The Girl at the Window – Rowan Coleman

The Girl at the Window - Rowan Coleman Synopsis: A house full of history is bound to have secrets…
Ponden Hall is a centuries-old house on the Yorkshire moors, a magical place full of stories. It’s also where Trudy Heaton grew up. And where she ran away from…
Now, after the devastating loss of her husband, she is returning home with her young son, Will, who refuses to believe his father is dead.
While Trudy tries to do her best for her son, she must also attempt to build bridges with her eccentric mother. And then there is the Hall itself: fallen into disrepair but generations of lives and loves still echo in its shadows, sometimes even reaching out to the present…

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-girl-at-the-window/rowan-coleman/9781785032462

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

Rowan Coleman’s books are very special, guaranteed to keep you totally engrossed from the very first page to the very last sentence! Rowan is a sublime storyteller, we have loved all of her books, and The Girl at the Window is superb, atmospheric writing, weaving fact with fiction in such an accomplished way. This is an absolutely stunning novel; book the time and the space to curl up and be transported to another time and place! Highly Recommended!


A Dream of Italy – Nicky Pellegrino

A Dream of Italy - Nicky PellegrinoSynopsis: “Here is your chance to buy your own home in southern Italy for less than the price of a cup of coffee”
For sale: crumbling building in southern Italy. Asking price: 1 Euro.
In the drowsy heat of an Italian summer, three strangers arrive in the beautiful hilltop town of Montenello. Each has agreed to buy a crumbling historic building for a single Euro – and each is dreaming of a new adventure.
Elise is desperate to get on the property ladder. Edward wants to escape a life he feels suffocated by. Mimi is determined to start afresh after her divorce. And there’s one more new arrival whose true motives are yet to be revealed…
For each of them, Montenello offers a different promise of happiness. But can they turn their dream of Italy into reality?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Dream-Italy-Nicky-Pellegrino/dp/1409178978

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We love Nicky Pellegrino’s books and her ability through her evocative writing to transport you to another place and the The Dream of Italy is another utterly charming and uplifting novel. If you dream of living or visiting Italy you will adore this book. Highly Recommended!

 

 


New Beginnings at Rose Cottage – Erin Green

New Beginnings at Rose Cottage - Erin GreenSynopsis: One glorious summer brings the chance to begin again.

When solo travellers Benni, Emma and Ruth find themselves holidaying together at charming Rose Cottage in Brixham, Devon, they are initially disappointed to be sharing with strangers of a different age group.

But ‘friendship and home comforts’ are guaranteed at Rose Cottage and soon a bond blossoms between the women, who each have valuable life lessons to share.

As the summer unfolds, Benni, Emma and Ruth begin to realise that age is just a number. Before their time at Rose Cottage ends, will they take the chance to grasp the dreams that are now within their reach?

https://www.waterstones.com/book/new-beginnings-at-rose-cottage/erin-green/9781472263551

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This is an utterly charming book, Erin captures the scenery of the Devon harbour village beautifully and gently explores the opportunities faced by three solo travellers as they each take a well-deserved holiday. New Beginnings at Rose Cottage is an uplifting and optimistic story, perfect for holiday reading.


Almost Adults – Ali Pantony

Almost Adults - Ali PantonySynopsis: The struggle is real but at least they’re all in it together.
Ever managed to kill a succulent after just a few days?
Got seven reminder letters on the kitchen table because you forgot to pay your council tax?
Become a hot mess who’s falling apart because they’ve been broken up with?
Mackie, Edele, Alex and Nat are navigating their chaotic and confusing twenties together. They have jobs and pay their own rent (well, most of them) but don’t know how to bleed radiators, defrost a freezer or test the smoke alarms.
With break-ups to deal with and major decisions to make, life can get messy especially when they’re still trying to get the hang of this ‘being a grown-up’ thing.
Welcome to the joys of being almost adults.

https://www.waterstones.com/book/almost-adults/ali-pantony//9781529104301

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Almost Adults is full of realism, humour and real warmth as we follow the lives of four women as they navigate their way through their twenties. With clever observation Ali Pantony has created a story full of relatable situations, charting the highs and lows of relationships, the realities of adult responsibilities and the importance of friendship. A brilliant debut novel!


A Home From Home – Veronica Henry

A Home From Home - Veronica HenrySynopsis: Sunshine, cider and family secrets…
Dragonfly Farm has been a home and a haven for generations of Melchiors – arch rivals to the Culbones, the wealthy family who live on the other side of the river. Life there is dictated by the seasons and cider-making, and everyone falls under its spell.
For cousins Tabitha and Georgia, it has always been a home from home. When a tragedy befalls their beloved Great-Uncle Matthew, it seems the place where they’ve always belonged might now belong to them…
But the will reveals that a third of the farm has also been left to a Culbone. Gabriel has no idea why he’s been included, or what his connection to the farm – or the Melchiors – can be.
As the first apples start to fall for the cider harvest, will Dragonfly Farm begin to give up its secrets?

https://www.waterstones.com/book/a-home-from-home/veronica-henry/9781409183525

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Veronica Henry is one of our favourite authors, every time one of her books arrives we know that we are in for a treat of sublime storytelling!

A Home from Home is another triumph, an absolute joy of a read, beautiful evocative writing, making this delightful book an absolute must-read for your summer booklist.

We absolutely loved it! Highly Recommended!


The Little Vineyard in Provence – Ruth Kelly

The Little Vineyard in Provence - Ruth KellySynopsis: Ava needs to escape.

Stuck in a dead-end job, her husband Mark has left her with a mountain of debt and no clue as to when he’ll be back.

When she receives the news that her grandfather has passed away, Ava is shocked to learn he has left his entire vineyard, Chateau Saint Clair, to her.

Fresh coffee and croissants for breakfast, a glass of red with the handsome local waiter Jacques; Ava starts to feel quite at home. But it would be madness to walk away from her marriage, to take a chance on a place she fell for as a child – wouldn’t it?

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-little-vineyard-in-provence/ruth-kelly/9781409185307

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
As a title The Little Vineyard in Provence immediately beckons you in with a promise of a delightful escapist reading and Ruth Kelly delivers a charming and uplifting summer read. As a debut novel this shows real talent, we look forward to her next book!


The Woman in the Photograph – Stephanie Butland

The Woman in the Photograph - Stephanie Butland

Synopsis:

 

1968. Veronica Moon, a junior photographer for a local newspaper, is frustrated by her (male) colleagues’ failure to take her seriously. And then she meets Leonie on the picket line of the Ford factory at Dagenham. So begins a tumultuous, passionate and intoxicating friendship. Leonie is ahead of her time and fighting for women’s equality with everything she has. She offers Veronica an exciting, free life at the dawn of a great change.
Fifty years later, Leonie is gone, and Veronica leads a reclusive life. Her groundbreaking career was cut short by one of the most famous photographs of the twentieth century.

Now, that controversial picture hangs as the centrepiece of a new feminist exhibition curated by Leonie’s niece. Long-repressed memories of Veronica’s extraordinary life begin to stir. It’s time to break her silence, and step back into the light. An empowering, feminist and moving novel that will change the way you see the world.

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

In The Woman in the Photograph, Stephanie Butland has created an important and powerful novel. Well-researched and cleverly combining history with a deeply moving and poignant story of so many dimensions, this is a book that will stay in your mind long after you finish reading it. Highly Recommended!


Four Weddings and a Festival – Annie Robertson

Four Weddings and a Festival - Annie RobertsonSynopsis: Four months. Four weddings. One happy ending…?
Lifelong friends and rom-com fans Bea, Lizzie, Hannah and Kathave curled up with Bridget Jones, sobbed at Love, Actuallyand memorised the script to Notting Hill. They always joked about getting married in one summer – their own Four Weddings – and it seems like this might just be the year . . .

That is, until Bea turns down her boyfriend’s proposal. Is her own Hugh Grant waiting for her amid the champagne and confetti? Can real-life romance ever live up to a Richard Curtis movie?

As the wedding – and festival – season gets into its swing, can all four friends find their happy ever after…?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

This is a perfect read for lovers of romantic comedy and particularly Richard Curtis movies, the book is full of references; but Annie Robertson also cleverly creates her own story full of very realistic characters and intriguing storylines. Absolutely wonderful, feel good summer read. Highly Recommended!


My Lemon Grove Summer – Jo Thomas

My Lemon Grove Summer - Jo ThomasSynopsis: Could the lemon groves of Sicily be the perfect place to start over? The irresistible new novel from Jo Thomas, the author of Sunset Over the Cherry Orchard, will transport you to the island of mountains and sparkling blue seas.

When life hands you lemons … is it ever too late for a second chance?

Zelda’s impulsive nature has got her precisely nowhere up until now. A fresh start in a beautiful hilltop town in Sicily looking for new residents, together with her best friend Lennie, could be just what she needs. And who better to settle down with than the person who knows her best?

But the sun-filled skies and sparkling seas can’t hide the shadow hanging over Citta d’Ora, which means not everyone is pleased to see their arrival. The dreams Zelda and her fellow new residents had of setting up a new life might be slipping away. But a friendship with restauranteur Luca could be about to unlock the possibilities that lie in the local lemon groves. And there’s a wedding on the horizon that might be just what the town needs to turn it around…

Could a summer in Sicily help Zelda learn to trust her instinct and follow her heart?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
What we love about books written by Jo Thomas is that she always transports the reader with her vivid descriptions of her locations; her evocative writing immediately places you in the destination so that all your senses are alive to the scenes as they unfold.

My Lemon Grove Summer is no exception, stunning location, believable characters, engaging storylines, it is another joyous summer read! Highly Recommended.


Secrets and Seashells at Rainbow Bay – Ali McNamara

Secrets and Seashells at Rainbow Bay - Ali McNamaraThe sun is shining on the golden castle on Rainbow Bay – and change is in the air!

Synopsis: Amelia is a single mother, doing her very best to look after her young son, Charlie – but money is tight and times are tough. When she first hears that she is the last descendent of the Chesterford family and that she has inherited a Real-Life Castle by the sea, Amelia can’t quite believe her ears. But it’s true!

She soon finds that owning a castle isn’t quite the ticket to sorting out her money problems that she’d first hoped: she can’t sell, because the terms of the ancient bequest state that any Chesterford who inherits the castle, must live there and work towards the upkeep and maintenance of the family home. So ever-practical Amelia decides to uproot her little family and move to this magnificent castle by the sea.

Living in a castle on the beautiful Northumberland coast is fun at first, but organising the day-to-day running is a lot more complicated than Amelia first imagined. Luckily she has help from the small band of eccentric and unconventional staff that are already employed there – and a mysterious unseen hand that often gives her a push in the right direction just when she needs it most. It’s only when she meets Tom, a furniture restorer who comes to the castle to help repair some antique furniture, that Amelia realises she might get the fairy-tale ending that she and Charlie truly deserve…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Congratulations Ali, ten years and ten books and we have loved each one! Ali McNamara is one of those special authors who always delivers a guaranteed delightful escapist read and Secrets and Seashells at Rainbow Bay is another magical story. We loved it! Highly Recommended!

If you would like to read more about the 10 novels – 10 Years. 10 Books. 10 Questions… visit https://www.alimcnamara.co.uk


Bring Me Sunshine – Laura Kemp

Bring Me Sunshine - Laura KempSynopsis: Charlotte Bold is nothing like her name – she is shy and timid and just wants a quiet life. When her job doing the traffic news on the radio in London is relocated to Sunshine FM in Mumbles, she jumps at the chance for a new start in Wales.

But when she arrives she discovers that she’s not there to do the travel news – she’s there to front the graveyard evening show. And she’s not sure she can do it.

Thrust into the limelight, she must find her voice and a way to cope. And soon she realises that she’s not the only person who finds life hard – out there her listeners are lonely too. And her show is the one keeping them going.

Can Charlotte seize the day and make the most of her new home? And will she be able to breathe new life into the tiny radio station too…?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We loved Laura’s previous book, The Year of Surprising Acts of Kindness and in Bring Me Sunshine, Laura has created another collection of delightful characters, full of realism, humour and real warmth. Another utterly charming and uplifting novel. Highly Recommended!


A Walk in Wildflower Park – Bella Osborne

A Walk in Wildflower Park - Bella OsborneLife’s not always a walk in the park…

Synopsis: Anna thought she’d found The One – until he broke off their engagement exactly a year before their wedding day. Hoping new surroundings will do her the world of good, she moves in to a place of her own on the edge of gorgeous Wildflower Park.

With the help and friendship of her neighbour Sophie, Anna quickly settles in and pledges to focus on her career, but a handsome new colleague seems determined to thwart her attempts at every turn. And when she receives a text from a mystery man, it looks as though an unlikely romance is on the horizon…

Is Anna about to be swept off her feet by someone she really shouldn’t be falling for? Or could this be the new start she needs and deserves?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
A Walk in Wildflower Park is a delightfully satisfying book, full of twists and turns. Originally published as a four-part series it has interesting characters and a pace to keep you reading to the very end. There are some laugh-out loud moments as well as heart-warming charm. A perfect summer read! Highly Recommended!


The Library of Lost and Found – Phaedra Patrick

The Library of Lost and Found - Phaedra PatrickSynopsis: Librarian Martha Storm has always found it easier to connect with books than people, though not for lack of trying. She keeps careful lists of how to help others in her notebook. And yet, sometimes it feels like she’s invisible.

All of that changes when a mysterious book arrives on her doorstep. Inside, Martha finds a dedication written to her by her grandmother Zelda, who died under mysterious circumstances years earlier. When Martha discovers a clue within the book that her grandmother may still be alive, she becomes determined to discover the truth. As she delves deeper into Zelda’s past, she unwittingly reveals a family secret that will change her life forever.

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This is such a special book, beautifully written with an intriguing mystery at the centre. Phaedra Patrick has created a delightful collection of characters, if you love books you will find this story utterly charming. Highly Recommended!


All Summer With You – Beth Good

All Summer With You - Beth GoodThere’s no place like home…

Synopsis: Nursing a broken heart, Jennifer Bolitho retreats to Pixie Cottage. Her new landlord – a former soldier turned movie heartthrob – has grounds so large, she’s sure the little house nestled in the woods will bring her solitude.

Alex Delgardo also has reasons to hide away. Seeking refuge after a tragic incident turned his world upside down, he knows that the most important thing now is to care for his ailing family.

But when Jennifer enters their lives, that changes. Because, as they both learn, you can’t heal others until you learn to heal yourself…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
In All Summer With You, Beth Good has created a book with real pace. Her characters have such depth and she manages to keep revealing more and more secrets so that once started you really want to finish it. A delightful summer read! Highly Recommended!


Needlemouse – Jane O’Connor

Needlemouse - Jane O'ConnorTime to come out of hibernation…

Synopsis: Sylvia Penton has been hibernating for years, it’s no wonder she’s a little prickly…
Sylvia lives alone, dedicating herself to her job at the local university. On weekends, she helps out at a local hedgehog sanctuary because it gives her something to talk about on Mondays – and it makes people think she’s nicer than she is.

Only Sylvia has a secret: she’s been in love with her boss, Professor Lomax, for over a decade now, and she’s sure he’s just waiting for the right time to leave his wife. Meanwhile she stores every crumb of his affection and covertly makes trouble for anyone she feels gets in his way.

But when a bright new PhD candidate catches the Professor’s eye, Sylvia’s dreams of the fairy tale ending she has craved for so long, are soon in tatters, driving her to increasingly desperate measures and an uncertain future.
Sylvia might have been sleep walking through her life but things are about to change now she’s woken up…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This is a thoughtful book about unrequited love and self-discovery, poignant, but ultimately uplifting. There are also delightful references to the life of hedgehogs throughout the book. In Needlemouse, as a debut novel, Jane O’Connor has demonstrated real talent. Highly Recommended!


A Summer Reunion – Fanny Blake

A Summer Reunion - Fanny BlakeSynopsis: One perfect villa, four old friends, and a holiday that will change everything…

Amy, Linda, Kate and Jane were best friends at school. Now, years later, they have grown apart. When Amy discovers her husband has been stealing from her successful interiors business, and with a milestone birthday looming, she decides it is the time to reach out to her old friends once again.

So, she decides to invite the other three to her beautiful villa in Mallorca for a reunion weekend. As the four friends gather, secrets are unearthed, old scores settled and new friendships forged. Will this holiday bring them together or tear them apart? And will each of them grasp their second chance for happiness…?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Fanny Blake always creates the most delightful books. Her storytelling is always enticing, as a reader you want to know more about her characters and their lives. Her descriptions of the locations are sublime, ensuring that you don’t just read her books but experience them as if you are an observer watching the plot unfold. A Summer Reunion is an intriguing, absolutely wonderful summer read. Highly Recommended!


The Bookshop on the Shore – Jenny Colgan

The Bookshop on the Shore - Jenny ColganEscape to the Scottish Highlands where a tiny bookshop perches on the edge of a loch.

Synopsis: Zoe is a single mother, sinking beneath the waves trying to cope by herself in London. Hari, her gorgeous little boy is perfect in every way – except for the fact that he just doesn’t speak, at all. When her landlord raises the rent on her flat, Zoe doesn’t know where to turn.

Then Hari’s aunt suggests Zoe could move to Scotland to help run a bookshop. Going from the lonely city to a small village in the Highlands could be the change Zoe and Hari desperately need.

Faced with an unwelcoming boss, a moody, distant bookseller named Ramsay Urquart, and a band of unruly children, Zoe wonders if she’s made the right decision. But Hari has found his very first real friend, and no one could resist the beauty of the loch glinting in the summer sun. If only Ramsay would just be a little more approachable…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

What we love about Jenny Colgan’s books is her magical storytelling where she always creates such believable characters and communities that you feel transported the minute you step inside her books. Full of atmosphere, The Bookshop on the Shore is an uplifting, heart-warming summer read!
Highly Recommended!


The Lemon Tree Hotel – Rosanna Ley

The Lemon Tree Hotel - Rosanna LeySynopsis: In the beautiful village of Vernazza, the Mazzone family have transformed an old convent overlooking the glamorous Italian Riviera into the elegant Lemon Tree Hotel. For Chiara, her daughter Elene and her granddaughter Isabella, the running of their hotel is the driving force in their lives.

One day, two unexpected guests check in. The first, Dante, is a face from Chiara’s past, but what exactly happened between them all those years ago, Elene wonders. Meanwhile, Isabella is preoccupied with the second guest, a mysterious young man who seems to know a lot about the history of the old convent and the people who live there. Isabella is determined to find out his true intentions and discover the secret past of the Lemon Tree Hotel.

A story about love, family secrets, and a little piece of heaven . . .

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
An indication of how much we like a book is how invested we are in the characters. In The Lemon Tree Hotel, Rosanna Ley has created a family that is so real that as a reader there are times when you are literally holding your breath as you turn the pages; willing them to get to the next stage, caring about their hopes and dreams – will they each get a happy ending? Absolutely stunning writing, a wonderful summer read. Highly Recommended!


The Path to the Sea – Liz Fenwick

The Path to the Sea - Liz FenwickSynopsis: Sometimes going home is just the beginning…

Boskenna, the beautiful, imposing house standing on the Cornish cliffs, means something different to each of the Trewin women.

For Joan, as a glamorous young wife in the 1960s, it was a paradise where she and her husband could entertain and escape a world where no one was quite what they seemed – a world that would ultimately cost their marriage and end in tragedy.

Diana, her daughter, still dreams of her childhood there – the endless blue skies and wide lawns, book-filled rooms and parties, the sound of the sea at the end of the coastal path – even though the family she adored was shattered there.

And for the youngest, broken-hearted Lottie, heading home in the August traffic, returning to Boskenna is a welcome escape from a life gone wrong in London, but will mean facing a past she’d hoped to forget.

As the three women gather in Boskenna for a final time, the secrets hidden within the beautiful old house will be revealed in a summer that will leave them changed for ever.

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

The Path to the Sea is a book that commands your attention. This is a novel with real depth; Liz Fenwick’s brilliant writing with her evocative descriptions and powerful characters is utterly gripping.

We have loved Liz’s previous books, but this has all the qualities to make it one of her best books yet!

Once started The Path to the Sea will ensure that you will lose track of time, so book out the weekend and escape to the sea!

Definitely one of our Top 10 reads this year. Highly Recommended!


Her Husband’s Mistake: A marriage, a secret, and a wife’s choice… Sheila O’Flanagan

Her Husband's Mistake: A marriage, a secret, and a wife's choice... Sheila O’FlanaganSynopsis: Should a woman be ready to forgive and forget to save her marriage? Roxy’s not so sure…

When Roxy comes home unexpectedly one day to give her husband Dave a lovely surprise, it’s Roxy who gets shock of her life. And all she wants to do is run away. Roxy knows she has to face up to what’s happened and decide: forgive and forget, or bring an end to a decade-long marriage. Surely the right thing is to get over it – that’s what Dave thinks. After all, it’s just one mistake…

But Roxy finds it’s not so simple. Especially when another secret starts to emerge. Her friends and family all know what they’d do – but they’re not Roxy…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Sheila O’Flanagan is such a sublime writer that when one of her books arrive arrives you know that you will be completely transported to the place and people that she has created with such realism. Her Husband’s Mistake is gritty, funny, and totally absorbing.

We absolutely loved it, a perfect summer read! Highly Recommended!


The Woman Who Wanted More by Vicky Zimmerman

The Woman Who Wanted More by Vicky ZimmermanSynopsis: Two women. One unusual cookbook. And a friendship that will show them how to savour each moment . . .

Kate Parker is about to turn forty and her world has fallen apart. Her seemingly rock-solid relationship is suddenly up in the air, and she’s been forced to move back in with her mother. In need of some distraction, Kate (reluctantly) volunteers at her local retirement home.

Cecily Finn is a ninety-seven-year-old resident of Lauderdale House for Exceptional Ladies. Her tongue is as sharp as her mind but lately she’s lost her spark, seemingly resigned to the Imminent End.

But then Cecily prescribes Kate a self-help recipe book with a difference – and so begins an unlikely friendship between two lonely and stubborn souls. Together, these two very different women – one near the end of her life, one adrift somewhere in the middle – will show each other that food is for feasting, life is for living, and that it’s always essential to ask for more.

https://www.waterstones.com/book/the-woman-who-wanted-more/vicky-zimmerman/9781785765322

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
In the note from the author Vicky Zimmerman explains that one of her lead characters, Cecily Finn, was inspired by her grandmother also called Cecily Finn, who wrote Thought for Food in the 1950’s. This in part explains why The Woman Who Wanted More is such a deliciously authentic book, beautifully written, poignant but ultimately inspiring.

Highly Recommended!


A Perfect Cornish Summer – Phillipa Ashley

A Perfect Cornish Summer - Phillipa AshleySynopsis: Summer is on the horizon, and the people of Porthmellow are eagerly awaiting the annual food festival. At least, most of them are…

For Sam Lovell, organising the summer festival in her hometown is one of the highlights of her year. It’s not always smooth sailing, but she loves to see Porthmellow’s harbour packed with happy visitors, and being on the committee has provided a much-needed distraction from the drama in her family life (and the distinct lack of it in her love life).

When their star guest pulls out with only a few weeks to go, everyone’s delighted when a London chef who grew up locally steps in at the last minute. But Gabe Matthias is the last person Sam was expecting to see, and his return to Porthmellow will change her quiet coastal life for ever.

Curl up with this gorgeous novel and savour the world of Porthmellow Harbour.

The first in a gorgeous new series from the author of Summer at the Cornish Cafe.

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

We love Phillipa Ashley’s books and A Perfect Cornish Summer is another delightful example of her writing. Capturing the atmosphere and spirit of the village and the festival Phillipa invites you in and keeps you engrossed until the very end. A heart-warming summer read! Highly Recommended!


A Summer to Remember – Sue Moorcroft

A Summer to Remember - Sue MoorcroftSynopsis: COME AND SPEND SUMMER BY THE SEA!

WANTED! A caretaker for Roundhouse Row holiday cottages.

WHERE? Nelson’s Bar is the perfect little village. Nestled away on the Norfolk coast we can offer you no signal, no Wi-Fi and – most importantly – no problems!

WHO? The ideal candidate will be looking for an escape from their cheating scumbag ex-fiancé, a diversion from their entitled cousin, and a break from their traitorous friends.

WHAT YOU’LL GET! Accommodation in a chocolate-box cottage, plus a summer filled with blue skies and beachside walks. Oh, and a reunion with the man of your dreams.

PLEASE NOTE: We take no responsibility for any of the above scumbags, passengers and/or traitors walking back into your life…

GET IN TOUCH NOW TO MAKE THIS A SUMMER TO REMEMBER!

https://www.waterstones.com/book/a-summer-to-remember/sue-moorcroft/9780008321765

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

In A Summer to Remember, Sue Moorcroft’s description of the Norfolk coast is atmospheric and beautiful, you really do feel transported to Nelson’s Bar. The book is an absolute delight, beautifully written, a perfect escapist Bank Holiday read!


Playgroups and Prosecco – Jo Middleton

Playgroups and Prosecco - Jo MiddletonThe (mis)adventures of a single mum

Synopsis: January 3rd

Jaffa Cakes – 7.

Times I was forced to watch a small child do a dance involving a dusty piece of ribbon found under the sofa – 4.

Inappropriate thoughts about Zac Efron – undisclosed

Single mum Frankie’s whole life revolves around her kids. But when your toddler has a more active social life, something has to change. Forget ‘me-time’, Frankie would settle for some adult conversation, and watching something other than the Disney channel.
The local playgroup may be ruled by Instagram mums with perfect husbands but Frankie accidentally forms a splinter group of single parents. After all, Mummy reallyneeds a playdate of her own. (Now pass the prosecco.)

https://www.waterstones.com/book/playgroups-and-prosecco/jo-middleton/9781529103366

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Playgroups and Prosecco is a very funny and relatable novel describing the life of single mum Frankie. Jo Middleton has very cleverly observed and recorded delightful anecdotes which combine poignancy with laugh-out loud moments, making it a delightful read. A brilliant debut novel.


The Flatshare – Beth O’Leary

The Flatshare - Beth O'LearyTiffy and Leon share a flat
Tiffy and Leon share a bed
Tiffy and Leon have never met…

Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they’re crazy, but it’s the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy’s at work in the day, and she has the run of the place the rest of the time.

But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven’t met yet, they’re about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window…

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This is a very clever book, we loved the concept behind The Flatshare, it’s intriguing and engaging. We often talk about a book being suitable for a movie but The Flatshare really would lend itself to the big screen. Heartwarming and uplifting with engaging characters, this is a stunning debut novel.

Highly Recommended and one of our favourite reads of 2019!


The Garden of Lost and Found – Harriet Evans

The Garden of Lost and Found - Harriet EvansSynopsis: Nightingale House, 1919. Liddy Horner discovers her husband, the world-famous artist Sir Edward Horner, burning his best-known painting The Garden of Lost and Found days before his sudden death.

Nightingale House was the Horner family’s beloved home – a gem of design created to inspire happiness – and it was here Ned painted The Garden of Lost and Found, capturing his children on a perfect day, playing in the rambling Eden he and Liddy made for them.

One magical moment. Before it all came tumbling down…

When Ned and Liddy’s great-granddaughter Juliet is sent the key to Nightingale House, she opens the door onto a forgotten world. The house holds its mysteries close but she is in search of answers.

For who would choose to destroy what they love most? Whether Ned’s masterpiece – or, in Juliet’s case, her own children’s happiness.

Something shattered this corner of paradise. But what?

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
The Garden of Lost and Found is described as an ‘epic family drama’ and it really is. The way that Harriet Evans weaves the different threads of the story across the different generations is powerful. There are parts of this book that make for difficult reading, but such is her talent for storytelling that it will capture you and entreat you to read just one more page to see where she takes you. Utterly compelling and well written.


Swallowtail Summer – Erica James

Swallowtail Summer - Erica JamesSynopsis: They thought they were friends for life – until one summer, everything changed . . .

Linston End on the Norfolk Broads has been the holiday home to three families for many years. The memories of their time there are ingrained in their hearts: picnics on the river, gin and tonics in the pavilion at dusk, hours spent seeking out the local swallowtail butterflies. Everyone together.

But widower Alastair has been faced with a few of life’s surprises recently. Now, he is about to shock his circle of friends with the decisions he has made – and the changes it will mean for them all. For some, it feels like the end. For others, it might just be the beginning . . .

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
In Swallowtail Summer, Erica James creates an intriguing story about long term friendships and the hidden secrets that may lie beneath the surface. There are dramatic moments which are challenging to read, but her descriptions of the Norfolk Broads are exquisite and as usual with an Erica James novel it is well written and thought-provoking.


One Summer In Paris – Sarah Morgan

One Summer In Paris - Sarah MorganSynopsis: One charming bookshop, two unlikely friends, and a summer in Paris that will change their lives forever…
Grace can’t believe it when her husband of twenty-five years announces he doesn’t want to join her on their anniversary trip to Paris – instead, he wants a divorce. Reeling from the shock, Grace makes the bold decision to go on this holiday of a lifetime alone.

Audrey leaves behind heartache of her own when she arrives in Paris. A job in a bookshop is her ticket to freedom, but with no knowledge of the French language, her summer adventure seems doomed to fail. Until she meets Grace, and everything changes…

Living in neighbouring apartments above the bookshop, Grace and Audrey form an unlikely friendship. They came to Paris to find themselves, but finding each other might be the best thing that’s ever happened to them.

https://www.amazon.co.uk

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

We love Sarah Morgan’s books, but Summer in Paris is one of her best! , Sarah is a sublime story teller, her characters have depth and warmth and set against the backdrop of Paris, her descriptions of the bookshop and the sights of Paris are so rich that it makes you feel that you are really there. As she weaves the characters and their lives together, this is a perfect candidate for a movie.

An absolutely glorious summer read!

Highly Recommended and one of our favourite reads of 2019!


The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew – Milly Johnson

The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew - Milly JohnsonSynopsis: Behind every successful man is a woman.
Behind the fall of a successful man is usually another woman.

Sophie Mayhew looks like she has the perfect life. Wife of rising political star John F Mayhew, a man who is one step away from the top job in the government, her glamour matches his looks, power, breeding and money. But John has made some stupid mistakes along the way, some of which are threatening to emerge. Still, all this can still be swept under the carpet as long as Sophie ‘the trophy’ plays her part in front of the cameras.

But the words that come out of Sophie’s mouth one morning on the doorstep of their country house are not the words the spin doctors put in there. Bursting out of the restrictive mould she has been in since birth, Sophie flees to a place that was special to her as a child, a small village on the coast where she intends to be alone.

But once there, she finds she becomes part of a community that warms her soul and makes her feel as if she is breathing properly for the first time. Sophie knows she won’t be left in peace for long. Now she must decide: where does her real future lie?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Milly Johnson always writes with such warmth and The Magnificent Mrs Mayhew is another delightful novel. Very current in its content, full of strong characters and a wonderfully uplifting theme of discovering yourself and what you really need to fill your soul this is a joyous spring read! Highly Recommended!


The Day We Met – Roxie Cooper

The Day We Met - Roxie CooperSynopsis: Stephanie and Jamie are meant to be. The problem is they’re both with other people…

Stephanie doesn’t believe in fate, true love or living happily ever after. She’s content enough being engaged to Matt. But then she meets Jamie, who understands her more than anyone else ever has. Jamie is happily married to his childhood sweetheart Helen and believes in everything Stephanie doesn’t. So why does he have such a strong connection with Stephanie? When Stephanie and Jamie meet one fateful weekend in 2006 it will change everything… Ten years. Two people. One epic love story.

https://www.waterstones.com/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Once in a while a book comes along that you know is something really special and The Day We Met is such a book. Impossible to put down, this is a challenging, funny, bittersweet, moving, poignant, love story.

Beautifully written, emotionally charged from the accompanying playlist to the ending, this book will capture your heart, but be prepared to experience every emotion that you can imagine.

Highly Recommended!


A Rose Petal Summer – Katie Fforde

A Rose Petal Summer  - Katie FfordeSynopsis: IT’S NEVER TOO LATE TO FALL IN LOVE…

Caro Swanson has taken a job in a remote part of Scotland.
She’s answered an ad in The Lady: being a companion to an elderly gentleman who lives in a country estate could be perfect! Surely it’s time to make a change and do something different for a while?
The fact that she may also see Alec, the young man who she met some years previously and who she has always thought of as her ‘one who got away’, is of course purely incidental.
Soon Caro is falling in love – not only with Alec but with the stunning country house she’s now living in. But the estate is in financial difficulties, and Caro soon realises there’s only one way to rescue it.
So begins a magical romantic summer, one that will take Caro from Scotland to London and the south of France, in search of a classic lost perfume that might just restore all their fortunes.

https://www.amazon.co.uk

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
It’s always a magical time when a Katie Fforde book arrives and this beautiful book, her 25th novel, is another absolute delight and another candidate for our Top 10 reads of 2019! .

Once you start reading A Rose Petal Summer you will be transported into the world that Katie has created and before you know it several hours will have passed, and as you reach the last page you will emerge smiling and relaxed. We absolutely loved it, an uplifting and delightful perfect weekend read! Highly Recommended!


The List That Changed My Life – Olivia Beirne

The List That Changed My Life - Olivia BeirneSynopsis: Georgia loves wine, reality TV and sitting on the sofa after work. She does not love heights, looking at her bank account, going on dates, or activities that involve a sports bra. And she will never, ever take a risk.

That is, until her braver, bolder, big sister finds out that she won’t be able to tick off the things she wanted to do before turning thirty, and turns to Georgia to help her finish her list.

With the birthday just months away, Georgia suddenly has a deadline to learn to grab life with both hands. Could she be brave enough to take the leap, for her sister?

And how might her own life change if she did?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We love The List That Changed My Life, Olivia Beirne has brilliantly created very funny relatable situations which combined with more poignant reality moments results in a wonderfully uplifting debut novel. Definitely an author to watch in the future. Highly Recommended!


Happiness for Beginners – Carole Matthews

Happiness for Beginners - Carole MatthewsSynopsis: Molly Baker is living her best life.

Thirty-eight years old, she lives on the twenty-five-acre Hope Farm in Buckinghamshire, surrounded by (mostly) four-legged friends and rolling hills. There’s Anthony the anti-social sheep, Tina Turner the alpaca with attitude, and the definitely-not-miniature pig, Teacup.

Molly runs the farm as an alternative school for kids who haven’t thrived in mainstream education. It’s full on, but she wouldn’t have it any other way. So when the well-groomed Shelby Dacre turns up at Hope Farm asking to enrol his son Lucas, Molly isn’t fazed.

But Lucas is distant and soon Molly realises he might be more of a handful than she anticipated. And then there’s the added problem that his dad is distractingly handsome. Molly has her beloved farm to think of – could letting Lucas and Shelby in be a terrible mistake, or the start of something wonderful?

https://www.amazon.co.uk

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
With its bright yellow cover this delightful book contains a wonderful and brilliantly written story that will completely engage you. What we love about Carole’s books is the characters that she writes about have such depth, that as you read you are completely transported to the world that she has created.

Carole took her inspiration for Happiness for Beginners from a real farm that offers alternative education and this research sings throughout the whole book as it is not only the people but the animals too, utterly charming and unpredictable they almost steal the show!

Carole describes this book as one of her best and we couldn’t agree more, it is a joyous, uplifting and absolutely stunning book! Highly Recommended and guaranteed to be one of our Top 10 Books for 2019!


Mr Doubler Begins Again – Seni Glaister

Mr Doubler Begins Again - Seni GlaisterSynopsis: Not every journey takes you far from home.
Baked, mashed, boiled or fried, Mr Doubler knows his potatoes. But the same can’t be said for people. Since he lost his wife, he’s been on his own at Mirth Farm and that suits Doubler just fine. Crowds are for other people; the only company he needs are his potato plants and his housekeeper, Mrs Millwood, who visits every day.

So when Mrs Millwood is taken ill, it ruins everything and Mr Doubler begins to worry that he might have lost his way. But could the kindness of strangers be enough to bring him down from the hill?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
In Mr Doubler Begins Again, Seni Glaister has created such a wonderfully exquisite book. Taking an uplifting and sensitive approach to relationships, her characters are brilliantly drawn and the twists within the storyline are so cleverly revealed, we absolutely loved it.

This book is guaranteed to be one of our favourite reads in 2019! Highly Recommended!


If We’re Not Married By Thirty – Anna Bell

If We’re Not Married By Thirty - Anna BellSynopsis
Lydia’s not exactly #LivingHerBestLife. She never imagined she’d be here at thirty – newly single, a job that’s going nowhere and her friends all winning at life when she’s still barely taking part. So she jumps at the chance of a free holiday and jets off to sunny Spain.

Then, out of the blue, she bumps into her childhood friend, the handsome and charming Danny Whittaker. She’s always had a crush on him and they soon enter into a passionate holiday romance.

But this relationship could be more than just a fling. Years ago they made a pact that if they were still single when they turned thirty they would get married. But noone really follows through on these pacts . . . right?

Could Lydia’s back-up man really be her happy ever after?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
If We’re Not Married By Thirty has great pace, very funny, but also with a will-they-won’t-they romance. Full of great characters and with all the makings of a romantic comedy movie, Anna Bell has created a wonderful post-Christmas delight.


More than a Feeling – Cate Woods

More than a Feeling - Cate WoodsSynopsis: Annie Taylor had bags of confidence and spent her evenings impersonating her idol Barbra Streisand, looking flawless in exuberant turbans and winged eyeliner.

Nowadays she is a mother, girlfriend, best friend, photographer, sister – and she’s struggling to keep up.

But then, she sees something she most definitely should not have, and it’s the most freeing thing that could have happened. Suddenly, she has the chance to find herself once more…

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This book has great pace, once started you just want to keep reading, as well as poignancy, it has some brilliantly funny laugh-out-loud moments, and despite some ups and downs in Annie Taylor’s life, Cate Woods ultimately delivers a heart-warming romance.


A Winter Beneath the Stars – Jo Thomas

A Winter Beneath the Stars - Jo Thomas - Hot Brands Cool Places Synopsis: Halley has been running from her problems for years.

On a courier trip to Tallfors, deep in Swedish Lapland, everything is going to plan. Halley has her bag, with two precious wedding rings inside for delivery… until she doesn’t.

The only way to save the wedding is to team up with mysterious reindeer herder Bjorn, the one person who can lead her across the snowy tundra to be reunited with her bag.

On a journey of a lifetime beneath the stars, with only the reindeer and a bad-tempered stranger for company beside the fire, Halley realises that she will need to confront her past heartaches in order to let the warmth of love in once more…

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
This is such a fabulous read! Full of pace and energy, we absolutely adored this book. Jo always researches her books really thoroughly and in this case Katie Fforde was with her too! Capturing the imagination, this book has such tremendous pace you feel exhilarated just by reading it. Impossible to put down, it is a wonderful Festive delight. Highly Recommended!


Not Just For Christmas – Natalie Cox

Not Just For Christmas- Natalie Cox - Hot Brands Cool PlacesSynopsis: Charlie hates the holidays, and this year is shaping up to be her worst yuletide ever. Her boyfriend has left her for his personal trainer, her flat is out of bounds after a gas leak, and her mother has gone to spend Christmas in Melbourne with her fifth husband. Finding herself single, mildly concussed and temporarily homeless, Charlie hesitantly agrees to dust off her wellies and spend the festive season in Devon, looking after Cosy Canine Cottages, her cousin Jez’s dog-care centre.

However, her plans for a quiet rural Christmas with only the four-legged friends for company are dashed as soon as she meets Malcolm the deaf Great Dane, Hugo, his gorgeous (but engaged) owner, and Cal, the undeniably attractive but unbearably haughty and patronising local vet…

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
If you love dogs you will love this book. A gentle and humorous take on life in the country, served with a sparkling romance, a menagerie of animals and an unusual Christmas tree! A perfect book to get you in the mood for the Festive season.


Christmas at the Beach Hut – Veronica Henry

Christmas at the Beach Hut - Veronica HenrySynopsis: Everyone adores Christmas . . .

Especially Lizzy Kingham. But this year, she is feeling unloved and underappreciated by her family. The present-buying, decorating and food shopping have all been left to her. So she wonders . . . what would happen if she ran away and left them to it?

Lizzy heads to her favourite place: a beach hut on the golden sands of Everdene. There she meets an unlikely collection of new friends, all running away from something. But the spirit of Christmas gets under Lizzy’s skin: soon the fairy lights are twinkling and the scent of mulled wine mingles with the sea air.

Back at Pepperpot Cottage, her family are desperate to find her. For Christmas isn’t Christmas without Lizzy. Can they track her down in time and convince her she means the world to them, every day of the year?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

Veronica Henry is one of our favourite authors, when one of her books arrives it is such a delicious treat, you know it will be beautifully and thoughtfully written, touching the heart of anyone who reads it. Christmas at The Beach Hut is no exception, very current and totally absorbing. A perfect excuse to stop Christmas preparations and curl up with this gorgeous book. We absolutely loved it! Highly Recommended!


The Mother of All Christmases – Milly Johnson

The Mother of All Christmases - Milly Johnson - Hot Brands Cool PlacesSynopsis: Eve Glace – co-owner of the theme park Winterworld – is having a baby and her due date is a perfectly timed 25th December. And she’s decided that she and her husband Jacques should renew their wedding vows with all the pomp that was missing the first time. But growing problems at Winterworld keep distracting them …

Annie Pandoro and her husband Joe own a small Christmas cracker factory, are well set up and happy together despite life never blessing them with a much-wanted child. But when Annie finds that the changes happening to her body aren’t typical of the menopause but pregnancy, her joy is uncontainable.

Palma Collins has agreed to act as a surrogate, hoping the money will get her out of the gutter in which she finds herself. But when the couple she is helping split up, is she going to be left carrying a baby she never intended to keep?

Annie, Palma and Eve all meet at the ‘Christmas Pudding Club’, a new directive started by a forward-thinking young doctor to help mums-to-be mingle and share their pregnancy journeys. Will this group help each other to find love, contentment and peace as Christmas approaches?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Mother-All-Christmases-Milly-Johnson/dp/1471161900/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1542274742&sr=8-1&keywords=Mother+of+all+Christmases

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We love Milly Johnson’s books and The Mother of All Christmases is a delight, it has all the ingredients of a perfect read, humour, romance, but also a poignancy that will take you from laughter to tears, but ultimately will uplift you, in the sublime way that Milly has of completing all her novels. A wonderful Christmas read! Highly Recommended!


The Christmas Sisters – Sarah Morgan

The Christmas Sisters - Sarah Morgan - Hot Brands Cool PlacesSynopsis: It’s not what’s under the Christmas tree, but who’s around it that matters most.

All Suzanne McBride wants for Christmas is her three daughters happy and at home. But when sisters Posy, Hannah and Beth return to their family home in the Scottish Highlands, old tensions and buried secrets start bubbling to the surface.

Suzanne is determined to create the perfect family Christmas, but the McBrides must all face the past and address some home truths before they can celebrate together . . .

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
What we love about Sarah Morgan’s books is the way she holds the attention from the first page to the very last, as a reader you want to curl up and enjoy every minute of her delightful books. The Christmas Sisters has all the components for a wonderful read, believable characters, atmospheric location, humour, romance and uplifting touches of pure Christmas magic! We absolutely loved it. Highly Recommended!


An Island Christmas – Jenny Colgan

An Island Christmas - Jenny ColganSynopsis: Christmas on the remote Scottish island of Mure is bleak, stark – and incredibly beautiful.

It’s a time for hunkering down, getting cosy in front of whisky barrel wood fires, and enjoying a dram with the people you love – unless, of course, you’re accidentally pregnant to your ex-boss, and don’t know how to tell him. In what should be the season of peace and goodwill on earth, will Joel think Flora is a bearer of glad tidings?

Meanwhile Saif, the doctor and refugee from war-torn Syria is trying to enjoy his first western Christmas with his sons – but without his missing wife. Can the little family possibly find comfort and joy?

Travel to the beautiful northern edge of the world and join the welcoming community of Mure for an unforgettable Christmas.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We love our visits to the beautiful Scottish island of Mure, and this is another very welcome return. What we love is the way that Jenny paints such a realistic picture of the island and its characters that you feel it’s quite possible to take a boat and visit.

An Island Christmas is both poignant and heart-warming and as our days get shorter and colder, makes this a wonderful weekend read. We loved it. Highly Recommended!


Every Breath – Nicholas Sparks

Every Breath - Nicholas SparksThere are times when destiny and love collide. This story is one of them.

Hope Anderson is at a crossroads. After six years with her boyfriend, she is no longer sure what she wants, and when her father becomes ill she heads to her family’s cottage at Sunset Beach in North Carolina to make some difficult decisions.

Tru Walls has been summoned across an ocean from where he was born and raised in Zimbabwe by a letter from a man claiming to be his father. In journeying to Sunset Beach, Tru hopes to unravel the mystery surrounding his mother’s life, but the letter will lead him in an unexpected direction

When these two strangers’ paths cross, their chance encounter sets in motion a heart-breaking story – one that will transcend decades, continents and the workings of fate.

Illuminating life’s heart-breaking regrets and enduring hope, Every Breath explores the many facets of love that lay claim to our deepest loyalties-and asks the question: How long can a dream survive?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Every Breath is a book to treasure, poignant, magical, storytelling, with its message about seizing the opportunities in life and love. One of the things that we love about the writing of Nicholas Sparks is the cinematic way that he describes the locations in his story. In describing Sunset Beach in North Carolina where the Kindred Spirits Mail Box is located, you are transported to that beach, and the story immediately has a realism that underpins the beautiful love story. We loved it! Highly Recommended!


The Songs of Us – Emma Cooper

The Songs of Us - Emma CooperSynopsis: If Melody hadn’t run out of de-icer that day, she would never have slipped and banged her head. She wouldn’t be left with a condition that makes her sing when she’s nervous. And she definitely wouldn’t have belted out the Arctic Monkeys’ ‘I Bet You Look Good on the Dancefloor’ in assembly at her son’s school.

If Dev hadn’t taken the kids to the zoo that day, then the accident wouldn’t have happened. He wouldn’t have left Flynn and Rose without a dad. Or shattered the love of his life’s heart.

But if they hadn’t seen the missing person report that day, they might never have taken the trip to Cornwall. And, in the last place they expected, discovered what it really means to be ‘Us’.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

In The Songs of Us, Emma Cooper has created such a special book.Thoughtful, funny, bittersweet, moving, poignant, there are not enough adjectives to describe the content, just be prepared to experience every emotion.

Impossible to put down, the memory will stay with you long after you have finished the book, it will make you cherish those you love and appreciate the air that you breathe and the life that you live.

One of our top 10 reads this year! Highly Recommended!


The Drowned Village – Kathleen McGurl

The Drowned Village - Kathleen McGurlSynopsis: A village destroyed. An uncovered secret.

It’s the summer of 1935 and eleven-year-old Stella Walker is preparing to leave her home forever. Forced to evacuate to make way for a new reservoir, the village of Brackendale Green will soon be lost. But before the water has even reached them, a dreadful event threatens to tear Stella’s family apart.

Present day, and a fierce summer has dried up the lake and revealed the remnants of the deserted village. Now an old woman, Stella begs her granddaughter Laura to make the journey she can’t. She’s sure the village still holds answers for her but, with only days until the floodwaters start to rise again, Laura is in a race against time to solve the mysteries of Stella’s almost forgotten past.

Haunting and evocative, The Drowned Village reaches across the decades in an unforgettable tale of love, loss and family.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Inspired by a real life incident Kathleen McGurl has created an intriguing and evocative story with a mystery at the centre. The events are shared through the voices of different family members in different time periods. With beautiful descriptions of the scenery in The Lake District and a gentle romance, The Drowned Village is a delightful weekend read!


Summer of Secrets – Nikola Scott

Summer of Secrets - Nikola ScottSynopsis:

August 1939

At peaceful Summerhill, orphaned Maddy hides from the world and the rumours of war. Then her adored sister Georgina returns from a long trip with a new friend, the handsome Victor. Maddy fears that Victor is not all he seems, but she has no idea just what kind of danger has come into their lives…

Today

Chloe is newly pregnant. This should be a joyful time, but she is fearful for the future, despite her husband’s devotion. When chance takes her to Summerhill, she’s drawn into the mystery of what happened there decades before. And the past reaches out to touch her in ways that could change everything…

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

Nikola Scott is such a talented writer, her writing is so evocative and she has this wonderful ability to create powerful storylines steeped in poignancy and emotion, that make her books impossible to put down.

Summer of Secrets is another wonderful example, utterly compelling, brilliant writing. Highly Recommended!


A Girl’s Best Friend – Jules Wake

A Girl’s Best Friend - Jules WakeSynopsis: Welcome to your new cottage in the country – complete with grumpy vet, village gossip and a very muddy dog . . .

City girl Ella wants to take refuge in the country, lick her wounds and work out what she’s going to do with the rest of her life. She certainly doesn’t want to have a four-legged house guest or anything to do with village life. Unfortunately, the inhabitants of Wilsgrave have other ideas.

Settling in to her godmother’s house for a few months of R&R, Ella finds herself the reluctant babysitter of a badly behaved Labrador – and her plans of staying mainly indoors scuppered. But as she’s forced into wellies and into the village’s way of doing things, Ella meets people who make her think again about what she really wants out of life and love, starting with her new furry best friend . . .

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review

In A Girl’s Best Friend, Jules Wake has created an utterly believable village, full of wonderful characters, coupled with an amusing account of village life. Add in a delightful dog and the potential of a happy ever after romance and you have an absolutely charming and delightful weekend read!


One Thousand Stars and You – Isabelle Broom

One Thousand Stars and You - Isabelle BroomSynopsis: Alice is settling down. It might not be the adventurous life she once imagined, but more than anything she wants to make everyone happy – her steady boyfriend, her over-protective mother – even if it means a little part of her will always feel stifled.

Max is shaking things up. After a devastating injury, he is determined to prove himself. To find the man beyond the disability, to escape his smothering family and go on an adventure.

A trip to Sri Lanka is Alice’s last hurrah – her chance to throw herself into the heat, chaos and colour of a place thousands of miles from home.

It’s also the moment she meets Max.

Alice doesn’t know it yet, but her whole life is about to change.

Max doesn’t know it yet, but he’s the one who’s going to change it.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Isabelle Broom is a sublime writer, we have loved every one of her books and One Thousand Stars and You is another brilliantly written and researched novel. Set in Sri Lanka, her descriptions are so evocative that you feel utterly transported to the sights and sounds of the country. Woven within the narrative is an achingly beautiful romance.An absolutely stunning read, we loved it! Highly Recommended!


Summer on the Little Cornish Isles – The Starfish Studio – Phillipa Ashley

Summer on the Little Cornish Isles - The Starfish Studio - Phillipa AshleySynopsis: One summer can change everything

Poppy has always loved Cornwall. So when her boyfriend Dan suggests they leave their office jobs and take over the Starfish Studio on the Isles of Scilly, Poppy doesn’t need asking twice.

But things don’t go to plan when Dan dumps her, weeks before they’re due to move. Determined not to give up, Poppy accepts the help of local photographer Jake, her landlord’s grandson. But Jake is distracted by a loss from his past.

Can they turn the crumbling gallery into a success in time for tourist season? And will a summer on the little Cornish Isles mend just the studio or Poppy’s heart too?

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
Phillippa has created such a gorgeous story set in a beautiful location, that you can imagine getting off the boat and seeing The Starfish Studio waiting for you. This is such a delightful summer read. We loved it, utterly charming!


One Summer in Italy – Sue Moorcroft

One Summer in Italy - Sue MoorcroftSynopsis: When Sofia Bianchi’s father Aldo dies, it makes her stop and look at things afresh. Having been his carer for so many years, she knows it’s time for her to live her own life and to fulfil some promises she made to Aldo in his final days.

So there’s nothing for it but to escape to Italy’s Umbrian mountains where, tucked away in a sleepy Italian village, lie plenty of family secrets waiting to be discovered. There, Sofia also finds Amy who is desperately trying to find her way in life after discovering her dad isn’t her biological father.

Sofia sets about helping Amy through this difficult time, but it’s the handsome Levi who proves to be the biggest distraction for Sofia, as her new life starts to take off

https://www.amazon.co.uk/

Hot Brands Cool Places Review
We loved One Summer in Italy, set in a gorgeous location, brilliant storyline, great pace, absolutely wonderful feel good summer read.