4th May, 2019

Review: The Bookshop on the Shore by Jenny Colgan (Little Brown/Sphere)

Jenny Colgan has done it once again: I am in love with her book and didn't want it to end. The Bookshop on the Shore isn't a sequel to The Bookshop on the Corner (or The Little Shop of Happy Ever After as it is called in the UK) but it is losely tied with Colgan's other Scottish book mobile story: certain characters make a reappearance, plotlines are overlapping, etc. 

Zoe is a single mother and a professional child care worker, and she is desperate. It's becoming increasingly difficult for her to pay the ridiculously high rent for her tiny London flat. The father of her son is too busy enjoying the wild bohemian life all over the globe to think about supporting his family, but his sister might just have an idea. Things are arranged for Zoe to become the new nanny at a mysterious but musty manor on the shores of Loch Ness. During the day she is supposed to help the heavily pregnant Nina with her book mobile. What sounds like the perfect solution becomes anything but as Zoe hasn't anticipated to be faced with three sullen children who are running wild around the estate while their father, widower and antiquarian bookseller Ramsay Urquart, seems to be stuck in memories of the past battling his own demons. Zoe needs to find a way to make things work and hopes that her quiet son Hari might just find the motivation to finally speak. 

The Bookshop on the Shore is the perfect summer companion for anyone with an interest in Scotland, books and a dash of romance. It is a heart-warming read that will make you feel all fuzzy inside. It is also incredibly funny and addictive. I, for one, finished it in pretty much a single sitting on a balmy spring evening. 

Colgan manages to draw her readers in right from the start. She makes you fall in love with Scotland (either for the first time or all over again) through her gorgeous and quirky descriptions of local idiosyncrasies and the stunning scenery. Her protagonists are versatile and never boring, while the mixture of known and new characters is just perfect. The Bookshop on the Shore is everything you'd want from a Jenny Colgan novel: friendship, cosiness, romantic complications, comfort, and lots and lots of bookish references. It is a brilliant and gratifying read, and even though the ending is predictable (as it typically is with romance novels) it is not cheesy but thoroughly lovely. The Bookshop on the Shore is a story written by someone who clearly loves books for people who also love books while being about people who love books. Sounds fab? It is! 

This book will be out on 13th June, so if you are looking for a bookish all-the-feels summer read you might want to stack this on your TBR list. 

Rating: 5/5 stars 

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All texts and photographs are mine, unless indicated otherwise.