Lisa Jewell had always planned to write her first book when she was fifty. In fact, she wrote it when she was twenty-seven and had just been made redundant from her job as a secretary. Inspired by Nick Hornby's High Fidelity, a book about young people just like her who lived in London, she wrote the first three chapters of what was to become her first novel, Ralph's Party. It went on to become the bestselling debut novel of 1998.
Twelve bestselling novels later, she lives in London with her husband and their two daughters. Lisa writes every day in a local cafe where she can drink coffee, people-watch, and, without access to the internet, actually get some work done. Get to know Lisa by joining the official facebook page at www.facebook.com/LisaJewellOfficial or by following her on Twitter @lisajewelluk. And visit her website at www.lisa-jewell.co.uk Lisa Jewell is in her thirties and was born and raised in north London, where she lives with her husband and their baby girl, Amelie Mae. She worked as a secretary before redundancy, a bet and a book deal took her away from all that. She is the author of four huge bestsellers- Ralph's Party, Thirtynothing, One-Hit Wonder and, most recently, A Friends of the Family.
Comparisons to Bridget Jones's Diary are sure to greet British author Jewell's American debut, but her tale of love among neighbors bears more resemblance to TV's Melrose Place. Intertwining the lives of six youngish, soul-searching and fun-loving characters who live in a trendy London brownstone, the author (who allegedly penned this book on a dare) sets her romantic comedy at 31 Almanac Road. A love triangle involves Ralph, a promising artist whose career is currently stagnant; his best friend and flat-mate, Smith, a self-centered, well-to-do PR man; and Jem, their vibrant new flat-mate, who falls for Smith even as Ralph is hopelessly smitten with her. Jewell takes a potshot at self-absorbed Gen-Xers with Cheri, a outrageously gorgeous, self-centered single woman and voracious man-eater. Karl and Siobhan have been together for 15 years, but their complacency is ruptured when Siobhan, fat and feeling unloved, goes for another guy and Karl is unfaithful with Cheri. Jewell satirizes tell-all media programs when Karl is propelled into stardom by detailing his personal woes on a radio show. Spicing up the fast-paced plot is Smith's long-running, long-distance obsession over Cheri and Jem's inexplicable attraction to Ralph, though she remains devoted to Smith. Enjoyable scenes include a hot chile-eating contest and Jem and Ralph's first visit to a sex-toy store, where they're initially nervous, but are soon examining the merchandise with gusto. An amusing denouement brings all six tenants together and wittily, neatly ties up their lives in a novel that won Jewell acclaim and a TV movie option in England, where this light delight was first published. (Jan.) Copyright 1999 Cahners Business Information.
Deliciously enjoyable . . . addictively readable * The Times *
A joy . . . a fun summer read * Guardian *
A book about relationships which appeals to men and women . . . pulls off a rare trick which even Helen Fielding and Nick Hornby couldn't manage * Daily Mirror *
A breath of fresh air -- Tom Paulin * Late Review *
Addictive * Metro *
Praise for Lisa Jewell * - *
Terrific * Sunday Times *
The best romantic comedy we've read in ages * Company *
Tackles serious issues with humour - proving that chick-lit can be intelligent, interesting and huge fun * Sunday Express *
A triumph * Hello *
Top marks. Fantastic * Heat *
Lovely * Daily Telegraph *
Moving and intelligent * Independent *
Magnetic, unpretentious and bursting with one-liners * Cosmopolitan *
Jewell's readability and emotional intelligence make her the cream of pop fiction * Glamour *
Fans of chick-lit will understand when I say that this is a book you simply disappear into * Sunday Telegraph *