The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 24 Jan 2019

Member Reviews

A sweet story with some humorous touches, although a little more pace would have been good. I found Peggy's change in outlook rather sudden, although the happy ending itself was nicely done.
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Ahhhhhh this was such a heartwarming read, and Peggy was amazing, I hope when I’m old or wind up in a retirement village that I have just as much fun as these guys did! Never a dull moment and if there is be sure it won’t last long!!!

I totally loved this book, reminded me of a couple of others I’ve read of which I enjoyed just as much. Sad in places but funny too it’s a lovely easy read to warm your cockles with on a blustery day!

I loved it, more please!!!!
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This was such an entertaining read. I was sold from the premise, and wasn't disappointed. The perfect Sunday afternoon sort of read.
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When looking for a book that was totally different from the ones I had been reading lately The Single Ladies of the Jacaranda Retirement Village seemed like the perfect choice and I wasn’t wrong. What can I say about this book other than reading about people in the later stages of life shouldn’t be funny but Single Ladies had me chuckling repeatedly as I devoured it over 2 days. That being said it wasn’t all hilarity as there were some touching moments as the residents of the retirement village came to terms with their various ailments and limitations. 
In the book we get to meet Peggy who lives in the retirement village with her dog. She has been at a loss what to do since the death of her husband Ted and is worried that her children will see as her incapable of looking after herself and try to take control. When a blast from her past in the form of old friend Angie moves in things start to liven up for her. Peggy is forced to deal with the things that broke their friendship up in the first place but at the same time realise that maybe life is still worth putting the effort in after all…. And that includes getting closer to Brian, another resident in the retirement village. Her lack of confidence regarding a possible new romance is quite endearing and shows that no matter what age you are, starting new relationships can be quite daunting.
As they challenge the way things are done in the village from the fundraising to the policy of pets roping more of the residents in along the way you can’t help but get drawn in. The attempt to buy a karaoke machine was hilarious. Some of Peggy’s confusion regarding terminology and technology really brought a smile to my face as they are the sort of thing my mother in law would say. Her struggles with her children as she fights their well-intentioned interference in her life are quite touching. Although the story is told from Peggy’s perspective I never got the feeling that it was a one sided story as the book is filled with characters you can’t help but like and to be honest I am hoping that I grow old disgracefully like Angie. Joanna Nell has managed to capture what growing old can be like without making it morose or belittling it, showing that moving into a retirement home does not mean that life has to end but can actually bring the fun back.
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I enjoyed this book but felt it could have pushed a little harder on freedom that being of a certain age brings. I almost wanted to scream at Peggy and tell her to ignore her family and live life to the full and rather than laugh at her subdued antics, it started to irritate me.. Angie brought that in to the story, but still not enough for me.
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I have to say that I was sold on this book simply by the first sentence of the synopsis – ‘It’s never too late to grow old disgracefully’.  Now that’s the sort of attitude I like and I would love to grow old disgracefully.  Anyway enough of me.  I knew that I just had to read this book as soon as I could.  I was not to be disappointed and I absolutely adored this book but more about that in a bit.
I absolutely love the character of Peggy Smart and I took to her from the start.  In fact I wanted to adopt her as my Granny.  She’s a woman of a certain age and she is bored with her life.  Her life is as beige as the paint on the walls of her house.  At the start of the book, the bright spot of her day is watching her neighbour come and go from his house.  She has developed something of a soft spot for him but she doesn’t think that he would look twice at somebody like her when he has all the other single ladies to choose from.  I loved Peggy.  She is fun, feisty, hilariously funny, determined and at times stubborn woman.  I did get the impression at the start of the book that she has a distinct lack of self confidence and I also wondered if perhaps she was depressed.  I so wanted to jump inside the pages of the book to give her a reassuring hug.  Peggy meets an old school friend, who she hasn’t seen in donkeys years.  It’s this meeting that sets Peggy off down the path to self discovery.  Does Peggy achieve the life that she so deserves?  Does Peggy find love?  Does Peggy’s self confidence improve?  Well for the answers to those questions and more you are just going to have to read the book for yourselves to find out as I am not going to tell you.
Oh my giddy aunt, I haven’t chuckled my way through a book as much as I chuckled my way through ‘The Single Ladies Of Jacaranda Retirement Village’ in a long, long time.  It was certainly an ideal book that came along at the right time for me.  I was in need of a pick me up and a distraction.  This book ticked both boxes and then some.  It didn’t take me long to get into this story and reading it soon became an addiction.  I found it nigh on impossible to be parted from this book.  In fact I found any excuse that I could to avoid having to stop reading this fabulous book, which didn’t go down well with my two Labradors who selfishly insisted on going out for a walk.  Oops.  It didn’t seem to take me long to get through the book but then I did lose all track of time.  I picked the book up only intending to read a couple of chapters and six chapters later I was still reading.  I had mixed feelings about finishing this book.  Don’t get me wrong, I was pleased to finish because it meant that I knew how the story ended but I was enjoying the author’s writing style, the characters and the storylines so much that I wanted the book to continue on and on.
‘The Single Ladies Of Jacaranda Retirement Village’ is superbly written.  The author has a down to earth writing style that grabs your attention from the start.  I loved the way in which she has created the range of characters in this book.  She writes so convincingly about her characters that they seem so realistic that they seem real.  In fact, I was all for moving into the Retirement Village just so I could get to know Peggy and her crowd.  The author tackles some subjects that will sound so familiar to some, as they are the sort of problems that those people of a certain age will identify with.  I loved the way in which the author interweaved humour with serious moments.  Sometimes the only way to deal with some subjects is to laugh and that’s certainly what this book made me do.
In short I thoroughly enjoyed reading ‘The Single Ladies Of Jacaranda Retirement Village’ and I would definitely recommend it to other readers.  Joanna Nell has written a brilliant book that is surely destined to be a bestseller.   I can’t wait to read what she comes up with next.  The score on the Ginger Book Geek board is a very well deserved 5* out of 5*.
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A lovely and enjoyable story. This is a gem of a book. Peggy and Angies story was happy and sad and uplifting. It was a pleasure to read this book.

Thank you to Netgalley for my copy.
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The Single Ladies Of Jacaranda Retirement Village by Joanna Nell is the most delightful novel about love and friendship and life.
Life is for living whether you are eight or eighty. “The person inside doesn’t change just because a few years have passed.”
The novel explores how frustrating it can be when you are treated as old and infirm. Being older in years does not equal deaf and daft. If we are still breathing, we can have fun. 
The residents of the retirement village are well past their first flush of youth and had forgotten how to live until a sprightly seventy nine year old breezes in and shows them how to grow old disgracefully. There are some very amusing moments as words are forgotten or substituted. Malapropisms are the order of the day.
This is a beautiful book that captures some charming and very touching moments. It is a book about a deep love – first for a husband and then for a friendship rekindled, as well as for a small dog. There were some lovely interactions with his owner.
This is a charming read. It will make you laugh. It will make you cry. And it will leave you smiling.
I received this book for free. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.
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This was an enjoyable read, but not quite the page turner I hoped it would be. The story talks honestly about the problems that come with aging, and children who worry too much. The main character Penny slowly starts to accept that growing old doesn't have to be fearful and boring with the help of an old friend. However, while there are plenty of funny moments along the way, for much of the book I felt I was waiting for something exciting to happen. It's a well told, gentle story, but one that for me was lacking in pace.
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Not really my cup of tea but very readable, warm hearted and funny in places. It may appeal more to s slightly older reader.
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An enjoyable if undemanding read. Although set in Australia the problems of old age are universal and the writer manages to present interesting insights on the attitudes of families  towards their elderly relatives. While a light romantic story there are sufficient hard edges to maintain interest as well as unexpected final twist.
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Peggy lives a beige life in her retirement village, with a hilarious inner voice that gets a bit muddle up: her marriage was monotonous, and her menopause was the mentalpause.  Her days are filled with aqua Olympics, committee meetings and day dreaming about the handsome widower Brian who lives next door.

All until the glamourous Angie Valentine arrives at the village. Angie has pushed boundaries all her life and she is not going to change just because she is nearly 80.  

What emerges is a heart-warming story of Peggy’s literal emergence from her beige existence, into her colourful and fun existence.  We follow Peggy and her octogenarian friends to her grandson’s birthday party, a hilarious trip to a shop to purchase Karaoke equipment, and numerous committee meetings.  

This is a lovely story, and Peggy is a wonderful narrator taking in all sorts of details.  I particularly loved when she thanks her grandchildren in a speech and mentally adds her daughter’s new born alpaca Lulu to the list.  

Definitely recommend for a hilarious read, and reminder that you can grow old disgracefully.
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There are not many books featuring senior citizens as the main characters so this book immediately caught my eye. I really enjoyed reading about life from the perspective of someone who has lived for eight decades. It's a charming and amusing book that will make you reconsider how you see elderly people.
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Retirement and growing older is not all it is made out to be in this delightful, moving story.

Peggy Smart, Brian Cornell, Angie Valentine and others live in the Jacaranda Retirement Village amongst friends and enemies. The larger community in this novel include doctors, nurses’ children and grandchildren. Some are delightful, some very trying.

In this moving, hilarious novel full of love, friendship, angst and a few nail-biting times the characters evolve into endearing people. Peggy is charming, Angie is still glamorous, and Brian is an absolute gentleman. Their lives are not without current troubles that they timidly, boldly and wisely take on. These troubles cause much hilarity as the outcomes unfold.

There are past secrets as well that make you sit on the edge of your seat while reading. These astounding secrets could end or deepen life-long friendships. 

I highly recommend this heartwarming book that will keep you smiling for weeks!

BonnieK

Breakaway Reviewers received a copy of the book to review.
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An entertaining story about growing old disgracefully. Peggy emerges from being drab with a beige wardrobe into a colourful character through the interaction of her long lost friend of her youth Angie. Set in a retirement village the tale deals sensitively with the problems of ageing health wise and changing familial relationships.
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Fantastic book which tells the tale of Peggy Smart, a soon to be octogenarian living in a retirement village with her aging dog for company. Peggy’s two children think she is old and decrepit and Peggy is getting oh so forgetful most days and fears they are right. Peggy hovers by her net curtains every morning to catch a glimpse of her neighbour, Brian - it is the highlight of her day. Until Angie Valentine saunters back into Peggy’s life and turns it upside down. 

An excellent read - will have you laughing out loud. Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an advanced read copy of this book in exchange for an honest and unbiased review of this book.
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Wonderful! Beautiful, true to life sorry of relationships and people. Touching, funny, and revealing.
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Really enjoyed this book, made me laugh and I can imagine that a lot of it is probably quite likely to happen. Don't forget that growing older doesn't have to be beige- let your true colours show!
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I really loved reading this book. It was extremely funny and the insight to o!d age definitely opens your eyes.

It made me laugh and cry and cry with laughter.
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Peggy Smart is living in the Jacaranda Retirement Village, worrying about her leaky bladder and secret love interest Brian the ex-accountant.
But with the return of her childhood friend Angie Valentine, things are going to get a whole lot more interesting.
This is a slight but sweet novel that’s funny, cheerful and optimistic.
There are some slightly darker plot turns but the ‘happily ever after’ arrives to satisfy, too.
It took me a little bit of getting into, and it’s not great literature, but it is warm and funny.
It’s also a life-affirming reminder that later life can be fun.
Perfect for a holiday read.
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