Apple March is 27 years old and is currently a manager at clothing boutique Loom, in Melbourne.
Following an incident years prior during her fashion designing course at a prestigious academy that left Apple disgraced, she dropped out and took the position at Loom and has been hiding away there ever since.
When her sister Poppy gets engaged, she wants Apple to make her wedding dress, but Apple isn't sure if she can handle delving back into fashion designing after avoiding it for so long.
After much deliberation and soul-searching, she agrees to make the dress, and goes along with Poppy to a bridal show for Poppy's work.
Whilst there, she spots Charlie Beauchamp, a gentleman she once had a chance run in with, and the two become friends.
He also introduces her to his friend, Noah, who takes an instant liking to Apple. Charlie has a fiancee but continues to support Apple as she endeavours to re-emerge into the world of fashion. Noah also proceeds to build a relationship with Apple. But as she is faced with many challenges, which of these two men will be there for her through the highs and lows of not just the fashion world, but Apple's personal world too?
There are quite a few well developed characters in this story. Apple's mum Ginny is a sweetheart and only wants the best for her two daughters. Poppy has a strong bond with Apple, and their support for one another throughout the story was endearing.
I adored the element of fashion throughout, reading about different textiles, styles, and also about the textile mill in Ho Chi Minh city that Apple visits with a co-worker.
Apple's friend from Loom, Ella Jackson is a character who is equal parts sass and smarts, and despite her potty mouth, she was one of my favourite characters.
I breezed through this book in a matter of days. It is a heart-warming tale that I would happily recommend. Bonus points for the stunning cover!!!
Thank you to Beauty & Lace Book Club and Harper Collins for the opportunity to read and review this title. You can see my original review on the Beauty & Lace website here: http://bookgirl.beautyandlace.net/book-club-the-rules-of-backyard-croquet