Posted in Writing


Third Time Lucky Tour Banner

My Review

What I love about being a reviewer for Brook Cottage Book tours are the variety of reads and wonderful discoveries I make along the way. Pippa Croft  is a writer I have not come across before and as with several of the other books I have reviewed I am delighted to say I have found yet another author I want to read more of.

Although Third Time Lucky is the third book in the Oxford Blue Series I found it easy to read as an independent, stand alone novel. The problem I now have, however, is that I find myself needing to download the other two – The First Time We Met and The Second Time I Saw You. One book in the series is simply not enough; I need to know the whole story!

Now I’m not usually a fan of novels written from the first person as I do love to see things from various viewpoints. However, I can say hand on heart as soon as I began reading this any pre-conceived ideas flew straight out of the window. This story, told from 21 year old post graduate student Lauren Cusack’s viewpoint, has everything. There is humour and steamy sex scenes which are well written and in a totally different league to those in ‘50’. Then we have hot hero Captain Alex Hunt (come on girls admit it, you’d love to wake up beside someone like him) and a couple of pretty awful villains all wrapped up in a great read which keeps you hooked until the last page.  It left me wondering whether we had seen the last of Lauren and Alex or if there might possibly be a sequel coming along at a later stage.  Secretly I’m hoping the answer will be yes.

As I love Oxford the setting there with the backdrop of student life plus the goings on at Alex’s stately home, Falconbury was a big plus even before I had fired up the Kindle.  Coupled with this, the whole book was written in such a beautifully smooth, seamless way.  A deliciously funny, sexy and entertaining novel worthy of the five stars I’m awarding it.

My complimentary copy of Third Time Lucky came from Penguin Books UK  via NetGally in exchange for an honest  review.


For fans of Sylvia Day and E. L. James, the third and final part of this exciting romance series.

‘It’s Sister Dixon from the Royal Infirmary here. I’m sorry to tell you that Captain Hunt has been involved a serious incident.’

Lauren Cusack should be on her way home for an holiday in Washington before Pippa Croft Series (3)-003her final term at Wyckham College, Oxford. But this call changes everything. Her relationship with impossibly handsome aristocrat Alexander Hunt has been turbulent and Lauren knows she needs to walk away. Yet now as she rushes to his side she knows she will be inevitably sucked back into his world.

And sure enough, Alexander – even a seriously injured Alexander – is an intoxicating cocktail Lauren cannot resist and despite everything that is sent to thwart them – and with Alexander there is drama at every turn – she finds herself happier than she’s ever been.

But as her final term races by, and she is offered the perfect job back in Washington, the impossibility of their romance hits home.

Can there be a future for Alexander and Lauren?

The love trials of Lauren and Alexander continue in the third book in Pippa Croft’s brilliant new Oxford Blue romance series.

Fans of E L James, Tammara Webber and Samantha Young won’t be able to get enough of Pippa Croft’s Oxford Blue romance series. Lauren and Alexander’s journey begins in The First Time We Met, and follows on in the brilliant sequel, The Second Time I Saw You, which are both available as Penguin e-books.

About the Author

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Pippa Croft is the pen name of an award-winning romantic novelist. After studying English at Oxford, she worked as a copywriter and journalist before writing her debut novel, which won the RNA’s New Writers’ award and was later made into a TV movie. She lives in a village in the heart of England with her husband and daughter.

Amazon buy links



For a chance to win one of two Copies of The First Time We Met (the first book in the series)  simply click on the link  below

Jo Lambert – Reviewer for Brook Cottage Books

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Posted in Writing


Romancing my Love Tour Banner

ROMANCING MY LOVE is the newest addition to the BRADEN series by New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author Melissa Foster. This contemporary romance series features alpha male heroes and sexy, empowered women. They’re flawed, funny, passionate, and very relatable to readers who enjoy new adult romance, contemporary romance, and women’s fiction.


After months of caring for her terminally ill mother, Rebecca Rivera is left all alone in a world she doesn’t trust—but she’s determined not to let her mother’s death define her. Losing her job, having to pummel some jerk for being too handy, and living in her car are just temporary setbacks to an otherwise solid plan in finding her footing. Full of pride and used to being in control of her life, she’s certain she can make it on her own. The last thing Rebecca needs is a man to fix her troubles—even if that man is strikingly handsome, wealthy, and charismatic Pierce Braden.

Pierce is a powerful real estate investor on the verge of a major acquisition. As the eldest of six siblings raised by a single mother, he’s spent his life protecting those he loves. He’s used to being in charge and making things right, and although he’d give his life for his family, he treats the women he dates as expendable—until he meets sexy and stubborn Rebecca Rivera, a woman who is as strong as she is vulnerable.


Passion ignites between them, and the two share their most intimate thoughts and desires. It doesn’t take long for Pierce to realize that Rebecca is as determined not to be saved as he is to find a way into her heart. As their love grows, Rebecca must face fears she didn’t even realize she had—and Pierce must learn the hard truth that sometimes less really is more. Is the power of true love enough for Rebecca and Pierce to learn to give up control and allow their hearts to take over?

First can I say many thanks to the author for sending me  a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for an honest  review as part of the Romancing My Love Book Tour


Pierce Braden is a thirty six year old, drop dead gorgeous real estate millionaire still happily playing the field.  One night he wanders into a bar where he meets Rebecca Revira.  She has just been sacked from her job there and as she leaves has to deal with the unwanted attentions of one of the drinkers.  Impressed by the way she seems able to take care of herself, nonetheless something protective stirs in Pierce and he follows her, offering to take her home or call a cab. Refusing she walks off into the night.

Twenty seven year old Rebecca has recently lost her mother to cancer, is homeless and now jobless. She lives in her car and uses a local gym facility where she not only keeps up her fitness levels but can use the shower facilities.  Through instructor Andy’s girlfriend she manages to get a waitressing job at The Astral resort which unknown to her is owned by Pierce. He runs into her there by chance and takes her for a drink where she begins to open up and talk about her life.  Pierce finds he wants to get to know her better and offers to cook dinner for her.  A romantic relationship develops, each of them gradually sharing more details of their lives, including the fact Pierce owns the Astral and a whole lot more. Rebecca’s life begins to get back on track.  She rents a room from a work colleague and begins dating Pierce.  Un fazed by his wealth Pierce begins to realise Rebecca is special, like no one he has ever met before.  He also knows he is controlling and deliberately steps back, allowing this feisty independent young woman the space she needs to allow their relationship to grow.

Rebecca has not divulged everything about herself however, and when something is revealed by accident her old insecurities surface, threatening their relationship. As Pierce flies to LA to sort out a business deal Rebecca must come to terms with what she really wants and whether she is going to let the past continue to influence her life.

Before I started to read Romancing My Love I checked it out on Amazon and noticed there were already 14 five star reviews for this book. Most of these readers, it seems, like some of the reviewers on this tour are very much committed Melissa Foster fans and love her books. As for me, this is my first outing into this author’s territory so I’m very much a newbie to the Braden stories. I loved the two central characters and the great bonus was that it appeared Pierce was one of a string of equally handsome, hot brothers who have their own stories in the other Braden books. I love feisty women characters and Rebecca certainly was that, a survivor wanting to fall in love with a great guy but knowing she had a lot of bridges to cross before she could really let Pierce into her heart. A first class four star read, one which now has me very curious about what stories those other Braden boys have to tell…

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Melissa Foster is a New York Times & USA Today bestselling and award-winning author. She writes contemporary romance, new adult, contemporary women’s fiction, suspense, and historical fiction with emotionally compelling characters that stay with you long after you turn the last page. Her books have been recommended by USA Today’s book blog, Hagerstown Magazine, The Patriot, and several other print venues. She is the founder of the  World Literary Café and Fostering Success. When she’s not writing, Melissa helps authors navigate the publishing industry through her author training programs on  Fostering Success. Melissa has been published in Calgary’s Child Magazine, the Huffington Post, and Women Business Owners magazine.

Melissa hosts an annual Aspiring Authors contest for children and has painted and donated several murals to The Hospital for Sick Children in Washington, DC. Melissa lives in Maryland with her family.

Visit Melissa on social media. Melissa enjoys discussing her books with book clubs and reader groups, and welcomes an invitation to your event.









Amazon UK



The Giveaway on this tour is an ecopy of FATED FOR LOVE by Melissa Foster. For a chance to win this copy click on the link below and enter your details:

Jo Lambert – Reviewer for Brook Cottage Books

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Posted in Writing



For someone who surrounds herself with music for most of her waking hours the above song seems most relevant as I look out of the window.  ‘All the leaves are brown and the sky is grey...’ is the opening line and that’s exactly how it is here today.  There is still some green in the trees down the river valley but mostly brown and gold flutters confetti-like onto the streets and gardens where I live.  Driving into the city from my home in the eastern suburbs there is a park which is bordered by chestnut trees.  These are the first to bud in the spring and now are the first to give us an amazing display of rich golds and bronzes. I always feel sad when Autumn arrives. The year is drawing to a close and colder days are on their way but I guess in life as in all things there has to be a balance.  It would be great to have perpetual spring or summer. However no doubt if that happened we would long for the beautiful clear blue skies of frosty winter mornings or cold wet evenings when we drew the curtains and curled up in front of the fire to read a good book or watch a movie.

And now to writing. Having just returned from a friend’s birthday celebrations in the Channel Islands I’ve got three months to knock the first draft of my new novel into shape.  It’s amazing when you finish that draft how well you think you’ve done.  It’s only when you come to sit down and retrace your steps you realise how many imperfections there are.  How dialogue can be changed to give a bigger impact or how working the scene from another character’s perspective might make the read more interesting.  All these things and more come into play once you start the editing process.  I have to confess to never being able to write small books.  To date they have all been big reads probably because of the subject material – a family saga spread across several years.  Although I told myself the new book would be smaller the draft currently sits at 120,000 words.  This means it will need some extensive pruning before it’s ready to go if I am to keep my promise to myself. Amazing that when I started writing I thought the whole story could be wrapped up in one book. That has not happened, so Summer Moved On will now have a sequel.

This time around I’ve decided to work with a slightly smaller cast.  Some things, of course, don’t change. The book is about provincial life with romance at its core and yes, still with a lot of drama.  This novel has presented new challenges which have been great as I feel it is important to stretch yourself as a writer.  There is a certain comfort in writing a series.  As it develops most of the settings and characters are already well known  and it’s all about incorporating other locations and individuals into the mix to create the new story.  Throwing yourself into the deep end with a completely unknown cast and backdrop can be a bit a giant leap into the dark. You may have made profile notes about each of your characters and locations but they are still very much unknown quantities and you are never sure how the dynamics between the characters will play out until you begin writing .  However that first draft gives you the opportunity to familiarise yourself with both your newbie cast and their surroundings and see whether they work well with your storyline.  I’m glad to say that with a few nips and tucks here and there they have and currently I’m in a good place and on schedule so am one very happy bunny!

And now I’m off to get some lunch…back  next week.