Sunday, 15 January 2017

Books Read: Milkshakes & Heartbreaks at the Starlight Diner by Helen Cox

Next time you’re in New York, take a turn off Broadway onto East Houston Street.

There, you’ll see it: The Starlight Diner. A retro eatery curious enough to delight tourists and locals alike. Fifties tunes stream out of the jukebox long into the night, and it serves the tastiest milkshakes in the five boroughs.

Esther Knight waitresses at The Starlight Diner. She’s sharp, sarcastic, and she’s hiding something. Nobody at the diner knows why she left London for New York – or why she repeatedly resists the charms of their newest regular, actor Jack Faber.

Esther is desperate to start a new life in the land of the free, but despite the warm welcome from the close-knit diner crowd, something from her past is holding her back. Can she ever learn to love and live again?

Amazon link: Kindle

I did actually read Milkshakes and Heartbreaks at the Starlight Diner last Summer but for one reason or another the review never got written up so I owe a massive apology to Helen Cox and her publishers for the delay in reviewing.  There is one upside to the delay though in that I got the chance to re-read this fab story and immediately have the chance to read the follow up story Secrets & Fries at the Starlight Diner. 

From the moment we first meet waitress Esther it's clear that she's been deeply affected by an incident in her past so although she has moved to New York for a fresh start she hasn't exactly immersed herself into her new life.  Instead her life revolves mainly around her job at the Starlight Diner working alongside Mona and Lucia and serving the quirky regulars who frequent the diner.  Even handsome English film star Jack Faber struggles to crack the wall that she's put up but when a local reporter tries to do an expose on her to uncover her story, Esther soon finds that Jack and her friends at the Starlight Diner are there for her when she needs them the most. 

I will admit that this was a lot darker of a story than I first expected, I knew there was a mysterious back story behind Esther's appearance in America, but fortunately this dramatic storyline was interspersed with some lighter moments too.  I've never been to New York and even though I know the Starlight Diner is not real, Helen Cox's descriptions of New York and a retro diner made me want to visit New York to see the city for myself and perhaps stumble across a 50s diner somewhere. 

Normally when we get an epilogue it's to wrap up the story nicely to bring us up to date with the characters but that's definitely not the case here as we're left wanting to know what's going on in Secrets & Fries at the Starlight Diner so that the questions I was left wondering would be answered!  

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