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Book Review: Starting Over At Sunset Cottage by Lisa Hobman

My dear bookish friends,

As the days are getting shorter (and colder), we all crave even more of that cosy ‘snuggle up on the couch with a steaming mug of your fave hot drink’ type of time, don’t we? If you snuggle up with Starting Over at Sunset Cottage, you will have a great time, I can guarantee you that much! Let me tell you what the book is all about…

Book Blurb

Do you love someone enough to let them go?

It was love at first sight when talented art student Felicity “Flick” Johnston-Hart and Jim MacDuff’s worlds collided at Oxford University.

However, after years of blissful marriage, everything crashes down when their marriage comes to a painful and abrupt end, thanks to Flick’s interfering mother Penelope.

Finally succumbing to maternal pressure, Flick falls into the high-flying career her mother believed she was destined for.

However, she soon realises life without Jim isn’t all she’d hoped, and that some decisions, once made, cannot be undone.

Meanwhile, Jim is settling back into life as a single man in the beautiful Highland village of Shieldaig, when an unexpected visitor brings painful news. A letter from beyond the grave leads him to do something he never imagined and takes him on a journey he didn’t anticipate.

Can either of them heal and truly move on?

Or is it true that a broken heart can never be a blank canvas?

This book was previously published as Through the Glass.

Purchase Link

My Review

Doesn’t this gorgeous cover just scream happily ever-after? Well, this one comes with a twist. We basically start at the end of it – with the end of Flick and Jim’s marriage! In more than one sense, this story comes in a full circle. I can’t say much without spoilering, but many themes from the beginning are picked up again in the ending, and the story is rounded off satisfactorily that way.

But let’s get back to the start. The two meet at uni and fall in love – hoping for a happily ever-after, of course. And they have that for a while. A beautiful, heart-warming love story. But then comes Flick’s mum and … well, she thinks Jim is not the right one for her daughter… What follows is a rather emotional journey that makes you think. Can broken hearts be mended, or will they stay broken for ever?

After their breakup, Jim moves back to Scotland. I really loved his character. Very often in these kinds of novels, the male character ends up as the villain, but Jim here was actually super sweet. No idea why his mother in law disliked him so much – I just wanted to give him a hug! His anguish is palpable, and it made him seem so much more realistic because of it. I don’t think I have ever read a book quite like it. It was also new to me how the story then focused on the two characters’ still existing love for each other as they both move on with their lives. A truly special read.

While Jim is running his coffee shop in Scotland, Flick continues to follow her big dream of making art in London. While I could understand her motives (sometimes), she very often just came across as too over-ambitious, and that made her less likeable then. Very often I wanted to take her by the shoulders and give them a good shake in the hopes that she would start seeing things more clearly. Flick is very much like her name suggests – she is fickle, volatile, creative. Both characters are very complex, and it’s hard to paint the picture in black and white really – but they are both very different.

I loved turning the pages to see more twists and turns. Some I saw coming, others not at all. One of the things I loved the most though was reading about the beautiful Scottish scenery – it made me feel like I was there myself! The author did a great job making the setting come to life, as well as creating believable, out-of-the-box characters.

I’m so happy I discovered this author – Starting Over at Sunset Cottage certainly won’t be my last read by her!

4 stars from me!

Thank you all so much for reading – and big thank you to Boldwood Books and Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for my spot on this tour, and for my ecopy of the book, which I was given in exchange for my honest review.



Author Bio

Lisa Hobman has written many brilliantly reviewed women’s fiction titles – the first of which was shortlisted by the RNA for their debut novel award. In 2012 Lisa relocated her family from Yorkshire to a village in Scotland and this beautiful backdrop now inspires her uplifting and romantic stories.

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