Milly Johnson – The Barn on Half Moon Hill

The Barn on Half Moon Hill

The Barn on Half Moon Hill is a 99p e-book that Milly wrote to raise money for Claire Throssell, a woman whose children tragically died in a fire started by their dad. There’s a fundraising page if you want to read more.

I went into the book knowing it was only short (85 pages), and that I was probably going to finish up yearning for more (as always with a Milly book), and I wasn’t wrong. When I got to the last page, I was dying for it to go on further, but maybe there’s more of a story to be told, who knows?

Cariad Williams has been writing to movie star Franco Mezzaluna (half moon, geddit?) since she was a small girl, but he’s never written back to her. She’s convinced that he isn’t getting the letters, but she can’t stop writing. She’s told her obnoxious flatmates that he is her boyfriend (not that they really believe her), but the story looks like it will unravel when it’s announced that he’s going to open the new attraction at Winterworld, the Christmas theme park where Cariad works.

She writes one desperate last letter to him, before her mind goes into overdrive thinking of how she can get away from the terminal embarrassment that’s bound to be coming her way when her flatmates are finally proved right that she was lying.

But little did she know that Franco has been reading and saving all her letters, they’ve been like a lifeline to him. And there’s a reason he hasn’t written back to her, one that nobody knows. So when Franco arrives at Winterworld and he knows how she is, Cariad is able to spend one splendid day with the man of her dreams. And as they both reveal secrets about themselves that no-one else knows, it soon becomes obvious why these two people were fated to meet.

As I said at the start of this post, I was dying for more when I turned the last page, but I understand why this was only a short story. I can only hope that Milly might give us a sequel so we can spend more time with Cariad and Franco. A lovely, heart-warming and uplifting book whose only fault is that there aren’t enough pages!

My Rating: 5/5
Year Published: 2016
Number of Pages: 85
Format: Paperback
Date Read: 29th June 2016 – 30th June 2016
Average Goodreads Rating: 4.19
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Review: Jill Mansell – The One You Really Want

51KENSqnCCLWell after a lot of heavy fantasy books, I decided to give my brain a bit of a break and catch up on some of the books I’ve got downloaded on my Kindle. I’m not one to dismiss chick-lit as useless or mind-numbing, and I definitely don’t use chick-lit as a derogatory word. When it’s well written, I find it more like a warm, comforting, relaxing experience, more like watching a lovely film.

And this one was quite lovely. When I first got in to reading, I used to read quite a bit of Jill Mansell, she seemed to be quite a popular option at my local charity shop where I used to buy my books for 25p a pop. But it’s been a while since I read any of her books, so when this one came up in the ‘Top 100 free’ list on Kindle, I just couldn’t say no!

The book starts with a fateful ride-on lawnmower. Not exactly the romantic Christmas present a woman wants to receive from her husband,and especially not when she’s just received a Christmas Card from a jewellers through the mail. It’s not hard for Nancy to put two and two together, and she decides to leave her husband and move in with her friend Carmen in London.

Carmen is still grieving for her late husband Spike. He was in a supremely successful rock band with his brother Rennie, but he also liked to experiment with drugs, which led to his untimely demise. And when Rennie rocks up on Carmen’s doorstep, she can’t deny that she feels something for him, try as she might.

The book contains a lot of speedbumps on the way to true love for each of the characters, who I came to love so much by the middle of the book that I was sat hoping and praying that they’d end up with the right people. Of course, you can tell quite early on how the book is going to end, but that doesn’t stop you from laughing and crying along with the characters and enjoying a thoroughly good read.

I’m only giving this book four out of five because I think some of the characters were just a little too stereotyped for my liking, but a brilliant read nonetheless.

4/5