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Book Review

Beating About The Bush by Linda Taylor - Book Review


Beating About The Bush
Linda Taylor
Arrow Books

Fiction-Net Rating 1 Star Rated Book

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Cover Story

Ella Norton has opted for the simple life. Gone are the power suits and an executive career. In are the wellies, a horticulture course and Matt, her immensely sexy tutor.

With two lodgers - gorgeous, worldly Miranda and unglamorous, naive Faith - to help with the DIY, it can't go wrong. Except that Miranda and Faith hate each other, Matt has a wife and the DIY lands them in casualty. But it's when tall, abrasive and engaged CID man Jaz Singh sets up camp in Ella's bedroom that life starts to spiral seriously out of her control.

Embracing the simple life has never been so complicated.

We Say

Or so mind-numbingly awful. There are many words I can think of to describe this kind of popular fiction but I'll stay in tune with the theme of the book and keep it simple. Beating About The Bush is dull, predictable and feeble. I found myself skim reading the last third because I just couldn't take any more.

There is not a single character that stands out as a real person. 'Normal' but needy Ella shares a house with nasty but beautiful Miranda and mousy but secretly-very-pretty-when-she-can-be-bothered Faith. Heaven forbid we should have someone who genuinely is unattractive in this story. Worst of all is the Asian policeman, Jaz. He is faced with an arranged marriage that he is allegedly very happy about. We are treated to patronising speeches about race-relations and trying to be part of a new culture in a way that seems totally out of sync with the awareness that most people now have.

Maybe it would be possible to forgive the weak characters if the plot was gripping. Unfortunately, it's equally pointless and shockingly uneventful. Until the last quarter of the book, the main events consist of the girls going to the pub, Ella alternating between arguing and flirting with Jaz and the real dramatic high point of the girls trying to put up a shower curtain.

By the time anything does actually happen, you'll have lost all interest. One character has the good sense get themselves locked away in prison by the end and if you don't see that one coming then you must have been reading with your eyes shut. Hmm, wish I'd thought of that.

Review by: Rachel Taylor

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