Zoe Taylor is 33 years old and lives in Westholme with her football-loving son Charlie (8) and Lola the cat. She (Zoe, not Lola the cat) works as a journalist on the local newspaper The Northern News – or at least, she does until she is made redundant.
She meets up with her best friends Emma and Beth for sympathy and wine and they discuss ideas about what Zoe could now do for a job. Despairing at the amount of bad news printed in the local newspaper and on the local Facebook page, they have an idea for Zoe to produce a newspaper focusing on positive news stories – The Good News Gazette.
I found the story really easy to get into, it’s written really well with lots of humour and relatable situations (such as the countless school charity days parents need money for – oh yes!) and great characters. Zoe is lovely, I liked her immediately and loved her excuse for being late to work!
Zoe, Emma and Beth all attend a slimming club called Slim City and boy, could I relate to that too. We’ve all had a leader like Barbara, I’m sure! Well, maybe not quite so bad… but I recognised many aspects of the club!
The community feel is really good in the novel, especially when the café and other shops on the parade become under threat from the possibility of a big supermarket redevelopment. This all leads to a campaign organised by Zoe and in all this, it’s great to see people rallying around to help out.
There’s so much in the book that is wonderful, but one point I need to make is how accurate the Westholme Community Facebook page is. When I read the complaints about dog poo, it reminded me so much of my old village and I’m sure that was the top complaint there too! Beautifully observed.
The Good News Gazette is a lovely book full of warmth, heart and positivity. Just what we all need to read!
The Good News Gazette
Because we all need something to smile about!
She may be down but don’t count this determined single mum out just yet…
Nine years ago, Zoe Taylor returned from London to the quiet hamlet of Westholme with her tail between her legs and a bun in the oven. Where once her job as a journalist saw her tearing off to Paris at a moment’s notice after a lead, now the single mum covers the local news desk. At least, she did…until she’s unceremoniously let go.
When Zoe invites her friends over to commiserate, wine and whining soon turns into something more… and before the night is out she’s plotted her next step: The Good News Gazette.
Now, as a developer threatens to force Westholme into the twenty-first century, Zoe’s good news movement finds her leading a covert campaign as a community crusader. She may have started The Good News Gazette as a way to save herself, but she might just be able to save Westholme in the process…
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Author Bio –
Jessie Wells lives with her husband and two children in Merseyside. She has always written in some form, and previously worked as a journalist on the Liverpool Echo and Sunday Mirror and as a freelancer for various national women’s magazines and newspapers before moving into finance. She loves nothing more than getting lost in her imaginary worlds, which are largely filled with romance, communities bursting with character and a large dose of positivity.
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