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The Single Girl's To-do List - Lindsey Kelk

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Author: Lindsey Kelk / Format: Paperback / Date of publication: 09 June 2011 / Genre: Modern & Contemporary Fiction / Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers / Title: The Single Girl's To-do List / ISBN 13: 9780007345632 / ISBN 10: 0007345632

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    7 Reviews
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      31.10.2013 23:02
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      Not one of my favourites...

      My friend recently lent me this book. I hadn't heard of the author but the book title was intriguing and I was expecting a fluffy chick lit book.

      The main character is Rachel Summers, a makeup artist, who has been with her boyfriend Simon five years. They have a mortgage together and Rachel thinks that babies and marriage are the next steps for them. That is until Simon tells her that he thinks things aren't working out, and disappears off into the night.

      Another one of Rachel's loves are her 'to do' lists. So when she finds herself unexpectedly single, her friends convince her to start a single girl's 'to do' list. Of course the usual breakup 'must do's' are on the list (haircut, makeover) but there are other items added by her friends to remove Rachel from her comfort zone.

      The more items that Rachel ticks off her list, the more she changes as a person. Will she finally learn to love life as a single girl?

      I wanted to like this book, but I found my concentration waned about halfway through and while I wanted to finish the book, my heart wasn't completely in it. While I'd imagine that the aim of this book is to show all the changes that Rachel has made and how they have enriched her as a person, he speed at which everything happens confuses me somewhat, and the whole idea that 'redheads' are fiery and have more fun is somewhat clichéd.

      Some of the items on the list annoyed me. One was to get a tattoo, as her 'ex had never liked them'. Her friends also surprised her and took her to get one and had the design all picked out (okay so they all got them, but still). While I think that changes following a breakup are a good thing, I'm not so convinced by permanent ones. The fact that they forced her friend into getting one too also didn't sit right with me. Though, as a lot of the book seems to involve people being coerced into things that they are not sure they want to do, maybe I shouldn't have been surprised at that addition to the story.

      While there are some glamourous touches through the book and the odd curveball, the book does struggle under the realisation that the subject matter is a bit dull.

      If I'm totally honest, I think the reason why I didn't like this book was that it was a bit boring. I liked the idea of the list and it was well executed, but there was something I didn't like about the character of Rachel. The characterisation was weak and a bit predictable in places. Most of the characters seemed to lurk in the background, and while there are flashes of personality occasionally, they soon fade into the background.

      The story did seem to pick up slightly towards the end and I found that the last few chapters held my attention more that the rest of the book, though the ending was slightly predictable and I felt that it also slightly undermined the lesson that seemed to run just under the surface of the book, but this is only a personal opinion.

      I don't think I would read this book again as I found the book slightly predictable in places, even though the ending did redeem the book somewhat. If you're looking for an easy to read, slightly clichéd book, then this is for you, otherwise I wouldn't bother.

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        05.09.2012 23:45
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        A great read

        The Single Girl's To Do List is a chick-lit book by British Author Lindsey Kelk, The book was released in the United Kingdom in 2011 and so it is fairly recent. I managed to get my copy as part of a '3 books for £5' offer from The Works, which I thought was excellent value for money.

        The Plot: Meet recently-dumped Rachel who has just split up from her long-term partner. Rather than become down in the dumps, with the help of her two best friends Mathew and Emelie, they come up with a 'to do' list which Rachel has to complete. Such 'to do's' include: a bungee jump, catch up with her first crush, visit a country she has never been to and get a tattoo. Will Rachel be able to tick them all off? Read The Single Girl's To Do List to find out!

        I enjoyed the plot as I found it very entertaining and exciting; I just kept wanting to keep reading on. I found it difficult to put the book down. When going back to the book (after putting it down for a few hours), I did find it extremely easy to get back into it and so didn't need to waste time re-reading sections.

        I found the characters to be very likeable. Rachel was my favourite character as I felt as though I could really connect with and that I got to know her really well. I thought that she was a lovely character; so normal, likeable and just easy to relate to. I liked her friends too - they were different and each brought something different to the story. I felt as though I was part of the friendship group as I was reading the book which was good.

        Lindsey Kelk is one of my all-time favourite authors. I have read a few of her books (I Heart Hollywood, I Heart New York and I Heart Paris) and I just have to say I love her books - they really are the best! As a chick lit fan, they are right up my street; romantic and funny!! Lindsey has a great way with words - she makes great use of descriptive language - her sentences are witty, well put together and funny. Her writing flows naturally and isn't forced making this book an easy read - perfect for the beach!

        I would definitely recommend this book! It's such a fun read! I found myself laughing out loud several times! If you like chick lit books then you will love this!

        Thanks for reading!
        September 2012
        Xdonzx / xd-o-n-z-x

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        26.04.2012 21:39
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        I loved it and would totally recommend it!

        I am a big fan of Lindsey Kelk. She has written only a few books so far, but I have enjoyed them immensely and so when I saw her newest one available for download on Amazon for £2.99, I bought it straight away. Lindsey Kelk's other novels so far have all been from the 'I Heart . . .' series, which up to now include 'I Heart New York', 'I Heart Vegas', 'I Heart Hollywood' and 'I Heart Paris'. This one however is not from the same series; Kelk has branched out a bit, although admittedly not too far. 'Single Girl's To-Do List' is a fun and easy read that will no doubt cheer you up.

        The story is centred around Rachel Summers, who is a twenty-something girl who loves to write a list. I totally related to Rachel straight away because I love to write a list, albeit not as obsessively as she does, but it is one of the many things that made me warm to her. The story begins with Rachel happily living with her long term boyfriend in a cosy flat in London, paid for by her enviable job as a make-up artist to the stars. As is usually the case with this kind of story, this lifestyle quickly unravels when her boyfriend announces one day that he no longer loves her and their lifestyle and he leaves. However, unlike the norm for this kind of story, Rachel doesn't run weep relentlessly into her pillow or find her real self in a little obscure little village in the middle of nowhere. What actually happens is her two best friends write her a new list, and so comes 'The Single Girl's To-Do List' . . .

        I loved the slight twist to the girl falls in love, girl has her heart trodden on, girl gets revenge story that this book gave. It is a subtle difference to the norm, but it did feel quite original when I was reading it. The idea of the list gave lots of scope for Rachel to do all the things that you'd love to do, like just take a flight to a random city, hook up with someone that you let go by a long time ago or do a bungee jump. OK so that last one might be your idea of hell just like me, but it's the idea of doing something totally out of your comfort zone and rewarding that this book really taps into.

        The list is written by Rachel's best friends; Emilie and Matthew. Emilie is a French Canadian stunner who loves a good time and has never had a long term boyfriend by choice and Matthew is the gay best friend that looks after you and all the girls want to be friends with. Lindsey Kelk really knows how to write likeable characters and particularly supporting characters. She always writes strong and fun supporting characters who help make the story so readable. She has done it again here because before they even write the list you know that they are going to make it extravagant and that they are going to make her stick to it. The way they are written means that it is totally believable that they have the contacts to travel the world on a whim and the cheek to contact someone's schoolmate on Facebook without that someone knowing. If you are a fan of the 'I Heart . . .' books, you'll be pleased to know that one of the best supporting characters from that series makes a cameo appearance in this book too!

        The book is available on Amazon in a few different formats. Like I said, the Kindle version is £2.99. The paperback version is available brand new for £4.50 and used from 33p plus postage. There is also an unabridged audio version available for £10.49. Whichever way you purchase it, I am sure you will enjoy it and so it'll definitely be worth it!

        I was a bit worried about whether Kelk would be able to move away from her series successfully, but she totally managed and I loved this book as much as I did the others. I would absolutely recommend it because it is a fun read that you will be disappointed to reach the end of.

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        27.08.2011 15:09

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        A fab book, I'd definitely read it again and again!

        Although this book may not be a classic novel, it sure is a great girly read! I bought this originally because I love reading funny, girly books - typical girl, maybe? I enjoy that kind of genre because they give me an escape, are fun to read and don't take too much brain power!

        At first I was a little slow at getting into this book, as I was desperate for this 'to-do' list to appear, but after I got over my impatience, it really is a great read from the start! Following Rachel (the narrator) and her two best friends, Emelie and Matthew, as they try and get Rachel out of her dumpee's slump, using drastic techniques such as tattooing and bungee jumping, and into living life as a single girl. It's a little hard to believe that 95% of this book is set over a 2 week period, however that isn't really a crucial detail when you're focusing on the hilarious moments and hurdles the trio have to overcome.

        It really is a great read if you only want something light, and if you enjoy chick-lit, you'll thoroughly enjoy this!

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        24.07.2011 22:40

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        A brilliant read.

        I purchased my copy of 'The Single Girl's To-Do List' at a WH Smiths at the airport as a last minute holiday read. I only picked it up because it was part of an offer but boy am I glad I did. It was such an excellent read, I finished it in a day sat by the pool!

        It's an autobiographical style book that denotes the adventures of a newly single woman experiencing new, exciting things and journeys with her two best friends to help her along the way. For a truly funny, emotional, girly read, this is the book for you.

        Since reading 'The Single Girl's To-Do List' I've read Lindsey Kelks 'I Heart...' series which are equally as enjoyable.

        This book leaves you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside and makes you want to write your own to do list! It is really worth a read and am glad I picked it up on a whim before my summer holiday.

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        16.07.2011 11:32
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        A good stand alone novel from Lindsey Kelk

        Rachel Summers loves making to-do lists. She feels like her life is in order if everything is written down, and she knows exactly what she's doing. However, when Rachel is suddenly dumped, she realises that definitely wasn't on her list and doesn't know what to do. She calls in the help of her two best friends Emilie and Matthew to help her get her life back on track, and they create a brand new list - The Single Girl's to-do list. Rachel finds herself signed up to do some crazy things she'd never normally do - sky diving, talking to strange men in bars... but soon she starts to have fun and realises this is what life is all about. The list helps Rachel to start to cure her broken heart, but is she going to meet the one along the way?

        I love Lindsey Kelk's 'I Heart...' series, so I was really excited when I found out Kelk was bringing out a stand alone novel. Kelk has a way of writing that really makes me laugh, and gets you right into the characters she writing about so I hoped this would continue throughout this book. Yes, it's pretty much chick lit by numbers - girl gets dumped, girl has a makeover and meets fabulous guy, we all know what's going to happen pretty much but there's something nice about that, about knowing what's going on and it makes for an easy and enjoyable read - just what I want when I've had a busy day with a manic 5 year old boy, and I need to read something that isn't going to be taxing. Too many people slag off chick lit, but try it first, you might be surprised.

        Anyway, back to the book in hand. I have to confess I wasn't instantly enamoured by this book as I usually am with the 'I Heart...' series, and it did take a little while for me to get into the book which I felt was a bit of a shame. Perhaps it was my own reluctance to get used to a new character or something, I don't know, but once I got going it was okay and I was eager to pick the book up at every opportunity and read on. Rachel is a great character, and finds herself suddenly single after years of being in a stable relationship. She doesn't know much about the dating scene and feels lost, a feeling a lot of women (like me!) will be able to relate to, so instantly Kelk has tried to find some common ground with her readers there which I like - I'm sure a lot of women can relate to Rachel and her story in some way. She's a good character, I liked her and felt sorry for her, although of course things quickly go to plan for her unlike in real like, but that's why it's fiction I suppose.

        Rachel's best friends Emilie and Matthew (the required gay best friend of course) were great characters, and really kept the book alive and flowing when Rachel was having her down moments. Rachel works as a make up artist so I was expecting a bit about make up in the book but to be honest, it is barely mentioned and there was nothing overly technical about it in the book at all, it's only really there to give Rachel a job. I did find Rachel's makeover a bit too typical and expected, and how all the guys suddenly thought she was gorgeous, putting a bit too much importance on appearances for my liking but I suppose it's reflective of real life so I just went with it. The book is mostly set in London, but does travel the US for a bit and I really enjoyed these scenes at the end, perhaps my favourite of all actually. Do look out for an 'I Heart....' character cameo which I thought was a fantastic touch!

        I think this is a good stand alone novel and shows us Kelk can do more than just write about Angela Clarke and her 'I Heart...' adventures. The cover to me is fantastic, and certainly encapsulates all the book is - fun, bright and a bit of a laugh. It's got a good cast of characters who make sure there is always something going on, and give you lots of giggles along the way. For me, it was very formulaic and I wish something had happened to throw a spanner in the works, but as it was, they didn't so I just enjoyed what was there. I am sure people who dislike chick lit won't like this book, after all, it is typical chick lit but I really enjoyed it for what it is, a fun and light hearted look at love and moving on, and Kelk's story telling is enjoyable to read, she paints a good picture with her words. A great book to sling in your beach bag for your summer hols!

        ISBN: 978-0007345632. Published by Harper on June 9th 2011. Pages: 400. 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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        14.06.2011 13:30
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        A Lindsey Kelk book not in the 'I heart' series

        I have loved all of Lindsey Kelk's 'I heart' series so as soon as I knew she was bringing this book out I was very excited indeed. The day it hit the shelves of Tesco on the 9th of June this 2011 I was there buying it. For me it was even better because it was released as a small paperback, so none of this waiting around for it to go from hardback so I would buy it. I couldn't wait to make a start on it so it was that very same day that I started it after I had finished reading Jane Costello's latest book.

        The author:
        Lindsey is an English author who now lives in New York. She has written four books, three of which are in the 'I heart' series, plus one short story. She has another book in the 'I heart' series due out in December of 2011.

        Plot:
        Rachel Summers likes to make lists and tick them off each day. However her current list is consisting of a great job, her long term boyfriend and owning her flat and doesn't include getting dumped by said boyfriend. However when exactly that happens, her best friends Emelie and Matthew are on hand to teach her how to be single and in true Rachel style, she finds having a list of things to do in teaching her how to be single will be the best way forward. Once the top ten things have been established, it is just a case of ticking them off. However some things are easier said than done. Before long she is in full swing of getting her list all ticked off and she is suddenly realising how much she is learning as well as understanding that love is something she can have if she can find the right man......

        Characters:
        When I was reading the book, I felt that Rachel was such a fun character. I like how quirky she is and that she talks to herself in her head. Probably very much like many people all over the world do but, actually reading her thoughts made the book very interesting. I liked that she was willing to take chances as well as it made her seem like somebody you would want to hang out with and a person you could really have a giggle with. I think it was also easy for me to relate to her too as I also like making lists for everything so I could understand how this made her feel better!
        Matthew and Emelie as Rachel's friends are brilliant. Both are caring for their friend and have a laugh and are people you can really like. The author has done a great job at making them interesting and likable so that as a set of friends they are fun to read about. I like that they're a really close knit group as they know each other really well and the characters of both Matthew and Emelie are very different and so each bring something to the story in their own way.
        Also featuring in the book is a variety of men including Rachel's ex-boyfriend, an old school crush and a work colleague. These each have their own part to play and I felt the author did well in creating an image of these people and how they relate to the story.




        Price:
        As per usual for me, I bought this book in Tesco as part of the two books for £8 deal so, the book cost me £4. I think firstly for a brand new book this is good value anyone but, considering that I enjoyed the book so much it is even better value! You can still pick this up as part of the same deal and is also for sale in many other places such as Waterstones, Amazon and ASDA.


        Overall opinion:
        I have really enjoyed this book and considering it wasn't in the 'I heart series' I wasn't sure if I would enjoy it as much as I just knew I wanted to get it and try it. However it exceeded my expectations as I truly enjoyed it and I didn't want to put it down. I enjoyed the story and the characters and loved the things that went on in the book. The author really knows how to bring characters to life and make a story interesting. She knows how to keep the pace moving without missing important bits out either, so I was never reading a section thinking that it needed to move on or that it was a pointless bit which can sometimes happen when an author decides to put too much information in!
        I think for the money it was well worth it and I am glad I bought it for my collection. Now I am already looking forward to the next 'I heart' book which is due out in December although I am thinking that seems an awful long way away at this current moment in time! However, I have plenty of books to get through in the meantime, that I am sure will last me until I can next get my fix from a Lindsey Kelk book.

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