Week in Review – 26 November 2017

I’ve been working on some things ready for next year I have some of my favourite authors secured for The Bookshelf in 2018, I’m literally bouncing off the walls with excitement over who I’ve secured. One will close out the year with the final bookshelf of the year and the others will be taking part in early 2018. It’s very exciting. Don’t forget anyone can take part just head here.

I’ve been busy with the mental health side of things again this week. The campaign I’ve been working on with my volunteering role went live this week at an event attended by Bristol’s Mayor and a number of other influential people from various organisations within the City. I had a great conversation with the Superintendent in charge of Mental Health for Avon & Somerset Police, it was great to meet someone in a position like this so passionate about mental health. This week I’ve appeared on Made in Bristol TV News and BBC Radio Bristol Breakfast, it’s been a busy week! The video we made for this campaign is below.

NaNoWriMo has gone really well, I hit the 50,000 words to complete it yesterday. For my first NaNo, I feel quite positive with how I went, especially as I finished early. When I started the month I didn’t think I would complete, but I’ve felt really inspired as I’ve written this novel and other than a few days where I’ve struggled to get the word count out I’ve really flown through it. I now need to backfill some areas of the novel that need more depth, and there are some additional chapters I want to add so I will set myself a new schedule and get on with it after my holiday.

It’s my birthday tomorrow and as always I’ll be running a giveaway, this year is probably my best yet, I tied it in with the release of a fantastic book so I hope you’re all ready for this! The post will go up at midday tomorrow and the Rafflecopter will stay open for a couple of weeks.

I go on holiday for a week next Thursday so the blog will go quiet for a bit. knowing me I will be about on Social Media, I can’t help myself(!) but there will be no posts until I get home. The plan is to have a nice relaxing week and to read loads. I really hope that pans out. More than anything I’m looking forward to sun, lots and lots of sun!

You Had Me At Hello - Mhairi McFarlaneThanks as always to everybody who voted in this month’s TBR Topple poll. I’ve had a great run of books from these polls so far, so I’m really looking forward to picking up this month’s winner. With 42.86% of the votes, the winner was, You Had Me at Hello by Mhairi McFarlane. I’ll be reviewing it next month and the new poll will go up when I get home from my holiday so will be slightly later than usual.

Here are this week’s book updates:

Currently Reading

What I’ve Read

New Books

Bought / Freebies

Book Post

eARCs

Reviews

This week I have reviewed:

Four Star: and a Sixpence for Luck by Lilac Mills.
Five Star: A Stranger in the Cove by Rachel Brimble and Kiss My Boots by Harper Sloan.

Other Posts

I had excerpts from Istanbul Days, Istanbul Nights by Leonard Durso and Become the Force by Daniel M. Jones. The Bookshelf this week featured the very lovely Danielle from Books, Vertigo and Tea.

Music Monday this week featured Bon Jovi with a Thanksgiving-themed song.

I also took part in the Brotherhood of the World Award.

Next Week on BrizzleLass Books

Week in Review – 22 October 2017

I’ve been recovering from the Bronchitis this week but I’ve been busy working with a couple of authors who I have taken on as marketing clients. I’m really excited about this new freelance route I’ve developed and using my marketing background to help authors is really rewarding.

I’ve also started working on the next revision of my book. I’ve had some awesome feedback from beta readers and have started to work that into this revision and can already see how great the book will be when I finish the edits.

I’m also reading a lot at the moment, I have a week coming up in November with five review tours (bad planning Claire!) so I’m trying to get all the books read as soon as possible so that I don’t trip myself up when that week gets closer! Honestly, I don’t know how I get myself in these fixes sometimes, especially as I’ve been trying to reduce the amount I’m doing!

The TBR Topple winner for this month has been chosen and the winner is: Simply Irresistible by Jill Shalvis, keep an eye out for the review next month.

Right, here is my bookish update for this week!

Currently Reading

What I’ve Read

New Books

Bought / Freebies

Reviews

This week I have reviewed The Pets at Primrose Cottage by Sheila Norton, If I Want You by Rachel Brimble, the Personalised Modern Girls Guide to Happy Hour by Ada Adverse, Elements of Mischief by C.M. Stunich and Tate James, and A Vicarage Christmas by Kate Hewitt.

Other Posts

I had a guest post from Kate Hewitt on the A Vicarage Christmas blog tour, I had an excerpt from The Rise of the Dawnstar by Farah Oomerbhoy. I featured Tina Guo on Music Monday this week. I also took part in the Hocus Pocus Book Tag. I had Lynne from Fictionphile join me on The Bookshelf this week.

Next Week on BrizzleLass Books

#Review: The Food of Love by Amanda Prowse @MrsAmandaProwse

Description

A loving mother. A perfect family. A shock wave that could shatter everything.

Freya Braithwaite knows she is lucky. Nineteen years of marriage to a man who still warms her soul and two beautiful teenage daughters to show for it: confident Charlotte and thoughtful Lexi. Her home is filled with love and laughter.

But when Lexi’s struggles with weight take control of her life, everything Freya once took for granted falls apart, leaving the whole family with a sense of helplessness that can only be confronted with understanding, unity and, above all, love.

In this compelling and heart-wrenching new work by bestselling author Amanda Prowse, one ordinary family tackles unexpected difficulties and discovers that love can find its way through life’s darkest moments.

Review

I didn’t anticipate going in how difficult this would be to read. My own struggles with mental health and having friends who struggle with anorexia much of this book cut close to the bone for me and I found myself needing to stop and take breaks at regular intervals feeling myself struggling often.

Lexi is a seemingly happy and healthy fifteen year old girl, that is until her parents discover her secret life. She has been skipping meals and purging with a strongly held belief that she will grow fat if she doesn’t. As her anorexia takes more of a grip she struggles with the physical ramifications versus the mental ones. Amanda Prowse hasn’t held the punches here and has perfectly described the struggles, the deceits, and the life of someone with anorexia. Whilst some of what Lexi went through I didn’t recognise as it was different from what my friends have been through, as with all mental illness there is no size fits all and I felt an affinity with this young girl who was battling her mind and her body.

Her parents were very well written, as people who loved their daughter dearly, but despite this did almost everything wrong. Lockie her Father is a bull in a china shop, he wants to punish and and take the hard line. He takes a long time to accept that anorexia is a mental illness, although once he does he is the one that realises what kind of treatment she needs and should have and ends up battling for her to get it.

Freya was awful, just awful, as someone who grew up with a mental illness she would have been my worst nightmare as a mother. She was full of love but she had no backbone. She wasn’t willing to fight for her daughter to get the treatment she needed, to be treated by the right people and ultimately is probably the reason that Lexi ends up so sick. I spent so much of the book shaking my head and tutting at the decisions she was making, my mind had a running commentary of “why aren’t you doing?”. It really has been a long time since I have disliked a character as much as I have disliked Freya. She wasn’t a bad person she was just a complete marshmallow when it came to handling this awful illness.

This is a truly harrowing read, but this is what this illness is like, it tears through lives and those living with it become consumed. Mental illness is real and harsh and anorexia has devastating physical affects. Amanda Prowse has written a book which could probably have been a biography for thousands of families here. I would recommend thinking carefully before reading if you have any mental health issues especially related to food or self harm as this is tremendously hard to read.

A huge thanks to Amanda Prowse for the eARC of this book in return for my honest review.

Rating

blb-four-star

Book & Buy Links

TitleThe Food of Love
Series: N/A
Author: Amanda Prowse
Genre: Fiction | Contemporary Fiction | Mental Health
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing
Publication Date: 1 December 2016
Review Format: eBook
Other Formats: Paperback | Audio
Pages: 364
BuyAmazon UK | Amazon US

Review: Perfect Daughter by Amanda Prowse

Description:
Once upon a time, Jacks Morgan had dreams.

She would have a career and travel the world. She would own a house on the beach, and spend long nights with her boyfriend strolling under the stars.

Continue reading Review: Perfect Daughter by Amanda Prowse