Pushing Her Luck…
About the Book:
Holly Caulfield has won the Irish National Lottery and sets in motion a plan to save the village of Abbeyglen. But who would have thought that giving money away could be so difficult?
With a resident’s association that’s clamouring for more and more money, an old lady who’s decided that a dream cruise is in her grasp and a couple who may not want that dream wedding after all, Holly’s finding it hard to keep it together!
And with a new love interest and an ex-husband hot on her heels, it’s up to Holly to figure out what can truly make her happy.
Chick lit is not really a genre that you see pop up on this blog very often. I do however occasionally dabble in it, and maybe on account of how selective I am – and believe me when I say that I am VERY selective when it comes to chick lit – I usually strike gold when I do. Pushing Her Luck was a really enjoyable read and a great lead in to my summer holidays.
Holly Caulfield is a true gem of a human being. She’s kindness personified and not even a tiny bit selfish. In a bit of a financial slump, she misreads the well-meaning advice of a kind stranger and spends her last few euro on a lottery ticket…which wins. It’s the stuff of pipe dreams of course, who hasn’t bought a ticket with secret hopes and then simply rolled their eyes at the waste of money after. But people do win, and in this story, it’s Holly: the entire four million euro.
Holly’s first instinct is to start giving it away. Fortunately, she listens to a friend and engages the services of a financial planner, who helps her distribute the money in a somewhat organised fashion. First port of call though, is Holly’s husband, whom she is separated from. Holly happily hands over half of her winnings without even trying to find out if it’s necessary. This was an example where Holly’s kindness had me grinding my teeth in frustration!
As Holly gives and gives, her financial planner is getting a vibe that the people Holly is giving money to aren’t necessarily on board with being dictated to about what they should be spending it on. This in turn leads Holly to question their gratitude, whilst trying to remain anonymous as the lottery winner. There are some lessons learnt along the way, for all involved, and plenty of mayhem and good times. There’s also a more serious undercurrent that examines who Holly really is and what exactly is motivating her unbridled generosity.
I admire the focus on kindness and giving that is spotlighted within this novel. We live increasingly shallow and selfish lives. Instead of giving our unwanted belongings to charity, social media is now filled with groups geared at selling it all second hand. If I have clothes that no longer fit me, or my children, I donate them, regardless of how many, or how few times, they’ve been worn. If I have unwanted books that I know I’ll never read again, I give them away to friends or charity. This is the way I was brought up and the way I hope my children will be as adults. I give gifts often, possibly too much so, but it makes me feel good to see how much being thought of cheers a person. So, while some may find Holly’s generosity over the top, I thought she was delightful and entirely refreshing. I could relate to her and I enjoyed how her giving also began to give her financial planner a bit of a happy high.
As is the way with chick lit, there is new romance and old flames popping up, but there is also new friendships and old family rifts being healed. All in all, Pushing Her Luck is a lovely novel, a truly enjoyable read. The author has set it up well for the next instalment in what she hopes will be a series about a quaint little Irish village named Abbeyglen – I’m looking forward to book two. Highly recommended.
Thanks extended to the author for providing me with a copy of Pushing Her Luck for review.
Pushing Her Luck
Released 22 November 2019
Available from Amazon