by Ben Elton
Sam and Lucy seem like the perfect couple. Successful, happy and in love. But life isn't that simple. Lucy thinks thinks Sam is a sad, cold sensitivity-exclusion zone who would rather read a newspaper than have an emotion.
Sam thinks Lucy is blaming him because she can't walk past Mothercare without getting all teary.
The problem is that they might be infertile. And in more ways than one. Lucy wants a baby. Sam wants to write a hit movie. And given that the average IVF cycle has about a one in five chance of going into full production, Lucy's chances of getting what she wants are considerably better than Sam's. What Sam and Lucy are about to go through is absolutely inconceivable.
The question is, can their love survive? Or are the odds stacked against them once again?
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 368 pages
- Publisher: Transworld Publishers Ltd
- Publication Date: 01/06/2000
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780552146982
- Paperback from £8.59
- EPUB from £3.99
Showing 1 - 4 of 4 reviews.
Review by Othemts
A humorous novel about an English couple attempting to conceive a child. Most of the jokes miss their target.
Review by SonicQuack
Ben Elton taps his personal career to produce a book centered around a couple working at the BBC. The entire book is formed from the couple's personal diaries, created to help then deal with the difficulty of getting pregnant. As per usual, the Elton brand of wit is sharp, rude and cutting edge, hitting on the taboo areas of our everyday lives most people don't feel comfortable talking about. It's interesting reading since Elton never hints at where he's leading you, or to about which subject he will open up like a can of worms next. The charactisation will make you ask questions of yourself as Elton is uncanny in his portrayal of human psychology and behaviour - it's very Men are from Mars, Women are from Venus. So far, it's all good news. However, I did find that the actual flow of the book was somewhat impeded by the Diary Entry form of the book. Overall it's a good read; which is on-the-ball with cultural events and humour, but the format, although original, prevents real immersion and gets rather stale towards the end.
Review by Britt84
My dad told me to read it because he thought it was great, but I found it really disappointing.Elton takes out pretty much every cliché you can possibly think of and puts all of these together in a little novel that's supposed to be funny. And sure, it gives you a smile or two, but mainly I was just annoyed by how cliché and unoriginal it was. I get that that is partly the point of the novel, but it's just not my kind of thing. I just think it's too easy, with too little originality and inspiration.
Review by atreic
Wanted to like this, but it never really clicked for me. It feels quite shallow - it's hard to tell if Elton has got the voices of Normal People trying to write about their feelings spot on, with all the stilted slightly inadequate ability to talk about their feelings except in cliches, or whether it reads like a GCSE 'try and write about what it must feel like to not be able to have a baby'. I tend towards the latter though. If one was, say, looking for representations of miscarriage in fiction, having the whole thing dealt with with in two paragraphs starting 'today has been a very upsetting day' might just be a bit disappointing. The book is really in two halves - their inability to have a baby, and Sam's career - and I didn't really have any interest in Sam's career. It's a comedy, so the plot is a bit farcical and far fetched - letters in wrong envelopes, Most Famous Film Star falling for Sam's wife etc - and I don't think I was in quite the right place to suspend disbelief. Also, Sam is a wanker, and she shouldn't have taken him back...The ending feels really rushed - there's over 300 pages of book, but in the last 20 pages, she leaves him, goes out with the film star, gets pregnant, leaves the film star, gets back together with Sam and loses the baby. Which leaves a niggling feeling that he knew all these things had to happen, but he'd written more book than he wanted to already, so just rushed to wrap it up. On the other hand, there are some bits that are spot on - the misery of loving someone, but being caught up in the 'sex on demand' patterns of ttc, and there is something sweetly uplifting about the 'well, we'll just keep loving each other and that will be enough'