Somewhere to review books I'm reading without giving away any spoilers!
Island house off coast of Maine, with private beach, sea views and the occasional farmyard animal, seeks super swanky Central London penthouse overlooking Holland Park, complete with concierge service and spurned ex-lovers…
When thirty-somethings Cassie and James find each other on a home swap website, it feels meant to be. City hotshot James needs a bolthole after a relationship goes sour and Cassie needs to leave the comfort of her little island to research her new book.
Soon, James is living in Cassie’s cute but ramshackle beachside cottage, and Cassie’s living in James’s luxurious London apartment. It’s the perfect solution.
Except James didn’t imagine he’d be sharing his home with eleven chickens and three alpacas, not to mention the unusually friendly neighbours, who seem to find any excuse to drop by. And Cassie is less than impressed when James’s ex-girlfriend turns up at his door, demanding to know where he’s gone.
The more Cassie and James talk, the more the tension between them mounts. But as the insults fly so do the sparks, and when the time finally comes to swap back, Cassie and James find they aren’t quite ready to give each other up.
But there’s more than just distance between them – and when Cassie makes a surprising discovery, the pair are forced to confront their feelings and decide what kind of life they really want.
An utterly heart-warming love story that will make you laugh and cry, fans of The Flatshare, The Hating Game and movies like The Holiday will fall head over heels for The House Swap.
This is a delightful mix of romcom and emotional family drama, a truly heartwarming and very moving read. It is an easy story to escape into, with great characters and plenty of difficulties to be overcome, one to keep you turning the pages and hoping things will work out well for both James and Cassie.
Cassie is everyone’s friend, the sort of person who moves into a London apartment block and ends up getting folks together and making friends. James was the opposite – a workaholic who didn’t know any of his neighbours. However, moving into Cassie’s home for their house swap also involves him with the neighbours who love her – and they have their own ways of breaking down his reticence and barriers. Both main characters are in their thirties and have experienced sadness in their past that is affecting their attitudes to life.
This is a story of facing the past, being open and discussing events and moving on to a brighter future filled with love and hope. It is about growing and being willing to change your dreams and aspirations. It is an uplifting story that runs through the full gamut of emotions and leaves you with a smile on your face!
Thank you to Bookouture and NetGalley for my copy of this book which I have voluntarily read and honestly reviewed.
Jo Lovett lives in London with her family.
She worked in Corporate Tax before taking a longer-than-expected career break to have more-than-expected children (five). She started writing romantic comedy when she realised that she was regularly begging her oldest son to let her do his English homework but she wasn’t actually that interested in haunted houses or Macbeth.
Jo was runner-up in the Good Housekeeping/ Orion First Novel Competition 2018 and shortlisted for the Comedy Women in Print Award 2019.
Her first novel, ‘The First Time We Met’, was published by Bookouture in November 2020 and her second, ‘The House Swap’, comes out in April 2021.
When she can escape from her laundry mountain, she enjoys reading, tennis and wine.