Swapping downstairs for upstairs… How hard can it be!?
Look up the phrase ordinary girl and you’ll see a picture of me, Gemma Goodwin – I only look half-decent after applying the entire contents of my make-up bag, and my dating track-record includes a man who treated me to dinner…at a kebab shop. No joke!
The only extraordinary thing about me is that I look EXACTLY like my BFF, Abbey Croxley. Oh, and that for reasons I can’t explain, I’ve agreed to swap identities and pretend be her to star in the TV show about her aristocratic family’s country estate, Million Dollar Mansion.
So now it’s not just my tan I’m faking – it’s Kate Middleton style demure hemlines and lady-like manners too. And amongst the hundreds of fusty etiquette rules I’m trying to cram into my head, there are two I really must remember; 1) No-one can ever find out that I’m just Gemma, who’d be more at home in the servants quarters. And 2) There can be absolutely no flirting with Abbey’s dishy but buttoned-up cousin, Lord Edward.
Aaargh, this is going to be harder than I thought…
My opinion: I really liked the premise of this book and thought that it sounded different, so jumped at the chance when I was offered a review copy by the author!
Gemma is a very normal girl who has just lost her job at a pizza place and gets asked a huge favour by her best friend and flat mate Abbey. Abbey asks Gemma to stand in for her and take part in a reality show being filmed at her uncle’s stately home. But by standing in, she also has to pretend to be Abbey and somehow convince everyone that she is from an upper class family and has attended finishing school, rather than being from a more humble working class background with a love for fake tan, make up and chicken fillets! When Gemma arrives it seems like an even harder job when she meets Abbey’s very straightlaced (and hot!) cousin Edward.
This is a great idea for a book and mixes the UK’s love for reality TV and the more sombre Downton Abbey! The characters in the book are really loveable and get even more so as you know more about them. I particularly liked reading Edward’s blog posts for the show to get his view on the whole charade and I liked how Gemma adapted so well to this new way of life. The only negatives about this book for me were that I was expecting a more Christmassy book from the cover and it is only a small feature at the end of the book, and at times I felt like the book was losing pace a little, although this didn’t stop me wanting to read on.
I would definitely recommend this book as a fun read, and would definitely read more from the author, and would like to read more about the characters.
My rating: Four stars!
I was sent a review copy of this book in return for an honest review