Check out this absolutely fantastic review of Hamlet’s Ghost from the wonderful Readful Things Blog. It has made my week. 🙂
* If you haven’t read any of Jane’s books yet, then you have been missing out. Jane Tara is an author that is well on her way to becoming a household name. I love her works and strongly encourage you to check them out. This latest book is one of my favourites of the year and I am so happy I had the chance to read it.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Much like Jane Tara’s other books, this is filled with magic, outstanding characters that are easily loved and quirky, fun writing. I love Jane’s stories for their ability to take you away from daily life and make you feel as if you are somewhere else. I also love her sassy writing full of quips that make you giggle.
What made me love Hamlet’s Ghost was not just the cast of unique and varied characters, but the setting. The connections between the name of the town and the goings on inside the theatre were brilliant and kept me turning pages. I loved the way she tied the past and familiar characters into this novel but still managed to make it feel new. This could easily be read as a standalone novel even without the primer of the previous books.
My favourite character was Crystal. She’s strong and independent and full of life and it affects the characters around her. I’d love to know even more about her story. This was a book that I was sorry to see go and it will be difficult to find something else to read after this–but this is the price you pay for reading Jane’s work.
If you are tired of reading books where the female characters are all perfect down to the last fake nail, then this is for you. This author values differences between her characters and they are not all cookie cutter shapes that have been done before. She uses real women of all shapes, sizes and backgrounds to fill her pages. I love that.
The love story(ies) are charming and the romance scenes mild enough for those who don’t want to jump into the deep end too soon. You get a sense of each character’s personality and that of their match before they end up together and things don’t always go exactly as one would expect. Overall I thought this was one of the most delightful reads of the year.
If you like romantic stories with lots of twists and plenty of magic, you can’t go wrong here. Definitely a book that deserves recommendation.
This review is based on a complimentary copy from the publisher. All opinions are my own.
This was a sweet, startling efficient book. It’s basically a collection of stories featuring different women achieving their own happy ending. There’s women in all different stages of life here, with very different romantic and family backgrounds.
What I found most incredible about this book was how quickly each story was communicated, but always in such a way that it tugged on my heart strings. I never felt the tale of romance was rushed, I was always satisfied by it. I did shed a few tears during Eva’s story, it was a direct emotional bullseye, which was pretty incredible given that it only occupied thirteen pages of the book. Excellent writing, smart story-telling. I was really entertained and impressed by how much was packed into each chapter.
There’s a thread of the paranormal or magical weaving throughout the story. I did find it a little strange in that some of the stories feature a fantastical element and others don’t. It was a bit jarring for me to move from a less fantastical tale to a more fantastical one. I think if there’d been a more even distribution across the book, it would have been less strange.
The other thing that kind of irked me was that though the book club connects everyone together, it was really only a reference point. I kind of wanted books with happy endings to feature more prominently. Still, this was definitely a book store that I could appreciate, and a book club I would *love* to participate in.
The Bottom Line:
Pick this one up. It’s a sweet collection of generally happy, Christmas-time stories. It makes some interesting points about women, love, families and I think it’s well worth a read.
For fans of contemporary romance, the paranormal/fantastical, happy endings
This book is weird. That’s my opinion, and it’s not to say the book is bad, because it’s not. The book is well written and clever; it’s just the quirkiest, oddest book I’ve ever read. I was slogging through it, not enjoying it at all, when all of a sudden at 75% of the way through, I got it. I understood. And I burst into tears as all the problems of all the characters met inside my mind and exploded there. I’m not sure if that made me ENJOY the book any more than before, but I sure do appreciate it now.
The Happy Endings Book Club is a group of women who need a little encouragement and uplifting. They’re fading into the background of life and need some verve. Some of the women find “life” in reality, and some find it in fantasy: fairly lands and magic.
The fantasy world in the novel isn’t isolated like Hogwarts in Harry Potter. Instead, it’s part of the regular world… More like fantastical beings existing with all their powers in the mortal world. And while that allows great freedom in the plot, it also confuses a linear realist like me!
I liked the characters, the plot lines, the endings and new beginnings. I had a tough time with the magic, the fairyland, and the special powers…. but only because those are out of my comfort zone. This clever novel opened my eyes and gave me a lot to think about.
I absolutely loved this book!
To say it was “magical would be an understatement”. To those of us who think our time may be past or running out for our own “happy ending” this gives hope. A totally feel good read with so much inspiration and insight.
Andrea from Love is said this about my novel, The Happy Endings Book Club:
*ARC courtesy of Momentum Books on Netgalley.*
I LOVED this book! Jane Tara pulled me in right away, with her amazingly different characters. I read it in less then a day, because I couldn’t put it down! I felt like you got to know some better then others, but I still felt connected to them all. Your still pulling for them all to get their happy ending. This book made me laugh out loud, (a few times) & really made me think. Which is something I don’t think you find in many books. I truly enjoyed it & will differently be reading more Jane Tara books in the future!
I’m not sure when I started disappearing. One minute I was clearly visible, with the confidence of a woman who knows that. The next… something had shifted. I felt invisible. More than that… I quickly expected that others wouldn’t see me either. They didn’t. Heads failed to turn. I was often overlooked in a queue. But it was more than that. Suddenly my quirky collection of vintage clothing seemed ridiculous. I would enter certain restaurants or bars and feel like a dinosaur. Women around me were getting work on their face. For some it is subtle, but others look ridiculous. Surely that isn’t the alternative to my wrinkles? It was an internal shift as well, not just physical. At a point in my life when I really knew myself, I wasn’t sure what to do with that hard earned wisdom. It wasn’t valued. Youth is celebrated, embraced, feted. Women my age often feel… invisible. Welcome to womanhood in the forties. Not everyone feels invisible, but many do. I know. I’ve discussed this with countless women: friends, acquaintances, and strangers at parties. It’s something I experienced myself, with mounting dismay, until earlier this year I was handed a gift: