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The Girl in the Ice by Robert Bryndza ๐Ÿ“š a book review ๐Ÿ’™

One of my secret pleasures is watching horror movies. More thrillers than horrors in fact. It’s something my mother and I love to do together. Once the boys are in bed we put on a good thriller, dim the lights and enjoy.

I am not as brave as my mother who is not fazed by even the scariest of movies, but I’m normally watching through the gaps between my fingers at the scariest parts.

Suspenseful books are also a great pleasure. I adore happy fun love filled books, but sometimes you just want to be shocked and frightened. Not in real life of course.

The Book –

Her eyes are wide open. Her lips parted as if to speak. Her dead body frozen in the iceโ€ฆShe is not the only one.

When a young boy discovers the body of a woman beneath a thick sheet of ice in a South London park, Detective Erika Foster is called in to lead the murder investigation.

The victim, a beautiful young socialite, appeared to have the perfect life. Yet when Erika begins to dig deeper, she starts to connect the dots between the murder and the killings of three prostitutes, all found strangled, hands bound and dumped in water around London.

What dark secrets is the girl in the ice hiding?

As Erika inches closer to uncovering the truth, the killer is closing in on Erika.

The last investigation Erika led went badly wrongโ€ฆ resulting in the death of her husband. With her career hanging by a thread, Erika must now battle her own personal demons as well as a killer more deadly than any sheโ€™s faced before. But will she get to him before he strikes again?

A page-turning thriller packed with suspense.

Verdict –

I just read recently that the talented author of this book Robert Bryndza has collectively sold 1million copies of The Girl in the Ice & the follow up to this story The Night Stalker.

I must say I am not suprised one bit.

The Girl in the Ice had me hooked from the word go.

I normally allocate myself a few days to read & review my list of books over the summer months. But with this book it was read and reviewed in one day! A definite record for Mother in London.

I loved the detective, Erika Foster. She is focused and doesn’t care what anyone thinks. It was more like watching a really good detective movie than reading a book. It flowed so naturally and was so well written I got quite scared.

I cannot wait to read The Night Stalker next which I will review in a separate blog.

In the meantime you can get The Girl in the Ice on Amazon UK now. You can find out more about the author at the link below –

https://robertbryndza.com

A Fizzling frozen facial ๐Ÿ’™

It is still very hot in sunny Antalya but I’m loving it! 

My skin needs some extra loving care in the summer heat. With all the suncream, chlorine from the swimming pools and heat, your skin gets clogged up.

Using too many skincare products is difficult in humid weather conditions as you tend to sweat a lot and clogging your facial pores with too many creams and serums can cause more oil production and in turn a shiny unhealthy look all round.

So when on holiday I tend to use natural ingredients to freshen my skin and keep packaged products to a minimum.

This is a fantastic tip I got from my mother who has amazing skin!


Every morning treat your skin to a fizzling frozen facial. It couldn’t be more simple. The main thing to remember is to use ‘naturally carbonated mineral water’. So stick to Perrier or San Pellegrino. The wonderful minerals will enrich and make your skin sparkle!

Method-

  • Carefully fill an ice cube tray with mineral water and freeze overnight.
  • In the morning as soon as you awake take a cube out of the tray and rub it all over your face & neck!
  • Leave on your skin for a while to get the benefit of all those minerals
  • Pat dry!

Your skin will be glowing! โญ๏ธโญ๏ธโญ๏ธโญ๏ธ

The Red Notebook by Antoine Laurain ๐Ÿ“š a book review โค๏ธ

As you all know by now I am in love with Paris! I love and enjoy London and Istanbul but it is that extra something about Paris I cannot get enough of. 

It’s not just the beautiful buildings, the corner cafรฉs or the historic monuments, it is chicness of the Parisian women. Everyone, well mostly everyone, makes a real effort with their appearance. I think this is so nice and makes everyone else around them take note of what they are wearing. 

Even I make that extra bit of effort when in Paris. I tie one of my mother’s elegant Hermes scarves around my neck to add a little style and class to my day.

So when I came across these lovely books set in Paris I was super excited to read them! The author Antoine Laurain is the epitome of Parisian life and his super fun books translate this love for the city of lights.

The Book –


Bookseller Laurent Letellier comes across an abandoned handbag on a Parisian street and feels impelled to return it to its owner. 

The bag contains no money, phone or contact information. But a small red notebook with handwritten thoughts and jottings reveals a person that Laurent would very much like to meet.

 Without even a name to go on, and only a few of her possessions to help him, how is he to find one woman in a city of millions?

Verdict –

I just adored this book and read it in one sitting. Laurent Letellier is a romantic man, someone who believes in love and goes after what he believes in.

I have always believed that in life everything happens for a reason. The people we meet, we marry, it is one big plan destined to happen. Kismet, destiny. All one big story.

And this is Laurent’s story. One of love, chances and luck.

I also just finished The President’s Hat by Antoine Laurain which was also so much fun, I will review this one in another blog.

You can purchase all these wonderful stories on Amazon or at major bookshops.

His latest book is called ‘French Rhapsody ‘ which I can’t wait to read.

Find out more about the author below! And also follow his very cute Instagram page –

http://antoinelaurain.blogspot..tr/?m=0

Avocado & Kiwi smoothie with lime & honey ๐Ÿ’š

Smoothies and fruit juices are not just for starting the day with. When Iโ€™m trying to get fit and stay healthy during my summer holidays what I normally do is replace one meal with a smoothie. Not only are they wonderfully filling, they are nutritious without all the bulk of carbohydrates, calories of dairy, and just so delicious.


This combination is just so good, the creamy avocado with the sweet kiwis, the citrusy sharp lime and honey all blend to form a perfectly filling meal in a tall cold glass.

Ingredients – (makes enough for 1 tall glass)
1/2 ripe avocado
2 peeled kiwis
1 teaspoon lime juice
1/4 cup of almond or soy milk
1 teaspoon of honey to taste
 2-3 ice cubes

Method –
Place the liquids in the blender first, then the fruit, then the ice.

Cover the blender. Start on a low speed then increase slowly. Blend until smooth and creamy.

Pour into a tall glass and enjoy straight away!

Yummy! xxx

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton ๐Ÿ“š a book review ๐Ÿ’™

Every now and again a book comes along which keeps you guessing and thinking and pondering long after you have finished reading it.

A few months ago I visited the beautiful city of Amsterdam with my darling husband. We had a lovely two night stay exploring the canals, grand houses and everything else the busy cosmopolitan city has to offer. A city filled with history from Anne Frank’s House to grand houses dating back to the 1600’s.

So when I came across The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton, a book set in the very era I found so interesting and mesmerising whilst in Amsterdam, I knew I had to read it.

The Book –


On an autumn day in 1686, eighteen-year-old Nella Oortman knocks at the door of a grand house in the wealthiest quarter of Amsterdam. She has come from the country to begin a new life as the wife of illustrious merchant trader Johannes Brandt, but instead she is met by his sharp-tongued sister, Marin. Only later does Johannes appear and present her with an extraordinary wedding gift: a cabinet-sized replica of their home. It is to be furnished by an elusive miniaturist, whose tiny creations mirror their real-life counterparts in unexpected ways . . .

Nella is at first mystified by the closed world of the Brandt household, but as she uncovers its secrets she realises the escalating dangers that await them all. Does the miniaturist hold their fate in her hands? And will she be the key to their salvation or the architect of their downfall?

Beautiful, intoxicating and filled with heart-pounding suspense, Jessie Burton’s magnificent debut novel The Miniaturist is a story of love and obsession, betrayal and retribution, appearance and truth.

Verdict –

In many ways the story of The Miniaturist is very similar to the things we are experiencing today. The terrible words racism, homophobia and misunderstanding of those who are different come to mind. But that was in the 1600’s, today it is such a shame that our societies still have to experience such atrocities.

Jessie Burton writes in such a natural way you feel as if you are watching a historic documentary. The characters all intertwine and interlink to make the story of Nella and her marriage to merchant trader Johannes Brandt a tale you will never want to end. As I read I felt as if I too was living in that very grand house on the canals in Amsterdam.

A book I thoroughly recommend. This is definitely on my favourite list for this year. After you’ve read it I recommend a trip to Amsterdam.

You can buy The Miniaturist in all major bookshops and on Amazon UK. I am now reading The Muse, the second novel by Jessie Burton which I will review for you all very soon.

 

Bad Moms ๐ŸŽฌ a movie review โค๏ธ

As you all know from my many seaside pictures on fb and Instagram I’m still in beautiful Antalya holidaying with my family.

It is definitely hot and humid, so between the extremely hot and dangerous hours of 11-4pm we tend to relax indoors or head to the many wonderful malls nearby. Visiting the cinema is our favourite pastime. It’s cool, extremely comfortable and a great pastime.

Today we went to see ‘Bad Moms’ starring Mila Kunis. I’ve been wanting to see this movie for a while.

The Movie –


Starring Mila Kunis, Kathryn Hahn amd Kristen Bell in the lead roles. When three overworked and under-appreciated moms are pushed beyond their limits, they ditch their conventional responsibilities for a jolt of long overdue freedom, fun, and comedic self-indulgence.

Verdict-

I loved loved loved this movie! It is a no brainer and just very down to earth and honest. Any mother will relate to the many chores and task involved with motherhood. 

I was laughing out loud all the way through!

Once the movie is over don’t leave straight away, there is a lovely bit at the end where we see the movie stars chatting with their own mothers about motherhood. Definitely brought a tear to my eye. 

Bad Moms will be released in the UK at the end of this month. Don’t miss it! xxx

Summer beauty essentials! ๐ŸŒž๐Ÿ’›

I am currently enjoying a wonderful summer with my family in sunny Antalya on the southern coast of Turkey.

Temperatures are high, on some days reaching well over 40 degrees celsius! So the aim of the game for us all here is to try and keep cool in the healthiest and best way possible.

Here are two of the summer essentials I have found perfect this Summer –

Evian Brumisateur Mineral Water Spray – 


These are an absolute godsend! After popping out of the pool or the sea these sprays are the perfect way to refresh your faces and keep cool. My mother keeps her bottle in the fridge and spritzes the cold water over her face in the mornings. I keep a small handy bottle in my handbag for daytimes and a big bottle in the bathroom for a spritz after cleansing my face after cleansing.

Clarins Hydraquench Lotion SPF 15 –


In the summertime creams can be more of a hindrance than a help. They can clog up pores causing you to sweat, not a very attractive look at all. So if you want to keep your skin moisturised, protected from the suns harmful rays and also keep cool this is the best lotion I have tried so far. In a handy light pump action tube, in a beautiful shade of blue. 

As the description of the product states ‘…this lotion hydrates the skin while helping to banish shine caused by heat and humidity, thanks to extracts of pomegranate and Alpine willow herb.”

You can buy both of these products from your local Boots store.

Keep cool & look fabulous! xxxx

 

Recipes for a perfect Marriage โค๏ธ by Kate Kerrigan ๐Ÿ“š a book reviewย 

I love novels that share recipes. It’s great because you get to enjoy a wonderful story and have lots of great recipes to try out too. Two for the price of one in a way.

I am also in the process of writing a novel, and it has lots of my lovely recipes intertwined with a story.

So whenever I come across these novels with recipes I love to start reading them straight away!

The Book-


Description below taken from Recipes for a Perfect Marriage –

They say there is no such thing as a perfect marriage, but of course there is. A perfect marriage is where two people live together for most of their lives until death separates them.

What there is no such thing as is an easy marriage. And when it comes to love, people have somehow come around to equating love with ease.

New York food writer Tressa returns from honeymoon worried that she has married her impossibly handsome new husband Dan out of late-thirties panic instead of love.

In 1930โ€™s Ireland, her grandmother, Bernadine, is married off to the local schoolteacher after her family are unable to raise a dowry for her to marry her true love, Michael.

During the first year of her marriage, Tressa distracts herself from her stay-or-go dilemma by working on her grandmotherโ€™s recipes, searching for solace and answers through their preparation.

Through the stories of these two women RECIPES FOR A PERFECT MARRIAGE challenges the modern ideal of romantic love as a given and ponders whether true love can really be learned.

Verdict

This story is so enticing, you will finish it in one go!

It’s very interesting to read as its topic is marriage, a subject which is always under scrutiny in the media in the modern society we live in today. It’s wonderful to go back in time and see how marriage was viewed in Tressa’s grandmothers era. 

If you love to cook, if you love to eat, whether you are married or not, I’m sure this book will touch you.

I’m planning to read The Dress by Kate Kerrigan next. A wonderful author who writes so naturally and realistically.

You can purchase Recipes for a Perfect Marriage on Amazon uk now.

Let you nails go naked this Summer ๐ŸŒž

I love having my nails done! A 2-3 weekly manicure & pedicure is my escape from the world and a way to take care of myself.

I go to a wonderful nail salon near my home where my therapist Tal is fantastic at her job. 

I always have clear varnish on my hands and either a deep letterbox red, or Essie’s Bordeaux- a deep burgundy – on my feet. 


Yes it’s definitely true that colour on short well pedicured toes looks fabulous. Especially in the summer months when we wear sandals. But after my last pedicure I have switched. Now I have nude fingers and toes.

Too much coloured nail varnish can turn your nails a terrible shade of yellow. Extremely unattractive and unhealthy. The best remedy is to stop using varnish and just let you nails breath and grow.

I am now sticking to nude hands and feet. The look is so wonderfully clean and natural and with a little strengthening polish to give your nails a gloss, your feet will look glorious!


I especially love how glossy and glowing my nails look with tanned feet.

When in doubt go au naturel – you won’t regret it!

Revenge of the Goldfish ๐Ÿ“ša book review ๐ŸŸ๐ŸŸ๐ŸŸ

My boys love books that rhyme. Poems which are funny and songs with words that rhyme are definitely their favourites. They are also the ones which the kids remember the quickest.

I read recently on another blog that studies have shown that if a child is able to memorize at least eight nursery rhymes or short poems by their fourth year, they will become the best readers in their class by the time they are eight years old. So this proves that nursery rhymes help your child read better and learn to love reading! Such a fun way to learn and love reading.

The Book –


Revenge of the Goldfish A selection of upbeat, fun poems to read to 4 โ€“ 7โ€™s. Using rhythm and rhyme, the book embraces modern life, with mobile phones and computers. It also offers a scattering of dinosaurs, giraffes and robots – oh and an angry viper – just to spice things up.


These are poems that can be read to your children at home, whilst snuggled upon the settee or utilized as a circle time resource within nursery/pre-school, plus included within the primary school classroom as part of an organised poetry session โ€“ to encourage and build upon the childโ€™s enthusiasm for rhythm and rhyme. With lively illustrations to engage and inspire.

Verdict –


My boys really enjoyed this book full of lovely illustrations and poems. Both my 5 year old and 8 year old laughed out loud at the humour and had memorised a few of them after a few days. They enjoy reciting them to their grandparents.

A fantastic book to keep the kids busy over the holidays! Fun and educational at the same time โค๏ธ

You can buy this and others in the series on Amazon uk now.
 

 

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