First publication: May 22nd 2013
When Imogen and Anna unexpectedly inherit their grandmother Vivien’s ice cream parlour, it turns both their lives upside down. The Brighton shop is a seafront institution, but though it’s big on retro charm it’s critically low on customers. If the sisters don’t turn things around quickly, their grandmother’s legacy will disappear forever.
With summer fast approaching, Imogen and Anna devise a plan. Rather than sell up, they will train up, and make the parlour the newest destination on the South Coast foodie map.
While Imogen watches the shop and conjures new marketing ideas, her sister flies to Italy to attend a gourmet ice cream-making course. But can their best-laid plans survive their warring family, tempestuous love lives – and the great British Weather? One thing is for certain – this summer will be like no other . . .
I really enjoyed reading this book and devoured it in just a day. It was really quite fast-paced, so easy to read and get caught up with all that’s happening with Anna and Imogen. And the fact that this book is about ice-cream is a bonus point! I love how the story flows together and how it’s divided into different parts to show the progression of the story. I also love the settings of the story, both in Brighton and also the more exotic Florence. I thought both places were described very well by the author as it’s easy to imagine that I was part of the scene together with the sisters.
The characters are also a big part of why I love this book. Anna and Imogen both lead a separate live but for the sake of their Grandma Vivien, they got together and make the ice-cream shop work. Although their venture is not very smooth-sailing, but they got it together in the end, thanks to their sisterly bond. I love how the author captured their relationship that eventhough they are technically different, but they can still work together and this makes them relatable.
Another thing that I love about this book is the focus on family. Anna and Imogen’s family is definitely the normal kind, with doting father and the nagging (but well-intentioned) mother. At the start of the book, Imogen did not get on well with their mum because she couldn’t understand why Imogen needs to go so far away from her family to do what she likes. But when faced with tragedy and other kinds of troubles, the family got together and lean on each other for support and that is just beautiful.
Last but not least, this book hits all the right spot for me when it comes to ice-cream. All the mention of ice-cream concoction makes my mouth waters. How I wish I had tubs and tubs of ice-cream at my disposal while I was reading it but alas I had none so I had to make do with reading the descriptions. And thankfully the author did very well in describing those ice-cream!
My rating: 1/2