Lots of books published around this time of year feature holidays, romances and adventures in some sunny clime. That’s something that it looks like yet again most people might not be able to do this year. In A Taste of Home, the tables are turned somewhat. Fliss, who has spent her life on the family fruit farm in Italy, makes a trip to England to find out about and connect with the English side of her family who she has never known.
One thing I noticed about this book is that it was full of F words! No, not that F word (although it may pop up occasionally). Let me show you what I mean by telling you my thoughts using F words.
Family – at the start of the book, Fliss is grieving for her mother. They lived in Italy with her Nonno and Nonna although actually, they were a family who had effectively adopted Fliss’s mum when she arrived in Italy. Encouraged by her Nonna and a letter from her mum, Fliss returns to England to find out more about her real family.
Fenview– when she arrives at Fenview she meets the grandfather who didn’t know she existed and it’s not an auspicious start as he is rather unwell. However, she also meets his care assistant, the rather gorgeous Eliot. I couldn’t help but feel for Fliss getting thrown in at the deep end in a difficult situation.
Farm – one thing that connected both Fliss’s Italian and English families was farming. Although in Italy, Fliss and her mum grew up on the Rossi fruit farm, it was a fruit farm in England that her mum had run away from all those years ago. I really liked how Heidi Swain showed that farming life was far from easy with lots of physical hard work and frequently the worry of being financially viable.
Fruit – oh my goodness, the descriptions of the fruit and all the delicious things that were made from the various different kinds of fruit grown on Fenview Farm certainly made my mouth-water. We’re just coming into homegrown soft fruit season here and there’s nothing like the taste of locally grown strawberries is there?
Food – in fact, throughout the book, the mention of all the lovely foods available from the Cherry Tree Cafe or Skylark Farm made me feel famished!
Flirtation – this being a Heidi Swain book, you will expect a healthy dose of romance and you will not be disappointed. There are two contenders for leading man although one of them, it was quite clear to me, was not the good guy that he wanted Fliss to think he was.
Fluttering – only one man was giving Fliss those butterflies in her tummy and it was so lovely to read about their attraction to each other. Heidi Swain certainly knows how to write a romantic hero who sounds just irresistible.
Friends and friendship are so important in this book. Fliss is such a lovely, genuine person that she quickly makes very good friends in Wynbridge and their support (and the support of the community in general) is so important to her.
Feels – this is a book that will give you all the feels from the romantic aspect of the book to Fliss finding a place where she felt completely at home.
Fulfilling – this is another fulfilling read from the fabulous Heidi Swain.
Finally – what else can I say except that A Taste of Home is perfect for your summer reading list!
My thanks to Harriett Collins at Simon & Schuster for inviting me to take part in the tour and for my review copy of the book. A Taste of Home is available now in paperback, audiobook and ebook formats. If you are able to support a local book seller, please do buy from there. Alternatively, you will find buying options for various retailers on the Simon and Schuster website here: A Taste of Home
From the back of the book
Fliss Brown has grown up living with her mother on the Rossi family’s Italian fruit farm. But when her mother dies, Fliss finds out she has a family of her own, and heads back to England with Nonna Rossi’s recipe for cherry and almond tart and a piece of advice: connect with your family before it is too late…
Fliss discovers that her estranged grandfather owns a fruit farm himself, on the outskirts of Wynbridge, and she arrives to find a farm that has fallen into disrepair. Using her knowledge gleaned from working on the Rossi farm and her desire to find out more about her past, Fliss rolls her sleeves up and gets stuck in. But what will she discover, and can she resurrect the farm’s glory days and find a taste of home…?
About the Author
Heidi Swain is the Sunday Times bestselling author of five novels. She lives in Norfolk with her husband, two allegedly grown-up children and a mischievous black cat called Storm. She is passionate about gardening, the countryside and collects vintage paraphernalia. To find out more, follow Heidi on Twitter @Heidi_Swain or visit her website: heidiswain.co.uk.