Sparkles by Louise Bagshawe
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Louise Bagshawe’s books are excellent to relax with – they have a good pace, always with some twists. This one is no different – a strong principled woman character in Sophie Massot, mystery, and other scheming characters.
The story is about the Massot family who own a large jewellery chain in France. The owner, Pierre has disappeared and it has been 7 years. His wife, Sophie Massot, decides to move on and declares her husband dead, effectively taking over the company till her son now studying at Oxford is of age. This does not go well with Pierre’s mother Katherine or her son Tom. There is the added complication that Pierre was not a loyal husband, and his mistress Judy is part of the firm. There is also the takeover bid being pursued by Hugh Montfort. With no business background, Sophie attempts to understand and improve the declining fortune of the company. It does not help that her mother in law and son are hostile to her, and Judy is scheming against her - smarting that she has not got her due for all she was to Pierre.
The story is interesting and as expected there are twists in the last quarter of the novel. However, the initial sections are far too long, not allowing the last section of the novel to assert itself. The language of the novel more or less gives you clues on what to expect broadly – it is still good reading though. It is almost as the story itself is tired of being so long, and the climax winds down too quickly.
I rate it at 3.5 stars. Though I liked some of Louise Bagshawe's other books better - for its story and characters, it is worth a read.
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