Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Book review of Promises to Keep by Patricia Sands

French Village Diaries book review Promises to Keep Patricia Sands Provence France

French Village Diaries book review Promises to Keep Patricia Sands Provence France
Promises to Keep
Synopsis from the author:
Falling in love with the south of France was no surprise to Katherine. Choosing to walk away from her past and start over was completely unexpected. A new country, a new lover, and the promise of a bright future beginning in mid-life … who knew?

Now there were the exciting dreams of restoring the property on the Cap, of beginning a new career, of experiencing the traditions of Christmas in Provence, of falling even more deeply in love with the man who inspired these hopes.

It was all so perfect, until it wasn’t.

She had embraced new possibilities in life and given her heart only to discover something was being kept from her. Something terrible from her lover’s past. Something that could destroy everything.

What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger, had become her mantra. Would it be enough?

My review:
Katherine found happiness in Provence, where she spent time on home exchange holidays following the break up of her marriage and the death of her mother. In book one we left Katherine at a critical life-changing moment and this book follows the first few months of her new life in the south of France. There are delicious descriptions of market produce and no shortage of stunning scenery brought to life; from days out in the hilltop towns and cycle rides along the coast with the new man in her life. I really felt that I was there along side her as she became a part of the local community. There are loved up picnics, lie-ins and preparations for her first traditional French Christmas, shared with a special person in her life once more; real romance that warmed my heart. I especially enjoyed their weekend sightseeing in Lyon. It is somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit and more so now thanks to Patricia’s cleverly written chapter. She left me feeling more knowledgeable in what I want to see when I get there.

However, life (even with love in Provence) is not all rose tinted. There are dark secrets from a past forgotten that come back to haunt them, just when they are getting their lives back on track. Things happen to scare them and fear taints their happiness. The cleverly written suspense about what was happening really drew me in and there were times when my imagination was running way ahead of what I was reading and I was expecting all sorts to happen just over the page. Everyone was a suspect in my eyes, so much so I was left feeling a little under whelmed when things did come to a head. It does seem though, that their life is likely to be full of drama for a little while longer. I’m sure there is more to tell and I am looking forward to the next book where I hope Katherine will learn more about her friend Simone, a new character that Patricia has dangled temptingly in front of us.

If you love romance with a twist of drama and a taste of Provence, I’m sure you will enjoy this book.

Promises to Keep - A Novel (Love in Provence Book 2) is available in ebook format and The Promise of Provence (Love in Provence Book 1) in paperback and ebook format. Links to Amazon can be found below. You can read my review of The Promise of Provence here. If you would like to read more about Patricia’s love of France you can read my France et Moi interview with her here. Patricia is also the co-author of Cooking With Our Characters: Fifteen Recipes from Characters in Our Books a recipe ebook that features some of the delicious food Katherine learns to love in Provence.