THE FLATSHARE by Beth O’Leary

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From the publisher:

What if your roommate is your soul mate? A joyful, quirky romantic comedy, Beth O’Leary’s The Flatshare is a feel-good novel about finding love in the most unexpected of ways.

Tiffy and Leon share an apartment. Tiffy and Leon have never met.

After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. But the apartments in her budget have her wondering if astonishingly colored mold on the walls counts as art.

Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare. Leon, a night shift worker, will take the apartment during the day, and Tiffy can have it nights and weekends. He’ll only ever be there when she’s at the office. In fact, they’ll never even have to meet.

Tiffy and Leon start writing each other notes – first about what day is garbage day, and politely establishing what leftovers are up for grabs, and the evergreen question of whether the toilet seat should stay up or down. Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more.

But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea…especially if you’ve never met.


So British! And a completely delicious debut.

Tiffy is still holding out hope that her on again, off again boyfriend will be on again. Until he gets engaged. Then she’s pretty sure that it’s truly over. But she can’t seem to move past him. Months later, she finally starts grappling with the dysfunctional relationship that she was in and never realized – but as she does, she starts learning a lot about herself.

Meanwhile, work is getting crazy and her flat mate is turning into a good friend, albeit one she’s never met. His girlfriend made sure of that. But when they do finally meet, it is not what either of them expected.

This is a very funny and often emotional read. I love the British wit. The story moves back and forth between Tiffy and Leon’s viewpoints, which makes for an intimate read. You really get to get inside their heads. There are also tons of back and forth notes, that is how they communicate for at least half the book so I would file this under epistolary novels for sure.

The characters are real and well drawn and the story moves quickly. All in all, an excellent debut – I can’t wait to see what comes next. Don’t miss it!

6/19 Stacy Alesi, AKA the BookBitch™

THE FLATSHARE by Beth O’Leary. Flatiron Books (May 28, 2019).  ISBN  978-1250295637. 336p.

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