Book review of ‘Summer at Skylark Farm’ by Heidi Swain.

Summer at Skylark Farm by Heidi Swain.
Published 2nd June 2016 by Simon and Schuster.
Available to buy from Amazon UK and Amazon US.

‘Amber is a city girl at heart. So when her boyfriend Jake Somerville suggests they move to the countryside to help out at his family farm, she doesn’t quite know how to react. But work has been hectic and she needs a break so she decides to grasp the opportunity and make the best of it. 
 
Dreaming of organic orchards, paddling in streams and frolicking in fields, Amber packs up her things and moves to Skylark Farm. But life is not quite how she imagined – it’s cold and dirty and the farm buildings are dilapidated and crumbling. 
 
But Amber is determined to make the best of it and throws herself into farm life. But can she really fit in here? And can she and Jake stay together when they are so different?’

If you had to choose between a life in the city or a life in the country, which one would you choose? Would your answer still same the same if, say, you had only dabbled in one of those lifestyles and not the other?
When I was younger I used to prefer being in the hustle and the bustle of the city and only liked the countryside for the views. However, now that I am much older, I do enjoy going to the city as long as I’m left alone ha! To be honest though, if I had a new adventure to begin at Skylark Farm, I probably would get upon my sheep(!!) and head for a life in the countryside! (Note: I wouldn’t ride a sheep…I’d fall off).

Amber is going from strength to strength in her job in the city, and so is her relationship with her new man, Jake. Amber starts to realise that her workload doesn’t seem to be  showing signs of slowing down anytime soon, this leaves her questioning the amount of quality time that she has with Jake. Jake gets to dabble in life in the countryside with his Aunt whilst Amber dabbles in her life of last-minute work requests, but is it enough? Amber wants to try something new and rid herself of the rut she is stuck in and Jake may just have the solution to her problems. But can Jake persuade Amber to step out of her comfort zone and try for a new life, where her work outfit would consist of wellies? Will Amber put her relationship with Jake before her relationship with work?

Welcome to Skylark Farm! A farm where nothing is ever as straight forward as you would like, but the reward are overflowing. My heart went out to Amber throughout the story because she was thrown into the deep end on more than one occasion and nobody seemed to want to tell her complete stories, just snippets. Luckily for her, Jake’s Aunt Annie was always on hand to give her the confidence boost she needed, or grated potato…whichever came first! Skylark Farm was more of a shrine than a working farm, so when the opportunity arose for Amber to offer some input, she did just that.

‘Watching’ the changes and mini makeover happen on Skylark Farm felt like watching the film Calamity Jane. You know the part where she goes from hard as nails and potty mouth, to house wife donning a floral apron with white kitchen furniture? It was like reading a 21st century twist on a classic film, especially when Amber got her hands on the cottage (eventually).  I felt like I was ‘watching’ something magical happen as I read the story. It was as if the changes created a new life, not only in Skylark Farm, but Aunt Annie too. You really cannot put a price on a feeling as magical as the one you get from well written words.

Nine times out of ten when you meet new characters within a book, there are going to be some you instantly like, and some you instantly dislike. Summer at Skylark Farm was no different! Several characters made their way into my heart quite early on in the story, however, one or two characters couldn’t seem to find the right key. I didn’t seem to warm to them because their actions annoyed me! I get very involved with the characters in every book that I read! Each and every character is very unique, a few of them with more dented personalities than others, but I loved that because it gave the whole story more character.

What I admired most about Summer at Skylark Farm, was how it contained the ‘take a chance’ message. One day you might think that something is impossible to achieve, or that you don’t have the confidence to just go for it. But, if Amber can completely change her life and see more of certain animals than she bargained for, then maybe you could just take the chance?

Heidi has written such a cosy, comforting and warming story. So cosy in fact, that I just wanted Aunt Annie to come and give me a hug whilst I finished reading it. If you’re undecided on whether you should take a chance and head to Skylark Farm for a summer full of adventure, then the answer is YES. Just go for it, but remember to take your wellies!

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3 thoughts on “Book review of ‘Summer at Skylark Farm’ by Heidi Swain.

  1. Pingback: ‘The Cherry Tree Cafe’ turns ONE today! Happy debut book birthday Heidi Swain!! | The Writing Garnet

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