Review: 'Summer Flings and Dancing Dreams' by Sue Watson (2015)
After years on her own, the highlight of single mum Laura’s week is watching Strictly Come Dancing with a glass of Pinot Grigio and a large helping of imagination.
With her daughter Sophie going travelling, Laura knows the time is right to do something for herself for a change. One disastrous Zumba class later and Laura ends up at the feet (literally) of gorgeous dance instructor Tony Hernandez.
A natural dancer and inspiring teacher, Tony rekindles in Laura a passion she inherited from her ballroom dancer father – and with it comes a dream… to make him proud.
But when Tony enters them to perform at the National Dance Festival, can Laura’s new-found confidence survive the test? And with a once-in-a-lifetime chance to learn Flamenco in Spain, could Laura truly learn to dance like nobody’s watching… and love like she’ll never get hurt?
A few years ago I was introduced to the work of Sue Watson and ever since her books have been bringing a smile to my face every time I read one. I've had the pleasure of reading 'Love, Lies and Lemon Cake' (click here to read my revieiw) and 'Snow Angels, Secrets and Christmas Cake' (click here to read my review), and I'm already really looking forward to her 2015 Christmas release 'Bella's Christmas Bake-Off.' However, I actually still had a sparkly new Sue Watson book waiting for me, namely 'Summer Flings and Dancing Dreams', which was released this summer by Bookouture. I was in the mood for a feel-good read and just knew this one would do the trick, so I was happy I saved it for a rainy day!
Forty-four-year-old Laura is stuck in a rut; her life mainly consists of her boring job at the local supermarket and evenings in watching Strictly Come Dancing with a large glass of wine. When Laura's daughter Sophie is dumped by her fiancee on her wedding day, she decides to go travel around the world to mend her broken heart. Leaving Laura behind with a lot of free time and the urgent message from her daughter to take the chance to finally make a change in her life. Unexpectedly, that change isn't too far away when Laura takes a step into the world of ballroom dancing when she meets dance teacher Tony Hernandez. Tony knows how to bring out Laura's natural talent for dancing, and before Laura knows it, her life is turned upside down, but can Laura really leave the old her behind and grant herself this new start?
Sue Watson's lovely feel-good novels never disappoint and that is also the case for 'Summer Flings and Dancing Dreams.' Considering the popularity of TV show 'Strictly Come Dancing', this novel deals with a great topic in the form of ballroom dancing; an aspect of the book which many readers, including me, will love. Combined with a wonderful group of characters and a captivating storyline, I thoroughly enjoyed this read and had a smile on my face while I was flying through the pages. Sue Watson's writing style is a true joy to read (it made me laugh out lod more than once) and I was already taken in by the story from the first chapter, that deals with Laura's daughter having been jilted on her wedding day.
The mother-daughter relationship between Laura and Sophie was wonderful and I loved seeing them deal with the things happening in their lives and taking care of each other. Sue Watson's novels always have a significant message at their core, like the importance of not giving up on your dreams, finding happiness, and staying true to yourself. This is also the case in this novel and I think Laura is not just a warm and relatable protagonist, but also an inspiring one to many readers. Overall, 'Summer Flings and Dancing Dreams' is an uplifting, light, funny women's fiction read that made me want to put on my dancing shoes and kept a permanent smile on my face... A stunning read and I already can't wait to see what Sue has in store for us next!