Do you know what is a proud moment as a book blogger? When somebody comes back to you to review the next book in their series. It gives me a sense of accomplishment and that I did their hard work justice with my review. Today I am going to present to you the follow up to the entertaining A Little Bit of Chantelle Rose.
Valentina by Cristina Hodgson welcomes the return of protagonist Chantelle Rose. In order to continue the fairy-tale life she experienced in the first book, Chantelle needs to get to the bottom of who Lionel and Robbie really are. The path takes her to the Pampas lands of Argentina and the stunning Valentina. But who is Valentina and what key does she hold to the past?
What you are probably wondering already is “can I read Valentina if I haven’t read A Little Bit of Chantelle Rose?” I would answer no. Although you get a very brief rundown of what happened in the first book, it is not enough to get a real feel for the characters and their background.
Saying that I can see the books in this series becoming more distinct from each other and them becoming stronger as standalone stories (book three is already confirmed). Certainly, this book seems less about Chantelle. Her name has even been removed from the title and replaced with that of Valentina. The third book will focus on Chantelle’s mother so this series is not really Chantelle’s story anymore. I predict they will eventually feel more like a James Patterson series, where each story is somewhat unique and you don’t necessarily have to read every instalment unless the main character is your pull to the book.
In my review of A Little Bit of Chantelle Rose, I wrote that while I found Chantelle irritating at first, I warmed to her by the end. Unfortunately, I seemed to backtrack in this book. Chantelle really annoyed me. She was immature and irresponsible and I can’t say I agreed with some of the choices she made. On the flip side, if these characteristics of Chantelle were omitted, we wouldn’t have the story we have today.
I liked the story. It was fun and easy to read. I know I say this a lot but I found it to be a good poolside book, especially now that summer is upon us. Overall, I can’t say Valentina was my favourite recent read. However, I now feel invested in Chantelle and the adventures she finds herself embroiled in. Would I pick up the next instalment in the series? Probably. I want to find out about her mother, probably the most interesting element of Chantelle’s backstory.
I was sent a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.