*Copy provided by publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
Cathy’s debut ‘Conditional Love’ became a HUGE hit after being released in October last year and it was just a matter of time before she snatched a deal with a great publisher. Needless to say, I was over the moon to hear she got a deal with Transworld and she’s about to publish her new novel in 4 parts. Tricky you may say, well I thought so too. But, you’re NOT to doubt Cathy’s writing skills, so publishing her novel in 4 parts (each for every season) proved to be very wise.
‘Ivy Lane: Spring’ is the first part and it’s absolutely charming. It’s the right length for a novella, so even those who have trouble reading long books can devour in less than an hour. It’s also the perfect opportunity for those who’re not familiar with Cathy’s writing, to check her out and get addicted to her (just like many of us already is).
‘Ivy Lane’ tells the story of Tilly Parker who settles in Ivy Lane discovering the beauty of not only her new allotment but of life once again. She’s been through quite a rough period (though Cathy shares very few details of Tilly’s past) and is all set to start anew. I must admit, I can’t wait to read the other parts in this novel because I so want to know what are the reasons Tilly decided to move and make such a drastic change in her life. So, a warning to those that will read this one – do not get frustrated if you don’t know all the answers to Tilly’s story, I’m sure they will be revealed ‘when the time is right’, maybe even in the next part.
I really enjoyed Ivy Lane, it’s short yet charming because I really could see Tilly transforming in front of my eyes. I’ve never been one for drastic changes, like moving after a heartbreak etc, but I get the whole idea of starting afresh. Tilly is a lovable character you’ll connect to from the first page, and even if you don’t like gardening and know zilch about potatoes/tomatoes/carrots/flowers etc, you’re going to enjoy this book. Because it’s not about gardening, it’s about new beginnings, making new friends, believing in life once again though you were burned before.
As you see, I’m really excited about ‘Ivy Lane:Summer’ and can’t wait to see what Cathy and Tilly have in store for us. I assume there will be some twists or huge revelations, which I AM anticipating. Short, sweet read perfect for these spring days.
My rating: 5/5
Couple of days ago we found out one of our favorite authors, Cathy Bramley has signed a deal with Transworld for publishing her new work/s. We absolutely loved her debut, ‘Conditional Love’ and were over the moon to find out about such a big news! The new novel ‘Ivy Lane’ is a serialized novel told in four parts – spring, summer, autumn and winter. The first part Spring, is already available to request on NetGalley and yessss, we got it and will be reviewing it just in time for publication. The release day is April 3rd and we’re already looking forward to next part, Summer.
Friendship blossoms at Ivy Lane…
Tilly Parker needs a fresh start, fresh air and a fresh attitude if she is ever to leave the past behind and move on with her life. As she settles in to a new town seeking peace and solitude, taking on her own plot at Ivy Lane allotments seems like the perfect solution. But the vibrant, friendly Ivy Lane community has other ideas and endeavour to entice Tilly into seedling swaps and Easter egg hunts. Can Tilly let new friends into her life, or will she stay a wallflower for good?
All she ever wanted was a place called home. Nice and cozy place where she could be herself. Not that Sophie didn’t like her two flatmates, they were her best friends. And there was Marc, with that well-shaped body wrapped around her.
And then, Marc dumped her. On Valentine’s Eve. How cruel is that?
One letter changed everything. She inherits a property from an aunt she didn’t even knew she had. Talk about surprises life offers us e? But there is a condition: Sophie has to meet her father who abandoned her and her mother when Sophie was just a baby.
Struggling between making her dream come true, forgiving her father and not losing the trust of her mother, Sophie meets Nottingham architect Nick Cromwell. A guy who can give that old bungalow a name: Sophie’s home.
Sophie didn’t seem like much of a strong character at the beginning. It was all about Marc. “What would Marc think? Oh, my God, Marc can’t see me like this. Marc tells me to lose weight because he cares about my health. I’ll tell Marc about the inheritance, he will be happy for me and he’ll come back.”
I really felt like shouting out loud – Sophie, he doesn’t deserve you!
But despite being slightly annoying at the beginning, Sophie was a very interesting character. She’s naïve but in a cute way, and she always seems to want to make things right. She reminded me a little bit of Bridget Jones. Growing up without a father, with a mother who blamed him for everything that he did and he didn’t do, Sophie longs for a family, for people who will love her no matter what. With a background like this, it’s totally understandable she ends up in a couple of bad relationships and feels lonely most of the time.
I liked her flatmates, Emma and Jess, the two sisters. They were pretty down to earth and acted as Sophie’s guardians. They were fighting each other all the time, but they were always there when anyone of them got into trouble. They were the closest thing to a family for Sophie.
Let’s talk about the boys. I think I’ve said enough about Marc. I didn’t like him at the beginning. But, Nick, Nick was something different. He believed in Sophie and her dream from the very start. He loved the old buildings in town, and he fought for them with all his heart. But, he had some skeletons in the closet that had to come out. Is he just someone no better than Marc?
I thoroughly enjoyed this debut and would recommend it to every romance fan.
My rating: 5/5