Monday, 2 February 2015

Book Review #4 / The Best Thing That Never Happened To Me

The Best Thing That Never Happened To Me


The past few books I've read have been thrillers so it was very refreshing to have a little romantic comedy to read this week. These types of books can be a bit hit and miss, in my opinion, but I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed this novel...

Everyone remembers their first love. Holly certainly remembers Alex. But she decided ten years ago that love wasn't about mix tapes and seizing the moment - though she's not exactly sure it's about secret dates with your boss, either. But what if the feelings never really went away?

Alex wants to make every moment of his new job count. It's a fresh start in a big city, and he's almost certain that moving to London has nothing to do with Holly. Almost.

How do you know if it was meant to be... or never meant to happen at all?

I was drawn to this book purely by the fact that the authors both studied Journalism at The University of Sheffield - the exact same course as me! Wanting to support fellow students, and all that, I added this straight to my Amazon basket. 

Also, I'm not one to judge a book by it's cover but can we just appreciate how pretty it's front cover is!?

Now, I  wouldn't normally buy a romantic comedy unless it's one that has had rave reviews - mainly just because I find they can be a bit boring and and predictable and they don't seem to grab me in the way that thrillers or crime novels do. So, with that being said, I didn't have high hopes for this novel, really. I was definitely proven wrong.

As soon as I started reading 'The Best Thing That Never Happened To Me' I realised that this wasn't your usual cheesy 'chick-lit' and immediately fell in love with the characters and just didn't want to put it down.

The book is basically a tale of 'the one that got away', as cliched as that may sound, as it follows two best friends, Holly and Alex, who were in love with each other as teenagers but never realised that they both felt the same way - resulting in Holly moving to London and the pair never speaking again - until now.

11 years later, Holly and Alex are thrust back into each others lives when Alex finally leaves his hometown in Yorkshire and moves to London for a new job - where Holly also happens to live, still. He decides to rekindle his friendship with Holly - who is currently in a secret relationship with her boss.

Despite their lives taking very different paths and having not spoke for over a decade it's clear that their old feelings for each other are resurfacing - but will they actually do anything about it this time?

I have to say that I absolutely LOVED this book. The thing I enjoyed the most was that it's split into two narratives, so each chapter is told by either Holly or Alex, meaning we get to understand the story from both points of view. I think this is what makes the novel different to others in it's genre as they are usually just told from the female perspective. The first person narrative always makes me feel closer to the characters as well and I just really loved both characters - they're both portrayed as down to earth, honest people that you can really relate to.

The novel is split between 1999, set in a little town in Yorkshire just before Holly and Alex go to uni and leave each others lives, and 2010, where the pair are reunited, as 29 year olds, in London. 

The dialogue is fast paced and witty. I never found myself wanting to skip pages or feeling a bit bored. The chapters flow really well together as well, despite being told from different points of view. 

I found myself really rooting for the pair to be together and, once I'd finished it, I had a huge smile on my face - as cheesy as that may sound. 

I could honestly see this book being made into a film as it has all the elements necessary for a perfect rom-com. Lots of laughter, relatable leading characters and just the right amount of romance - enough to make you smile on a miserable day but not so much that you sit there rolling your eyes, wanting to throw up your popcorn.

If you're after a light-hearted, funny, romantic read - then this is the one for you. I keep saying this, each week, but I definitely  think this is my favourite book of 2015 so far!

The Best Thing That Never Happened To Me, £3.85, Amazon

Have you read this book? What have you been reading? Leave me any recommendations in the comments below!

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