4 Star Reviews

Book Review (4 Stars) – The Beachside Sweet Shop, by Karen Clarke


Chocolate fudge, butterscotch and raspberry bonbons… treat yourself to some sugary treats, a big slice of friendship and a sprinkling of romance at The Beachside Sweet Shop.

When Marnie Appleton inherited a sweet shop from her grandfather she was determined to do his legacy proud. The shop has been a much-loved feature of the little seaside town of Shipley for years, but now Marnie needs to bring it up to date, and she’s recruited gorgeous new assistant Josh to help.

Marnie gets busy redecorating the shop and choosing delicious new sweets to stock, but things are never that simple: new neighbour Isobel, a fame-hungry blogger, is on a crusade against sugar, and she’ll go to any lengths to secure bad publicity for Marnie’s shop.

Marnie fights back with homemade sugar-free treats, but with her best friend Beth heavily pregnant, her grandmother Celia recovering from an operation, and her very recently ex-boyfriend Alex returning to Shipley with a new love, Marnie has a lot on her plate.

And then there’s Josh, with whom Marnie is struggling to keep her relationship strictly professional…Will both the sweet shop and love flourish?

A deliciously heartwarming read about family, friends and handmade coconut ice. Perfect for fans of Cressida McLaughlin, Debbie Johnson, and Tilly Tennant.

The Beachside Sweet Shop

My Review:

The Beachside Sweet Shop is a delicious delightful story about the trials and tribulations of a traditional sweet shop that has been owned by the same family for generations. Set in a close-knit seaside community, will this sweet shop survive the changing times?

Comedy romances aren’t really my thing, but as far as this one goes, it was a fun and enjoyable read. If I’m completely honest, I was tempted by the sweet cover, because despite not really having a sweet tooth, I couldn’t resist the temptation of experiencing the nostalgia of an old fashioned sweet shop.

I loved the setting of this story. I live in a tiny hamlet in West Cornwall, where most neighbours are seen as friends, and we all look out for each other. I feel blessed to have such caring neighbours, and that really helped me fall in love with the town and its people in this book. There is a great mix of characters within this story, some more likeable than others.

This is an overall feel good tale of love and friendship that will have you giggling in places. I’m now really looking forward to the next book, which is called The Beachside Flower Stall, as I love flowers.

I’ve discovered that I seem to have a thing for aniseed flavour, as the first sweets that came to mind while reading this book were Aniseed Balls, Cough Candy Twists, Black Jacks, and those pink and blue Spogs. Those were definitely all my favourites.

Aniseed Sweets
I did like others too, but I have less pleasant associations with them, like loving the flavour of Cola Cubes, but the corners hurting the roof of my tiny mouth (not so bad when I had braces on my teeth though). I liked the yellow and pink Bon Bons, but they would always end up sticking my teeth together. Finally, I ate loads of Pear Drops as a child, as my parents often had them in the car, and they would help me with my severe travel sickness. But I remember one time when my dad braked, due to us arriving at our destination, and me unexpectedly swallowing a Pear Drop whole *ouch*. I was very careful with Pear Drops after that day!

So, if you’ve made it this far reading my review, I’m curious what your favourite traditional sweets were when you were a child?

4 Stars


Where to find this book:


Amazon UK

Amazon US


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