Friday, April 22, 2011

Girl in a Spin by Clodagh Murphy

5 Star

Jenny Hannigan might be a good-time party girl, but all she secretly craves is a life of domestic bliss and solid respectability - worlds away from her troubled upbringing back in Ireland.  So when she crashes into the arms of Richard Allam -- the young, handsome, recently separated politician hotly tipped to lead his party to victory in the upcoming election -- she thinks she's found her perfect match. 

Richard's spin doctor, charismatic publicist Dev Tennant, thinks otherwise.  Charged with putting a positive spin on the relationship, Dev soon discovers that Jenny has more than one skeleton in her closet - and as the election gathers momentum, he is working overtime trying to keep them there. 

 And as Jenny's life starts to spiral out of control, suddenly she isn't sure what she wants anymore ...
Lydia - 5 Star

I loved Girl in a Spin.  I was immediately immersed in the plot, laughed out loud frequently and grew so fond of the characters that I desperately wanted to know how this delightful story would end. 

I couldn’t help rooting for na├»ve Jenny.  She knows what she wants, and is determined to get it, so much so that she loses sight of what’s in front of her or just plain ignores it.  I wanted to shake some sense into her a few times, and couldn’t wait for her to figure things out, but it made her human and I adored her even more for it.  I loved that she wasn’t perfect and despite her less than ideal past, she didn’t use it as an excuse, but continued moving forward. I was quite taken with Dev’s character from the start and although I wasn’t a fan of Richard, I didn’t hate him and thought that he fully believed he was doing what he thought he wanted and was right.  Each character was well rounded with pasts and dreams and I could see all of their motivations clearly.

Although it seemed easy to decipher what was happening, the ride to get there was amusing and fun. Clodagh Murphy even managed to somehow make reading a story about politics enjoyable. This shocked me as I’m not particularly political minded, especially when they take place in a country far from my own, but it was detailed enough to be interesting, yet light enough that it wasn’t bogged down in too much boring detail.  The balance was perfect and I enjoyed the unusual topic that we don’t see very often in chick lit. 

There were even things in this novel that should have seemed over the top, but they somehow felt completely natural in this story.  The ex boyfriends club was unique and amusing and even though this might sound a bit ridiculous, it didn’t come across as such in the least.  Also, the scene where Dev comes to interview Jenny at her flat might have seemed a bit much told in other stories, but instead had me just short of rolling on the floor in a fit of giggles. And don’t even get me started on some of the one liners later from the snooty folks she has to have dinner with!

Clodagh Murphy is a talented new writer that I will definitely look out for. I can’t wait to read more from her and have been eyeing her debut novel, The Disengagement Ring since reading this lovely tale. 

Thank you to Clodagh Murphy for sending us a review copy! All opinions are our own.

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