Thank you to Random House – Dial Press and NetGalley for the advance reader copy of Love Your Life, releasing on October 27th!
I was floored that I had the chance to get an ARC of a new Sophie Kinsella book. I have actually never read a book by Sophie Kinsella but my entire time as a reader I have known who she is. From the Confessions of a Shopaholic series to standalone such as Can You Keep a Secret? and I’ve Got Your Number, Sophie Kinsella is a prolific writer and a titan of the romance genre. It is my honour to be able to review her new book months in advance.
Check out the Goodreads synopsis…
“From the #1 New York Times bestselling author of I Owe You One, an utterly delightful novel about a woman who ditches her dating app for a writer’s retreat in Italy–only to find that real love comes with its own filters
Call Ava romantic, but she thinks love should be found in the real world, not on apps that filter men by height, job, or astrological sign. She believes in feelings, not algorithms. So after a recent breakup and dating app debacle, she decides to put love on hold and escapes to a remote writers’ retreat in coastal Italy. She’s determined to finish writing the novel she’s been fantasizing about, even though it means leaving her close-knit group of friends and her precious dog, Harold, behind.
At the retreat, she’s not allowed to use her real name or reveal any personal information. When the neighboring martial arts retreat is canceled and a few of its attendees join their small writing community, Ava, now going by “Aria,” meets “Dutch,” a man who seems too good to be true. The two embark on a baggage-free, whirlwind love affair, cliff-jumping into gem-colored Mediterranean waters and exploring the splendor of the Italian coast. Things seem to be perfect for Aria and Dutch.
But then their real identities–Ava and Matt–must return to London. As their fantasy starts to fade, they discover just how different their personal worlds are. From food choices to annoying habits to sauna etiquette . . . are they compatible in anything? And then there’s the prickly situation with Matt’s ex-girlfriend, who isn’t too eager to let him go. As one mishap follows another, it seems while they love each other, they just can’t love each other’s lives. Can they reconcile their differences to find one life together?”
Check out my more detailed thoughts below…
- Characters: Ava and Matt are the main characters of this story. Ava is your classic quirky British girl heroine, to me, she was very reminiscent of someone Jojo Moyes would write. She is a bit scattered, she cannot help but pick up a hobby and discard it quickly with the justification that she will get back to it. Matt was very different, raised in a wealthy family he was a lot more refined and occasionally stuffy.
- Setting: The book opens with Ava going on a writing retreat in Italy. The story spends a small amount of time in Puglia then because of Ava’s goal go to buckle down and write her book. Sophie Kinsella painted the setting beautifully and really demonstrated why it would be such a perfect place to fall in love. The majority of the book though is set in London as that is where Ava and Max live. London comes in more to be the stark reality to the Italy setting and how Ava and Max presented themselves there. This contrast was a very nice touch.
- Romance: This has felt very different than many of the romances I have read recently. It was interesting to see how Sophie Kinsella went about writing this opposites-attract romance as for the longest time while reading I thought it was a lost cause. I got swept up in the meet-cute and how they fell in love in Italy. So once the story brought everyone back to reality, to two very different people with two very different lifestyles. I became much more pessimistic about the relationship. What Sophie Kinsella did a great job of reminding me of is the power of love, to bring the best out in you, specifically how it encourages you in the case of Ava and Max to live your life more openly and honestly.
Love Your Life receives four out of five stars.
Thank you again to Random House – Dial and NetGalley for the review opportunity. Thank you for reading and supporting my blog!