After a week of touring the book blog’s out there, I’m imagining An Artisan Lovestyle is feeling thrilled but a little tired. So I’d like to invite this little humdinger of a book to settle down on my blog while I do what I do and write a review. Oh yes, I’m about to get underway on my very first post in a blog tour! I’m hugely grateful to the author Kiltie Jackson and Rachel from Rachel’s Random Resources for providing me with a free copy of the book in return for an honest review.
An Artisan Lovestyle is the second in a trilogy of books by Kiltie Jackson, but you don’t need to have read the first book, A Rock and Roll Lovestyle, as this story stands alone.
Elsa Clairmont was widowed barely five years after marrying her childhood sweetheart. She has struggled to come to terms with the loss and, six years later, has almost ceased to live herself. She does just enough to get by.
Danny Delaney is the ultimate ‘Mr Nice Guy’. He’s kind, caring and sweet. A talented artist in his teens, his abusive mother ruined his career in art and he turned his back on his exceptional gift. Now, he does just enough to get by.
On New Year’s Eve, both Danny and Elsa die in unrelated accidents.
Thanks to some poker playing shenanigans, Elsa’s husband Harry, and Danny’s old Art teacher, William, manage to orchestrate a deal with Death that allows Danny and Elsa to live for one more year on the condition they both agree
to complete three tasks.
They have until the last chime of Big Ben on the 31st December to fulfil their quests.
If they succeed, they stay in the world of the living.
If they should fail however…
‘An Artisan Lovestyle’ is a story of personal growth and self-discovery as two people find themselves forced to make overdue changes in their lives, changes in other people’s lives, and all with the added challenge of
finding true love before their time runs out.
Will they do it?
Can they do it?
After all, it’s a matter of Life or Death…
It’s funny, I’ve actually read very little romance over the years. Either because I thought of the genre as too saccharine or perhaps through some kind of literary snobbery, which in itself is a crime worse than not reading Harry Potter. It’s also utterly nonsensical when you consider that one of my favourite books is Pride and Prejudice, the greatest love story of all time! Or is that Romeo and Juliet? Anyhow, I can officially pronounce myself wrong about romantic fiction. If everyone out there is romancing like Jackson then I am an utter convert!
I enjoyed Jackson’s feel good, witty style of writing. She has a knack for being light hearted and touching all at the same time. Her exploration of these two melancholy individuals was so realistic that I was often massively frustrated by them. Stop being such a doormat, I wanted to shout at Danny. Be honest with yourself, was what I wanted to tell Elsa. I could advise them from the other side of the book as much as I liked, these two were not going to listen. So I had to let the story play out…
And play out it did, quite satisfactorily I might add. Although I did feel the book was quite long. This was largely down to Jackson’s tendency to stay with a character through the minutiae of their actions, locking doors, putting on coats etc. as well as their thought processes. Some of this could have been cut out to provide a trimmer version of the story. But chunky or trim, in its very essence this book was a beautiful story of two vulnerable individuals who you can’t help but root for from the off.
Thank you all for coming along for the ride on while I hosted my first ever blog tour. Remember: what happens on the blog tour stays on the blog tour!
Next week I’m returning to an author that I read at the very start of the 52 week challenge. I’ll be reading The Order of Time by Carlo Rovelli and I’ll be back on my usual Monday morning to let you know what I made of it. By then I will have worked out if Monday is an actual point in time or just an illusion of human experience…