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3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 2 March 2001
Cas is a much more rounded character than Connie from Parks' previous "couldn't put it down" book Playing Away. As a woman of 30 years, it is a pleasure to read of someone successful and beautiful but who still has flaws. I work hard and when I get home I want to read of women who are living a life I sometimes fantasize of having myself. Cas has been hurt in the past by a man who left her - her father - she vows never to be hurt by love again until she meets Darren but she can't be in love with him can she? What I love about Adele Parks is that she writes so convincingly that you feel everything the heroine goes through and even though most of the time you don't agree with them you are still in the thick of the action. I feel she makes me live through all the ups and downs and I can never turn the page quick enough. She writes about love/lust/passion so well I can feel it in my stomach. I for one will look out for wvery book this woman writes - she writes for the "me time" I value so much.
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on 11 February 2004
If this was a film it would be a classed as a chick flick, it is superb! It has has the classic storyline full of love, sex, relationships, unrequited love etc with the added humour and characters everyone can relate to. The idea of 'sex with an ex' was absolutely brilliant and i'm just waiting for it to become a real TV show, i'm sure it would attract millions. Darren seems the perfect guy for every woman - shame he doesn't seem to exist in reality! Overall I thought this book was excellent and would recommmend it to any female, specially those getting over heartbreak.
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VINE VOICEon 13 July 2013
Cas is a character within this book which you are either going to love or hate in probably equal measure. Cas works in the television industry, she is a producer on a tv channel that is losing audience figures by the day and needs to find a programme to make it stand out from anything else.

Cas hits upon an idea, an idea that will solve everything - a programme which relies on the general public turning up and watching a couple on the brink of marriage and whether they would ever be tempted one last time with an ex. It has elements of every reality tv show you can think of in there - and I think this book reflects the sudden fascination we have sitting on our sofas at home and watching other people's lives fall apart. Cas thinks she is onto a winner, and this will enhance her career even further - it's all she wants because she knows that no one can resist.

But then Cas, who uses men as a hobby and manipulates them purely for her own need suddenly meets Darren and she cannot convince him to be part of the television show which is sweeping the nation, and causing the wedding industry to take a financial hit.

Darren has something that Cas does not - morals and principles.

Cas is convinced that Darren will be easily swayed and sets out to prove something to everyone and herself.

How wrong Cas is!

And finally just when you think that actually you could hate Cas no more, she suddenly has a side to her that makes you think that all that hurt and bottled up anger and bitterness about the male sex, is just a front, is a protection against the one thing she cannot control - falling in love.

Sorry Cas, it looks like it is Game Over for you in this instance.

This is a great escapism read, that actually might hit on a reflection of they type of television programmes we watch and actually fill our schedules night after night. It was that which made me cringe slightly, and think how low can the entertainment business go to get viewing figures and reputations. This novel I think reflects that very well, under a basic girl and boy fall in love story, she just makes it that little bit more difficult for Cas but not for Darren, who I happily fell in love, because of his morals and his principles!
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on 17 October 2005
I took this book on holiday with me last week and although it is a bit predictable it was a good read and made me laugh. I couldn't put it down and read it in 2 days a great girly beach book.
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on 13 June 2001
I was looking forward to an idle feast of simple entertainment - to will away the Saturday hours. I discovered that sleep is a better saviour - and indeed the book at least worked to bring on a near coma. Perhaps I elevated it a bit much after reading the reviews. I snuggled up and began my 'absorbing' tale and after a few chapters had to force the pages be turned only in hope that somewhere along the line some dramatic improvement would occur! Needless to say, it was a chore - I made it in the end, eventually discovering humour - but I don't think the kind that the author would appreciate. Nevermind. The character was truly atrocious - and yes, she was supposed to be perceived as such but I wanted the worst for her in the end, was without any sympathy and most certainly void of empathy. Her sidekicks (obviously her inferiors) were disgustingly stereotypical and oh my lord help me! It is bad enough to endure the facetious, stuck up kind that amble on these streets in ones own reality so when you are prepared for a relaxing feast of a read it's with horror that you come across a worst kind - the terrier of the breed. Ugh. If the book was more demanding and the tale a complex one I could deal with a vile diva telling me her pompous tale, but it was not. And, when expecting a great chic-lit read you actually want to have some kind of liking for the people that are the stars for those hundreds of pages.
Sadly, I was void of any feeling except utter boredom and yes - I acquired a great snooze out of the affair.
I beg your apologies. 'Twas not my cup of tea.
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on 31 August 2013
Cas is a clever, competent, 33-year-old TV producer. She's also a slut (her own description), preferring the buzz of once-only liaisons with married or engaged men to any kind of commitment. She has two close friends, Josh and Issie. Josh's modus operandi, as far as women go, is to take them, shake them, and dump them. One can only assume that Parks thought she was creating a typical red-blooded male character but Josh is a male version of Cas - self-obsessed, manipulative, and maybe even border-line psychopathic. Issie (as is Josh) is a friend from university days and is an antidote to the other two. She's supposed to be gentle and kind but comes across as guache and insipid. And Bale, Cas's boss at ITV6, is repugnant, or as Cas calls him, a txxt.

Oh dear, isn't there anyone in this story who's nice? Not really, unless you count Darren, for whom Cas falls, hard. He's `The One.' "He has wide shoulders that taper to slim hips and the cutest bum. His eyes are huge, deep brown and framed with the most stunning Bambi lashes. He has the cheekiest smile. He's a babe." Darren, to Cas's consternation, believes in all the things she doesn't - true love, fidelity and commitment. So when Cas develops a reality TV programme called `Sex with an Ex' that Darren is scheduled to appear in, there are far-reaching consequences. I shan't spoil the ending, but let's just say it's better than Cas deserved.

Those who are made squeamish by constant references to (and descriptions of) sex should not read this book. By page 54 I'd had enough of them and almost gave up. I carried on only because I wanted to give this book a fair review.

I have already read four Adele Parks novels and thoroughly enjoyed them. This is Parks' second novel and I think she may have still been flushed with the success of her first novel, `Playing Away' when she wrote `Game Over.' Normally, she gets right under the skin of her characters. She's terrific at observing human behaviour and can create exquisitely funny dialogue. However, `Game Over' doesn't measure up. Thank goodness the books she has written since 2001 have more than made up for this lapse.

To summarise, I think Parks got this one wrong. Her characterisation was off-beam throughout. We've had enough of brittle-thin, cynical thirty-something women: they're too mean-spirited, spiky, and difficult to warm to. And wide-shouldered, slim-hipped, cute-bummed men are too much of a female fantasy stereotype to be credible.
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on 12 August 2011
I was very sceptical about this book before I read it. A friend suggested it to me after she read it and totally loved it so I came on here to see the blurb and found myself fishing through several bad reviews. I know chick lit novels are not renound for their fantastic writing and original story lines but some of the reviews were really quite bad. After nearing the end of the month with insufficient funds to justify buying a book I thought I might as well and I have to say I really liked it.

I thought it was great that it showed a woman who didn't want commitment as opposed to the man and added to that one of her best friends who shares the total opposite view was a nice comparison. Although this has probably been done before I thought it was well written and very gripping throughout.

The TV show `Sex with an Ex' was a brilliant idea and I hope parks copyrighted it cause I would defiantly watch it - what can I say I boo when coupes on Jeremy Kyle get back together. I could see it being a real show and I felt like I was getting a good insight into the television business. Although half of it may have been total rubbish, a good writer should be able to convince you that that is how it happens without you feeling as if she's making it all up and I think parks did that.

My only gripe was Darren. I tried so hard to think is sickly approach to everything in life was endearing but it just became a bit eugh. Also the description of him did not leave me hot under the collar and I did find myself forgetting the description and coming up with my own vision of him (a very good vision I must say). Josh I didn't feel was done enough justice throughout the book, I found myself rooting for him throughout (may be because I was imagining Jason from true blood but who knows).

Overall it is a great book; I found myself unable to put it down and feeling various emotions throughout the whole book which is always a plus. If you can get past the dodgy sex scenes and the fact it is not guna win a book prize for sophisticated writing I think most people should enjoy this. Although I should warn, if you work in television and everything that Adele describes about it is total rubbish id probably avoid it, it may get very frustrating.
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on 6 March 2001
This is another one of those plots where girl meets ideal partner, falls madly in love, they fall out/have a misunderstanding, don't see each other for a while, then make up and it all ends happily ever after. The plots of these books all seem to merge into one to be honest, but when you read a worse than average one it stands out. I started off quite liking Cas because she wasn't as vacuous as other ChickLit heroines. She is honest enough to appreciate her good looks and good brain. We are painfully reminded over and over of how hard she is and how immune to love - yet she falls for the first pretty face we are introduced to. And this is where the book takes a turn for the worse - it's so sickly! The only parts of the book worse than Cas's descriptions of love were the sex scenes, and for a self confessed slapper she wasn't up to much! The main weaknesses of the plot were the reason for Cas's inability to fall in love - a much hackneyed, stereotyped reason and for goodness sake if she's that intelligent she would have got over her father leaving 24 years before. The second is that the totally unbelievably perfect Darren (and he was single? purlease!)would not have fallen for a vain, self centered, shallow user like Cas. If the book had ended with her humiliation at the hands of her own TV show I would have enjoyed it more - she would have got her comeuppance and Darren would have got his revenge - but it ended on a very disappointing note compared to the promise of the beginning.
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on 7 July 2001
A look at life in the age of the fractured family. The story of a fierce and obnoxious television producer who develops a fierce and obnoxious show, SEX WITH AN EX, one that drags tens of people to despair before she gets it herself. She has always blamed her father's brusque departure for her woes, which she won't overcome completely until the last page. At times more graphic than necessary in describing the sex scenes, it is a great story about love, and how it can last, without any of the usual trappings of romantic novels. A lesson in using the rules of writing.
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on 6 May 2001
i picked this up when i was visiting london & wandered into a bookshop. very good read. it has fast wit, a comedy of errors and a nice twist on how our priorities can get so mixed up. a good weekend read.
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