Reviewed on 14th September 2019

Live a Little by Madeleine Reiss

Genre: Fiction / Women's Fiction
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Live a Little by Madeleine Reiss Synopsis

Two Sisters. One road trip. What could possibly go wrong?

Lottie has always followed the rules, her life is comfortable and she is – finally, finally – marrying her long-term, sensible, boyfriend Dean.

Tina is carefree, wild and, maybe, just a little bit careless. She doesn’t understand Lottie’s obsession with settling down with ‘dull Dean’. There’s so much to explore in the world.

The two sisters have drifted apart since the death of their older sister. Without her, Lottie and Tina realise how little they know each other. Desperate to remedy this, Tina convinces Lottie to set out on a road trip across the US, just the two of them.

But Tina has one more surprise in mind to shake up Lottie’s life – she must say yes to everything Tina suggests, no matter what . . .

Live a Little by Madeleine Reiss Review

Two Sisters, One Ex-Boyfriend and an Epic Emotional Road Trip – What Could Go Wrong?

Two sisters, one a commitment-phobe and the other about to be married, embark on a road trip across America with their dead sisters’ ashes and an ex-boyfriend in tow. What could possibly go wrong?

Live a Little is the story of two sisters who embark on a road trip through America. Tina the carefree and spirited ones has whisked Lottie away for a last ‘hurrah’ before she is to wed her long-term boyfriend Dean. Lottie is the well-grounded sister who wants to have the whole ‘husband, kids and the house with the white picket fence’ kind of life.

Tina uses the guise of spreading their recently deceased sister Mia’s ashes to convince Lottie to come on the trip. Unbeknownst to Lottie, Tina has an ulterior motive for the journey. Tina, who has a severe case of commitmentphobia, doesn’t understand why Lottie would want to get married and least of all, why she wants to marry Dean. Tina concocted this little trip as a way of trying and make her Lottie ‘Live a Little’ and hopefully re-think her upcoming nuptials.

As they set off on the journey, Tina sets Lottie little challenges that she must complete. The agreement for the trip was that Lottie would take on and complete any challenge that Tina sets for her. Some of the challenges were as simple as wearing a piece of clothing or talking to a stranger. Whilst some others were a little less practical and at times extremely reckless such as driving the car whilst blindfolded.

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The sisters find themselves with another passenger shortly after the road trip begins. In addition to two of them, they have agreed to give Spike, Tina’s ex-boyfriend, a lift. This adds a whole new dimension and level of complexity to the journey.

Between the silly challenges that Lottie must agree too and the constant revealing of information from the past, the storyline evolves. Together they tackle new obstacles and both Mia and Lottie’s characters grow significantly. We start to see that neither Lottie nor Tina are actually the same people they appeared to be at the start of the novel. This trip has changed them both, for the better, in my opinion.

I loved reading this book and enjoyed getting to know each of the characters personalities. The writing style cleverly included the reader in the journey, so it felt like I was there watching each scene unfold. Live a Little is a light-hearted and easy book to read so I imagine you would be able to read it just about anywhere. Unfortunately for me, it was just in the comfort of my lounge at home but often I still found myself feeling like I was right there in the car with them.

Will Tina succeed in making Lottie see that there is ‘No happily ever after’ or will Lottie’s view of the world start to rub off on Tina?

Many thanks to Tracy Fenton at Compulsive Readers and Zaffre Books for inviting us on this Blog Tour.

Published by: Zaffre Books
ISBN: 978-178577-092-0

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