“The Bookshop of Second Chances” by Jackie Fraser

Oh man, I feel so bad about this because I read the book back in July and am just now doing my reflection on it. I didn’t intend to wait this long to post my reflection, but the summer months were hard for me. Now I’m surprised that I managed to post anything at all back then. But, anyway, better late than never, especially since I liked this story.


Contemporary; Romance





From Goodreads

A woman desperate to turn a new page heads to the Scottish coast and finds herself locked in a battle of wills with an infuriatingly handsome bookseller in this utterly heartwarming debut, perfect for readers of Evvie Drake Starts Over.

Thea Mottram is having a bad month. Her husband of nearly twenty years has just left her for one of her friends, and she is let go from her office job–on Valentine’s Day, of all days. Bewildered and completely lost, Thea doesn’t know what to do. But when she learns that a distant great uncle in Scotland has passed away, leaving her his home and a hefty antique book collection, she decides to leave Sussex for a few weeks. Escaping to a small coastal town where no one knows her seems to be exactly what she needs.

Almost instantly, Thea becomes enamored with the quaint cottage, comforted by its cozy rooms and shaggy, tulip-covered lawn. The locals in nearby Baldochrie are just as warm, quirky, and inviting. The only person she can’t seem to win over is bookshop owner Edward Maltravers, to whom she hopes to sell her uncle’s antique novel collection. His gruff attitude–fueled by an infamous, long-standing feud with his brother, a local lord–tests Thea’s patience. But bickering with Edward proves oddly refreshing and exciting, leading Thea to develop feelings she hasn’t felt in a long time. As she follows a thrilling yet terrifying impulse to stay in Scotland indefinitely, Thea realizes that her new life may quickly become just as complicated as the one she was running from. (Goodreads)

My thoughts

Unfortunately, my thoughts aren’t many because I read this one such a long time ago (3 months ago!) before finally getting the chance to do a reflection post. However, what I do recall is that I liked it.

The Bookshop of Second Chances is a contemporary romance about a woman who moves away to the Scottish coast while going through a divorce. Thea found out that her husband had been cheating on her for some time with one of her friends. When she found out, she left, leaving the house to her husband. Shortly after, the friend who’d been sleeping with the husband moved in. Devastated and feeling lost, Thea decides to spend some time at a cottage she inherited from her great uncle in a small coastal town, and it’s while there she’s able to heal and find love again.

I liked the story. It was a bit slow-going, but I didn’t mind because I think the pace matches the emotional journey Thea is on because Thea allowed herself time to heal from her relationship before rushing into a new one. Plus, she also needed to build her confidence up again. I like that the changes in Thea occurred gradually until happiness began to return to her again.

This novel made me admit to myself that I love romances that begin in bookstores. Such stories warm my book-loving heart, so that was one of the reasons why I enjoyed the story — although I think Thea’s romantic interest is an immature ass at times. I often didn’t like him. I also like that the story is set in a small coastal town and that Thea stays at a cottage. Those two aspects added a sweet, cozy vibe to the story that made me want to see it adapted for a Hallmark movie.

I really think the setting, the cottage, and the romance in the bookshop are the reasons why I liked the story because I didn’t care much for Thea and thought she was a bit too concerned about her age, and the side characters didn’t stand out enough to make me care for them either. But I liked the story and would recommend it, especially to those seeking romances that feature an older character. I’m so used to seeing contemporary romances featuring protagonists in their mid-to late 20s that it’s always refreshing to encounter someone a little older.

Overall: ★★★☆☆ ½

I liked it. It felt like a cozy read to me, but I think that’s because of the setting.

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6 thoughts on ““The Bookshop of Second Chances” by Jackie Fraser

  1. Romances that begin in bookshops sound so cute…apart from in the series, You 😀 This sounds like a good read. I am glad that you found quite a bit to enjoy about it despite the issues you mentioned. Great review.


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