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Thursday, December 5, 2013

The Debt & The Doormat by Laura Barnard: Review

Author Laura Barnard with her copy of The Debt & The Doormat

(*I was provided a review copy of the book by the author. The reviews expressed here are my own and have not been influenced by the author. Also, I have not been paid for this)

I first heard about the book when author Laura Barnard wrote me a mail, asking if I would like to review her new book called 'The Debt & The Doormat.' From the synopsis, the book looked really fun, so I promptly agreed.

I received about 2 months back, but in the meanwhile, I had just had a new baby and there were other books on my reading list plus my work, so it took me some time to share the review. Well, now that I have read it, let's see what I have to say about it.

If you don't know about the book and would like like to read the cover jacket, here it is.

About the book:
The story is about 2 best friends, Poppy and Jazz, who have been friends from the first week of university. The 2 are polar opposites of each other, yet manage to remain best of friends. Jazz, with her ever-spending habits, gets into a huge financial mess, and that's when the 2 friends decide to switch their lives. Of course Poppy is talked into it by Jazz.
So now, Jazz lives Poppy's life, while Poppy finds herself in Jazz's mad-home of a house with her crazy housemates. There's Izzy who's a fitness freak, there's Grace who is extremely gorgeous but a bitch and there's hunky but grumpy Ryan.
Poppy's tendency to try and please everyone lands her into many problems and her life is soon upside down, not what she signed on for when she decided to switch lives.
There's a fake boyfriend, there's a boss who is bullying the crap out of her, there's a mother who has mental issues and three brothers who all have lives straight out of a drama!
Her brother's wedding is just coming up, but the question is - will Poppy get back her normal life in time?

My thoughts about the book:

At first look, the book is really adorable. I have not come across such a lively and pick-me-up-and-enjoy-reading kind of a cover in some time. The look is absolutely what you would associate with chic-lit. Bubble gum pinks and blues and girls and shopping and that being-friends-yet-bitches look. Soooooo chic-lit ;-)

Though the title is not self-explanatory, the book jacket pretty much gives a good idea about the book, and then you want to read it.

I found the idea of the book quite different and fun. I mean, have you read about a book where the characters swap lives? I haven't. Interesting.

As I started reading, I liked what I read in the first few sentences, but soon, the scene turned a little boring and over-stretched for me, especially where there's some drama over a pillow. I wasn't getting it then. And frankly, I thought that part could have been done better.

I lost interest for a while, but then, after a few pages, things started picking up. Especially once the 'switch' happened. The story actually starts getting really funny and interesting. There are lots of interesting characters to keep you hooked on.

And I especially loved the way the author has brought out the relationship between the two protagonists. Over the pages, we actually see the characters evolving, especially Poppy. Not literally, but in a more 'thinking' and soul-searching way. She becomes more understanding, more of this world, and sees things for what they are, getting more confident and sure of herself. I liked the way the author builds up her character.

I liked reading the book a lot. In fact, it will make for a great weekend read and can be the perfect book to read on a flight or on vacation. It's not heavy, a fun light read that you can really enjoy and have a good time with.

I've heard there's a sequel coming, and I'm sure it will be as good as this one, if not more.

I will give this book 3 hearts: GOOD

- Debolina Raja Gupta