All relationships have their ups and downs, whether it’s struggles with a partner or difficulties in the family. Our Relationship Stories section shows the unique features of relationships in gloriously written technicolour.
Originally published in 2006, this comes back into print for those who may have missed it. Actually she has changed publishers so her new one is reissuing her work. This is a great read, especially astute, and indeed amusing, about a family and their behaviour towards each other. We follow this particular family through four generations. They live on a charming Australian island which they turn into a tourist attraction and build a mystery surrounding an abandoned baby found by one of two sisters in the 1930s. The business becomes very profitable and each year the anniversary of the rescued baby is celebrated … until now. This is truly lovely stuff. November 2014 Book of the Month.
Another great romp from this fab author. The party of the title is an office party in a very posh country house hotel with no expense spared, including a free bar all night! Most of our action is concentrated on the chiefs, their problems with alcohol/infidelity, their disenchanted wives and a certain amount of misunderstandings. The author has the most enormous fun sending the whole corporate world up while giving us some delicious characters. I think she is very good indeed. If you have not come across her then you have a mass of back titles to enjoy.
It's ten years on from the first winter gathering, when four of Maggie Quinn's closest friends rushed in to spend Christmas with her after her husband walked out just days before. And at Christmas, it doesn't take long for an event to become a tradition.But this Christmas Day, for the first time, there's an addition to the party, in the form of a young, very handsome man. Only one of the women knows what he's doing there, and she's remaining tight-lipped.So begins a new chapter in the lives of the five friends. As the winter moves towards spring, each faces personal hurdles, from family difficulties to illness to the unexpected reappearance of Maggie's ex. Throughout, each proves that friends truly are the family you choose -- and that, ultimately, the magic of Christmas can arrive at any time of year.
A compelling story of war, secrets, family and history that will draw you into the heart of Paris and its troubled past. Paris, 1937. Kitty Travers enrols at the Conservatoire on the banks of the Seine to pursue her dream of becoming a concert pianist. Soon she is swept off her feet by a handsome American doctor and starts a new life as a married woman. But what was a place of love and peace quickly becomes a prison after war breaks out and the city of light falls into shadow. Nearly twenty-five years later, Fay Knox, a talented young violinist, visits Paris on tour with her orchestra. She barely knows the city, so why does it feel so familiar? Soon touches of memory become something stronger, and she realises her connection with these streets runs deeper than she ever expected. As Fay traces the past, with only an address in an old rucksack to help her, she discovers dark secrets hidden years ago, secrets that cause her to question who she is and where she belongs...
Meet Valentine, an unforgettable and passionate woman with a heart and a dream as big as New York City. Her dream? To design the perfect pair of shoes ...The Angelini Shoe Company, makers of exquisite wedding shoes since 1903, is one of the last family-owned businesses in Greenwich Village. Now, in the twenty-first century, the company run so devotedly by Valentine and her grandmother Teodora faces financial ruin. Juggling a romantic relationship with dashing chef Roman Falconi, her duty to her family, and a design competition for a prestigious department store, Valentine accompanies her grandmother to Italy in the hope of finding inspiration. There, in Tuscany and on the Isle of Capri, she discovers her artistic voice and much more, turning her life around in ways she never expected.
The Seafront Tea Rooms is a peaceful hideaway, away from the bustle of the seaside, and in this quiet place a group of women find exactly what they've been searching for. Charismatic journalist Charlotte is on a mission to scope out Britain's best tea rooms. She knows she's found something special in the Seafront Tea Rooms but is it a secret she should share? Kathryn, a single mother whose only sanctuary is the 'Seafront', convinces Charlie to keep the place out of her article by agreeing to join her on her search. Together with another regular, Seraphine, a culture-shocked French au pair with a passion for pastry-making, they travel around the country discovering quaint hideaways and hidden gems. But what none of them expect is for their journey to surprise them with discoveries of a different kind ...Full of romance, tea and cake, The Seafront Tea Rooms is a heart-warming tale about the strength found in true friendship.
Lawrence and Jo have enjoyed a strong marriage, the envy of their friends. Even after thirty years they have lots to say to each other, many interests in common and, until recently, a good sex life. But Lawrence seems wary and restless. Something's wrong. Just how wrong, Jo is about to discover...Can they use their years of history - all the things they've shared - to overcome a devastating betrayal?
This is a brand new very funny Christmas novel, from the bestselling author of No-One Ever Has Sex on a Tuesday and Single Woman Seeks Revenge. There comes a time in every woman's life when the only answer is to marry George Clooney. For Michelle, that time is now. Slogging her guts out in a chicken factory whilst single-handedly bringing up a teenager who hates her is far from the life that 36-year-old Michelle had planned. But marrying the most eligible man on the planet by Christmas could change all that, couldn't it? Sometimes your only option is to dream the impossible - because you never know where it might take you.
Continuing the life of Rosie in the Derbyshire village where she inherited her aunt’s sweetshop. You don’t need to have read the first to enjoy this but you’ll enjoy knowing the major players better if you have. Rosie is in love with Stephen, the damaged son of the village matriarch, who is now a teacher in the village school. Christmas brings Rosie’s family over from Australia, her mother, brother, his wife and children. Their arrival makes her realise just how much she has missed them and she wonders about Stephen’s intentions. This is the joy of this delightful book: will he, won’t he …? Should she, shouldn’t she …? And you are kept guessing right through. A lovely, lovely read. The first in the series, Welcome to Rosie Hopkin’s Sweetshop of Dreams won the Romantic Novel of the Year Award (2013)
One of our Books of the Year 2014. Very different from her previous books for there is no supernatural or spiritual element. Just a thoroughly good story of family dynamics, relationships, handicaps in families and it affects all. It’s pensive, soul searching stuff concentrating on two people who have lost their way in life. A lovely read that will linger with you a long time.
Tropper’s comic novel about American life has now been made into a film starring Jason Bateman, Tina Fey and Jane Fonda. It is a delightful rom-com as four very different, slightly estranged siblings are forced back into the family home when their father dies. Judd, our hero, has just caught his wife cheating on him and finds – rather hilariously for the reader – that his status as grieving soon-to-be divorcee doesn’t discourage any and every one from trying to find him a new wife. A wry, clever and genuinely funny look at family life and the ups and downs of living (and dying). The film version of This is Where I Leave You is released in UK cinemas on Friday 24 October 2014. Click below to view the trailer.
One of our Books of the Year 2014. A great read, you are never disappointed with a Cathy Kelly. What happened in Paris was a marriage proposal. What happens in the book is the preparation, the family entanglements, the background to the various people involved, the moving of the day as the bride discovers she’s pregnant – the complications, the stress and then the resolutions and the big day. It is lovely through and through. October 2014 MEGA Book of the Month.
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More than just romance, Relationship Stories can really strike a chord with us, at every stage of life. Just like relationships themselves, these books and there authors come in all shapes, sizes, atmospheres and aspirations. So, if something was missing from your last relationship read … we’ll help you find it in your next one! Here you’ll find the warm and the wise (Maeve Binchy, Cathy Kelly, Rosamunde Pilcher), the deliciously sexy (Jilly Cooper, Veronica Henry), the humourous and honest (Nick Hornby), the insightful (Joanna Trollope) and the … Perhaps, though you’re looking for a new relationship? Why not try our’ Author Like for Like’ tool or make a date with our Book of the Month recommendations and find your perfect match … for now, at least!
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A selection of authors who will feature in this Lovereading category include: