After Hello is a short story sequel to Mhairi McFarlane's 2012 novel You Had Me at Hello. The synopsis says: "In You Had Me At Hello, the one who got away came back... but what happened next? Together, apart and then back together again, Rachel and Ben had a rollercoaster ride to get here. But now happily in love and partners in crime once more, it feels like it's all been worth it. But when a face from the past reappears, misunderstandings come between them once more. Can they hold on to their happy ever after?" After Hello is out in January 2017.
Rachel's life takes an unexpected turn and she starts to question the decisions she's made in life. When Rachel bumps into Ben, her best friend from university and the one-that-got-away, it reawakens old feelings. Only in the decade that has passed since they last saw each other, Ben's got married and Rachel's life seems to be the same. As Ben and Rachel rekindle their friendship, will they be able to just be friends? The story is fast paced as it is set in the present day with flashbacks to Ben and Rachel's time at university. This worked really well with the adventures of their university days being interpreted through thirty-something eyes. I laughed out loud throughout the novel. It was witty and fresh and it felt like the sort of naughty chick lit that we had before all the novels about baking cupcakes and running twee shops. An excellent debut novel that will have me looking out for the rest of Mhairi's books. (AB)
Mhairi McFarlane's You Had Me at Hello asks 'what happens when the one that got away comes back'? The synopsis says: "Rachel and Ben. Ben and Rachel. It was them against the world. Until it all fell apart. It's been a decade since they last spoke, but when Rachel bumps into Ben one rainy day, the years melt away. From the moment they met they'd been a gang of two; partners in crime and the best of friends. But life has moved on. Ben is married. Rachel is definitely not. In fact, the men in her life make her want to take holy orders...Yet in that split second, Rachel feels the old friendship return. And along with it, the broken heart she's never been able to mend."