Thursday, April 28, 2016

Book review of The Little French Guesthouse by Helen Pollard

french village diaries book review The Little French Guesthouse Helen Pollard
The Little French Guesthouse Helen Pollard

My review today is for the brand new novel (with the prettiest of covers) The Little French Guesthouse by Helen Pollard, released today and currently only 99p for the kindle edition.

A well-earned holiday in France is just what Emmy and Nathan need. Their relationship is struggling, but Emmy is sure it’s something that time away from work and routine can fix, until she finds Nathan and their B&B owner Gloria on the terrace in a rather compromising position. Angry and upset, Emmy tries to talk to Nathan, but instead he drives off into the distance, with Gloria.

I liked Emmy, she was a genuinely nice person, wanting to make those around her happy and avoid conflict if possible, which wasn’t easy in the situation she found herself in. She needed to keep busy, which she did by helping owner Rupert, who had been abandoned by Gloria, to cook, clean and look after the guests, something he was struggling to do on his own. Rupert made me smile, his heart was always in the right place, but his ways and means were sometimes a little devious. Although Emmy and Rupert make an odd couple, they worked well as a team and slowly, life in rural France began to weave its magic on Emmy.

Helen paints a lovely picture of the renovated stone guesthouse, La Cour des Roses, and I felt its charm and like Emmy, I fell in love with it and the flower filled gardens. In fact I was ready to pack my bags and head off for a few nights away, where the food and wine seem to be as good as the company. Emmy becomes part of Rupert’s social scene and appreciates the friendships she makes, and here Helen introduces a great fun mix of characters in the form of the locals and other expats. With a bit of scheming from Rupert and some unexpected interest from his gardener and accountant, Emmy begins to feel she has unexpectedly found somewhere she belongs. Reality for her though, is returning to a stark flat, a job (in the same company as Nathan – awkward) and no one to share her life with. She certainly has lots to think about, but will it be her heart, her head or Rupert that influence the decision to be made about her future?

This book offers lots to make you smile at as you read and once I stepped in, I didn't want to leave. It is warm, cosy and will fill you with summer sunshine and unless you are going away as a last ditch attempt to salvage your relationship, will be a perfect holiday read!

Please join me back here tomorrow where I will be chatting to Helen for my France et Moi interview feature. You can follow Helen on Twitter, Facebook and her website.