Saturday, 1 September 2018

Blog Tour || Finding Felix by Jo Platt - Book Review


Today I'm taking part in the blog tour for Finding Felix by Jo Platt. Read on to find out what I made of it...


Blurb


A family wedding. A fake boyfriend. A recipe for disaster! A funny, feel-good romantic comedy from bestseller Jo Platt.

Singleton Dot Riley's grandmother, Nanny Flo, is on her deathbed, surrounded by family and distraught at the thought of Dot being all alone in the world. Desperate to make Flo's final moments happy ones, Dot invents a boyfriend - plumping in panic for her childhood friend, Felix, a firm favourite of Flo, but whom Dot hasn't actually seen for 15 years.

But when Flo makes an unexpected recovery a few weeks before a family wedding, Dot is faced with a dilemma. Should she tell her frail grandmother that she lied and risk causing heartache and a relapse? Or should she find Felix and take him to the wedding?

Dot opts for finding Felix. But it's not long before she discovers that finding him is the easy bit: liking him is the real challenge.

An uplifting romantic comedy about the angst of adult relationships and the joy of rediscovering the child within. Finding Felix is perfect for fans of Anna Bell, Tracy Bloom and Debbie Viggiano.




About The Author


Jo Platt was born in Liverpool in 1968 and, via the extremely winding route of rural Wiltshire, London, Seattle and St Albans, she is now happily settled in Bristol with her husband and two daughters. She studied English at King's College London before going on to work in the City for ten years. In 2000 she escaped into motherhood and part-time employment, first as an assistant teacher in a Seattle pre-school and then was a Bristol-based secretary to her husband.



My Review


Dot Riley is only thinking of her beloved Nanny Flo when she reassures her dying grandmother that no, she isn't single - she's actually in a happy relationship. Desperate to soothe Nanny Flo's fears that she'll be forever alone, she invents a fictitious boyfriend - her childhood friend Felix, who she actually hasn't set eyes on in 15 years. When Nanny Flo makes an expected recovery and is able to attend a family wedding, Dot has to choose between 'fessing up or finding Felix. But once she tracks him down, will he be everything she remembers?

Stories about fake relationships are nothing new, and from reading the title alone I thought I knew the plotline before I'd begun. But I was wrong - and I loved the twist on the story of Felix not being hard to physically track down at all, but about the reconnection of two old friends being more troublesome. 

Have you ever had a friend who somehow always manages to get themselves - and you - into some of the most ridiculous and hilariously awkward situations? That's Dot, our main character. She always manages to somehow screw things up without meaning to. I think Dot is written absolutely perfectly - in another person's hands, she could have been ditzy, self-centred and irritating, whereas Jo Platt manages to make her self-aware, extremely likeable and someone you can't help but fondly chuckle at. In fact, for the first time ever, I actually highlighted a line from a book on my Kindle to come back to, because I laughed out loud at it and thought it was genius:

"I always favour empathy over pity because it lets me focus at least fifty per cent on me too."

I loved the other characters in the book too. Felix's personality develops slowly across the story and I loved the exploration of what drew Dot to him as a teenager. If I was being picky, I could probably have done with a stronger confrontation between the two about his frostiness with her in the present day, but overall I enjoyed his character a lot. Other honourable mentions are Kate, Dot's business partner, who is involved in a cute, heartwarming secondary plotline, and of course, Dot's overbearing mother who had me chuckling to myself with her lack of tact and inability to stop meddling. For me, Kevin and Linda were the hidden gems! I loved their inclusion in the book.

That's the thing - this book is genuinely laugh-out-loud funny. A lot of 'romantic comedies' are heavy on the romance but lacking in the laughter, but I really enjoyed the writing style for this. It wasn't ever cheesy or schmaltzy (is that a word?), it was humorous, witty and engaging. I found this so easy to read but never over-simplified or predictable. It's just an uncomplicated, light-hearted, but very enjoyable story that I really loved reading. I'm not going to say that this is relateable because honestly, some of the scrapes Dot gets herself into are hilarious in their ridiculousness, but it is sweet and warm, and pretty much impossible to dislike. If you love your romance with a dash of laughter, this is the perfect book for you. 

Be sure to check out the other blogs hosting Finding Felix on this tour!


Huge thank you to Ellie at Canelo Publishing for providing me with this copy.
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