Meet Clara Andrews – Book 1 [Lacey London]

24779543Meet Clara Andrews… Your new best friend!

With a love of cocktails and wine, a fantastic job in the fashion industry and the world’s greatest best friends, Clara Andrews thought she had it all.

That is until a chance meeting introduces her to Oliver, a devastatingly handsome American designer. Trying to keep the focus on her work, Clara finds her heart stolen by lavish restaurants and luxury hotels.

As things get flirty, Clara reminds herself that inter-office relationships are against the rules, so when a sudden recollection of a work’s night out leads her to a gorgeous barman, she decides to see where it goes.

Clara soon finds out that dating two men isn’t as easy as it seems…

Will she be able to play the field without getting played herself?

Join Clara, as she finds herself landing in and out of trouble, re-affirming friendships, discovering truths and uncovering secrets.

My thoughts on the book: Meet Clara Andrews is the first installment in the Clara Series by author Lacey London. I must admit that I had a fun time delving into this easy, light read, which is reminiscent of Bridget Jones and other chick lit novels. Clara has a likeable personality and she’s surrounded by good friends, which makes for an efficient cast.

Granted it contains your average amount of clichés (like the wealthy suitor) — and I also thought that Clara spent a crazy amount of time eating and drinking throughout the plot — but in the end, you get what you hope for, a heartwarming love story. Pretty much a guilty pleasure. Even though it’s not groundbreaking in the romance genre, it’s lovely and entertaining.

I think I’ll read the second book to see whether it gains in depth!

My score: ♥ ♥ ♥ (= I liked it a lot)

Christmas at the Little Wedding Shop [Jane Linfoot]

The snow is falling around Brides by the Sea, Cornwall’s cutest little wedding shop, and wedding dress designer Seraphina East is in her cosy studio designing exquisite dresses to make even the most demanding bride’s dreams come true.

Unless the bride is her big sister Alice of course. Saying that the two sisters don’t always see eye to eye is an understatement. Alice hasn’t even asked Sera to design her wedding dress. But when an absent groom and ill-fitting dress threaten to ruin Alice’s happiness let alone her big day, Sera’s determined to give her sister the winter wedding of her dreams – even if that means keeping not one but two irresistibly gorgeous best men under control…

Is Sera going to end up being the maid of dishonour…Or will repairing her frozen relationship with Alice be the icing on the wedding cake?

My thoughts on the novel: Cuteness alert! Christmas at the Little Wedding Shop perfectly combines everything we love about chick lit — the romance, the clichéd characters (i.e Bridezilla, playboy, etc.), the supposedly carefully planned wedding turning into a real nightmare, all wrapped up in a Christmassy cloud of sweetness.

I haven’t read the first installment entitled The Little Wedding Shop by the Sea, however it’s not a prerequisite. You can still fully enjoy this new plot. I really like the character of Seraphina who appears very down to earth, if not too self-conscious because of her big sister who comes across as the perfect, never-swearing sophisticated city girl. Alice is typically the kind of character you love to hate. The idea of a “wedding manual” epitomizes how exacting and insufferable a bride can become. For the life of me, I don’t get how they can be so fussy about insignificant details, but that’s what makes it so entertaining. At times, she becomes so obnoxious, it’s plain hilarious. As for the notorious playboy, Quinn, he’s the guy who never fails to remind you of someone you’ve crossed paths with in your own life. He’s bad news and you’d better steer clear of him, although I must admit that he spices things up, especially when confronted with other male characters or when stranded on an island with just the right “items”.

All in all, it was very pleasant and refreshing to read about the series of failures leading up to the big day over the magical Christmas weekend. It’s light, amusing and romantic. The writing style is lively, the plot is fast-paced and the ending is heartfelt.

Finally, I really liked the final notes about cocktails and pastries. I’m definitely going to try the “easy peasy chocolate brownies” because, let’s face it, you can never go wrong with Nutella chocolate spread.

I highly recommend this novel if you love all things girly, Christmassy and sparkly.

Score: ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥