Welcome, bookworm, do come in. Can you believe we’re almost halfway through October? It’s my favourite season, full of snuggly blankets, hot chocolate and cosiness. Speaking of cosiness, I want to tell you about a book I’ve just read: It’s called Boomerville at Ballymegille and is written by Caroline James.
Before I get to my review, I’d like to tell you why I have bruised shins from kicking myself. You see, I am a dedicated bookworm and lover of the written word, but I also fulfil duties bestowed upon me by mystical book gatekeepers who ask me to give a tome a home, read it lovingly and tell bookworms about it at a predestined point in the book’s life (mere mortals may know them as blog tour organisers or book marketers). I used to enter such details into my old ledger but at the behest of the modern fiction books, I went digital and shut away my paper journal since I’d moved into the 21st century. The classics books were extremely frustrated with me; I received many a stern glare as I walked past their shelves and had my invites to their luncheons rescinded.
When it came to logging the nook for this book I must have accidentally hit a wrong key, for the predestined date came and went and I was none the wiser. When a guardian asked me about Boomerville, I realised something had gone wrong and a search party needed to be mustered. Cap in hand, I went to the Classics and after sniffing somewhat superciliously, they agreed to loan me their bloodhounds (the modern books scoffed and tried to seduce me to using one of their app creatures but I refused to be drawn in this time). After following the scent and being distracted only slightly by the mischievous horror books, they found Boomerville at Ballymegille so I could help it to bask in its spotlight.
So finally, without further ado, here’s the blurb: Join Hattie and Jo as they head to Southern Ireland to open Boomerville Manor, a holiday retreat for guests of ‘a certain age’. There’s Irish craic and shenanigans aplenty for the colourful cast of characters as everyone gathers for the grand opening.
Meet Melissa, an ex-cabaret singer running from her abusive husband, and Bill, a bachelor bullied from beyond the grave by the ghostly voice of his mother. Along with local bobby Harry the Helmet, ageing aquatic team the Boomerville Babes, eccentric artist Lucinda Gray, and heartthrob Finbar Murphy, they gather in Ireland and the fun begins. But murder is in the air and there’s mischief afoot. Will the residents get more than they bargained for at Boomerville?
Set in the beautiful Irish countryside, ‘Boomerville at Ballymegille’ is a heart-warming story of friendship, fears and new beginnings.
Here’s a little about the author:
Best-selling author of women’s fiction, Caroline James has owned and run businesses encompassing all aspects of the hospitality industry, a subject that often features in her novels. She is based in the UK but has a great fondness for travel and escapes whenever she can.
A public speaker, which includes talks and lectures on cruise ships world-wide, Caroline is also a consultant and food writer. She is a member of the Romantic Novelist’s Association, the Society of Women’s Writer’s & Journalists and the Society of Authors and writes articles and short stories, contributing to many publications. Caroline also runs writing workshops.
In her spare time, Caroline can be found walking up a mountain with her two Westie dogs, sipping raspberry gin or relaxing with her head in a book and hand in a box of chocolates.
And here’s my review: Boomerville at Ballymegille is the second instalment in the Boomerville serious but I didn’t feel like there were any spoilers for the first book or gaps in the second since I hadn’t read it. My favourite character was Hattie, whose flamboyance and tendency to meddle was the source of many of my chuckles (there’s a particular scene involving support knickers which really sticks in my mind!). With her straight talking and no nonsense approach, she gees the guests up and encourages them to banish their personal demons with aquatics, singing lessons and art classes to name but a few.
Melissa’s escape from her villainous husband, Malcolm, goes awry when he tracks her down and tries to force her to return with him. His skullduggery begins to involve other residents, who come to Melissa’s aid but put themselves at risk in doing so. Bill was an intriguing character and the voice of his mother was a vicious character in itself. The canine characters were a sweet addition to the narrative, and helped to heal some of the characters’ battered hearts.
I had a few gasp moments thanks to some twists and turns but I’m not saying who these involve or why so that I don’t spoil it for you! But that letter…. I’m giving this a cosy 3.5 stars and recommending it to anyone who needs some lighthearted, cosy fun in their reading life at the moment.
If you like the sound of this book, you can click on the picture above to go to it’s page on Amazon (I don’t get anything for providing the link, I’m just being a helpful bookworm).
Oh goodness, I’ve just noticed one of the bloodhounds is nibbling on my dragon-proof gloves. I’d better go and return him discreetly to the Classics books before I’m in the dog house again. While I’m at it, I think I’ll just check on what the modern books are up to – I have a sneaky suspicion they may be trying to tamper with my old filing system… Farewell, bookworm!