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Sheer Mischief Kindle Edition
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Being an avid reader of Mansell’s latest books I wanted to go back to the beginning and read them. ‘Sheer Mischief’ follows the same formula that Mansell has and is a sheer delight to read. The plot is wonderfully frothy with plenty of characters to get stuck into and many eligible people for them to pursue. There are elements of the plot that are obvious but this did not ruin the plot as it was so entertaining and there are some surprise plot elements which only made the book more exciting. The plot overall is delightful and it was fun to be involved in Janey and Maxine’s somewhat messy personal lives.
The characters are great as well, all well written and developed and all very realistic. It was easy to get sucked into their world and read about their joy and merriment along the way. There are as well some more emotional plot threads which only add another depth to the book and give it more of a realistic edge. Janey and Maxine in particular are two great characters to be the ‘lead’ characters and there is a lot going on in both their lives. Guy is another excellent character and has his fair share of emotional storylines. Together the trio make for spectacular reading, prepare to get swept away with their story and to laugh, cry and feel happy.
‘Sheer Mischief’ is another fantastic read from Mansell, why would I expect anything else?! A great beach read.
Boy, was I wrong. This book was absolutely ridiculous. I mean, yes, granted, it's a chick-lit, so certain expectations go with that genre. There will always be a happy ending, it will always be cheesy and romantic, it will include the jerk, and the chivalrous hero, and two female characters, one who is absolutely clueless and naive and the other who is a complete skank.
So yes, as usual, Jill Mansell delivered on all of the above. But besides the fact that story line was so overdone and predictable as hell (again, I realize most chick-lits are predictable), but the quality of the story is what bothered me. What I usually love about Mansell's books are the short chapters, because I feel like I can fly through the pages in no time. Not this time though, it took me forever to get through the book and through the chapters. At one point, I found myself skimming huge chunks of text just to get to the freaking point.
It was very long-winded, stalled like no tomorrow, the twists and turns were so frustrating and annoying, and both protagonists were MEH. In fact, I found Maxine and Bruno a lot more interesting than Janey and Guy.
Definitely not worth more than a star in my opinion, however, that does not mean I've given up on Mansell. I simply did not prefer this particular book.
I usually enjoy her books very much and find them totally relaxing. But, the BIG but. "Sheer Mischief" is a bit too much of everything. Too many actors on the stage, too many intrigues, too many goings on at the same time.
The characters are like cardboard cutouts in one of the soaps. And although it's ok that the end is given and happy, when it gets as banal as this, it's simply too much. Janey the nice girl who does not know she is beautiful. Her unscrupuluos sister Maxine who has the brain the size of a pea. Bruno, the heartbreaker, put together with Janey's ex-husband Alan, a duo too insufferable for words. And good guy par excellance, smashing fashion photographer Guy, who is surrounded by indredibly beautiful fashion models but secretly dreaming about an ordinary girl like you and me! (Especially when the ordinary girl wears her oldest jeans, T and no make up and it's raining... Yeehhh!!!)
The only "normal" people in all this are Guy's children Emma and Josh, Guy's father Oliver and Janey's and Maxine's artist mother Thea. Only they seem real and believable.
I know we are talking fiction here, and with a fairytale twist, but there is a limit.
No wonder, as I found out afterwards, that this is Mansell's first book. Try her latest, "Rumour has it" and experience the difference!! If this is an indication of future work from Jill Mansell, we have got a lot to look forward to. "Sheer Mischief" is best forgotten.
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