Nadia Knows Best Review
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Even if you prefer the brain-bending action of an intricate mystery—or the thought-provoking drama of the latest literary fiction—there’s a pretty good chance that, from time to time, you like to reach for something lighter. Maybe your favorite guilty pleasure is a pulpy thriller or steamy romance. Mine, however, is a fun and fluffy work of chick lit—something like author Jill Mansell’s Nadia Knows Best.

Nadia Kinsella met Jay Tiernan after they both found themselves stranded in a snowstorm. They ended up spending the night in the same little pub—but, despite his charm and good looks, Nadia had no problem remaining faithful to her supermodel boyfriend, Laurie.

Months later, long after Laurie left her for the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, Nadia runs into Jay again. The successful real estate investor has come to Bristol—and, needing a gardener to work on his latest project, he hires Nadia for the job. Just as Nadia begins to fall for her handsome boss, though, Laurie returns, determined to reconnect with his ex.

But Nadia’s not the only member of the Kinsella family who’s dealing with trying circumstances. Her sister is struggling to cling to a troublemaking boyfriend, her long-single father is starting a new relationship, and her grandmother finds that a decades-old secret is about to come to light.

Light and breezy, with an intriguing tangle of intertwined storylines, Nadia Knows Best is the kind of book that many of us reach for when packing for a vacation—or heading to the beach. It’s easy-going and undemanding, written with a playful sense of humor—and, after 450 pages or so of romantic dilemmas, it all comes together in a neat and happy ending.

Still, while the book may be called Nadia Knows Best, the main character spends most of the story disproving the title. Like any contemporary romance, Nadia Knows Best is filled with conflicts and secrets and misunderstandings. And, like any romantic heroine, Nadia spends a lot of time floundering, trying to make up her mind about which guy—the persistent ex or the handsome boss—she really wants to be with (despite the fact that readers will find the answer blatantly obvious).

Nadia’s indecision is often frustrating—as is her sister’s fawning over a man who’s so clearly not interested. But, well, how many of us can honestly say that we’ve never been there? Most of us have our own stories about falling for the wrong guy—or letting the right guy get away. So the Kinsella family’s stories are the kind that most readers will understand—and though the characters’ behavior is often maddening, most of us have acted the same way at one time or another. And at least their fictional stories come complete with happy endings.

Nadia Knows Best isn’t as riotously funny as some chick lit—nor is it entirely realistic. But if you’re just looking for a little bit of light and entertaining romance to bring along on your next poolside excursion, it’s worth a trip to the library.

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