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Friday, 9 September 2011

(Un)like a Virgin by Lucy-Anne Holmes

Is Gracie in love for the very first time? You know that bit in The X Factor, when the singer tells everyone about the rocky road they travelled to pursue their dream? Well, that's Gracie Flowers' story. Gracie is very focused for a woman of almost twenty-six. Her favourite book is 'The 5-Year Plan: Making the Most of Your Life'. And her five-year plan is going very well. That is, until she is usurped from her big promotion by a handsome, posh idiot; she is dumped by her boyfriend; and discovers her loopy mother is facing bankruptcy. Hormones awry and ice cream over-ordered, a dream Gracie thought she'd buried ten years ago starts to resurface. A dream that reminds her of the girl she used to be and everything she wanted to become.

This book is a roller coaster of emotions; there are times of happiness; laughter; sadness and anger. There are also surprises throughout the book, people being other than you expected of them - as is true in life.

Gracie, the main character, is an estate agent, working in an agency where she is top sales (wo)man and is hoping for the promotion which is available in the company. She lives with her boyfriend, Danny, and is best friends with the admin girl in the office, Wendy. Her father died a few years previously, and her mother lives in the family homes. Her mother and father were champion ballroom dancers and Gracie and her father also used to sing together, although following her father's death, Gracie no longer sings in public.

There are many story lines within the book; Gracies relationship with Danny is a major storyline, they where childhood sweethearts, Gracie's relationship with her mother and her dead father are also significant throughout the book, as is her relationships with work colleagues and the position she holds within the office.

There are many prospective house sales in the book, the possibility of the area where her father's grave lies being developed into a slip road for a large housing development and her previous love of singing with many people urging her to sing in public again.

The book is a great read, it is easy to pick up and read just a few chapters, however i found it difficult to put down and therefore finished it quickly. There are many twists and turns throughout the story and I know how I wanted the story to end but at many times throughout the book I thought Gracie would be choosing a different ending. 

I loved Lucy-Anne's style of writing, it was easy to read and to get lost in. There is plenty of drama throughout the book within Gracie's life but it all remained believable. I am sure many people will be able to relate to Grace's situation and will fall in love with her story.

Thank you to the publishers, Sphere, for sending me the book to review.


  1. Great review, Sarah.

    I sat up past my bedtime last night to finish this. I couldn't resist it!


  2. fab review, sounds like quite a wee read!