both eyebrows.

Good question. CountryHouse Potatoes was a great employer. The pay wasn’t bad, and from what Adam said, the staff canteen food was yummy. If the position was temporary, I’d have already been at the post box.

I’m, um, used to working with pretty silver sugar balls and candied roses.’ I smiled. ‘Your average potato is uglier than my bunion.’

Ha, ha. Come on, Kimmy. It’s in catering. Put your mind to it and you could be supervisor in half the time I took. All this time you’ve spent at Best Buns bakery, with no chance of moving forward… If you forgot this mad cake-making idea of yours, you could be earning real money, getting promoted…’ His voice sounded even more animated than when he watched football.

But I’m going down to the job centre again on Monday.’ I opened one of the rickety cupboards and took out a pan. It was not a mad idea. Even the psychic I’d visited at the local Easter Fair said I was “born to bake”.

He picked up the form. ‘You can’t go on like this forever, babe. I want to be with someone who’s willing to look further ahead than next week’s edition of Starchat.’

I don’t complain about your sport magazines.’

Dismissively he waved his hand. ‘They don’t encourage me to waste money on dye kits and fake tans.’

I thought you liked my blonde hair?’ I bent down, opened the fridge door and took out some eggs.

Wasn’t your hair light brown when we first met?’

I stood up and turned around. ‘Women call that “mouse”.’

For all I cared it could have been black, green, streaked with pink or shaved off. It’s you I like, Kimmy – your contagious laugh and your… sense of right and wrong.’

I grinned. ‘Like when I refused to do any housework until you agreed to go halves on a vacuum cleaner that worked?’

He gave a wry smile. ‘No. I was thinking of the time you handed in that fifty pound note you found on the supermarket floor.’ He shrugged. ‘I don’t need to be with some glamorous, hotshot business woman. Marriage, kids, decent house and maybe a Chelsea football club season ticket – that’ll be enough for me.’

I put down the eggs. ‘You feel pretty sure you’ll have kids one day, right?’


I bet you’ve even pictured them and thought of names. That’s no different to me, except that I’ve imagined my successful cake company, my clients, the shiny van I’ll use as I drive to their homes. I even know what kind of pedigree dog I’ll buy with the profits – he’s called Chico and wears a leopard print coat and matching booties.’

I’d grown up with status dogs, Mum’s boyfriends strutting around with Rottweilers or Staffies. They’d never let me dress them up or strategically place a few ribbons.

And it’s not just about the money,’ I continued. ‘Baking’s my life. I even dream about recipes at night, Peanut.’

Peanut was my pet name for him, because of his one big vice: an addiction to Snickers, the nutty chocolate bars.

But since your redundancy, you’ve made no concrete plans to get this supposed business off the ground.’ His cheeks flushed. ‘In fact, you’ve just given away a box of cakes. You should have charged the postman.’

I’ve catered for kiddies’ parties,’ I said and my chest tightened. ‘And it’s paying off. I met Megan at her niece’s do. Everyone thought the cakes I made for her wedding were awesome. At last I’m moving on to more upmarket work. The bakery taught me all I know.’ I was rambling now. ‘The next step is to work somewhere I can make the right contacts.’

That’s a plan?’ he said. ‘So, exactly what kind of job are we talking about?’

Um…childminder to the kids of someone famous; receptionist in a top hairdressing salon…’ I could just see me now, delivering cakes to some top football club. The Wags would become my best friends. The men would insist Chico become their mascot… I started beating the eggs, not wanting to catch Adam’s eye. My plan sounded feeble, I knew that, but networking was my only chance. And let’s face it – no one at CountryHouse Potatoes could introduce me to a chart topping singer or Olympic champion.

The most famous person living in Luton is either dad to fifteen kids by fifteen mums or on trial for murder,’ muttered Adam.

That’s a bit harsh. I thought you liked living here.’

I do, but it pays to be realistic. Wise up, Kimmy – baking cakes is no way to escape the nine ‘til five. Round here, people have to work their butts off to earn an honest living. What makes you think you’re any different?’

I don’t, it’s just…You saw Megan’s cupcake tower – the spirals of pink buttercream icing; the ribboned gift boxes. I was up until three in the morning finishing that display.’ I lifted my chin. ‘And what about the selection of mini Christmas-themed cakes I made for that charity coffee morning, at the community centre, last week? Everyone went wild for the cute Stollen slices, cinnamon cupcakes and chocolate logs… ’ A lump rose in my throat. ‘Don’t you think I’ve got what it takes? You know I work hard. Don’t you believe I’ve got the talent?’

That Megan was a one-off, babe – she got married to her boss and they moved away to London. No one else around here can afford a wedding cake that per mouthful costs more than they earn per hour. As for the charity bash, you sold those cakes at a discount price for the good cause. Your profit hardly covered your costs. Times are hard; we don’t live in some crappy reality show with a quick-fix prize. However much you want it, building a successful business can take years – you ask my Uncle Ron.’

There’s nothing wrong with setting your sights high.’ I bit my lip.

So long as it’s not so high that your head’s stuck in the clouds.’ Adam stood up. ‘I’m sick of feeling as if my life’s on hold. We can’t plan a decent future just on my wages. The factory offers regular money, benefits and prospects. You could always do your cake thing when we’ve retired and got a house with a bigger kitchen.’

Retired? I’ve only just turned twenty-one and you’re only a year older! I mean… isn’t that rather a long time off?’ At times he reminded me of Mr Potts, my Year Eleven form teacher, who advised us to choose the most boring career we could think of because it would probably pay the most.

I… didn’t expect things to turn out like this either, you know,’ he said and gave a small sigh. ‘I always imagined I’d earn enough to buy a place on my own, get a new car every year and afford a two week holiday in Spain…’ Adam plonked himself down on the sofa again and ran a hand through his short sandy hair, down to the back of his head. Suddenly I longed to do the same to him.

You do great,’ I said, softly. ‘Not all your mates have even left their parents’ homes yet.’

He shrugged. “I thought you moving in last year meant that you were ready to settle down. People like us don’t get to drive sports cars or live in houses with their own tennis courts.’

Leona Lewis does all right.’ I picked up the hand-whisk and mock-mimed a ballad.

So, now you’re going to audition for the X Factor?’

We’ve got years ahead of us together,’ I said. ‘What’s the rush to cement our relationship, literally, by tying ourselves down to a mortgage?’ I glanced at the oven clock. ‘I’ve got to hurry or I’ll be late for Jess.’

Adam’s mouth went into a thin line. ‘Look…’ he said, eventually. ‘Why don’t we cool things for a bit? I’ve been thinking for a while that, well… It’s for the best, babe… in the long run… Maybe you should move out.’

A ball of coldness hit the inside of my chest. No. Adam had to be joking. He couldn’t mean it. We’d had a great time, ever since I moved in last summer. “Kimberley Jones has shacked up with her boyfriend” was my best ever Facebook status. Hoping I didn’t smell too sporty, I walked over and sat on his lap.

How about I find a regular bar job, to combine with the temp agency stuff? That would bring in extra money, until my baking takes off?’ I slipped my arms around his broad neck and gazed right into his eyes. ‘We both know you couldn’t manage without me. Who else would pair up your socks or keep you supplied with clean trackie bottoms?’

His hands slipped around my waist and I leant in for a snog. However, Adam prised me off, like some rockstar rejecting a crazed fan. He reached over to the small coffee table and picked up the local paper, flicking through to the Home Search section. Then he passed it to me.

You’re serious, aren’t you?’ I stuttered, feeling ever so slightly sick. ‘And on a practical level, how can I afford a place of my own, just like that, let alone find one a couple of weeks before Christmas? Mum won’t welcome me back.’ Especially as boyfriend number… I’d lost count… had just moved in. Like all the rest, he sported barbed wire tattoos and thought he was the next Eric Clapton.

You might find a flat share,’ said Adam and folded his arms. ‘Makes you realise, doesn’t it, how important it is to have a reliable income?’

I’ve more than pulled my weight!’ A wave of red-hot indignation replaced the coldness in my chest. ‘Days stuffing envelopes paid for our petrol and food last month. In fact, if we ever get in at the same time, it’s always me who cooks dinner and does the housework whilst you work out at the gym.’

Adam raised his arms into the air. ‘But it’s me who’s responsible for trying to save up for our future.’

Well maybe I needed a break from responsibility after virtually bringing up my younger brother.’ My voice trembled. ‘Ever had to sit your mum down and take her through the weekly budget? No. So, don’t talk to me about being level-headed and practical.’

I’d like to know what happened to that organised, sensible girl I fell in love with.’

Eyes tingling, I stumbled into the bedroom and hauled my pink case off the top of the wardrobe. Sensible? Hadn’t I recently taken back the five inch high shoes I’d only bought because I saw them on Paris Hilton?

I sat down on the bed and stared at my glittery nails. It didn’t make me a bad person, did it? Wanting a better life? Holidays where trees smelt of vanilla? Cars with engines that didn’t take ten minutes to start? I wanted arctic white teeth; I wanted rainforest-exotic handbags. I wanted to spend my nine ‘til five doing something that I loved. Wasn’t it good to have aspirations? Work hard for a top lifestyle? That was what I’d always dreamed of, growing up, wearing neighbours’ cast-offs. I didn’t even get a brand new first bra. Mum said I wouldn’t be in it that long and the money she’d save would buy a mountain of fags.

You should have let me get down that case,’ said Adam, suddenly appearing at the bedroom door. ‘I didn’t mean for you to leave right away.’

I swallowed. Was he having second thoughts?

At least ring around a few friends first.’

My heart sank. ‘Is there… someone else?’ I said and sniffed.


I believed him. Adam didn’t do excuses. Not even if he forgot my birthday or – God help him – finished off the last tube of Pringles.

Then give me one more chance,’ I whispered. ‘What’s it going to take to change your mind?’

Adam hesitated for a moment before kneeling down in front of me, by the bed. He took both my hands and gently rubbed my palms with his thumbs. ‘Fill in that form, babe. Then we can both look forwards.’ His eyes crinkled at the corners. ‘I still love you,’ he murmured and kissed me softly on the lips. ‘I just can’t face starting the New Year without having more concrete plans for our future.’

That’s what bowled me over, about Adam – my gentle giant combined strength with such tenderness. The thought of life without him was unthinkable. We went together like a cupcake and cappuccino. I’d never forget feeling sick with excitement when we first started dating. Hunky Adam, with his clean-shaven cheeky smile and steadfast eyes, had asked me out. I’d never find another guy who found my “voluptuous tum” (code for “pot belly”) a turn on – or who, more importantly, made me feel as if the big wide world could do me no harm. Even though we’d been together for almost three years, I still treasured the things he’d bought me which showed that he really cared – not jewellery or flowers, but the emergency holdall for my car with a warning triangle and blanket inside. No one had ever looked out for me like that. When he’d bought me a personal alarm, I’d practically swooned at his feet. But all this… planning for our retirement already…

We could window-shop for houses,’ he continued, stood up and grabbed his towel. ‘Suss out what sort of property would suit us. Google mortgage deals…Look into saving plans. It’s never too early to start cutting back. We could eat value range food and buy clothes from charity shops.’ Humming, he beamed and left the bedroom.

Mortgage deals? And had he ever tried value cornflakes? They were like cardboard confetti.

I headed into the lounge, picked up a biro from the coffee table and, still unable to take it all in, sat back on the sofa for a while. Eventually I leant forward and held my head in my hands. Adam was what my Auntie Sharon would have called “a catch” –kind, hard-working and loyal. But why the rush to throw down roots and, in the process, throw away our freedom?

I looked up and chewed on the end of the pen, before reaching for the application form. My eyes felt wet. Every atom of me hurt. Why did he have to give me an ultimatum? With a shaking hand, I texted Jess and asked her to meet me, instead, by the bench outside Adam’s flat. Then I picked up the form and slowly began writing:



CURRENT POSITION: Aspiring Entrepreneur

SEX: 100% safe, please, until career well underway

ASSETS: Curves. Cupcakes. Ambition.

HOW DO YOU SEE YOURSELF IN 5 YEARS: Glossy-haired, Dior-dressed catering magnate


MARITAL STATUS: Single, then?

ADDRESS: “No Fixed Abode”, I guess.

Picture 014

Samantha Tonge lives in Cheshire with her lovely family, and two cats who think they are dogs. When not writing, she spends her days cycling and willing cakes to rise. She has sold over 80 short stories to women’s magazines. Her bestselling debut novel, Doubting Abbey, was shortlisted for the Festival of Romantic Fiction best Ebook award in 2014. Its fun standalone sequel is From Paris with Love. Mistletoe Mansion stars a new set of characters and is for fans of cupcakes and Christmas!

Review: The boy in the cemetery by Sebastian Gregory

untitled (27)The boy in the cemetery by Sebastian Gregory

This is the story of a girl who lived but was not alive…

Carrie Anne is desperately unhappy. Tangled in a web of abuse, she seeks solace in the cemetery that backs onto her garden. But something creeps between the gravestones. Carrie Anne is not alone…

…and a boy who was dead, but could not die.

‘The cemetery is home to a boy. He has guarded these forgotten bones since meeting a gruesome end two hundred years ago. Neither dead nor alive, he has been watching for a long time. And now, he finally has the visitor he’s been waiting for…”


The boy in the cemetery is a very Burton-esque horror story. It is hard to pin down as one genre because there is a horror/supernatural aspect to it, but at it’s core there is the friendship between Carrie Anne and “The boy”- together they enact retribution in a very unique style.  Often uncomfortable because of themes of neglect, abuse, loneliness and revenge- Sebastian Gregory pulls it off with great style. It is a creepy novella, where everyone somehow, gets what they deserve.

Sebastian Gregory  has one hell of an imagination and his other novels are just as twisted- which makes them all ghoulishly delicious.  The boy in the cemetery is a must read for it’s innovative plot and spine tingling delivery.


Review: Coming home to you by Liesel Schmidt

untitled (25)Coming home to you by Liesel Schmidt

When one door closes…

Zoë and her fiancé Paul had everything ahead of them. So when Paul dies suddenly, Zoë doesn’t recognise the life she’s left with. Helping a friend by housesitting for a stranger is the last thing she wants to do – but she can’t deny that she needs time away from the memories which crowd her flat. So, collecting the keys, Zoë lets herself into her temporary home.

…another one opens.

Surrounded by a stranger’s belongings – his toothbrush, his favourite records, the pictures on his walls – Zoë begins to build a picture of the flat’s owner, Neil, who is away in the military. Driven by a need to know more, Zoë begins writing to Neil and finds herself feeling an unlikely connection with him. But while some people are destined to share our lives forever, others are sent simply to help us on the way. And for Zoë, a new life is just beginning…

Proof that life can change in the most unexpected of ways, Coming Home to You is the superbly moving debut from Liesel Schmidt, perfect for fans of Cecilia Ahern and Jojo Moyes.”


Coming home to you is an amazing debut by Liesel Schmidt. I can not remember the last time a book made me cry like this one. Liesel Schmidt’s beautiful writing is so emotive and empathic, I really felt all of Zoe’s heart break.  The novel really touched me, being in a similar situation, myself- I fully remember the journey of emotions and saying to myself “my life was so well planned, what do I do now?”. Zoe, became rudderless, but serendipity intervened and gave her a new opportunity that she desperately needed.

Coming home to you, is heart breaking, heart warming and will re-instil hope that fate always has an ace up her sleeve for all of us. It is a wonderful book that I will be adding to my list of favourite books. I can not wait to see what Liesel Schmidt writes next. Five stars is not enough.


Down Under

cover55505-smallThe Secret Prince by Justine Lewis
“Prince Alexander Davros is on the run. From the press, from his bodyguards, and from a secret that threatens his position as heir to his country’s throne …

Journalist Maddie Lawson is determined to prove herself capable of covering hard news. She’s fuming when her boss tells her to investigate reports of a European prince holidaying undercover in Sydney. As far as Maddie is concerned, Alexander Davros is a freeloading playboy.

When their accidental meeting results in a media frenzy, Alex is convinced Maddie’s just been using him for a story. And Maddie can’t believe the cute surfer she kissed was actually royalty. With her professional reputation in tatters, Maddie has no choice but to accept the royal family’s offer to travel to Europe to write a profile on the Prince.

While furious that his father has arranged for Maddie to visit, Alex is forced to keep her close or risk having her uncover his secret. And as they spend more time together, the attraction between them grows. But if Maddie discovers the truth, she’ll have to choose between the career she’s worked so hard for and the man she’s just getting to know … ”

The secret prince is complete escapism bliss. It is a wonderful début by Justine Lewis and the perfect fairy tale for a winter’s day. It is contemporary, but there is still plenty of old fashioned romance too.

The secret prince is the kind of novel we all would wish to live but never admit to. Full of exotic locations and majestic situations, it is a glorious escape into a world full of King’s. Castles, and Prince’s- although, it is a world that no longer exists in our time, I can still dream about it.

A sweet, quick read that will keep those Cinderella day dreams alive.



untitled (23)World Change (Earthbound 1) by Maggie Munday

“Clare gets transported from present day Florence to an alternate world, one that looks like fourteenth century Italy. The only way back is through a portal half a world away, plus the local High priestess wants her dead, and the only one she can trust is a vampire called Trevi. He is the only one who exits in this world, and she knows more about what he is than he does. He is hard to resist, especially when he saves her life. Trevi can take her home but he is keeping one big secret. She will have to be like him to survive the journey through the portal back to her world making a myth a reality ”

Maggie Munday does it again! With “World change”, she created a fantastic alternative urban fantasy universe, filled with gorgeous vampires and other supernatural creatures. I loved it and I wished I could visit there.

Trevi is by far the sexiest vampire I have ever read, he is dark, brooding and dangerous. There is so much packed into this epic novel: intrigue, adventure, and an incredible romance. There were many tender moments between Trevi and Clare, that just melted my heart and plenty of action to keep me on my toes.

Once I started reading, I could not put this book down, the only bad part about this book, is the wait for the next one in the series. I highly recommend!






cover53418-smallChasing the flame by Cheryl Adnams
“Sometimes the hottest fire burns with an old flame. Trisha Carne has loved Brian Muller, of Muller’s Field vineyard, for as long as she can remember but the moment has never been right. Then an unexpected kiss on New Year’s Eve has Brian looking at her in a new way. Has she finally caught his attention? Brian’s been doing it tough since his wife left him, and has retreated into the safety of bachelorhood. So he’s surprised to find this new fling with an old flame is starting to bring him back to life.  Until his ex-wife turns up in McLaren Vale and he’s thrown into a state of confusion. Will Brian and Trisha let their pasts keep them from finding true happiness? Or will they have the courage to chase the flames that still smoulder between them?”

Another sexy story from the McLaren Vale, this time with another Muller brother. The delectable Muller brothers were first introduced in “Bet on it” and although it is a sequel, Chasing the flame can be read as a stand alone, but I recommend reading in order because both books are so wonderful.

Brian just smouldered with angst ridden sexuality and Cheryl Adnams really delved into his psyche and delivered a truly three dimensional character that you could really fall in love with and wish he was a real man that you could stand a chance with. I don’t think I could pick my favourite Muller brother because each of them are so blissful in their own way.

Cheryl Adnams has a way of bringing the McLaren Vale to life vividly, and the location becomes almost a character in its own right. Chasing the flame, is witty, sexy, and deeply romantic. I found that I was not so much reading the novel but experiencing it.

I can not wait for the next book in the series, and I wish there were so many more Muller brothers to pick from. Great read that will not disappoint, perfect for those long winters night’s to add some spicy steam.




untitled (24)Will of the heart by Darry Fraser

“So your father’s will leaves you bewildered and angry, and with the possibility of losing everything you love – your cattle station home in the red desert of central Australia. Do you stand up and fight for it against your father’s wishes or do you follow and find that the road home leads directly to another’s heart? ”


Will of the Heart is gorgeous novel, with a beautiful setting and stunning characters. Toni and Callum are electric as their desire for one another reaches a glorious climax. Toni and Callum’s romance was so gracefully written, it touched my heart and gave me hope that my own Callum is out there waiting for me.

Darry Fraser never disappoints. She is a phenomenal new Australian author that delivers every time! I can highly recommend every book she has written. Each story is packed with wonderful locations, romance and a lot of soul.

Guest Post: Rebecca Raisin- Christmas Wedding at the Gingerbread Cafe


untitled (22)I LOVE Christmas! And with that comes a total adoration for Christmas carols! I’m the girl walking through the shops with a huge smile plastered on my face as I sing along to the music blaring out over head. It can be pan-pipes, instrumental, a kids choir, it doesn’t matter, if it’s Christmassy – I love it!

I’m one of those people who has kind of hyper-emotional reactions to anything. For example if I find something funny, I can laugh for DAYS about it. This crazed, belly-holding kind of laughter that makes people shake their heads and wonder if I’m sane. The same thing goes with Christmas music…Tour banner CW

I happen to adore the song Amazing Grace, but uh oh, I find it really quite sad! In that gorgeously haunting way! So seriously, cue the ugly crying! As soon as the opening melody starts, a full-fledged blubber-fest begins…because… it’s so beautiful! And it makes me think of all the things I’m grateful for, and the magic of Christmas and the fact Santa is on his way! It’s probably no surprise that the opening scene of Christmas at the Gingerbread café features, Lil kind of in the same predicament.

Here’s a small excerpt…

Amazing Grace blares out from the speakers above me, and I cry, not delicate, pretty tears, but great big heaves that will puff up my eyes, like a blowfish. That song touches me, always has, always will. With one hand jammed well and truly up the turkey’s behind I sing those mellifluous words as if I’m preaching to a choir. Careful, so my tears don’t swamp the damn bird, I grab another handful of aromatic stuffing. My secret recipe: a mix of pork sausage, pecans, cranberries and crumbled corn bread. Punchy flavors that will seep into the flesh and make your heart sing. The song reaches its crescendo, and my tears turn into a fully-fledged blubber-fest. The doorbell jangles and I realize I can’t wipe my face with my messy hands. Frantic, I try and compose myself as best I can.

“Jesus Mother o’ Mary, ain’t no customers comin’ in here with this kinda carry-on! It’s been two years since that damn fool left you. When you gonna move on, my sweet cherry blossom?”

So in a way, Lil is very similar to me when it comes to her emotions and Christmas music! This theme carries on through the three books, and of course plays a part in her Christmas Wedding! What’s not to love about feeling all sentimental and sweet at this time of year!

As the stories progress, Lil develops and so do her reactions to music, and certainly Amazing Grace. It’s yet to happen to me, I still blubber like a fool, but only when I’m home alone!

Thanks for having me here today, Robyn! And I hope everyone has a wonderful Christmas!

CW DreamcastYou are invited to the wedding of the year!

Snow is falling thick and fast outside the Gingerbread Café and inside, its owner Lily is planning the wedding of the year. Her wedding! She never dreamt it would happen, but this Christmas, she’ll be marrying the man of her dreams – in a Christmas-card-perfect ceremony!

The gingerbread is baking, the dress is fitted and the mistletoe’s in place – for once, everything’s going to plan. That is until her mother-in-law arrives… Suddenly, Lily’s famous cool is being tested like never before and her dream wedding is crumbling before her eyes.

In the blink of a fairylight, the Gingerbread Café has been thrown into chaos! Lily thought she had this wedding wrapped up, but with so much to do before she says ‘I do’, can Lily get to the church on time – and make this Christmas sparkle after all?

Tour banner CWThe Gingerbread Café series:

Christmas at the Gingerbread Cafe

Chocolate Dreams at the Gingerbread Cafe

(The Bookshop on the Corner)

Christmas Wedding at the Gingerbread Café

Find Christmas Wedding at the Gingerbread Café here:

Amazon US

Amazon UK

Amazon Aust


Google play





Find Rebecca here:


Christmas Wedding at the Gingerbread Café is one of those rare uplifting books that should become a Christmas reading tradition. It encapsulates everything that the season should be in one feel-good package. The entire “Gingerbread” series is phenomenal and must be read. Rebecca Raisin’s created a masterpiece of romantic fiction by adding her own wonderful compassion and sunny disposition- that makes it is impossible not to fall in love with this book and the series. Five stars is not enough because I will be re-reading every year to start the Christmas season off with.


Rebecca Raisin is a true bibliophile. This love of books morphed into the desire to write them. She’s been widely published in short story anthologies, and in fiction magazines. And now she is focusing on writing romance.

Rebecca aims to write characters you can see yourself being friends with. People with big hearts who care about relationships and believe in true love.