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3.9 out of 5 stars
West End Girls
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Judging from other peoples' comments, I was lucky to come across this in Audio CD. Morwenna Banks's voices were wonderful and infused the story with life. It was a shame that the version was abridged but I don't suppose I missed too much :)
Two council house twins, Penny and Lizzie, suddenly have the good fortune to move into a large flat in Chelsea. Unfortunately they are not allowed to move anything so it's not the huge airy white expanse that they dream of. It belongs to their grandmother, now languishing in an old people's home.
The twins launch themselves into Chelsea life, a steep learning curve involving the inevitable mistakes. The ending is hardly a surprise, it's more the method of getting there that kept my interest.

Well read and good fun, but not mind blowing.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on 25 May 2007
Its been a few years since I last read one of Jenny's books (the last one being Talking to Addison - which I highly recommend also). West End Girls from the first word is funny. I thought the conversations between the two main characters flowed well and sounded like any normal twenty-something girls chatting/bickering together.

Love Jennys use of very upto date references (Gordon Ramsey/Turkey Twislers/Page 3 models/Jody Marsh's army belt dress/Prince Harrys present girlfriend even gets a mention and also the latest clubs/bars that are 'hot' right now (Im presuming Jenny herself had to research these - tough work if you can get it!!!)

Fab read - if your into Heat/Now magazine, Pop culture, shopping, fashion, IT girls plus a good old love story thrown in for measure!!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on 25 October 2011
I don't think Jenny Colgan has disappointed me yet. If you're looking for a light-hearted read that's not too taxing on the brain cells, but leaves you with a smile on your face at the end, then Colgan's your girl.

West End Girls is the story of Lizzie and Penny, non-identical twins in more ways than one. Out-going Penny is slim, blond and pretty, always up for a party and dreaming of more than her mundance job as a waitress, living in her mum's council house. Lizzie is quiet, mousy and plump, happy to spend her days at work for a stamp importing company and her evenings on the sofa in front of the TV, watching soaps and eating biscuits. So when their estranged paternal grandmother requests they live in her Chelsea flat whilst she is 'convalescing' in a retirement home, the girls finally think their luck has changed. London is the place to be and with a Chelsea address, how could anything possibly go wrong?

My fave characters in West End Girls were definitely Lizzie and Georges (the Portuguese sandwich shop owner who Lizzie ends up working for). Their budding relationship is made even sweeter by Lizzie's familiar worries that she is not 'good enough' and is constantly overlooked in favour of her supposedly more attractive sister. And Georges is possibly the most unconventional hero/love interest you're ever likely to meet in the pages of a book, but he won my heart in the same way as he wins Lizzie's.

In contrast, Penny is a little more difficult to take to. She spends most of the the first half of the book wrapped up in her own self-importance, determined to become 'famous' and make a name for herself, whatever the cost. But, like many chick-lit characters, she soon realises that perhaps being famous is not all it's cracked up to be. And with the introduction of mysterious artist Will, she soon realises there's more to life than parties and partying.

Secondary characters, Brooke and Minty (Lizzie and Penny's neighbours) are stereotypically drawn as Chelsea girls; designer clothes, numerous party invites (all of which are denounced as 'tedious') and a string of rich boyfriends, they spend most of their time looking down their perfect snub noses at everyone, but strangely still manage to make friends with Lizzie and Penny. I struggled to find the appeal of this pair, but luckily they don't feature too heavily or else they were in danger of becoming tedious themselves.

Overall though this is a really enjoyable read with a lovely, happy, feel-good ending. Would definitely recommend.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
on 21 October 2009
A brilliant book about two sisters wanting different things from life and getting the unexpected . I loved this book as did my teenage daughter, its got a good story line and will make you laugh at times to me it was like reading a chick flick
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 27 December 2013
I really love Jenny Colgans books, I love the characters and story lines but this book was awful. I didn't find the foul language very relaxing and i can't say much about the storyline as i didn't finish it. Only glad that i borrowed this one from the library. Others that i have had from the library i have enjoyed so much that i have bought my own copy. All i can say is if this is the 1st Colgan book you have tried don't let it put you off trying her other books. Most Colgan books i would give 5 stars too, for mt taste this one isn't even a 1
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
on 10 July 2007
I would recommend people to read this. It's a down-to-earth and warming book, though the only characters we knew in depth were the two twins; i still liked the others too. The only trouble i had with this book was that the ending seemed to come pretty quickly and didn't seem very realistic. But still, give it a try!
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on 13 October 2013
I had read West End Girls when it first came out but got the Kindle edition when it was one of the daily deals. I am really glad I did as I had forgotten just how good it was. Some great characters (and some you love to hate) and some really heart warming touches, I love the way the girls leave all the stuff in the flat untouched and live around it. Will have just to keep my eye open for more Jenny Colgan books on the daily deals.
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on 27 November 2013
If you love a simple, fluffy, chick-lit book then this is for you.

I downloaded this book on monday and haven't been able to put it down. It really is Jenny Colgan at her best.

The characters in this story are brilliant, you'll either love or hate them but you can't help but be attached to them....the story line is also easy to follow and there is a clear flow of story.

IT'S JUST BRILLIANT :)
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on 1 June 2014
I really enjoyed The Little Beach Street Bakery and thought I would give this one a try next. Unfortuantely it turned out very disappointing and downright depressing - while certainly exaggerated, the mirror it holds up to society (celebrity adoration, girls doing literally anything to bag a rich or famous guy) is just a bit too stark for a light read. I also couldn't warm to Penny's character whatsoever.
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on 17 February 2015
Another disappointing read after loving Jenny Colgan's later books (cupcake/sweets/bakery etc.) The writing is harsher and not so fluent, the characters less likeable and three dimensional and a let down. Perhaps these early years were her trial and error writing years but if you like her latest books, don't waste your time on the early ones like this one and Looking for Andrew McCarthy etc.
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