The Flatshare

By Beth O’Leary

“I wake with a jolt that sends a shock of pain through my ankle. Crying out, I look around me. Floral wallpaper. Am I at home? Who’s that man in the chair by the door, reading …. “Twilight?” Leon blinks at me, putting the book down in his lap. ‘You went from unconscious to judgemental very quickly there.”

This was an amusing and sweet love story between a quirky and nice book editor and a socially awkward and equally nice palliative care nurse. It is gently amusing. I wouldn’t call it funny. As is true of all good romances that I enjoy, there is much more going on than just the will they or won’t they, when will they, how does he feel, how does she feel, I feel this, I don’t understand, blah blah blah. Primarily we have the matter of Leon’s brother who is incarcerated but innocent. Thanks to Tiffy’s caring nature he has a chance of competent representation to appeal his conviction. Leon has a self-centered girlfriend who doesn’t care about Leon’s brother Richie that we hope Leon will dump. That happens fairly early on, thank goodness. There is another subplot in which Leon goes on a mission to find one of his dying patients’ lost love before it is too late. And finally, we have Tiffy’s controlling ex-boyfriend who chucked her out of his apartment at the beginning of the novel, who is trying to get her back.

Of course, as with most romances these days, we have the protags having to go through some personal growth. Unfortunately, this necessitates the reader having to endure some wuss-like and frustrating behavior throughout the book until they see the light and develop backbones and self-confidence. But they are both sweethearts. I like a book where there is a lot to look forward to playing out besides a love story: a little suspense or a little mystery. This was a light and fun romance with just a bit of peril to make it interesting. I would recommend this to anyone who likes Sophie Kinsella or Meg Cabot. Also, Millie Johnson, who is hilarious while tackling tough issues.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

August 8, 2019

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