Cover Image: The Beginning of Everything

The Beginning of Everything

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Member Reviews

This book didn't work for me. The premises was too unbelievable. I can't imagine someone allowing a squatter to stay living in their house they are renovating. The characters were too depressing, and I find it hard to believe either one could be in a relationship so quickly after what they had both been through. I think the slow burn of this story was too slow. Maybe the characters were not developed enough for me or just not mature for their ages. The writing style was hard to get through also. Too many thoughts ending in questions and too many ellipses in dialogue. Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for an eARC of this book.

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I had trouble getting into this one and ended up not finishing. The plot was too out there. I feel like some people will enjoy this though!

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This was a cute and fast read! It’s a friends-to-lovers heartwarming story of strength and resilience. I enjoyed the characters and storyline, although at times they seemed immature. However, still I fun read!

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It just should have gone more into depth with how she was feeling and everything that she was going through. I also liked them together but it felt like the author was doing a lot of showing, not telling.

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This book was enjoyable but ultimately, just an ok read for me.. The premise is pretty unrealistic = a man finds a woman living in his newly purchased home and instead of calling the police or kicking her out, he offers that she can continue to keep living there in exchange for help with renovations. He even goes so far as to offer to put this complete stranger on his car insurance so she can use his car. Seriously? But once you suspend the disbelief enough to accommodate the premise, it’s a nice story of two people developing a friendship and helping each other get over difficulties from their pasts. It’s a quiet story - not a great deal of plot - that mostly focuses on the developing relationship between the main characters. The characters are likable and I did find myself interested enough to read to the end and see how things turned out. Thank you to NetGalley for the ARC.

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When main character Jess finds herself homeless upon leaving an abusive relationship, she decides to start over in Wales.. At first she lives in a tent after finding work as a dishwasher, but as the night grow cold, she looks to find better housing, preferably with a solid roof and even heat or electricity. She begins living in an empty house whose owner has yet to move in. Normally the homeowner would call the police and the squatter would be arrested, however, Gethin sees that Jess has taken good care of the house, and he suspects, accurately, she really needs a place to stay that is safe and warm. Thus, an unusual relationship begins, where Jess becomes a tenant and helps Gethin get his house move in ready. Like all good romantic fiction books though, there is a satisfying ending.

Thank you Netgalley for this eARC!

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The Beginning of Everything by Jackie Fraser didn't do it for me. The premise was so out of the realm of really happening I couldn't get in to it. I can’t imagine letting someone who broke into my house stay there to live! The characters did have chemistry but that was it for me. Nothing else major happened. I would read this author again but cannot recommend this book.

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The premise of the story is interesting - man finds woman living in a home that he purchased and he invites her to live with him. That is how the friendship unfolds. It's a sweet love story.

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I couldn't seem to get in to this one and that was after a very long time of putting it off before I finally picked it up. I will give this a neutral rating for those reasons.

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I'd really enjoyed Jackie Fraser's first book, The Bookshop of Second Chances, so was happy to see that she had a new book coming out. Happily I enjoyed this one just as much, if not more. This one has two people in their mid-40s who are both coming out of bad relationships meeting in a most unusual way. Jess has been left adrift, homeless, and distrustful of people after a series of relationships (particularly her most recent one). Gethin has recently ended a long-term relationship and is perhaps overly trusting of Jess when he finds her living (okay, squatting) in his newly purchased house that's in need of an extreme makeover. She understandably questions his motives, while his friends and family understandably question hers. But they strike a bargain for her to live there rent-free in exchange for her help with the renovations. Friendship grows, but can they get past their pasts? I really liked the slow development of their friendship as they both try to figure out what their next steps in life will be. And I've been watching a lot of British TV recently so I enjoy the cadence of Fraser's writing, it feels very much like what I've been hearing in those shows. This book kept me engaged throughout. I'll be on the lookout for what Jackie Fraser comes up with next.
Thanks to Netgalley and Random House/Dell for providing a copy for an unbiased review.

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This was not for me. The story was kinda slow and I couldn't connect with the characters at all. I was hoping for something different

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I recently had the pleasure of delving into the captivating world crafted by Jackie Fraser in her novel, "The Beginning of Everything," and I am sincerely grateful to NetGalley for providing me with an advance reader copy (ARC) of this exceptional book. Fraser's storytelling prowess shines brightly in this poignant tale of love, loss, and the enduring resilience of the human spirit.

"The Beginning of Everything" follows the journey of its protagonist with a raw and emotional depth that resonates deeply with readers. Fraser's characters are flawlessly rendered, each imbued with a complexity that makes them feel remarkably real. As the narrative unfolds, we are drawn into a web of interconnected lives, navigating through the highs and lows alongside the characters with bated breath.

Fraser masterfully explores themes of friendship, forgiveness, and the transformative power of second chances. Through her evocative prose and deft narrative skill, she creates a story that lingers in the heart long after the final page is turned. "The Beginning of Everything" is a beautifully crafted novel that reminds us of the beauty and fragility of life, and I wholeheartedly recommend it to anyone in search of a stirring and unforgettable read. Thank you, NetGalley, for the opportunity to experience this remarkable book ahead of its official release.

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Focusing on starting over and second changes, The Beginning of Everything follows Jess as she escapes a bad relationship with limited funds and support. After finding an abandoned house, Jess decides to take shelter there as long as she can, but when the new homeowner shows up, she thinks she is for sure going to get caught.... until she doesn't.
While this book's premise is unrealistic, once you get past that, it is an enjoyable read with sweet moments and a focus on self-discovery and finding your happiness, even if you have to start over.

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I have been in a reading slump and it’s possible maybe this one just wasn’t for me. I really wanted to love it but felt the characters were a bit immature for their age and didn’t love the cheating angle. But could also be for personal reasons. I still always support the thought behind writing an entire book and found that parts of this were decent, others a bit awkward.
⭐️⭐️⭐️

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I love the premise of this story and it is such an intriguing plot line!

Due to time I will not be giving a full review here.

Thank you to the author, NetGalley and the publisher for an ARC in exchange for my honest opinion.

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The premise of this story is ridiculous and hard to get over. While it attempts to approach the message of human connection and unexpected kindness, it misses the mark of reality by a lot and suspending my disbelief became impossible.

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Book Review: The Beginning of Everything
Stars: 3 X 5
Author: Jackie Fraser
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group/Ballantine/Dell
Thank you @netgalley for this ARC

Gethim finds Jess living in his new home. She is homeless and unbelievably, Jess invites her to live with him. He also then decides to let her drive his car and adds her name to his insurance. At this point in the book I found this so ridiculous that I was going to stop reading it. I then remembered a movie with Steve Martin and Goldie Hawn called Housesitter, which basically the same premise. I remembered that movie was so outrageous and funny and decided to give the rest of the book another try. This book was a tad more dramatic the I thought it was going to be. It tackled homelessness, abuse, starting over, trust issues, friendship and love. All of those in this sweet love story between Gethin and Jess.

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A charming, thoughtful book that makes you think about life and second chances. Though it moved slowly, it was enjoyable and entertaining. Recommended!

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Jess has not had any luck with finding a good man. After leaving a bad relationship with little to nothing, she camps out in a cemetery until it gets too cold. She takes refuge in a vacant house, being very careful not to make her presence known. When the new homeowner shows up, she is surprised to find one of the kindest most patient humans she has ever met. Trusting people and opening up is not easy for Jess but slowly Gethin(the homeowner) is able to help Jess trust again.

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I really enjoyed this book. Jackie Fraser delivers a slow burn romance that I couldn't put down. The story is about a woman who runs away from her old life towards the possibility of a new one. It's great to read a story about a heroine who is not a twenty something at the beginning of life, but a woman who made choices and needs a fresh start. Great book!

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