I received this book from Little, Brown Book Group UK via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.
At thirty-three-years old Evangeline Starling’s life in Chicago is missing that special something. And when she’s passed over for promotion at work, Evie realizes she needs to make a change. Some time away to regain perspective might be just the thing. In a burst of impulsivity, she plans a holiday in a quaint English village. The holiday package comes with a temporary position at Much Ado About Books, the bookstore located beneath her rental apartment. There’s no better dream vacation for the bookish Evie, a life-long Shakespeare lover.
Not only is Evie swept up in running the delightful store as soon as she arrives, she’s drawn into the lives, loves and drama of the friendly villagers. Including Roane Robson, the charismatic and sexy farmer who tempts Evie every day with his friendly flirtations. Evie is determined to keep him at bay because a holiday romance can only end in heartbreak, right? But Evie can’t deny their connection and longs to trust in her handsome farmer that their whirlwind romance could turn in to the forever kind of love.
‣ POV: 1st person, Evie
‣ Summary in Emojis: 💕🐕👨🌾📚🐚
‣ Trigger and Content Warnings: alcoholism, abusive guardian/parents, some sexual scenes
As a fluffy, escapist novel this book ticked all the boxes. We have our heroine Evie running away from her messed up life in Chicago to come on a working holiday at a Bookstore in England. There she slowly falls in love with the idyllic little village of Alnster, the people who live there, and also a certain rugged farmer. But her life in Chicago is still there and Evie must decide what she wants to do with her life, and who she wants to be.
I loved Alnster and everyone within the quaint little village. It sounded like the perfect holiday destination! The villagers were all immediately friendly with Evie and, even though I rolled my eyes a bit at them instantly devulging all their deep, dark family secrets to a complete stranger, I did enjoy the fact that for once a tourist town was actually nice to a tourist! I’ve read so many books where a tourist village is very anti-outsider and so this was a nice change of pace. I also loved all the side characters, particularly Caro, Violet and Lucas.
Also Shadow–I adore dogs in books and he was the sweetest Great Dane ever (I just wish the dog on the front of the English cover matched his breed!).
In general I enjoyed this book, I thought it was very sweet, but I didn’t love it as much as I thought I would. Some bits of it were just too cheesy for me to take seriously. And other parts were just plain boring.
And then you have the characters. Evie is one of those busybody characters who needs to sort everyone’s life out for them. Now, if you like this type of character you’ll love Evie, but after a while I just started to find her annoying. Roane on the other hand was a little too perfect. There was a bit of insta-love in the beginning where Roane is immediately infatuated by Evie and I found it really hard to get behind their romance because everything seemed to happen so fast. I prefer my characters slowly falling in love over time, and there wasn’t much of that here.
Overall though this was a lovely laid-back and easy read with little drama, perfect for a relaxed, cosy afternoon.