I know that most authors don’t really want to read this in a review, but if you are looking for a quick, fun read for a holiday, then Living the Dream by Lauren Berry is probably perfect. I don’t mean this condescendingly though; in fact, I get the impression that Lauren Berry would be complemented by this assessment.
I have seen some refer to Living the Dream as the “Bridget Jones for millennials.” As a millennial (forgive me) who just happens to love Bridget Jones, I do not agree at all. I can see why some may make the comparison – both books are about single women in London grappling with the dating world and their careers. Beyond this, I see no similarities between the two – Bridget Jones is memorable and hilarious, while Living the Dream falls short and is, quite simply, forgettable. It will make you laugh out loud a few times, but most of the attempts at humour fall short.
This book lacks that certain something which I can’t quite put my finger on. Perhaps it is this – I felt that more could have been done with it. The characters were likeable enough, and yet nothing seems to really happen to them until the very end, when everything is seemingly tied up in a little bow. When I hit the hundredth page mark of this book I started to ask myself what it was really about. The story lacks a catalyst for action, I had no vested interest in the characters. I was vaguely interested in what was going to happen to them, but I was not rooting for them. This is a crucial flaw in my opinion. And yet – if I happened to be lying on the beach in the sunshine, perhaps I would not have minded so much.
Ultimately, I feel like this book fell short of its potential. If the author had focused on the perspective of only one of the characters, while the other one acted in the background, perhaps it would have been more enjoyable.
If you do happen to be looking for a book about millennials in London, or something that could be compared with Bridget Jones, I would suggest Everything I Know About Love by Dolly Alderton (my review here) and One Day in December by Josie Silver over Living the Dream.
Have you read this book? I’d love to know what you thought!