27 Apr 2014

Book Review / A Seaside Affair by Fern Britton

The new wonderfully warm and witty novel from Fern Britton, the much-loved TV personality.

Perfect for fans of Katie Fforde and Trisha Ashley.

When the residents of the Cornish seaside town of Trevay discover that their ramshackle but much-loved theatre is about to be taken over by a global coffee chain, Café au Lait, they are up in arms.

It is up to Penny Leighton, hotshot Producer, to come up with a plan to save it. Armed with her only her mobile phone and her enviable contacts book, she starts to pull in some serious favours. Trevay soon finds itself at the centre of the universe when more A-listers than you can shake a stick at arrive to take part in a charity season at the theatre.
The play throws out a chance to Jess Tate, girlfriend to TV heartthrob Ryan Roberts. His career is on the rise while hers remains resolutely in the doldrums. But when opportunity comes calling, it isn’t just her career prospects that are about to change.

Tevay is about to put on the show of its life – but can the villagers, and Jess, hold on to the thing they love the most?

Published:     24th April 2014
Publisher:  HarperCollins
Goodreads :  Click here

Author Website:  Click Here
Series:  Not part of a series but recommend reading Hidden Treasures First.
Source:  Review Copy from Publisher
Review:   9 out of 10

My Review

Fern is very quickly becoming one of my favourite authors of all time.  Not only does she create an enthralling seaside community and describes the scenery so beautifully, she creates characters and scenarios that draw you in and keep you there until the story is done.

As you can probably tell from the first paragraph, I absolutely adored this story.  There were quite a few characters to get to grips with but the way they were introduced to the story I had absolutely no trouble in keeping up with them and remembering who they are.

What I loved about this story...
Everything.  The descriptions of locations were so great that they made me feel as if I was right there in the story, I loved that given the fact that at the time I was reading this book it was a typical rainy English day!  The fact that each character had their own particular back story and mini plot in this story coupled with the fact that we had the major plot line of saving the theatre, kept my attention right until the very end of the story.

What I was not fond of with this story...
I loved this story from start to finish and cannot come up with anything that I was not fond of...

About the Author

Fern Britton, an English television presenter, was born on 17 July 1957 in Ealing, London. She was educated at Dr Challoner's High School in Little Chalfont and underwent training in stage management at the Central School of Speech and Drama. She is the daughter of the English actor, Tony Britton and Ruth Britton. Fern Britton spent the early days of her life at Buckinghamshire. Her older sister, Cherry Britton, is a script writer and her younger half brother, Jasper Britton, is an actor. She is married to the celebrity chef, Phil Vickery and lives with her family at Holmer Green in Buckinghamshire.

Fern Britton worked with a touring theatre company and in 1979, she started her career with Westward Television in Plymouth. She worked as a newsreader and continuity announcer on Westward Diary, the nightly local bulletin. Later, she switched to present BBC’s Southwest news programme, Spotlight. She became a known as the youngest national news presenter to present News After Noon on BBC1. Fern Britton then moved to work for TVS in Southampton, where she hosted the South edition of the news programme, Coast to Coast, together with Fred Dinenage. She has also presented other programmes, like Coast to Coast People, The Television Show and Magic Moments.

Since then, Fern Britton has hosted several programmes, which include Carlton Television's After Five, BBC's Breakfast Time, London News Network's London Tonight and BBC 1’s Holiday. She also featured in the first two series of The Brian Conley Show and in 1994, Fern Britton went onto present the famous television cookery game show, Ready Steady Cook. She hosted the show for a long span of six years until she was succeeded by chef, Ainsley Harriott. She joined hands with the British television presenter, Phillip Schofield to host the famous television magazine show This Morning. Since 1999, Fern Britton has been hosting the show and the couple was known for their hilarious presentation. The show was a big hit and won the 2003 & 2004 TV Quick Award for the ‘Best Daytime Viewing’. It also clinched the 2004 National Television Award for the ‘Most Popular Daytime Show’.

Fern Britton anchored the Pride of Britain Awards in 2002 and was one among the panellists on the satirical panel show, Have I Got News for You.

In 2006, the song, “The Fern Britton Experience”, which featured in the album, Hang The DJ was named after her by the UK DJ Shitmat. She hosted the reality television show, Soapstar Superstar, and the British Soap Awards 2006. At the Royal Albert Hall, on 31 May 2007, Fern Britton presented the Classical BRIT Awards and also co-presented the British Soap Awards that year.

Fern Britton anchored her own ITV1 Saturday night series, That's What I Call Television in 2007. In December 2007, she went on a secret trip to Basra to broadcast behind-the-scenes footage of the troops. She appeared as a guest presenter for the show, Have I Got News for You on 27 April 2007 and again on 17 October 2008. On 12 January 2008, she was the winner in the first episode of Thank God You're Here, a television comedy series hosted by Paul Merton. In April 2008, Fern Britton together with her colleague, Phillip Schofield was the presenter of the revived 'all star' version of the super hit ITV show, Mr and Mrs. The show was broadcast on Saturday nights as a six-part series.

Apart from television presentations, Fern Britton has also featured in advertisements for Ryvita Minis. She performed the title role in a Cinderella pantomime in 1988. In March 1998, her first book, Fern’s Family Favourites, was released and in October the following year, she launched her second book Winter Treats and Summer Delights. Fern, My Story was published in November 2008 by Michael Joseph and it ranked among the Top Ten Bestseller list by The Sunday Times.

Best wishes

Debs :-)