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Family is forever, and there's nothing you can do about it.The charming, hilarious and all-too-relatable new novel from the author of How to be Second Best
'Dettmann nails the funny, sad and bizarre nuances of family life in this gripping novel that will appeal to fans of Liane Moriarty, Jojo Moyes and Marian Keyes' Sally Hepworth
Molly's a millennial home organiser about to have her first baby. Obviously her mum, Annie, will help with the childcare. Everyone else's parents are doing it.
But Annie's dreams of music stardom have been on hold for thirty-five years, paused by childbirth then buried under her responsibilities as a mother, wage earner, wife, and only child of ailing parents. Finally, she can taste freedom.
As Molly and her siblings gather in the close quarters of the family home over one fraught summer, shocking revelations come to light. Everyone is forced to confront the question of what it means to be a family.
This Has Been Absolutely Lovely is a story about growing up and giving in, of parents and children, of hope and failure, of bravery and defied expectation, and whether it is ever too late to try again.
'A pure joy to read from the first page to the last - lots of heart and emotion, but with a perfect amount of humour. My only complaint is that I didn't write it myself!' Rachael Johns
'Hilarious, poignant, and a genuine page-turner. Dettmann's tone is addictively dry and often laugh-out-loud funny, but the family drama that unfolds is a proper yarn, with lovely dramatic twists and gorgeous revelations and resolutions.' Tim Minchin
'Witty, warm, sharp and sincere. An absolutely lovely read.' Book'd Out
'Compelling and utterly charming ... A joyful, laugh-drenched, tear-soaked page-turner' Ben Elton
'Brilliantly observed, Jessica Dettmann's portrayal of messy, modern family life is packed with delicious humour and balanced with moments of real poignancy. Her knack for writing sharp, witty dialogue makes for a hugely entertaining read. I adored it.' Joanna Nell
‘Brilliantly observed, Jessica Dettman’s portrayal of messy, modern family life is packed with delicious humour and balanced with moments of real poignancy. Her knack for writing sharp, witty dialogue makes for a hugely entertaining read. I adored it.’
Joanna Nell, author of The Single Ladies of Jacaranda Retirement Village
‘With humour and heart, Dettmann weaves an unforgettable tale about the lives we choose, and the lives that choose us. Dettmann nails the funny, sad and bizarre nuances of family life in this gripping novel that will appeal to fans of Liane Moriarty, Jojo Moyes and Marian Keyes. I expect to see this everywhere this summer.’
Sally Hepworth, author of The Mother-in-Law