#BookReview AFTER THE RAIN by LUCY DILLON #AfterTheRain

ABOUT THE BOOK

After the storm it’s time for a fresh start . . .

The powerful and heart-stirring new novel by the Sunday Times bestselling author of Unexpected Lessons in Love.
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First, the clouds…
Tara Hunter is a therapist on a mission to restore Longhampton’s community spirit after catastrophic flooding. But with her boyfriend AWOL, her family fragmented, and only a cat for company, Tara’s own life is crumbling.

Then the storm…
On top of everything, Tara’s father – last seen as he walked out on her when she was ten years old – is suddenly back, with a surprising offer that could change everything.

And after the rain…
Dr David Dalloway is Longhampton Wellness Centre’s new star counsellor. He’s charming, caring and has a knack for reading people’s minds – which is the last thing Tara needs right now. Will having David and her dad around make for a bigger storm on the horizon? Or is this Tara’s chance for a fresh start?

PUBLISHED BY PENGUIN

PUBLICATION DATE – 17TH MARCH 2022

PRE-ORDER LINK

Amazon


MY REVIEW

This was another wonderful story from Lucy Dillon that sums up the conflicting emotions of humans, especially when they find it easier to pick others up while their own crumbles around them!

Tara is a therapist who finds herself at the heart of the Longhampton community after the devastating floods wrecked the lives of so many. She’s there to help them make sense of it all and help in any way she can and that distraction helps her forget the problems in her own life!

When David, a fellow therapist at the Wellness Centre she works at, is seen as a miracle worker she’s sceptical to say the least! She’s very reluctant to open up about her own issues, even when he’s offering to help out! Add to the mix the return of her Dad who has been missing from her life since she was 10, you really get the sense that she needs to follow her own advice and get a different perspective on things and ask for help!

I loved the characters in this one, especially Tara. You could feel total empathy towards her and I found her struggles with reaching out for help really relatable. When emotions got in the way it really seemed to cloud her judgement, which made it so much easier helping others with their problems !

It’s full of family drama and you really get involved with the community issues and I love how the author always does a brilliant job of getting underneath the skin of the characters she creates, that allows you to put yourself in their position and wonder how you’d deal with all that life has to throw your way! Loved it!!

★★★★★

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#BlogTour UNEXPECTED LESSONS IN LOVE by LUCY DILLON #BookReview @lucy_dillon @HJ_Barnes #UnexpectedLessonsinLove

Thank you for stopping by today for my stop on the wonderful blog tour for UNEXPECTED LESSONS IN LOVE by LUCY DILLON. My thanks to the author and publisher for letting me be part of it all!

ABOUT THE BOOK

From the SUNDAY TIMES bestselling author of Where the Light Gets in and All I Ever Wanted

‘Real, heart-breaking – I loved it’ Katie Fforde

What happens when ‘I do’ turns into ‘I don’t know’?

Jeannie always wanted to fall in love, and now she’s finally got the whirlwind romance she dreamed of. Dan’s gorgeous, he’s a successful young vet, and he flew her to New York and proposed on Brooklyn Bridge. Jeannie has to remind herself this is actually her life. It seems too perfect, too magical, to be real. Yet it is.But now she’s on her way to the wedding she can’t shake off the tight sensation crushing her chest. Is it just nerves . . . or is this all happening a bit too fast?

Jeannie has one last chance to shout, ‘Stop!’ But just as she grabs it, a twist of fate throws everything she knows into the air like confetti. What Jeannie learns about Dan, about her own heart, and about the power of love itself, will change her world for ever . . .

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PRAISE FOR LUCY DILLON:

‘Bittersweet, lovely and ultimately redemptive; the kind of book that makes you want to live your own life better’ Jojo Moyes

‘No one tugs at the heartstrings quite like Lucy Dillon’ Red magazine

‘Satisfying and clever and deeply moving’ Sophie Kinsella 

E-book – out now

Paperback edition – out 9th January 2020

PURCHASE LINKS

hive.co.uk

amazon uk

MY REVIEW

There’s just something about the way that Lucy Dillon writes a story that gets me everytime, and in her latest it’s another exceptional story that touches at the heartstrings and allows the reader to connect with a group of characters as they face up to an emotional set of circumstances.

Jeannie is on her way to her wedding.. But she’s plagued with doubts that she can’t shrug off – the ultimate dilemma! Do you go through with the wedding or do you face those fears and call it off?!  When fate steps in the way and makes the decision for you then you’re left to deal with the consequences and that is what Jeannie has to do when her husband to be ends up in a coma in hospital on his way to the church.

It’s such an interesting dilemma that really allows you to put yourself in her place, and with the time she has by his bedside allows her to look back at the whirlwind romance they shared and to question what it is that led her to say yes to Dan in the first place.

As life carries on while he recovers, she begins to find herself more involved in the local community, especially at the local dog rescue centre and the time spent there really helps her get her mind back on track with what she wants, both personally and professionally.

I felt a little indifferent to Jeannie at the beginning of the book – how could she have got to the wedding day without listening to her doubts? – but as the story develops, so does Jeannie as a character and you realise she’s good at giving advice to others but not really so good at giving herself the same insightful advice. She’s very loyal and not one to run away from a problem and I really admire her for that. It would have been so easy her to run away and not face up to the situation but she hangs in there and finds out so much more about herself by doing just that.

★★★★

Where the Light gets in by Lucy Dillon #bookreview

‘You know those cracks in your heart, Lorna, where things didn’t work out, but you picked yourself up and carried on? That’s where the fear gets out. And where the light gets in.’

It was Betty, defiant to the end, who sent Lorna back to Longhampton. If Lorna’s learned one thing from Betty it’s that courage is something you paint on like red lipstick, even when you’re panicking inside. And right now, with the keys to the town’s gallery in her hand, Lorna feels about as courageous as Betty’s anxious little dachshund, trembling beside her.

Lorna’s come home to Longhampton to fulfil a long-held dream, but she knows, deep down, there are ghosts she needs to lay to rest first. This is where her tight-knit family shattered into silent pieces. It’s where her unspoken fears about herself took root and where her own secret, complicated love began. It’s not exactly a fresh start.

But as Lorna – and the little dog – tentatively open their cracked hearts to old friends and new ones, facing hard truths and fresh promises, something surprisingly beautiful begins to grow around the gallery, something so inspirational even Lorna couldn’t have predicted the light it lets into her world . . .

An inspiring, life-enhancing novel that will make you see your life afresh . . . Fans of Jojo Moyes, Lucy Diamond and Veronica Henry will love it.

BUYING LINKS

Amazon UK

Hive.co.uk – buy online and support your local bookstore

Book Depository

MY REVIEW

Such a wonderful book!!! I love reading books from Lucy Dillon as she always creates such warm characters who you immediately connect with, and this story follows Lorna as she goes back to where she has some bad memories, but just taking that brave step to face them head on and start a new project just brings out the best in her – and changes the life of those around her too!

We first meet Lorna as she is volunteering at a hospice where she spends time with those in the final stages of life, and you instantly see how compassionate she is, and how she acquires the little dog Rudy!

Lorna only has her sister Jess left around as they lost their parents years ago, and while Jess has a husband and family, Lorna is left feeling a little lost and is looking for a new direction in which to take her life. And that is when moving back to Longhampton to buy the failing art gallery becomes her plan!

As soon as she arrives she finds many faces from her past that evoke a number of feelings, no more so than when she finds Sam is back in the area – she used to have a major crush on him during her teenage years and she finds those feelings don’t seem to have gone away. Is he still the same kind of character that she remembers though?!

The friendship and bond Lorna then builds up with Joyce is a wonderful and touching part of this story. Joyce is an artist, but a reclusive one and is happy to live her life on her own, with her dog Bernard, and has developed a hatred of her social worker! But she sees something in Lorna that resonates with her and is quick to trust her, first with walking Bernard for her and then being more open to sharing her artwork to help the gallery.

There are a wide range of topics throughout this book – memories, family secrets, yarnbombing, a community pulling together, facing your fears – and I found myself unable to put the book down at times as I became so wrapped up in the characters and the situations they found themselves in! There were tears too!!

A fabulous read!!

My thanks to the publisher and author for the advanced readers copy in return for a fair and honest review.

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