The Square by Rosie Millard
Jane has the ideal life: loving husband, beautiful house and delightful son. Her fashionable dinner parties are perfect – and so are her secret assignations with her neighbour’s husband, Jay. From Tracey and her ‘New Money’ lottery winnings to eccentric artist Philip and his pornographic portraits, the residents of North London’s most privileged enclave The Square are a very satisfied bunch. To raise money for communal fencing, the Residents’ Association decides to hold a Talent Show, produced by Jane and hosted by TV celebrity Alan Makin. But when the show lurches into public disarray, reputations are shattered and everyone has to learn to live with a far less glossy reality than before.
This was a kicky little book about neighbors in an upper class London square. It was a bit Melrose Place except with married, wealthy families instead of gorgeous single people. It was written from multiple perspectives, with the viewpoint of the Square’s bitchiest occupant, Jane to the children who live in the households, including George, Jane’s son. I was never quite able to figure out how old he was; at times he sounded and acted much older than he would at other moments throughout the book. Strange. You also hear from other neighbors like the lucky lottery winners and the eccentric artist and his bizarre companion. Each of them is flawed in their own special way, which makes for an entertaining read.
The premise of the book was fun, being a fly on the wall in the households where things may look great on the outside but underneath all the fluff there was some seriously dissatisfied people, cheating on one another here, there, and everywhere. I found the characters to be only somewhat developed, I never really cared to know any of them further though. Again, it was fluff, but that was what I knew it was so it delivered perfectly.
It wrapped itself up fairly well, although I would have liked a bit more closure on some of the happenings. Overall, it was a fun, punchy read that I would definitely bring along to a beach and read while soaking up some Vitamin D.
**Full disclosure: I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review.