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Book Review: Holding Paradise by Fran Clark 🌴

Holding Paradise. Book One in the Island Secrets Series. By, Fran Clark

Today's review is about, Holding Paradise, the first in the Island Secrets Series written by Fran Clark. I've read a couple of books by Fran and also one under her pseudonym, Rosa Temple. I've enjoyed all her books and so, when Fran approached me about reviewing the first in her new series, I jumped at the chance. Thank you, Fran, for inviting me to review Holding Paradise and for my digital copy in exchange for an honest review.

Fran Clark


Fran Clark is a Womens' Fiction writer. Her first novel was published by Indigo Dreams in 2014. In the same year she achieved a Distinction in her Creative Writing MA from Brunel University. In 2016 she was shortlisted for the SI Leeds Literary Prize.

She has an upcoming book series called Island Secrets, soon to be published on Amazon in ebook, paperback and audio format. The four books are called, Holding Paradise, A Prayer For Junie, The Long Way Home and When Skies Are Grey.

Originally from London, Fran moved to the English countryside with her musician husband. A musician herself, Fran teaches vocals and leads a local choir.  She has two sons.

Fran also writes under the pseudonym, Rosa Temple, writing contemporary fiction and published by HQ Digital and Simon & Schuster UK.

Holding Paradise: Island Secrets Book 1.


From the Caribbean to the streets of London, Holding Paradise paints a passionate portrait of family secrets, forbidden love and two women pushed to the edge.

Angelica’s seemingly perfect life is torn apart when a family secret is uncovered. At risk of losing her husband and daughter, she boards a plane in desperation to seek the advice of the person whose stories have guided her through life. Her mother, Josephine.

Josephine’s life by comparison, has come full circle, starting and ending in the Caribbean. She weathers a lifetime of betrayal and deceit, though her sole focus is to keep her family together during troubled times. It is with a broken heart that she endures her marriage and manages to raise her children with colourful stories that prove to be lessons to light their way.

It’s the wisdom of one of these stories that Angelica seeks and Josephine has one last story to tell – the story that will change both of their lives.


I loved this book from start to finish. It’s a story that spans generations and is expertly woven together to give an emotionally driven narrative. Holding Paradise revolves mainly around two women, Josephine and Angelica. Both are strong, passionate women who face more than their fair share of challenges. These and other characters in the book were written in such a way that by the time I’d finished reading, I felt like I knew them. My heart went out to them, and with every turn of the page, I wanted to find out more. How these generations came together was beautifully executed. It’s a wonderful story, cleverly written and captures both the emotion and landscape perfectly.

Thank you Fran for allowing me to read the first in what is sure to be a fantastic series.

NEXT REVIEW - coming soon!

Uncle Digit and the Truth about Magic, by Jeremy Hullah

My next review will be Uncle Digit and the Truth about Magic. This is the latest middle-grade children's fiction book by Jeremy Hullah.

Here’s the book blurb.

Confined to a wheelchair and bullied at school, 11-year-old Finn isn’t having an easy time of it. The only things he looks forward to are the visits of his Uncle Henry, a globe-trotting photojournalist, who can be relied upon to arrive with amazing gifts and unbelievable stories of his adventures. But when Henry goes looking for his father’s ship, lost in the Artic forty years ago. The stories he recounts become increasingly fantastical, straining even Finn’s desire to believe everything his uncle tells him… until he joins in the adventure himself!

Until next time, Happy Reading!

Gill x



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