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Mother of the Year (2014)

Mothers and daughters are supposed to share a special bond, right? But for Juliet Jackson, being the daughter of Beth Jackson, who became famous as a fifteen-year-old mother, leaves a lot to be desired. For a start her mother's always embarrassing her on live TV, or simply putting her other duties first. Juliet's determined not to live in the shadow of her mother. Thank goodness for her boyfriend, Rob, whose dinner invitation looks as if it will herald them moving in together, and her job at Cognita, where it seems a promotion is firmly on the horizon. Unfortunately Rob's big announcement isn't quite what Juliet was expecting and it's not great news at work either. At least she's still got the comfort of the flat she shares with best friend Theodora - that's until she hasn't. And there's only one option left: at twenty-five Juliet finds herself once again living at home with her parents. From the opening line, Karen Ross creates a wonderfully witty and fulsomely fresh novel headed by a completely relatable and understated chick lit heroine more accustomed to wearing Crocs than stilettos. The writing is strong and the novel is well-structured. Although it would have been nice to have seen a bit more of Juliet and Rob's relationship, this is very much a novel about the relationship between mother and daughter and about a daughter learning about the forms that a mother's love takes. Sweet and endearing, witty and stimulating, light and powerful, and entertaining throughout, Mother of the Year is a real treat for chick lit fans. Definitely worth a read. (JC)

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