‘The Sunday Lunch Club’ is the latest book by Juliet Ashton.
Every few Sundays, Anna and her extended family and friends get together for lunch. They talk, they laugh, they bicker, they eat too much. Sometimes the important stuff is left unsaid, other times it’s said in the wrong way. Sitting between her ex-husband and her new lover, Anna is coming to terms with an unexpected pregnancy at the age of forty. Also at the table are her ageing grandmother, her promiscuous sister, her flamboyantly gay brother and a memory too terrible to contemplate. Until, that is, a letter arrives from the person Anna scarred all those years ago. Can Anna reconcile her painful past with her uncertain future?
It’s been a while since I’ve read a book by Juliet Ashton, so when I received a copy of her latest story called ‘The Sunday Lunch Club’ I was eager to delve into foodie story of new love and family drama.
The story is seen solely through the narrative of Anna, the eldest sibling of a family of four, who had become accustomed to being the parent of the family, along with her outspoken and flamboyant brother Neil. On Sunday’s, they gather at each other’s houses, with their families and catch up on each other.
It’s at her youngest brother’s Josh soiree, one Sunday that Anna discovers she is pregnant after a quick one stand and that she meets Josh’s friend Luca, who she rapidly falls for. Now suddenly pregnant at 40, Anna wonders what to do and finds it only natural to continue with her pregnancy and her new love affair with Luca, who openly supports her decision. As the pair of them embark on their new relationship, Anna takes the next nine months to take stock of her family and the issues that they face. Neil is struggling to adapt to fatherhood now that he and his partner have adopted and longs for the crazy days of long nights out, whilst Maeve, her other sister longs for a proper relationship and seems to attract men that have no genuine interest in her and finally her brother Josh, who is quiet and timid and the main reason Anna worries so much. Meanwhile Dinkie, the Irish grandmother of the finally has finally gone into full time care, much to the discomfort of the rest of the family.
I loved this story, it’s filled to the brim with drama and humour and had such an eclectic mix of characters that it was hard not to get absorbed in all their tales. Anna, was a lovely lead character, kind with a heart of gold, she was always putting others before herself. She’s extremely hard on herself for the person she has become and carries a guilty secret that no-one else knows and this makes life hard for her but for the reader, makes for compelling reading.
The story is very current as it touches on so many topics, same-sex relationships, transgender and there are so many unexpected surprises along the way keeps the reader on their toes.
With a stunningly vibrant cover and a clever plot line, ‘The Sunday Lunch Club’ is a delicious story, with fascinating characters and a dose of humour and good food scattered throughout, this book will wet any readers appetite with it’s feel good drama.
You can pre-order The Sunday Lunch Club from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 19th April 2018.