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Stories from the heart. This category combines Romantic Fiction with Sagas and Romance to create a collection of lovely tales. From rags to riches stories to tales of tight-knit communities, this carefully curated collection is bound to have the perfect match for you, and as the Beatles said, ‘love is all you need’.
This latest novel from Josephine Cox gets straight to the heart of family life and the dramas that surround them. What begins as a gentle, seaside holiday in Blackpool with friends soon becomes a distant, cherished memory for Marie. A time when life was happy and simpler made up of a loving family and good friends. Yet as time moves on all is shattered and Marie is forced to live with the consequences of one moment that would change her life forever. Years later she returns to Blackpool to try and mend the ill she has done and finally admit to the terrible secret she’s been harbouring for many years. There is much at stake but she feels that the time has come and the truth must be heard. With the wonderful nostalgic setting of 1970’s Blackpool, Cox pulls at the heartstrings as we get to know and love the wonderful, gentle characters throughout and live through their highs and lows until she brings us to the climax of the story. Will Marie lose everything that she has come to love or will her revelations bring her the peace and acceptance she so desperately craves? Fans of Josephine Cox will love this new family drama. ~ Shelley Fallows
From the bestselling author of the Richard and Judy Book Club summer read, East of the Sun, Julia Gregson returns with this compelling love story set in India - perfect for fans of The Tea Planter's Wife.
All aboard for an Agatha Christie-esque mystery set on a ship bound for the distant shores of Australia in 1939. As the world teeters on the edge of another war, working class Lily is about to plunge headlong into a new life. She’s leaving her family and her little room in Hammersmith to work in domestic service in Australia. While she’s on a lowly assisted-passage scheme, once aboard the ship she “feels like a person of substance”, enjoying cocktail parties in the company of flirtatious Edward Fletcher and the decadent Campbells as they stop off at the likes of Pompeii, the Pyramids and Colombo. But, as Lily’s Jewish friend Maria remarks, “on a boat like this everyone is running away from something”, and that certainly turns out to be true when a succession of misdemeanors strike; an assault, a disappearance, and then murder. All in all, this is a scrumptiously entertaining, read-in-one-sitting mystery that fizzes with glamour, romance and intrigue and the sting of an unexpected twist, while also exploring sexual, racial and class prejudices. ~ Joanne Owen
In the late 1800s, left on the steps of a workhouse as a new born, named Sunday to mark the day and subjected to a hard and often cruel childhood, our heroine, as a teenager, catches the eye of the workhouse master. This enrages matron who has designs on the master herself. Jealousy is indeed an evil monster as Sunday will discover. Forced to flee she encounters tragedy and pain, little happiness but then, as this fast-paced, absorbing read should, light and love will shine through for her. It’s predictable and glorious fun, the perfect ingredients for a long, relaxing read and an obvious Mother’s Day gift. Fans of this genre will love it. ~ Sarah Broadhurst
A rather special, magically quirky yet deeply dark novel, with a potentially misleading title - until you’ve read the book and all becomes clear! Sisters Lilly and Neave set up a cosmetics empire as the USA becomes involved in the Second World War. When Lilly goes missing, Neave finds herself in incredible danger. Sharon Powell writes with a sparkling pen, adding just enough enchantment, while retaining a gritty feeling of reality. Mr Boppit became a firm favourite of mine, I quite fell under his spell, particularly regarding his choice of shoewear. Another tale runs alongside and inside the main storyline, adding an extra dimension to the read. There is a sparkling alchemy to the writing, yet an ominous undertone ensured I was kept on the edge of my seat as the tension increased. ‘The Romance Reader’s Guide to Life’ is a particularly charming, wonderfully compelling read, do I recommend it, why yes, I most assuredly do!
Ellie Jeffreys arrives in Darjeeling with her British husband, en route to Kathmandu. They have ten-month-old, golden-haired twins, and despite appearing to be a happy family, Ellie's relationship with the overbearing, philandering Francis is disintegrating. At a cocktail party, Ellie meets Hugh Douglas, a maverick explorer and botanist. Despite the rumours surrounding Hugh, Ellie is drawn to him. A year later, Nepal is devastated by a catastrophic earthquake and in a falling building, Ellie is forced to make an instant, and terrible, decision: she has time to save only one of her children. When she returns for her son's body the next day, it has gone. Ellie knows he cannot have disappeared; someone, somewhere has her child, and it is to Hugh that she turns for help.
Be swept away with beloved bestselling author Santa Montefiore and the Deverill Chronicles. Martha Wallace came to Dublin from her home in America to find her birth mother. But instead she has lost her heart to the impossibly charming JP Deverill. Then she discovers that her mother comes from the same place as JP, and her fate seems sealed. Bridie Doyle, now Countess di Marcantonio and mistress of Castle Deverill, is determined to make the castle she used to work in her home. But her flamboyant husband Cesare has other ideas. And as his eye strays away from his wife, those close to the couple start to wonder if he really is who he says he is. Kitty Deverill has come to terms with her life with her husband Robert, and their two children. But then Jack O'Leary, the love of her life, returns to Ballinakelly. And this time his heart belongs elsewhere...
An engaging, poignant and moving family tale set in the 1960’s on the south coast of England. 15 year old twins Maisy and Duncan are sent to live in the New Forest with their disapproving grandmother. After the difficulties of their childhood, the beauty of the forest captures their imagination, however when Duncan goes missing and the bodies of young men are discovered, lives are changed forever. This story touches heartbreak, can be uncomfortable to read, yet Lesley Pearse always handles difficult subjects with sensitivity and empathy. This is such a readable tale, I simply raced through the drama and intrigue. ‘The Woman in the Wood’ is a captivating and intense story, bringing alive a time period still within touching distance. ~ Liz Robinson
1879. Lanzarote. A wealthy young woman elopes with an impoverished fisherman, leaving her family distraught.1968. Perdita West, secretary to a famous author, visits Lanzarote on a research trip and begins to fall in love with the unusual, beautiful little island. When, while snorkelling, a landslide traps Perdita in an underwater cave, her efforts to save herself will reveal what happened to the ill-fated couple who fell in love at this very spot almost a century ago ...
Suffused in the exuberance of a yellow-jersey-wearing cyclist freewheeling down the Champs-Élysées with a bottle of Champagne, this wildly witty novel tells of three fine young women who rise above body-shaming bullies to become Queens of the Mountain. Likened to Jean-Paul Sartre - “squinty old man, atrociously ugly” – Mireille has been voted one of the ugliest girls in her school in the cruel “Pig Pageant” Facebook poll, but she’s not going to take this lying down. Rather, she seeks out the two other “Little Piglettes”, Astrid and Hakima, and they strike up sisterly bond. Sometimes fate conspires in fortuitous ways and here the girls realise that key aspects of their lives will conflate at the president’s Élysée Palace party. Quite simply, the Three Little Piglettes must go to the ball and so they embark on a voyage à vélo to Paris, funding their trip by selling homemade saucisson. First covered by local news, their journey goes viral, which sees them enveloped in a peloton of national interest. What an inspired, amusing, enchanting ride this is.
Just one huge loving hug from start to finish. Felicity flees as fast as her heart and mind will let her when she realises her ex-husband is back in town. Seth last saw Felicity ten years ago, he still has feelings for her, does the fact that she has run, mean that she returns them? I just love a Sarah Morgan novel, she delivers every time, with friendship as much at the heart of the story as the romance. With both Felicity and Seth the focus, we are given more of an insight into relationship dance between them, and I cheerfully tutted, raised my eyebrows and encouraged them along the way. While the characters link to previous novels, if this is your first novel by Sarah Morgan, you could quite happily treat yourself to the delightful ‘Holiday in the Hamptons’ and read it as a standalone romantic feast. ~ Liz Robinson
The new heartwarming novel from Sunday Times bestselling author, Dilly Court. Clara held onto the precious button, glimmering like a jewel in the dark alleyways of London's notorious Seven Dials. She needed to save her family...but who was going to save her? There was a time when the Carter sisters' father was their hero. Now he's a drunk who's gambled away everything they had and put them all in peril. It's on Clara's shoulders to save the four sisters from destitution. Clutching her precious button box, the only thing of value they have left, Clara dreams of starting a shop that could put a roof over their heads and keep them safe...But in debt to the terrifying Patches Braggs, leader of one of the East End's roughest gangs, Clara is in fear for her life. When a mysterious benefactor seems to offer an escape, Clara realizes too late that it comes at a terrible price...Cheated, abandoned and alone - can Clara save her family and hold onto her dreams?
We all love a good saga. From Wuthering Heights and Jamaica Inn, to the modern works of authors like Katie Flynn, Katherine Webb and Nadine Dorries, there is something so captivating about the journey of a romantic heroine through an unfamiliar world, where the hearts and desires of all around her form the centre of everything. These stories can take place on grand settings: on the High Seas and foreign lands, or on a small cobbled street in a northern mining town. It doesn’t matter, as the journey of the heart is the most important of all. Get your tissues at the ready and find yourself happily shipwrecked on the ragged rocks of epic romance.