Why I feature #ChocLitSaturdays (book reviews & guest author features)
I feature Romance & Women’s Fiction authors during @SatBookChat.
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!
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. This is how I first came to find out about Ms Browne’s novels – whilst reconnecting with the author at Christmastime as we have kept up with each other through my bi-monthly chat (@SatBookChat) or outside of it; Ms Browne offered to send me a copy of ‘The Rest of my Life’ to read in the New Year. I had learnt through our conversation she has moved from ChocLit to Bookouture – the publisher I happily hosted a series of author interviews for in 2016. Previously, I had received “Learning to Love” via ChocLit when Ms Browne was still with the publisher in 2017. This marks my second reading of a Contemporary Romance by Ms Browne.
I received a complimentary copy of “The Rest of my Life” from the author Sheryl Browne in exchange for an honest review! I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.
Why I was interested in reading ‘The Rest of my Life’:
I had initially intended to read this novel ahead of ‘Learning to Love’ but as fates would intervene, I read them out of sequence as this one was the debut novel for Ms Browne with ChocLit. As I awaited the novels to be released in print, I happily celebrated them being released on Jorie Loves A Story whilst finding myself smitten with her writing life as she would share snippets of her bookish and writerly joy via #ChocLitSaturday which has now become re-named #SatBookChat in 2018. Through the convos and exchanges in our then weekly chat, I garnished an appreciation for Ms Browne’s writing style and the ways in which she develops her stories – I had a sinking feeling I was going to become wickedly delighted by what I’d find inside her Romances!
On the other hand, I also knew – from what I gleamed in our convos her intensified & grisly Crime Thrillers were not my cuppa. Hence why I am positively thrilled she loves to write heart-centred Contemporary stories befitting all readers who love reading both Romance & Women’s Fiction as to me, her novels are a smashing example of how you can write a hybrid styling of a story which can happily reside in both designations! She emotes the drama of real life with realistic characters and back-stories into the very fabric of her Contemporaries. You feel every raw emotion as her characters do whilst you walk away with your ruminative thoughts.
What I appreciated the most about the trailer is that it sets the story up for a curious reader as it’s a story where redemptive qualities in a flawed approach to life and romance can be re-approached differently when you meet someone quite unexpectedly right for you. I like how the bloke in the story is very atypical of a classic choice for a woman seeking romance; who purposely would find a womanizing fool?
It’s a turning of the tables for both of them; each of them has a burdened and/or difficult set of emotional baggage to shift through in order to make their relationship work – if there is a relationship to build upon and that provides the drama which lights the fuell of curiosity to read it!
I will be quite keen to see which direction Ms Browne leads us to go forth from here!
-quoted from my Book Spotlight for “The Rest of my Life”
For these reasons, I was delightfully humbled and happily surprised Ms Browne offered to send me The Rest of my Life – as with her transition to Bookouture, I knew it would be a considerable time until I could get to read this novel. Thus, I was truly blessed I could read it so early-on in the New Year. I am simply drawn to certain kinds of stories at certain moments and I knew it was time to read this second, er, first novel by Ms Browne! There is just something about her style of writing I feel I can attach my heart inside and for this, I am truly thankful I crossed paths with her on the beginning leg of her writerly career! I’ll be cheering from the sidelines now as she continues onward & upward with Bookouture!
On my connection to the author:
I happily have had the pleasure of interacting with Ms Browne through #SatBookChat (previously #ChocLitSaturday) the chat off/on for the past two years (or thereabouts). She is a delightful presence to have in the chats and I am thankful she found a niche where she felt comfortable chattering with fellow ChocLit authors, Romance novelists, book bloggers, readers, and other bookishly chatty spirits who alight on Saturdays!
I am disclosing this, to assure you that I can formulate an honest opinion, even though I have interacted with her ahead of reading her novels. I treat each book as a ‘new experience’, whether I personally know the author OR whether I am reading a book by them for the first time. This is also true when I follow-up with them on future releases and celebrate the book birthdays that come after their initial publication.
Learning to Love
Subtitle: When is it time to stop running?
You can’t run away from commitment forever…
Adam Hamilton-Shaw has more reason than most to avoid commitment. Living on a houseboat in the Severn Valley, his dream is to sail into the sunset – preferably with a woman waiting in every port. But lately, his life looks more like a road to destruction than an idyllic boat ride…
Would-be screenplay writer Sienna Meadows realises that everything about Adam spells trouble – but she can’t ignore the feeling that there is more to him than just his bad reputation. Nor can she ignore the intense physical attraction that exists between them.
And it just so happens that Adam sees Sienna as the kind of woman he could commit to. But can he change his damaging behaviour – or is the road to destruction a one-way street?
Places to find the book:
on 21st April, 2016
In regards to the ‘heat’ of sensuality & sexuality explored in this novel, I felt I ought to let my readers know this one was at the upper tier of where I think Romance can almost be blurring the lines for what it can encompass, therefore for me personally, it was at the highest end.
Available Formats: Paperback & E-Book
Ms Browne’s ChocLit Contemporary Roms:
The Rest of my Life (see also Cover Reveal w/ Notes)
Converse via: #Contemporary #Romance + #ChocLit