The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker by Jenni Keer blogtour book review


the hopes and dreams final cover

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker written by Jenni Keer, publisher Avon, is available NOW in ebook.  The paperback format is due to be released in March and is available to pre-order.

To pre-order/buy link:

Product Details

Meet Lucy, aged 25, and Brenda, aged 79. Neighbours and unlikely friends.
Lucy Baker is not your usual 25-year-old. She is more at home reading and knitting in her cluttered little flat than going out partying and socialising.
79-year-old Brenda is full of wise and wonderful advice, but when she’s diagnosed with dementia her life begins to change. Before her memories slip away for ever, Brenda is desperate to fulfil one last wish – to see Lucy happy.
Gifting Lucy the locket that helped Brenda find her own true love, she hopes to push her reticent neighbour in the right direction. But is Lucy Baker ready for the opportunities and heartbreaks of the real world? It’s about time she put her knitting needles aside and found out…
The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker will be the most charming, heart-warming and feel-good novel you will read this year, perfect for fans of Ruth Hogan and Gail Honeyman.

the hopes and dreams of lucy baker full tour banner

I voluntarily reviewed an arc of this book. All opinions are my own and no content may be copied. However, authors and publishers may use elements of my reviews for quotes.

I am so pleased to be involved in the blogtour celebrating and promoting the launch of Jenni Keer’s debut novel: The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker.  I have to hold my hand up and admit that I was totally drawn to this novel by the cover, the black cat drew me in to all the prettiness.  I also love a story with characters from different ages as they bring a dynamic to the storyline with the wise of the mature generation and the effervescence of the younger.

This is a story about two socially awkward souls who are given a helping hand in love by a vivacious elderly neighbour and a scrappy looking black cat.  A neighbour who all her life has practised in the art of apothecary using natural ingredients and who also believes in mystical powers.

I loved the relationship that Lucy had with her elderly neighbour Brenda.  Brenda was a dream of a character, she had so much joy from her life and her history was fascinating.  I also enjoyed reading about the natural potions and spells she believed were the answer to friend’s and neighbour’s prayers and ailments.  Lucy was a quiet soul who felt under-shadowed by her elder sister, her mother was constantly belittling her.  Lucy stuck with her joys in life which were her friendship with Brenda, her knitting (especially the celebrity-like dolls) and her job working at the toy wholesalers.  When a new neighbour moves in who appears to be more socially awkward than Lucy, Brenda hatches out a plan to help Lucy and George become friends.

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker is an utterly charming story that will entrance and entertain you.  It was magical, romantic and full of fun.  I adored it and it left me thoughtful, bewitched and a little emotional.  I am so looking forward to more from Jenni Keer.

About the Author

Jenni Keer is a history graduate who embarked on a career in contract flooring before settling in the middle of the Suffolk countryside with her antique furniture restorer husband. She has valiantly attempted to master the ancient art of housework but with four teenage boys in the house it remains a mystery. Instead, she spends her time at the keyboard writing women’s fiction to combat the testosterone-fuelled atmosphere with her number one fan #Blindcat by her side. Much younger in her head than she is on paper, she adores any excuse for fancy-dress and is part of a disco formation dance team.

Social Media Links –
FB Jenni Keer Writer
Twitter @JenniKeer
Instagram jennikeer
Website –

the hopes and dreams giveaway prizeGiveaway to Win The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker goodies (UK Only)
Prize contains – Thornton’s fudge, a Nu notebook, a Hopes and Dreams bookmark and a set of five “Scratbag” blank greetings cards designed by Jenni Keer
*Terms and Conditions –UK entries welcome. Please enter using the Rafflecopter box below. The winner will be selected at random via Rafflecopter from all valid entries and will be notified by Twitter and/or email. If no response is received within 7 days then I reserve the right to select an alternative winner. Open to all entrants aged 18 or over. Any personal data given as part of the competition entry is used for this purpose only and will not be shared with third parties, with the exception of the winners’ information. This will passed to the giveaway organiser and used only for fulfilment of the prize, after which time I will delete the data. I am not responsible for despatch or delivery of the prize.



Sowing Secrets by Trisha Ashley book review

sowing secrets

Sowing Secrets by Trisha Ashley, publisher Avon, is available NOW in ebook, hardcover and paperback format.

To buy link:

Product Details (as per amazon page)

Fran March’s life in the idyllic village of St Ceridwen’s Well is coming up roses. Almost.

If only daughter Rosie – the result of an uncharacteristic one-night stand years ago – wasn’t so curious about her real father, and if only husband Mal spent less time on his hobbies, everything would be bliss.

But then a face from the past turns Fran’s world upside down. The handsome face of TV gardener Gabriel Weston, currently restoring the village’s decrepit stately home. And when Fran’s ex-boyfriend Tom appears on her doorstep, it seems that all the ghosts of Fran’s romantic past are back to haunt her.

Can Fran keep Rosie’s paternity under wraps? Why is Mal acting so oddly? And will Fran ever learn that every rose has its thorns…?

roses border

I’ve been a fan of Trisha Ashley’s work for a long time.  I’m taking part in a Reading Challenge for 2016 and when I noticed one of the challenges was to read a book set in Wales it coincided with the re-print of Sowing Secrets (originally published as The Generous Gardener) so I had to buy myself a copy.

The story is set in a the fictional village of St Ceridwen’s Well, North Wales.  The village sounds very idyllic and ‘olde worlde’ and treasures the myths and legends associated with the area.

Fran has been living happily with her daughter, Rosie, and husband, Mal, in the village for a good while.  She has her own art studio designing her own stationery and prints and also has a garden full of her beloved roses.  Her past is suddenly catching up with her.  The one night stand she had over 18 years ago, that could possibly have resulted in the paternity of her daughter turns out to be the TV gardener Gabe Weston, who so happens to be visiting the village soon with a view to restoring the garden at Plas Gwyn. Also Tom Collinge her ex-boyfriend from uni out of the blue contacts her.  Now Rosie is 18 she is asking questions about the origins of her father.  As Fran isn’t 100% sure there isn’t a lot she can say to her daughter.  After 18 years of not seeing her one night stand and her ex-boyfriend can Fran keep her daughter’s identity secret from the men in her life?

Fran’s husband Mal is acting very strange and is also starting to get a little jealous of her past.  Mal decides to accept a contract of work which will take him overseas for 6 months.  Hopefully this time apart will save their marriage.

The villagers are getting excited for the new Restoration Gardener programme with Plas Gwyn in the running for the next project.  A lot of action is happening at Plas Gwyn which is bringing the villagers together.

This was such a lovely, fun read.  I loved Fran’s character and how every now and then she would burst into song that reflected of her current mood.  Her job as an artist drawing pictures of roses, hens and now strong female comic characters sounded brilliant.  She was also a keen rose grower.  Fran’s mother was another great character, very eccentric and colourful.  I hope to hear more from some of the main and sub characters we’ve discovered in North Wales.

A delightful story full of warm, fun characters and of blossoming romance.  4.5/5*

To find out more about Trisha Ashley and her books please visit the following links: