When I started From Notting Hill with Love…Actually by Ali McNamara…I hated it.
As in, I would audibly groan at the overuse of the word ‘movie’ and how it would try to make you feel something rather than letting you feel it for yourself. By that I mean the characters would talk about how the story itself was fascinating and should be a Hollywood film…practically telling me I should be finding it fascinating, was turning me off.
I got to page 100 and decided I couldn’t take any more of it. I put it down and ordered a new book. Yes I know I shouldn’t be buying more books when my pile of unread books is mahoosive, but it’s coming up to Christmas and I wanted a Christmas story for this glorious time of year, which I don’t have in my pile.
However, I then realised I would have a lapse in my reading materials whilst I waited for my new book to turn up in the post…so I picked up From Notting Hill with Love…Actually, again. And fell in love with it.
I fell head over heels in love with this story after page 100. It was charming and I suddenly found that I could not put it down. I was racing through the chapters to find out what mishaps Scarlett would find herself in next. The big-180 I did on this book was astonishing. I think a big part of it was the stopping of the characters talking about how great the story is, I was allowed to figure out and feel the emotions of the story for myself. Why couldn’t it have started like that!
Let’s face it, you can tell from the title what roughly happens in the book but…
We follow Hollywood obsessed Scarlett as she takes a break from her normal life and goes on a ‘movie mission’ whilst she house sits in Notting Hill for a month. Her ‘movie mission’ is to prove that you can live your life as if you are in a film. Sit back and watch the cringey antics unfold as Scarlett tries to live as if she were in Sleepless in Seattle, Pretty Woman and so many more of the world’s best chick flicks.
If, like me, you have started this book and put it down at page 100, vowing to not read the rest, I urge you to give it another go. You might be pleasantly surprised.
My new book, ‘Christmas at Rosie Hopkins Sweetshop’ by Jenny Colgan, has arrived ready for me to read for the festive season. Oh, and this one, I totally chose for the cover. Don’t judge a book and all that…we’ll see.