Saturday, 26 March 2016

Book Review - Plan Bea by Hilary Grossman

Amazon UK
Title: Plan Bea
Author: Hilary Grossman
Format reviewed: Ebook
Source: Netgalley
Publisher: Booktrope
Publication Date: 8th October 2015
Rating: 5 Stars

We live our entire lives thinking we know those closest to us. But do we ever really?

On the outside, Annabel O'Conner has it all - the perfect husband, two adorable children, an amazing job, and a mother from hell! Just when she gives up trying to regain her overbearing mother's love, an unexpected call turns her world around and makes Annabel question everything she believes about her life. 

Could falling in love give a cold, stubborn, and selfish woman a second chance to open her heart back up to her family?

Beatrice Buchanan has spent more years than she can remember distancing herself from everyone close to her. She barely has a relationship with her grandchildren. The only time she manages to have a one way conversation with her daughter is during her weekly fifteen-minute commute to the nail salon. When Bea meets Walter on a cruise she realizes there may be more to life than designer clothes, killer handbags, and impressing the ladies at her posh country club. 

I have this sometimes very frustrating habit of either deciding I want to read a book either by its cover, or by the author and barely glancing at the blurb until I've started reading. Plan Bea was one such book and as a result, from the first few pages it was clear it was going to have a different focus to it, to whatever I had been thinking. However I am so glad it was written the way it was, as its a brilliant story. 

Plan Bea is a story about Annabel's relationship with her mother Bea. For many years they have been almost estranged, and it isn't until Bea meets Walter, that she starts to soften around the edges and talk to her daughter properly. 

Bea involves Annabel in the planning of her wedding, and despite Annabel having far too many other commitments, such as her two children, husband and job, she agrees, in an effort to gain her mother's approval. 

Bea is a cold hearted woman and has her reasons for being the way she is. During the time Bea and Annabel spend together a lot is revealed, all of which explains the reasoning behind why Bea is the way she is.  And as the revelations start to come you can sense a potential for thawing the mother-daughter relationship. 

There is a twist towards the end of the book that I wasn't expecting, but its an entirely pleasant one, and fitted the story perfectly. 

I found Plan Bea to be written in an engaging way, that is easy to read, and its quite a quick story to read too. The pacing is good, and there was a good selection of characters to like. This was the first book I had read by Hilary Grossman and I can't wait to find the time to sit and read Dangled Carat, as if this is a good example of the authors writing, then I'm sure her other book will be good too. 

Thank you so much Booktrope and Netgalley for this review copy. This was my honest opinion. 


  1. Thank you so much for reading and reviewing Plan Bea! I am glad you enjoyed the book and I hope you like Dangled Carat too

  2. Nice review, I have heard of Dangled Carat, but not this one. Sounds like a good read.

    1. I've got a copy of Dangled Carat and will read it eventually, but I can definitely recommend Plan Bea.


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