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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 Girls by Bella Osborne #Review


I thoroughly enjoyed  Bella Osborne's The Library so I was delighted to be invited to be on the tour for her latest novel, The Girls which was published on April 14th by Aria.

 Four old friends. Thrown back together after forty years apart. What could possibly go wrong?

In the 1970s, The Girls were best friends sharing a house and good times: Zara the famous diva actor, Val the uptight solicitor, Jackie the wild child and Pauline the quirky introvert. Now they're in their twilight years, and Zara suggests that they live with her to support each other through old age.

Initially, being housemates again is just as much fun as in their heyday. But then Zara reveals the real reason she asked them to move in with her, and suddenly things take a sinister turn.

As the women confront their demons they come under the spotlight of the press, the police and an angry parrot. With their lives spiralling out of control can they save their friendships and each other?

 My Thoughts

This is a highly entertaining story of four friends in their later years, who meet up again and spend time together. They are all distinct and different characters and the dynamic between each of them differs. Queen Bee over all of them appears to be Zara, who made it as an actress and has a celebrity profile. I enjoyed all the asides referring to actual celebrities throughout the story. However, behind the facade lurk some serious subjects, ranging from loneliness and depression, through guilt, abandonment to decisions of life and death.

    This story takes you to a surprising setting which I will not mention for fear of spoiling the plot. I loved the descriptions of the life they found themselves living, and the characters they all met there. Friendship is of course an important thread in the story and ties which survive the years. The plot moves at a pace and carries you through to the end.

In short:an entertaining look at friendship


About the Author


Bella Osborne has been jotting down stories as far back as she can remember but decided that 2013 would be the year that she finished a full length novel. In 2016, her debut novel, It Started At Sunset Cottage, was shortlisted for the Contemporary Romantic Novel of the Year and RNA Joan Hessayon New Writers Award. Bella's stories are about friendship, love and coping with what life throws at you. She likes to find the humour in the darker moments of life and weaves these into her stories. Bella believes that writing your own story really is the best fun ever, closely followed by talking, eating chocolate, drinking fizz and planning holidays. She lives in the Midlands, UK with her lovely husband and wonderful daughter, who thankfully, both accept her as she is (with mad morning hair and a penchant for skipping).

For more about Bella, visit her website at follow her on Twitter - @osborne_bella or Facebook
Aria links: Website  |  Twitter   |  Fiction   |  Instagram
Head of Zeus: Instagram  ||  Twitter |  Website  |  Facebook
Book links: Amazon UK   |  Kobo

Thanks to Bella Osborne, Aria and Head of Zeus for a copy of the book and a place on the tour.
Check out the rest of the tour!



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