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The Wartime Book Club by Kate Thompson #Review

  The Wartime Book Club is a marvellous historical novel set on Jersey in World War Two. Written by Kate Thompson , it was published by Hodder $ Stoughton on February 13th. Jersey, 1943. Once a warm and neighbourly community, now German soldiers patrol the cobbled streets, imposing a harsh rule on the people of the island. Grace La Mottée, the island's only librarian, is ordered to destroy books which threaten the new regime. Instead, she hides the stories away in secret. Along with her headstrong best friend, postwoman Bea Rose, she wants to fight back. So she forms the wartime book club: a lifeline, offering fearful islanders the joy and escapism of reading. But as the occupation drags on, the women's quiet acts of bravery become more perilous - and more important - than ever before. And, when tensions turn to violence, they are forced to face the true, terrible cost of resistance . . . Based on astonishing real events, The Wartime Book Club is a love letter

A Village Secret by Julie Houston #Review #Publication Day


I have great pleasure in introducing Julie Houston's latest novel, A Village Secret. It is published today on April 14th  by Aria.

When Jennifer goes up to Cambridge University with her head full of the Romantic Poets, she never dreams that she will find her very own Byron. But then she meets gorgeous actor Laurie Lewis, and finds herself living a real-life love poem.

Fifteen years and two children later, Jennifer and Laurie's relationship is starting to feel more like an epic tragedy. After a series of revelations turn her world upside down, Jennifer will do anything to keep her family together – even if it means moving hundreds of miles away to Laurie's childhood home in Westenbury, Yorkshire.

As she reluctantly enters into village life – complete with interfering in-laws, new friends and a surprise delivery of alpacas – Jennifer is amazed to find herself feeling happy for the first time in years. But the village holds one last, devastating secret.


Praise for Julie Houston:

'A warm, funny story of sisters and the secrets they keep' Sheila O'Flanagan

'Warm, funny and well written, with a page-turning plot, this book has everything! I loved it!' Katie Fforde

'Julie Houston at her best – heartfelt and hilarious' Sandy Barker

'Laugh-out-loud hilarious and heartwarming!' Mandy Baggot

'This book is an absolute gigglefest with characters you'll fall in love with!' Katie Ginger


My Thoughts

This return to Westenbury features some interesting and distinctive characters, I must say, not all of them are sympathetic! You feel Jennifer's frustration at how her life has ended up and her feeling of being caught between her different family members. In this story, Jennifer has to learn to stand up for herself  and to learn to put her needs first, at times.

    You follow Jennifer and Laurie's story from the early days when they met at Cambridge, through fifteen years of marriage and disappointments. Although Laurie is not particularly likeable, nevertheless, there are some interesting dynamics in his family and family secrets which have wighed down on them. You also see the different generations in the family and how decisions made affect everyone. Romance is gentle and a slow burn.

In short: Moving on

About the Author


Julie Houston
lives in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire where her novels are set, and her only claims to fame are that she teaches part-time at 'Bridget Jones' author Helen Fielding's old junior school and her neighbour is 'Chocolat' author, Joanne Harris. Julie is married, with two adult children and a ridiculous Cockerpoo called Lincoln. She runs and swims because she's been told it's good for her, but would really prefer a glass of wine, a sun lounger and a jolly good book – preferably with Dev Patel in attendance. 


You can follow Julie here: Twitter   | Facebook   |  Website 

Book links: Amazon UK   |  Kobo  

 Aria Books: Website  |  Twitter  |   Facebook  |  Instagram
Head of Zeus:  Twitter  |  Instagram |  Facebook  |  Website

Thanks to Julie Houston and Amy Watson and Aria Books for a copy of the book and a place on the tour. 

Check out the rest of the tour!




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