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The Accidental Proposal - Matt Dunn

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Genre: Fiction / Author: Matt Dunn / Paperback / 416 Pages / Book is published 2011-02-17 by Simon & Schuster Ltd

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    Your dooyooMiles Miles

    3 Reviews
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      24.04.2011 18:49
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      Fun and lighthearted read

      Your wedding day should be one of the happiest of your life shouldn't it? As Ed Middleton's big day approaches though, he can't help thinking that it might just turn out to be the worst. He thinks his fiancée Sam might be having an affair; there's a chance that he was unfaithful to her on his stag night about which he remembers very little; and to cap it all, he's not really sure that Sam really proposed to him anyway! It's either going to be a match made in Heaven or a recipe for disaster.

      Edward Middleton seems like a pretty decent guy. He always stops to buy a Big Issues from Billy, a local homeless man and he takes his elderly widowed neighbour shopping once a week. These are some of the reasons why his girlfriend, Sam, loves him so much. One night, after a friend's wedding, Sam asks Ed if he would also like to get married to which Ed enthusiastically replies 'yes'. However, the following morning, whilst nursing his hangover, he cannot work out if it was a hypothetical question or an actual proposal. His best mate Dan is no help at all and is quite incredulous that anyone should ever want to marry Ed.

      It soon emerges though that it must have been an actual proposal as a date is set and the registry office booked. Ed is a bit perturbed that Sam only wants a quiet event and wonders if her heart is really in it. Then, when she starts acting quite secretively and he spots her with a good looking man that he does not know, he starts to fear the worst. Plagued by insecurities, Ed struggles to believe that Sam can really love him and that she is not having an affair with someone else. Matters are made ten times worse when Ed is led astray by Dan on his stag night and wakes up the next morning with the guilty feeling that he has behaved badly. His decent nature dictates that he should confess all to Sam, but as he is suffering from acute memory loss he is not sure exactly what he is confessing to.

      There are so many misunderstandings in this book that, although at first they seem quite amusing, they actually become a bit tedious. I found it hard to believe that Ed was quite as naïve as was made out, especially as it seemed fairly obvious to the reader what Sam was really up to. Also, much of the book seemed to be spent in the local pub with Ed and Dan discussing what might be happening over a few pints. Although some of these conversations were entertaining, and also reminded me of the TV series 'Men Behaving Badly', I couldn't help feeling that they were going over the same old ground all the time.

      There's nothing really wrong with The Accidental Proposal though. It is a light-hearted easy read told with much humour. Ed is an extremely likeable character and it is easy to be on his side and hope that everything turns out well in the end. I liked the fact that he tells the story and the way he shares his thoughts with the reader. I just felt that the book was too long though. I feel that it merits about three hundred pages instead of the four hundred that it actually covers as this would have cut down on all the repetition and kept my interest a little more.

      The Accidental Proposal is currently available on Amazon for only £3.92.

      This review has previously appeared under my name at www.thebookbag.co.uk

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        20.03.2011 21:10
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        A chick lit book by Matt Dunn

        Always one to be buying books; I bought this in Tesco as part of their on-going offer of two books for £8. The reason I chose this was simply because I needed another to go with the one I had my eye on and after reading the first chapter whilst stood there in store, I decided it already had me interested enough to buy so it came along home with me to grace my book shelves!


        The author:
        Matt Dunn is an English author who currently lives in Spain. An ex newspaper columnist he has written five other books besides this one. I had never read anything by this author until this book but, he gets a lot of praise from various women's magazines and other chick lit authors.



        The plot:
        Edward has just got hitched! Well.....he thinks he has, as his girlfriend Sam asked him and he said yes but, now he's unsure whether it was a general wondering from her rather than a proposal? So he decides if he gets planning underway then he'll soon find out but, as the day gets closer and closer and his girlfriend starts having secretive meetings and phone calls, it makes him a little uneasy. Throw in his ex-girlfriend Jane shows up and starts causing him bother and on top of that Dan, his best man, is damn sure he'll have a stag night to remember! So overall Ed feels a little like the accidental proposal is maybe exactly that and possibly him and Sam shouldn't really be tying the knot or is he just getting himself into knots over nothing?



        Characters:
        I really liked the main character of Edward because he is basically such a nice guy! I like the fact that he is such a normal, down to earth, person, with real insecurities and the type of person who I could imagine being friends with in real life. I like that because he is a character who has been created to be a nice person, it is easy to like him and want everything to go well for him. I like that he is a man who has principles and he is somebody I can relate too because of that.
        Dan is a character that is actually quite amusing to read about as he comes across as a bit of a womaniser but, he is so stupid sometimes that it is hilarious to read some of the things he comes out with. I think, that having him as Edwards best friend works really well because he is a total opposite and the fact that Dan gets the wrong end of the stick a lot of the time provides many amusing conversations between them.



        Price:
        I bought my copy in Tesco as part of their buy two books for £8 deal. So it cost me £4 per book which is a good deal for a brand new book. The RRP on this book is usually £6.99 but, you can still pick it up on offer and on various other sites at slightly lower than the RRP.


        Overall opinion:
        I wasn't sure how much I would enjoy the book; all I knew was, from that first chapter I read whilst stood in Tesco's, I had enjoyed it enough to buy, so I thought I may as well make a start on it and I have to say I wasn't disappointed. As soon as I got going I couldn't stop and finished the book in no time at all. The writing was easy to get into as there were no fussy drawn out sections or descriptions and just a good storyline and easy flowing text.
        I liked that the characters worked so well together and I also enjoyed how the two main characters interacted together too as their conversations were so typical of two male friends especially when in the pub and a bit intoxicated!
        Overall this book was an enjoyable read. Not too long a book at just over 400 pages long it is an ideal summer read to enjoy in the garden or on your holidays and if you can pick it up whilst it is still on offer then it really is a bargain price too. Definitely an author I will now be on the lookout for in the future and I will also be picking up all his previous books to try.

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          05.03.2011 18:51
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          Another great read from Matt Dunn

          Ed Middleton is back, and he's an engaged man. Well, sort of. Actually, he isn't sure whether girlfriend Sam actually meant to propose to him or not, and his best friend Dan has decided he's got to find out once and for all. Once Ed has determined the fact that Sam does indeed want to marry him, he has the problem of organising a wedding that is going to suit the both of them. Then there's the added problem of what exactly went on on Ed's stag night - neither Dan or Ed can remember a thing, yet signs are that something untoward went on. What on earth has Ed been up to this time, and is he actually going to make it up the aisle with Sam in the end?

          Matt Dunn has quickly become of my favourite chick-lit authors, and always offers something brilliant and funny for a male perspective, a fresh view in chick lit I have to say! Matt has written about the characters of Ed and Dan twice before, in The Ex-Boyfriend's Handbook and Ex-Girlfriend's United, both of which were hilarious and so I was thrilled to learn he was bringing them back for a (probably final!) outing. The cover has broken away from the other two which is somewhat of a shame to those who like their matching covers but I quite like the fun and carefree look of the new one, it certainly stands out with its bright blue and knitted imagery. I was just hoping that this third outing for Ed and Dan wouldn't be disappointed, and of course I was right!

          Ed has been happy with girlfriend Sam for a long time, and finally feels its time to take the next step. However, he is a bit confused when he thinks he has got engaged to Sam, but isn't entirely sure whether she meant to ask him to marry her or not. However, thanks to the "brilliant" advice of his best friend Dan, he decides not to just come out with it and ask Sam if she wants to marry him, he has to go about in a completely awkward and ridiculous way which of course is absolutely hilarious to read. You have to wonder why exactly Ed listens to a word Dan says, what with his awful track history with women of course, but the consequences are just brilliant.

          I think these two characters work perfectly together because they are both such opposites and Dunn's comic dialogue between the pair flows so easily it is a pleasure to read. Ed is a genuinely nice bloke, a good boyfriend but he makes some silly decisions based on the advice of sage Dan. Of course, these are always done with good intentions but rarely end up that way. The scenes at the hotel and nightclub are brilliant, so funny and I really did find myself laughing out loud at the capers the boys manage to get themselves into. As I said, Dunn's writing is very easy to read and the comedy is just perfect - not over the top but enough to make you really laugh like I did. Ed and Dan do make a perfect partnership though, and if Dunn chooses not to bring these characters back for another outing, I for one will definitely miss them!

          Again, the book is set in Brighton and you really get a feel for the place as you read along. The book is written in the first person from Ed's perspective, so you can really get into the mindset of him, and indeed the comedy from his point of view. It's almost funnier because you can see Ed's hesitation in most things, and while we all know he shouldn't go along with everything that happens, it's funnier when he does because of the consequences! Yes, the scenarios are probably a bit unbelievable, but I for one enjoy a book that is a bit escapist and funny, and of course when there is comedy involved, there's always an element of exaggeration which has to be there for the story to work.

          I find Dunn's books are always very funny and enjoyable, and The Accidental Proposal certainly lives up to my expectations. It is great being reunited with the characters of Ed and Dan again, but I think this is a book you can enjoy whether you've read the previous 2 books in the series or not. I loved every page, and even though I wasn't sure how it was all going to end up for poor Ed, I found myself rooting for him as usual, but also rooting for Dan as well, he's got a heart of gold bless him! As I said, if this is the last outing for these characters, it's a good one and would be a nice ending, but I like to think there is room to catch up with Ed and Dan again one day. It's very well written, funny, enjoyable and will have you laughing out loud - what more can you ask for?!

          ISBN: 978-1847395245. Published by Simon&Schuster in February 2011. Pages: 416. RRP: £6.99.

          Thank you to the publishers for sending me a copy to review for http://chicklitreviews.com

          Thank you for reading.

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