Allyson's and Cyra's Books


Sunday, 30 October 2016

Fifteen Postcards by Kirtsen McKenzie

Having now committed myself to read more books and write a review and a blog post about them, I have found I mostly read novella's. I am not sure if it because they are shorter or more plentiful in the genres I tend to read.  When I started to read Fifteen Postcards (obtained through a giveaway) I was surprised at the list of seventy-seven chapters all with names and not just numbers. That was my first clue that the author of this book was taking her story seriously and the chapter titles intrigued me straight away. I then discovered this was a debut book. Completely impressed by the author now.
So, onto my take of Fifteen Postcards.
With seventy-seven chapters to read I started out quickly, but then discovered that I actually needed to slow down and savour the work. McKenzie's writing is crafted with tantalizing descriptions that force the reader to imagine the visions, sounds and smells of different countries and even an old antique shop. 
This story is a montage of many genres all wrapped up in a layer of mystery and mystique. it is an extremely well crafted and researched book. An intriguing story combining time travel, history, geography and the antique trade. I found it all enjoyable and very educational. I did get a little confused at times, but managed to unravel my thoughts by rereading a few pages, and I have to admit to drifting off a little through the long India passages, but as the story keeps flitting from one scene to another, it keeps you hooked until the end. Ah then end! That was not what I was expecting either.
Well done Kirsten McKenzie. A brilliant first novel.

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Carolyn Arnold: Eleven

I found this book to be very readable. I very often read later into the night than planned, just to find out what happens next. A good plot that keeps the reader guessing as different turn of events sends the FBI chasing leads. The characters are realistic, with all their troubles in life while trying to keep up with a major murder hunt. I will definitely look out for more of Ms Arnold's books.

I did check some of the other reviews and noticed that some readers complained about Brandon Fisher's attitude. I must admit there were occasions during the book I thought he was a tad shallow and selfish, but then there are people like that in life, so it made the character more believable. not every person in a book can be idyllic. I will still read more books to see if the characters develop.

Slaving Over Christmas by Allyson R. Abbott

At last, my Slaving Over Christmas Book has now been published with a new cover and a new publisher.  Just look at that cover!!!
Now available at Amazon
I would be happy to send an ARC or free copy if anybody is so inclined to think about reading it. Although a review would be nice it is not a necessity.

Take the Monkeys and Run by Karen Cantwell

I am really enjoying my new regime of making time to read. I love the fact that I can just use the kindle app on my phone and squeeze in a few pages here and there. I can even manage to read at night without waking up my husband.  I must admit to having to muffle a few giggles when reading Take the Monkeys and Run.

It was the title that attracted me to this book. I love to read funny books and this title just screamed humour at me. I was not let down.  it made me chuckle a few times and even though I knew it was all ridiculous I just could not stop reading.  It was an easy read, no hard work trying to follow plots or to work out who did it. the main character Barbara Marr, keeps you entertained with her antics and thoughts throughout the book. Monkeys and mayhem, murders and men. it had everything you need for a relaxing evening read before bed. I will definitely be recommending this book to my friends.

This book is actually free on kindle, so treat yourself to a frivolous read.

Friday, 14 October 2016

How to Write a Simple Book Review

Murder in Vail by Judy Moore

At last I am now settled in one place for a while so am actually able to read more books.  Ever since I have been writing I have found less and less time for reading, but now I am determined to set a few hours aside each day.  I very often found myself reading until the early hours of the morning, but I have not done that for a few years. However, when I downloaded Murder in Vail by Judy Moore I found that I was enjoying the easy flow of the story so much that I snuck a few extra hours of reading on using my iPhone, so as not keep my husband awake with a light. Luckily for me, once he is asleep, he sleeps quite heavily, so my iPhone is an ideal way of reading at night. 

I have just checked and the book is free there at the moment so download it while you can.

I found myself being drawn into the story with every page. This is the first Judy Moore book that I have read and was unsure of what to expect. Moore created a family, albeit a wealthy one, that actually behaved like a normal dysfunctional family. With all the sibling rivalry and bickering. I enjoyed Sally’s (the mother) response and found myself reflecting on how I handled my family Christmases. The murder mystery storyline had twists and turns and you have to read to the end to find out the ‘whodunit’, but it was definitely not a chore to wait. A lovely readable story that has wetted my appetite to read more book from the author.

I loved Judy's style of writing so much that I have since downloaded another one of her books Airport Christmas.  I will let you know about that one in a few days..

Saturday, 8 October 2016

Bloggers and Reviewers needed please

Readers and Bloggers needed please
I have been lucky enough to team up with #1 Bestselling and award winning author Tamara Ferguson and together are publishing a Christmas romance set. Both the sweet/clean novella's are brand new stories with a twist of Christmas fun. We would very much welcome any reader or bloggers who would either like to review, blog or interview about the books from mid-November through to early January. More information and an ARC can be provided nearer... the date. Please message or email  ( ) to register an interest.

Tamara Ferguson: Two Hearts' Christmas Wish is Tamara's 4th Wounded Warrior Romance. Not only has her Two Hearts Wounded Warrior Romance Series won 5 awards, including a silver medal in Military Fiction from Readers' Favorite, in 2016 alone, Two Hearts Surrendered was a #1 International Bestseller on 12 lists, and Two Hearts Unspoken was a #1 International Hot New Release as well as a #1 International Bestseller on 12 lists.

Allyson R. Abbott: Goodbye, Hello became a #1 bestselling book in 2015 and a total of five books have received a glowing 5 star reviews from The Readers Favorite Organisation, earning a collection of 5 Star seals. Allyson also has a bestselling nonfiction book called How to Write a Simple Book Review, which has accumulated over 50 5 star reviews