10 July 2016
Book Review: The Little French Guesthouse by Helen Pollard
Rupert, the ailing guesthouse owner, is shell-shocked. Feeling somewhat responsible, and rather generous after a bottle (or so) of wine, heartbroken Emmy offers to help. Changing sheets in the gîtes will help keep her mind off her misery.
Thrust into the heart of the local community, Emmy suddenly finds herself surrounded by new friends. And with sizzling hot gardener Ryan and the infuriating (if gorgeous) accountant Alain providing welcome distractions, Nathan is fast becoming a distant memory.
Fresh coffee and croissants for breakfast, feeding the hens in the warm evening light; Emmy starts to feel quite at home. But it would be madness to walk away from her friends, family, and everything she’s ever worked for, to take a chance on a place she fell for on holiday – wouldn’t it?"
You can buy the book now.
Another book I have enjoyed reading this summer has been the first novel from Bookouture and Helen Pollard - The Little French Guesthouse. This book caught my eye when I saw it being advertised on Twitter, and I was lucky enough to get hold of a review copy on Netgalley. I downloaded to my Kindle, and began reading - it was a really good read from the start, and I thoroughly enjoyed the way it was written, the characters and the setting. It's the perfect escapist read for the summer, and here's why I definitely recommend putting The Little French Guesthouse on your Kindle or in your suitcase this summer.
This book was charming from the very beginning. I was a bit unsure how I was going to feel about the whole story at the start, as I hadn't really read the blurb as it was on my Kindle, and didn't realise Emmy's boyfriend, who was rather horrible, it has to be said, wasn't sticking around. Once he left, it left us to get to know Emmy more, and for her to start her friendship with her landlord Rupert. The pairing of these two was wonderful, and I thoroughly enjoyed reading their friendship start to bloom, against the odds really! Their spouses had run off with each other, but they found solace in each other, Emmy in particular enjoyed helping Rupert on what was meant to be her holiday!
The setting of the guesthouse was enjoyable to read, and sounded quite idyllic! It's set in the French countryside, and although Emmy ventures out occasionally into the nearby town, we spend the majority of the book at Emmy and Rupert's residence, and you can see why Emmy was so reluctant to leave. It was very rustic and French, and just sounded like the perfect break from her business London job. The presence of a hunky gardener, handsome accountant and new friend in Rupert didn't stop her wanting to stay either... wonder why?!
Pollard's writing was enjoyable to read. There were a few parts where I felt the narrative was a little long-winded but I carried on through it and I'm pleased that I did. The parts with dialogue, especially between Emmy and Rupert were my favourite - I loved that their friendship transcended their age gap, and liked how Emmy was willing to help out Rupert in his time of need, and his appreciation of that help. Pollard really brought her characters to life on the page, and I enjoyed reading about what they were getting up to in and around the guesthouse, and of course what Emmy's ultimate decision about whether to return home or not would be! I really enjoyed this light-hearted summer read, and am pleased to say that there is going to be a follow-up, called Return to the Little French Guesthouse which is out on August 26th! Definitely recommended for a summer read.