Happy New Year fellow bookworms, and it’s time for a happy new blog! For too long this book review blog has fallen rather by the wayside because of university and I’ve felt that my reviews haven’t really been worth much of a read. But no more! Not only am I going to keep up regular blogging, I’m also shaking up the reviews a bit. As you know, I have four categories that I separate my reviews into, but now I’m adding a fifth. New year, new me and all that. When I started this blog I was very hesitant about adding too much of my own opinion into my reviews, but I have decided that without a bit of my own opinion, the reviews are rather clinical. So after my Overall score, I will now add in a little bit about my favourite/least favourite parts of the book. I hope you enjoy it… although feel free to shout at your computer and unleash your disagreement into the comments section if not.
The book I’m reviewing today is one that was an ORLB (my new nickname for a book that I read a lot… Often Read Lovely Book… look at me with my new 2017 updated book slang) for many years a long time ago. I must admit that I haven’t re-read it since then- breaking a rule of this review I realise- but I felt that I knew the story so well it wouldn’t be hard to review now. It’s called Flora’s Lot, it’s by Katie Fforde and it is a romantic comedy. I’m also adding in cool effects to my new snazzy 2017 blog if you haven’t noticed.
The blurb reads: Flora Stanza has sub-let her London life in a bid to join the family antiques business. Her knowledge of antiques extends only to the relics of information she has crammed from daytime TV, but what she lacks in experience she makes up for in blind enthusiasm. So she is more than a little put off when she doesn’t receive the warm country welcome she expected. Her curt cousin Charles and his fiancée Annabelle are determined to send Flora packing, and their offer to buy her out is tempting … until a strange warning makes her think twice. Stuck with a cat about to burst with kittens, Flora has little choice but to accept the offer to stay in an abandoned holiday cottage miles from any neighbours, let alone a trendy winebar. And between fighting off dinner invitations from the devastatingly handsome Henry, and hiding her secret eco-friendly lodger William, Flora soon discovers country life is far from dull as she sets about rebuilding the crumbling business …
I give this book 3/5 for how put-down-able it was. I really enjoyed the story but it is a bit tame and cannot in any way be called gripping. It’s a great read for a summers day when you have nothing to do, not the kind of book that makes you want to leave your life immediately, travel Europe and pick up various assassin lovers along the way. To be honest, that sounds like a bloody good book… I wonder if anyone’s written it yet?
Flora’s Lot gets 4/5 for characters. Flora is the definition of the word lovely, and exactly who I’d like to be in another life (aside from the Europe-travelling-assasin-lover). The male romantic lead though, cor blimey. Charles is absolutely gorgeous and I always give credit to an author who can use just words to create an image that makes you want to marry a character entirely having only read 400 pages. And let’s not forget the cat in the story who is obviously amazing because they are a cat.
For originality I gave this book 3/5. I was considering a 2 but that felt slightly too harsh. One thing I can say about this book is that it’s the spitting image of half of The Holiday film. By that I mean that you get the girl moving to the remote cottage and finding Mr Classic English Awkward Romantic Lead. It’s only half of the Holiday therefore, because there’s no mention of cool LA mansions or Jack Black (sigh). Flora’s Lot is a classic romantic, cosy story and I loved it.
Overall I give this book 3/5. It is a charming romantic story that slowly warms your heart and makes you wonder whether a tiny village life is the one for you. I wouldn’t class it as the best romantic book I’ve ever come across, but I would certainly recommend for a summer holiday read.
MY FAVOURITE/LEAST FAVOURITE BIT (ooo, look at me with my bold capitals):
Let’s start with the bad bit first. My least favourite part of the book was Annabel. I know she’s the token village bitch in the story but I actually found her super boring and the thought that Charles was with her kind of made me think that maybe his taste and personality weren’t quite as appealing as I thought. Also I have to slip in here as well that EW, Charles and Flora are related… Why, Katie Fforde? You had to have the two romantic leads as family??
My favourite part however was the descriptions of Charles as he loosens up a bit and clearly starts to warm to Flora. Charles, for those of you who don’t have a clue what I’m talking about, is basically Mark Darcy from Bridget Jones and it’s all very sexy when he takes off his tie and runs a hand through his hair… anyway, I’m getting distracted.
Thank you for reading this review, I hope you enjoyed the new structure! Please do comment and let me know what your favourite/least favourite moments were and next weeks review will be Harry Potter 5 and 6 (number 7 deserves one on its own, don’t you think?).