14 March 2014
Book Review: It Felt Like A Kiss by Sarra Manning
Ellie Cohen has it all. A great job at a swank Mayfair art gallery, loyal mates, loving family and really, really good hair. Well, almost - there's the mega-famous, rock-star father who refuses to acknowledge her and a succession of challenging boyfriends (which she calls 'fixer-uppers', her friends call 'losers'), but nobody's perfect.
Then a vengeful ex sells Ellie's secrets and a pack of lies to the press. Suddenly she's no longer the girl most likely to succeed, but a girl whose world is falling to pieces. For the first time in her life, Ellie can't deal - she's fighting to keep her job, her reputation and her sanity. So it's a relief when David Gold, her father's ruthlessly ambitious lawyer, arrives to manage the crisis - and Ellie. David might be handsome and charming, but he thinks she's a gold-digger and Ellie thinks he's a shark in a Savile Row suit.
'Strategic damage limitation' aren't the three little words Ellie wants to hear, so it's just as well that falling in love is the last thing on her mind."
You can buy It Felt Like A Kiss as a paperback or an eBook now.
I've read a few of Sarra Manning's books in the past, and was curious to read her latest offering It Felt Like A Kiss. It has one of my favourite book covers so far this year, such pretty colours and the setting of it is just perfect. The book was quite a chunk of a book, so I sat down hoping that I would like what I was about to read. I didn't know that one of the characters, Vaughn, who is main character Ellie's boss at the art gallery where she works, first appeared in one of Manning's earlier novels Unsticky. I don't think is a follow-on of any sort because I haven't read the other book and had no problems with following the story of this one.
Ellie Cohen loves her job working in an Art gallery. Yes, her boss is a bit of a pig but she's good at her job, so she's willing to stick it out. She's got quite a quiet life, that is until her ex-boyfriend Ritchie decides to sell a rather shocking and personal secret about Ellie to the national press. Overnight, Ellie is catapulted from unknown to unwilling celebrity, and she isn't enjoying it at all. She's fighting to keep her job, her relationship with mum Ari on track, and to stay out of the limelight as much as possible. Ellie drafts in the help of top lawyer David Gold, but she isn't sure she can really trust him either. Ellie doesn't know where to turn next, and it turns out love is the last thing on this girl's mind...
The book starts by introducing us to Ellie Cohen, and I have to say I liked her straight away. She's a friendly, hard-working woman and the sort of person you could imagine yourself being friends with. She values her mother, her family and her best friends, but also enjoys life as well. Ellie is very trusting, and whilst this is her downfall in the end, it's a good trait to have! All through the book, I was rooting for Ellie because I did feel very sorry for her - what happened to Ellie is my worst nightmare! In a celebrity obsessed world where it seems everyone wants to get their name in the press, Ellie wants quite the opposite - a quiet life. She absolutely loathes her newfound fame and I loved her for that. It makes a refreshing change to read about, and I enjoyed reading about the ways Ellie avoided the press, and the intrusion into her life.
I also really liked reading about Ellie's relationship with her mother Ari. We get to know a little bit more about Ari through short flashbacks shown at the beginning of chapters, around the time Ari fell pregnant with Ellie and her relationship with Ellie's father too so we get an insight into her life pre-motherhood and what she is like as a person. The pair are very close, and Ari sounds like a great mum to me, in fact all of Ellie's family are pretty cool. The other characters in the book include Ellie's boss Vaughn, who is just a horrible person! He treats his staff and his wife like rubbish, and I can't say I liked him whatsoever. Ellie's best friends crop up a bit, but I wish I had seen more of them with Ellie, as the three seemed to have a great relationship.
I really enjoyed this book, and the look into Ellie's life as a very unwilling celebrity, and trying to deal with the fallout of her secret being made public and how it affects the rest of her family too. I really loved Elllie, she dealt with things really well in my opinion and I don't at all blame her for wanting to hide away from the intrusion. As I said previously, it was interesting reading a book from the flip side of celebrity - someone who hates it and wants to not be a part of it at all. The romance in the book is slow-burning and at times I wasn't sure it would have its happy ending but to me, it felt perfect and was so well written. Reading Ellie and David getting to know each other quickly due to the strange situation they found themselves in was interesting, I found myself not wanting to put the book down! It was a great read, a very real and emotional story, and I'm looking forward to reading more of Sarra Manning's novels. Recommended!