Read Farm Fatale: A Comedy of Country Manors by WendyHolden Online


Rosie and Mark, a couple living in chic urban squalor, pine for the rustic bliss of country life. Newly minted, Samantha and Guy want the same thing-on a somewhat grander scale. The four converge on the quaint village of Eight Mile Bottom. With its eccentric residents, including a reclusive rock star, a nosy postman, a foxy farmer, and one ghost with a knife in its back, tRosie and Mark, a couple living in chic urban squalor, pine for the rustic bliss of country life. Newly minted, Samantha and Guy want the same thing-on a somewhat grander scale. The four converge on the quaint village of Eight Mile Bottom. With its eccentric residents, including a reclusive rock star, a nosy postman, a foxy farmer, and one ghost with a knife in its back, the two couples are soon swept up in various romantic entanglements, mix-ups, slipups, and unlikely seductions in their search for ever-greener pastures. Farm Fatale is another witty, irresistible gem from a hip and savvy author....

Title : Farm Fatale: A Comedy of Country Manors
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780452283022
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 339 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Farm Fatale: A Comedy of Country Manors Reviews

  • Juliana Graham
    2019-02-06 15:44

    Well, let's be honest. Firstly I picked this book up in error, thinking it was by an author I liked. A silly mistake to make, but the cover styles of Wendy Holden's books are very similar to those of Judy Astley. I like Judy Astley... In my haste in the library I grabbed this book and began to listen to it (talking book you see) on my way to and from work. I remember thinking to myself that it was not in the usual style of the author I thought it was (I know, I know, my mistake) but by the time I realised my error I had already got through a fair few chapters and I HATE to give up on a book once I've invested more than a few minutes in it.So, I plodded on. Where to start on what is wrong with this book...? Firstly, the characters are the most one-dimensional, raging stereotypes I have had the misfortune to encounter since marking a 14 year old's creative writing project. In addition to this, they are not only stereotypes but also thoroughly dislikeable. I know that humorous books exaggerate characteristics to make situations amusing, but the characters here, with their bizarre names and excessive behaviour often descended into the farcical. The plot itself had potential - young couple move to the country, find things not quite as they expected, adventures ensue. However, everything was so overblown and any potentially funny situations were SO obvious that you could guess where a funny piece of dialogue or scene was going by the end of the first sentence. The main character, Rosie, was such a wet lettuce and it seemed to me that she would have ended up with any character that gave her the time of day, falling in and out of love according to how nice the current object of her desire was to her at any given moment.I will never, ever read another Wendy Holden book. It took me so long to get through because I found it so tedious. Chick Lit at its worse and I'm no book snob, but I really don't get why anyone would find this book amusing! The only bit that made me smile was that the farmer had a cow called Jennifer Lopez. I once knew a farmer who also had a cow called Jenny, because she had a big bottom like J-Lo. That anecdote is funnier than anything you will find in this book... I rest my case.

  • Ivonne Rovira
    2019-02-09 17:44

    Poor Rosie had given up on her dream of moving to the British countryside when her live-in boyfriend Mark, an underappreciated journalist, gets the assignment of writing a regular column on how — in Mark’s editor’s words — “moving from the city to the country is the millennium dream” and “what it’s really like to swap SW7 for rural heaven.” Needless to say, the relocation to the village of Eight Mile Bottom ne’er runs smooth. Mark is no less self-absorbed in the village than he was in their apartment in the London suburb of Easthampstead. (After all, he moved for his own benefit, not because of what Rosie wanted.) But Rosie rises to the occasion and comes into her own. Farm Fatale combines both quite funny situations and some sweet bits in a convincing fashion without it sounding patched together. At the same time, B-grade actress and trophy wife Samantha Villiers relocates to the same village, along with her ruthless, cynical and self-absorbed banker husband Guy Grabster. Samantha, a selfish prima donna given to embellishing her movie résumé, has succumbed to every passing fad, and that includes the new trend of country life. Samantha now envisions herself the lady of the manor at The Bottoms, a 17th century manor house, and the arbiter of life in Eight Mile Bottom. You’ll forsee that this grasping social climber will get her comeuppance, but, when it comes, you’ll still savor the satisfaction.Farm Fatale, of course, constitutes a Cinderella story with Rosie in the starring role. I won’t ruin the novel for you by giving away who fills the role of Prince Charming, but I promise you’ll love to see Rosie happy at long last. This is my first Wendy Holden novel; it won’t be the last.

  • Beka
    2019-01-31 18:25

    Literally worst book i have ever suffered through. The author spends half the time going off about furniture and crap. There is a typo on page 293 where the author miscalls a character named Matt, calling him Luke instead (and there is no character in the book of the name of Luke). Another typo is on page 336 where she misspells her own flipping character's name: Alan, as Alen. I wouldn't wish this book upon my worst enemy.

  • J.A. Kerr
    2019-01-29 17:16

    I've didn't enjoy this as much as her others but a good solid read.

  • Deidre
    2019-01-29 14:41

    Just no

  • Sarah (Cardcaptorsezzy) Barber
    2019-02-15 10:30

    I’m bias when it comes to this book. I’ve had it since new (since 2001 and refreshly released) and I’ve read this book countless times in the intervening years. This book is my guilty pleasure and I love it. I love the humour, the setting and the characters. Man I wish a reclusive rock star would come and batter down my door to declare his love for me! 😍This book isn’t going to be everyone’s cup of tea but it is mine (and I can’t stand tea 😖). And would I read it again? Definitely a big fat yes!

  • LyndaIn Oregon
    2019-01-25 13:45

    This one just didn't do it for me. Two London couples pick the same small village as their get-away-from-it-all destination. Largely unlikeable or clueless characters and an author who is inordinately pleased with her "inside" jokes drag everything down.

  • Rory
    2019-01-25 18:45

    This is a great little book. Love the characters and silly antics. Light and funny read.

  • Jen
    2019-02-01 15:20

    I laughed out loud! Such fun!

  • Kathy
    2019-02-10 15:30

    A bit love story, a bit character plots, but a light interesting read.

  • Pernilla
    2019-02-08 16:41

    A sweet little story with a happy ending, what more can you want when you feeling blue. Makes me want to move to the country too.

  • Elizabeth(Thoughts From an Evil Overlord)
    2019-01-21 12:25

    Wendy Holden has done it again! With Farm Fatale: A Comedy of Country Manors she had me cracking up as well as worrying about her heroine Rosie, and her semi-unfocused life. Illustrator Rosie lives in London with her boyfriend Mark, an ambitious reporter. Desperately wanting to move to a country village, Rosie is able to pull her plan together when Mark is given the opportunity to write his own column. They will find a country cottage and Mark will write about their experiences as Londoners learning the country way of life. A cottage built in 1649 with an overgrown garden becomes their home, surrounded by quirky yet friendly neighbors and visited daily by the nosiest postman in England. Rosie adapts well to their new home, bringing the garden back to life, finding the perfect illustrating job to complete in her rural world, and making friends all over Eight Mile Bottom. Mark is having a more difficult adjustment, unable to find topics worthy of his column, holing up in the cottage, and worrying about the criticisms of his editor.Rosie and Mark grow apart, and Rosie grows close with a local farmer while Mark begins questioning the wisdom of staying in the countryside. A large social occasion in the village brings their relationship to a head, and in the days following Rosie and Mark begin building their separate lives.Farm Fatale is filled with funny characters and situations, including a wanna-be starlet and the local publican, who runs the village hen races. Wendy Holden gives us more thoughtful moments as Rosie contemplates jumping from one relationship to another, and she learns that the person the world sees is often not the person one is inside. I greatly enjoyed Wendy Holden's Farm Fatale, and would love another story about all the interesting characters of Eight Mile Bottom. I can't recommend this book more as a great example of fun, summer time beach reading!

  • Tori
    2019-01-24 13:44

    I read Wendy Holden's first two books (Simply Divine, Bad Heir Day) about twelve years ago when I was around twenty or so and really enjoyed them. So when I found this book at a used book sale last year, I was pretty excited. I'm not sure if it's because I'm older now or because this wasn't Holden's best effort, but I just couldn't get into this book like I did her others. It starts out well enough. The two main characters are typical Holden, one being a young, working class woman with a heart of gold and the other being a vapid, selfish socialite (in this particular story, their names are Rosie and Samantha). The plot is familiar chick-lit fair, city people moving to a small country town full of colorful characters, complete with a love triangle on the side. The book starts to fall apart about halfway through though. First off, Holden starts spending way more time on Rosie's story than Samantha, which is really a pity because Samantha, with her failed attempts at social climbing and completely shallow personality, is far more amusing then Rosie (who spends the majority of the book in a relationship that the reader can tell from page one is going no where fast). The second problem with the book is that in the third act, the love triangle suddenly and randomly becomes a love square, which brings the entire "love story" plot to a quick and unsatisfying end. I still like Holden's writing enough to give her other books a try but I'm hoping that Farm Fatale (or Pastures Nouveaux, as my copy was called) was just a misstep and not the direction that her storytelling in general took.

  • Laura
    2019-01-24 17:44

    Rosie is an illustrator in London who dreams of moving to the country with her boyfriend Mark. When her boyfriend finally receives a new column about finding a new life in the country, Rosie is sure all of her dreams will come true. The hunt for a cottage is not exactly what they were expecting, but they eventually find a home in Eight Mile Bottom. Once in the village however, their lives don’t go exactly as planned.Samantha is a not even D list (can there be an F list) actress with a rich husband named Guy. After Guy suffers a heart attack, the two buy “The Bottoms” in Eight Mile Bottom. Samantha looks forward to being a big fish in a little sea until she discovers a former Bond girl is a neighbor and a reclusive rock star also lives nearby. Samantha throws the party of the season and much adventure ensues.Overall, this novel was okay, but I wasn’t drawn in as much as I could have been. I think the major problem was that half of the story was about Samantha and I really didn’t care for her character at all. Rosie’s story was also unexpected as her love life moves on from Mark in unexpected directions. Her eventual suitor is a very last minute addition and felt rushed. I also didn’t really like the name of the novel . . . Farm Fatale leads one to think that Rosie or Samantha will be a farmer or fall for one, but that is not the case. Rosie was an enjoyable character and I did like the funny antics of the novel. If you are looking for a quick, light read, this could be your book.

  • Andrea
    2019-02-15 16:18

    Farm Fatale took a little bit for me to get into. I don't normally have a hard time reading British books, but for some reason I did with this one.The characters were hit and miss for me. Rosie and Matt and Bella were okay. There were times I felt sympathetic for Rosie, but other times, she didn't mean that much to me. And while I found Bella amusing, at times she could be annoying. I think Matt was my favorite character, even though we only really get to know him in the end. But I found that he had the most redeeming qualities.I thought Mark was okay at the beginning but then he turned into a jerk, although that is what he was supposed to be. And Samantha was just spoiled. I thought Jack was going to be a nice guy, but I found that I didn't like him much either.The plot had me fooled though. I thought Rosie was going to end up with a certain guy, but she didn't. She ended up with a guy that I didn't even see coming. But I liked that and it felt right.As for living in the country, this book didn't make me want to move there. Sure, Matt's house sounded beautiful, but where Mark and Rosie lived sounded kind of awful to me. Maybe I'm just a snob, but the description of their village doesn't meet what I imagine a lovely country village to be like.Anyways, the book did hold my interest, and while I liked Beautiful People by the author better, this one wasn't too bad and I look forward to reading more books by Wendy Holden.

  • Cheryl
    2019-01-21 11:25

    Matt Locke is a newspaper reporter. Though, he writes more of the gossip column news. Rosie is Matt’s girlfriend. Rosie is tried of the city and dreams of moving to the country. Matt is stuck in his ways and would rather die then move to the country. That all changes when Matt gets the opportunity to write his own column and become a free lance reporter. His first feature will be about life in the country. Rosie could not be happier.Samantha Villers is an actress. Lately, her career has become almost non-existent. With her husband, Guy’s failing health and failing career, Samantha needs to do something soon to jump start her on the fast path again. Samantha comes up with the idea to move to the country. There she hopes to find some inspiration. Things are about to get wild in Eight Mile Bottom. Farm Fatale reminded me of the Chevy Chase movie, Funny Farm. Though, I thought this book could have been a bit funnier. There were some laughs to be had. Don’t get me wrong as I liked this book but just wasn’t in love with it. I liked Rosie a lot but besides her, there weren’t a lot of the main characters I could get into. Rosie had a heart of gold. Samantha seemed a little too much into herself, which I didn’t care for. I thought the postman was a hoot. He was so noisy but didn’t care. I may try Wendy Holden again in the future.

  • Wendy Hines
    2019-01-17 18:20

    Rosie is an illustrator and Mark is a journalist living in the big city, but they both have grander dreams. Rosie wants to move into the country and Mark wants to become a freelance columnist.With a quirk of fate, Mark is bestowed a column about cityfolk living in the country and so begins the search for a cozy cottage in the country. After much searching, they finally find a cute cottage affordable within their means in a small village and things seem to be working out nicely.Then the neighbors come home with all of their children and it's just not as quiet as it once was. Rosie gets a job to illustrate a book and she needs farm animals to draw, so she begins visiting a neighboring farm, and Mark struggles with his column. Rosie keeps advising him to use some of the local color, but Mark tells Rosie she doesn't know what she is talking about.It gets tense between the two and the local farmer's advances to Rosie are getting harder and harder to avoid. Meanwhile, social climber, actress wannabe Samantha and her husband move into the village, buying one of the oldest and finest homes in the area, and throw a party. Mark is determined to get invited, and perhaps get a deal as a screenwriter. The characters are quirky, funny, and the plot highly entertaining. The gossiping mailman was my favorite! Great for a summer read! Chick-lit lovers will love Farm Fatale!

  • Roxie
    2019-02-11 17:40

    So this book... happened.I don't hate it. There's not enough in here to latch onto for me to hate it. I don't love it, either; even while wearing the Suspenders of Disbelief, this plot is so far out of left field that it goes from escapism (or well-written farce) into What The Hell Even Is This. Also, the characters are trying so hard to be quirky and charming, but there's no substance to back it up (except for Matt. Matt gets a pass, because he ended up being the most enjoyable part of this book apart from those last five pages that just come out of nowhere).I want to like the -idea- of this book, because there was a lot of potential in these ideas. The city slickers moving into the country and finding it not quite the idyllic escape they wanted. The quirky members of the village with all their surprises and secrets. Hell, I don't even really mind the 11th hour romance (unrealistic though it undoubtedly is, even for this genre). But the book never lives up to its potential. It's just... there.Still, I might keep this one on my shelves for a while, if only to have something utterly mindless to peruse when my brain needs a break.

  • Kathleen Kelly
    2019-02-14 12:22

    Rosie convinces her boyfriend Mark that they should move to the country where they will both be able to work from home and just be able to get out of the big city and live a less hectic life. She finds a cottage in Eight Mile Bottom, somewhere in England. What ensues is a very funny story about what happens when several couples relocate to the countryside. Rosie is an artist, Mark is a writer. Another couple are Guy and Samantha. Samantha is an actress and her main focus is, well, herself. Eight Mile Bottom is a quiet small town with a variety of quirky characters. Duffy is the postman who just walks into the residents homes with their mail and offers advice and gossip. Matt is the reclusive rock star that everyone speculates about but Rosie befriends him at Samantha's party. Guy has a daughter Iseult who despises her stepmom. Then there is Jack, the farmer who allows Rosie to paint his sheep for her illustrations. Rosie's and Mark's next door neighbors are Mrs. Womersley who is Jacks aunt. So needless to say it is a tight knit community and everyone knows about everyone else. I found Farm Fatale to be a funny, witty and just plain fun book to read..

  • Margaret
    2019-02-10 16:34

    The back cover of this book was enticing and promised in theory some good laughs about two couples making the move from city life in London to quiet, peaceful life in the country. Rosie and boyfriend Mark (once he was convinced the move would be a good one for his job as a newspaper columnist) and Samantha and Guy (wealthy Guy and wannabe actress second wife) move to the country for Samantha to research a promised acting role, which she ends up losing anyway. I lasted only 125 pages without a laugh and totally confused with the chapters switching between the scenarios of the two characters. I never felt any connection with Rosie at all and the only thing I felt for Samantha was disgust at her self-absorption and social climbing ways that were ridiculously navigated.Too many long detailed descriptions of furnishings and decor took over serving not to just create a mental picture of the country homes became the center of the story and took away from the actual characters and their plights, funny or otherwise. I could not find a reason to continue the journey of reading something that was so dissatisfying.

  • quinnster
    2019-01-16 18:30

    What to say....what to say.....I didn't love this book, but then I didn't hate it either. It was just....there. Rosie wasn't that bad of a character, but I never really got a sense of who she really was. I definitely got a sense of other characters. Like Samantha and Mark. Awful, awful people. I don't understand at all why we were stuck in Samantha's head at all. I kept waiting for the moment when something changes for Samantha, when she realizes she's a horrible person, but that never comes. From the synopsis I was expecting a much different couple. The story would have been just fine if she was never in it, albeit much shorter.Everything kind of dragged on and then suddenly took this sharp turn and as the pages flipped away with very little pages left to read I wondered how things were going to get wrapped up. Holden wrapped everything up in about 7 pages. It was kind of disappointing. And predictable.I still have two other books by Wendy Holden to read for the off the shelf challenges. Hopefully they'll be a little better than this one. I'm generally a sucker for brit chick lit, but this one didn't thrill me.

  • Sharon
    2019-01-24 15:23

    Amusing in a few places but overall quite weak in character definition and storyline. One storyline I quite got into – the one of illustrator Rosie and her insensitive aspiring journalist boyfriend moving to the country. Then there was the parallel storyline of the celebrity world which didn’t interest me much. Most of the characters are not very nice so there are not too many you can warm to, but worse still they’re all pretty stereotypical. The ending is the most disappointing thing about this book as it is so rushed. You think she is going to end up with the farmer (this part actually had quite a nice build up) and she suddenly sleeps with a rockstar (someone who doesn't fit in with who Rosie would gel with at all) and gets engaged to him before you can blink – no reason, background or anything to it. A stupid ending and one that asks you to suspend belief too far. Did Holden just get fed up with the book and want to end it quickly? Very disappointing.

  • Rachel
    2019-01-24 11:30

    I have mixed feelings about this book. On the one hand, it's mostly well-written with a decent plot and a lot of wordplay and Holden is good with dialogue. On the other hand, all of the characters are unlikable and the ending is idiotic. Moreover, there are a lot of really unconvincing sex scenes and if I never hear the word "nipples" again, I think I'll be okay with that. The book is about two couples, Samantha and Guy and Rosie and Mark, who move from London to a country village. Samantha is a D-list actress whose businessman husband Guy is wealthy, Rosie is a struggling illustrator and Mark is a failing journalist. The country village part of the story is mostly superfluous, however, as the gist of it is that Samantha is vile, Guy is a philandering groper, Mark is an angry jerk, and Rosie is hapless and dim. The supporting characters are equally unappealing. I would probably read another book by Holden, but I wouldn't go out of my way to do it.

  • Belea Keeney
    2019-02-06 18:20

    Like much of chick-lit, this one requires a huge suspension of disbelief, but that's part of the genre's charm. You either go with the fantasy, or throw the book against the wall within a couple of chapters.I didn't throw this one and kept going through the shenanigans more in the hope of some farm-type stuff, of which there just wasn't enough. This setting wasn't so much a farm as a rundown cottage in the English countryside, and the heroine didn't have to make any physical effort to secure her world.The quirky characters worked fine--the nosy and gossipy postman, the bitter farmer, the reclusive rock star--all coming together in a disastorous event party put on by an over-the-top actress wannabe with money coming out her butt. (Well, her husband's butt, because after all, few women in these types of books have to actually *earn* a living.)A pleasant diversion if you enjoy English comedies and chick-lit.

  • Jennifer
    2019-01-16 18:16

    From My Blog...[return][return]Farm Fatale by Wendy Holden is a lively, faced-paced, clever novel that makes for a delightful afternoon of reading or the perfect summer book pick. The adventure begins as Rosie and Mark decide to give up life in the city and choose to move to Eight Mile Bottom in the country, beginning a brilliantly witty tale of the antics of the rather eccentric characters of Eight Mile Bottom. Will Rosie and Mark be able to survive country life?[return]Holden writes a brilliant novel filled with a delightful and eclectic cast of characters, vivid description and imagery further ensconces the reader into Eight Mile Bottom. I recommend Farm Fatale to anyone looking for a charming, witty novel. Pack up a copy of Farm Fatale into your bag before heading to the beach and you shall not be disappointed.

  • Jennifer
    2019-01-17 17:29

    From My Blog...Farm Fatale by Wendy Holden is a lively, faced-paced, clever novel that makes for a delightful afternoon of reading or the perfect summer book pick. The adventure begins as Rosie and Mark decide to give up life in the city and choose to move to Eight Mile Bottom in the country, beginning a brilliantly witty tale of the antics of the rather eccentric characters of Eight Mile Bottom. Will Rosie and Mark be able to survive country life?Holden writes a brilliant novel filled with a delightful and eclectic cast of characters, vivid description and imagery further ensconces the reader into Eight Mile Bottom. I recommend Farm Fatale to anyone looking for a charming, witty novel. Pack up a copy of Farm Fatale into your bag before heading to the beach and you shall not be disappointed.

  • Jessie Adamczyk
    2019-02-05 13:43

    This. Was. Awful. Horrible. I wanted a fluffy chic lit but seriously?? She gets engaged to a rock star who knows her all of a week. Really?? That does not happen. The infallibility of it is nuts. Not to mention a completely pointless side romance that ends in a ridiculously fast engagement as well. The author can't seem to chose which person she wants Rosie to end up with. First she makes the reader love the first one, then shows him as a jerk. Then the second guy-also a jerk. Then the author wants to hurry and finish the damn thing and throws in a rock star engagement. Um... None of the characters are particularly likeable. Where she is supposed to be quirky she's unrealistic. I hated it and I do not recommend it to anyone. Ever.

  • Cecilia
    2019-02-09 17:42

    Two words: boring and predictable.The characters are interesting to a point, I get the idea of what Holden was going for (funny, quirky); but quickly gets tiring to read about them because their dysfunctional qualities are way overdone. The story plot is interesting and imaginative, but it could have been told in half the pages. The dialogues are endless, boring, and painfully predictable. Just like the characters are overly dramatized so are the settings. The endless and painfully detailed descriptions of unrealistic settings made the book more of the same, page after page. I still don’t know Rosie as a person other than she is kind of a slut and not very smart. I found her annoying, shallow and (yes) boring.

  • Linda
    2019-02-05 17:38

    I had never heard of Wendy Holden before but I needed something to read and borrowed this from a friend on vacation. Having read so much Joanna Trollope, I saw this as a spoof on Trollope and other English village stories. Two young couples pull up roots in London and go to live in a village called Eioght Mile Bottom.Samantha and Guy are wealthy and buy the large house in the village. Rosie and Mark, as yet u married, live in a small cottage. Mark, a journalist, writes a weekly newspaper column on country life. A reclusive rock star Matt Locke lives in an estate nearby.the two couples decide that life ina small viallage isn't the idyllic blessing they thought the would find, and everyone soon gets entangled in the plot, including eccentric neighbors and a nosy cop.

  • Marcella
    2019-02-03 12:21

    Farm Fatale is a story about a financially struggling London couple who move to the countryside in hopes all their problems will be resolved, instead it strains their relationship even more. The story is lighthearted and entertaining but the prose is so florid at times that it takes away from the scene at hand. I was indifferent to the characters until the middle of the book when the author seemed to focus more on the plot than embellishing the discriptions of the scenes.I liked the 2 other Wendy Holden books I've read, particularly Beautiful People. I will definitely read more of her books.