Liz Eeles returns to the blog with the second installment in her Cosy Kettle series coming from the Cotswolds village of Honeyford
A Summer Escape and Strawberry Cake at the Cosy Kettle
Returning to Honeyford and the Cosy Kettle Café tucked in the bookshop, this story is focusing on Flora, the new owner of the bookshop and her struggles to make things work, even when her husband Malcolm is subtly (and not so) undermining her efforts. Again the little town, while looking at her cautiously, is open to hearing and supporting her, particularly when she discovers that Malcolm is having an affair with a waitress in his restaurant, and tries to blame Flora’s preoccupation with the bookshop as the reason. While Flora is struggling to find a way to continue to say no to Malcolm’s demands, she is rescued by Luna, the owner of the ‘new age’ shop in town, and offered a refuge in terms of room and space in her cottage. Moving in with Luna to her cottage offers her a space to sleep, beautiful views, a vegan meal and interactions with Daniel and his young son Caleb.
Yet Daniel and Malcolm are not thrilled with Fiona’s new choice of living space: Malcolm because he wants her back to be a ‘helper’ (read unpaid dogs body) at the restaurant, and Daniel is worried that Fiona is looking to take advantage of his mum. It doesn’t help that Caleb had an ’accident’ in the café, with spillage and dents involved, and Fiona (already having a bad day) was less than understanding. But, she’s got so much on her plate AND is desperate to find a “fit’ in the little town of Honeyford that she’s all in for the upcoming festival: one where their 900+ year old Royal Charter for the market will be celebrated with an ‘all hands on deck’ event in town. Being more than a bit of a snob, her husband doesn’t think that she is spending her time ‘usefully’, and is doing his best to manipulate, degrade and bully her back into ‘her place’ so his life can proceed unfettered. Yet, despite her personal tumult, Flora is determined to make the bookshop (and their participation in the festival) a success, and pushes back at Malcolm’s efforts to bring her back home.
Like the first (New Starts and Cherry Tarts at the Cosy Kettle), Eeles brings us everything: a palpable feel of the town, clever and rather eccentric characters who all have a ‘point’ to make in the story, a sense of community and the actual goodwill and openness to Flora and her efforts to fit in. It wasn’t all an easy or straightforward path for her, but when she took a bit of Luna’s advice, Eeles again created a story where Flora was allowed to grow and flourish, finding a new and different way to define her place in the world and her acceptance into the little village. A lovely series that will be sure to leave you with a smile and more than a few moments to laugh.
Title: A Summer Escape and Strawberry Cake at the Cosy Kettle
Author: Liz Eeles
Series: Cosy Kettle #2
Also in this series: A Christmas Wish and a Cranberry Kiss at the Cosy Kettle
Genre: British, Contemporary Woman's Fiction, Friendship, Humor elements, Romantic Elements, Second Chance, Setting: Britain, Small Town
Published by: Bookouture
Published on: 1 July, 2019
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Google
The Cosy Kettle café is the perfect place to escape this summer, for fans of Cathy Bramley, Jenny Colgan and Debbie Johnson. Guests can tuck in to fruit puddings and strawberry-studded ice cream, but for Flora, the warm summer breeze is blowing in big changes…
When Flora finds out about her husband’s secret fling, she escapes to the one place she feels safe: her beloved café, The Cosy Kettle, in the charming village of Honeyford. Serving up cream teas to her café regulars is the perfect way to soothe her broken heart, and although she’s never lived in the area, the little community welcome her with open arms.
She’s soon lodging with local eccentric Luna in her remote and beautiful Starlight Cottage, snuggled between rolling green hills. Luna’s handsome son Daniel lost his wife several years ago, and as Flora gets to know him, sharing walks through the blossom-scented woods, they both slowly begin to heal… and she realises that behind Daniel’s quiet exterior, there’s a passionate nature that makes her forget all about her ex-husband.
As she settles into her new life, hosting a baking competition for the village’s summer celebration seems like a great idea… but with Daniel’s mysterious silences leading Flora to believe he’s hiding secrets, she can’t help but wonder if she can really trust him. And when the race to bake the perfect Victoria sponge stirs up old rivalries between locals, Flora starts to feel like she’s bitten off more than she can chew.
After her new start, will Flora ever truly belong in Honeyford? And, this summer, can she risk opening up her heart again?
A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: