Wednesday, 28 June 2017

Book Tour & Book Review: PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT BY PENNY PARKES

I am thrilled to be today's stop on the Practice Makes Perfect Blog Tour with my review and a fabulous piece by author Penny Parkes


Published by Simon & Schuster on 29 June 2017

The Practice at Larkford has suddenly been thrust under the spotlight – and its nomination as a ‘NHS Model Surgery’ is causing the team major headaches. Dr Holly Graham should be basking in the glow of her new romance with fellow doctor, Taffy – but she is worried that the team is prioritising plaudits over patients, and her favourite resident, the irreverent and entertaining Elsie, is facing a difficult diagnosis. Add to that the chaos of family life and the strain is starting to show.

Dr Dishy Dan Carter’s obsession with work is masking unhappiness elsewhere – he can’t persuade girlfriend Julia to settle down. It’s only as Julia’s mother comes to stay that he realizes what she has been hiding for so long. Alice Walker joins the team like a breath of fresh air and her assistance dog Coco quickly wins everyone round – which is just as well, because Coco and Alice will soon need some help of their own. Can they pull together and become the Dream Team that the NHS obviously thinks they are?

Practice Makes Perfect is the second novel in the Larkford Series - the first book Out of Practice won the Romantic Comedy of the Year category of the RNA Awards.

I really liked the first book and wondered whether the second could be as good, well it's not as good - it's even better!

Holly's twins are just as boisterous and funny, Dan and Taffy are still having silly bets with each other, I chuckled at the teasing between them, Larkford's resident celebrity Elsie is still as ascerbic but funny as ever, even though her health is not good, though that doesn't stop her from enjoying life!

There is also a new doctor, Alice, who has fitted in nicely, along with her lovely medical assistance dog, which I thought was a great idea, and taught me so much about these fabulous animals who can save lives.

Add to this scene, a TV reality crew who are following Julia around creating problems for her and the lovely Dan, plus the fact that the Practice have been nominated for a Model Surgery award, which comes with its own problems for the staff ...... and you have a story that's full of warmth, humour, never a dull moment, plenty of laughs, but also deals with the more serious side of life.  A great achievement all in one book!


I am so happy that Penny Parkes has written a guest post all about ......

The Making of Larkford

It’s a wonderful thing to create an entirely new world and Larkford is no exception. In fact, the joy of cherry picking different aspects of all my favourite Cotswold places has been the gift that keeps on giving, because now when I return to these much-loved haunts myself, I am seeing them afresh, alert to any nuance or detail that might have escaped me over the years of familiarity.

I have often joked that Larkford is the love-child of Cirencester, Bath and Broadway, but indeed she is – from the honey-coloured rows of cottages that line Broadway’s high street, to the pastel shades of Cirencester’s market place. And of course, Elsie Townsend’s house required a little extra finesse, and where better to find that, than a Georgian townhouse lifted straight from the streets of Bath.

It’s no coincidence that these three places hold a special place in my heart for, having lived in (or near) all three, they have also provided the backdrop to most of my life.

It was a surreal moment indeed, for example, standing in the heart of Broadway in a wedding dress, fresh from the church and wielding champagne and roses, to have a couple of Japanese tourists ‘crash’ the party, snapping away with their Nikons. An undeniably odd thought that our wedding might actually be in their photo album somewhere, when we’ve yet to put our own pictures of The Big Day into an album sixteen years later!


As for Bath, the many, many happy years my husband and I spent hopping from one flat to another as we negotiated our way into the working world and set up home together will forever be a special and memorable time in our lives. Indeed the amount of time I spend poring over the property pages might yet suggest that a reprise might one day be in order.


But right now, our home is in the Cirencester countryside, where The Ginger Ninja and I can take to the fields and our village provides the sense of community we craved as we started a family. Where Market Day is the perfect excuse to swing by a bookshop, pick up a coffee and drink in the joys of a country market town, before going home and writing about one. And maybe one day we’ll find our Larkford too – the perfect combination of all three.




Thank you Penny, for a lovely insight into how the wonderful world of Larkford was created!


Don't forget to check out all the other lovely bloggers on the blog tour





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