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You Don't Have to Say You Love Me Paperback – 3 Feb 2011
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"Manning's latest slice of good old-fashioned chick-lit features one of the most loveable heroines in ages" (Heat)
"This is classic chick-lit in the vein of Bridget Jones's diary" (Heat)
"A sexy, modern read" (Glamour)
"A deliciously addictive tale of romance and reinvention" (Marie Claire)
Mr Apparently Right, Mr Definitely Wrong, and one girl who has to work out which is which - this is clever, sharp and romantic story-telling.See all Product description
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Top customer reviews
This is a story that draws you in, keeps you there and then when it's over you just want to go through it all over again. Trust me, I've read it three times in a row before.
Neve, as a character, isn't perfect. She isn't your quintessential female character in a piece of chick lit. She's flawed, strong and weak at the same time, and has something in her that I think all women can relate to. Max is the guy we all wish we could have, not because of anything he is, or what he looks like, or the amount of money he makes, but because of the way he loves and the way he acts (most of the time).
I can't even describe the words to recommend this enough, just read it and then thank me!
Neve is holding out for William who she met at Oxford University, he has been in LA for the last 3 years and their only contact has been emails and long, long, handwritten letters. However, Neve is convinced that William is 'The One' and so she is doing everything to be ready for his return. William is in for a shock though as Neve is half the woman she was; Neve's weight and her quest to lose it is a huge part of her life. At first I found this aspect of the character a little off-putting but as I learnt more about Neve and the negative impact her weight has had on her life, I began to like and understand her a lot more.
Neve lives in a house converted into flats, she has the top floor, her little sister Celia the bottom floor and then her brother Douglas and his nasty wife Celia have other one. Charlotte is a pretty nasty piece of work; she made Neve's life hell by bullying her about her size at school and she still manages to intimidate her now. Neve's sister Celia is a lovely character, she works for a fashion magazine and she introduces Neve to Max, one of the editors. Max is very much a ladies man and Celia warns her big sister to keep her distance. But it is Max who os the persistent one, following Neve home, trying to charm his way into her pants.
Realising that Max is not going to give up, Neve decides that he could be a good relationship practice before William returns. Ground rules are set; no holding hands, no sex and it will all be over once William is back on British soil. So much to everyone's surprise, Max and Neve embark on a pretend relationship, they have dates, share the same bed but there are no strings attached. Well there shouldn't be but once Neve realises that their time together is coming to an end she begins to wonder if William really is 'The One' and what will life be like without Max?
Sarra Manning has written an excellent book. Neve has bit of the Bridget Jones factor about her in that she is a woman that many female readers will completely identify with. She has aspirations, insecurities, fears and needs; she just didn't bet on Max becoming one of them.
You Don't Have to Tell Me That You Love Me is an absorbing, sexy read. Max and Neve are really well formed characters and I was a bit sad when I got to the last page. This really is a great book and I shall look out for others by Sarra Manning in the future.
Sarra Manning has created a novel which is so much more than the usual two-dimensional chick-lit. The length of the novel means that the growing intimacy between Max and Neve is not rushed, and therefore the ending is so much more satisfying and meaningful than other novels of this genre.
I loved the characters of Max and Neve as their flaws and characteristics are relatable and real. Although the novel is long I could have easily read another 500 pages about Max and Neve. You Don't Have to Say You Love Me is funny, romantic and will leave you with a warm, fuzzy feeling long after you have finished it.