Tuesday 20 August 2013

Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop by Abby Clements


Imogen has been living in Thailand for six months, dividing her time between relaxing with friends and her boyfriend in idyllic surroundings and building an exhibition of underwater photographs. She can't imagine returning to dreary Britain but one phone call freezes her travel bug and sends her back to Brighton. Imogen's beloved grandmother, Vivien has passed away, leaving her ice cream shop to Imogen and her older sister, Anna.

Imogen and Anna have a tough task ahead of them to fulfil their grandmother's wishes and take over the business. The ice cream shop has suffered in recent years and needs modernisation and a new wave of customers. Anna has always dreamed of making a living from selling her own food creations but she doesn't have much experience of making ice cream and creating her own recipes so, in the name of research, she jets off to Italy to enrol on a gelato course.

Making the ice cream shop a success won't be easy but Anna and Imogen are determined to make their grandmother proud.

I was thrilled when I received a copy of Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop as the cover is gorgeous and what could be better than a plot revolving around ice cream? We only meet Vivien - who opened the shop in the 1950s with her husband, Stanley - very briefly but, through her friends and family, I got a real sense of the woman she was. Vivien was a warm, caring and full of life character so her granddaughters have a lot to live up to when they take over her shop.

Anna and Imogen have their fair share of problems while setting up the shop, both in business and their personal lives. It was good to see the hiccups of taking over the business or, more importantly, how the sisters worked to resolve them, growing in confidence as they progressed.

Vivien's Heavenly Ice Cream Shop is a tasty treat of a book and is perfect to enjoy over the summer.

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