5 stars and rooting for Tiffy and Leon as an OTP.
If I had to use a string of tags like what we are asked to do on Netgalley, I’d use: romance, abuse, friendship, grief, quest, OTP …
I don’t know what I can add to all the raving reviews about this story!
I was late to Beth O’Leary’s bandwagon and began with The Switch. It was insta crush an assured that Beth has become one of my one click authors. She reminded me why I used to read and love so many British authors like Sophie Kinsella, Jane Green, Katie Fford, Marian Keyes, Jojo Moyes and the likes!
The trope is simple: Tiffy is looking for a cheap place to live after her boyfriend Justin kicked her out of his apartment. Leon needs money to pay a lawyer defending his little brother Richie’s case. He will rent the flat which has only one bed that both will share alternatively. The goal is to never see each other but of course, fate has other plans for them.
This story relies heavily on its amazing characters.
Tiffy and Leon are like the sun and the moon.
Leon would be the moon and he is feeling SO MUCH!
As a nurse in a palliative ward he loves his patients. From little Holly, who is treated for leukemia to Mr Prior, war veteran regretting his lost war love when loving a man was frowned upon, he will give them so much love and care.
He also is fiercely protective of his little brother Richie, imprisoned under false pretense and defended by a joke of a lawyer.
Leon is kind of an introvert and does not talk much. What he does is think deep, feel everything tenfold and always want to be good and supportive.
Tiffy is bright, colorful, brash, larger than life, boisterous! She is always happy to go on an adventure or a night out with friends. As she works in a publishing house specialized in DIY and craft, she wears improbable colors clashing together, repurposed shoes with hand painted flowers and models for her author’s crochet creations. When having her measurement taken in front of a crowd while she is kind of big and curvy, she just wants to giggle as she is absolutely not self conscious. But behind her sunny side, hides a sadder Tiffy. She’s also gone through very serious and damaging trauma that I won’t reveal here as you get to discover it bit by bit.
This will give her frailty that awoke my protective instincts and made the amazon hiding in me want to seriously punch some faces and kick some behind!
Beth used an interesting writing technique to give life to her two heroes as we go for dual POV, alternating chapters between Tiffy and Leon. She had Leon speak in very short sentences, omitting pronouns resulting in a very unique tone.
Another technique used in this story was the post it notes!
That’s not as big a jump as whatsapp or emails but it’s one step further from the old fashioned letters you got to exchange with your penpal.
As Tiffy works day and Leon has night shift, they never see each other and leave a trail of post it notes.
That’s a very interesting as the trope is based on getting to know a person through her writing, her thoughts rather than looks! Kind of what bloggers do too as we get to know each other from exchanging comments, reading posts and if you feel an affinity with the person, through messenger and sometimes you end up skyping! This “get to know you” on what you say rather than how you look allows their relationship to unfurl and bloom slowly, steadily.
That story reads itself with a special mention for Tiffy’s friends: Mo, Gerty and Rachel. They always had her back and that friendship is a huge theme in the book! How you can lean on your friends when life is too hard. How they have your back, no matter what.
Beth delivers charming and smart stories. With the help of quirky characters, she makes you think about serious topics like abuse and death all with a keen eye for human nature, its flaws and extraordinary resilience too.
You will laugh. You will swoon. You will cry. You will rage too. But above all else, you will root for Tiffy and Leon’s love story.
Have you read that book?
Thanks for reading!