You can’t avoid getting older but you can choose whether or not to grow up! That’s the idea behind Christina Hopkinson’s latest book, Just Like Proper Grown-ups. This is a very readable and entertaining story about a group of acquaintances who are all, for different reasons, faced with this troublesome choice.
Just Like Proper Grown-ups starts with a gathering of Tess’s closest friends – Michael, Sierra, Lucy and Owen. They don’t actually know each other very well but they are soon to be inextricably linked when Tess announces that she is expecting a baby and that she wishes them all to be godparents. The reason that they have all been chosen is because they will all bring something special and different to this important role. This is hardly surprising as they are very different people all grappling with different issues in their own lives that may or may not compel them to grow up!
Each story is fascinating and I really enjoyed reading about all of the different characters and their different lives, particularly their messy relationships. It was also interesting to note the things that happened to some of them that might cause them to grow up such as the death of a parent or the birth of a child. If you have been through either of these, or the other fates that befall the characters, you can’t help but make connections with your own experiences.
Just Like Proper Grown-ups is a well written book with strong story lines running through it. I thought all of the different stories were interwoven in an interesting way that kept my interest all of the way through. I loved all of the main characters and found myself liking them and caring about what happened to them and also looking forward to getting to know them better as the story progressed. They were also very diverse and that definitely added to the overall enjoyment.
Just Like Proper Grown-ups is often amusing but has a slightly more serious side to it as well. This is particularly true with how some of the characters face up to the ageing process and at least one goes to great lengths (and expense) to do everything that she can to delay it. The big question is whether this makes her any happier or more secure in her relationship.
This is a book that is immensely enjoyable and easy to read making it just perfect for some light summer reading. It’s the first book that I had read by Christina Hopkinson but I’m pretty sure that it won’t be the last.
Just Like Proper Grown-ups by Christina Hopkinson
Published by Hodder & Stoughton, August 2012
I’m very grateful to the publishers for sending me a review copy.
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