Love and Marriage by Patricia Scanlan

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My Rating: 4/5

Patricia Scanlan has now released the final part of her trilogy entitled Love & Marriage. The first two books were Forgive and Forget released in 2008 and Happy Ever After released in 2009.

We again meet the same characters and their daily struggles. Bryan and Debbie are now newly married and feeling the pinch financially. Their marriage is already looking uncertain and as things get harder Bryan tends to bury his head in the sand even more.

Connie who has done her bit for her daughter Debbie and son-in-law Bryan is celebrating a new man in her life. Drew is everything her ex-husband Barry wasn’t. Sadly, Drew’s ex-wife likes to make a habit of ringing and calling upon Drew in her hour of need which is not doing much for Connie’s relationship with Drew.

Connie’s ex-husband Barry re-married Aimee who is the ultimate career woman. Barry is ecstatic when he realises that Aimee is pregnant. This is his chance to be a better father the third time round. With his elder daughter Debbie and youngest Melissa the new addition is something to look forward to. Aimee feels differently and with the added stress to their marriage of their daughter Melissa’s eating difficulties things are looking tough.

Lily’s daughter Judith is recovering slowly from a car accident that left her in a coma. The good thing is that they are finally building a relationship. Judith has become a different person and wants to make the most of her life and together they start to enjoy life as mother and daughter.

Ken and Juliet Davenport have been married for many years. However Judith is sick of her surgeon husband expecting things to be done the same now as they were years ago. When Juliet decides to take action and make her own life for herself independently, Ken struggles to accept that their married life will change forever.

The first two books in the trilogy were as usual good reads, but if I am honest her second book was the weakest of them all. This final part to the trilogy was lovely, so easy to read and a typical curl up with a cuppa type of book! When I first started reading, I kept thinking “I’m sure I have already read this book” and then it finally dawned on me that it was a trilogy.

It didn’t take me long to catch up with the characters and their lives. It also didn’t take me long to detest Bryan who is possibly the most obnoxious character I have read in a long time.

The story itself is always turning and rolling into another part of the story which I loved. The characters are all linked somehow, whether they are family, colleagues or just friends. Patricia Scanlan dealt with the pretty serious issue of anorexia in this book but just like the last one this was dealt with sensitively. The story of Melissa and her eating disorder combined with trying to bond with other family members was very real. It made for a heart-warming read when you see the positive steps she takes in the book.

All in all, this latest release from PS was as usual a great read. It’s not a ten out of ten with a wow factor, but there is something very comforting with her books as you know just the sort of thing you are getting. I look forward to the next one and meeting some new characters.

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