Monday, 24 August 2015

Picnics in Hyde Park- Nikki Moore

The Blurb

The last story in the fun & flirty #LoveLondon series from exciting new chick lit author Nikki Moore! The perfect novel for reading in the sunshine… and falling in love with London.

A summer to remember…or forget?

When Zoe Harper returns to the UK after five long years in New York, the last thing she expects is to find her younger sister Melody jobless, homeless, broke and dumped. Unfortunately, life has a way of delivering the unexpected. She should know that, given her ex-fiancĂ© Greg’s faithless behaviour.

Filled with rage and determined to get revenge on the infamous Reilly brothers for her sister’s heartbreak, as well as get some answers, Zoe hatches plan Nannygate. Unfortunately that means moving in with the gorgeous but uncaring music producer Matt Reilly to be nanny to his two adorable, complicated children. But something isn’t adding up, and over the course of the hot London summer, she starts to think that perhaps Matt isn’t so bad after all.

Let down by his last nanny and weighed down with guilt about his wife’s death three years before, wealthy but camera-shy Matt has spent a long time pushing people away, including his own kids. His stunning new nanny challenges him every single day in completely different ways, but maybe that isn’t such a bad thing?

But what happens when you open your heart, and someone isn’t who you thought they were? And can it really be true love when it’s on the rebound, and starts off with a plan for revenge?

The Review

2015 could quite possibly be renamed 'the year I raved about Nikki Moore's Love London series'.  I'm pretty sure everyone I know is sick of me saying how much I enjoyed the five novella length books (my favourite being Valentine's on Primrose Hill ).  I featured Picnics in Hyde Park as my Waiting on Wednesday a few weeks ago and I was so excited to be able to read the final instalment of the series at last.

This time we're following Zoe and Matt's story.  After Zoe's sister Melody is rapidly dismissed from her job as nanny to Matt's children without so much as an explanation, Zoe is keen to get revenge.  When the opportunity arises to take over Melody's position, she grabs it with both hands, keen to gain information that will bring him into disrepute.  However, the more she gets to know Matt, the more she likes him...can she follow through with her plan?  Or will love get in the way?

I really enjoyed this novel length book and found myself getting swept along by the plot, especially the story about Matt's late wife Helen. I really wanted to know exactly what had happened to her!  Whilst not a mystery as such, there were clues dropped in alluding to how she died and I was desperate to know why Matt clammed up every time she was mentioned.   Matt's children were adorable, I wanted to wrap Aimee up and give her a hug and tell her everything would be OK in the end. 

It was also fabulous to find out a little bit more about the characters met in previous Love London books, Nikki Moore managed to cleverly weave them into Picnics in Hyde Park without it being clumsy or clunky. 

The romance and relationship between Zoe and Matt sizzled and there were some red hot scenes between the two of them, especially with the wool jacket involved!  All in all they were a likable couple and the fact there were some snarky comments and disagreements made them more believable.

The only niggle for me was when things that were obvious were being spelled out, especially in relation to childcare, safeguarding and education.  I'm not sure if this was irritating to me because my day job is in childcare or because it felt a bit unnecessary, but that was the only negative for me in what was a highly enjoyable novel. 

I'm reluctant to say farewell to this series, but can only thank Nikki Moore for writing her heart out to produce contemporary romances which are a love story of a couple within a love story for a place.  My visits to London via her books have been a real delight, a highlight of my summer. 

I love, love, love the Love London series!

Picnics in Hyde Park is out now, published by Harper Impulse.

With thanks to the author who provided me with a copy of this book in return for an unbiased review.

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