Book Review: A Home at Honeysuckle Farm by Christie Barlow

A Home at Honeysuckle Farm by Christie Barlow
Release Date: 6th April 2018

Publisher: HarperImpulse
Pages: 271
Buy: Paperback  Kindle

A family secret
One shocking argument and ten-year-old Alice Parker’s world was turned upside down. Her peaceful life at Honeysuckle Farm in the quiet rural village of Brook Bridge swapped for the bustling metropolis of New York City. Alice’s life was changed forever…
A second chance
Now, thirteen years later, Alice’s American dream is over. With her life in tatters, there is only one place Alice wants to be… home at Honeysuckle Farm. So, when Alice learns her beloved Grandie is ill, she knows this is her last chance to heal the family rift.
A forever home?
But secrets still swirl in Brook Bridge, and Alice is no closer to discovering the truth. And for some reason her new friendship with local heartthrob Sam Reid seems to be making the locals tense.
Sick of the lies Alice knows it’s time to lay the past to rest once and for all. But could the truth ruin her hopes of ever calling Honeysuckle Farm home again?

Alice Parker spent an idyllic ten years growing up on Honeysuckle Farm. She loved the freedom, the surroundings, The Old Tea Shop...It was a dream of a place for any young girl to spend their childhood.
Therefore you can imagine how distraught Alice was when her mother and her Grandad ('Grandie') had a huge falling out, which caused Alice's Mum to up and leave, taking Alice with her.

Fast forward thirteen years and Alice is living in New York City. What should be the land of opportunity is turning out to be anything but, as Alice struggles to make ends meet whilst working dead-end day jobs, yet harboring dreams of becoming a Broadway star.
However, the arrival of an email from one of Alice's old school friends informing her that Grandie is ill, provides Alice with the perfect opportunity to leave New York behind and return home to the rural village of Brook Bridge.
Alice makes the journey back to the place she once called home and couldn’t be happier to be reunited with Grandie again after all these years. But there's just one problem. What really DID happen between him and her mother back when she was a child to cause such a massive rift between father and daughter? Grandie's saying nothing and she couldn't get the truth out of her mother...But the locals of Brooke Bridge also seem to know something Alice doesn't. Then when hunky local Sam Reid comes on the scene things start to take an interesting turn...

As someone who is a massive fan of Christe Barlow's books I was extremely twitchy until I got my mitts on a copy of A Home at Honeysuckle Farm. I was buzzing about reading her latest offering; and let's face it - that cover is to die for...It sums up the story perfectly; colourful, cozy & hugely exciting.

I was enthralled by Honeysuckle Farm, both when Alice was a child and when she returned as an adult. It's the kind of place you can't help but fall in love with and I quite fancy going and living there myself (can this be arranged? Thanks, Christie!) Of course, this was largely down to Christie's wonderful writing, which was emotive and jam-packed full of description which really bought the setting to life for me. I also really enjoyed reading about the contrast between the hustle and bustle of life in New York, compared to the much slower, more relaxed Brook Bridge.

I loved the plot and the more I read the more eager I became to discover what was going on and what really happened between Alice's mother and grandad all those years ago. I will fully admit that I had no idea what was coming and it's a major plot twist when all is revealed. I love books that can keep me guessing & this was A Home at Honeysuckle Farm all over.

Christie touches upon some really important themes within the story, such as the power of forgiveness and the importance of families. Naturally there is some romance thrown into the mix and I will freely admit that I fell a little bit in love with Sam Reid. (Especially when he starts dancing... *fans self*)
Whilst we're talking characters, Christie has created a great set for this novel, all of whom are believable and extremely likable. Alice is a great protagonist and one who is really easy to identify with. I wanted her to follow her dreams and be happy as I felt that that was what she deserved.

Whilst I love all of Christie's previous books, this one felt very different to her earlier novels and I think I'd probably say that this is my new favourite (although it's a tough call...) I love books that provide you with a bit of an escape and give you something to just curl up with and forget the world and A Home at Honeysuckle Farm fits that bill perfectly.


A huge thank you to Rachel at Rachel's Random Resources for the opportunity to review.

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