The Home for Broken Hearts
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The Home for Broken Hearts

3.49 of 5 stars 3.49  ·  rating details  ·  392 ratings  ·  71 reviews

THE DOOR IS OPEN . . . For young widow Ellen Wood, her Victorian home is a refuge—a place to feel safe with her eleven-year-old son, Charlie. But when money grows so tight that Ellen could lose the house, her sister, Hannah, makes a radical suggestion . . . rent out some of the rooms. Soon Ellen has three lodgers: Sabine, a German coworker of Hannah’s, recently separated f...more
Paperback, 343 pages
Published September 7th 2010 by Gallery Books (first published August 19th 2010)
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In my view this novel had some ambitious goals which I don't think were reached. The writing wasn't quite smooth enough; the characters didn't quite seem real; the plot wasn't completely convincing.

Ellen is a widow of a year; her husband was killed in a car accident due to his own reckless driving. Ellen has become housebound with grief, to the dismay of her eleven-year-old son Charlie. Ellen's sister Hannah is coming to visit more frequently, but there is tension between the two women.

Due to a...more
Rea Sinfield
Rowan Coleman is an Author who I had not come across before. I was surprised when I googled the author to find that she has had many books published which I have not seen or heard of before. The front cover is your typical chick-lit style book which is what grabs us chick-lit lovers straight to it on the shelf.

Ellie has hit rock bottom. After losing her husband in a car crash she finds herself unable to leave the house, and in a serious amount of debt. Ellen needs to find a way to bring in...more
Barbara Elsborg
Compared to the three other books of a similar ilk I've read over the last week, this at least was enjoyable. The story of Ellen, who's a widow with a son trying to get her life back together was well drawn. I liked Charlie, the son, and the cast of characters who come to live in her house were different and interesting.I didn't like the long extracts of bodice ripper - I thought they were far too long and I stopped reading them. I did like the relationship between Ellen and her sister - I had g...more
Suad Shamma
I really enjoyed reading The Happy Home for Broken Hearts, and wanted it to go on for much longer than it actually did, but at the same time felt that it ended quite well and gave us the closure we needed as readers. Rowan Coleman was able to merge devastation, loss, grief, romance, love, humour and wit all into one book.

I kind of knew what was going to happen from the very beginning, and had it all figured out, so yes, it was predictable in that sense. However, Coleman managed to write it all i...more
Donna in Southern Maryland
This book is quite different that the ones I usually read; I think I saw it in the NEW BOOK section of the Library list, and was hooked by the the summary. A wife and mother in London, Ellen's life is torn apart when her beloved husband Nick is killed in a car accident. After almost a year, she finds out that there will be no insurance money, and that she is broke. To make enough money to keep the house she and her son live in, it is suggested she take in Boarders.

If I had my way, and I lived i...more
Ellen Woods, freelance editor, grieving widow and the mother of a nearly twelve year old son has realized her late husband left them broke and she has to find a way to keep her house and home. After her sister, Hannah, insists she take three lodgers in her spare rooms, she reluctantly agrees, and between Hannah and her editor she soon has three very different people living under her roof. There is Sabine, a beautiful German woman escaping an unfaithful husband, Allegra Howard, one of the erotic...more
Sara Gatto

E' un romanzo che lascia l'amaro in bocca perché, dalla trama, crea un'aspettativa di una storia divertente, di situazioni simpatiche e qualche volta dolorose.
Invece ci troviamo a navigare in pagine e pagine in cui Ellen, la protagonista, non fa altro che piangersi addosso, riconoscendo anche si sta piangendo addosso. E' legatissima al passato in cui ha amato tantissimo un marito che la teneva all'oscuro di tutto, annullando la sua vita all'esterno della casa, tanto da farla diventare ag...more
This is another one of those books which should carry a 4 1/2 star rating. It was very enjoyable and easy to read.

Ellie Woods is mother to her 11 year old son and a fairly recent widow when she finds that her husband has left behind a mountain of debt so high, she could soon be forced to sell her beloved family home. After some serious nagging from her sister, Ellie gives in to the only possible course of action which is to take in lodger's in order to keep up the mortgage payments. Enter Alleg...more
This has turned into my pet reading peeve. I liked the book and most of the characters, but again am confounded by the recent tendency for every female character over 35 to find and be attracted to and snare a man at least ten years, more often more than that, younger than herself. Perhaps it is a total failure of imagination on my part, but why isn't finding a similarly attractive guy your same age an acceptable plot device anymore? When did the authors decide at once that all women of a certai...more
I haven't always been one for the genre "chick lit", however sometimes you find a gem I like. The Home for Broken Hearts has become one I did enjoy. Also, as a full American person, I also have to say I loved the English slang within this book. Imagine "Bridget Jones" movies and you have some of the lingo us US chaps find so fun. As for the story it really revolves around a group of people, but more so around two in particular, Ellen and Matt. It is their story that is also the most interesting....more
From my book review blog Rundpinne.

"Beautiful, heart-warming, and redemptive, The Home For Broken Hearts by Rowan Coleman is a beautiful portrayal of some of the most life-changing situations one can envision and the healing that comes with time. Eleven months ago, Ellen’s life drastically changed when her husband was killed in a motor vehicle crash. Since Nick’s death, Ellen has only felt comfort inside their home working as a copyeditor for romance fiction novels and caring for her son Charl...more
Jennifer Defoy
I sometimes find it hard to get into books about England because even though they are written in English the slang and differences in language make it difficult for me to fully grasp what the characters are saying. While I did experience a bit of that with this book for the most part it was pretty easy for me to pick up on. I'm finding that the more I read from English authors, the easier the language differences are to decipher. Having said that I really thought this was a great book.

The whole...more
Ellen Woods spends her days immersed in the escapist pages of the romantic novels she lovingly edits. But her reality is somewhat less rose-tinted. Once upon a time, Ellen had her ‘happily ever after’ moment when she married her beloved Nick, but fifteen years later her husband’s tragic death leaves her alone with their soon-to-become-a-teenager son, faced with a mountain of debt, and on the verge of losing the family home. On the brink of bankruptcy, Ellen finally succumbs to her sister’s well-...more
Young widow Ellen Wood feels as though she's treading water in the first few months after her husband's death. Her eleven-year-old son Charlie is her primary focus, as well as the books she edits for romance author Allegra Howard. Her Victorian home is her sanctuary, and between maintaining that home for herself and her son, and working from home, she scarcely even needs to leave it—which suits her fine, because she loves this home that seems to embody everything precious in her life.

So when she...more
Mary (BookHounds)
This is such a thoughtful and heartwarming story about family and that you don't always have to be blood relations in order to belong. It starts out with Ellen and Charlie who have just lost their husband and father and follows Ellen through her recovery from the loss and Charlie growing up. Ellen finds that when Nick died in a car accident that is his fault, it negates his life insurance and she is force to take on roommates. The new roommates start to act as a family since they each have a nee...more
Lisa (scarlet21)
Ellie Woods spends her days immersed in the escapist pages of the romantic novels she lovingly edits. But her reality is somewhat less rose-tinted. Once upon a time, Ellie had her 'happily ever after' moment when she married her beloved Nick, but fifteen years later her husband's tragic death leaves her alone with their soon-to-become-a-teenager son, faced with a mountain of debt, and on the verge of losing the family home. On the brink of bankruptcy, Ellie finally succumbs to her sister's well-...more
My Book Views
Ellen’s husband Nick died in a car crash, which, of course, changed the lives of Ellen and their son. A year later, Ellen is surprised to learn that not only is there no insurance money (they determined the crash was Nick's fault), but Nick had kept secret the financial trouble his business experienced (and that’s not the only secret he had!). Ellen's sister suggests renting rooms to get the money to keep the house. The three lodgers are just what Ellen and Charlie needed as they fill a unhappy...more
Lydia Laceby
Originally Reviewed at Novel Escapes

The Happy Home for Broken Hearts was my first Rowan Coleman novel and it did not disappoint. A great chick lit read, this novel is funny, yet has heavier moments as well as a cast of great characters and a unique premise that makes it stand out.

The overall tone wasn't too depressing even with the story tackling the topic of grief, but that was probably helped because we meet Ellen a year later. Watching her stumble as she rediscovered life had me cringing at...more
It's nearing a year since Nick was killed in a car crash. His young widow and their nearly twelve-year-old Charlie are still recovering from the loss. Emma has retreated into her home and her sanctuary but their depleted finances have led them to open their house to three special lodgers: Sabine, Allegra, and Matt. The lodgers bring much needed change for Charlie and Emma. The friendships that come about, the unexpected kindnesses and camaraderie push the book forward and make it a fun read.

I fell into this book, literally, I couldn't stop reading and was gutted when I finished it.
Ellen - who has just lost her husband is all over the place, hates going outside, and I guess is trapped in her own grief. Then, a visit from her solicitor tells her she needs to increase her income in order to keep her house. She is torn, she doesn't want to sell the house she bought with her dead husband, but she has no means of keeping herself afloat financially.
Her sister, successful Hannah suggests...more
L'amore è effimero,fragile come una ragnatela in un giorno di vento.

Ma perchè devono sempre cambiare il titolo?Non potevano lasciarlo come l'originale The happy home for broken hearts ?mah!!

Una storia intensa,fatta di cuori spezzati,tristezza,sogni,paure,pentimenti,amore,passione,desideri...una storia matura,come la protagonista, che deve rifarsi una vita,lei che ha sempre vissuto chiusa in un bozzolo,immersa nei suoi amati libri,confortata dal suo unico vero amore deve ricominciare,l'arrivo d...more
I thought this was an OK read. SEt in England, it is sort of a Soap opera. Ellen Woods, a widow witha preteen son, takes in borders to make ends meet. Sabine, her 1st border is a German divorcee, Matt, her second border, is a writer and her 3rd border is Allegra, an author, whose books Ellen proofreads. Mix in Ellen's wild sister, Hannah, al Matt's one night stands and you have the workings of a real soap opera.

Allegra, the wise, figures out the Ellen has not left the house since her husband's d...more
THE HOME FOR BROKEN HEARTS by Rowan Coleman is a contemporary romance set in London. It is well written with details,depth, twists and turns. It has grieving widows,love,lost, boardinghouse, mothers, sons, single parenthood, struggles, secrets, friendship, family, renewal and finding yourself. The characters are interesting, charming, bold and have struggles with life and other issues. The story interweaves several characters together living in a boardinghouse. It shows their struggles, their fe...more
Don O'goodreader
The Home for Broken Hearts by Rowan Coleman chronicles Ellen Wood and her son Charlie a year after the tragic death of her husband Nick. In order to balance her budget she takes in three boarders: Sabine, on trial separation from her husband, Allegra, septuagenarian writer of hot romance novels, and Matt, a writer for a sleazy men's magazine. Into this mix is added, Hannah, Ellen's much younger sister.

Amid much angst and introspection, Ellen works through her grief and resulting agoraphobia, Mat...more
Perhaps I'd actually rate this book 2.5 stars. Hm, those so-called half stars are becoming a bit of a cop out. But I digress.

I certainly do not hate this book; however, I predicted the outcomes in the first few chapters. The characters, particularly Ellen, are at times surprising, in that I managed to care for them. Ellen made me put the book down often because all-consuming grief made her, at times, a negligent parent. For example, he is told that he must apologize to her and Hannah, but not t...more
Jennifer Burns- Our Book Boyfriends
I woke up this morning and finished this book before I even started in on my social media or grabbed a cup of coffee. That's how I know this book sits well with me and makes me feel happy on the inside.
I borrowed this book from a friend so I would have something to read on a long flight. I tend to like almost any book I read, and my ratings on goodreads are useless because I basically give a 4 or 5 to every book. I probably read Bridget Jones' Diary five times, so I don't require every book to be A Serious Piece of Literature. But this book helped me appreciate how lucky I have been with my reading material. None of the characters are believable. The plot is nonsensical. The writing is cliched...more
I enjoyed this far more than I thought I would....I liked the mix of happy/sad going on and though abit predictable in places,it didn't detract from the story and was a v enjoyable read.
Read this with a slightly different title; "The Home for Broken Hearts". Still, a surprisingly good read; contemplative but not navel gazing. The main character is screwed up and becomes a shut in at the death of her husband, but the supporting characters just manage not to turn her into a repetitive woe-is-me drone but dragging and pulling her to realize her psychoses. The romance is gradual and convincing, with none of the usual tacky romantic cliches and shortcuts. I wouldn't mind looking int...more
Rocio A.
A sweet wonderful read about love, loss, healing and new beginnings.
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Rowan Coleman lives with her husband, and five children in a very full house in Hertfordshire. She juggles writing novels with raising her family which includes a very lively set of toddler twins whose main hobby is going in the opposite directions. When she gets the chance, Rowan enjoys sleeping, sitting and loves watching films; she is also attempting to learn how to bake.

Rowan would like to liv...more
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