My Rating: 4/5
Availability: Paperback and Kindle
Synopsis: Can happy-ever-after get lost in translation?
Gina has lost her perfect job, her boyfriend and her favourite aunt all within the space of a few months. So when she inherits her aunt’s ramshackle French house, Gina decides to pack her bags for the Bordeaux countryside – swapping English weather for blue skies, sunshine, great wine and a fresh start. What she hasn’t factored in is a hole in the roof, the most embarrassing language faux pas, and discovering family secrets that she was never supposed to know.
Suddenly feeling a long way from home, Gina will have to rely on new found friends, her own hard work – and Cédric – her charming, mysterious and très handsome new stonemason. But whilst desire needs no translation, love is a different matter. Can Gina overcome the language barrier to make her French dream come true?
My Review: The synopsis is certainly not original and I have seen these ‘relocations and fresh starts’ many times in other books. However, Fiona Valpy has done the MOST important thing in my opinion. She has managed to weave a tale that is descriptive enough to actually take me to France in my mind and picture the village and house, as well as giving me the main character Gina who I just fell in love with. If you can get the setting right, and characters that are likeable that’s half the battle.
Gina seems to have lost everything in a very short space of time including her boyfriend, her job and now her aunt. Her aunt has left her ramshackle farmhouse in France to Gina and she decides to give life in France a try…after all she has nothing holding her back now. We watch as she makes a fresh start and decides to take time out and study, as well as adjust to a slower pace of life. When the roof on the farmhouse is damaged in high winds, her wonderful neighbour Mereille involves her four sons in the repairs.
In the meantime, Gina is discovering that her Aunt Liz had secrets of her own. Gina starts to delve and soon realises that there was more to her Aunt than she originally thought. This along with the wonderful storyline that involves Gina working on her Masters of Wine qualification makes for a very interesting read. This book was a wonderful and uplifting read, just perfect for a beach, a plane or even a comfy sofa. It will transport you to the beautiful area in Southern France and give you a much needed break from real life.
I am so pleased I got around to reading this book and was especially pleased at the Epilogue (I do love it when authors add this in). I am now totally ready to read another book in this series and cannot wait.
*It may be worth noting that the ‘French Series’ is not a continuation with the characters, merely a series of books based in France *