Tuesday, 4 November 2014

Ivy Lane (Part 4) - Winter by Cathy Bramley

Release date: 6 November 2014
Published by Transworld
Purchase from Amazon here
The Blurb:

Hope thrives at Ivy Lane . . .

As winter descends on Ivy Lane, the frost sparkles and icy winds flurry – but Tilly is still reeling from the events of the Hallowe’en party. Only the die-hard plot holders brave the cold weather, and Tilly fears the loneliness that gripped her a year ago will return.

Resolute to stay cheerful, she throws herself into organizing both the inaugural Ivy Lane Great Cake Competition and the Christmas Party, and even squeezes in a little match-making along the way.

Surrounded by her friends at the Christmas Party, Tilly has come a long way in a year. She can feel her own heart slowly melting, but who will be waiting under the mistletoe?

Ivy Lane is a serialized novel told in four parts – taking you through a year in the life of Tilly Parker – ending with Winter.

Each part of Ivy Lane is approx. 10 chapters.

My Review:

After waiting with baited breath for the last two months it was fantastic to catch up with Tilly and the gang again. If you have read part three (autumn), you will know that it ended with a massive cliffhanger. I was dying to know what happened and if all was ok and couldn't get started soon enough. As soon as it had finished downloading to my Kindle I was stuck straight in,

This fourth and final installment does not disappoint! It is so beautifully written, I defy you not to fall in love with Ivy Lane and it's residents. As winter descends upon the allotment things wind down, and it almost feels like it's time to hibernate until the spring.

When we last saw the residents in Autumn there was alot happening. Tilly was slowly starting to emerge from her chrysalis and coming back to life after the devastating accident that tore her life apart. Her friends also have much going on for them. Gemma's pregnancy is progressing and her due date is looming ever closer. Charlie is still reeling from Tilly rejecting his advances, and decides he wants to take a step back from their friendship. There has been no word from TV Producer Aidan and Tilly is devastated, as she realises how  much she likes him.

However, in good old Tilly fashion, rather than curl up and feel sorry of herself she throws herself full force with the allotment committee. When the roof is blown off and needs repairs the costs threaten to empty the already depleted allotment coffers and leave them with no Christmas party, Tilly jumps to the rescue and organises a cake baking competition at the allotment. The thought of all the cakes had me drooling!! She then goes on to be master organiser by taking on the Christmas party.

Will Gemma's baby arrive safely? Will Charlie get over his disappointment and become friends with Tilly? Will Aidan ride back into Tilly's life and bring her happiness? You will just have to read it and find out for yourselves!!!!

I have absolutely adored reading this series and will miss Tilly and the characters now that the series has ended. Cathy has written this is such a way that I felt connected with the characters right from the start. I love Tilly. She is a strong, resilient woman, with a massive heart. Her past is tragic, but we don't find out why until quite late into the series. Despite not knowing what has happened, Cathy's skill at writing enabled me to empathise with her and get totally drawn into just knowing that she was heartbroken, and needed nurturing and the chance to blossom once more. I was willing her to find happiness and contentment  all the way through.

I also loved every other one of the characters in their own way. Gemma is a great friend who helps Tilly to learn to trust again and to smile. I am lucky to have a Gemma in my life too. I of course love a bit of romance and I spent alot of the series torn between Charlie and Aidan. I won't ruin the surprise but I wasn't devastated at the end!

The series is currently available on kindle in 4 parts, but will also be released in its entirety in spring next year, and will be available in paperback. I will be re-reading it again then I am sure.  It has been torture only getting part of the story at a time, but in other ways I have also enjoyed the suspense that went with it. I think I have said it before but this series made Cathy Bramley into the queen of cliffhangers. Each season ending with another!

You may have realised by now just how much I have enjoyed Ivy Lane. It has made me laugh, made me cry, feel frustration but never fails to make me smile. It is perfect and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

It has also bought out the gardener in me. I finished ready the summer part and got planting my first ever seeds. They are pansies, the flower of remembrance and were given out at my boyfriends fathers funeral earlier this year, so are very special to me. Thanks to Tilly and the gang I planted them and look, they have grown. I am shocked and delighted. I now really really want an allotment of my own and have started looking in my local area.

My Ivy Lane inspired pansies grown in love for John 

A massive thank you to Cathy Bramley for giving me such reading enjoyment and for finding my inner gardener. I will miss the Ivy Lane gang, but am counting down until 5th February and the new Appleby Farm series.

No comments:

Post a Comment