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Love And Missed By Susie Boyt

Love And Missed‘Love And Missed’ is the latest book by Susie Boyt.

When Ruth’s beloved, reckless daughter is too caught up in drugs to look after her baby, Ruth decides to make off with the child. This time she’ll get the love right.

If you like stories that are deep exploration into fragile female relationships, then ‘Love And Missed’ is the book for you.

The story is primarily seen through the narrative of Ruth, mother to Eleanor. Eleanor has addictions and disorders and is rarely around. She promises to spend more time with Ruth but is always letting her down and Ruth being the committed mother that she is, sees the best in her only daughter. And when Eleanor gives birth to a little girl, Ruth takes it upon herself to bring Lily up and to have a second chance at being a mother.

This story is turbulent one, that I occasionally got lost in as I unsure who’s narrative I was reading, but having said I did find myself embroiled in this story.

Ruth is dedicated mother, she’s committed and is determined to be the best mother that she can be, with Lily’s mother absent. Ruth is a bit naive and always sees the best in people and this can make for sad reading, particularly when she’s making excuses for Eleanor’s behaviour.

Her relationship with Lily is a tender one and it’s heartwarming to read their time together as she does her best to provide Lily with love and protect her from Eleanor.

A beautifully written story about the hardship of unrequited maternal love, ‘Love And Missed’ is a keen observation in the troubled relationship between mother and daughter that is emotional, all consuming with the determination of never giving up.

You can buy ‘Love And Missed’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday By Cressida McLaughlin

The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday‘The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday’ is the latest book by Cressida McLaughlin in the ‘Cornish Cream Tea’ series.

Thea Rushwood was looking forward to exploring the beautiful Cornish tourist spot of Port Karadow, but when her friend drops out at the last minute, she is forced to go solo. Arriving at her cosy holiday cottage to discover a building site next door, Thea and the annoyingly attractive, but grumpy builder, Ben, don’t get off to the best start. Thea starts to wonder if her perfect escape wasn’t meant to be. That’s before she realizes there is more to Ben – and to the community – than she first thought. As a magical Cornish summer stretches out in front of her, Thea discovers this is one holiday that she never wants to end.

Cressida is back with another lovely story set amongst the Cornish community with a welcome return to some of her lovely characters as well as an introduction to Thea, an aspiring bookshop owner.

Thea was meant to be having the holiday of a lifetime with her best friend, Esme. Three weeks in a Cornish cottage with a bucket list of fun things to do. Unfortunately, work prevents Esme from coming along but Thea decides to still go along and enjoy the scenery as well as research a childhood dream of opening her own bookshop. But when she meets Ben, who’s initially a grumpy man, he ends up being her tour guide and with a combination of an adorable dog called Scooter, his exquisite culinary skills and his own charm Thea finds herself falling for him and finding another reason to the move to the coastal town.

This is another delightful story from the Cornish author, set amongst the stunning scenery of Cornwall, packed with heartwarming characters and a lovely plot that flows like a Cornish beach.

I loved Thea, she’s kind with a heart of gold and a massive book lover like myself. She’s brave and determined and even when her dreams are belittled, it gives her more of a drive to continue. The story has some lovely characters, like Sylvia, the eccentric old lady that shouts down from her tower at passerbys, she’s sharp and witty and scenes with make for entertaining reading and occasionally tender as she shows a vulnerable side. It’s warming to see Thea fit into her new life and settle in with the community whilst making friends and her budding relationship with Ben is really lovely reading, as they get to know each other bring out the fun side in each other.

Heartwarming, charming and packed with fun and aspiration, ‘The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday’ a journey of self-discovery and following your dreams which was the perfect seaside book to curl up with.

You can buy ‘The Cornish Cream Tea Holiday’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

The Summer Trip By Isabelle Broom

The Summer Trip‘The Summer Trip’ is the latest book by Isabelle Broom.

It’s been 18 years since Ava spent the summer on the Greek island of Corfu, but she has never forgotten what happened during those months – or who she left behind. Now single, estranged from her family, and preparing to wave her daughter off to university, Ava’s life seems a million miles away from the one she dreamed about as a teenager – a life now being lived by her sister instead. When Ava decides to return to Corfu for the summer, she knows she must finally face the place and the people that broke her heart. But with old resentments festering, long-buried secrets lurking, and familiar feelings resurfacing, it looks set to be a holiday that will change all their lives forever.

The latest offering by Isabelle is a glorious escape to the sun kissed shores of Corfu. Say goodbye to clammy weather, interest rates and drama and hello to an exquisite escape, packed with delicious Greek food, Greek gods and a nostalgic journey into what could have been.

The story is seen through the narrative of Ava who’s never quite gotten over her first love. 18 years after leaving Corfu, she returns with her 17 year old daughter to catch up with her younger sisters as well as the man who first stole her heart.

I love Isabelle’s books, they’re vibrant, romantic and are the perfect distraction from the mundane life.

Ava is an interesting character, she’s fun and protective of daughter and when she meets Niko, the boy she fell in love with, it makes for tender reading as they both have to face up to the past and what could have been. Her relationship with her sisters is strained so it’s interesting to see the different personalities come together and reflect on old times. Niko is also a lovely character with his charming and spirited attitude.

Like Isabelle’s, previous books, this story is vividly written packed with wonderful descriptions of the island, the delicious cuisine and the culture. So if you were thinking of a Greek adventure, ‘The Summer Trip’ is the perfect guide book with the added bonus of some romance.

The story is written in the past and present when Niko and Ava first met as teenagers and it’s so lovely to join as their young love flourishes and this really made for tender and sweet reading.

Beautifully written and wonderfully captivating, ‘The Summer Trip’ is a gentle, heartwarming and witty story about self-discovery and forgiveness that made for poignant and fun reading.

You can pre-order ‘The Summer Trip’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 23rd June 2022.

WAKE By Shelley Burr

WAKE‘WAKE’ is the debut novel by Shelley Burr.

Mina McCreery’s sister Evelyn disappeared nineteen years ago. Her life has been defined by the intense public interest in the case. Now an anxious and reclusive adult, she lives alone on her family’s destocked sheep farm. When Lane, a private investigator, approaches her with an offer to reinvestigate the case, she rejects him. The attention has had nothing but negative consequences for her and her family, and never brought them closer to an answer. Lane wins her trust when his unconventional methods show promise, but he has his own motivations for wanting to solve the case, and his obsession with the answer will ultimately risk both their lives.

This debut is an absolute cracker of a story. Set in the rural outback of Australia. Lane Holland is a private investigator and is looking into the disappearance of Evie McCreery who disappeared over 20 years without a trace.

The story is seen through the narrative of Mina, the twin sister of Evie who’s had to live with people assuming she was behind her disappearance whilst Lane, is determined to get the reward for solving the disappearance and provide a better life for his little sister.

I loved this story, it’s dark, atmospheric and riddled with tension. A case of whodunnit set in the outback, everyone has a theory, whether that’s the people of the small town or online.

I loved the characters particularly Lane and found myself racing through the book to find out more about his background and the motivation into Evie’s disappearance. Mina was a sympathetic character who’s life never moved on since Evie disappeared and has lived in her shadow ever since.

This book was CWA Debut Winner in 2019 and it’s thoroughly well deserved with the taunt writing, a well crafted storyline along with a wealth of suspicious characters that filled me with unease and doubt.

Gripping from the first page and filled with shocks throughout. Written with skill and compassion, ‘Wake’ delves into the terrible tragedy of a child’s disappearance and when privates lives become public property.

You can ‘Wake’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Retreat To The Spanish Sun By Jo Thomas

Retreat To The Spanish Sun‘Retreat To The Spanish Sun’ is the latest book by Jo Thomas.

Eliza has a full house! When her three children grew up and moved out, she downsized to a smaller property… but now they’re all back. Every room in the house is taken and Eliza finds herself sharing her bed with her eldest daughter and her daughter’s pug. Combined with the online course she’s trying to finish, plus her job to fit in, there just isn’t the peace and quiet that Eliza needs. So when an ad pops up on her laptop saying ‘house-sitters wanted’, Eliza can’t resist the chance to escape. She ends up moving to a rural finca in southern Spain, looking after the owner’s Iberico pigs, learning about secret gastronomic societies… and finding a new zest for life and love along the way.

Settle into the latest book Jo and you’re settling into a Spanish adventure packed with delicious food, friendly pigs and an escape from the mundane.

Tired with her grown up children under her feet and not being able to get a moments peace, Eliza takes herself to sunny Spain to housesit.

It’s whilst away that Eliza takes stock of her life and how little time she has to herself and makes her reevaluate herself and makes new friends as well as finding love.

I loved this story, it’s sunny, fun and packed with adventure. Eliza was a great character, she was kind with a huge heart who immediately settles into her new life in the small Spanish community and befriends fellow English people. She’s not afraid to speak her mind and it’s such warm reading as she makes friends with Josep as well as becoming friends with his pigs.

As per usual Jo has delivered another story, that sweeps you away in life, packed with delicious and mouthwatering food and a traditional Spanish town, ‘Retreat To The Spanish Sun’ is the perfect book to curl up with beside the pool!

You can pre-order ‘Retreat To The Spanish Sun’ from Amazon and will be available to buy from good bookshops from 23rd June 2022.