Thanks to AToMR for hosting. To follow the rest of the tour you can check it out HERE.
Author: Shani Struthers
Pages: 260 pgs
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: July 2nd 2013
Review Source: Omnific Publishing
Dumped by her hotshot boyfriend and boss, Layla Lewis quits her job and heads to Trecastle in North Cornwall to house-sit for a friend-of-a-friend. Trecastle isn’t new to her; it's a place where she holidayed regularly with her now-estranged mother. It’s also the home of Hannah McKenzie, her childhood friend. Hannah has tempted her with a place to live and a job in the local pub. Needing time to nurse her battered heart and escape her “real life” for a year, Layla accepts.
Hannah is a talented artist as well as a barmaid. She lives in the village center with her boyfriend Jim, a singer in a local band. They are happy together, or as happy as they can be, considering. Hannah loves Jim, but there is someone she loves more and it’s pushing them to breaking point.
Meanwhile, back in Brighton, Layla’s fiery yet loyal friend Penny seeks revenge on her behalf, sending a forged email that could damage her ex’s business prospects. Penny wonders if she has gone too far but is soon preoccupied with her own problems: the sizzle has fizzled in her marriage, and she feels neglected. After getting frisky with Dylan one night, she confesses all to her husband—and he’s been like ice ever since.
Over the course of a year, there is laughter and heartache as all three endeavor to rein in their tumultuous love lives—discovering you can run all you like, but if it’s love you’re up against, true love, good things can only happen when you stand your ground.
I wasn't entirely sure what to expect from The Runaway Year, but I'm rather glad that I checked it out. Shani gave readers a little bit of everything; romance, friendship, misunderstandings, all set on the English country side.
Shani right off the bat introduces her three main characters: Layla, Penny, and Hannah. And while this novel is a romance, it's also about these three women, as friends and as individuals. Their each unique and pretty different from one another, but you can easily see how they can be so close. I loved the banter between them, especially with all of the British sayings. It was perfect.
Each woman was dealing with a relationship problem, but at the core they also had to deal with themselves. I liked how Shani didn't make it a male bashing story, but more a finding yourself story. They each learned a little bit about themselves and were able to grow and figure out what its was that they truly wanted.
Shani also did a tremendous job of describing the English country side and landmarks in Cornwall. I've always wanted to go to Europe and Britain and after reading this I have even more of a yearning now. They took the time to explore the little village they lived in and took in the beauty that was all around them and I loved getting the chance to picture it for myself.
The Runaway Year was about three friends, learning about themselves and about love through wacky adventures and misunderstanding. A lot of fun, and I can't wait for more from Shani.
And now, if you'd like the chance to read it:
(10) eBook copies of The Runaway Year - international
(1) Swag Bag includes
Postcards of places mentioned in TRY (can message and sign them?)
A coaster with Gull Rock on.
Brighton Rock (of course!!)
A beautiful polished shell from a Cornish gift shop (and hopefully from a Cornish beach too!!!)
Fairy dust (so you can make like the Smoke Fairies and sprinkle some magic into your life).