Book Review: Sunshine and Sweet Peas in Nightingale Square by Heidi Swain

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My latest review is of Sunshine and Sweet Peas in Nightingale Square by Heidi Swain.

Kate is on the run from her almost-divorced husband who is determined to have her back, and she has found the perfect place to hide… a little cottage on Nightingale Square in Norwich, far away from her old life in London. But the residents of Nightingale Square don’t take no for an answer, and Kate soon finds herself pulled into a friendship with Lisa, her bossy but lovely new neighbour.

Within a matter of days Kate is landed with the job of campaigning the council to turn the green into a community garden, meanwhile all the residents of Nightingale Square are horrified to discover that the Victorian mansion house on the other side of the square has been bought by developers. But when all hope is lost, the arrival of a handsome stranger is sure to turn things around! (Thanks Netgalley)

I am no stranger to Heidi Swain’s novel’s, having read and reviewed The Cherry Tree Cafe and Sleigh Rides and Silver Bells at the Christmas Fair, neither of which disappointed.  Sunshine and Sweet Peas in Nightingale Square is no exception.  I like that Heidi’s novels are all linked, with the characters over-lapping novels and the setting remaining the same – Wynbridge.  This novel is no different, except for the change in venue – Heidi now introduces us to Nightingale Square, a beautiful community, a hidden treasure in fact, within the city of Norwich.  Close enough to Wynbridge that we still get to see the characters we know and love, but far enough away that we get to learn about this new setting and those that live within it.

Kate is our newly single main character.  She is in desperate need of a fresh start, and rather than returning to her family in Wynbridge she chooses to buy a small cottage in need of TLC in Nightingale Square.  She wants to hide from the world, or more specifically her soon to be ex-husband, and this seems to be the perfect place to do that.

Rather than finding the peace and quiet she seeks, Kate instead finds herself in the midst of a tight knit community who are keen to involve her and get to know her.  She quickly finds herself with new friends who have no qualms about telling her that her views on love are wrong!  What follows is the story of a woman who thought she understood love, life and friends and instead finds that sometimes it’s good to be wrong!

I really enjoyed this novel.  It was easy to read with a good pace, a beautiful new setting and really lovely relationships; both friendships and romantic.  The characters are all well-rounded and likeable – I found some of Kate’s view on love a little annoying, but despite this I enjoyed learning more about her and her newfound community.  I very much hope that Heidi Swain lets us re-visit Nightingale Square soon!

Rating: 📖 📖 📖 📖

Thank you to Netgalley and Simon and Schuster UK Fiction for providing me with a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review.

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