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The Frog Prince (2014)

Stella literally falls for Julian on a girls day out in London; the fairytale commences ... boy meets girl, they fall in love, she moves to London and they live happily ever after - in a tiny flat, with no money, no job and washing his socks, cleaning and cooking to keep her busy! Enter Julian's best friend Will; handsome, charming, fun, wealthy and successful, but with a track record of picking the wrong women. Stella makes it her quest to find Will the perfect woman by getting him to masquerade as a teacher on an online dating site, in order to attract women that will fall for him and not his bank balance. Also there is the small matter of whether Julian is the perfect prince that Stella thinks he is. This is a charming, funny book with endearing characters. I particularly liked the bond between Stella and her two best friends. Some of the chapters have a fairytale-style insert which I thought worked really well. The style is witty, fresh and fun, with some unexpected and hilarious moments when Will goes on dates - a visit to a burlesque club being my favourite. An enjoyable read, which I found difficult to put down. (EH)

A Groom with a View (2014)

Pippa is happy with the life she leads; she has a great job as a chef and the perfect relationship with her boyfriend Nick. Everyone always mentions how great the two of them are together, and Pippa knows she doesn't need a ring on her finger as proof of their love for each other. Yet, after a few too many drinks, Pippa suddenly finds herself engaged to Nick and before she knows it she's answering questions about invitations, cakes and wedding locations. In order to make things as easy as possible for Pippa, Nick decides to do most of the planning and organising himself, but when Nick's mother appears on the scene and the wedding slowly seems to take over their entire lives, things between Nick and Pippa only seem to get worse. Every now and again I come across a great chick lit novel which is thoroughly enjoyable from the first until the very last page, which has an entertaining storyline at its core, combined with a fabulous cast of characters; basically, a book I didn't want to put down but at the same time didn't want to end. A Groom With a View is definitely one of those novels. The storyline is great, Pippa is a wonderful heroine; she doesn't want a big and glamorous wedding, she just wants to be with Nick and no wedding is needed to put a stamp on their love for one another. It was nice to read about a man who takes on all the wedding planning, and the female character who tries to deal with this. Pippa and Nick are a fantastic couple, and the book also has a fabulous mix of supporting characters. There honestly was never a dull moment and I loved returning to it at the end of a busy day, keeping my fingers crossed for Pippa and Nick and their wedding. It's a funny, and thoroughly enjoyable read; I can't recommend it to other chick lit fans enough! (JoH)

It Would be Wrong to Steal My Sister's Boyfriend (Wouldn't It?) (2013)

When Ellie Mottram meets Oliver it's love at first sight. Unfortunately though he happens to be her sister Rose's new boyfriend. And despite knowing better, Ellie is determined to entice Oliver away. Getting spruced up, finding a new job and frequenting the glamorous hotspots, Ellie takes on Rose's lifestyle as she tries to win over Oliver. But is he worth risking her sister's love? I expected there to be more tension between the sisters given the plot of the story, however this never really comes to a head and in fact Rose never finds out about Ellie's dalliances with Oliver which seemed to me to skirt around the potential issue of the novel. And indeed at times, the novel felt a bit anticlimactic. However, in Sophie Ranald we find a naturally funny and gifted writer and the quality of her voice and wit carries this novel through. I thought this was a very solid effort for a debut and certainly think good things can be expected in the future. (JC)

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