Summer at Little Beach Street Bakery
by Jenny Colgan
William Morrow Paperbacks
March 22, 2016
For fans of Elin Hilderbrand, Jojo Moyes, and Jane Green, Summer at Little Beach Street Bakery is an irresistible novel—moving and funny, soulful and sweet—about happiness, heartache, and hope. And recipes.
A thriving bakery. A lighthouse to call home. A handsome beekeeper. A pet puffin. These are the things that Polly Waterford can call her own. This is the beautiful life she leads on a tiny island off the southern coast of England.
But clouds are gathering on the horizon. A stranger threatens to ruin Polly’s business. Her beloved boyfriend seems to be leading a secret life. And the arrival of a newcomer—a bereft widow desperately searching for a fresh start—forces Polly to reconsider the choices she’s made, even as she tries to help her new friend through grief.
Unpredictable and unforgettable, this delightful novel will make you laugh, cry, and long for a lighthouse of your own.
“Flora Larson, who worked in the old bakery, always had the look of someone expecting to be in trouble at any moment. She was thin and stooped, with a hangdog stance, and had a way of peeking up through an overlong fringe that simply looked guilty, even though there was a pretty face hiding in there somewhere.”
“‘There is no point being bitter that there are wankers in the world,’ said Huckle. He sounded funny saying ‘wanker’ in his thick Southern accent. ‘If there weren’t any wankers, you wouldn’t know how to spot the nice people.’”
“Everyone wants to call their boss a pig… Come on, if you can’t make a big fuss when you’re being sacked and storm out going ‘You’re a pig!’ you’re not really a human being.”
“The sun was glinting on her hair, and he pulled her close and gently kissed the freckles on her nose, and realized, suddenly, that there was so much he wanted to say, but if he started, if he even tried to get the words out, then he would start to cry, and he wouldn’t get on the train, and they would be in an even worse situation than they were in already.”
“She only locked it in the summer during the daytime, and that was only after she’d come home once to find a family of wide-eyed holidaymakers in her sitting room, with the father extemporizing, ‘… and then one day the lighthouse keepers simply vanished without a trace,’ at which she’d had to shoo them out, which had scared the children of the party, who thought she was the lighthouse ghost.”
“If Polly was upset or cross about something, he would listen to her, hear her out, then suggest he make them Spanish omelettes and they could curl up on the sofa and watch something with zombies in it. Most problems, when it came down to it, could pretty much be cured, or at least helped, by curling up on the sofa with an omelette, watching something with zombies in it.”
I adored this delightful and charming story and did not realize it was the second in a series, and although I had no trouble following the story as it had strong legs, I would love to go back and read the first book as well as anything this author has ever written, or will write in the future. Instant fan-girl here. Ms Colgan’s humor is sneaky and her characters are endearing, quirky, and beyond lovable. Polly and Huckle are completely and utterly adorable, but who could not love a woman who slaves away in a bakery while earning mere pennies, mainly for the love of feeding her friends; lives in a broken down lighthouse with a Puffin named Neil; and pays more for a cursed food van named Nancy than the seller was asking because she was worried about him? I found Polly and her cadre of friends to be a delicious and precious treat, although there was one hazard I should mention – I found I was often hungry while reading, and seemed to be yearning for large quantities of hot tea and toast.
About Jenny Colgan
Jenny Colgan is the New York Times bestselling author of numerous novels, including Little Beach Street Bakery, Christmas at Rosie Hopkins’ Sweetshop, and Christmas at the Cupcake Café, all international bestsellers. Jenny is married with three children and lives in London and Scotland.