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This Lovely City by Louise Hare

A Brave New World

This Lovely City by Louise Hare is a marvellous historical murder mystery. It is a fabulous debut novel set between 1948 and 1950.

The war is over. Britain needs rebuilding but hasn’t the population to do it so an invite is issued to Jamaican men to come over and start a glorious new life… but the reality is very different. “It didn’t matter what his passport said. A man with a black skin could never be considered British.” The Windrush men find that that they were lied to, racial prejudice is rife. “People looked and decided what he was without knowing a single thing about him.” There were terrible crimes committed against the men even from those in authority. Men were judged as guilty merely on the colour of their skin. It is horrifying to witness for the modern reader. These men were helping to rebuild Britain and yet they were judged and assaulted for the crime of being black.

Mixed race relationships did occur but they were frowned upon and any children were judged too. It was a terrible, shameful time.

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A Dog’s Promise by W Bruce Cameron

Angel Dog

A Dog’s Promise by W. Bruce Cameron is a perfectly charming contemporary novel and the third book in A Dog’s Purpose series. It can be read as a stand-alone. I had seen the movies of the first two books which were delightful, but you did need the tissues!

The novel is written through the eyes of puppy dog Bailey, whom we meet in book one. Bailey knows that he has been created for a purpose which will unfold as he moves from puppy to dog.

The reader sees the love and loyalty of Bailey (aka Cooper and Oscar) the bonds he makes will travel with him through life. He never forgets his owners.

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The Other Mrs by Mary Kubica

Heart Racing Action

The Other Mrs by Mary Kubica is a thrilling contemporary psychological suspense that will have your heart racing as you speed towards the conclusion.

I found The Other Mrs to be a slow burner. I settled down for a comfortable read – and then the roller coaster of a read kicked in. Oh wow, oh wow, oh wow – what a ride – My pulse raced, my heartbeat rose as I read with heart in my mouth. Mary Kubica clearly has a great talent as an author as she manipulated my emotions this way and that.

The novel is written in the first person from several points of view. The reader becomes intimately involved and invested in lives. The various characters elicited different emotional responses from me. My favourite was six year old Mouse, although there were hard to read scenes of abuse. There is the theme of manipulation. Sometimes it is so subtle that it is difficult to recognise.

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In Five Years by Rebecca Serle

Beyond The Sea And The Sky

In Five Years by Rebecca Serle is the most beautiful contemporary novel celebrating friendship and love. It made me smile and it made me cry as the love radiated from its pages.

We do not always realise what we have until it is gone. Love creeps us on us over the years before overwhelming us. We know we are part of a great love because of the pain in parting.

Rebecca Serle celebrates a best buddy friendship in the novel – two girls meet aged seven, they grow up together and share the highs and lows, the ups and downs, the loves and losses in life. They appear to be complete opposites but their personalities complement each other as they support each other through life. Theirs is a beautiful friendship that will warm the reader’s heart.

We make our plans. We do everything on our lists but still life does not pan out the way we thought it would.

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