Book Review // Summer at Shell Cottage by Lucy Diamond

summer at shell cottage – lucy diamond 
pan macmillan


A seaside holiday at Shell Cottage in Devon has always been the perfect escape for the Tarrant family. Beach fun, barbecues and warm summer evenings with a cocktail or two – who could ask for more?

But this year, everything has changed. Following her husband’s recent death, Olivia is struggling to pick up the pieces. Then she makes a shocking discovery that turns her world upside down.

As a busy mum and GP, Freya’s used to having her hands full, but a bad day at work has put her career in jeopardy and now she’s really feeling the pressure.

Harriet’s looking forward to a break with her lovely husband Robert and teenage daughter Molly. But unknown to Harriet, Robert is hiding a secret – and so, for that matter, is Molly…


Summer at Shell Cottage is the second book released by Lucy Diamond in 2015, the first being A Year of Taking Chances. After reading Summer with my Sister (I seem to have a thing about Lucy Diamond & Summer?!) back in January this year, I knew I would like this one too.  The cover is just gorgeous, such lovely colours!

Lucy Diamond has a talent for creating fantastic, light, easy reads with characters that I can easily relate to. Summer at Shell Cottage is one of those reads, with plenty of hidden surprises.

There are lots of characters in this novel. We hear from all of their perspectives, bar a few. You’d think that this would be confusing but Lucy Diamond’s writing style and ability to create unique voices for each character makes everything flow seamlessly. Each character has their own voice – Molly’s ‘voice’ was my favourite, by far. Lucy Diamond encapsulated the sullen, angsty teenager perfectly whilst still holding on to that nervous vulnerability.

Summer at Shell Cottage is set in Devon. The setting is picturesque – blue seas, calm landscapes, beaches, reading and copious amounts of wine. Each location is described in such detail that I could imagine myself there – sipping a cold drink, whilst looking out at the sea in the glorious sunshine. All of this combined makes for a perfect Summer read (I also want to visit Devon now, I went to Newquay about ten years ago).

I wasn’t expecting some of the plot twists in this novel. So much happened on the Tarrant family holiday, but I had no problem keeping up. I enjoyed how everything unfolded, I was so curious about all of the secrets and couldn’t wait for them to be revealed. In short, this book is about finding the new you, being reckless and having fun!

I have left this review quite short as I don’t want to reveal too much about the plot. If you want a fun, summer read with plenty of surprises and revelations then you should definitely read Summer at Shell Cottage. A perfect beach read!



  1. says

    You should write reviews for a living because I had no interest in this and now I’m feeling like I might pop to Sainsburys and pick it up after all!

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