*I received a free ARC of this novel, with thanks to Quercus Books and NetGalley. The decision to review and my opinions are my own.*
Blurb: Tiffy and Leon share a flat
Tiffy and Leon share a bed
Tiffy and Leon have never met…
Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they’re crazy, but it’s the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy’s at work in the day, and she has the run of the place the rest of the time.
But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven’t met yet, they’re about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window…
The Flat Share is a deliciously light-hearted, fun romance with a quirky plot hook and some chillingly dark undertones. I loved it!
At first I was worried that the plot device of having Tiffy and Leon share a bed/flat without meeting would be a bit contrived, and when I realised that the characters would be written in alternating point-of-view narratives interspersed with notes, texts and so on, I thought it might be a bit gimmicky.
I was wrong.
The format and plot work perfectly together. Tiffy and Leon have their own distinct voices and the Post-It note conversation threads are charmingly different. Their relationship develops slowly but naturally, and both characters (whilst very different) are totally endearing. I wanted to give them both a cuddle then take them out for pasta and baked goods!
The supporting characters are equally compelling and I would happily read books about Mo, Gerty, Rachel and Richie as well.
There is a trigger warning, in that not everything is sweetness and light (although the majority of the book is). Beth O’Leary sensitively but devastatingly explores the effects of emotional abuse by a romantic partner and the result was sickeningly accurate to reality. As in, it literally made me feel sick with sympathetic dread. For me though, this dark side just added depth to the overall appeal of the story.
I would wholeheartedly recommend this book to fans of well-written, well-rounded romcoms. It is funny, emotional, and full of heart!
‘It’s not just sharing a flat, Tiff, it’s sharing a bed. Sharing a bed is odd,’ Mo says worriedly.
‘What if this L. Twomey is a man?’ Gerty asks.
I’m prepared for this one. ‘It doesn’t matter,’ I say calmly. ‘It’s not like we’d ever be in the bed at the same time – or the flat even.’
This is uncomfortably close to what I said when justifying staying at Justin’s place last month, but never mind.
‘You’d be sleeping with him, Tiffany!’ Gerty says. ‘Everyone knows the first rule of flatsharing is don’t sleep with your flatmate.’
‘I don’t think this sort of arrangement is what people are referring to,’ I tell her wryly.
– Beth O’Leary, The Flat Share
The Flat Share releases on Amazon today!