Contemporary Romance · humour · mystery · self discovery · Spain

Book Review – The Spanish House

The Spanish House

One bizarre to-do list to earn her inheritance. One Spanish summer. One huge family secret.

‘⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ An absolutely delightful and captivating read!’ – Lucy Coleman, bestselling author of Summer in Andalucia

Juliana makes a modest living as an ‘ethnic’ TV/film extra – even though the only connections with her Spanish heritage are her cacti, Spanish classes, and some confused memories of a Spanish mother she hasn’t seen since she was seven.

When her beloved Uncle Arturo offers her the chance to discover her roots while housesitting his coastal home in a quiet corner of Andalusia, Juliana can’t believe her luck. Especially when he reveals that the house will be hers if she fulfils ten life-enhancing ‘Conditions’ within 90 days.

Redecoration of the house and a visit to the old film studio where her mother used to sew costumes seem ridiculously simple tasks for such a wonderful reward. But little does Juliana realise that there are family secrets and inherited rivalries awaiting her in sunny Spain, and the condition that she has to ‘get on with the neighbours’ – who include a ruggedly handsome but moody artist – may be harder than she thinks.

The perfect escapist read for fans of Rosanna Ley, Jo Thomas and Sue Moorcroft.

The Spanish House is gorgeous romantic escapism that you won’t want to miss!’ Holly Martin, bestselling author of Sunlight Over Crystal Sands

WoW! This book was simply a joy to read!‘ Reader review

‘Loved this enjoyable book!’ Reader review

It was funny, cute and intriguing‘ Reader review

‘This is the first novel of Cherry Radford that I read and it was beautiful … One cannot resist wishing to visit Spain after reading this splendid book … The story is heartwarming’ Reader review

‘A wonderful book, that I would recommend to anyone‘ Reader review

‘A light and heart warming read set in a beautiful location’ Reader review

‘I could not put this down, it was my first book by this author and wish I had found her a while ago. Fantastic writing, fantastic plot development and I just loved the main character’ Reader review

‘This was my first Cherry Radford book and it was a beautifully written story. The description of Spain made the reader feel like they were there with Juliana’ Reader review

‘A great summer read!’ Reader review

‘This is a great book! Well written, complex storyline with various moving parts … Would so recommend this amazing read!‘ Reader review

‘Absolutely loved this sweet romance … So glad I came across this’ Reader review

‘It’s just right for a summer read … although it would be delightful to spend time in Spain in the middle of the winter!’ Reader review

‘This was such a gorgeous read!!!! I really enjoyed the plot and the writing style was gorgeous!! The character build up is fantastic and I couldn’t put it down’ Reader review

Purchase link

My Review

Sometimes a book title will call out to you. The Spanish House did that to me, no doubt because of where I live and how I got here. I can’t seem to resist a story set in my adopted country! The fact that I’m familiar with Almería and can visualise the descriptions only added to my enjoyment.

It was comforting and entertaining to take a step back and read about Juliana’s experience of doing up her Uncle Arturo’s house in San Rafael. Her encounters with the local and non-locals alike felt so realistic; I loved her “stream of consciousness” outpourings as she ummed and ahed over how to ask certain questions, wondering whether her vocabulary was as effective in Spanish as she intended. But more than that I loved the relationships she built with her dear uncle, with Josemi next door and even with his “Miserable Bag” of a mother.

Conflict came in the form of a family secret (I’m not giving any spoilers here!) that initially angered her but then helped her understand who she was. Why it seemed inconceivable that a parent would hold back such information, in the end Juliana benefitted in so many ways. Her life changed forever, and for the better. What felt like betrayal of trust eventually became an explanation, an understanding and her future.

Her uncle’s “to do” was super specific and yet vague – she should visit the site where her mother worked on the set of Once Upon a Time in the West, a Western made in Spain years before her birth. She should visit all the beaches, and get along with the neighbours. None of the tasks seemed too onerous, yet they were indeed very random. However, Uncle Arturo was a wise man, mending bridges that Juliana didn’t even know existed, let alone that they’d been broken in the past.

As she went about the task of painting the house, replacing bits and pieces, and making it into a home, it was evident she would have to inherit the place. But, of course, it was not as straightforward as that, especially when he ex threw a huge spanner in the works and put her one true romantic relationship in jeopardy. Would she be able to fix that mess? And how could she live in the house if not?

A lovely story about family, friends, memories and being true to yourself. Set amidst stunning scenery within a village of fun, lively and believable characters. Evocative and dramatic, quirky and hugely entertaining. A great read for a rainy day – although there aren’t many of those here! 😉

As always,

Reviewed on Amazon UK by Meandthemutts

book blitz · contemporary fiction · humour · literary fiction

Book Blitz – Everyday Magic

EverdayMagic2

Great news! If you pre-order a copy of Everyday Magic by Charlie Laidlaw, you will receive a signed edition! But you have to order before May 26th!

Everyday Magic Front cover FINALEveryday Magic

Expected Publication Date: May 26th, 2021

Genre: Literary fiction/ Contemporary Fiction/ Humour

Publisher: Ringwood Publishing

Carole Gunn leads an unfulfilled life and knows it. She’s married to someone who may, or may not, be in New York on business and, to make things worse, the family’s deaf cat has been run over by an electric car.

But something has been changing in Carole’s mind. She’s decided to revisit places that hold special significance for her. She wants to better understand herself, and whether the person she is now is simply an older version of the person she once was.

Instead, she’s taken on an unlikely journey to confront her past, present and future.

Everyday Magic is an uplifting book filled with humour and poignancy, and reminds us that, while our pasts make us who we are, we can always change the course of our futures.

Pre-Order HERE!

About the Author

download

Charlie Laidlaw lives in East Lothian, one of the main settings for Everyday Magic. He has four other published novels: Being Alert!, The Space Between Time, The Things We Learn When We’re Dead and Love Potions and Other Calamities. Previously a journalist and defence intelligence analyst, Charlie now teaches Creative Writing in addition to his writing career.

Charlie Laidlaw | Facebook | Twitter

 

Book Blitz Organized By:

R&R Book Tours

books · ebooks · Giveaways · humour · mystery

Mysteries with Humour – A Giveaway!

Today, I have a fun surprise to share with you…

I’ve teamed up with 30+ fantastic authors to give away a huge collection of Mysteries with Humo(u)r series starters to 2 lucky winners!

Oh, and did I mention the Grand Prize winner gets a BRAND NEW eReader? 😁

You can win my novel Just a Simple Little Holiday,

plus books from authors like Eliza Watson and Zara Keane.

Enter the giveaway by clicking here 👉 bit.ly/HumorousMysteries-Oct2020

Good luck and enjoy!

Thanks for reading,

book blitz · dark · humour · RABT Book Tours

Book Blitz – Dead Serious (with giveaway)

Dark Humor/Comedy
Date Published: 6/10/2020
 photo add-to-goodreads-button_zpsc7b3c634.png
“In the past five years, I’ve lost four grandparents, three uncles, two aunts, three cousins, five classmates, and my parents. Even a car died on me…”
Comedian Michael Malone’s life has been punctuated by tragedy. He’s been to over a dozen funerals, but just three weddings – two of which were for the same friend. No stranger to loss, Malone has had ample time to reflect on what it means to grieve, and how to move forward when you’ve outlived so many of your loved ones.
Dead Serious is a look inside Malone’s mind and journal since losing his parents; a dark-humored exploration of depression, suicide, grief, and religion. Designed to be opened and read at any page, this collection of journal entries, illustrated one-liners, and humorous musings combine to create an unorthodox self-help book for anyone who has ever lost someone close to them and doesn’t know where to go from here.
Comedy has always been the lens through which Malone chooses to view the world; a way to shine a light on the dark times so his audiences feel less alone, and less crazy, during their own hardships. Dead Serious offers readers his signature comedic comfort on all life’s ups, downs, and confusing in-betweens.
Michael Malone is an award-winning comedian, actor, writer, and film director who is currently based in Los Angeles, CA. He has been featured on Showtime, Comedy Central, FOX, Hulu, XM Radio, and his Amazon Prime special, “Laugh After Death” has over 2 million views. Michael is known for his dark sense of humor that breaks down the idiotic ways we deal with life, death, love, and sex.
SCROLL UP AND GRAB YOUR COPY TODAY!
Quote from Brad’s foreword:
“If you have any doubt that the best humor comes from deep, dark places, this page-turner will make you a believer. Malone’s life journey, which he describes with blinding transparency and unforgiving irony leaves you laughing your ass off as he candidly exposes how he himself has risen from the bowels of depression and self-loathing to personal and professional success.” – Brad Garrett
About the Author

Michael Malone is an award-winning comedian, actor, writer, and film director who is currently based in Los Angeles, CA. Michael has been featured on Showtime, Comedy Central, FOX, Hulu, XM Radio, and his one-hour special, “Laugh After Death” is now streaming with over 2 million views on Amazon Prime. “Bits and Pieces” is Michael’s first book, but not his first written work. Michael has a monthly column in Face the Current magazines that based on his popular storytelling podcast, “Punched Up.” Michael is known for his dark sense of humor that focuses on breaking down the idiotic ways we deal with life, death, love, and sex.
Contact Links
Purchase Link
RABT Book Tours & PR
blog tour · book review · cosy · crime · humour

Blog Tour ‘n’ Book Review – Marrow Jam

MURDER, MYSTERY…AND MARROWS

Some people would describe Beattie Bramshaw as a pillar of the community. Many would applaud her numerous successes in the bakery competition at the annual village show. A small number might say, if pushed, that they find her a little on the bossy side. And one or two might just whisper the words ‘interfering’ and ‘busybody’ behind her back.

But no-one would have her down as a murderer.

So why is she being questioned in Dreighton police station after being found in the local allotments, at the dead of night, wielding a kitchen knife just yards away from where local lottery winner, Yvonne Richards, was found stabbed to death? And what does all of this have to do with Doug Sparrow’s prize marrows?

Marrow Jam is a comedy crime caper in the spirit of Agatha Raisin. It will have you chuckling all the way through many a cup of tea.

Amazon UK

My Review

The story jumps straight in with Beattie being arrested after having been found brandishing a knife on the allotments. Unfortunately for Beattie, a body has also been found nearby, the victim stabbed to death by a weapon similar in size to her knife. The police officer in charge is adamant Beattie is the killer, and when during her rambling account of events she admits to not liking the victim, then jealousy seems the most likely motive for her crime. 

In an attempt to prove her innocence, Beattie insists on giving a full and frank account which involves steering off topic so many times as to test the police officer’s patience.

I’ll be honest, I was ready to lock her up and throw away the key – not for the murder, but for simply being so annoying! As Beattie’s explanation unfolded, she didn’t endear herself to me until very close to the end when the reasons for her pernickety, prudish and determined nature was clarified. 

The nostalgia of 1999 was lovely to reflect on, especially right now, and the author came up with some of the best metaphors I’ve seen in a long time that so depicted the era and took me right back. 

I’m a big fan of cosy mysteries. You might say “it’s my jam”, and while this was entertaining overall, it didn’t quite resonate with me in the way most mysteries do. The constant timeline changes, while clearly marked at each chapter’s start, meant I had to flick back a lot to double-check where the story was. Maybe I wasn’t concentrating hard enough! The pace began well, faltered a little in the middle but then picked up again towards the end – there was a lot going on in that village. 

Marrow Jam is more of a funny story than a real mystery in my eyes, the humour often bordering on slapstick, Set in a typical English village with the ubiquitous annual fête, it offers a cast of quirky older characters with huge personalities. A charming story with plenty of laughs thrown in. 

About the author:

Susan A King lives with her husband in a quiet suburb in Hampshire. Between them they have four grown-up sons.

The inspiration for her first novel, Marrow Jam, came from her long experience and observation of competitors at the local Romsey Show, where she regularly aspires to win Best in Show with her floral arrangements. 

Social Media Links

Twitter – Susan A King

Twitter – Eye and Lightning

 

For more news and reviews, 

 

Audiobook · blog tour · book review · British · comedy · humour · satire · series

Audiobook Tour ‘n’ Review – The Corridor

Audiobook Blog Tour: The Corridor by Vic Neal

Author: Vic Neal

Narrator: Jack Hardman

Length: 8 hours 32 minutes

Series: Oxford Uni Corridor Series, Book 1

Publisher: Nice Cake Publishing Ltd

Released: Feb. 14, 2020

Genre: Humor

Continue reading “Audiobook Tour ‘n’ Review – The Corridor”

book review · Contemporary Romance · humour · romance · warmth · women's fiction

Book Review – The Next Forever

The Next Forever

by Alix Kelso

Friendship begins beneath cherry blossoms. Can it turn into love?

Meet Chrissie Sullivan – baking whiz, cake shop owner, and a woman on the brink ever since her grown family moved back into the house. When her meddling mother enters Chrissie’s shop into a prestigious wedding cake competition, things get even more complicated. Chrissie never expected still to be alone in her fifties, but her hectic life doesn’t make it easy to find a little romance.

Meet Keith McGraw – pub landlord, whisky lover, and a man who’s perpetually unlucky in love. He thinks he’s happy living alone, until his chaotic ex-wife reappears and turns his life upside down, making him wonder if the woman of his dreams might still be somewhere out there after all.

When Chrissie and Keith meet in the park, a friendship begins beneath spring cherry blossoms as they seek shelter from their messy lives. But as romance sparks, they must run a gauntlet of calamities that threaten to keep them apart. Can they find what it takes to overcome the mayhem and give love one last chance, or risk a future filled with regret?

Treat yourself to THE NEXT FOREVER, a sweet, funny, feel-good story about family, friendship, and falling in love when you least expect it.

Add to Goodreads

My Review

Earlier this year, I read the author’s first Fairhill novel – The Perfect Moment – and was instantly charmed by the characters, especially Keith McGraw. For him to get his own story delighted me, giving me hope that he would get his own chance at happiness. The Next Forever shines a spotlight on Keith, one he thoroughly deserves.

As a thrice-married, thrice-divorced lover of fine Whisky, Keith has all but given up on finding someone with whom to share his life. He books a tour of whisky distilleries, a tour he has promised himself for a long time and one which he is prepared to take alone. Aww! Bless him.

Unfortunately, Janice happens – his ex-wife turns up, sobbing and desperate, the night before he’s due to leave on his trip. There’s no way he can go now – not because he has any feelings still for Janice, but because he dare not leave her alone in his pub. So, he cancels.

Having offered to sort out a wedding cake for a customer-friend, Big Kev who is struggling to keep up with his wedding to-do list – because that’s the kind of man Keith is: big-hearted and generous – Keith heads to Chrissie’s cakes.

Chrissie finds herself in the shop on her day off after a distressed bride-to-be gets into tizz over her wedding cake (such a tizz that the young woman has even got the date of her appointment with Chrissie wrong) when Keith arrives, and despite being swamped with orders , she agrees to take his order – because that’s the kind of woman she is: warm-hearted and selfless.

You can see where this is going, right?

Chrissie, living alone until recently, is now feeling the stress of accommodating her daughter, her daughter’s boyfriend, and their young child. Her home is not her own anymore, and the boyfriend is a prolific DIY disaster who wrecks more of Chrissie’s belongings than he repairs. Add to that, her mother has entered her in a cake competition at an upcoming wedding fayre.

So, when both Chrissie and Keith escape the dilemmas of their home lives for a breath of fresh air, they find each other on a park bench beneath the cherry trees.

A friendship blossoms, one that has great potential for a future relationship. It’s as if their lives aligned on the park bench that night. But of course, the road to romance is cluttered with one issue after another that sees their attempt to even go out to dinner thwarted time and time again. Misunderstandings, overreactions, self-doubt and thoughts of being unworthy of love seek to keep them apart.

The story is brimming with realistic characters, believable circumstances, unfortunate external interferences and so much humour. Often, it is Keith and Chrissie themselves, who suffer as a result of their own generosity and sense of duty. Such is their nature to care for and help others that their commitments impede their own chance of happiness.

Both characters ooze warmth, and will have you onside from the start, willing them to be together. Their journey is tested by real-life situations and frustrations, all of which makes it such an easy, effortless read. Charming, full of heart and a lovely way to pass a few hours. Everyone should visit Fairhill for a dose of warmth, humour, charm, and hope.

 

As always,

book review · chick-lit · Contemporary Romance · humour · NetGalley · relationships · women's fiction

Book Review – One Summer in Santorini

One Summer in Santorini

by Sandy Barker

There was something in the air that night. . .

Sarah has had enough of men. It’s time to rekindle her first true love – travel – so she books a sailing trip around the Greek islands with a group of strangers.

The very last thing Sarah wants is to meet someone new… But then a gorgeous American man boards her yacht and she knows she’s in trouble. And when she also encounters a handsome silver fox who promises her the world, she realises that trouble really does come in twos.

Will Sarah dive into a holiday fling, embark on a relationship, or stick to her plan – steer clear of men, continue her love affair with feta, and find her own way after all?

What others are saying …

The perfect holiday read to escape with this summer for fans of Annie Robertson’s My Mamma Mia Summer and Mandy Baggot’s One Last Greek Summer.

‘A summery romantic debut from a fresh voice in romantic fiction. Made me want to pack my bags for the Greek islands this instant!’ Phillipa Ashley, bestselling author of A Perfect Cornish Summer

‘A fun and flirty escapist read.’ Samantha Tonge, bestselling author of Knowing You

My Review …

A feast for the eyes with beautiful scenes of the Greek islands, a feast in general with plates of delicious Greek food, and lashings of sharp, witty humour to give you belly ache.

The story began well, with Sarah’s funny and relatable view of her break-up with Neil as told to her sister before she set off for her ‘get over it all’ jaunt around the Greek isles. On a whim she’d booked the trip – a ten-day break on a boat with strangers! And why not? After Neil, she deserved some ‘me’ time, and where better than halfway across the world, on a boat in the the middle of the ocean. If that’s not escapism, then I don’t know what is.

As we found out though, Sarah is not the luckiest of travellers – and this time was no different, losing her driver’s licence and wallet before the trip even began. Her bad luck jinx seemed to follow her everywhere, although spotting a cute American at the bus station, and then again on her bus … well, it took the edge off things. And, well, whaddya know he’s on the same trip too! Things were looking up. Or were they?

Her fellow passengers on the boat turned out to be the nicest bunch ever, restoring her faith in strangers and really helping her to relax and live in the moment. Even her roommate Hannah – a bit odd at first – became a trusted friend.

But it was her relationship with the cute American, Josh, that drove the story. She hadn’t planned on meeting anyone, let alone being as attracted to him as she clearly was. He, too, was on board just for the travel and the experience, having never left the US before, and he was most certainly not looking for love.

Despite both Sarah and Josh recognising the mutual attraction, there was a lot of ‘will they / won’t they’ going on, and this was exacerbated further with the arrival of James, aka the Silver Fox, an older, rich man who made no bones about being attracted to Sarah. She knew exactly where she stood with James; with Josh it was never totally clear, although there was a hint of jealousy when Josh realised he had a rival.

In between the ‘romance that could have been’, the group took in some amazing sights, ate some wonderful food and, as a result, bookings to Santorini will probably skyrocket as more readers learn of its beauty and that it has the best tomatoes in the world!

Saying goodbye was never going to be easy; Sarah had made some strong bonds with her fellow travellers. But as she headed back to London for a final week with her sister before flying home to Sydney, her dilemma was never more evident.

Josh, despite occasional signs to the contrary, seemed to just want a travel ‘bud’, whereas James was much keener and determined to meet up with her while she’s in London.

What’s a girl to do? She wanted a BIGGER life, but can she handle the options available to her? I guess we’ll find out in the next book. Looking forward to it already 🙂

I enjoyed this story, the imagery drew me in, the food made me drool, and the witty asides made me chuckle. I’ll definitely be back for seconds.

My thanks to Sandy Barker, Avon Books UK and Netgalley for a copy of this book. This review is all mine, and made of my own free will 😉

As always,

blog tour · book review · British · humour · Italy · mystery · romantic comedy

Blog Tour ‘n’ Book Review – The Ice Cream Parlour

The Ice Cream Parlour

by Isabella May

Giovanna Tonioli is a successful stockbroker with a famous sports star boyfriend, but things aren’t as sweet as they seem. When life in the city of Bath goes from Vanilla to Rocky Road, she takes herself off to Italy for an ‘Eat Pray Love’ style tour of all things gelateria. What she doesn’t expect to find on her travels is one smooth, hot dollop of temptation that she just can’t shake.

How will her spiteful twin sister react when Giovanna returns to open a rival ice cream parlour? Will Natalia get her just desserts? Or will things become even stickier? All’s fair in love, war and ice cream. Isn’t it?

*Marian Keyes meets Paulo Coelho meets Nigella*

The Ice Cream Parlour is a mouthwatering tale of fate, family, love and jealousy – with a delectable drizzle of alchemy besides.

Purchase Link – mybook.to/theicecreamparlour

Author Bio

 

Isabella May lives in (mostly) sunny Andalucia, Spain with her husband, daughter and son, creatively inspired by the sea and the mountains. Having grown up on Glastonbury’s ley lines however, she’s unable to completely shake off her spiritual inner child, and is a Law of Attraction fanatic.

Cake, cocktail, gelato, and travel obsessed, she also loves nothing more than to (quietly) break life’s ‘rules’.The Ice Cream Parlour is her fourth novel.

Social Media Links 

www.isabellamayauthor.com

Twitter – @IsabellaMayBks

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/IsabellaMayAuthor/

Instagram – @isabella_may_author

My Review

4/5 stars

As the first book I’ve read by Isabella May, this one sets a very high bar. It’s an imaginative and creative story – and I’m not just referring to the fantabulous range of drool-inducing gelato on offer.

It’s a mesh of genres and definitely not a typical romantic comedy; it has almost as many layers as the ice cream parlour has flavours.

This is Giovanna’s (Gi) story, and begins when she and her twin, Natalia, are living in Capri with their parents who run a gelateria. Out of the blue, the family (Papa) says they’re moving to England (you might start to get a little suspicious of his reasons, but, of course, he’s not going to tell you 😉 ) Destination: Bath where they will open up a new gelateria. (As you can see, this is not the usual way of things, and Bath, while no doubt a beautiful city, is not Capri by any stretch of the  imagination.)

It is in Bath that most of the sibling rivalry comes to the fore, particularly when Giovanna (who always helps her parents out in the shop) learns that her (much lazier) sister, Natalia will be the only heir. Naturally disappointed and hurt, Gi goes on to have other plans and a trip back to Italy reinforces her ideas. She is determined to show everyone that she and gelato are meant to be together!

Relationships come and go for Giovanna, but her passion never fades. While alienated from her family, new friends (Matt, Kelly, Flo, Nellie) keep her motivated and interesting. There is the inevitable Mafia connection, but it only adds to the mystery that threads through the story from beginning to end.

The author’s writing is witty and current, with plenty of humour, primarily in the form of Giovanna’s sarcasm which is always sharp. The customers in The Ice Cream Parlour provide plenty of interest, with side stories that all seem to connect nicely come the end. I’m not convinced every subplot works. In fact, I feel the regression scenes are quite laboured as though the author is forcing the point a bit too firmly (the point being that the sisters lived many lives before together where roles reversed in each period)

But, getting back to the crux of the story – Gi’s Italian trip is a travel guide all by itself, the ice cream flavours she concocts are inspired, creative and occasionally a tad crazy, but succeed in adding personality to the Parlour and delight the ever eager customers.

The romance element of the story (for Giovanna) is not rushed, and you might even think that poor girl will miss out again (after the sham that was Mr Smug Jeremy!) but do not despair – the author has it all under control. I Love it when that happens 😉

Overall a fun read with a bit of everything thrown into the blender, creating magical flavours and extraordinary characters. I’ll definitely read more of this author’s books, and have already grabbed Costa del Churros for my summer reading.

For more news and reviews, head over  to these blogs:

As always,

book review · chick-lit · fun · humour · romantic comedy

Book Review – The Lonely Spinsters’ Club: Willow

The Lonely Spinsters’ Club

Willow

How does a woman enjoy the company of a man without committing to a long-term relationship? Easy, love him for ninety days and leave him.

Willow gave up on love a long time ago, but she hasn’t given up on sex. So, to keep her chakras aligned and life force flowing, she abides by her tried-and-true rule: love him for ninety days and leave him. Consequently, she can feed her body while protecting her heart.

Willow’s practice of purposeful detachment serves her well until she sets her sights on Kendall’s friend Josh. Even though Josh expresses interest in Willow, he wants a more traditional relationship than she’s willing to give.

Despite their apparent differences, the universe seems to have other plans for the couple as their lives become increasingly intertwined. When Willow finally decides to follow the universe’s lead, she’s betrayed by her ninety-day rule and must rethink her life plan or face the future alone.

Willow’s story is the second installment of the five-book romantic comedy series THE LONELY SPINSTERS CLUB.

Buy Link: Amazon US

My Review

4/5 stars

Having read “Kendall”, the first in the series of The Lonely Spinster’s Club, I was more than happy to jump into this second book. As before, the author’s writing style is easily addictive, with fabulous, larger-than-life characters, authentic dialogue and shed-loads of humour.

Who is Willow, then? To say she is nothing like her cousin Kendall would be an understatement. Kendall is eight and a half months pregnant as this story begins, and planning her wedding to Gio. Willow is about as far away from domestic “bliss” as it’s possible to be, having vowed to never get involved with anyone beyond her 90-day rule. She is of the ‘once bitten, twice shy’ school, but with agoraphobia taking the place of shyness.

When she catches up with Josh again – she met him at her cousin Ruthie’s wedding – then her chakras are out of control, and she spends weeks afterwards wondering whether she could actually settle down with Josh. She’s a tad pigheaded too, and can often come across as aggressive and argumentative.

Josh, on the other hand, wants to settle down and have a family; he loves kids, he gets a puppy … they appear to be perennial combatants.

For Willow, it’s a case of “She loves him. She loves him not”, while for Josh it’s an eternal tug of war with occasional “benefits”.

With Grandma Bev on the sidelines with her quirky digs at Willow’s single status, there is lots of humour to be found here.

A fun read with amusing and entertaining characters – this is a big family, and they all have an opinion. I noticed on Goodreads that there are three more books planned for the remaining cousins – Hester, Ruthie & Freya – all potential candidates for The Lonely Spinsters’ Club (yes, even Ruthie too!) and all much to Grandma Bev’s disapproval. I’m looking forward to reading more about this crazy family.

Get your copy here.

As always,