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S. J. Virtue "sjv" (UK)
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Going Home
Going Home
by Harriet Evans
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.26

31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great first novel, 25 Jan 2007
This review is from: Going Home (Paperback)
From start to end, I loved this. With brilliant main characters and a superb supporting cast, this tale of Lizzy Walters, her family home (Keeper House), her ex boyfriend (David) and her family - had me laughing out loud in parts and nodding my head in sympathy in others. Its as much a story about family secrets and lies as it is about Lizzy and her boyfriend, and I found both stories as entertaining as each other. The story begins with the whole Walters clan enjoying their Christmas break at Keeper House and ends with a summer wedding, and the time in between is spread between Lizzys London life (her job and shag buddy Jaden), the lives of her family back home at Keeper House (cousins, aunts and uncles) and the secrets they are all hiding. Its not a taxing read, although it does have a fair few twists and turns, but its beautifully written and I ended up feeling all warm and peaceful by the final page.


If You Could See Me Now
If You Could See Me Now
by Cecelia Ahern
Edition: Paperback

6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great, 25 Jan 2007
This was the third novel by the extremely talented Ms Ahern, and whilst I adored PS I Love You, I wasnt blown away by Where Rainbows End. If You Could See Me Now however had me hooked from the first page, and it was a book I kept trying to put down to make it last longer, and was annoyed with myself that I could make it last longer than one day. It tells the heartbreaking tale of Elisabeth Egan a control freak interior designer whos mother disappeared just before her 12th birthday, whos Dad is distant and whos crazy alcoholic sister Saoirse has a son Luke at 18, who she cant care for. Elisabeth adopts Luke who is 6 when the story starts. I strugged to like Elisabeth at the beginning of this story, she seemed a touch too hard as nails for me, but as the story unfolds of Lukes imaginary friend Ivan entering and changing their lives forever, I really felt for her. Its beautifully written, with fantastic characters and (I dont want to reveal too much and spoil it for you) as Elisabeth and Ivans relationship develops, some hidden truths emerge that had me bawling my eyes out. I will read this book over and over again, and look for Jinny Joe's in every field and garden I pass.....


The Godmother
The Godmother
by Carrie Adams
Edition: Paperback

9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chick Noir?, 25 Jan 2007
This review is from: The Godmother (Paperback)
It took me just one afternoon sat in the sun to read this book. The life of Tessa and her superb circle of friends gripped me from the first word. Tackling everything from miscarriage, infidelity, death and one night stands, Carrie Adams has written the perfect antidote to all those sickly sweet tales of love and happy ever after, without being cynical or depressing. At 36 and single Tessa is battling with her inner body clock, whilst coping with the responsibilities of Godmotherhood...and the steady stream of "life" that's thrown at her from every side. As her friends lives threaten to obliterate her own, she is engulfed by the simple truth that she is desperate for her own "happy ever after" but soon realises that the grass is very rarely as green as you envisage it to be.... I was moved to tears throughout this book, but it also has its fair share of belly chuckles. I can't wait for Carrie Adams next one, and hope the move from Crime Fiction to Chick Noir is a permanent one.


The Double Life Of Anna Day
The Double Life Of Anna Day
by Louise Candlish
Edition: Paperback

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 25 Jan 2007
Having loved Prickly Heat, but been a bit so so with Sisters Avenue, I was really looking forward to this, Louises third book.. Its the story of Anna, a high flying media sales guru, who after a year of being together has yet to meet her boyfriend Charlies mum, so with the help of her lifestyle coach Vic, sets upon a fiendish plan. I thought this was a really fun read, very light hearted with a healthy smattering of giggles and "ah" moments along the way. As the plan to make friends with the future mother-in-law escalates, and take Anna on an art appreciation trip to Spain, her belief that Charlie is The One wavers, and as her job looks shaky, so does her relationship. If you liekd Prickly Heat, you'll love this. I did.


All I Want Is You
All I Want Is You
by Martina Reilly
Edition: Paperback

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Tina Reilly all grown up, 25 Jan 2007
This review is from: All I Want Is You (Paperback)
Now writing under her real name (previously known as Tina), this is the fourth title to be published by Little, Brown. I absolutely loved Flipside and Wish Upon a Star and was really looking forward to this novel which tells the tale of Poppy Furlong who goes from living a perfect life in a perfect house, with a perfect son and a perfect husband, to a tiny house, with a ADHA diagnosed son, a distant husband, a job in a Euro shop and the mother in law from hell on her doorstep. When her husbands business partner does a bunk with the dosh, Poppys life comes crashing down around her ears and every aspect of her life is affected. Ill be honest, I didnt like Poppy at all until about two thirds of the way through this book - but towards the end, as she struggles to find her way in her new life, she really grew on me, and I ended up feeling really proud of how she carves her own niche in the world. Its a funny book, with a good old plot and some brilliantly written characters, and Martina has combined some serious issues with great humour.


The Playground Mafia
The Playground Mafia
by Sarah Tucker
Edition: Paperback
Price: 6.47

10 of 15 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Not for me, 25 Jan 2007
This review is from: The Playground Mafia (Paperback)
An overwhelming plus for me, when reading Chick Lit, is if I like the main character. I dont mind if shes single, married, divorced, gay, a mother...as long as I like her, or something about her. I didnt like the main character in The Playground Mafia, Caroline Gray. Shes a newly divorced, single mother, who I found harsh, hard and frivolous. She has two best friends who I liked far more than her - Heather and Eva, and a few new enemys (head honcho of the PTA Sarah Flint and her sidekicks). Caroline is having far more trouble settling into her sons new school than he is, and as the Playground Mafia gang up on her, her life .... well ... gets a bit worse I suppose for a short time before getting better again. I dont have kids, and Ive never been married (and therefore never divorced) and have forgotten my own playground experiences since last being in one some 20 odd years ago, so maybe its just me, that I didnt really get this book. See what you think - it really might just be me.


Angels
Angels
by Marian Keyes
Edition: Paperback

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Superb, 24 Jan 2007
This review is from: Angels (Paperback)
Every one of Marian Keyes novels has that something special that makes them enjoyable to read over and over again. She writes in a way that touches my soul, lifts my spirits and makes me roar with laughter. All at once. Every character she creates makes me feel like they have been written just for me. Angels is no different. The safe, steady, sensible Maggie Walsh has chucked in her job, her life and her marriage and followed her best mate to Hollywood. As we find out the whys and hows we learn more about Maggie and her fantastic family and I ended up considering Maggie one of my best mates too.


The Other Side of the Story
The Other Side of the Story
by Marian Keyes
Edition: Paperback

3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Un-put-down-able, 24 Jan 2007
A fantastic story that pulls at the heart strings as well as raising the spirits. When three very different women's lives become overwhelming entangled you learn that there is always another side to every story. Jojo is the agent of Lily, whos just published her first book and spends the advance for the second with and on her lover Anton. Anton is the ex of Gemma, Lilys ex-best friend, who herself is now writing a book... which ends up on the desk of Jojo. Each of the three womens stories are so well written that I really cared what happend to them, and in their own ways I really liked them all. A beautiful book thats funny, romantic and touching. Classic Keyes.


Snap Happy
Snap Happy
by Fiona Walker
Edition: Paperback
Price: 5.03

4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My first, 24 Jan 2007
This review is from: Snap Happy (Paperback)
This was the very first Fiona Walker book I ever bought. Its a thick old wedge of a book and a cracking read - so it's one I return to time and time again. When uber photographer Jay from NY swaps apartments with Sean from London he also takes on housesitting dutites for Poirot, a dirty talking macaw, and Juno - who happens to be a sexy, funny and terribly untidy stand up comic. With a great supporting cast (including the Bengal cat Bagel and U-boat the turtle) Ms Walker brings us a fantastic story, which is both funny and sad. When Jay says the words "dont try to love me, people dont" after being seduced by Juno, it breaks my heart ... and the love story that develops between the two characters is beautifully written.


Sushi for Beginners
Sushi for Beginners
by Marian Keyes
Edition: Paperback

4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic, 24 Jan 2007
This review is from: Sushi for Beginners (Paperback)
If someone ever put a gun to my head and forced me to name my favourite Marian Keyes title, I fear I'd have to take the bullet. Every one of them would appear on my Top 10 list, all with the number 1 next to them. Sushi for Beginners is my current number 1.. As we flip between the US and Ireland we meet Lisa, Ashling and Clodagh - three women all on that tittering edge between complete breakdown and absolute happiness. Its beautifully written, as all of Ms Keyes books are; they are great characters, as all of Ms Keyes characters are; and its a great story - ditto. You are never alone with a Marian Keyes book.


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