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Books to Listen to this Summer

I’ve decided to compile a list of books to listen to this summer. I’m a big fan of Audible. I’m also an affiliate so my links will earn me money if you click them, but don’t worry, you won’t pay any extra. Thanks for your support.

Books to Listen to this Summer

Little Fires Everywhere

books for summer, little fires everywhere.
By: Celeste Ng
Narrated by: Jennifer Lim
Length: 11 hrs and 27 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 09-11-17
Language: English
Publisher: Hachette Audio

This is next on my reading list. I’ve not watched the series so I’m going in for the story first. If I like it I might watch the series afterwards. I’m just waiting for my next Audible credit and this is the audio book I’m using it on. Have you read it?

I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings

i know why the caged bird sings, books to listen to this summer
By: Maya Angelou
Narrated by: Maya Angelou
Length: 10 hrs and 11 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 04-04-14
Language: English
Publisher: Hachette Audio UK

I’m listening to this right now and it’s both sad and beautiful. I have often seen quotes from Maya Angelou all over the internet but this is the first time I’ve started on of her books. This is the first book of her six book autobiography. And I will definitely be listening to more.

Playgroups and Prosecco

Playgroups and prosecco
By: Jo Middleton
Narrated by: Elizabeth Bower
Length: 9 hrs
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 02-05-19
Language: English
Publisher: Random House Audiobooks

I’ve already read this book, but I really want to listen to the audio book as well. Jo Middleton is a very funny lady and fabulous writer. I do hope she writes some more.

Midnight Sun

Midnight Sun
By: Stephenie Meyer
Narrated by: Jake Abel
Length: 25 hrs and 49 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 04-08-20
Language: English
Publisher: Hachette Audio UK

And, just in case you want a trip to the ‘dark side’ here is Stephenie Meyers Twighlight story told from a different angle. It’s actually Edward’s story an we can get an inside view on why he behaved the way he did. And if you are a Twilight fan then you will know that he did act pretty strange at times. I’m not a fan of the films, but I’ve read all the Twilight books.

Invisible Girl

By: Lisa Jewell
Narrated by: Donna BanyaRebekah StatonConnor Swindells
Length: 9 hrs and 45 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 06-08-20
Language: English
Publisher: Penguin Audio

Still a bit dark, but I love the concept of this book. Definitely one for my wish list.

Invisible Girl: a story of secrets and injustices and of how we look in the wrong places for the bad people while the real predators walk among us in plain sight.

Sunrise over Sapphire Bay

sunrise over sapphire bay, books to listen to this summer
By: Holly Martin
Narrated by: Penny Andrews
Length: 9 hrs and 12 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 04-06-20
Language: English
Publisher: Whole Story QUEST

Not going on holiday this year? Why not pick a book that will take you somewhere lovely. There are plenty of books to choose from but I decided to go for this romantic little novel set on a beautiful Jewel Island where “where the sapphire sea sparkles, the golden sun warms your skin and the islanders melt your heart. ”

Thanks for reading, have a wonderful summer,

Anne x

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Book Worms Monthly August

Welcome to Book worms Monthly August linkup

Hello, Welcome to Book worms Monthly, August. Last month I read one of the best books I have read this year. The Beekeeper of Aleppo by Christy Lefteri. I really wasn’t sure it was something I would enjoy but I loved it. You can read my review over here.

Reading is my passion and I love to write about what I’ve read. I’m a real book worm and I have been since the day I could read. I decided to start this linky so that other book worms could Share. I’m starting monthly for now, so you have a whole month to link up your posts. You can link up to four posts, so that’s one a week. Or if you like you can link up some of your older posts.

Let’s share what we read and give other’s ideas what to read next. Tell me your reviews, you book reading lists, your author interviews, kids book favourites, Young Adult books, and even posts about your favourite authors. Anything book related is allowed and I can’t wait to read them all. I want to find all the book worms out there.Here is last months linky to give you some idea of what book worms monthly is about. I’m trying to reach out to all the book worms out there to com and join me with their posts monthly.

Join Us for Book Worms Monthly

Book worms Monthly will be posted every month, and you can join in at any time. I will share anyone who links over on my Social Media sites, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Mix (formerly Stumbleupon.) I’ll also come along and read and comment on your post. Please do share this link up with your friends.

Link up your BookWorms Monthly July book posts below.

Here’s a badge to share. No code, just copy and paste it on your blog and link the photo back to mine if you wish. Or please mention my blog 
https://athomealot.com/ with a link instead. That we we can encourage more to join in and share.

book worms monthly June

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Night Music – Jo Jo Moyes

I haven’t read a book from Jo Jo Moyes for a long time, so I took the opportunity to buy an audiobook for £3 in the Audible sale and chose Night Music. Here is what I thought of it.

l will be using affiliate links which will incur not extra cost to you but may earn me a little cash, so thank you if you go on to purchase something.

Night Music, Jo jo Moyes, book cover.

The Blurb

Isabel Delancey has always taken her gifted life for granted. But when her husband dies suddenly, leaving her with a mountain of debt, she and her two children are forced to abandon their home and move to a crumbling pile in the country.

With the house falling down around them, and the last of her savings fast disappearing, Isabel turns to her neighbours, not knowing that her mere presence there has stirred up long-standing obsessions.

As she fights to make her house a home, passions and lives collide. Isabel will discover an instinct for survival she never knew she had – and that a heart can play a new song . . .

The Audio Book

I’ve listened to Clare Corbett, the narrator, a few times now and I enjoy her storytelling. When buying an audio book it’s always a good idea to listen to a little clip to check that you can get on with the narrator, there is nothing worse than listening to a voice, or accent that grates on you. Clare Corbett is fairly easy to listen too.

The Blurb for the Audio Book.

The Spanish House is a mixture of designs, Georgian, Gothic and Moorish, as if whoever started it had simply got bored. It has long been known as an architectural folly to locals, and is now nearly derelict to boot.

When its reclusive owner dies intestate, the Spanish House is left to his city-dwelling niece. For Isabel, recently widowed, the house is a potential lifeline – the only hope she has of providing for her two children without having to sell her most treasured possession.

But for neighbour Matt McCarthy, the house is revenge – on the family who ruined his father. For his wife it’s the key to the perfect family life, while a struggling property developer sees in it a whole new future. As desires clash and intertwine, lives and loves are demolished – and the Spanish House becomes a true folly indeed…

My Review of Night Music

Jo Jo Moyes has a wonderful way of making you believe in the characters of her stories, whether it’s the main character, the protagonist, the love interest or even the shop keeper. You feel like you know them all personally.

I didn’t take to the main character straight away, she seemed very self absorbed and even had little time for her children. My two favourite characters were her mute son Tierry and the labourer Byron. I loved how their relationship developed.

The plot had plenty of little twists and turns and just when you thought everything was a bit ‘everyday ordinary’ things take a drastic, even sinister turn. The ending was a little surprising.

I listened to the book fairly quickly, I wanted to know what was going to happen next, it really is a page turner.

If you like love stories that are a little out of the ordinary, then you will enjoy this. It is ultimately a love story, but is the love for something other than romance?

If you’ve read this book? Let me know what you thought of it.

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The Suspect By Fiona Barton – A review

The Suspect, by Fiona Barton is the third of her books that revolves around reporter Kate Waters. I have already reviewed The Widow and The Child. All three books are stand alone stories, but you do get to know some characters better as the stories progress.

I use affiliate links in my posts which means if you click through I and purchase you will receive a great new read and I will receive a little payment, at no extra cost to you. So thank you in advance.

The Suspect on Audible

I’m a huge fan of Audible, I love to listen to my stories while I crochet.

The Suspect audio book edition
By: Fiona Barton
Narrated by: Clare CorbettMark MeadowsSian ThomasRia Zmitrowicz
Length: 10 hrs and 54 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 24-01-19
Language: English
Publisher: Audible Studios
Categories: Crime & Thrillers,Suspense

Paperback Edition

The Blurb

When two eighteen-year-old girls go missing on their gap year in Thailand, their families are thrust into the international spotlight: desperate, bereft and frantic with worry.

Journalist Kate Waters always does everything she can to be first to the story, first with the exclusive, first to discover the truth – and this time is no exception. But she can’t help but think of her own son, who she hasn’t seen in two years, since he left home to go travelling.

This time it’s personal. And as the case of the missing girls unfolds, they will all find that even this far away, danger can lie closer to home than you might think . . .

My Review

I loved Fiona Barton’s other two books I couldn’t wait to get reading this one. I wasn’t disappointed, it was really hard to put down. It did feel different to the other two stories though. I’m not sure if that was because Kate didn’t have her usual role in the story. Or even that Bob Sparks was otherwise occupied with his wife’s cancer. When you get used to character’s behaving differently it kind of disrupts your expectations. So, I’m a little mixed on my feelings. I loved the book, but it just wasn’t the Kate and Bob I’ve come to know through the other two stories.

It was typical Fiona Barton style though. You are presented with all you need to know to solve the case in the beginning. The clues are obvious. But the story of how they got to that conclusion is still so very intriguing. Mostly because of Fiona’s amazing characterization. You really get to know the characters and feel invested in their parts of the story.

The Audible Version of The Suspect

Again, The audible version has gone for different voice actors for each character. I found this helped a lot in the last book, The Child, as the timelines were all over the place and everyone had such a different story. This book would have worked with just one narrator like The Widow. Yes, it’s good to hear each character in their own voice, but some of the voices just didn’t seem to fit. I get a bit picky over who I’m enjoying listening too and I know that’s a personal thing.

I hope Fiona Barton continues to write about Kate Waters because I’d love to read another and find out what happens to Kate and Bob next.

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Book Worms Monthly July Link up Party

Welcome to Book worms Monthly July linkup

Hello, Welcome to Book worms Monthly, July. It took me a little longer than expected to get through The Starless Sea last month, but once I started my second book, The Suspect by Fiona Barton, I had it listened to in just 3 days. Do you find that some books you fly through a lot quicker than others. I guess some need more absorbing, while others you just can’t wait what is going to happen next?

Reading is my passion and I love to write about what I’ve read. I’m a real book worm and I have been since the day I could read. I decided to start this linky so that other book worms could Share. I’m starting monthly for now, so you have a whole month to link up your posts. You can link up to four posts, so that’s one a week. Or if you like you can link up some of your older posts.

Let’s share what we read and give other’s ideas what to read next. Tell me your reviews, you book reading lists, your author interviews, kids book favourites, Young Adult books, and even posts about your favourite authors. Anything book related is allowed and I can’t wait to read them all. I want to find all the book worms out there.Here is last months linky to give you some idea of what book worms monthly is about. I’m trying to reach out to all the book worms out there to come and join me with their posts monthly.

Join Us for Book Worms Monthly

Book worms Monthly will be posted every month, and you can join in at any time. I will share anyone who links over on my Social Media sites, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Mix (formerly Stumbleupon.) I’ll also come along and read and comment on your post. Please do share this link up with your friends.

Link up your BookWorms Monthly July book posts below.

Here’s a badge to share. No code, just copy and paste it on your blog and link the photo back to mine if you wish. Or please mention my blog 
https://athomealot.com/ with a link instead. That we we can encourage more to join in and share.

book worms monthly June

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To Be A Cat – Matt Haig, Book review

I wanted something to read along with my Little Man so I decided to introduce him to Matt Haig and we read together, To Be a Cat.

To Be a Cat, Matt Haig
Publisher: Penguin Random House Children’s UK 
ISBN: 9780552564342 
Number of pages: 320 
Weight: 224 g 
Dimensions: 198 x 129 x 20 mm

To Be A Cat, the Blurb

Barney Willow’s life couldn’t get any worse. He’s weedy, with sticky-out ears. Horrible Gavin Needle loves tormenting him. And evil headteacher Miss Whipmire seems determined to make Barney’s existence a complete misery! Worst of all, Dad has been missing for almost a year – and there’s no sign of him ever coming home. Barney just wants to escape. To find another life. To be a cat, for example. A quiet, lazy cat.

Things would be so much easier – wouldn’t they?

Our Review

As a fan of Matt Haig I was eager to share his style with my son. After reading one of Matt’s books you get a sense of humanity, and they are often uplifting and assuring. You can read a couple of my reviews of Matt Haig’s other books here.

So, what did we think of To Be a Cat? Well, The Little Man was not over keen at first, he didn’t like how uncomfortable Barney Willow’s life was. My Little Man has experienced bullying himself and he prefers to lock it away rather than talk about it. But I thought it was good for him to see that other people felt the same too.

The book was kind of strange, I mean, humans really can’t turn into cats can they? Poor Barney had quite an awful life, his Mum was distracted, his father missing, he was being bullied and his head teacher seemed to have it in for him big time. Luckily he did have his best friend Rissa on his side.

Then looking at life from a cat’s point of view, well, do they really have it any different? There are still falling outs and bullying and at times, even more horror to endure.

As the book progressed you wondered if Barney would ever get his life in order and my Little Man was gripped, wanting to know what would happen next.

The book also had Matt’s wonderful way of lifting up your spirits and giving you more belief that life really is worth living. It’s good to start giving younger children this affirmation as we think they have it easy, but its not really.

As we read this book together, I loved the closeness of being with my boy. We had stopped bedtime stories long ago, but he was required to read as part of his homeschooling and I think we chose the right book. I also noticed that my 14 year old was listening along to the story too, even though she was pretending not to 😉

Disclosure

I bought this book after choosing it with my son and all thoughts and opinions are my own. I have included an affiliate link in my post. If you click through and purchase it will cost you no extra but may earn me a little money, so thank you x

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The Starless Sea, Erin Morgenstern.

I have just finished listening to The Starless sea on Audible. This post contains affiliate links which means if you click them I may earn a little money, at no extra cost to you. So thank you for your support.

The Starless Sea audible book
By: Erin Morgenstern
Narrated by: Dominic HoffmanDion GrahamBahni Turpin,Allan CordunerFiona HardinghamJorjeana Marie
Length: 18 hrs and 37 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release date: 05-11-19
Language: English
Publisher: Penguin Audio

The Blurb

Are you lost or are you exploring?

When Zachary Rawlins stumbles across a strange book hidden in his university library it leads him on a quest unlike any other. Its pages entrance him with their tales of lovelorn prisoners, lost cities and nameless acolytes, but they also contain something impossible: a recollection from his own childhood.

Determined to solve the puzzle of the book, Zachary follows the clues he finds on the cover – a bee, a key and a sword. They guide him to a masquerade ball, to a dangerous secret club and finally through a magical doorway created by the fierce and mysterious Mirabel. This door leads to a subterranean labyrinth filled with stories, hidden far beneath the surface of the earth.

When the labyrinth is threatened, Zachary must race with Mirabel and Dorian, a handsome barefoot man with shifting alliances, through its twisting tunnels and crowded ballrooms, searching for the end of his story.

You are invited to join Zachary on the starless sea: the home of storytellers, story-lovers and those who will protect our stories at all costs.

My Review

I chose to listen to this on Audible, it’s 18 hours and 37 mins and the authors change. Some people are okay with different voice actors and some are not, it’s a very personal choice. I really don’t mind and I think different voice actors add extra ‘character’ to a story. Having said that, this book is so many stories within a story I feel the need for a paper copy to read.

I love stories within stories, books within books. I find them fascinating and I’ve enjoyed many such books before. The first one being Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaarder and more recently The Binding by Bridget Collins. I think that The Starless Sea is more comparable to The Binding.

It’s not for everyone, flipping between stories and times.The Starless Sea leaves you with many questions (Which is why I want a paper copy) and you will get confused I’m sure. It starts with a fairly regular story, then gets weird, then gets even weirder, followed by some normal stuff. I think you have to be able to suspend your normal beliefs and be a lover of fairytales to get the most from this book.

As for the actual story, I can’t really say more than the blurb. The Main character, Zachary, is pivotal throughout. But the other characters have their own stories, and that’s what this book is about, stories, real and imagined, believable and fantastical.

I’ve not read The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern but I am very tempted, so it will be going on my TBR pile.

Thank you for reading. Remember you can link up your own book reviews to my monthly linky, Book Worms Monthly.

My review is also added to Lovely Audiobooks Link up party

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Book Worms Monthly June Link Up

Welcome to Book worms Monthly June linkup

Hello, Welcome to Book worms Monthly, June. I managed to get through four books last month and I’m waiting for my next Audible credit so I can buy Fiona Barton’s The Suspect. I really enjoyed her other two books. Remember, if you can’t get a hold of books you can always try Audible. They are always available 🙂

Reading is my passion and I love to write about what I’ve read. I’m a real book worm and I have been since the day I could read. I decided to start this linky so that other book worms could Share. I’m starting monthly for now, so you have a whole month to link up your posts. You can link up to four posts, so that’s one a week. Or if you like you can link up some of your older posts.

Let’s share what we read and give other’s ideas what to read next. Tell me your reviews, you book reading lists, your author interviews, kids book favourites, Young Adult books, and even posts about your favourite authors. Anything book related is allowed and I can’t wait to read them all. I want to find all the book worms out there.

Here is last months linky to give you some idea of what book worms monthly is about. I’m trying to reach out to all the book worms out there to come and join me with their posts monthly.

Join Us for Book Worms Monthly

Book worms Monthly will be posted every month, and you can join in at any time. I will share anyone who links over on my Social Media sites, Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Mix (formerly Stumbleupon.) I’ll also come along and read and comment on your post. Please do share this link up with your friends.

Link up your BookWorms Monthly May book posts below.

Here’s a badge to share. No code, just copy and paste it on your blog and link the photo back to mine if you wish. Or please mention my blog 
https://athomealot.com/ with a link instead. That we we can encourage more to join in and share.

book worms monthly June

You are invited to the Inlinkz link party!

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The Child by Fiona Barton – book review

The Child by Fiona Barton

The Child is Fiona Barton’s second book featuring newspaper reporter Kate Waters. I recently read the first book, The Widow and was instantly drawn in by Fiona Barton’s fabulous story telling.

Front cover of The Child by Fiona Barton.
Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd 
ISBN: 9780552172455 
Number of pages: 448 
Weight: 314 g 
Dimensions: 198 x 127 x 28 mm
Waterstones paperback £8.99

Before I begin my review I need to tell you that I will be using affiliate links throughout my post. This means that if you click through and make a purchase from them I may earn a little money. This will be at no extra cost to yourself, so thank you in advance for your support.

The Blurb

When a paragraph in an evening newspaper reveals a decades-old tragedy, most readers barely give it a glance.

But for three strangers it’s impossible to ignore.

For one woman, it’s a reminder of the worst thing that ever happened to her. For another, it reveals the dangerous possibility that her darkest secret is about to be discovered.

And for the third, a journalist, it’s the first clue in a hunt to uncover the truth.

My Review on The Child.

I really enjoyed The Widow, I love the way Fiona Barton weaves you into her characters world. Even if you work out the answers, you still want to go on reading to see how it all unravels.

The child was slightly different I was kept guessing for much longer, but when the penny dropped it made me feel very emotional.

I listen to my books on Audible when possible. I love to be able to plug in and block out the world. It also means I can continue with my crochet, or even do the washing up or go to the toilet without having to stop listening. I’m a member of Audible so I can get a book a month for my £7.99 subscription. I already have Fiona Barton’s third book in this season in my basket waiting for my next credit. You can get the book on Audible here.

The audible book has a different voice actor for each of the characters which helps you keep track of what is happening. I did find the jumping of timelines a little more difficult in the previous book with the same actor reading all the parts. Some stories work better when there is more than one voice, it does make it more like listening to a drama than reading a book though.

As for the story, I found it really gripping. I found it hard to stop listening. I connected with the characters for who they were. It’s hard not to like Kate even knowing she’s a journalist and poking around in other’s lives, she is good at coming up with answers that even the police don’t see. She has no shame about the way she worms herself into lives, but she never causes harm.

The main character in this story appears to be Emma, who is the only one who has her part in first in first person. This is her story, what happened to her. The other characters seem to be the main focus, but we know it’s all about Emma really and that it’s only Kate who can bring the truth to light.

I have to admit it brought a lump to my throat a couple of times.

There are some touchy subjects involved including child abuse and baby death, so it won’t be a good read for some. But for those who love a good page turning ‘who dunnit’ type book, then you’ll love this.

I’m adding my review to The Monthly Book Blogger Linky over on Lovely Audio Books here.

If you like reviewing books then please feel free to join in my monthly linky which starts on the first of the month and runs to the end and you can link up as much as you like so long as it’s book related. You can find the linky by clicking here or the image below.

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The Widow – Fiona Barton

My review of The Widow by Fiona Barton. The links are affiliate links and may earn me a little money but cost you nothing more if you click through and purchase.

The Blurb

We’ve all seen him: the man – the monster – staring from the front page of every newspaper, accused of a terrible crime.

But what about her: the woman who grips his arm on the courtroom stairs – the wife who stands by him?

Jean Taylor’s life was blissfully ordinary. Nice house, nice husband. Glen was all she’d ever wanted: her Prince Charming.

Until he became that man accused, that monster on the front page. Jean was married to a man everyone thought capable of unimaginable evil.

But now Glen is dead and she’s alone for the first time, free to tell her story on her own terms.

Jean Taylor is going to tell us what she knows.

My Review of The Widow

I listened to The Widow on Audible after reading a review by Mum of Three World who has read all three books in the series. I’m currently on the second book, The Child. The latest book is The Suspect and I will be reading (or listening) to that next.

Fiona Barton is a great writer that grips you from the first page and refuses to let you go. So be prepared to read her books very quickly because you won’t be able to put them down. As I listen to the books I generally find books that start with dates and characters get a bit confusing because it’s not so easy to flip back and check on what happened previously.

With The Widow the book switches timelines quite frequently from the present date, to what happened before the death of her husband and even further back to the missing child. It’s kind of obvious what has happened, but despite that the unravelling of the story is riveting.

On Audible The Widow has just one narrator which I enjoyed. I always listen to a snippet of the book before purchasing as you will be listening to that voice for hours.