Review by Veronica

“But much as she tried to lose herself in the pages, her mind kept going back to the man on the beach, He’d seemed familiar, somehow. She reached under her shirt and touched her shoulder gently. She remembered the feel of his hands on her skin, goosebumps appearing at the thought of it.”

The Island of Dreams is a great romantic escapist romp.

Martha is the youngest of three sisters and, in her mid-thirties, has the dubious honour of being the only one to call off a wedding at the last moment.

Now, feeling as if she’ll be single forever, and trying to keep her low opinion of her sister Iris’s fiancé to herself for risk of looking bitter, Martha needs a change of scene.

When she is given the opportunity of a holiday to Paxos it seems too good to turn down, though the idea of travelling alone is daunting. And when the trip to the Greek island gets complicated, Martha wonders if this has all been a mistake.

But soon the island and its residents start to work their magic on Martha, and when she meets single father Harry and his adorable son Milo, a new way of living is revealed in contrast with the drab routine of her life back home. How can Martha leave behind the warmth of the people, the freedom and the fun, not to mention Harry and Milo when it’s time for her to go home…

Greece is a magical place to escape to, whether it’s in real life or in the pages of a book. Helen has managed to capture what makes Greece so wonderful and breathtaking. All of the descriptions in this story are lush and vivid. I felt like I could feel the warm breeze on my face and hear the waves crashing in the ocean. She also shows readers how wonderful the communities that live on this island are. I loved just spending time with locals on Paxos. They are friendly, funny, and just have so much heart. They added that extra charm to the story. 

The overall story is enjoyable. This book is great for those bookworms who like their romances on the lighter side of things. The romance between Martha and Harry isn’t the story’s main focus and doesn’t pick up until the book’s latter half. As readers, we enjoy spending time on this gorgeous island and hanging out with Martha and the community that lives on Paxos. The book’s first part has some family drama (which I always love), and then the story turns into this fun vacation romance. I enjoyed the book’s flow, and all the characters were well-crafted. They were interesting and relatable. Martha is a great MC and fun to be with. I loved exploring Paxos with her and watching her bloom and begin to live again. I’m not ashamed to say that little Milo stole my heart and was just so delightful in this book. It’s not too often that I say I wish I got to spend more time with a character who is a kid, but I wish I got to spend more time with Milo.

As I mentioned above, the romance is on the lighter side of things. It’s a cozier romance and an excellent read for anyone who loves vacation romances. I always love seeing how an author will get their two MCs to their HEA, and Martha and Harry’s journey was really enjoyable to watch unfold. And I liked the romance between Harry and Martha. It was sweet, and the sparks were there. I liked their conversations, and things just flowed really nicely between these two.

The Island of Dreams is a cozy vacation romance that will transport readers to the gorgeous island of Paxos.

Thank you, Boldwood Books and Rachel Random Resources, for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.