BOOK REVIEW: Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses by Carole Matthews

I’ve been a fan of Carole Matthews since reading The Only Way is Up quite a few years ago. Carole’s novels are always nice to curl up with, and are usually full of relatable characters and sweet, believable romance. So when I received a copy of her latest novel, Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses, I was looking forward to reading right away.

Christie is a single, forty-something mum to teenager Finn. She spends most of her days working as a secretary in London, and enduring the daily commute to and from the capital every day. When she isn’t working, Christie turns her attentions to crafting, working on beautiful creations and whiling away her spare time in a world of pretty paper and handmade gifts. To do it professionally would be a dream come true, but for Christie, it seems worlds away.

That is, until her impressive crafting talent lands her an opportunity that’s impossible to turn down – working for an American craft company that wants to extend its top-selling range in the UK.

Christie agrees, and soon finds herself not only doing the job of her dreams (and with a house full of craft supplies!) but also heading out for a training event where she meets the company’s handsome and rather charming Max Alexander.

Max seems lovely, and just as interested in Christie. But just as she’s beginning to live her dream life, a heartbreaking revelation turns her world upside down. Soon she’s forced to make a choice, in order to put her family first.

A hint of love and success just isn’t enough to pull Christie away from her family. A dream can wait…can’t it?

Paper Hearts and Summer Kisses is a charming yet heartwarming story about realising dreams and the importance of family. One thing I enjoy about Carole’s novels is that even though they can be sweet and romantic, they also focus on genuine life issues and hardships, with characters so real and relatable that they soon feel like your close friends. Christie is no exception. She’s a hardworking, loving mum taking life as it comes, and when the opportunity of a lifetime arises, she grabs it. I found myself rooting for her throughout the book – and the lovely Finn, too -  and even when things do start to go wrong. Christie remains headstrong and determined. The romance in this novel is believable and does keep you guessing (I’m deliberately not mentioning much so as not to spoil it for you!) which is another aspect I liked a lot about this book.

Thank you again Carole, for another great read.

Rating: 5/5

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