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Summary

It's never too late to live the dream.... 

Carla Sullivan’s 50th birthday is fast approaching when her whole world is turned upside down. Discovering her feckless husband is having yet another affair and following her mother’s death, she is in need of an escape. Finding an envelope addressed to her mother’s estranged sister Josette in the south of France gives Carla the perfect plan. 

Seizing the moment, she packs her bags and heads to Antibes to seek out the enigma known as Tante Josette. But as the two women begin to forge a tentative relationship, family secrets start to unravel, forcing Carla to question her life as she has always known it. 

A heartwarming tale on the beautiful French Riviera that will keep you guessing. From the best-selling author of Summer at Coastguard Cottages, The Little Kiosk by the Sea and Rosie's Little Cafe on the Riviera. Perfect for fans of Jill Mansell and Fern Britton.

©2019 Jennifer Bohnet (P)2019 Boldwood Books Ltd

Critic reviews

"Unputdownable, a heartwarming story of love, family and friendship in the glorious south of France. What’s not to love!" (Lucy Coleman)

What listeners say about Villa of Sun and Secrets

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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narration dreadful

couldn't finish this book due to the narration. Do the authors not listen to a sample before letting it go out to audible?

6 people found this helpful

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A Wonderful listen

Dear Readers
Having spent five summers in Antibe with my beloved wife ,before she died last year, this book brought back glorious memories of our visits The story great in character and place ,filled me with joy.Thank you Author and Reader for the many hours spent in your company .No doubt I will return to re-read it again









5 people found this helpful

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Predictable but still enjoyable

If you fancy an extended stay in the South of France, with an unchallenging, predictable but fair paced plot, I recommend this book. I listened to it free as it is in the Plus Catalogue section.

I liked all the characters, but the best part was the description of pool-side suppers, the ice-cold rose wine and the lovely food. It is never really tense and nothing bad happens.

The narration is definitely in the 'this is theatrical acting' zone, but JF is very good at all the accents, and switches effortlessly between say, Scottish, to French, or Italian, so there are no painful moments.

I really enjoyed it and the fact that is was free is a real bonus - thank you!

3 people found this helpful

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Another wonderful holiday book

Thought I had guessed the ending, how wrong I was, a twist around every corner. Ready for the next audio book.

2 people found this helpful

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Struggled with the accents

I quite enjoyed the story although it was fairly predictable. I found the French and Italian accents were far too strong to be comfortable to listen to, authentic or not.
Apart from that the performance was good.

1 person found this helpful

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Didn’t finish

I struggled to tune into the narrator especially when she was doing the French accent. I returned , shame.

1 person found this helpful

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story wained in last quarter

I enjoyed the story to start with and enjoyed the narrator. I started to get bored after 'the secret' was out and made the mistake of looking at reviews. One ruined the rest of the book by giving a huge spoiler for the only interesting bit left! Because of this I did not finish the book which I felt was dragging on anyway. There were lovely depictions of life in France but I was expecting an announcement that one character was an alcoholic, the amount of wine guzzled at every opportunity remarkable. It was a shame the thread about developing a guest house was not explored much further.

1 person found this helpful

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Somehow finished this

I think I only managed to listen to this because I'm desperate for a holiday somewhere sunny. 😂

Storyline is average, plods a bit and is quite predictable but fine for switching your mind off after work. I feel a significant amount of editing could still have been done, the character's actions/reactions are not believable, and there was a lot of 'we just need time to get to know each other' - could have been a drinking game, they said it so often.

However, what could have elevated this audiobook a little but actually made it worse was the cringey narration. Sometimes I almost thought the narrator had a tone of 'obviously this is what happens next, do you really need me to spell it out?'

Would not recommend. If you want a well-written book set in a Mediterranean villa for a bit of imaginary sunshine I suggest The Enchanted April.

1 person found this helpful

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loved it.

very good story but the narrator's accents were a bit strong until you got used to them. Nice that the story was about the "older generations" for a change.

1 person found this helpful

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OK read

Story wasn't to bad with a little twist at the end. The narrator took a bit of getting used to though. Didn't seem to flow and left strange gaps in sentences . And I wasn't keen on the accesents.
Overall it was ok .

1 person found this helpful

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  • Gail
  • 28-11-21

Dreadful recording

Audio quality makes it virtually impossible to listen to. Had to stop at chapter 7. Could not understand a word, the French accents are completely over done. Very disappointing

1 person found this helpful

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  • Marcia U. Glenn
  • 27-09-21

I want more!

Ms. Bohnet speaks to every woman who has been taken advantage of by an all consuming and cheating spouse, showing that forgiveness and value of oneself can open a path to wonderful new beginnings!

1 person found this helpful

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  • Jan
  • 07-02-20

Villa of Sun and Secrets

Villa of Sun and Secrets. I tried several times to get into this book because the narrater was so over the top. I finally just read it. As the book progressed her voice settled a bit. I absolutely loved the book I did not want it to end. If you have been there you feel as if you are there again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Vera L.
  • 27-07-22

Good story

This book had a good story, but to me, the narration was annoying and distracting with the heavy accents.

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  • T W
  • 24-07-22

Enjoyed it

Enjoyed the storyline and characters. Glad I found this book on plus and will.look for more by this author.

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  • Angela Hays-Rake
  • 23-07-22

Keep going past the first chapter to give the French accent a chance.

Listeners in the reviews complained about the French accent and wouldn’t keep listening. That’s too bad because this book has a few surprises and twists and turns that keep you feeling for the characters. I loved this book and I respect the narrator for doing all the accents. French, English as in England, Scottish and Italian and maybe more I missed.

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  • Kathy
  • 20-07-22

Impossible To Understand

The book sounds like it would be a good book but definitely not one to listen too. The accents are pretty much impossible to understand! I couldn’t get through the first chapter!

I listen to audible books a lot, purchase several of them, but there are some narrators that really turn me off of some great authors’ books.

Something needs to be done differently for the authors who put so much of themselves into their work. Who hires these narrators? Surely not the authors themselves!?

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  • Mona-Alisa
  • 13-07-22

Villa of Sun and Secrets

I loved this book. The storyline is well written. The characters are nicely developed. Although I quickly guessed the secret, I didn't see the entire secret coming. Some reviews complain about the narrator. I strongly disagree. She is excellent. Off to see if Jennifer Bohnet has more audible books.

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  • Molly
  • 10-07-22

Heard it

Wonderful, wonderful story! Well written, great plot and endearing characters! A feel good book!




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  • Angela
  • 03-07-22

Enjoyed every moment!

I am a romantic at heart and I loved listening to the reader’s accent. I enjoyed the storyline and the happy ending.