- Publisher: Sphere
- Format: Paperback | 448 pages
- Dimensions: 126mm x 194mm x 34mm | 358g
- Publication date: 24 November 2011
- Publication City/Country: London
- ISBN 10: 0751547409
- ISBN 13: 9780751547405
- Sales rank: 26,770
When Darcy McCall loses her beloved Aunt Molly, she doesn't expect any sort of inheritance - let alone a small island! Located off the west coast of Ireland, Tara hasn't been lived on for years, but according to Molly's will, Darcy must stay there for twelve months in order to fully inherit. It's a big shock. And she's even more shocked to hear that she needs to persuade a village full of people to settle there, too. Darcy has to leave behind her independent city life and swap stylish heels for muddy wellies. Between sorting everything from the plumbing to the pub, Darcy meets confident, charming Conor and sensible, stubborn Dermot - but who will make her feel really at home?
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Ali McNamara is the author of four novels, all published by Sphere: From Notting Hill with Love ... Actually, Breakfast at Darcy's, From Notting Hill to New York ... Actually and Step Back in Time. Ali lives in Cambridgeshire with her family and two Labrador dogs.
By Leah 24 Nov 2011
Breakfast At Darcy's started well enough for me and I liked the idea of Darcy having to spend a year on an island off Ireland (trying saying that fast) called Tara, but there was something about Darcy herself that rubbed me up the wrong way. The plot is excellent, there's no doubt about it, but Darcy is one of the most annoying heroines I've come across for a while. She really hampered my enjoyment of the novel, if I'm honest. Her obsession with designer labels, her selfishness about inheriting a big sum of money (your Aunt's just died so when you hear she's left you something, you immediately think of paying off your credit card debt and buying a flat. Yeah, good going, Darcy, let's just forget how you got that money, about your poor Aunt), it all got on my nerves somewhat. I'm not saying Darcy was wrong to immediately mentally spend the money, more I just found it to be in bad taste.
Breakfast At Darcy's also seemed to lack the sparkle FNHWLA had. I can't really explain it; sometimes I click with a book, sometimes I don't and this is a time where I didn't really click with the book. It had everything necessary for me to like it: The island, Tara, which sounds beautiful; some characters who were lovely (Niall, Dermot); and, eventually, Darcy does become tolerable but the perceived selfishness at the beginning sort of made it all a case of too little, too late and I failed to capture the real essence McNamara was trying to get across about Tara, and about its surroundings.
It's really hard to take to a book if the main character isn't as likeable as you'd like. I mean, I'm sure Darcy's obsession with her nails and her hair (by God, how often her hair got in her way; has she never heard of a bobble?) and her clothes might not affect a lot of people, but considering the perspective of the novel - that it's all come about because of the death of Aunt Molly, it all rather seems pointless to worry about things so superficial. As Dermot pointed out: What does it matter if Darcy greets the guests to Tara in wellies and jeans? Who cares? And that's how I felt. I didn't care what Darcy wore - I am the least fashionable person ever and I can never fathom why people spend thousands on clothes, it's pointless. Some characters did make the book worthwhile for me and I did really like Dermot, he was a bright spot, along with Niall and Eamonn but I could never take to Darcy or her best friend Roxi.
Breakfast At Darcy's was a quick enough read, but I did find myself skipping parts. It was nowhere even close to as good as FNHWLA was, which makes me so incredibly gutted because I loved that book and wanted Breakfast At Darcy's to be just as awesome. I truly believe it has to do with Ali calling Darcy, Darcy. Darcy's just aren't the nicest characters, it seems and this Darcy was the same for so much of the book (I am joking, though of the two Darcy's I've met in the Chick Lit world, neither are likeable!). She had flashes of a nice personality - particularly the idea for Tara to be opened up a resort of some sort, but I couldn't get past the fashion-consicience Darcy we meet at the beginning. The beauty of Tara couldn't save the book for me, though I do accept that that is an awesome book plot, totally inspired, but the characters let it down for me and I ended up bored. (I feel so bad admitting that.)
A warm second novel Daily Mirror, Book of the Week Perfect easy reading Sun Charming story of adventure, discovery and affairs of the heart Candis Fun and refreshing Star magazine