Beach House Summer by Sarah Morgan

Coming Home

Beach House Summer by Sarah Morgan is the most delightful contemporary novel that will warm your heart and make you smile.

The whole novel has a beautiful aroma of love. It is a book about loving well – loving those who love us and loving ourselves.

Sometimes in life we are hurt by words spoken over us and we believe we are unlovable. “She… stabbed you with words. And that wound stayed with you.” Words can pierce us and destroy us. We need to know that we are worth so much more than cruel words spoken over us.

We see the effect on a character that others have had by continually telling her she is worthless. We all need to surround ourselves with those who believe in us. “She believed in me, at a time when I didn’t believe in myself.” We all need positive role models.

The novel is about parenting. Some people are too selfish to parent well. Others are cruel. And some just exude love. You do not necessarily need to have given birth in order to parent well. Some people just have a default setting of love.

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The Witch’s Tree by Elena Collins

New Beginnings

The Witch’s Tree by Elena Collins is a marvellous dual timeline novel that completely enthralled me from the start.

The action is set in Somerset in 1682 and present day. Both time periods are linked by an old house in which each main character lives.

The leading ladies lives mirror each other as an invisible thread unites them down the years. Both have known betrayal and sadness.

The house retains an atmosphere down the years which has repelled many until one empathetic soul reaches out across the years.

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Escape To The River Sea by Emma Carroll

Captivating

Escape To The River Sea by Emma Carroll is an exciting children’s historical novel that is guaranteed to entertain all those aged eight years and over.

The novel is set at the end of World War II as we follow a young girl who was sent to England from Austria before war started as she was Jewish. Her mother and sister were left behind. Now war is over, and she is looking and waiting for the post with a letter to say her mum and sister survived. The reader can ‘feel’ the tension and disappointment as each day passes with no news. However, she still clings to hope.

There was another search running parallel. This takes the characters and the reader to the Amazon to look for the famed Giant Sloth. We are treated to the sights and sounds of the jungle under the skillful pen of Emma Carroll.

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The Memory Keeper Of Kyiv by Erin Litteken

Powerful And Horrifying

The Memory Keeper Of Kyiv by Erin Litteken is a powerful dual timeline novel that will educate and horrify you, whilst totally consuming you.

The novel is set in 2004 in America and from 1929 into the 1930’s in Ukraine. The reader hears of Stalin’s program of collectivisation and his plans to eliminate the kulaks (so called richer peasants). As a historian I had studied this subject but it seemed even more shocking and horrifying to read about the atrocities in a novel. I think that is because the macrocosm becomes the microcosm as we focus in on a community.

The two time periods are linked by a character and her diary. She has kept her early life a secret due to the fear as Soviet arms are long. Now it is time to share her story.

The losses are immense. The modern reader just cannot comprehend the horrors of the Holodomor as over eight million lost their lives through a man-made starvation program and a reign of terror. We see the will and determination and luck needed to survive in spite of many losses.

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