It’s my pleasure to share my review for The Golden Oldies’ Book Club for the blog tour organised by Rachel’s Random Resources.
Jeannie Sharrock has run the family cider making business in the small village of Combe Pomeroy with the help of Barney, her farm manager, since her cheating husband left her and moved to Spain. Her son and his wife also moved to Spain, leaving their teenage twins, Ella and Caleb, with Jeannie while they finish their education. She has her nonagenarian mother to consider as well, although Violet certainly isn’t of the shrinking variety. Jeannie is seventy two years old herself and is feeling the strain.
‘The point is…’ Jeannie drained the last drops in her glass ‘…it’s the awful boredom of routine that kills. And the treadmill — oh, that treadmill!’
Ruth peered over her glasses. ‘What treadmill? I didn’t know you went to the gym.’
‘The treadmill of life. Cooking, organising, bottling cider, accounts, the twins…my mother. Then the next day I start again.’
Jeannie’s friends and book club members, Aurora, who runs the on site shop, estate agent Danielle whose marriage has hit the rocks, librarian Ruth, and potter Verity who is getting sick of her controlling and misogynistic husband. All the ladies are about to approach crossroads in the their lives, the catalyst being an impromptu visit to France.
Ruth runs the twinning association with Plouménez in France and has booked a gîte for the bookclub. With several villagers volunteering to keep an eye on the cider farm and Violet, Jeannie was reassured. So it was decided. The bookclub members were off to France and staying by coincidence on a cider farm.
I do enjoy a book with more mature characters, especially when they realise it’s never too late to change what isn’t working, and this group of friends fit the bill perfectly. They are so relatable and their situations believable. I loved reading about the trip to France, the places they visited and people they met, and how it had a long reaching impact.
The Golden Oldies’ Book Club is an entertaining read, written with warmth, humour and a message not to let chances slip by. Themes of friendship, community and navigating life and its opportunities run throughout. I’m a fairly recent convert to Judy Leigh’s books but will definitely be searching out more.
Deep in the Somerset countryside, the Combe Pomeroy village library hosts a monthly book club.
Ruth the librarian fears she’s too old to find love, but a discussion about Lady Chatterley’s Lover makes her think again.
Aurora doesn’t feel seventy-two and longs to relive the excitement of her youth, while Verity is getting increasingly tired of her husband Mark’s grumpiness and wonders if their son’s imminent flight from the nest might be just the moment for her to fly too. And Danielle is fed up with her cheating husband. Surely life has more in store for her than to settle for second best?
The glue that holds Combe Pomeroy together is Jeannie. Doyenne of the local cider farm and heartbeat of her family and community, no one has noticed that Jeannie needs some looking after too. Has the moment for her to retire finally arrived, and if so, what does her future hold?
From a book club French exchange trip, to many celebrations at the farm, this is the year that everything changes, that lifelong friendships are tested, and for some of the women, they finally get the love they deserve.
Purchase Link – https://amzn.to/3SEaggJ
Judy Leigh is the USA Today bestselling author of The Old Girls’ Network and Five French Hens and the doyenne of the ‘it’s never too late’ genre of women’s fiction. She has lived all over the UK from Liverpool to Cornwall, but currently resides in Somerset.