This Is My Jam – Save The Date by Allie Spencer


Ailsa Stuart is abandoning the dreary UK for a week in Tuscany to attend the wedding of her flighty cousin, Jess. On paper, it seems like a no-brainer; it’s half-term so she has time off from her job as Deputy Head in a primary school, she gets to spend a week all expenses paid in a luxury hotel and her family will be there. The problem is that her ex, Nick might also be going. And all her family will be there.

From the moment Ailsa arrives, things start to go wrong and it soon becomes apparent that the week is going to be anything but relaxing. As the days go by, the dramas pile up and Ailsa finds herself with the unenviable task of ensuring that the wedding happens at all, which would be much easier if she didn’t have to deal with Nick and all the tumbled emotions he stirs up in her. Did she do the right thing in ending their relationship or has she made a terrible mistake?

Save The Date has all the delights of a creamy gelato and it’s set in one of my favourite places. Actually, this is the second book in a week I’ve read where the heroine runs off to Italy to escape a failed relationship so there must be something about the place. I loved Ailsa from the very start; she was funny and sweet and hilariously disaster prone – I was rooting for her from her spectacular party entrance at the Hotel Santa Lucia. I could totally identify with her cringe-making, squabbling family, too – we’ve all got relatives we’re embarrassed to admit to but Ailsa has more than most. The underlying mystery gave the story an added dimension but the loveliest thing about this book is the way that the characters all pulled together in the end.

This is a brilliant holiday read, which mixes the craziness of a family wedding with the essence of an Italian summer and throws in an irresistible dollop of amore. It gets a big thumbs up from me!

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