Monday, October 9, 2017

Ella's Ice Cream Summer by Sue Watson

4 Star

Ella’s life just hit rock-bottom, but can a summer by the sea mend her broken heart? When life gives you lemons… make ice-cream! 

Life hasn’t always been easy for single mum Ella, but she has just hit an all-time low; she’s jobless, loveless, very nearly homeless and, to make matters worse, now the owner of a pocket-sized pooch with a better wardrobe than her. 

Packing her bags (and a bigger one for the dog), Ella sets off for the seaside town of Appledore in Devon to re-live the magical summers of her youth and claim her portion of the family ice-cream business: a clapped-out ice-cream van and a complicated mess of secrets. 

There she meets gorgeous and free-spirited solicitor, Ben, who sees things differently: with a little bit of TLC he has a plan to get the van – and Ella – back up and running in no time. 

Kathryn - 4 Star

At first, I enjoyed this novel for the light simplicity of the story - the summer draw to cold treats in a seaside town can do nothing but bring a smile to your face. There are complex issues though behind Emma's escape to the sea.  She's unsure of her financial position, she has a number of dependents who seem to be entirely her responsibility and she is feeling decidedly without direction.  On top of all this she ends up inheriting a dilapidated ice cream van from her aunt and has no clue what to do with it, except that she's keen to honour her aunt's memory.  

I didn't really care for her mother at first mostly because I found her decidedly unhelpful. But her reluctance to encourage becomes more palatable when the mystery behind the family feud starts to come out. It takes the entire novel to be fully explained though so try not to be impatient as I was!  I wanted things cleared up so that there were no more secrets.  The arrival of Ella's cousin adds tension of course and she's very difficult to read (for us and for Ella) but it's obvious that there are things she'd like to share…

I found our love interest Ben super sweet, perfect and delightful despite his own uncertainties.  I liked him almost as much as the ice cream descriptions.  Honourable mentions go to the dog and the Slimming Club ladies who added to the overall giggles. 

I've enjoyed all my Sue Watson reads. She creates generational family dynamics I always relate to. All in all a fabulous read which will have you on your toes and give you faith that families can come back together if they all want it to be so.

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

Connect with Sue Watson:
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