When Josh Strachan, newly returned to his home in north Cornwall from sunny California, first meets Sophie Wells, he's immediately smitten. Sophie's pretty, she's funny, she has lots of friends and she clearly loves her job as a photographer, despite the sometimes tricky clients. There's just one problem: Sophie has very firmly turned her back on love. It's nothing personal, she tells Josh, but she just doesn't do dates. And no one - even Sophie's scatty best friend Tula - will tell him why. Josh is sure Sophie likes him, though, and he's just got to find out what's put her off romance. And then put things right...
Kathryn - 4 Star
I’ve been a Jill Mansell fan for a long time. At one point I think I owned a copy of every one of her novels (until the bookshelves started overflowing!) and re-read a number of them like old friends but I’ve lately been a bit disappointed in her books. Something has been lacking or perhaps the predictability was no longer holding my interest? This novel, however, had a little something about it that made me connect to the characters.
I particularly liked friends Sophie and Tula. Despite being very different they were close without being in each other’s pockets- they had a sweet relationship which was supportive and during which they had fun but they weren’t clingy with each other. It came across as refreshing and honest.
The romantic liaisons of the novel are definitely unsurprising but even their “expectedness” didn't seem trite. Although they went around in circles a bit getting to the point I still found the meandering realistic. Especially in regards to Tula, I liked her insistence that the man she wanted would have some sort of work ethic. She didn't want to be with someone content to take things without earning them and I liked her spirit. Sophie also had her reasons for her aversion to the one pursuing her, though I found it a bit frustrating I did appreciate the lengths he went to try and make her comfortable again. Sophie’s photography business was also fun to read about as she had various clients and the sometimes wacky jobs she took all seemed to fit with her genuine personality.
The other characters in this novel were also quirky and well placed and definitely added to the story. I was definitely fond of Marguerite and Josh’s grandmother Dot who were pursuing their own romances.
If you are a fan of Jill Mansell then I'm quite sure you'll enjoy this one!
Thank you to Sourcebooks for our review copy. All opinions are our own.
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