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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’.
Prepare to relinquish yourself to a ravishing new world in this exquisitely hypnotic read. Helprin offers you the chance to view New York from a different reality, one of disconcertingly bewitching rogues, heroically valiant horses and divinely mysterious villages. Four interlinked tales are told across several generations, where time undulates and miracles materialise out of thin air. Appearing at first to be a lovely whimsical fantasy, as you read further, you feel there is a deeper and more profound story emerging from the pages. This fascinating tale is not about the ending but the wild and incredible journey of the characters who have been poetically brought to life. This is a book to fall in love with, to embrace, to yearn for, then to return to and savour all over again. ~ Liz Robinson The film version of A New York Winter's Tale is released in UK cinemas on Friday 21 February 2014. Click below to view the trailer.
As Christmas 1938 approaches, the staff at the Nightingale Hospital have their own wishes for the festive season. Ward sister Frannie Wallace is hoping she won't have to live through another war like the one that claimed her beloved fiance. But with bomb defences going up all around London, it seems as if her hopes are in vain. Staff Nurse Helen Dawson wants to find happiness again after the death of her husband Charlie. A handsome stranger seems to offer the chance she wants. But is she looking for love in the wrong place? Matron Kathleen Fox struggles to keep up morale amongst her nurses as the hospital faces the threat of evacuation. But while everyone else worries about the future of the Nightingale, it's for her own future that Kathleen truly fears. As the country prepares itself for war, one thing is for sure - by the time next Christmas comes, nothing at the Nightingale Hospital will be the same again.
October 2014 eBook of the Month. Gloriously moving and delightful, this is the perfect companion to hide from reality with for a few hours. At first glance Claire appears to have a heavenly life, her husband is busy finishing their dream cottage and Idyllic Homes are featuring them in their magazine (you know… the darling, fairy-tale type of magazine that actually stuffs you green with envy). Each chapter is headed with an extract from the article detailing Claire’s perfect home, each chapter then describes Claire’s reality; the chaos of three children, an indifferent husband, a monstrous mother-in-law and then the teasing, flirting and fluttering that a click of connection and hope can bring. Become friends with Claire, laugh with her, cry with her, care about her and cheer her on as she struggles to become the person she deserves to be. ~ Liz Robinson
This is the wonderfully nostalgic and heartwarming new novel from the Sunday Times Top Ten bestselling author of The Beggar Maid. Born out of wedlock when her mother was only fourteen, Lucy Pocket has spent all her life in the care of her disreputable but charming grandmother, Eva. They dodge from one poor lodging house to another, always in debt and resorting to theft in order to exist. Until her wealthy paternal grandfather buys her from Eva, determined to bring Lucy up to be a lady. When her grandfather dies, his despicable nephew cheats Lucy out of her inheritance, except for a run-down lodging house in Whitechapel, where she is forced to look after his three illegitimate children. Jilted by her would-be fiance, Lucy is determined to make a life for herself and the children, and to search for her long lost grandmother, creating the family she has always longed for.
Beautifully told, with a cast of truly intriguing characters, this is a novel that immediately captures attention and allows you to immerse yourself in its velvety depths. This, the first in an exclusive four part serialisation of the novel, introduces the Winter family; soon to turn 80 Martha invites everyone to a party at Winterfold, where she plans an announcement she fears will tear them apart. Scattered around the world, the different generations all seem to hold and hide secrets and as hints and suggestions slink across the pages, we are kept in suspense, waiting to see who can and who will attend the party and wondering what the announcement could possibly be. Evans portrays the characters with a deft and eloquent touch, she allows them a quirk, a flaw, a vulnerability that brings them vibrantly to life. Her descriptions of Winterfold are so enticing, you find yourself wishing for an invitation to join the party. The end of part one brings you back to reality with a gasp, this is gloriously wonderful writing and will leave you waiting with baited breath for the next part in the series. Click here to see part 2 of A Place for Us.
A lovely, fascinating, proper treat of a read set during the Blitz of World War Two. The Brogan family sit at the heart of A Ration Book Christmas which is the start of a new saga series. Concentrating on sisters Jo and Mattie, we see their lives unfold as the bombing raids take their toll. Jean Fullerton brings to life the war on the home front, the small details and descriptions fully set the scene, supporting the storyline beautifully. I took this close knit family to my heart, from little rascal Billy through to unshakable Gran Queenie. Each and every character feels rounded, real, tangible. I let myself simply sink into the story, and it wrapped itself cosily around me. Romance, gossip, scandal, pain, friendship and love make their mark and I was left wanting to know more about this family. A Ration Book Christmas is food for the soul, it’s simply deliciously readable and enjoyable. Featured in the LoveReading Christmas Gift Guide.
One of our Great Reads You May Have Missed in 2012. Catherine Alliott is at her sparkling and brilliant best in this her latest feel-good read. Full of her trademark wit and characters you feel instantly drawn to. Perfect to curl up with in that 'me' time you've been promising yourself! May 2012 Book of the Month.
It is a Quick Read but has the same setting as her big seller The Beach Hut and those fans will undoubtedly lap it up despite its size and simplicity. I think it will do very well indeed. It is also perfect to pass on to anyone who might not be such a committed reader to tempt them into reading longer books.
Sweeping from the Great War, through the Jazz Age to the 1940s, this unforgettable tale follows the entwined lives of the Fentons, an aristocratic family from Yorkshire. Thea, the eldest daughter of Viscount Gilbert Fenton, flouts the unwritten rules of her class by embarking on a love affair with Hal, the fiercely socialist son of one of her father's tenant farmers. Carrie, her close childhood friend and granddaughter of the Viscount's nanny, has always been expected to marry Hal - but when she goes into service she finds herself longing for the one person she can never hope to marry. Olivia, the middle Fenton sister, follows a more conventional path, forging friendships with the British royal family and attending a finishing school in Germany. Her relationship with Count von der Schulenburg does not raise eyebrows, but as the mid-1930s approach, she finds herself in a country experiencing rapid, radical and dangerous social change. Violet, the youngest of the Fenton sisters, is also the most reckless. She dreams of becoming an actress in Hollywood, unaware her life will be filled with more drama than any part she will ever play. And then there is Rozalind, their American cousin, who is secretly in love with a married U.S. senator. Her ambitions to become a photojournalist will also take her into the heart of Hitler's Germany. Set against the rich canvas of the first half of the twentieth century, A Season of Secrets is an unforgettable tale of passion and betrayal, love and war.
March 2017 Book of the Month. Another joyful hug of a read from Katie Fforde, what more could you want, than to settle down with her latest book! Philly, Lorna and Anthea, all wonderful ladies, in various stages of their lives, sit centre stage in this delightful story. Set in a friendly community, with a garden to restore, will love pay a fleeting visit or settle in for a longer stay? As to be expected, the three main characters are surrounded by a lovely cast of friends, as life throws gravel, pebbles, and socking great boulders in their path. Katie Fforde has the wonderful ability to put a smile on my face, and I feel re-energised and ready to face the world again when I finish her lovely tales. To be honest, her stories speak for themselves, I really only need to tell you that the latest Katie Fforde is out, and it’s the warm and very charming ‘A Secret Garden’. ~ Liz Robinson Click here to read an exclusive interview with Katie Fforde by Mary Hogarth.
In strictly chapel Pontypridd in 1938, tongues are quick to wag when Alma Moore, abandoned by her lover, is rushed to hospital with stomach pains. The doctor may call it appendicitis, but the scandal-mongers think they know better. And then Bethan John, who's too good for the rest of them since she married a doctor, comes back to her mining family's house with her new baby - but without her husband, or any word of explanation. Ostracised by most - even their own mothers - Alma and Bethan face a lonely struggle to survive. Then taciturn Russian Charlie, an outsider haunted by his own past, reaches out the hand of friendship to them both, and in so doing begins to thaw his own heart...
An epic relationship tale, spanning one of the most interesting periods in our history. Aubrette grows up as her half-sister Rowena’s companion, her life changes dramatically when Rowena marries. Rowena’s new husband is an illegitimate son of Henry II, Aubrette remains with Rowena throughout her marriage, travelling with her into France and on to the crusades with Richard I. Ann Turner doesn't shy away from the difficulties faced by women during this time, with violence spilling over the pages. Used and abused, Aubrette has a truly difficult life, as Kings come and go, Aubrette finds herself a pawn for the men in power. ‘A Sister’s Crusade’ is a fascinating sometimes uncomfortable, behind the scenes look at history. ~ Liz Robinson
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.