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Turning Thirty (Flame) Paperback – 3 Aug 2000


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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder Paperbacks; First Edition edition (3 Aug 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0340767936
  • ISBN-13: 978-0340767931
  • Product Dimensions: 15.4 x 23.3 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (105 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,907,825 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Previously an Agony Uncle, Mike Gayle is a freelance journalist who has contributed to a variety of magazines including FHM, Sunday Times Style and Cosmopolitan. He is the author of eight previous bestselling novels.

Product Description

Amazon Review

Mike Gayle's previous novels My Legendary Girlfriend and Mr Commitment have already wittily chronicled living and loving amongst the twentysomethings at the end of the 20th century. As time marches on, Gayle's latest novel Turning Thirty deals with what happens when his characters reach that most dreaded of moments-- the big three-o. Matt Beckford is reaching that time of life. At the age of 29 he thinks he has answered those two crucial questions you ask yourself as a teenager: "What am I going to do with my life?" and "Will I ever get a girlfriend?" Living as a computer expert in New York with the lovely Elaine, Matt thinks he's cracked life. But then both he and Elaine suddenly realise that their relationship isn't working. They split up amicably, realising that "biology is telling us there's no point in crying over spilt milk", and Matt heads back to his friends and parents in Birmingham. As his thirtieth birthday looms, Matt meets Ginny Pascoe, an old flame, or more accurately "a girl who was also a friend who I sometimes snogged", and things get more complicated as he realises that he's falling for Ginny--again. The transatlantic love triangle that develops between Matt, Ginny and Elaine is funny and refreshing, and lacks the usual angst you would expect from such a situation. As Matt enjoys the nostalgia of going out with old friends and loves, he also realises he needs to sort out his life, as 30 beckons. Turning Thirty is another sharp, funny and astute offering from Gayle, that won't disappoint his growing army of fans. --Jerry Brotton

Review

Full of belly-laughs and painfully acute observations (Independent on Sunday on MY LEGENDARY GIRLFRIEND)

Touching and funny (Sunday Mirror on M L G)

Something near to mid-period Woody Allen...a delicate blend of realism and whimsy...funny and clever...refreshing to find a male writer working in this genre (Guardian on MR COMMITMENT)

Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus meets Men Behaving Badly (Daily Telegraph on MR C)

Unputdownable (She on MR C)

an entertaining journey through one man's life as 20-something becomes 30-something. An enjoyable read which should appeal to both sexes - and all ages. (Western Telegraph (Turning Thirty))

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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By DevJohn01 on 13 Jan 2006
Format: Paperback
Being a little over two years away from the big three oh myself this book struck a chord with me. Many of Gayle's observations about how one feels as they approach thirty were not only hilarious but also right on the money.
Matt Beckford is turning thirty in about 89 days and his life is falling apart! He thought by the age of thirty he would have it all together, the fancy high paying job, the woman who was "the one" to spend his life with and the trendy house complete with the requisite "thirty-people's" wine rack. However, Matt finds himself three months away from his birthday moving out of his live in girlfriend's apartment and back to Birmingham to live with, dare I say it...his PARENTS! Now Matt has to figure out what turning thirty really means and he enlist the help of some of his oldest friends to figure it out.
This is the third novel by Gayle that I have had the pleasure of reading and he is definitely a very talented and witty author whose voice has never gotten lost in his stories. As popular as Gayle is in the UK it is surprising that he isn't better known it the US however now with the wide re-release of `TURNING THIRTY' he may just find himself at the top of the US's best sellers list soon.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 6 Sep 2000
Format: Paperback
Mike Gayle's third book didn't turn out to be the 'flop' that I thought it might have been. As usual, his style of writing kept me glued to the book chapter after chapter and I really could not put it down. It is written with his usual wit which makes the reader definitely feel like the events are taking place in their life. I thought the e-mailing throughout would have annoyed me but each time they came around I was more glued to them than the story line itself. It truly was an amazing read. I can't wait till Gayle writes another one, I do hope that the next one though doesn't make me cry at the end!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sam Tyler on 28 Jan 2008
Format: Paperback
Matt believes he has it all with a great job in New York and a live-in girlfriend who he thinks will be the one. Not the one for life perhaps, but certainly the one that will be with him when he turns 30 in a few short months. Matt's life plan has always been to be settled down by 30, but this plan slips when his girlfriend leaves him and he decides to return to Blighty. With 3 months until his new job starts in Australia, Matt finds himself 29 years old and living with his parents. To keep himself amused he decides to rekindle old friendships with his school pals. Will Matt be able to find someone to spend his 30th with and will he ever manage to get his life together?

`Turning Thirty' is another quintessential lad lit book from Mike Gayle. The entire book is incredibly laid back and has an effortless feel to it. This means that it is an easy and pleasant read, but it never does anything to inspire the reader or make it stand out from the pack. Matt is a likable enough character, although like in many of this type of book he thinks far too much rather than getting on with life. I do enjoy this type of novel on occasion as something different, however, even though the plot of `Turning Thirty' is meant to resonate with me I found it rarely did. A nice enough read for a couple of nights, but nothing to write home about.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 17 Mar 2001
Format: Audio Cassette
Mike Gayle's story is about the unexpected changes in his life, just before his turning thirty. I liked his story, cause it is so alive, and daily. His life starts to become unexpected, some months before his 30th birthday, with breaking up with his girlfriend, and continuous with changing the location of the job from US to Australia. His moving back to UK, before going to Australia to start is filled with re-living with the parents, and meeting the old friends, learning about their lives, etc. Quiet nostalgic, and touches the nostalgia in our lives as well, since all of us wants to be back to the old days of our lives where we had friends that we grew up with, and shared the moments of our lives. Thirty is the ideal age that we start thinking about those days, with a feeling of getting old, and reaching a milestone. People mostly have some images of themselves when they are thirty. It is indeed very handy to have his work on audio. You can listen to his novel, and laugh while driving to work everyday ! Have to say that his style is very friendly, feels like you listen to the story from the first-mouth :-)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 30 Mar 2001
Format: Paperback
From the moment I read the first page I was hooked on this story. The easy almost conversational writing style made it effortless reading towards a conclusion that I did not see coming and did not want to happen. Having transplanted myself into the lead charachter I was left feeling incredibly low for a couple of days after I finished the story.
I cannot give the book greater praise than to say it left its mark on me.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 11 Sep 2000
Format: Paperback
As someone on the cusp of turning that fatefully age I was instantly drawn to Mike Gayle's latest offering. The prolific writer continues to create wonderfully funny and realistic scenarios that never alienate the female reader despite the male narrative. This is by far my favourite of his books to date and I especially the heartfelt nostalgia trips that my friends and I also regularly indulge in. My one criticism is that some of the characters needed more flesh on their bones. Brothers and sisters are briefly mentioned then dismissed, which left me wanting. For the record, I read this in one sitting and for the first time in a while, was not let-down by a trite, lazy ending. Gayle as always, is a pleasure to read, never failing in making the reader feel like a personal friend.
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