Let’s Not Be Friends
Perfect for fans of Jo Watson, Mhairi McFarlane and Portia MacIntosh.
City girl Sophie has married the prince (or landed gentry – close enough), moved to his pile (which is more accurate a description than she’d anticipated) and is set to live happily ever after – until she finds the other half of her perfect life in the stables with the stable girl, and they’re definitely not grooming the horses.
Shocked and appalled, Sophie’s no happier to learn that she’s supposed to ‘just get on with it’. After all, according to her mother-in-law, she got the title . . . they even overlooked her family’s ‘new money’ status.
What a lovely family she’s married into! But what’s a girl to do when she’s still in love? Make it work or leg it as fast as she can? Either way, the mother-in-law will not be coming to tea!
What readers are saying about Phoebe MacLeod:
- ‘A perfect love story’
- ‘Humorous, light and romantic!’
- ‘I absolutely loved it. Heart-warming, just perfect!’
- ‘I loved every minute reading this book, light hearted and fun, finished in a day!’
- ‘I smiled so much’
- ‘What a wonderful book’
Purchase Link – https://amzn.to/3KelOne
What’s it about (in a nutshell):
Let’s Not Be Friends by Phoebe MacLeod is a women’s fiction story of empowerment mixed with a bit of romance and light-hearted moments. It’s billed as a romantic comedy in the book description, but it really isn’t. It is a somewhat realistic tale of breaking free from a cheating husband and rediscovering yourself.
Initial Expectations (before beginning the book):
In the title, the book says that it’s a laugh-out-loud, feel-good romantic comedy and the cartoonish cover corroborates that statement. So, that’s precisely what I’m expecting.
Actual Reading Experience:
Let’s Not Be Friends is nothing like what I expected, but I was okay with that. Instead, it is a relatively light women’s empowerment story about a wife who finds out her husband is cheating in the worst possible way. She agrees to stay and work on the marriage, but only if he agrees to counseling and with the understanding that if he cheats again, that is the end of their marriage. And ultimately, she had to walk away and rediscover who she is as an adult and what she wants to do. There is a very light romance in the story, and there are no surprises in the turn of events, but still, I enjoyed this story very much.
I enjoyed watching Sophie develop a backbone most of all and finding out how much strength she had. It’s so refreshing to have a story go in this direction rather than the other way. I loved her attitude and how she made life happen rather than wait for it to happen. I also loved how she figured out how to create a better situation with one co-worker. That was very inspiring.
Lastly, the romance – To be honest, everything about it was super predictable to the point where Sophie’s cluelessness over what was so apparent to me became a little annoying. But it is still an excellent pairing, and I love how Elliott is in every way James’ opposite.
Sophie is raised by wealthy self-made parents – one of the nouveau riche set. She has never wanted anything, but she was presented with the reality that you need to provide for yourself as an adult, not try to live off her parents’ money. This directly conflicts with how her husband, a landed gentry, looks at her.
James sees dollar signs when he looks at Sophie. In his mind, as well as that of his mother, he has the title, and she has the cash, so he feels that makes an equitable partnership. He doesn’t seem to understand that Sophie doesn’t want an arrangement; she wants a true marriage in every loving sense of the word.
Narration & Pacing:
The narration is in first person, and the pacing is rapid, both of which I enjoyed. First-person narration often aids in keeping the pace fast, which is the case in this novel. Sophie makes a pretty good narrator. At first, I grew a little weary over James;’ infidelity, but her strength grew as time passed, and I enjoyed the front-seat ticket to experiencing that with her.
The setting is around London – primarily outside the city for half of the story, and the other half is the estate where Sophie lives with her husband and his widowed mother. The estate is run down and requires many repairs, but it is also hemorrhaging money, so they can’t afford the upkeep.
Read if you like:
- Women empowerment stories
- Light romance
- Hopeful tales
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Phoebe MacLeod is the author of several popular laugh-out-loud romantic comedies. She mainly sets her books in her home county of Kent and her first new title for Boldwood will be published in November 2022. They will also be republishing her existing titles from August this year.
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