One Christmas Morning by Rachel Greenlaw is a simply beautiful contemporary novel that will warm your heart.
Though the setting is Christmas, this book is perfect and relevant for any day. It is about the choices we make and the consequences of those choices. Very rarely can we have a do-over but we can learn from past choices and make wiser choices in the future.
The book is also about grief and loss. No two people ever walk the exact same road but we can be there to support others. We do need to acknowledge our grief and let others help us. We were never meant to journey alone.
And the book is about love – between partners, friends and even work colleagues. We all need love. We need to give love and we need to receive love.
Everyone is fighting their own battles. Unless we have walked a mile in their shoes, we have no idea what others are facing. What would you do if you could be someone else for twenty four hours?
Glitz & Glamour
Murder On The Dance Floor by Shirley Ballas is an entertaining cosy crime novel which I really enjoyed. It is the first book in a new series which promises to be fabulous.
The reader enters the glitzy world of professional dancing. We see the effortless sequins and the glamour on stage. This is in contrast to the hard work put in behind the scenes. There is a grueling schedule for each competition as whole teams work on hair, make up and bodies.
Among the glitz and glamour lurks a silent killer as a life has been overtaken by bitterness. Designed to look like accidents, the body count rises – who will be next?
The police dismiss the deaths as accidental. An ex-dancer turner personal detective is called in to solve the crimes. As she polishes up her dance moves, old feelings that were squashed begin to rise.
All the characters were well drawn and realistic. The reader witnesses the cut throat world of professional dancing. I tried to work out the guilty party and fell for a few red herrings along the way!
Tell Me Your Secrets by Mel McGrath is a totally griping contemporary psychological suspense that I just could not put down. I read it in just two sittings, pausing only to sleep.
There is the theme of grief. “Grief… is a country with a population of one.” No two people will ever grieve the same, even in response to the same event. With grief we see that guilt and regret go hand in hand.
A thirty year old cold case is awakened in present day as a character feels a connection in an old house. Secrets, lies and sadness inhabit the very walls, as the truth is trying to come out.
We witness the manipulation of many by one – but to what end? Read the book in order to find out.
All the characters were well drawn. Not all were likable. Mel McGrath manipulates the reader’s responses as we follow the action.
The Bulldog Spirit
Nineteen Steps by Millie Bobby Brown is a truly inspiring, powerful historical tale that is based on fact.
The novel opens in the autumn of 1942 in Bethnal Green in London. We ‘travel’ through the remainder of the war with the community, focusing in on two families who are next door neighbours.
As we journey, we learn about events on one fateful night in early 1943 in Bethnal Green tube station. We see the repercussions across the community. The reader is educated about what was kept secret for thirty five years after the event.
We witness the indomitable bulldog spirit. As a community pulls together. “Nothing would lessen [her] pain… But these kindnesses, from people who had so little themselves, touched her.” Though the people have little in the form of material goods, they have huge hearts that love, care and support.