Cover Image: The Little Bookshop at Herring Cove

The Little Bookshop at Herring Cove

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Member Reviews

My thoughts

Narrative and Plot

The Little Bookshop At Herring Cove is a cute romantic read with the backdrop of a bookshop. Needless to say any book lover will have a good time with it. The story is told from both Sophie and Alexander's perspective.

The plot however is not one of the strong suit of the book. The love story felt too instant and it was hard to get into the romance thereafter. If you read the synopsis, you will get a hate to love vibe. Instead you're greeted with two people who are attracted to each right from scene one. If that doesn't throw you off, the fact that both of them want the opposite ends of a stick and still pursue each other will do.

Characters and Conflicts

Sophie is rooted in her past. It makes her who she is. The depth and portrayal of loneliness through Sophie is commendable. It makes you care for the character. Alexander Fletcher on the other hand is a man burdened by expectations. The internal struggle of these characters is one of the highlights of the book. However, instead of straightaway jumping into a romance, if only it took more time for the main characters to fall for each other, it would have made for a great read.

The epilogue had glimpses of other characters such as Alexander's family. The book could have spent more time showing how Sophie's relationship with them evolved. The supporting characters from the village were likable and enjoyable.


Is this a necessary pick for any bookish person? I don't think so. I had a good time reading it, yet it will be a one time read for me. If you love the backdrop of a fishing village, bookstore and a budding young romance give it a go. Otherwise, The Little Bookshop At Herring Cove might not be the one for you.
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Sophie Jones was struggling with her bookshop, she hoped the Christmas rush would provide enough money to keep her going for another year. One day this gorgeous babe walked into her bookshop and said he was looking for Sophie Jones. He introduced himself as Alexander Fletcher and offered his hand to shake.  She recognised his surname, Fletcher as in  the resort builders, she knew why he was here. What he wanted. She was determined that he wasn’t going to get it, no matter how polite he was, how nice he seemed... or how much money he was offering. 
She just needed to figure out a way to boost sales and to change the downward trend that had come with the shrinking of Herring Cove’s population. That was all, no big deal. 
Except it was a big deal, a huge deal, massive. The bookshop was her livelihood and the flat about it was her home. 
Alexander wanted a proper chat with Sophie to find out why she’d declined their offer, Sophie told him she had no desire to sell the place. 
This book follows the journey that Sophie and her bookshop make against Fletcher Resort Builders and their ambition to turn Herring Cove into the destination resort they wanted.
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Alexander Fletcher is the son of a property developer, you know those that come into rundown seaside areas and revamp it into a modern resort. While Herring Cove is a little on the rundown side, it is nothing if it’s not a community. At its heart there are still a few shops and a pub, but it is hard for those businesses to keep going.

One of the businesses is the bookshop run by Sophie, while she does like the look of the man that stands before her, she does not fall for his charms and the generous offer he has to buy her business… well, she doesn’t fall for him straight away.

Now I have never read anything by this author before and I have to say that my first outing was wonderful. I loved the sound of Herring Cove and I loved the characters in the story. This is a story that oozes heartwarming and feelgood as well as having quite a few sniggery moments, especially as the slight flirty but not supposed to be flirty comment litter this lovely story.

There is a story behind the bookshop and it has ramifications for Sophie and her on the “don’t need a man in my life” outlook. Alexander, well isn’t he a dark horse, and rather handy as well!

This is a lovely one sitting read, it was captivating and light to read but also had a nice feel to it, full of warmth, friends and laughs. Having not read this author before I cannot wait to read the other already published books, The Little Bookshop at Herring Cove is a book I would definitely recommend.
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First time reading this author but it won't be my last. 

This was a lovely read, nice and easy going storyline, no real concentration needy. 

I enjoyed the story, which is based around a bookshop and a little seaside village, what's not to like about that. It certainly made me want to go visit that's for sure.  

I enjoyed getting to the know characters, very easy to fall in love with Alex but then I do have a weak spot for a man in a suit lol.  I also developed a soft spot for Puddles the cat, sounded like a right cutie pie. 

So if your looking for a delightful pleasant story with lovely characters, true friendships and community spirit, then look no further and give this book a go.
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As an avid romance reader as well as someone who lives this author's writing I somehow always look forward to her books and this series.

A tiny town, charismatic characters, and two main characters that have a golden heart but have to deal with their issues firstly.

Emotions and feelings are perfectly described and you cannot but adore all the dialogues, and banter and sweet situations those two find themselves. 

The love story burns nicely and at a desirable speed so you can enjoy all the other characters and their interaction with each other. 

As Sophie's and Alex story starts to find a compelling beginning of something new you are already imaging that and you are mirroring yourself in them and you are so happy that you can see yourself is some of the characters! 

A definition of a good summer read is this cozy book.
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I enjoyed this book. First one by this author, but for sure it will not be the last. Great book to return too at the end of the day.
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How I enjoyed this book, it was full of a lovely small town vibe, a bookshop that is trying to turn its fortunes around, a romance between two complete opposites who should be sworn enemies, a man having a slight crisis of job and being, a fabulous location and some great friends. 

Sophie is determined that she won't be forced into selling her beloved bookshop, just so that a developer can turn Herring Cove into a big soulless tourist resort. Her whole life is in that shop and location and she has many reasons why she wants to stay put. 

Alex is the man tasked with persuading her to sign and take a large financial settlement, but yet it soon becomes obvious they have have misjudged each other and that Alex may have hidden depths to him. 

It was incredibly sweet to see but to me I loved Alex's character development, turning from corporate drone Alexander into the man he is meant to be.  i couldn't help falling for him myself. 

There is just such a sense of sweet loveliness within this book, I felt completely at home within its pages, I couldn't' read it fast enough, reading well into the early hours of the morning in bed.   

You sort of knew where the story would end up, and I did  think at one point a certain happening was inevitable, but it was also amusing too. And I enjoyed reading this and just seeing how they would reach the ending you were rooting for! 

Another really entertaining and joyful story from an author that I love. 

Thank you to HQ Digital and Netgalley for this copy which I have reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
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I  received an advanced digital copy of this book from the author, publisher and Thanks to all for the opportunity to read and review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own. 

Ms. Hailes' book is a delight to read. Put your phone on silent, get comfy and prepare to check out of reality and get lost in what could possibly be one of the sweetest stories I've ever read. An virtual aspirin for this headache inducing world.

5 out of 5 stars.  Highly recommended.
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I really enjoyed a great many things about this book. Characters were fleshed out and the plot was well spaced. Some of the secondary storylines could've used a bit more page space but all in all an enjoyable read!
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The Little Bookshop on Herring Cove first grabbed my attention by the beautiful cover.  Unfortunately, the story fell flat for me.  

Thank you NetGalley for the opportunity to give this book a try.
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I'm normally ALL OVER books like this one; just a light hearted romance story/chicklit.

But somehow, I just wasn't really impressed. It feels like a 'dime in a dozen' to me and I couldn't fully connect to the characters, and the writing. Just not in the way I wanted to. 

Of course, seeing how much romance books I read, it's bound to happen that you come across similar stories, story elements, etc. This doesn't bother me, if the characters stand out and the writing is unique. Unfortunately, I just can't really say that this was the case with this book. 

There was really nothing wrong with the book perse, but I personally just couldn't really connect to it because it was quite a bland set of characters and it overall felt like the book just didn't really stand out compared to other books in the genre and for the fact that I just didn't connect with the writing style. 

It's a story I'm sure lots of romance/chicklit readers out there would love, so I'd definitely recommend picking it up if you like the synopsis of this one.
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The start of something wonderful…


Sophie Jones loves her little bookshop at Herring Cove. She’ll never give it up to big property developer, Alexander Fletcher – no matter how handsome he might be…

Yet beneath Alex’s sharp suit and persuasive manner, there’s something about him that makes Sophie want to trust him.

So when he offers to help make her little shop a success again, she wonders whether this could be the start of something wonderful for both Sophie and Alex – together?

So these are the reasons why I didn't make it to the end.

Don't judge a book by its cover

It lacks emotions


The writing style, you can easily put it down and forget that you'd been reading it. You can be easily distracted and in parts it lacks character development. Sophie appears to be in the middle of a pity party and is quite happy to bemoan her situation without taking any responsibility for the part she plays. Alexander doesn't come across as an Alpha man. We all love a good alpha man 🙌🏻 Alexander is brow beaten by his father to following in his footsteps and it appears Alexander follows meekly without putting up much of a fight.

Slow burner

Chapter Six ~ Having made it 26% into the book (I feel like I deserve an award 🥇) and still couldn't tell you much about Sophie or Alexander. And due to that it's difficult to invest more time when there's no connection between (me the reader) and the leading characters

The Promise

The promise of a adorable cozy read is overlook by the lengthiness it takes for anything to pan out. This adds to making this a book you can put down. As I've said I made it 6 chapters deep and wow was it challenging. I kept hoping it would improved but it did.

I'd still give the book 3 STARS as it has potential.

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Sophie Jones loves her little bookshop at Herring Cove. She’ll never give it up to big property developer, Alexander Fletcher – no matter how handsome he might be…

Yet beneath Alex’s sharp suit and persuasive manner, there’s something about him that makes Sophie want to trust him.

So when he offers to help make her little shop a success again, she wonders whether this could be the start of something wonderful for both Sophie and Alex – together?

I got exactly what I expected out of this. It was a sweet romance with minimal plot moving it forward.

*Book received from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*
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Sweet story but parts of it dragged for me. I always love stories about books though. Likeable overall.
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The Little Bookshop at Herring Cove is very well written, with the right doses of drama and lots of love. The spaces and places are so well described that at all times I felt very integrated in the environment. I had the feeling of being inside the novel, living the story along with the characters.
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I am no longer interested in the content of this book. So, I'm DNF'ing this book for now. I may circle back around to this book one day.
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A lovely setting and a warm story but unfortunately our heroine falls at the first hurdle and is smitten with the big bad developer the first time she meets him. he’s described as “babelicious”... I almost dropped the kindle in disgust, but I digress...

Cue a series of events where his company tries to pressurise her into selling her building and she can’t resist his charms despite wanting to... 

Whilst the depths of her friendships are clear, the narrative isn’t particularly strong in places. The ending is good and some of the scenes are well drawn out (such as in the pub, with the landlord and the demarcation zone) but others are a little silly / rushed. 

Good description of the delights of Herring Cove and its beach are standout moments but sadly this book doesn’t sing as much as it could. I’ve read other books by this author which were more engaging (eg little unicorn shop)...

3* An enjoyable read
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This was a sweet story with a refreshing bunch of characters. Enjoyed this read from the first page to the last word.
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A lovely story, the two main characters Sophie who owns a bookshop in a picturesque little seaside town and Alex a property developer. Alex is sent by his father who own the fletcher group to try and persuade the villagers to sell their properties. Sophie has ties with her shop after her parents were killed when she was young and she stayed with her aunt in the shop and then took over. No one will make her sell! Her friend Natalie who is next door sells out but supports Sophie, as expected she falls head over heels for Alex and he turns out to be super nice and tries to help her bring her shop out of the darkness and the village thrives on it. Towards the end Alex tried to convince his father rather than building a resort they could actually make money by buying properties to rent out and titivate the shops to make the place more appealing to tourists as it has everything needed just now it’s just run down. I loved this story it ended with all the elements to know how the story ended which didn’t leave me wanting another book which seems to be the case with many now! I thoroughly recommend giving this book a read.
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I really enjoyed the writing style and storyline in this book. I’ve read a couple other books by Kellie Hailes and this one lived up to what I hoped it would be. 
Kellie’s writing style is so easy to read, it welcomes you in and holds your imagination throughout with interesting characters in a gorgeous setting. 
The relationship between Sophie and Alexander was lovely to read, although I’m a bit unsure about believing they could fall in love as quickly as they did. However, once I put those misgivings to one side I thoroughly enjoyed the sparkle developing into a flame between them and seeing their relationship develop as they got to know each other. I found I was really rooting for them to be together, although the twists and turns in their relationship were enjoyable to read too. 
Both Sophie and Alexander are lonely souls who are trying their best to succeed, but who are both missing fulfilment and enjoyment in their professional and personal lives, it turns out what they were both missing was each other. Once together both flourish, but time isn’t on their side and after a week together it appears what they have built up in their hearts will be demolished along with most of Herring Cove.
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