Chicklit Club
 

NICK SPALDING

 

Fat Chance (2014)

 

Zoe and Greg have let themselves go over the years, and now, thanks to Zoe’s DJ friend Elise, they have been picked for a radio competition that pits them against five other couples trying to lose the most weight. With the Fat Chance competition running over six months, both Zoe and Greg have to keep a diary about their experiences. From trying weird diets and being pushed to the limits by a personal trainer and competition challenges, is it enough for this couple to emerge victorious? This is an irreverently funny, warts-and-all glimpse into a marriage, told through the highs and lows of a weight-loss journey.


 

Love Under Different Skies (2013)

 

Jamie Newman is facing the prospect of having his hours cut at work, it's a fact he has to grin and bear but unfortunately he doesn't and ends up out of a job. This is hardly the news he wants to share with his wife, Laura, with things being strained in their relationship, so when Laura gets a job offer in Australia, the couple, along with three-year-old daughter, Poppy, decide to start a new life Down Under. The plan is for Laura to keep things ticking over financially until Jamie gets a job. Unfortunately, Jamie struggles to find one and, with mounting tension, their dream life soon gets a sharp dose of reality. When the pair find themselves receiving attention from elsewhere, they have to decide where their priorities lie. From mating koala bears to swimsuit wardrobe malfunctions, Nick Spalding once again delivers a raucous story full of laughs and cringe-inducing fun. Although this wasn't my favourite book in the series, his books always guarantee to bring a smile. I look forward to seeing what he comes up with next. (JC)


 

Love ... and Sleepless Nights (2012)

 

The last thing Laura and Jamie Newman have planned for is a baby but after one lax moment with contraception, Laura and Jamie's lives are about to change. Told through Laura's diary and Jamie's blog entries, the story follows the couple from the initial surprise, through the disastrous announcement to Jamie's family, the world of midwives and antenatal classes to the final moments of agony and ecstasy in labour and beyond through their baby's first year. I absolutely loved the dual narration in this sequel to Love...From Both Sides and felt that both Laura and Jamie were very genuine characters with believable voices. As for the writing style, I cannot praise enough the humour of this novel, not only does it make you (somewhat embarrassingly!) laugh out loud, but the laughs keep going over several pages in wonderfully delivered anecdotes rather than fleeting one-liners. It is a hugely warm, uplifting and funny novel. Pure joy. (JC)


 

Love ... From Both Sides (2011)

 

To say Jamie Newman and Laura McIntyre are unlucky in love is an understatement. Both of them have a terrible dating track record, so when the two come together, how can their dating experience be any different? It's written in alternate chapters between Jamie's blog and Laura's diary, a format that works well. Billed as a laugh-out-loud comedy, I think this book will either have you laughing or cringing, and I know it divides people like the Fifty Shades lovers and haters. Personally, it wasn't my humour (it was just a little too crass). Which was a shame, as I spent the book smiling but no full-on laughs. For me the magic of the book starts when Laura and Jamie begin to date, and you get explanations of their crazy behaviour in their respective chapters. I would definitely read the other books in the series though, as seeing the two in a proper relationship (with a baby thrown in) has great potential. I think this is a real give-it-a-go book - you might just think it's an easy, witty read, like me, or you may (according to other reviewers) find it the funniest book you've ever read. (AB)

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