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Ratings and Book Reviews (4 16 star ratings
4 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.7 out of 5
16
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
11 5 0 0 0

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    Good warm family writing

    Great storyline, some laugh out loud moments and also some tear jerking ones. Few twists and turns in the storyline, I did guess part of what was going to happen but certainly not all. A nice read
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    Enjoyable read

    Easy reading, enjoyable good feel book with a good storyline.
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    Leise

    Perfect! Countryside setting with a strong inspiring main character.
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    Pies, Pies and More Pies

    4.5 Stars The real star of this book is not Hetty, Dan or any of the other human characters. It is definitely the pies and I am all about the pie. Unfortunately, some of Hetty's creations sound, quite frankly, awful. Yes, I know cheese pairs well with apple but in a pie, the texture alone would be offputting and as a warm creation extremely disturbing. The only flavour combination I could get behind was the apple and dark chocolate. There seemed to be a surfeit of extraneous ingredients in every pie and a preponderance of lamb (Yes, I am aware Hetty and Dan have a sheep farm) which is possibly the worst meat for a pie filling ever. I was lusting after a good old-fashioned steak and ale pie but Hetty would never make anything so mundane it seems. Okay, the story is about more than pies - but only just. I just happen to love a good pie and did expend a fair amount of brain power imagining that golden crust and little puffs of steam coming from the top whilst I was reading. The main thrust of the story (apart from pies) is about Hetty and Dan's relationship, they have been together since school and are married with a teenage daughter - Poppy. Still living in the same small Cumbrian town in Dan's childhood home where he has taken over the reins of the sheep farm. Life is comfortable and plods along following the same formula day after day. That is until Dan's sister intervenes and gets Hetty to bake some of her pies for the Farm Shop she runs and just so happens to enter one of her more exotic creations in to Cumbria Finest Food competition. This proves to be the cue for Hetty to discover long buried ambition and to want to do something for her. Dan is then cast in the role of very unsupportive husband. A long lost friend pays a visit. Hetty's best friend reveals the identity of her son's father and, as it does in all good books, our heroine's world falls apart. Fortunately the falling apart comes quite near the end so we are saved from long soul-searching passages and morose flopping about from our characters. Of course everything comes together in the end and although Hetty's world has changed she is stronger for it and we have our Happy Ending. I am aware that the above all sounds fairly snarky, but the book does follow a tried, tested and reader approved formula. Going in to this genre you know you are guaranteed a happy outcome that is tied up in a big, floppy satin bow. That is why we read these books, to lift our mood and for sheer escapism from the day to day garbage that fills all our lives. Fortunately, Cathy Bramley knows what we like and knows how to deliver it in spades and put a smile on my face as I was reading.
16

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