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Just Like Proper Grown-Ups Hardcover – 16 Aug 2012
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Sharp, funny and deliciously rude. (Daily Mail)
This is a fascinating expose of chaotic relationships, the demands of modern life, and societal preoccupation with youth. A fast-paced and entertaining read. (Image)
A well-written, absorbing story, with lots of little touches that make it believable and true to life . . . a great grown-up novel for everyone's who's terrified of growing up (that will be all of us, then)! (Fabulous)
A hugely witty read, which will appeal to almost everyone. (The Lady)
Immensely enjoyable and easy to read (www.curiousbookfans.co.uk)
Praise for THE PILE OF STUFF AT THE BOTTOM OF THE STAIRS (:)
'Utter genius. The funniest, truest and most insightful book about being a parent I have ever read.' (Lisa Jewell)
'The new I Don't Know How She Does It' (Grazia)
Encapsulates precisely, but with plenty of humour, the madness of the modern working family (Sarah Vine, The Times)
'A bittersweet domestic drama . . . sharply funny . . . occasionally very moving' (Marie Claire)
Do growing up and growing old go hand in hand? An entertaining exposé of messy relationships, modern life, and our preoccupation with youth and beauty, from the author of THE PILE OF STUFF AT THE BOTTOM OF THE STAIRS.See all Product description
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The characters are all different in their own way: Lucy is terrified of getting older, commitment-phobe Owen keeps accidentally proposing to the wrong women, Sierra's difficult childhood means she keeps choosing men who treat her badly, and Michael has always felt inferior to his second cousin Tess - can any other woman compare to her?
There's no disguising the fact that Christina Hopkinson is a very good writer. She is observant and witty, zooming in on the tiniest detail on pushy mums, relationships, childbirth etc. in a wry and telling way. I like the fact that there is a real edge to her writing too - she doesn't shy away from meaty issues and uncomfortable truths about modern life.
However, where this book disappointed me was the fact that I didn't like any of the characters. I found them all self-obsessed and shallow, and ultimately, didn't care what happened to them in the story. I didn't really go along with the main premise of the book either, unfortunately - that all these random godparents would start spending so much time together. It felt forced and unconvincing. Sorry - this one didn't work for me.
My first take on the book is that the endless, rambling discussions might eventually lead somewhere, but in a distant fashion, you feel like you are reading Samuel Becket's Waiting for Godot.
And nothing happens. This is partly my fault - nothing happened as far as I could tell. I struggled for ages just to force my way through it.
I admire the intent. Four characters, emotionally destitute, somehow are linked because one of them is going to have a baby. This could have made an interesting story in principle; but the characters have no humour and are so blank that any sympathy for them would come from music that you might be listening to while you are with the book, an accidental feature, as it were.
At the end I felt as if I had met no characters at all and read no story. Maybe that is exactly what was supposed to be the general effect; but I could tile our bathroom and have the same sensations, probably.
I cringed, I sympathised and I laughed out loud. Christina Hopkinson's unforgiving, witty and cynical take on modern issues and "growing up" is an entertaining one that I would recommend.
did not know quite what to expect from her second novel.
Tess is child free, successful, glamorous and determinedly single with four close knit friends. She
drops an unexpected bombshell on the lot of them by announcing her pregnancy and inviting the four of
them to be her baby's godparents..
Of course they all rally around Tess but without exception each of her friends are battling their own
demons. Art gallerista Sierra, love-lorn teacher Michael, rich singleton Owen and yummy mummy Lucy who
is petrified of the ageing process.
Whilst I did not warm to all the characters it is a sharp funny and deliciously rude novel and I enjoyed
it hugely, and I shall be buying her first novel and look forward to her next one also.
The consequences are so funny at times and so up to date, that you could actually believe it to be happening to someone you knew in real life now. I like her writing style as clear cut and so well just right for the subject ...... funny.
I laughed an awful lot with this book, such a funny but domesticated read.
Haven't read her previous book but would gladly read it now after finishing this.