Hello, hello lovely bookish folks, today I am having two Blog Tours and the first one os for Jules Wake‚s absolutely gorgeous new novel „Escape to the Riviera„. As much as I liked this book, I am also in love with the poster for this blog tour – I usually don’t mention blog tour posters, even though they are an art for themselves, but this time I just feel the need to tell how much I love this, and how much I think it fits the climat of the book with its wonderful rainbow colours of sun setting down – it’s gorgeous! But the book is too, no worries there
Escape to the Riviera
by Jules Wake
Publishing Date: 30th June 2016
Source: Copy provided by the publisher, thank you!
Number of pages: 416
Genre: Women’s Fiction, General Fiction (Adult)
Carrie Hayes is ready for the summer of a lifetime . .
Quiet and unassuming Carrie Hayes has a nice, steady life with long-term boyfriend Alan. But she’s been keeping a secret hidden for years. A whirlwind marriage to Hollywood superstar Richard Maddox when they were young and foolish and life was full of endless possibilities. Although no longer together when Richard went to fulfil his acting ambitions in America, they’ve never quite got a divorce.
And now a chance meeting in the paradise of the glamorous French Riviera is about to change Carrie’s summer, and entire life, for ever . . .
For fans of Lucy Diamond, Jane Costello and Jill Mansell, lose yourself in this summer’s perfect holiday read . . .
So there. Jules Wake. As I have read her novels previously and rather enjoyed them I didn’t hesitate to say yes to a review copy and also with pleasure I am taking part in a blog tour – because let me tell you, right at the beginning, that I personally think „Escape to the Riviera” is Ms Wake’s best novel yet. And can we please gush a little over this beautiful, climatic, summery cover? It’s gorgeous, the colours of the sunset are so authentic and right now I’d love to be on this terrace.
The story introduces us to a bunch of main characters, and I liked it, lately I’ve read many novels with thousands of characters in them and here I truly enjoyed this small colourful group of vivid protagonists. Carrie’s life seems to be absolutely right as rain. She’s a drama teacher, has a boyfriend Alan who is also a teacher and she lives with her sister Angela and her niece, Jade. Thanks to Angela the girls get a chance to spend a month of their summer holidays in a villa at the south of France and after some initial doubts they travel there. While Angela and Jade hope for lazy, sunny days full of swimming, sunbathing and enjoying themselves, Carrie has some ulterior motive to be there – namely, she’s married to a Hollywood superstar, Richard Maddox, and as Alan has made the big step and proposed, Carrie needs a divorce. So she sets her goal on tracking Richard down in the beautiful setting of the French Riviera. But is she going to find him? And if so, did the old feelings die?
The characters were very well rounded and I had a feeling that I know them very well, and the author has written them in such engaging way that I wanted to be a part of their world. Carrie is so normal with her anxieties, uncertainties and questions and I warmed to her right from the beginning. But she’s not only like this – she’s also strong, a great support to her sister and niece and she has passion to drama, and all this made her sometimes annoying, but also lovely and realistic and down – to – earth.
I also liked how the author showed two sides to being famous and yes, we know it’s not always a bed of roses and drinking champagne for breakfast, but also the social media being sure they can follow the celebrities and report on their lives, not taking into consideration that they are people who also need private sphere, and the impacts and consequences of such situations. Though I admit, it was a great joy to have a look or two at how the other half lives. And this brings us to Richard, who, except of annoying the hell out of me at the beginning, turned out to be a great, having both feet on the ground person, taking his career not too seriously and having a distance to himself, and to be totally honest, I had a feeling that he and Carrie really belong together. But can you still have feelings after eight years of not seeing each other?
What the author has also managed to capture so very well was the sparks between Carrie and Richard. While at the beginning I had nothing against Carries’s boyfriend Alan, but the more I read and the more we got to know him, the more I started to feel that my feelings of sympathy to him start to cool down – I had a feeling that nothing interest him except of his cycling and teaching and somehow he didn’t coordinate with the creative, full of life Carrie and well, I found myself keeping my fingers crossed for Carrie and Richard. Even though at the beginning Richard seemed a little too arrogant and too self – confident for my liking and I didn’t like the ultimatum he gave Carrie. However, it turned out, it was for the best.
But what is also great is that the author didn’t concentrate only on Carrie and Richard’s plot but added some other subplots to the story. The stories of Angela and Jade suit the book in a perfect way and make it a much deeper read, and they, as background characters, give as much as the main ones.
The setting of the French Riviera, of St. Tropez couldn’t be better, and Jules Wake’s descriptions bring the places to life. No matter if she writes about the gorgeous, glamourous yachts, or the incredibly tasty French food, or the beautiful villa the girls were staying in, or the fantastic clothes they tried on, it all sound true to life. I also enjoyed how the girls reacted to the places and they didn’t even try to hide their excitement or the fact that being near celebrities and film stars made them so excited – especially Jade. Jade had her moments, oh she did, when she annoyed not only her aunt and mother but yours truly as well, but on the other hand she was a teenager and Ms Wake has brilliantly captured her irritating nature.
This novel, albeit sometimes a little too far – fetched and with moments where destiny and coincidence played big roles, was a brilliant escape to the south of France. Jules Wake has described all the places in such a vivid, realistic way that I didn’t have any problems to see them in my mind and I’d do anything to be there at the moment. It is this kind of a book that you want to take with you on your holidays and devour under the shining sun. The writing style is great, so easy to follow and accessible and the story flows effortlessly. There were some moments in the book that I had a feeling it drags unnecessary on but mostly it was full of events. This is a lovely story about discovering yourself afresh and about following your dreams, about finding the courage and start living as you want. Lovely book, perfect for the summer evenings! Recommended!
AND HERE IS THE BEAUTIFUL BLOG TOUR POSTER! BE SURE TO CHECK OTHER STOPS FOR REVIEWS AND EXCERPTS!