Book Review: Tempting Fate by Jane Green

September 11, 2013 2013 releases, Book Reviews, Rating: 4/5 1 ★★★★

Book Review: Tempting Fate by Jane GreenTempting Fate by Jane Green
Published by St. Martin's Press
Release Date: 2014-03-25
Genres: Contemporary Women, Fiction
Format: ARC
Rating: four-stars
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Amazon Summary
From Jane Green, the New York Times bestselling author of such beloved novels as Jemima J, The Beach House, Another Piece of My Heart, comes an enthralling and emotional story about how much we really understand the temptations that can threaten even the most idyllic of relationships….Gabby and Elliott have been happily married for eighteen years. They have two teenaged daughters. They have built a life together. Forty-three year old Gabby is the last person to have an affair. She can’t relate to the way her friends desperately try to cling to the beauty and allure of their younger years…And yet, she too knows her youth is quickly slipping away. She could never imagine how good it would feel to have a handsome younger man show interest in her—until the night it happens. Matt makes Gabby feel sparkling, fascinating, alive—something she hasn't felt in years. What begins as a long-distance friendship soon develops into an emotional affair as Gabby discovers her limits and boundaries are not where she expects them to be. Intoxicated, Gabby has no choice but to step ever deeper into the allure of attraction and attention, never foreseeing the life-changing consequences that lie ahead. If she makes one wrong move she could lose everything—and find out what really matters most. A heartfelt and complex story, Tempting Fate will have readers gripped until they reach the very last page, and thinking about the characters long after they put the book down.

Jane Green is massive in the Chick Lit world, but she isn’t someone who I think is a must read. I attempted to read Jemima J many moons ago, but I didn’t like it at all. I don’t know why, but from then I steered clear of Jane’s books. I did try another of her novels, Second Chance, but again it didn’t blow me away. However it seems that her more recent novels have seen her go in a more mature direction, with marriages the main focus, getting into the minutaie of what it is to be married, and when I received a copy of Tempting Fate I was really interested to give it a read. A final last chance, to see if I could get on board with Jane Green the way millions of other fans have, or if she was just destined to be an author I just didn’t need to read.

I’m actually quite pleased to report that I thoroughly enjoyed Tempting Fate, and that surprised me massively as the novel is actually focused on cheating; something that if you read my reviews you will know drives me nuts. I hate it. I hate that in Chick Lit if a man cheats he’s a scoundrel but if a woman cheats it takes an entire book to justify why she did it and in the end… it’s OK. So a lot of the time a book about an affair with get a 3-star or lower rating and a hefty rant from me, but I liked that in Tempting Fate, Gabby had to live with her consequences and in so many ways, as well. Not only did her affair, her one-night stand, end her marriage, it left her with a surprising (but not entirely unwanted) pregnancy. And so, the novel takes us through Gabby’s mid-life crisis and we see if she’s able to get her life back on track or if her indiscretion was just a step too far for her (quite wonderful) husband Elliott.

I really, really enjoyed Tempting Fate. I felt Gabby getting her comeuppance and having to fight for her happiness made it a wonderfully refreshing, honest read. It’s a quieter sort of novel to the novels I normally read, the kind of books that I normally find too slow, books that aren’t generally my type of read, but this was great. For some reason, I was really interested in Gabby’s life and I found it fascinating. Despite my staunch stance that cheating is wrong, I have to admit I enjoyed the scenes building up the tension between Gabby and Matt, it was a nice peek into how Gabby felt about Matt, how him treating her like an adult and a young not middle-aged woman made her feel alive and brilliant. It was easy to be as sucked in with Matt as Gabby was and I found their email correspondence to be so compelling; so compelling I’d have read an entire novel just of their email exchanges, I thought that was Green’s writing at her best!

Tempting Fate really was an interesting novel. It has definitely made me interested in seeking out some of Jane Green’s other novels, perhaps starting with her last two from Tempting Fate. This was a mature, enjoyable novel and I really savoured every page. I thought Gabby was a fantastic character; yep, what she did was so, so wrong, but I liked seeing her dig her way back out from such a deep, deep hole. I liked that her relationship with Elliott was practically impenetrable until her transgression, proving you can have the most solid of marriages and still be led astray. I would definitely recommend you pick up the book, Jane Green seems to have matured as a writer and I liked the writing, it kept me hooked. It was a brilliant read, with some fabulous characters, Gabby in particular was a delight, do pick up Tempting Fate, it was great.


One Response to “Book Review: Tempting Fate by Jane Green”

  1. Kay

    I am (was?) a die hard Jane Green fan. When I first read Jemima J in my early teens, I loved it. However, on re-reads it kind of bothered me because as someone who is struggling with an eating disorder the way Jemima’s was glossed over and the lack of acknowledgement for something so serious annoyed me. Besides that I still love her earlier work. Her latest books have been “meh” for me. It isn’t the change of direction – the girl about London town to suburban wives and families that bothers me. I may be a lot younger than Green, but I am shacked up with daughters so the storylines aren’t unrelatable. I just hate her new style of writing. It’s so “American” Her older books are full of sharp observations and snappy one liners, to me very “British” whereas her more current ones are full of American lingo (yeah, I know they’re set in the US but still… Green is British) and sappy dialogue. While I pre-order in the hope of another “Bookends” or “Straight Talking” I roll my eyes a lot!

    That she is now writing two books a year doesn’t give me much hope either.

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