Review: Clare London – How the Other Half Lives (London Lads #2)

51HXR25hKLLAuthor: Clare London
Reviewer: Sandra
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Genre: Contemporary

Rating: ★★★☆☆ 

Summary:

Compulsive neat freak meets chaotic slob: Can their living space survive the conflict?

Martin Harrison keeps himself to himself and his Central London flat as neat as a new pin. Maybe he should loosen up and enjoy more of a social life, but in his mind, that’s tantamount to opening the floodgates to emotional chaos. He agrees, however, to join the flat-sitting scheme in his building and look after another tenant’s flat in exchange for a similar watch over his when he’s travelling for his work.

A floor away in the same building, Russ McNeely is happy with his life as a freelance cook and a self-confessed domestic slob. He also joins the flat-sitting scheme, both to be neighbourly and to help keep his flat in order, as Russ also travels for his work.

For a while, the very dissimilar men never meet. Martin is horrified at the mess at Russ’s flat, while Russ finds Martin’s minimalist style creepy. But in a spirit of generosity, each of them starts to help the other out by rearranging things in their own inimitable way.

Until the day a hiccup in the schedule brings them face-to-face at last.

Review:

This was pretty freaken adorkable. I actually really liked the first half best where the two men had never even met, yet were communicating through home decorating and sticky notes. It was interesting to only witness the interactions through their conversations with their respective meddling BFF’s.

I did like once they finally met, although I was worried the magic would be gone. They were cute and a tad awkward but clearly had chemistry. I wish we’d seen a bit more of their developing relationship, although for a novella length book it worked to be told they’d been ‘dating’ for a few weeks so that we can jump to the more meaningful moments without it feeling rushed.

The last few chapters didn’t seem necessary though, and I wish it had focused more on them instead of on Russ’s work. While I appreciated bringing the friends back around, I would have preferred a dinner party with more interactions instead of them sitting around talking about what a great couple Russ and Martin are. But that was also all set up for that last line of the book, which was of course perfect. I do love a full circle ending.

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