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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 Summer of Castles by Rachel Walkley #Review

Today we have a mystery romance with more than a touch of magic realism. A Summer of Castles by Rachel Walkley is published today by Spare Time Press.  

A Summer of Castles. A secret in ruins.

At the beginning of the sultry 2003 English summer, Robyn Yates quits her job to photograph fifteen castles for a man she’s never met. A man who won’t tell her his real name.

What motivates her is an unusual ability she can’t explain nor understand. Somebody does though and is keen to exploit her secret.

But Robyn isn’t alone on her journey. An artist is painting pictures of the same castles. Wherever she goes, so does he, like a stalker. But is he dangerous? And could this man be the same person who wants her photographs?

She decides to challenge him, never anticipating that the confrontation will change the path of both of their lives.

The stifling summer will eventually end, but will Robyn find out the truth in time?

My Thoughts

This novel takes you on a tour of castles in the north of England and at each one, you get the particular atmosphere of the place and a glimpse at possible events from the past. Robyn and Joseph, who meet up along the way, are both loners and have parts of their lives which they are keen to keep hidden. The mystery around Robyn's experiences at each site seems to get more complicated as the story evolves and opens up in a surprising way.

    If you like your stories with a touch of magical realism and mystery, you will enjoy this novel. The most interesting part of the story for me is the developing friendship between Robyn and Joseph and the emerging link between them. You are also given some interesting descriptions of events at each castle and the B&B's which Robyn stays at are a rich source of humour and a few lively characters.

In short: mystery with a touch of romance 

About the Author

Aspiring writer who pens Women's Fiction and magical tales about family secrets.

What else?

An East Anglian turned Northerner - almost.

Information professional, always.

Biologist, in my memories.

Archivist, when required.

Amateur pianist and flautist.

Reluctant gardener.

Scribbler of pictures.

And forever.... a mother and wife.

Oh, not forgetting, cat lover!

You can follow Rachel here: Goodreads  |  Twitter   |  Facebook

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Book links: Amazon UK   |  Amazon US

Thanks to Rachel Walkley, Spare Time Press and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for a copy of the book and a place on the event.



  1. Thank you so much for reviewing my book, much appreciated, Rachel


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