I've come to realise in the last year or so that I really love rom-coms that centre around food; I've read books set in chocolate shops, cafes and bakeries, and loved them all. So when I spotted this treasure on a Facebook book reviewer group that I'm a member of, I immediately requested a copy; I'm glad I did.
I LOVED the sweet shop element of the story, reading about Holly's mission to take the shop over and make it a success made me want to go and run a sweet shop. The endless mentions of sweets that I remember from my childhood not only made my mouth water, but also provided a nostalgia that served to make the reading experience even more enjoyable than it already was. What really impressed me was the focus that was placed not only on what the shop sold, but how the shop made people feel and the sense of community it provided; at times it felt like a love letter to small, independent shops and it was lovely.
Holly was a fantastic female lead and was instantly likeable thanks to her well-balanced mix of vulnerability and determination. While this book is sold as a rom-com, and there is a healthy dose of romance to revel in, what I enjoyed most about reading this book was watching Holly find her confidence and take chances in her new life - living as she wanted rather than how she thought she should.
Her developing friendships with Caroline, Jamie and Drey were delightful to read. They were well-written secondary characters and added an extra layer of depth and meaning to Holly's new world. Speaking of secondary characters, I would have loved to see more of Maud. I appreciate that her absence was key to the plot, but her warm, encouraging character was so endearing that more of her could only be a good thing.
This was a lovely read, with a good natural pace. It had a comfortable predictability about it, but nothing that detracted from the reading experience. I'd recommend this to anyone looking for a light, uplifting read this summer (or any other time).
*I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Starting over never tasted so good
Holly Berry has it all; a good corporate career, a steady boyfriend, and enough savings that they will soon be able to buy a nice little house. But when she finds out her boyfriend has been cheating on her, she decides to retreat to the Cotswolds and a place full of far sweeter memories.
However when Holly discovers the quaint village sweet shop that she worked in as a teenager is starting to crumble she decides that maybe the sensible life isn’t what she wants after all. Putting all her chocolate eggs in one basket, she says goodbye to the city, and sets her sights on Just One More.
After all, how hard can running a sweet shop be?
With charismatic Giles, ready to rescue her at every turn and the local bureaucrats breathing down her neck, it certainly isn’t the quiet life she expected. Can Holly really save the place from the the wicked developers, or will she be the reason Just One Morecloses its doors for good?
Full of laughter, sweet clean romance and cozy village life, The Sweet Shop of Second Chances will make you believe that the best things in life really are worth fighting for.
You can buy the book here now. The author published it herself.