Thank you to the wonderful Emma at @EmmaLouAuthor for letting me post her review of ‘Amelia Grey’s Fireside Dream’ by Abby Clements!
Amelia has a dream: toasting chestnuts by the fire with her husband Jack in their own cosy cottage. Their real life is another world – a cramped one-bedroom flat in Hackney. But when life takes a surprising turn, removal vans are soon heading to the Kent countryside.
They soon realise the cottage makeover is a far bigger project than they’d anticipated. On top of that, there’s Amelia’s newly loved-up mum and her tearaway half-sister, Mirabel, to contend with – pushing Amelia and Jack’s marriage to breaking point.
Amelia begins to strip back the wallpaper and fittings in the cottage and discovers the story of the cottage’s previous owner – and a hidden secret. As Amelia’s ideas about love and family change, will her fireside dream finally come true?
(Blurb from Amazon)
A review copy was kindly sent to me from Abby’s publishers, so thank you! I’ve always looked forward to Abby’s books because I know they won’t disappoint. After reading Vivien’s Heavenly Ice Cream Shop, I thought – how will she top that? But she did!
I’ve never been a fan which include dates at the beginning of each chapter, but with Abby’s unique sense of style and beautiful descriptions, I saw past this tiny dislike and continued to enjoy the novel. Her descriptions are picturesque and I feel a little home sick that I’m not back in the cottage with Amelia and Jack. Abby has a way of drawing her readers straight into the narrative. The sentences flow perfectly into one another and I just couldn’t stop reading. One more chapter and then I’ll go to sleep.. Three chapters later and I’m still wide awake!
The love between Amelia and Jack is strong yet calm. I was hoping neither of them would fall into the “I’ve had an affair” trap because they’re one of my favourite book couples!
The subplots of careers, family, lies, secrets, new love, friendships and babies cements the narrative beautifully. I always enjoy narrative which are split up between the seasons but Abby’s novel could have easily done without. Her descriptions are so simple yet effective that they season separation could have easily been taken out and it would have had the same effect.
I was forever cheering Amelia and Jack on from the side lines and I’d love to see them in one of Abby’s books again. Perhaps a sequel?