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A Year on Ladybug Farm
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A Year on Ladybug Farm (Ladybug Farm #1)

3.88 of 5 stars 3.88  ·  rating details  ·  2,604 ratings  ·  393 reviews
Their husbands were gone, their families were grown, and the future stretched out before them like an unfulfilled promise...
Tired of always dreaming and never doing, Cici, Lindsay, and Bridget make a life-altering decision. Uprooting themselves from their comfortable lives in the suburbs, the three friends buy a run-down mansion, nestled in the picturesque Shenandoah Val
ebook, 384 pages
Published March 3rd 2009 by Berkley Books (first published January 17th 2009)
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First thing: I liked that this book was about 3 fifty-something women, not the typical young, slender, beautiful, redhaired / curly brunette / blonde that seems so prevalent. Aside from one physical description at the very beginning, the looks of these women aren't really mentioned.

The story is a familiar one, nothing remarkable, and pretty much formulaic.

That said, I really liked this book. The short author bio at the back of the book says she's written something like 80 books under several ps
Picked this up on a whim at the library. If "Hallmark" is a genre then this fits the bill nicely. I have to be in the mood to read this sort of book without a smirk on my face. I was in the mood.

Three 'older' (gd it...fifty is not old!) women risk everything to purchase an old farm house. Some silly mishaps, lots of bills and a Norman Rockwell-type setting add up to an okay, quick and syrupy-sweet read.

Recommend for those times when you need something cheerful and inane.
An Amazon reviewer said this is not "War and Peace" but it sure was totally enjoyable to read. I had never heard of this book or author until a friend who knows how I like to read about home renovation and cooking told me about it. I was hooked on the first page.

I loved the characters, their development, and the descriptions of all that these women did on the farm. I love how they met the challenges, many of which they had not expected to encounter. It is a story of resilience and most importan
Nov 24, 2013 Amy rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women, dreamers and those seeking something unusual
I love getting wrapped up in a good book that I cannot put down, well this is one of them.

The story of a Year on Ladybug Farm was a quick read with a few surprises that I didn't see coming. The intertwined lives of Cici, Bridget and Lindsay all come together as one on Ladybug Farm. A hatched plan of dreams and ambition keep them together in their 1st year on the farm. Their relationships with each other are tested to the limit when everything that could go wrong, likely does. I felt sorry for t
I think I have found another book in the league with the Jan Karon Mitford books! This is the story of three friends who find themselves at a crossroads in their lives. One has just lost her husband in death, one has been divorced and a child off to college and one is a retiring school teacher. Best friends for years and ready for a change, they decide to purchase an old house in Virginia and undertake redoing it as they redo their lives as well. As they discover all the history and problems of ...more
Jade Eby
Originally published at my blog Chasing Empty Pavements

I can't even begin to tell you how much I loved and enjoyed this book. This book goes right up there with The Help and Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society. I started reading it at work and could not put it down. I finished it in a 7 hr span. A Year on Ladybug Farm is about 3 close women who decide it's time to put their dreams to the test. They pool their money and resources together and buy a decrepit old house that they fell in l
Jeannie and Louis Rigod
What to do when your life hits a crossroads? This is a wonderful fiction novel, the first in a series, which asks of three independent women, can we dare to live our dreams?

Cici, Lindsay, and Bridget have all been friends for two decades or more. In fact they have been neighbors and have laughed, cried, and grieved together. One discussion over wine leads the ladies to the question of dare we live our dreams?

Gradually, the idea becomes a reality, and the three women find themselves outside a bro
LOVED THIS BOOK. I was a little skeptical when my friend suggested this book but I am soooo glad I bought it. I needed to read something refreshing and positive. This is a very light read and very easy to follow.

I was constantly picturing myself in my 50's hanging out on a farm with my bestest friends in the whole wide world. I absolutely adore my friends and would not be able to live life without them.

I found myself giggling out loud in some parts of the book and that is very rare for me.

This b
This is a story of friendship, independence and self-discovery. It's a light, fluffy read and very heartwarming. Three women chuck everything and purchase a farm in Virginia that turns out to be a money pit. The story follows their trials and tribulations in getting the property habitable. The problem I had with this book is that it was very hard for me to believe that three mature professional women would purchase a home without doing their homework. One of the characters, Cici, was supposedly ...more
An Extreeeeeeamly cozy read :) Fun, light, and really, really delicious-sounding food! Thanks for a great read, Susan!!!
Taylor Knight
First off, this is not a book I would normally read in a million years. I hardly ever read anything outside of Young Adult. I joined a book club to try and read more books that I wouldn't normally read and that's why I read A Year on Ladybug Farm.

A Year on Ladybug Farm started off a lot better then I thought. I tried to go in with an open mind but
I just knew I would like it at all. But it started off surprisingly well.
I really like the chapter headings and it was well written.
But on page 30,
Paula  Phillips
Ever wondered what life would be like if you one day packed up everything you ever knew and took a risk , something unknown and strange to you ?
For three best friends , all in their late fifties that's exactly what they did. Cici, Bridget and Lindsey have all had their fair share of troubles and triumphs but when Bridget's husband Jeff dies she is left wondering , is this is it ? What has she done with her life ?
Soon , the three friends are travelling and looking at houses in the middle of now
I admit that this book is what I would normally picked up myself, but I'm so glad that the ladies Reader's Paradise introduce this author to me, this is really enjoyable read.
First I really love that the three heroines in this book were in their 40. I rarely read a book from that age bracket, and I find myself really enjoy their POV's and their struggle to made sense of their problems.
Second, the "new life" that these three women tried to embark apparently not going as smooth as they first thou
I don't use the word 'chick-lit' because I find it condescending and dismissive of books that women may like to read. (After all, there is no universal, slightly derogatory slang term for books that men might be drawn towards.) I may, occasionally, call a book "fluffy" if I feel it doesn't have much literary, educational, or mental weight to it, but I could call a story about women "fluffy" or a spy novel. Gender appeal doesn't play into it. And may I say for the record that I am a giant fan of ...more
Heather Lyle
From the moment I started this book I could tell it was going to be a heart warming story of three best friends. It did not disappoint. Such a great story of these three ladies who leave their comfort zones for a really old house :) I will admit, I did laugh out loud at a few moments (Lindsay and the bee stings while she was on the lawn mower....hilarious :) ) I've already ordered book #2 from this series and can't wait to see what these three friends get into next.
I loved the first in this series of books by Donna Ball called A Year on Ladybug Farm. Read this one for sure!

Three good friends and neighbors...Cici, Bridget and Lindsay...decide to three their three houses and start a new life in a very run down large farmhouse called Ladybug Farm. Life is Virginia is very different than life in the city and they are learning each day to adapt. They work hard together to bring an old mansion back to life and start the farm up once again. But they did not barga
Although the descriptions of food, gardens and decorating sometimes made this book seem like Country Living magazine without the advertising, it was still quite enjoyable. The most unusual thing, and kudos to the author for it, is that the three heroines are all single (two long-divorced, one recently widowed) at the beginning of the book, and they are all still single at the end of the book. In between, they sell their houses in the Baltimore suburbs and buy a decrepit mansion/farm in Virginia, ...more
What an absolutely delightful and enjoyable story! These ladies are my idols. What better way to spend your older years than with friends creating a place of your dreams? I can't think of one.

Three women, with three very different personalities come together to buy a property & turn it into a business and a home. There's all kinds of potential here for humor, poignancy, and drama; Ms. Ball lives up to them all.

So why not 5 stars? Well...there were a few personality aspects of the character
Connie N.
I had no idea what to expect from this book, but it turned out to be a lovely and warm chick lit book about 3 women who join forces to buy a 100-year-old farm together. I had a lot of admiration for them since they are all 50-somethings, and they certainly have a lot more gumption and sense of adventure than I have at that age. The only drawback is that I didn't think the author spent enough time developing the personalities of these characters, instead focusing on the stuff happening to them. S ...more
Judy Iliff
I'm so tired of reading mysteries that have female leads who do something simply because their boyfriends/husbands/SO tell them not to. This book is about 3 women, in their 50's, who agree to buy a farm together. They get into a project that is way over their heads, but they have the support of each other. I find, more and more, that I enjoy reading books about the foraging of friendship among a group of women.

This book made me smile and laugh out loud. There is no intense conflict. There is, ho
Sandy Crux
Published in March of 2009, I am late in discovering "A Year on Ladybug Farm." Suffice to say, late to the farm or not, I loved it.

Written by Donna Ball, there are now sequels galore for those who want to continue to read about Cici, Lindsay and Bridget, who in mid-life, sell everything and move into a very old, run down house in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.

Divorced, single and ready to retire, or unexpectedly widowed, these three middle-aged women take on the challenges of fixing up the o
Lynne Spreen
This book is about three middle-aged women who buy an old mansion together, which is a rich setting for a story through which women can live vicariously. Unfortunately, it's a rough start, with lots of narration, none of which is in the point of view of any of the three characters. There's no internal dialogue, just a lot of talking, acting, and the narrator providing loads of scene description and exposition.

But the women are likable and funny; as the story progresses we grow to care about the
This is a lovely, light-hearted read–good for a quiet weekend morning.

Three women who no longer have anyone or anything they are devoted to grounding them to their current lives pool their resources and buy a house, a big house, that turns out to have significant grounds, and a farm, with sheep, and trees, and an ornate garden, with a barn, and an old dairy, and a folly. You see where I’m going with this? They underplanned, under-realistictedness (not a word, but again, you know what I mean), an
Princess Kristin
I would never have picked this book up of my own volition. I finally found a book group in the small town where I now reside and this was the book for this month. I cringed a little when I found the book on Amazon because I am not a fan of what is often derisively called chick-lit.

On one hand, it was pretty much what you'd expect: female bonding and (middle-age) girl-power with a side of mild family drama and mishaps that always end well. The story follows the women through their first year on
Jul 25, 2013 Ginger rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Fans of Virgin River series
Recommended to Ginger by: NayNay
The is the first book in the Ladybug Farm series. What a fun read!! Three women who have been friends for 30 years decide to make a big change in their lives. Is the change for the better?? Or are they getting in a little over their heads??? Join these three gals as they restore a 100 year old farmhouse and celebrate with them the challenges and good times. I definitely will be grabbing up the other books in this series. Enjoyable, fast read....great for those days on the beach!
Diana Day-Admire
When three life long friends decide to live together in an old plantation/ mansion all heck breaks loose- When One id a handy woman- "Who can fix anything" or so she thinks- One is a virtual Betty Crocker, and one a artist/ botanist extraordinaire, you think they have the basis covered. But the house and the townsfolk know differently. What can go wrong does- but what kept me thrilled and glued to the pages were.
Ms. Balls excellent descriptions. When the characters sit on the porch every night r

4.5 It was refreshing to read a book about three 50-something women and not a romance in sight. I loved reading about their friendship and their adventures buying and renovating Ladybug Farm. It was a fun, feel-good read. It made me want to grab a few friends and move there myself :) Thanks Diana for the recommendation!
I cannot describe to you how much I loved this book. I found it absolutely mind altering. I was having a rough week, but when I picked up this book I was transformed. It was one of those books where I got through it too fast and was sad to have come to the end.

When my family and I drove to and from Florida we stopped in Tennessee and Georgia. We fell absolutely in love with those places, so reading this book brought me back to the area. The imagery was so vivid, reading it actually brought me p
Probably not real plausible (especially the "ghost"), but a fun summer beach read that could lead to some good dreams and good planning for one's future...

Three Baltimore friends rather impulsively purchase a huge old estate in Virginia and move there...they run into construction snafus, overgrown foliage, snakes & sheep...and find that the house is, indeed, a money pit.

But they grow together, learn a lot about themselves and their grown children...much about them changes, but their friends
Jan 23, 2010 Denise rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
This was an absolutely fabulous book. As soon as I finished it I looked up the sequel on my library's website and reserved it. I just didn't want to wait to continue reading about my new friends and to see how their second year goes with their "money pit".
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“All my life, I thought I was this independent woman. I was on all the right committees, made speeches for all the right causes, traveled all over the world. I had my little part-time job, I made all my own decisions, but . . . there was always someone there to fall back on when things went bad. Funny, how after so many years of marriage you don’t think about how much you depend on the other person until . . . well, until they’re gone. And then of course there’s just the whole system in the city. Your doctor, your pharmacist, your plumber, your vet . . . there’s always someone there. You never have to find out . . . how much you can’t do.” 8 likes
“You’re not born with a walk like that. You have to earn it.” 5 likes
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