Friday, February 10, 2023

Blog Tour: Finding Refuge in Bellbird Bay by Maggie Christensen

I normally wouldn't do two blog tours so close together but when one is for a book in Maggie Christensen's Bellbird Bay series, there was no way that I wasn't going to say yes!

We met Bev Cooper in the first book in the series, when her friend Ailsa and brother Martin met and fell in love. Bev is the owner of the local garden centre, everyone's friend, and yet no one, not even her brother, know her deepest darkest secret. And it is this secret which is the reason why Bev has always closed herself off to the possibility of love.

Iain Grant has recently moved to Bellbird Bay in a bid to try to give his son, Bryan,  a new start. Bryan's wife has recently died, and since then Bryan has understandably been struggling emotionally leaving Iain to shoulder a lot of the responsibility for his granddaughter Mia. 

When Bryan starts working at Bev's garden centre, she can't help but be reminded of someone from her past, which is causing some angst for her. The other thing that is causing some turmoil for Bev is opposition to her plans to make part of her garden centre into an intimate wedding venue. 

Bev needs help understanding the bureaucracy and also with dealing with the opposition to her plans, Given Iain's previous career, he volunteers to assist and so Bev and Iain start to spend time together. Slowly they begin to begin to open up to each other, although when Iain's ex wife turns up in town that definitely throws a spanner in the works.

All the while, Bev can't help but revisit the events of her past and wonder how those events will link to her future.

This is another entertaining entry in the Bellbird Bay series. It was great that Bev has got her chance at happiness after spending so long on the sidelines watching the people around find happiness in new relationships.

This story did take some very interesting twists and turns, although I do feel like there was at least one s part of the past story that was not quite explained to my mind. Maybe I missed it! It is minor but It has kept me still wondering.  I guess that means that I was invested!

Rating 4/5

Thanks to Rachel's Random Resources for the review copy

About the book

Thirty-five years ago, tragedy forced Bev Cooper to cut short her university studies and seek refuge in her hometown of Bellbird Bay. Today, as the owner of the thriving Pandanus Garden Centre and Café, Bev has moved beyond the past and is happy in her solitary existence.

Following the tragic death of his son’s wife, Iain Grant takes early retirement and moves with his devastated son and granddaughter to the peaceful coastal town of Bellbird Bay hoping it will provide the change of scene they all desperately need.

When Iain’s son accepts a position at Bev’s garden centre, the pair find themselves drawn into each other’s lives. But as they begin to enjoy an unexpected attraction, issues from the past threaten to derail their growing relationship.

Will the healing atmosphere of Bellbird Bay work its magic and provide a second chance in life, or will Bev find it too difficult to put the past behind her and enjoy her own happy ever after?

A heartwarming tale of family, friends, and how a second chance at love can happen when you least expect it.


About the Author –

After a career in education, Maggie Christensen began writing contemporary women’s fiction portraying mature women facing life-changing situations, and historical fiction set in her native Scotland. Her travels inspire her writing, be it her trips to visit family in Scotland, in Oregon, USA or her home on Queensland’s beautiful Sunshine Coast. Maggie writes of mature heroines coming to terms with changes in their lives and the heroes worthy of them. Her writing has been described by one reviewer as like a nice warm cup of tea. It is warm, nourishing, comforting and embracing.

From the small town in Scotland where she grew up Scotland, Maggie was lured to Australia by the call ‘Come and teach in the sun’. Once there, she worked as a primary school teacher, university lecturer and in educational management. Now living with her husband of over thirty years on Queensland’s Sunshine Coast, she loves walking on the deserted beach in the early mornings and having coffee by the river on weekends. Her days are spent surrounded by books, either reading or writing them – her idea of heaven!



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