Blog Tour-The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada- Neil Randall


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The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada

Nine stories

One artist

The whole world against him


The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada is the story of an outsider, a lonely, misunderstood young artist who chronicles all the unpleasant things that happen to him in life. Abandoned by his parents, brought up be a tyrannical aunt, bullied at school, ostracised by the local community, nearly everyone Jacob comes into contact with takes an instant, (often) violent dislike towards him.

Like Job from the bible, he is beaten and abused, manipulated and taken advantage of. Life, people, fate, circumstance force him deeper into his shell, deeper into the cocoon of his fledgling artistic work, where he records every significant event in sketches, paintings and short-form verse, documenting his own unique, eminently miserable human experience.

At heart, he longs for companionship, intimacy, love, but is dealt so many blows he is too scared to reach out to anybody. On the fringes of society, he devotes himself solely to his art.


My Review

Thank you to Rachel for the invitation to the tour and for the copy of the book in return for a fair and honest review.

Poor Jacob! This is possibly one of the saddest books I have ever read. Jacob who lives with his vile Aunt is involved in an incident as a child which stays with throughout his whole life. However, it is after this event that he discovers art and this gift helps him throughout the rest of his sad life and he uses it as a coping mechanism and it does help him.

Each of the  nine chapters represent another story of Jacob’s life and mostly with unfortunate consequences. Although the book was very dark and sad, I hoped that Jacob would find some peace and I won’t give away anything but I was gripped with this little book.

So much is packed into the Jacob’s nine lives I think it will stay with me for a long time.

Purchase Link:

Author Bio – Neil Randall is the author of seven published novels and a collection of short stories. His work has been published in the UK, US, Australia and Canada

Social Media Links – Twitter: @NARandall1,, Instragram: neilrandall4869
Giveaway to Win 3 Copies of The Nine Lives of Jacob Fallada (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.




Riverflow- Alison Layland Promo


Riverflow by Alison Layland

#Riverflow @AlisonLayland @honno @damppebbles #damppebblesblogtours

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Book Blurb:

After a beloved family member is drowned in a devastating flood, Bede and Elin Sherwell want nothing more than to be left in peace to pursue their off-grid life. But when the very real prospect of fracking hits their village, they are drawn in to the frontline protests. During a spring of relentless rain, a series of mysterious threats and suspicious accidents put friendships on the line and the Sherwells’ marriage under unbearable tension. Is there a connection with their uncle’s death? As the river rises under torrential rain, pressure mounts, Bede’s sense of self begins to crumble and Elin is no longer sure who to believe or what to believe in.


About Alison Layland:

Alison Layland is a writer and translator. Raised in Newark and Bradford, she now lives on the Wales/Shropshire border. She studied Anglo-Saxon, Norse and Celtic at Cambridge University and translates from German, French and Welsh into English. Her published translations include a number of bestselling novels.



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Purchase Links:

Amazon UK:

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Book Depository:



Publishing Information:

Published in paperback and ebook formats by Honno Press on 20th June 2019.

Fake Like Me- Barbara Bourland



The plot

What really happened to Carey Logan?

After a fire decimates her studio, including the seven billboard-size paintings for her next show, a young, no-name painter is left with an impossible task: recreate her art in three months-or ruin her fledgling career.

Homeless and desperate, she flees to an exclusive retreat in upstate New York famous for its outrageous revelries and glamorous artists. And notorious as the place where brilliant young artist Carey Logan-one of her idols-drowned in the lake.

But when she arrives, the retreat is a ghost of its former self. No one shares their work. No parties light up the deck. No one speaks of Carey, though her death haunts the cabins and the black lake, lurking beneath the surface like a shipwreck. As the young painter works obsessively in Carey’s former studio, uncovers strange secrets and starts to fall–hard and fast–for Carey’s mysterious boyfriend, it’s as if she’s taking her place.

But one thought shadows her every move: What really happened to Carey Logan?


My review

Thank you to Quercus books for the invitation to the buddy read for an absolutely enthralling read from beginning to the twist and the end.

I saw this book before I was invited and I was desperate to read it. Set in the art world and it revolves the nameless narrator who in the beginning  came across to me as Carey Logan super-fan.

An artist her self, she has a chance meeting with Carey at a show before Carey’s death. After the fire destroys all her work she gets offered the chance to work in a a studio at the infamous Pine City.  She becomes even more involved and infatuated with Carey’s life and her world.

I love the authors depiction of Pine City, in my head it was a bit like Jurassic Park when they revisit it when its run down and left behind. The artists are still working there but are all reluctant to discuss Carey and her work and they  like Pine City are all a shadow of their previous glory.

Our narrator is a great character and I really didn’t like her to begin with as I felt she was trying to hard to be like Carey but as the story progresses we start to see her true self and when she makes a speech about her work and this really showed how she was her own person.

In addition to the Pine City artists, the narrators friends Max and Charlie are also heavily involved in the art world and it is through them that she learns more about Carey but also discovers the truth about her suicide and that is an outstanding twist !

I would love to have seen her own paintings as they sound magnificent and I loved how the author depicted these huge masterpieces. It is a really great read I had to be really strict not to read in one sitting for the Buddy Read but I loved it and it’s Rebeccaesque qualities.

The buddy read was a really great way to read this book as there was just so much to discuss every week I will really miss it and the live chat with Barbara was amazing. I loved hearing about how she wrote the book and developed the characters and her love of art and experience with the art world.

Thank you to all the team at Quercus for a fantastic experience.

About the author

Barbara Bourland was formerly a freelance writer and web producer for titles at Conde Nast and Hearst, among others. She lives in Baltimore, MD, with her husband and their dogs.



Blog Tour-3 Days in Florence – Chrissie Manby

The plot

Kathy Courage has never visited the famous Italian city of Florence before, so she’s thrilled when she and her boyfriend Neil are invited there for a wedding. Unfortunately, with Neil’s constant complaining and his teenage children in tow, it’s not exactly the romantic break Kathy was hoping for.

But when a mix-up with her flights leaves Kathy stranded in the city, she decides to embrace the unexpected and stay on alone.

What follows is a life-changing few days in the Tuscan sun, as Kathy begins to question the choices that have led her here. With the help of the colourful Innocenti family, who offer Kathy a place to stay, she gradually begins to realise that there’s a much bigger world out there, if only she can be brave enough to explore it.

Could Italy hold the answers to her future happiness? Or is Kathy destined to return to her old life?

My review

Thank you to Jenny from Hodder for the invitation to the tour and the copy of the book in return for a fair and honest review.

Kathy Courage is an only child and she has dreamt of visiting Florence since her mother and father visited on their honeymoon. So when she is invited to her boyfriend Neil brother’s wedding in Florence she is delighted. Unfortunately for Kathy she is with the awful Neil and his equally hideous children.

Kathy decides to have a nap and gets left behind at the palazzo when everyone goes off for the day on a pre-wedding trips.Enjoying sometime alone she finds a piano and also meets Henry and plays a duet for the first time in many years.

At the wedding Neil gets down on one knee and proposes but Kathy is already having second thoughts and how could blame her what a family, they are hideous !  Luckily for Kathy the flights get muddled up on the way home and she finds herself stranded in Florence with Neil and his children going home.

After not being given the chance to explore Florence properly with Neil she decides to make the most of her time alone. Unfortunately things don’t go quite to plan but a fortuitous meeting with Carla takes her back to Casa Innocenti where she meets up with Henry again.

I really enjoyed this book and I loved Kathy and I was so pleased that she eventually sees through Neil and his awful family. I liked the contrasts of the two families and how Kathy becomes stronger and experiences what she wants to in life.

I had not read any of Chrissie’s books previously but I will definitely looking up more. A really great feelgood holiday read.


About the Author

Chrissie Manby is the author of seventeen romantic comedies including A PROPER FAMILY HOLIDAY, THE MATCHBREAKER and SEVEN SUNNY DAYS. She has had several Sunday Times bestsellers and her recent novel about behaving badly after a break-up, GETTING OVER MR RIGHT, was nominated for the 2011 Melissa Nathan Award.
Chrissie was raised in Gloucester, in the west of England, and now lives in London. Contrary to the popular conception of chick-lit writers, she is such a bad home-baker that her own father threatened to put her last creation on She is, however, partial to white wine and shoes she can’t walk in.

You can follow her on Twitter @chrissiemanby, or visit her website to find out more.

Blog Tour- Sunshine over Bluebell Castle-Sarah Bennett

Sunshine Over Bluebell CastleThe Plot

The summer she will never forget…

Time’s running out for Iggy Ludworth to restore the wild gardens of Bluebell Castle in time for the Summer Fete, so she ropes in hotshot gardener Will Talbot…

But she regrets her decision as soon as he sets foot in the historic grounds – not only is Will arrogant and bossy, he’s totally gorgeous!

And very soon, sparks are flying amongst the bluebells. Yet with summer nearly over, will their summer fling convince Will and Iggy to go the distance?

Perfect for fans of Trisha Ashley, Rachael Lucas and Hilary Boyd.

Book 1: Spring Skies Over Bluebell Castle
Book 2: Sunshine Over Bluebell Castle
Book 3: Starlight Over Bluebell Castle

Purchase Links


My review

Thank you to Rachel from Rachel’s Random Reads for the invitation to the tour for the second book in the Bluebell Castle series and to the publisher HQ Digital for my copy of the book in return for a fair and honest review.

The book picks up at Bluebell Castle home of Arthur, Iggy and Tristan a set of triplets who are trying to keep the family home thriving after the death of their father. The first book focused on Arthur, the eldest of the three and this book is set around Igraine his sister and her work to transform the gardens of Bluebell castle which have fallen in an overgrown and unkempt state over the years.

They decide they need help to achieve this mammoth task and that comes in the form of Will a celebrity gardener who is trying to escape his own life and the opportunity to escape to a  Derbyshire hide-hole and get back to actual gardening seems too good to be true.

A wedding and a visit from the triplets estranged mother turns everything upside down and can the family save the castle once again ?

This is a great feel good read and I enjoyed getting to know Igraine but also picking up on the story felt very familiar and cosy and I particularly enjoy the scenes in the families sitting room this was just the type of read I needed.

There is drama, passion, jealousy and love a perfect combination for a summer read. I cannot wait until book 3 !


Author Bio –

Sarah Bennett has been reading for as long as she can remember. Raised in a family of bookworms, her love affair with books of all genres has culminated in the ultimate Happy Ever After – getting to write her own stories to share with others.

Born and raised in a military family, she is happily married to her own Officer (who is sometimes even A Gentleman). Home is wherever he lays his hat, and life has taught them both that the best family is the one you create from friends as well as relatives.

When not reading or writing, Sarah is a devotee of afternoon naps and sailing the high seas, but only on vessels large enough to accommodate a casino and a choice of restaurants.

Sarah is the author of the Butterfly Cove, Lavender Bay and Bluebell Castle trilogies, published by HQ Digital UK.


Social Media Links –



Amazon Author Page


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The Daughter in Law – Nina Manning

The plot

No one is good enough for her son…

As a single mother, Annie has an especially close relationship with her son, Ben. They have always been together. Just the two of them. So, when Ben brings home his mysterious beautiful new wife, Daisy, immediately Annie doesn’t trust her. Who is this woman who has taken her son away from her? And what is she hiding?

She’ll protect him with her life…

When Ben disappears, suddenly Annie and Daisy are all the other one has. Alone in Annie’s big, remote house, just the two of them, the tension is rising. And like any protective mother, Annie will stop at nothing to expose her new daughter in law, and the secrets she is hiding…

My review

I am delighted to share my review of this great book and to be part of Boldwood Books first blog tour. Thank you to Megan for the copy of the book in return for a fair and honest review.

The book is told from two perspectives Annie, a sixty something woman and mother of Ben.

Ben has just married Daisy who tells us her side of the story as the other voice of the book.

To say Annie is not happy with the marriage is somewhat of an understatement and she is deeply unhappy that they only told her afterwards.

Daisy and Ben live with Eve who is Daisy’s best friend and without giving too much away. Daisy and Ben find themselves homeless and Annie offers them a place to stay.

I was totally unnerved by this book, the way the author writes the anxieties that Daisy feels about her pregnancy felt very true to life when you find out that Daisy has a big secret from her past.

Annie is aware of this secret and she manipulates Daisy in the most hideous of ways.

Ben who is a musician has taken a job away and after a row Daisy hears nothing from him and the only person she has is Annie which makes it even worse for her.

There are bits of the book that I did find personally hard to read and I think anyone who has suffered with miscarriages may do too. The book deals with loss, obsession and fear.

A clever book with a cracking twist I really enjoyed it. I read it really quickly as the tension was amazing and I needed to find out what happens.

A great debut !

About the author
Nina Manning studied psychology and was a restaurant-owner and private chef (including to members of the royal family). She is the founder and co-host of Sniffing The Pages, a book review podcast. She lives in Dorset.

Heathcliff -Sue Barnard -Book Birthday Blitz


The plot


It would degrade me to marry Heathcliff now…”

Cathy’s immortal words from Wuthering Heights change Heathcliff’s life.  At just seventeen years of age, heartbroken and penniless, he runs away to face an unknown future.

Three years later, he returns – much improved in manners, appearance and prosperity.

But what happened during those years? How could he have made his fortune, from nothing? Who might his parents have been? And what fate turned him into literature’s most famous anti-hero?

For almost two centuries, these questions have remained unanswered.

Until now…



My review

I have a confession to make. I have not read Wuthering Heights completely!  I have read some chapters of it though and more recently Chapter 4 when Nelly tells of the arrival of Heathcliff at Wuthering Heights as a child.  So, when Rachel invited me on the tour for this book, I knew that I should read it.

Jane Eyre is my favourite book of all time and I loved The Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys, so I was intrigued by Heathcliff and finding out what happens in those missing years as The Wide Sargasso does with Mr Rochester. I really loved the premise of what happened to Heathcliff when he leaves after he is spurned by Cathy and in later life.

Interestingly, he heads back to Liverpool where Mr Earnshaw found him as a child and he is taken in by an innkeeper Mary O Keefe and then given work by Bill McDougal. McDougal runs many dubious businesses and he teams up Heathcliff with Matthew Trewlaney. This starts with short voyages to France to buy contraband but takes a very much more sinister turn as McDougal begins to trust Heathcliff.

In these early years Heathcliff comes across as kind hearted and naïve but what he sees and deals with over the three years ‘hardens his heart’ and I found that as the book went on my opinion of Heathcliff changed.

I really enjoyed this take on Heathcliff and although some of the story shows the really grim side of humanity it was really interesting and I will be reading more about the History of Liverpool and of course Wuthering Heights.

There is a lot packed into this little book.

Thank you to Rachel for the invitation and to the publisher for my gifted copy of the book.


Purchase Link  –

Author Bio –

Sue Barnard is a British novelist, editor and award-winning poet whose family background is far stranger than any work of fiction. She would write a book about it if she thought anybody would believe her.

Sue was born in North Wales but has spent most of her life in and around Manchester. She speaks French like a Belgian, German like a schoolgirl, and Italian and Portuguese like an Englishwoman abroad.

Her mind is so warped that she has appeared on BBC TV’s Only Connect quiz show, and she has also compiled questions for BBC Radio 4’s fiendishly difficult Round Britain Quiz. This once caused one of her sons to describe her as “professionally weird.” The label has stuck.

Sue’s first novel, The Ghostly Father (a new take on the traditional story of Romeo & Juliet), was officially released on St Valentine’s Day 2014.  Since then she has produced five more novels: Nice Girls Don’t (2014), The Unkindest Cut of All (2015), Never on Saturday (2017), Heathcliff (2018), and Finding Nina (2019).

Sue now lives in Cheshire, UK, with her extremely patient husband and a large collection of unfinished scribblings. 

Social Media Links –








Giveaway to Win a signed copy of Heathcliff (UK Only)

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then Rachel’s Random Resources reserves the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will be passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time Rachel’s Random Resources will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.