Genre: Contemporary romance /FictionPages: 304
Published: February 1st 2011 Choc-Lit
How much can you hide? Jemima Hutton is determined to build a successful new life and keep her past a dark secret. Trouble is, her jewellery business looks set to fail - until enigmatic Ben Davies offers to stock her handmade belt buckles in his guitar shop and things start looking up, on all fronts. But Ben has secrets too. When Jemima finds out he used to be the front man of hugely successful Indie rock band Willow Down, she wants to know more. Why did he desert the band on their US tour? Why is he now a semi-recluse? And the curiosity is mutual - which means that her own secret is no longer safe.
Jemima Hutton makes belt buckles, and that leads her into the guitar store owned by Ben Davies. They both have secrets, and they both need someone.
What can I say, it was real. I like this kind of romance. You know where a couple meet, are friends, and then something slowly builds up. It is real, it's life, there are doubts, and there is love.
Jemima is young woman trying to build a life. She is nice, but she is also broken. Why we do not know. But there are hints, something has happened in her past. That alone could have kept me reading, I do like secrets. Then there is Ben, a former celebrity from a band bigger than Coldplay. Why he suddenly left no one knows. He has issues too, and I though that I knew why while reading, but the truth is never that simple. His secret made me want to read on too. These two needed each other. Their way to romance was slow, but truthful, and it made me the happier when they took small steps.
There are also two side characters, Jason who shares a studio with Jemima. He was fun, and Rosie with her newborn son Harry. She was sweet and now I kind of want her story. And of course we need someone not to like and in comes Saskia, the resident bad guy. She does not want to sell Jemima's belt buckles anymore, she seems to have a stick up her ass, and she demands too much from Rosie (who makes handmade cards and sells them in Saskia's store). Something fishy is going on there, so there is a third mystery that makes the plot go forward.
This book had a mix of everything, and there was warmth, true friendship and feelings about loss and trying to hide who one really is. I could not put it down, I had to read on. It was a fast read, and wonderful read too.
Final thoughts and recommendation:
I would recommend this one, it is not contemporary romance with whirlwind romances in a day, and big jealousy dramas. It's a more truthful look at a couple finding each other and opening up. While dealing with life. It was a wonderful book that I did not want to stop reading, and I do want to read more by this author.
Reason for reading:
I like Choc-lit books, Brit romances are fun :)
Nice, but it does make me think about what her belt buckles really look like with all those stones on it.