From Publishers Weekly
This debut novel from Evans (a former editorial director at Penguin UK) opens with a late-twentysomething female British narrator and a crazy family holiday dinner, but quickly distinguishes itself from the usual Bridget Jones-esque fare. At the Walters' cozy Christmas in their crumbling countryside manor, trouble starts when Uncle Mike shows up with a blonde, buxom American wife, and normally affable Tom gets stinking drunk and declares his homosexuality. But then the big news hits: Kepper House-the aforementioned cozy manor-will have to be sold to fund one family member's shady dealings. So protagonist Lizzy Walter-a plucky Londoner nursing a broken heart and contemplating a move to L.A. as a way to leave behind painful memories-sets off on a mission to save the family home. Lizzy juggles her house-saving schemes with her romantic entanglements-she's dating the younger brother of the boy who broke her heart-but it's the familial characters like eccentric Aunt Chin and Chin's younger Australian fiancé, and a mother and father ever-eager to hit the sauce that give the book life and depth. Charts (one rates the "level of weird behavior" of family members, another lists fundraising possibilities) and hyperactive capitalization (Lizzy washes "the Things that Are Too Big to Go in the Dishwasher") skew cutesy, but otherwise the story is set in solid writing that manages to be fun without dipping into dumbed-down frivolity.
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Twentysomething Lizzy Walter is living the good life, working in London at a film--production company and visiting her family's manor in the country whenever she wants a change. Until, still stung over her boyfriend's betrayal, she arrives home for Christmas with her sister Jess and cousin Tom to discover that Keeper House must be sold to pay her adored, but unreliable, Uncle Mike's debts. Her family seems to have accepted the loss of their ancestral home, but she is in denial, so that while they are planning her aunt Chin's wedding and packing up the house, she sequesters herself in her London apartment and broods, using sex as a panacea but refusing to commit to any relationships. In spite of a confusing use of American slang and pop-culture references in a British milieu, Evans' chick-lit debut is an engaging first-person recounting of a watershed six months in one young woman's life. Lynne WelchCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved