The Second Chance Shoe Shop
by Marcie Steele
Release Date: April 8th 2016
Ebook Edition; 290 Pages
Genre: Fiction / Contemporary
Source: Review copy from publisher
3.5 / 5 Stars
All Riley Flynn
wants is to meet someone who makes her happy. But attracting the right
kind of man is not easy, and with her heart still hurting from her last
break-up, Riley believes she’ll never find love again.
A year ago, Sadie Stewart’s
whole world was shattered when her husband, Ross, died. She has
struggled to keep herself together for the sake of their young daughter,
but with the anniversary of his death approaching, Sadie finds herself
overwhelmed by grief.
Sadie and Riley work at Chandlers shoe
shop, in the charming town of Hedworth. But when Chandlers is threatened
with closure, the friends are confronted with the loss of not only
their jobs, but also their support network - the glue that holds them
together when they are close to breaking.
As they put together a
plan to save their beloved shop, Sadie realises that she might just be
learning to live again. Could it be that new beginnings are just round
the corner? The campaign also finds Riley unexpectedly crossing paths
with charming photographer, Ethan. Maybe her second chance at love is
right under her feet …
The Second Chance Shoe Shop is a great book for the beach or if you are looking for something light and feel-good to read. I was rather intrigued by this book at first as I know this author also writes the Allie Shenton series, which I really, really like. (If you're not familiar with them, they are police procedural/suspense written under the name Mel Sherratt.)
I enjoyed this novel and thought the characters were rather interesting and quirky. I did find it to be on the light side though, which made it a bit more difficult to connect with the characters and their issues. I did however, like the social media theme that was introduced in the novel, and the influence it can have on a business and on a personal relationship, especially if you are not careful. I liked the way that Riley kept coming up with ideas to compete with other major retailers in order to try and keep the shop open, while not necessarily crossing the line her boss had set. It was definitely interesting to see what the repercussions would be to everything she set in motion for the shop and I was always curious as to what would happen next.
The themes of friendship, love, loyalty, loss ran pretty strongly throughout this novel, but I don't think they were ever explored in depth, rather touched upon lightly. It's not always a bad thing, but to me, it also made the novel feel more superficial as it didn't really plumb the depths of these emotions. I actually enjoyed Sadie's character the best because she seemed the most honest in her emotions as she tried to deal with the anger and pain of losing her husband to cancer less than a year ago. I didn't really connect with Riley as much as I thought she needed to develop a bit of a backbone as well as really see what was in front of her.
The Second Chance Shoe Shop is one of those books that I enjoyed, but to be honest, I didn't really connect to the characters or was interested in what happened to the shop. While I enjoyed the antics of the characters, I was a bit let down by the ending; and yes, it was a bit predictable, and I think I was hoping for something else to happen. I would definitely recommend this one to others, if anything as a feel-good read and as a good chick-lit read.