15 October 2014
Book Review: The Beginner's Guide to the Birds and the Bees by Sophie Hart
Sex therapist Annie Hall helps couples put the fizz back into their relationships. It’s a shame her own love life is non-existent. When Jamie who works next door catches her eye, she can’t ignore the spark of chemistry.
Most men would jump at the chance to skive off work for an afternoon quickie with their gorgeous wife, but Nick knows Julia is after only one thing – a baby. Sex shouldn’t be a chore. Can Annie help Julia see that?
Newly engaged Zoe and Simon can’t keep their hands off each other. They’ve decided to take a vow of celibacy until their wedding night. Will Annie help them stick to it?
Roy and Linda have been married for over thirty years but she’s more interested in the family business than getting intimate with him. Can Annie convince Linda to rediscover her passion for Roy after all this time?
While Annie begins to work her magic with the three couples, she soon discovers that she’ll need to take some of her own advice if she’s going to let a new man into her life."
You can buy The Beginner's Guide to the Birds and the Bees as an eBook or a paperback now.
I read Sophie Hart's debut novel The Naughty Girl's Book Club last year and absolutely loved it, so I was thrilled when I was offered the chance to review her newest book with brand new publishers Bookouture called The Beginner's Guide to the Birds and the Bees. Again, Sophie Hart has tackled a bit of a taboo subject, sex therapy, and I was wondering where this story was going to go! However, it was an utterly brilliant book that I loved from start to finish, the story was fantastic and I can't recommend it highly enough!
The main character is Annie, who works as a sex therapist. Despite being able to right the wrongs in other people's relationships, she can't seem to make a success of her own, and is perpetually single much to the chagrin of her parents and her happily-loved-up sister. I loved Annie, she was such a nice person, good at her job and unafraid to help even the toughest of cases, and I admired her for that, and her job overall actually! Reading about Annie's job was eye-opening, I think I had envisioned it to be a bit naughtier than it was, but as it happened I enjoyed reading about Annie's sessions with her clients, and finding out about their various problems.
The other characters in the book happen to be Annie's clients that she meets at her office. There's newly engaged couple Zoe and Simon, who are attending Annie's therapy for a different reason to most, but they are sure it's the way to a successful marriage together. There's married couple Nick and Julia who are trying for a baby, but it's starting to affect their marriage and their sex life, can Annie help them get things back on track? The last couple to see Annie are Roy and his wife Linda, they've been married for many years and things have got a bit stagnant. Ray wants more from his marriage, but is that more than Linda wants to give?
As you can see, there's a lot of different characters in the book, but they are all so different that it's easy to differentiate between them all. I loved Zoe and Simon's story, it was really touching and I enjoyed the fact it was very different to the other couples who are having trouble in their marriage. I also enjoyed how Annie handled the troubles between Ray and Linda, and Nick and Julia. I did feel sorry for the males in this book, Nick and Ray, they just want a happy marriage but their wives are just unhappy for different reasons. Nick and Julia are affected by infertility, and the way this was explored in the book was really touching, and very well written.
For me, this was a fantastic story that was so well written, I couldn't stop reading and did not want to put down until the end. I enjoyed following these characters of their journey, whether it was to solve their marriage problems, or to find some sort of happiness for poor Annie, who seems to sort everyone else's love woes apart from her own! There was a great cast of characters here, lots of fun and laughs as well as some tears and sadness, but this just adds to the brilliance of the book. A lot of what happens to these couples is very relatable, you can imagine yourself or people you know going through these problems and that's what made it so enjoyable for me. The writing flows so well, the narrative worked perfectly for the multiple characters, and overall this was a superb read. I won't forget this book for a long time, and I can't wait to read more from Sophie Hart. A must-read!