The Second Chance Holiday Club

A joyful and heartwarming story of friendship and taking chances, perfect for fans of Hazel Prior

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Pub Date 01 Dec 2022 | Archive Date 01 Dec 2022

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Description

It's never too late to change the habits of a lifetime...

Evelyn Pringle isn't the sort to make rash decisions. Or any decisions, really – she's always left that sort of thing up to her husband. But he's been found dead, wearing his best suit, with a diamond ring in his pocket that doesn't fit her. When Evelyn finds a letter addressed to a woman on the Isle of Wight, she decides to deliver it. By hand.

So begins a very unusual holiday, and an adventure no one could have predicted – least of all Evelyn herself. With the help of some unexpected new friends, and a little effort on her part, Evelyn discovers that it is never too late to have a second chance at life and forge friendships that are well-worth living for.

The Second Chance Holiday Club is a heartwarming and funny later-life uplit for fans of Judy Leigh, Hazel Prior and Maddie Please.

It's never too late to change the habits of a lifetime...

Evelyn Pringle isn't the sort to make rash decisions. Or any decisions, really – she's always left that sort of thing up to her husband. But...


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ISBN 9781804542217
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Average rating from 40 members


Featured Reviews

I loved Evelyn all her insecurities and heartache. What a journey we take with this unlikely heroine as she rises to the challenge that life throws at her. I loved the twists and turns of the story and all the characters, a great read. I would love to know what happens next.

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Really enjoyed this book with three refreshing old ladies each looking for an escape and booking a small break to the isle of white to find it, unlikely friendships and each finding their eacapes as their breaks progress, a few giggles along the way, brilliant

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This was not what I expected but I absolutely loved it. The story of 3 mature ladies on a coach trip . Mainly set on Isle of Wight. It was just fab.. They all had secrets . It was just great.. You have to read it. The very ending made me laugh. There were sad parts and parts that made you think as well. I look forward to Kate Galley ‘s next book

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What a fantastic book! The Second Chance Holiday Club perfectly weaves humour, mystery and unforgettable characters together in a story I didn't want to put down.

Poor Evelyn - finding a letter addressed to another woman and a diamond ring that isn't meant for her in her late husband's possessions, she decides to forgo the comforts of home to get some answers. This leads to a Christmas coach trip to the Isle of Wight, and a holiday Evelyn is never going to forget. It's a set up that allows the author to have lots of fun with Evelyn and her fellow holiday makers, and I adored the many comic scenes, from them first arriving at The Welcome Rest to their trip to see the sights in a snowstorm to them having to lay on Christmas dinner themselves. While the book is packed with humour, there's a real mystery at the heart of the book, and I loved how Evelyn's character developed as she examined the life she thought she had all these years with her husband against the truths she's faced with. The friendships she makes and the way the three main characters support each other along as they all try to deal with sadness in their lives and find happier endings was lovely to read. By the end of the novel, I was so invested in Evelyn's life, I didn't want to turn the final page, although the ending was perfect and made me cry. I can't wait to read the next book from Kate Galley!

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I loved Evelyn all her insecurities and heartache. What a journey we take with this unlikely heroine as she rises to the challenge that life throws at her. I loved the twists and turns of the story and all the characters, a great read. I would love to know what happens next.

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Three widows meet in this thought-provoking story. Striking up an amazing friendship in a seedy Isle of Wight

hotel over Christmas and the New Year, they look forward to new and better things in the future..

A wise, funny, and uplifting tale, offering acceptance and hope.. The holiday from hell is turned into a new

start as they move on. I really enjoyed reading this book.

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This is an absolutely delightful book. I particularly enjoy books with older main characters who are living life to the full. When Evelyn’s husband dies in a car accident she finds he was on his way to visit another woman with a ring in his pocket. The layers of Evelyn’s marriage are gradually revealed, and we see that Evelyn is a complex character. As Evelyn embarks on a journey to deliver the ring to its intended owner there are some hilarious moments as well as very moving ones. Evelyn emerges from her self imposed carapace to make new friends on the disastrous coach trip. There could definitely be a second volume to this tale, I hope so!

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I really enjoyed taking a coach trip with these three ladies - it’s the perfect holiday read! I’ll be looking for more books by Kate Galley in the future.

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The journey undertaken by Evelyn is full of emotions, heartache and laughter! It wonderful to read the friendships made between three unlikely friends was beautiful too!

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I absolutely loved this book. The most amazing characters and so well written. A really lovely, lovely book. Highly recommended.

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This is such a lovely book. It comes across as so easy to read which means that the author worked really hard to make it flow so effortlessly. It is feel good, fun and has some good twist and turns in it along the way.

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This is just a wonderful book which I got thoroughly immersed in. A gentle light read with more than a touch of underlying humour with twists and turns along the way. The characters are just utterly delightful, the main ones being women in their 70s, each with their own real life issues and secrets, after finding themselves on their own over Christmas after bereavement. Plus the peripheral characters were also real and bought to life so well by Kate Galley that one can imagine them all so well . The whole plot was so believable overall I found this book was such a refreshing and entertaining read that I just want to know what happens next.

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Evelyn Pringle is different from most older women described in novels. She is strongly built and, except for the odd niggling joint pain, in good health. Her relationship with her husband Tony, who has recently passed away, was distant but reassuring. He was there for the family and a popular member of the local community. It his only when she finds a concealed drawer in his desk that she realises Tony had a secret life apart from the one he shared with her. That's when she sets off on a voyage of discovery. to find out the truth about her marriage.

‘Evelyn Pringle isn't the sort to make rash decisions. Or any decisions, really – she's always left that sort of thing up to her husband. But he's been found dead, wearing his best suit, with a diamond ring in his pocket that more doesn't fit her. When Evelyn finds a letter addressed to a woman on the Isle of Wight, she decides to deliver it. By hand. So begins a very unusual holiday, and an adventure no one could have predicted – least of all Evelyn herself. With the help of some unexpected new friends, and a little effort on her part, Evelyn discovers that it is never too late to have a second chance at life and forge friendships that are well worth living for.’

Evelyn ignores her daughter's plans for the Christmas period and signs up for a few days in the Isle of Wight. On the coach she gets to know the women sitting on either side of her. Cynthia, who is a little older, is a natural organiser. Joy, who. is younger than the other two, is friendly but reserved, as if she is hiding something. What I like about these women is their willingness to take control of their lives. In spite of being from a generation of women who were expected to depend on their husbands for everything, they are enterprising and willing to take risks. Evelyn's daring attempt to locate her husband's lover almost lands her in trouble, but with the help and support of her new friends she wins through and begins to see the future more posiitively.

I found the premise engaging. Evelyn’s struggle to recover from the shock of her husband’s betrayal is convincing. All of the experiences of the women in The Second Chance Holiday Club seem genuine and arouse sympathy. It is good to see older women being presented as real people with genuine emotions.

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Really good book. The plot is very true to life. Believable. One most can relate to. The book is very well written.

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Quite a fun story with lots of mini threads running underneath. Easy to read, a perfect holiday book!

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Evelyn Pringle is totally a different main character that most authors portray. Strong willed, in fairly good health and plodding along in life. Until she loses her husband and her life is turned around by her findings

She embarks on a unexpected, out of character, trip away just before Christmas which leads her to find herself with the help from Cynthia and Joy, friends that ordinarily would never have been on Evelyn's radar in life

A refreshing read which keeps you wanting to read more. In fact, I read the whole thing in a day as I really didn't want to put it down...and when I finished, I felt as if I had lost touch with great friends

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Perfect summer read, about more mature ladies. Totally believable story many people can relate too. Thank you netgalley for the advanced copy.

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What an utterly adorable book! Being a lady of mature years myself ,it was joyous to read a book that allowed three mature ladies to be the leading characters. It took me a little while to warm to them but as they thawed and starting unpeeling their layers of defences , I grew to love them and want to spend time with them. The peripheral characters were equally engaging and I was totally invested in their stories . Highly recommended

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Evelyn Pringle isn't the sort to make rash decisions. Or any decisions, really – she's always left that sort of thing up to her husband. But he's been found dead, wearing his best suit, with a diamond ring in his pocket that doesn't fit her. When Evelyn finds a letter addressed to a woman on the Isle of Wight, she decides to deliver it. By hand.

So begins a very unusual holiday, and an adventure no one could have predicted – least of all Evelyn herself. With the help of some unexpected new friends, and a little effort on her part, Evelyn discovers that it is never too late to have a second chance at life and forge friendships that are well-worth living for.

The writing style is great and it's fantastically written. A wonderful story, beautifully told. I absolutely tore through it! A sparkling, joyful read!

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Evelyn has recently lost her husband Tony to whom she was married for over fifty years. She seems a bit lost until she finds a letter. He wasn't the man she thought she married. And so she heads off to the Isle of Wight where she meets Joy and Cynthia who have their own secrets.
It was really refreshing to read about pensioners for a change. They were a formidable threesome after initially Evelyn being a bit standoffish.
Cynthia is certainly full on.
They got into a couple of scrapes that were very funny.
I've recently returned from Shanklin so it was lovely to return to the IoW.
A very enjoyable read.
Thanks to Netgalley and Aria for the ARC in return for an honest review.

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I really enjoyed this story. An elderly lady's husband has passed away and she finds a letter to another woman and diamond ring hidden among his belongings. She sets out to travel to this other woman by booking a coach trip to the Isle of Wight. Along the way she gets to know two other elderly widows. A novel about the journey, not the destination. I enjoyed the focus on these older women.

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I absolutely adored this book! What a journey we take with Evelyn, our unlikely heroine! Wise, funny and uplifting I loved every twist and turn of this thought-provoking, heart-warming novel.
When Evelyn’s husband is found dead in his car, with a ring in his pocket, a map and a letter declaring his love for another woman it sets off a chain of events that will see Evelyn book a holiday to the Isle of Wight and deliver the letter by hand. So begins an adventure that will forge new friendships and see Evelyn examine the life she thought she had and find a happier ending.
Uplifting and joyous, I didn’t want to turn the last page. I can’t wait to read more from Kate Galley!

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I loved this book! I wouldn't have thought it was a debut novel, it was so well-written. I loved the author's style and also the pace of the story.
The main storyline is about Evelyn, who has lived in a sort of limbo for decades. Now as an elderly woman decides to do something bold and unexpectedly finds friends and a totally new life. It was lovely to watch as she was coming out of her shell.
I loved all the supporting characters as well. The two new friends also had their painful issues in their lives, but they also found a way forward.
The storyline itself was also really interesting, full of unexpected twits and turns.
To sum up, I spent really enjoyable hours with this novel, often staying up late in the night as I wanted to read one more chapter.
I can recommend it to everyone who loves a good story about senior protagonists. As for me, I will look out for the next works of the author.

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I just finished The Second Chance Holiday Club and absolutely love it! What a brilliant debut novel from Kate Galley.

The writing is effortless and each character comes to life in a relatable and tridimensional way that creates an immediate connection with the reader.
As I wizzed through the chapters it became impossible not root for Evelyn Pringle with her dry humour and no-nonsense attitude. I enjoyed the relationship and friendship forming between the different characters as much as the unravelling of the mystery and secrets unearthed by the sudden passing of Evelyn's husband.

Funny and touching, this novel is the perfect fireside read...although this is great book in all weather as it was very refreshing to read about snow and Christmas day during the heatwave :-)

I'm looking forward to read more books from this author.

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I really enjoyed this book, i don't think the cover in my mind relates to the story as i think the hotel is more central to the story.

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I really liked this book, it was gentle, warm, a little sad but ultimately uplifting. Great to have an older woman as the main character and I thought this was a well observed, well written novel.

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“It’s never too late to change the habits of a lifetime…”


This is another of those books I never really thought I would enjoy anything like as much as I did. However, I have no hesitation in awarding this one the full five stars and I would definitely never have guessed that it was a debut novel written by a new author. The messaging was discreet, yet there for all to see. The humour was subtle, but it still made me laugh out loud quite often. And when, despite the more advanced years of Evelyn over myself, I was a little perturbed to find myself comparing many of her quirky and often downright thoughtless traits; and sharp, acerbic, often insulting comments, with my own mannerisms, I came away almost determined to change my inbuilt habits of a lifetime – Am I really like that!

I am only going to divulge the very bare bones of a storyline which offers so much entertainment, building of friendships, new personal beginnings and laying of ghosts to rest… and even a little breaking and entering!

...

Evelyn had been married to Tony Pringle for many decades, when he is found dead inside his car, apparently the victim of a sudden heart attack. Theirs had not been a particularly happy marriage, as, given the prevailing circumstances, it had been rather forced upon a young and reluctant Tony by his family, very much against his wishes. Their son, Stephen, did unite them as a family for a short period, however, following his sudden and untimely death aged just seven, a distance between them was established which neither had the will or inclination to try and reconcile. Tony, as much as he gave off the air of being the successful businessman, was in fact, living off Evelyn’s wealth and therefore never had any intention of leaving her, or giving her her freedom. She in turn, relied heavily on Tony to organise, run and maintain the outward appearance of their lives, accepting the many ‘business trips’ he took, for what they were, or rather what she chose to close her eyes and mind to, for a quiet life.

When his body is recovered, an item of jewellery found in his possession, together with travel documents, makes it clear that he was about to take a trip, although this was news to Evelyn, who does some investigating of her own and discovers in Tony’s home office, a letter and address for a woman on the Isle of Wight. It is perfectly obvious that they were more than just good friends, although Tony had been keeping an even bigger and more terrible secret from everyone, which should she confront his mystery paramour with the information, might blow up in her face spectacularly! Evelyn, who doesn’t drive, has no friends except for her much younger and garrulous sister Carol and her family, and has never been further than the local shopping centre on the bus by herself, amazingly only prevaricates for a few days before deciding to deliver the ring to Tony’s mystery woman, in person. As Tony’s death was so recent and Christmas is only days away, Carol is definitely nonplussed when Evelyn announces that she will not be joining them for the festive period, but is instead taking a ‘turkey and tinsel’ coach trip to the Isle of Wight for a few days.

Much as a very cynical Evelyn had predicted, the trip itself is a catalogue of disasters right from the outset; from the over friendly and definitely over optimistic driver Alan; to the ebullience of her two immediate travelling companions Cynthia and Joy, who although much the same age as herself certainly don’t intend to let the grass grow under their feet and age gracefully; even down to the literally do-it-yourself, dingy hotel experience into which the entire coachload is plunged. Cynthia proves herself to be a consummate organiser, whilst Joy is able to command a kitchen and prepare meals befitting the season, with the help of four very young trainee staff members who have decided to remain and help salvage some vestige of seasonal cheer for this coach load of misery. It seems that all Evelyn manages to do really well – is complain about everything and snipe at everyone! Cynthia isn’t prepared to put up with Evelyn’s morose behaviour for the entire holiday, so she and Joy set about getting to the real reason for her making the trip in the first place. However, in the course of doing so, a surprisingly perceptive Evelyn works out that she is not the only one with a secret and as a tacit understanding develops that all three can be trusted with each others hidden truths, one by one they open up, in a cathartic release of pent up feelings and emotions, although each of them still has amends to make and bridges to build with friends and family back home.

Cynthia is probably the most emotional of the group, despite the ‘public face’ she wears, although it transpires that she is also the one who knows what she wants when she sees it and is prepared to move heaven and earth to get it. Joy has a much more serious problem on her hands, which will ultimately mean a delayed trip home for the three unlikely new friends, as they must wait for Joy to finish ‘helping the police with their enquiries’. Evelyn has a much more tricky visit to make to Tony’s mystery lady friend Sarah, although even she is totally unprepared for the complexity of a situation which is even worse than she could have imagined. Her anger dissipates in light of the sheer magnitude of Tony’s duplicity and lies, with her rather new and unfamiliar mellow approach to a problem, taking over. After a few false starts, some straight talking leaves the air clear and Evelyn surprises even herself with the decisions she reaches. She leaves a struggling, hard-working mother with a whole new start ahead of her and a young hotel trainee happily contemplating his future as a potential top chef. Whilst they will never become bosom friends, Evelyn and Sarah will always have a shared past and a brighter future in common.

By the time they are all finally free to go home, the New Year has already been rung in, so with a rallying ‘all for one and one for all’ agreement, the three new besties resolve to keep in touch and visit often, leaving a much changed and improved Evelyn to do some straight talking with Carol, in the hope of building bridges and tearing down some of the walls she had built around herself. Carol has a couple more revelations for Evelyn, but these she is now well able to take in her stride, much to Carol’s surprise. So whilst forgiveness for Tony is never going to be a realistic option, a calm sense of closure and laying ghosts to rest, makes Eleanor’s transformation complete. Oh! – and talking of walls. There is going to be one very happy and surprised young travel agent soon.

...

Some wonderfully fluent and evocative writing, complemented this beautifully textured, fast-paced, multi-layered storyline, which is narrated in the first person by Evelyn herself. Whilst the physical footprint the story occupies, is quite finely focussed, the narrative about specific places is very descriptive with good spatial awareness, although for any seriously confirmed ‘armchair travellers’ among you, this one might be a little light on location. But believe me, this was one unique hotel stay and botched house-breaking episode, which I could visualise in all its ‘laugh or it will make you cry’ moments.

This was a perceptive and poignant story about moving on, of new beginnings and making fresh starts, with its focus undoubtedly concentrated on the storyline and the cast of characters who occupied its space. The interactions between them as individuals and with the wider community. Their personalities and how a little understanding and compassion, often from complete strangers, could change their perspectives on life. Strange locations and unexpected circumstances only served to help create the bonds which would weave them together and re-define them, creating many immersive and memorable moments which they would never forget.

The three main protagonists Cynthia, Joy and Evelyn, represent a complex jigsaw of vulnerable human emotions, which are laid bare when the fragility of the lines between life and death, defeat and survival, love and hate, trust and duplicity, are drawn. However a raw addictive passion and the will to survive, overcomes all the odds stacked against them, making them stronger, determined to be true to themselves, and more united as time goes on. They brought out both the best and the worse in each other and the energy between them was genuine, believable, engaging and authentic to the roles created for them by the author, with the synergy between them obvious to see.

The trauma of grief and loss and the long term effects it can have on mental health is eased when their respective experiences are shared and brought out into open discussion, which for Evelyn in particular, is something which needed to have happened many years ago and spurs her on to seek a spell of professional counselling. Whilst this may not have made her relationship with Tony any easier, they may have been able to help each other overcome their loss, rather than Evelyn retreating further and further into herself, wrapping a blanket of guilt and shame around herself, thus making the gulf between them even wider.

Maybe the ending wasn’t quite as I had expected it to be, but what always makes reading such a wonderful experience for me, is that with each and every new book, I am taken on a unique and individual journey, by authors who fire my imagination, stir my emotions and stimulate my senses. This story was definitely one of a kind, having the power to evoke so many feelings, that I’m sure I won’t have felt the same way about it as the last reader, nor the next, so I can only recommend that you read The Second Chance Holiday Club for yourself and see where your journey leads you!

As one of my fellow bloggers so aptly wrote: “Sometimes reading something different is like a breath of fresh air”. Thank you, Shirley, I couldn’t agree more!

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Wonderfully sweet story of Evelyn Pringle an older, settled lady, whose husband suddenly dies.
She finds new friends that are not expected while on a sudden holiday trip, taken to solve a mystery that she found left by her deceased spouse.
Who knew that a beautiful friendship would develop and these ladies would help to deliver and solve Evelyn's dilemma!

I definitely recommend this book! Well done and it has a lot of detail. I easily could put myself in with these "girls" while reading! Thank you to #NetGalley and #HeadofZeus, Aria for this ARC and allowing me to provide my own review, I will be awaiting more to read from this new author!

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Firstly, thanks to Netgalley, Kate and the publisher for a copy of this book in return for an honest review.

After the sudden death of her husband, Evelyn Pringle sets off on an unexpected holiday and meets Cynthia and Joy. Together they want to unravel a secret that her husband took to the grave which Evelyn only finds out after his passing - did she really know the man she was married to for all of those years?

Initially unlikeable, you can see Evelyn grow throughout the book and this is in part thanks to the blossoming of the friendship between the three completely different women.

Overall, a great read which covers betrayal, loss, grief and friendship.

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Wonderful story about friendships, second chances, and what ultimately can make life feel worth living. The character of Evelyn is easy to like and empathize with, and her story is full of insights. Recommended if you enjoy good writing, and stories about how to survive what challenges life throws at you. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC.

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When I started this book, I wasn’t too sure about the age of the main characters, but this was soon dismissed as I got carried away with the story and the reveal about more detail of Evelyn, Joy and Cynthia’s lives. The revelations really make you think about your own life and in particular “seizing the day”. Sad, funny and uplifting. I really think we need a sequel to this one!

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Evelyn was an older character and it seemed unfair that she had to discover what she did.
Her husband found dead in a vehicle in another part of the county with ring in his pocket
and a cryptic letter addressed to a woman on the Isle of Wight. Her marriage to Tony has
been devoid of any deep feeling for a long time, and they had just got into a rut with Tony
ruling the roost most of the time, using Evelyn's money for his own advancement.

Evelyn decides to pursue her own investigation and their follows a hilarious journey to a
run down hotel on the Isle of Wight in the company of a tour group - including ladies as
dysfunctional as any you could find but all finding comfort and solace in each other. Evelyn
was set in her ways, did not like to mix, was very particular what she did and how she did
things which were very annoying to read about until you realized that most ladies of her age
were like that. (Made me very keen to be otherwise as I am in the same age category as her!!!!)

The story was sad and funny. Discovering the truth of Tony's infidelity which went back decades
his long relationship with the other woman, Evelyn making amends in the way she knew how which was
wonderful and peace coming to both Evelyn and the other woman's daughter who was resentful, angry
and wary at the beginning was a good ending for all.

Very character driven, very descriptive of the Isle of Wight as well and the courage of three
women to overcome odds in their personal lives.

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The Second Chance Holiday Club by Kate Galley far exceeded my expectations. This was an author that I was not familiar with, but the book description peaked my curiosity. The three main ladies each have a story to tell. They meet up on a Christmas holiday trip. Although they are different in every way, they come together and develop an affinity for each other. The other sub characters help weave the story together and they too are like able. I highLy recommend this book. I had to stay up very late last night to finish it and that’s the sign of a good book.

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