Monday, 20 June 2016

Bookshop Blog Tour: Reviews for How to Find Love in a Bookshop & Astley Book Farm

Today I’ve teamed up with Orion and the Books are my Bag campaign to bring you a special post all about bookshops! I’m reviewing the new novel by Veronica Henry, How to Find Love in a Bookshop and am also featuring my own local independent bookshop Astley Book Farm for Independent Bookshop Week.

How to Find Love in a Bookshop by Veronica Henry 
Publisher: Orion
Release: 16th June 2016
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Source: Copy received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

"Nightingale Books, nestled on the high street in the idyllic Cotswold town of Peasebrook, is a dream come true for booklovers.

But owner Emilia Nightingale is struggling to keep the shop open. The temptation to sell up is proving enormous - but what about the promise she made to her father? Not to mention the loyalty she owes to her customers.

Sarah Basildon, owner of stately pile Peasebrook Manor, has used the book shop as an escape from all her problems in the past few years. But is there more to her visits than meets the eye?

Since messing up his marriage, Jackson asks Emilia for advice on books to read to the son he misses so much. But Jackson has a secret, and is not all he seems...

And there's Thomasina, painfully shy, who runs a pop-up restaurant from her tiny cottage. She has a huge crush on a man she met and then lost in the cookery section, somewhere between Auguste Escoffier and Marco Pierre White. Can she find the courage to admit her true feelings?

How to Find Love in a Book Shop is the delightful story of Emilia's fight to keep her book shop alive, the customers whose lives she has touched - and the books they all love."

I’m a sucker for books about books so I couldn’t resist How to Find Love in a Bookshop by Veronica Henry. This is my first book by the author and it won’t be my last! I loved this charming tale of a family owned bookshop set in a Cotswold town.

Julius Nightingale lives and breathes books, after the death of his young wife he’s a single father bringing up their baby daughter Emilia alone. He opens a bookshop ‘Nightingale Books’ and creates a happy home full of stories for his daughter. Julius’s warmth and passion for books soon draws in the bookish locals looking for some escapism and therapeutic advice from the kindly bookseller.

Thirty years later and Julius’s untimely death leaves a gaping hole in the local community. After inheriting the book shop, Emilia struggles financially to keep it open and running – but books have a special way of leaving a mark on our hearts and those Julius has touched over the years with his recommendations are determined that Nightingale Books isn’t going down with a fight. Can a community of book lovers save their beloved bookshop?

How to Find Love in a Bookshop follows a large cast of characters. As well as Julius’s chapters set in the past and Emilia’s chapters set in the present, we also follow the town’s locals whose lives Nightingale Books has touched in some way. I really enjoyed reading about how books bought these characters together and loved how their individual stories tied in with the main plot. Julius was by far my favourite character, he was such a sweetheart and I felt the impact of his death just as much as the characters in the book. He’s everything you want in both a bookseller and a friend.

Any book lover will enjoy spending time in Nightingale Books, the independent bookshop that is the beating heart of this story. It’s everything you envision a good bookshop to be. I wanted to crawl inside of the book and spend hours exploring this little shop.

How to Find Love in a Bookshop is a wonderful story that shares a special message with its reader about how books have the power to bring people together. It’s a celebration of reading, bookshops and booksellers demonstrating how it only takes one story to change your life forever.

Follow the rest of the blog tour!

Astley Book Farm 
A Playground for the Bookish 

I am lucky enough to live a ten minute drive away from Astley Book Farm – the largest second hand bookshop in the Midlands and home to 75,000 books. Situated in the beautiful Warwickshire countryside it’s the perfect place for book lovers to escape the hustle and bustle of city life in favour of a day amongst books.

The bookshop itself is far bigger than one might expect, you can easily lose an entire day getting lost in a maze of books as you wander the shops corridors. The bookcases are crammed with books new and old, ranging from popular bestsellers to out of print rarities. The décor is homely and rustic with old books propped along the ceiling beams, funny and inspirational decorative quotes hang on the walls and a squishy armchair can be found around every corner to tempt customers to snuggle up and read for a while.

Once you’ve finished perusing the main shop floor, there is a separate Children’s Hayloft where young readers can discover the joys of a good bookshop for the very first time. Back outside there’s the Ten Bob Barn, a treasure trove of mismatched books selling for a mere fifty pence each. It’s the perfect place to get lost for anyone who loves a good rummage around looking for hidden gems.

Every book lover knows that book shopping is hard work and the onsite coffee shop is the perfect place to sit down and read with a nice cup of tea and a doorstop slice of one of their delicious fresh cakes. The coffee shop also extends out into the garden so that customers can enjoy a light lunch in the sunshine during warmer seasons.

With friendly, knowledgeable staff and enough books to last even the most avid reader a lifetime, Astley Book Farm is a truly special bookshop with a huge amount of personality. Whether you’re visiting on a daytrip with friends or just stopping by to find your next great read Astley Book Farm is a playground for the bookish with something to offer every reader.

Check out Astley Book Farm's website here for more information
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