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The Lost Queen by Carol McGrath #Review

  We travel back to the 12th Century for this gorgeous historical novel, The Lost Queen by Carol McGrath . It was published by Headline Accent on 18th July. 1191 and the Third Crusade is underway . .  It is 1191 and King Richard the Lionheart is on crusade to pitch battle against Saladin and liberate the city of Jerusalem and her lands. His mother, the formidable Eleanor of Aquitaine and his promised bride, Princess Berengaria of Navarre, make a perilous journey over the Alps in midwinter. They are to rendezvous with Richard in the Sicilian port of Messina. There are hazards along the way - vicious assassins, marauding pirates, violent storms and a shipwreck. Berengaria is as feisty as her foes and, surviving it all, she and Richard marry in Cyprus. England needs an heir. But first, Richard and his Queen must return home . . . The Lost Queen is a thrilling medieval story of high adventure, survival, friendship and the enduring love of a Queen for her King.   My Thoughts

A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village by Michelle Vernal #Review


Michelle Vernal's A Christmas Miracle in the Little Irish Village was published on September 27th by Bookoutre.

Ava Kelly loves returning to Emerald Bay for Christmas. Snowflakes fall on the green rolling hills and mulled wine fills The Shamrock Inn with the smell of winter spice. But this year, the Kelly family is hoping for a miracle…

When twenty-four-year-old Ava Kelly and her adventurous twin Grace return home to The Shamrock Inn, their Ma’s favourite baubles bring back so many memories of Christmases past. They have always done everything together, even leaving their little Irish village for the excitement of London. But with the locket her handsome ex Shane gave her hanging just above her heart, Ava has just one wish this festive season…

After a year stuck in a job she can’t stand and going on dreadful dates, Ava longs to be back with Shane. Curling up in front of the fire with him, the brooding fisherman everyone else sees melts away as his blue eyes meet hers. But planning a future with Shane would mean telling Grace she’ll be moving back to the village for good. Ava knows it will break her sister’s heart for them to be parted.

But, before Ava can build up the courage to talk to her twin, terrible tidings about Shane hit The Shamrock Inn like a winter storm. With everyone but Grace rushing to the harbour, will Ava’s hopes for a future with both Shane and her sister in it be dashed? Or could a Christmas miracle bring them all together?

Fans of Nicola May, Trisha Ashley and Debbie Macomber will love this stunning festive romance. Get comfy under your winter blankets with a warm cocoa ready, because you will not be able to put this wonderful, heart-warming book down!

My Thoughts

I enjoyed travelling back to the Little Irish Village. This is such a heart-warming series, with some larger than life characters and a huge feeling of family, friends and community. Ava is at a crossroads in her life and torn between what she wants for her future and the wishes of her twin sister. Their bond is strong but feels a little inequal to Ava who as the youngest in the family, is slightly quieter and more reflective than her outgoing sisters.  You get to know Ava through some flashback chapters and see how her relationship with  Shane has come about.

    Every time someone leaves the village, you get to glimpse the other villagers and the small businesses who line the main street. There is humour in the dynamics within the Kelly family and their observations about the villagers. Set around Christmas, there is a lovely festive feel which complements the story and fits perfectly.  This is such a warm story which leaves you with a smile on your face and a wish to find out how life continues for the Kelly sisters.

In short: warm, festive feelings


About the Author

Michelle Vernal is a New Zealand author who writes stories that will take you onto the page with her characters and make you feel part of their lives. She writes with humour and warmth, and her readers describe her books as unputdownable, feel good and funny. Her writing has been likened to Maeve Binchy but with a modern-day vernacular. In 2015 she was shortlisted for the Love Stories Award. In 2020 she won the Reader's Favorite Gold Medal Award for Chick lit, and in 2021 was shortlisted for the Page Turner Book Awards.

You can follow Michelle here: Twitter  |  Instagram  |  Facebook 

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Book link: Amazon UK


Thanks to Michelle Vernon, and Jess Readett of Bookoutre for a copy of the book and a place on the tour. 



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