Whilst this book was published in a four-part serial, I patiently waited until it was published as a whole because I wanted to be able to read and read without any impatience!
I am so glad I did, I absolutely adored it. But why I wonder? Clearly it is the writing, but also because there was something about the plot which I could lose myself in. It was like reading about my own dreams in some ways.
I have always wanted to work in a ‘big house’ in some capacity and I make no bones about the fact that and I now I get the chance to do so vicariously through Holly Swift, the book’s main protagonist.
Holly becomes the new events co-ordinator at Wickham Hall. A place that has always been in her life as she visited frequently their when she was growing up with her mother. She remembers all the lovely events, festivals, fireworks and Father Christmas, now she has a chance to experience it all and enjoy it from the other side. Holly simply cannot wait and she has some lovely ideas to help make lots of memories for other people.
Trouble is working in someone’s home is fraught with problems, not least when the son of the current Lord Fortescue comes in a disrupts the smooth running of the events that Holly has organised. Trying to juggle that, with the disorganisation of her own mother’s life as well as the problems her friends have Holly is nothing if not busy. There are so many loveable and likeable characters within the novel that there are too many to mention. All the different relationships were given enough space within the pages of the book for you to connect with the characters and understand their story as much as the book is obviously dominated by Holly and her following her dream.
What I will say and I know that perhaps it is a long shot, but I would love to return to Wickham Hall and catch up with them all.
I have to say, that Cathy Bramley writes some real cracking good reads and they are sheer pure escapism.
You can enjoy Cathy’s novels Ivy Lane and Appleby Farm as well. I have read them all as a whole, and will wait very patiently for her new novel The Plumberry School of Comfort Food to be released in its entirety at the end of June. If you cannot wait that long then the first part is out on 3 March. In the meantime I have yet to catch up with the only other novel of Cathy Bramley’s I have not read and that is Conditional Love.