I was lucky enough to be given an ARC from Netgalley of Sue Moorcroft’s new book – Summer at The French Cafe. It publishes on 12th May 2022.
It was a brilliant, satisfying 5 star read.
As soon as Kat Jenson set foot in the idyllic French village of Kirchhoffen, she knew she’d found her home. Now she has a dreamy boyfriend, a delightful dog and the perfect job managing a bustling book café in the vibrant Parc Lemmel.
But when she learns her boyfriend isn’t all he seems, it’s the start of a difficult summer for Kat. Vindictive troublemakers, work woes and family heartache follow, and the clear blue sky that was her life suddenly seems full of clouds.
Then she gets to know the mysterious Noah, and her sun begins to shine brighter than ever. But Noah has problems of his own – ones that could scupper their new-found happiness. Together, can they overcome their many obstacles, and find love again?
My Mini Review
I loved this novel. I feel like I say this about every book Sue Moorcroft writes, but it’s true!
Just thinking about writing a review makes me want to pick up the story and read it all over again.
Kat and Noah are brilliant main characters who deserve happiness together if only life’s problems didn’t get in the way. We follow both as viewpoint characters and really get insides their heads to understand the decisions they make and how the past has affected them. There are serious issues in this book that are handled with care and sensitivity. My heart aches for Noah and his little girl, and Kat has some really crap situations to contend with too. At the end I felt like cheering, but you’ll have to read Summer at the French Cafe to find out why!
All I can say is that it has a very satisfying ending.
I loved the book cafe in Park Lemmel, I would love to stop there for cake and tea. And Angelique the dog was a star character for me. Having a dog in romantic fiction should be compulsory!
I was lucky enough to get a copy of this book through Netgalley. It was one of my last reads of 2021 and was perfect for Christmas.
When Laurel returns to the village of Middledip, she’s looking for a quiet life. Adjusting to her recent divorce, she’s ready to spend some time getting back on her feet amidst the glorious snow-dusted countryside.
Yet, life in Middledip is far from straightforward. Coming to the aid of her sister, Rea, as she navigates her own troubles, Laurel barely has a moment to think about where her own life is going.
However, time stands still when she sees her old flame, Grady Cassidy – and it’s soon as if they’ve never been apart. But through her happiness, Laurel remembers why she left the village all those years ago, as she recalls a dark night and Grady’s once-wayward brother, Mac…
Can Laurel learn to forgive and forget? Or will her chances of Christmas under the mistletoe with Grady remain a dream?
I enjoyed returning to Middledip, especially at Christmas. It’s clear that childhood sweethearts, Laurel and Grady, would make a great couple when they meet years later but events from the past that forced Laurel to flee her home keep getting between them. Can their love conquer the past?
I felt that at times the past event focused too much in the plot, but I still rooted for Laurel and Grady to overcome it and have the happy ever after they deserved.
Art was a theme that featured heavily in the story as Laurel is a successful artist and Middledip’s art scene is buzzing with the arts and craft club preparing for the Chirstmas fair. Family relationships also play a big part in the story. I really enjoyed all the scene’s with Laurel’s niece and I have to mention the horse that helps Laurel’s sister Rea’s recovery.
This was a perfect seasonal read. You can’t go wrong when you pick up a Sue Moorcroft book!
I received a copy of A Home in the Sun through Netgalley and I have to say you can’t go wrong with a Sue Moorcroft book!
A gorgeous summer read about new beginnings from the Sunday Times bestseller.
Home is where the heart is…but what if your heart is broken?
When Judith loses her partner, she loses her life in Malta too – including the beautiful view from her sun-warmed balcony of the sparkling blue waters of Sliema Creek.
Back in England, Judith finds a spare room in her sister’s house where she grew up – but with it comes a whole host of family dramas.
Nursing a broken heart, Judith knows she must find happiness again – and rebuild her life on her own terms. Could an island in the sun be the answer she is looking for?
My mini review
I was quickly hooked by this wonderful romance and loved the characters. A Home in the Sun was a down to earth, emotional read, but in no way depressing. I enjoyed every moment of the world Sue Moorcroft created. She is one of my go to authors if I want an absorbing story that touches the heartstrings and won’t let you go until you’ve read the last page. A top romance author and a top romance book!
Unpredictable Consequences of Love – Jill Mansell. Loved this book and thought about the characters long after I finished it. My review
Winter Beneath The Stars – Jo Thomas. Despite a shaky start for me I ended up loving the characters and the location was wonderful. See my review.
Christmas Wishes – Sue Moorcroft. A heart-warming Christmas read I absolutely fell in love with. My big fat 5 star review.
(I started Christmas Wishes at the end of 2020 and finished it in early 2021. I considered it one of my fav reads of 2020 but it could also be a contender for the best of 2021 reads too!)
Raven Storm (book 3) – Emma Miles. My only fantasy read so far this year (shocking)!
I loved this third book just as much as the first 2. Emma Miles is such an accomplished fantasy writer and I love the world and characters she has created in this series. I must review this book and get on with reading book 4 which came out a few months ago. My Review of the series so far (books 1 and 2)
Beginning of The End – GJ Stevens. Gripping with non-stop action and a surprising twist end. My 5 star review.
Wolf Hollow – Lauren Wolk. Very emotional, evocative and immersive 5 star mid-grade read.
The Circling Sky – Neil Ansell. This cover is beautiful and I love the title which reminds me of the Pink Floyd song ‘Learning to Fly’. I love the New Forest and this book helped to transport me back there. I’m grateful a fellow reviewer sent me her ARC copy once she’d finished reading it – thanks Hannah at Echoes in an Empty Room. This is a relaxing 4 star read.
My only DNF
Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte. I just couldn’t get on with this classic. I got half way through but I just didn’t care enough to keep reading. More of a frustrating read than entertaining for me.
The whole reason I decided to read this was because a character in my new romance series is an English Literature Professor and he said Wuthering Heights is one of his favourite reads. Having attempted to read in myself, I’m going to have to have a chat with him as to why he chose it!
What are your views on this classic or classics in general? I just can’t seem to get on with them.
It has been great to escape into books this year and I have enjoyed being forced to start reviewing again mainly due to my Netgalley reads. There are some books here I would still like to review, especially by indie authors as I know how important it is to get those precious reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.
I’ll be back soon with a list of the books I want to read during the rest of the year including the books I still have outstanding on Netgalley.
What are your reading plans and how close are you to completing your 2021 Goodreads Challenge?
Talking of reviewing books, my Goodreads, Amazon and Audible book pages seem to have hit a bit of a slump. If you have read any of my books would you consider helping me out by posting a quick review? I love to read your thoughts and even a short review will really make my day. Thanks very much.
Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic fantasy and heart-warming romance
I received this book prior to publication via Netgalley and am grateful to have been given the chance to read this immersive summer read. Publication date is set as 13th May 2021.
A warm, sun-baked terrace.
The rustle of verdant green vines.
The sun slowly dipping behind the Umbrian mountains.
And the chink of wine glasses as the first cork of the evening is popped…
Welcome to Italy. A place that holds the answer to Zia-Lucia Costa Chalmers’ many questions. Not least, how she ended up with such a mouthful of a name.
When Zia discovers that her mother wasn’t who she thought she was, she realises the time has come to search out the Italian family she’s never known.
However, as she delves into the secrets of her past, she doesn’t bargain on having to think about her future too. But with local vineyard owner, Piero, living next door, Zia knows she has a serious distraction who may prove difficult to ignore…
This summer, join Zia as she sets out to uncover her past. But can she find the future she’s always dreamed of along the way?
As soon as I started reading about Zia, I got lost in her story and was desperate to unravel the mystery of her past. I gladly followed her journey from Brighton to Italy and rejoiced when she met the delectable Italian, Piero. They were made to be together but scheming ex’s and shady family dealings threaten any future happiness before it can begin.
I loved the setting, the Italian family Zia is desperate to connect with and the sense of place you get in this book. On a grim, grey days in the UK, there is no better place to be than the Umbrian Mountains ‘Under the Italian Sun’.
An immersive romance, with plenty of emotional impact and scorching moments that have little to do with the weather!
I read this book just after Christmas. I loved the two protagonists, Hannah and Nico, and their story had me glued to the pages. Here’s the blurb from Amazon…
A sparkling Christmas read from the Sunday Times bestseller – perfect to snuggle up with this winter!
Hannah and Nico are meant to be together.
But fate is keeping them apart…
As soon as Hannah bumps into her brother Rob’s best friend Nico in Stockholm, the two rekindle a fast friendship. But Hannah has a boyfriend – and Nico has two children to look after.
When Hannah loses her beloved shop in Stockholm, though, she is forced to move back to the little village of Middledip – only to find Nico has just moved in too. Under the same snowy sky, can the childhood friends make a romance work – or are there too many obstacles standing in their way?
My Brief Review
Oh my goodness, this story blew me away. I loved Nico and his kids and really wanted him to find his happy ever after with Hannah from the moment they were together on the page. Fate keeps getting in the way of these two people who are so clearly made for each other.
The locations were wonderfully described, both in Stockholm and the UK.
It was impossible to put this book down. It had plenty of fun but also heartfelt moments that had me secretly crying into my pillow. One of my favourite reads of 2020.
This is a 5 star read, and one you don’t have to wait to read at Christmas. Pick it up now I say!
Note – after reading this story I see there are other books set in Middledip. It clearly works as a standalone as I didn’t feel I was missing anything. And now I’m excited to read the other books set in Middledip and start a new adventure.
Suzanne Rogerson – Author of epic and heroic fantasy