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Millie Brady doesn't realise just what she is letting herself in for when she saves successful novelist Orla Heart's life and has no idea just how much this off chance meeting will change her own life either. Orla is determined to thank Millie in the only way she knows how by helping her find love. Throw into the equation a job as a skating gorilla-gram, a dropped wallet with a gorgeous owner, an overly flirtatious boss and a best friend with a tangled love life and you have all of the ingredients for 'Millie's Fling'.
Millie's Fling is written by Jill Mansell, an author who up until recently I hadn't really come across much. I had heard of her as I do read a lot, chick lit in particular, but for some reason hadn't ever read any of her work. My friend had passed on 'Perfect Timing' before Christmas which I loved and then this was followed by 'Kiss', which again I really enjoyed, so when she said she had just finished reading 'Millie's Fling' and would I like to borrow it as well I didn't hesitate in saying yes..
The story kicks off with Millie listening to her boring boyfriend talking about them moving in together, a thought that terrifies Millie as basically she isn't very keen on him. As they are in a car at the time over looking the sea at a picturesque spot (which is also renowned as being the local suicide spot) Millie sees a woman pacing up and down looking like she is about to leap over the edge into the sea and rocks below. After talking her round she realises why this woman seems familiar as she is the successful author Orla Heart, and after Millie's boyfriend drives off in a huff she finds herself being given a lift home by Orla and forming an unlikely friendship. Millie lives with her best friend Hester, who despite having a lovely boyfriend Nat who she barely sees as he is working away in Scotland, is pining over her teenage crush of Lucas who has just come back into town and who is Millie's new boss.
When Millie finds a wallet lost under a hedge on a night out, her and Hester decide to drunkenly phone the owner who happens to be newly (ish) widowed Hugh...who it turns out happens to be funny, interesting, exciting and very gorgeous. Millie knows that Hugh is off limits as it's too soon after losing his wife but that doesn't stop her fancying the pants off him! Will Hugh feel the same after spending time with Millie as 'just friends'?
Orla is set on finding the perfect partner for Millie though and introduces her to several available men and we follow Millie's journey for love and surviving life in general in hot and sunny Cornwall..
Millie's Fling introduces us to the main character of Millie in the first few lines of the book and within a few moments we also meet Orla who plays a major part in the story line. I like the fact that we get to meet the main characters quite early on and get to feel comfortable with them rather than getting halfway through a book and then finding key characters are thrown in too late finding them harder to adjust to.
One thing that I did like about Millie's Fling is how the story just flows from start to finish, there are no characters back stories here which can often deter from reading the main story and personally I'm not a fan of and find the main offender for this is the author Carmen Reid. This is only the 3rd Jill Mansell book I've read so far but I'm finding her work so readable and easy going that it's a pleasure to pick up her books on an evening to settle down with as they are so easy to get involved with.
I really enjoyed this book probably more than I expected, as according to the blurb it seemed as if it was going to just be another romantic chick lit story. What I like about Jill Mansell's books is her books are often based about searching for love but they are wrote in such a light hearted and funny way that they are not soppy or sickly at all.
I loved all of the characters here and there weren't any 'nasty' ones at all and even Orla's love rat of a husband was likable as he turns out to be not as clever as he thinks. In particular though I have to say that both Millie and Orla were my favourites as they are both strong willed women in their own different ways and their approaches to life in general led to some daft and laugh out loud moments.
At 566 pages this is just the right length for me personally without stretching out the story unnecessarily and it is the sort of book that would make a perfect holiday read, and one I will definitely read again at some point in the future.
Everything about this book is enjoyable from the story to the characters to the soothing design of the cover depicting 'girl things' such as flowers, cushions and shoes and randomly a dragonfly.
I'm really enjoying Mansell's books so far and can't wait to read more of her work and know for a fact my friend has several other books by her so I will dropping several hints at borrowing them!
£7.99 - though can be found from as little as £1 online
I read this book couple of years ago and recently took it on holiday to read again, it's such a light hearted, and easy reading book, which grips you with it's story that you can't stop turning the pages.
The main character in the story is Millie (of course). We meet her at a hill top where her boyfriend is asking her to move in with him as he's about to be kicked out of his flat and of course he has no where to go!
Our heroine doesn't tell him where to go (although the reader may feel that she should have done exactly that, or is that just me), but instead goes off to talk to a woman who is quite obviously very distressed, meaning that Millie puts 2 and 2 together and makes 4 and a half, believing that the woman is there to kill herself. I have to allow her this, as she nearly got it right, and who knows what would have happened if she hadn't approached her....
Due to Millie opting to "save" Orla's life rather then staying with her boyfriend to discuss how wonderful life is going to be living together, she gets dumped, literally, as he drives off leaving her on top of the hill with no means of getting back home. And, that is where the beautiful friendship between Millie and Orla begins.
The chances are, if Millie had not approached Orla (a famous writer of trashy romance novels) then her life would not have changed for the better - although that is debatable, as the male interest which "improves" her life is not really introduced to Millie through Orla, but through her finding his wallet after a drunken night out.
Jill Mansell showing of her wit superbly, it explores a number of emotions from guilt, to lust, to rejection to euphoria! She takes us on an expedition from gorilla-grams, to becoming a character in a book (Orla's latest novel of course!), to discovering how to put your foot in it big time, and basically, how to enjoy life!
I didn't want to put this book down, I was dying to know all the way through what the outcome was going to be, and although it is pretty obvious, Millie goes through quite a hard time before she finally gets to be happy.
Jill Mansell is one of the queens of romantic comedy books and I've read a few of her novels before. Millie's Fling is very similar to her previous work, which has been described by various people as 'riotous', 'a jaunty summer read' and 'slick, sexy and funny stories' - so you know exactly what to expect; a light-hearted, engaging read that makes a great holiday book.
Millie Brady is sitting on a cliff top in her boyfriend's car waiting for him to pop the question, but she's preoccupied by another woman who is acting very strangely, right at the edge of the cliff. Just as her boyfriend asks her to move in with him (Ok, so it's not the question she was expecting) Millie jumps to the other woman's aid. Her boyfriend drives off and she is left trying to talk a bestselling novelist into a) not jumping and b) giving her a lift home.
Crisis averted, Millie settles into a peaceful life without her leech of a boyfriend and is toddling on nicely, but the lady she saved has other ideas. She has just received a terrible review for her latest book and decides that Millie is going to be the heroine of her next blockbuster. So, Millie is drawn into a world of disastrous dates, ridiculous jobs and celebrity politics to make a summer that she'll never forget.
I really enjoyed reading this book. It has all the ingredients of a good summer read - a slightly haphazard heroine, a couple of gorgeous men with mysterious backgrounds and a storyline that is so ridiculous that is could almost be true.
The premise of the book is that the novelist, Orla Hart, has been accused of becoming predictable and lazy in her writing, so she decides to write about Millie's real life. The fact is that 'real life', as it were, ends up being stranger than fiction. Whilst you still read it as a complete work of fiction, you can't help but be reminded of the phrase 'you can't make this stuff up'. It's silly enough to be a fun read, but not so far fetched that you are left thinking the book is ridiculous.
The book is set in the summer in Cornwall so has a great happy feel to it - there are plenty of surfers and walks on the beach (it obviously wasn't written last summer!). This makes it a nice summer read, but is also a good antidote to the horrible weather we've been having recently - it really felt like reading the book was improving my mood.
One of the main plus points is that Millie is a very likeable character - essential for this kind of read. You can empathise with her and you don't get frustrated with her. I've read a few books from this genre recently where I've been irritated by the main character, but I didn't get this feeling at all here.
This is also true for the secondary characters. Some of them are larger than life, some have murky pasts and some are just there, but all of them are believable and likeable. They are brought into the story well and are all important to help it move along. Mansell has a great way off making a seemingly too different group of people mix together effectively.
Although Millie's Fling is quite hefty for a light read (it is 566 pages long), it doesn't feel like it at all. I found myself completely engaged in the book and I couldn't make myself stop reading it, even when it was way past my bedtime!
The only criticism I have of the book was that I thought the ending was a little lazy. Whilst I wasn't unsatisfied at all, I felt that the book could have been finished a little better. It felt as though there was a word limit applied and that there were only a couple of pages left to tie everything up and finish it off. But, this is just a small criticism and it wouldn't stop me from recommending the book to others or from reading future books from the author.
So if this is your cup of tea, then I would strongly recommend Millie's Fling and I'm sure you won't be disappointed.
Sometimes, I just want to read something I know is going to be easy and amusing, and it is at precisely those times that I turn to my extensive collection of Jill Mansell books . If you're going to do chick lit, you might as well read something by one of the best known chick lit authors around . Yesterday, I selected Millies Fling , and read it in just a couple of hours. This book runs to 566 pages, with an RRP of 5.99 on the cover, although I'm certain you can get it much cheaper online (it was, after all, published a few years ago.)
Like many of Mansells books, it follows the traditional format of having a group of women who , for some reason, are all either single or in crap relationships, and follows them as they find love with assorted men, most of them having a couple of stumbling blocks along the way . In this particular book, the stumbling blocks for some characters are bigger than for others - Millie is just in the middle of having her boyfriend ask her to move in with him when she spots Orla on top of the cliff, apparently ready to end it all by hurling herself off . She talks Orla out of it, but loses her boyfriend in the process . When Orla later turns up at Millies work, this cost's Millie her job, and Orla feels terrible - especially since her latest book has had some terrible reviews. Orla hits on an idea that could help out both herself and Millie - a book based on a real person , that person being Millie, and hands Millie £5000 pounds for the rights to publicise her life.
Unfortunately, Millies life is not the smoothest of lives . She finds a wallet, with a photo of a handsome man, and decides to ring him up and let him know she has found I, but plays a little joke first - a joke that goes horribly wrong. Millies housemate is currently lusting after an old crush, despite having a boyfriend that works miles away, and Orla keeps attempting to set Millie up with all manner of people . Will Millie find love ? Will Hester get together with Lucas or stick with Nat ? Will Orla ever realise her husband is an idiot, and will she ever get over that terrible book review ? You'll have to read the book to find out .
I'll be honest and say I do find Mansells books very formulaic, and there is always essentially the same plot with different characters. Everyone gets a little rumpy pumpy with the wrong person before ending up with the right one - always delayed by a serious of comic mishaps . From the second or third chapter, it is clear who is destined for who - what is never clear is how this isall going to work out .
Mansell manages to keep my interest with one unlikely scenario after another, and with many a comic pun in the text. Despite essentially knowing the ending from the start, the process of getting from beginning to end was fresh and surprising, and I enjoyed every minute of this book . It is not a challenging read - as already mentioned, it only took me a few hours - but it is an entertaining one, for which I award 4 stars .
I have just finished this book- Its been on my book shelf for months and months, and for some reason I never thought of reading it, that was until last week, when I was sorting through my books and was thinking which to read next, and the blurb sounded good so I thought I would give it a go, and I'm glad I did!
Milly Brady is in her twenties, and living with her best friend Hettie. She works in a travel agent for a smothering couple who do literally everything together, and a sickeningly in love, but its money...and it pays the bills so what can she do? Her life is pretty un-exciting, that is until she is on the hills in her hometown of Newquay with her boyfriend, when she notices Orla Hart, famous novelist, acting strangely on the cliff side of the notorious suicide spot. Upon deserting her boyfriend-who is in the process of asking Millie to move in with him- she talks Orla out of her depression and suicidal state and convinces her that cheating husband George will be better off with her sticking around so she can stop any mistresses moving in on her territory.
For saving her life, Orla feels she owes Millie, and makes it her mission to make her life better. And Orla needs some inspiration for her new novel...so what better than to combine the two...? Orla gives Millie £5000 to be her muse...and to allow her to write a book about her life, and everything that happens in it. Millie agrees and goes about her ways agreeing to come back once a week to report what has happened. Meanwhile Orla is on a mission to get some romance for the leading lady in her novel and sets Millie up on numerous dates with numerous men, and sending her to occasions and events where she is "bound" to meet someone. But maybe she's already found who she's looking for.
Elsewhere, Hettie is missing her gorgeous boiyfrend Nat who is off working in Scotland in a Michelin Star restaurant for 6 months and with the temptation of old flame Lucas back on the scene theres temptation everywhere, but will she...or will she keep faithful to the love of her life, and wait out the 6 months, conforming to the "celibet" which she and Millie have...no sex for the summer......?
Hugh Emerson's wife died just 10 months ago, and he is in no way looking for love. That is until Millie comes along, a year after he dropped his wallet in Cornwall on a trip with Lousia (his wife), Millie found it under a bush, and all of a sudden he is thrown into all these mixed and confusing feelings. He doesn't want to betray his wife, but he knows he is falling for Millie and doesn't want to break her heart, so he has a choice, dismiss his chance of happiness and run away to grieve, or grab it with both hands, his heart and mind both tell him to go with the latter, but its going to be hard to tear himself away.
The story has around 6 storylines going on at once, the main one been of Millies relationships with all the other characters. But with lots of little sub plots lying around, with everyone having something going on and been connected in some way.
Although you would think the book would be very confusing with all those storylines, but its actually pretty easy to follow and not at all predictable, with a nice little twist at the end of the book! :)
This is a definite must for anyones suitcase or bedside table. A great read which is nice and easy to follow, and its one of those books you don't want to put down!!!
After reading two pretty dreadful excuses for books, I was desperate, gagging even (dunno why I used that expression, I hate it!!) for a decent read. I needed to check whether or not I had fallen foul of literary evils that had decided to rid the world of the enjoyment, the involvement, and the satisfaction that can usually be found within the pages of type that we call books. And so, I checked. And I discovered that indeed, my two previous reads were not the shape of things to come. This book restored my faith in reading again!! ***SPECS AND STUFF*** Hot off the presses of Headline this year, expect this 566 paged paperback to poke you in the part of your brain that controls the excitement and whip you up into a literary frenzy. The whipping, for me, created more of a stir because I actually managed to collect another Mansell novel along with this one FREE. That’s right F R E E! Read my lips. It ain’t often that I will admit to actually having a tinsy winsy soft spot for Tesco’s (long story, and one we won’t go into here, sorry) but on this occasion, I have to say it, I love them. Yep, that’s right, this little baby was in a ‘BOGOF’ offer (I’m not being rude, ‘buy one, get one free’ simple hey …?) and netted me in ‘Kiss’, another, later offering from the pen of Jill Mansell. And what’s more, the R.R.P is currently £5.99, but anybody who pays that kinda money is a fool. A fool I tell you! Get ya butt’s down to the supermarket where every little helps and stick this in your trolley for ¾ of the price. You know it makes sense. The cover, in keeping with Mansell offerings, is a simple vivid background, in this instance a kinda dark ‘turquiosy’ blue with a pair of womens legs on it. Beside the women’s legs is the cutest little Lab pub in sunglasses, awwwwww. But remember, when your maternal instinct runs amok, your hor
mones raging …….. A DOG IS FOR LIFE, NOT JUST FOR THE DURATION OF THIS BOOK!! (And anyway, they soon grow, and don’t stay cute for long, I know, I’ve got two of the buggers!!) Dunno why, maybe Mansell, or Headline likes dogs, but there has now been a couple of her other books with the cute little puppy dog on them? Does the presence of the Andrex dog make the sales figure rocket?? As I said, I dunno? The blurb excites and entices enough for you to pick up this book anyway, and basically, you get what it offers. ISBN: 0 7472 6486 4 ***HOWS IT WRITTEN?*** In keeping with all of the accumulations of amorous adventures that the pages of a Mansell novel titillates, and tantalises our minds with. This book does not fail. In short, Mansell does it again. Its easy to read, and the characters not particularly diverse. They have a role to play, and play it they do. Kinda like the SAS, they get in, they do the job, and they get out again!! Actually, not unlike one of the characters in the book funnily enough? Of course, as with the other 2 or 3 Mansell stories that have had the pleasure to feast my eyes upon, the plot to this one is pretty much predictable. But. And it’s a big but, we have a twist my fellow readers. A big twist. A twist that will make you run through a plethora of emotions before finally settling on my particular favourite, ‘Well, bugger me!!’ Believe me when I say, that unless you wrote this story yourself, you will not see it coming. In fact, the first time you will know anything about it is when it slaps you straight between the eyes with a satisfactory thud indicating that once again, Mansell has managed to dupe her readers into thinking that they ‘know’ what it going to happen. I did, well until the bloody thing hit me that was. After that, I had a fair idea. It starts to get predictable again, but you are still reeling
from the sudden sharp slap of unpredictability that you are constantly on the look out for other slapping incidences. However, you are not in the slightest bit disappointed when they don’t occur. You have been satisfied already, and it wasn’t even anywhere near the end!! We have a touch of humour spattered amongst the pages, but it’s not what you would call side splitting. More of a case of just laughing through recognision as the main characters go from day to day living ordinary lives. There is a whole range of emotions spread out for us in the story line. None are dealt with in any depth however, just enough for you to detect a certain part of the characters lives that you are maybe living? If you haven’t gathered by now, Mansell writes about you and me. Yours and mine. Ordinary people. Living ordinary lives. If you are looking for the razzle and dazzle of Hollywood, I’d look elsewhere? Unless Newquay is the new New York? ***WHAT’S IT ABOUT AND WHO’S IN IT?*** Millie Brady is in the habit of changing lives. Well, not actually in the habit. It’s not a thing she does on a regular basis. She does it twice. And ……. And well, one of them is only really changed cos the first one is changed . Hold on, let me start again. When Millie changes Orla Harts life, she inadvertedly starts the ball of change rolling in her life too. Millies ‘then boyfriend’ is about to pop the big question ….. dun dun dun dun …… no not that big question, he wants them to move in together! Instead of the arms being flung round his neck and the joyous claims of acceptance he felt sure were to be thrown his way, Millie ignores him and dashes from the car. He then drives off in a huff. Ah, men huh………!! Millie wasn’t dashing cos she didn’t know how to say no, but she knew that the lady peering over the s
ide of the cliff with no shoes on and looking decidingly forlorn was not bird watching or looking at the cliff face. Nope, she was about to jump off. The woman, best selling novelist, and wife of an errant husband, Orla Hart is about to end it all. To become fish food. To wipe her existence from the world. Her choice. But an option that Millie will not let her take. Anyway, save her she does. Millie is secretly relieved that she is single again. And looking forward to a peaceful and man-free summer down in Cornwall. However, the person in charge of the life that she has just changed, Orla, has a little something to say about it. And as you do, when finding yourselves in these awkward positions, you don’t say no. Or rather Millie didn’t and so the story line evolves. Although Orla is a best selling novelist, but her work is getting slighted by the critics. She’s not giving her readers what they want. She has to change her style. No more Hollywood and glitzy ritzy characters, she has to write about real people. Let the readers and the critics know that she can change her style, and change it successfully. And so, through a turn of events, and 5 thousand squids later, Millie is Orla’s guinea pig. She is living her life for Orla’s pages of print. Millie’s man free summer becomes a thing of the past as Orla plays matchmaker with some funny, and unexpected results. Well, she needs a story doesn’t she? Millies summer is anything but peaceful. Usually, about here I stick in my favourite snippet from the book, this time I haven’t. It’s not that I’m being lazy or anything, I would love to, but when you read this book, and you really should you know, it will have ruined everything. For my favourite bit is the ‘slapping between the eyes’ piece. And it is one piece you have to read for yourself. Sorry. ***WHO SHOULD
READ IT?*** Any Mansell fan who hasn’t got round to reading this one should have this book next on their list. Get down to Tescos pretty smartish and you can pick two of her books up!! Anybody that wants a light, easy and highly enjoyable book will not be disappointed. The main character is about 25, she has a 25 year olds life, if you are around that age, you will identify with her everyday life problems and glitches. This is a great book to read anytime, anywhere, on the beach or on the bus. I won’t say it’s unputdownable, it’s not, but it has the right level of excitement to let you close the pages and carry on with your lives. Oh, you don’t forget about it when your not reading it though, it as something that makes this stick out in your mind, especially the bit you did not see coming. You’ll be thinking about this for days. ***DID I LIKE IT, AND WILL I BE FEASTING MY PEEPERS ON IT AGAIN*** As a relative new comer to world of Jill Mansell’s novels, this one did, in no way, disappoint. It had all I want from a book. Lets face it, it does makes life a touch harder if a book is unputdownable, (there’s nothing worse than having to leave a story for work or something equally as frustrating is there?) but it doesn’t worry me, or leave me unsatisfied to say that this book wasn’t. It was just right. I didn’t really identify with any of the characters myself, but I know people, family like the people in print that I came to know over the 3 or 4 days I was reading this. No, it had all that I want from a book. The element of predictability that lets me think that I’m in charge. The element of excitement that tells me that I’m not in charge. Another chance for the ‘I’m in charge and I know what going to happen’ scenario to be played again, and then the happy ending. And, it was a happy ending. For
me anyway. I hadn’t just wasted several hours of reading drivel. I hadn’t just closed the last page with despair and frustration. I had turned the last page, and lost a friend.
When Millie Brady saves Orla Hart's life she doesn't realise how drastically it will change her own - not least because the boyfriend who was proposing at the time stormed off in a huff. Actually, Millie's relieved. She's happy to enjoy a man-free summer in Cornwall. But Orla has other ideas. She's determined that Millie should meet the man of her dreams. Trouble is, Millie's taste in men doesn't tally with Orla's.