The Summer Job by Lizzy Dent Book Review*

Thursday, 8 April 2021



Title: The Summer Job
Author: Lizzy Dent
Pages: 330
Publication date: 15th April 2021
Publisher: Viking
Genre: fiction, contemporary, romance

Trigger warnings: alcoholism, gaslighting a child (mentioned)

About the book
Have you ever imagined running away from your life?

Well Birdy Finch didn't just imagine it. She did it. Which might've been an error. And the life she's run into? Her best friend, Heather's.

The only problem is, she hasn't told Heather. Actually there are a few other problems...

Can Birdy carry off a summer at a luxury Scottish hotel pretending to be her best friend (who incidentally is a world-class wine expert)?

And can she stop herself from falling for the first man she's ever actually liked (but who thinks she's someone else)?

Review
You know when you're in the mood for a really cosy, easy read that you can fly through and not think too much about? Well, this is the perfect book for exactly that. The premise is absolutely crazy and a tad bit bonkers, but don't let that put you off, for it's the perfect uplifting, funny and enjoyable story.

I was hooked on this book from the first few pages and I instantly fell in love with Birdy; she's a bit of a mess who doesn't really know what she wants from life and has no interest in trying to find out what that something might be. But above everything else, she was hilarious. I'm talking actually laugh out loud funny. Her one liners are on another level and it certainly made for an entertaining read. Birdy is just one of those characters that you can't help but root for. She's doing a wrong thing but for all the right reasons and it's easy to see how things spiralled out of control for her. One teeny (okay, not so teeny) lie suddenly snowballed and she found herself in an impossible situation, abliet, through her own fault, but never once did she not acknowledge that the situation she found herself in wasn't her own doing. The concept of the story was wild and a bit nuts, but I actually found Birdy a very realistic person who was very easy to warm to and as the story unfolded, we saw many different layers to her character and how she came to be the unmotivated and unambitious person she was at the beginning of the book. I also loved all of the other characters too. None of them felt like 'filler' characters and each of them had their own personality and added something to the story.

I also loved the setting of Loch Dorn in Scotland and Dent did an amazing job at bringing the setting to life with vivid descriptions and somehow capturing that cosy, rural countryside setting.

This whole book was very well written and Dent writes with the ease and storytelling of an author who appears to have written for years. If I had read this book and didn't know it was a debut novel, I would have guessed that the author was already well established. The story flows so well and there's always something happening to keep the reader engaged. The story was neither too boring nor too cheesy, which I think for the contemporary romance genre is very hard to pull off, but Dent did so perfectly. 

There is an underlying message within this story and one I feel like a lot of people will relate to. It's a story about finding yourself and understanding what you want in life. There are definitely some deeper themes running throughout this book that touch upon some difficult subjects, which for me, elevates this story and gives even more depth to these characters.

I loved this story and the whole predicament that Birdy got herself into. I loved the romance aspect too - it felt very natural and Birdy and James were a great match for each other. It was romantic without being TOO cheesy and I was so invested in these two characters. I would highly recommend it if you're looking for something fun, easy and heartwarming.

Verdict: ★★★★★

*This book was sent to me by the publisher, but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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