Book Tour & Review – In Persuit of Happiness by Freya Kennedy (with excerpt)




In Persuit of Happiness

by Freya Kennedy

Publish Date December 15, 2020

by Boldwood Books



About In Persuit of Happiness

The world is waiting…but just outside of your comfort zone.

Jo Campbell is perfectly content in a perfectly structured life.
Nothing ever changes in Jo’s life, and she likes it that way.
Or at least, she tells herself she does.
Most of the time, she manages to push down the tiny voice that tells her to chase her dream and maybe, just maybe, open her battered and bruised heart up to love.
But to chase her dreams she needs to take chances that are way out of her comfort zone and learn to not put other people’s happiness above her own.
Most of all she has to learn to trust her heart, which may just be the biggest challenge of all.




My thoughts

A sweet story of friends, family, finding yourself, and finally taking a chance on romance along the way. Certainly the perfect uplifting romantic read for 2021 that it touts itself to be, and I think its a perfect way to start your new year!

Just published 12/15, Freya Kennedy has written another tale at Ivy Lane in Derry, Ireland, the beloved home of Libby Quinn, the main character in “The Hopes and Dreams of Libby Quinn.” Now you don’t have to read this first book because IN PURSUIT OF HAPPINESS reads as a stand alone story, but it’s nice to reconnect with some of the characters, especially Libby. This tale centers around Jo and her thirst to follow her own dreams, despite wanting to remain in her comfort zone. When Libby sends Jo’s book to a famous writer to “push” Jo to pursue her own writing goals AND Harry’s grandson Lorcan comes to town and sparks an unexpected tingle in Jo’s version of single, will Jo finally venture out of her comfort zone and take a chance?

Of course I adored this book, it had all the cozy feels that I love in a romcom. The village and all the characters are so enchanting, and Jo really makes you realize that its important to follow your dreams. Heartwarming, fun and delightful, I hope Freya Kennedy keeps taking us back to Ivy Lane with more great stories.

I just would like to thank Freya Kennedy, Rachel Gilbey of Rachels Random Resources, Boldwood Books and Netgalley for the gifted copy of this book for my unbiased and honest opinion for review.





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Enjoy a short excerpt from In Pursuit of Happiness from Freya and Boldwood Books:

Erin pulled back and sat down. ‘You know we’re catering that private party tomorrow? The engagement?’

Jo nodded. The details of the dinner for thirty being held in the pub’s small but perfectly formed function room were seared in her brain. The bride-to-be was what most people would class as high-maintenance. And the groom-to-be was worse.

‘Well, himself just called and wondered could they add another ten meals to the cover. And four of those ten are vegan, but none of our vegetarian options “sound like something they would like”.’ She rolled her eyes at this. For a small gastro pub, The Ivy Inn’s array of vegetarian and vegan meals was impressive – something Erin was very proud of. ‘So he wondered could I send him a few ideas for them to consider. You know, for the dinner, tomorrow.’ She dug her fork into her brownie with a fierceness that made Jo feel a little scared. ‘I mean… ten more meals and a bespoke menu at twenty-four-hours’ notice! And you’ll have to rework the table arrangements to fit more people in! It’s been one thing after another with these two.’

‘At least it’s only the engagement and not the wedding,’ Jo offered. ‘If they want to book that with us, we can claim to have no availability that day.’

‘Can we not just tell them to stick their extra guests and their bespoke menu up their arses?’ Erin asked, hopefully, but Jo could see that her temper was already subsiding. She knew Erin and the pride she took in her work. She’d make it happen and she’d make the vegan meals amazing, so much so that the couple would probably want to book there and then for the wedding – but they’d cross that bridge when they came to it.

‘If only,’ Jo said with a smile. ‘But you can tell them that our vegan menu has won awards and at this stage it’s not possible to source other ingredients for alternatives.’

‘I can probably work something out,’ Erin said, as she took a second bite of the brownie and made semi-orgasmic noises as the chocolate hit took effect. ‘Who supplies these? They must have a special recipe. I’ve never tasted anything like it.’

‘I can find out for you,’ Jo said, with a hint of a smile on her face. Hurricane Erin had run out of puff and her friend’s mind was already back at work.

‘What would I do without you?’ Erin asked, her smile bright and a little disgusting, thanks to some chocolate brownie stuck between her front teeth.

‘Clearly you’d be horribly miserable,’ Jo said and reached out to give Erin’s hand a quick squeeze.

‘I suppose I’d better get back. Are you on Clara duty tonight?’ Erin asked before she savoured the last bite of her brownie.

Jo nodded. Thursday night was always Clara night. Not that she minded. In fact, Thursday nights were one of her favourite nights of the week. She got to indulge her own inner six-year-old as she immersed herself in her little sister’s world and there were times when that world was much more fun than her grown-up world. ‘But I will be working tomorrow and I’ll be there from early afternoon, so I will be on hand to help you manage the high-maintenance bride- and groom-zilla. It will all be grand. And if it isn’t, we’ll let Paddy lick their cutlery before dinner.’


About the Author

Freya Kennedy lives in Derry, Northern Ireland, with her husband, two children, two cats and a mad dog called Izzy. She worked as a journalist for eighteen years before deciding to write full time. When not writing, she can be found reading, hanging out with her nieces and nephews, cleaning up after her children (a lot) and telling her dog that she loves her. 

She has met Michael Buble and even kissed him. It was one of her best ever moments.

She believes in happy ever afters.

Freya Kennedy is a pen name for Claire Allan, who also writes psychological thrillers.

Find out more about Freya at her website::

Sign up for her newsletter here:  Freya Kennedy Newsletter



Author Contact/Social Media

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Published by ReadingGirlReviews

Serious book loving critical care RN dealing with RA, being married to a surgeon, my 2 crazy dogs, an obsession with crafting, and a mad desire to swing golf clubs (although quite poorly).

One thought on “Book Tour & Review – In Persuit of Happiness by Freya Kennedy (with excerpt)

  1. Someone who can write lovely characters has to be a lovely person herself. Is that true, I wonder? Probably not. My own characters are a grim lot, lonely, devious, manipulative – but I don’t think I’m like that myself – I’ll have to ask those close to me and hope they tell the truth! It sounds like a lovely book, and thanks for the review.


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