I received this book for free from the Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.The Sunday Lunch Club by Juliet Ashton
Also by this author: The Woman at Number 24
Published by Simon & Schuster UK on 19th April 2018
Genres: Chicklit, Love & Romance, Women's Literary Fiction
Source: from the Publisher
The first rule of Sunday Lunch Club is … don’t make any afternoon plans.
Every few Sundays, Anna and her extended family and friends get together for lunch. They talk, they laugh, they bicker, they eat too much. Sometimes the important stuff is left unsaid, other times it’s said in the wrong way.
Sitting between her ex-husband and her new lover, Anna is coming to terms with an unexpected pregnancy at the age of forty. Also at the table are her ageing grandmother, her promiscuous sister, her flamboyantly gay brother and a memory too terrible to contemplate.
Until, that is, a letter arrives from the person Anna scarred all those years ago. Can Anna reconcile her painful past with her uncertain future?
Juliet Ashton weaves a story of love, friendship and community that will move you to laughter and to tears. Think Cold Feet meets David Nicholls, with a dash of the joy of Jill Mansell added for good measure.
Thank you to SJ at Books and the City for my copy of this book. Last year I read The Woman at Number 24 and I fell in love with Juliet’s writing so I was so excited when this book was in my goodybag at the BATC Christmas drinks. This book took me a long time to read, not because I didn’t enjoy it but because I signed up to so many tours over the last few months that I had to dip in and out. For me, I felt like I was one of the members of the Sunday Lunch club dipping in and out when I could for another dose.
Anna Piper and her siblings get together on a Sunday for family lunch. It’s not every week and sometimes they might go a few weeks without meeting. There’s quite a few in the group so I’m gonna clue you in slowly with the core group. First let’s start with Anna’s older brother Neil, his husband Santi and their gorgeous little bubba Pamola. Then there is Anna’s younger sister Meave and her son Storm. Anna’s younger brother Josh, Anna’s ex-husband Sam and of course Dinkie Anna and her siblings’ Grandmother. As I said these are the core members but sometimes other friends joined the gang too.
I’m not going to talk about all of these characters as I would simply be here for days but I want to mention that Santi was my favourite. I loved his sense of humour and his mannerisms.
I loved the Pipers simply because of the fact that they were real. They weren’t this big happy family that always got on and were perfect all the time. They bickered, they argued, they were over protective, they jumped to conclusions but in the end they all love each other. I come from a big family and these Sunday lunches reminded me of those big family dinners.
Juliet builds the suspense perfectly in this book. It’s not over bearing or too intense. It’s lurking in the background like that feeling of something you have forgotten. She layers the secrets and then shocks you with the reveal.
One of the things I loved about this book was that each chapters began with a menu for that Sunday’s Lunch. I love quirky little things like that. It’s a bit more interesting than Chapter 1, Chapter 2. I love a good chapter starter or header.
This is a feel good family story. The ending was bittersweet for me and left me with a satisfied smile with a hint of ‘I want to cry’. I felt like I had seen these characters grow so much throughout the book. After being with them for so long I was so sad to say goodbye to them.
Reading this book contributed to these challenges: