Every once in a while, a book surprises you. Not just because it’s that’s good, or that strange, but sometimes, just quite simply… Because it goes above and beyond what you thought it would do. And that’s certainly the case in The Neighbours!
I was offered an ARC by Netgalley in exchange for a review. All opinions are strictly my own.
Meet Ginny, 34, and Cassie, 55. Neighbours, and (very) unlikely friends.
Some women have it all. Others are thirty-four, renting a tiny flat alone because they recently found their long-term boyfriend in bed with their boss. Unfortunately, the latter applies to Ginny Taylor. Single and jobless, Ginny is certain her life can’t get any worse. But then she encounters her downstairs neighbour for the very first time…
Cassie Frost is a woman who had it all – she was a once-loved actress, but a recent stint on reality TV has rocketed her to online infamy. She’s suddenly become a national hate figure – and she desperately needs a new publicist. And Ginny is a publicist who desperately needs a job… but can she be persuaded to work for the uber-difficult, excessively prickly woman that lives below her floorboards?
Because sometimes – just sometimes – bad neighbours become good friends…
| C – characters |
A – atmosphere
W – writing
P – plot
I – intrigue
L – logic
E – enjoyment
Now, let’s start out with the obvious: Ginny? Not the most likeable of characters. That’s to say – she starts the novel quite passive, seemingly upset that good things don’t just happen to her. And let’s be real… In the beginning of this book? A lot of good things don’t happen to her.
Opposed to Ginny and her passive approach to life, Cassie has always chosen to be more proactive. Suffice it to say, their two ways of life don’t necessarily get along too well. Watching these woman grow to appreciate each other, however, made for at least half of my enjoyment of this book.
Something I’ve mentioned before is that I really like the concept of a bildungsroman and how it can be re-interpreted in modern literature. Nicola Gill certainly managed to do that, in a way, as she follows Ginny and Cassie and allows them to grow. As Ginny says herself, towards the end: with everything she’s been through, she’s grown stronger. Gill manages to portray that search for herself and her growth in an incredibly natural manner.
The rating: 4,5/5
If you’re in need of a book that features strong women, strong growth and a romance that is really captivating, but doesn’t claim all the attention, The Neighbours is just the book for you! (Goodreads)