As I said in a post last week, I was a little wary about reading this one! I love romance books despite most of them being very predictable! This book is the debut novel from Giovanna Fletcher. She is an actress/writer, and Billy and Me is her first published book!
I bought this book when I was in Waterstones last week. I’ve been meaning to get it since it came out (May 23rd!) but had just never gotten round to doing so! On first impressions, the book cover did draw me in! The colours are lovely, and I love how the little village looks! It is a beautiful cover. The back is equally as pretty too – following on with the colour and the ‘end’ of the village scene.
The book blurb:
Sophie May has a secret.
One that she’s successfully kept for years. It’s meant that she’s had to
give up her dreams of going to university and travelling the world to stay
in her little village, living with her mum and working in the local teashop.
But then she meets the gorgeous Billy – an actor with ambitions to make
it to the top. And when they fall in love, Sophie is whisked away from the
comfort of her life into Billy’s glamorous – but ruthless – world.
Their relationship throws Sophie right into the spotlight after years of
shying away from attention. Can she handle the constant scrutiny that
comes with being with Billy? And most of all, is she ready for her secret
heartbreak to be discovered and shared with the nation?
The book starts with a memory of sorts, which introduces the main character, Sophie. I loved this introduction, and for me it was something quite different to see! It then launched into present day, starting with Part 1. The book is split up into chapters, but also has four ‘parts’. These signify changes in the character’s lives, and I think it really helps to give a sense of time! One thing that took me some time to adjust to was the use of first person, and the present tense. It felt weird to read at first, but that’s because I haven’t read a book written like this in a while!
The plot is quite typical in the ‘girl meets boy’ way, however it has some twists which make it stand out from a normal ‘chick lit’ book. We follow Sophie May, who works in the local tea shop, as she meets the famous actor Billy Buskin. Filming would be taking place in Sophie’s village, and despite the whole community getting excited about it, Sophie just didn’t seem to care. Upon meeting Billy, she didn’t know who he was, but reading it you just knew who the guy would be! It follows their relationship and the effect that stardom has on the two. Given the fact that Giovanna is married to Tom Fletcher (part of Mcfly!) I do think that the whole media ‘experiences’ seemed very realistic, and gave an insight into what it could be like for a normal, shy girl to be pushed into that sort of environment.
The characters in this book are loveable and realistic. You can picture the exact types of people that appear in the book (and especially the tea shop!), which for me helped to make it more relatable. Molly is shown as a mother figure to Sophie, helping her to gain confidence and to overcome past struggles, and was easily my favourite! We know that something happened to Sophie’s father, but we don’t find out what until the middle of the book. All we know is that something bad happened, and it really knocked Sophie and her Mother really hard. For this reason, Sophie’s relationship with her mother is a little strained. I won’t say much more on that, as it is only revealed quite late into the book!
Some things were quite predictable, but I suppose after reading so many romance books you just know what is bound to happen. One plot twist did shock me, as I really wasn’t expecting it! It was a book that I didn’t want to put down and I did really enjoy it. Sometimes I like having an easy book to read, and this certainly fit the bill. I would recommend this to anyone who likes chick-lit, but I wouldn’t expect it to be too different than most romance stories!