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10 thoughts on “Rich in Small Things

  1. Georgia Georgia says:

    Rich in Small Things by Helen J Beal is a story focusing on how much the small things in life actually mean to us.First Paragraph I am horizontal, mid air, my feet planting into his chest He sprawls backwards and the anger knotted inside of me bursts out of my mouth in a shout as he thumps down onto the mat He scrambles to his feet and comes at me again and in my mind I see myself yesterday, stood up against the window in the office with its view out across the docklands, along with the rest Rich in Small Things by Helen J Beal is a story focusing on how much the small things in life actually mean to us.First Paragraph I am horizontal, mid air, my feet planting into his chest He sprawls backwards and the anger knotted inside of me bursts out of my mouth in a shout as he thumps down onto the mat He scrambles to his feet and comes at me again and in my mind I see myself yesterday, stood up against the window in the office with its view out across the docklands, along with the rest of the trading floor, suited and booted, being told we no longer have jobs and as he tries to jab me my bile rises and I block him, sweep his feet from under him and hop from foot to foot, arms raised and ready I turn from my waist and switch my front and back feet and then back again PLOT Melissa had was she considered her perfect job Working as a city trader she madethan enough to get by, and enjoyed the finer things in life Now her decade of service has gone down the tube, as the economy hits the company and thousands of employees are made redundant Luckily she has enough saved to last a few months, but a new job is top priority on her now considerably empty To do list Especially with her hobby.Melissa enjoys online poker, and she s very good at it But now that she s unemployed, she realises just how little social life she actually has No friends and the only person she sees on any regular basis is her grandmother Babu Desperate for some face to face company, she decides to try her luck at a poker game downtown resulting with her being scouted by a less than scrupulous character Her poker skills get her noticed by his boss Victor, who invites her to a private high stakes game Despite the fact that he is clearly the type of man you never want to owe money to and is probably pretty much a sure bet to win she buys in for 25,000 Six players, and her confidence is her downfall She makes a mistake and ends up 175,000 in debtthan three triple what she has in the bank, plus interest Victor makes her a deal He likes her If she joins his team he will clear the debt She declines, realising the kind of men they are, but is now spectacularly indebted to a Ukrainian mobster With very little options, she takes any work she can find In this case, a waitress at a small cafe where she bumps into an old school friend Julia who tells her all about the Ulaanbaatar Cup a kind of car race from Hyde Park to Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia with a prize of 1,000,000 Melissa sees her chance, however slim it may be, and she and Julia decide to give it a try Meanwhile, a couple other teams are preparing for the same race Some for the experience, others for the cash One of the teams is one of Victor s who has the race on the books He s determined his team wins not only for the large gambling sum that will come his way, but also to force Melissa to work for him.Slowly the groups all begin to interact They discuss the race, the riddles they are given for bonus points, and what they would do with the money And slowly, bonds are formed There are of coursethan a few mishaps along the way some accidental, some not With very few rules regarding sportsmanship and such a large prize to be had, there s plenty of hijinks and some sabotage But soon each character will realise just what a difference five weeks can make.REVIEWThis is a book with interesting, fallible characters and none of them are clear cut There is no black and white Each character can forgive or be forgiven, and those that start off seeming like the antagonists are just people by the end Neither right or wrong, capable of both good and bad One of the recurring themes of the story is that everybody has the ability to change, given the right incentive Likewise, the characters can make mistakes There are areas where occasionally a character seems to have inexcusably poor judgement, but you can let it slide, not because it isn t stupid because let s face it, it is , but because sometimes people do, say or believe stupid things The story focuses on its title, managing to deliver a realistic path that leads the characters to each of their own revelations and the beginnings of change We know from the start how the book will end or at least can make an educated guess , but like the plot that draws each character in, we re along for the ride As the old saying goes, It is not the destination, but the journey I thoroughly enjoy road trip based stories They offer all the usual things characters go through to reach the people they become by the end of the story, but add in some adventure and sight seeing All the different locations and their descriptions, never fail to entice and enthral me Not only that, but these types of plots help the reader feel like they ve travelled the distance with the characters It makes the journey seem longer andreal so we experience some its the length too Not anywhere near as much of the characters, of course, but enough to give us a taster of the weariness, or the sense of triumph and accomplishment once the end is reached The only criticism I have is understandable, but slows the story down A lot of the information is repeated again and again Each group of characters discuss the Ulaanbaatar Cup in their own times and places, going over a lot of the things we already know It makes sense that they would each discuss the race, but we don t need to see it for each group The race doesn t even get going until around two hundred pages in.Another minor issue was some of the writing or rather spelling and grammar Some of the wording can seem a little off as though it s a bad translation There are also a few grammatical spelling errors or inconsistencies, but overall I don t really count them as common enough or severe enough to be problems I was still happily able to enjoy the story.OVERALLA fun, entertaining read Part adventure, part romance and part comedy Perfect to take along on any adventures you may be planning yourself, or to relive the memories and emotions of a past excursion It left me with an overwhelming sense to start my own month long road trip.Disclaimer I received this book from the author through a giveaway This is not a sponsored review All opinions are 100% my own


  2. Gordon Kenz Gordon Kenz says:

    Book review Rich in Small Things by Helen J BealThe book appeals to me instantly as it relates to a young lady who loses her job in the city and finds that her skills are suited to online gambling I am one of many who believe that many bankers are nothan professional gamblers All gamblers, no matter talented, either hit a losing streak sooner or later or go for that one big risky deal The excuse after a failure is that their methods worked perfectly until that one unlucky market crash Book review Rich in Small Things by Helen J BealThe book appeals to me instantly as it relates to a young lady who loses her job in the city and finds that her skills are suited to online gambling I am one of many who believe that many bankers are nothan professional gamblers All gamblers, no matter talented, either hit a losing streak sooner or later or go for that one big risky deal The excuse after a failure is that their methods worked perfectly until that one unlucky market crash but now everything is back to normal and they should be given another chance Anyway, back to the book Melissa finds she is a natural at online gambling and soon finds she is a class act on the real poker table too Like many of us she finds that drink played a part in her one big mistake and she is suddenly indebted to Ukranian thugs.Melissa s private life echos her profession as a steady relationship is followed by a fling She throws herself at an East End wide boy, Henry Before her big loss she already knows he works for the Ukranians.In the biggest gamble of all Melissa, with a new female friend, embarks on a journey that takes the story on a long drive all the way from London, via Europe and Eastern Europe to Mongolia This is a big change in direction for the book and we enter the world of treasure hunts, rallying, car mechanics and travelling The Ukranians tag along to keep an eye on their debtor but there are numerous new characters forming the other teams It takes a while to get to know all the personnel but it is worth the effort My usual gripe applies where I would love to see a list of characters at the start of a novel like this, even with a little of their background.The competition is fun and there are plenty of sexual possibilities for Melissa and her friend Eventually Melissa takes a liking to a fellow competitor as the story moves towards the end We are invited to feel sorry for the Ukranian family at the end but this is a little difficult to pull off Even Henry becomes a nice guy though he has always been a likeable rogue with a small conscience.So what does this all tell us about the author At the start when Henry was talking in the first person I felt that only a bloke could have written some bits My view changed as I progressed but we know that this author is good at putting herself into the shoes of others and their thoughts The author changes the personality of Henry as the book progresses and successfully makes us feel sympathetic towards the Ukraninan thug family two reasons why I would bet the author watches Eastenders Every bloke loves a girl who gambles though and this story is a delightful ride Anyone interested in motor mechanics, rallying, treasure hunts and gambling will surely stay the course


  3. Laura Dobb Laura Dobb says:

    Ok, firstly if like to thank the author for picking me to win this book in the goodreads giveaway, I was very grateful to be chosen Now, on with the review I would have loved to give this book 5 stars but I can t, it started off quite slow, and it took me over a week reading a chapter at a time to read the first 100 pages There were moments, like the poker table bits that I felt it picked up, and I understand how the ultimatum with victor could have been seen as terrifying, but Melissa nev Ok, firstly if like to thank the author for picking me to win this book in the goodreads giveaway, I was very grateful to be chosen Now, on with the review I would have loved to give this book 5 stars but I can t, it started off quite slow, and it took me over a week reading a chapter at a time to read the first 100 pages There were moments, like the poker table bits that I felt it picked up, and I understand how the ultimatum with victor could have been seen as terrifying, but Melissa never seemed overly worried, so as a reader, I wasn t worried either I did like the relationship between Henry and Mel though, especially at the end where they still remain great friends after everything that has happened to them both I m trying not to give away spoilers where the book got interesting for me was at the start line for the race From then it s taken me a few hours to finish the book, I found the odd chapter pointless but other than that, it was riveting I liked the relationship build up for Melissa and carter, I also liked how chapters where sometimes from other competitors points of view, mainly so I got to see that carter liked Melissa first lol I m a sucker for a love story The story travels through the different countries with contestants picking up clues and gaining points to win a million dollars I liked the relationship between Julia and Melissa although before they actually set off for the cup I dreaded it as I thought Julia would annoy me but I actually started to really like her I know I m just rambling now, but all I m trying to say is it is well worth a read I m glad I have it a chance an will be looking to readbooks written by Helen Beal in the future Would like go know if there is a sequel too telling us if Julia finds a man and how carter and Melissa end up in India


  4. Rich Rich says:

    I really enjoyed this book which takes you on an adventure from an exit from the high flying banking world, through online poker, losing a real poker game with the Ukrainian mafia oops and an exciting adventure driving in a race across Europe to Mongolia I am not a card player let alone a poker player, I do love travelling though so I wondered if I would just enjoy bits of the book How wrong I was I loved it all The way the author describes the games of poker gave me an insight into the I really enjoyed this book which takes you on an adventure from an exit from the high flying banking world, through online poker, losing a real poker game with the Ukrainian mafia oops and an exciting adventure driving in a race across Europe to Mongolia I am not a card player let alone a poker player, I do love travelling though so I wondered if I would just enjoy bits of the book How wrong I was I loved it all The way the author describes the games of poker gave me an insight into the game, raising the tension in the book without being over technical and losing me, I loved the journey across Europe in the beat up old ambulance and all the characters that come and go from the book and even if you haven t been travelling you ll love this.From the opening high energy scene it is a story of an exciting adventure and I found the characters all developed through the course of the book the good and the bad, you ll love some and hate others, probably change your minds about one or two and I d be very surprised if you didn t relate to most of them Although just a novel it has made me think about what I really want in my life and where I want to be going must go, need to go and do some travel research Life is too short but not to read this book I d recommend you find time for it


  5. Matthew Garratt Matthew Garratt says:

    I enjoyed this novel which follows the fortunes of Melissa, a high earning city girl whose life changes, twists, turns, and develops into a compelling adventure This is a story full of observations and reflections on modern life and the world we live in I enjoyed being with the characters and willing them along on their exciting and challenging journey through different lands I was unable to put this book down towards the later chapters, and very much enjoyed the ending I then treated myself I enjoyed this novel which follows the fortunes of Melissa, a high earning city girl whose life changes, twists, turns, and develops into a compelling adventure This is a story full of observations and reflections on modern life and the world we live in I enjoyed being with the characters and willing them along on their exciting and challenging journey through different lands I was unable to put this book down towards the later chapters, and very much enjoyed the ending I then treated myself to some crispy duck with pancakes and plumb sauce, which somehow tasted better than usual having just read this book


  6. Ellis Shuman Ellis Shuman says:

    There is no such thing as the Ulaanbaatar Cup The whole idea of a car race from London to the capital of Mongolia, incorporating many elements of an international treasure hunt, is entirely a work of fiction This novel, telling the story of participants in the fictitious Ulaanbaatar Cup race, is a very enjoyable read It is a combination of cultural travelogue, a simple story of romance, and a bit of suspenseful intrigue.It starts off innocently enough, or actually, not so innocently Melissa, There is no such thing as the Ulaanbaatar Cup The whole idea of a car race from London to the capital of Mongolia, incorporating many elements of an international treasure hunt, is entirely a work of fiction This novel, telling the story of participants in the fictitious Ulaanbaatar Cup race, is a very enjoyable read It is a combination of cultural travelogue, a simple story of romance, and a bit of suspenseful intrigue.It starts off innocently enough, or actually, not so innocently Melissa, a recently unemployed London City trader, is also an avid poker player In one spectacular hand, which demonstrates the author s command of the game, she loses muchthan she has to her name Unfortunately, the winner is an unforgiving member of the Ukrainian mafia, and Melissa has to go underground to stay alive And then along comes an offer to compete for the million pound cash prize of the Ulaanbaatar Cup race If she can win the race, Melissa can repay her gambling debt and start anew.Many colorful characters are participating in the race, but what makes the journey truly interesting is reading about the border crossing delays, the locals who come out to welcome the racers, and the many mechanical failures of Melissa s converted Land Rover ambulance she will get extra credit if she makes it all the way to Mongolia in an ambulance, which afterwards will be donated to a local charity.The prose of author Helen J Beal is a treasure in itself, and that makes the six week trek to Mongolia all thefun


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Rich in Small Things [EPUB] ✰ Rich in Small Things By Helen J. Beal – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk What do you do when you owe the Ukrainian mafia a huge amount of money that you don t have Drive a twenty year old ambulance ten thousand kilometres from London to the remotest country in the world, o What do you do when you owe the Ukrainian mafia a huge amount of money that you don t have Drive a twenty year old ambulance ten thousand kilometres from London to the remotest country in the world, of course Not to run away, you understand, but to bag your share of a million pound cash prizeMelissa, a suddenly unemployed City trader, finds herself horrifically in debt to Victor, a leading light in the Ukrainian mafia following an Rich in Epub / unlucky hand in an underground poker game in East London Escaping to her grandmother s flat in Hammersmith, she is reunited with old school mate Julia, who offers her the chance to take part in the Ulaanbaatar Cup where competitors drive to the capital of Mongolia in chase of a one million pound cash prizeIn the high pressure atmosphere of challenge, sabotage, espionage, misinformation and unmitigated disasters with Melissa s future up against the clock, against all odds she finds herself having fun than she can remember, forging friendships that will last for life and falling head over heels in love But what will happen when she returns to London.