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Book Review: The No-Show

By Marisa Appleton

Siobhan, Miranda, and Jane are all stood up on Valentine's Day. What connects the three women? Joseph Carter. All three women go on well-needed, but very different journeys of self-discovery.  They experience love, loss, and self-acceptance. There’s more to Joseph than meets the eye. Is he simply a lying womanizer? You’ll have to read to find out.

The No-Show starts off as a typical, predictable romance. I love Beth O’Leary. Her stories are normally happy, albeit predictable, but heartwarming reads. Going into this book, I expected a similar vibe. It starts off that way, we initially learn about three different women Siobhan, Miranda and Jane. All three women have been stood up on Valentine’s Day. Siobhan is an Irish life coach; Miranda is a tree surgeon and Jane works in a charity shop. Each woman is different, but they all have some deep-rooted trauma that we unpack throughout the story. 

The one thing that all the women have in common is Joseph Carter. Somehow though, he manages to show up and apologise to the women the following day. They all forgive him and go on to have very different relationships with him. I fully expected a The Other Woman kind of scenario where all the women met up and plotted their revenge. I couldn’t have been more wrong. This story really exceeded my expectations.

I didn’t know what to make of Joseph Carter. In some ways, he was a swoon-worthy boyfriend. I didn’t blame the girls for falling for him. But in the back of my mind, I still knew that he was a three-timing cheater. When the secrets start to unfold, we discover a different side to Joseph. Throughout the novel, I felt a darker undertone. I wasn’t sure what it was, I could just tell that this story wasn’t going to be your traditional happily ever after. I can honestly say that this book is worth reading just for the twist. I really did not see it coming and that’s saying a lot. The twist did make everything just click. Spoiler alert – I cried. As soon as I figured out where the story was going, it was tinged with sadness. O'Leary has created fully formed characters in this novel; they all have their own secrets and sadness. 

There’s not much else I can say that won’t spoil the novel; all I can do is encourage you to go read it! I’m predicting that this novel is going to be Beth O’Leary’s most successful novel yet. 

Thanks to Berkley for the book in exchange for an honest review.

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