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The Stolen Ones by Vanessa Curtis Book Review

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Her name is Inge. She is sixteen. She lives with her Mama and Papa in Munich. Food is still rationed, though the war ended over ten years ago. Her boyfriend is Jewish. She has to hide this from her parents. She thinks they are hiding something from her, too. Letters arrive every year on her birthday, but they are not addressed to her. They are for a girl named Kasia. This is Kasia's story. 

A historical and interesting young adult fiction based ten years after World War II ended. The Stolen Ones by Vanessa Curtis.

The Stolen Ones by Vanessa Curtis


This is now the fourth book I have read so far this year (which is a lot for me when by usual total is zero). The Stolen Ones wasn't the book I voted for in book club and I almost didn't join in. However I decided to take part last minute and I am glad I did. 

Inge is 16 years old. She lives in a nice home in a cul-de-sac with he Mama and Papa. She comes from a privileged home and although it is ten years post war in Munich when food is still hard to come by, they manage to get the best meat and the freshest of vegetables. Her life is a completely different to Wilf's. Wilf is her boyfriend. He lives in a small apartment with his Papa, Stefan. Money is tight, food is rationed although sometimes Inge feels more at home there and she does in her own home.  Wilf is Inge's secret. She does not think her Mama and Papa would approve. Wilf is a Jew. 

Inge seems to have everything she wants and needs except every night when she closes her eyes she has a nightmare. A nightmare she has had for years. Mama and Papa don't seem interested in her nightmares so Inge tries to forget about them until her nightmares start to reveal some truth about her past. 


Like I said earlier this isn't a book I would normally choose to read however the point of book club is to push you out of your comfort zone and encourage you to read genres you usually wouldn't. I really did like this though but it did take me the whole month to get through instead of just a few weeks like the previous months. 

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Michelle
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It Only Happens In The Movies by Holly Bourne Book Review

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Audrey isn't like the majority of her friends. Whilst they are gushing over boys, Audrey is over romance. Audrey had been brought up by two parents who were head over heals with each other until one day it was over. So whilst dealing with her parents divorce, a hurtful breakup of her own, and distancing herself from her friends she has every reason to feel cynical. To avoid being at home with her Mum who is clearly not over her Dad, Audrey starts a job at the local cinema. She meets Harry. Harry is her fellow coworker, brash, impulsive, and a major flirt. Audrey isn't interested and tries to resist, however she finds herself falling for his charms. 

In this funny, insightful, and ultimately empowering novel, love and life isn’t what it’s like in the movies. It Only Happens In The Movies by Holly Bourne.

It only happens in the movies book



My Book Review
This is the third book I've read since joining the monthly book club in May. It Only Happens In The Movies got the majority of the votes including mine. I am a sucker for a romance books however this really wasn't a romance book, but I loved it. 

The story tells a story about a teenage girl, Audrey who had been brought up by two parents who loved each other. Their proposal was epic in Rome similar to the movie Roman Holiday. Their daughter Audrey was actually named after the actress Audrey Hepburn. Audrey had no idea that one day her Dad would up and leave to be with another woman. He actually starts a new family. 

There is a lot of responsibility on Audrey to look after her Mum who doesn't take the situation very well. Audrey does have an older brother but he is away in college. I really felt for Audrey as she never seems to know what she will come home to so starts staying out later and later at her new job at the cinema. 

Audrey has had a failed relationship herself just recently so the idea of love isn't in her thoughts at all right now until she meets Harry. Harry is a charmer. Harry is funny, cute, says all the right things but has a reputation. I think we all knew this kind of boy in school. Some girls stayed clear and others fell for him, Audrey was a bit of both. 

I finished this book within a week or so, I couldn't put it down. I really enjoyed watching the relationship build between Audrey and Harry. There is something special about your first love and although it doesn't always ends the way you want it too it's one you will always remember.

Take a look at my other book club reviews


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Comments - I love reading your opinions and thoughts - Have you read any of Holly Bourne's books? Which ones?

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Michelle
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Beauty Sleep By Kathryn Evans Book Review

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Laura can't remember who she is. But the rest of the world knows. Because Laura is famous - a dying girl who was frozen until she could be cured. A real-life Sleeping Beauty. But what happens when you wake up one day and the world has moved on forty years? Could you build a new life - while solving the mystery of what happened to the old one?

A darkly twisted thriller plunging a pre-tech girl into a futuristic world. Beauty Sleep by Kathryn Evans

beauty sleep book


My Book Review
This is the second book I have read since joining my monthly book club in May. Beauty Sleep got the majority of votes including my vote as it appealed to me with the Sleeping Beauty reference. Whilst I can understand the reference the book wasn't what I imagined but I throughly enjoyed it all the same.


The book is split in to chapters and each chapter is headed with a name Laura or Shem. Each of these characters get their own chapters which tells the story from their own perspective. They are both on the same timeline and the characters intertwine at several points across the book. 

With regards to the characters, I found them very realistic however for me Shem and the relationship with his dog was so endearing. I don't own a pet myself but I know how attached you can become to a pet. Shem was besotted with his companion, they were best friends. 

The way Laura adapted to being woken up 40 years in the future was amazing. There were key moments in the story that I thought were written brilliantly. I felt like I was there, experiencing the emotions the characters were feeling at the time, especially Laura. Although she had no choice to adapt to her new life, the sense of loss Laura felt at points through the book were so real. It was lovely to reminisce with her through her memories of growing up in the 80's. Loving Duran Duran, reading Smash Hits magazines and covering her room walls full of posters of boybands. Laura had been torn away from all this as had her family, her friends, her home and her school. 

There is an uneasy feel throughout the book when you know something isn't quite right but you are not sure what. There were several times throughout the book when I thought I had an idea of what was going to happen and the outcome. Although I was very close there were a few twists that kept me still guessing right up until the last pages.  

beauty sleep book


Beauty Sleep had me intrigued from the first few pages and some of our other book club members read it over a weekend. They couldn't put it down. I was expecting a fairy tale type story but it wasn't. It's dark and mysterious and I would definitely recommend it especially if you enjoy thriller and suspense type books. 

The story ends well without the need for another second book although even at the end I still wanted to keep reading so would love to read other books by the author, Kathryn Evans. 


If you found this post useful there are a few ways that you could say thanks and support Playdays and Runways.

Comments - I love reading your opinions and thoughts - Have you read any of Kathryn Evans books? Which ones?

Growing my social media is something I work hard on. If you would like to follow us - Like us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

If you have found this post or our blog useful you can say thanks by - Buying Us A Virtual Coffee

If you think a friend of family member would like this post - Tap the share button below.

Michelle
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