Friday, 28 November 2014

Peter Rabbit Club Books | REVIEW & GIVEAWAY

Peter Rabbit has came back to life on CBeebies. Peter Rabbit, Benjamin Bunny and Lily Bobtail are now gracing our screens on a Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday on CBeebies. To go along with the programme Puffin have a fantastic range of story, sticker and board books to bring the world famous rabbit and his friends to a new generation. Along side the books is a monthly magazine and a range of toys.

Puffin very kindly gave us three different books from their new range.

The first one in our pack was Happy Christmas
'Late on Christmas Eve Peter, Benjamin and Lily set off on a clip slidey Christmas adventure!'
This is a hard back cardboard book which is ideal for babies like Logan who like to be read to but think the book is also for eating. Christmas is fast approaching and I am getting more excited by the day, so right now I am loving anything Christmasy. I really like the illustrations in this book, the drawings are really colourful. The story is a nice, feel-good Christmas story.

The second is The Peter Rabbit Club
'Peter, Benjamin and Lily want to start a club. But can they escape from Mr Tod's own beastly band?
Logan is still too small for books like this but I think he will love it when he is a little older. Its a paperback book with a much longer story. It has a few interactive pages at the back to teach little ones how to build their own tree house. Again, it has really bright and colourful pages. And perfect for little ones who are starting to enjoy books with more of a storyline.

The final book is the Secret Treehouse Stickerbook
It looks so much fun that i'm kind of tempted to complete it myself. But I think I will hold off and leave it for Logan when he's a bit older. this activity book is jam packed full of different things for little ones to do. There are different puzzles, colouring-in pictures and activities throughout this book that I think any little one will love, or any larger one if you want to help out!

I think this range of Puffin books are a great addition to the CBeebies programme, but even if your little one isn't a fan of the television show they still make great books on their own. An ideal Christmas present for any little reader. You can sign up to the Peter Rabbit Club Newsletter here to be the the first to hear about exciting Peter Rabbit news, and to find out about fun, games, crafts and activities to enjoy with your little ones.

If you would like to be in with your chance to win these three fantastic books then fill in the form below. The competition will run for 7 days and finish on the 6th of December. The winner will be announced within 24 hours on the 7th of December by email. If they do not respond within 48 hours then another winner will be picked. Good Luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

*book supplied for the purpose of this review

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Storage Solutions

*As any first time mother will tell you: baby's come with a lot of stuff. And it's not just small little dinky-sized baby stuff like teddies and baby grows. It's mammoth big things like cots and prams and baby baths and jumperoos. Then there is all the things that aren't really baby related but they still seem to multiply. Towels, I seem to have 10 more towels than I did before baby arrived, when infact I have the same amount.

So anyway, the one thing that I love is storage. I don't mind clutter, as long as its hidden away in a cupboard or drawer. So I thought I would show you some different storage solutions to help keep your home in order while there is a small person trying their hardest to mess it up again.

1. 3 Seagrass Storage Baskets | Argos
I love these baskets! They are so useful for chucking in those little bits and pieces that don't quite have a real home. You can stack like I have in the picture, but usually we have them hiding out of the way under our side tables or coffee table. We have everything from XBox & Playstation controllers to junk mail and cat toys stored in ours we even have drumsticks and a drum pad in one (see what I mean about things that don't really have a home?!). You can pick them up in loads of different places but we got these for £9.99, in my 'go to' shop, Argos.

2. Canvas Boys Drawer Tower | Argos
 This storage is ideal for a little boys room. It is also available with Pink, Purple and Green drawers for a little girls room and they are only £21.99 from Argos. I'm not sure if these are exclusive to Argos but I couldn't seem to see them anywhere else online. At the moment we have dribble bibs, old baby grows that I can't bare to through out and toys in our drawers. The drawers are nice and deep so they fit a lot in. They are also super simple to build, even though I am a DIY master, I had them built in under 10 minutes.

3. Natural Table Set of 3 Storage Boxes | Laura Ashley
Sadly I don't own these boxes but I really wish I did. They are beautiful! Though I think pretty much everything from Laura Ashley is beautiful (don't get me started on their Christmas stuff). They would look gorgeous sitting in the corner of my living room, they would look so fancy that no one need know they were filled full of crap! On sale these boxes are only £26, not bad for LA!

4. Pair of Underbed Storage Boxes | ArgosThese were essential for us when Logan was born because of all the clothes we were given. A lot of the gifts were in bigger sizes and as his wardrobe wasn't big enough to hold all the extra clothes , I had nowhere to keep them. So I made a quick trip to... yip you guessed it, Argos! And picked these up for only £14.99 for the pair. Now that he's made his way through most of those clothes, I keep his bed covers and towels in them. If blue isn't for you can also get them in pink and white.

5.Racking Systems |
One thing I would love, but don't have living in a flat, is a garage. I would love to have a room that wasn't actually in my house that was solely dedicated to storage. Something like this racking from
Warehouse Storage Solution LTD would be ideal. It has adjustable shelves so you would be able to house... anything! I could make lists and make labels and I could get so carried away! It is strong and sturdy and would be able to hold mostly everything.

Just a few ideas of some storage solutions you could use around your house and garage.

Saturday, 22 November 2014

REVIEW Cosatto Zoomi Zowee

When choosing something as important as a car seat there are a lot of things to consider: safety, reliability, price, comfort and more. So when it came to shopping for Logan's next car seat we went with the Cosatto Zoomi.

The Zoomi is a Group 1-2-3 car seat which means it will do him from 9kg to 36kg which is roughly 9 months to 12 years. We decided to go for a group 1-2-3 so it will last him longer. You can remove the padding, the harness, the head rest then the back to convert it into a booster seat. From a financial point of view it made more sense to get one that will last him as long as possible because car seats don't come cheap!

Cosatto is a well known and trusted brand so I knew they would be great from a safety point of view. Because the car seat no longer uses the ISOfix base I wanted a car seat with a 5 point harness for extra safety. I fell in love with the designs of the Zoomi, they come in 9 different quirky designs so there's something to suit everyone. We went for the Zowee with its lightning bolt design, however I think this design was coming to the end of its run because its now no longer available on the Cosatto website. I'm glad we got it just in time!

Something we always do is shop around to find the best price, so after a quick search online we came across a website we had never seen or used before but a company we will definitely use again Lesters Nursery World. We initially bought the seat from here because of the price but we wouldn't hesitate to buy from them in the future, the service was second to none! We ordered the car seat on the Thursday morning and it arrived the very next day! We received an email to say delivery would be between 12 and 1pm and at 12 o'clock on the dot it appeared. When the delivery is free on all orders over £50 you don't really get better than that!

Doesn't he look super chuffed to be trying out his new car seat? Even if it is just in the house! We've now got it in the car and it seems to be a huge success! He's much comfier now than he was in his first seat.

Thursday, 20 November 2014

When Do I Stop?

I always said I would try breastfeeding. When I was pregnant I wasn't determined to breastfeed but it was something I said I would try and if it worked then great, if not then it wasn't the end of the world. However it worked for us and it worked well... Until now.

I will be going back to work mid January and I'm starting to consider that breastfeeding will no longer work for us. Some babies when they are on 3 meals a day naturally begin dropping feeds, Logan is not one of these babies. He can go 3-4 hours between feeds but he hasn't dropped any of his feeds yet and I don't see it happening any time soon. 

Going back to work will include early starts for me, which means I'll leave for work before Logan wakes up and there will be days that I won't be back till after he goes to bed (this one doesn't sit well with me) but both means I won't be consistently available to do is first or last feeds.

I tried expressing when I first left the hospital but I never seemed able to produce what I needed. If I expressed first thing in the morning I'd be able to get up to 2 ounces but any other time I would struggle to get even 1oz. Logan gets 1 bottle of formula in the evening and he can usually finish a 6oz bottle. This mean I'd need to pump every morning at 6am for 3 days just to get enough for one feed. It would take me 2 weeks to get enough for one day! It's just not practical. 

However the biggest crux is: he can't fall asleep on his own. Every night and at his morning nap he is fed to sleep and it's like waging a war to get him to fall asleep any other way because he doesn't know how to (which is totally our fault but we'll not get into that just now) He either needs rocked to sleep (even then that's not a sure fire way to get him to sleep and it can take forever) he can fall asleep in his pram (it can sometimes take him 4 seconds to fall asleep, sometimes it takes 40 minutes) but neither of these are practical ways to get him to sleep. I know the 'easy' answer is to train him to self soothe and fall asleep on his own but I know for as long as I breastfeed him that won't happen. 

So what do I do? For many reasons I don't want to stop breastfeeding,mainly: I enjoy it! Its that little bit of time that I know I can spend just me and my boy. It's cheap and easy, I don't need to worry about washing and sterilizing bottles or the expense of formula. Its there, ready to go and its free. Moreover I feel a bit guilty. Some mum's struggle with breastfeeding so much that they have to stop and here's me contemplating giving it up early but I don't see that I have many other options.

Do you have any suggestions? What did you so when you started back work? i'd love to hear.

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

REVIEW PicStick Photo Magnets

Before I had a baby I was not a photo person. I didn't take a lot of pictures and I didn't have a lot of pictures on show in my house. Then I had a baby and that all changed! My phone is never away because I am constantly snapping away taking pictures of Logan and now I want to display them everywhere! So when I got the opportunity to try out some photo magnets, I jumped at the chance.

PicStick are an online company that create photo magnets from you cherished pictures. You can upload to their from your phone, computer, tablet or Facebook and they will great high quality and durable magnets. Each sheet of 9 magnets cost £9.50/$14.99 and postage is free! They aim to post your order within one working day of placing your order. I ordered my magnets on the 7th of November but they weren't posted until the 10th and I received them on the 11th. So it was a little longer than one working day but I wont complain too much when the postage is free.

 I'm really pleased with the outcome. They are good quality and very robust so they will last a long time. The website claims that you can rip/pull them apart at the perforations and although the pictures themselves were not attached to each other they magnets were and weren't noticeably perforated so I had to cut them with scissors, which was easy enough to do.

The picture quality is decent. Obviously the better quality picture you use the better the magnet will be. You can see from the picture above the slight difference in quality, the original of the picture on the right is darker therefor the quality of the magnet is a bit less but on the whole I think the quality is good for the size of them.

The wonderful people over at PicStick have given me a unique code for you guys to get 25% percent off your order. Use the code: SOCKS25 and you can get your sheet for only £7.13! They are superb to bring a bit of life to a boring fridge door. They make the perfect Christmas gift, I gave a couple to my mum and mother-in-law and they love them!

Sunday, 16 November 2014

REVIEW & GIVEAWAY | The First Hippo on the Moon by David Walliams

Reading is a fundamental part of a child's development and it is something I'm passionate about doing with Logan. From as early as I can remember I loved visiting the local library with my mum, spending forever trawling through all the books to find the ones that I wanted to read. My parents would read to my brother and I and I loved it as a child and I love reading as an adult.

From a very early age children enjoy being read to. They enjoy looking at colourful pictures, listening to the sound of your voice and identifying characters on the page. That's why, when I was given the chance to review The First Hippo on the Moon by David Walliams I was delighted.

The story is based around 2 Hippos that want to be the first hippo on the moon. I would say it's probably more directed towards young boys as there is lots of talk about bums and farts! Though it can be enjoyed by girls just the same. Although, in our early stage of reading, I haven't read many children's books in a while, I think the story line is relatively thought provoking for a child's book which I really enjoyed.
I liked the fact the speech was all in speech bubbles and wasn't just included in the rest of the text. I think it makes it easier for the child to identify who is speaking and can allow you to give certain characters certain voices and accents. 
The illustrations are great, they remind me slightly of Roald Dahl in their edginess. The illustrator, Tony Ross, has used a lot of colour and nice bold colours that make it interesting even for someone as young as Logan.
A great read for that can really be enjoyed by children from 2 upwards 

The lovely people at HarperCollins Children's Books have given me the chance to giveaway a copy of The First Hippo on the Moon. If you would like to win then please fill out the form below. There are a few ways to gain some extra entries. The give away will run for 7 days and end on the 23rd November at 12AM GMT. I will contact the winner via email within 24 hours of the competition ending. If you don't respond within 48 hours, another winner will be chosen. Best of luck! 

Friday, 14 November 2014

Breastfeeding After a C-Section

Breastfeeding after a C-Section might be a bit more difficult for a few reasons. I have only given birth via C-Section before so I can't compare pain or problems faced but I can give you a few tips on common problems faced after a C-Section and how to overcome them so you are not discouraged when it comes to breastfeeding, there's always a way!

I'm not very mobile after birth:

When you have a C-Section you are given either a spinal or an epidural for the surgery. This leaves half of your body out of commission. It can take up to 5 hours for the feeling to come back into your legs after a spinal so lifting your baby, even getting to your baby is pretty difficult. This is where your other half comes in. Make him do all the heavy lifting, let him help you position the baby properly and comfortably.

My milk is taking longer to come in:
In most circumstances a C-Section is performed before your due date. In my case we opted for c-section because of a failed induction. I was to be induced because of the size of my baby, at 10lb 12 you can kind of see why. I had my section 10 days before my due date. Because you are forcing your body through a process it might not be ready for your body can some times take a little longer to catch up. Milk usually takes around 4 days to come in but can take 5 days after a c-section. Because of the little delay, Logan became quite dehydrated so I began pumping while still in the hospital to try and help the supply, at the same time we also made the decision to top his feeds up with formula. We only had to do this twice and at the time I HATED it, I fought back the tears as the midwife gave him the first bottle. I felt like such a failure that my body wasn't producing enough milk for him. However looking back on it, I think I was silly for getting so upset. What is a little formula in the grand scheme of things? It didn't hinder our breastfeeding journey in the slightest.

My incision is causing me a bit of pain:
The slight pain in my incision coupled with the weight of my baby made the conventional cradle position a little difficult. Luckily the midwife in our ward on the first night in hospital was fantastic. She spent loads of time with us trying to find the right position. We tried the rugby ball position, cross-craddle position then eventually we realised lying down was easiest for both of us and that's the way we've continued doing it for the last 7 months!

Did you have any problems with breastfeeding that you had to overcome?

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Dressing a Baby Boy

I've never made a conscious decision about what to dress my little boy in. When we began buying baby clothes Gavin and I just bought what we liked. We didn't discuss dressing him in only baby grows for the first 3 months nor did we decide to stick him in jeans and tshirts from birth. However I've heard many a discussion around this with many women promoting keeping their babies in babygrow's/onesies for as long as possible. 

Now I totally agree that they're not babies for long but why should that dictate what we dress them in? I love a good baby grow. So much so I have a favourite babygrow that Logan has had in 0-3 months, 3-6, 6-9 and I'm about to buy again in 9-12 months! If that's all someone wants to dress their little boy in for the first 6 months of their life then that's great but that might not be for everyone. I love dressing Logan like a little grandpa sometimes. Just the same as I love him kicking about in a babygrow. We shouldn't be frowned upon for what we chose to dress our children in.

Each to their own I say. Do you have a preference? 

Monday, 10 November 2014

7 Month Update

I wont say that same thing that everyone says at the beginning of updates, but you know I'm thinking it ;)

He is 8.6kg which is 18lbs 15oz. He was 4.4kg when he was born so he is very nearly almost double his birth weight! We are hoping to get him in his new car seat very soon because he absolutely hates his baby seat now. Hopefully he can put 0.4kg on super quick.

He is coming on really well with his food. He's starting to eat more 'real' food, favorites being toast & butter and cucumber.

His routine is becoming more predictable. He wakes up at 7, even if he wakes a little before 7 I will leave him in his cot till then. He has his first feed then we come through to the living room and he plays for a while till I have my breakfast. Then I fix his porridge around 8. Between 9:30 and 10 he will have his second feed and go for a nap. He will sleep for at least and hour here, if were lucky then its 2. Once he gets up he has another feed then his lunch. Depending on what were doing for the day, we will get ready and go out or stay in and play. Dinner is around 4:30 depending on when he is hungry. He will have his formula feed from his daddy at 18:30 then I feed him to sleep at 19:30.

Sleep has been a bit all over the place recently. He has been waking up usually at 10 then again at 11 for no obvious reason, he wakes up crying but the minute he gets lifted out his cot he stops and goes straight back to sleep. Usually he doesn't even fully wake up. Usually that's him until 7am then other times he will wake again at 1 or 2, usually again he will go straight back to sleep unless he wakes screaming blue murder because his gums are sore, in which case I'll give him some calpol and feed him back to sleep.

He is still in 6-9 months. Maybe another month and he will be going up a size. I have been looking at clothes for ages so Iv'e got his next wardrobe all planned!

Being around me, He can get quite upset when he can't see me. He is happy to play away on his own as long as he can see or at the very least hear me. The minute he thinks I've vanished all hell breaks loose.

Brocolli, takes after his mummy :)

I am so proud to say he can finally sit up. I thought it would never come and I was stupidly starting to get a bit disheartened about it and then all of a sudden one day I sat him down and he didnt immediately topple over. He hasn't mastered it completely, he will only last a few minutes before falling over, but he is getting better day by day. Crawling won't be far of either I hope. He could never master both getting up on his arms and knees at the same time, but now he can and he will bounce back and forth and push himself backwards.

Saturday, 8 November 2014

What To Do With A 6 Month Old Baby

As Logan started to get more mobile and more aware of everything I started to worry I wouldn't have/know enough to keep him amused all day but I slowly realised the things I do on a day to day basis are what keep him amused. I don't need fancy toys and day trips to keep him happy. I just need me and a few odd things I can find round the house. Here are my top tips for keeping a 6 month old baby amused all day:

1. Talk
Just talking to him keeps him amused. Whether I'm telling him a story or simply talking nonsense he loves it. I usually just babble away and tell him what I'm doing as I do it. 'Picking up the glasses to put them in the kitchen cause we both know daddy won't do it' he'll end up babbling back to me and we can have a right wee conversation going.

2. Singing
I'll be the first to admit: I can't sing. I might love to sing but I'm tuneless. However that doesn't matter to Logan. Doesn't matter if it's just random noises, a nursery rhyme or the jingle to an advert that I can't get out my head, if I'm singing he's happy.

3. Bouncing 
Logan loves to be mobile and bouncing him up and down on my knees is great for keeping him smiling. 

4. Banging
I can give him a wooden spoon and sit him on the wooden floor and as long as I can stand the noise is as long as he'll be amused for. He's going to take after his daddy and be a drummer!

5. Cover his eyes
I suppose it's just a form of peek-a-boo. If I take his sock off his foot and place it over his eyes I love to watch his eyes light up as he manages to pull it off himself and he realises I'm still there! 

6. Playing in the mirror
I've yet to see a baby that doesn't like looking at themselves in the mirror. I can hold Logan in front of the mirror and he'll look at himself for ages! I don't blame him, he is a handsome chap.

7. Dancing
If I sit on the floor and stand him between my legs and hold his hand up in the air he immediately sticks his bum out to keep balance, I'll then wiggle his arms about so he wiggles his bum about and he finds it hilarious.

8. Reading
Books don't feature in Logan's bed time routine, because he is breastfed I always feed him to sleep and there's no real time for books so I try and read to him during the day. You don't need to have a big selection of books. Some simple sturdy wooden books for them to chew, with big bold pictures are great. They'll enjoy seeing the same images over and over again. Logan loves any story read in a funny voice.

Do you have any other cheap and easy ways to keep your little one amused?

Thursday, 6 November 2014

Our First Baby Group Experience

I'm not one for making friends. I usually feel rather awkward in social circumstances. I'm fine when I'm with my friends and people I'm comfortable around but I care too much about what people think of me, therefor when I'm in around people I'm not comfortable with I begin to overthink what I'm going to say which means I usually don't say much.

We spent a lot of Logan's first few months at home. Up until he was 5/6 months old he was being fed every 2 hours, very tiring for me but it also didn't leave a lot of time for other activities. Eventually I got pretty lonely. On facebook I would see other mums going to classes and going out trips with other mums and their kids and I felt like I was missing out. Don't get me wrong, I have friends, who I see often but they don't have kids and work full-time so I didn't have many people to socialise with during the week.

Once Logan started on solid foods he was going a little longer between feeds so I started looking into classes in our local area. I quickly realised that there wasn't really an easy way to find all your local groups, I'd seen women online saying their Health Visitor had given them a list of local groups and classes, I wish my health visitor had told me this! I used websites like & but I found most of the information pretty outdated. Eventually, thanks to Facebook, I found a locally run Baby & Toddler group, just 5 minutes down the road.

I was pretty nervous about going but for Logan's sake I bit the bullet and off we trotted. The first week was a bet nerve wracking. Its not a very large group, there's only 7-8 other mothers and their children but I still didn't enjoy it much. It felt like the other mothers all knew each other and although they were all friendly enough they all seemed really comfortable with each other so I felt a bit like the odd one out. It was a bit of a test for Logan because I knew he would start to get tired and hungry and that usually equals a complete meltdown, but as all the other kids had their snack Logan fell asleep on me. Usually unheard of! The next 3 weeks however were not as successful. Although I did realise not all the mums were as close friends as I first thought, Logan would last about 45 minutes before losing his shit. He has started napping quite consistently around 9/10, the group runs from 9:30 - 11:30. I even left early one week because he was just inconsolable with rage because he was so tired and no matter how hard I tried he would not fall asleep on me. We've been going for about 6 weeks now and I can finally say yesterday was a lot easier. He had a quick nap before we left and although he started getting tired around 11am he didn't completely lose the plot.

Wrapped up warm for his walk to toddlers
Although you cant see it, I promise he's dressed like a pumpkin

I'm really glad that I persevered with it because after week 3 I was ready to quit. I just need to remember that its more for Logan's benefit than mine. I want him to get used to being around other kids and be more comfortable around different people.

Did you have any similar experiences when going to new groups?

Tuesday, 4 November 2014

What To Look For In A Changing Bag

Changing bags are expensive. Lets get over that before we go any further. If you want a good quality bag you will pay for it. The quicker everyone accepts that, the better. Don't waste your time trying to look for a beautiful, leather, expensive-looking bag for much cheapness. It doesn't exist, believe me I've looked! If you want it to look good, it will cost. Even the ones that look kinda rubbish, are expensive. Have we all accepted the expense of them? Good, lets move on.

Your changing bag could be one of the most important things you will own. It allows you to leave the house knowing you are fully equipped for any catastrophe that might occur when you are out. And if you are anything like me, a well packed bag will give you the warm and fuzzies.

Out with the old, small, stylish bags and in with the large, robust and practical changing bags. However practical doesn't have to mean ugly. I thought I would give you my top 5 changing bags at the moment. I have tried to include a variety of prices for the tighter and more lavish budgets.

1. Storksak + Bugaboo - £250

This could be the most beautiful bag I have ever seen. I have a Bugaboo Cameleon 3 and this would be the perfect partner. This bag is sleek and chic and doesn't look like a changing bag in the slightest. It could easily pass for a normal hand bag, until you open it up. There are five internal compartments including a large zipped pocket for valuables, a Thermo-insulated zipped bottle pocket, a luxury padded changing mat with two pockets to store nappies and wipes and it comes with a detachable carry-handle. 

2. Babymel Big Slouchy Bow Vintage - £49

With an insulated bottle holder, changing mat, three outer pockets and two inner pockets it might not look as stylish and expensive as the Storksak range but you won't need a loan from the bank just to buy one. Babymel have loads of different designs so there is one to suit every mummy.

Pink Lining do a fantastic range of changing bags. I found it really difficult picking one to feature in this post, goodness knows what I'd be like if I had to buy one. Again they have a design to fit EVERYONE. The only downside, from what I can see, is the changing mat that comes with the bag is pink and pretty girly and as the mother of a boy it might not be perfect for me. However at a relatively cheap price for a bag that has all the same benefits of ones at triple the price it's a great buy!

4. Coco Bow Ebony - £165

With the signature bow keyring the Ebony exudes style and sophistication. This bag has three zip pockets, four expandable pockets, a portable insulated bottle holder and a luxury changing mat. It has so many pockets it is ideal for the mummy with a touch of OCD. *ahem* ME *ahem*

It may be the most expensive bag Pacapod have and the most expensive on this list but God damn it's the most beautiful. It's ridiculous how beautiful I find this bag. I could lust after it all day! The pod concept that Pacapod use is genius. They have a feeding pod and a changing pod, making the bag more hygienic and even more organised! The separate pods mean no faffing about in your bag for 5 minutes trying to find that spare vest or spoon. Super stylish, super sexy and super practical.

What bag do you use? Any more suggestions to add to the list?

Kirsty x

Saturday, 1 November 2014

BOOK REVIEW Echoes of Scotland Street by Sam Young

Echoes of Scotland Street

The bit on the back:
Shannon MacLeod has always gone for the wrong type of man. After she drifted from one toxic relationship to the next, her last boyfriend gave her a wakeup call in the worst possible way. With her world shattered, she’s sworn off men—especially those of the bad-boy variety.

Cole Walker is exactly the sort that Shannon wants to avoid—gorgeous, tattooed, charming, and cocky. But his rough exterior hides a good man who’s ready to find “the one.” He’s determined to pull Shannon from her self-imposed solitude and win her heart.

As Shannon opens up in the face of Cole’s steady devotion, the passion between them ignites to blazing levels. But when Shannon’s past comes back to haunt her, her fears may destroy the trust Cole has built between them—and tear them apart for good…

I was going to start this review by saying 'I don't usually do this' but actually I do. I've written the odd guest review over on my best friend's blog Erins Choice. So I thought why not bring the odd book review onto my blog. 

I love to read. Sadly though, it's taken a back seat since baby came along. I no longer have the time to get lost in a book for hours on end, to lose myself in another world, become another person while life carries on around me. I need to control and care for the life that carries on around me now so reading has taken a back seat.

However when Echoes of Scotland Street was released I knew I was going to have to fit it into my busy days somewhere. Echoes of Scotland Street is the fifth novel in the On Dublin Street series by New York Best Selling Author, Samantha Young. I have read 1-3 in the series, plus the novellas Until Fountain Bridge and Castle Hill. However no. 4 Fall From India Place had passed me by (it was released when Logan was only 2 months old, I'm sure I can be forgiven) However when Erin had received an Advanced Review Copy and told me I MUST read it, I knew I would have to make time for it. This time came in the rare form of an afternoon off. After suffering from the cold for a few days Gavin decided to gather Logan up and take him to see his granny for a few hours and give me an afternoon of peace. So I decided to use these rare few hours or tranquillity so start, and subsequently finish, this book.

It's a very easy read, so much so I was able to start it and finish it in under 5 hours. The story follows Shannon MacLeod. Shannon has sworn off the 'bad-boy' type for good following bad relationship after bad relationship. She thinks she's met another bad boy in Cole Walker but Cole is set on proving her wrong. 

Shannon is the first heroine that we've never met before. In each of Samantha's novels the main characters are characters we have met in the previous novel so you already know them to a certain degree. Shannon is brand new however, which I liked. It was refreshing to have a brand new character to learn about and grow with. Cole however we already know. We first met Cole in Down London Road (book 2) as younger brother of main character Jo. At the time he was a slightly geeky teenage boy going through puberty and struggling with a tough life. In Echoes of Scotland Street it is clear that he came out the other side of puberty looking not too shabby!!! Talk about Book Boyfriend material!!!! It was so easy to fall love with Cole as quickly as Shannon did. 

Being from Scotland, and not a million miles away from Edinburgh I really enjoy the setting of these books. not often are us Scots treated to a book set in our bonnie country so its fun to read about somewhere that I can really picture.

There are not many major plot twists and the outcome of the story is relatively predictable but I really enjoyed reading how Shannon and Cole came to be together. They have great chemistry together and their blossoming relationship is an enjoyable one to read.

If you haven't read anything by Samantha Young before I would recommend starting from the beginning of the series, it isn't necessary, you could read this as a stand alone novel as Sam does give you a bit of back story to the other characters, however its a fantastic series and worth reading them all.

Kirsty x