I was VERY excited for the Switch. Like so many, I adored The Flatshare so I was very excited for Beth O’Leary’s next one.
I don’t think this one has the magic of The Flatshare but it is still a lovely book. It felt a little slow to start but it made up for that in the middle and towards the end with a whole lot of heart and community spirit.
The Cotton women are trying to manage life after losing one of their own in a battle with cancer.
Sister Leena has thrown herself into her high-flying job in London, mother Marian has tried out every healing strategy possible and grandmother Eileen is trying to keep the family together.
Leena and Eileen need a change in order to deal with their grief and enable some self-rediscovery, and what better way than to switch lives!
Grandmother Eileen moves to the city looking for love and 20-something Leena moves to the country to take a break from her high-paced job and find herself. Eileen and Leena are similar, they both have very assertive, sometimes pushy personalities which did annoy me at the start but I came to love their ‘get things done’ attitude and bravery to lead change.
The way Eileen creates a community wherever she goes is just lovely, and I loved her chapters the most – an absolute firecracker of a 79yo! She brings small-town charm to the city and online dating to the senior age group. Leena takes over Eileen’s various causes and committees, befriends the grumpy neighbour, builds relationships with various Hamleigh folk and starts to repair her relationship with her mother Marian, which has been strained since her sister’s passing.
This book gave me Gilmore girls vibes.
Small town Hamleigh could easily be Stars Hollow and the Eileen/Marian/Leena relationships were similiar to the Emily/Lorelai/Rory family triangle. Leena and Jackson felt like another Luke and Lorelai (which by the way I loved).
The last third of this pushed it up for me, it was somewhat predictable but it was still well done and enjoyable. I gave this one.
The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
If you haven’t yet read the Flatshare by Beth O’Leary, I also highly recommend this one.
An easy five-star read for me, this one follows Tiffy and Leon who in a bid to save on rent, end up flat-sharing – except there is only one bedroom!
Luckily Leon works night shift and Tiffy days, so their bedshare arrangement seems like the perfect money-saving solution.
What follows is a beautiful, witty contemporary romance which also tackles some deeper issues.
This super fun and cute read should be on everyone’s to-read list