Sunday, 26 June 2016

How to Find Love in a Bookshop - Veronica Henry

How to Find Love In a Bookshop
by Veronica Henry

About the book...
Nightingale Books, nestled on the high street in the idyllic Cotswold town of Peasebrook, is a dream come true for booklovers. But owner Emilia Nightingale is struggling to keep the shop open. The temptation to sell up is proving enormous - but what about the promise she made to her father? Not to mention the loyalty she owes to her customers. 
Sarah Basildon, owner of stately home Peasebrook Manor, has used the bookshop as an escape from all her problems in the past few years. But is there more to her visits than meets the eye? Since messing up his marriage, Jackson asks Emilia for advice on books to read to the son he misses so much. But Jackson has a secret, and is not all he seems... 
And there’s Tomasina, painfully shy, who runs a pop-up restaurant from her tiny cottage. She has a huge crush on a man she met and then lost in the cookery section, somewhere between Auguste Escoffier and Marco Pierre White. Can she find the courage to admit her true feelings? 

How to Find Love in a Bookshop is the delightful story of Emilia’s fight to keep her bookshop alive, the customers whose lives she has touched - and the books they all love. 

Published in Hardback by Orion Books 16th June 2016, £12.99. Also available in ebook and audio. 

About the author...
Veronica Henry has worked as a scriptwriter for THE ARCHERS, HEARTBEAT and HOLBY CITY amongst many others, before turning to fiction. She won the 2014 RNA NOVEL OF THE YEAR AWARD for A NIGHT ON THE ORIENT EXPRESS. Veronica lives on the coast in North Devon with her sons. 

For more information on Veronica Henry 

•Visit her website
•Follow Veronica on Twitter @veronica_henry
•See Veronica’s Facebook page henry author 

My thoughts...
I was offered a copy of How to Find Love In a Bookshop in exchange for an honest review by Elaine Egan, Publicity Manager at Orion Books, something which I am more than happy to do.

This was a touching book that was a pleasure to read.  Emilia, finds herself alone with big decisions to make.  Her father, Julius was a single parent to Emilia and his love of books and their ability to soothe and enlighten was a gift which he passed onto his daughter. Sadly, How to Find Love In a Bookshop begins with the death of Julius and the reality that Nightingale Books is now Emilia's responsibility, bringing with it problems and the one person who she always leant on and sought advice from - gone.

Nightingale Books is a responsibility that she wants to take up but when the reality of the challenge facing her is presented in black and white it becomes a challenge that may be that step too far.

Veronica sensitively conveys Emilia's feelings and her grief, that was at times all consuming.   I really felt for Emilia as she dealt with the huge tug of love that was Nightingale Books.  She realises the bookshop is struggling financially but initially not quite how bad. Grief is a terrible thing that effects us all differently and for Emilia the yo-yoing between decisions is made harder when she arranges a memorial service for her father and practically the whole community wants to take part. The emotional strain of dealing with the desire to keep the bookshop open for her fathers sake, but realising it appears to be a hopeless case so she should sell up is all too evident.  

Emilia slowly begins to realise that perhaps she isn't all alone.  The love and genuine support given and received by Julius and subsequently Emilia was evident with each and every character introduced to us.   Nightingale Books really was at the heart of Peasebrook and to close it down would be like ripping the heart out of the community.   I felt strongly that Emilia should keep it open and willed her on with each chapter.  Every time I thought she had made a positive decision to stay open something would happen to change her mind and I genuinely felt saddened by this.  

I loved this story, at times it was sad and I felt quite emotional but at others found it to be an uplifting read that made me smile and wish for the chance to walk through the doors of Nightingale Books. The descriptions were so vivid I could smell the books and see myself stroking the spines as I chose my next read, wanting to be a part of a community that has a bookshop playing a pivotal part in the community.   Thank you so much for this beautiful read.

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