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The Vintage Village Bake Off by Judy Leigh #Review

  Here we are with another amusing romcom by Judy Leigh . The Vintage Village Bake Off was published by Boldwood Books on December 4th. Now in his seventies, Robert Parkin is stunned to find himself the unlikely sex symbol of the village gardening club. Living in happy solitude with his cat Isaac Mewton in the Devon village of Millbrook, entertained by his mischievous chickens and goats, Robert has never figured out the rules of romance. But as the local ladies vie for his company, it soon becomes clear that Robert's Victoria Sponge cake is the lure, and as his baking prowess grows, so does his confidence. Cheesecakes, meringues, puddings, Robert can do it all, but his real masterpieces are his scones - ginger, rosemary, coconut, fruit, his recipes are inspired and soon come to the attention of the local media. Which county does the best cream tea - Devon or Cornwall? It's time for an age-old debate to be settled with a competition. Robert's sisters Bunty and Ha

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker by Jenni Keer #Review #Giveaway

Today is the final day in the blog tour to celebrate the launch of Jenni Keer's The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker and I am delighted to be taking part. There is also a great Giveaway for you to take part in. Details on how to enter are at the foot of this post. 

Meet Lucy, aged 25, and Brenda, aged 79. Neighbours and unlikely friends.

Lucy Baker is not your usual 25-year-old. She is more at home reading and knitting in her cluttered little flat than going out partying and socialising.

79-year-old Brenda is full of wise and wonderful advice, but when she’s diagnosed with dementia her life begins to change. Before her memories slip away for ever, Brenda is desperate to fulfil one last wish – to see Lucy happy.

Gifting Lucy the locket that helped Brenda find her own true love, she hopes to push her reticent neighbour in the right direction. But is Lucy Baker ready for the opportunities and heartbreaks of the real world? It’s about time she put her knitting needles aside and found out…

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker will be the most charming, heart-warming and feel-good novel you will read this year, perfect for fans of Ruth Hogan and Gail Honeyman.

My Thoughts

This turned out to be a most enjoyable and feelgood read, with interesting principal characters and a varied cast of supporting ones as well, including Scratbags, the all-seeing cat. Lucy and George are both well drawn with some unexpected character traits and not always predictable reactions. Neighbour to them both  is the redoubtable Brenda who brings a touch of magic to the whole proceedings.There is a real poignancy about Brenda's deteriorating dementia but she always maintains her sense of humour and affection for Lucy.

    There is plenty to get your teeth into in this story line. Lucy's family all have their own backstory and you get the feeling that this could apply to George as well. I was able to visualise all the scenes so well. Lucy's workplace is full of office politics and it is good to see how she faces up to some of the challenges there. I always enjoy a story where you get to see characters grow and develop and I definitely felt that this was the case here. There are some genuinely funny moments but a few sad ones too. 

In short: A tapestry of emotions.
About the Author

Jenni Keer is a history graduate who embarked on a career in contract flooring before settling in the middle of the Suffolk countryside with her antique furniture restorer husband. She has valiantly attempted to master the ancient art of housework but with four teenage boys in the house it remains a mystery. Instead, she spends her time at the keyboard writing women's fiction to combat the testosterone-fuelled atmosphere with her number one fan #Blindcat by her side. Much younger in her head than she is on paper, she adores any excuse for fancy-dress and is part of a disco formation dance team.

You can follow Jenni here: Facebook   |  Twitter   |  Instagram 
                                         |  Website

Book link: Amazon UK   |  Amazon US  

Thanks to Jenni Keer, Avon Publishers and Rachel of Rachel's Random Resources for a copy of the book and a place on the tour. 

                                             Check out these other great bloggers!

                                                                       Giveaway ( UK only) 

Win The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker goodies (UK Only) To enter, just follow the link below and good luck!

Prize contains - Thornton's fudge, a Nu notebook, a Hopes and Dreams bookmark and a set of five "Scratbag" blank greetings cards designed by Jenni Keer

*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome.  Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below.  The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over.  Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data.  I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.

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