Publication Date: February 4, 2014
In The Expat Diaries: Single in the City by Michele Gorman, Hannah is 26 years old and drowning in her life. After losing her job and going on a drinking binge with her best friend, she impulsively buys a ticket and heads to England to start a new chapter in her life without so much as a plan. Can Hannah push through and find the excitement her life has been lacking?
The author’s publisher, Notting Hill Press, sent me a copy of this novel in exchange for my review.
The Expat Diaries: Single in the City shares a spirit with the Bridget Jones Diaries and the Shopaholic series. There is a lightness and warmth to Gorman’s style of writing. Hannah’s decision, however hastily made, is a commitment and one she’s determined to see through. She doesn’t anticipate something as simple as ordering a sandwich to be so different but she values the experiences and learns from them teaching readers along for the ride.
Starting The Expat Diaries: Single in the City, the novel doesn’t feel like anything we haven’t read before. Single girl looking for love, laughter and the perfect life. In connecting with the wonderfully drawn Hannah, readers will find her to be a truly special character. She’s just adventurous enough to be interesting without being grating and allows her heart to lead her perhaps a bit too much, but not in a way that makes her seem stupid. Hannah goes into her job thinking everyone knows how she managed to get hired and discovers soon that respect must be earned and praise isn’t handed out like candy kisses. Her boss, Felicity, is no-nonsense and written at first as a bit of a harridan, but as we get to know her, Gorman peels back the layers.
At her party planning job, Hannah meets a fellow American named Sam who is working on his degree as well as a few jobs. They have an instant connection, but Hannah didn’t fly across the ocean to date a boy from Wyoming. Gorman’s handling of the plot as it pertains to these characters is perfection. Sam is comfortable in his environment and situation. He’s looking to the bigger and better eventually.
Though we see the background and supplementary characters through Hannah’s eyes, Gorman manages to give them an individual voice. As much as Hannah assumed things about the English, the assumption about her and both perspectives are proven wrong. If you want an idea of the ex-pat experience for a single woman looking for excitement, pick up The Expat Diaries: Single in the City and take the ride with Hannah. You will not be disappointed.
The Expat Diaries: Single in the City is a smoothly written masterpiece of chick-lit. Despite a sameness of spirit, Gorman’s novel has a unique voice and will engage readers of all generations. Michele Gorman is a bestselling author raised in the United States and living in London. The Expat Diaries: Single in the City is the first book in a four-novel series.
Check out more reviews of books written by Michele Gorman Match Me if You Can, Perfect Girl and The Curvy Girls Club.
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