I received this book for free from in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
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Released: May 4th 2021
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Published by William Morrow Paperbacks
“Just Last Night was a spectacular book and one of my favourites of 2021″~ Under the Covers
Eve, Justin, Susie and Ed have been best friends since they were teenagers. Now in their mid-thirties the bonds of friendship remain strong…and Eve is still in love with Ed. But, one night changes everything and none of them will ever be the same again. Especially as, in the aftermath secrets are revealed which make Eve question whether she ever really knew her best friends at all. When a figure from her past makes a reappearance she begins to see her life going in an entirely new direction.
It’s been a while since a book forced me to stay up all night. I couldn’t go to sleep until the book ended; I had to follow Eve’s journey right to the very end. What I concluded when I finished was that Just Last Night was a spectacular book and one of my favourites of 2021. It takes you through a full range of emotion. One minute I am laughing my socks off as Eve has a disastrous almost-one-night-stand with a pubic hair hating misogynist wanker, the next I am sobbing my heart out as tragedy visits Eve and her friends.
Mhairi Mcfarlane has this great talent of combining the best elements from women’s fiction and the romance genre and combining them into the best version of themselves. In Just Last Night we witness Eve’s journey to happiness and through grief and a lovely romance. It was all perfectly balanced to create a full experience.
What I also found interesting about this book was its look at friendship. Eve has had a core group of friends since she was a teenager, now 20 years later they are still incredibly close. Long lasting friendships are a wonderful thing, but you could also see how these friendships have held Eve back and kept her stuck in this loop of mediocrity. And, that’s okay because her friends are also stuck in this loop as well. Ultimately Eve and the rest of the gang could only find happiness by not having their own identities so intrinsically linked to one another.
Secrets are revealed in this book that don’t make anyone look good, and I like the way this was handled. No one was really vilified; they were all very human and had their flaws as well as their moments to shine. It’s what made everything so interesting as they all learn to live in this new reality that tragedy has pushed them into.
Now the romance, I haven’t spoken much about this, even though it was adorable. In some ways it was the simplest relationships in this book after that way Eve and her friends are entangled, although it wasn’t without its complications. If you like a hero who seems like ice on the outside but is in fact just a blackhole of old pain and missed opportunities…then he’s the one for you. I won’t say much more as it is a bit spoilery.
I could talk a long time about this book. It touches on so many topics: friendship, grief, abuse, growing old, mental health, change and love. But, Mcfarlane does it in such a way that this book brings real joy. And, as it is set in the UK, it’s done with our trademark dry, self-deprecating humour. As I said, this is one of my favourite books of 2021 and I highly recommend giving it a read.
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