- Published: 23 January 2023 23 January 2023
As I had read and enjoyed her previous book, Annie Stanley, All at Sea, I was offered a copy of The Pre-Loved Club by the publisher. This is always a bit risky as you can’t guarantee that another book by the same author will have the same appeal. To be honest, I found the first half slow going, and could not find much empathy for the characters, but then something changed, and I read the rest in one sitting.
In alternating chapters, we follow the lives of Gemma and Ned, both from broken marriages, who meet at a support group. They don’t seem to have much in common, apart from the fact that their former partners are messing them around. They slowly form a bond of friendship, they support each other, and the reader is left wondering if their relationship will ever develop into something more. This long build-up is necessary as they have to come to terms with being single again and work out what went wrong with their relationships. Over the course of the book Gemma and Ned change for the better, grow in confidence and by the end they are ready to move on with their lives. After a slow start, I really enjoyed this book and will definitely read the next one by this author. Thanks to Mantle and NetGalley for a digital copy to review.