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Welcome to My World Paperback – 11 Nov 2010
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‘A guilty pleasure.’ Grazia
‘The perfect book to curl up with on a cold winter’s eve.’ Closer
About the Author
Miranda Dickinson has always had a head full of stories. From an early age she dreamed of writing a book that would make the heady heights of Kingswinford Library. Following a Performance Art degree, she began to write in earnest when a friend gave her The World's Slowest PC. She is also a singer-songwriter. Her first novel, Fairytale of New York was a Sunday Times Top 10 title.
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But what Miranda really excells at, is that she manages to make her characters so real and she connects us to them so well. I fell in love with Harri from the first line, and she's such a wonderful character that I truly hoped the story would end well for her. The fact that she's a travel agent who has never actually travelled made me feel so sad. I wasn't entirely convinced by Rob, Harri's boyfriend, because he worked away a lot we barely get to see him, and I admit he did seem nice at first but I always had a few doubts about him. The main man for me, though, was the lovely lovely Alex. I loved how he fed Harri's travelling addiction, and I loved how easy-going their relationship was. For me, that was my favourite part of the novel. Alex's mum Viv is a prominent character and really sparkled and Harri's best friend Stella and Aunt Rosemary (who you may recognise from Fairytale of New York as she's Rosie's mum!) add to the cast nicely.
I must admit, I did worry that Welcome To My World wouldn't live up to my expectations, and wouldn't match the fantasticness that was Fairytale of New York but I am very happy to announce that I was wrong. Welcome To My World was just as good as Fairytale of New York. It's true, there's not a lot going action-wise, but for me, I read Miranda's books for the story, for the unravelling of the plot, not for cliched action scenes that appear in a lot of Chick Lit novels. Miranda has a very distinct writing style, and a distinct way of telling a story and for me it's a huge hit. You have no idea how sad I am to have finished the novel as it means a wait of another 12 months before Miranda's next one It Started With A Kiss, but believe me, it will definitely be worth the wait.
This is an even better read than Fairytale and I pretty much gobbled it up in one sitting. Welcome to my World tells the story of Harri, a travel agent who hasn't actually been on holiday anywhere outside the UK yet, which is in stark contrast to her best mate, Alex, who has recently returned home to the Black Country village of Stone Yardley, after extensive travelling.
I loved the structure of this book. When the book opens, something has happened to make Harri take refuge in a cubicle of the ladies' toilets at Stone Yardley Village Hall. Each chapter returns to Harri in her cubicle and then goes onto reveal more backstory until it leads up to the present and takes you from there on to the conclusion. It's an unusual device but one that really works well and each time it lets you digest what's happened to date before the story moves on.
Miranda excels at writing characters, and not just when it comes to the main ones. You get a whole village of them here. She is also very clever at bringing a place to life within her books and making it a character in its own right, something she did exceptionally well with New York in Fairytale of New York. While reading the book, the villagers and vilage of Stone Yardley felt so real that it was almost as if I knew them and was living among them.
As with Fairytale, I felt that the ending was a little rushed, although that could have been partly due to me frantically turning the pages to find out how it was all going to end for Harri!
I cried, laughed, shouted and giggled my way through this and now can't wait to read Miranda's next book, It Started with a Kiss, which is out in November 2011.
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I enjoyed this story, it was an easy read and I enjoyed the writing. Sometimes, though, the characters actions didn't ring true - which made them...Read more