Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Laura's Library Loans #2

Welcome back to my new feature, where I share with you mini-reviews of the books I've been borrowing from the library. 

I think I'm already sensing a bit of a theme with my library loans.... they provide a great opportunity to catch up on some of my favourite author's back catalogues. This month I did exactly that, picking up two older books by some brilliant authors that I've only recently discovered. I borrowed Billy & Me, Giovanna Fletcher's first novel, and Leftovers by Stella Newman. Below are my thoughts on these books. 

1. Billy & Me by Giovanna Fletcher 

So I've approached Giovanna's writing completely backwards, starting with You're The One That I want (her 2014 release) and then Dream a Little Dream (her latest release published in Summer this year). I've wanted to read Billy & Me, her first novel which was released in 2013, for some time now. When I saw it in the library, I rushed to borrow it and read it straight away. 
Now, I did say in my review of Dream a Little Dream (link above) that Giovanna Fletcher's writing gets better and better with each book, and I think this book proved my theory as, if I'm honest, this is probably my least favourite story of hers. Don't get me wrong, I still really enjoyed it. It was a fun, light read- perfect to curl up with on a winter evening for some relaxation. It just didn't flow as easily or engage me as much as her other books did. I just think you can tell her writing style has strengthened with experience.
The plot is great - small-town girl Sophie May is happy(ish) working in the teashop in the small village she grew up in, keeping to herself. When superstar actor Billy shows up for filming, sparks fly between them and she eventually finds herself in a relationship with him and catapulted into an entirely new world- one filled with fame, fortune and stardom.  This idea was great, it was fascinating seeing how the other half live and how a normal girl can fit into that. I also loved the location - a small, sleepy village where everyone knows everyone. I think these make for the best settings as it gives you a real insight into the characters. 
One of the major downfalls for me was how Sophie May could sometimes make mountains out of molehills. Some of the big arguments between her and Billy seemed to be unnecessary and caused by an overreaction. I think Sophie was on a very short fuse and that, to me, made her slightly unrelatable. 
Summary: A light hearted, easy read with a beautiful countryside setting, intreguing romance and an interesting plot.  

2. Leftovers by Stella Newman

I was taken aback by Stella Newman's amazingly witty writing style when I read The Dish, and her 2013 novel Leftovers doesn't disappoint. Much like The Dish, it centers around a main character with a passion for food and cooking. Stuck in an advertising job she hates, she makes a pact to herself that once she is promoted, she will quit. I must admit this part of the plot confused me slightly- why would she quit once she's been promoted? I know she wants to prove herself to everyone, but surely she'd be better following her dreams now rather than enduring months in the job from hell, just to tell them where to go when they promote her? Despite this qualm the story is fab, jam packed with unique characters, drool-worthy recipes and witty writing. I LOVE the way Stella Newman makes the most normal of sentences hilarious and has such a knack to make words float off a page and smack you in the face, they grab your attention so much. It's safe to say I absolutely loved this and can't wait for more from Stella.
Summary: Laugh-out loud fiction with relatable, brilliant characters and amazing sounding food. I was hooked from page 1 and couldn't put it down, Leftovers put a big smile on my face thanks to Stella Newman's fantastic writing. 

So, there you have it! My library reads for this month. What have you guys been reading? Any recommendations for my next visit to the library? Let me know in the comments below L xx :)

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