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Sparks Fly by Sarah Sanders

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ Take every love-at-first-sight movie; add to that every romantic movie of falling head-over-heels in love with someone in a ...

Poppy Jenkins by Clare Ashton

⭐⭐⭐⭐★

Sweetness, light, small village, great descriptions of the place, people and emotions – this is such a lovely, lovely book.

Poppy Jenkins is a happy soul (some adjectives used for her in the book: the most joyous person and the nicest human being) living her life in a small village in Wales. She owns and manages a café, looks after her sister and lives with her family including an easy-going father, a slightly flaky mother (who really isn’t all that flaky), terror of a grandmom and a teen sister. Poppy is happy in her world. And then Rosalyn Thorn returns. Poppy’s best friend during her growing up years, Rosie broke Poppy’s heart by inexplicably snatching away her friendship and being downright cruel to Poppy when they were sixteen. A reality Poppy has buried deep in her heart. When Rosalyn returns to the village, all sorts of emotions tumble around Poppy causing turbulence in her placid life.

Guileless, somewhat naïve, endearingly innocent and a right ray of sunshine – Poppy Jenkins is a totally loveable character. Cast darker, somewhat broody, Rosalyn Thorn is a perfect partner for Poppy. The chemistry, attraction and deep emotions between the two are beautifully captured. Their friendship is so real. Rosalyn’s behaviour at sixteen is quite awful, but completely believable. It can really happen that way.

The bad guys are so transparent that their acceptance by the village seems a little hard to digest. There are quite a few things that we can nit-pick about, but – oh, really…it doesn’t matter – because the book is just so lovely. 

⭐⭐⭐⭐★

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