22 May 2013

Book Review: The Desperate Wife's Survival Plan by Alison Sherlock

"From riches to rags...

Charley Summers doesn't have a care in the world. She lives in the lap of luxury, supported by her rich husband and surrounded by a loyal group of friends.

Until the business goes bust and her world collapses. Before long the bailiffs have taken everything, and as if things weren't bad enough, she catches her husband with another woman. Suddenly, Charley needs a job, any job, so she can start repaying some of the money her husband squandered.

But with nowhere to live and no recognisable skills, how on earth is she to do that?

Charley needs a survival plan fast!"

Rating: 5/5

You can buy The Desperate Wife's Survival Plan as a paperback or an eBook now!

When Charley suddenly finds her life ripped apart around her, she doesn't know how to cope. Her husband, her hosue, her lifestyle - all of it gone in an instant. Charley has to move into a dismal flat on the worst side of town, and hates living alone. All of her old possessions have gone, and she realises that she needs a job to get by, something she's never needed before. But Charley knows she doesn't have any skills that she can use in a good job, and ends up with a cleaning job that she really doesn't like. But as she starts to make a bit of a success in her new life, and other opportunities begin to open up for her, Charley starts to think that maybe life isn't as bad she first feared it would be. Will Charley survive against the odds and make herself happy once more?!

I love a book where you can just get involved in the story straight away, and I found this was the case with this book, I loved it right from the first page! I loved Charley right from the beginning, even though she was a tad spoilt at first and really just bought everything she ever wanted without a second thought. Her marriage wasn't the best either, but I got the feeling she was just there because of their lifestyle, not for any great love! Anyway, the main story kicked off fairly quickly, and it was quite horrible to read in a way, it's your worst nightmare, suddenly finding out you have absolutely nothing left in the world and it's news to you too. Charley reacted quite predictably, but I did feel immensely sorry for her, she was taken by complete surprise and I felt that Sherlock really wrote these scenes well and realistically.

The developing story of Charley's life unravelling was really easy to read, and I didn't want to put it down each evening, I was so keen to find out what was going to happen next for her. I really did feel sorry for her, her new life did sound pretty awful, especially as she was getting used to living alone too, something I know isn't easy and the guilt of other things that had happened were weighing her down too. One of the more positive aspects of the book was the friendships she had with the other women, and I enjoyed reading about these other stories just as much as Charley's which was great! There's vain Samantha who only cares about herself and the next man she can get her claws into, single mum Juliet who finds herself with a brand new "friend" and then happily married Caroline, whose life isn't quite as perfect as she might make out. These women were realistic and believable, and their stories were ones you could really put your heart into as you read, and I cared so much about them having a nice ending.

In fact, these positive relationships are what really drive the book, showing good things can come out of bad, and a positive attitude can change so much. Charley begins feeling down in the dumps, well, as you would after losing everything, but manages to find something to be positive about. I loved the storyline involving Charley's obsession with ice-cream, it was mouth-watering in parts and it's certainly made me think about ice-cream in a different way, yum! While there's a fair bit of sadness at the start of the book, it by all means doesn't carry on and I loved the optimism written throughout, you just know something good has got to happen to these nice people. Sherlock has written them all brilliantly, making the reader care about them and want to read their stories, and I can honestly say I really did love this book. It's well written, has a story you can lose yourself in and it certainly makes you grateful that you aren't in Charley's position. A superbly written and enjoyable read, I can't wait for Sherlock's next book.

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