Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop by Abby Clements
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
'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 while it's big on 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 looming, Imogen and Anna devise a plan to return Vivien's to its former glory. 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, her sister flies to Italy to attend a gourmet ice cream-making course. But as she works shoulder-to-shoulder with some of the best chefs in the industry, Anna finds that romance can bloom in the most unexpected of places...'
I must say that I don't normally like books that use sweet shops/cake shops etc as a base for a story, however I bought this as it was on offer but I also could not resist the beautiful cover.
I could not believe how much I was enjoying this story; I read it in less than 24 hours, something I have not done since I read the shopaholic series by Sophie Kinsella.
The story is about two sisters bought together by an unfortunate event. Two sisters who have completely different personalities and wants from life. They inherit an ice cream shop left to them by their nan.
Anna is settling down, she has just bought a new flat by the sea in Brighton and Imogen is travelling and trying to make it as an underwater photographer in Thailand. Neither of them feel that this ice cream shop will fit into their lifestyles but are prepared to give it ago for their nan.
Anna and Imogen's personalities continue to develop throughout the story which I really like. Anna visits Italy where she attends an ice cream course to allow her to bring back a part of Italy to her shop. Imogen, still enjoys the travelling free life style and buys a vintage van to allow her to travel and attract business. She attends festivals to sell ice meanwhile still fueling her lifestyle.
Abby Clements writes about Italy while Anna is there and she does this well, it is clear that she researched it well and perhaps even visited herself. I enjoyed this part of the book particularly as being a traveller myself and visiting Florence; I felt I had a connection with the book, I knew where Anna was and I understood art references within it.
What I especially liked about this book is that although there are many story lines going on in it; it all centers around the ice cream shop, the ups and downs of making it a success. This story has a feel good factor and you want to continue reading to find out if the shop is going to be a success.
At the end we find out what happens to both Anna and Imogen, I was a little surprised about one of the girls - I won't say anymore in case you haven't read it yet.
I did enjoy this book and after reading this it would encourage me to read other books based around shops. I will defiantly be reading other stories by Abby Clements
This is a perfect summer read, I would recommend it to anyone who wants a lighthearted, entertaining and easy read.