Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Book Review - The Riviera by Karen Aldous - Blog Tour

Amazon UK
Title:  The Riviera
Author: Karen Aldous
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Carina 
Publication Date: 10th July 2015
Rating: 4 Stars

The journey is only as good as its end…

It’s been a hard journey, but Lizzie Lambert’s life is a Provençal dream come true. Her business is wildly successful, and with her little boy and the love of her life, Cal, she is making a beautiful home on the vineyard for their blended family.

But when Cal goes to America to support his son through a teenage crisis, it becomes clear the kid’s not the only one with some growing up to do: Cal’s glamorous ex-wife wants to get her claws in him again. As Cal spends longer and longer away, Lizzie wonders, was it all too good to be true?

The Riviera is a lovely follow up to The Vineyard, continuing Lizzie Lambert and Cal's story. Although I had read The Vineyard only a few months ago, I'm ashamed to say I couldn't remember enough of it, to initially make feel instantly at home in the Riviera. I was continually wracking my brains for bits of story that felt familiar, but couldn't quite recall. However that didn't make this any less of an enjoyable read, and I have a weird feeling this may not be the last we see of these characters. 

I loved seeing Lizzie's relationship with Thierry, her 3 and half year old son, he is a real character and a joy to read about. I also loved the relationship between Cal and his 16 year old son Jack. It is a relationship that has been hard on them, with The Atlantic being between them, but when Jack asks for Cal's help, Cal steps up to the plate admirably. 

Jack was adamant he didn't want to go back to school in Nantucket, and that he wanted to move in with his friend Robbie, in London. Obviously his parents had other ideas, and with how strongly Jack was feeling on this subject, all sorts of horrible scenarios were playing out in my mind, as to what could be causing it, and none were correct. 

Cal though has to spend an extended time out in America, while he helps Jack get through this situation, and Lizzie who struggles to trust men, has a tough time with him away, convinced that Cal will be unfaithful with his ex-wife, Jack's mother. 

There are various threads of story, a lot of them revolving around family. I loved Jack, just all around loved him, he is brilliant with Thierry, and also the level of maturity he starts to show, with regards his future. 

The Riviera was predominantly set in the French Riviera, Cannes to be precise, and the descriptions of the area are wonderful.  I would love to visit Cannes again, but having been exhausted by reading about Lizzie's workload during the Film Festival, I would probably stay clear of the area in May!

I thoroughly enjoyed this book, it is a lovely story, which I found to be very quick to read. I really hope we get another Lizzie and Cal book, as I really want to see more of these characters, and I feel with the way the book ended that it could be open to more.

Thanks to Carina and Netgalley for this review copy. This was my honest opinion. 

Author Bio

Karen Aldous enjoys village life on the edge of the north-downs in Kent with easy access to the buzz of London. Not only does she love the passive pleasures of reading and writing, she also craves the more active pursuits with her family and friends such as walking, cycling and skiing especially when they involve food and wine!

Karen gets much of her inspiration from her travels and if she had to choose, France, Greece, Switzerland, Italy and Lake Tahoe in US would be her favourites. However, wherever she goes, she discovers a new character emerges in 'Karen's World'. She likes to write about strong independent women who can direct their own lives - but struggle to control them! And, of course there's always a gorgeous hunk or two!

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