The One Plus One
by Jojo Moyes
The One Plus One is the beautiful, poignant and utterly compelling new novel by the internationally bestselling author Jojo Moyes.
One single mum
With two jobs and two children, Jess Thomas does her best day after day. But it’s hard on your own. And sometimes you take risks you shouldn’t. Because you have to . . .
One chaotic family
Jess’s gifted, quirky daughter Tanzie is brilliant with numbers, but without a helping hand she’ll never get the chance to shine. And Nicky, Jess’s teenage stepson, can’t fight the bullies alone.
Sometimes Jess feels like they’re sinking . . .
One handsome stranger
Into their lives comes Ed Nicholls, a man whose life is in chaos, and who is running from a deeply uncertain future. But he has time on his hands. He knows what it’s like to be lonely. And he wants to help . . .
One unexpected love story
The One Plus One is a captivating and unconventional romance from Jojo Moyes about two lost souls meeting in the most unlikely circumstances
I have only read one book by Jojo Moyes before and that was Ship of Brides which I enjoyed, so when I saw this book and realised it was the same author I decided to give it a go. Am I ever glad I did. It is so enjoyable, full of wit and warmth but also in parts so very sad. If you can get through chapter 22 without your heart breaking I fear you may not have one.
The characters are so beautifully drawn that you just feel that you know them so well. Jess is mother to two children, her daughter Tanzie who is a mathematical genius and Nicky her step-son who is out of step with the rest of the world and being badly bullied for it. Jess is poverty stricken, trying to hold down two jobs that barely feed the family and trying to raise money to see Tanzie into a private school in the hope that she won’t be bullied like Nicky.
Enter Mr Nicholls (Ed), he fortuitously finds himself in a position to take the family to Scotland where Tanzie hopes to win a maths competition. Ed’s life is already in turmoil after finding himself unwittingly at the centre of an insider trading scandal and potentially facing jail. Ed is pre-occupied with his own problems but he’s a good guy and Jess’s warmth and optimism and over-riding love for her kids takes him out of himself.
The journey up to Scotland is both funny and tragic. Jess and Ed find themselves caught up in a budding romance which is lovely and warm but it’s the children who steal the show. Nicky especially with his geeky goth ways, he grows so much throughout the book.
The last word has to go to Norman, the family’s enormous, drooling, flatulent, loyal, loveable dog. This book wouldn’t be the same without him.
I loved this book and I will probably read it again which I don’t say very often.