Fay Keenan returns with the third book in her Little Somerby series, a small village in Somerset with a generations-old cider business and all of the family dramas that one could hope for, all mixed with a dash of love. Please read on for my review of
Summer in the Orchard
It’s coming to the time of year when summery stories are all I crave, after the rush of the holidays and the prospect of colder and grey days in sight. In this story, we return to Carter’s Cider but the Carter family is only a piece of the puzzle. Sure there are visits and moments with Matthew, Johnno, Meredith and the whole gang, but with the increasing popularity of the long-standing brand of cider and their many varieties, the business has decided to take on an intern from British Colombia, and Sophie, the ‘associate taster’ is to be their contact person. Sophie has been with the business since leaving school, her affinity for blending and her thorough knowledge of the process to make a bottle of cider have moved her, along with her palate, up to second in command in the tasting / production end of things. Her first impression of Alex is “wowza”, but still reeling from her last breakup and wholly unwilling to trust anyone, not to mention the complications of someone she’ll be working with for the next few months have her stepping back and away.
Alex has purchased an old orchard outside of Vancouver, initially planning a ‘kitchen’ level operation to test his skills and fulfill a dream – one that was partly meant to give his mother and stepfather a retirement space where he could be close. He’s applied for the internship at Carter’s to learn all he can about the production from tree to bottle, although his choice of Carter’s for was not a random one – he comes with secrets, secrets he’s not sure he’s ready to share yet -but that is for another time. Perhaps before he and Sophie got so close and came to rely on one another in ways that extended far past the workplace.
I love this setting and series, with the characters who are so wonderfully drawn and complex, while the cidery is a bit of a ‘tribe’ in the band together sense, the heart of the place all comes back to the founding father of the current generation of management, Jack. Jack was a salesman and charmer to his core, and unfortunately that behavior left some tidal waves in relationships and family dynamic, but the family seems to always manage to come together and find the brightness that seems to be behind the shadows. A lovely and complex story that is far more than expected.
Title: Summer in the Orchard
Author: Fay Keenan
Series: Little Somerby #3
Also in this series: The Second Chance Tea Shop, Springtime at the Cider Kitchen
Genre: British, Contemporary Woman's Fiction, Romantic Elements, Setting: Britain, Small Town
Published by: Aria
Published on: 3 January, 2019
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Google
Sophie Henderson loves her job at Carter's Cider in the picturesque Somerset village of Little Somerby, but with summer dawning before yet another picking and pressing season, and her boss David showing no signs of wanting to hang up his cider jug, perhaps it is time to move on.
She's all set to hand in her notice when Alex Fraser, an intern from Vancouver, comes to Little Somerby to learn everything he can about the cider business. With Sophie as his mentor, attraction between them starts to grow alongside the apples.
For Alex, however, being in Little Somerby is about more than cider, and as the summer grows warmer, and his relationship with Sophie blossoms, can he find the courage to tell her the truth before it's too late?
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: