Contemporary, Drama, Family, Romance

Whatever Happened to Vicky Hope’s Back Up Man by Laura Kemp

I received this novel as an advanced copy from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

There was a time when I used to love chick lit. I mean, Sophie Kinsella was my go-to author and I loved the Shopaholic series with a passion. I don’t recall when I decided to move on from that genre and tread new waters, but there are always times when I miss it. This book gave me the opportunity to revisit the past, and read something that I knew would be cute and romantic and funny as hell!

Before travelling the world with her high flying friend, Kat, 21-year-old Vicky Hope comes up with a plan she thinks is brilliant: if she isn’t married by the time she is 30, she will marry her best friend Mikey Murphy. Mikey reluctantly goes along with the plan, and Vicky heads off on her new adventure.

Eight years later, Vicky – who now goes by Vee – wakes up on her 30th birthday in Brighton, expecting her longtime artsy boyfriend Jez to propose to her. Instead, he tells her that their relationship is over, leaving her no choice but to head home to her parents. Devastated and realizing just how alone she is, Vee decides that she will track down her two old friends. With shock, she finds out that Mikey is a successful app designer, who has taken his turbulent upbringing and made a future for himself. Kat, who everyone thought would be making it big in finance, has instead chosen a more humble career route. Vee doesn’t care too much, all she wants is to be back with her friends again. What she doesn’t know is that one of them is hiding a secret that could threaten the happiness of all three.

This was an absolutely cute novel, with a great cast of characters. I loved Vee with her bubbly attitude, and Mikey’s sarcastic tone, and Kat’s desire to please everybody, especially her mother. This was a tender story of friendship and the way it evolves through life and challenges. This was quite a change from my thrillers, in that you already know something bad is going to happen to have caused a rift between everyone, and you find out what the rift is soon enough. What made this story interesting was seeing how each character dealt with the aftermath of the secret. And maybe this is a spoiler, but it is a happy ending – and I am a sucker for happy endings! The prose was quite interesting for me, as I’ve never heard words like “tosh” in my life – growing up in Canada means we have an entirely different slang vocabulary. This made the whole experience more fun for me. Overall, this novel offered a touching yet light-hearted novel about friendship and love, that kept me entertained from beginning to end!

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