I love chick lit. All types, really, but one sub-genre I really love within chick lit is Irish chick lit. I read a lot of Marian Keyes and have dabbled in Cecilia Ahern’s and Maeve Binchy’s novels, but I always love coming across new authors from Ireland that I haven’t yet read. Clodagh Murphy is one I was yet to try. Her new novel For Love Of Money sounded right up my street.
“Lesley has always fancied herself as an amateur sleuth, a sort of modern day Miss Marple without the support stockings.
So when Al wants to hire her to investigate his elderly uncle’s young fiancée, she jumps at the chance. It doesn’t hurt that the job will involve posing as Al’s girlfriend and joining his glitzy, star-studded family on holiday in Nice.
Stella still can’t quite believe she’s engaged to legendary actor Sir Peter Bradshaw. She accepted what she thought was a deathbed proposal. Now she has a living, breathing fiancé and a wedding to plan.
First, though, she has to get through a holiday in the South of France with Peter’s extended family, who all seem convinced she’s a gold-digger with her sights set on the family fortune.
As Lesley bonds with Stella over shopping trips and bottles of rosé, she thinks she has it all figured out. After all, it’s no great mystery why a young woman would marry a fabulously wealthy seventy-two-year-old with a heart condition, is it? It’s an old story.
And Al may be the nicest boyfriend she’s ever had (even if he is fake), but Lesley believes in instant attraction and there’s just no spark … no matter how fit he looks in his swimming trunks. So there’s no chance he’s going to grow on her.
But people have a way of surprising you, as she’s about to discover …”
(Taken from Goodreads)
For Love Or Money is a wonderful premise for a novel, and works well within the chick lit genre. Like the greats that I’ve read before it I fell into the story almost instantly, and was completely engaged with main character Lesley who both relatable and funny. I loved the idea of the plot – although Lesley and Al meet at a dating event, they don’t get together but rather form a professional relationship as fake girlfriend and boyfriend so Lesley can investigate Stella, the fiancée of Al’s uncle.
The book also follows Stella, which is interesting as she’s perceived as an antagonist by the other characters. However, we follow her as another protagonist and gain insights into her life and past that are not yet visible to everyone else. The two perspectives work really well together and struck a good balance – a more light-hearted story combined with another that, although is light-hearted on the surface, is more complex underneath.
The best thing about the book was definitely the humour – I was not disappointed by the author’s witty Irish writing style and it brought so much life to the story. All of the characters are written really well but it’s the hilarious quips between them and the relationships that are built that really stand out. In general all elements of the writing are very good – the characters are developed strongly, with the right amount of hints dropped to keep you guessing without knowing what’s going to happen. As with many chick lit novels, the relationship side isn’t a complete mystery. However, there are multiple elements within that aren’t so clear-cut – something I think makes a novel of this genre really stand out. The sex scenes are also well written – more graphic than others, but intense in a good way.
And, of course, I absolutely loved the cover. It’s bright and bold and it’s immediately obvious what type of book it is. I wanted to read it immediately, and I think it 100% fits the book.
For Love Or Money is possibly my favourite chick lit novel I’ve read this year – refreshingly original, with a great set of characters and a really interesting and engaging plot. It’s a lot of fun, but it also covers some interesting issues and it’s hard not to love Lesley and the other characters. If you love Irish chick lit then this is 100% the book for you. If you’re yet to venture into it then for Love Or Money is a great place to start.
If you’d like to purchase your own copy then you can do so using the following links:
“Clodagh (rhymes with Yoda) is an Irish writer of romantic comedies. She lives in Dublin with a large circle of imaginary friends.”
(Taken from Goodreads)
If you enjoy chick lit, what’s your favourite book in the genre? Have you read Irish chick lit before?Let me know in the comments and don’t forget to like and pin! You can read some of my other chick lit reviews here: