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Ratings and Book Reviews (5 6 star ratings
5 reviews
)

Overall rating

4.7 out of 5
6
5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star
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  • 2 person found this review helpful

    2 people found this review helpful

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    60s relived

    The book started slightly out of time but moved along extremely fast to catch up with itself. The telling at the start of the meeting of three young students as they begin their new lives at Oxford sets the scene brilliantly. The book goes on to tell their stories, interlinked and separate until they are forcibly joined at the bittersweet end. Lily is a genuine and realistic heroine but the heroes are the story. I felt so involved in this story I could have been there living it with them. I loved how the author gave voices to the three main protagonists in such a honest and believable manner. The romance was, as so oft happens in real life, obvious from the start to the reader but unseen by the participants. A true romance but not at all ‘sloppy’. The setting in recent past was well created and enjoyable both for those of us who lived through those years and those who wished they had. A most enjoyable, readable and heart wrenching story which I hope you will enjoy as much as I did.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

    1 people found this review helpful

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    Red Velvet, Red Queen

    Author Margaret James has such a great writing track record that I could expect nothing less from her except a 5 star book! And she hasn't disappointed with "Girl in Red Velvet. Her "writing voice" (if I can say that) is so soothing, even when the plot is taking a surprising turn. And the plot is full of such turns. Take the beginning, for instance, when Lily does a runner at her own wedding, leaving the reader to wonder who she's supposed to be marrying and why doesn't she want to, such a brilliant cliffhanger that keeps the reader guessing for a good part of the book. Ms James also manages to convey Max's bold, adventurous spirit without resorting to piles of adjectives. His character is amazing, as is feisty Lily's whose journey from a frightened girl on her first day at Oxford to that of a mature, take-no-prisoners, woman is smoothly transitioned. Harry's quieter ways prove a perfect foil. The author has a way with words that evoke images of the story in the reader's mind, and makes the characters real. If you lived in the sixties, you'll be reminded of life at that time and how undergraduates lived (I'd forgotten all about Wimpeys), and the foreign lands that Max finds himself are so well researched and portrayed. This is no mere "chic-lit". Ms James takes light literary fiction several steps further and goes deeper (there are three main characters, remember) and produces a story that will keep the reader on his/her toes right to the end.
  • 1 person found this review helpful

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    Journey back to the 60's and meet the "Red Queen"

    This had me laughing out loud at the beginning. The "Red Queen" so very much like me. All worried and health and safety conscious. With the lovely Max climbing up posts and causing havoc on the roads and just in general .... I can happily say I would react like her too 😂 During the university section, I kept having to remind myself that LMH does in fact mean Lady Margarets Hall (and not left hand menu as it is known in my role at work!) Max and Harry are best friends, at uni together and usually found at the nearest pub selling beer. Then the lovely Lily comes along and is quickly renamed as Red Queen. We follow the three closely in the story and learn how their lives take different paths. But unbeknown to them... Meeting Lily changes Max and Harry's life forever .... but in very different ways. I loved following Max on his travels - really liked his character. Lily and Harry ... a whole different storyline. I was gripped by both. Each had plenty of moments where I thought of what if questions / scenarios and had so much hope for what might happen next. Harry for me was a but dull but the Max and Lily storylines .... they made it for me. I felt like I was being transported back to the 60's but also felt like it was happening now as well. Oh ... and what a car crash! I shall say no more other than ...if you take the plunge and feel compelled to read this yourself, I truely hope you enjoy what is a lovely book. Huge thanks to Margaret James and a big thank you to the lovely ladies at Choc Lit for allowing me to read this in return of an honest review. This one is for you Liz x
  • 0 person found this review helpful

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    Enjoyable read through the decades

    This is the first book I have read by Margaret James and I have to say it was a pleasant surprise. Max, Lily and Harry come together at University during the sixties and this book takes you through their lives, through the ups and downs of friendships and relationships throughout the decades. I loved the characters, who I found easy to relate to, and really enjoyed the way that they were portrayed with all of their flaws and insecurities. I have to admit I did find parts of it a little far-fetched but it didn't spoil my enjoyment of the story. I found this an easy to read, well written story and would certainly recommend it.
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    Enjoyable read.

    If you enjoyed One Day by David Nicholls, you will love this book. Girl in Red Velvet follows the friendship of Lily, Harry and Max, from university students through to adult and parenthood. Their solid friendship is put to the test by love, lies and betrayal which risks heartache for all. A realistic and believable plot when university life opens up a new world of friends and first loves which can last for the rest of your life. An enjoyable read, with relatable characters from a well established author.
6

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