One Christmas Kiss in Notting Hill by Mandy Baggot

One Christmas Kiss in Notting Hill by Mandy Baggot

 

34322561Publisher: Ebury

Publishing Date: 16th November 2017

Source:  Received from publisher in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 448

Genre:  Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Isla Winters loves Christmas – especially the parties! Prosecco-infused everything is her ideal start to the busy festive season, and she can’t wait to wow her contacts in international construction throughout the month of December. But everything changes when she’s given a new remit: right-hand girl to the head of the New York branch.

Chase Bryan’s marriage has fallen apart. Given a secret project, he moves to London for the holidays with his two young daughters, hoping to dive in and ignore the distractions of Christmas. Problem is, he’s been saddled with Little Miss Candy Cane.

Isla’s wheelchair-bound sister, Hannah, lives life to the max. Isla’s unofficial second job is to keep her sister from trying to take over the world – but what will happen when Hannah starts to pay attention to Isla’s love life? One moment in Notting Hill could change everything…

Join Isla and Chase in a sparkly, festive London, where a little winter magic is just around the corner.

Rating: five-stars

I really think that Mandy’s Christmas offers are much better than her summery ones – not stating that the summery are not worth reading, though, nono, far away from this, but “One Christmas Kiss in Notting Hill” is a book that is going to give you a very happy feeling. There is already plenty of festive feeling in this novel, and oh my god, let’s not forget the cover! It’s gorgeous, and so Christmassy, and it glitter! I could look at it all the time.

I immediately warmed to all the characters. Loved the fact that one of the leading ones was Hannah, sitting in a wheelchair after an accident – it doesn’t happen often that your main character is disabled like this. She was a lovely person, full of humour, she had of course better and worse days but it’s totally understandable, and she was full of determination and optimism. Isla was a person that you couldn’t not like, I think. She was a great carer of her sister and whatever she did, she did it with a view of Hannah. There was a passion in her, she wasn’t afraid to speak her mind, she loved her job and life generally and you could feel the good vibes that she was radiating through the pages. She was feisty and bubbly and didn’t look for romance, but then Chase enters… mmm. He has two daughters, is a workaholic, suffers with self – doubt and has a wicked past and yet he is brilliant. He is capable to admit when he’s made a mistake and he knows he’s not perfect. There is an incredibly romantic side to him, he gleams warmth and I just liked him very, very much.
All the other background characters, especially Chase’s daughters, were so brilliantly developed, full of life and heart and such a great positivism – I felt warm when reading about their adventures, their problems and troubles and loved how they tried to work the best possible ways for them.
There was a brilliantly captured chemistry between Isla and Chase. It was realistic, genuine, not too pushy and so relaxed, and it was a real pleasure to see how it developed, in which direction was it going to go. I really enjoyed the love stories in this book (because there were more, yes!), they were great romances, not too wishy – washy, not too meh, and I liked that it also included the families of the characters’ involved.

I loved the setting of this book, London, and more specifically, Notting Hill. You could say you know all about Notting Hill but then you start to see it again through the eyes of the total newcomers, Maddie and Brooke, Chase’s quirky daughters, and the author brings all those places so easily to life.

The end seemed much too rushed for my liking, the things were incredibly quickly wrapped up and if you think how long it took to build up to them then the ending may be a little disappointing, and just this little bit too far – fetched. I mean, “we saved Notting Hill”…? But it worked well in this book, don’t get me wrong, it was just tad unbelievable for me. Altogether though, “One Christmas Kiss in Notting Hill” was a lovely, warm and funny Christmas romance and I absolutely adored this story, with its quirky characters, embarrassing moments, cheeky teenager and that dealt with serious issues in a lovely, gentle way. The story interwoven many sub – plots and touched upon many issues, and there were all the time many things happening, so no single moment flat, guys, but that is great! It was easy and light – hearted and written with a lot of heart. Highly recommended!

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It Started with a Tweet by Anna Bell – #BlogTour + Guest Post

Hi guys! Hope you’re having a great Monday and if not it’s going to be bettwe right now because I have a brilliant guest post from Anna Bell! Her brand new and shiny “It Started with a Tweet” has just been released as an ebook and will be available in paperback on 28th December, and what can I say guys, it’s a brilliant, humorous book and I loved every single minute of it!

It Started with a Tweet by Anna Bell

 

35091775Publisher: Zaffre

Publishing Date: 7th December 2017

Source:  Received from publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 416

Genre:  Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback (out on 28.12.2017)

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Can Daisy Hobson log off for love…?

Could you survive a digital detox? This hilarious new romantic comedy from the author of The Bucket List to Mend a Broken Heart is perfect for fans of Lucy Diamond and Sophie Kinsella.

Daisy Hobson lives her whole life online. A marketing manager by day, she tweets her friends, instagrams every meal and arranges (frankly, appalling) dates on Tinder. But when her social media obsession causes her to make a catastrophic mistake at work, Daisy finds her life going into free-fall . . .

Her sister Rosie thinks she has the answer to all of Daisy’s problems – a digital detox in a remote cottage in Cumbria, that she just happens to need help doing up. Soon, too, Daisy finds herself with two welcome distractions: sexy French exchange-help Alexis, and Jack, the brusque and rugged man-next-door, who keeps accidentally rescuing her.

But can Daisy, a London girl, ever really settle into life in a tiny, isolated village? And, more importantly, can she survive without her phone?

Rating: five-stars

Anna Bell belongs to my auto – buy authors, guys, and I really don’t need to read the blurb to her new book because I know it’s going to be brilliant and just my cup of tea. I fell in love with her writing style, and her stories are not only incredibly hilarious but also close to life and full of wonderful, livid characters, and I am always waiting impatiently for her new release.

The heroine, Daisy, was such a typical Anna Bell’s character – bubbly and quirky, full of life, always getting in troubles but in the end always learning her lesson, and I bloody loved her. You couldn’t not like her, even though you sometimes wanted to throttle her and feel desperate with her, but mostly she was really a brilliant person. She was honest and straightforward and felt so realistic and when she got herself into this huge trouble I couldn’t help but fell and feel for her, even though it happened of her own making.
Meet Jack. So grumpy and so introverted but oh my word, so gorgeous, so funny and he very quickly became one of my favourite characters in this book. The blossoming relationship between him and Daisy was simply the best, so awkward and so genuine and one of the greatest moments in the story were the letters (yes! Letters! Don’t forget about Daisy being on a detox, and the fact that there was never reception didn’t help as well) that Daisy and Jake sent to each other – oh boy, they were so honest and so funny! It was so heart – warming, and so sweet and I so wanted to bang their heads together sometimes, as – of course! OF COURSE! – nothing is straightforward in life in fiction, right, and there are few bumps and turns on the (muddy) road to their happiness. One of them is the sexy Frenchman Alexis – oh, he’s going to stir up troubles!

Even though I spent endless hours on social networks I hope I’m not as extreme as Daisy, though the story really made me think and I promised myself to cut those hours spent scrolling down on Twitter or Facebook. However, I can go without my phone. Really. Lately I even once forgot to take it with me to work. Yes, I felt funny and insecure but I survived. But maybe it wouldn’t be too bad to go on a digital detox myself? To start see things again? To pay more attention to the outside world? This book is a real eye – opener, guys.

Anna Bell’s writing style is so light and easy. It is chatty and I had a feeling as if someone was recounting me the story and not as if I was reading it. She can so easily engage with her readers, both thanks to the topics she chooses and to her writing style, and it is so easy to connect to her characters and everything she writes about, especially as the social media stuff is such a hot topic nowadays. I think all of us can relate to Daisy, in this way or the other, with her need to stay up to date with all the news on Facebook or Twitter.

“It Started with a Tweet” was such a light, funny and entertaining read but it also touched on some more important and serious issues, and I loved how well Anna Bell interwoven them into the story, how she mixed the light – hearted and heavier stuff together and delivered a brilliant and up – to – date and close to reality story that rings the bell oh so much and that we can relate to. It was full of laugh – out – loud moments and I was all the time smiling when reading it. Full of embarrassing moment and surprises and I couldn’t wait to turn the page to see what’s going to happen next. Another cracker from the lovely Anna Bell – highly recommended!

GUEST POST

How ideas evolve

Every novel has a starting point. A small kernel of an idea that sparks off the project. For It Started With A Tweet it was the idea that the two main characters would fall in love with each other by writing letters. It was a simple idea with a huge question to solve: why would they write letters? Why wouldn’t they speak in person? Why would they not text or use a messaging app? And so the process began . . .

At first I thought I’d set my novel in rural France where I live. Lots of British people move over to France and buy run down properties that they renovate. There are also a lot of people that choose to live off grid and don’t have mobile phones (we often can’t get reception) and don’t have TVs etc. It seemed at first like it would make the perfect setting, but when I started to plan the novel I realised it presented a lot of problems. The villagers would have to be french, would my main character be able to speak the language? The location seemed to create as many problems as it seemed to solve and that’s when I decided to set it in Cumbria.

Cumbria was a great setting as it’s remote enough to suffer from mobile phone black spots and old derelict farmhouses are relatively cheap to buy (compared to other areas in the UK). It was the perfect place and to create an easily believable scenario where my main character could be easily away from having phone and internet. Only something was still niggling at me. Why couldn’t the main character walk into the village and use a phone box? And surely they’d be able to get signal somewhere for her to text. I needed more of an incentive to keep her offline and that’s when the digital detox was born.

The digital detox idea seemed perfect. It gave the book a real focus (and a plot) as the book became about Daisy’s digital addiction and what happened when her sister Rosie forced her offline. The first draft saw Daisy fired from her job because she’d forgotten to send important emails – she was too distracted all the time by her mobile. When I sent it to my editors they loved her digital detox but they felt her reason for going wasn’t strong enough. They suggested that Daisy make a digital faux pas. It was a great idea and I knew almost immediately how it could happen. There’s a scene near the beginning where Daisy goes on the Tinder date from hell and it lent itself beautifully for her to tweet something about the date accidentally from her work account rather than her personal one. It tied the whole novel together instantly and it even lent itself to the title of the book.

It takes roughly eighteen months between the initial idea and the moment I see the finished book on the shelf and the end product is usually unrecognisable. With each draft the ideas evolve and change. I think that’s why I love writing so much – you never know where your ideas are going to take you!

 

FOLLOW THE BLOG TOUR:

It Started With a Tweet Blog Tour (2)

Only One Woman by Christina Jones and Jane Risdon

Only One Woman by Christina Jones & Jane Risdon

 

29006048Publisher: Accent Press

Publishing Date: 23rd November 2017

Source:  Received from publisher in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 492

Genre:  Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Two women, one love story.

June 1968. Renza falls head over heels for heartthrob guitarist Scott. But after a romantic summer together they are torn apart when Renza’s family moves away.

December 1968. On the night she believes to be her last, Stella meets Scott at a local dance. He’s the most beautiful boy she’s ever seen and if this one night is all they have, she’ll take it.

As the final colourful year of the sixties dawns, the question is: can there be only one woman for Scott?

 
Rating: two-stars

I’ve been waiting for ages for another Christina Jones’s book so when the announcement on Twitter went that “Only One Woman” is going to be released, I couldn’t hide my excitement. This book is also a co – operation with Jane Risdon, and lately I’ve read a brilliant book written by two authors, so was hoping for another captivating read with a difference.

But honestly, I wanted to just put my kindle away and mark this book as DNF much too many times, and this right at the beginning. The only thing that kept me reading was the fact that I was supposed to review it for the blog tour, and also hope that it’s going to turn out into something much better. Unfortunately, any of those things happened and in the end I found myself skim reading and waiting impatiently for the words “The End”. I’m sorry if it sounds harsh but those are my feelings and I can’t change them. It was a repetitive and lifeless story, slow paced and with underdeveloped characters. One of the reasons that I didn’t like it was mother of one of the main characters – I hated this woman. She treated her daughter like a slave and decided about everything – literally everything.

I couldn’t believe how naive Renza was, and it doesn’t matter if it is the swinging 60’s or 2017, naive is naive and I just wanted to shake her and tell her to get a grip. To be honest, I am much more Team Stella. Also, the very sexy and luscious Scott was not my cup of tea, he was playing with the feelings and emotions of the girls all the time, and actually why was it Stella that should feel so bad and not Scott for being a two – timing, calculated person?

Sure, this story was a one great roller – coaster of emotions and feelings for all characters involved but they just didn’t sound true and genuine to me. However, this book, in a great way, gives an insight into the lives of two different girls, or young women, in the 1960s. There were many descriptions of clothes, and especially music, actually the whole book was like a one, long lyric. I wasn’t born in 1960’s but all the cultural references, the names of the groups and songs ring a bell, how couldn’t they, those are cult bands and songs, and it was great to read about them. The atmosphere and the vibe of those times is brilliantly captured, and I also think the differences in lives and the family dynamics as well, and I’m really very sorry that it just didn’t work for me.

Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

Genuine Fraud by E. Lockhart

 

34870304Publisher: Hot Keys Books

Publishing Date: 5th September 2017

Source:  Received from publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 272

Genre:  Mystery & Thrillers, Teens & YA

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Hardcover

 

 

 

Synopsis:

From the author of the unforgettable bestseller WE WERE LIARS comes a suspenseful new psychological thriller – the story of a young woman whose diabolical smarts are her ticket into a charmed life.

But how many times can someone reinvent themselves? You be the judge.

Imogen is a runaway heiress, an orphan, a cook, and a cheat.
Jule is a fighter, a social chameleon, and an athlete.
An intense friendship. A disappearance. A murder, or maybe two.
A bad romance, or maybe three.
Blunt objects, disguises, blood, and chocolate. The American dream, superheroes, spies, and villains.
A girl who refuses to give people what they want from her.
A girl who refuses to be the person she once was.

Rating: two-half-stars

Honestly, I was very intrigued after reading synopsis of “Genuine Fraud”. I went into it with an open mind, not sure what I can expect from the author that is new to me, and from the book itself that already got so many mixed reviews. After reading the novel though I think I know why the reviews are so diversified.

The story is written backwards, if I can say so, and I can already tell you here is where my biggest problem was. It felt really weird reading about things, events and situations and understanding them not until a few chapters later. I also often found myself not remembering to what situations that I’ve already read about did the events lead. It was really weird, demanding and made the reading more difficult for me personally. It was confusing and to be totally honest, not clear, some things and characters were appearing out of the blue and after finishing it I found myself sitting and thinking, and what now?

The storyline follows two characters and one is pretending to be the other one. They were not likeable, those characters, however I think that’s the way it was supposed to be. They were reckless. They were unreliable and they were probably in a need of a therapy. I didn’t feel connect to any of the characters and actually mostly I just felt reluctance towards them. I didn’t understand them and their motives probably, and I still am not sure if this what happened with Jule’s parents was truth or was it another lie.

The writing style was great but on the other hand it felt so cold and emotionless as if the author didn’t mind if she connects with the readers or not. It lacked in suspense in tension. There was not a mystery to discover. There weren’t any twists. So what was this book for? I was truly intrigued by the beginning, the first two, three chapters. Then the going back in time began, and every chapter skips back a week, few weeks or even a month before. I have nothing against flashbacks or retrospections but it was just too much for me and this timeline has just kept messing me up.

So the book left me totally in two minds and I still am not sure what to think. I will definitely read another E. Lockhart’s book, especially as I’m hearing so many good things about “We Were Liars”, but “Genuine Fraud” stays for me a short, fast – paced story with an average plot, not likeable, unbelievable and underdeveloped characters. However, if you’re looking for a read with a difference, that is fresh and unique and even intriguing, that you might give “Genuine Fraud” a shot.

Some Kind of Wonderful by Giovanna Fletcher

Some Kind of Wonderful by Giovanna Fletcher

 

35164060Publisher: Michael Joseph

Publishing Date: 16th November 2017

Source:  Received from publisher in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 389

Genre:  Women’s Fiction, Literature/Fiction (Adult)

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Hardcover

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Lizzy and Ian have been a couple since their first day at university. Now, after celebrating a decade together, everyone thinks they’re about to get engaged. A romantic escape to Dubai is the perfect moment, but instead of the proposal Lizzy hopes for, Ian reveals he’s not sure he even wants her anymore.

Lizzy is heartbroken. But through the tears, she realises this is her chance to seize the opportunities she missed as Ian’s other half. But what does she want? How much of her is really Lizzy, and how much was Ian’s influence? Determined to discover who she is at heart, Lizzy sets out to rediscover the girl she was before – and in the meantime, have a little fun . . .

Rating: three-stars

 

In “Some Kind of Wonderful” we meet Lizzie, who’s been with Ian for ages – that is, since Uni, and the only thing that she misses is proposal and a wedding. On a trip to Dubai Lizzie is convinced that Ian is finally going to propose – however, as the popular saying goes, tell God about your plans and he will laugh, and indeed, the opposite happens and, devastated, she flies back home as a single woman. She needs now to come to terms with this totally new situation, to lick her wounds and to find herself afresh.

What I liked in the story was the fact that it was not about desperately finding a man and feeling complete with him at your side but about a journey from being a part of a couple for as long as Lizzie remembers to discovering what it is she really loves in her life. Perhaps the delivery was the problem here, as the story didn’t really keep my attention, and Lizzie herself was not so easy to immediately like – for me at least. I understand you can’t pick yourself up just like that, recover and just go on after such an unexpected break – up, that you need time to bounce back but Lizzie was mostly acting like a child and not an adult. However yes, as the book progresses, Lizzie became much more likeable and endearing woman and in the end she started to feel like a friend to me.
I also had problems with the other characters, and especially Lizzie’s sister Michelle – I know all about the sibling’s rivalry and so on but there is rivalry and there is a spite and such a love – hate relationships between siblings just don’t work for me in books, I’m sorry. However, I did like the ending for example, maybe usually I’m not a great fan of open endings but this time it worked really well and I’d love to hear what options did Lizzie choose for herself.

This book was written with a light humour and it was easy to read and light – hearted. It was comfortable and cosy, and you don’t always need great dramas in the books. However, as much as I like Giovanna’s lovely and gentle writing style, there was just too much of unnecessary details and not enough concentrating on the main plot points. But it was a book, that ticks all the boxes for a nice, lighter read, with enough substance and a lot of potential.

Altogether, it was an easy and relaxing read that – unfortunately – won’t stay with me for longer. It was not complicated and the pace was slow – the first half of the book was about Lizzie trying to come to terms with what happened and the second half was about Lizzie trying to redefine herself, to find herself anew and outside of a relationship. You read the book, and read it, waiting for something special to happen, and before you realize that there is nothing special, you’ve already finished the story. Giovanna’s other novel “you’re the One that I Want” stays absolutely my favourite book by her, it just seems to me that there is something holding her back from writing another such lovely book, but I am sure that fans of this author are going to adore “Some Kind of Wonderful”.

The Birthday Girl by Sue Fortin

The Birthday Girl by Sue Fortin

 

36066989Publisher: HarperImpulse

Publishing Date: 30th November 2017

Source:  Received from publisher via NetGalley in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 364

Genre:  Suspense, Mystery

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Dear Carys, Zoe and Andrea
Come and join me for my fortieth birthday adventure weekend, full of mysteries and surprises the like of which you can’t imagine.

When Joanne’s friends reluctantly accept an invitation to her birthday party, it quickly becomes clear that there is more to this weekend than they are expecting.
One of them is hiding a secret.
And Joanne is planning to reveal it…

A weekend away in a cottage in the woods sounds like fun – until no one can hear your cries for help.

Four friends.
A party to die for.
Who will survive?

Rating: four-stars

After reading “Sister, Sister” by Sue Fortin I was impatiently waiting for this author’s next release, so when “The Birthday Girl” was offered to request on NetGalley I didn’t hesitate long, quickly downloaded it to my kindle and almost immediately started reading this another compelling, hooking read.

The story follows four friends, Carys, Andrea, Zoe and Joanne. The first three have been invited to a mystery birthday weekend by Joanne and reluctantly they arrive at the very remote place. Why reluctantly? Well, lately their friendships haven’t been as good as they used to be and, as it turns out, each of the women had a grudge against the other ones. However, for the sake of the friendship and relationships, they agree – but they are going to regret it, as Joanne feels wronged and she has conjured a plan to expose some of her friends’ secrets.

The relationship between the four women is brilliantly described and very complex – the author knows when and where to add another red herring to change our perspective and to start thinking differently. She can also perfectly well capture the atmosphere, that was changing from very frosty to very heated to full of mistrust. The characters are really not immediately likeable ones, and some of them aren’t likeable at all but this only makes the whole story even more gripping and interesting. They are also all so very different which – I think – is a great thing as it only makes the story so hooking. Joanne is reserved and cold and – in my opinion – unpredictable, Andrea is outspoken and straightforward, Zoe is bouncy and optimistic and easy going and Carys is a very complex person, with a complicated past, with plenty of survival skills, that she’s going to need during the weekend.

It brilliantly describes how a female friendship works, with all its petty jealousies but also bigger and more serious dramas – just as it usually is within groups. The writing style is brilliant, and the author so skilfully builds layer upon layer of secrets, misunderstandings to gradually unpeel the layers and reveal the overall picture. It is very fast paced and it keeps you tightly in its grips, you just can’t put it down as you want to know what’s going to happen next. Also, the setting already adds tons to the atmosphere of uncertainty and fear – in remote woods, far away from inhabited places, it creates this feeling of foreboding and danger.

I can’t stop comparing those two books, though, “Sister, Sister” and “The Birthday Girl”, and I am really sorry for this, I probably shouldn’t be doing this as they are two totally different novels, so please forgive me, but in comparison “The Birthday Girl” was not as full of this palpable tension as “Sister, Sister”. What is the same, however, is the fact that the author incredibly professionally and skilfully makes each and every character suspicious. Guys, really. I was changing my mind instantly and with every new character entering the scene I was suspecting them. While I guessed the main suspect, I haven’t guessed their motivations, and also the author of the few hate letters between chapters directed to Carys was a great surprise to me. She skilfully played with our minds and I was all the time asking myself whom should I trust – is it Carys, as we mostly get the story from her point of view, or is she really hiding something? Shall I believe her version of events or those of the others? I loved this, this feeling of uncertainty and of anything being possible.

Altogether, “The Birthday Girl”, though not as good as “Sister, Sister” (sorry. Sorry!), was a brilliant, compelling and suspenseful read, full of twists and turns and it surprised me more than often. I was very intrigued what the secrets that each of the woman kept were and couldn’t wait to discover them. This book is filled with dramas, feelings and emotions, it is complex and clever, and it ends with a terrific grande finale. However, the very end seemed a tad too flat in comparison to the whole story. Nevertheless, it was a great novel and I can’t wait to read more from the great Sue Fortin. “The Birthday Girl” – recommended!

The Place We Met by Isabelle Broom

The Place We Met by Isabelle Broom

 

34890012Publisher: Michael Joseph

Publishing Date: 30th November 2017

Source:  Received from publisher in return for an honest review, thank you!

Number of pages: 406

Genre:  Women’s Fiction, Romance

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Paperback

 

 

 

 

Synopsis:

Lake Como, Italy, New Year’s Eve. The perfect place to fall in love? Or the perfect place for everything to fall apart?

‘Utterly romantic’ Adele Parks, bestselling author of The Image of You

Lucy may have suffered her fair share of bad men, but now she has Pete. Finally, a man worth sharing her favourite place with, Lake Como. That’s if she can put mysterious phone calls and glamorous ex-girlfriends out of her mind.

Taggie is rushed off her feet, but distraction is exactly what she needs to forget why she fled England and the sadness she left behind. She certainly doesn’t have time for infuriating stranger Marco. A man is the last thing she needs right now.

Lucy and Taggie might not know it, but their lives are about to collide. The New Year might begin with fireworks – but how will it end?

Rating: four-stars

In Isabelle Broom’s newest release “The Place We Met” we are introduced to two main characters. Taggie works as a tour guide in Lake Como after escaping London and a heart – break. Lucy loved Lake Como as a child and decides to take her new boyfriend Pete there for Christmas and New Year. The two, at first sight, different women that don’t know each other do share something in common and they don’t know that their lives are going to change soon.

I, of course, loved the setting of Lake Como at around Christmas and New Year, the author is already known for gorgeous places she’s choosing for her stories but I think she could work on creating her characters better, more developed, more interesting – settling for the characters took me a little longer – probably because it took long for the two different characters and two different stories told alternatively to eventually overlap and find something in common.

But again, Isabelle Broom is perfect when it comes to the settings and describing the places, with all the gorgeous little details, places known only to the insiders, things to discover, but when it comes to action the books start to slow down and feel flat – with the exception of Isabelle’s debut novel, “My Map of You”, which I incredibly loved and which stays currently my favourite book by this author. “The Place we Met” felt mostly very slow, concentrating hard on the setting and bringing the beauty of Lake Como at Christmas to life – which, BTW, the author has effortlessly brought to life – but it lacked on pace and more complex plot. I also had some problems with the plot being build up to something much bigger and shocking than what Taggie’s secret turned out to be. However, there was much warmth to the story and in the end I found myself surprised how much I enjoyed reading the book, and it left me with a smile on my lips.

Altogether, it was a bitter – sweet story about finding peace with your past, about love and hope, and I think it is Isabelle’s second – best, after “My Map of You” of course. The writing here is lovely, full of emotions, evocative. The plot is tad predictable and I would love it to be more complex and more mature but I am sure that soon I’m going to get it from this author. In the meantime I can only heartily recommend this book to you all, guys.