From Notting Hill with Love… Actually by Ali McNamara

Actually, Book 1

Synopsis: Scarlett loves the movies – they’re just so much more exciting and romantic than her own mundane life mending popcorn machines and living with her DIY obsessed fiancé David. So when everyone keeps telling her she needs to stop day-dreaming her life away in Johnny Depp & Brad Pitt’s arms, and settle down and get on with real life, Scarlett decides to prove them all wrong.

When she’s given the chance to house-sit in Notting Hill for a month, Scarlett thinks this will be her ideal opportunity to prove her family wrong about the movies. But she quickly finds the real Notting Hill is nothing like the celluloid version, and after she meets her new neighbour – the cool, confident, but movie-hating Sean, Scarlett starts to realise this challenge might be trickier than she first thought.

Every day Scarlett tries – usually unsuccessfully – to place herself in as many movie scenes as she can. But it’s when she’s least expecting it that she finds a link to one of her favourites…and it’s then that she discovers so much more than the fairytale ending she’s always dreamed of.

Review: I heard great things about this book, so when I saw that it was out in French, I told myself that it was an opportunity to see how it really was. And I admit that I was pleasantly surprised by the story and the heroine.

Scarlett is an unusual young woman. Indeed, the movies are more than a hobby for her, and she often loses herself in her mind to imagine surreal scenes. And therefore she escapes into a different world where her imagination allows her to create a new story. She is very happy like that, but this is unfortunately not the case for everyone such as her father and her fiancé David. In addition, the date of her wedding is approaching. This, added to the criticism of her companion about her obsession, Scarlett decides to take a short break away from the people she knows to show them that real life can also be seen as a movie. This little break will also bring her in the area of ​​ Notting Hill, one of her favorite story. She will meet fantastic people who will help her as much as they can, as a Sean who has a big influence on her life.

I loved this novel and all the references. Because, yes, of course, I knew all the quotes as I am a good follower of romantic comedies and it was a great pleasure to be able to replace everything. I must say that our heroine has without realizing it, a life worthy of a story like that the ones she loves. Yet her life is not easy, her mother disappeared when she was little and although she wants to find her, it all seems quite difficult. And her fiancé David does not seem to be the person with whom she could be really happy. I should also say that my feeling has completely changed about this character. I did not really enjoy him the beginning of the story, seeing he did not really try to accept the peculiarities of Scarlett. Yet while the story unfolds, we begin to understand him and see that he is serious about his love for our heroine. All this even to the point of letting have the space she needs. But when we meet Sean, we know immediately that our heart will swing for him. It is astonishing that our beloved heroine happens to resist him that much after all he did for her. But it is true that I had many doubts about him still, as Scarlett. I had a little trouble with some of his choices or his actions, but I’m really happy to see how the story was also carried out and concluded.

So it was a very nice story well done and it was a real pleasure to follow it. I would definitely recommend it if you want to read a nice story full of wonderful references associated with movies that we all know.



Notting Hill with Love… Actually de Ali McNamara

Actually, Tome 1

Résumé : Scarlett O’Brien rêve de faire de sa vie une de ces comédies romantiques qu’elle consomme sans modération. Un gardiennage en plein cœur du légendaire quartier de Notting Hill ? La possibilité de vivre dans le décor d’un de ses films préférés ? Voilà une proposition qui ne se refuse pas. Tournant le dos à ses amis, à sa famille et à son fiancé, Scarlett se rend à Londres pour devenir le personnage principal de son propre film… et ce n’est pas une mince affaire !

Avis : J’avais entendu beaucoup de bien de ce livre, aussi quand j’ai vu qu’il sortait en Français, je me suis dit que c’était l’occasion de voir ce qu’il donnait. Et j’avoue que j’ai été agréablement surprise par l’histoire et son héroïne.

Scarlett est une jeune femme atypique. En effet, le cinéma est pour elle plus qu’un hobby, et elle se perd souvent à s’imaginer des scènes surréalistes. S’évadant ainsi dans un monde différent où son imagination débordante lui permet de créer une nouvelle histoire. Elle est d’ailleurs très heureuse ainsi, mais ce n’est malheureusement pas le cas de tout le monde comme par exemple son père et son fiancé David. Par ailleurs, la date de son mariage se rapprochant, cela ajouté aux reproches de son compagnon quant à son obsession, Scarlett décide de faire une petite pause, loin des gens qu’elle connait pour leur prouver que la vie aussi peut être considérée comme un film. Ce petit break va d’ailleurs l’amener dans le quartier de coup de foudre à Notting Hill, un de ses films préférés. Elle rencontrera des personnes fantastiques qui l’aideront comme ils peuvent, tout comme un certain Sean qui aura une grosse influence sur sa vie.

J’ai adoré ce roman et j’ai beaucoup aimé toutes les références cinématographiques que l’on retrouve. Parce que, oui, bien sûr, je connaissais toutes les citations comme bonne adepte de comédies romantiques que je suis et c’était un grand plaisir de pouvoir les replacer. Il faut dire que notre héroïne possède sans se rendre compte elle-même une vie digne d’une histoire comme celles qu’elle affectionne particulièrement. Pourtant sa vie n’est pas non plus très simple, sa mère a disparu quand elle était petite et bien qu’elle veuille la retrouver, tout cela semble assez difficile. Et son fiancé David ne semble pas être la personne avec qui elle pourrait être vraiment heureuse. Je dois d’ailleurs dire que mon sentiment a complètement changé par rapport à ce personnage. Je ne l’ai pas vraiment apprécié au début de l’histoire, voyant qu’il ne faisait pas vraiment d’efforts pour accepter les particularités de Scarlett. Pourtant alors que l’histoire avance, on commence à le comprendre et voir qu’il tient réellement à notre héroïne. Tout cela même au point de lui laisser l’espace dont elle a besoin. Cependant quand nous rencontrons Sean, ce personnage auquel on s’attache assez vite, on sait tout de suite que notre cœur va balancer pour lui. Il est d’ailleurs étonnant que notre chère héroïne arrive à lui résister autant après tout ce qu’il fait pour elle. Mais il est vrai que j’ai eu de nombreux doutes tout de même, d’ailleurs les mêmes que ceux de Scarlett. J’ai eu un peu de mal à accepter certains de ses choix ou de ses actes, mais je suis vraiment contente de voir comment l’histoire s’était menée et aussi conclue.

C’était donc une très jolie histoire bien menée et j’ai pris un grand plaisir à la suivre. Je vous le conseille vraiment si vous voulez lire une jolie histoire pleine de merveilleuses références en rapport avec des films que nous connaissons tous.



Stacking the Shelves #25


Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews

 Mr. Real (Code Shadow, 1) – Carolyn Crane

He finds the girl of his dreams…with the secret agent of his nightmares.

Alix Gordon is a woman who doesn’t take life too seriously. What’s the fun in that? So when she stumbles across occult software that can bring any computer image to life, she conjures up lots of awesome outfits and accessories. And then, on one drunken, horny night, she conjures up Sir Kendall, the sexy TV ad spy . . . who looks exactly like Paul Reinhardt, the super-sexy martial arts teacher who kicked her out of class three years ago.

Fighter Paul Reinhardt has good reason to hate Sir Kendall, the character he brought to life to land a part in a TV ad; he’d do anything to forget him. A cross country road trip seems just the thing . . . until Paul finds himself inexplicably drawn to Minnesota and is shocked to discover Sir Kendall – in the flesh – with the girl he’d once loved from afar. He barges into Alix and Sir Kendall’s love nest, determined to stop the madness – somehow.

But is superspy Sir Kendall transforming into something more dangerous anyone can imagine? And what will Sir Kendall do when Paul and Alix finally give into their mad lust for each other?

 The Wish List (Time of Transition, 1) – Gabi Stevens

Kristin Montgomery is more than a little shocked when her aunts inform her they’re fairy godmothers. Worse, after dropping that bombshell they hand her a wand and head off on a world cruise. Now Kristin’s uncomplicated life as a CPA in San Diego has disappeared like magic and she not only has to deal with her burgeoning magical powers, but also a reluctant and distractingly sexy magical arbiter.

Tennyson Ritter is a historian. A scholar by choice, he is yanked from his studies to act as arbiter for the newly chosen fairy godmother. He doesn’t want to waste his time with a woman who doesn’t know anything about magic or the magical world, but soon the beguiling Kristin draws him away from his books and into her life.
But before Kristin can hone her skills and pass the tests necessary to fully claim her powers, she and Tennyson must work together to defend the world – both magical and human – against those that would claim her powers for their own.

 Les péchés du Démon (Kara Gillian, 4) – Diana Rowland

The homicide beat in Louisiana isn’t just terrifying, it’s demonic. Detective Kara Gilligan of the supernatural task force has the ability to summon demons to her aid, but she herself is pledged to serve a demonic lord. And now, people who’ve hurt Kara in the past are dropping dead for no apparent reason. To clear her name and save both the demon and human worlds, she’s in a race against the clock and in a battle for her life that just may take her to hell and back.

Les gens tombent comme des mouches autour de Kara. Les victimes ont un point commun : elles lui ont toutes fait du mal par le passé. La jeune femme cherche désespérément à comprendre le mobile des crimes pour éviter d’en être accusée. Lorsqu’elle découvre que la magie des arcanes et le royaume des démons sont impliqués dans ces décès, c’est la sécurité des deux mondes qui est mise à mal. L’enquête prend alors une toute nouvelle dimension.
Une course contre la montre qui pourrait bien mener Kara droit en enfer.

 Belladone (Nightshade, 1) – Michelle Rowen

Jillian Conrad never believed in vampires-until she was unwillingly injected with a serum that was supposed to act as a deadly poison to them. Now, tormented half-vampire Declan Reese wants her blood to destroy the undead kingdom. Unfortunately, the serum has also made her blood irresistible to all vampires-including Declan, whose desire for Jillian is more than mere hunger.

Pour Jillian Conrad, l’expression « être au mauvais endroit au mauvais moment » prend tout son sens. En effet, kidnappée par un assassin, elle se retrouve au beau milieu d’une guerre sans merci qui oppose les vampires à une organisation gouvernementale tentant de protéger l’humanité de ces monstres sanguinaires. Mais les apparences peuvent être trompeuses et son ravisseur, Declan, pourrait bien être son seul espoir.

 Larguée et Recyclée (Ex Trophy Wives, 1) – Dakota Cassidy

She was the perfect party-planning, haute-to-the max trophy wife. Now Maxine Cambridge is broke, unemployable and living with her mother and teenage son in a retirement village, with her self-esteem kicked to the curb.

Until her geeky former classmate Campbell Barker returns, all grown-up- and off-the-scale smokin’ hot. Campbell refuses to believe Max isn’t that smart, funny girl he’s crushed on since high school. The more Max tries to show him he’s wrong, the more she rediscovers her long-retired mojo. Now, she’s ready to throw down some payback on her ex-life and fight for what she deserves…

C’est la débâcle pour Maxine Cambridge : cette future-ex-femme au foyer richissime, toujours tirée à quatre épingles, doit retourner vivre chez sa mère avec son adolescent de fils. Impossible de dégoter un emploi : même le fast-food du coin ne veut pas d’elle. Réduite à ramasser des déjections canines pour se faire un peu d’argent, elle est au fond du gouffre…
Et si un petit coup de pouce du destin, en la personne de son ancien copain de classe, le magnifique Campbell Barker, était justement ce qu’il lui fallait pour remonter la pente ?

Blood Bath & Beyond (Immortality Bites Mysteries, 1) – Michelle Rowen

Sarah Dearly is adjusting to life as a fledgling vampire, satisfying her cravings at vampire-friendly blood banks. But when her fiancé Thierry takes a job with the Ring—the secret council in charge of keeping vampires in line—Sarah’s about to get more than a taste of danger…

Being engaged to a centuries-old master vampire can be challenging—especially when he takes a job with the Ring. Thierry’s in for fifty years of nonstop travel and deadly risk. It’s enough to make any woman reconsider the wedding…any woman except Sarah, that is.

Traveling to Las Vegas for his first assignment, they encounter a child beauty pageant contestant from hell, as well as a vampire serial killer leaving victims drained of blood, potentially exposing the existence of vampires to the whole world. But when Thierry’s truly ancient history comes back to haunt him, and he’s accused of a crime he didn’t commit, it’s up to Sarah to clear his name before their immortal lives come to an end. 

 Darklands (Deadtown, 4) – Nancy Holzner

They call it Deadtown: the city’s quarantined section for its inhuman and undead residents. Most humans stay far from its border—but Victory Vaughn, Boston’s only professional demon slayer, isn’t exactly human…

Boston’s demons have been disappearing, and Vicky’s clients are canceling left and right. While fewer demons might seem like a good thing, Vicky suspects foul play. A missing Celtic cauldron from Harvard’s Peabody museum leads her to an unwelcome conclusion: Pryce, her demi-demon cousin and bitter enemy, is trying to regain his full powers.

But Pryce isn’t alone. He’s conjured another, darker villain from Vicky’s past. To stop them from destroying everything she loves, she’ll have to face her own worst fear—in the realm of the dead itself.

Divergent (Divergent, 1) – Veronica Roth
In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles to determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes infuriating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers a growing conflict that threatens to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.

Debut author Veronica Roth bursts onto the literary scene with the first book in the Divergent series–dystopian thrillers filled with electrifying decisions, heartbreaking betrayals, stunning consequences, and unexpected romance.

Cinq destins. Un seul choix.

Tris vit dans un monde post-apocalyptique où la société est divisée en cinq factions. À 16 ans, elle doit choisir sa nouvelle appartenance pour le reste de sa vie. Cas rarissime, son test d’aptitudes n’est pas concluant. Elle est divergente, elle est en danger de mort ! 

 Iron Duke (Iron Seas, 1) – Meljean Brooks

After the Iron Duke freed England from Horde control, he instantly became a national hero. Now Rhys Trahaearn has built a merchant empire on the power-and fear-of his name. And when a dead body is dropped from an airship onto his doorstep, bringing Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth into his dangerous world, he intends to make her his next possession.

But when Mina uncovers the victim’s identity, she stumbles upon a conspiracy that threatens the lives of everyone in England. To save them, Mina and Rhys must race across zombie-infested wastelands and treacherous oceans-and Mina discovers the danger is not only to her countrymen, as she finds herself tempted to give up everything to the Iron Duke.

Angleterre, 1901. Les invasions de la Horde ont ruiné le pays. Nombreux sont ceux qui ont fui devant ce peuple barbare. D’autres restent et se battent. Comme Rhys Trahaearn, surnommé le duc de Fer, devenu un héros depuis qu’il a vaincu les forces ennemies. Alors que le pays se relève lentement, les ténèbres demeurent. Au côté de la sublime détective Mina Wentworth, le hors-la-loi enquête sur un meurtre des plus obscurs.

From Notting Hill with Love… Actually (Actually, 1) – Ali McNamara

Scarlett O’Brien is in love . . . with the movies. Utterly hooked on Hugh Grant, crazy about Richard Curtis, dying with lust for Johnny Depp, Scarlett spends her days with her head in the clouds and her nights with her hand in a huge tub of popcorn. Which is not exactly what her sensible, DIY-obsessed fiancé David has in mind for their future. So when Scarlett has the chance to house-sit an impossibly grand mansion in Notting Hill ? the setting of one of her all-time favourite movies ? she jumps at the chance to live out her film fantasies one last time. It’s just a shame that her new neighbour Sean is so irritating ? and so irritatingly handsome, too. As a chaotic comedy of her very own erupts around Scarlett, she begins to realise there’s more to life than seating plans and putting up shelves. What sort of happy ending does she really want? Will it be a case of Runaway Bride or Happily Ever After? The big white wedding looms, and Scarlett is running out of time to decide. 

 Moonshifted (Edie Spence, 2) – Cassie Alexander

After surviving a brutal vampire attack, Nurse Edie Spence is ready to get back to work—attending to supernatural creatures in need of medical help. But her nursing skills are put to the test when she witnesses a hit-and-run on her lunch break. The injured pedestrian is not only a werewolf, he’s the pack leader. And now Edie’s stuck in the middle of an all-out were-war…

With two rival packs fighting tooth and nail, Edie has no intention of crossing enemy lines. But when she meets her patient’s nephew—a tattooed werewolf named Lucas with a predatory gleam in his eye that’s hard to resist—Edie can’t help but choose sides. The question is: can she trust this dangerous new ally? And can she trust her own instincts when she’s near him? Either way, Edie can’t seem to pull away—even if getting involved makes her easy prey… 

 Sealed with the Curse (Weird Girls, 1) – Cecy Robson

Celia Wird and her three sisters are just like other 20-something girls—with one tiny exception: they’re products of a backfired curse that has given each of them unique powers that make them, well, weird…

The Wird sisters are content to avoid the local vampires, werebeasts, and witches of the Lake Tahoe region—until one of them blows up a vampire in self-defense. Everyone knows vampires aren’t aggressive, and killing one is punishable by death. But soon more bloodlust-fueled attacks occur, and the community wonders: are the vampires of Tahoe cursed with a plague?

Celia reluctantly agrees to help Misha, the handsome leader of an infected vampire family. But Aric, the head of the werewolf pack determined to destroy Misha’s family to keep the region safe, warns Celia to stay out of the fight. Caught between two hot alphas, Celia must find a way to please everyone, save everyone, and oh yeah, not lose her heart to the wrong guy—or die a miserable death. Because now that the evil behind the plague knows who Celia is, it’s coming for her and her sisters. This Wird girl has never had it so tough. 

 Tempting is Hell – Cathy Yardley

When the temp agency sent free spirit Kate O’Hara to Fiendish Enterprises, a ginormous, soul-sucking conglomerate, she didn’t realize just how appropriate the term soul-sucking would be. On the plus side, she does get to meet the sexy, devil-may-care playboy CEO, Thomas Kestrel. She’s just not sure if he’s a good guy or a bad guy or just a hot guy.
Thomas Kestrel has a problem. Nine years ago, he signed over his soul to save the woman he loved…only to realize he’d been set up. Now, to save himself from damnation, he must find and kill the thirteen key signatories who signed their souls over to the same man he did. Which would be a lot easier if the cute redhead he has nothing in common with wasn’t distributing Ho-Ho’s to the demons wading through soul contracts, creating a riot with talk of labor codes and unionization. He’d fire her if not for the fact that Kate’s irresistibly attractive—or that she’s created a program that makes finding signatories easier.
In fact, it’s so successful, she’s already found one.