Monday, 27 July 2015

Book review: The Great Village Show by Alexandra Brown

"Tindledale is in a tizzy...
The Village Show competition is coming around again and after last year’s spectacular failure, the villagers are determined to win. Meg, teacher at the local school, is keen to help and to impose some much-needed order.
After a terse encounter with a newcomer to the village, Meg discovers that it is celebrity chef and culinary bad boy, Dan Wright. Meg thinks he is arrogant and rude but rumour has it that Dan is opening a new restaurant in the village which could really put Tindledale on the map.
As things come together, villagers old and new all start to come out of the woodwork, including new arrival Jessie who seems to have it all. But first impressions can be deceptive and Meg discovers that when it comes to Tindledale – and Dan – nothing is ever quite as it seems..."

My review: 

I had been waiting for what seemed like ages for The Great Village Show to come out, as it sounded like the perfect story for me-  I love anything set in a small village, as it pleases my inner Country Bumpkin. Finally, the kindle version came out earlier this month (with the paperback due out on 30th July) and I hurriedly downloaded it, reading it straight away. I'm pleased to say that the story did not disappoint at all, I loved it.

The story follows the villagers of Tindledale as they plan the village show, hoping it will be popular and woo the school inspectors that are currently threatening to shut down the school. Led by the 'country bumpkin' villager Meg, acting Head Teacher of the school, she sets out to make it the best village show ever

My favourite part of the story was definitely the location. Tindledale village sounds wonderful and somewhere I could quite happily live. I loved the 'everyone knows everyone' feel that it has, it reminded me of the village I grew up in and so, for me, was actually a comforting part of the story. Tindledale is like a warm blanket on a frosty morning. I know that might seem an odd way to describe it, but but it's true and if you read this story, I'm sure you'll see what I mean.  There's a sense of belonging and comfort within the village that had me smiling from ear to ear. 

If I'm entirely honest, I will say that I feel the story started off fairly slowly and I didn't engage with Meg as much as I thought I should in the first chapter. I was slightly worried that I would struggle with the rest of the book but I didn't - after the first few chapters something clicked into place and I was hooked, needing to know how the village show would turn out, what would happen to Tindledale school and what would happen to the villagers. There's some great characters - Megs mum is a personal favourite, she's loud, inappropriate and not exactly tactful, which was hilarious. I loved watching Meg develop and see her engage with the other villagers, embark on a possible romance and set out to make the show one to remember- which it definitely is. 

The Great Village Show is  a quaint, lovely story that I thoroughly enjoyed. It has a thrilling mixture of village life (and drama!) and bold characters all centered around the show. This is the perfect story to read for some escape from everyday life, to transport yourself to a completely different location. I loved it! 

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