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Book Review: The Cherry Tree Cafe by Heidi Swain


About the Author:

Although passionate about writing from an early age, Heidi Swain gained a degree in Literature, flirted briefly with a newspaper career, married and had two children before she plucked up the courage to join a creative writing class and take her literary ambitions seriously.

A lover of Galaxy bars, vintage paraphernalia and the off bottle of fizz, she now writes contemporary fiction and enjoys the company of a whole host of feisty female characters.

She joined the RNA New Writers’ Scheme in 2014 and is now a full member. The manuscript she submitted for critique, The Chery Tree Café, is her debut novel published by Simon and Schuster in July 2015.

She lives in Norfolk with her wonderful husband, son and daughter and a mischievous cat called Storm.

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Book Summary:

They say you can never go home again, but home is precisely where Lizzie Dixon finds herself returning to. Dumped, unemployed and homeless, she really doesn’t seem to have any alternatives, but being around people who love her and accept her for who she is turns out to be just what she needs.


Lizzie Dixon has turned herself inside out to fit into her boyfriend’s world.  But while she’s happily humming the wedding march anticipating the big question that he’s obviously about to ask, he’s got an entirely different bride in mind.

At first Lizzie seems a little naïve to have given up everything for a man with a shaky past when it comes to commitment, but blinded by love and an eagerness to be loved in return her naivety is not only understandable it’s also a common affliction. I quickly found myself rooting for Lizzie as she adjusted to the shock and realised that finding love had meant losing herself. As Lizzie battles to overcome the humiliation and heartache of losing the man she loves, Cherry Tree Café becomes the place where she can retreat and find comfort with friends who love her, and who teach her to love herself again.

This was a lovely easy read that kept me engaged all the way through. Well rounded characters gave the story great depth and charm. As a fellow craft lover I loved the idea of the beautiful café and its creative craft sessions and desperately wanted to be able to walk through the doors and join in!

Let down by the person she loved, Lizzie becomes cautious about letting people get too close to her. When she realises that her friends have not only been whispering about her behind her back, but also keeping secrets from her, it causes her to flee again as she feels there is no-one that she can trust.

The mysteries surrounding the backgrounds of the three male characters, Giles, Ben and Jay, were intriguing and kept me guessing as to who Lizzie would eventually fall for. I was impressed with the author’s ability to make me feel pity (as well as contempt) for a man whose treatment of Lizzie was so mean and despicable.

Overall, a thoroughly enjoyable and satisfying read. I’m looking forward to reading Heidi’s next book now - Summer at Skylark Farm.