16 April 2012
Book Review: Outrageous Fortune by Lulu Taylor
Meanwhile on a rough council estate in East London, Chanelle has wanted to be a dancer her whole life. Dancing is the one thing that takes her out of the grim reality of her life with her alcoholic mother and she is determined to use any means possible to become successful, no matter how underhand her methods.
Born on the same day Chanelle and Daisy's lives could not be more different. Until everything changes, and they discover they have more in common than they could ever have imagined."
I've read each of Lulu Taylor's novels so far and loved them all, so when I was offered the chance to review her latest book Outrageous Fortune, I jumped at the chance because I just knew it was going to be a great read! The cover style has broken away from the previous look which I did love, but this one is nice enough too, and I do like the metallic pink of the title which makes it stand out a bit. It's a pretty huge book at 688 pages long, but soon flies by as you're reading because you end up whizzing through the chapters to find out what dramatic event is going to happen next! As usual, there's plenty of sex, shock and scandal in the book to keep you hooked, and it does just that.
The book tells the tale of 2 women who have no idea the other exists. Daisy Dangerfield is born with a silver spoon in her mouth, to a father who absolutely idolises his youngest daughter, and a mother who prefers the bottle to her child. Even so, Daisy is thrust into her father's company at a young age, so is horrified to suddenly be cast aside with only a few pounds to her name, never to speak to her father again and no idea why. Chanelle is the opposite, born to a drug addict mother who has no time to mother her daughter, and Chanelle is pretty much left to bring herself up. She's determined to be more than what others expect her to be, and sets about setting up a new life for herself. However, the women's lives collide in a shocking way and leave them changed forever...
Taylor's book is simply a fantastic bonk-buster novel, and I loved it. From the very first page, I was completely absorbed by what I read about Daisy and her life with the Dangerfields, the same for Chanelle and her tough upbringing, and I was left really curious about how these women were going to end up in each other's lives in some way. Taylor draws you right into the action, portraying these women in their own individual ways and I found it to be really fun reading. I loved reading about Daisy's opulent lifestyle, having anything she wants at her disposal, being the apple of her wealthy father's eye, and being groomed for greatness. On the other hand, I felt really sorry for Chanelle who isn't given the best start in life, yet wants to be something more but is hindered somewhat by her lack of money troubles. However, she finds a new way for herself, and I found myself rooting for her to make more of herself, and be more than she thought she could be.
As the book progresses, there are a lot of twists and turns along the way, but the big shocker reveal regarding Daisy comes about a third of the way into the book, and I had guessed a little bit what it could be. I wasn't 100% right but was along the right lines, but it was still really well done by Taylor, and I felt really sorry for poor Daisy! The scenes written after this change were fantastic, drew me totally into the new world of Daisy, and also Chanelle's depths of despair and was written so believably too that I just couldn't put it down. Taylor allows us to keep up with both sides of the story via alternating narratives for each chapter, so one chapter is from Daisy, the next from Chanelle and so on, and I didn't find it hard to keep up at all. I didn't find that the pace lacked at all, in fact, each of the 688 pages was crammed with a fantastic story, it really couldn't have been shorter!
This book was fantastic, and I highly recommend it! Yes, there is a bit of language, a bit (okay, more than a little bit...) of sex and plenty of drama to keep you interested, and you can't help but root for these characters, wishing them both the happy ending they deserve, and the comeuppance for the horrible people they have been lumbered with in their lives! It's well written, from the fabulous life of Daisy to the sad upbringing of Chanelle, and really highlights how a person can find strength within despite where they have come from, and that we can do things we might never have dreamt possible. It's one of these books that takes you into the world of the characters and leaves you there until you reluctantly drag yourself away again, I loved every page and am now eagerly awaiting Lulu Taylor's next book! Fab!
You can buy Outrageous Fortune as a paperback or an eBook now.