Solo by Jill Mansell
Published by Sourcebooks, Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: January 1st 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Romance
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"Mansell's...gentle humor and enormous heart always ensure a treat for her readers." -RT Book Reviews for Making Your Mind Up 4 Stars
It all starts at a party, as these things often do...
- A one-night stand with far-reaching consequences - Momentarily enamored guests going home with all the wrong people- An unfaithful wife struck by jealousy and getting a dose of her own medicine- A shocking family secret revealed at the worst possible moment
One fling follows another, and now the whole community is embroiled in a great big web of deceit, the untangling of which will charm you, amuse you, make you laugh and make you cry.
Whatever's going on in your life, Solo by Jill Mansell is the perfect distraction right about now...
"A graceful blend of heartbreak, humor and redemptive love." -Kirkus for The Unexpected Consequences of Love
Jill Mansell is a master at writing contemporary romances set in English small towns. They’re always filled to the brim with characters, storylines, and laughter. This book was no different…except that the more that I read this book, the more pissed off I got. The different stories worked for me and while I was more invested in Max and Holly, I was still interested in what was happening with everyone else. Everything was going swimmingly until about halfway through and the stuff that worked was still happening with no kind of growing happening. There was a lot of infidelity, a lot of boneheadedness and the characters that showed promise in the beginning, I started to hate.
Ross and Tessa drove me nuts, I wanted to knee Max in his balls every time he went running back to that old hag, hurting Holly in the process and then the whole thing with Antonia, Richard, Mattie, Grace, all of it made me either roll my eyes around the room or seriously pissed me off. I was Team Max for Holly until he kept right on hurting her because then he stopped deserving her. Same with Ross. I was frustrated with Tessa’s inability to ride things out. She was always running away and that annoyed the snot out of me.
By the time the end came, I was glad to be done with these characters. Ross was a huge disappointment, and while Max came around, I thought Holly let him off the hook too easily. The character that I probably liked the most was Grace. Her story was funny because she fell in love with her Dad before she knew that he was her Dad and then once she found out, she was so grossed out. That was funny.
Overall, this was a miss for me. It started off great but kind of veered off into the OMG what the hell is going on right now? land. I just couldn’t get behind all of the dumbass antics of everyone involved. Such a disappointment.
Grade: 1 out of 5
Three Amazing Things about You by Jill Mansell
Published by Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: October 1st 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Chick Lit
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Jill Mansell's enchanting new novel will drive readers to seize life with both hands and make the most of every minute...Hallie has a secret. She's in love. He's perfect for her in every way, but he's seriously out of bounds. And her friends aren't going to help her because what they do know is that Hallie doesn't have long to live. Time is running out...Flo has a dilemma. She really likes Zander. But his scary sister won't be even faintly amused if she thinks Zander and Flo are becoming friends - let alone anything more. Tasha has a problem. Her new boyfriend is the adventurous type. And she's afraid one of his adventures will go badly wrong. THREE AMAZING THINGS ABOUT YOU begins as Hallie goes on a journey. A donor has been found and she's about to be given new lungs. But whose?
Jill Mansell writes great contemporary stories that promote strong female characters and Three Amazing Things about You is no different. She also writes stories that will break your heart but mend it right back up by the end of the book.
Three Amazing Things about You follows Hallie, a young woman suffering from cystic fibrosis and Flo, a young woman who inherits a cat after her boss dies and who has to move into her boss’ house since the cat inherited a house and last but not least, Tasha, the serially single Tasha who falls in love with a man while she’s digging into a trash can looking for her credit card.
Each woman was as different as can be but over the course of the book, you see their lives come together through a shared connection and the book ends with all loose ends tied together and a great big smile on your face.
Each woman falls in love, gets their heart broken and then put back together again and each story wiggled its way right into my heart and stayed there. I think of the three women, Hallie’s story was the one that broke my heart the most. She’s in love with her doctor and he doesn’t seem to reciprocate her feelings she’s bogged down with this disease and just wants to live a normal life. Flo’s story also hurt my heart but I was thrilled to see her grow and count her blessings with each passing day. Tasha was probably my least favorite of the three women as I was a bit frustrated with fear of adventure. I was mostly frustrated with it because I didn’t understand it and I can’t even remember where those fears stemmed from but alls well that ends well. I was really happy with the way that this story came together and then the way that it ended was just great.
This is a heartwarming story of three women and the directions their lives take toward each other. It was another hit from Mansell for me and I’m looking forward to more from her.
Grade: 3.75 out of 5