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Rachael's Rants

The ramblings of author Rachael Richey

Cover Reveal and Publication Date!

I’m very excited to reveal the cover of my new book, The Girl in the Painting!  This is the fourth book in the NightHawk Series, featuring Abi Thomson and Gideon Hawk, and this time the story takes us to Paris.

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When Abi finds an old painting of an unknown girl in her father’s attic, the subsequent events lead to the uncovering of a startling love story.

At the same time, whilst in America, Gideon gets himself into an awkward situation that threatens his relationship with Abi.

The book is due for publication on Friday 29th July, and is already available for pre-order from Amazon.

Order from Amazon UK

Order from Amazon US

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School Prom

My husband and I went to our first ever school prom last week.  When we were at school it wasn’t really the norm for English schools to have a prom, it was still much more of an American or Australian thing.  I remember being very jealous of my Australian penfriend when she sent me pictures of her prom.  All we got were a few dismal discos and the odd barn dance.  Not really very inspiring!

So when our sixteen year old son’s school had their prom and invited the parents – I know, I thought it was weird too – we went along.

The kids had had their leavers’ assembly at 8.30 in the morning, so as to give the girls all day to get ready for this momentous event.  My son, on the other hand, spent the rest of the day playing a Spiderman game on the Xbox, then fifteen minutes getting ready.  And that included shaving.  But he still managed to look very nice.  🙂

Here he is trying to look like The Rock, although I think maybe James Bond is more apt!

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I, on the other hand spent a good part of the day worrying about what to wear, painting my fingernails and toenails to match, practising walking in my killer heels….. you know the sort of thing!  Eventually I decided on an outfit which included a hurriedly borrowed top from my daughter, straightened my newly dyed hair into some semblance of order and chivvied my husband into his suit.  He looked pretty good too 🙂  There are no pictures of us though, which is a bit of shame actually, we made a good couple.

So then off we went to the prom.  Ben had had to go earlier to have photos taken with his whole class so we met him there.  It was being held in a restaurant, and the kids were given a room upstairs to themselves, and all the oldies were downstairs.  I have to say it wasn’t really what I was expecting as a prom.  I had visions of Back to the Future or Pretty in Pink in my head, so a fairly sedate dinner with lots of other parents and teachers was a bit different…. but what the hell?  It was a Prom.  Everyone enjoyed it and the food was excellent.  The kids had a great time, got to party and say goodbye to each other – not that they won’t all be meeting up in the holiday anyway – and Dave and I finally got to go to a school prom!

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Book Review – Don’t You Forget About Me by Liz Tipping

An athlete, a princess, a brain, a criminal, a basket case…Cara Dunham is definitely one of them. But stuck in her small hometown, with no prospects of escape, she’s struggling to find her thing. Her life is more book club than Breakfast Club and there is no Judd Nelson in sight!
So when Cara is invited to a school reunion she knows this is her chance to channel her inner Molly Ringwald and grab her John Hughes moment, once and for all. Because her teenage love, Daniel Rose will be there, the coolest boy at school and the one that got away.
But transforming into an 80’s icon isn’t easy and Cara enlists the help of her oldest friend, Stubbs, to teach her all she needs to know about being cool and quirky – a la Ringwald.
Except Stubbs thinks she’s perfect, just as she is and takes it upon himself to show Cara that her life might not be ‘movie perfect’, but there is always another take to get things right. And maybe the hero she’s dreamed of has been under her nose the whole time…
Well the blurb certainly makes it sound attractive…..

My Review:

Don’t You Forget About Me is Liz Tipping’s second novel, and having thoroughly enjoyed her first, Five Go Glamping, I was naturally very excited to read this one.

I wasn’t disappointed.  In fact I can honestly say I loved this book.  It kept me reading right into the night – under the covers with a torch, like a naughty child – because I couldn’t bear to put it down.

The main character, Cara, is so easy to identify with and I love that in a heroine.  She is a totally normal girl, unsettled in her job, wanting more but not knowing exactly what.  Except she would like to be like Molly Ringwald.  Obsessed with John Hughes movies, and with Molly Ringwald in particular, Cara spends a lot of her time trying to work out which movie character she was like, or should aspire to be like.

When she gets invited to a school reunion she enlists the help of her old school friend Stubbs, with her quest, at the same time failing to see that he likes her the way she is.  (I have to admit to developing a little bit of a crush on Stubbs…..)

I loved Cara, completely understood her self-doubt that had gestated since her school days, yet also got extremely exasperated with her on occasions, actually finding myself shouting at the book once or twice!  I got totally caught up in the story and desperately hoped the outcome would be satisfactory.

But I’m not going to tell you whether it was or not since I don’t want to give too much away, but suffice to say this is a very enjoyable read, perfect for the beach, or to curl up with on a cosy afternoon. Or to read under the covers with a torch of course….

I award it a very well deserved 5 Stars.

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You can get your copy from Amazon and all you need to do is click here and it will take you straight there.  Enjoy it, I did.

My wedding cake challenge!

Over the past year I’ve bored everyone on Facebook senseless with pictures of my weekend baking antics…. here’s today’s offering by the way….
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…..when I realised that I don’t think I’ve ever actually shared my most impressive culinary feat of 2015.

My daughter’s wedding cake.  I offered to make it for her in a moment of madness and rather worryingly she seemed to be delighted.  So that was it, I was stuck with making a whole wedding cake for a real wedding.  With a real bride and groom and real guests.  Who were going to see it.  And even worse, going to eat it.   Actually not sure which was the most daunting prospect;  the eating or the looking at and judging!

So, I took a deep breath and got on with it.  I’d had an idea of what I thought it should look like right from the start, and luckily that seemed to coincide roughly with what Francesca wanted, so we were off to a good start!

After a lot of panicking and looking at pictures, I finally plucked up the courage to make a practice cake.  I guess I should point out here that although I am a pretty accomplished chocolate cake maker, this was almost my first time making a fruit cake.  So no pressure there then!  Luckily the practice cake turned out okay, and I even managed to ice it with nice smooth icing.  We tested it out on my son’s birthday and it got the thumbs up from the happy couple, so I took another deep breath, and over the course of a few early mornings, made the three layers.
I had bought a book on icing cakes and discovered there’s a whole lot more to it than just piling them up and spreading the icing on.  You have to push poles through to stop the cakes sinking into each other, and all sorts of complicated things.  E-bay came in very handy at this time!

Anyway, to cut a long story short (bit late for that I hear you say), I managed it, and was actually rather pleased with the finished result.  As were the bride and groom.  Phew!  😀    So here it is.

Wedding cake

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