Friday 20 June 2014

Book ~ "One Plus One" (2014) Jojo Moyes

From Goodreads ~ Suppose your life sucks. A lot. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your teenage stepson is being bullied and your math whiz daughter has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you can’t afford to pay for. That’s Jess’s life in a nutshell - until an unexpected knight-in-shining-armor offers to rescue them. 

Only Jess’s knight turns out to be Geeky Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire whose vacation home she happens to clean. But Ed has big problems of his own and driving the dysfunctional family to the Math Olympiad feels like his first unselfish act in ages ... maybe ever.

Jess cleans houses for a living and also has a part-time job in a pub.  Her husband, Marty, claimed he was depressed and needed to get away for a while and moved back with his mother.  This left Jess to raise their daughter, Tanzie, and Marty's teenage son, Nicky, who getting bullied because he's different (he wears mascara and dresses in black).

Tanzie is a math whiz and gets offered a scholarship at a private school and Jess just has to come up with the difference, which she can't afford.  If Tanzie wins the Math Olympiad, though, the prize will more than cover their cost for the private school.  The Olympiad, though, is in Scotland and Jess can't afford to get her, the kids and their huge dog, Norman, there.

One of Jess' clients, Ed, is a computer geek who became a tech millionaire.  Unfortunately he is being investigated for insider trading so has to lay low and stay away from the company he'd created.  With nothing else to do, he offers to drive Jess and her family to Scotland.  It takes a lot longer than necessary for various reasons and by the end, Ed's once pristine fancy car is full of dog hair and drool, barf, chocolate and lots more.

This is the second book I've read by this author and I liked it.  I liked the writing style and thought it moved at a good pace.  It's written in third person perspective, though there are a couple chapters that are in first person point of view (and it's obvious why).  The interactions between the characters was good ... funny and serious, depending on the situation.  As a head's up, there is some swearing (the "F-bomb", etc.).

I liked Jess and Ed ... they have incredibly different lifestyles.  Ed is used to eating out all the time, having a couple cars, a nice house, etc. and has an Italian model for an ex-wife.  Jess, on the other hand, has to watch every penny and make it last.  On their roadtrip, Ed wants to eat in restaurants while Jess has the kids take extra food from a breakfast buffet which lasts a couple days or she buys the fixings to make sandwiches.  Though Ed does offer to pay so they can all eat in a restaurant, Jess is too proud to take him up on his offer.  It was interesting to watch Ed evolve as he's forced to live someone else's lifestyle.  I usually find kids' characters annoying but I liked Tanzie and Nicky.  And Norman was a hoot!

1 comment:

Masshole Mommy said...

This definitely sounds like a book I would enjoy!