‘The One Plus One’ is the latest book by Jojo Moyes.
With two jobs and two children, Jess Thomas does her best day after day. But it’s hard on your own. And sometimes you take risks you shouldn’t. Because you have to . . .One chaotic family Jess’s gifted, quirky daughter Tanzie is brilliant with numbers, but without a helping hand she’ll never get the chance to shine. And Nicky, Jess’s teenage stepson, can’t fight the bullies alone. Sometimes Jess feels like they’re sinking . . .One handsome stranger Into their lives comes Ed Nicholls, a man whose life is in chaos, and who is running from a deeply uncertain future. But he has time on his hands. He knows what it’s like to be lonely. And he wants to help . . .One unexpected love story
I am not only embarrassed but I am also ashamed to admit that ‘The One Plus One’ is the first book that I have read by Jojo. Now, before you all shriek at me in disgust, let me explain that I have ‘Me Before You’ but my TBR has consumed it and I haven’t had a chance to read it with all the new releases and trying to keep up with books. But after finishing, ‘The One Plus One’ in a day, I now have to admit that I understand the hype with the author and will definitely be moving ‘Me Before You’ further up in my TBR pile.
But now back to ‘The One Plus One’. What can I say about this book that will make you all read it? How about I adored it? I loved it with the unique cast of characters that I felt a genuine concern and connection with and with one of the nicest illustrated covers that I have seen in a while, how could I not love it? The story is seen from the perspective of the four main characters of the book, Jess a struggling single parent with two children and two jobs, trying to balance family life and making sure that no-one goes without, she worries relentlessly about her eldest stepson Nicky. Nicky is the quiet loner of the story, not into football, he is perfect victim to the local bullies, who make his life hell, Nicky retreats into himself only interested in his computer games. Tanize is Jess young daughter, wise beyond her years, she is incredibly intelligent and is excited that going to a better school could be her escape from the local bullies but knows that with having no money, this will prove difficult and finally there is Ed Nicholls, a successful entrepreneur who after one stupid mistake in his life could potentially leave him with nothing. Together the four people plus a flatulent dog travel on a long car journey, hoping to fulfil one girl’s dream whilst facing up to their own problems and creating new relationships along the way.
The characters are fun, troubled and make for compelling reading. I loved them all equally, I loved Jess for her fiery attitude, her determination to make the best out of the little money they had and the fierce protection that she had over her family, even though Nicky isn’t her son, she treats him as her own and looks out for him, as only a mother can. Nicky, provides a softer element to the story, the outsider to the story, he observes the world around noticing things that others might not and that is what makes him particularly sensitive whereas Tanzie is bubbly and outgoing and constantly quizzing everything. Ed is the hero of the story and it is not only Jess who is attracted to him, with a brooding and generous heart, he gave Jess a reason to believe that everything could be ok.
This book has 528 pages and I read it in a day, I literally could not put it down, I loved it so much. Slightly reminiscent of one of my favourite films, ‘Little Miss Sunshine’ about a family travelling across America for a beauty pagement, this book was just as heartwarming. I actually feel no words can express just how good I found this book. It was the perfect book to curl up, to appreciate family no matter how big or small or how unorthodox it is. It’s not a simple story of boy meets girl, it’s a story about a boy who is about to give up who meets a struggling woman and relationship they embark on. Beautifully written with engaging characters, that will make you laugh and sigh with understanding, ‘The One Plus One’ is a humane, poignant story about people trying to find their paths in life. I absolutely loved it!
You can buy The One Plus One from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.