Book Review: Summer Wedding by Sarah Morgan

Summer is here when you see a Sarah Morgan summer release. Rosa has been a huge fan ever since she fell in love with the Snow Crystal trilogy years ago and eagerly awaits the summer and winter releases.

The arrival of an advanced copy of Summer Wedding made her day. Scroll down to see if it hit all her high expectations.

Book Review: Summer Wedding by Sarah Morgan

Book cover for Sarah Morgan's Summer Wedding. A vibrant turquoise background, yellow brush stroked font with an illustration of Corfu with a bride in a boat sailing towards it.
Summer Wedding by Sarah Morgan

Title: Summer Wedding

Author: Sarah Morgan

Publisher: HQ

Genre: Romance

Release date: 25th May 2023


A family wedding
Catherine Swift is a bestselling romance author, but her personal story hasn’t been quite so successful; three failed marriages have left her relationship with her daughters strained. Engaged once again, Catherine is counting on this wedding, at her villa in Corfu, to finally bring the family together.

A summer of secrets
Adeline can’t believe her mother is getting married for a fourth time, or that she’s expected to attend. It brings back the pain of her mother’s infidelity and the baby who was the result. Not that she blames her half-sister Cassie, but then she’s never tried to know her, either. Cassie, on the other hand, is thrilled by her mother’s news – she’s always admired Catherine’s resilience, and is excited to meet the mystery groom. Cassie also has a secret of her own, and a summer in Corfu will give her the time she needs to process everything.

A chance to start over again
As the guests arrive on the island, and the big day approaches, Catherine begins to reveal secrets from her past, and suddenly both Cassie and Adeline realise that they don’t know their mother at all . . .

Thoughts from the Emporium

Summer Wedding is another summer hit from Sarah Morgan whose descriptions of Corfu with hidden coves, warm sea and blue skies transported Rosa to enjoy the Mediterranean heat while being immersed into the lives of Adeline, Cassie and Catherine.

Catherine, a romance writer knows all about love and attempts to bring her daughters back into the family and heal wounds. Written with depth and heart, Rosa loved all the women who each have their flaws and she whizzed through the book to see if they'd get the ending they all deserved.

The two sisters complex relationship means they have become estranged and the reasons why were revealed using three points of view. It was interesting to see how the three women’s perspectives melded together and consequences of decisions made in the past created different childhood experiences impacting their own adult lives.

It is always fun to read about writers in novels especially romance authors and feels like your are getting an insight into the authors mind and publishing industry.

This heart warming, emotional exploration sibling relations and love set in a delicious environment make it an ideal summer read and holiday escape. It’ll be a well loved story in Rosa’s Box of Romance.


Book Review: The Bone House by Caroline Mitchell

The second review of the day couldn’t be any further from the romantic, Summer at Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas if it tried. Instead of a romance that warms the heart, The Bone House is a creepy thriller that promised to chills it and make you leave the light on.

This is the third book in the Slayton series by Caroline Mitchell and after reading the previous ones, Willow and Amber couldn’t wait to read it when it arrived at the Emporium, courtesy of Compulsive Readers so they could give their honest opinion.

Scroll down to see if it scared them as they expected.

Book Review: The Bone House by Caroline Mitchell

Book cover for the bone house by Caroline MItchell. A ramshackle shack on the edge of a misty lake and forest.
The Bone House by Caroline Mitchell

Title: The Bone House

Author: Caroline Mitchell

Publisher: Embla

Genre: Thriller with paranormal edge

Release date: 25th April 2023


When hundreds of birds fall from the sky into Slayton’s lake in a terrifying freak event, the waters are dredged – revealing a dark, long-held secret.

An old pram is pulled from the depths, with the bones of a baby still strapped inside.

It’s the moment that new mother, Cora, has been dreading since she moved to Slayton – because someone knows, and is going to make her pay.

With the help of forensic anthropologist Sophia Hudson, and the extraordinary young Elliott Carter, Detective Sarah Noble gets to the bottom of a cold case that refuses to stay in the past. Will she survive the secrets of the bone house?

Don’t miss this gripping new thriller from bestselling author Caroline Mitchell, that will have your heart pounding as you say ‘just one more page!’. Perfect for fans of Cara Hunter, Alex North and Stephen King.

Thoughts from the Emporium

Slayton is a village with sinister undercurrents making it a place neither witches would want to live but are addicted to reading about at a safe distance. The strong sense of place and grounded dark atmosphere always provides the foundation for the multiple layers of fear added when the police investigation begins and secrets are uncovered. The previous novel The Night Whispers gave both witches nightmares and with some cinematic scenes this was just as creepy; Caroline Mitchell excels at giving the reader just enough information for their own imaginations to kick in and create their own fear. It was impossible to put down at night. One more chapter just wasn’t enough because they needed to know the conclusion before they could think about sleep.

The Bone House could easily be read as a standalone but it did revisit characters from the previous novels, namely Sarah, Elsie, Maggie, and young Elliot who has been mastering his own unique skills. Unlike some series not knowing their full backstory to this point doesn’t hold back any of the enjoyment.

Discovering a baby’s body was always going to be unnerving but with a terrifying poem muttered throughout and snippets from the events in the bone room, it was a tense read. Bookshop owner Cora invoked sympathy but it was difficult to know who to trust when facts were revealed in this unexpected twisty case.

The Bone House is a strong example of Caroline Mitchell’s talent for blending unnerving paranormal elements with a twisty crime thriller. Gripping and chilling with characters you begin to care for this is a series those at the Emporium highly recommend and is a hit on the Enchanted Emporium bookshelf. Caroline Mitchell has become one of those authors that as soon as a new release is announced, it is eagerly anticipated and added to the TBR list.

Author Biography

New York Times, USA Today, Washington Post and International #1 Bestselling Author. Shortlisted by the International Thriller Awards for best ebook 2017, the Killer Nashville Best Police Procedural 2018 and the Audie awards 2022. Over 1.5 million books sold.

Caroline originates from Ireland and now lives in a village outside the city of Lincoln. A former police detective, she has worked in CID and specialised in roles dealing with vulnerable victims, high-risk victims of domestic abuse, and serious sexual offences. She now writes full time.

Caroline writes psychological and crime thrillers. Her stand alone thriller Silent Victim reached No.1 in the Amazon charts in the UK, USA and Australia and was the winner of the Reader’s Favourite Awards in the psychological thriller category. It has been described as ‘brilliantly gripping and deliciously creepy’.

The first in her Amy Winter series, Truth And Lies, has been optioned for TV.

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Book Review: Summer at the Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas

The first of two reviews today is Summer at the Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas. When this book arrived in Rosa’s Box of Romances courtesy of Random Things Tours, Rosa couldn’t wait for the bank holiday weekend to relax and read. Last year, she discovered Jo Thomas’ Retreat to the Spanish Sun (review here) and fell in love with her style.

Scroll down to see if this year’s summer novel reaches her high expectation.

Book Review: Summer at the Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas

Summer at the Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas book cover. Very cheery it shows a seaside coastal town in the background, a seagull flying with an ice cream, and a pink and blue open beach hut selling ice cream. There is a woman in a pink dress on the seashore eating ice cream.
Summer at the Ice Cream Café by Jo Thomas

Title: Summer at the Ice Cream Café

Author: Jo Thomas

Publisher: Penguin

Genre: Romance

Release date: 27th April 2023


A dream home
Beca Valentino is ready to escape the city. When she sees the perfect house for sale in her hometown, it seems like fate. Is this her chance to build the foster family she dreams of, on the beautiful Pembrokeshire coast?

A big mistake?
Returning home isn’t as easy as she thought, however. Her family’s beloved ice cream café is gone – turned into a soulless wine bar by her hateful ex-boyfriend. Reconnecting with her oldest friend, fisherman Griff, isn’t straightforward either. And when, instead of the children she expected to take in, two wary teenage boys appear on her doorstep, Beca fears she’s made a terrible mistake.

A recipe for change
But an old family recipe book is just the inspiration she needs. Soon, with a little help from friends old and new, Beca is selling mouth-watering homemade gelato from a pop-up café on the beach.

Then disaster strikes. Will the Valentino family legacy be lost forever? Or can Beca create a new recipe for happiness?

Thoughts from the Emporium

Jo Thomas has a knack of throwing the reader into the story from the first page and this was no different. Part of this talent is the relatable characters and observations but the other is the setting. Her vibrant descriptions bring the location alive and in this instance, it was Beca’s new home, Ty Mawr and the farm including the dairy and the cove. Within pages, Rosa could feel the sea breeze, the cold water lapping over the shore and experience the farm life. It was a setting to fall in love with and it was refreshing to be in Wales rather than the popular Cornish coast.

Rosa could feel Beca’s heartbreak when she realised how much had changed in the village since she left home, and empathised with her desire to capture some memories while leaving others behind. It subtlety highlighted the effects of second homes and holiday lets have on small communities popular with tourists.

While there was a romance bubbling along throughout, it was the relationship between Beca and the foster children that stood out. Joe was a child that will always be remembered and it was a joy to watch him and Blake flourish in the environment despite the emotional twists and turns. As with the location, there is always a strong connection with food in Jo Thomas’s novels and the mouth-watering descriptions of the Valentino’s gelato made Rosa reach for the ice cream in her freezer and smother it with toppings. As this was an advanced copy the included recipes were missing but she will buy her own copy to rectify this.

Summer at the Ice Cream Café is a beautifully written, emotional and evocative read that is an ideal summer escape about healing the past, discovering a new future and love in all its forms. Just stock up on ice cream before you start or be prepared to search for an ice cream van or parlour.

Not only does this romance deserve place in Rosa’s box of Romance but will also sit on her forever shelf for future rereads. Based on her recommendation Willow is eagerly waiting for an audio copy for Mrs Marley to listen too. With sea, ice cream and characters to love, it promises to be an equally beautiful listen.

Author Biography

Jo Thomas

Jo Thomas worked for many years as a reporter and producer, first for BBC Radio 5, before moving on to Radio 4’s Woman’s Hour and Radio 2’s The Steve Wright Show. Jo’s debut novel, The Oyster Catcher, was a runaway bestseller and won both the RNA Joan Hessayon Award and the Festival of Romance Best eBook Award. Her recent book Escape to the French Farmhouse was a #1 bestselling eBook and in every one of her novels Jo loves to explore new countries and discover the food produced there, both of which she thoroughly enjoys researching. Jo lives in Pembrokeshire with her husband and three children, where cooking and gathering around the kitchen table are a hugely important and fun part of their family life

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Book Review: Hotel 21 by Senta Rich

It’s publication day for Hotel 21 by Senta Rich and we’re excited to share our review as part of the blog tour organised by Random Things Tours. Thank you for the invite and the advanced copy so we could give an honest and an unbiased opinion.

While it’s not the usual book we’d review (it’s not a romcom and there are no haunted hotel corridors) the blurb caught our eye as did the simple but striking cover. Scroll down to see if it reached the high expectations.

Book Review: Hotel 21 by Senta Rich

Hotel 21 by Senta Rich

Title: Hotel 21

Author: Senta Rich

Publisher: Bloomsbury

Genre: contempory fiction

Release date: 27th April 2023


Noelle is an efficient, friendly hotel cleaner. She impresses managers. She avoids conflict.

And she steals from the guests…

Noelle is a model employee. Or so she’d have you think. The trouble is that she can’t help taking a little ‘souvenir’ as she cleans the hotels where she works. Nothing of value, just tokens of happy, normal lives: a lipstick, a hair clip, some tweezers. And by the time the guest has noticed, she’s long gone.
As she starts at her 21st hotel, she’s determined to beat her record of one month in a five star hotel before suspicion falls on her. But when she meets her new colleagues, her plans are complicated. These women aren’t just hands pushing carts down lonely hotel corridors: they are women with lives full of happiness and worry, pain and joy. The kind of lives Noelle has never known how to live. They make her wonder what it might be like to have real friends, people to stick around for…
Will the women at Hotel 21 give her the courage to claim the life she deserves?
A sharp, warm-hearted tale for fans of Convenience Store Woman and Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine.

Thoughts from the Emporium

What a heart warming, and at times heart breaking read which left all the staff at the Emporium uplifted and ready to discuss between themselves and customers.

Noelle was a complex protagonist that grew on the reader when the novel delved into her life, her reasoning as she steals and her past. While the book focused on her employment at her 21st hotel, separated by lists of things stolen it flipped into the past to different hotels. What hit Willow, Rosa and Amber was her stealing wasn’t random as they expected for someone with kleptomania but a considered action which sparked much conversation.

The good dynamics between the team of cleaners Noelle found herself in leapt from the page thanks to the great dialogue and this memorable supporting cast were as a vibrant as the cover. Their own lives were complex as Noelle’s and as they were revealed alongside Noelle’s arc, reading one chapter wasn’t enough.

Hotel 21 is an emotional yet entertaining novel about the importance of friendship, and connections when life never goes to plan.

Author Biography

Photo of Senta Rich. White woman smiling with ash blonde hair, straight. Wearing small rectangle black glasses, black top and white shirt
Senta Rich

Senta Rich began her career as an advertising copywriter. During this time she also wrote radio plays and articles for magazines. As soon as she could she left advertising and moved into the world of film and TV. She currently writes for TV shows in Ireland and the UK, including drama and animation. Her work has featured on RTE, BBC, CBEEBIES, Amazon Prime and other international and European networks. She also has a feature film in development. Hotel 21 is her first novel.
Senta has a BA (Hons) in Philosophy from Liverpool University. She has a strong background and interest in psychology with particular emphasis on Jungian psychology. She is originally from London but now lives in Dublin with her husband and son.

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2nd May
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3rd May
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9th May
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10th May
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11th May
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12th May
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Book Review: Insomnia by Kelly Covic

All at the Emporium are fans of Kelly Moran’s Phantoms series which follows ghost hunters on their paranormal investigations and passion sizzles between them. So when Insomnia, by her darker alter ego, Kelly Covic arrived on the Enchanted Emporium bookshelf, the usual arguments about who would be first to read ensued.

This time Willow won.

Book Review: Insomnia by Kelly Covic

Insomnia by Kelly Covic

Title: Insomnia

Author: Kelly Covic

Publisher: Smashwords

Genre: paranormal short stories

Release date: 4th April 2023

Purchase Link: Amazon UK


Nothing is as it seems…

Beyond the veil of this world lurks mysterious curiosities. What hides in the shadows can do more than simply frighten. They can bend reality and meld into terrifying horrors.

Welcome to the creepy and twisted short stories collection by debut author Kelly Covic. Featuring nine original spooky and unusual tales that are sure to leave an impression, including the Next Generation Indie Book Awards Short Story Finalist, “Idle Thursday.”

Sit back with a cup of something hot, a cozy blanket, be sure your lamp has a fresh bulb, and never mind that peculiar noise behind you. It’s probably nothing.


Thoughts from the Emporium

Despite living in a haunted building where ghosts chat and things go bump in the middle of the night daily, there is something thrilling about scaring yourself with ghost stories. Taking the blurbs advice, Willow curled up under a blanket with a Lemsip and dived into Insomnia while recovering from covid. It was ideal reading. The entertaining and creepy short stories were a perfect length to read between naps.

The style and imagination everyone loved in Phantoms were clear in the punchy, short but perfectly formed paranormal tales. The topics ranged from eerie time travel, to more classic hauntings and an insightful study of death. If this is an example of this author’s darker side, those at the emporium can’t wait to read more. It’s a welcome addition to the small lending library and will be a popular borrow.

Insomnia is a creepy and immersive short story collection that lends itself to be used as a reward for busy days during a coffee break or sneaky reading at night (just maybe leave a light on).

Author Biography

Black and white photo of Kelly Covic aka Kelly Moran.  White woman, long blonde hair, smiling
Kelly Covic

Kelly Covic is the dark, sinister version of international bestselling & award-winning romance author Kelly Moran. She’s always had an interest in the unexplained or the unknown, especially ghosts. She’s incredibly thrilled to unleash her alter-ego into the world with stories that will haunt the pages and your mind. Stay tuned for upcoming book releases. Her interests include: spooky movies, all kinds of art, driving others insane, and sleeping when she can. She is a closet coffee junkie and chocoholic. Tell no one. She’s originally from Wisconsin, but she resides in South Carolina with her significant other, her three sons, their wily dog, a chameleon, and their sassy cats.


Book Review: Isaac and the Egg

Book Review: Isaac and the Egg

Book cover for Isaac and the Egg by Bobby Palmer. Cover is split into two halves. The top is yellow with half a white egg shape coming from the horizon. The bottom is orange with rippled egg reflection.
Isaac and the Egg by Bobby Palmer

Book Title: Isaac and the Egg

Author: Bobby Palmer

Publisher: Headline

Genre: Fiction

Release date: 13th April


Heartbreaking and heart-stealing, this bestselling modern-day fable is an unforgettable novel about sorrow, joy, friendship and love.
When Isaac Addy walks into the woods on the worst day of his life and finds something extraordinary there, he already knows he’s going to take it home.
A grieving Isaac and his curious new friend are unlikely companions. They don’t even speak the same language. But their chance encounter will transform Isaac’s life in ways he cannot yet imagine.
And maybe he will finally be able to tell the truth.
Sometimes, to get out of the woods, you have to go into them. Isaac and the Egg is one of the most hopeful, honest and wildly imaginative novels you will ever read.

Thoughts from the Emporium:

Everyone in the emporium read it, everyone loved it and all agreed to fully appreciate this novel, you need to empty your mind of any expectations and go with the flow. In fact, Amber declared it was even better on the reread as she could slip into the unique plot quickly and enjoy the writing and story more rather than being dazzled by the originality and trying to fit it into a box of books she’d read previously.

This novel is special, unforgettable but difficult to review. The crippling grief Isaac, is feeling after his perfect life falls apart leapt from the page, making it an emotional read yet this is balanced with Egg’s gentle humour and antics, making it an enjoyable read with many unexpected twists and turns.

Isaac and the Egg is an unique, emotional depiction of raw grief blended with visual humour; it’s fantastical plot earns its place on the Enchanted Emporium bookshelf and will be a hit with customers. If you read this, you’ll never read another book like it- ever.

Author Biography:

Photo of Bobby Palmer. Youngish white man smiling with short brown curly hair and short beard. Wearing white t-shirt and standing in
front of trees
Bobby Palmer

Bobby Palmer is a freelance journalist who writes for publications including Time Out, GQ,
Men’s Health and Cosmopolitan. Isaac and the Egg is his debut novel.

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Book Review: Bewitching by J E Nice

Amber is excited to share her review for Bewitching by J.E Nice as part of the blog tour organised by Rachel’s Random Resources. Thank you for the advanced copy so an honest and unbiased review could be given.

Book Review: Bewitching by J E Nice

Book cover for Bewitching by J.E Nice
Woodland background with a dark claw grasping The Devil tarot card with bluebells in the foreground. It is through a blue filter

Title: Bewitching (Murray and Tidswell Paranormal investigations)

Author: J E Nice

Publisher: Indie

Genre: paranormal

Release date: 5th March 2023

Purchase Links

UK –

US –


A teenage girl tempted from this world over a carpet of bluebells…

A house full of shadows and a presence waiting to be let in…

Finally, everything is going well for Erica Murray, witch and paranormal investigator. That is, until the mother of a missing teenage girl recognises Erica’s fae lover, Alfie, for what he is and begs for his help. Erica must step into Alfie’s world to find the girl, but it means discovering secrets about her lover that might tear them apart.

Meanwhile, Jess Tidswell has other things on her mind. Her parents are meeting Jess’s new dog and, more importantly, her fiancé for the first time.

That’s not the worst of her problems. Her parents, keen for a new adventure, have bought a house and it comes with some unexpected residents. Shadows that move of their own accord, a curious spirit and something malevolent that lives on the periphery.

Unable to contact Erica, can Jess handle this terrifying ordeal on her own and protect her family?

Deep in another world, can Erica find the missing teenager and bring her out of harm’s way?

It’s going to be a long weekend.

Thoughts from the Emporium

Bewitching was an enjoyable and entertaining fantastical read that kept Amber company while she had covid. While it could be read as a standalone, it is book four in the series with intricate backstories surrounding Erica’s love of two men, time travelling police and Jess’s talents. For full enjoyment, she wished she’d read the other books first.

With two separate investigations, there was plenty to keep Amber’s attention but it was the darker problems of Jess’s parents house that kept her turning the pages. With witchy confessions, ghosts and other spooky goings on she was gripped.

The depiction of fae being an enchanting species with a high sex drive, was a far cry from other books she’d read previously which either had Enid Blyton’s mischievous innocence or much darker in nature. There were no graphic scenes but their unashamed expression of love was alluded to which threw up some interesting discussions on consent especially relating to bluebells.

Highly imaginative with lots of threads to discover, Bewitching is a welcome addition to the Enchanted Emporium bookshelf and has tempted Amber to explore the series more.

Author Biography

Black and white photo of J.E Nice
Young white woman with long blonde hair
J.E Nice

J E Nice is a fantasy author who lives in a city filled with dragons, woodland where the fae hang out, on an airship home to a crew of sky pirates and, sometimes, on the outskirts of Bristol in England. Wherever she is, there is always cake.

Social Media Links – (@writeintothewoods)

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Book Review: The Little Venice Bookshop by Rebecca Raisin

Now the Easter holidays are looming, many people are thinking of planning trips away abroad. There is little chance of Rosa or the others going this year but luckily books can be the next best thing. They allow you visit

different places without leaving home. Today, it’s the Emporium’s turn on the blog tour The Little Venice Bookshop by Rebecca Raisin. Thank you Rachel’s Random Resources for an advanced copy so they could give their honest review.

Book Review: The Little Venice Bookshop by Rebecca Raisin

Book cover for the Little Venice Bookshop by Rebecca Raisin Teal sky with a painted illustration of Venice. A orange painted bookshop 'libreria' a stone bridge and a man on a gondola
The Little Venice Bookshop by Rebecca Raisin

Title: The Little Venice Bookshop

Author: Rebecca Raisin

Publisher: HQ Harper Collins

Genre: Romance, women’s fiction

Purchase Links

Amazon US:

Amazon UK:

Amazon Aust:


A bundle of mysterious letters. A trip to Venice. A journey she’ll never forget.

When Luna loses her beloved mother, she’s bereft: her mother was her only family, and without her Luna feels rootless. Then the chance discovery of a collection of letters in her mother’s belongings sends her on an unexpected journey.

Following a clue in the letters, Luna packs her bags and heads to Venice, to a gorgeous but faded bookshop overlooking the canals, hoping to uncover the truth about her mother’s mysterious past.

Will Luna find the answers she’s looking for – and finally find the place she belongs?

Thoughts from the Emporium

While The Little Venice Bookshop focuses on Luna’s journey of not only self but the truth behind mum’s secret letters, it was La Libreria sul Canale that stole everyone’s hearts. The vibrant descriptions of the over filled shelves, heaps of disorganised fiction and even a maze, immersed them into the story and they never wanted to leave. They fell in love with the place just as Luna did, making it a joy to discover the truth behind the letters. With more depth and soul than they expected, and it made their bibliophile hearts sing. 

Luna was an unforgettable character with an unexpected and refreshing backstory that added to the depth and intrigue. The themes of home, family and loss, it was an engaging read.

Beautifully written this evocative novel is an ideal summer escape for those who love to lose themselves in second hand bookshops with their distinctive smell, and enjoy a love story with unravelling secrets. It will fly from Rosa’s Box of Romance, but also a copy will be on her forever shelf for repeated rereads. 

Author Biography

Photo of Rebecca Raisin White woman, long blonde hair, smiling wearing black
Rebecca Raisin

Rebecca Raisin writes heart-warming romance from her home in sunny Perth, Australia. Her heroines tend to be on the quirky side and her books are usually set in exotic locations so her readers can armchair travel any day of the week. The only downfall about writing about gorgeous heroes who have brains as well as brawn, is falling in love with them – just as well they’re fictional. Rebecca aims to write characters you can see yourself being friends with. People with big hearts who care about relationships and believe in true, once in a lifetime love. Her bestselling novel Rosie’s Travelling Tea Shop has been optioned for film with MRC studios and Frolic Media.

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Book Review Maybe This Time by Cesca Major

After three years, the covid virus has slipped through all the Emporium’s protective spells and hit the staff so books have become more important while they recover. Monday Merry Meets will resume shortly. In the meantime, they are thrilled to review Maybe This Time by Cesca Major. Thank you Random Things Tours for the advanced copy that arrived on the enchanted bookshelf so they could give their honest opinion.

Book Review Maybe This Time by Cesca Major

Book cover for Maybe Next Time by Cesca Major. Very simple- cream background with Maybe Next Time in black script with two bronze xx and a hand drawn love heart.
Maybe Next Time by Cesca Major

Title: Maybe Next Time

Author: Cesca Major

Publisher: Harper Collins

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

Release date: 30th March 2023


Even the greatest love stories end. But what if this one didn’t have to?
Emma is having the worst day of her life. Frustrating. Chaotic. And the only person who could
make it better is gone by the end of the day.
Yet even worse than all of that: Emma keeps waking up to the same day, over and over
But what if this is a sign things could be different? Can Emma change the heart-breaking
end to this love story?

Thoughts from the Emporium

When both Amber and Rosa read this, they agreed the frantic tone of the first few chapters where Emma is battling with all her responsibilities of being a book agent, mum and wife set the tone well and made them want things to calm for her. They felt their own heart race gallop as they tried to keep up – a sign a writer has the power to affect emotions instantly with words. What followed next with the groundhog day premise kept them hooked. 

Underneath the repetitive day where Emma tries to change the outcome is the romance between her and Dan revealed through the letters they write each other on their anniversary. They range from fun to heartbreaking with a punch of relatability. They catalogue ups and down in the relationship and provide the reader a key to how maybe Emma can right wrongs and maybe heal to influence events and lives. Engaging, Rosa and Amber couldn’t put it down. 

With romance at its heart blended with the impossible time bending events, Maybe Next Time would be a welcome addition to either Rosa’s Box of Romance or on the Enchanted Emporium’s Bookshelf. It’s an engaging, thought-provoking story of gratitude, deep love in a world that expects so much commitment beyond family and living. 

It made Rosa consider her own phone addiction and work life balance while not so secret writer Amber has vowed to never be an over reactive debut author.

Author Biography

Cesca Major
Cesca Major

Cesca Major is a novelist and screenwriter. She runs writing retreats and coaching throughout the year, is a mentor for Black Girl Writers and has taught creative writing for Jericho Writers and Henley School of Art. She blogs and vlogs about the writing process on her social channels.
Cesca has written under pseudonyms in other genres and has been nominated for both the RNA’s Romantic Comedy Award and the CWA Gold Dagger Award.
She lives in Berkshire with her husband, son and twin girls.

Social media

Twitter @CescaMajor



Book Review: The Purgatory Poisoning by Rebecca Rogers

Today, those at the emporium are thrilled to be on the blog tour for Rebecca Rogers’ The Purgatory Poisoning and thank you Random Thing Tours for the swift arrival of a copy to read so they could give their honest opinion.

With a striking cover and tagline, it promised to be a novel destined for the Enchanted Emporium’s bookshelf. Scroll down to see if it fulfilled its potential.

Book Review: The Purgatory Poisoning by Rebecca Rogers

Book cover for The Purgatory Poisoning by Rebecca Rogers. White background with red typeface. An illustration of a poison bottle with stopper with red liquid inside. A devil's tail is looped out of the letter O of poisoning. A silhouette of a man with a halo is standing next to it.
The Purgatory Poisoning by Rebecca Rogers

Title: The Purgatory Poisoning

Author: Rebecca Rogers

Publisher: Harper Collins

Genre: Comedy Fantasy

Release date: 2nd March 2023


How do you solve your own murder when you’re already dead?

Purgatory (noun):

  1. Where the dead are sent to atone.
  2. A place of suffering or torment.
  3. A youth hostel where the occupants play Scrabble and the mattresses are paper thin.

When Dave wakes up in his own personal purgatory (St Ives Youth Hostel circa 1992), he’s shocked
to discover he’s dead. And worse – he was murdered.
Heaven doesn’t know who did it so with the help of two rogue angels, Dave must uncover the
As divine forces from both sides start to play the game, can Dave get out of this alive? Or at the
very least, with his soul intact?

Thoughts from the Emporium

Full of humour, Dave’s story conjured up the emporium’s staff’s own memories of youth hostel holidays and childhood especially Willow and Rosa who remembered the 1990s. Setting purgatory in a Cornish youth hostel was inspired as were many of the memorable cast. An angel resembling Michael Palin added to the highly visual scenes which could easily be translated into a movie. Told in an unique voice, Dave and the crime solving angelic duo provided many chuckles and kept everyone turning the pages. They were rewarded with unexpected twists as Dave not only tries to solve his murder but avoid hell too.

With sibling rivalry, complicated a love life and unravelling family secrets, there are many suspects in this unusual murder mystery. Towards the end the busy, character heavy scenes required a reread to understand the mechanics of the murderer’s reveal but all in all, everything came together with a satisfying, clever conclusion.

This novel is an enjoyable fantastical escape with demons, angels and Dave. With its humour and air of supernatural, The Purgatory Poisoning is a welcome addition to the enchanted bookshelf to be recommended to others.

Author Biograpghy

Photo of Rebecca Rogers. Young white woman smiling. Has long brown wavy hair
Rebecca Rogers

Rebecca Rogers grew up in Birmingham on a diet of Blackadder and Monty Python. For a long time, she
thought Michael Palin was her uncle (he’s not). Now a civil servant by day and writer by night, she’s a proud mum to two grown-up boys and lives in the glorious south west of England.
The Purgatory Poisoning is her first novel and won the Comedy Women in Print Unpublished Prize 2021.