Friday, November 27, 2009

Review: Perfect Timing by Jill Mansell

From the book:

He sounded amused. "I know the way her mind works.Don't tell me, you're a ravishingly beautiful blonde."

"Nope." Poppy smiled. "A ravishingly beautiful redhead."

"Hmm, shock tactics."

"I'm not one of Claudia's friends either. She only sent me up here because she couldn't think how else to get rid of me." Poppy thought for a moment then added, "And maybe to punish you for not putting in an appearance downstairs."

Move over Bridget Jones and make room for Poppy Dunbar and her misfit gang!

Poppy Dunbar, out on the town for her hen night (staggette for us North American folk) meets a man, Tom, that she falls for instantly. They arrange to meet later, both feeling the draw of something powerful and instant. Could it be love at first sight? What about Poppy's fiance...with the wedding being the next day and all? Poppy decides to grab her life and give it a good shake.

Along the way, she makes new friends, annoys many people, and gets herself into trouble frequently, all while discovering the truth about herself and if there is such a thing was love at first sight.

I think this might be the first book I've read that has that particularly British feel. There were many phrases that I've heard growing up that came in useful here. Some of the references to famous people weren't as easy to figure out. The Coronation Street ones were understandable enough as well as David Niven and Jason Donovan, but there were some others that I'd never heard of that made the jokes fall slightly flat.

The book is a little camp, it's funny, and it's very cute! There were times when I could've just wrung one or the other of the characters for their blatant stupidity but it was all in the name of humour. I whipped through this book in a day, not wanting to put it down (it actually says it on the cover and now I believe it!)

Jill Mansell gives us a rich character in Poppy Dunbar, full of contradictions. She seems intelligent but just sometimes doesn't quite know when to quit. Her disorganized style gets her into more trouble than is necessarily good for one human, to the point where she accidentally buys a painting for her antiques dealer boss, that she affectionately names "Dead Hamster on a Patio" when she bids several hundred pounds over his maximum bid, only to find out she wasn't supposed to be bidding on it at all.

There are some touching moments included, also, that give it a little balance, emotionally speaking (it can't always be good, right?). Overall, I very much enjoyed this book and would definitely recommend it to fans of Bridget Jones or Sex in the City.


jill mansell said...

Hi Jackie

Many thanks for the lovely review - I'm so glad you enjoyed the book! (And yes, I have bid at auctions for paintings before now and spent way more than I'd planned on spending. I'm a lot like Poppy - or shouldn't I admit that?!)


Jill Mansell x

Jackie said...

Thanks so much for stopping by Jill!! I think Poppy was a great character, so no harm in admitting to being like her, lol.

Once I clear off some of my "to be read" books, I'm going to check out your other books. Reading about the British Isles makes me long for my family there...and Jaffa Cakes (they're harder to find in Canada). Cheers :-)

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