I loved Adrian Mole when I was younger and laughed a lot at the farcical situations Adrian found himself in as he pursued love and happiness so this was a book I was looking forward to reading as I really needed a laugh when I picked it up and the front cover blurb promised that that would be exactly what I would get.

Well, not so much. What woman hasn’t fantasised about stopping the interminable round of cleaning, cooking and caring in order to go to bed for a long time? The premise itself of a woman who wants to stop the world for a while and go to bed was an interesting one but the problem with this novel is that it is difficult to like any of the characters as they are all basically selfish apart from Eva Beaver’s mother Ruby who works herself in to the ground despite her frailty to try to help out and Alexander the artist/handyman who is trying to atone for an earlier accidental death of his own wife by looking after others. There is more than a touch of darkness and brooding in this book and it is clear that Eva is mentally ill but prevarication by various family members results in her not getting any useful support to get over what ails her. Various nasty characters come and go but the problem was that I just didn’t like any of the other characters they were ruining things for to care when they got their comeuppance, if indeed they did. I tittered once or twice and turned the pages in quick enough succession but the ending left a bad taste in my mouth.

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