Bestsellers · chick-lit · romance

The Hating Game – Sally Thorne ★★★★

Blurb; Nemesis (n.) 1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome.
2) A person’s undoing
3) Joshua Templeman

Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She’s charming and accommodating and prides herself on being loved by everyone at Bexley & Gamin. Everyone except for coldly efficient, impeccably attired, physically intimidating Joshua Templeman. And the feeling is mutual.

Trapped in a shared office together 40 (OK, 50 or 60) hours a week, they’ve become entrenched in an addictive, ridiculous never-ending game of one-upmanship. There’s the Staring Game. The Mirror Game. The HR Game. Lucy can’t let Joshua beat her at anything—especially when a huge new promotion goes up for the taking.

If Lucy wins this game, she’ll be Joshua’s boss. If she loses, she’ll resign. So why is she suddenly having steamy dreams about Joshua, and dressing for work like she’s got a hot date? After a perfectly innocent elevator ride ends with an earth shattering kiss, Lucy starts to wonder whether she’s got Joshua Templeman all wrong.

Maybe Lucy Hutton doesn’t hate Joshua Templeman. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game. ​​

My Review; This is one I chose to buddy read with Mel from Melanie’s Reads. A huge Tik Tok book apparently and recently adapted into a film which I have not yet seen but Mel has so she can compare the two. Now I’m not going to lie this book took me a while to get into and the long chapters put me off, but I kept going with it and I am so glad I did, I ended up loving it! It’s a real back and forth yo-yo of a book torn between loving and hating each other in a small confined office and it also includes the one bed trope. So has a bit of everything in it really. But a great ending. Loved both the main characters, they can both give it and take it but underneath they’re secretly inlove aren’t they? They have to be.

I cannot wait to watch the film now so I can compare the two. I awarded four stars and would highly recommend. I realise I’m probably late reading this one and the hype has past. But brilliant book. Few sex scenes included for you smut lovers.

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Bestsellers · contemporary

The Reading List – Sara Nisha Adams ★★★★★

Blurb; Widower Mukesh lives a quiet life in the London Borough of Ealing after losing his beloved wife. He shops every Wednesday, goes to Temple, and worries about his granddaughter, Priya, who hides in her room reading while he spends his evenings watching nature documentaries.

Aleisha is a bright but anxious teenager working at the local library for the summer when she discovers a crumpled-up piece of paper in the back of To Kill a Mockingbird. It’s a list of novels that she’s never heard of before. Intrigued, and a little bored with her slow job at the checkout desk, she impulsively decides to read every book on the list, one after the other. As each story gives up its magic, the books transport Aleisha from the painful realities she’s facing at home.

When Mukesh arrives at the library, desperate to forge a connection with his bookworm granddaughter, Aleisha passes along the reading list… hoping that it will be a lifeline for him too. Slowly, the shared books create a connection between two lonely souls, as fiction helps them escape their grief and everyday troubles and find joy again. 

My Review; I am one of those readers that if the book has the word reading, bookshop or library in the title I know it will be a brilliant read and this was spot on. Highly recommend. A must read. One that will stick with me for a long time.

This story brings a lot of people together over books. From non readers, widows, to carers to the lonely people from old to young in society they all come together over one reading list but do not know where the list has come from or who wrote it. Heart-warming. Uplifting. The story focuses on two characters in particular Mukesh and Aleisha with a few chapters from others inbetween.

A story that will stick in your heart. One you won’t regret reading. A must read for me. High chance this could end up in my top reads of the year. A well deserved five stars. A beautiful ending which might make you tear up. Books are powerful things.

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Bestsellers · Time travel

Before the Coffee gets Cold: Tales from the Cafe – Toshikazu Kawaguchi ★★★★

Blurb; In a small back alley in Tokyo, there is a café which has been serving carefully brewed coffee for more than one hundred years. But this coffee shop offers its customers a unique experience: the chance to travel back in time…

From the author of Before the Coffee Gets Cold comes a story of four new customers each of whom is hoping to take advantage of Cafe Funiculi Funicula’s time-travelling offer.

Among some faces that will be familiar to readers of Kawaguchi’s previous novel, we will be introduced to:

The man who goes back to see his best friend who died 22 years ago
The son who was unable to attend his own mother’s funeral
The man who travelled to see the girl who he could not marry
The old detective who never gave his wife that gift…

This beautiful, simple tale tells the story of people who must face up to their past, in order to move on with their lives. Kawaguchi once again invites the reader to ask themselves: what would you change if you could travel back in time?

My Review; I absolutely loved the book before this one (Before the Coffee gets Cold) and the lovely Mel from Melanie’s Reads told me about this one and sent it me for Christmas last year. This is a book that I wanted to devour but also to savour & not finish.

It’s a short read at just under 200 pages. It is split into four different short stories of people coming to the cafe to time travel, most people choose to travel back in time but in this book one person travels forward! The rules remain the same from book one and the cafe characters remain the same. Its such a cosy read. Welcoming. A setting I will miss.

However, short story number three did require some attention from me as this was a story of back and forth, hard to keep track. Each story is unique and beautiful. Highly recommend and isn’t that cover just stunning. A well deserved four stars from me… If you could who would you go visit back in time? Or the future?

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