#MidnightChocLit No.3 | “Grand Designs” by Linda Mitchelmore the writer behind a ChocLit series Jorie is reading in January!

Posted Saturday, 24 December, 2016 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

#MidnightChocLit banner created by Jorie in Canva. Book Photography Credit: Jorie of jorielovesastory.com.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Acquired Book By: I am a regular reviewer for ChocLitUK, where I hand select which books in either their backlist and/or current releases I would like to read next for my #ChocLitSaturdays blog feature. As of June 2016, I became a member of the ChocLit Stars Team in tandem with being on the Cover Reveal Team which I joined in May 2016. I reference the Stars as this is a lovely new reader contribution team of sending feedback to the publisher ahead of new book releases. As always, even if I’m involved with a publisher in this sort of fashion, each review is never influenced by that participation and will always be my honest impression as I read the story. Whether the author is one I have previously read or never had the pleasure to read until the book greets my shelf.

I received a complimentary copy of “Grand Designs” from ChocLit in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

#MidnightChocLit No.3: a #newtomeauthor & a girl’s love for her Royal

My Royal typewriter & #PocketChocLit. Book Photography Credit: Jorie of jorielovesastory.com.

Jorie’s preferred method of #amwriting her novels & stories: a vintage Royal typewriter from the late 1930s & early 1940s

There is a wicked sweet story *behind!* how I came into possession of this incredible machine – my dearly loved Royal, however, tonight I wanted to share my love of *typewriters!* and my growing aversion towards using traditional technologist resources to write stories! It began by a succession of computers which not only died behind the infamous ‘blue screen of death’ but due to the fact I never understood the best method towards ‘saving’ a backup of my files until I became a book blogger!

Remember: I’m old enough to remember *floppy!* 5 1/2 discs and their cousin, the 3 1/2! I am sure other GenX writers out there know what I’m referencing, too!

Then, there is the whole connective connection to writing by typewriter vs. a computer – mind you, I will always have a computer in my life, but the advantage of having a typewriter is complete immersion into the writerly process without the distractions of social media (which ahem! sometimes distracts me as a blogger!) or the curiously curious features that comes with a Win10 upgrade! I’ve gone through bouts of gaming since October, collecting ‘apps’ (oh, dear!) and had a serious addiction to “behind-the-scenes” of new tv dramas via the Win store, too! (oy, oy) A girl can get properly addicted to these new lovelies due to how user-friendly they are and how much you can honestly do on them.

I am unsure which method of writing Ms Mitchelmore used to compose her words inside her novella or in her novels, but all my future stories will be composed on my Royal and a few more retrofitted vintage typewriters I have yet to collect! There is a growing sub-culture of writers who are wicked addicted to typing their stories rather than using a more 21st Century method – the #Typosphere is calling me, too. Where you literally ‘type’ your blog posts? I will be exploring that sometime in the future – I simply need to get my Royal serviced, spruced up a bit and gather a small collection of necessary items, such as INK + PAPER. Laughs.

Trivia of Jorie: She began writing on an electric typewriter not a computer when she was writing her Science Fiction novel as a teenager – however, her earliest writings as a child were on a Commodore owned by her maternal grandfather.

I picked Ms Mitchelmore’s series to begin next as one thing I have enjoyed over the course of *2016!* is becoming further introduced to serial ChocLit! My readings of To Turn Full Circle begin in January – thus, imagine how keenly happy I was to spy this novella in my #ChocLitChristmas parcel of joy!? An early ‘preview’ if you will of an author I have been eagerly awaiting to read!

IF your just joining me for #MidnightChocLit and want to know why I conceived this wicked #awesomesauce of a readathon – please direct your attention to #MidnightChocLit No.1: You’re the One that I Want.

Join me whilst I read *six!* ChocLit novellas Christmas Week & New Year’s – as we read through the holidays with a ‘pocket of ChocLit’ in our hands! Remember: I’m tweeting LIVE as I read ahead of posting these reviews! Tweet me your reactions & add your commentary on the posts!

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

 #MidnightChocLit No.3 | “Grand Designs” by Linda Mitchelmore the writer behind a ChocLit series Jorie is reading in January!Grand Designs
Subtitle: You can change the house but can you change the man?

You can change the house but can you change the man?

Carrie Fraser is an interior decorator and cannot believe her luck when she is invited to work at Oakenbury Hall – a beautiful manor house in the heart of the English countryside. Nor can she quite get over the owner of Oakenbury – the gorgeous (not to mention, completely loaded!) Morgan Harrington. Morgan appears to have it all, but his previous life is clouded with sadness and heartache, which Carrie can relate to only too well. He is intent on running away from his troubled past to a glamorous, celebrity-filled existence in Cannes, but there’s a problem…

Morgan is bound by his late father’s wishes to keep Oakenbury Hall within the family and have children, and the more time Carrie spends with him, the more she yearns to be the woman to fulfil this wish. But the likes of Carrie Fraser could never be enough for a high-flying businessman like Morgan … could she?

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Find on Book Browse

Book Page on World Weaver Press

ISBN: 9781781893579

on 4th November, 2016

Pages: 128

Published by: ChocLitUK (@ChocLituk)

Available Formats: Pocket Paperback + Ebook + Audiobook

Converse via: #Contemporary & #Romance

#RomSusp OR #RomanticSuspense + #ChocLit

OR #PocketChocLit (Jorie’s idea!)

Put some ChocLit,

in your pocket!


(little rhyme I came up with to celebrate these editions!)

About Linda Mitchelmore

Linda Mitchelmore

Linda has had over two hundred short stories published worldwide. She has also won many short story writing competitions – Woman’s Own, Woman & Home and Writespace to name but three. In 2004, Linda was awarded The Katie Fforde Bursary by the Romantic Novelists’ Association, and has a story in their 50th Anniversary Anthology. Linda also won Short Story Radio Romance Prize 2010. Having started her writing career doing a short story course with Writing Magazine, she has now come full circle and is a preliminary judge for their short story competitions. Linda lives in Devon and is married with two grown-up children.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

My review of grand designs:

Carrie isn’t quite off on the right footing when she meets Morgan – her car named after the author’s son IRL is one of those quirky models that has the ill-temper of acting up right when you need it to produce you somewhere ‘on time’ rather than ‘modestly late’! What was bemusing to her was Morgan’s rather cavalier attitude – halfway between being witchingly naughty to nudge her out of her own confidence and being cheekily attractive! Carrie isn’t one to mix pleasure with business, not when she’s in need of this meeting to work like gangbusters to secure the account but how to curb her reaction to Morgan was proving to be a bit more difficult than first appearances!

Oakenbury Hall once stood tall, proud and eloquently outfitted by yesteryear’s scale of notability; however, the years were unkind to the estate by today’s terms. Carrie had a true gift for seeing potential even if it were buried knee deep under mountains of dust and outdated surface dressings of rooms. She had a knack for seeing past what was being presented out of character for a house but moreso, out of step with the reality of the build. Where others saw an interior wasteland, Carrie liked to foresee the possibilities of what a good reno could towards re-instilling a bit of soul back into a house.

Carrie found interacting with Morgan quite the difficult chore if she were to keep her musings about his potential as a life mate to herself. Smitten from their awkward first meeting, Carrie couldn’t help herself but to stumble over words and stammer out her responses whenever Morgan was around. He didn’t help matters by presuming ‘James’ was a boyfriend non grata; a fact she cloyingly did not correct him about. Morgan on the other hand ran hot and cold; his emotional tides were as unpredictable as the weather! Something that Carrie found a bit off-putting as how to navigate working with him when she was never quite certain which mood she’d find him in when she was ready to talk specifics of design.

Nibbling around the edge of her work at the Hall, Carrie stumbled into Morgan’s secreted emotional anguish when arriving to discuss layouts and placement of patterns. Morgan’s heart and mind was consumed by guilt and the auspiciously difficult emotions fuelled by regret for what was never said or shared whilst his father was alive. The weight of which you could tell was plaguing him and of one he shared in Carrie; of whom had her own demons to slay.

The closer Carrie felt she was moving towards Morgan, the harder her mind and heart made it for her to follow through with her feelings. She had a Mum to look after and a jaded past – although, Morgan’s track record was as squashed as hers in that regard. She simply wasn’t sure if she could trust her instincts to the brink of sharing what needed to be said and then, awaiting the response from Morgan. His frustration was finding himself keenly attracted to Carrie and yet, forestalled at every opportunity to bring him into a relationship with her as she was not one who was easily chased. He respected her and was interested, but not to the point of where he would avoid listening to her perspective on the matter. All in all, both of them were in conflict – either with themselves or with each other, as they tried to navigate the work at the Hall without muddling things beyond recognition.

Mitchelmore had me in stitches when a scene popped in where Carrie’s Mum is hand-in-hand with her beau whilst Carrie is in the arms of Morgan! It was organically inserted and had such a strong effect of clarifying a few things all round – Morgan and Carrie are not the best to deny each others’ feelings even if they had second thoughts on the matter; though mostly, it was Carrie who was trying to put-off Morgan. When Louise (Carrie’s Mum) entered into the fray, you could nearly see how she wasn’t quite as dependent on Carrie as forethought to have been and how wrecking that was for Carrie, of whom I am not sure was ready to embrace her mother’s independence!

I truly liked how the relationship was building between Carrie and Morgan; a lot of it was fuelled by mutual respect and mutual admiration; however, there were bits of their connection that needed working on such as the trust Carrie was hesitative to place in Morgan. The worst for Carrie was being carted off outside her comfort zone when Morgan insisted she travel with him. This led to nearly the undoing of Carrie’s mental state, as she blundered herself into a muddled situation she could not quite see at first how to undo. When it came to the particulars, Carrie was still feeling the pinges of remorse over putting her heart into a chaste state of solitude. Morgan in this light was a gentleman even if Carrie’s reactions left him in smirks moreso than disappointment.

The true beauty is how Mitchelmore united the two reluctant lovers and gave them a reason for trusting each other. There is a lot of heart and a lot of life bubbling inside this novella; so much so, you’ll be delighted to take the journey.

the contemporary styling of linda Mitchelmore:

I liked the approach of Ms Mitchelmore to draw out the spirit of Oakenbury Hall but also to show how despite the age of a house, there is a certain charm in restoration and renovation to bring back the soul of what was once lost in time. I have a deep appreciation for all things vintage & retrospective, which is why reading a story set to the tone of how a remodel and re-do of an estate sinking past it’s prime truly suited me! I always took a shine on antiques and innovative design options to retrofit an existing property with elements from it’s origin and history. To seek out the personality rather than being overtly suggestive of what it’s personality ‘should be’ is a good rule of thumb.

Mitchelmore draws your eye into this novella by carefully presenting two people who are caught together on a project to restore property even if their eyes for each other were dancing with delight from their initial meeting. Ms Mitchelmore doesn’t preclude her story with a spoiler of an ending (as some might think it could become predictable in the beginning) but rather, gives her characters depth to explore their own interests both separate and equal to each other. It is a clever story where a house lends itself to inspire romance with two people who are not entirely unmotivated to follow their own instincts. In this, Mitchelmore excelled at crafting a very realistically believable story.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

I happily review for ChocLitUK!

This book review is courtesy of:

ChocLitUK Reviewer Badge by ChocLitUK.Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

In case you’ve missed my ChocLit readings:

Please follow the threads through #ChocLitSaturdays!

And, visit my ChocLit Next Reads List on Riffle (recently upated!)

to see which stories I fancy to devour next!

I celebrated my 3rd Blogovesrary on 31st of March, 2016 wherein I revealled my Best of the Best Reads for 2015 via my End of the Year Survey. More than one ChocLit novel made the cut and received a special Award from me to acknowledge how lovely it was written!

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

#MidnightChocLit Schedule of Readings & Reviews:

*accompanying the reviews are LIVE readerly tweets starting @ midnight per date listed; reviews will go LIVE after the live tweeting sessions approx. one hour later. trying to keep the live reading reflections to an hour to give a small ‘taste’ of what is inside each novella!

You’re the One that I Want by Angela Britnell (22 DEC) (review)

Blueprint for Love by Henriette Gyland (23 DEC) (review)

Grand Designs by Linda Mitchelmore (Christmas Eve)

Marry for Love by Christina Courtenay (29th DEC) <– new date!

Only True in Fairy Tales by Christine Stovell (New Year’s Eve)

The Art of Deception by Liz Harris (New Year’s Day)

*ChocLit Reviews of Novels return January, 2017 to Jorie Loves A Story!

Tell me: did I tempt you to ‘put a little ChocLit in your pocket’?

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Why I feature #ChocLitSaturdays (book reviews & guest author features)
and created #ChocLitSaturday (the chat via @ChocLitSaturday):

I wanted to create a bit of a niche on Jorie Loves A Story to showcase romance fiction steeped in relationships, courtships, and the breadth of marriage enveloped by characters written honestly whose lives not only endear you to them but they nestle into your heart as their story is being read!

I am always seeking relationship-based romance which strikes a chord within my mind’s eye as well as my heart! I’m a romantic optimist, and I love curling into a romance where I can be swept inside the past, as history becomes lit alive in the fullness of the narrative and I can wander amongst the supporting cast observing the principal characters fall in love and sort out if they are a proper match for each other!

I love how an Indie Publisher like ChocLitUK is such a positive alternative for those of us who do not identify ourselves as girls and women who read ‘chick-lit’. I appreciate the stories which alight in my hands from ChocLit as much as I appreciate the inspirational romances I gravitate towards because there is a certain level of depth to both outlets in romance which encourage my spirits and gives me a beautiful story to absorb! Whilst sorting out how promote my book reviews on behalf of ChocLit, I coined the phrase “ChocLitSaturdays”, which is a nod to the fact my ChocLit reviews & features debut on ‘a Saturday’ but further to the point that on the ‘weekend’ we want to dip into a world wholly ideal and romantic during our hours off from the work week!

IF you love chatting about Romance novels, #amwriting adventures and being in a wicked good circle of writers and readers joyfully sharing their writerly & bookish lives, I invite you to join us for #ChocLitSaturday which is an extension of my reviews & guest features on behalf of ChocLitUK! All are welcome! Visit @ChocLitSaturday for more details!

Our chats resume January, 2017.

Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

I look forward to reading your thoughts & commentary! Especially if you read the book or were thinking you might be inclined to read it. I appreciate hearing different points of view especially amongst bloggers who picked up the same story to read.

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Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com Writerly Yours Christmas Readathon 2016

I am cross-promoting my Christmas readings this year via the #WYReadathon of which was put together after I had envisioned my own Christmas selections! I felt it was quite kismet on the timing of it all, and looked forward to engaging with other readers who were going to blog their readerly delights this Thanksgiving and Christmas season! I find that I am the most comfortable reading Christmas Stories between Thanksgiving and Twelfth Night (in January); as the stories just appeal to me to be read during this short period of time where the fullness of the season is not only apparent but can be felt by spirit, mind and heart. I look forward to sharing more of my selections with you as I proceed forward with my readings! Happy Christmas!

More #WYReadathon selections including “Kissing Father Christmas” and “A Very Blessed Christmas Colouring Book” are arriving before New Year’s. I am also featuring a *25!* colouring book journal special feature wherein I will start blogging my journey with this special devotional journal where colouring & mindfulness walk hand in hand. I had to amend my #ChristmasReads schedule due to my father’s stroke (see also this post).

This marks my 4th #WYChristmasReadathon post –

  1. Read my initial joy over reading Christmas Stories on my review of “Finding Father Christmas”!
  2. You’re the One that I Want by Angela Britnell (review)
  3. Blueprint for Love by Henriette Gyland (review)

What are you reading this Christmas Season?

Do you love soaking into Roms as much as I do for Christmas!?

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{SOURCES: Author photograph of Henriette Gyland, Cover Art for “Grand Designs”, Author Biography, Book Synopsis and ChocLit Reviewer badge were provided by ChocLitUK and were used by permission. Post dividers by  Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo and Fun Stuff for Your Blog via Pure Imagination. Tweets embedded due to codes provided by Twitter. #WYReadathon badge provided by Priya of Writerly Yours and is used with permission.  Blog graphics created by Jorie via Canva: #MidnightChocLit banner and the Comment Box Banner. Book Photography Credit: Jorie of jorielovesastory.com.}

Copyright © Jorie Loves A Story, 2016.

I’m a social reader | I love sharing my reading life

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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • #WYChristmasReadathon

About jorielov

I am self-educated through local libraries and alternative education opportunities. I am a writer by trade and I cured a ten-year writer’s block by the discovery of Nanowrimo in November 2008. The event changed my life by re-establishing my muse and solidifying my path. Five years later whilst exploring the bookish blogosphere I decided to become a book blogger. I am a champion of wordsmiths who evoke a visceral experience in narrative. I write comprehensive book showcases electing to get into the heart of my reading observations. I dance through genres seeking literary enlightenment and enchantment. Starting in Autumn 2013 I became a blog book tour hostess featuring books and authors. I joined The Classics Club in January 2014 to seek out appreciators of the timeless works of literature whose breadth of scope and voice resonate with us all.

"I write my heart out and own my writing after it has spilt out of the pen." - self quote (Jorie of Jorie Loves A Story)

read more >> | Visit my Story Vault of Book Reviews | Policies & Review Requests | Contact Jorie


Posted Saturday, 24 December, 2016 by jorielov in 21st Century, Blog Tour Host, British Literature, Castles & Estates, ChocLitSaturdays, ChocLitUK, Contemporary Romance, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, England, Indie Author, Modern British Literature, Modern Day, Romance Fiction, Siblings, Small Towne Fiction, Twitterland & Twitterverse Event

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