Monday, 15 June 2015

Blog Tour & Review: The Thirty List by Eva Woods

Let's start this Blog Tour for The Thirty List by Eva Woods off with a bang. To follow the tour and read what my fellow bloggers are saying about The Thirty List read Blog Tour -Thirty List to follow the links to each blog on the tour.

About the author:
Eva Woods/Claire McGowan is a writer and a lecturer. She writes contemporary women's fiction as Eva Woods and crime fiction as Claire McGowan.

She was born in Northern Ireland and now lives in London, where she writes and teaches creative writing.

According to her blog she also spends a lot of time tutting at slow people on escalators and dodging urban foxes. She likes wine, pop music, and holidays, and thinks online dating is like the worst board game ever invented.

To read more about Claire visit, visit her Facebook page or follow her on Twitter @inkstainsclaire

About The Thirty List:
Everyone has one.
That list.
The things you were supposed to do before you turn thirty.

Jobless, broke and getting a divorce, Rachel isn’t exactly living up to her own expectations. And moving into grumpy single dad Patrick’s box room is just the soggy icing on top of her dreaded thirtieth birthday cake.

Eternal list-maker Rachel has a plan – an all new set of challenges to help her get over her divorce and out into the world again – from tango dancing to sushi making to stand-up comedy.

But as Patrick helps her cross off each task, Rachel faces something even harder; learning to live – and love – without a checklist.


Welcome to the disaster called Rachel's supposedly perfect life, well at least it used to be. From the very beginning it seems as if Rachel has made hasty decisions or at least ones made in doubt. She has built an image of a perfect relationship in her head and lives it outwardly for society.

To be quite frank she needed to buck up and stop being the perpetual doormat for the people around her. Instead she goes when she is asked to leave, she gives up house and home, because hey Dan asked her to. I mean come on, really? No spunk, no fight and no disagreement at all?

Instead she has let herself be boxed into this pseudo cupboard of imaginary blame and remorse by her husband and her friends. It isn't as if she did an entire football team in the locker room. Keep it real.

So her friends suggestion of a Bucket List is exactly the right thing to get her out of the slump she has slithered into. A list full of eccentric, exotic, daring and funny challenges or tasks to complete. Things to do before you... You get the picture and might even have one yourself, I know I do.

She embarks on her tasks with her new landlord, father of one, Patrick. They have slumps in common, and that isn't all they have in common. Rachel quickly becomes part of the family, and as part-time nanny she also becomes close to Patrick's son.

Being a step-parent or parent substitute is probably one of the hardest jobs in a patchwork family. Faced with the same responsibilities and yet when it comes down to the nitty gritty you are always only the stand-in for the real parent.

Rachel cares for and looks after Alex, as if she were his mother, and yet in the direst of situations she is treated like a convenient servant. There is no empathy for her or her emotions. No comprehension of the bond she has built with the young boy. Even in that regard I found Patrick to be very lacking in compassion towards her.

I was slightly taken aback by the way Patrick reacted towards the end of the story. How very condescending of him to reach out to the ex and offer Rachel up on a pathetic platter. Sort of  'can you come and pick up your second-hand goods now.' I would have been angry if I were Rachel, I was certainly annoyed on her behalf.

The Thirty List is a tale of romance, the threading together of new families, questioning of relationships and about Rachel's discovery of self. An amusing and also painful journey, but certainly one worth reading.

Thank you to Mills & Boon and Harlequin UK for the copy of The Thirty List.
To buy The Thirty List go to Amazon UK or Goodreads for other store links.

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