Publication List – Lucy Diamond

The Secret of Happiness by Lucy Diamond

51wiVO--Y5L._SY346_Synopsis: The best things in life . . . can be just around the corner

Rachel and Becca aren’t real sisters, or so they say. They are stepsisters, living far apart, with little in common. Rachel is the successful one: happily married with three children and a big house, plus an impressive career. Artistic Becca, meanwhile, lurches from one dead-end job to another, shares a titchy flat, and has given up on love.

The two of them have lost touch, but when Rachel doesn’t come home one night, Becca is called in to help. Once there, she quickly realizes that her stepsister’s life is not so perfect after all: Rachel’s handsome husband has moved out, her children are rebelling, and her glamorous career has taken a nosedive. Worst of all, nobody seems to have a clue where she might be. Continue reading

On A Beautiful Day by Lucy Diamond

Synopsis: It’s a beautiful day in Manchester and four friends are meeting for a birthday lunch. But then they witness a shocking accident just metres away which acts as a catalyst for each of them.

For Laura, it’s a wake-up call to heed the ticking of her biological clock. Sensible Jo finds herself throwing caution to the wind in a new relationship. Eve, who has been trying to ignore the worrying lump in her breast, feels helpless and out of control. And happy-go-lucky India is drawn to one of the victims of the accident, causing long-buried secrets to rise to the surface.

This is a novel about the startling and unexpected turns life can take. It’s about luck – good and bad – and about finding bravery and resilience when your world is in turmoil. Above all, it’s about friendship, togetherness and hope.

Kat’s Rating: 5/5 Continue reading

The Year of Taking Chances by Lucy Diamond

Lucy Diamond The Year of Taking ChancesSynopsis: Because love is always worth the risk . . .

It’s New Year’s Eve, and Gemma and Spencer Bailey are throwing a house party. There’s music, dancing, champagne and all their best friends under one roof. It’s going to be a night to remember.

Also at the party is Caitlin, who has returned to the village to pack up her much-missed mum’s house and to figure out what to do with her life; and Saffron, a PR executive who’s keeping a secret which no amount of spin can change. The three women bond over Gemma’s dodgy cocktails and fortune cookies, and vow to make this year their best one yet.

But as the months unfold, Gemma, Saffron and Caitlin find themselves tested to their limits by shocking new developments. Family, love, work, home – all the things they’ve taken for granted are thrown into disarray. Under pressure, they are each forced to rethink their lives and start over. But dare they take a chance on something new?

Kat’s Rating: 5/5

Kat’s Review: Apologies for those that don’t want a lengthy or waffle like review but, well sometimes needs must. Many people know me for my Book Blogging and other know me as a friend etc. What connection some people don’t make is that I also run my own business. A business that was born from a seedling of an idea that came from a book by none other than the lovely Sue, or as others know her Lucy Diamond. For that reason even 5 years on, with my business growing at an alarming rate, but stresses of life getting me down a bit, I did what I have done in the past and turned to a book written by the wonderful lady herself. 

I picked this one up as I still have a few of hers left that I haven’t read and figured there was nothing better to lift me out of the gloom that a book written by Sue. Thankfully my wishes were granted as I raced through this book in one day, over two sittings and that feeling of gloom has lifted a little. The book was an absolute corker and brought me out of the feeling sorry for myself phase. Thee women have a chance meeting at a New Years Eve Party and from that point on they all become intertwined in each others lives.

I particularly liked Gemma Bailey. The married Mum of two who seems to have a wondrfully settled life with a great husband and wonderful home, until an event changes her life in an instant. Then there is Caitlin who is trying to work through her grief after losing her Mum. She returns to Larkmead to try and sort out her Mum’s house but whilst there she not only befriends Gemma and Saffron, but she discovers some things about herself which will alter her life. Saffron, the thrid and final of the trio is a PR exec just on a visit from London trying to clear her head.

These three characters were a pure joy to read about. Nothing about their journey’s was easy, but they were done with the support of family and friends. The story kept me engaged from start to finish and I was genuinely anoyed to have finished. Luckily for me I have another couple of LD books to keep me going. Some may say this book is predictable, but for me this is the perfect balance. A sheer joy to read and another reason for me to thank my lucky stars that Sue managed to inspire enough confidence in me to give my own business a go.

A Baby At The Beach Cafe by Lucy Diamond

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A Baby at the Beach Cafe is an engaging short story follow-up to Lucy Diamond’s bestselling novel The Beach Cafe.

Evie loves running her beach cafe in Cornwall but with a baby on the way, she’s been told to put her feet up. Let someone else take over? Not likely.

Helen’s come to Cornwall to escape the stress of city living. She hopes a seaside life will be the answer to all her dreams. When she sees a job advertised at the cafe it sounds perfect.

But the two women clash and sparks fly. . . and then events take a dramatic turn. Can the pair of them put aside their differences in a crisis?

Kat’s Rating: 5/5

Kat’s Review:  I adore Lucy Diamond’s books and was shocked when I realised I had missed this little nugget. I thoroughly enjoyed the Beach Cafe books and was excited to read a little more about Evie and her husband Ed. At only 145 pages it’s certainly a short story and I read it in one sitting but it was so nice to be back with the characters. Evie is now heavily pregnant and her husband Ed decides they have to employ a new Cafe Manager for when Evie goes on Maternity leave.

With the Beach Cafe being Evie’s baby she is reluctant to allow anyone else to run her perfect little business. When Helen escapes city life by moving down to Cornwall she hadn’t planned on working but the opportunity presented itself and both her and Evie are not keen on each other for various reasons. Although Helen could be abrasive as a reader you knew why and actually it was such a lovely story I almost thought it was a shame when it ended as I would have loved to have known more about Helen.

If you haven’t read any of Lucy Diamonds books you are missing out. The books of hers I have read to date have been nothing but delightful and the Beach Cafe books are amazing. Definitely a recommended author.

Christmas Gifts At The Beach Cafe by Lucy Diamond

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Synopsis: With her Cornish Beach Café closed for the winter, Evie Flynn should be looking forward to lazy days and a happy Christmas, with nothing more pressing to think about than when to have her next mince pie.

But her sister Ruth is coming to stay, in a cloud of heartbreak and bitterness following her marriage breakdown, along with her three unhappy children, and Evie knows she’ll have her work cut out, trying to spread some festive cheer. Then her boyfriend Ed breaks the news that he’s going to spend Christmas in London, for family reasons, and her heart sinks even further.

Add in to the mix a lost dog plus the hotly contested village Christmas bake-off and before long, Evie is feeling the strain. But there are still a few surprises in store for her, that look set to make this Beach Café Christmas the most memorable one yet…

*Note: If you plan to read The Beach Café first followed by Christmas at The Beach Café, please do not continue to read my review as it will inevitably contain spoilers*

Kat’s Rating: 5/5

Kat’s Review: I very recently read Christmas at The Beach Café which was a novella follow on to her novel The Beach Café. I loved the second novella (unusual for me as I’m not keen on shorts) and was so pleased when I realised Lucy had another Novella. This one is set the following Christmas and is just as good as the last novella. All this succeeded in doing was making me realise that Lucy Diamond needs to write quicker and luckily for me I still have 2 full length novels (her latest 2) all ready to read on my Kindle…yay!

This latest Christmas novella we see Evie’s sister Ruth and her children come to Evie for Christmas following a messy divorce. In addition Ed is dealing with the loss of his Dad. This offering is short but very sweet, and giving us THE best set up for the next book (at least I hope there is a next one!). We see brief glimpses of a couple of villagers, and we also see Ed’s Mum make an appearance. There isn’t one character I dislike in these books and just can’t wait to see them all again.

Yes it’s only 90 pages, and yes it’s a novella, but….it’s brilliant! Another cracking read and I can’t wait to gets started on another Lucy Diamond book!

Christmas At The Beach Cafe by Lucy Diamond

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Synopsis: A Christmas short story from bestselling author Lucy Diamond, revisiting her Beach Café characters.

After a hectic summer running her beach café in Cornwall, Evie Flynn is looking forward to her first Christmas with new boyfriend Ed – she’s determined that it’s going to be the most perfectly romantic one ever. Cosy nights in front of the fire, spicy mulled wine, mince pies . . . what’s not to love?

But the peace is shattered when Ed’s ex suddenly gets in touch again, and then some unexpected guests arrive: Ed’s surly brother Jake and Evie’s heartbroken best friend Amber. Add in the stress of trying to finish her very own recipe book, snow blizzards and family dramas and Evie’s Christmas starts to look as if it’ll be a total turkey. Will any of her festive wishes come true . . . or is this Christmas just a recipe for disaster?

*Note: If you plan to read The Beach Café first please do not continue to read my review as it will inevitably contain spoilers*

Kat’s Rating: 5/5

Kat’s Review: Just recently I have been ploughing through all my novella’s and short stories, as they are never my first choice. Although I say that and it’s usually the case, this novella was absolutely wonderful. It didn’t take me long to get reacquainted with Evie in her beautiful café in Cornwall. This will be her first Christmas there and now she has her boyfriend Ed around the excitement gets to her.

Evie is a funny character and one that you fall in love with quite easily. In this latest short story her ideal Christmas is planned out in her head. Evie and Ed, all alone in front of that log fire, except her Christmas is going to turn out far from what she imagined. We meet Ed’s brother Jake, Evie’s friend Amber as well as half the people living in Evie’s village.

The story is witty, warm and full of magic. Although it’s only 100 pages long it makes me realise how much I love Lucy Diamond books. I am so pleased she has since released another Beach Café ‘Christmas’ Novella so I know what I will be reading shortly. Absolutely loved this!

One Night In Italy by Lucy Diamond

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My Rating: 4/5

Availability: Hardcover, Paperback, Kindle, Audio,

Synopsis: Is Italian really the language of love? A new class of students hopes to find out. Anna’s recently been told the father she’s never met is Italian. Now she’s baking focaccia, whipping up tiramisu and swotting up on her vocabulary, determined to make it to Italy so she can find him in person. Catherine’s husband has walked out on her, and she’s trying to pick up the pieces of her life. But she’ll need courage as well as friends when she discovers his deception runs even deeper than infidelity. Sophie’s the teacher of the class, who’d much rather be back in sunny Sorrento. She can’t wait to escape the tensions at home and go travelling again. But sometimes life – and love – can surprise you when you least expect it. As the evening class gets underway, friendships form and secrets from Italy begin to emerge. With love affairs blossoming in the most unlikely places, and hard decisions to face, it’s going to be a year that Anna, Catherine and Sophie will never forget.

My Review: Three women are the focus in this latest Lucy Diamond release. Catherine is the first and when her husband ups and leaves she feels like she is starting all over again. We also meet Anna who has recently discovered her father who she has never known is Italian, and then Sophie who has returned from her many years abroad to see her ill father. The three women will meet through the Italian language course they all decide to be a part of.

The three women’s stories are told individually and you really get to know each of them before they eventually meet. Anna and Sophie I instantly liked, but for some reason I wanted Catherine to grow a backbone and she annoyed me for the first few chapters. However, when she starts to make changes to her life I warmed up to her. Sophie was my favourite and I loved the way the reader gets to discover slowly why she left the UK, and why her relationship with her parents had gone so wrong. Anna was a funny and warm character and you couldn’t help but get swept along with her in her dream to find out about her Italian roots. 

The story flowed beautifully and I was transported into all of their lives and willing them to all get what they wanted out of their classes. In addition to the three main characters we also meet some of the characters at their class, and they definitely made the book complete in my eyes. Once again Lucy Diamond has managed to create a heart-warming story, which takes you away from reality for a few hours. I read this in just under 2 days and really enjoyed it. Certainly a recommended read, although ‘Summer With My Sister’ will always remain my absolute favourite!

Me and Mr Jones by Lucy Diamond

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My Rating: 5/5

SynopsisMeet the women in love with three very different brothers . . .

Izzy’s determined to escape her troubled past with a new start by the sea – but flirtatious Charlie Jones is causing complications.

Alicia’s been happily married to loyal Hugh for years but secretly craves excitement. Maybe it’s time to spice things up?

Emma’s relationship with David was once fun and romantic but trying for a baby has taken its toll. Then temptation comes along . . .

As the future of the family’s B&B becomes uncertain, Izzy, Alicia and Emma are thrown together unexpectedly. It seems that keeping up with the Joneses is harder than anyone thought . . .

My Review: I started reading Lucy Diamond I think two years ago now. I have been trying to get through her back catalogue but when I got a review copy was dead chuffed and took it with me as my holiday read. Sadly, the book only got me as far as the airport and a 4 hour flight! Having said that, you may well realise I really liked it having finished it in such a short space of time.

As the title suggests, we meet Mr Jones; well actually we meet all the Mr Jones! Three brothers and their family are the heart of this latest story. Charlie Jones is the flighty brother who has trouble keeping his attention for longer than an advert. He is certainly the charmer of the group and when he meets Izzy, it seems he may well cause her trouble. Hugh Jones has been married to Alicia for years and although their relations ship has longevity, it seems that something is afoot as Alicia starts to secretly crave some excitement in her life. David Jones is married to Emma, but with the recent redundancy he suffered and Emma’s need for a child, things aren’t looking too rosy for them. Finally we meet the parents Eddie and Lillian. Eddie and Lillian run Mulberry House which is a guest house and the boys home they grew up in. When they decide it may be time to retire they look to the boys to see which one of them may be interested in taking it over.

Right from the outset I got drawn into this story. The three brothers are so different to each other and we get to see not only them but each wife in turn and what is going on with them. Within the first quarter of the book you are drawn into the family to the extent that you almost feel part of it! In addition to the family, we meet Izzy and her two girls. Izzy was quite simply a wonderful character even though her situation seemed so perilous all the time. For each family member I liked them the more I read about them. This was especially the case with the mother Lillian. By the end of the book I simply loved her and felt for her situation.

There are lots of issues dealt with in this book and as usual Lucy Diamond has dealt with all of them wonderfully. For some reason, every time I read a Lucy Diamond book, it makes me feel kind of inspired. I can’t quite put my finger on why or what it is exactly, but I always feel better about most things I think are un-manageable prior to reading one of her books. This wasn’t better than her last, but then I think Summer With My Sister will always be my number one LD book. Having said that I cannot see how anybody would be disappointed with this book and would highly recommend it!

The Beach Cafe by Lucy Diamond

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Star Rating: 4/5

I have been book reviewing for a few years now and only recently picked up my first Lucy Diamond book. However, I had no idea how much reading one of her books would change things for me. The second book I picked up was her most recent release Summer With My Sister. The book was a brilliant read and as I was reading it, something strange happened. It started the cogs in my brain turning and an idea for a new business has come out of it (but more on that later!). Having enjoyed the first two books of hers, and being so inspired by one I was keen to pick up a third to see how that fared against the other two. This book, the Beach Café sounded like a good read and I was hoping it would help me get out of my feeling of `being in a rut’.

Evie Flynn has always considered herself the `black sheep’ of the family. Her two older sisters always seem to get it right, while she seems to be permanently stuck in a rut. Whilst Evie is stuck in a very depressing temp job, and her `sensible’ boyfriend plans their future, her beloved Auntie Jo dies leaving the family shocked. Jo was always the life and soul of the party and Evie was incredibly close to her. When Evie realises that her Aunt has left her the little Beach Café she owned in Cornwall she has no idea what she is going to do. Evie was a character I liked immediately and the first few chapters really give you an idea of the sort of character she is. She is a little bit of a flapper and spends many an hour with her head in the clouds and you can’t help but wish for better things for her.

Her boyfriend Matthew I just wanted to throttle. He was so sensible and boring and seemed to be doing nothing but holding Evie back. After a lot of dithering Evie decides that she will go to Cornwall and spend the summer deciding what to do with the café. It’s the start of a journey that is funny, disastrous and interesting all at the same time! The only criticism I could really find with this book was that it seemed to take a long time for Evie to make the decision and actually get down to Cornwall and work at the Beach Café. Other than that, as soon as the transition happened the book was brilliant. We meet lots of characters that feature heavily including Rachel the waitress, Ed the chef and Phoebe, a young girl who makes an impact on Evie.

Apologies if people think this review is long but I feel like I need to explain something about reading Lucy Diamond books. Although this wasn’t my favourite I have read of hers, by the end of the book I had that `feel good’ mood back and my positivity had gone through the roof. I don’t know what it is about the way she writes, but it has the profound effect of making you feel like if you keep on chipping away things will work out and you just need to keep at it. The reason I highlight this, is that reading a LD book started me off on a new (albeit small) business venture that I am hoping to launch by later on this year. However, I was having a bit of a wobble moment and wondering if I had gone bonkers. Having read another of her books, I now feel a lot more confident and think if you don’t give it a go, you will never find out!

Overall, not my favourite but a great feel good easy to read book that I thoroughly enjoyed!