Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Return to The Little French Guesthouse by Helen Pollard

5 Star

When Emmy Jamieson leaves her life behind and moves to La Cour des Roses, a gorgeous guesthouse amidst vineyards in France, everything is resting on her success as the new guesthouse manager. 
Looming in the calendar is the biggest booking ever, when the entire eccentric, demanding Thomson family will descend for a golden wedding anniversary. With airbeds on the floor and caravans in the garden, La Cour des Roses will be bursting at the seams. 
Emmy knows she’s up to the challenge, especially with the support of the gorgeous Alain, the half-French, half-English, caramel-eyed accountant. But she hadn’t counted on a naked, sleepwalking travel blogger, or the return of owner Rupert’s venomous ex-wife Gloria. 
Gloria has a few things to say about Emmy’s new role, Rupert’s finances, and the unsuspecting Alain, which send everybody reeling. Just when Emmy can see a future for herself of endless sunshine, true love and laughter, are her dreams about to be ripped at the seams? 

Kathryn - 5 Star

I felt such a connection to the place and people in the first novel (The Little French Guesthouse) that I pounced on the chance to read the sequel and I wasn’t disappointed. The bonds between the characters were still there in the sequel, as if Emmy had never left the idyllic French setting.

The plot was filled with action with new guests of the guesthouse especially as a large family reunion took over a good portion of the novel.  There was much angst as to how they would handle all the requirements of such a big booking and it made me anxious for Emmy and Rupert! Especially as they were trying to bounce back from the scathing review one guest had left.  As always, there were a lot of hilarious moments with the guests- the scathing review came after a particularly bizarre moment and I like that the author doesn’t brush over the difficult parts of running a hotel. Each guest is given a personality and each one brings either a bit of insight or a bit of humour, you can picture each one sitting around the kitchen dinner table with drinks and wonderful food that Rupert has prepared.

We are also treated to the return of Gloria as she tries to pretend she’d never left.   She adds a certain amount of tension to the storyline which compounded with the family reunion makes a portion of this second novel a bit of a page turner.  I still liked Alain and Emmy’s relationship.  I liked how it evolved organically and how they dealt with their obstacles.  Particularly sweet was their individual loyalty to Rupert.

On the whole this sequel didn’t disappoint- I hope there’s a third in the works!

Thank you to Bookouture for our review copy.  All opinions are our own.

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