30/05/2010

The Chocolate Run (by Dorothy Koomson)

Last Summer, I read a book called Marshmallows for Breakfast, by an author I had never heard of before: Dorothy Koomson. I liked the style, and said I would look out for some more. So I put a few of her books on my wishlist, and was delighted to be given some of them for my birthday.

'The Chocolate Run' is narrated by Amber, a young woman who has just recovered from a passionate weekend with her best friend Greg. The problem is, she had only ever seen him as a platonic friend, and she's worried that he will simply see her as another notch to his credit. For Greg is promiscuous. Amber has been his confidante over the years, and has sometimes rescued him from very difficult situations. They've often stayed the night at each other's places after a late night out with other friends... but until this past weekend, when the story opens, there has never been anything romantic or sexual between them.

The rest of the book is about the unfolding of their new relationship - since it can never go back to what it was. They don't tell anyone at first, even their good friends, although Amber's colleagues quickly guess. And while that might not seem like much of a plot, there's a great deal more involved, as we begin to learn about why Amber is so afraid of commitment, and so generally insecure about herself. We learn, too, why Greg has been so promiscuous. And there are several asides about chocolate; Amber describes all her family and friends by certain types of chocolate, and has a hidden addiction to chocolate-sniffing.

I thought at first that this book was the worst kind of chick-lit, but persevered and was pleased to find that the characters of both Amber and Greg grew on me significantly.

Some of the minor characters are rather caricatured, but that wasn't a problem. There are any number of bedroom scenes in the book, but nothing explicit - it's very cleverly done, leaving all details up to the readers' imaginations.

So, all in all, I enjoyed this book.

Available in Kindle form as well as being still in print in paperback.

Review copyright Sue's Book Reviews, 30th May 2010

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