Caroline Hemingway can’t help but feel a little strange watching her ex-sister-in-law marrying the owner of Carter’s Cider Farm, but she’s delighted Anna’s found happiness after the death of her late husband, and Caroline’s brother, James. If only Caroline could find her own love story…
Desperate to escape the rat race, Caroline decides to take the plunge and move to the idyllic village of Little Somerby, where she is given the task of opening and running a restaurant in one of the forgotten barns on the Cider Farm.
Opening and running The Cider Kitchen is no easy task, and there are many challenges on the way, but slowly Caroline feels she’s being accepted into the local community and starts to believe she may have found her forever home. But secrets from her past seem destined to haunt her, and not even the attentions of the very dishy Jonathan Carter can distract her from all she’s left behind…
Don’t be fooled by the cute cover, this story is not a feel-good romantic romp in the countryside or a heartwarming romance. The main characters are edgy and self-indulgent. Realistic but not easy to empathise with.
This was my first excursion into Little Somerby, and I didn’t need to read the first book in the series to understand the setting and characters of this one. Although, Anna and Matthew are easier to like than Caroline and Jonathan.
The first couple of chapters peaked my interest, and I found I wanted to see what happened to Caroline and Jonathan after their initial encounter. However, they are both such self-absorbed, spiky characters that I can’t honestly say I cared whether they got their happy ever or not.
Even though I didn’t like the main characters, I still found the story interesting, it was for the most part well-paced, and the plot held my interest.
An original take on village life and new beginnings with a good cast of supporting characters.
I received a copy of this book from Aria via NetGalley in return for an honest review.