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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars
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on 11 August 2008
I loved the book "my best friends girl" by dorothy and didnt think I would enjoy another of her books as much - how wrong was I? I cant decide whether it is on par with that book or better- either way it was a brilliant read! This book is written in a different way to DKs other books - telling the points of views of the main characters all throughout the book. The main storyline is about Mal and Nova - best friends growing up. Mal asks Nova to have a baby for him and his wife as she is unable to have them - Nova agrees then Mal changes his mind without Nova ever knowing why. This book takes you through a rollercoaster of emotions, and I cried and cried at the last few pages of this book! It deals with real issues and secrets are revealed throughout the book. If you have ever lost someone close to you or had to deal with someone you love been very ill then you will really connect with this book. Nova is a strong character and for her to do what she did and be who she was was simply admirable! Even if you have never read dks books - I can guarantee you will like this book - although slightly depressing in places - it has to be for the reader to be able to connect to the characters. If I could give this books more than 5 stars I would! One of the best books i have ever read - and I read a LOT! As soon as you finish this book you miss the characters and the book stays with you a long time after you have read it!
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on 2 September 2008
This book was ok but by far my favourite of Dorothy's books is still My Best Friends Girl. I did find myself getting emotional whilst reading this book and I can't say it was bad, just not my favourite.
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VINE VOICEon 13 October 2009
After reading and LOVING Marshmallows for Breakfast and The Chocolate Run, I couldn't wait to get my teeth into Goodnight, Beautiful (sorry, couldn't resist). Seriously, though, Dorothy Koomson has quickly become one of my favourite chick-lit authors, and this book simply cemented in my mind the reasons why. She creates an enthralling storyline, real and lovable characters and inspires incredible emotion - the result is a lovely, lovely book.

The plot is thus: eight years ago Nova Kumalisi agreed to be a surrogate for her best friend, Mal, and his wife, Stephanie. Despite the fact the parents-to-be were incredibly excited during the first part of the pregnancy, months later, the unthinkable happens. Mal and Stephanie change their minds about the baby, leaving Nova alone with the prospect of bringing up a child she never bargained for, throwing her future into turmoil. However, not one to take things lying down, Nova gets used to the idea of being a mother - and months down the line she is doting on her son as though nothing ever happened.

Back in the present the child in question, a little boy called Leo; has been in an accident. He's lying in a coma in hospital, much to the distress of his mother and her husband. Despite age and health being on his side, things don't look good for Leo, and Nova is forced to tell her family - which inevitably means that Mal's family will find out. Goodnight, Beautiful deals with the fall-out of Leo's accident and what it means for his family... and those that could have been.

There aren't enough adjectives available to praise this book. It truly was one that I didn't want to put down, and I raced through it in a day or so because I was desperate to find out what happened. There are twists and turns galore in this book, so there'll be surprises, laughter and tears... all packed into 433 pages. I don't want to say any more and ruin it, but be prepared to have your emotions played with - Koomson is a powerful writer and her talent shines particularly brightly in this book.
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on 3 March 2014
I found this book -with all its twists and turn from past to present -endearing in more ways than one, Nova's slight naive-ness and out-going personality, Mal's unfortunate upbringing and strong resolve, along with how they are both unbelievable loyal to those that they love. When poor Steph comes into the picture it seems almost perfect, that the strong, gorgeous Mal will hold her up and make her stronger and build her up, but she slips and slides all over the place. Towards the end, when all revelations are let loose, there is no way to feel too disgusted with Stephanie for some of her actions. She had isolated herself and withdrawn from the world, her own mind making her paranoid and reckless. The ending of the story breaks my heart but not just for the most obvious reason; the happy ever after is just in reach but they have made their ways and sadly their life has taken a different turn. There are so many what if's that could have happened, or may have happened long after the allotted time frames, but the end shows how strong and loyal both Nova and Mal are. They both need to do what makes them happy, and honor their promises and commitments. The end of this story is worth the wait but I DO RECOMMEND that you keep the tissues by your side especially if you finish this book at 6AM because it's THAT good that you can sacrifice a few more hours of sleep! There is also no way that you couldn't go on Brighton beach or the pier and not feel what Nova felt through her heartache. She shows so well that when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade, even if what you really want is a spiced orange!
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VINE VOICEon 3 August 2008
Certainly different from her previous books, Goodnight Beautiful tels the story of Nova who promised to have the child of her best friend Mal for him and his wife Stephanie. They change their mind and Nova keeps hers and Mal's son Leo. Then Leo gets seriously ill.

What is different about this book from the others is that it is quite clear that the generic, expected happy ending (i.e. Mal and Nova reconciling) seems beyond reach - you do not dare to hope. DK is asking you quite early on to forsake that and look for another kind of satisfaction. Nova and Mal are very conflicted, loving their spouses but loving each other more. They martyr themselves for people that probably don't deserve it (Mal's wife Stephanie eliciting no sympathy from me) Despite this they do not chase the romantic ideal but run from it. It is in many ways a depressing book with little of the humour found in her other work like The Cupid Effect. As an exercise in showing how love hurts it is very demonstrative.

I have given it 3 * because it is well written with well drawn characters with an unsual premise but doesn't have the charm of My Best Friends Girl or the comfort of The Chocolate Run.
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on 30 August 2016
Another heartbreaking read but Koomson never fails to get the emotions of characters spot.on so each book comes to life and draws you in until you feel part of the characters lives and walking their journey with them.
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on 19 March 2012
Book arrived within the time stated and was packaged well.

It has now become one of my favourite books. I had a love for Dorothy Koomson since reading Marshmallows For Breakfast and had to continue reading her books. Ive read the Ice-Cream Girls and didnt think any book could beat it but this one did.
Its a 'cant put it down' kind of book. There are shocks and sorrows in the book that arent expected but it is beautifully written and made me feel many emotions. I will read it again and again.
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on 31 October 2008
Having read most of the author's books I was not expecting this mega-weepy read. My gosh, at the end, I was literally broken hearted; had a mega headache from the crying, and when I tried to explain what was the matter with me to my husband, who had quite clearly thought I'd finally flipped, I could not speak for crying/sobbing. What a profound effect this book has had on me. I would not describe myself as being low or depressed currently, but thought provoking and stunningly sad tis book certainly is. If a book is judged on how the reader is able to connect with the characters, then this book deserves every one of the 5 stars I have awarded it. Now, where did I put the panadol...?
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on 14 March 2012
I bought the book because people described it as a 'fantastic book which will make you cry'. I beg to differ.
An average book and I wasn't emotionally moved in the slightest.

I feel like the endings of Koomson's books let her down greatly. I always get that "is that it?" feeling when I finish reading them. It's almost as if they are rushed or a Part I of a trilogy.
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on 16 June 2014
I think this must be one of the most heart wrenching books I have read (and I have read a lot!) and it certainly was one which resulted in a lack of sleep the next day! (due to staying up to finish it!!)

The story is about Nova and Mal who have been best friends since children and have grown up together with both families being extremely close.
Mal askes Nova to have a baby for him and his wife, she agrees to this as she would do anything for Mal. Before the baby is born Mal changes his mind without any explanation, and breaks contact. Nova is left to bring up the baby that she never thought would be hers.

Meanwhile in the present, Leo, Nova's son, is in a coma and it isn't looking good. Nova must tell her family, which also means Mal's family will find out.

I think this book takes you through a range of emotions and I will openly admit I cried more than a few tears through it! It opens your heart to the 'could have beens' and the consequences of choices that have been made.

I have found it hard to write this review as it was such a moving story and I do not want to spoil it!!!
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