Author: Emily Phillips
Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton
A hugely funny, searingly honest comedy about what to expect when you’re not expecting.
Olivia and Felix are trying for a baby. They even moved to the suburbs in anticipation of their future family. But despite approaching her cycle and their sex life with military precision, there’s still no sign of what felt like the sure next step, whilst friends’ broods seem to be growing by the week. Meanwhile, vying for a promotion at work under the (very attentive) watch of a new boss sends Olivia down a dangerous road of risking it all. Does a happy ever after, she starts to question, even have to include a baby?
I loved this heartfelt but very funny novel about not just ‘trying’ for a baby but also love, life and friendship in the modern world. Although I’m not trying for a baby myself (or ever have I been), and don’t even have many friends with kids, it didn’t affect my enjoyment at all as I can sort of tell how it feels to try and juggle being a ‘modern female’ and all its ‘demands’! I hugely identified with Olivia and her changing feelings, from being completely overwhelmed, to heartbroken, to (at times) acting quite stupidly! At times I could almost feel Olivia’s sadness and desperation myself; her emotions almost bounce off the pages and this is a testament to Emily Phillips’ brilliant writing.
I don’t agree with every choice Olivia makes, and some of Felix’s notes seemed a bit much at times, but I can really understand why both her and Olivia feel the way they do, and I hugely enjoyed reading about both characters – and their friends too.
Trying is definitely bittersweet, as it’s described on the cover – that word immediately springs to mind when I think of this novel. It’s lovely and humorous whilst making you really care abut the characters. In some ways it really is just about normal, everyday, boring life (with a few dramas along the way, admittedly!) but that certainly doesn’t equal boring. Trying remains so completely absorbing and brilliantly written that I didn’t want to put it down, and would happily have read on and on.
Many thanks to Hodder & Stoughton and Netgalley for providing a copy of this novel on which I chose to write an honrst and unbiased review.
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