Posted in **** rating 4/5

House. Tree. Person. by Catriona McPherson

I eagerly recommend Catriona McPherson’s “House. Tree. Person.” as an intriguing 4 star read.

I really do enjoy reading Catriona McPherson’s books based in the Dumfries and Galloway region and enjoy following the characters journey’s between the towns that my family spoke of during my childhood.

This book is a good paced thriller filled with so much suspense you just don’t know what the twist is until the very end (or at least I didn’t).

This book was an easy, yet engrossing, read and had me hooked early on. The author tells the backstory at the perfect pace to ensure the reader turns page after page.

Thanks to Catriona McPherson, Midnight Ink and Net Galley for the opportunity to read and review this engrossing suspense novel.


The body found in a muddy grave across the street is just the latest horror threatening to tear Ali McGovern’s life apart seam by seam.

She knows Angelo, her brooding teenage son, is keeping secrets. She fears he’s in danger, too. But her new job at the psychiatric hospital, the job her husband pushed her into, is using up everything she’s got every day. She can try to ignore the sounds that surely can’t really be there. And she can try to trust the doctors, who can’t be as dark as they seem.

But can Ali hold herself, her life, and her family together without getting blood on her hands?

AUTHOR Catriona McPherson
BOOK TITLE House. Tree. Person.
PUBLISHER Midnight Ink
DATE OF PUBLICATION 8 September 2017






Catriona McPherson’s website and can be found on Twitter


Posted in **** rating 4/5

The Trial by John Mayer

I found The Trial, John Mayer’s first book in The Parliament House book series to be a fascinating novel and would recommend it as a 4* thriller with a legal twist!  I was hooked after reading the synopsis and liked the fact that it is set in Scotland and written by an Advocate. I was not disappointed!

This is an intriguing story which is very well written. The author clearly describes the scenes in great detail, sometimes over wordy, but certainly in a way that you feel yourself in the heart of the action in each  setting.

There were a lot of twists and I found this difficult to follow at times but perseverance got me through those paragraphs and then I found myself back with the story again.

As mentioned, at times I had some difficulty following the legal terminology but this did not dampen my enthusiasm for the book.  I look forward to reading more from this talented author.

I was given this book in exchange for an open and honest review.


An urban legal/crime novel set in the beautiful Scottish city of Edinburgh.

Part 1 of The Parliament House book series

When Glaswegian Brogan McLane completes many years of university education and legal training he crosses that great divide from Glasgow to Edinburgh. ‘Called’ to the Bar of the Scottish Supreme Court, he becomes a member of the most prestigious club in Scotland; The Faculty of Advocates in Parliament House.

When High Court Judge, Lord Aldounhill, is found dead after a transvestite party in his sumptuous home, those who know the killer close ranks and need a scapegoat – who better than ‘outsider’ Brogan McLane?

Out on bail with his career on hold, McLane and his band of blood brothers in the Calton Bar in Glasgow need to get ahead of their enemies or McLane will go down for life after Trial. But every time they discover a piece of evidence, it seems there is a mirror image to contradict it.

Through the murky world of Russian controlled transvestite hotels and with some unexpected police and judicial help, McLane battles against ‘Low Life in High Places in the Old Town’ until the killer is found.

But well protected and knowing all the tricks, will the killer ever stand trial in Parliament House

AUTHOR John Mayer
SERIES The Parliament House Books #1
PRINT LENGTH 290 pages




Mayer, John

John Mayer’s Parliament House Books website

John Mayer on TwitterGoodReads

and Amazon

John Mayer (b. 1952) was born in Glasgow, Scotland at a time of post-WW2 austerity. But in 1963 when he heard The Beatles on Radio Caroline, his life path was set. Aged 14 he walked out of school because, in his opinion, he wasn’t being well taught. Every day for the next year, in all weathers, he cycled 9 miles to and 9 miles from the Mitchell Library in central Glasgow where he devoured books of all kinds.

While still an apprentice engineer he was soon teaching men two and three times his age. But in the 1970s he ‘dived off a cliff’ and set out to become a Record Producer. He built his own record company trading in 14 countries. After a court battle with global giants, he went to the University of Edinburgh and became an Advocate in the Supreme Courts of Scotland. He acted for the downtrodden and desperate as well as Greenpeace International. His specialism was in fighting international child abduction.
As an author, John has written non-fiction, legal texts and articles; broadcasting to tens of millions of people on US and UK radio, TV and print media.
The Trial is the first novel in his Parliament House Books series. Set in Edinburgh, it’s an homage to Franz Kafka’s book of the same title. The Trial sees crusading Scottish Advocate, Brogan McLane, fight injustice casually delivered by Low Life in High Places in the Old Town.

Posted in **** rating 4/5

The Yellow Envelope: One Gift, Three Rules, and a Life-Changing Journey Around the World by Kim Dinan

Kim Dinan has given us a fascinating memoir telling of her journey, with her husband, around the world. As they prepared to set off on their adventure, their friends gave them a yellow envelope containing $1,000 for them to use for those in need on their journey.

Whilst I found the descriptive way the author talks of the places visited very interesting, I would have preferred to read more of this than the sections which read more journal-like. However, this is clearly a memoir and not just a travel story.

I would recommend this as a very fascinating read.  The synopsis had me excited to get started and I was not disappointed!

Thank you to Netgalley and SourceBooks for the opportunity to read an advance copy prior to publication.


After Kim and her husband decide to quit their jobs to travel around the world, they’re given a yellow envelope containing a check and instructions to give the money away. The only three rules for the envelope: Don’t overthink it; share your experiences; don’t feel pressured to give it all away.

Through Ecuador, Peru, Nepal, and beyond, Kim and Brian face obstacles, including major challenges to their relationship. As she distributes the gift to people she encounters along the way she learns that money does not have a thing to do with the capacity to give, but that giving—of ourselves—is transformational.

AUTHOR Kim Dinan
BOOK TITLE The Yellow Envelope
PUBLISHER Sourcebooks
PRINT LENGTH 346 pages
ISBN 978-1492635383
OBTAINED: Netgalley / Sourcebooks





Kim Dinan is a freelance writers and blogger, whose travel blog, So Many Places, receives over 200,000 unique visitors per year and was selected by USA Today as one of the 2014 Best Hiking and Outdoor Travel blogs. Her writing has appeared in OnTrak Magazine and Northwest Travel Magazine, among others, and she was on a speaking tour for Backpacker Magazine.

Kim Dinan’s website

Kim Dinan on Twitter and GoodReads

Kim Dinan is the author of The Yellow Envelope and Life on Fire. Endlessly curious about the world, she has backpacked to over twenty-five countries on five continents and has called India, Mexico and numerous campgrounds around the USA home. Her love of the outdoors landed her a coveted job on Backpacker Magazine’s Get Out More Tour and has compelled her to climb mountains in the Himalayas, raft frigid rivers in Patagonia, and walk five hundred and fifty miles across Spain on her own. Her writing has appeared in Parks and Recreation Magazine, Northwest Travel Magazine, Trailer Life Magazine, Go Explore Magazine and OnTrak Magazine, among others. Her popular blog, So Many Places, was named one of the best outdoor blogs by USA Today and has been featured online by such sites as Huffington Post and BuzzFeed. She is a member of the Outdoor Writers Association of America and lives in Ohio with her husband and daughter.


Posted in **** rating 4/5

6th Grade Revengers: Cat Crimes and Wannabes by Steven Whibley

This is the first book in Steven Whibley’s 6th Grade Revengers series.

I would recommend this to children of all ages – especially pre-teens.

The author has created the perfect team with friends Jared and Marcus who team up to become Revengers who set out to help those in need in order to raise money to pay for spy camp.

Well written and fast paced will keep children’s attention right to the end!



Jared and Marcus aren’t like other 11-year-olds…they’re also Revengers.

They fix problems and they’re awesome at it – at least, they will be if they ever get a chance to show off their skills. What they need is exposure. Luckily, they have the perfect target in mind: Jared’s sister’s boyfriend. He’s a jerky, wannabe rock star, a relentless bully and he smells like old gym socks. Enough is enough. The tone deaf jerk’s days are numbered. There’s only one hitch: Marcus already offered their services elsewhere. A stray cat with serious aggression issues apparently has a whole neighborhood boarding up their windows.

What the boys think will be an easy-money job quickly turns into a dangerous game of wits. The cat’s a monster. It takes all the ingenuity the boys can muster to deal with this beast. Two targets at once. It’s time to prove themselves as the awesome after-school problem-solvers they know they are. That is, if their plan doesn’t backfire. Because they’ll either be feared fixers or a couple kids who can’t even take out a kitten.

AUTHOR Steven Whibley
BOOK TITLE Cat Crimes and Wannabes
SERIES 6th Grade Revengers:
PUBLISHER Amazon Digital Services
DATE OF PUBLICATION 15 September 2015
ISBN 9781927905081






Steven Whibley’s website

Steven Whibley on TwitterFacebook GoodReads and Amazon

Whibley, Steven

Steve believes in pixies and fairy dust, and the healing power of unicorns. When he’s not writing epic tales of horned beasties, he’s working as a look-a-like for Brad Pitt, Ryan Reynolds, Zac Efron, and Seal. He spends his free time training hairless mole rats to be service animals for the colorblind, and dreams of one day inventing a thanksgiving dish that will rival the infamous turducken.

Okay, okay, most of the stuff I just said isn’t super accurate. Here’s the truth: I love writing books for kids and it’s a privilege I don’t take lightly. I want my readers to be taken away on an adventure they hadn’t expected. I want them to gasp and laugh and cringe about what’s coming around the next corner. And in the end, I want them to leave the story with the same rush I used to feel when I was a child reading books like The Hardy Boys or Goosebumps.


Posted in **** rating 4/5

The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends The Silent Wife by Kerry Fisher as a 4* read.

Kerry Fisher’s latest novel ‘The Silent Wife’ is packed full of family secrets and earth shattering betrayals that will leave your mouth open in disbelief again and again.  The characters are brought to life in such a way you can easily relate to their individual personalities. The Farinelli family certainly has high expectations! The author expertly looks at the complicated relationships with step-children, in-laws, and the constant reminders of the first wives and mothers.

Told in alternating views of Lara (married to Massimo) and Maggie (married to Nico) this is a poignant story the lengths women are prepared to go for the sake of their families. I was gripped from the start and enjoyed page after page until the last chapter.

Thanks to NetGalley and Bookouture for the opportunity to read and review The Silent Wife (also known as ‘The Secrets of Second Wives’ as it was formerly called) by Kerry Fisher.


Would you risk everything for the man you loved? Even if you knew he’d done something terrible?

A heart wrenching and gripping tale. I was hooked from the very first page.’ Write Escape

Lara’s life looks perfect on the surface. Gorgeous doting husband Massimo, sweet little son Sandro and the perfect home. Lara knows something about Massimo. Something she can’t tell anyone else or everything Massimo has worked so hard for will be destroyed: his job, their reputation, their son. This secret is keeping Lara a prisoner in her marriage.

Maggie is married to Massimo’s brother Nico and lives with him and her troubled stepdaughter. She knows all of Nico’s darkest secrets – or so she thinks. The one day she discovers a letter in the attic which reveals a shocking secret about Nico’s first wife Caitlin. Will Maggie set the record straight or keep silent to protect those she loves?

For a family held together by lies, the truth will come at a devastating price.

A heart-wrenching, emotionally gripping read for fans of Amanda Prowse, Liane Moriarty and Diane Chamberlain.

AUTHOR Kerry Fisher
BOOK TITLE The Silent Wife
PUBLISHER Bookouture
PRINT LENGTH 374 pages
ISBN 9781786811264
OBTAINED: NetGalley – Bookouture







Kerry Fisher website

Kerry Fisher on Twitter and Facebook and GoodReads and Amazon


Posted in **** rating 4/5

Rise – How A House Built a Family by Cara Brookins

Inspirational. Emotional. This is a powerful 4 star read!

Truly inspirational book which tells of the power of love between a mother and her children.

Reading this you soon realise that Cara Brookins accomplished something so incredible following years of abuse. I found myself laughing, crying and at times biting my nails in horror at each inspiration chapter of this amazing family rise from their ruined old lives.

Thanks to NetGalley and St Martin’s Press for the advanced copy of this book.


After escaping an abusive marriage, Cara Brookins had four children to provide for and no one to turn to but herself. In desperate need of a home but without the means to buy one, she did something incredible.

Equipped only with YouTube instructional videos, a small bank loan, a mile-wide stubborn streak, Cara built her own house from the foundation up with a work crew made up of her four children.

It would be the hardest thing she had ever done. With no experience nailing together anything bigger than a bookshelf, she and her kids poured concrete, framed the walls and laid bricks for their two story, five bedroom house. She had convinced herself that if they could build a house, they could rebuild their broken family.

This must-read memoir traces one family’s rise from battered victims to stronger, better versions of themselves, all through one extraordinary do-it-yourself project.

AUTHOR Cara Brookins
BOOK TITLE Rise: How a House Built a Family
PUBLISHER St Martin’s Press
PRINT LENGTH 320 pages
ISBN 9781250095671





Cara Brookins website

Cara Brookins on Twitter

Cara Brookins on Facebook

Cara Brookins on GoodReads

Posted in **** rating 4/5

Blind Date Collection – A Timeless Romance Anthology

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends this as a nice, clean, 4 star easy read.                  

This collection brings together six great authors. The theme of blind dates made each novella fun!

There are three historical novellas, and three contemporary which was a great mix of historical and modern day tales.

Thank you to ebooksforreview for the chance to read and review this heartwarming collection.


A TIMELESS ROMANCE ANTHOLOGY: BLIND DATE COLLECTION: Featuring New York Times bestselling author Victorine E. Lieske. Readers will love this collection of six novellas—three contemporary and three historical—all with one thing in common: Romance.

Three Historical Romance Novellas:

THE PROMISE THAT KATY DID, by Annette Lyon: After the death of Sue Ellen, the closest thing she has to family, Katy knows it’s time to leave the house she’s lived in as a guest and start over in the city. She quickly secures a job, but before leaving, she must honor the unusual promise she made to Sue Ellen on her deathbed: meet with Mr. Balmer. The elderly gentleman arranges for his grandson Barrett to escort her to a town dance. That evening, shy Katy quickly feels at ease with her partner. If her new position weren’t taking her from town morning after next, perhaps something could develop between them. But Barrett may not feel the same about her, and besides, they don’t have enough time to find out.

A LADY OF SENSE, by Sarah M. Eden: Eleanor Sherwood has lived her entire life under her parents’ thumb with little hope of escape. When they choose the unbearable Mr. Broadstead to be her future husband, she begs her father for another option. He arranges for her to meet Peter Havensham, who quickly proves himself a good and kindhearted gentleman, completely different from Mr. Broadstead, and utterly undeserving of a forced engagement. Eleanor cannot bring herself to prey upon Peter’s honor, but neither can she imagine a life with Mr. Broadstead. What is a lady to do when faced with such an impossible choice?

A SECOND CHANCE, by Heather B. Moore: Virginia needs a new start in order to recover from her broken marriage and vicious gossips of her neighborhood in Boston, so when her best friend Millie invites Virginia to Chicago, she goes to live with her friend’s family. But when Millie asked Virginia to participate in a double-date, Virginia knows she’s not ready to start dating again. Reluctantly she agrees, only to find out that Max might just be the man who can repair the cracks in her heart.

Three Contemporary Romance Novellas:

BRAELYNN’S BLIND DATE, by Victorine E. Lieske. When Braelynn agrees to go on a blind date, she thinks she’s hit the jackpot. Tyler is gorgeous and the perfect gentleman. Of course she should have known it was too good to be true. It turns out that Tyler really wasn’t Tyler, but a random stranger who went along with Braelynn’s mistaken assumption. So, she chalks it up to a dumb mistake until she gets to work Monday morning and discovers that her gorgeous blind date is now her new boss.

BIANCA’S HOPE, by Rachel Branton: A blind-date-gone-wrong is not the way Bianca would have chosen to celebrate the news that she might be losing her business, but saying no to the sister who took care of her after their mother’s death proves impossible. So for one date, one torturous evening, she’ll endure the company of an infuriating, heartless man she has no intention of ever seeing again. She doesn’t expect her heart to have other plans. Bianca soon learns that sometimes the unexpected is not only what you need, it’s exactly what you’ve been waiting for all along.

BLIND SPOT, by Sariah Wilson: Ria has prepared most of her life to meet her prince, trouble is, her mother keeps yanking her back to reality. So when Ria reads about a country teeming with princes, she drops everything and applies to grad school. But every blind date goes wrong, and while Ria commiserates with her roommate Tessa and Tessa’s totally un-prince-like brother Paolo, Ria discovers that all the things she thought she wanted in a man are far from what she really needs.

AUTHOR & BOOK TITLE Annette Lyon – The Promise That Katy Did

Sara M. Eden – A Lady of Sense

Heather B Moore – A Second Chance

Victorine E. Lieske – Brae Lynn’s Blind Date

Rachel Branton – Bianca’s Hope

Sariah Wilson – Blind Spot

PUBLISHER Mirror Press
PRINT LENGTH 303 pages
OBTAINED: ebooksforreview




Annette Lyon website on Twitter on Facebook on GoodReads

Sara M. Eden website on Twitter on Facebook   on GoodReads

Heather B Moore website on Twitter  on GoodReads

Victorine Lieske website on Twitter on GoodReads

Rachel Branton website on Twitter on Facebook on GoodReads

Sariah Wilson website on Twitter on GoodReads

Posted in **** rating 4/5

Guide Me Home by Kim Vogel Sawyer

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends this as a page turning 4 star read.                

The author had me hooked.  The characters and setting was just perfect. I could feel the atmosphere of Kentucky in the way the author describes each scene.

The plot had me turning page after page.  It is the first Kim Vogel Sawyer I have read and I will be picking up another one.

It is not my normal type of novel but it was a very nice, needed, change of pace.

Thanks to NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this historical romance.


Working as a guide in Mammoth Cave might allow Rebekah the chance to bring joy back to her family. But will the cave claim more than it gives?

After tragedy leaves its mark on Rebekah Hardin’s family, she plans to help her parents and six siblings honor her beloved brother’s memory and alleviate their poverty by working as a guide in the dangerous cave system. Kentucky’s renowned Mammoth Cave presents profitable opportunities for hardworking, capable men. But Rebekah is determined and if it means presenting herself as a himself, then she’s up to the job.     

Under the wing of experienced guide Tolly Sanford, “Reb” begins to learn the complexities of the cave. The two are joined by an aspiring young cartographer, Devlin Bale. The university student has traveled to the hill country to map tunnels—not to fall for a girl in disguise.

Can the God who designed miles of underground astonishment shape Devlin’s ambitious plans and free Reb from the weight of her past?

AUTHOR Kim Vogel Sawyer
BOOK TITLE Guide Me Home
PUBLISHER WaterBrook & Multnomah
PRINT LENGTH 388 pages
ISBN 9780307731395





Kim Vogel Sawyer website

Kim Vogel Sawyer on Twitter

Kim Vogel Sawyer on Facebook

Kim Vogel Sawyer on GoodReads

Kim Vogel Sawyer on Amazon


Posted in **** rating 4/5

Adopting: The Real Story by Ann Morris

MoMo’s Book Diary recommends Ann Morris’ “Adopting – The Real Story” as a fascinating 5 star read for anyone with an interest in adoption.

Ann Morris has updated her earlier book The Adoption Experience which was published in 1999.  I found this an emotional and highly insightful book which shares a wide range of voices and experiences, good and bad, but anyone considering adoption would find this a very useful tool.

Adoption touches so many people on a daily basis, be it as birth parent, adoptee or adopter.  Processes may have changed over the years but human feelings are still as raw and scary as ever – on all fronts.

I would like to thank NetGalley for the opportunity to read and review this book ahead of publication.


“Who makes adoption a success? We do: the kids and parents in the new family as we change shape to accommodate each other.”

With more than 70 real life stories, revealing moments of vulnerability and moments of joy, this book provides an authentic insight into adoption.

These stories take the reader on a journey through every stage of the adoption process, from making the initial decision to adopt to hearing from adoptees, and offer an informative and emotive account of the reality of families’ experiences along the way. It includes chapters on adopting children of all ages as well as sibling groups; adopting as a single parent; adopting as a same sex couple; adopting emotionally and physically abused children; the nightmare of adoption breaking down; contact with birth parents; tracing and social media and more.

Adopting: Real Life Stories will be an informative and refreshing read for adopters, potential adopters, professionals and all those whose lives have in some way been touched by adoption or want to know more about it.

AUTHOR Ann Morris
BOOK TITLE Adopting: Real Life Stories
PUBLISHER Jessica Kingsley Publishers
PRINT LENGTH 288 pages
ISBN 9781849056601






Ann Morris on GoodReads



Posted in **** rating 4/5

Out of Play by Joy Norstrom

MoMo’s Book Diary enjoyed Joy Norstrom’s “Out of Play” and recommends as a great 4 star read.

This is a great book and all LARP-widows will love it!

Joy Norstrom has written a great book here and it was a joy to read.

The main characters, Gillian and Ralph, have hit a rocky patch in their marriage and Gillian is seeing a therapist who has some strange ideas but Gillian goes along with the plan – she is willing to try anything to save her marriage.

I have not read another book which looks at Life Action Role Play (LARP) despite it being very popular in today’s world. There is a serious side to the book but there is also a good dose of humour meaning the book stays light and an easily entertaining read.

Sincere thanks to author, Joy Norstrom, and publisher, Crooked Cat Publishing, for opportunity to read this funny book via Netgalley prior to its release date.


Gillian Campbell is out of patience.

Her husband is choosing his hobby over her. And the hobby in question? Live Action Role-Play, or ‘larp’. Larp involves dressing up as a character (be it medieval knight, banshee or centaur) and participating in imaginary battles for entire weekends.

Gillian is not impressed. She seeks professional advice and is surprised when her therapist encourages her to try larp. “Who knows? It may make you smile. It may make you laugh. It may even improve your sex life. How terrible could it be?”

The advice seems super sketch to Gillian, but she decides to don a costume and give it a go. If larp doesn’t work a marital miracle, Gillian will be able to walk away knowing she tried absolutely everything before giving up.

Will going on her own role-play adventure heal Gillian’s marriage, or will the game shed light on everything that is wrong?

AUTHOR Joy Norstrom
BOOK TITLE Out of Play
PUBLISHER Crooked Cat Publishing
PRINT LENGTH 212 pages