A real pleasure today to be joining the blog tour and sharing my review of Lost In Translation by Audrey Davis: published on 11th January, it’s now available for kindle and in paperback via Amazon in the UK and US. My thanks to Rachel at Rachel’s Random Resources for the invitation and support, and to the author for my advance reading e-copy.
I finally managed to catch up with Audrey’s writing in July last year when I read and reviewed A Wish For Jinnie – you can read my review again here. I loved the whole concept of the story, and I particularly enjoyed the way it was delivered – I escaped from real life for a while, adored the cast of characters, and laughed frequently and loudly. You can’t really ask for more than that, can you? But we’re not returning to Cranley in her latest book – no magic this time, and a very different setting…
Charlotte Egerton and family are off to Switzerland, after husband Dom bags a big-time job promotion.
But Charlotte isn’t exactly yodelling with delight at the prospect. Not since a chance discovery cast a shadow over her ten-year marriage. And navigating twisty Swiss roads and getting to grips with French only adds to her woes…
Following a bumpy encounter with an arrogant German, Charlotte is far from convinced the expat life is for her.
With doubts about Dom – and concerns for her best friend, Ruth – plaguing her mind, will Charlotte embrace the Swiss way of life, or are some mountains just too hard to conquer?
Embark on a journey filled with laughter, tears and lessons in love. Sometimes you just have to seize the day…
Praise for Audrey Davis
‘Warm, witty and highly entertaining.’
‘The author never fails to provide humour and pathos in equal measure.’
‘The story-telling is rich, intelligent and rewarding.’
This is a very different book from the author’s last – and I must admit that I wasn’t sure at first whether it was going to be entirely my cup of tea with its focus on the trials and tribulations of a young family. But that feeling lasted only for the first few chapters – I really liked Charlotte herself, her relationship with the two children, her friendship with the wonderful Ruth, her worries about what husband Dom might be up to, and really felt for her when transplanted reluctantly to life in Switzerland and facing a whole new set of challenges. And I thoroughly enjoyed the cast of characters she encountered there – including that “arrogant German”, who certainly turns out to be very different from both his reputation and her first impressions.
I certainly didn’t take to husband Dom – high-handed, supercilious, the centre of his own universe – and I really didn’t like the way he’d squashed Charlotte into the role of supportive wife and mother with a total disregard for her needs (and little recognition of how wonderfully she discharges that responsibility). One of the joys of this book was the way Charlotte began to stand up for herself, to find her own path while being left to struggle with the many unfamiliar elements of ex-pat life: it takes a while, but when she does address the widening cracks in her marriage it’s a moment that has you cheering for her while wanting to give her a hug.
In many ways it’s a light hearted read, but it certainly doesn’t shy away from those difficult moments encountered within a marriage that’s been slowly disintegrating while no-one was really watching, held together by the importance of family. The whole book feels very “real” – I do suspect that there will be many readers who’ll really identify with Charlotte’s situation.
The writing is excellent – the emotional touches, the gentle humour, the relationships (family and friendships), the setting – and the whole book was a real pleasure to read (I raced through the second half, willing Charlotte on…). And I won’t mention the ending, other than to say that it was everything I wanted it to be, and left me with a smile and the perfect warm glow. It might not have been quite what I was expecting, but I really rather enjoyed this one…
About the author
Audrey Davis is a Scottish-born former journalist, now resident in Switzerland. Her newspaper career saw her cover events in Northern Ireland and the Falkland Islands, as well as working for a London-based movie magazine writing reviews and carrying out interviews.
She self-published her debut romantic comedy novel A Clean Sweep in June 2017, following an online Open University course in Writing Fiction.
Audrey followed up with a short, darker prequel A Clean Break before beginning work on a rom-com novella trilogy with a ghostly twist – The Haunting of Hattie Hastings. Again, reviews across the board were excellent, and it was combined into a standalone novel in November 2018. Her third novel, A Wish For Jinnie, was published in June 2020.
Apart from writing, Audrey enjoys travel and spends a lot of time in Edinburgh (at least she did until recently…). She is an avid cook, watcher of scary movies and reluctant gym-goer.