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11 Reviews
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpected joy, 25 April 2014
By 
David Tomlinson (England) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Hardcover)
Campari for Breakfast is about a teenage girl called Sue, who wants to know the truth about her mother’s death, but has to negotiate a tangled family history and a cast of eccentric characters to get at it.

I can’t remember the last time a book surprised me so much. It’s playful and inventive and witty, and I either chuckled or hooted on every other page. But for all my chuckling and hooting, I was also moved by tender moments of insight and exquisite imagery.

Sara Crowe, an Olivier Award winning actress, appears to have a writing voice as original as her stage presence, and I’m intrigued to see how she employs it next.

A difficult book to categorise, I hope that readers of all genres will find it just as compelling and companionable as I did.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Champagne Read!, 23 April 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Kindle Edition)
I thought any book recommended by Tamsin Greig AND Mark Gatiss must be worth a read - and I wasn't disappointed. This is a fantastically funny and moving story that had me going from tears to laughter at the turn of a page. Seventeen year-old Sue Bowl is a wonderfully original, quirky character and her novella, Brackencliff (which pops in and out of the main story) is the funniest thing I've read in ages (not that that's "literary" Sue' s intention of course!)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Campari for Breakfast, 27 April 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Kindle Edition)
A pure delight. I couldn't wait to pick up and read and become more and more involved with this eccentric, quirky and loveable family. Lot's of smiles and also poignant moments.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Remarkable First Novel, 21 April 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Kindle Edition)
At first I thought the novel had been badly edited for Kindle but it didn't take long to realise that the mis-spellings, malapropisms ad neologisms were Sue's very own. This is a portrait of a young girl becoming a woman in the 1980s, discovering her creativity as a writer, combined with practical common sense which she uses to try to help Aunt Coral out of her financial difficulties - not to mention finding out the difference between a crush and genuine affection. All this and the search for the truth about her mother's death makes for a hilarious roller-coaster of emotions and startling revelations. I'm already looking forward to the author's second and subsequent novels.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review: 'Campari for Breakfast' by Sara Crowe, 14 April 2014
This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Hardcover)
It’s 1987 and seventeen-year-old Sue Bowl’s world has just been turned upside down by her mother’s unexpected suicide. She can’t understand that her father is already together with another woman and decides to go and stay with her aunt Coral, who lives in an enormous country house with the name Green Place. In order to preoccupy herself with other things, Sue wants to focus on her ambitions to become an author. She starts a creative writing group together with her aunt and the other eccentric inhabitants of the house, and next to that she finds herself a job at a local cafe. Soon, Sue has enough to focus on: a crush on one of her co-workers, saving Green Place which is slowly crumbling down, and her search for her mother’s missing suicide note.

It took me a bit of time to get into this book; the storyline is a mix of both present and past events, told mainly from the perspective of Sue, but there are also passages from aunt Coral’s diary. Sue’s voice (which is really distinctive; the book even features the spelling mistakes Sue makes, which I think really adds to the whole atmosphere) fascinated me and as the story progressed I just wanted to jump into the book and live at Green Place together with Sue, Aunt Coral, and the rest of the characters. I particularly warmed to Sue, but the supporting cast consists of a brilliant blend of various personalities: lovely Aunt Coral, charming Joe, infuriating Loudolle... Each of them plays their own significant part in Sue’s journey to adulthood and adds something specific to the book.

While the suicide of Sue’s mother is central to the entire story, the book definitely has a hopeful and heart-warming side to it. I loved that Sue was busy with several things at the same time, providing the reader with various storylines to enjoy: her crush on one of the boys at the local cafe and how she tries to hide this from everyone, her search for her mother’s suicide note, the attempts to save Green Place. ‘Campari for Breakfast’ is an absolutely charming and quirky coming-of-age story; a book that left me with a feeling of positivity and a broad smile on my face!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An Intoxicating Charming Delicious Read, 27 April 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Hardcover)
I adored this book and would have read it cover to cover in one sitting but work got in the way. Crowe handles the characters and locales deftly and it is wonderfully evocative of simpler times gone by. The time shifts are very cleverly woven through the narrative and become as compelling as the story itself and then before you know it part of the story. Sue is a wonderful heroine, beguiling and bewitching and quite simply plain old funny too. Sue's journey and development is heart warming and inspiring. I am hoping to have a smiliar coming of age experience any day now. to put it plainly; THIS IS A MUST READ.

Cassandra
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Amazing book!, 9 July 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Kindle Edition)
Amazing book!...so quirky and unusual. Loved every minute of it. The characters are really interesting and Sara Crowe really brings them to life!. I found myself wishing I could live at Green Pace too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Utterly charming, funny and touching., 29 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Hardcover)
Funny, tender and touching, with a wonderfully engaging voice. This coming of age novel is filled with charming eccentrics, but underscored with a note of melancholy that always keeps you rooting for its bright (but at times naive) narrator. One of those books where you grow increasingly anxious as you realise you only have a few pages left, because the world is so vividly drawn you want to stay there as long as you can. A delight.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful whimsey, 5 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Kindle Edition)
Delightful read - can't wait for the second book. Full of surprising characters who are a joy and pleasure to discover
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5.0 out of 5 stars Quite excellent, 23 May 2014
By 
KeSu "KeSu" (North Yorkshire) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Campari for Breakfast (Hardcover)
Just finished this fabulous novel and feeling utterly bereft because I loved the characters so much that I'm now missing them terribly. Sensitively written with lots of laugh out loud moments and some that made me cry, I cannot recommend this novel enough. Bravo, I found this truly wonderful and was unable to put it down. Thank you Ms Crowe, I look forward so much to your next delightful page turner x
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Campari for Breakfast
Campari for Breakfast by Sara Crowe
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