Title: Hot Mess
Author: Lucy Vine
Publication date: 13 July 2017
Genre: Women’s fiction / Romantic comedy
Any book claiming to be ‘Bridget Jones for a new generation’ will pull me in. As much as I think Bridget remains relevant, certain parts of her story (like being able to afford a non-sharing flat in London Bridge on a publishing salary…) no longer ring true. Ellie Knight is a single woman for the modern world. She hates her job, feels her friends are losing interest in her as they couple up and have children, has some incredibly weird flatmates (including one she’s never actually seen) and finds herself fighting the ever-growing black mould present in every London flat. On top of that, she’s tackling horrid Tinder dates, despite being perfectly happy living the single life.
Unlike Bridget, Ellie makes an active choice to be single, but she’s constantly conflicted about that choice. Her friends and family are certain she can’t truly be happy alone and push her into relationships and dating, sometimes living vicariously through her.
Hot Mess isn’t quite equivalent to Helen Fielding, but I could definitely relate to Ellie and had to reach for the tissues when she talked about her relationship with her mum who passed away. Despite a few tears, I also laughed out loud at points and enjoyed the contrast of Ellie’s dates and her Dad’s love life as he re-entered the dating scene and discovered cocktails for the first time.
My only issue with the book was the inclusion of emails from Ellie’s Dad, containing extracts of his poorly written ‘erotic’ novel. I didn’t find it funny and had to persevere through those sections. They didn’t really add anything and felt like a waste of space in the novel. Thankfully they stopped halfway through and the second half of the book definitely improved without them!
Hot Mess is a realistic romcom that will have you laughing out loud. It is released in paperback on 13 July, but is available as an ebook now for a mere 99p. A fun summer read for your Kindle, perhaps?
I received this book free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.