Book Review: Charlotte by Helen Moffett

I am very pleased to bring you my review of Charlotte by Helen Moffett.

For fans of Longbourn and The Other Bennet Sister, this beautifully told story of marriage, duty and friendship follows Charlotte’s story from where Pride and Prejudice ends.

Everybody believes that Charlotte Lucas has no prospects. She is unmarried, plain, poor and reaching a dangerous age.

But when she stuns the neighbourhood by accepting the proposal of buffoonish clergyman Mr Collins, her fortunes change. Her best friend Lizzy Bennet is appalled by her decision, yet Charlotte knows this is the only way to provide for her future.

What she doesn’t know is that her married life will propel her into a new world: not only of duty and longed-for children, but secrets, grief, unexpected love and friendship, and a kind of freedom.

I have had this book for a little while, along with Longbourn by Jo Baker. Pride and Prejudice is my favourite book – it’s like a comfort blanket. When I’m struggling to read, or don’t know what book to pick up next, Pride and Prejudice is always the right book to fill that gap. So I love the idea of reading other peoples take on characters from such an important novel to me. But I then get a little scared to actually pick them up and read them. What if those authors ruin the characters? What if their view of Pride and Prejudice is different to mine? So I have put off reading these novels, because I couldn’t face the disappointment. I finally gave myself a talking to though, and picked up Charlotte by Helen Moffett.

Charlotte Lucas plays a relatively minor role in Pride and Prejudice, despite being Lizzy Bennet’s best friend. At 27 years old, the community has written her off as a spinster at a time when marriage was the only thing that could provide security to a young woman of her standing. Her sudden marriage to the incomprehensible Mr Collins causes upset within the Bennet household, and places an immense strain on Charlotte’s relationship with Lizzy. Mr Collins is depicted as a buffoon; very little intelligence with an unhealthy obsession with the upper classes, namely Lady Catherine de Bourgh. Due to this, Lizzy cannot believe that someone of Charlotte’s intelligence would marry him of her own free will.

Charlotte gives us such a clear insight into the life of Charlotte Collins and the decisions she makes, along with the reasons why. Helen Moffett has achieved what I hoped she would – a clear, smooth link to Pride and Prejudice. She understands Jane Austen in a way that I had really hoped for. She depicts Charlotte in exactly the way I imagined her to be – a practical woman looking for security, but hopeful for a peaceful, meaningful life.

I really loved this novel. I loved following Charlotte, and I surprisingly enjoyed learning a little more about Mr Collins, a character with more depth than we could really see or imagine in Pride and Prejudice. Helen Moffett has respected Austen’s work, and provided us with a new story that is completely sympathetic to a novel that I, and many others, love. I am more than happy to recommend this novel to you all. If you love Pride and Prejudice then this is definitely the novel for you.

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

BLOG TOUR: Heartcross Castle by Christie Barlow

It is my pleasure to bring you my review of Heartcross Castle by Christie Barlow as part of her fabulous blog tour!

Love Heart Lane – where friends are there for you no matter what

A second chance…

When her grandfather Marley passes away Grace Power discovers she’s been left the beautiful but crumbling estate of Heartcross Castle. As a single mum of three, Grace has no idea what she’s going to do with it – but who can say no to a roof over their kids’ heads and a chance to get away from past hurts?

And a forever home

Heartcross Castle is full of secrets – especially a lost security deposit box that holds the truth to everything… But when celebrity chef Andrew Glossop sets his eyes on the castle and, to make matters worse, mistakes Grace as the new housekeeper, Grace tells him there is absolutely NO CHANCE he is getting his hands on her home.

Devastated to have got it so wrong, Andrew will do anything to make it up to her – but is she willing to listen?

I am always pleased when Christie Barlow releases another Love Heart Lane story, they are always full of family, friendship and love, and I am pleased to confirm that Heartcross Castle is no exception!

Grace Power is a mother to 3 boys, with a very difficult home life. She has spent years struggling after running away from home, but when she finds out that her Grandfather has passed away and left her Heartcross Castle, she finally sees a way to improve the future for herself and her beloved sons.

Upon arrival, she discovers that the Heartcross Castle she remembered is now unloved and crumbling. With celebrity chef Andrew Glossop living next door and clearly with his eyes on the castle, Grace will need to decide whether to work to retain the legacy of the Grandfather or take the money and secure her future.

Heartcross Castle is one of my favourite novels in the Love Heart Lane series. I loved Grace and her wonderful boys – Christie Barlow really highlights the difficulties of single motherhood, whilst showing how hard mothers work to give their children the best life possible. She really shows what you can achieve with very little money. Andrew Glossop is an equally great character, someone from an incredibly privileged background but with a less than ideal family life, proving that money isn’t always everything.

I am more than happy to recommend this novel, its an excellent addition to what is already a fab series!

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Thank you to Christie Barlow and Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for inviting me to be a part of this fabulous blog tour, and for providing me with a copy of this novel in exchange for my honest review.

Purchase Links

Amazon UK

Amazon US

Author Bio

Christie Barlow is the number one international bestselling author of fifteen romantic comedies including the iconic Love Heart Lane Series, A Home at Honeysuckle Farm and Kitty’s Countryside Dream. She lives in a ramshackle cottage in a quaint village in the heart of Staffordshire with her four children and two dogs.

Her writing career has come as a lovely surprise when Christie decided to write a book to teach her children a valuable life lesson and show them that they are capable of achieving their dreams. Christie’s dream was to become a writer and the book she wrote to prove a point went on to become a #1 international bestseller in the UK, USA, Canada and Australia.

When Christie isn’t writing she co-presents The Book Show on Radio Northwich, enjoys playing the piano, is a keen gardener and loves to paint and upcycle furniture.

Christie is an ambassador for the @ZuriProject alongside Patron of the charity, Emmerdale’s Bhasker Patel. They raise money and awareness for communities in Uganda.

Christie loves to hear from her readers and you can get in touch via Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Social Media Links