#Newrelease #review: Moonbeams in a Jar by Christine Stovell @chrisstovell @ChocLituk

By | May 22, 2018

Delighted today to be sharing my review of Moonbeams in a Jar by Christine Stovell, published today by Choc Lit and available on all major e-book platforms (congratulations Chris!). It’s sadly impossible for me to read every book published by Choc Lit (much as I’d really like to!), and I missed out on the first two books in the Little Spitmarsh series – Turning the Tide and Follow a Star. But when I saw that this latest book was a novella, and could be read as a standalone (and it really can, just perfectly) it seemed the perfect opportunity to try Chris’ writing. I’m just sorry it took me so long…

When Chloe Potter wishes on a star that she’ll find a man who’ll accept her and her noisy dachshund Wilma, she doesn’t think that she’ll bump into one quite so soon …

But almost immediately she meets Ryan Green and his boisterous basset hound, Fred. Ryan is larger than life, ruggedly handsome and, most importantly, a dog lover – surely a match made in heaven? But Chloe soon finds that trying to tie a man like Ryan down is like trying to catch moonbeams in a jar. Ryan’s job as a photographer means that when he’s not in the middle of a war zone, he’s trying to catch just the right light at the top of Mount Snowdon.

Chloe wants stability and when it becomes clear that Ryan will always put his job first, she knows she has to move on. But then a once-in-a-lifetime trip unexpectedly brings them together once again …

I’m becoming increasingly enthusiastic about reading novellas – they’re just the perfect length for a lighter story, and there’s something that’s just right about being able to read them in one sitting (although it’s not compulsory!) and still find a cracking story and well-developed characters. And this lovely book was a perfect example of that – a story well told, around 150 pages, complete in itself, and so very enjoyable.

The characters are excellent – Chloe so likeable, Guy slimy and thoroughly horrible (whatever was Chloe thinking?), Ryan the very definition of deliciousness and with considerably more depth than you might expect from a hero in such a relatively short read. Mix in a couple of characterful dogs (but don’t get downwind of Wilma…), some family issues, and a good measure of will they/won’t they. Add some perfectly drawn settings (Hong Kong brought back memories of my own visit there, when I too preferred the view of the lightshow from the Star ferry – I once memorably messed up a food order too, but sadly without a Ryan to help me out!), and this is a story with enough twists and turns and dramatic moments on the road to happy ever after to keep any reader happy.

Such a lovely read… and a perfect introduction to the author’s writing, most definitely making me want to read more…

About the author

Winning a tin of chocolate in a national essay competition at primary school inspired Christine Stovell to become a writer! After graduating from University of East Anglia, she took various jobs in the public sector writing research papers and policy notes by day and filling up her spare drawers with embryonic novels by night. Losing her dad to cancer made her realise that if she was ever going to get a novel published she had to put her writing first. Setting off, with her husband, from a sleepy seaside resort on the east coast in a vintage wooden boat to sail halfway round Britain provided the inspiration for her Little Spitmarsh series. Her debut novel, Turning The Tide was a top 100 Bestseller with Amazon Kindle and spent months in the Top 10 Chart for Adult Contemporary Romance. Christine has also published numerous short stories and articles. Christine lives in Wales.

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5 thoughts on “#Newrelease #review: Moonbeams in a Jar by Christine Stovell @chrisstovell @ChocLituk

  1. kraftireader

    Love the cover of this book, very striking and yes I agree I love the fulfilment of reading a novella in one sitting.

  2. The Cozy Pages

    Sounds like a perfect summer afternoon read. And beautiful cover! I also like the idea behind the title.

  3. joylennick

    A delightful review! How Chris finds time to run… and a house too…be a young grandma and write books, I just don’t know! Good for her. Her book sound great.

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