Published by Aria Fiction on March 1, 2018
Purchase: Amazon, Kobo
Lizzie Greene is about to lose everything when her husband suddenly dies and his debts come to light.
To make ends meet she opens up her quirky old house to be used as a set for a film based on a bestselling romance novel. Her life and household are turned upside down when a whole cast of colourful characters enters her family's lives: from an enigmatic author, a handsome location scout, a brooding director, to a heart-throb leading man, never mind her now ex-mother-in-law camped out in her drive.
As Lizzie delves deeper into the film's book, all is not as it seems.
Will her desire to save her house and unravel the secrets of the past lead to new love, or to mortal danger?
~~Reviewed by Evelyn~~
FINDING DREAMS by Lauren Westwood is an intriguing story-within-a-story. The author artfully weaves a true-life mystery together with the mystery in a book, and the result is a compelling page-turner suitable for all audiences.
Lizzie Green thought she had it all: a loving husband, two children and a beautiful old house on a lake just outside London. When her husband suddenly dies, however, she learns that he wasn’t the man she thought he was. Saddled with an immense amount of debt and the real possibility of losing her home, she goes back to work and also agrees to allow a film crew to use her home as the location for the movie version of “The Lady’s Secret”, a book by best-selling author Phillipa King.
As filming begins, Lizzie begins to realize that not all is as it seems. It appears that the selection of her home (Tanglewild) was tied to a long-ago mystery and that a couple of the key players in the movie had a connection to her home that leads them back. As the secrets begin to unfold, Lizzie realizes that there is danger that comes with the intrigue and glamour of movie stars and movie making, and there is also the real risk that she may be falling in love again.
The characters in FINDING DREAMS are strong and well-written, especially the lead character Lizzie. Faced with numerous setbacks and disappointments, she is fierce in her determination to do what it takes to provide for her family and save her home. She is supported by her in-laws, quirky free-spirits who at first seem adversarial but soon prove to be supportive. Her young children are realistic and loveable.
Phillipa King, the author in the book, is a larger than life character. Lizzie is a fan and is excited, at first, to have her in her home. It is unclear at first, however, which of the many interesting male characters will become her potential love interest: an arrogant, self-involved actor; a friendly, helpful production assistant; the stubborn, dictatorial director; or her new boss who definitely has more than just a professional interest in Lizzie. The romance develops rather slowly so don’t expect a lot of fireworks, but the pace seems appropriate for the story.
As the movie making progresses and the real-life mysteries unfold, the reader is also treated to excerpts from the movie book,
“The Lady’s Secret” and the mysteries unfolding there. The stories soon become entwined, leading to the compelling conclusion. All in all, a well-written story, well worth the time.
I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader’s Copy of this book.