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Since John bought me a new Kindle at Christmas I have been reading a lot more than I have done for quite some time. Every month I’m going to share a couple of my favourites so that you might find inspiration for your next read.
Amelia loves her life in Paris. But with the surprise inheritance of her childhood home, she has no choice but to return to the small village of Meadowbank to restore her great-aunt’s old farmhouse.
However returning to Meadowbank means she has to confront her past, including old flame Adam – the one person she regrets leaving behind.
When Amelia discovers a locket hidden in the farmhouse, containing the picture of a mysterious World War Two soldier, she starts to uncover the secrets of her great-aunt’s past. With Adam on hand to help restore the farmhouse, she’s shocked by his generosity after so many years apart.
As her feelings for her first love reignite, Amelia is suddenly confused as to where she truly belongs.
Can Amelia finally find where her heart truly calls home?
I really like a romance with a bit of a difference and that’s exactly what this book was.
Amelia loves her life in Paris but a death in the family calls her back home. Amelia dreads heading back to the village she grew up in and the man she loved but ran from.
To start with, I liked the change from Paris to the small village. Sometimes with changes like this the original location can be skimmed over quickly but I felt like there was so much detail put into Paris to help make us understand why Amelia loved living there so much.
Most of all, I loved the history within the story and Amelia trying to find out about her Great Aunt Vera’s past. Not only did this make us understand her more but it helped to introduce lots of interesting characters and information about the village Amelia had gone back to.
The romance, for me, was secondary to the mystery aspect but in a good way. Adam didn’t take anything away from what Amelia was trying to do but instead was there, was supportive and helped her. However, I could have done with a bit more from him and Amelia with regards to their past but I can overlook that really.
Rose Vernon is headed to a quiet Cornish village – to find the man who saved her life.
For Rose, every day is a gift. She narrowly survived a life-threatening illness and owes everything to her anonymous donor. Determined to thank him, Rose follows a trail of clues that lead her to the little Cornish fishing village of Falford.
But things become complicated when Rose is drawn into local life, becoming involved in the legendary Falford Regatta and meeting the handsome Morvah brothers – one of whom might just be the man she’s looking for. But which one?
Can Rose find the answer she’s searching for, or will she lose her heart before the summer is over?
Cornwall is right at the top of my to visit list and Phillipa Ashley only made me want to visit more. This book is filled with beautiful descriptions of quite a few locations and there is loads of history included too. If you’re a book lover you might be interested in the Daphne Du Maurier references throughout as well.
I really enjoyed the basic idea of the plot, with main character Rose trying to figure out who helped to save her life. It was a little far fetched that she could actually find them from a postcard but it didn’t stop me from liking the adventure.
This book has some really wonderful characters, especially with Rose and the Morvah brothers. Everyone had a great story to tell and they were really interesting to read about. Ashley makes sure to keep the story light and fun throughout even though there’s an important mystery to be solved.
My only slight niggle really was the ending, as I felt it was a bit too rushed. It wasn’t completely believable but it didn’t ruin the book.
You and Me on Vacation by Emily Henry
TEN SUMMER TRIPS
THEIR LAST CHANCE TO FALL IN LOVE
12 SUMMERS AGO: Poppy and Alex meet. They hate each other, and are pretty confident they’ll never speak again.
11 SUMMERS AGO: They’re forced to share a ride home from college and by the end of it a friendship is formed. And a pact: every year, one vacation together.
10 SUMMERS AGO: Alex discovers his fear of flying on the way to Vancouver.
Poppy holds his hand the whole way.
7 SUMMERS AGO: They get far too drunk and narrowly avoid getting matching tattoos in New Orleans.
2 SUMMERS AGO: It all goes wrong.
THIS SUMMER: Poppy asks Alex to join her on one last trip. A trip that will determine the rest of their lives.
I had a feeling about this one as soon as I read the synopsis but I really wasn’t prepared for just how much I was going to love it.
Poppy and Alex have been friends for years, ever since that first summer home from college. Every year they take a trip together… it’s tradition! This book is written a little differently to others as it switches back and forth between the present day and Poppy and Alex’s previous trips. I really loved getting to know their history and the adventures they’d been on together.
I also felt like going back made it possible to get to know both characters really well. You can see how they chance from college students to adults, discover different things that mean something to them and watch their friendship develop over time. The story is quite a slow one in a way, as you don’t really get to find out what’s actually happened between Poppy and Alex until quite late in the book.
Something I absolutely loved about this book was the adventure and humour. Not only did it make me want to go off on an adventure somewhere but I was laughing out loud so often (or giggling quietly when I was reading in bed). So far, I think this is my favourite book this year.