“Tiffy & Leon share a flat
Tiffy & Leon share a bed
Tiffy & Leon have never met”
I mean… that pretty much sums up the concept of this book perfectly! I’ll give you a tiny bit more detail to set the scene for you, but I don’t want to ruin the plot too much as it’s highly original and has a certain ‘je ne sais quoi’ that will leave you remembering it for YEARS.
So… Tiffy is paid a pittance in her role as assistant editor in a publishing firm that specialises in crafting and DIY books, it might seem dull but there are certainly some interesting authors in this genre and a few dishy men too!
Her boyfriend has left her again; they’ve had an on-off relationship for years, and now she’s keen to get her own place, except when you’re living in London and can only afford £350 a month for rent, your options aren’t great!
Leon’s advert is pure comedy gold, it’s not outright funny, but if you’d read it yourself you’d think it was ludicrous – who offers to share their one bedroom flat with a stranger, allowing them to share your bed?! As Leon works nights, the potential flat mate has the bed to themselves at night… normal right?! But Tiffy is desperate and so she says YES.
Leon’s girlfriend is NOT happy about a woman sharing the flat with him, and so she handles the correspondence with Tiffy, meaning Leon doesn’t even know what the woman he lives with looks like! He knows her clothes, her perfume scent and her tea preference… but not her voice or how she looks.
When Tiffy leaves a post-it note next to some homemade flapjacks, their conversation starts through the form of short notes to each other, and they find themselves opening up to one another.
It’s not long before each is looking for a new note when they arrive home…
O’Leary flips between Leon and Tiffy’s perspective and uses different writing styles to great effect – it emphasises their contrasting personalities, bringing their individual humour and quirks to life, and also allows their own backstories to weave naturally into the story. Plus it makes the book even more of a ‘page-turner’, as my mind was curious about both sides of the story so I ended up reading just that little bit more to connect the chapters together!
Whilst the book is uplifting and packed full of giggles, it also tackles some more serious topics; I won’t spoil these, but they add that extra layer of grip to an already highly absorbing story.
Final shoutout to Tiffy’s energy – that girl is full of life! I’ve loved reading her bubbly notes to Leon and watching her fight her demons and come out stronger and happier – ALL HAIL TIFFY!
The Flatshare is out on 18th April in hardback and eBook versions by Quercus.
*GIFTED – I grabbed a free copy of this book at a Quercus book event*
Until next time, Chloé x