Curves, Kisses and Chocolate Ice – Cream by Sue Watson
Publishing Date: 27th June 2017
Series: The Ice – Cream Cafe #2 (you can read my review of “Ella’s Ice – Cream Summer here)
Source: Received from the publisher in return for an honest review!
Number of pages: 294
Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction
Dani’s on a mission to get her life back on track by the end of the Summer. Running, rowing, aerobics and more, but perhaps all she needs are sweet treats and a second chance?
Twenty years ago, Dani fled Appledore with a broken-heart and a suitcase full of shattered dreams. Only now is she brave enough to put her past behind her and return for a summer selling homemade ice-cream and getting fit by doing sit-ups by the sea.
But the new-look cafe is filled with old memories of Jude, her teenage sweetheart-turned-sour. She thinks of him every time she swirls warm sauce onto a “chocolate-bockaglory” and even with the help of Chris, her gorgeous personal trainer, the urge to break her diet is everywhere she turns.
When Jude makes an appearance at the cafe on the eve of Dani’s birthday party, history threatens to repeat itself. Is Dani strong enough to say no? And is the love she’s been longing for much closer than she thinks?
A truly delicious, laugh out loud beach read that’s guaranteed to melt your heart. Perfect for fans of Lucy Diamond, Jenny Colgan and Debbie Johnson.
I think that “Curves, Kisses and Chocolate Ice – Cream” is a story that many of the readers can relate too. I, for once, can. I’ve been struggling with my weight since I’ve become a mum – right after bringing the little one home I was so slender like never before and it stayed like this for some time but then the PND began, together with comfort eating and so the kilos started to pile and well, they don’t want to go away, no matter what. I am not overweight, well, maybe a little, but I just don’t feel well with me weight. And so I could SO completely understand Dani, and I could see all of the excuses that I am using to start better eating – it is always from the next Monday. So this is probably why I could so well connect with Dani – because I’ve been there, I’ve seen this. Sue Watson in a brilliant, sensitive way explains Dani’s feelings about food and I could nod my head as I was so getting it.
Even though this book is second in the series, you can absolutely read it as a stand – alone. And personally I think that this story was much, much better than the previous one! Yes, we meet some of the characters from the previous book but those are only small vignettes, as the story really focuses on Dani and her battle with her weight and her weakness. This journey is full of funny and poignant moments, full of strength and weakness, showing all the ups and downs of trying to pull their socks up and feeling better. Not all have such a willpower that one word and decision is all they have to do – sadly.
With “Curves, Kisses and Chocolate Ice – Cream” we are back in Appledore, meeting Dani this time. She’s left the town twenty years before, heartbroken, and now she’s back – overweight, unhappy, desperate to become thinner for her fortieth birthday. However, working in the Ice – Cream Cafe doesn’t help to keep her diets… What must happen that Dani sees what feeling good is really about? Is it really all about the weight?
I think Dani belongs to those characters that you can’t not like. She is determined but also weak, and she often gives up only to start again the next day – such a well – known vicious circle! She’s honest and she’s maintaining a healthy distance from herself but she also often uses the humour against herself.
There is a brilliant feel to this story, and I think it’s because Sue Watson has perfectly well blended together poignant and funny moments. Well, funny – they were funny for us but for sure not always for Dani! She is again your usual, normal woman, just like many of us, and Sue Watson can really write those characters. And it was truly Dani that has made this story – she was so lovely, bubbly and quirky, full of good intentions and with the right sense of humour and her favourite sport was coaching, and I immediately thought, my kind of girl! Talking too much, wearing her heart on her sleeve, here is our Dani. And it is great that at the end she’s going to find balance – it’s the most important thing, no matter if you’re overweight or not.
Each chapter of the book starts with Dani mentioning her previous diet – there were many of them, and all failed but you have to read the reasons why they failed and why she was trying this particular diet at all – oh, this was brilliant and very, very amusing! And thanks to Sue Watson (not!) I am turning into a real ice – cream fan. I’m not so much into ice – creams but all the descriptions were so mouth – watering, all the different flavours sounded so, so good, I would love to try them!
Sue Watson’s shows with her book that impossible is nothing for her – she has taken a very sensitive topic and managed to turn it into a great, honest, down – to – earth realistic story. She has got into Dani’s head and translated for us all of her feelings and emotions, explaining why she doesn’t feel comfortable in her own body and why she couldn’t change it. So truly, under the funny, light – hearted topping, there is a lot of depth to this story and it has many, many layers.
The strength of this book lies not in the characters, or the humour, or twists and turns but in the fact that Sue Watson has decided to write about such sensitive topic and she brilliantly pulled it off, so hats off to her for this, and standing ovation from me personally. She writes about insecure women that aren’t afraid to eventually and finally spread their wings, and it is always so inspiring. Her writing style is colourful, full of sharp humour, and vivid, easily bringing the events in the story to life.
So altogether, “Curves, Kisses and Chocolate Ice – Cream” was a very relatable story about a woman like many others trying to loose some weight, told in a sober, genuine, down – to – earth way with a lot of understanding and without patronising or offending someone. There are characters you can’t help but root for, a lovely setting, even more lovely background of the Ice – Cream Cafe, nice weather and feel – good factor – what more do you need than this lovely, sweet and charming story? Recommended!