The Mysterious Miss Mayhew by Hazel Osmond

But then that's the thing about the truth. It's often stranger than fiction. Harder to believe.

Title - The Mysterious Miss Mayhew
Author - Hazel Osmond
Publisher - Quercus
Publication Date - 6th November 2014
Format - eBook (Provided via NetGalley)
Pages - 432

The blurb

Tom doesn't need any more women in his life. He already has his hands full with his five year old daughter, an estranged wife who keeps blocking his efforts to get divorced and a mother who might be having an affair with vicar, When Fran Mayhew turns up - years younger than him and with all the tact of a dinosaur with it's backside on fire - she's just another tricky person to deal with. 

And what's she doing in his remote part of Northumberland crawling around in graveyards anyway? 

But soon Tom discovers that there's more to Miss Mayhew than meets the eye - and it's not just his heart he's in danger of losing. 

Becca's thoughts

Firstly, I'd like to say thank you to the fabulous publishers Quercus for accepting my request to view this title on Net Galley. I was absolutely over the moon when I received the email stating that this gorgeous story was "now available on my dashboard", and I couldn't begin reading quick enough. And of course, the biggest thank you goes to the author Hazel Osmond. This is the first book that I have read by the author and I was delighted with it, so I'll definitely be reading more from Hazel in the future. Now, onto my review...

If you're not already aware, then I should tell you that I am a complete cover fiend, and so when I clocked this stunner sitting primly on Net Galley, I'm afraid there was no way that I could resist. Then, once I'd read the blurb, I was intrigued. The title itself managed to get my imagination working overtime, so it was only right that I caved and thought, "To hell with it!" Denying a book lover books is just ridiculous, and I don't want to be a part of that! Now, I read The Mysterious Miss Mayhew in digital form, but if I were to have read in paperback, I'm sure the cover would have been stroked lovingly numerous times. Everything about it is what I LOVE! The colours, the swirly pretty font, the tiny little bumble-bee up in the left hand corner, but most of all, the two cosy armchairs with the mugs between them. That, to me, is the perfect set-up. That's the kind of image that makes me feel at home and comfortable, sitting in one of those (in my imagination) squishy seats, a book in my lap and a mug of something yummy in my hands. It's safe to say that before I had even started reading, just looking at the cover had me feeling cosy and ready for an adventure. It started me off perfectly. 

In The Mysterious Miss Mayhew, there are an absolute ton of fabulous, colourful characters to get to know, each of them beautifully constructed and uniquely developed. Fran Mayhew is the first character that we're introduced to. Right from the get-go, she is truly mysterious. There was an air of determination about the woman, and it immediately became apparent to me that Fran Mayhew was on some sort of mission. I was hooked from the very first page. A million questions fired through my mind. What's she up to? Why is she there? There was so much mystery and wonder surrounding Miss Mayhew, and she had me intrigued completely. I wanted to know everything about her. What I absolutely loved was that Hazel switched viewpoints. She didn't just stick with Fran, she introduced us to Tom, too. There was something about this guy that was instantly likeable. Whenever the focus was on Fran, we read about her in the form of a diary and in first person, and whenever we were back with Tom, it was written in third person. It was a fabulous way to swap and change between the characters, allowing the reader a 360 degree view of all that was going on. I adored watching the relationship between Fran and Tom blossom, taking them from just meagre acquaintances to much, much more, despite neither of them pushing towards it. It was magical, delightful, and a true joy to read. 

As well as Fran being quite the mysterious little package, the plot itself was also something to be unravelled. There were lots of twists and turns along the way, and Hazel did such a fantastic job of holding me captive. I could not wait for the big secret to be revealed to me, it really spurred me on to finish the story and exhale fully for the first time since beginning to read. It truly was a joy to read, and I can't wait to read more from Hazel Osmond. There's something incredibly scrumptious about her story-telling talent, and I'm completely ready for more! 

Becca's Books is rating The Mysterious Miss Mayhew by Hazel Osmond with five gorgeous cupcakes! A very welcome breath of fresh air, with a beautiful array of characters who I would love to sit down with, over a mug of tea! 

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