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  • Writer's pictureLilac Mills

The Pets at Primrose Cottage by Sheila Norton


Emma Nightingale needs a place to hide away.

Fresh from the heartbreak of a failed relationship, she takes refuge in quiet Crickleford. And not before long – and quite accidentally too – Emma finds herself the town’s favourite pet-sitter, a role she isn’t certain of at first, but soon her heart is warmed by the animals; they expect nothing more of her than she is able to give.

The last thing Emma wants is for people to discover the real reason she is lying low, but then the handsome reporter from the local paper takes an interest in her story. Can Emma keep her secret and follow her heart’s desire…?


Well of course the pets are going to the stars of the show in this story! I particularly liked liked the escaping hamster and the swearing budgie, but the human characters were pretty good too.

The author keeps the suspense and mystery surrounding Emma's breakup with Shane going throughout the book, although the revelation was far tamer than I was expecting. I also had an issue with one or two inconsistencies regarding Emma's reading ability, but they didn't spoil my enjoyment at all.

A sweet read with some lovely characters.

About the Author

Sheila Norton lives in Chelmsford, Essex and part-time in Torquay, Devon. She worked for most of her life as a medical secretary, until retiring early to concentrate on her writing. Her most recent novels are published by Ebury (Penguin Random House) and are contemporary fiction with animal backgrounds: 'The Pets at Primrose Cottage' and 'The Vets at Hope Green' were preceded by two 'cat' stories: 'Oliver the Cat Who Saved Christmas' and 'Charlie the Kitten Who Saved a Life'. Sheila's first novel was published in 2003 and most of her earlier books were of the 'chick lit' style of women's fiction, apart from two books set mostly in the 1960s and one book about grandparents. She has enjoyed writing all her life, but her writing career first really took off in the 1990s when she won two first prizes for her short stories, and went on to have over 100 stories published in women's magazines. Sheila enjoys hearing from readers and can be contacted through her website: where you can also ask to be added to an email mailing list for updates about Sheila's books and writing life.

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