Thursday, January 8, 2015

The One You Love - Lori's Review of THE UNEXPECTED CONSEQUENCES OF LOVE by Jill Mansell

Title: The Unexpected Consequences of Love
Author: Jill Mansell
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Publication Date: 2/3/2015
Source: ARC from publisher through Netgalley

Sophie Wells is a successful photographer with a focus on putting the past firmly behind her. When Josh Strachan returns to the seaside town of Cornwall from the States to run his family's hotel, he can't understand why the fun, sexy girl has zero interest in letting him-or any man for that matter-into her life. He also can't understand how he's been duped into employing Sophie's impulsive friend Tula, whose crush on him is decidedly unrequited. Both girls remain mum about the reasons behind Sophie's indifference to love. But that doesn't mean Josh is going to quit trying.

Jill Mansell lives with her partner and children in Bristol, and writes full time. Actually that’s not true; she watches TV, eats fruit gums, admires the rugby players training in the sports field behind her house, and spends hours on the internet marvelling at how many other writers have blogs. Only when she’s completely run out of displacement activities does she write.

Jill Mansell's books have sold over ten million copies and her titles include: Making your Mind up, Fast Friends, Good at Games, Sheer Mischief and Solo, among many others.

This is my first experience reading a Jil Mansell novel.  I was expecting a sweet, beach-side romance, kind of like a made for Lifetime TV Rom-Com.  What I got was so much more than that.  I will never underestimate Jill Mansell. again.

Sophie Wells is a photographer rebuilding her life while keeping everyone at camera lens length.  She prefers to go through life just viewing others through her camera rather than actually participating.

Josh Strachan has already lived an exciting life as the manager for an extremely popular band over in the United States. When he stopped following the bands every whim, they decided to find a new manager.  Josh came home to England to help his grandmother run their Inn.

Josh is immediately intrigued by the confident and successful Sophie, and possibly a little obsessed with discovering why she won't agree to go out with him.  While uncomfortably attracted to Josh, Sophie is determined to keep him in his place, far far away from her.

While Josh and Sophie are the main players in this romantic story, they are not the only ones.  Sophie best friend Tula has had a run of bad men and bad luck.  She moves into town and with the help of Josh's grandmother, convinces him to hire her at the Inn.  Josh's friend, Riley, is definitely interested in Tula.  Unfortunately, Tula is convinced that he is nothing more than a lazy beach bum and wants nothing to do with him.

Josh's grandparents spent many years happily married, but now they are politely divorced.  Both are still intensely in love with the other, but their past is looming between them, keeping them apart.

From the beginning it was evident that Sophie had something large in her past that was keeping her from connecting with people; keeping her from allowing herself to fall for Josh.  While there are many things that the author could have used, Mansell gave Sophie a heart-wrenching past that I would never have expected.  Bravo for keeping things fresh and original.

Overall this was just an extremely refreshing and enjoyable read.  I will definitely be reading more books by Jill Mansell as soon as possible.

4.25 out of 5 stars
*Quotes are from an advanced copy and may not appear in the final published version.*

Passenger - The One You Love

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