Romance, Historical, Contemporary, Paranormal, Young Adult, Book reviews, industry news, and commentary from a reader's point of view

Daily Deals: British chick lit, Neil Gaiman, Downton Abbey books

The Single Girl’s To-Do List Lindsey Kelk  -The Single Girl’s To-Do List by Lindsey Kelk. $ 1.99

From the Jacket Copy:

A hilarious and romantic standalone novel from the bestselling author of the I Heart series
Rachel Summers loves a to-do list:
• Boyfriend
• Flat
• Great job
NOT on the list:
• Being dumped
Best friends Emelie and Matthew ride to her rescue with an entirely new kind of list – The Single Girl’s To-Do List. Rachel doesn’t know it, but it will take her on all kinds of wild adventures – and get her in some romantic pickles too. And then it won’t be a case of what but who she decides to tick off…
• Mr. bendy yoga instructor
• Mr. teenage sweetheart
• Mr. persistent ex
• Mr. deeply unsuitable

The Single Girl’s To-Do List gives Rachel the perfect heartbreak cure – and proves love is out there if you’re willing to take a chance

Reviews suggest that the start is slow but it picks up and you find yourself rooting for the heroine. It’s a British chick lit and those were my favorite (anyone remember Elizabeth Young?).

AmazonBNSony KoboBook DepositoryAREApple Google

41MoO2hCr-L._SX300_Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman. $ 2.99

From the Jacket Copy:

Richard Mayhew is a young man with a good heart and an ordinarylife, which is changed forever when he stops to help a girl he finds bleeding on a London sidewalk. His small act of kindness propels him into a world he never dreamed existed. There are people who fall through the cracks, and Richard has become one of them. And he must learn to survive in this city of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, murderers and angels, if he is ever to return to the London that he knew.

I’m not a huge Gaiman fan. I’ve only read Coraline and I thought it was interesting, creepy, and thoughtful but I’ve never been moved to read anything else by him.

AmazonBNSonyKoboBook DepositoryAREAppleGoogle

9780312658663_p0_v1_s260x420The American Heiress by Daisy Goodwin. $ 2.99 Google | Amazon

From the Jacket Copy:

“Anyone suffering Downton Abbey withdrawal symptoms (who isn’t?) will find an instant tonic in Daisy Goodwin’s The American Heiress. The story of Cora Cash, an American heiress in the 1890s who bags an English duke, this is a deliciously evocative first novel that lingers in the mind.” —Allison Pearson, New York Times bestselling author of I Don’t Know How She Does It and I Think I Love You

Be careful what you wish for. Traveling abroad with her mother at the turn of the twentieth century to seek a titled husband, beautiful, vivacious Cora Cash, whose family mansion in Newport dwarfs the Vanderbilts’, suddenly finds herself Duchess of Wareham, married to Ivo, the most eligible bachelor in England. Nothing is quite as it seems, however: Ivo is withdrawn and secretive, and the English social scene is full of traps and betrayals. Money, Cora soon learns, cannot buy everything, as she must decide what is truly worth the price in her life and her marriage.

Witty, moving, and brilliantly entertaining, Cora’s story marks the debut of a glorious storyteller who brings a fresh new spirit to the world of Edith Wharton and Henry James.

“Top-notch writing….will please fans of historical romance, including book club members.” –Library Journal (starred review)

AmazonBNSonyKoboBook DepositoryAREApple Google

9781416547815_p0_v1_s260x420Plain Truth by Jodi Picoult. $ 1.99 AMZN | Google Play.

From the Jacket Copy:

From the bestselling author of My Sister’s Keeper comes the riveting story of a murder that shatters the picturesque calm of Amish country — and tests the heart and soul of the lawyer defending the woman at the center of the storm.

The discovery of a dead infant in an Amish barn shakes Lancaster County to its core. But the police investigation leads to a more shocking disclosure: circumstantial evidence suggests that eighteen-year-old Katie Fisher, an unmarried Amish woman believed to be the newborn’s mother, took the child’s life. When Ellie Hathaway, a disillusioned big-city attorney, comes to Paradise, Pennsylvania, to defend Katie, two cultures collide — and for the first time in her high-profile career, Ellie faces a system of justice very different from her own. Delving deep inside the world of those who live “plain,” Ellie must find a way to reach Katie on her terms. And as she unravels a tangled murder case, Ellie also looks deep within — to confront her own fears and desires when a man from her past reenters her life.

I find Picoult novels very readable but also quite emotionally manipulative.

AmazonBNSonyKoboBook DepositoryAREApple Google

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She self publishes NA and contemporaries (and publishes with Berkley and Montlake) and spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com


  1. LauraB
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 14:37:31

    Read Gaiman’s “The Graveyard Book.” It’s wonderful.

  2. carmen webster buxton
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 14:43:56

    NEVERWHERE is my favorite Neil Gaiman! I thought it was a wonderful, imaginative story, much less grim than some of his other novels. CORALINE was creepy as hell, and much scarier, in spite of being marketed as a kids’ book (ages 8 and up? it would have given me nightmares at age 8!).

    How funny that the historical heroine has the same first name as the countess in Downton Abbey (Cora) and her duke has the same first name as the marquis in Georgette Heyer’s BATH TANGLE (Ivo). I wonder if that was on purpose?

  3. Tanya
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 14:48:33

    Neverwhere is my favorite Gaiman, too. Oh, and Stardust. But I must say: An American Heiress was a DNF for me. Just awful and stilted. YMMV. I’m picking up the Brit Chick Lit.

  4. hapax
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 15:33:05

    I do love Gaiman’s books, even though he sometimes strikes me as a bit too deliberately “clever”. NEVERWHERE is one of the best, although my favorite are the sweet, sad, overwhelmingly romantic fairy tale STARDUST and the wise and hilarious GOOD OMENS.

    STARDUST and NEVERWHERE, btw, are both available as Graphic Novels (the original format for STARDUST), as are many of Gaiman’s works; he started as a comic book writer, and it’s still the format best suited to his talents (imho)

  5. Susan/DC
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 16:49:43

    Liked Stardust (there’s a movie version) and Neverwhere, but my favorite Gaiman is American Gods. Complex and compelling, it’s a great book for those who loved (or still love) reading Greek and Roman mythology, but Gaiman’s mythology is far more expansive.

  6. Janine
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 17:53:49

    @Tanya: An American Heiress was a DNF for me too. I only read the opening chapter, but it turned me off.

  7. CD
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 18:22:12

    “he started as a comic book writer, and it’s still the format best suited to his talents (imho)”

    I so agree – I find that his novels seem to rehash the same ideas that he had in SANDMAN, but not with as much frenetic energy and creativity.

    That said, I do love NEVERWHERE.

  8. Rachel
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 19:04:31

    @Janine: I actually finished it, after much trying. It was totally meh.

  9. Kim W
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 21:59:56

    I’ve read Neverwhere twice. Maybe 3 times now that I think about it. Definitely twice on audio. The audio versions are really good.

  10. ML
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 22:32:49

    Neverwhere is a wonderful book, as is Stardust. Highly recommended.

  11. Regina W
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 22:57:22

    I loved Neverwhere and the audio book adds another dimension that drew me right into the London Underground. I’ve also read The American Heiress. Enjoyed that one too.

  12. Janine
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 01:05:07

    @Rachel: Good to know. It got some solid reviews in the print media, so I thought maybe I hadn’t given it enough of a chance.

  13. Kate Hewitt
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 03:59:58

    Oh, I loved Elisabeth Young so much. Read her books ages ago but have never forgotten them.

  14. Marianne McA
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 06:50:27

    My favourite Gaiman is The Ocean at the End of the Lane. I’d read anything he wrote, because I love his writing – I once bought an anthology in hardback because he’d a short story in it – but they aren’t books I’m fond of. ‘Ocean’ is perhaps the first I properly loved.

  15. pooks
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 12:30:14

    I’m not a huge Gaiman fan, but the audiobook of Anansi Boys is one of my favorite audiobooks ever. I don’t know how much of that is Lenny Henry, and how much is Gaiman. I suspect Henry has a lot to do with it, since I rarely see the book mentioned as a favorite from Gaiman fans.

  16. Coribo25
    Jul 01, 2014 @ 12:54:59

    Neverwhere was serialised by the BBC back in 1996. It’s available on DVD.

%d bloggers like this: