Just My Luck by Adele Parks
|Just My Luck by Adele Parks|
|Reviewer: Sue Magee|
|Summary: Winning the lottery should have been the best thing that ever happened to Lexi and Jake Greenwood, but it is going to cost them more than they ever believed possible. An excellent story which draws you in and simply doesn't let go. Highly recommended.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 384||Date: May 2020|
|External links: Author's website|
Elaine Winterdale took the fall for the landlord. Aged 37, she got a suspended sentence because a faulty gas boiler had caused the deaths of 29-year-old Reveka Albu and her 2-year-old son Benke. Toma Albu, husband and father, had found them when he returned home.
Lexi Greenwood and her husband Jake had done the lottery, using the same numbers, for fifteen years with their friends Jennifer and Fred Heathcote and Carla and Patrick Pearson. It wasn't really that they expected to win, but it was tradition. On three Saturday nights each month, they'd meet in each other's houses, in rotation, and have meal and Jake would break the news that they hadn't won. Again. And so it might have continued until that Saturday night when Patrick lost his temper and he, Carla, Jennifer and Fred ganged up on the Greenwoods and said that they weren't going to do the lottery any more. Fifteen years' friendship seemed to be at an end.
Lexi felt the loss viscerally. It wasn't just the Saturday night meals, but Jennifer and Carla were her best friends. Carla and Patrick's daughter, Megan, was her daughter, Emily's best friend and Emily was dating Jennifer and Fred's son, Ridley. She knew that the other two couples were in a different league, financially - Jake had never really found a job that he could settle to - and they didn't live in the same, posh village. What hurt Lexi most was that the other couples had insinuated that doing the lottery was common, for losers.
Lexi bought a ticket the following week, but on the Saturday the other two couples cried off the meal. And the numbers came up. Lexi and Jake had won £17,870,896. Jake's the spender: there's a flash car outside the house within hours and shopping sprees to buy stuff the family didn't even really need. So much for the idea of not wanting publicity, then. Lexi's not in tune with all this - she'd always been careful with money. She'd always had to be that person and I don't really know how to stop.
The Heathcotes and the Pearsons weren't going to give up on the money easily and not everyone was going to be delighted for the Greenwoods' good fortune. And there's something Emily hasn't got around to telling her parents yet.
Oh, l loved this book. I didn't quite read it in one sitting but it wasn't for want of trying. I fell for Lexi straight away: even as a big-time lottery winner she still wants to go on working at the Citizen's Advice Bureau until the publicity makes it impossible. It was there that she'd met a homeless man - Toma Albu - who wanted help in tracing the man who had really been responsible for the deaths of his wife and child and her heart breaks for him.
Lexi's special, but all the characters come off the page well. Somehow Adele Parks makes the combination of the three couples work when they don't really have all that much in common - that's a real skill - and she produces some twists at the end which I wasn't expecting. It's a cracker of a book and I can't wait to read what she writes next. I'd like to thank the publishers for letting The Bookbag have a review copy.
I decided to read Just My Luck because I'd really enjoyed Lies Lies Lies in 2019. If Just My Luck appeals to you then you'll enjoy Lies Lies Lies.
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