Newest Review: ... 15th July. The premise sounds good enough, right? Emma is a smart, outspoken girl who can appear a little snobbish but definitely means... more
What were you doing on this very day last year?
One Day - David Nicholls
Member Name: lyndsey1989
One Day - David Nicholls
Advantages: Writing style, plot, characters
Disadvantages: It can take a while to get sucked in by the plot
I hadn't heard of this book until the end of last year when I heard that there was being a film adaptation made. I wanted to see the film but if a film is based around a novel I always try to read the novel first because I hate reading a book already knowing the ending! I don't mind watching a film knowing the ending so much because it takes a lot less time. Therefore I was going to order the book when my sister said she was going to order it too so she said I could borrow her copy once she was finished. She couldn't get into the book so I actually got it sooner than anticipated but felt quite sceptical because she didn't find it a good read.
The book begins by giving us a date in the 1980s and we are introduced to Emma Morely and Dexter Mayhew who have just graduated from university the previous day. Emma and Dexter knew of each other but weren't close friends but last night after a lot of alcohol they had somehow managed to spend the night together.
The following chapters take us to the exact same day over the coming years and we learn what Emma and Dexter are up to each year. Dexter becomes a high flying TV presenter whilst Emma is working in a tacky Mexican restaurant despite longing to be a writer. The pair still communicate with one another but both can see that their lives have taken very different paths.
As the book progresses we learn what Dexter and Emma do over the next fifteen years of their lives. Each chapter represents a different year but every one is focussed on one single date in July. The pair go through marriage, affairs, bereavement and parenthood but they are always in contact with one another, forming a friendship that stood the test of time.
As I said above I was quite sceptical about this book because my sister had said she couldn't get into it. My favourite kind of book is a very easy going chick lit and for the first few chapters of One Day I did find myself thinking that I wasn't exactly getting sucked in by the plot but by the end of the third chapter I was absolutely hooked and couldn't wait to read on.
Initially I thought the fact that the book only focussed on one day of each year might pose a problem because important occasions and events would need to be left out. However, I really liked the way the book only looked at one day because it meant with each new chapter there was so much more to discover about Dexter and Emma and as a reader I could learn what the past year had brought for them.
I really liked both of the main characters but did find Dexter a little selfish and self-centred initially as he did let fame go to his head. However, I thought Emma was very down to earth, realistic, hardworking and loveable. There was one thing that she did in the book that I didn't agree with personally but everyone has their flaws!
To begin with I thought I could predict the ending however although what I thought would happen did happen, a shock to the plot occurs after this that I was definitely not expecting and actually made me gasp when I read it! The plot flows very well and because each chapter moves forwards a year it does mean there is plenty to discover throughout the book. At the close of the book the plot timeshifts back to the day after graduation and we learn a little more about Dexter and Emma when they first met which I thought was really nice as it tied up many loose ends.
David Nicholls writing style is laid back, informal and very easy to follow. The way that he wrote about both Dexter and Emma in first person made me really understand them both and by the end of the book I felt as though I knew both of them very well. The chapters were usually longer than a chapter from my usual reads but I found it easy to stop and start halfway through a chapter without any confusion. The chapters couldn't have been made shorter in any way because you must remember one chapter is the whole of the information provided for each year!
I really enjoyed this book and found that I was always keen to pick it up and read a little more when I had a spare twenty minutes. The concept of focussing on one single day per year was new to me but I found it very interesting and original and liked the way that both Dexter's and Emma's lives had progressed a lot since the last chapter. Although I initially thought the plot was going to have a predictable ending as I said above there was a big shock in store for me! I thought this was a very good twist to the plot as I wasn't expecting it at all.
The book is written by David Nicholls.
My book was published in 2011 as a reprint edition to celebrate the film release but the novel was first published in 2009.
The book is currently available with two covers, one is predominantly orange whilst the other (which I have) has a still from the film.
The book has 464 pages.
It is published by Hodder paperbacks.
The book is currently available from Amazon for £3.86 with the DVD priced at £9.99
I really enjoyed this book and found it a refreshing change due to its interesting layout. The plot was full of interesting moments and events and I found some aspects of the plot shocking and surprising. The two main characters are both very realistic and loveable and this is a book that I wholeheartedly recommend to any fans of drama, comedy or relationship novels.
Summary: Fantastic read