Now out and one I enjoyed:

The Kitchen Front

A Novel

by Jennifer Ryan

#TheKitchenFront #NetGalley

This is the third book that I have read by Jennifer Ryan. I very much enjoyed her earlier novels, The Chilbury Ladies Choir and The Spies of Shilling Lane. Ms.Ryan has found her authorial voice writing fiction about women and WWII. The Kitchen Front, also set during WWII, is a book that I highly recommend.

As the novel begins, the men are mostly away or involved in war work, while women try their best to manage both on the home front and in the kitchen. Food is scarce and rationing pervasive. There is a campaign to make creative, practical recipes using what is at hand.

In this story, food concerns lead to a cooking contest in a small village. The winner will be given co-hosting duties on a food related BBC radio show. The novel tells the story of four of the women who, through their recipes, try to win first prize. They are Audrey, a young widow with three children; Audrey’s sister, the snobby Lady Gwendoline; kitchen maid Nell and pregnant, unmarried, French trained chef, Zelda. Each of these characters comes to life with a backstory and relationships. I very much enjoyed spending time with each of them and also enjoyed the village setting. An added plus of this book is that each cook’s recipes are included, giving insight into what cooking was like in the 1940s.

I highly recommend this enjoyable novel. For Ms. Ryan, third time (for her historical novels) is definitely the charm!

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.

An e book bargain for February 26, 2021

Are you ready to be on “This Side of Murder?”

by joycesmysteryandfictionbookreviews

Myearlier review

Product DetailsAnna Lee Huber’s novel, is an historical mystery that is reminiscent of an Agatha Christie novel. A group of characters is stranded on an island, (think “And Then There Were None”), as the action unfolds. Widow Verity attends an engagement party weekend, while trying to find out whether her husband, Sidney, was a traitor during WWI. Not the most believable plot but Verity is a plucky character and one that I rooted for.  Book provided by NetGalley in return for an honest review.  Thanks NetGalley!

Are you tired? Sleep Tight

Illustrated bedtime stories & meditations to soothe you to sleep

by Alison Davies

#SleepTight #NetGalley

Pub Date 23 Mar 2021

I picked this title up to read after having a night filled with insomnia. Clearly, Alison Davies wishes something better for me and all of her readers. In this book, she offers ways to calm down and get in the state of mind and body that allows for a restful night. There are several ways that she approaches doing this.

There are a number of stories or guided meditations in this book that invite a reader into a tale in which they take part. The book also includes meditations and a number of suggestions such as a memory box, the use of a crystal and more.

For some readers, some suspension of disbelief may be needed to engage with the stories.. However, if readers take a look, they will know if this is a book for them. I will spend more time with this title tonight!

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.

Spend time with her: The Girl from the Channel Islands

A WWII Novel

by Jenny Lecoat

#TheGirlfromtheChannelIslands #NetGalley

First, the cover of this book is just gorgeous. It draws the reader in to the world of those living on the Channel Islands. Not all readers may know that the region was occupied by the Germans during WWII. It is shocking to think of as the Germans were so close to England. It is a fascinating period and location for an historical novel .

I have written many times about the plethora of WWII novels. Yes, here is another one but don’t let WWII fiction fatigue keep you from giving this one a read. The story of a Jewish girl and a German soldier is well told and engaging. Readers will hope for good things for protagonist Hedy who left Vienna only to be equally at risk in her new home. She hides in plains sight as a translator for the Germans; what courage she shows! Find out more about her story!

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.

Take a minute or two: God Hears Her Creative Journaling Edition

365 Devotions for Women by Women

by Our Daily Bread Ministries

#GodHearsHerCreativeJournalingEdition #NetGalley

God Hears Her has been previously published but this new edition offers a bit more; there is space to journal and react to what is read and, from the advance copy I saw, it looks as if there are some pages to color in. There is an entry for every day of the year with a short entry that invites reflection. Readers who like putting aside a few minutes a day to think about life’s bigger issues, may well want to give this book a look.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title. All opinions are my own.

It’s an important word: I Can Say No

by Jenny Simmons

#ICanSayNo #NetGalley

Pub Date 04 Mar 2021

This is a nicely illustrated picture book that comes with an important message. The theme is the importance of being able to say no in a variety of situations. The book makes the appropriate and timely use of the word empowering for kids. Read this title with a child you know or just leave it somewhere where a child can pick it up. They will learn an important lesson.

While I think that this title will be helpful to both boys and girls, often it seems that girls are more socialized to not make waves. So, this book may be even more helpful for them.

This title ends with a helpful section for adults. It is worth a read and offers good tips for helping children.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher. All opinions are my own.

An e book bargain for February 24, 2021

Tis the season: One Perfect Summer by Brenda Novak

by joycesmysteryandfictionbookreviews

My earlier review

  Do you enjoy women’s fiction?  Are you ready to be immersed in a long (464 page) book?  If you  might answer yes to these questions, this title could provide you with an escapist read.

The setting is Lake Tahoe, a beautiful and peaceful place with lots of water, places to walk and sports to enjoy.  There are three protagonists; Serenity, Reagan and Lorelei.

Serenity writes books about true crimes.  There is a true crime in her personal life that has changed everything for her.  Next is Reagan; she is an ambitious, successful advertising executive until one decision and one moment changes everything. She will be faced with some big decisions. Then there are Lorelei and her four year old daughter Lucy.  Lorelei grew up in foster care and knows nothing about her family.  She was happy in her marriage until…

What do these women have in common?  No spoiler as this comes out early in the novel; the three share a blood relationship discovered after they did testing with a DNA site.  How are they connected?  Who is their common biological relative?  Why has no-one ever discussed any of this with any of them>  You will need to get very close to the end of the book to find the answer.

Around this central plot there are many others involving the sisters’ families, their evolving relationship and their next door neighbors, all of whom have their own stories.  The strands intertwine and four narrators voice the story; these are the three sisters and Finn, one of the neighbors.

Overall, this was a book where the pages turned.  The characters are well established and each is very much their own person.  That said, I think that the novel might have been (even) better had it been shorter.  Sometimes sections replayed things that were already known to the reader.

This was the first novel that I have read by this author.  I would most likely read another of her books.

Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for this title in exchange for an honest review.