Review: The Second Chance Shop Shop by Marcie Steele

Friday 15 April 2016
Title: The Second Chance Shoe Shop
Author: Marcie Steele
Publisher: Bookouture
Publication Date: 8th April 2016
Pages: 262
Source: Review Copy
Rating: 4/5
Purchase: Amazon
All Riley Flynn wants is to meet someone who makes her happy. But attracting the right kind of man is not easy, and with her heart still hurting from her last break-up, Riley believes she’ll never find love again.

A year ago, Sadie Stewart’s whole world was shattered when her husband, Ross, died. She has struggled to keep herself together for the sake of their young daughter, but with the anniversary of his death approaching, Sadie finds herself overwhelmed by grief.

Sadie and Riley work at Chandlers shoe shop, in the charming town of Hedworth. But when Chandlers is threatened with closure, the friends are confronted with the loss of not only their jobs, but also their support network - the glue that holds them together when they are close to breaking.

As they put together a plan to save their beloved shop, Sadie realises that she might just be learning to live again. Could it be that new beginnings are just round the corner? The campaign also finds Riley unexpectedly crossing paths with charming photographer, Ethan. Maybe her second chance at love is right under her feet...

I think I might have been the first person on Twitter to correctly guess that Marcie Steele's identity was in fact that of the amazing Mel Sherratt who, despite being an incredibly busy and successful author, has been a huge supporter of my blog these past two years and I was so excited to finally be reading one of her Marcie Steele novels after I eagerly downloaded The Second Chance Shoe Shop. I am kicking myself for not picking them up sooner. As Mel writes dark, gritty crime dramas with real and believable characters, I couldn't wait to read a different kind of story from her.

It's a bit of a cliche to say that a main character in a story was instantly likeable but, in this genre at least, that's what I want and expect and the character of Riley Flynn was instantly likeable, and relateable. All she wants is to meet someone who makes her happy. She's still getting over her previous break-up and has reached the conclusion that she will never find love again. Her work at Chandlers shoe shop and best friends Sadie and Dan are what mostly get her through the day. First and foremost anyone who has worked in retail will recognise the struggles faced by Riley. Especially in the way that those on the shop floor often have the knowledge and experience to come up with ideas of how to improve (or in Riley's case save) a business. Riley, Sadie and Dan are told that their sales performances will become almost like a competition to save the crumbling shoe business, but thankfully the characters soon have their own ideas of how they can restore Chandlers back into the thriving store it once was.

It isn't just Chandlers that's in need of some restoration but Riley, Sadie and Dan themselves and each of them go on a journey throughout the novel and as the store starts to improve, so to do the lives of our three characters, helped along by some of the colourful characters we are introduced to along the way. It is in these characters, both main and supporting, that Marcie so obviously becomes Mel Sherratt. In the hundreds of crime novels I've read over the years, Mel's contain some of the characters who have stood out to me as the most real. This in the past hasn't so much helped me to connect to the characters as such, because they have been so far removed from my own life, but to connect with the story and enjoy it more. This time, under the guise of Marcie and with a much lighter story, I could for the first time truly connect with and relate to the characters Mel has created. Characters who became so real that I wished I knew them in real life, and I finished the book a little sad that I didn't. I hope I can meet them again one day. They become such easy characters to root for, and I couldn't wait to see how everything would end.

I loved the friendships in this book, it was so heartwarming to witness and was one of the standout features of the story. What also stood out to me was character development, and I don't really want to discuss a favourite character of mine outside of Riley, Sadie and Dan because this particular character's development was one of my favourites from when we first meet them at the start of the story. Marcie has also created such a gorgeous setting for this book (and I believe her previous ones) to take place and I found myself just wanting to climb inside my Kindle and live in Hedworth. It sounded like the most wonderful place and I can't wait to visit it again in Marcie's previous books. The Second Chance Shoe Shop is a real delight from start to finish, and it's not just me who thinks so as you can see from the genuine and very well-deserved praise from some of my favourite bloggers over on Twitter and on the blog tour which you can follow below. I have no hesitation in recommending The Second Chance Shoe Shop and also, if you haven't read Mel Sherratt's books before then I highly recommend them too.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Copyright © 2014 Book Addict Shaun
Template by These Paper Hearts