The Cottage at Plum Tree Bay

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 25 Jul 2019

Member Reviews

What an absolute joy this book was to read, I thoroughly enjoyed it from start to finish.

Having read book 1 to this series, I was very excited to read book 2 to the series. I loved getting to know the new characters Catherine and Mark, discovering their journey/stories but also I loved being able to reaquaint myself with characters from book 1, seeing how they are getting on.

One of my fave parts throughout the story were the going ons between the two cats Bob and Ginger, so cute and lovely that they had their own little story to play out.

So if you haven't discovered Darcie's books yet then I can highly recommend them.
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Catherine is thirty-four, works as a teacher, lives with and takes care of her needy mother, and has only had one romance, which she gave up in order to stay with her mother. Mark is recently out of a very long-term relationship and has gone to stay in Penhallow Sands to recover and fight through writer's block. Neither are looking for romance, but neither can deny the attraction between them.

If you're looking for romance, you'll find it in spades. If you're looking for women's fiction, you'll sort of find it. Overall, this book follows the formula for the typical romance. Yet it's also categorized as women's fiction, and we do get some of that. Catherine has never left her mother or Penhallow Sands and there are some issues with being abandoned by her father at the start of her adolescent years. Over twenty years later, her encounters with Mark have brought out a yearning to know if there's more to life, and what her life could have been and could be. I would say this is about three-quarters romance and one quarter women's fiction. Perfect if you're looking for romance, not so ideal if you're looking for women's fiction.

As a rule, with very few exceptions, I don't enjoy romance. It's too formulaic to me. I'm glad to say most of this book was cleverly disguised with women's fiction themes, so the fact that it is also a romance didn't hit me until the end, when that oh so typical element in romance where something breaks up the hero and heroine popped up and felt almost like a non-sequitur. Honestly, I wish it had been left out. Other than attempting to add some tension and throw in a usual romance element, it felt very flat, and made me question Catherine's character and everything I had learned about her. I was so disappointed in her character and stopped caring about the couple, who are far from the typical twenty-somethings figuring out themselves and their relationships. I did love that both Catherine and Mark are in their thirties.

One thing I absolutely loved was how some of the characters were portrayed. They were fun, sassy, and had a great deal of flair. Of course, they also felt stereotypical, but I loved that, instead of having a girlfriend sidekick, Catherine had a gay couple. I mean, what girl doesn't want a gay best friend? I loved them, and wanted to take them out of the book for myself. What I didn't love were Diana, Catherine's mother, and Lucy. Neither felt fully developed despite playing important roles. Come to think of it, though, I could have done without the Lucy subplot. She was more of a vehicle to showcase Catherine and Mark as little more than angels. While I'm on this thread, Mark's character was surprisingly lackluster. He was very stagnant despite having his heart shattered and discovering an attraction to Catherine.

If you like dramatic events, there are plenty here. They were a little over the top for me. Overall, I don't feel they added much to the story, other than to knock Catherine over the head with what a catch Mark is and she would be stupid to cling to her mother instead of taking a chance. They did, though, add color to the relatively quite Penhallow Sands and the inhabitants.

Overall, this is more typical romance than typical women's fiction. It was a decent read with plenty of charm and a relatively heartwarming romance that could be seen a mile away. Not bad for an easy summer read.

Thank you to NetGalley and Canelo for a free e-copy. All opinions expressed are my own.

Link to review: https://thelilycafe.wordpress.com/2019/07/30/book-review-the-cottage-at-plum-tree-bay-by-darcie-boleyn/
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This was an absolutely gorgeous read and I adored every second of reading about such wonderful characters and community. Darcie's female lead was a joy to follow, with so much loss and heart-break in her life, I couldn't not root for her to get the happy ending she so deserves. 

Mark, the male lead and a mystery author was an absolute dream man. He is skilled in pretty much everything, some even he didn't know he could do and he fit in to the community like a glove from the second he walked in Penhallow Sands. 

Darcie's writing is filled with so much romance, humour and great friendships that you'd be crazy to not love the story of Catherine and Mark. Not only will you love the two leads, but every character weaved in to their lives are also just as incredible. I especially loved Catherine's gay best friend, Jamal, as he was so honest about everything to the point where you'd either laugh at his remarks or cringe!

The only critique I would have for this book is that I feel like we didn't get enough time with Catherine and Mark when they're relationship had begun and we're officially in love - please, can we have a book two!

*Full review coming to the blog soon*
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I thoroughly enjoyed reading this summery book because in addition to the gorgeous setting, you get to follow Catherine’s story and see her develop. There is a cast of likeable and in some cases, amusing characters. Catherine may not have many friends but those she has are genuinely on her side. Her relationship with her mother is problematical and based on secrecy on her mother’s side, which was a surprising plot point. It is well worth a read.. Great Summer read.

Thanks to Netgalley for a copy of the book.
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What an absolute joy this book was to read, I thoroughly enjoyed it from start to finish. 

Having read book 1 to this series, I was very excited to read book 2 to the series. I loved getting to know the new characters Catherine and Mark, discovering their journey/stories but also I loved being able to reaquaint myself with characters from book 1, seeing how they are getting on.

One of my fave parts throughout the story were the going ons between the two cats Bob and Ginger, so cute and lovely that they had their own little story to play out. 

So if you haven't discovered Darcie's books yet then I can highly recommend them.
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Another lovely Darcie Boleyn book, I adored this so much I read it across an evening, I just didn’t want to put it down. Darcie writes such lovely, heartwarming and appealing characters you can’t help but want them to fall in love.  I adore the fact they are flawed, imperfect people and it makes them so much more relatable and easy to connect with. Each book I have read of Darcie’s is a little ray of happiness into your heart, pure unadulterated happiness and warmth in a book.  If you need a lift or to smile, you need to read this and also the previous book in the series, you won’t be disappointed 


Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for a free copy for an honest opinion
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I love romances set in Cornwall and The Cottage at Plum Tree Bay does not disappoint. It's such a fun, sweet beach read!

Many thanks to NetGalley, the author, and the publisher for ARC. All opinions are my own.
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This book is Women's Fiction/Romance at it's best! Honestly this has been one of the easiest books I have ever read. I absolutely loved it. The characters are fantastic I found myself so attached to Catherine and Mark's story.  The two of them are just adorable and I knew that these two were characters destined to be together- I just prayed for a happy ending for them.  The location is stunning, I really wish I lived there. Everyone is so friendly and there is just so many little places to visit and walk to/around. Oh and the cover is just BEAUTIFUL! This is pure perfection!
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This is the perfect summer read.
Catherine lives in Penhallow sands with her mother. She has given up on love & men as she is told by her mother they are no good over and over again.
The Mark the handsome stranger rents a cottage in the bay. He also has been hurt by love 
There is definitely something there between them so will they end up together you’ll have to read it and see
Thanks Netgalley
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Catherine, the main character, has lived in the village pretty much all her life with no plans to leave. Mark is just visiting for the summer while he tries to finish his novel. They are drawn together, and the story unfolds from there!
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What a beautiful summer read .. the very thing to put you in the mood for sun, sea and sand!

Catherine Bromley lives in her home town of Penhallow Sands where her mother needs her emotional support. Living under the same roof isn't conducive to love and romance, but Catherine is very much a dutiful daughter. When the handsome Mark Cavendish rents a nearby cottage for the summer though, there is no denying the frisson between them. With all the baggage both of them are carrying, will their attraction ever come to fruition?

Oh, it's lovely to be back at the coast! Penhallow Sands sounds rather idyllic and the author does it full justice with her wonderful descriptive prose. I'm a big fan of her work and this series is terrific; with great array of characters and a super story it all comes together in a beautifully structured novel which is an absolute delight! To top it all off, the cover is absolutely gorgeous and really does the novel justice. Darcie Boleyn writes with warmth and empathy, a bit of fun, a dollop of romance and it all adds up to a fabulous, really enjoyable book which I adored. No less than five shining stars will do for this fantastic summer read.

My thanks to publisher Canelo for my copy via NetGalley. As always, this is my honest, original and unbiased review.
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I kept reading, but when I was some two-thirds of the way through I was still hoping that something would happen that was new and novel and surprising, but it didn't.
This book sauntered rather than trotted or even cantered to the end of the story. The trope was on too even a keel.
Darcie can write better and does when writing historical fiction. Just too cosy for me... This story only just reaches the 3 star mark..
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When your best friend is a gay hairdresser and your Mum has convinced you that all men are a waste of space, it’s easy to seek out your romance from books.  Catherine is settled to life in Penhallow Sands and happy to find her romance at the library.  Hiding her favourite books from her Mum is much easier than ignoring her growing her attraction to the handsome Mark Coleman.  Of course, Mark has only rented his cottage for the summer so, there’s no point in exploring their obvious chemistry.  Or is there?

Darcie Boleyn writes the kind of books that are the perfect antidote to a dose of the blues.  Great friendships and lots of comedy help to bring a happy ending to this delightful story which is set in the fictional, Cornish resort of Penhallow Sands.

I read this book courtesy of Net Galley and would recommend it to anyone who enjoys a light, romantic page turner.

Get to know Darcie Boleyn or follow her on Twitter
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An okay story. I really couldn’t give myself into this book. It moved a bit slow for me but it was something to read.
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A sweet story of two people Catherine and Mark.
Catherine has been brought up by her mother after her dad left when she was younger her mother has always told her that men always hurt you and can’t be trusted.
Mark is an author from London who has arrived in Catherine’s village ,he is a quiet man who has kept mainly to the cottage he is renting.
When they meet they feel a mutual attraction but Catherine is afraid of getting hurt and Mark is fresh out of a bad relationship can they get past these problems and become a couple?
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Lovely feel good story. It was well written and flowed well. Easy to read and hard to put down. Perfect on these summer nights
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A small town in Cornwall and a pair destined for one another- what's not to love!  Catherine has shut herself off from romance (with good reason) but she's always open to a fun time.  Mark is trying to finish a novel but he's carrying some sorrow.  It's a small town (with great characters, btw) so they can't not meet.  And they can't not get close to one another.....Thanks to Netgalley for the ARC.  This is a nice story well told.  It's sort of meant to be summer reading but it would be perfect to cheer you in the winter as well.
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This is such a heartwarming and delightful story about love, trust and family. When I saw this cover I knew I had to read it - then I saw that this was the cover for Darcie Boleyn's new novel and I knew even more that I had to read it! I love Darcie's novels, her style of writing is so elegant and just draws you in from the first page. With this cover, I love the pink sky, the pretty flowers and the glistening sea. It makes me want to visit Cornwall!

With this storyline, I felt quite sorry for the main character - Catherine. She seemed to be out of sorts as she is always looking out for her mum and can't seem to have a break without her mum being there. Having said that, it must be so difficult living with that type of anxiety, and I felt for both Catherine for having to care for her mother and I felt for her mum for going through it! It must be so hard, but then again you would always look out for those you care for.

There's a lot of great parts throughout this novel, I really loved the characters of Jamal and Bradley and enjoyed reading about the hairstyle competition. It was also really nice to see Catherine coming out of her shell and getting to know Mark. They clearly had great chemistry and it was clear to see. One character I wasn't too sure on was Catherine's mum (for obvious reasons). One minute I felt for her and what she had been through in life and what she suffers with, and the next she's dropped a massive bombshell on Catherine and it made me see her in a different light!

Overall though, this was Darcie Boleyn at her finest. It was excellently written, keeping you wanting to read more and more. I couldn't put this book down. The setting is idyllic and the characters are relatable. Thank you to the publisher for a chance to read an advance copy of this novel, which I have reviewed honestly.
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An okay read, but not a story that stays with you. I found Catherine a bit childish to be honest, and very needy. I loved Mark - to be honest I wanted to read one of his novels! He was written so well, leaving Catherine looking a bit cold. I also loved Catherine's hairdresser pals, as well as the setting. So there's a lot here, it's just that I had a problem with Catherine.

With thanks to NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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I always love a Darcie Boleyn book. They never fail to make me laugh, smile and feel joyful. The writer is so lovely and her personality shines through the pages of the book. If you love a good chic lit and romance book. Then this one is simply not to be missed. I really loved it. Well done darcie got writing another cracking book.
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