Book of the Week

You And Me, Always by Jill Mansell. Photo: PA Photo/Picador
You And Me, Always by Jill Mansell. Photo: PA Photo/Picador

You And Me, Always by Jill Mansell.

Jill Mansell is one of heavyweights of the chick-lit world, and her latest work provides another dose of heart-warming plot lines and relatable characters.

Lily, the heroine of the story, hasn’t had a perfect life. Her mother died when she was just a child, and her absent father wants nothing to do with her.

But she lives happily in an idyllic village in the Cotswolds, along with her adoptive mother Coral, unlucky-in-love friend Patsy, and the conveniently good-looking Dan, who she refuses to admit her feelings for. But when a famous actor arrives in the village and Lily makes contact with her mum’s ex-boyfriend, everyone’s world is soon shaken up.

Mansell has a great skill for observing people. Whether you’ve lost someone close to you, had your partner leave you or ever fell for your best friend, every reader will see themselves in this tale.

She also does comedy rather well, as demonstrated in Patsy’s disastrous date scenes and in the witty back and forth banter between Lily and Dan.

The book may not be full of unpredictable twists, but that’s part of its charm. This is an uplifting, easy read, made to brighten up the winter months.