Today I'm kicking off the Rainy Day Sisters blog tour hosted by Neverland Blog Tours. I would like to thank both Jenny from there and the author, Kate Hewitt for a review copy of the book in return for my honest opinion.
The USA Today bestselling author presents a heartfelt novel about two sisters struggling toward new lives and loves.
Welcome to Hartley-by-the-Sea in England’s beautiful Lake District, where two sisters who meet as strangers find small miracles tucked into the corners of every day....
When Lucy Bagshaw’s life in Boston falls apart, thanks to a scathing editorial written by her famous artist mother, she accepts her half sister Juliet’s invitation to stay with her in a charming seaside village in northern England. Lucy is expecting quaint cottages and cream teas, but instead finds that her sister is an aloof host, the weather is wet, windy, and cold, and her new boss, Alex Kincaid, is a disapproving widower who only hired her as a favor to Juliet.
Despite the invitation she offered, Juliet is startled by the way Lucy catapults into her orderly life. As Juliet faces her own struggles with both her distant mother and her desire for a child, her sister’s irrepressible optimism begins to take hold. With the help of quirky villagers, these hesitant rainy day sisters begin to forge a new understanding…and find in each other the love of family that makes all the difference.
About Kate Hewitt
Kate Hewitt is the author of over 40 novels of women’s fiction and romance. She loves telling an emotional story in a variety of genres, and has been nominated for the Romance Writers of America RITA Award twice.
An American ex-pat, she lives in the Cotswolds of England with her husband, five children, and an overly affectionate Golden Retriever.
You can follow her adventures in village life on her blog, http://www.acumbrianlife.blogspot.co.uk
Since becoming a reviewer and blogger I've avoided books which are impart of a series, purely due to the fact that with an ever growing TBR list, I can't guarantee that I will be able to read the following books, and I just have to know what happened.
So when I saw that Rainy Day Sisters was touring I "umm'd" and "ahh'd" over it for all of 30 seconds - just look at that beautiful, intriguing book cover that gives absolutely nothing away, yet makes perfect sense right from the start of the novel.
Rainy Day Sisters is a Hartley-By-The-Sea novel, the first in the series and is set a quaint little village in the Lake District.
It tales the tale of two sisters, bound together purely by the fact they have the same mother and is set over a four month time scale. The book is split into chapters giving the story from the prospective of the two girls in turn, although narrated from the third person.
Although at times I found the story a little predictable, it's a romance after all, the book flowed and and the pages kept turning, in fact I devoured the story in one sitting all bar my tea breaks!!
Lucy - is the younger of the two sisters and arrives at Juliets door from Boston after her life falls apart. Her, their, mother is a well known artist and has embarrassed Lucy in the most public and humiliating of ways. That thrown in with her losing her job and her relationship falling apart she escapes to the wet, cold and windy Cumbrian village.
Lucy is incredibly naive at some of the things that happen and as a reader you could just see how the out come was going to be.
She's also crazy, live and bubbly and surprises her self when she gets a new, albeit temporary job at the local primary school, and starts to form new friendships.
Over the course of the four months that she is there she also forms a strong bond with Alex, the head teacher. Alex has his own problems, a widower with two young daughters... Bella, a preteen with attitude and facing bullies at school, and 6 year old Poppy who you just couldn't help but fall for with her cute ways. Lucy has a tendency to fall head first and it's no different with Alex but as she's only there for a few months they keep their distance.
Juliet is the older sibling and is as tough as they come... On the outside. Lucy and their mother left her for Boston when she was at university and they've barely seen each other since, not that Juliet and her mother had a loving relationship to start with.
Juliet resents Lucy and when she arrives at her door she regrets agreeing her to come and stay instantly. She hasn't got the time for Lucy and her sob story, after all, she feels if it wasn't for Lucy hen she and her mum may have a relationship.
Juliet has her own troubles. She's lonely, clear as day lonely even though she lives in a small village where everyone knows everything about each other, but deep down she's hurt and heartbroken. She appears cold hearted due to rejection from her mother, not the only one to make her feel like that... She was also left to fend for herself when dealing with an ectopic pregnancy - I've been through this myself and know just how hard it is - and is now desperate for a child, someone she hopes will love her and need her.
Juliet appears to have only two real friends in the village, her neighbour Peter who had a thing for her but she's in denial about, and her cleaner Rachel.
Rainy Day Sisters brings Juliet and Lucy together but it's not a easy ride. Whilst Lucy just wants her sister to open up to her, Juliet can't help but find flaws in Lucy.
Just as they are getting somewhere, heir mother calls up and Lucy jumps like a lap dog back to Boston, leaving a gap in the bridge her and Juliet had almost mended, after almost declaring her feelings to Alex and telling the girls she was staying as it was her new home....
I loved reading this book, I've family in Cumbria and felt quite nostalgic reading about the weather, the sheep and village life as well as enjoying a good romantic story, well written with ups and downs.
The characters were easy to get to know and I'm hoping that the next book in the Hartley-By-The-Sea series picks up where it's left off as I'd love to know how Juliet and Lucy move forward as sisters plus how they are moving on with Peter and Alex respectively.
You can buy Rainy Day Sisters at the following:
Barnes & Noble: https://store.kobobooks.com/en-US/ebook/rainy-day-sisters
Google Play: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Kate_Hewitt_Rainy_Day_Sisters?id=RMnsBAAAQBAJ
WH Smith: http://www.whsmith.co.uk/products/rainy-day-sisters-a-hartley-by-the-sea-novel/9780698195332