I have decided to end my blogging break.
I read a really good book. Not just any book. It was one of those books where once you have finished it you just want to tell everyone about it, including uninterested pets and loved ones. Struggling to contain my reading euphoria and desperate for someone to listen to me I thought, ‘I will return to my blog and shout about it on there!’
This is what I love about books, they make you do crazy stuff.
Then I thought about how I missed my blog, how I cry myself to sleep hugging my BlondeWriteMore pillow, how I enjoy downloading my weird thoughts on a regular basis and how posting once a week actually feels good.
So, every Sunday, whilst high on coffee and tropical granola, I have decided to allow myself to get completely carried away with an emotional book review.
For the few kind souls who want to know about my story bird cages (old post from last year), progress has been made. The blogging break has been worth it.
The book which made me put an end to my blogging break is a romantic comedy and reading it was like taking a medicinal tonic.
Prior to starting ‘Getting Over Jesse Franklin’ I had a facial expression similar to a bulldog chewing a thistle and my loved ones had renamed me, ‘glummy mummy.’
So here is my review…
What is the book description:
Back in the nineties Cassie loved Jesse. But he was the bass player in her favourite band and didn’t know she existed. Fourteen years on, the band has broken up and she’s found him on Facebook. In a moment of madness Cassie sends Jesse a friend request. It turns out after a lot of messaging and then finally meeting him in London, he quite likes her. Things between them quickly intensify and Cassie finds herself in a long distance relationship with her boy band crush from the 90s but things don’t run smoothly.
How did this book description make me feel?
After reading this I was beside myself, all I could think about was my old crush on Simon Le Bon (Duran Duran). Okay, so he’s now married to a drop dead gorgeous supermodel, with some beautiful grown up children and I am married with sulky teenage kids, an array of attention seeking pets, a large mortgage, some wobbly bits on my thighs, silvery strands in my hair, a Twitter obsession, a weak pelvic floor, no upper body strength and a blog…but this book makes you DREAM the IMPOSSIBLE.
I love the idea of finding your old boy band crush on social media, sending each other random messages and then falling head over heels in love. Simon Le Bon and I could discuss his poster, which hung above my bed, back in the day, where he was leather clad and stuck to that windmill thing on the video of ‘Wild Boys’. Sorry, I’m getting carried away.
What were the characters like?
I think Cassie is hilarious and all I want to do now is go for a drink and then order a takeaway round hers. Stephie Chapman does a brilliant job in making you connect with Cassie. She’s just a run of the mill twenty something who has an office job, enjoys takeaways and has a wonderful dry sense of humour. The first few chapters where she sends her boy band crush Jesse a friend request and waits for his response left me crying with laugher.
Jesse is everything you want from a male character in a romantic comedy; he’s smooth, handsome and some of the things he says to Cassie melted my heart.
Was the setting interesting?
The book is set in London and in……California. Romantic escapism doesn’t get better than this.
Was there heartbreak?
Yes and I was in bits when it happened. The clever romance author knew I had to suffer after several chapters of bliss. I was surprised at how emotional I felt wading through the heartbreak.
By the end of the book how were you feeling?
This book took me on an emotional journey. I read it in twenty-four hours and was left gasping by the end. I have to say the ending is exceptional and afterwards I had to go lie down in a darkened room with a cold compress on my forehead.
There is another book in the series which I will be devouring once I regain my reading composure.
What has life been like for you since reading this book?
After instructing my Facebook reading club to devour this book I made a few new friends who also loved Duran Duran, but they were John Taylor fans. This led to some interesting discussions on how ‘double dating’ could have worked, back in the day, me with my arm casually around Simon’s neck and a Facebook book reviewer friend snogging the face off John Taylor.
Why did the author write this book?
I have since contacted Stephie Chapman, fangirled her and asked for some info on where the idea came from for this book.
Here’s what she sent me:
I am hopelessly nostalgic for anything 1990s and I was listening to my favourite band from when I was a teenager, The Moffatts one day, back in 2014ish. No one really remembers them, but my friend Sarah and I LOVED them. They are a group of brothers from Canada. I heard about them when I was visiting family in Vancouver in 1998, bought their CD ‘Chapter 1: A New Beginning’, and was completely hooked. They were like a slightly more gritty version of Hanson and as they weren’t even close to being a famous as them, they somehow seemed more accessible.
So, some of the stuff that happens in the beginning of the book actually happened. Sarah and I found other fans and we all hung out where we knew they were going to be. The bit about getting backstage actually happened. We dragged one of them off to the backstage bar and drank Archers and lemonade. No one stopped us, no one cared. It was amazing. There were all these music industry people and roadies, and me and Sarah just chilling. It was an insane night. Anyway, I don’t know what happened to The Moffatts but they stopped coming to the UK. They released another album called Submodalities, which I still think is great, but it didn’t do well at all, and all that is what Franko is based on. Not even particularly loosely, when I think about it!
The idea for the book came off the back of a daydream. It was literally just my imagination running away with me. Anyone who ever had it bad for a boy in a band wonders what could happen if they met them again and still had those intense feelings, and what would happen if those feelings somehow were reciprocated. And I wanted it to be completely far-fetched, but also weirdly realistic, and like it *could* happen. I wanted Cassie to be that person, out of sheer random luck. I wanted Jesse to just take a chance on something he wouldn’t usually even consider. I wanted the break up of the band to be a bit mysterious and also for the whole fact that she knew about his background to scare the crap out of him, but also to be a bit therapeutic.
If you fancy a giggle and a great read please check Stephie Chapman’s book out. You won’t be disappointed!
Questions for my readers:
- Who was your teenage music crush?
- If you were single / looking for love and you found them years later on Facebook (providing they are still alive) – would you send them a friend request?
You can check out ‘Getting Over Jesse Franklin’ by clicking here.
Thanks for reading.
All my other book reviews can be found here.