Women Authors Raffaella Barker Summertime

ISBN 13: 9780375503870

Summertime

3.73 avg rating
( 341 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9780375503870: Summertime

For a year, Venetia Summers has been buffered from single motherhood by her boy-friend, David, but when work takes him to a Brazilian rain forest, things begin to unravel. Phone lines crackle, e-mails languish unanswered, and long-distance love proves to be a bewildering experience. Meanwhile, Venetia’s children and dogs run wilder than ever, brother Desmond’s outrageous wedding takes over her home, and her relationship with an eccentric new neighbor gets off to an unfortunate start. Still, there are the everyday rewards, not least among them the dazzling beauty of the changing Norfolk seasons.

How is Venetia to cope alone with an army-style camping holiday, a foul-mouthed Amazonian parrot, and the demanding, if endearing, personalities of three exuberant children? Her burgeoning fashion career, creating outlandish garments for a London boutique, provides much-needed diversion. But when a moonlit walk takes an unexpected turn, she finds herself with a real dilemma on her hands.

With Summertime, Raffaella Barker, whom Publishers Weekly called “a postmodern Erma Bombeck,” gives us another sparkling comedy of English rural life, sure to delight fans of her first novel, Hens Dancing, and new readers alike.

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Review:

Summertime, the sequel to Raffaella Barker's extremely popular Hens Dancing is a six-month snapshot of the life of Venetia Summers and her three children. Deserted by her "tower-of-strength" boyfriend David, Venetia spends the summer waiting for him to return, lonely and hurt that he seems to be taking his time.

Don't be fooled into thinking that she's just going to sit and mope. Although it would be pushing it to describe Summertime as action-packed--too much of the novel takes place on the school run or in the knot garden for that--Venetia's life races along and the months soon skip past. There are three eccentric children to ferry about, the ex-husband and his Internet pet cemetery to contend with and a new neighbour--the elusive Hedley Sale, complete with monobrow and dandruff.

Written in a clipped diary style, Summertime is packed with moments city dwellers only dream about. Afternoons in the garden of a beautiful Norfolk cottage, impulsive trips to hear nightingales, Easter egg hunts and moonlit nights stuffed with stars. Although they're a privileged lot--the children tell jokes about Beethoven--they're endearing and lovers of Katie Fforde, Mavis Cheek and Joanna Trollope should snap this up. Especially if they're partial to a cheeky parrot with a fruity wolf whistle and a mean sense of rhythm.--Jane Honey

Review:

`I loved it. I couldn't put it down... Raffaella Barker is so good at drawing her characters and making tham likeable that within about 10 pages you feel you know them intimately... Yes, this is comic writing, but it's quiet comedy rather than a raucous bark... very,very well done' (Daily Express)

'I loved it. I couldn't put it down... Raffaella Barker is so good at drawing her characters and making them likeable that within about ten pages you feel you know them intimately and a few pages later you are almost as concerned about them as you are your real friends.. Very, very well done' Daily Express

'The comic voices are virtuoso and the immediacy of Venetia's jottings tell it like it is - and it is very, very funny... SUMMERTIME is a mood altering book: as light and bright and optimistic as the days it celebrates' Polly Samson, Independent

'Raffaella Barker is refreshingly honest about children and dogs, chaotic parenting and farmyard manure... The comic voices are virtuoso, and the immediacy of Venetia's jottings tell it like it is - and it is very, very funny... a brilliant eye for contrasting the fantasy of bucolic childhoods with the reality... skilfully juxtaposes lyrical celebration of nature with a cynical eye to the realities of human foibles and bodily functions... It's a tonic to read something so infectiously cheerful... SUMMERTIME is a mood-altering book: as light and bright and optimistic as the days it celebrates' Polly Samson, Independent Weekend Review

'My advice is not to read SUMMERTIME in public. You'll giggle, you'll snort, you'll make an exhibition of yourself... I loved HENS DANCING, and this is better yet' Country Life

`light-as-a-feather but none the less entertaining novel' Sunday Times

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Barker, Raffaella
Published by Random House (2002)
ISBN 10: 0375503870 ISBN 13: 9780375503870
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BARKER, RAFFAELLA
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ISBN 10: 0375503870 ISBN 13: 9780375503870
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