Return to Half Moon Farm by Holly Hepburn: packed with the romance, drama and fun – book review -

Return to Half Moon Farm by  Holly HepburnReturn to Half Moon Farm by  Holly Hepburn
Return to Half Moon Farm by Holly Hepburn
Imagine an ancient, wisteria-clad oast house as it nestles comfortably in the lush greenery of the Kent countryside, and the battlements of a centuries-old castle... and you’re ready to bask in the warm glow of another irresistible ‘getaway’ with Holly Hepburn, author of a raft of feel-good fiction.

Originally published as four e-book novellas – Spring Fever, Summer Love, Autumn Dreams and Winter Magic – and now brought together in one bright and beautiful book, Return to Half Moon Farm is a joyful, warm and romance-filled treat which is ideal for sweeping away the January blues.

Packed with Hepburn’s trademark humour and heart, and featuring a beautifully imagined cast of characters (both animal and human), this delightful rural odyssey has all the ingredients you need to settle back in front of a roaring fire.

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When only child Daisy Moon’s estranged mother Rose suffers an unexpected heart attack, she is forced to leave her home in Milton Keynes and return to the family hop farm at Mistlethorpe in Kent where she grew up and which she hasn’t visited for almost twenty years.

Moving back to Half Moon Farm to care for her mother has meant uprooting her ten-year-old twin sons, Finn and Campbell, but divorced Daisy has had no real choice and despite her long absence and the dilapidated state of the farmhouse, she feels a warm sense of gladness to be back.

But a new life in the Kent countryside isn’t all a bed of roses. Daisy – who left all those years ago because of her controlling stepfather – finds the relationship with her mother is still complicated and the tumbledown farm isn’t the only thing that needs rebuilding.

Daisy and the boys must work hard to adjust to their new way of life in the middle of nowhere, a leaking roof, and the pain of having no WiFi. Luckily for Daisy, she might yet find some distraction in charming and handsome mistletoe farmer, Drew Entwhistle, and Kit Devereaux, Earl of Winterbourne, the cool and haughty heir to the nearby castle who she somehow can’t seem to avoid.

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As Daisy learns to juggle caring for the boys, getting to know her mother again and updating the farm, she discovers secrets lurking in her family’s past which might just throw everything into further disarray.

There are so many star roles in this gorgeous tale of feuds, family secrets, friendship and community that readers will be hard pushed to select a favourite, but the blossoming of Daisy as she returns to home turf, and her turbulent relationships with the two contrasting men in her life, undoubtedly take centre stage.

And waiting in the wings are a host of other entertaining players, not least Atticus, Daisy’s unforgettable ginger cat, ‘a mass of fur, claws and sheer bloody-minded swagger,’ and his role in a story that plays out against an idyllic backdrop of England’s glorious countryside.

Packed with the romance, drama, fun and strong sense of shared endeavour that we have come to expect from Hepburn’s novels, Return to Half Moon Farm is a captivating reading escape from start to finish.

(Simon & Schuster, paperback, £9.99)

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