Monday, 19 November 2018 Book Review: As Good As Gold by Patricia Furstenbe... Book Review: As Good As Gold by Patricia Furstenbe...: ***We received a copy of this title, from the author, in return for an honest review.*** Having read, and loved, Patricia's c...

Book Review: As Good As Gold by Patricia Furstenberg.

***We received a copy of this title, from the author, in return for an honest review.***

Having read, and loved, Patricia's children's novel Joyful Trouble, we were more than happy to review her new collection of poetry and Haiku. Each of the 35 poems are written from a dogs perspective and delightfully explore the sights, sounds and smells they encounter. The collection is split into four parts: Questions, Colours, Musings and Haiku.

In Questions, we encounter inquisitive dogs who are fascinated with their surroundings. They have questions about other animals and different types of weather, and often ending with their 'humans' coming to rescue them from potential problems. In Why, Rain? a puppy escapes from the safety of the garden and, distracted by new experiences, he finds himself in a jam:

"And puppy cries, his feet are stuck,
He cannot cross this river;
He's cold and hungry and alone.
"I'll help you," speaks a small snail.
"I'll call your mom. Just wait a bit. I'm going."

In Orange, the joy of Christmas is seen through the eyes of a dog:

"It's weekend, there's such rumbling and they're all over the room,
Mom, Dad, the children... the grandparents too!
There are plenty of boxes, some open, some not
And there's something else, in the house, in a pot!
It doesn't make sense.
A tree indoors?

There are plenty of photos throughout the book, my only qualm being that perhaps younger children would enjoy pictures of the other animals and birds dotted throughout the collection. An owl, a frog, a snake. Kids love to see pictures when being read to.

This is a very cute addiction to a family library and the short poems are ideal for distraction or night-time reads. Who doesn't love puppies?

As Good As Gold is available in paperback and ebook format. Both can be ordered via amazon via links below:


Wednesday, 7 November 2018 My Mum Tracey Beaker by Jacqueline Wilson. Review ... My Mum Tracey Beaker by Jacqueline Wilson. Review ...: We received a copy of this title, from the publisher, in return for an honest review. Review from Endija, aged 11. My Mum Tracy ...

My Mum Tracey Beaker by Jacqueline Wilson. Review from Endija, aged 11.

We received a copy of this title, from the publisher, in return for an honest review.

Review from Endija, aged 11.

My Mum Tracy Beaker is a funny, loving book by Jacqueline Wilson, starring Jess Beaker (Tracy's daughter) and Tracy herself.

Jess thinks Tracy is the best mother ever, but when Sean Godrey (Tracy's childhood friend) comes along, Jess isn't happy, though Tracy is over the moon.

Jess wants everything to go back to the way they were, when it was just her and her mum living in their perfect flat.

But will things work out for Jess and Tracy Beaker? Find out in this brilliant book! 

Suitable for ages 8+

*****Note from Editor*****

Reviews from children are the best! There is nothing like the way they word things. There is no need to change them, as their words are the genuine ones. The photo above - complete with tea stain - shows how the reviews begin as hand-written ones, with plenty of mistakes as they gather their thoughts.  It can be hard to get children to read, never mind review books, so asking them to embellish more is not feasible (or wise). Age appropriate reviews are perfect and may assist parents/guardians/teachers in their search for the right book, for the right age-group.

My Mum Tracy Beaker is published by Doubleday and is available in HB, ebook and audio. You can order your SIGNED* copy with FREE WORLDWIDE POSTAGE and 12% discount HERE. 
*limited signed stock

Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Book Review: Dark Wood Dark Water by Tina Callaghan.

**we received a copy of this book from the publisher, for review purposes.**

Review by Mia Madden, aged 15.

This books story is told through the eyes of multiple characters: twenty-something-year-old Callum, his brother Josh, budding artist Kate, her friend Gabe, the local historian Doc Naylor, the local doctor Richard, and Alma, a girl so deeply in love she would do anything to be with her crush.  These people all reside in Bailey, a town situated on a river with a dark history. Every year people go missing, or are killed, and their bodies are always found in the river. Josh Kate and Gabe meet and become close friends when they realise they've all lost someone to the river. They all have their minds set on one thing: to find out why this is happening and how to stop it. 

The trio enlist the help of Doc Naylor in the hope of him having some sort of knowledge on this particular topic. He claims to have noticed the amount of losses as well, offering to assist them on their search. But they all know that this won't be easy. Between fatal battles, ancient curses, oblivious civilians, savage teenagers covered in blood, ghastly faces coming out of toilet bowls, an evil monk and vivid dreams of scenes from the past, will the group be able to survive and stop whatever is happening in the town of Bailey?

This book is definitely different to anything I've read before. Of course, the dark imagery and style had me hooked. But the thing I loved most about it was how weird and unique it was (in a good way). Even the characters weren't what I was expecting! How many authors can say that their debut novel, with the main antagonist being a body of water, was nominated for an award

I rate this book 5* and recommend it for ages 14+

About the Author

Tina Callaghan is a writer of speculative fiction, both for children and adults. Her stories involve elements of history, mythology and the supernatural. Her short stories have appeared alongside horror and science-fiction greats Stephen King, Dean Koontz, Ray Bradbury and Robert Bloch. 

Dark Wood Dark Water is her debut novel and has been shortlisted for the 2018 Eason/Dept51 An Post Irish Book Award 

Dark Wood Dark Water is published by Poolbeg and is available in PB and ebook format. Available in all good bookshops and on

Carmel Harrington’s A Thousand Roads Home. Author Interview and Giveaway

Last week I was lucky enough to meet up with Carmel Harrington at the LMFM studios on publication day of A Thousand Roads Home. I had reviewed the book on October's #LateLunchBookclub   and just had to come back and chat to her when she was back in studio with Gerry Kelly.

Below is the video of our interview and there is also a chance to win a signed copy of the novel! Just leave a comment below, or on the original you tube clip to enter. Open INT and closes 1st Novemeber. Good Luck!

You can listen back to Carmel's interview with Gerry HERE.

You can listen back to my review of A Thousand Roads Home, on October's #LateLunchBookclub HERE.

The Blurb

Where is home? Wherever the people you love are.
Single mother, Ruth, and her son, DJ, have never truly fitted in, but that didn’t matter, so long as they were together. When their home comes under threat, their quiet life will change forever.
DJ meets Tom, a man who ten years ago walked out of his house and never looked back. Ruth, DJ and Tom have all felt like outsiders. Burdened with grief and insecurities, they are not living their best lives. But together, these three ordinary people will do an extraordinary thing…

A Thousand Roads Home is published by Harper Collins and is available from all good bookshops now. You can get FREE WORLDWIDE POSTAGE and 12% discount (at time of posting) via

Also available in ebook format:

Wednesday, 15 August 2018

Book Review: Mine by J. L. Butler

Francine is applying for Queen’s Counsel and is determined to prove her worth: “’How many state-school-educated QCs are there…How many women, Northerners, ethnic minorities … The very top end of our profession is still full with white upper-middle, Oxbridge men…’” Then she meets Martin Joy. Seeking a divorce, he sweeps in to Francine’s office and the attraction is instant. A chance encounter in Selfridge’s sees Francine being wooed by the handsome millionaire: “He pushed his shirtsleeves up and I noticed what good forearms he had: strong and tanned with a light trail of hair across the top.” Within hours, the lawyer is “in love” and seems to have repressed all her legal training. She has also forgotten the small detail of her bipolar pills: “I had missed taking my medication last night and this morning, and I knew I would soon feel a comedown, or panic or derailment, but for now, my mind was consumed by him and all felt well.”

Francine is loving the wining and dining, the Aston Martin and lavish properties: “we were the beautiful people, sophisticated and urbane.” What could go wrong? A missing wife, that’s what. Donna fails to appear in court and questions are asked. Martin suggests she has probably jetted off “for a detox” and will return to Chelsea “tanned, ten pounds lighter.” Briefly, Francine considers the alternative: “I’d heard about Missing White Woman Syndrome before … Donna Joy wasn’t just blonde, white and beautiful. She was estranged from her millionaire hedge fund banker husband.” The plot becomes gloopier when Francine ‘remembers’ following her client; seeing him with Donna on the night she disappeared.

Mine attempts to be on-trend and ripe for TV adaptation; full of hedonistic-lifestyles of the self-entitled. However, it also ticks every cliché box: mental health, alcohol, handsome/wealthy man causing brain fog, sexual assault (not reported), amazingly-patient female friend and forgiving boss. The writing can be beautifully descriptive when detailing the high-end streets of London, but the concept of a high-flying lawyer is rather spoiled by many clangers. While undergoing therapy (of which one ten-minute session seems to do the trick), Francine is asked if she has heard of the term dissociation. “She shakes her head”. Really?  Like a Harold Robbins novel from the 80s - sexy and bizarre - but the women of today deserve more than the suggestion that Martin “had the most muscular and tanned forearms that were the very definition of manliness.” 

Mine is published by Harper Collins and is available in Hardback and ebook format.

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