Recipe | Coffee and walnut tray bake

This coffee and walnut tray bake is the perfect tea time cake. Delicious!

Coffee and walnut traybake tray bake with coffee buttercream espresso cake easy uk recipe

This is a quick, easy recipe I found on GoodtoKnow. I used a lot of strong coffee and the coffee flavour in the cake was still subtle, so don’t worry about going too far.

Wait! There’s more. Click for the recipe and more pics!

Review | The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

An entertaining office romance. 3/5 stars.

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

Thank you to Headline for providing me with an e-copy of this book via NetGalley.

The blurb:

Samiah Brooks never thought she would be ‘that’ girl. But a live tweet of a horrific date reveals the painful truth: she’s been catfished by her three-timing jerk of a boyfriend.

Suddenly Samiah – along with the two other ‘girlfriends’, London and Taylor – have gone viral. Now the three new besties are making a six-month pact: no men, no dating, just time to focus on themselves.

This means Samiah can finally focus on her exciting career in app development – so having the deliciously sexy and distracting Daniel Collins walk into her office definitely isn’t part of her plan…

But is Daniel really boyfriend material – or is he simply too good to be true?

My take:

I must say first off that 3 stars is a good rating from me! I know some reviewers and authors see it as negative, but I enjoyed this book and would recommend it to fans of the genre.

Now that’s out of the way, The Boyfriend Project is a fun contemporary romance that has a lot going for it. I loved the opening which is described in the blurb above. I was particularly delighted that when the three women find they’ve been dating the same man they join forces and turn on him, rather than turning on each other. And then that they go on to become great friends and a mini support network for each other is wonderful.

Continue reading…

Recipe | Chocolate caramel Chelsea buns

Chelsea buns with chocolate hazelnut and caramel sauce. Why not?!

Chocolate and caramel chelsea buns quick and easy UK recipe baking with yeast tear and share

I very rarely make bread or anything involving yeast. Mainly because I haven’t the time for mucking about with proving. But when I found this recipe from GoodtoKnow for chocolate Chelsea buns, it sounded straightforward so I thought I’d give it a go.

Traditional Chelsea buns contain spices and sultanas. This is a sweeter twist on the classic recipe.

I didn’t have enough chocolate hazelnut spread, but did have some salted caramel sauce to use up. And so that’s why my version contains chocolate and caramel. You can just use the chocolate hazelnut spread if you prefer.

Ingredients (makes 12 chocolate caramel Chelsea buns)

Continue reading…

UK book bargain alert: Art and Soul just 99p! #indieauthor #ArtandSoul #RomanceBooks


UK readers! Are you looking for a light, cheerful read?

Then grab a 99p bargain at Amazon UK!

Art and Soul novel book cover contemporary romance uplit

My debut novel, Art and Soul is only 99p on Amazon UK until 24th June.

Why should I read it? If you want a happy, easy-to-read romance to escape into, please give Art and Soul a try. I promise the story will provide some light relief.

The blurb: An expert at solving other people’s problems, single mum Becky is hired to help artist Charlie get out of his creative slump. But when she starts falling for her client, will she be able to fix her own love life?

Reviews so far: I’m delighted to say that readers are enjoying it!

40 four and five star reviews from Amazon UK customers for Art and Soul by Claire Huston

My favourite so far:

Knickergripping review for Art and Soul by Claire Huston

Don’t miss out on the chance to bag a “knickergripping story” for just 99p! Pop over to Amazon UK and treat yourself to a bargain. And if you’re subscribed to Kindle Unlimited, you can download the book for free.

International readers: I’ll be running a wider sale in July. I haven’t forgotten you!

Thank you!


Claire Huston / Art and Soul

Review | A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes

We don’t need another hero.

A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes book cover

Thank you to Picador/Pan Macmillan for providing me with an e-copy of this book via NetGalley.

The blurb:

My take:

It’s interesting that the blurb mentions Madeline Miller and Pat Barker. I’ve read The Song of Achilles and Circe (both by Miller) and The Silence of the Girls by Barker. I enjoyed A Thousand Ships more than the Barker but didn’t love it as much as either of Miller’s books.

Barker’s The Silence of the Girls disappointed me because I’d hoped it would retell events from The Iliad from the perspective of the female characters. But halfway through the narrative we switch from the female characters’ viewpoints to Achilles’, and I didn’t think we needed yet another male view on events. Thankfully, Haynes doesn’t do this in A Thousand Ships. Instead, we get an entirely female perspective as we skip between the stories of various characters featured in The Iliad (and, to a lesser extent, The Odyssey), including goddesses.

Continue reading…

Recipe | Old school jam and cornflake tart

Jam and cornflake tart: a school dinner classic I’ve been meaning to make for ages!

Old school dinner jam and cornflake tart or cake traybake recipe easy quick uk recipe custard optional

What can I say? I had cornflakes to use up! I found quite a few recipes which said to use ready-to-roll, shop bought-pastry. And that’s a good option if you’re in a hurry, but making the pastry isn’t that tricky if you have the ingredients and time. I used this recipe from Baking Mad.

Jam and cornflake tart is an old school classic. Another one I think many people would have had served with custard.

Ingredients

Continue reading…

Recipe | Lemon melt icing sugar cookies

Bite through the crunchy shell to a fluffy lemon cloud of icing sugar cookie deliciousness…

Lemon melt icing sugar cookies light fluffy biscuit simple recipe uk

It had been ages since I’d made a lemon recipe and a quick search for simple options turned up this recipe for soft melt-in-your-mouth lemon cookies.

These lemon melt icing sugar cookies are absolutely beautiful, particularly if you get the chance to eat one or two when they’re fresh out of the oven. The outer shell has a sweet crunch and the inside is a fluffy cloud of subtle lemony goodness.

Rolling and baking the sticky dough in several batches is a bit of a faff, but your efforts will be more than rewarded.

Ingredients (makes approx. 50 icing sugar cookies)

Continue reading…

Review | The Summer of Madness by Alexander Raphael

A great romantic short story.

The Summer of Madness by Alexander Raphael

The blurb:

My take:

Having taken his long-suffering girlfriend for granted one too many times, Kurt finds himself dumped. When the usual heartfelt apologies and begging fail to win her back he decides to make a grand gesture. And that’s how he ends up reading from Wuthering Heights every day outside the local train station. But will it work?

This is a terrific, romantic short story. It’s something you could download and read on your lunchbreak or even in your tea break for you speed-readers out there. It’s well-written, flows beautifully and is peppered with some lovely comedic touches.

Continue reading…

Recipe | Honey and ginger cakes

Little honey and ginger cakes with optional sticky honey glaze

Honey and ginger cakes uk recipe quick and easy with glaze

Looking for an alternative to chocolate everything? These honey and ginger cakes are a terrific option. So easy to make, the mixture rises beautifully into a light, fragrant sponge.

I got the original recipe for these honey and ginger cakes at olive magazine. Personally, while the glaze is also easy to make, I prefer the cakes without it. As advertised, it’s very sticky, and I prefer to live without the mess!

If you want to use a bun/cupcake tin, the ingredients will make 24 cakes. If you use a muffin tin, you’ll get 12 muffins. As you’ll see below, I used a 12-hole bun tin and a 24-hole mini bun tin.

Wait! There’s more. Click for the recipe and more lovely pics!

Thank you and book update. A quiet lockdown launch for Art and Soul… with cake!

Art and Soul an uplifting contemporary romance novel by Claire Huston book cake 2
Yes, the enormous book in the middle is, in fact, a cake!

Like many authors, I always hoped to have a small party to celebrate the publication of my debut novel, Art and Soul. Like everyone, I didn’t expect lockdown. But, even if she only has 4 people to feed, you can’t keep a baker down. And with a good excuse to make a giant cake, I made one!

Art and Soul an uplifting contemporary romance novel by Claire Huston book cake 3

Here’s another picture of it sliced, just to prove it really was a cake. Two large layers of simple sponge cake with vanilla buttercream and then an edible customised topper which I ordered online.

And if you’re wondering where I am… ta-dah!

Art and Soul an uplifting contemporary romance novel by Claire Huston book cake (2)

Sorry I look so squinty, but it was a beautiful bright day so at least we got to eat cake in the garden.

Blog Tour thanks

Thank you to all the bloggers who took part in the blog tour for Art and Soul and, of course, to Rachel Gilbey for doing such a wonderful job in organising it all. Their reviews are brilliant and I’m thrilled they enjoyed the book, with many of them finding it was exactly the sort of cheerful distraction they needed at the moment.

Thank you too!

And thank you everyone for your kind words, sharing the message the book was out and, indeed, to those of you who bought or downloaded a copy. I really appreciate it.

If you have read and enjoyed Art and Soul, if you can, please leave a review on Amazon and/or Goodreads. It does make a huge difference to how visible the book is to other readers.

Still a book bargain!

If you like contemporary romance and are looking for an uplifting story, I’d be delighted it you would give Art and Soul a try. And/or tell your romance-reading friends about it!

The ebook is still only 99p / $0.99 on Amazon or free to read with Kindle Unlimited.

And/or if you could add the book to your to-read shelf on Goodreads, I’d be very grateful.

Art and Soul contemporary romance novel cover by Claire Huston a heartwarming uplifting romance

Thank you again! I hope you’re all keeping safe and well.

Next week, normal service will resume with a recipe post 🙂


Get your copy of Art and Soul now!

Claire Huston / Art and Soul