My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved coming back to Kingswater after reading the first in the Cornish Coastal Romance series. Once again, with vivid painting of the landscape and subtle attention to detail, the author transports you there. I swear I could smell the salt in the air. I more loved coming back to Jo Lambert’s characters, who are always completely compelling. There’s an immediate fascination for me when a down-to-earth woman meets a seemingly arrogant, abrasive, frustratingly attractive man and sparks fly. Meet Keira, whose sometimes downfall is that she doesn’t mince her words, and Jake, who she literally bumps into on her return to Cornwall after backpacking around Europe, and who – begrudgingly – helps her to her feet. With her job on her father’s ferry no longer available, Keira decides to work part-time while she decides what to do with her life. Fate brings her into contact with the wonderful Stella, a wealthy former film star, who’s made Cornwall her home – using local tradesmen to make it the stunning home it is. We get an instant impression of Stella as being strong and likeable, and someone Keira can relate to. Keira jumps at the offer of a job from Stella, sorting and cataloguing a lifetime’s memorabilia. No guesses for who she bumps into again. Jake, a much lusted after TV star in his own right, also resides at the property, albeit in the boathouse. Keira goes from deeply suspicious about what he’s up to (particularly with beautiful, scheming Chantal, the girlfriend of Stella’s spineless Godson). She soon learns, though, that she might have jumped to conclusions about Jake for seeming to be making advances to the woman, which leave him somewhat embarrassed, cue direction of angry frustration towards Keira. As the story unfolds with dramatic twists that reveal who the true manipulators are, giving us the perfect sense of danger, we realise that this is so much more than a beautifully written romance with rich, rounded characters, some of whom you’re cheering for, some of whom you love to hate. If you like a moving, thought provoking read that’s stuffed full of intrigue until the very last page, then A Kingswater Summer is a book I would highly recommend.

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