After thoroughly enjoying Don’t Want to Miss a Thing last year I was looking forward to reading another book by Jill Mansell.
The Unpredictable Consequences of Love follows a large cast of characters but each of their stories all weave around each other effortlessly. As you can imagine from the title the book is full of troubled romance.
Because the book had such a big cast of lead characters it did take some time getting to know each of them but because each of them were so well developed I didn’t have any trouble remembering who was who.
Sophie has absolutely no interest in men much to Josh’s disappointment, something has clearly happened in her past to put her off men for life and Josh is determined to get to the root of the problem.
The gorgeous babe magnet Reily has a big crush on Sophie’s friend Tula but she keeps knocking him back which has never happened to the surfer dude before.
Reily’s aunt is a successful author and she has eyes for Josh’s grandfather but it looks like he still holds a torch for his ex-wife Dot.
So much love is flowing in this little seaside town and each of the characters were all loveable and entertaining. I picked this book up at every spare moment I got as I was hooked and couldn’t put it down, eager to see what was going to happen next and if any of these romances were going to blossom.
My favourite thing about this book is that there is one almighty twist that I really didn’t see coming. I am not going to say any more about this or who it involves otherwise you will be watching out for it and not seeing it coming was what made this such a shock as there were no clues that made this obvious!
This was a perfect read with no flaws and had me hooked from start to finish, one of my favourite reads in a long time.
on 14 April 2014
I received an e copy of this book in exchange for an honest review from Headline through Netgalley which I am more than happy to give.
I've always loved books by Jill Mansell - she's one of a stock few authors that I can rely on to give me a book that hits the spot every time. A feel good book that's not all hearts and flowers, there is always a deeper story to discover and in this case I got several rolled into one!
The impression you get is that this book is going to be all about Sophie a single, photographer who spurns all romantic advances and Josh the handsome grandson and co-owner of The Mariscombe House Hotel who has just returned to live and work in Cornwall from LA.
Sophie and Josh are intertwined with various family and friends and as a result Jill treats us to several parallel stories woven around them all. The novel is set in beautiful Cornwall and I could very well have been sat on the beaches myself watching the action first hand as the descriptions were so vivid I could smell the sea and taste the ice-cream.
I truly loved this book. I spent most of the time I was reading it smiling and laughing at all of the antics but there are sad bits and awww bits too. None of the characters are superficial all have depth and all have their own reasons for presenting a 'face' to the outside world that in some cases is so good I was totally surprised when it was removed. I loved the fact that the story didn't just revolve around the younger relationships but those of the older ones too.
With so many characters and relationships in this book it could have very easily felt bitty with not enough time to explore each fully but Jill stitched them together beautifully and in enough detail too - counter balancing the more serious sad parts with humour and wit. Once again I finished a Jill Mansell book with a satisfied sigh, glad that everyone seemed to get their happy ending.
All in all this is a compelling read, for anybody who loves contemporary, romantic comedy. It's gentle enough for a quiet Saturday afternoon but with enough plot twists and surprises to keep the pages turning, you'll want to get to the bottom of the many inter woven stories.
I have read every book written by Jill, all 25, some of them more than once, ekhm, or more than twice, or even more than that, and I am still waiting for more. Every year I am looking forward to her new novel and as soon as I finish it, I start to long for the next year, for a new story. No exceptions this time. The cover of the book, so typical to all Jill's covers, is in bright yellow colour and with a brilliant picture, and it is just as great as the whole book, optimistic and in my opinion it suits the whole plot.
As usual, we have here a fair share of characters. Meet Sophie, who is trying to concentrate on her career after moving to St Carys, and the move was a consequence of a very traumatic situation in her past, which put her off men totally. Josh, after leaving US and his job as a manager of a music band, running a hotel with his grandmother Dot. Dot and her ex - husband Lawrence - I can't say more, don't want to be a spoiler! Reily, Josh's best friend and a golden - boy, surfer with no problems, has his eyes set on Sophie's best friend Tula, who on the other hand thinks that she develops feelings for Josh. A successful best - selling author, an aunt of Riley who thinks very highly about Lawrence...
See what I mean???
So many characters but they are so wonderfully and clearly written, and each story is so good developed, that I had no problems with all the people and I knew who is who from the beginning. But while I thought that it is Sophie who is the main character and that the main story is going to develop around her - we know that something happened to her and that she's hiding a secret - I must admit that two other people have stolen the whole book for me, as I totally haven't seen it coming! Also the story of Sophie was a surprise to me, and I love to be surprised when reading a book, and here we already have two surprises!
Even with such a big cast of the leading characters, I have liked them all, without exceptions. They were warm, likeable and the situations they found themselves in or things that happened to them were also probable, not exaggerated, which always makes the read for me much more comfortable and enjoyable. And I have a feeling that the book actually needed such cast of the characters, every single person added something to the story.
As well as many characters, there were also a few plot threads going on in the book, every one as enjoyable as the other one, but thanks to the easy, clear writing they were not confusing at all and they were easy to keep up. Jill Mansell is just a queen of a good plot and is perfect in drawing brilliant, characters. She can create a world that you can immediately feel a part of. The story is what it's meant to be, it's fun, it's light, and slightly touching. It was a feel good book, a book that every one of us really need to read. Highly recommended!
I received a copy of this book from publisher in exchange for a review.
When I received this latest offering by Jill Mansell I was a little surprised. The book itself looked like it was a little smaller than previous offerings. After a little scout on Amazon I saw that it was actually only marginally shorter than her two latest books. Not deterred I started the book and within the first few pages was once again transported into the wonderful fictional word Jill created. Sophie at first glance appears to be the main character but in this book, by the end I felt like there were maybe 5 or 6 ‘main’ characters. Initially Sophie wasn’t a character that I immediately liked. She seems like a friendly girl who lives in Cornwall and is trying to build up her photography business. The thing was she was such a closed book it was really difficult to warm to her that much. Shortly after we meet Sophie’s friend Tula who is somebody who is an open book and a character you like almost from the off. In addition to them, we see Dot who is running her hotel in Cornwall jointly with her Grandson Josh. Josh has recently moved back to the UK and in addition to seeing him work around the hotel we meet his friend Riley. Now do you see what I mean about the characters?
Jill Mansell has a magical ability to transport you into the worlds she creates and by the end of the book I found myself wanting to go and visit the hotel in Cornwall and meet the characters she has lovingly created. Each character has its own flaws and the most major one, seems to be Sophie. As the story unfolds we see everybody’s issues start to jump to the forefront and as time went on and I realised what Sophie’s issues were it made me like her even more. There were plenty of plot threads going on too, but I can assure you this wasn’t overdone and the characters all made their own mark on me.
I was so engrossed in this book that by the time I finally got around to starting it (two weeks later than planned)! I finished it the same day. Jill’s last two books were 5 star reads and this one is no different. I found myself totally absorbed, and this book gives you everything you could want from a book in this genre. It has fantastic characters and an interesting storyline that takes you straight into their world without pausing for breath. In my eyes, Jill Mansell is a legend! I kid you not people; the lady has been writing books for over two decades and the only way I can describe her (in the nicest possible way) is like a fine wine. She just gets better with age! Do yourself a favour and pre-order this one, I don’t think you will be disappointed.
on 15 August 2014
Not Jill's finest. The characters are laid out for in detail too early. You can see the path they will follow and how it's going to end. From then on through the book, it's just a very average batting back and forth of courtship, for want of a better word. It gets very tedious, the characters are far too stereotyped and the book is altogether predictable without gathering interest and pace. Sorry, but so disappointing and a bit dull.
on 3 February 2014
Another easy to read by Jill Mansell, set in lovely Cornwall. Only downside it finished too soon........can't wait to read her next book!
on 29 June 2014
How could i not give this 5 stars?! It was a joy to read just like all of Jill's other books. I stumbled across To the Moon and Back last year and I was hooked, 12 months later i have read every last one and was thrilled when I was able to read another. Thanks Jill, hurry up with the next one :)
on 28 October 2014
I enjoyed this read very much, particularly as it brought back memories of my own time spent in Cornwall at the beginning of this summer. Jill Mansell has created a good ensemble of characters alongside a mainly believable story which allows them all to intertwine and lead to the “unpredictable consequences of love” for many of them. The things I take issue with are, I suppose, exactly those I need to accept as elements of chick lit that are impossible to get away from – one being the ability for characters to fall truly, madly, deeply in everlasting love within two weeks of meeting each other, male characters having names straight from Mills and Boon, and the paradox of the title, because this type of book always has elements of predictability. It would be refreshing to read a book with more ordinary-named characters; I would be able to believe in the storyline a little more as we can’t all meet a Riley.
Sophie is a photographer working in the idyllic setting of St Carys in Cornwall, single-mindedly focused on work to the exclusion of romantic relationships and doing very well for herself, but she is keeping a secret which she does not show any sign of revealing to anyone. Her best mate Tula, who arrives in the village in amusing circumstances which continue once she is there, is the only person who knows the truth about Sophie. Josh has arrived back in the village to help run a hotel with his grandmother and immediately falls for Sophie. Josh is determined to find out the real reasons she is keeping him at a polite distance. This part of the story felt rather unsettling to me as he goes to unwarranted lengths to uncover Sophie’s back story. Given the short amount of time he has been acquainted with Sophie, I found it edging towards creepy.
None of the characters are what they appear on the face of it. All have secrets, hidden depths and more to their personality than at first seems the case. There is so much going on and so many different characters, but Jill does a fantastic job of keeping the reader on the ball, never losing track and being able to pick up and run with every thread of the story. There is tragedy, hope, friendship, resilience, cuteness, self-realisation and downright silliness all entwined within this tale.
The ending is nicely wrapped up for all the characters, but I do feel that in parts it was slightly unrealistic, especially the scene on the beach. However, to fully enjoy chick-lit we must suspend disbelief and accept predictability. On the whole I did really enjoy this book, helped massively by the picturesque setting.
on 3 March 2014
Sparkling like a glass of vintage champagne and delicious like a box of Belgian chocolates, The Unpredictable Consequences of Love is the phenomenal new romantic comedy from the fabulous Jill Mansell!
When managing a band of bratty teenagers had grown wearisome, Josh Strachan had realised that he had had enough of his life in Los Angeles. Fed up of being taken for granted and looking for a new challenge, Josh decided to bid farewell to the City of Angels and headed back to St. Carys in Cornwall to help his grandmother Dot run the Mariscombe House Hotel. Managing a five-star hotel is no walk in the park, but Josh is enjoying the change of pace and loving his new life in St. Carys – especially as he’s just clapped eyes on Sophie Wells, a pretty photographer he’s desperate to get to know better. Used to women throwing themselves at him on a regular basis, Josh is confident that Sophie will quickly fall for his charms. However, he is shocked when she tells him that relationships are strictly off the agenda for her!
Bitter experience had taught Sophie to keep her heart firmly under lock and key and to never let anyone get close to her ever again. With her burgeoning photography business growing in leaps and bounds and an active social life, Sophie has got plenty to keep her occupied – she doesn’t want or need to have a man in her life. But when Josh Strachan strides into St. Carys and reawakens feelings deep within her that have been buried for a very long time, Sophie soon begins to realise that her resolve to stay single is weakening. Is she willing to put her heart on the line for the second time? Or will old fears and never resolved issues ruin her chance of redemption?
Sophie’s best friend Tula has just moved to St. Carys for a fresh start. Having found a job she loves and been embraced by the St. Carys community, Tula is loving her new life in Cornwall. Although her crush on Josh Strachan looks set to remain unrequited, Tula is determined to find her Mr. Right. With so many sexy surfers around, Tula is confident that she’ll not remain single for long. However, the feisty barmaid is not about to let her head be turned by a good-looking beach bum. Tula wants an intelligent, confident and self-sufficient man – and unfortunately feckless Riley Bryant does not subscribe to a single one of these categories. A man who spends his days chatting up girls on the beach and who lives on the hands-out given to him by his rich aunt, Riley – despite his good looks and delectable body – is as far removed from Tula’s perfect man as it is possible to get. However, there’s more to the laid-back surfer than meets the eye…
The unpredictable consequences of love have knocked the inhabitants of St. Carys for six. But are they prepared to thrown caution to the wind and let love into their lives? Or will they let this unexpected happiness slip through their fingers?
Jill Mansell is one of the queens of romantic comedy and she is on top form with The Unexpected Consequences of Love. Funny, heartwarming, emotional and deliciously feel-good, take the phone off the hook, cancel all your appointments and get ready to enjoy a fast-paced romantic romp that will make you laugh, cry and keep you up way past your bedtime.
I adored the characters in this book. I loved Sophie and Tula, swooned over Josh and Riley and I desperately want to meet up with Riley’s Aunt Marguerite for a gossip and a glass of bubbly. As always, Jill Mansell creates a wonderful community you would love to be a part of and brings the idyllic villages she writes about to such vivid and colourful life, that I am packing my bags and booking the first available flight to St. Carys!
Wonderfully witty, highly compelling and absolutely impossible to resist, The Unpredictable Consequences of Love is not to be missed!
This review was originally published on the Single Titles website.
I've been a fan of Jill Mansell's books ever since her first novel, Fast Friends in 1991, and she is one of the few authors whose books I will always buy regardless. I very much enjoyed her last book, Don't Want to Miss a Thing, and have been eagerly awaiting the next one. A new book is always a treat worth waiting for and this, her 25th novel, is no exception.
The story is set in the fictional, idyllic sounding St Carys in Cornwall. The main character, Sophie is a photographer and has moved to Cornwall to set up her own business. She is pretty and popular and soon catches the eye of a local hotelier, Josh Strachan. Josh has recently returned to the UK from California and co-owns a local hotel with his grandmother Dot. When Josh's repeated attempts to date Sophie are rebuffed he is intrigued to know why. He's good looking and successful and is not used to being turned down. Sophie however has vowed to stay away from relationships and men and as the story unfolds we learn the reason why.
There are several other characters featuring heavily in the book and they are all interesting and people that you could care about. Sophie's best friend Tula, Josh's fun loving friend and co-conspirator Riley, Dot and her ex-husband Lawrence, and local author Marguerite. All have their own sub-plots and dramas which are perfectly woven throughout the story. What I love about Jill's books is that all the characters are so well drawn, you feel that you know them and could be friends with them - I could have fallen for Josh myself! Riley has a thing for Tula and is described as being a "lazy, work-shy, pleasure-seeking hedonist" - could he really be that shallow?
There are ups and downs for all our characters and a twist that I didn't see coming. I love the Cornish coast and the gorgeous location was a big plus for me. The story isn't all frothy and light - there are deeper issues covered but these are dealt with sympathetically and made to feel an integral part of the story.
This was a lovely feel good humorous story and another 5* read for me. I'm now keenly waiting for book number 26!