Vintage Alice, by Jessica Adams

In my dreams I see us standing on a beach in our wedding clothes a year or two from now…By then, Vintage Alice will be a shop, not just an imaginary fashion label.

Alice is over England. Really over it. She and her boyfriend Nash have applied for visas to go and live in Australia – and she’s sure that it will be the answer to all their problems. In Australia there will be sunshine. In Australia they will be able to afford to eat. And, in Australia, they won’t fight all the time. Yes, Australia will be the answer to all of Alice’s problems – if only they can get there. Their relationship may not even last long enough to get to the plane.

Alice is an unemployed fashion designer who has dreams of launching her own label, and of having a new life with Nash in a country she has never even visited. But when her relationship with Nash falls apart, she has to decide just how to recover from yet another failure, and find the courage to go ahead with her plans without him. And, in Australia, she has to contend with snakes, spiders, and crazy dog-kennel owners.

Vintage Alice is a funny, feel good story of one woman’s quest to find love and fulfilment. Set in damp England and sunny Australia, and with a diverse cast of characters and plenty of twists and turns, this is a tale which will make readers smile. Alice is a character who is as likeable as she is self deprecating and amusing.

Vintage Alice

Vintage Alice, by Jessica Adams
Arena, 2009

This book is available from Fishpond. Buying through this link supports Aussiereviews.

Summer Psychic, by Jessica Adams

I am interviewing an English psychic named Luke Gabriel when he stops the tape recorder and tells me we will be married by winter.
He is peering into an old bucket full of sea water when he gives me the good news. Apparently this is how Nostradamus saw visions of the future too – though obviously not in a cleaner’s bucket.

When Jo Delaney meets psychic Luke Gabriel she has no intention of marrying him – or anyone else. And within six months? It can’t be possible. But when Luke’s other predictions start coming true, she has to wonder. But Jo doesn’t want to marry Luke – she’s still recovering from the death of her fiancé, Andrew, and has just met Gram Nixon, a rock musician she has always fancied from afar.

But, as Jessica discovers, you can’t always control the way your life is heading, and maybe Luke’s proposal is the least of her worries, anyway. She has to contend with a tenuous employment situation, a witch who has it in for her, and her memories of Andrew.

Summer Psychic is a n engrossing, funny read, with twists and turns, some poignant moments and lots of humour. Aimed squarely at the chick-lit market it will be adored by those who’ve enjoyed Adams’ previous work, and send those new to her writing scurrying for her back list.

Highly readable.

The Summer Psychic

Summer Psychic, by Jessica Adams
Allen & Unwin, 2007

You can buy this title online at Fishpond.

Single White Email, by Jessica Adams

I must force myself to think of Dan as the Loathsome Lawyer from Leichhardt, I must. But what if he bumps into me walking out of the hairdresser’s with my new red hair, and drags me into an alley and kisses the life out of me? And says it’s all been a terrible mistake and he can’t eat, can’t sleep?
I don’t know the statistical chances of that, but they must be there somewhere. There must be a chance.

Victoria Shipworth has just had another break-up with a man who doesn’t know when he’s on to a good thing. And this one managed to break up with her at her thirtieth brithday party.

On the same day, she received a brand new computer – a birthday present from her father. So, as she tries to forget Dan and a brief fling with Liam, a guy from work, Victoria turns to the internet in her search for Mr Right.

When she strikes up an email friendship with Pierre, a single man from Paris, Victoria finds her life starting to change. But is Pierre a possible Mr Right? Is he really a man at all? And does he live in France, or somewhere a little closer to home?

An internet romance aside, Victoria’s life is getting increasingly unpredictable – her best friend has decided she’s gay, her career is out of control and she seems to have acquired a cat.

Single White E-Mail is funny, but it is also disarmingly accurate. Anyone who has ever been single will find bits of themselves in this book, and probably cringe. Victoria is a likeable character, even through her strange obsessions and her self-centredness. Her life is sad, funny and very real all at the same time.

A great read.

Single White E-Mail, by Jessica Adams
Pan, 2004 (first published, 1998)

Cool for Cats, by Jessica Adams

I find myself making a list in my head of pros and cons for David, as if it will help me sort out this confusion, Instead, it makes things worse, This is the man who sewed the end of my jeans back together once, after I borrowe dhis bicycle and the denim got shredded in his bicycle chain. I was wearing flares – that’s how long ago that was. But it’s also the same man who had a serious conversation with me about how much house-keeping money I’d get from him once we were married. Just like dad all over again. Just like your worst nightmare, in fact.

Linda Tyler is working in a chinese restaurant, engaged to a bank clerk and living in a oring town when she sees the advertisment that changes her life. A new music magazine is looking for a writer. No experience need – just a passion for music and some youthfulness. Before she has time to draw breath, Linda is on her way to London to work for New Wave Weekly, her engagement with Dave is off and she’s living the life she didn’t dare to dream could be hers.

So why is she still obsessing about Dave and his new girlfriend? And why is she alone when everwhere she goes people are together?

Cool for Cats is a trip down memory lane to 1979, the year Margaret Thatcher was elected as England’s Prime Minister, Sid Vicious commited suicide, the Boom Tonw Rats sang about hating Mondays and wearing school uniforms outside of school bacame cool. Linda’s lessons in music journalism and in love are both funny and poignant, especiallyf or products of that era, who will share (or laugh at) her music addictions and the highs and lows of relationships.

Cool for Cats IS a cool book.

Cool for Cats, by Jessica Adams
Pan Macmillan, 2003, reprinted 2004