Published by Simon & Schuster
Publication date – 5 November 2015
Source – review copy
“Hazel never set out to be a wedding planner. She was just helping her stressed sister Lila with cakes and décor for her big day. But when Lila and Ollie’s summer ceremony is a runaway success, with guests raving about the food and styling at the pretty venue, word about Hazel’s expertise soon spreads.
But Hazel’s clients expect the very best – she’s promised lawyers Gemma and Eliot a snow-covered castle in the Scottish Highlands, and laidback couple Josh and Sarah a bohemian beach wedding in a Caribbean paradise. But as weather, in-laws and wilful brides conspire against her, can Hazel get two very different couples to walk up two very different aisles to say ‘I do’?
From the author of the bestselling The Heavenly Italian Ice Cream Shop, this is a festive treat of a novel, perfect for readers who enjoy books by Carole Matthews, Trisha Ashley and Jenny Colgan. – See more at Simon and Schuster.”
4 of 5 stars
Hazel is at a cross roads in her life. She is estranged from her best friend, Sam. Her twin sister, Lila, has moved out of the flat they have shared for 10 years. She is holding out for promotion to Set Designer at work, hoping that all the covering she does for her boss will pay off. When Lila announces her engagement the moment is bitter sweet for Hazel. However she is eager to step in and help organise the wedding when Lila’s wedding planner lets her down. The success of the event leads to opportunities to plan more weddings. But with bumps in the road will they go ahead?
It’s been a long time since I’ve read a complete novel in just a few hours, but that’s what happened with this book. It was lovely to get lost in the story and I soon found myself racing through the book eager to find out what happened.
I don’t want to get too much into the story as that would spoil it but there are moments of frustration and romance. There are also times when you want to shout at Hazel so that she can see what is evident to us as the reader. All of these things pull the story together and make you read on.
I’ll be honest, I didn’t warm to Hazel at first. I couldn’t quite put my finger on it but there was something that put me off her. But she grew on me and I soon got wrapped up in her tale. There are a whole host of characters in this book, some who are easy to love, others who are easy to loathe. I particularly liked the friendship that developed between Hazel and Amber and between Josh and Hazel. There are of course those characters you aren’t supposed to like, such as Emma, Hazel’s boss and a question mark arises over the intentions of Sam, Hazel’s childhood best friend, and her first love.
This is a great book to curl up with on a dark winter evening. I look forward to reading more of Abby Clements’ books and I’ll be reading her earlier novels soon.