It was a real delight to welcome the lovely Carol Warham as my guest here on Being Anne back in August 2017 (you’ll find the feature here), on the day that her debut novel, Resolutions, was published for kindle by Tirgearr. Since then, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Carol – at the RNA Afternoon Tea in York – and also the thrill of appearing on her website (here). And at long last – the New Year actually seemed the perfect timing, although I’d really hoped to get to it rather sooner – I’ve now read her lovely book. Many thanks to Carol for providing my reading e-copy.
A few days before the New Year, Carly Mitchell returns home to the small town on the Yorkshire moors. Her intention for the short visit is to make her apologies and offer an explanation for her action. A year earlier, she fled, leaving her bridegroom and friends bewildered.
She’s met with mixed reactions, ranging from curiosity to open hostility. However, when an emergency arises, Carly agrees to change her plans and stay a little longer. Falling in love with the new local doctor, Ben Thornton, was not part of her original plan either. Especially when it appears his past is shrouded in mystery.
Complications and tensions increase during the town’s New Year celebrations and she begins to doubt whether she has done the right thing by coming home.
Can she find the resolution she needs to overcome the challenges facing her, or will she run away again?
This book was just the perfect reading choice for the time of year – because of the focus on the New Year celebrations, but also because it was such an absolute joy to read. The story is excellent – Carly’s awkward return to her former home town, the initial hostility and gentle thaw of relationships with those she let down, the story behind her abrupt and dramatic departure, her decision about whether to leave or stay, and a nice gentle romance that falters before it really begins and which might (or then again, might not) bring some overdue happiness.
The setting is beautifully drawn – the small Yorkshire community surrounded by the wildness of the moors – and I really liked the characters, major and minor, all involved in each others’ lives. I enjoyed the hotel backdrop, nicely detailed, and the excitement of the preparations for the New Year celebrations. I liked Carly too – everything she’d been through, her personal kindness in stepping forward to help with the emergency, her attempts to rebuild relationships. Other characters were equally well drawn – I particularly liked Maggie, who becomes Carly’s confidant. Ben’s back story was good, and believable – and there were a small number of less likeable characters who were very well portrayed and made my hackles rise every time they appeared.
The writing flows very nicely, with a light touch that makes it a pleasure to read, a real warmth in the story-telling, easy to pick up and put down, but with plenty of twists and turns to keep your interest, and enough depth in the character development to make the whole story really engaging. I really enjoyed this one – a breath of fresh air, and a debut novelist I’ll look forward to reading again.
About the author
Carol lives in beautiful Yorkshire, with her husband and Sam the dog. Resolutions is her first novel and is based in locations around her home. Writing has always been a part of her life, as a child she made up comics for dolls and friends. After leaving college she became a journalist for a short time, and in more recent years has had some short stories, travel articles and poems published. When not writing she is involved with her two daughters, grandchildren and various organisations in the village where she lives.