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Tess Jarvis' rules for life have always been somewhat relaxed!
1.Never go to bed before your last guest has left - Tess and Gina's flat has a jacuzzi so it's the obvious location for a party ! every night
2.Make great friends and keep them close - Though not actually in your bed.Tess and Jim's claims that they are 'just good friends' has everyone's eyes rolling.
3.Look on the bright side of life - After all it could be so much worse.Tess's job interviewing the nation's catastrophes proves this every day.
4.Don't wait for the weekend to wear your fancy knickers - Although be warned, this can lead to all manner of messes! Tess has always been one to wing it but she's fast realizing that her bank of blag is running out of funds.
At 28, is it time to grow up? Maybe having a baby with your best friend isn't the best way to start!
One Thing Led To Another is Katy Regan's debut novel. One Thing Led To Another is based loosely on Katy's own experience of having a baby with a friend. It tells the story of Tessa and Jim who are friends who occassionally sleep together. Unfortunately Tess ends up pregnant and the story begins....
I really enjoyed One Thing Led To Another. Usually when books say they are hilariously funny they usually aren't but One Thing Led To Another had me laughing out loud a few times. I thought the plot was new and unique compared to other chick lit books and thought Katy's execution and writing style was brilliant.
I loved Tess and Jim's easy friendship. I felt they complemented each other as well as being able to take the mickey out of each other. I thought Tess was a well-written character and I enjoyed the easiness of the first person narrative. I also liked the way Jim wanted to be a father even if it was a total surprise. I also liked how Katy portrayed Tess and Jim's relationship. It was real and Katy kept us guessing throughout the entire novel. One of the characters said they were like Ross & Rachel on Friends and that's exactly - EXACTLY - what they were like.
I enjoyed all of the minor characters, too. Vicky and Gina, Tess and Jim's other best friends, I liked how they each had their own troubles and managed to resolve them. Tess' mum and dad, it was great to read about a father and daughter who are incredibly close. Then there's Laurence who was quite irritating. I knew there was more to him that met the eye.
I thought Katy wrote about Tess' pregnancy very well and found the novel just kept going along at a briliant pace. The ending was brilliant and for the last few chapters I was rushing to finish it to see if just maybe we would get the ending I was hoping for!
That's where the novel differs from Katy's experience, the ending but I'm not complaining!
I also enjoyed the paragraphs at the beginning of each chapter telling us about other women and their experiences of having a baby.
It was definitely an enjoyable and engaging debut and I sincerley hope Katy Regan is writing a second novel.
Also posted at http://chicklitreviews.wordpress.com
Tess Jarvis has a fairly easy followable guide to life:
live life to the full
Look on the bright side of life
Learn from past mistakes and
Make great friends and keep them close
Learn to drive and never wear fancy knickers mid week
Expect the unexpected....
but that all changes when she accidendly becomes pregnant by her best friend Jim Ashworth or otherwise known as her 'friend with benefits'!
Although Tess and Jim have decided to keep and raise the baby - without becoming romantically involved - this tracks Tess in her journey of friendships and relantionship and finally taking that leap of growing up whilst preparing herself for single motherhood and dealing with the emotions and questions having a baby brings.
This was a lovely, funny and easy read book and the lead character was likeable and especially for me, easy to relate too.
This book is a credit to Kathy Regan
When Tess Jarvis and Jim Ashworth drunkenly sleep together neither of them expects that it will result in a baby. But that's exactly what happens, and Tess is in complete shock over her unexpected pregnancy. Both Tess and Jim want to stay friends with no romantic involvement but don't like the confused looks people give them when they try to explain their situation. Tess, with the help of her friends, has to try to come to terms with single parenthood, and has to do a little growing up of her own.
Pregnancy is a very common theme in women's fiction these days - from IVF, to women getting pregnant on the sly and unplanned pregnancies. But One Thing Led To Another has a different slant on the issue, and perhaps one which sits well in our modern times as well - a baby with a best friend after a suprise 'union' shall we say! This book is actually based loosely on author Katy Regan's personal experience of having a baby with her own best friend, and the relationship that followed. The book really benefits from her experience with brilliant writing, real emotion and realistic characters all the way through.
The book starts at the beginning of Tess' pregnancy, although she doesn't actually know it yet! She's an instantly likeable character, stuck in a bit of a rubbish job as journalist on a magazine covering the 'real life' sob stories, sharing a house with best mate Gina and occasionally getting together with other best friend Jim Ashworth, who is unknowingly about to become the daddy to Tess' child. The discovery of her pregnancy is done with real humour, and actually made me laugh out loud which was a great start! From there on, the laughs kept coming and Regan's easy writing style really allows the reader to get into the story, and makes the book impossible to put down!
The story's very believable and this is what allowed me to get so into this book, without a doubt. I really enjoyed Jim's reaction, and I was pleased that Regan chose to write Jim as she did as he is a lovely character, and the on-going and changing relationship between Jim and Tess was really fascinating to read. The twists and turns along the way kept the momentum going and stopped the book from getting at all boring, instead keeping the reader engaged. It wasn't easy to see how it would work out for Tess and Jim, and Regan certainly didn't make it a smooth ride, leaving you guessing almost up until the final pages about how it would all end. But the most enjoyable thing about the book is the realistic insight into pregnancy, and having a baby with a friend. Regan really goes into Tess' emotions and so the book has such a believability to it, there are points where you feel you could be reading Regan's own life story. It really is inspiring, as well as being funny and poignant.
The pace of the book was just right, and it seemed to move through Tess' pregnancy at a good pace, and luckily without too many characters. So many novels are ruined, I believe, through having too many characters but Regan keeps it to just Tess, Jim, their friends Vicky and Gina, and Tess' family. Others get a mention but aren't too vital to the plot and just work well as minor characters. Also, the book is written in the first person and allows you to get to the heart of Tess, almost living her pregnancy, hormones and emotions with her because of the emotive and compelling writing style. The narrative is really enjoyable; you can tell Regan has a background in journalism (she wrote a column based on her own pregnancy for Marie Claire) because her writing just flows, and reads so well.
This is women's fiction at its best, and I would expect this book to be a real hit with lovers of the genre. It takes a somewhat overdone subject and puts a new spin on it, injecting a little humour and plenty of emotion into the mix just to make it that bit more appealing to the reader. Add in loveable characters, a wonderful heroine and you have a real recipe for success. For a debut novel, this is really brilliant and I really hope Regan goes on to write more in this genre - Regan and the Women's fiction genre are a match made in heaven! Definitely recommended - light-hearted, funny and a great unputdownable read!
ISBN: 978-0007277377. Published by Harper Collins in February 2009. Amazon is currently selling for £3.00.
This review has previously appeared on www.thebookbag.co.uk
Thank you for reading.