Friday, March 30, 2012

Book Review: Single in the City

By Kathryn Hamilton

What would you do if you found yourself going through life on autopilot and stuck in a rut? Would you take up a new hobby? Look into a new career? Get a makeover? If you’re 27 year-old Hannah Cumming, then you decide to move to London, England on an alcohol influenced dare. Having been fired from her one and only job, Hannah leaves the comfort of her Connecticut home (including best friend Stacy) and lands in jolly England to get the fresh start on life that she feels is needed. What follows is absolute hilarity as she experiences a dose of culture shock in her pursuit of friendship, love, and daily living in a new country.

Michele Gorman is an American expatriate currently living in England. "Single in the City" is her first published novel and was released in the UK, but was self-published in the US. It exploded in sales on Amazon, and it is clear why she enjoyed the success. This novel is wonderfully charming and funny, and the story felt realistic. As the main character, Hannah is believable, likeable, and I could completely relate to her tendency to over-think and over-analyze everything. She is, however, much more bold and daring than I am (I don’t think I would ever have the nerve to up and move to a new country without extensive planning), and so I was able to live vicariously through her as she jumped in feet first and found her way. I found myself truly laughing out loud on the second page, and Ms. Gorman had me hooked from that point on. I was also delighted at the fact that while I was fairly certain I knew who Hannah’s love interest was going to be, Ms. Gorman threw in a little twist that made me have doubts (I love when authors keep me guessing!). The supporting characters are also realistically written with big personalities that are not caricatures. I appreciated that there was not a lot of cursing and that references to sex were not smutty.

There honestly is little that I have to criticize about this novel. As an e-book, I was greatly impressed, as my experiences with e-books have been largely fraught with poor editing. I believe there was one instance where two words ran together, but one error in an entire novel is not something I’m going to fuss about. My only other “complaint,” as it were, is that I wish there had been more scenes with Hannah’s feisty Irish co-worker, Siobhan. I loved the character and wanted more of her!

Ms Gorman began to make a name for herself in the world of chick lit with this engaging first novel. It is a perfect example of chick lit, as it brings together elements of friendship, love, and fashion (the latter being something I am completely clueless about). I look forward to reading more from her in the future. The follow-up is the newly released "Misfortune Cookie," which Ms. Gorman wrote in part with input from her fans. What an awesome “novel” idea! I wish Ms. Gorman much continued success!

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1 comment:

Michele Gorman said...

Thanks so much Kathryn, for your super review, I'm thrilled that you liked it so much!

And lovely readers, I'm very happy to inscribe either Single in the City or Misfortune Cookie through so please do feel free to pop a request through!