On a Beautiful Day by Lucy Diamond / #BlogTour

Hi guys, hope you all have a great Saturday! I am absolutely thrilled today to welcome you to my stop on Lucy Diamond’s blog tour for her newest release “On a Beautiful Day”. It’s not a secret that I’m Lucy’s huge fan and I adore her reletable, believable stories – they’re so easy to get into and to get lost into them, and it’s the same with this book – I’m sure you are also going to love it!

On a Beautiful Day by Lucy Diamond

 

36517591Publisher: Macmillan

Publishing Date: 11th January 2018

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

Number of pages: 496

Genre: Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Hardcover | Paperback

 

 

 

Synopsis:

It’s a beautiful day in Manchester and four friends are meeting for a birthday lunch. But then they witness a shocking accident just metres away which acts as a catalyst for each of them.

For Laura, it’s a wake-up call to heed the ticking of her biological clock. Sensible Jo finds herself throwing caution to the wind in a new relationship. Eve, who has been trying to ignore the worrying lump in her breast, feels helpless and out of control. And happy-go-lucky India is drawn to one of the victims of the accident, causing long-buried secrets to rise to the surface.

This is a novel about the startling and unexpected turns life can take. It’s about luck – good and bad – and about finding bravery and resilience when your world is in turmoil. Above all, it’s about friendship, togetherness and hope.

Rating: five-stars

 

Yes, guys. I love stories about friends and I love Lucy Diamond’s novels, so what could be better than a brand new Lucy Diamond book about four friends? Exactly! Lucy’s novels are always so comforting, they are easy reads that make you laugh and cry and they are always a winner, you can be sure that Ms Diamond is going to deliver a book that’ll fulfil all of your expectations. And it’s the same with “On a Beautiful Day”, just grab the book, your favourite blanket and a mug of hot chocolate with whipped cream and put a “Do Not Disturb” on your door.

 So the story follows four friends, Eve, India, Jo and Laura and let me tell this right now how much I enjoyed this friendship – it was pure and genuine, there weren’t any indiscretions  between the women, they didn’t conspired against each other like it often happens in books with such subject matter, no, it was a great, real friendship, with some secrets, of course, but when you read you’ll quickly learn why some of the girls choose to keep the things secret, what was their keynote, and you’ll going to understand them and fell for them immediately. On a beautiful day, when they meet to celebrate birthday of one of them, they witness a very horrific accident, where a car barely misses them and crashes in a shop nearby, leaving several people injured and dead. This accident makes them think and yes, it’s going to change their lives significantly.

I can’t say that I had my favourite character because they were all just awesome, normal, real women, with everyday problems, so unique and their friendship was great. They had their own lives and troubles, their own stories, however the moments in the book when they were together worked so very well.

Eve has been ignoring a lump in her breast. She’s scared to go to the doctor in case they’re going to confirm her fears. Help comes in the most unexpected way. I wasn’t so sure why Eve didn’t want to open to her husband, to be honest, I understand she wanted to be strong and independent, she never wanted help from anybody but there are moments in our lives when we just should share our problems with the closest ones.

Laura desperately wants a baby, however how is it going to happen when, after years of trying and disappointment, her husband has just left her? I think Laura’s story, of course as important and touching as the other three, was not as well developed and I felt the weakest connection with her. But of course I kept everything crossed for her, I fell for her as well and the end of her story surprised me very much, but also made me happy for her.

Her sister Jo, who’s just started a new relationship, has a very different problem, as the new boyfriends brings his teenage daughter with and she can’t quite bond with the girl. I so wasn’t sure about the new relationship, the quick move, I was really scared and afraid that she’s going to be hurt again, but following the motto “no risk, no fun” Jo dived pretty deep. She just wants to feel happy again. There were moments that I wouldn’t stand Rick’s daughter, but she was patient and determined to make the things run smoothly between them and I really admired her for this.

And India, who’s running mother and baby music classes, even though she had great ambitions before, she wanted to go to music college and was short of doing this, well, is she going to reveal the secret from her past that’s so haunting her? Is it this secret that makes her question everything, not being sure if she’s happy with her life, her children, her husband? Is the chance encounter going to answer all her questions and doubts or rather bring even more problems?

All the stories are beautifully written, and, typical for Lucy Diamond, with tons of gentleness, understanding and subtlety. They are all down to earth and very authentic, telling us about the effects they have on each of the characters and their closest ones.

 Lucy Diamond creates her characters in a way that make you feel as if you’ve known them for ages. You can’t help but fell in love with them, cheer them on and keep everything crossed for them. I was immediately hooked and warmed to all of the women from the word go. What is also so significant is that we can really easily identify with them all because Lucy Diamond makes them realistic and down to earth, and their problems as well.

There are many lighter and humorous situations in the story, as well as many emotional ones, and the book really tugs at the heart – strings. With four main characters there is a lot happening, so it’s fast paced and while I wouldn’t say that it’s full of twists or turns, there are for sure some surprises on the way and I wouldn’t call the story predictable – oh no! Forget about the wishy – washy stories and repeating plots, “On a Beautiful Day” is close to life, realistic and relatable book with complex and well developed characters.

Lucy Diamond’s writing is, as always, full of sensitivity, she writes beautifully and descriptive, but with a great dose of humour and there is a lot of understanding in her writing. The characters must face plenty of problems, their lives are not beds of roses and life can be challenging for them but the story is not sad but it will make you think about your own life and to re – consider some things, that’s for sure.

 It was a gorgeous story about appreciating your life, about facing the challenges on your way, about having the courage. This is a book about second chances and about trust, touching upon so many different and important issues like fertility, health concerns, (patchwork) families, relationships and friendship. I absolutely adored the fact that it was so compelling, clever and so challenging, with a complex plot and I enjoyed every single minute of it. Lucy Diamond’s book are guaranteed to provide you with all you need: laughter, tears, all kinds of emotions, suspense, and it’s not different with “On a Beautiful Day”, but the book is on no account too heavy or too overwhelming. It makes you think, so this is really my favourite kind of read, as it obliges to look under the surface. Highly recommended!

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The House of New Beginnings by Lucy Diamond

The House of New Beginnings by Lucy Diamond

 

33388406Publisher: Macmillan

Publishing Date: 26th January 2017

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

Number of pages: 480

Genre: Romance, Women’s Fiction

 Buy the Book: Kindle | Hardcover | Paperback(out on 01.06.2017)

 

Synopsis:

Number 11, Dukes Square, looks just like the other houses on the Brighton seafront: a Regency terrace with elegant sash windows, a winding staircase, and post piled up in the hall for its tenants. It might be part of the city’s history, but it’s also a place of brand new beginnings.

Georgie has followed her childhood sweetheart to Brighton but is determined to carve out a career for herself in journalism. Throwing herself into the city’s delights is fun and exciting, but before she knows it, she’s sliding into all kinds of trouble . . .

Charlotte’s in the city for a new start, hoping to keep her head down and somehow get over the heartbreaking loss she’s suffered in the past. But Margot, the stylish old lady on the top floor, has other ideas. Like it or not, Charlotte must confront the outside world, and the possibilities it still holds.

A terrible revelation sent Rosa running from London to start again as a sous chef. The work is gruelling and thankless but it’s a distraction at least . . . until she comes up against the stroppy teenager next door who challenges her on her lifestyle choices. What if Rosa’s passion for food could lead her to more interesting places?

As the three tenants find each other, it’s as if a whole new chapter of their lives has begun. The House of New Beginnings is a moving and uplifting novel from bestselling author Lucy Diamond.

Rating: 5/5

Oh yes, guys, it was a high time for a new Lucy Diamond’s book – I’ve been already experiencing Ms Diamond withdrawal symptoms, to be honest, missing her warm and inviting writing style and gorgeous stories about strong women. When I’ve seen the title of the new book – “The House of New Beginnings” – I really didn’t have to read the synopsis to know that it’s going to be a gorgeous novel about taking chances and starting afresh. And guys, this cover…! THIS COVER…! Better let’s not start on this beautiful, sparkly, eye – catching cover…

When starting a book by Lucy Diamond I know it is going to introduce me to some lovely, strong female characters. The author’s incredible strength lies in writing about people that easily could be our friends, neighbours, family. This time we have three main characters – Rosa, working in a hotel’s kitchen, chopping onions and avoiding flying knives, Charlotte whose marriage didn’t get through a tragedy and Georgia, following her boyfriend who’s just got a new job in Brighton. Of course, there is so much to the girls than meet the eye! They had some very complicated pasts and they all want to start afresh – even Georgia, who sees the move to Brighton as a chance to start a new career. What the girls have in common right now is their new address – they live in the same house, Number 11 Dukes Square, but soon they all are going to cross each other’s paths…

As always, the characters are incredibly well written. Lucy Diamond has this gift to create warm, realistic, not over – exaggerated characters, people that we root for and we can so easily relate to, as we could easily find ourselves in similar situations. This is what makes Lucy’s writing so exceptional, I think, that she writes about normal, everyday things but makes it in a special way and she doesn’t overweigh the readers with only sadness but wonderfully compensates the most tender and serious moments with happy and funny ones. I can’t say that I had a favourite character in this novel because I loved them all, from the very beginning. Their stories were so different, but they had something in common as well – they were all looking for happiness, for finding their way even when it seems that all the odds are against you. Rosa has been badly hurt by a man she’s trusted and her reaction was to run away, so she left her job, house, friends and moved to Brighton, and instead in the glamorous world of PR she is working in the hotel’s kitchen – training to be a chef, as she herself ironically states. It was clear that she is wasting her time in this kitchen, with the bully chef, guys, and my heart went to her. I couldn’t watch how she was flagellating herself because of this what’s happened in the past, she deserved so much more, she had so much to offer!
Charlotte’s story was heart – breaking and you really wanted to make things better for her. There is nothing worse than have your heart broken in a way Charlotte had and her sadness was so understandable. She was so honest and so believable in all her feelings and things she’s been doing, so realistic with her uncertainty and shyness and I loved to see her blossoming, coming out of her shell and finally not forgetting but accepting.
Georgie was the youngest of the three women and her biggest problem was leaving her best mates for few months when following her boyfriend Simon to the lovely Brighton. She didn’t have such problems like Rosa and Charlotte although she was very talented in complicating her own life. She was lovely, full of great sense of humour girl, although I wanted to roll my eyes at her sometimes and mostly I wanted to tell her, hey girl, you are great, you don’t need to hang on Simon so much.

And yet all the women, that have already hit the lowest point of their lives, were still dreaming and hoping of something better. And, what’s more important, with each other’s help, or with help of other great women, they eventually plucked up the courage – and it was beautiful to see how, throughout the story, they were – yes, they had so many downs on their ways – but they always picked themselves up and looked forward. It may all sound too pompous or serious, guys, but of course it isn’t – Lucy Diamond delivers (again!) a down – to – earth, light – hearted and uplifting story.
Even the background characters, that come and go – and even the ones that are not so significant, like Paul (oh my word! How much I laughed!) – they add so much to this story, and the book wouldn’t be the same without them. They also bring some twists and turns and that made the reading so hooking and so interesting and really, some of the surprises that were their doing were so unexpected. They were all very true to life and the author brought them so effortlessly to life – just like the setting, the house itself and all the events that happened when all the three women were living at Dukes Square. Lucy Diamond’s descriptions are colourful and vivid but she doesn’t need to write thousand words to describe a thing, she just finds the best words and ways to describe them in a way that has us glued to the pages. There was not a flat moment in this story, guys, and it was a real rollercoaster ride of feelings and emotions with a great dose of brilliant humour – Lucy Diamond at her best!

Truly, “The House of New Beginnings” is a brilliant read about new beginnings (sic!), friendship, dealing with grief and betrayal, finding your own feet – full of uplifting messages and hope. And the dishes that Rosa creates, oh my word, guys…! They sounded so, so delicious! I wouldn’t hesitate to become a regular at her diner! I found myself really engrossed in the book and the different storylines and the characters that – at the beginning – didn’t know each other, were working together perfectly and I kept my fingers crossed for them all. The story is not rushed, but it has a lovely pace to it that allows you to enjoy all the small and big things in the characters’ lives. And having created such brilliant characters the author doesn’t have to push on fireworks, an extravagant plot but this what she writes about is lovely and down to earth and I often found myself nodding my head with agreement at the characters’ way of resolving their problems. Another winner from one of my favourite authors and I can’t recommend it highly enough! Make sure you have it on your wish – list!