Thursday 22 May 2014

Way Back When: CosmoGIRL!/Piccadilly Love Stories

I often scan my shelves just letting my mind wander over the titles and the characters and the stories within them, and sometimes I take particular notice of an older book. Usually this is a book I read before I started blogging and one that I never hear anyone talk about and I wonder why on earth they don’t because I bloody loved it! I decided it was time that those old gems got dusted off and showcased again so I’m going to do a series of posts about books I Way Back When. The first is all about the CosmoGIRL!/Piccadilly Love Stories that were published by Piccadilly Press about 8-10 years ago.

Love stories have always been my kryptonite, especially ones that make my heart ache and my eyes leak. I’m just a sap really.

I discovered my first CosmoGIRL!/Piccadilly Love Story in my school library. It was called Tessa in Love by Kate le Vann and promised the tale of a shy girl who decides to take a stand when her local parkland is threatened and she joins a protest. There she meets Wolfie and they fall quickly in love. Then tragedy strikes. This book made me bawl my eyes out. I was a complete mess, and I adored it. I searched out the rest of Kate le Vann’s published novels at the time and waited eagerly for the next one (particularly The Things I Know About Love – another sobbing fest). I also realised that this was part of a collection by Piccadilly and I began to search.

Next I came upon Hilary Freeman’s Loving Danny. I think every girl loves a musician – I mean, who hasn’t crushed on a rock/pop star or twelve?! It’s the year after Naomi finished secondary school. All of her friends are off on adventures and beginning a new life at university while she’s going to work and living at home and being bored. Then on the bus home from work one day, Naomi meets Danny. Mysterious and intense, Danny turns her life upside down with his incredible talent and his band on the brink of stardom. But Danny has a destructive side that could put everything in shadow. Freeman introduced me to one of my first bad boy crushes and I’ve never forgotten him.

Anna-Louise Weatherly’s The Wrong Boy was by far one of my favourites from all I read of this series. I’m a big fan of the rather clichéd notion of rich-girl/poor-boy set up, and The Wrong Boy puts a bit of a spin on it – Grace had it all with her big house, posh school, horses and swimming pool, then here dad was incarcerated for fraud and she had to move to a small house on an estate with her mum. When she is bullied by some locals, her neighbour JJ comes to her rescue. They’re from different worlds – can they make it? This was another heart-wrenching one for me. Sadly, Anna-Louise is now a journalist and writes adult novels, the second of which was released last year, I believe. Maybe I’ll give them a go one day...

The final two titles, Love Divided by Vanessa St Clair and My Best Friend’s Brother by Laura Ellen Kennedy were my least favourites of the whole series. It may have been because there were no tears in these ones. I didn’t become as attached to the characters, either, but I still loved the element of forbidden romance and I feel affectionately towards them and always will.

I was gutted when I began to realise that no more in this series would be published. I had begun to rely on Piccadilly Press to deliver me heartache, sob-worthy stories that I could lose myself in. Luckily, all bar Tessa in Love are still in print so you can trundle off to Amazon to purchase shiny new copies, or very cheap e-books for most of them, if you prefer.

Do let me know if you’ve read any of these, or if you do at some point in the future – I’d love to hear your thoughts! Feel free to write your own series of posts about books you loved Way Back When!

Do you have any favourite publisher-led series?



  1. I love these books! I have them all and I really enjoyed reading them. I always look out for other books by these authors, too. Thanks for the happy reminder, Sophie!

  2. Thanks for this post! It's lovely when your old books are remembered and, hopefully, get new readers.


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