Five heroines for the price of one.
Hope, the frazzled working mother of two, remembers when her husband Matt would rip off her clothes and make passionate love to her whenever they felt like it, not caring whether he’d be late to work. But now, with his demanding job in advertising and their two young children, they’re just barely getting by. Living in Bath is so expensive—and what about her needs? Suddenly Matt proposes that they all move to Redlion, a rural Irish hamlet, so he can write a great novel instead of selling his soul writing copy. Hope is charmed by the old-fashioned village, but not so sure about the chickens in her antiquated pantry. With wild clucking, segue to: Hope’s sister Sam, a hard-driving music exec who secretly yearns for a husband and baby for at least two minutes every day, when not whipping new acts into shape. She’s awfully tired and pale. Does Sam have fibroids or ovarian cancer? Many phone calls between London and Redlion ensue. Jump-cut to Virginia, a well-heeled widow from Dublin who’s moved to the village to get away from memories. She’s soon befriended by Mary-Kate, the pharmacist, a shrewd middle-aged spinster who knows about pretty much everything in Redlion. Back to London for the story of Nicole, a beautiful half-Indian 20-year-old who wants to be a pop star. Flashback: her granny was born in Redlion. Nicole gets the attention of Sam, who sets her on the road to fame and fortune while wondering silently why she bothers. But things are looking up: a great-looking, down-to-earth venture capitalist in faded jeans has just moved in next door. Could he be the man of Sam’s dreams? Back in Redlion, Hope must deal with the amorous attentions of a rakish Irish hotelier. Oh, dear. He just kissed her . . . and she seems to have kissed him back!
Overlong but generally amiable second from Irish author Kelly (Someone Like You, 2001).