Determined: Elizabeth Brown (Day four of the review challenge)

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Another day, another review from mylittlebookblog; today is number four of the review challenge and so far so good. I’m currently finding the challenge not only rewarding in terms of helping to deliver some of the older reviews in my inbox but it’s already helping me improve my review writing on the whole. I find I’m enjoying writing the reviews more as the days go on, and I’m reviewing the books more as a whole rather than fixating on every little detail. Today’s review is a sultry read from the lovely Elizabeth Brown; enjoy readers.

Samantha Sharp always knew her direction in life. Do well in school, attend a top university, graduate with honors. Having secured a plum gallery job right after graduation, she was well on her way to accomplishing her goals. That is, until a chance meeting with a handsome stranger made her question her life’s entire course. Billionaire David Keith was sexy, successful, and on the wish list of every woman in San Francisco. Sam knew it was dangerous to hope she was different than all the women David normally dated, but for the first time, success wasn’t the only thing on Samantha’s mind. Would this distraction be her undoing?

So a little bit of a contrast to yesterdays incredibly intense book The Cage Legacy. As the blurb describes the book follows the steamy relationship between Samantha Sharp and the devilishly handsome David Keith. The two meet at an art gallery event and after an accident with a glass of wine and a white dress the two end up in a car back to Samantha’s. Intrigued by each other the two part ways but this is not the end of this potential love story. David is intrigued by the young female and will do anything to make sure the two cross paths again; this isn’t difficult when you’re a billionaire and the two embark on a burgeoning relationship but will it stand the test of their differences? Read on to find out.

So it’s best to get this bit out the way first; it’s not the most original of story lines however don’t write this story off just yet. Yes, sweet kind-hearted honest female meets incredibly sultry but closed off business man with a troubled past. Despite this it is a sultry read that is definitely going to keep a reader of romantic literature entertained. In terms of storyline it is a little formulaic but the character profiles are well rounded; David is a generous character with a controlling nature whilst Sam is elegant but with a flirtatious streak which does tend to get her in a number of difficult situations. Attractive and confident her air of sophistication helps to ensnare wealthy David effortlessly. Yes it is a little typical and maybe a little contrived but perfectly enjoyable.

Reading the book I thought to myself that this is a fantasy read; he send her flowers without thinking, he finds out her dress size and sends her a beautiful outfit with the most darling pair of shoes. He jets her off to different events around the world and travels with her and her family to Tahoe on a private jet to celebrate thanksgiving. The chance of it happening in one of our lives is yes very little but this book kind of makes it feel like it could be. It makes the fantasy feel a little closer to home. The chemistry between them feels realistic and genuine and although the connection is very sudden I did find myself engrossed in their relationship. Additionally, the sex scenes are very steamy. This lady does not hold back on details; hot and heavy I found myself blushing relentlessly on the bus to work this morning. I did also enjoy watching their relationship develop from the initial spark to a potentially fully committed relationship.

In terms of negatives, the two do fall for each other incredibly quickly and although their relationship does suffer some adversities it is very trouble-free and almost effortless. I guess for me, I don’t want to always read of the perfect relationship because love isn’t trouble free. I also, for some reason didn’t find myself fancying David, which I was a little miffed about, he didn’t capture my imagination however I know he will for many others. Despite this I did really enjoy the book because it was such a light and easy read. It really gives the reader that blissfully happy and steamy relationship. Yes it’s a fantasy but we all need a little of that in our lives and if I was about to go on a wonderful holiday away this would definitely be stashed in my bag for the beach. For me a little too clichéd, and little too perfect but a lovely saucy and romantic read.

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Bridget Jones’s Diary: Helen Fielding

Happy 2015 you wonderful people; I can’t believe this is my first review of the New Year. I’ve been a little quiet over the last few weeks because of all the festivities, seeing friends and family and generally having a serious break from work. So today’s review comes after a very last minute trip back to Stoke-On-Trent due to problems with the train lines. So this morning at 4.45 I was stumbling round my room picking up dresses, shoes and jewellery and staggering around I picked a book from the shelf and it happened to be this one. I will be honest it wasn’t exactly what I was thinking of reading on the drizzly journey back to Stoke-on-Trent however it all turned out to be rather wonderful. Hope you enjoy, and of course, Happy New Year!

In the course of the year recorded in Bridget Jones’s Diary, Bridget confides her hopes, her dreams, and her monstrously fluctuating poundage, not to mention her consumption of 5277 cigarettes and “Fat units 3457 (approx.) (hideous in every way).” In 365 days, she gains 74 pounds. On the other hand, she loses 72! There is also the unspoken New Year’s resolution–the quest for the right man. Alas, here Bridget goes severely off course when she has an affair with her charming cad of a boss. But who would be without their e-mail flirtation focused on a short black skirt? The boss even contends that it is so short as to be nonexistent. Overall a charming book about the ups and downs of the single life for one wonderfully ditsy but exceptionally witty young woman.

Now, regular readers of my blog will know that once I have seen a film I often decide not to read the book. It’s not that I don’t think the book will be as good or that I don’t think it is worth reading, I just worry that I will overall be disappointed. Either that the book is better and I wish I read it first or that the book was ruined because I already knew the storyline. It all becomes a little difficult. However I was actually rather impressed by this quite famous and well liked chick-lit. The book as like the films follows the loveable Bridget Jones who just can’t seem to catch a break – both in her professional life, and her love life. Written in a diary format (as the title suggests,) the book is written in a quirky, honest and bumbling style that tells of all the trials and tribulations of the main character including the difficulty of her finding a man, her parents split and her mothers sudden change in life ambition. However it focuses on it a way that can only be described as distinctly droll and witty.

Although I have read reviews describing it as unbelievable due to the frankly awful things that happen to her through the year, the book moves with style and pace that helps to keep you moving through this damn right hilarious story. Sometimes diary style formats can come across a little boring and lack action but the peculiar events and the authors peculiar but funny way of describing it all (especially the description of Bridget’s weight, calorie intake and number cigarettes smoked) made it very fun to read. I also didn’t find that the film weighed heavily on my mind whilst reading the book because the style of the writing makes it different to the very popular film. I also didn’t find the ‘singleton’ story tiring or mundane because it focuses less on the men and more on the main character. Additionally I loved how grating and exhausting the additional minor characters are. As like the film they are just as infuriating and funny at the same time!

Overall this is a wonderfully British book full of humour, awkward encounters, chaos and overall a lovely lady trying to find her feet. It is entertaining, stylish, witty and just a little tongue in cheek and I hate to say but I loved it. The plot whilst not profound works because of the lovely writing style. A definite book to cheer you up on a cold winters morning.

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Leftovers: Stella Newman

The first thing to do with book is push aside on misgivings or qualms that this is your typical chic-lit because this is a book not to be missed; its honest and sincere but with an added bang! Susie is in a panic; she has been labelled a leftover after taking a ridiculous quiz in a popular women’s magazine and she’s not happy. It’s not her fault that she is single, in a job she hates, and in a flat where the ownership is shared between her and her brother, right? Do not let yourself be misled, because Susie has a plan. If she can only get the promotion that she has been yearning for she can pursue her dream job and start a career in food. Simple? Not quite; tumble through this story rich with laughs, embarrassments and food on the rollarcoaster that is Leftovers.

As soon as I read the first page I knew that this was a book for me; the warmth that Susie, the main character, gives off is impeccably believable and I was hooked. Anyone that reads my book reviews knows that if I cannot connect with a character it causes a rift in my enjoyment in the book and I was happy here that I immediately felt I knew the character and all her misgivings. Newman’s writing is not only warm and enveloping but also witty and sharp with anecdotes and hilarity. Susie is original and real in the way that she stumbles through life and she has a real sense of authenticity that is sometimes difficult to create.  Another definite positive to this book is the sense of friendship between the characters. The mockery between Susie and her best friend Rebecca was brilliant and added a sense of added affection and misgivings between friends: (look out for Subecca!) Whilst Dalia (another of Stella’s friends) hooked on a new relationship and abandoning her friends on many occasions hit so many relatable notes with me only allowing me to relate to Susie more!

Much of the book is taken up with Susie and her tiring job in advertising. Susie’s difficulty to get herself recognised in her difficult job advertising pizzas with an exasperating creative team and thorny and stubborn boss is well told my Newman and I found myself really rooting for her to be appreciated. The project is going down and Stella needs to hold on and bring everyone together to show she deserves the promotion! The solution to this is food; especially pasta! The book revolves heavily around Susie’s Italian roots and her love of pasta! Throughout the book we are tempted with the appetizing and delectable recipes that are dispersed throughout the book based on her Grandmother’s belief that there is a pasta dish for every occasion! Friendship, fights, sarcasm and add in the hints of Mr Ryan Gosling (I bet that got a few people more than interested) and you are in for a stunner of a book. Real, honest and not clichéd with a defiant ending; this was a book for me and I bet it will be a book for you too! 

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