A Country Escape – Katie Fforde
I have always liked Katie Fforde’s novels – I find them comforting. I like some more than others – the ones I like have some sort of skill or craft (pottery, gardening, antiques – this one has dairy farming and cheese making). I am not so keen on the ones that involve cooking or event planning or narrow boats (but that is just a personal preference).
Here is the blurb …
Fran has always wanted to be a farmer. And now it looks as if her childhood dream is about to come true. She has just moved in to a beautiful but very run-down farm in the Cotswolds, currently owned by an old aunt who has told Fran that if she manages to turn the place around in a year, the farm will be hers. But Fran knows nothing about farming. She might even be afraid of cows.
She’s going to need a lot of help from her best friend Issi, and also from her wealthy and very eligible neighbour – who might just have his own reasons for being so supportive. Is it the farm he is interested in? Or Fran herself?
If you like a gentle romance – where the villains aren’t too villainous – and the surroundings are beautiful, then these novels are for you.
More reviews …
Book review: A Country Escape by Katie Fforde
A Secret Garden – Katie Fforde
I read all of Katie Fforde’s books – usually in a day and some are better than others, but there is something very comforting and easy about her books.
Here is the blurb for this one…
Romance, humour and happy-ever-after endings in Katie Fforde’s brand new novel for 2017.
‘What I want to know’, said Lorna, ‘is what lies behind those ash trees at the back of the garden?
Lorna is a talented gardener and Philly is a plantswoman. Together they work in the grounds of a beautiful manor house in the Cotswolds
They enjoy their jobs and are surrounded by family and friends.
But for them both the door to true love remains resolutely closed.
So when Lorna is introduced to Jack at a dinner party and Lucien catches Philly’s eye at the local farmers market, it seems that dreams really can come true and happy endings lie just around the corner.
But do they?
Troublesome parents, the unexpected arrival of someone from Lorna’s past, and the discovery of an old and secret garden mean their lives are about to become a lot more complicated…
The deliciously romantic new novel from the No. 1 Sunday Times bestselling author of A Vintage Wedding, Recipe for Love, and A French Affair.
What I like about these novels is that you get to explore a new profession/job – in this one it is landscape design and growing plants (i.e. being a plantswoman).
Another review …
A French Affair – Katie Fforde
Katie Fforde’s new book is out. She has even won an award.
I have read all of Ms Fforde’s novels (like this one or this one) – they’re a light, fun, easy read, but still well-written. This one, to my mind, seems a return to her best form. My copy arrived on Friday and I finished it on Sunday (perfect lazy Sunday reading).
Gina and Sally Makepiece have inherited a stall in the French House – an antiques centre nestled in the heart of the English countryside.
Gina is determined to drag the French House and its grumpy owner into the twenty-first century. Bearing all the attributes of a modern-day Mr Rochester, Matthew Ballinger is less than happy with the whirlwind that has arrived on his doorstep.
The last thing either of them want is to fall in love.
But will a trip to France change their minds?
If you like romance novels (without graphic sex scenes), then this novel is for you.
Another Katie Fforde offering. Here is the blurb…
Take one aspiring cook, one judge, and a spoonful of romance…
When Zoe Harper wins a coveted place in a televised cookery competition she’s thrilled. It’s a chance to cook her way to fame and fortune and the little delicatessen she’s set her heart on. The first task has hardly begun when she finds herself with rather too much on her plate. Not only has she got to contend with the fiercely competitive and downright devious Cher, but she’s fast developing an inconvenient crush on one of the judges – the truly delicious Gideon Irving. All too soon there’s more than canapés, cupcakes and cordon bleu at stake. Will Zoe win the competition or is Gideon one temptation too far? And is Zoe really prepared to risk it all for love?
I read this novel in one sitting – this isn’t an attempt at bragging about how quickly I read I just want you to get the idea of how easy it is to read. It is a fun, lighted-hearted read. Pure escapism – we know there is going to be a happy ending. I’ve read all of Ms Fforde’s novels and I have enjoyed most of them – she has found a winning formula and stuck to it – and I like to read them because I know exactly what to expect. I think my favourite is still the first one I read – “The Rose Revived‘. Read this if you enjoy romance novels with only minor complications.
More reviews …
On a much lighter note than yesterday’s post, I’ve read Katie Fforde’s latest offering. I’ve been a big fan since reading The Rose Revived years ago. However, I’ve been disappointed with the last few novels. This one, to my mind at least, marks a return to form. Not quite as good as the early novels, but better than the recent ones.
Katie Fforde writes romance novels – the plot revolves around the romance. In this one, as in some previous novels, there are two romances happening; a young couple and shall we say a more mature couple?
Here’s the blurb …
Sian Bishop has only ever experienced one moment of recklessness – a moment that resulted in her beloved son Rory. It’s not that she doesn’t love the outcome of that wild night, but since then she has always taken the safer route. So when dependable, devoted Richard suggests a move to the beautiful English countryside, she leaves the hustle and bustle of the city behind, and she throws herself into the picture-postcard cottage garden, her furniture restoration business, and a new life in the country. Her good intentions are torpedoed on a glorious summer’s evening with the arrival of Gus Berresford. One-time explorer and full-time heartbreaker, Gus is ridiculously exciting, wonderfully glamorous and a completely inappropriate love interest for a single mum. But Gus and Sian have met before…Sian has no use for a fling, she simply mustn’t fall in love with the most unlikely suitor ever to cross her path – even if he has now crossed her path twice. But who knows what can happen in a summer of love…
I loved the rural setting and the sense of community Fforde creates (I want to live in one of her villages – I’m sure the light is always golden and it never rains!). This is an escapist read – it’s light, enteratining and doesn’t take too long to finish.
I have to admit I did find the situation that Sian finds herself in (in relation to Gus) very contrived, but you have to get the plot moving somehow! And if this all seems a bit negative I assure you that I will be reading the next Katie Fforde novel.
Here are some other reviews …
I’ve written before about being a Katie Fforde fan – I was disappointed with the last two novels. They just seemed a bit formulaic and I didn’t like the heroines. However, this one is a return to the Katie Fforde of old.
Here’s the blurb …
Sophie Apperly’s family has never taken her seriously. Fiercely academic, they see her more practical skills as frivolous – whilst constantly taking advantage of her. So when her best friend Milly invites her over to New York, she jumps at the chance. It’ll do her ungrateful family good to do without her for a while. What’s more, she’s on a quest – America holds the key to solving her family’s financial woes, even if they don’t deserve her help.
From the moment Sophie hits the bright lights of Manhattan she’s determined to enjoy every minute of her big adventure. So when an evening at an art gallery throws her into the path of Matilda, a spirited older lady who invites her to Connecticut for Thanksgiving, Sophie willingly accepts much to the dismay of Matilda’s grandson Luke. Undeniably attractive, but infuriatingly arrogant, he seems to doubt Sophie’s motives for befriending his grandmother. No match for the formidable Matilda, he eventually admits defeat, but first he has a proposal to make. He’ll help Sophie in her quest to save her family from financial ruin if she repays the favour. But just what does he have to do in return …?
This is a quick easy read – sometimes a bit contrived, but Katie Fforde is a guilty pleasure not improving literature. It is a romantic comedy with the focus completely on the relationship between the heroine and the hero; you know the type ‘girl meets boy, they overcome some obstacles and live happily ever after’. Having said that I enjoyed reading this novel – it is a perfect escapist read.
Here are some other reviews …