Saturday, July 13, 2013

Book Review: The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & Cafe

The Irresistible Blueberry Bakeshop & CafeAuthor: Mary Simses
Publication Date: July 9, 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown and Company

A high-powered Manhattan attorney finds love, purpose, and the promise of a simpler life in her grandmother's hometown. 

Ellen Branford is going to fulfill her grandmother's dying wish--to find the hometown boy she once loved, and give him her last letter. Ellen leaves Manhattan and her Kennedy-esque fiancé for Beacon, Maine. What should be a one-day trip is quickly complicated when she almost drowns in the chilly bay and is saved by a local carpenter. The rescue turns Ellen into something of a local celebrity, which may or may not help her unravel the past her grandmother labored to keep hidden. As she learns about her grandmother and herself, it becomes clear that a 24-hour visit to Beacon may never be enough.

THE IRRESISTIBLE BLUEBERRY BAKESHOP & CAFE is a warm and delicious debut about the power of a simpler life.

“I’m sorry,” I gasped, aware suddenly of all the people looking on. “I’ve…got to go.” I turned and began to stride through the water as fast as I could toward the beach. I was shivering, my clothes sodden, my eyes stinging from the salt, and the embarrassment I’d felt a few moments before was nothing compared to this. I didn’t know what had come over me, what had possessed me to kiss him.

“Take him the letter. Just…promise.”

I glanced down at the compass rug. Maybe I needed to find out about this part of my grandmother’s life for her. It was like helping her put the final letters into her crossword puzzle.

Ellen Branford thinks she is on the way to Beacon, Maine to grant her grandmother’s dying wish. She has no idea that from the moment she steps foot in Beacon her life will change forever. Ellen was very close to her grandmother and wants only to honor her by delivering a letter she had written before her death. The letter is written to a Chet Cummings, and it is Ellen’s job to locate Chet and get this letter in his hands. She thinks it will be good closure for her, and wants to see the place that her grandmother called home for many years. However, her first day in Beacon is a complete disaster. She is looking out over the ocean while standing on a pier, when suddenly the pier collapses and she is whisked away into high tide. Lucky for Ellen someone was watching her. Her rescuer rushed from the shore to save her life, and Ellen can only think to repay him with a kiss. A kiss that ends up all over the local newspapers! Oh and did I mention? Ellen has a fiancĂ© waiting for her at home!

At first I was unsure about Ellen as a character. She was very Plain Jane to me at first and seemed to not want to take any risks. However, once she started to learn her way around Beacon, Maine, the events and happenings in her life started to changed and she changed with them. She became more outgoing and personable by the end of the book. I loved her desire to see the letter her grandmother had written be delivered. This was another book where I wish that a character that was dead was actually alive. I loved Ellen’s relationship with her grandmother, and especially loved the parts where Ellen would reflect on her time with her as well.

The relationship that Roy and Ellen form is endearing and everlasting. I immediately wanted to see the two of them together. I thought that it was so personable that Roy called her “Swimmer” after he rescued her from drowning. I literally laughed out loud at this each time he used the pet name. Roy comes off stubborn and crabby, almost like Ellen, but readers will see a dramatic change in him by the end of the book as well!

P.S. This book will make you want some blueberries!

***A copy of this book was provided to me by the publishers at Little, Brown and Company in exchange for my honest review***

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