Can an island in the sun provide the second chance Sara needs?
A warm and uplifting novel about love, friendship and new beginnings on the beautiful Greek island of Santaniki.
Sara Loveday flees home and crisis to the beautiful island of Santaniki. Here, amid olive groves and whitewashed stone villas, where dark cypress trees step down to a cobalt blue sea, Sara vows to change her life. Spotting a gap in the local tourist market, she sets up a wedding plan business, specialising in ‘second time around’ couples.
For her first big wedding, she borrows the olive garden of a local artists’ retreat, but almost at once things begin to go wrong. To make matters worse, a stranger from Sara’s past arrives on the island, spreading vicious lies. Can her business survive? And what will happen with the gorgeous new man who she’s begun to love?
This is a gorgeous, warm-hearted and uplifting novel conjuring the local colour, traditions and close bonds of island life.
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EXTRACT FROM THE BOOK!
Mel was late as usual for the book club meeting in Dorrie Thorner’s house. Membership was thin at the moment as many residents were away. Dorrie would take it as a personal insult if there were only a few in attendance. Mel had not done her homework either and that would be noted and held against her. It wasn’t her fault. Irini needed more help, Markos was playing up, Spiro was late and she’d given him an earful. ‘I don’t often get a night off, even if it is only to listen to Dorrie Thorner waxing lyrical about her latest literary sensation, but I do like meeting up and chatting in English all night.’
She stomped off in a bad mood and almost turned back. Meetings weren’t the same without their founder member, Ariadne Blunt. She arrived in time to hear the latest gossip about the new arrival in St Nick’s.
‘Who’s the poor victim this time?’ she joked.
‘The woman in Ariadne’s villa. Have you met her? Is she staying long?’
‘Only briefly,’ Mel replied. ‘And she’s from Yorkshire so you can’t get better than that.’
‘She’s on her own then?’ Dorrie was prying as usual. ‘I was told she arrived on that Don Ford’s arm. Perhaps he’s brought some company with him to keep him in check.’
‘We don’t know that,’ said Chloë Bartlett who was trying not to look interested.
‘Give the poor girl a chance, ladies. I’ve not seen her with the writing group or Don Ford in the taverna yet. I think it’s only a short holiday let.’
‘Do you think she would be good book club material? We could do with more temporary guests in the season. They have lots of paperbacks to share.’ Trust Dorrie to see a chance.
‘Most don’t have the sort of books you read, surely.’ Mel couldn’t help herself. Just because someone was single, there was no need to make assumptions, but she bit her tongue. ‘Hadn’t we better start?’
‘We were waiting for you.’ Dorrie looked at the wall clock. ‘I hope you’ve all read my choice.’ She was looking in Mel’s direction.
‘Sorry, I meant to, but every time I picked it up in bed, I fell asleep.’
‘You’re not the only one,’ Chloë added. ‘I’m afraid the subject matter didn’t hold my interest. You know I only give a book seventy pages but after that… sorry.’
Dorrie shook her lacquered bob with a sigh. ‘I see… Am I the only one to have read it then?’
No one spoke. ‘Then it’s a good job I made some notes.’
Mel sat back in the cane chair resigned to at least a twenty minute lecture, her eyes drooping in the heat. It had been a long tiring day and she hoped to be rewarded with some decent wine and a slice of Victoria sponge but knowing Dorrie, it would be something undrinkable and sensible Cretan biscuits.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
After careers in teaching, catering, running a market stall, stress management courses in the NHS as well as being a mother of four, Leah Fleming found her true calling as a storyteller. She lives in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales but spends part of the year marinating her next tale from an olive grove on her favourite island of Crete.
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