The #TFBookClub reads ‘A Summer Reunion’ set in MALLORCA

11th July 2019

Thank you for joining us as we read A Summer Reunion by Fanny Blake, set in MALLORCA (July/August 2019).

We hope you enjoy reading this skilfully woven story of old friendships, secrets and lies set against the sun-soaked backdrop of Mallorca.

A Summer Reunion

We will be chatting about the book throughout July and August 2019, so if you are reading it with us, please come and join the dialogue!

The #TFBookClub is your book club – we are here to help you discover new titles that will transport you to interesting locations via top literature for some exceptional #literarywanderlust.

As you read, please come and chat and share your thoughts in several ways:

  • Here on our dedicated blogpost, leave your thoughts in the Comments section below
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  • On TWITTER using #TFBookClub
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  • On PINTEREST following this link 
  • And once you’ve turned the final page, we’d love it if you could write your own review, which you can do on tripfiction.com using the Add A Review tab. Help us to build the #TFBookClub and the TripFiction website!

REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO READING THIS BOOK TOGETHER!

Andrew and Tina for the TripFiction Team

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Replies

  1. User: Julie Ryan

    Posted on: 12/07/2019 at 9:22 am

    Book has arrived and really looking forward to this one.

    Comment

  2. User: Bev

    Posted on: 14/07/2019 at 9:17 am

    A page turner discovering the 4 mature ladies having a school reunion. It is an easy read and when you think it is becoming predictable, the unpredictable happens. Kate, Jane, Amy and Linda’s characters are well developed. I’m wondering what other readers make of them. I had my likes and dislikes, I guess we are meant to.
    I spent a few weeks walking in Mallorca, from Fornalutx, Soller, Valdemossa to finish in Palma. Fanny Blake describes the countryside very well. I remember one of my walks in Fornalutx winding along a path edged in olive trees, looking up into the forest. Soller has lots and mean lots of orange groves. This is how I remember the small town, but didn’t pick that up, sorry if I missed it. There are lots of tourists and Fanny brings this into the narrative well. However the number of tourists in Valdemossa were overwhelming.
    So, The Summer Reunion brought back wonderful memories of my holiday and if you want to get a sense of the west side of Mallorca you would not go amiss with this one.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: Harriet Steel

      Posted on: 14/07/2019 at 8:21 pm

      Hello Bev, your walking trip sounds lovely and just the kind of thing my husband and I enjoy. Did you organize it yourself or go with a company? The book was fun, wasn’t it? I’ve not read anything by Fanny Blake before and it made a pleasant change from my usual historical novels and detective stories. I thought the enticing descriptions of the island made it a perfect TF book club choice. I hope you’re well and having a good summer, Harriet

      Comment

  3. User: Jane Willis

    Posted on: 14/07/2019 at 9:27 am

    I started reading this on Friday evening and got literally NOTHING else done all day on Saturday as I just couldn’t stop reading. The formula of “old friends who have grown apart getting together but all having secrets” has got so popular that it could be getting stale now, but by making the characters older – in fact my age so I could identify with them – and setting the story in Mallorca, Fanny Blake has made it work beautifully.
    I thought all the characters were very well written – not just the central ones but the incidental ones too. And the descriptions of the island, the villages and Ca’n Amy were so clear I could see every detail, even though I’ve never visited the Balearics.
    I loved the way the various stories intertwined throughout the book and everything came to a satisfactory, it unsurprising, solution. I’ve read far too many books recently that left everything up in the air.
    Undemanding yet not trivial, a well told story, a perfect summer read.

    Comment

  4. User: Janine Phillips

    Posted on: 14/07/2019 at 2:46 pm

    Well, I really enjoyed reading this. Great characters, I could relate to them as I have three friends from school, we are the same age as Amy, Linda, Kate and Jane. We meet up sporadically and our lives have taken varied paths. Fabulous descriptions of the area, great plot line. Must read more by Fanny Blake.

    Comment

  5. User: Harriet Steel

    Posted on: 14/07/2019 at 8:14 pm

    A Summer Reunion isn’t the type of book I usually go for nowadays, but I enjoyed it and found it very easy to embark on “just one more chapter” when I’d finished the previous one, resulting in even lower productivity than usual this weekend. Still, my husband was glued to a combination of cricket, tennis and motor racing, so why not?
    I’ve not been to Mallorca, and the author’s vivid descriptions of the island had me wanting to pack my bags and go. My image of it as a place that’s completely overrun with tourists and devoid of its original charm is obviously unfair.
    As far as the characters went, Amy was sympathetic, but for me, straightforward farmer’s wife, Kate, was the most likable. Her family also came to life in their scenes. Clever, bitchy Jane was the pebble in the shoe. She really didn’t deserve her David. Doormat or saint? I wasn’t sure. He only showed a harsher side once in relation to her tribunal hearing. It seemed out of character and rather jarring. I thought Linda was the least convincing, but eventually she came to life a bit more. It made a nice change for the women to be approaching sixty. Most books like this seem to be written with forty-somethings in mind. Feckless, charming Dan was great fun, and Jack made a satisfying creepy and nasty villain.
    There’s a lot of backstory to get through and many revelations. Some I’d anticipated, some not. I think the blurb exaggerates in saying that by the end, everything in the women’s lives will have changed, although there are changes. But of course, blurb writers like to make a dramatic impact!
    My main problem with the book concerned Amy’s husband stealing from her design company. Two hundred thousand pounds is an enormous amount of money and how to get it back would surely be the urgent issue for anyone in business. Yet Amy seems satisfied with a vague promise that Rob will repay her in a month. Wouldn’t a businesswoman be hell-bent on getting something in writing from him and assembling her forces in case he fails her and she needs to take legal action? After all, he’s already shown himself to be deeply unreliable. Instead, her reaction is to gather together old school friends whom she’s barely spoken to since they left school and start trying to iron out a more than forty-year-old problem. I felt that this plot line wasn’t necessary and let down the book. The unlikelihood is explained away a bit at the end, however when Amy finally decides she has to take legal action, she just tells her assistant to get on with it. As the sole owner of the company, I very much doubt she’d delegate something like that. I think the company’s lawyers would be too!
    Overall, however, this was a good read, and I’m sure I’ll seek out more of this author’s books at some stage in the future. Many thanks to the publishers for my copy.

    Comment

    2 Comments

    • User: Bev

      Posted on: 17/07/2019 at 6:22 am

      Hello Harriet, I enjoyed reading your review and agree with your analysis of the characters.

      Our walking holiday was organised with Inntravel. The walks are self guided and you can customise the trip to suit your personal adventure. We have had 4 walking holidays with them and enjoyed them all, the best have been in Italy. Inntravel source some wonderful and unusual places for you to stay. Hope this helps. Bev

      Comment

      1 Comment

      • User: andrewmorris51

        Posted on: 17/07/2019 at 7:54 am

        Hello Harriet – I can only echo Bev’s endorsement of Inntravel for self-guided walks. We haven’t been to Mallorca with them, but have enjoyed several others around Europe and they are invariably excellent. Check out On Foot Holidays too, they are smaller and perhaps a little more ‘personal’ than Inntravel. Their Mallorca walking route is ‘Palma and the Serra de Tramuntana’ – TF’s Andrew

        Comment

    • User: Harriet Steel

      Posted on: 17/07/2019 at 9:57 pm

      Dear Bev and Andrew, thank you both for the info. I know Inntravel who we had a couple of walking holidays with years ago when they were still a very small company. The one in Spain from the Pyrenees to the coast was, unfortunately, a disaster because my husband was very ill on day 2 and we spent the rest of the time in a hospital in Santander. The staff were great but it wasn’t quite what we had planned! The Italian one around San Giminiano was brilliant though. I must look at their brochure and the other one you mention. Best wishes, Harriet

      Comment

  6. User: julier

    Posted on: 18/07/2019 at 6:37 am

    Set in a beautiful villa in Majorca, four old school friends meet all together for the first time in many years. Scarred by an event which happened when they were in the Sixth Form, successful entrepreneur Amy Green, tries to get some kind of closure. As they gradually open up to each other, we see how they were each affected over the years and all of them are carrying their own secrets. I desperately hoped they would make the right decisions and enjoyed the diverse characters even if I couldn’t warm to Jane. Beautifully written, great characters and a fabulous setting – perfect for reading by the pool.

    Comment

  7. User: Sara Hill

    Posted on: 21/07/2019 at 7:39 pm

    I read this book quite quickly as it was very easy to read, I would classify it as good “chick lit”. It made a change to read about more mature women and I was eager to know how it all ended. I really liked Kate, Amy and Linda but couldn’t take to Jane at all. Amy’s brother Dan added a bit of a side story. He was a likeable wastrel!

    Comment

  8. User: Claire Harris

    Posted on: 22/07/2019 at 12:03 am

    I finished ‘A Summer Reunion’ last week. It was a bit “Chick-Littish” for my usual taste, but a pleasant read & I enjoyed how the various plots unfurled.
    The setting in Mallorca was beautifully described, I was transported & seduced by the climate & the countryside.
    I felt the characters of the four women were left a little underdeveloped & I frequently confused them, apart from Jane, the Baddie! I would have enjoyed more of an exploration & explanation of their motives, particularly in relation to Jane.
    I enjoyed the theme of four former schoolfriends reuniting at the age of 60+, just as I reunited with some of my schoolfriends last year, having not seen several of them for over 40 years! I’m not sure I would have agreed to go to Mallorca for such a reunion, though!
    Having attended an all girls’ school in the 60/70s, with few male teachers, the story line about the art teacher is totally believable! Our male art teacher was sacked for “bedding” a 6th former in the art cupboard at lunchtime!!
    An enjoyable and light read! Thanks to the publishers & Trip Fiction for my copy!

    Comment

  9. User: lapsapchung

    Posted on: 27/07/2019 at 10:44 am

    Reafing back over the others’ comments I’m struck by one thing – we book lovers need a new genre called “Quality Chick Lit”. This book would slot perfectly into it.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 01/08/2019 at 1:46 pm

      Great thought!!!

      Comment

  10. User: Claire Broomsgrove

    Posted on: 28/07/2019 at 4:54 pm

    I throughly enjoyed this trip to Mallorca with trip fiction a perfect summer read. I found the description of the beautiful villa and island captivating, it sounded like the perfect way to spend time catching up with girlfriends, although everything was not as it seemed, I enjoyed unraveling the stories of the women involved, finding likes & dislikes along the way, I thought the characters were well defined and I enjoyed trying to work out what their future would hold.

    Comment

  11. User: Lesley Morton-Evans

    Posted on: 30/07/2019 at 12:16 pm

    Firstly, thank you for sending me a copy of this book, a fabulous summer read and it didn’t disappoint.
    I was looking forward to reading it partly because of the location setting and because I am 60 and about to spend 3 days reuniting with 4 school friends. As far as I’m aware none of us have any scores to settle but this read has got me thinking !
    Fanny Blake’s beautifully written description of the villa and surrounding areas have left me wanting more. I feel the need to add it to my list of places to visit.
    It was refreshing to read a novel about women of this age group that did not come over as cougar femme fatales or deranged. By the age of 60 there will invariably be far more personal experiences accumulating and it was interesting to see each characters unfold. I felt each “story” was well paced and felt eager to continue reading.
    The only part of the novel that I found unrealistic was the action taken by Amy on discovering her husbands theft of money. The decision to reunite with school friends in Mallorca was odd to say the least, nevertheless it provided a great read.
    Will there be another reunion ?

    Comment

  12. User: Andrea

    Posted on: 06/08/2019 at 7:16 pm

    Thanks for sending a copy of A Summer Reunion by Fanny Blake. I loved the descriptions of Mallorca, somewhere I haven’t been but the island was enticingly described. I couldn’t, however, really get the strength of the friendship of the four women. They didn’t really seem to know each other very well, and the only one I really liked and understood was Kate. I did have a problem with which character we were with as chapters started with ‘she’ and it wasn’t until a paragraph or two later that a particular name appeared. Chapter headings by name might have helped me. Also I kept getting the characters muddled, having to go back and remind myself which was which. Perhaps the Christian names could have been markedly different. Amy, the one we meet first and the protagonist for the reunion, seems an unlikely successful business woman if she lets someone who has stolen nearly £200,000 just promise to return the money in a month, husband or not. And this as a catalyst to gather old friends she hasn’t seen for years, nor really been in touch with, to reunite and delve into a 40-year-old events, seems a really odd thing to do. The appearance of a prime character from those events was…too much of a coincidence. It’s not my usual type of read but pleased to have been given a copy for reviewing.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: Harriet Steel

      Posted on: 15/08/2019 at 6:55 am

      I’m currently spending a wet, but still lovely, week in the Lake District with my family and thought I’d look in to catch up on any comments I’ve missed. I absolutely agree about it being hard to credit that Amy was successful businesswoman. Her reaction to the theft was also, as you say, very odd. All the same, I enjoyed the book, and I wouldn’t say no to some of that Mallorcan sun at the moment!

      Comment

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