{Book Review} The Faerie Tree by Jane Cable

I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Faerie Tree

ISBN 9781784628918 Price £3.99 Publishing Date 28/04/2015

The blurb:

How can a memory so vivid be wrong?

I tried to remember the first time I’d been here and to see the tree through Izzie’s eyes. The oak stood on a rise just above the path; not too tall or wide but graceful and straight, its trunk covered in what I can only describe as offerings – pieces of ribbon, daisy chains, a shell necklace, a tiny doll or two and even an old cuckoo clock.
“Why do people do this?” Izzie asked.  I winked at her. “To say thank you to the fairies.”

In the summer of 1986 Robin and Izzie hold hands under The Faerie Tree and wish for a future together. Within hours tragedy rips their dreams apart.

In the winter of 2006, each carrying their own burden of grief, they stumble back into each other’s lives and try to create a second chance. But why are their memories of 1986 so different? And which one of them is right?

With strong themes of paganism, love and grief, The Faerie Tree is a novel as gripping and unputdownable as Jane Cable’s first book, The Cheesemaker’s House, which won the Suspense & Crime category of The Alan Titchmarsh Show’s People’s Novelist competition. It is a story that will resonate with fans of romance, suspense, and folklore.

My Review:

Initially I couldn’t put this book down, I loved how the book tells you a story both from Robin’s and Izzies POV, how they find each other after all those years and set about getting to know each other again. Robin’s life is going reasonably well until everything turns to pieces, he runs away and loses touch with everyone – its his way of dealing with things.  He switches off from the world he knew and basically tries to start again.  Every path he takes though inevitably leads him back to Izzie.

Izzie moves on, gets married, has a child and then starts to lose it when her husband dies.  She bumps into a homeless man on the street and instantly recognizes him as her long-lost love Robin.  She can’t just pretend she didn’t see him and sets out to find him again.  It’s a really romantic tale.

The book is an easy read but I did find Izzie a tad bit irritating at times and that’s where my interest started to dwindle.  Overall though it’s a great book if you love romance, suspense and folklore (as the blurb states) and I would give this book 3 stars.

#TBT | Throw Back Track

I love music and the way it allows memories to come crashing through almost instantly which either leaves you feeling great or really depressed.  I remember a few years ago (BK (before kid)), I was going through a really hard time and found that driving and listening to music really helped.  There are a few songs that automatically help me when going through a rough patch, just singing along to the lyrics (or shouting them out at time) just seemed to get those emotions out.  One of those songs came from Linkin Park, another from Staind, then from 3 Doors Down and of course, there was always Matchbox Twenty.

But in today’s #TBT I am heading over to a song that will automatically remind me of my sister.  Because she would play this song for days on end, to the point where I was walking around singing along with it and eventually loving it too.

Roxette came to South Africa about 2 years ago for a bit of a world tour and I went with my sister to watch them and its one of those concerts that I will never forget.  Not just because of the memories of their songs but from glancing over and looking at my sisters face.  She was absolutely happy, singing along and loving every single minute of it.  It’s definitely etched into my memory forever.

Life Lately

Life Lately

You guys, tomorrow is April.  My brain is screaming at me because how has this year gone so quickly already?  How are we already in April?  April is a big month.  It holds so many important dates (ok, 2 important dates), one terrible memory and of course, Easter.

Easter to me has always been incredibly special.  Not only because of the religious reasons but for me it symbolises family and spending time with those you love.  I’ve always found Easter to be so much more important and significant than Christmas (I am probably the only person in the world that feels this) and this year will be the first Easter in my life that I am not around my family in some way or form during this period.  Ever since I was a little girl I can remember heading over to my grandmothers on Easter, having a huge Sunday roast and then driving through to our extended families to eat a little (read a lot) more.  I’ve also found that I get very sentimental/depressed/emotional around Easter and rely on my family to kind of put me back together during this period… this year, it’s just the three of us and I truly don’t know how I am going to survive it.

Its my sister’s birthday on the 17th – the first one I will have missed in 33 years – that’s huge!  Growing up my sister and I used to fight all the time!  I would run around the house and try to stab her with a butter knife.  I have been known to throw ashtrays at her head too!  She is the older sister, the sister that did no wrong which also made her the sister that told her mother about everything her little sister got up… playing spin the bottle, having a hickey along with a whole other variety of things.  It used to infuriate me.  Getting older though, and probably only in the last 5 years, we became such great friends though.  We would speak to each other on the phone almost daily and I came to appreciate the person she is and I am really going to miss her on her birthday this year.

It’s also Jensen’s 6th birthday on the 28th!  I can NOT believe that my little guy is going to be 6 this year.  I have absolutely no idea about what we are going to do for his birthday and what kids to invite (since we havent made that many friends over here yet) but I will figure something out.  I have to.  I owe it to him to give him an amazing birthday – his first away from his family and friends back home.

It’s also the 3rd anniversary of his burns – the day before his 3rd birthday Jensen got really badly burnt by boiling water.  A day I will never forget.  A day that haunts me every single day.

Besides all of the above and those important days, life has been good.  We have started to feel as though we might have made the right decision in coming over here.  In packing up our lives and starting over.  I still have my ups and downs but it really is starting to feel right.

I took Jensen out on Saturday to a playgroup with a bunch of other kids around his age and he didn’t want to leave.  He had jumped around on a trampoline for around 3 hours.  Run around with the other kids and just had an amazing time.  While this was going on, I was chatting to 3 other ladies, all around my age, with kids of their own and they understood what I was going through, how I felt and told me things would get better.  That it is incredibly tough making this move without having anyone to connect with when you arrive and you know what, I believed them when they said that things will get better – it feels like it has already started to.

Yesterday Jensen and I went through to a softplay area (Gambado) and he had so much fun.  It’s probably the biggest softplay area we have been to in the UK and it was amazing.  They had a carousel (which Jensen showed no interest in) and they had a small little go-kart area which Jensen became a little obsessed with.  He drove around in a circle for what seemed like hours but realistically he probably only went around on the track a dozen times or so.  They also had an activity area for kids aged between 4 & 8 so there were a few kids his age that were running around with him (he’s normally the oldest kid in those places).  It is a bit expensive but trust me when I say it’s totally worth it.

Candyfloss as big as his head.

Candyfloss as big as his head.

Shaun has resigned from his job and will be starting another one on the 20th of April.  It’s for a larger IT company and instead of him having to travel for an hour plus each way every day he will now jump onto a train and travel for 18 minutes and walk a further 2 to get to the office.  He is incredibly excited and even went so far as to say “its starting to feel right” a couple of days ago and this is a HUGE thing for me!  For him to agree that its starting to feel right!  He loves the cold weather (even though its driving me crazy now) and is overall happy which is amazing.

My job is still going strong, made it through my first month as a permanent employee, lets keep our fingers crossed I will make it through the second (you know, since I’m on a probationary period).

We also received some amazing news last week that two of our friends are in the process of immigrating over here – how freaking cool is that?  I can’t wait until they get over here (possibly around August) and to have a wine buddy again!  It feels like forever since I have enjoyed a great glass of wine with someone other than myself for company.  That’s never a great look on anyone is it?  Drinking alone?


How are things going with you lately? 

{Book Review} The Canterbury Sisters by Kim Wright

I received an ARC through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

ISBN 9781501100765  Release Date 19 May 2015

ISBN 9781501100765
Release Date 19 May 2015

The blurb

Che Milan’s life is falling apart. Not only has her longtime lover abruptly dumped her, but her eccentric, demanding mother has recently died. When an urn of ashes arrives, along with a note reminding Che of a half-forgotten promise to take her mother to Canterbury, Che finds herself reluctantly undertaking a pilgrimage.

Within days she joins a group of women who are walking the sixty miles from London to the shrine of Becket in Canterbury Cathedral, reputed to be the site of miracles. In the best Chaucer tradition, the women swap stories as they walk, each vying to see who can best describe true love. Che, who is a perfectionist and workaholic, loses her cell phone at the first stop and is forced to slow down and really notice the world around her, perhaps for the first time in years.

Through her adventures along the trail, Che finds herself opening up to new possibilities in life and discovers that the miracles of Canterbury can take surprising forms.

My review:

From the moment I picked up this book I couldn’t put it down.  I somehow identified with Che, even though, thinking about it now, we have absolutely nothing in common.  I felt as though I understood her, knew her and that I was on the trail with her.

I loved how this book delves into the lives of each individual walking the Canterbury trail.  You get a glimpse into their lives – why they decided to join the pilgrimage and what led them to the point where they NEEDED to do it.  It reminds of the whole “the truth will set you free’ kind of tails.

Her mothers final written words were huge to me: “It is never too late for healing”

I absolutely adored this book, the writing was brilliant, the flow superb.  I give this book 4 stars.