February 2023 Books #AmReading

Well, the romantic month has come to an end…

A couple of ARCS on my list… When are there ever not? There are more than a few left at the end of this month. And the are ones I didn’t have at the start… STOP SAYING YES, RITU!

It’s been a busy month in my personal life, too, so I haven’t read as many as I would usually do, but I have read some good ones!

Maybe Next Time by Cesca Major
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I feel that over the last 12 months or so, I have read a few books centring around the GroundhogDay phenomenon, where the MC is reliving the same day of their life over and over.
Maybe Next Time is of the same ilk, but I didn’t feel like was reading the same kind of story over and over.
Emma, the MC, is a busy woman. A literary agent rushed off her feet with two children at difficult times in their own lives, a sister-in-law who is struggling, so many other demands on her attention, and a wonderful husband, Dan, who she barely gets to spend time with.
A little tradition of theirs is to celebrate each year they have been together with a letter to each other, highlighting the highs of the year. She forgets her letter in all the chaos of her life and experiences the day from hell, from work to her family life, and a heartbreaking end to it.
Every time she wakes up for the next goodness knows how many days, weeks, or months, it is the same painful day over and over, and no matter what she does, the eventual outcome won’t change.
I loved how each repeated day is separated by one of Dan’s letters over the years, so we get a real feel for who he is, as well.
It lifts your soul in some ways to see how Emma goes from hating her life to embracing the chance she has to make things in her life and the lives of her loved ones better, but I warn you, the ending will make you cry!
A wonderfully emotional read that I would recommend you might need a box of tissues to accompany you as you read.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Harper Collins, UK, for an ARC.

Releasing 30th March, 2023

Love, Theoretically by Ali Hazelwood
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Ali Hazelwood was a TikTok, Booktok success story with her STEM-based novel, The Love Hypothesis. You see her books all over the show. I have read one of her previous, so was intrigued to read another..
There is a niche Hazelwood likes/ Strong female characters in STEM. A bit messed up, with a love interest that starts as a bit of an enemy.
Well, in that respect, she did not disappoint.
Elsie is a Physicist with great ideas, but she isn’t getting her foot in the door to research her ideas.
She works two jobs, teaching by day and fake dating by night, to keep her head above water.
An opportunity of a lifetime arises, and when she goes for it, she is faced with a two-fold nemesis. Jack Smith, the brother of one of her fake dates and also someone who singlehandedly destroyed the career of her mentor, Dr L.
But, though there is negativity, there is something else.
Once that part gets going, the steam factor hits another high!
I read it, and enjoyed it, but it felt a little like a rehash of the previous books.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Little, Brown Book Co for an ARC

Releasing 13th June, 2023

Talking at Night by Claire Daverley
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Rosie and Will are two people with a fate entwined in a beautiful and tragic way.
Feelings they share should be celebrated. However, the shared tragedy in their life keeps them apart.
I don’t want to give much away about the reason these two find themselves unable to be together, even though everything points towards this being their fate. However, how they navigate early adulthood and those middle-aged years, connected, then not, and reconnected, shows how fate’s destination is not always by following a straight path.
What a stunning read!
Many thanks to NetGalley and Michael Joseph, Penguin Random House, for an ARC.

Releasing 6th July, 2023

Something New at the Borrow a Bookshop: A warm-hearted, romantic and uplifting read by Kiley Dunbar
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’m already a firm fan of the Borrow a Bookshop series and couldn’t wait to dive into the third instalment, wanting to find out what happened next.
Having said that, it is quite easy to read each book as a standalone. What happens in previous books is helpful to know but not essential. It just adds an extra layer of understanding and emotional connection to the returning characters that you meet in this book.
Joy and her five-year-old daughter, Radia, are the newest borrowers for the length of this book. Joy is known as a digital nomad, travelling around the globe from contract to contract with her daughter in tow. She is tasked with helping to set up a new technical system for the bookshop, as well as new digital locks, and designing a new website for the Borrow A Bookshop in the revamp that takes place after a devastating flood in the village of Clove Lore.
She’s also running away from something else, which prevents her from settling anywhere with her daughter. However, regrets are running through her mind constantly as she sees how much Radia needs stability and normality, too.
The residents of this friendly town are eager to help her settle in, and slowly her wall of emotional security is broken down, with Radia helping to ensure her mother opens up more to others,
And what would a romance book be without that spark of attraction?
Enter Monty, one of the fishing twins, who has had to give up his passion for being on the family boat with his brother to work in the local pub as a chef, dreaming up wonderful seafood recipes while having to serve up pies and sausage and mash to the pub food expectant holiday guests.
You can sense the chemistry between these two from the moment they meet, and I loved the slow-burn build-up of their connection.
I also loved the little side story romance involving the local ice cream seller, who loves keeping a book on the new borrowers and taking bets on who might pair up with someone local. This time, she has her own little love story, which was just precious!
A wonderful read which made me feel warm and gooey inside. Perfect for a pick-me-up, and I warn you, if you haven’t already, you’ll want to read the first two, too, to see what happened previously!
Now, I wait impatiently to find out if another book in the series will be coming our way!
Many thanks to NetGalley and Hera Books for an ARC.

Releasing 23rd March, 2023

Summer Wedding by Sarah Morgan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I love Sarah Morgan’s books, and new ones come with certain expectations.
Summer Wedding was no different. However, it was.
I am used to diving into the new Sarah Morgan offering and being swept away by a romantic storyline. In fact, when I mentioned to a friend I was reading it, she said it would be a good lighthearted read for a couple of days before the half-term ends.
But, the thing is, it wasn’t as light-hearted a read as usual. But that, by no means, is a negative thing.
It felt like there was a different, more serious thread running through it.
Summer Wedding is a story that explores the relationship between a mother and her two daughters.
An unexpected invitation drops to Adeline and Cassie, two half-sisters, for their mother’s fourth wedding.
Reactions are mixed.
Adeline, as the older daughter, is more sceptical, having been burned as a child n the fallout of her romance author mother, Catherine Swift’s first divorce from her father.
Cassie is much more excited, looking forward to seeing her mother settle down to live a life mirroring her hugely successful romance novels, hopefully.
However, both women are in for shocks and discoveries of their own as they arrive in Corfu.
The siblings have a fragile relationship, and this wedding could catalyse some huge emotions between them both.
And. boy, do those reactions cause fireworks!
Honestly, it felt different but just as good a read as previous books.
Many thanks to NetGalley and HQ for an ARC.

Releasing 25th May, 2023

Ready for It by Nicola Masters
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Two friends who have lived through everything together (but for one, it always seems that is the case unless something better comes along) are parting.
Fiona and Natalie have been best friends forever, but now, one of them is growing up, leaving the other behind,
Natalie struggles with the idea of her best friend finally moving out into a place with her long-time partner but tries her hardest to accept that life changes and moves on.
Fiona is excited about the next step in her life. but isn’t 100% sure of what she has done.
The story revolves around the two friends navigating the time after Fiona leaves their shared flat.
Things don’t go as planned, and we find one faring rather better than the other.
I enjoyed reading the book but would have loved to get to know the characters a bit deeper. A quick, easy read.
Many thanks to NetGalley and Amazon Publishing, Lake Union, for an ARC.

Blog Tour post coming in March on the 24th!!

So, tell me what you have been reading, and what caught your eye from the above!

6 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Rae Longest
    Mar 25, 2023 @ 11:04:06

    These ALL look like fun reads. I’ll try the bookshop first!

    Liked by 1 person


  2. Dr. Andrea Dinardo
    Mar 02, 2023 @ 17:01:06

    Thank you for this book list and descriptions and review Ritu!

    I have never appreciated books more than I do right here, right now.

    I tend to read both non-fiction related to my profession of psychology AND delightful escapism of the likes of Stephen King and Nora Roberts.

    It brings me so much CALM.


    Thank you β™₯️ πŸ“š

    Liked by 1 person


  3. beth
    Mar 01, 2023 @ 23:45:06

    thanks for sharing these

    Liked by 1 person


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