The House of New Beginnings

Summer means it is time for the release of Lucy Diamond’s latest book in paperback, and I was so excited to get my hands on her latest one “The House of New Beginnings”. I don’t think my summer is complete without a Lucy Diamond book! 🙂

In “The House of New Beginnings” we meet Charlotte, Rosa, Georgie, Margot and Jo, all living in the same house in Brighton. All of whom have their own story for being in SeaView House. All five of the ladies have experienced sad stories, and now thrown together in SeaView House they begin to confide in each other, building new friendships and watching each other fall in to happier, new chapters of their lives.

I enjoyed this book, like I have all of Lucy Diamond’s other books and it was great watching how the story unfolded and how each of the ladies lives were all twisted in to each other in some way. Plus there were parts of the story that weren’t predictable which is always good in a chicklit book! It was a lovely, heartwarming story of watching people so sad rebuild their lives into something new, so I really enjoyed going on the adventure with each one of the characters in this book.

My only problem with the book was that I sometimes forgot who was who. I think that is one of the problems with books like this were you have a lot of characters in a situation like this. Like I kept getting Rosa and Charlotte mixed up. I loved them both, but sometimes I had to flick back to remind myself which background story belonged to each character. But that said it was a great book with truly loveable characters, and I really can’t wait for Lucy Diamond’s next book! 😀

The Secrets of Happiness

It’s been so long since my last post! Sorry! But since then I’ve been on holiday and then back to work so although I finished this book a week or so ago I hadn’t yet got round to writing a review for it. But here it is!

I saw Lucy Diamond’s most recent novel “The Secrets of Happiness” come out back in January but I’d held off ordering it for a while firstly because it was hardback (and wouldn’t have fitted in so nicely with my other Lucy Diamond paperbacks!) and secondly because I had plenty of other books to be getting on with reading. But after finishing “A Year of Taking Chances” I decided it was time to buy “The Secrets of Happiness” and finally catch up completely with Lucy Diamond’s writing.

I enjoyed “The Secrets of Happiness”, particularly the two key characters Becca and Rachel.

Becca and Rachel are sisters, or stepsisters as they are more than happy to point out! Rachel’s dad married Becca’s mum when they were younger, and both children were struck with jealously at “losing” their parents to the other child. This led to a less than happy relationship between Becca and Rachel. Other further events occurring within their lives have pushed the two step sisters apart even further, to the point that Rachel is now rather embarrassed by her sister.

When Rachel suddenly finds herself needing help, Becca is called upon to care for her two nieces and nephew, much to her sisters concern! But Becca loves her nieces and nephew and more than steps up to being an aunt… and eventually a sister.

Will the events that bring them together under difficult circumstances be what brings them back together permanently?

I enjoyed “The Secrets of Happiness” as I took a liking to both Becca and Rachel instantly. One thing I always really like about Lucy Diamond’s books is her ability to create brilliant relationships between her characters and this book was no exception. The relationship between Becca and Rachel blossomed beautifully throughout the book.

All in all I enjoyed “The Secrets of Happiness”. I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s my favourite Lucy Diamond book (I think “The Beach Cafe” still holds that!) but it was a good read. Plenty of characters to get stuck in to as well as a good plot with several twists that kept me turning pages.

I look forward to Lucy Diamond’s next book!

A Year of Taking Chances

So I’ve finished another book! YAY! 🙂

Next up was “A Year of Taking Chances” by Lucy Diamond. Another great book that I really enjoyed and had no trouble getting myself in to. In fact I read most of it while curled up in bed yesterday! 🙂

“A Year of Taking Chances” is simply about what it says. It follows 3 ladies: Gemma, Caitlin and Saffron as they meet on New Years Eve, and vow to take more chances this next year.

Caitlin is back in the village she grew up in clearing out her mum’s house after her unexpected death. Saffron, from London has had a shock which causes her to make decisions that will change her life forever. Gemma, simply a “mum” has her whole life turned upside down when her husband has an accident at work that sees him out for a long time. With bank balances running low and bills piling up Gemma has no option but to look for a job having given up work when her children were born. But will it go down well with her husband who has totally lost his pride after his accident.

“A Year of Taking Chances” was a great book with lovable characters, who meet at the start of the book and remain best friends. Lucy Diamond again succeeds at making brilliant friendships with the most lovely characters. The plot was great with good twists and turns that I honestly wasn’t expecting.

Again I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend any Lucy Diamond books to anyone, including this one. It was great and I loved it. My only complaint was how it ended! I wanted to know more about what happened to Saffron in the future not have it stop when it did! But I can hope that Lucy Diamond writes more about these lovely characters.

One Night in Italy

It’s been a little while since a reviewed a book on here, but I’m back with a new one! As I’ve said before life and work have got in the way of reading as much as I would like to but I’ve finally finished another book that I’d like to share with you.

Having only discovered Lucy Diamond back in the summer I was pleased that I had loads of her books to read to catch up with and I’m getting sad now that I am almost at the end of all the Lucy Diamond books that are out at present. After “A Baby at the Beach Cafe” it was time for “One Night in Italy”.

“One Night in Italy” always intrigued me and I couldn’t wait to give it at try, but I decided that I would read the books in order so it had to wait!

“One Night in Italy” introduces us to several characters (so it did get a bit confusing at times) but our main characters are: Anna, Catherine and Sophie.

Sophie has been away travelling for the past 8 years after “falling out” with her parents, but after one of her parents falls gravely ill she rushes home to visit. Initially she lives in a hostel until a lack of money (due to no job) forces her home. Back home she manages to find a job in the local cafe until she lands herself a job as an Italian teacher… It is here that she meets Catherine and Anna.

Anna, a journalist has recently found out that her father that she has never met is Italian. After finding this out she is determined to do anything and everything she can to learn about her possible heritage, including undertaking Italian cookery lessons as well as signing up to Sophie’s Italian classes.

Catherine, a stay at home mother has recently seen her two children off to University. When returning home she finds her husband having an affair which leads to him walking out on her. As Catherine attempts to pick up the fragments of her life she decides to sign up to the Italian class to keep busy.

But what secrets are Catherine’s ex husband hiding, and how does that link to Sophie’s dad getting ill? Will Sophie decide to settle down now she’s back in Sheffield? Is Anna’s father really Italian?

“One Night in Italy” was a really great book. At first it took me a little while to get in to the story and see where possibly the stories could link up (because at first it seemed that all the characters would have no hope in all bumping in to each other)! But once I was in I couldn’t put the book down! It’s amazing how all the stories fit together and I loved all the characters so much.

I absolutely loved the little bit in the story where Catherine dropped absolutely everything after her daughter returned distraught from university. I loved it purely because my mum did exactly the same for me 18 months ago and it shows how many girls mothers are their best friends.

The story was just great, this review really won’t do it justice though! The characters were so lovable and the story was so full of little twists and turns and secrets, most of which I didn’t see coming at all. I would highly recommend this story to anyone who wants a great read. It will make you laugh, and probably make you cry! All in all it’s just another brilliant book from the brilliant Lucy Diamond!

A Baby at the Beach Cafe

Having discovered Lucy Diamond in the summer and falling in love with the Beach Cafe Series (The Beach Cafe, Christmas at the Beach Cafe and Christmas Gifts at the Beach Cafe) I was really excited when I found that there was another Beach Cafe book coming out… Even if it did mean waiting a long time for it!

At the end of “Christmas Gifts at the Beach Cafe” we find out that Evie is pregnant with her’s and Ed’s first child. “A Baby at the Beach Cafe” picks up Ed and Evie’s story several months later when Evie is now heavily pregnant with her baby due any day.

Evie fails to understand that in order to look after herself and their baby she needs to start taking things easy. With Evie’s blood pressure rising and her ankles swelling Ed posts an advert in their cafe for a temporary cafe manager so that Evie can begin her maternity leave.

Helen and her husband have just moved to Cornwall from Birmingham looking for some time away from work. Helen used to run a pub and after seeing Ed’s ad at the cafe, decides to jump in and help at the Beach Cafe. But things don’t start out well as tempers between Helen and Evie fray. Can their relationship improve before the arrival of the baby?

I absolutely loved this little novella from Lucy Diamond, it was such a lovely little story to bring us up to date with some of my favourite characters. The characters were great, at first I didn’t particularly like Helen, but she grew on me once the story developed. As usual I loved Evie and Ed and it was a great little storyline. The only problem was that it was too short! Something I hate about novellas, I never want the story to end!

I remember reading somewhere that this would be the last Beach Cafe story and I’ll be really sad if this is the case! But if this is the end then this is a perfect little book for us to say goodbye to Evie, Ed and the Beach Cafe! 🙂

Me and Mr Jones

Firstly I apologise that it has taken me so long to write this most recent blog post, but work has meant that I haven’t had so much time for reading!

My latest book was “Me and Mr Jones” by Lucy Diamond and again I was not disappointed. Me and Mr Jones was a brilliant book, where three ladies were all united by one common factor – a Mr Jones.

Emma and David Jones are struggling along, David has lost his job, their latest house deal has fallen through and Emma is struggling to get pregnant. Alicia is marred to Hugh Jones, who has a deep secret to share with his wife and family. Izzy ends up landing herself in a relationship with Charlie Jones. The parents of Hugh, David and Charlie own a B&B in Dorset and when Eddie and Lilian Jones to turn their thoughts to retirement. But which son will they pick to take on the family business?

Me and Mr Jones was a great book. I was gripped for the whole duration and I loved all the characters!

All in all, another outstanding book by Lucy Diamond!

Now, what shall I read next?!

Summer With My Sister

On Wednesday I started my new job! YAY! But it does mean I don’t have the time like I used to where I could happily sit and read my books all day! Boooo! 😦

But still, this morning I finished reading the next book in my Lucy Diamond readaton: “Summer With My Sister”.

So Summer With My Sister is pretty much what the title says. Two sisters Claire and Polly live incredibly different lives. Polly has an incredibly rich lifestyle living in London, working her socks off in the financial sector, while Claire a divorced mum of two lives in the village in which she grew up working as a receptionist at the local doctors surgery. When things go bad for Polly she is forced back home to live with her family. Frustrated at first Polly hates living back at home and longs to be back in London, but when an old friend re-enters her life she begins to change her mind and Polly changes for the better. Claire meanwhile struggling for money gets an opportunity too good to refuse and gets her big break!

Summer With My Sister was a lovely family-orientated story (a bit like Over You) and I really loved the characters. I particularly loved the change that we saw in Polly, from not caring at all about her family to absolutely adoring them, particularly her little niece and nephew Alex and Leila. The scene with Polly being left to babysit Alex and Leila and ending up watching Harry Potter with them was so lovely and was definitely the key turning point for Polly.

The characters were great and again I loved the ending and would really love to see more of Polly and Claire and their respective new boyfriends and Claire’s new business. Again Lucy Diamond has delivered another really great book, one that I struggled to put down and really really enjoyed reading.

Now on to “Me and Mr Jones”!