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One Italian Summer by Keris Stainton

It's been a year since Milly, Elyse and Leonie's dad died, and a year since their last trip to Rome. Summer's here again, and once again they are heading with their mum to Italy - but what's it going to be like going without Dad? Rome still holds its familiar charms - the sun is still as warm, the gelato as delicious, the people as welcoming. But nothing is quite as it once was ... 

With grief still raw for all of them, Milly is facing the additional awfulness of having to see Luke again - gorgeous, gorgeous Luke, who she had a fling with last year, and who she made a total fool of herself with - or so she thinks. What's going to happen this time? What's more, things between Milly, her sisters and their mum are rocky - Leonie is being tempestuous and unpredictable, Elyse is caught up with her new boyfriend, and Milly feels like she just doesn't know how she fits in any more. 

Over one Italian summer, can Milly find a way back to the life she once had?

My thoug…
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Girlhood by Cat Clarke

Real, compulsive and intense: Cat Clarke is the queen of emotional suspense. For fans of Paula Hawkins, Gillian Flynn, Megan Abbott and Jandy Nelson.

Harper has tried to forget the past and fit in at expensive boarding school Duncraggan Academy. Her new group of friends are tight; the kind of girls who Harper knows have her back. But Harper can't escape the guilt of her twin sister's Jenna's death, and her own part in it - and she knows noone else will ever really understand.

But new girl Kirsty seems to get Harper in ways she never expected. She has lost a sister too. Harper finally feels secure. She finally feels...loved. As if she can grow beyond the person she was when Jenna died.

Then Kirsty's behaviour becomes more erratic. Why is her life a perfect mirror of Harper's? And why is she so obsessed with Harper's lost sister? Soon, Harper's closeness with Kirsty begins to threaten her other relationships, and her own sense of identity.

How can Harper get back…

Windfall by Jennifer E Smith

Alice doesn’t believe in luck—at least, not the good kind. But she does believe in love, and for some time now, she’s been pining for her best friend, Teddy. On his eighteenth birthday—just when it seems they might be on the brink of something—she buys him a lottery ticket on a lark. To their astonishment, he wins $140 million, and in an instant, everything changes. 

At first, it seems like a dream come true, especially since the two of them are no strangers to misfortune. As a kid, Alice won the worst kind of lottery possible when her parents died just over a year apart from each other. And Teddy’s father abandoned his family not long after that, leaving them to grapple with his gambling debts. Through it all, Teddy and Alice have leaned on each other. But now, as they negotiate the ripple effects of Teddy’s newfound wealth, a gulf opens between them. And soon, the money starts to feel like more of a curse than a windfall. 

As they try to find their way back to each other, Alice learns…

Bookcase Showcase: Author David Owen

Bookcase Showcase: David Owen
I’ve moved home an unreasonable number of times within the last few years, so my books are spread all over the place. Most still reside in my mum’s house, a mess of books in the corner of my old bedroom.


A couple of years ago those shelves fell completely off the wall while I was sitting in the room, I thought I was going to have a heart attack!


I have a fairly extensive collection of Peanuts books, most of which I’ve had as long as I can remember. My parents used to pick them up from charity shops. They’ve always been my go-to books when I’m feeling low, and I really identify with Charlie Brown. I started buying the complete collection editions but ran out of money!



These are on the bookshelves in my mum’s front room, behind the TV. When The Fellowship of the Ring movie came out I had no idea at all what The Lord of the Rings was about. It had always been on that shelf beside Tolstoy, so I assumed it was something similar. After falling in love with the …

Can't wait to read

Another month, another pile of books I am desperate to read

A random mix this month of books I seen mentioned on twitter mostly that I'm now stalking Norfolk Library Catalogue for.

Freshers by Tom Ellen and Lucy Ivison


Another laugh-out-loud dual narrative, Freshers is a YA novel following two protagonists through that tumultuous first year of university. Starring new characters – but featuring some familiar faces from Lobsters – Freshers is a contemporary, authentic story packed full of love, sex and friendship.

I loved Lobsters and cannot wait to get my hands on this. I can't think of any other UKYA novel that looks at that first year at Uni so I'm looking forward to this for that reason alone.

The Upstairs Room by Kate Murray-Browne


Eleanor, Richard and their two young daughters recently stretched themselves to the limit to buy their dream home, a four-bedroom Victorian townhouse in East London. But the cracks are already starting to show. Eleanor is unnerved by the eerie a…

The last piece of my heart by Paige Toon

Meet Bridget, a successful travel journalist with ambitions to turn her quirky relationship blog into a novel. But, after numerous rejections from publishers, she accepts an alternative proposition: Nicole Dupre died leaving behind a bestselling novel and an incomplete sequel, and the family need someone to finish it. Bridget is just thankful to have her foot in the publishing door. But as she gets to know Nicole’s grieving family, and the woman behind the writing, Bridget’s priorities begin to change …


It is no secret that I am a Paige Toon fan. I was so excited to get this book for review and equally delighted to say that I loved it.

I loved it for many reasons. I loved the main character Bridget I really liked getting to know her and have a glimpse into her life as a writer. I loved the setting of the majority of the book being set in Cornwall and how I haven't booked a holiday to go there myself again is beyond me. I adored the main relationship of the book and seeing the friend…

Bookcase Showcase: Author JD Fennell

“A bookshelf is as particular to its owner as are his or her clothes; a personality is stamped on a library just as a shoe is shaped by the foot." ― Alan Bennett
I have a confession. I am a voyeur. A book voyuer. If I am ever a guest at someone’s house, and I see a collection of books, I cannot resist quietly edging my way toward them to browse and get the measure of my host. Perhaps their shelves are full of hardened crime fiction or sweeping romances or bloody horror or epic fantasy. None of that matters. Whatever their tastes, it is always satisfying and fascinating to meet someone with a book collection and discover what worlds he or she loves to get lost in.


I love books. I always have. A book is the gateway to another world. It is the beating heart and emotions of the person whose story you are following. Books are more than paper and ink. Books have life. Books enrich life. They make us happy, they make us sad, they make us angry. They educate us and help us understand other…