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The Fascination by Essie Fox #Review #Giveaway

   Today be prepared for a dark, Victorian gothic novel! The Fascination by Essie Fox is published on June 22nd by Orenda . For the chance to win a print copy of The Fascination see the foot of this post for details. Victorian England. A world of rural fairgrounds and glamorous London theatres. A world of dark secrets and deadly obsessions… Twin sisters Keziah and Tilly Lovell are identical in every way, except that Tilly hasn't grown a single inch since she was five. Coerced into promoting their father's quack elixir as they tour the country fairgrounds, at the age of fifteen the girls are sold to a mysterious Italian known as ‘Captain’. Theo is an orphan, raised by his grandfather, Lord Seabrook, a man who has a dark interest in anatomical freaks and other curiosities … particularly the human kind. Resenting his grandson for his mother’s death in childbirth, when Seabrook remarries and a new heir is produced, Theo is forced to leave home without a penny to his

Matchmaking at Port Willow by Kiley Dunbar #Review #PortWillowBayBook2


Today I am featuring the second in Kiley Dunbar's Port Willow Bay series, Matchmaking at Port Willow. You can read my review of the first in the series here Summer at the Highland Coral Beach. 

Beatrice Halliday has been working hard at the Princess and The Pea Inn, loved up with landlord Atholl and enjoying planning events for the locals. But at Christmas there's a kick - as she realises she's expecting.

Despite being fearful of the future, Beatrice is graced with a distraction: the prospects of helping a romance flourish when a married couple spend their first child-free holiday at the Inn – and it becomes clear they need some help rediscovering each other. In true Beatrice fashion, she cant help meddling.

Featuring the story of a first love, a new family, a marriage in crisis, and an octogenarian love affair, you'll fall head over heels for this heart-warming rom-com.

 My Thoughts

Having enjoyed the first in the series, I found that I picked up the story seamlessly. There is plenty of mileage to be had from the  characters we already know and the new ones proved to have some interesting depths. Family proved to be a major theme in the story and I was delighted that Beatrice was still showing her problem- solving side, alongside showing us her vulnerabilities. Loss and grief still hover in the background but there is an underlying feeling of hope and renewal.

    There is plenty of humour to be found in the villagers who form such a lovely community. I liked the subplots, especially seeing how guests Ruth and Mark tried to sort out their problems, encouraged by Beatrice. The setting is as stunning as before. Port Willow feels like a magical place, full of hope and possibilities. This really feels like Nina and Mutt's story. At the beginning they could not be more different but as the story develops, you see Nina rediscover what she actually wants to do with her life. Mutt has his own secrets which eventually are discovered. You do feel as though Port Willow has a healing power.

In short: can love find a way?

About the Author

Kiley Dunbar writes heart-warming, escapist, romantic fiction set in beautiful places, with One Winter's Night being shortlisted for the RNA Romantic Comedy Novel Award 2021.

Kiley's five novels include: The Borrow a Bookshop Holiday (May 2021), One Winter's Night (September 2020), Summer at the Highland Coral Beach (2020), Christmas at Frozen Falls (2019) and One Summer's Night (2019).

You can read my review of Christmas at Frozen Falls here and Summer at the Highland Coral Beach here.  and One Winter's Night  here.

You can find Kiley on Twitter @KileyDunbar  |  You Tube 
                                  |  Website & Newsletter

and on the 'Kiley Dunbar Author Book Page' on Facebook.

Book links: Amazon UK     |  Kobo   |  Apple
Thanks to Kiley Dunbar, Hera and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources  for a copy of the book and a place on the tour.

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