A quick glance at the front cover of Jane Costello's The Time of Our Lives shows a plane jetting off presumably to somewhere warm and a smiley young woman in beachwear. However, a closer look also reveals a mobile phone dropping into a cocktail so, despite the upbeat title, you can instantly tell that all will not go completely to plan.
The girlie holiday party is made up of three friends - single mum Imogen, party-loving mum-to-be Meredith and lesbian Nicola - all of whom are likeable but slightly stereotypical. Imogen is terrified of getting involved with another man after her last relationship broke her heart, Meredith is very apprehensive of the huge lifestyle change she is about to undergo and Nicola, whose character seems less developed than the other two, just wishes her parents would accept her same-sex relationship and not pretend it isn't happening.
The trio of friends head off for the trip of a lifetime which ends up being totally disastrous. Imogen, in particular, finds herself glued to her phone as she has to manage from a distance a huge crisis at work - the old saying about needing a holiday to recover from a holiday is certainly true for her - but nevertheless, all three of the girls will come home transformed, with a new outlook on life and prospects that are promising much more happiness and self-fulfilment than when they left.
As you'd expect, it's frothy, light, uplifting chicklit that had me frequently smiling and even snorting with laughter a few times. It's all very predictable but for a bit of uncomplicated escapism during an incredibly busy fortnight at work, it was just what the doctor ordered.
star rating : 4/5
RRP : £7.99
Disclosure : I received a copy of the book from the publisher in order to write an honest review.