Paperback: 318 pages
Publisher: Lake Union Publishing (14 Feb. 2017)
When Tom’s girlfriend walks out on him the day before Christmas, he feels humiliated but not necessarily heartbroken. Sadie wasn’t, after all, The One. If we’re being precise, she was number eighty-five.
And so, for reasons that are only mostly wrong, Tom embarks on a mission to bring his number of encounters up to a nice neat one hundred.
Over the course of his quest he sleeps with a colleague, a colleague of a friend, a friend of a friend, a friend of a friend’s wife, the estate agent selling his flat and several more besides.
Everything is going, if not well, then at least according to plan…and then Tom meets Verity. Whether she’s The One remains to be seen, but she’s certainly more than just another number.
I was very lucky to be given a review copy of this book by Andy Jones. I have read both his previous books, The Two of Us and The Trouble with Henry and Zoe and I really like Andy’s style of writing. I think, when reading mainly Women’s Fiction, you tend to read a lot of work written by female writers and, even though the style of every writer is different (and I enjoy all styles), you get something else when you read Women’s Fiction coming from a Male hand. I think there is less emotion in people’s actions and intentions but a deeper emotion when emotional connections are acknowledged – if that makes any sense!!
Anyway, this book was originally released before The Two of Us so you will see Fisher’s name mentioned and also El is a key part of this book – bear in mind (if you’ve read The Two of Us) this is before his condition has deteriorated. It was a lovely surprise to see El pop up in the book and I love him, his brashness and his loving relationship with his partner, Phil.
The story follows Tom as he has just cheated on his girlfriend and is now single having decided honesty was the best policy! He starts to think about all of the women he has bedded – which happens to 85 (Sadie-five). His friend, El, challenges him to make it to 100 before the anniversary of him losing his virginity – aptly named “C-day”! This sets off a string of funny, unintentional, random….well….shags basically! And we see Tom struggle with his feelings about what he is doing and what the outcome will be.
The story also explores the relationship between Tom, his widowed father and his much younger sister as well as between Tom and his much older neighbour (and new lover!).
I really enjoyed this book, but then I do always enjoy Andy’s work. I loved the message towards the ending about finding love again or not finding love again.
A nice, easy read, with some laughs and some cringe moments along the way! I can’t wait for your next book Andy! (Little request, could you do an E-short so we can catch up with Fisher from The Two of Us as well as seeing how Phil is getting on and Tom too?)