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Ratings and Book Reviews ()

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4.4 out of 5
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  • Readers in the market for a Happy Ever After shoul

    And Now You’re Back is a novel by British author, Jill Mansell. It’s thirteen years since Didi Laing has seen Shay Mason. She was seventeen, they had an intense affair that started, ever so romantically, in Venice. Back in Elliscombe, Shay came to work at her parents’ hotel, The Wickham. Then there was an incident. No one blamed Shay outright, but everyone thought he was responsible. Didi was sure it wasn’t his fault Wasn’t she? That hint of doubt: Shay was gone. And now he’s back. His dad, Red, is dying, and has one last wish: to see out his last days on earth in the family home, Hillcrest. But Hillcrest is run down, unliveable, so instead of a well-earned vacation, Shay is restoring it, and living in a luxury suite in the Wickham while he does. Apparently, Shay is now very well off, and just as gorgeous as he was at eighteen. Didi, now managing the hotel, shouldn’t be noticing: she’s engaged to Aaron, and their wedding is six months away: “Shay might have come back into her life, but he was a part of her past. Just because her thoughts and dreams were getting distracted by his return didn’t mean they meant anything.” Didi’s best friend, Layla has just taken a plunge into online dating, and found a wonderful man. Harry Gray is a fit and handsome, a personal trainer recently moved to the Cotswolds, and he seems to be enchanted Layla. Their relationship advances quickly to intimacy, and Layla is deliriously happy, even if she sometimes finds herself making excuses for Harry’s thoughtlessness. It’s puzzling that he never wants to come to her flat, and she senses that Elliscombe’s premier taxi driver, Will, has unvoiced doubts about her new boyfriend. Layla’s mother, Rosa is trying to cope with widowhood, but she misses Joe terribly. Giving up their home, Compton House, to cover the debts Joe had left behind was a shock, but not being close to him is what hurts the most. So, when she needs to, she sneaks into Compton House backyard at night and chats to him under his favourite tree, where she scattered his ashes. With Shay and Red back in Elliscombe, certain people are reminded of the unsolved crime that drove Shay away, and secrets they have been keeping for thirteen years. Thrown together, Didi and Shay remember, but try to ignore, what real love felt like: their timing is all wrong. Except for a nasty player whose comeuppance is very satisfying to witness, Mansell’s characters easily endear themselves to the reader, and if the plot is somewhat predictable, it doesn’t matter one iota because we all want these characters to overcome the obstacles thrown into their paths and find happiness. And it’s no spoiler to reveal that they do. Readers in the market for a Happy Ever After should look no further. This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by NetGalley and Source Books Landmark.

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  • Fantastic

    Lovely story. It was hard to let go of the characters after I'd finished the book.

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  • Viel tegen

    Erg voorspelbaar en weinig diepgang, humor en emotie. Andere boeken van Jill Mansell zijn leuker.

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  • Feel Good read

    Lots of missed opportunities, will they won't they moments, along with interesting side stories make this a really good read

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  • Lovely

    Great plot. Page turning excitement. Really loved it

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