I'm going to warn you up front: I may get a little gushy in this post! I'll try not to, but Jill Mansell is one of my very favourite authors. When I was younger (and had a disposable income, LOL) I was wandering around a bookstore looking for something interesting to read. I picked up a copy of Nadia Knows Best by Jill Mansell, read it in one sitting, and was hooked. For those of you not familiar with Jill Mansell, she writes intelligent, heart warming chick-lit, with characters that you can't help but love. I currently own 14 of her books (thanks to e-Bay I have some that are not even currently available in Canada), and have honestly loved each and every one. Recently a few bloggers participated in a blog tour celebrating Jill Mansell's latest North American release, Millie's Fling, and I was thrilled when I won a copy from Julie at Booking Mama's. Millie's Fling is one of the books that I had not yet added to my Mansell collection. I picked it up to read it after I had struggled through the first 100 pages of The White Queen and had found that, despite the great writing style, the book just wasn't for me. I needed to read something that I knew that I would love. And love it, I did.
Orla Hart, the best-selling novelist, has received a scathing review from fellow novelist Christie Carson. Orla is determined to prove that she isn't selling out, and she decides to do that by writing a novel different from her previous ones. She decides to write about real people, doing real things and when she meets Millie in unusal circumstances, she decides that Millie will be perfect as the main character of her newest book. Millie agrees to go along with it, but it seems as if everything is happening to the people around her. Her best friend Hester is torn between two men, her mother takes on a new, unsuitable lover, and her boss seems to bed a different woman every day. Nothing is happening to Millie, though, at least as far as Orla knows. In fact, Millie has met the charming Hugh, who is still getting over the tragic accidental death of his wife eight months before. Although Hugh and Millie have feelings for each other, Hugh is sure that being with another woman is a betrayal to his dead wife's memory, and he tries to deny how he feels. Eventually, Millie and Hugh must decide how much they mean to one another.
If I rated books (which I currently don't) this one would get an easy five out of five, meaning run out and buy this book NOW. This book was hilarious and heartwarming, and the only disappointing thing is that it ended. It was 501 pages of fun! I loved Millie and Hugh, and cheered for them all of the way through. Luke, Millie's boss, was a character all of his own and I was glad to find out that he did have a good heart underneath those leather pants. Hester, Millie's best friend, was overdramatic at times, but really had Millie's best interests at heart when push came to shove. The mix-ups were comical yet everything had a way of working itself out. If you haven't read anything by Jill Mansell yet, this is a great book to start with. You'll pick it up, and you won't be able to put it back down. I guarantee it!