Late, I know! I’m sorry. The last month has kind of got on top of me between family holidays, an ill child and an exciting new project I’ve been working on (all will be revealed soon)! But, I finally got round to writing ‘The Flatshare’ Book Review! Even writing this, I had to write this post twice because it didn’t save and I lost it all!

If this is your first Ramblings Book Club post, welcome! Feel free to read The Ramblings Book Club post to get a better idea of what the Book Club is all about. Also, feel free to read our last book review here: The Proposal Book Review
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'The Flatshare' and 'The Proposal' Books side by side on a white book shelf accompanied by a dark green leafy plant and lightbulb fairy lights

Our second book in The Ramblings Book Club was ‘The Flatshare’ by Beth O’Leary. Here’s a quick recap:

Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they're crazy, but it's the perfect solution. Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy's at work in the day. She has the run of the place the rest of the time.
But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven't met yet, they're about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window.

‘The Flatshare’ Book Review

Rating: 3.5 out of 5.

Spoiler Alert!

'The Flatshare' Book cover

August’s book was ‘The Flatshare’ by Beth O’Leary. A traditional love story in unusual circumstances. This rom com has handwritten notes, polar opposite characters, an old man hoping it isn’t too late to find his true love, a crazy and abusive ex-boyfriend and even a touch of courtroom drama.

What I liked…

The BIG thing I liked about this book was that there was a “damsel in distress” element in the story BUT she did not rely on her love interest to ‘save’ her. He was helpful and good support for her but she went out and sought her own help, jumped over her own hurdles and mustered up her own courage to face her abuser over and over again. It really shone a light on emotional abuse in relationships that I think gets overlooked a lot in our society.

I also liked how the writer ping-ponged the chapters to tell the story from two different points of view. Each chapter took it in turn to let the main characters take control. The two different styles of writing really represented the characters and was written so skilfully, I had to check it wasn’t written by two different authors. Tiffy is descriptive and cursive in the way she communicates both with the reader and the characters. Whereas Leon has shortened sentences, almost like shorthand or a stream of consciousness over the page like a brain dump. His compact ramblings remind me of Doctor Who or Sherlock. As the novel progresses, you can see he starts to be more detailed in his language and communicates in full sentences.

Side Note…

There’s also a reference to Gilmore Girls which really won me over. I also really liked Richie as a character. His character really made me smile and I think he’s my favourite.

What I didn’t like…

The book is quite lengthy. I feel like there’s a lot of extra bits that hold no value to the main story or any of the other side stories. There’s lot of background to Tiffy’s work and her colleagues that doesn’t seem to be relevant. It’s interesting that there’s so much of this extra stuff but I feel like there wasn’t enough connection building between Tiffy and her friends. She just seems to take from her friends but never give back. She rings them when she’s upset and they’re there. She’s in a crisis, they’re there. Which is great but she never returns the favour or seems to show an interest in their lives until she finds out they’re shagging?

Also, I couldn’t help feeling like I had so many questions when I finished this book! Is Mr Prior still alive? Did Justin go to jail? What about Patricia? Was she also victim to Justin’s abuse? What’s Richie doing now he’s out of prison? Martin! Did he get fired for what he did? Does Tiffy get her promotion? What about Leon’s mother?

To sum up…

I would highly recommend this quirky, charming and original book. The main story is just what you want from a rom com and the side stories are heart-warming and joyous. You just have to read through the odd bit of waffle here and there.

September’s Book

This month’s book is ‘the mothers’ by Sarah J Naughton, a psychological suspense novel. I’ve decided to mix up the genre this month. I don’t know why but I always like to read uplifting rom coms in the summer but as the colder months approach, I prefer something that will ease me into the spooky season. I think this mystery will do just that!

About the Book…

Five women. Five Secrets. One missing husband. They meet at their NCT Group. The only thing they have in common is they’re all pregnant. Three years later, they’re all good friends. Aren’t they? He’s disappeared with a life-changing amount of money. Now the police have come knocking. Someone knows something. And the trouble with secrets is that someone always tells.

About the Author…

Image from Google Images

Sarah worked as an advertising copywriter for ten years before her first book was published in 2013.  A supernatural thriller for teens, The Hanged Man Rises was shortlisted for the Costa Book Awards.  A second thriller for teens, The Blood List came out the following year, after which Sarah moved onto psychological thrillers for adults.  Tattletale was followed by Amazon bestseller, The Other Couple, and The Mothers is due out in 2020.  She also writes ghost stories. Sarah lives in London with her husband and two sons

You can buy the book here from Amazon in whichever format you like.

If you want to join The Ramblings Book Club, please do! All you have to do is grab a copy of this month’s book, read it and meet back here the first Sunday of every month (if I’m not late) to read my review as an opportunity to discuss the book!

Let me know what you thought to my ‘The Flatshare’ Book Review in the comments below and let me know if you’re enjoying our book club!

If you have any suggestions or requests for future book share them in the comments below. You never know, it might the next book in the Ramblings Book Club!

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