Book review: The Debt and The Doormat by Laura Barnard

Goodreads synopsis
Poppy and Jazz have been best friends from the first week of university. Whenever these two get together trouble isn’t far away and things haven’t changed much. When Jazz gets herself into financial trouble Poppy, being a good friend, offers to help. She instead ends up being talked into swapping lives, with Jazz insisting it will be good and help her get over her broken heart.
Poppy is thrown into a new life, full of crazy housemates. There’s fitness freak Izzy, horrendously beautiful bitch Grace and the slightly gorgeous, if not incredibly grumpy Ryan.
Quickly, with the help of Jazz, her life is thrown upside down. Madness ensues and her need to please everyone gets her in more trouble than she could ever imagine.
Before she knows it she’s got a fake boyfriend and is hiding so many secrets she’s scared they’ll spill out any minute. With a bullying boss, a sex crazed colleague, a mental mother and three brothers each with their own dramas, life has gotten pretty difficult for Poppy. And all of this would be much easier, if she could just stop falling over.
Will she get her life back to normal before her brother’s upcoming wedding? And will she want to?

My verdict
It’s been ages since I read a chick lit book that I couldn’t put down; I found myself making time to read The Debt and The Doormat! For a book with 451 pages, it seemed to pass really quickly while I was reading it.

The main character Poppy was likeable, and I really liked her friendship with Jazz. I’ve been rubbish with money in the past, so I really empathise with how Jazz got herself into the mess that she did!

Laura Barnard has a real flair for creating characters that you can relate to and I found myself thinking about the characters when I was away from the book, as if they were friends of mine. It was easy to become absorbed in the book and was really easy to read. There are some real laugh out loud moments, which got me some funny looks in the office when I was reading the book at lunchtime! I know that other people have mentioned in their reviews that the book is ‘crude’ in parts, but I’m not shy at saying that I have a crude sense of humour, hence me laughing out loud in the office! I would highly recommend it!

The book is currently free on Amazon, so rush to get it!

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

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Book review: Harry Webb in ‘A Potato With Her Name On’ by Jason Pinnington

It’s been ages since I read a book I couldn’t put down, and so I was so excited (and annoyed when life got in the way!) when I started reading Harry Webb in A Potato With Her Name On. This is the Goodreads synopsis:

The name’s Webb, Harry Webb, spider and private detective. Most people find what I do exciting, chases, shootouts, chases, fist fights, chases, escapes – you get the idea, there’s a lot of chases. Not me, I prefer the stakeout, hours sitting on some Liverpool street watching, waiting, eating, drinking coffee… minimal fees, minimal risk.

Then a job lands at my feet, a job I can’t refuse because it’s the only way out of a hole I’m in. A high profile job for a high profile client, with secrets that need to stay secret. A job that’s tougher than an overcooked steak and keeps me looking over my shoulder at every turn.

As I start drawing up a list of suspects and motives, making more enemies than friends, I realise that my job isn’t the only thing at stake here… there’s my life…

Below is the review I left on Goodreads:

Now, I did come to this book thinking that it was simply going to be a children’s book (which I don’t tend to read), but I enjoyed it just as much as if it had been written for adults. The characters, especially Harry, are likeable and life-like and you really care what happens to them. It’s well written and is really funny, though some of the lines did make me groan, but in a good way.

Harry talks to you throughout the book, and I admit that I did hear his voice as one of the characters from Bugsy Malone (one of my favourite films!) which made me smile.

Highly recommended 🙂

I know that Jason will be at the upcoming MerseyCon in Liverpool on Saturday 30th May, and in view of this, Harry Webb will be free to download as a Kindle title from Amazon on this day only, and will be available to buy in in paperback in person from him at the comic con for £5.

Book review: Ellie Campbell – Looking For La La


Ellie Campbell, AKA The Chicklit Sisters are Lorraine and Pam. They are sisters who live a fair distance apart, with Lorraine living in Boulder, Colorado (USA) and Pam living in Reigate, Surrey (UK). They have just released their fifth novel, Million Dollar Question, and that fact reminded me that I had read their book, Looking For La La a while ago (back in July 2013!), but that I was very naughty and hadn’t posted my book review on this website.

As well as Looking For La La, Lorraine and Pam have written How To Survive Your Sisters, When Good Friends Go BadTo Catch A Creeper and Million Dollar Question.

Synopsis (from Goodreads)
In a recent survey 65% of mothers admitted feeling undervalued, over-criticised and constantly tired.

Cathy is no exception. Her dull, uneventful days as a stay at home, mother of two, are radically transformed however with the arrival of a heavily lipsticked postcard addressed to husband, Declan. Who is the mysterious La La? Could Declan really be having an affair? And is Cathy actually being stalked?

Whatever – it will definitely prove riveting gossip for the Tuesday Twice Monthlies, Cathy’s ‘Mothers Restaurant Research’ group where scandal flows as recklessly as the wine. But what starts as a light-hearted investigation with best friend Raz, soon turns into something much more sinister.

With a possible murderer on the scene, a sexy admirer igniting long-forgotten sparks, and all her friends hiding secrets, it’s not only Cathy’s marriage that’s in jeopardy. Add in the scheming antics of Declan’s new assistant, the stress of organising the school Save The Toilet’s dance and the stage is set for a dangerous showdown and some very unsettling, possibly deadly, revelations.

My review
I read the Kindle version and I really enjoyed it. The characters were really likeable and it was a nice, relaxed, easy read. It really made me smile. My favourite character was Raz, as she reminds me of a friend of a mine. I’m looking forward to reading more by Ellie Campbell in the future 🙂

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

You can download Looking For La La on Kindle via Amazon

Goodreads giveaways

One thing I really love about the Goodreads website is the facility for authors to offer their books as giveaways to readers, often before their release date. We have run a few book giveaways for our books through Goodreads in the past, and we found it a fantastic way to spread the word about our books. It was brilliant to receive reviews from people who might otherwise not have read our books, or even heard of them.

On the other hand, I have entered quite a few giveaways myself and have added lots of books to my ‘to read’ list that I hadn’t previously heard of.

In case you haven’t taken a look at their giveaway page, here is the link:
https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway

Have you ever won a book through Goodreads? Have you had any good/bad experiences with giveaways? Let me know in the comments 🙂