LIFESTYLE | Book Review - 31 Dream Street by Lisa Jewell

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

I've read a few Lisa Jewell books over the past few years and I've always enjoyed them, when I spotted this one on the charity table at work I decided to pick it up and give it a try. 

It was a lovely quick read and would have been perfect to read on a sun lounger by a pool rather than on the Manchester Metrolink but I still enjoyed it. 

When I was reading it, it felt quite modern but there was the odd reference that made me shake my head, at first it I thought it was them making up there own word by using actual things that existed in the past. I need to clarify this; There was the mention of paying by switch card. It was only after a couple of things in this vein that I checked the publishing date and realised it was first published in 2008. 

The book is centred round Leah who works in a posh gift shop in London and the house opposite owned by Toby and failed poet who got the house complete with a sitting tenant as a wedding present from his Father, who was about to leave London to start a new life with his latest wife in South Africa. 

Lisa Jewell - 31 Dream Street

After Toby's marriage fails he opens the house to the waifs and strays of the world by way of personal ads and favours for people who knows him. 

The story starts when Leah, who has been curious about the house opposite and its eclectic mix of residents, finally gets to meet one when the elderly sitting tenant falls outside and she rushes to help, this leads her to meet Toby and a sort of friendship forms. 

He is socially awkward and needs a friend, she gets dumped by her boyfriend who has finally agreed to an arranged marriage by his parents and she needs a friend. 

Lots of little storylines follow each of the tenants and a downside for me is the sheer number of people, it did get a little confusing. 

Lisa Jewell - 31 Dream Street Toby has been left a sum of money and finds out his father is coming home to see what has become of the house. He makes a decision to sell the house but doesn't have the guts to evict the tenants, between him and Leah who hatches a plan to find out more about the people Toby has lived with for so long but knows so little about, all while the house has a top to toe makeover and gradually peoples stories are revealed. 

It's a fun read and moves at quite a quick pace, it is predictable in places but not in a "I need to throw the book across the room" kind of way. 

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