Don’t you just love the start of a romance novel where it feels like the author will have to perform a miracle in order to bring their two characters together? Their characters seem like the unlikeliest of people to find love and you end up diving into the story wondering how it’s going to turn out. Perhaps muttering; ‘this author has her work cut out with these two,’ and ‘I better fasten my imaginary armchair seatbelt because I get the feeling I am in for a bumpy ride.’
This was me at the start of Christie Barlow’s latest; Starcross Manor. How the hell was she going to get Julia interested in Flynn after he’d knocked down her grandfather’s home and built a hotel on the land and had jilted her friend on the day of their wedding?
I was very much on the side of Team Julia at the start of the book in light of all the suffering Flynn had caused and all I could think about was whether Christie Barlow would do the impossible.
So, I decided to take out my emergency biscuit tin, make myself a large cup of builder’s tea and set up camp in my armchair.
Here’s the blurb:
Dying to know more about the brooding and mysterious Flynn Carter and the secrets behind his plans for Starcross Manor?
You won’t want to miss the next spellbinding chapter in the Love Heart Lane series – where friends are there for you no matter what.
When Julia Coleman meets Flynn Carter again in the cosy village of Heartcross it can only mean trouble. Flynn might be rich, brooding and sexy, but Julia knows first-hand he’s ruthless and she plans to watch his every move.
When Julia discovers Flynn’s plans for beautiful Starcross Manor her greatest fears come true. Because Flynn’s dreams of turning Starcross into a luxury hotel could ruin Julia’s dreams…and finish off the community of Heartcross for good.
Flynn makes it clear he doesn’t want trouble, and he’s not the man Julia thinks he is. As he sets about convincing the community he’s changed, he hopes he can convince Julia to give him another chance too…
Here’s my review:
I knew bestselling author Christie Barlow would come out fighting on this challenge that she had set herself. She had a few tricks up her sleeve, one of which being – the character of Flynn. When I eventually met this heartbreaking, brooding, wealthy, heartless property developer I wasn’t expecting to… (clears throat and looks over shoulder)…like him. I found myself saying, ‘hmmm…you are actually quite nice!’ I did apologise profusely to Julia and reassured her by saying I was still very much Team Julia. As the book progressed my feelings for Flynn intensified, I stopped apologising to Julia, went quiet on the whole Team Julia thing and took out my electric hand held fan.
Julia was a good character too. I felt that Flynn had met his match with Julia. She was as determined as him in a different way and I loved how she cared so strongly for her community.
I was also really happy to read that Julia turned forty in the book. Can I just take this opportunity to thank Christie Barlow for this! As a forty something woman I am always looking out for characters who represent my age group.
This is a great book and works well as a stand-alone. I have not read any of the others in the series and I thoroughly enjoyed this.
I won’t give the game away on whether Christie Barlow succeeds in her challenge but I did give her a little toast at the end.
You will be glad to know Flynn has promised to visit me in my dreams ❤️ Sorry Julia x
Christie Barlow is the number 1 International bestselling author of ten bestsellers including A Home at Honeysuckle Farm, Love Heart Lane and Clover Cottage. Her writing career came as somewhat a surprise when she decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. The book she wrote to prove a point is now a #1 bestseller in the UK, USA, Canada & Australia.
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