Friday, 15 August 2014

Upside Down- Lia Riley

Upside Down is a new adult novel by up and coming author Lia Riley.  I was grabbed by the promise of an all encompassing romance, and couldn't wait to devote an afternoon of reading to it.

I must admit that the opening didn't immediately grab me.  As with all novels there was all the character development, and it focussed on Talia's insecurities, her OCD and how she was coping with the death of her seemingly perfect older sister Pippa.  It all seemed a bit more serious than I'd been expecting.

However, that changes when Talia runs away to Australia and meets Bran Lockhart, a mysterious hunk with a playboy reputation.  They might not appear to be a match, but they open up to each other, sharing their thoughts and their fears.  Bran's perceptive nature counteracts Talia's insecurities and before long they are dependant on each other. 

It isn't all plain sailing.  There are bumps in the road, particularly when it transpires that maybe Bran hasn't been entirely honest when sharing his life story.  But I took this couple into my heart, and after the turmoil they experienced, they deserved it.

I fell a little bit in love with surferboy Bran.  He's not perfect, not by a long chalk, but there is something about him which lured me in.  He's the playboy every woman believes she can tame.  And yes, he can be a total idiot at times, and thoughtless, and self-obsessed, but he truly cares for Talia.  He sees her for what she is, and loves her as she is.  And that is why this works.  The characters are not airbrushed to perfection, they have the flaws and quirks that are within us all, which gives them relatability (is that a word?  If not it should be).

Lia Riley has written a corker of a debut here, and fans of the genre will be lapping this up.  Humorous and heartfelt, Upside Down is a winner in my book.

Upside Down is out now.

With thanks to the publisher for providing me with a galley copy of this book in return for an honest review.

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