Portia is determined to restore Buttersley Manor, her family’s crumbling ancestral home, to its former glory. Yet she has a feeling that there are a few forgotten skeletons in the dust-covered cupboards.
Jenny has put her life on hold for far too long. It’s time to finally start living and to dig up those hopes and dreams she’s kept hidden all these years – but is she brave enough?
Rich is happily married with a beautiful wife and lovely daughter. In fact, his world is perfect until a very unexpected consequence of his past walks through the door…
Joe would like nothing more than to travel back in time to when he and Gina were happy. But is it too late to rescue what they once had?
One thing’s for sure, nothing’s ever quite what it seems when it comes to life in the country!
My Rating: 4/5
Review: I really enjoyed this book, the setting and the characters were quite realistic although I have to admit Jenny and Joe were my favourites. Their stories were so believable that you wanted the best for them. The intertwining of some of the stories brought it all together and set it really well in the location and gave context and depth to the book overall. There were quite a lot of characters in the book but because of the context they were placed in and because their stories were so different it never got confusing as to who was doing what.
I liked the conclusions that each persons story came to, each one fitted well with what the character was trying to achieve and with the confines of the story. The one thing that I found disappointing and prevents me from rating this any higher was that I felt it was too short and a bit rushed. There was a lovely build up and explanation of how each person got to where they were and where they wanted to go next, they started making progress towards their goals and then suddenly the stories wound up and the book ended. I think if this book were to have an extra 50-100 pages then there could be more depth to the “trying to achieve their goals” part of the book and it would end less abruptly.
Having said that the abrupt ending didn’t detract from the fact that this is a lovely summer read. It’s perfect for a hazy, lazy day outside with a cool drink. There are parts that will make you laugh out loud and others that will have you cheering people on. This is a easy, light read that is ideal for a bit of realistic escapism (sounds contradictory I know, but it’s true) and despite my feelings about the length of this book I will definitely be reading other books by this author.
About Alice Ross
Alice Ross used to work in the financial services industry where she wrote riveting, enthralling brochures about pensions and ISAs that everyone read avidly and no one ever put straight into the bin.
One day, when nobody was looking, she managed to escape. Dragging her personal chef (aka her husband) along with her, she headed to Spain, where she began writing witty, sexy, romps designed to amuse slightly more than pension brochures.
Missing Blighty (including the weather – but don’t tell anyone), she returned five years later and now works part-time in the tourism industry.
When not writing, she can be found scratching out a tune on her violin, walking her dog in wellies two sizes too big (don’t ask!), or standing on her head in a yoga pose.