Emperor – Andrew Frediani 

About Author 

Andrew is an Italian author and academic. He has published several non-fiction books as well as historical novels including the Invincible series and the Dictator trilogy. His works have been translated into five languages. 

Other books written by Andrew: 

Revenge 

Survive 

Information on Book 

A grippinng historical thriller and third instalment in The Invincibles Saga. 

The battle for control of Rome continues. Will Octavin succeed in defeating the dangerous pirate, Sextus Pompeius. 

Octavin has defeated and killed Caesars assassins, but the road to absolute power is still long and treacherous. Threat now comes from Sextus – a cunning pirate active along the Italian coasts, who terriorises Perugia’s citizens with his constant attacks. 

Octavin and his associates don’t have time to celebrate their victory in the final battle in the civil war before another even more bloody threat arises: the one presented by Sextus at sea. 

The long campaign against the pirates proves frustrating, and often sees Octavian close to defeat and even death. Everything seems to conspire against him: his enemy appears to be recieving divine assistance, public opinion is against him, the soldiers lack confidence in their commander, and rebellion is just around the corner. 

Extract from Book 

Pompey waved his arm in so violent a gesture of contempt that is almost made him lose his balance. “If you have not come to suggest sharing the empire with me, there is no point to us having his meeting. Go back to Rome and explain to the people who are starving that you do not want to share your power with anyone. Not even with those who could defeat you, if only they wanted to,” he cried, then turned and walked away angrily followed by Libo.”

Other Information 

This book is available here.

Many thanks to Aria Publication and Andrew Frediani. 

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The Lost Sisters – Lindsey Hutchinson 

About Author 

Lindsey lives in Shropshire with her husband and dog. She loves to read and has recently discovered photography. She is the daughter of million copy bestselling author, Meg Hutchinson. 

Other books written by Lindsey:

The Workhouse Children

The Wives Revenge 

The Orphan Girl due to be released in February 2018. 

Information on Book

A heart-wrenching saga of two girls, forced to survive without a mother’s love. 

Bestselling Lindsey returns to her beloved Black Country. 

Orpha Buchanan and Peg Meriweather had a very different start in life. Orpha surrounded by wealth and riches, Peg dumped on a doorstep as a baby with nothing to her name but a scruffy blanket and tatty clothes. But one thing they had in common from their very first day was a mother who despised them and wished them gone. 

Hortense Buchanan wasn’t made to be a mother. Bullied herself when she was a child she continues the tradition with her own children, loving money and finery more than her own flesh and blood. When her daughter Orpha runs away from home, Hortense celebrates, never once worrying for her safety. 

Circumstances bring Orpha and Peg togther, and before long they’re as close as family, making their way in the hustle and bustle of a booming Birmingham and the smoke-filled Black Country. But, before long, Hortense realises that her daughter stands in the way of the one thing she really cares about, and the bitter legacy of the Buchanans looks set to destroy them all…….

Extract from Book 

Abel Buchanan slumped back in his chair, a feeling of abject terror claiming his mind. The men in the Club had seen the boy and there was no mistaking they were related. Everyone knew he had two girls and had lost them both, they also knew Hortense and he had no other children.”

“Glancing at Hetty still sobbing in Henry’s arms, Orpha ran upstairs to collect her few belongings to form again. She hugged the Toyes in turn on her return to the kitchen. She was leaving the two people who she had come to love, but she determined that, whatever happened, she would see them again.”

My Views 

The one thing I can confirm from reading this book is, you will dislike Hortense the “baddy” in this novel. Her loves are money and prestigue, but she could not careless about her daughters. She dislikes them so much, she does whatever possible to ensure they are removed from her and her husband, Abel’s life. Also, whilst reading this book you will find yourself firstly, feeling a little sorry for Abel but then all I could think was “pull yourself together man” and sort out eveything in your life, instead of putting your head in the sand. Hortense just wants to make Abel and her “family” pay in one way or another and throughout most of the book her hatred seeps through the book.

Orpha, who is Hortense and Abel’s daughter makes attempts to rebuild her life, despite a very difficult start and struggles to initially find her feet, but in the end meets many people who love and support her, and adopt her into their family. Orpha and Peg meet, but unbeknown to them they have a lot more in common then originally expected. 

From reading this book you get a real passion Lindsey has for the Black Country. Lindsey has certainly completed her research to ensure she does not mislead her dedicated readers. 

The only point I would keep in mind when reading this book is, if you are not concentrating you could miss a vital point in the story. This book is full of twist and turns, dodgy family dynamics, love and hate. It has it all. 

I cannot wait for the next book from Lindsey in February 2018. 

Other Information 

You can purchase this book here.

Many thanks to Lindsey Hutchinson and Aria Publication 

False Lights – K. J. Whittaker 

About Author 

K. J Whittaker is the Carnegie nominated author of six YA novels published by Walker Books under the name of Katy Moran. She works part-time in a book shop and lives in Shropshire. 

Information on Book 

False Lights imagines England occupied by France and ruled by Empress Josephine, Napolean having won at the Battle of Waterloo. 

What if Napolean, instead of Wellington, had won the Battle of Waterloo?

Imagine that Buchaparte, instead of Wellington had won the Battle of Waterloo and that his ex-wife Empress Josephine is presiding over French occupied England………

Wellington is taken into secret captivity in the Scilly Isles as Cornwall erupts into open rebellion, and young Cornish heiress Hester escapes with Crow, Wellingtons former intelligence officer, a half-French aristocrat. Together they become embrolled in a web of treachery and espionage as plans are laid to free Wellington and lead an uprising against the French occupation, with servants playing as great role as their masters. 

Extract from Book 

pg.170

“Arkwright sensed the tide of opinion shift against him, the others were even more suspicious now, not that it ever took much- all save Wedderburn, who carefully tapped his pipe against the table edge, tipping ash to the sawdust – scattered floor before grinding it beneath the heel of his boot. Arkwright watched Castle but said nothing. Yes, very interesting that it was always Castle spurring the rest of them on.” 

My Views 

Initially, the first few chapters of this book I have to confess I really struggled to get to grips with the story and the characters. However once, I was past chapter 5-6, I really got into this book. Another confession, I know very little about the Battle of Waterloo which I believe may have disadvantaged me at the start. 

Once I was fully engaged in the story the characters were incredibly believable despite their many many flaws and gave you a real insight to the Cornish culture at thatt time. You follow a very different battle not one necessarily one on the battlefield but behind closed doors and the use of servants and people you least expected it passing messages and seeking information / intellgience on the enemy. You go on the journey with the servants and will them to step aside and keep out of the battle as you know it will only lead to a bad situation. However, you are aware that due to the poor circumstances the servants live in sometimes it is the only way for them to make their way in life and their employers have an awareness of this and use it to their advantage. 

Once, I settled into the book I did enjoy it and K.J Whittaker has a real knack of engaging her readers and making sure you do not put the book down. She also engaged me at a time of in history that I know every little about and made me want to go and research a lot more into what happened during that period of time. 

Other Information 

False Lights book is available here.

Price 14.99

Many thanks to K.J Whittaker and Head of Zeus 


One Day In December – Shari Low 

About Author 

Shari lives in Glasgow and writes a weekly opinion column and Book Club page for a well known newspaper. 

She is married to a very laid back guy and has two athletic teenage sons, who think she’s fairly embarrassing, except when they need a lift. 

Information on Book 

By the strike of midnight, a heart would be broken, a cruel truth revealed, a devastating secret shared, and a love betrayed, four lives would be changed forever, on one day in December. 

One morning in December ………

Caro set off on a quest to find out if her relationship with her father had been based on a lifetime of lies. 

Lila decided to tell her lover’s wife of their secret affair……

Cammy was on the way to pick up the ring for the surprise proposal to the woman he loved. 

And Bernadette vowed to walk away from her controlling husband of 30 years and never look back. 

One day, four lives on a collision course with destiny. 

Extracts from Book

She despised him. When he walked out, she’d thought she couldn’t hate him more. Now, looking at these images, she realised there was a whole pool of hate she hadn’t even dipped her toe in yet. Her mum, here, without the man who had promised to love her in sickness and health. Him, away somehwere playing happy bloody families.” 

“If this was a Greek tragedy, she had no doubt that there would be some profound theory that she was attracted to older men because she’d missed her dad so much as a child and never really felt his closeness or approval. But what did the Greek’s know? All that mattered was that she loved Ken, and when they’d been apart she missed their meetings. Missed feeling like this. Missed him.” 

My Views 

I have had real issues with “chick lit” books over the past few months and have just grown bored and just found them far to similar with one another. Don’t get me wrong they have there place, especially when you need an easy read which you have no real investment in. 

Shari has helped assure me that chick lit books are not as bad as I had thought. One Day In December has you following characters through life changing events in just one day, and boy there is a lot packed into one day. I found myself being Bernadette’s cheerleader and was pleased that she had finally found the courage to stand up for herself. Cammy was confused and was flattered that a younger beautiful girl was interested in him, but she had no substance. Caro, seemed to simply want closure and Lila , you just wanted to slap! But, some how you would probably have someone like these characters in your real life. I certainly know a few Lila’s in my life. 

Despite you following four people’s lives in some other books it can get confusing, but Shari seemed to make the book flow and after each chapter you wanted to know more about that particular character however, was moved on to the next. You were left simply wanting more.

It was an easy read, where you could just relax and not put much thought into it -this is not a criticism, but an ideal book if you want to get away from things.

Shari has done a great job in bringing my faith back in womens fiction so I would like to thank her for that. 

Other Information 

Shari’s website is available here.

A copy of the book is available here. 

Many thanks to Shari and Aria Publication