THE HOUSE AT THE END OF HOPE STREET by @meenavanpraag #WomensFiction

The House at the End of Hope Street by Menna van Praag
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I rushed to buy this book after reading about it on Liz Lloyd’s #FridayFiveChallenge post and am so pleased I did. The House At The End Of Hope Street is women’s fiction, the book is set in Cambridge, UK. Oh I so didn’t want this book to end, it was truly delicious! My feelings about the book were a mix; I was a gown-up in Alice-in-Wonderland and I felt like Harry Potter seeing the Weasley house for the first time all rolled into one. The shear delight of Number 11 Hope Street, I want to go there now, I want to spend 99 nights and you will too.

Alba Ashley is 19, intelligent beyond her years she is already at Cambridge University doing a PHD in modern history, she sees spirits, ghosts, auras and more, yet she is alone, lost and currently in deep shock. Her footsteps take her to the doorstep of number 11 Hope Street and Peggy Abbot. Alba is invited in, the walls are filled with photos of old residents; Daphne Du Maurier, Virginia Woolf and Caroline Herschel to name but a few.

Peggy offers Alba a room for 99 nights, no rent, no bills to pay, just take care of the house and the house will take care of you. The house is a refuge for women who lose hope. But it’s much, much more than that, the house is alive, magical, it nurtures, soothes and inspires the residents.

There are two other ladies living in the house at this time, Carmen a Spanish singer with a secret and Greer a broken hearted actress. The storyline evolves around the healing power of the house on all four of the characters as the author slowly peels away the layers of their lives allowing us to be there with all the women. Peggy has her own tower room as caretaker of the house where she has delightful tea cups painted with tarot cards which read the future of whoever drinks from them and crockery with moving characters from fiction.

Alba makes her first friend, a ghost called Stella, who lives in the kitchen and is there for her when she has news that her mother has died. This is a possible set back for Alba in her recovery however where one door closes another opens. The house sends paper messages which often take a little work to understand.

I want to tell you so much more, but it would spoil your own enjoyment of this book, I loved Peggy and her chocolate cake eating habit, I loved Alba for who she discovered she could be and Greer and Carmen and I loved the fact that after the author had finished this book she found out that there really is a Hope Street in Cambridge, but no number 11 – spooky!

Find a copy here from or

View all my reviews on Goodreads

VACATION Thoughts #FridayFiveChallenge Would you BUY or PASS? Fodor’s Utah

This fun feature is a mini workshop. We look at book covers just from their thumbnail pictures at online selling book sites and make quick fire buying decisions. We look from a READERS Point of View and this exercise is very EYE OPENING.

Mug 1

From the book cover we will browse the book description, price and some of the reviews BUT we only have 5 MINUTES.


Join in and see where it leads.

Grab a coffee and spend 5 Minutes on this exercise.

AUTHORS – You often only have seconds to get a reader to buy your book, is your book cover and book bio up to it?

My Friday Five Challenge is this….. IN ONLY FIVE MINUTES….

1) Go to any online book supplier,

2) Randomly choose a category,

3) Speed through the book covers, choose one which has instantly appealed to your eye,

4) Read the book Bio/ Description for this book,

5) If there are reviews, check out a couple,

6) Make an instant decision, would you BUY or PASS?

(then write a little analysis about your decision)

Share your post, use #FridayFiveChallenge @rosieamber1 and I’ll help share all relevant posts.

I’ve just finished an article about holidays and my thought returned to Utah and it’s National Arch Monuments, I like what I’ve seen before and would like to return to explore more of the area, so my search term was Utah. or

Book description

Fodor’s correspondents highlight the best of Utah, including awe-inspiring national parks from Arches to Zion, outstanding ski resorts like Deer Valley, and Salt Lake City’s cultural riches. Our local experts vet every recommendation to ensure you make the most of your time, whether it’s your first trip or your fifth.
MUST-SEE ATTRACTIONS from the Great Salt Lake to Sundance
PERFECT HOTELS for every budget
BEST RESTAURANTS to satisfy a range of tastes
Useful FEATURES on outdoor adventures and drives
VALUABLE TIPS on when to go and ways to save
INSIDER PERSPECTIVE from local experts
MAPS AND COLOR PHOTOS to guide and inspire your trip

Price; £9.69 kindle £13.99 paperback

Reviews; 5 on Amazon US

one 3* review said;

“Wish it would have been more detailed about the different Canyons. Spent almost half the book on Salt Lake City area which I had been too before.”

Would I BUY or PASS? …..PASS unless I definitely know we are going.


I chose the book for the book cover, Utah is the arches to me, but I want to explore more. I would buy a copy in paperback if I were booked to go there, Fodor have a good reputation and this book was published in 2015, so much of it would be up to date. A travel guide needs to be up to date to be of any use. I was concerned with the review which said much of the book was about Salt Lake City, we’re not city people, so I would want to know about the National parks, walks etc I’m not too bothered about the price for a non-fiction book, it will have lots of photos.

Here are links to others bloggers taking up today’s challenge.

Liz searched for Magic and found The House At The End Of Hope Street by Meena Van Praag

Shelley looked at upcoming releases and found Sleepless in Manhattan by SarahMorgan

Cathy is feeling the cold and found a thriller; Ice by Kevin Tino

Barb searched for LONDON and found a delicious book with wizards, Rivers Of London by Ben Aaronovitch

Paula searched for Andalucia and found a book by Lisa Marie Basile