Tuesday 15 August 2017

Summer Read 2017 ~ Felicity at the Cross Hotel by Helena Fairfax

Helena Fairfax
July 2017

What's it all about...

A quaint hotel in a romantic location. The Lake District is the perfect getaway. Or is it?

Felicity Everdene needs a break from the family business. Driving through the Lake District to the Cross Hotel, past the shining lake and the mountains, everything seems perfect. But Felicity soon discovers all is not well at the Cross Hotel …

Patrick Cross left the village of Emmside years ago never intending to return, but his father has left him the family’s hotel in his will, and now he's forced to come back. With a missing barmaid, a grumpy chef, and the hotel losing money, the arrival of Felicity Everdene from the notorious Everdene family only adds to Patrick’s troubles.

With so much to overcome, can Felicity and Patrick bring happiness to the Cross Hotel … and find happiness for themselves.

What did I think about it ..

When Felicity Everdene arrives at the Cross Hotel in the Lake District she is viewed with suspicion because she is part of the hugely successful Everdene hotel chain who are known for their ruthless takeovers of struggling hotels. That the Cross Hotel is struggling is evident in its shabby decor and in its dejected air of just about managing to survive in a competitive business world.

Felicity really isn't there to take over the hotel for her family but trying to convince the hotel employees of this proves to be difficult and yet, Felicity's warm nature and expertise soon starts to win over people's affections. However, the hardest person to convince of her honourable intentions is Patrick Cross who has had to leave his successful business in the Caribbean in order to come home to run the hotel after the death of his father.

What then follows is a delightful tale of how Felicity and Patrick's rocky relationship develops and of how the gradual building of trust between them helps to set the hotel on a very different path.

I really enjoyed travelling to the Lake District with Felicity as she discovered for herself the unique charm of this very special place. The author has captured the place and its people so well that it is a joy to see the area come alive so vibrantly. With clever description we can see how the light glimmers on the waters of the lake and how the constantly changing weather patterns allow the stunning landscape to become an important part of the novel. The author has captured the very essence of the Lake District's special characteristics and has interwoven a delightful story of love and loss and of the importance of family commitments.

Felicity at the Cross Hotel is the perfect antidote to a rainy summer as the story fills you with sunshine. From the quirkiness of Felicity's character, through to Patrick's grumpiness, the shabby charm of the Cross Hotel, the eccentricities of the hotel employees, all combine to make a delightful summer read. A story which is just perfect for an afternoon in the garden, or better still somewhere in the English Lake District, with a view of a lake shimmering before you, regardless of the weather.

Helena Fairfax writes engaging contemporary romances with sympathetic heroines and heroes she's secretly in love with. Her novels have been shortlisted for several awards, including the Exeter Novel Prize, the Global eBook Awards, and the I Heart Indie Awards. Her first novel was a contender for the UK's Romantic Novelists' Association New Writers' Scheme Award.

Helena is a British author who was born in Uganda and came to England as a child. She's grown used to the cold now, and these days she lives in an old Victorian mill town in the north of England, right next door to the windswept Yorkshire moors. She walks this romantic landscape every day with her rescue dog, finding it the perfect place to dream up her heroes and her happy endings.

Follow on Twitter @helenafairfax

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My thanks to the author for sharing her story with me 


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