Janet’s first love arrives out of the blue after thirty years. Those were simpler times for them both. Sunny childhood beach holidays, fish and chips and big copper pennies clunking into one armed bandits.
The Wells family has run the Cromer Pier Summertime Special Show for generations. But it’s now 2009 and the recession is biting hard. Owner Janet Wells and daughter Karen are facing an uncertain future. The show must go on, and Janet gambles on a fading talent show star. But both the star and the other cast members have their demons. This is a story of love, loyalty and luvvies. The road to Cromer Pier might be the end of their careers, or it might just be a new beginning.
What I Thought:
As traditional as chips and a 99, The Road to Cromer Pier takes us to a struggling summer show at the height of the financial crash. It’s a clever move, setting this at a time when the ‘staycation’ was becoming popular, as it allows the plot to advance, while recalling the glory years of seaside resorts such as Cromer.
At first, I was not sure what was going on in this novel, but as I realised that the various chapters were from the points of view of the main characters, seemingly unrelated at first, but tying up nicely as the book went on, it became a much easier read.
Commenting on such things as football scandals, the farce of TV talent shows and – as I said – the financial crash, The Road to Cromer Pier covers a lot of very interesting ground but still, at heart, remains a very human story of teenage love and loss, and also has an element of ‘The Show Must Go On’ beloved of many mid-century British movies. There is even a dastardly villain who gets his comeuppance to boo and hiss.
Evoking what’s best about the British seaside, this book firmly taps into the nostalgia market, but with a fairly modern edge to it – perfect for the summer reading pile.
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This post is part of a blog tour to celebrate the release of The Road to Cromer Pier. There is some more great content and reviews at the blogs below, so do make sure to check them out…
Please note: I was sent a copy of this book for review. All opinions are, as ever, my own.