Monday, May 08, 2023



I was so happy to be returning to Emerald Bay, Ireland.  Imogen Kelly an interior designer. She lives in Dublin but is in need of a change and when offered an interior design job in a lavish country manor in Emerald Bay, she jumps at the chance.  She loves the thought of returning home to see her family and friends including her first love, Lachlan Leslie, who also happens to be the heir to Benmore House.  Imogen would love to do the redesign but what she would love more is to see Lachlan.  But when she arrives in Emerald Bay, she discovers that the builder on the redesign is Ryan O’Mally who just happens to be the class prankster from school.  Imogene finds Ryan to be just as annoying now as she did when they were in school together.  However, the more time they spend together the more they begin to enjoy each other's company.  But what is she to do about Lachlan?  Does she follow her heart or her head?

New Beginnings in the Little Irish Village by Michelle Vernal was a fantastic get-away to the Irish coast.  I thoroughly enjoyed the quirky characters and the wittiness of the conversations between them. Again I loved the author’s detailed description of the sights and sounds of the Irish coast.  As I returned to Emerald Bay, the villagers felt like I reconnected with old friends.  I enjoyed this heartwarming tale from beginning to end.  This sweet story of family, friends both old and new, second chances and new beginnings was exactly the escape I needed.  I definitely recommend this one.  



Author:  Michelle Vernal
Publisher:  Bookouture
Publication Date: May 4, 2023
Pages: 322
Buy on Amazon

Welcome to the little Irish village of Emerald Bay where the sun is shining, the locals are gossiping, and romance is in the air. But will returning home be the fresh start Imogen Kelly needs?

Thirty-two-year-old Imogen Kelly is meant to be living her best life in Dublin but the bright lights of the city aren’t making her truly happy. So she leaps at the chance to take on an interior design job at the big country manor at the edge of Emerald Bay. It also gives Imogen an excuse to return to the place where she spent an unforgettable summer with her first love, Lachlan Leslie, the heir to Benmore House.

Imogen’s heart is full of hope at the thought of seeing her childhood sweetheart but on the way there she nearly has an accident on the winding, muddy country road. She arrives at Benmore House late and flustered, only to discover the builder working with her on the renovation project is none other than 
Ryan O’Malley – the class prankster who was forever pinging her bra strap at school.

Within seconds it’s clear he’s still a cheeky charmer, even if he’s transformed into a gorgeous guy who unexpectedly sets her pulse racing. Forced into close proximity with relentlessly cheerful Ryan, who’s forever (badly) singing rock ballads at the top of his voice, Imogen at first finds him an annoying distraction.

With St Patrick’s Day celebrations in full swing, Imogen has her work cut out to keep the job on track. Spending more time with Ryan, she discovers that, behind his warm smile and generous ways, he’s nursing heartache. But when she finally sees blue-eyed Lachlan again, Imogen has to face up to the truth about the secret summer romance they shared.

Will she leave Emerald Bay broken-hearted? Or will Imogen realise that home really is where the heart is?


Michelle Vernal is a New Zealand author who writes stories that will take you onto the page with her characters and make you feel part of their lives. She writes with humour and warmth, and her readers describe her books as unputdownable, feel good and funny. Her writing has been likened to Maeve Binchy but with a modern-day vernacular. In 2015 she was shortlisted for the Love Stories Award. In 2020 she won the Reader's Favorite Gold Medal Award for Chick lit, and in 2021 was shortlisted for the Page Turner Book Awards.

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