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Losing the Plot

By definition a Romantic Comedy novel should include two people who are perfect for each other, with one or both of them being quite vulnerable. There should be an obstacle that keeps them apart until a solution is found. The comedy can be situational or slapstick, but by the end of the story we are sure the couple will be together happily. Elizabeth Coleman has followed this formula quite successfully, has characters who are credible, interesting and who vary in age.

The main character in this story is Vanessa, recently divorced from her husband who married their marriage councillor. Nessie as her mother calls her, has two children and a large mortgage, so Mum (Joy) is living with her and pays rent. Vanessa has always had a desire to write a novel and has taken advantage of long nights to type up and send off a manuscript to a publisher.

Meanwhile a famous author, who’s work she slavishly reads, has come to town with a new novel. Unfortunately, it is identical to Vanessa’s story and it is here the problems begin. A local single Dad who is a lawyer, advises her to sue the well-known author. A love triangle develops leading to all sort of mistakes and issues.

The story is written in a lovely light hearted style. It is set in Melbourne and surrounding suburbs. The characters form a complementary group and it is here that the humour is introduced. Vanessa is a Dental Nurse, and works for Anthony, the dentist and his lovely and supportive wife Kirri. A New Zealander, Kirri is always on the look out for Vanessa. Indeed, she tells the nurse frequently to “Look out for him, he’s a ‘Dickhid’.” Joy, Nessie’s mum is also quite a character and lives life to the full.

As the story unfolds many issues arise such as those problems for single parents and people on a single income. These are the issues many of us face in real life so the ability to read about other peoples struggles and mistakes helps us to feel real. The odd chuckle along the way is a great help as well.

Author Elizabeth Coleman
Publisher Allen and Unwin
ISBN 9781760633431
Distributor Allen and Unwin
Released April 2019