One Book Away

One Book Away

by Debbie Ioanna

4 out of 5

She's just a girl, standing in front of a bookcase, looking for her happily every after...

Charlotte's love of romantic literature and 'happily ever after' is a far cry from reality. Putting her own ambitions to one side and settling with her university sweetheart, it has not been a decade of bliss. Changes need to be made, and quick.

At a book signing for her favourite author, she meets the handsome and chivalrous Ross. He immediately charms her and wants to see her again. Could this be the romantic, happy ending she was looking for?

Debbie brings us her latest romantic comedy where dating and new romances warm our hearts... and give us a little bit of dating fear. 

After their grand plans never came to fruition, Charlotte and her boyfriend have been coasting for years. Charlotte knows she needs to make a clean break, and follow her dreams again.

This story follows Charlotte, as she ditches her long-term boyfriend. When they first got together during university, Sam was romantic, and made a hundred little gestures of love. They were both driven, and had a plan.
Ten years later, Sam is a shadow of the man he used to be, and his casual neglect of Charlotte is breaking her heart every day. When he completely forgets her birthday, and then ruins her simple plans with a few casual remarks, Charlotte acknowledges that the relationship is no longer healthy.

Once free from Sam's negativity, she starts to look after herself, getting fit and healthy again. She also starts to write, reviving her old dream of becoming an author.
This ambition is helped along by her favourite romance author - who just happens to be handsome and charming!

What I always love about Debbie Ioanna's books is how down-to-earth they are. There's nothing extravagant or unlikely; they're always filled with familiar interactions between friends and families; with realistic romantic interests. But they're still totally captivating and entertaining.

I liked how it portrayed a realistic relationship, and how they can turn bad. It's a very normal long-term relationship - after ten years together, it's more than a little faded.
Sam's just stopped trying in every area of his life; and Charlotte has stuck her head in the sand, ignoring their problems.

I also liked how much of a contrast Ross was. On paper, he seems perfect in every way. He's handsome and talented, he can offer Charlotte professional advice. He's also rich and loves to make big romantic gestures.
But that doesn't necessarily mean there will be any chemistry. 
To be honest, I was a bit surprised and disappointed with where his story went. I was hoping for something scandalous - with all of Ross' generic phrases, I thought he might be seducing a woman to use their interactions for his next novel (or even steal fans' ideas). But he is just a thoroughly nice chap throughout.

One of my favourite storylines was following Charlotte's brother Matt, and his partner, as they finally get to adopt, after years of trying.
Matt and Dave are such a nice couple, and despite their own troubles with surrogates falling through; they are always there to support Charlotte.

Overall, this was another pleasant, heart-warming little story, and I definitely recommend!


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