Weekly Tales – 21/12/2014


Welcome to my weekly wrap up on Tales Of Yesterday where I share what I have been reading this week, what books I have bought or have been privileged to have received and any general bookish or sometimes not so bookish things I have been up to over the past week.

Currently Reading


Okay so I have finally started a Christmas read – yay!  However this was not on my December / Christmas reads – naughty me!  I got a little distracted as I bought this last week on my Kindle and sounds fun for Christmas.  Its only a short story so I’m sure I can move onto my next Christmas read fairly quickly.  I’m debating over My True Love Gave To Me or Let It Snow.

This week I read Milked by Lisa Doyle in preparation for the Blog Tour that I was part of – you can see my review here.  It was a great Adult Fiction read and I would recommend to people who enjoy Chick Lit with a twist.

Its been a busy old week on Tales Of Yesterday this week.  I also posted my review of the fabulous children’s book The Dreamsnatcher by Abi Elphinstone this week which is due out in February 2015.  I loved it and you can see my review here.  Myself and Corey, my son, have also been invited to the book launch for this book which I am really hoping we can make.  I cannot wait!

As well as posting my review of the brilliant Trouble by Non Pratt (see my review here) I have also been honoured to have the author of Trouble, Non Pratt, on Tales Of Yesterday on a question and answer feature where Non discussed Trouble, the writing process and her new book our next year Remix – you can see this here.

Phew – what a week!  I have two weeks off work coming soon so I plan to read – a lot!

Book Post

I have been extremely lucky and privileged this week to have received some books from publishers and authors to read and review.  Thank you so much to all.  Its been a very busy week for my postman!

Firstly I would like to thank author Lisa Heathfield and the publisher Egmont / Electric Monkey for sending me a proof copy of upcoming YA novel Seed.  The cover for this book is stunning and I cannot wait to read this book.  Thank you so much.


Publisher – Electric Monkey

Publication Date – 16th April 2015

Fifteen-year-old Pearl has lived her whole life protected within the small community at Seed, where they worship Nature and idolise their leader, Papa S. When some outsiders arrive, everything changes. Pearl experiences feelings that she never knew existed and begins to realise that there is darkness at the heart of Seed.  A darkness from which she must escape, before it’s too late.

A chilling and heartbreaking coming-of-age story of life within a cult, Seed will take readers on a journey of gripping self-discovery reminiscent of The Handmaid’s Tale. 

Another huge thank you goes out to the author Helen Grant who organised and sent me a copies of her two books from the Forbidden Spaces Trilogy.  The third book to this trilogy, Urban Legends is out March 2015 so I am going to read the first two asap!  Thank you so much Helen!

untitledPublisher – Corgi Children’s

Published –  27th March 2014

Seventeen-year-old Veerle is bored with life in suburban Brussels. But a chance encounter with a hidden society, whose members illegally break into unoccupied buildings around the city, soon opens up a whole new world of excitement – and danger.

When one of the society’s founding members disappears, Veerle suspects foul play. But nothing can prepare her for the horror that is about to unfold when an old foe emerges from the shadows… No one is safe, and The Hunter will strike again…


Publisher – Corgi Children’s

Published – 5th June 2014

Veerle has moved to Ghent to start a new life with her father and his girlfriend, she’s isolated and alone. But not as alone as she had thought . . .

Veerle recognises a familiar face in the crowds one day, a face connected to a past that she has been fighting to get over, a past that involved murder.

A spate of deaths hit the city but has Death followed Veerle to Ghent or is this something new?

I have also received a review copy of a wonderful book due out February 2015 – 7 days by Eve Ainsworth.  I feel very lucky to have received this as the wonderful author Keris Stainton sent this to me after she had finished reading it!  Thank you so much Keris you are truly wonderful!


Publisher – Scholastic Press

Publication Date – 5th February 2015

School should be a safe place for Jess, but at the moment it’s everything she dreads. Jess’s life is difficult enough without Kez picking on her. Kez’s life isn’t any sweeter. She has plenty of problems too but she finds comfort in knowing she is better off than Jess – or so she thinks…

I recently requested and was approved for a fab looking children’s book on Netgalley called The Deadly 7.  I have this on my kindle ready to read but the publishers, Macmillan, contacted me and asked if I would like a hard copy also.  I jumped at the chance as this book looks really good.  Thanks so much for getting in touch Bea I cannot wait to read!


Publisher – Macmillan Children’s Books

Publication Date – 15th January 2015

Everything was happening so fast and it was all so . . . mad. It was as if someone had taken reality, made it into a jigsaw, thrown the jigsaw on to the floor and then said, “Now, hurry up and put it all together!” as they danced all over the jigsaw pieces in a clown suit, blowing a trumpet.

When Nelson’s beloved big sister goes missing on a school trip, Nelson is devastated – he’s not that good at making friends and his sister is the only person he can talk to. His parents join the search party and leave Nelson in the care of his mad uncle Pogo. Uncle Pogo is the caretaker of St Paul’s Cathedral and it is here that Nelson stumbles across a machine, invented by Christopher Wren and buried for hundreds of years. Designed to extract the 7 deadly sins, the machine had a fault – once extracted, the sins became living, breathing monsters who would then follow the sinner around for eternity (unless they ate him first, in the case of the particularly sinful). Nelson accidentally extracts 7 deadly monsters from his own little soul. Ugly, cantankerous, smelly and often the cause of much embarrassment, Nelson’s monsters are the last thing he needed in his life, but at least they’re fairly harmless (he’s a pretty good kid, on the whole). When he learns of their individual powers he realises the monsters can be put to good use, and together Nelson and the Deadly 7 set out on a quest across the globe to find and rescue his big sister. Somewhere along the way, Nelson realises that he finally has friends, even if they are smelly, lazy friends who like smashing stuff up.

I am also beyond excited at receiving the following books via Lovereading4kids and the publishers of these books.  I have heard so many good things about both of these that I cannot wait to get stuck in!


Publisher – David Fickling Books

Publication Date – 1st January 2015

Two boys. Two secrets. David Piper has always been an outsider. His parents think he’s gay. The school bully thinks he’s a freak. Only his two best friends know the real truth – David wants to be a girl. On the first day at his new school Leo Denton has one goal – to be invisible. Attracting the attention of the most beautiful girl in year 11 is definitely not part of that plan. When Leo stands up for David in a fight, an unlikely friendship forms. But things are about to get messy. Because at Eden Park School secrets have a funny habit of not staying secret for long …


Publisher – Penguin

Publication Date – 8th January 2015

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the ‘natural wonders’ of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself – a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. How far will Violet go to save the boy she has come to love?

I have also been very lucky this week winning a set of Miranda Dickinson books and a tote bag that I received via Avon Books.  Thank you so much for picking me as one of your winners for this fab prize – looking forward to reading these!


Publisher – Avon Books

Published – 12th November 2009

Are happy-ever-afters made in Manhattan? Find out in this gorgeous debut, perfect for cold winter nights.

Once upon a time an English girl went to New York to live out her very own fairytale…
Florist Rosie Duncan’s life couldn’t be better, she has a flourishing business on New York’s Upper West Side and fantastic friends. Moving to Manhattan feels like the best decision she ever made. Even though at the time, it was her escape route from heartbreak . . .

For the past six years Rosie has kept her heart under lock and key, despite the protests of her closest friends – charming, commitment-phobic Ed, unlucky in love Marnie and the one-woman tornado that is Celia.

Then a blossoming friendship with publishing hot-shot Nate begins to shake Rosie’s resolve at the same time as her brother arrives in the Big Apple, hiding a secret.

But a chance meeting brings Rosie face to face with her past, unravelling the mystery behind her arrival in New York. Rosie is forced to confront questions she has long been trying to ignore, including will she ever get her very own happy-ever-after?

A sparkling, romantic comedy about an English girl who finds herself in the city where dreams can come true – or so she thinks…


Publisher – Avon Books

Published – 8th November 2012

The brand new release from the Sunday Times bestselling author that bought you Fairytale of New York and It Started With A Kiss.

What happens when your happy ever after is suddenly and painfully taken away from you?

Elsie Maynard has a whole new life she never expected to have.

From inadvertently founding a choir like no other with former 80s rock star Woody Jensen, to daring to date again, Elsie steps out into an unknown future – a future that could include gorgeous designer Olly Hogarth, a man who seems intent on winning her heart. Overcoming problems, challenges and the occasional frustration – namely overconfident Torin Stewart who seems to be everywhere – Elsie believes she is making the most of her life.

But then a heartfelt request brings her to Paris – and the last item on a very important List.

Can Elsie take the final step and lay her past to rest? Join Elsie as she battles to start again, with the help of a disastrous, newly-formed singing group and her father and sister armed with dating hopefuls.


Publisher – Avon Books

Published – 24th October 2013

How far would you go to make a new start? Heart-warming and romantic, Take a Look at Me Now will make you laugh, cry and cheer Nell on from start to finish.

What a difference a day makes…

Nell Sullivan has always been known as ‘Miss Five-Year Plan’. But when she finds herself jobless and newly single on the same day, Nell decides it is time to stop planning and start taking chances.

Nell blows her redundancy cheque on a trip of lifetime to a place where anything is possible – San Francisco. There she meets a host of colourful characters, including the intriguing and gorgeous Max. Very soon the city begins to feel like Nell’s second home.

But when it’s time to return to London, will she leave the ‘new Nell’ behind? And can the magic of San Francisco continue to sparkle thousands of miles away?


Publisher – Avon Books

Published – 4th December 2014

Have you ever given up on love?

When her boyfriend lets her down for the last time, Brooklyn bookshop owner Bea James makes a decision – no more. No more men, no more heartbreak, and no more pain.

Psychiatrist Jake Steinmann is making a new start too, leaving his broken marriage behind in San Francisco. From now on there’ll just be one love in his life: New York.

At a party where they seem to be the only two singletons, Bea and Jake meet, and decide there’s just one thing for it. They will make a pact: no more relationships.

But the city has other plans . . .


I have also been lucky enough to have been approved for these wonderful books on NetGalley – I can’t wait to read!  Thank you to all of the publishers who approved these reads for me.  As always reviews to follow shortly.

cover57151-mediumPublisher – Belinda Frisch

Published – 4th April 2014 

Harmony Wolcott’s childhood nightmares become reality when a session with a spirit board leaves her with more questions than answers. What starts as a message from beyond the grave, turns into something dangerous that won’t be ignored. Together with her best friend, Brea Miller, Harmony investigates the mysterious address that something or someone has given her: 6 Maple Avenue.

It’s not just the house that’s haunted.

The dilapidated scene seems like something from another lifetime, a place of mixed memories where Harmony and Brea’s friendship had started, and where their families’ lives had intersected years earlier. What happened there might well be the town of Reston’s best kept secret.

A tragic discovery threatens to unravel Harmony’s patched together life and bring Brea down with her, proving, with devastating consequences, that sometimes the past is better left buried.


Publisher – Simon & Schuster UK Children’s

Publication Date – 29th January 2015

This characteristically powerful novel follows eighteen-year-old Cody Reynolds in the months following her best friend’s shocking suicide.
As Cody numbly searches for answers as to why Meg took her own life, she begins a journey of self-discovery which takes her to a terrifying precipice, and forces her to question not only her relationship with the Meg she thought she knew, but her own understanding of life, love, death and forgiveness.
A phenomenally moving story, I Was Here explores the sadly all-too-familar issue of suicide and self-harm, addressing it with it sensitivity, genuity and honesty.

Other Bookish Goings On

This week I drew my E Lockhart Giveaway winners!  These were @shelbycat and @quirkiness.  Congratulations to the two winners who have been notified and the signed copies are working their way to you.  A big thank you to every one who entered .

This week I also did my first ever guest post on @yayeahyeah ‘s #indieadvent!  My post was on the wonderful Astley Book Farm!  Check out my guest post here.

As mentioned last week I am going to be taking part in the British Books Challenge 2015.  I am also taking up @pewterwolf13 ‘s challenge of re-reading all the Harry Potter books at some point over 2015 (probably spread out over the year) as well as taking part in the wonderful @Lucythereader ‘s twitter book club #readukya which will help towards my British Books Challenge.  I am also planning to set myself a challenge on Goodreads (maybe 100 books?) and still continue to take part in the wonderful @junodawson ‘s #pointhorrorbookclub!  Looks like I am going to be a busy bee!


Lastly don’t forget about #indieadvent – Jim over at YA Yeah Yeah has been doing a fab job of running this and posting a guest post everyday in December featuring and celebrating our favourite independent bookshops each day.

Look out for daily guest posts from fab bloggers.  Jim is also encouraging people to join in the conversation using the hashtag #indieadvent on the following days – join in the chat.  I think this is a wonderful idea and big congrats to Jim for all his hard work and effort with such a wonderful project.


Have you read any of the book above?  Do any look like books you fancy reading?  Was my fan girling moment a tiny bit on the sad side?  I would love to hear from you?  Why not leave a comment using the reply button at the tope of the page or tweet me on twitter using @chelleytoy

Wishing you all a lovely Christmas and a Happy New Year – Happy Reading!



Written by

I am often known to be a bit clumsy and a little loopy! Book loving (obsessed), theatre loving, slasher film loving csi geek! Winner of UKYABA Champion Newcomer 2015 and nominated for Champion of Social Media 2016 and Blogger Of The Year 2016! © 2014 - 2021 Michelle Toy All Rights Reserved

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