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38 Reviews
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wish it had an epilogue
I found this book was quite hard to get into at the start - you're introduced to a lot of characters over the first few chapters (Anna, Clare, Toby, Rachel, Ella, James, Daniel, Max...), the story is told from four different perspectives and it jumps back and forth between 1997 and 2010 - its enough to make your head spin!

Once you're past this (and have drawn...
Published on 27 Jan. 2013 by Stacey

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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sloppy plot
Not a particularly easy or credible read. One particular incident is far too light heartedly handled - I'm amazed an editor kept it in. There are much better chick lit books out there. This one struck me as a bit lazy and quite unrealistic.
Published on 30 Nov. 2012 by Dannimac


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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Sloppy plot, 30 Nov. 2012
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This review is from: RSVP (Kindle Edition)
Not a particularly easy or credible read. One particular incident is far too light heartedly handled - I'm amazed an editor kept it in. There are much better chick lit books out there. This one struck me as a bit lazy and quite unrealistic.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wish it had an epilogue, 27 Jan. 2013
This review is from: RSVP (Paperback)
I found this book was quite hard to get into at the start - you're introduced to a lot of characters over the first few chapters (Anna, Clare, Toby, Rachel, Ella, James, Daniel, Max...), the story is told from four different perspectives and it jumps back and forth between 1997 and 2010 - its enough to make your head spin!

Once you're past this (and have drawn yourself a little diagram so you know who is who!) it is a fantastic story which would make a great Love Actually style movie. It was nice to see the characters grow during the story, by the end of the book I had a real admiration for both Ella and Rachel.

The only thing wrong with this book in my opinion is the ending - it's quite abrupt with a lack of epilogue. It would have been nice to catch up with the four women a little later on to see how life was treating them.

Favourite quotes:
"'I can assure you that his wallpaper is not the only thing that's well hung in his house.'"
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Wet central characters, 5 Mar. 2012
This review is from: RSVP (Hardcover)
Unlike others I did find Helen's work light and easy to read. However the central relationship of Anna and Toby was more of a damp squib than anything else.
Their relationship feel apart over something and nothing...next thing 10 years on they cannot be apart. I cannot imagine being drippy Anna's friend for 10 years of her agonising and unable to recover from a boyfriend who appeared to have slept with someone else. Perhaps a focus on two key characters may have worked better - I did want to know about how Ella's life changed and Rachel could have had a stronger story. I neither found Anna or Toby interesting or likeable... so I suppose they did deserve each other in the end.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Loved it, 20 May 2013
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This review is from: RSVP (Kindle Edition)
After reading Stay Close to Me and thoroughly enjoying it I decided to read RSVP which was equally good. Very well written.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Poorly-researched and cliched chick lit, 19 Feb. 2012
By 
Laura T (Oxford, UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: RSVP (Hardcover)
I had hoped this novel would be fun and frothy, but unfortunately I was very disappointed. It traces the interlinked stories of four women, Anna, Clare, Ella and Rachel, beginning with Rachel's upcoming wedding to Toby, Anna's ex-boyfriend from university for whom she still carries a torch. Anna's best friend Clare tries to encourage Anna to finally put Toby behind her, while Ella, Anna's old nemesis from university, is having marital problems of her own.

A significant problem with this book is the lack of research Helen Warner put into it. A previous reviewer has already pointed out the implausibility of one of the plot lines, involving a wife being automatically cut out of her husband's will although previous wills are invalidated upon marriage, and I can weigh in on another matter - the section of the book set in Cambridge, where Anna, Toby, Clare and Ella were supposedly students at Trinity College. Warner has clearly not researched the university at all, or even spoken to somebody from Oxbridge - who would be able to tell her that Cambridge students do not live in 'halls of residence', but college accommodation, do not study in 'tutor groups', but attend supervisions, and that Anna would certainly not be living somewhere with a view of the railway station in her first term, as she'd be living centrally in Trinity College accommodation (it owns half the city, so they wouldn't be short of places to put her!) Poor Anna is also required to achieve an A* and two A grades at A Level to get into Trinity in 1997, although the A* wasn't introduced until 2008, so it's slightly surprising she turns up there at all. Although this all sounds nitpicky, the central point is that Warner writes this section of the novel without absolutely no sense of place, and the rest of the settings are equally bland, although I am unable to comment on their accuracy. It's frustrating because a brief conversation with an Oxbridge graduate or a quick look at the Trinity College website would have cleared these details up immediately, so it would hardly have taken much effort.

This novel is also weirdly paced. One important plot line culminates halfway through the narrative, and unsurprisingly, I quickly lost interest after it was resolved. Ella's and Clare's plot lines add some extra drama, but don't really mesh well with the central narrative and read as sidelines. Rachel, whom I found the most sympathetic of the four women, also shoots off on a tangent. The writing isn't strong enough to hold the reader's attention without a convincing plot, so the novel doesn't really work as a whole. For these reasons, I wouldn't recommend buying this book, and would instead suggest trying a chick lit novel by a better writer, such as Marian Keyes, Harriet Evans or Lindsay Kelk.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A Rollercoaster Love Story, 9 Jan. 2014
This review is from: RSVP (Kindle Edition)
Anna is the first of the four ladies who we meet and she's still madly in love with Toby, I mean, who can blame her? He's gorgeous! For me, Anna is one of the most relatable characters I've ever had the pleasure of reading about. Her story goes back and forth from May 2010 (present day) to October 1997. Rachel is Toby's wife to be and from the word go, I didn't like her. She wanted to marry Toby for all the wrong reasons - to keep him from Anna! Major grrrr moment right there! Clare is best friend to Anna and completely hilarious. Finally, we have the bitch of the novel Ella who is seriously troubled.

This novel is one of the most dramatic yet romantic narratives I have ever read. There's a lot of ups and downs for each of the characters and in all honesty, it's amazing. Each of the four women have their own powerful, individual story to tell and it's told with fantastic words. I did, however, favour Anna and Clare over Rachel and Ella.
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1.0 out of 5 stars Avoid this book, 3 May 2011
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This review is from: RSVP (Paperback)
I originally reviewed this book back in 2012, and my review seems to have disappeared. Not sure why! I did not enjoy this book at all. The writing is dull and the author clearly hasn't researched the issues properly. A central plot line, where a wife (forgive me, I can't remember the name of the character as it was so long ago) does not receive anything in her husband's Will is clearly incorrect. The law states that Wills are invalidated on marriage, yet this husband's Will was written before he married and was considered enforceable by this author. Absolutely ridiculous. A quick internet search would have revealed that Wills are invalidated on marriage. Another reviewer has pointed out the incorrect references to some of the characters' attendance at a Cambridge college. Lazy authors drive me mad. I cannot get back the time I spent reading this book, but you can!

Definitely one to avoid!
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4.0 out of 5 stars Lighthearted Romance, 23 Jun. 2013
This review is from: RSVP (Paperback)
I thoroughly enjoyed this easy read while relaxing on holiday. It's one of those books that you can't put down once you have started it with a nice cast of characters & quite a few twists & turns along the way.
My only criticism (which other reviewers have mentioned)is the rather abrupt ending .
Would have liked to have had an update of how all the characters fared afterwards.
I bought the hardback edition of the book at a bargain price & it is quite an attractive book which I will keep for a while & may read again.
Definately worth buying if you like a light easy going romance which started out at University. Has the feel good factor!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Impressive debut, 25 Jan. 2014
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This review is from: RSVP (Paperback)
Late in the day to read this one - but it's an impressive debut by an author new to an admittedly crowded genre. Nonetheless the plot was innovative, the friends/characters I could easily imagine in my own set during my twenties. I did indeed read it over a couple of sittings and found myself delaying my daily routine in order to finish it. I'm really looking forward to reading more by this author. I recommend it - she reminds me of the brilliant Jane Green in her early years.
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5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Kept me turning the pages, 13 Feb. 2012
By 
JM (UK) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)   
This review is from: RSVP (Paperback)
Although I used to read a lot of chicklit I more or less gave it up as, like another reviewer comments, most of it is about twentysomethings desperate to find a man. Boring and usually quite silly. RSVP is not like that at all, it's more like grown up chicklit, altogether more mature.
The story is about four women: Anna, who is still pining for her lost love, Toby, ten years on and Rachel who is about to marry him; Ella, who was the cause of Anna and Toby's breakup all those years ago, now unhappily married to much older Max, and Clare, Anna's best friend.
It begins with the invitation to Toby and Rachel's wedding, which causes fresh heartbreak for Anna, and the author then takes us back in time to find out what events led to the situation in the present day. Cleverly written, it's an emotional and engaging story, where you can really empathise with the characters, even, later on, with one who is not so likeable in the beginning.
I would definitely recommend as an enjoyable story, a cut above the majority of women's fiction, and one I was always eager to pick up.
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RSVP
RSVP by Helen Warner (Paperback - 2 Feb. 2012)
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