Kate can’t wait for her long-term boyfriend Alf to propose. So he might be a bit of a control freak who’s obsessed with his career … and he also seems to have conveniently forgotten their two-year plan to get married, buy a bigger house and have children. But Kate’s sure that ring will be on her finger soon.
When her thirty-second birthday ends in humiliating, proposal-less disaster, even Kate is left wondering if Alf really is The One. Then Alf’s friend, Marcus, needs a place to stay. With his dark eyes, easygoing manner and kind concern for Kate, Marcus is everything Alf is not – and it’s not long before Kate begins to wonder if there’s more to life than diamonds.
It’s important to remember ‘Kate and Alf’ is women’s fiction not romance. The story centres on Kate’s and details her growth and empowerment. The romance is significant but not central to this story. The characters Kate encounters are as important as Alf, the focus for Kate’s romantic aspirations.
Alf is a difficult character to like he puts the ‘self’ into selfish but he does illustrate vividly the point, you can’t help who you fall in love with.
Kate puts up with Alf because her life is plagued with loss. She can’t bear to be alone again. I want her to be more assertive at times but it adds to the story’s realism that she isn’t. I empathise with her journey and applaud her courage as she takes the steps she never thought she could.
Megan and Marcus are well written and likeable. They cleverly highlight important stages in Kate’s life. The give and take in Lillian’s and Vivian’s rapport with Kate highlights Kate’s and Alf’s one sided relationship.
The story’s slow pacing mirrors Kate’s life and makes the good things impact in a meaningful way. I did wonder if the book would be easier to read if it was broken up into parts to coincide with these changes. The unexpected plot twists in the last few chapters make experiencing Kate’s angst ridden life worthwhile for me.
‘Kate and Alf’ is a story of self discovery. The ending perfectly reflects Kate’s emotional journey.
I received a copy of this book from Harper Impulse via NetGalley in return for an honest review.
My rating: 5 of 5 stars