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The Things I'd Miss (2014)

Just like any other person, Lucy Potts can't help but ask herself occasionally: what if...? What if she had managed to stay together with the love of her life, Hugh Ashby? What if she hadn't married Hugh's best friend Simon instead? But then, one day, Lucy has a horrible car crash which results in her revisiting the past, particularly those important moments that shaped her future. It doesn't take long before Lucy notices she isn't just a bystander, but can actually change things in her own memories. Suddenly Lucy is given the chance to make these 'what if's' happen, but by focusing so much on the past, she starts to forget about everything that's going on in the present. The premise fascinated me straight away; I love novels in which the main characters get to do things which we won't be able to do in real life. When Lucy is involved in a car crash, her soul is separated from her body, providing her with the opportunity to travel through her own past and memories, and at the same time be able to change these important events. I really enjoyed this aspect of the novel; travelling with Lucy to different stages in her life, from her being a little girl disobeying her mother to her being at university completely infatuated with a boy. The fact that Lucy is actually able to change these memories was a remarkable aspect of the book and I was curious to find out what Lucy would do and how it would all turn out in the end. As the novel progressed, I have to say I didn't really feel the chemistry between Hugh and Lucy, which is a shame because I think it would have made the novel even stronger if this chemistry had been there. I also sometimes felt like I didn't know enough about Lucy, which made it difficult for me to really connect with her as a character. Overall, though, The Things I'd Miss is a touching, well-paced and thoughtful novel. (JoH)

Learn Love in a Week (2013)

Polly has been married for 10 years when she meets Her Road Not Taken. James is now a rich businessman and is looking for a garden designer, like Polly, for his new country pile. Polly is sorely tempted to take off with James, especially since she is fed up of having to be the breadwinner while her creative husband, Arthur, watches the kids and works on his children's book. Arthur, feeling the pressure to earn some money and not wanting to lose Polly, is roped into writing a newspaper column about love by Polly's best friend, Em. This brings Arthur back into the orb of his own fantasy woman, Daybreak executive producer Greta. And Em is putting pressure on her boyfriend to finally commit. Andrew Clover is a comedian who wrote a Dads Rules column in a British newspaper. His adult debut shows plenty of humour as it explores how love fares in a long-term relationship. The only thing - perhaps expectedly - all the characters' voices seem male.

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