Book Review: The Confession of Thomas Hawkins by Antonia Hodgson

My first thoughts on this book was that it looked like a really interesting read. I haven’t read that many historical crime fiction, but was totally absorbed and intrigued by the cover of this one. 
Book Description

Spring, 1728. A young, well-dressed man is dragged through the streets of London to the gallows at Tyburn. The crowds jeer and curse as he passes, calling him a murderer. He tries to remain calm. His name is Tom Hawkins and he is innocent. Somehow he has to prove it, before the rope squeezes the life out of him.



It is, of course, all his own fault. He was happy with Kitty Sparks. Life was good. He should never have told the most dangerous criminal in London that he was ‘bored and looking for adventure’. He should never have offered to help Henrietta Howard, the king’s mistress, in her desperate struggles with a brutal husband. And most of all, he should never have trusted the witty, calculating Queen Caroline. She has promised him a royal pardon if he holds his tongue but then again, there is nothing more silent than a hanged man.

Based loosely on actual events, Antonia Hodgson’s new novel is both a sequel to The Devil in the Marshalsea and a standalone historical mystery. From the gilded cage of the Court to the wicked freedoms of the slums, it reveals a world both seductive and deadly. And it continues the rake’s progress of Tom Hawkins – assuming he can find a way to survive the noose…
           

When I decided I wanted to read this novel, I didn’t realise that it was a sequel to The Devil in the Marshalsea, but anyway I decided to give it a go. I am really glad I did, and felt that it didn’t matter that I hadn’t read the previous novel. 
The setting of the novel is in the deep grotty slums of London in the 1700’s. The way the book is written gives you a great picture of this time with the corruption and violence that seems to be all around you. The main character Thomas is such a likable character, and I was rooting for him all the time as we try to discover who actually dunnit?
The one thing I enjoyed about the book was that it is actually loosely based on real events, this to me gives it a sense of reality and truth behind the story.
My overall thoughts is that you will be taken on a fabulous ride with this thriller through grimy London and be guessing all the way! I have enjoyed it very much and look forward to going back and reading The Devil in the Marshalsea.
I have given The Confession of Thomas Hawkins by Antonia Hodgson 4 out of 5 stars.
Hardback Edition
Published 4th June 2015 by Hodder & Stoughton
Rachel xx
Disclaimer I was given this hardback edition to read and review free of charge from Bookbridgr. All opinions and views expressed are my own.

#MySundayPhoto 12/07/2015

Well this is the last Canadian #MySundayPhoto in my series of photo’s, I hope you have enjoyed looking at them. 

The moment when we were on The Lady of the Mist boat heading close to Niagara Fall’s is a very hard to describe moment. It was scorching hot and wet and just took your breath away. 
Rachel xx
OneDad3Girls

Happy Chocolate Day!

Well I have just discovered that today is Chocolate Day! One of my new favourite days, I think. This is a picture of some gorgeous chocolate cupcakes that I made yesterday. I can’t wait to tuck into them! 
I have always been a huge chocolate lover ( which you can probably tell by now! ) My favourite chocolate bar is a dark chocolate Bounty, which are actually hard to come by here in Cornwall. The best chance of finding one is normally at petrol stations. 
I would love to hear about all your favourite chocolate bars, are you a milk or dark chocolate lover?
Rachel xx

Book Review: The Awakening by Stuart Meczes

I haven’t read a YA novel in a while and so when I saw this ebook of The Awakening by Stuart Meczes, I couldn’t wait to give it a go. I find YA books quick and easy to read with really great stories. This ebook is the first part of an urban fantasy series called The Hasea Chronicles. The second and third instalments are The Veil Corruption and Without A Heartbeat.

                 The Awakening by Stuart Meczes

Book Description

Alexander Eden is one unhappy teenager. A geeky, social pariah, he’s the victim of constant bullying at school. His home life isn’t much better with a stepfather who resents him and a half brother who is better than him at everything.

But that all changes the day the mysterious and beautiful Gabriella De Luca walks into his life. Everyone wants to know her, to be with her. But she is interested in Alex.
Because Alex is different.

Soon afterwards he is thrown into a world he never thought possible. A world where he and others like him are the last line of defence. A world where an ancient unspeakable evil lurks.
Evil which seeks to consume him.

DILECTI SURGEMUS – SOCII POLLEMUS
(Chosen we rise – Allied we prevail) 

The Awakening by Stuart Meczes
I have never read a fantasy series that has taken my breath away like The Awakening did with me. I have been totally hooked on this series, and as I write this I am halfway through the second instalment – The Veil Corruption. But I had to stop to write this review on The Awakening!
Stuart Meczes has created a brilliant concept of another world called Pandemonium which has endured an ‘endless war’ for centuries combining it with our world where a group called The Chosen protect our world from the evil that is trying to get across. 
The main character Alex Eden starts the story off by being a normal teenager that gets cruelly picked on at school and is subsequently a geeky loner. His life is the same everyday, trying to avoid getting picked on by the school bully. One day his life changes when a new student called Gabriella De Luca shows up in his class. From here on she helps him discover the real Alex and helps him through his ‘Awakening’. 
It is very rare for me to love absolutely everything about a book, but this is definitely one of them. It gives you the story of a journey for a young man, through love, loss and survival. 
I have given The Awakening by Stuart Meczes 5 out of 5 stars.
Rachel xx
Disclaimer: I was given this ebook to read and review free of charge. All views and opinions expressed are my own. Book cover image and book cover description taken from Tomoson.com.

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#MySundayPhoto 05/07/2015

Another photo from our Canadian Holiday archive. This week I bring you the greatest gem of them all – Niagara Falls.
Rachel xx
OneDad3Girls

Happy Canada Day!

5 years ago, my husband, sister and I were in Peterborough, Ontario celebrating Canada Day. It was an amazing experience to be involved with their celebrations. The whole town got together and put on various displays, with a carnival feel to it. The one thing that amazed me was that everywhere was closed! So absolutely everyone could get involved with the celebrations. This doesn’t really happen in this country, with most retail shops opening on Bank Holidays.
This blog post is for my sister, who lives in Canada – Happy Canada Day!
Rachel xx