Cover Image: The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker

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Member Reviews

This was a brilliant  read. As soon as I started reading this book I just knew I was going to love it. Highly recommended
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Very enjoyable, and reasonably easy to read. Well-developed characters with a good storyline. Highly recommend this book and look forward to reading more from this author. .
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A magical story about love and friendship, full of fun and sparkle. You won’t be able to resist the cast of quirky characters - especially Gorgeous George!
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Lucy Baker is quiet and sweet, and much prefers knitting celebrity figures like Thor or Poldark than a mad night out. When a new neighbour, grumpy but gorgeous, moves in, Lucy with the help of her elderly neighbour Barbra hatch a plan to make him sweet on her. With the help of a possibly magic locket, Lucy begins to stand up for herself and find her confidence in both her work life and personal life.

This was a sweet book and I really enjoyed my time reading it. I couldn't help but really like Lucy (I mean anyone who knits a topless Poldark is alright in my eyes), and I found her a sweet character but someone with a lot of hidden drive to her too. She was shy and lacking in confidence but not in a totally drippy way, and when she began to make strides for herself, it was really great to see.

The romance in the book had to warm up for me. At the start it was a bit odd, as George was literally the only option so by that alone, he became Lucy's object of affection - she didn't have much choice in the romance department. They also didn't have a massive spark between them but it was more like a tiny flicker than warmed up to a flame by the end.

The magical locket was a bit random, and I wasn't expecting it. It did add a touch of magic to the story naturally, and some great chances for Lucy and George to have some strange interactions but I think if it had been taken out of the plot it would still have been the same story pretty much.

There is sadly a dementia storyline in this book as early on in the story Barbra starts to lose some of her memories and becomes someone who needs caring from Lucy and George. It might be sad or triggering for people who may have had to witness a loved one go through the same thing.
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‘A beautifully heart-warming read with a touch of magic.’

Comment / quote provided direct to publisher.
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The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker
Jenni Keer
(Review written on 24th July 2020)

The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker is an absolutely, gorgeous read! 
Lucy is instantly likeable. She’s 25 years old and likes the simple things in life like her very much lived in little flat, romance novels, knitting and cake with her friend, Brenda. I’m not sure what a typical 25-year-old is like (I was married with two children aged three and one by 25!) but I’m pretty sure if more were like Lucy the world might be a much nicer place. 
I loved her friendship with 79-year-old Brenda. Brenda is the most amazing character! She is much younger than her 79 years in a lot of ways. She can certainly still appreciate a good-looking man! She’s quirky, fun and lovable. Her genuine love for Lucy as a friend and daughter she never had is so heart-warming. I loved their chats and how they both look out for each other. 
Brenda is determined to see Lucy happy and settled before anything happens to her and their new neighbour might just be the one to provide that happiness.
Of course, nothing is straight forward and Lucy’s initial attempts to win the affects of their mysterious neighbour are far from successful. Many are hilarious in fact! I did laugh, a lot!
I loved the fact that the male love interest in this book isn’t your stereotypical hunk who moved in next door. He’s not someone you instantly warm to, but he certainly grows on you over time. 
I also loved that this isn’t the sole focus of the story. We learn a lot about Lucy, her work colleagues and her career goals, her family relationships with her difficult mother and stressed out sister, her friendship with Jess (who couldn’t be any more different to Lucy which you often find in close friendships) and especially her friendship with Brenda and their struggles following a dementia diagnosis. This was totally relatable to me as my Grandad passed from Vascular Dementia and Alzheimer’s and the first stages are often the most difficult as they are still very much aware of the changes. I also work in a care home. Dementia is very cruel. My heart went out to Brenda and Lucy.
This beautifully written, feel good story made me smile a lot and laugh out loud often. It also made me cry sad and happy tears. I LOVED it! 
I have already bought The Unlikely Life of Maisie Meadows and very much look forward to reading it!
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Perfect reading for the lockdown. Light, funny, romantic but caring. A book to lose yourself in, a good cast of characters and a cat as well.
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The hopes and dreams of Lucy Baker was a great book, my first by the author Jenni Keer but will be looking out for more of her books. A great entertaining book that sensitively covered dementia with respect.
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The main character Lucy Baker was extremely relatable to me. As a homebody myself I recognised many of Lucy's traits and felt that she just needed a confidence boost. She makes friends with elderly neighbour Brenda who is determined to add some excitement into Lucy's life. This is a feel-good read with warm characters who are bursting with kindness and love. I enjoyed the mystery element and how Lucy and Brenda's friendship flourished despite a massive age gap and contrasting personalities. A wonderful story.
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Unfortunately I had to mark this one as did not finish (DNF). I was unable to get invested in the characters or their lives or the romance that was (maybe) brewing. Overall, not the book for me.
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This is a wonderfully warm and beautifully written story. As a debut novel I had no idea what to expect but the concept drew me in. I was not disappointing. It's full of mystery and adventure, hope and wonderful characters (including a certain feline friend) that makes this story a perfect book to curl up with and relax. I am looking forward to seeing what Jenni will produce next.
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I loved Lucy Baker by the end and didn't want the book to finish. I hope their will be more. It was a pleasure to follow who growth and journey. I loved all of the supporting characters they brought as much into the enjoyment as Lucy. A beautiful story.
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This novel was written in a slick, light-hearted, comical way, and the theme was touching. Lucy has a heart of gold, and I enjoyed some romance and a little cat-fix too. Thank you to NetGalley and Avon
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An easy reading novel. Such likeable characters and a story that has me wanting to continue reading. Thoroughly enjoyed. Thank you.
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This was an enjoyable story which takes you on a roller coaster of emotions with a bit of magic thrown in. A very comforting read.
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This is a book with a definite feel good factor.  An easy read, charming characters and a plot that, although predictable, is a pleasure to follow.
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A relaxing, charming read. Lucy Baker will have you rooting for her before you are two many chapters in.
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Let’s get my list of superlatives out for this review because this book is simply wonderful. From the first page right until the last, I was in love. In love with the story, in love with all characters. Yes, all of them. Even the ones less favourable, because they were so well written, so real and so strong and every single one of them contributed to the story massively.

Being somewhat a hermit myself 🙈 living in the ‘organised mess’, I could definitely connect with Lucy and her ‘boring’ lifestyle. I understand you don’t need to be out and crazy every day to have fulfilling life but getting isolated won’t help either. Sometime you have to put yourself out there and take it all as it comes, good or bad, with or without a locket.

As I mentioned before, it was characters that made this book for me what it is, it’s characters that will stay with me long after I have finished this book or written this review and I will, for the same reason, recommend this book to others.

It filled me with so much emotion, mostly warm fluffy happiness but won’t deny some parts made me weep like a child. To be fair, what else do you want from the book? It has it all and so much more. It’s not a book to talk about in detail, it’s a book you need to pick up, read, experience and feel.

So to wrap this up, don’t go on and read reviews about this book (unless it’s mine of course 😂) but get it and jump right in and let’s chat about it when you come out ☺️
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The Hopes and Dreams of Lucy Baker is a romantic novel with a touch of magic about it. I enjoyed it more than I thought I would as it’s a bit lighter than the type of book I usually prefer. But it has a feel-good factor and also gives a sympathetic and understanding picture of the problems of living with dementia. And as you can tell from the heading of my post this is a novel about friendship. It’s also about family relationships, love, caring for others and the importance of finding your own inner strength.

I like Lucy – she’s a cat lover and an excellent knitter and also a kind, warm-hearted and generous character. At the beginning she lacks self-confidence and finds it difficult to assert herself both with her overbearing mother and in her job at Tompkins Toy Workshop. Her friendship with Brenda helps her develop a sense of her own self worth. I also like Brenda, with her purple-streaked silvery hair, and a love of rainbow clothes; in a previous age she would probably have been called a ‘wise woman’ or even a ‘white witch’ with her herbal remedies, potions and lotions. But when she is diagnosed with dementia she realises that her life will inevitably change.

And more change is on the way when a new neighbour, George, moves into the house next door to Brenda and a scruffy black cat finds it way into the neighbourhood. It was not a huge surprise to me how things would turn out when Brenda gave Lucy a silver locket that when opened revealed words engraved in an ornate script. Brenda explains it’s a special locket that will boost Lucy’s confidence at work and with her mother and also help her find her true love.

Lucy’s confidence improves and her creative side begins to blossom. I loved all the details of Lucy’s job at Tompkins, where she works in the sales office and her friend, Jess who works in accounts. There’s plenty of office banter and gossip as well as disputes and misunderstandings. But things are about to change there too as a new general manager, Sam is appointed.

The characters are sympathetically drawn, the dialogue is realistic and there are plenty of amusing and moving scenes. I was thoroughly entertained and absorbed in the story, from the beginning, with the knitted figures of Poldark, Ed Sheeran, Harry Potter and Wolverine sitting on Lucy’s sofa, to the final scenes when Lucy realises that ‘true love is the real magic.’

This is Jenni Keer’s debut novel and I hope to read more of her books in the future.
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At the outset I must confess that this was a little out-of-my-genre; however, it was a pleasant and light read.

Lucy Baker, all of 25, leads a simple life. She has a quirky hobby – knitting characters out of stories and also in real life. She has an amazing friendship with her 79-year old neighbour, Brenda, who is as quirky as Lucy and more. She seems to have “unique powers” of predicting things, and is a totally colourful person, with the adequate amount of humour and wit. She dishes out her “magical potions” and advice at the drop of a hat.

Lucy has never been high-flying, much to the dismay of her mom, who adores her older sister Emma. Lucy works in Tompkins Toy Workshop – where her work and talents are underestimated.

Enter George, their new handsome neighbour, and Brenda is convinced that he’s the perfect one for Lucy. She entrusts her with a little something, which apparently will see her non-existent love life take off.

You relate to Lucy – she’s kind and thoughtful but, seems to underestimate herself and her abilities.
When Brenda is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s, Lucy takes it on herself to ensure that she sees to all the needs of her closest friend.

At the core, this is a book of true friendship and the love associated with it. Perhaps a little push and a magical touch can also help you find the courage to fulfil your dreams, both at work and on the personal front.

If you’re looking for something undemanding, but well-written, that will make you go aaawwwww and smile in contentment, then this is a good choice. 
There is an adequate amount of magic and spells – so if you do not believe in them, this is not your book.

3.5/5 for me
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