Review of Two For Joy by Helen Chandler


Julia and Toby have been friends for years, but apart from a couple of drunken snogs in their university days, there’s never been anything more than friendship between them. It’s only when Toby goes through a dramatic break up with his gorgeous ballerina girlfriend Ruby, that he and Julia realise they’re meant to be together. Then Ruby drops a bombshell – she’s pregnant – and though he feels torn in two, Toby feels he has to give their relationship another chance. Heartbroken Julia is left to lick her wounds in her little Walthamstow home, thinking she has lost Toby forever. But things soon become much more complicated…


Thank you very much to Hodder & Stoughton who very kindly sent me a copy in the post which I won in a Twitter competition!

Julia and Toby are best friends and from the very first page, it’s clear that there is a lot of chemistry between the two of the, however, in the Fictional world, it’s never as simple as that.

Helen’s writing style in her debut novel is descriptive and in general, the plot flows very well. There are quite a lot of cheesy, unrealistic lines which did have me cringing from time to time. Not only do reader see life from Toby and Julia’s point of view, but there are quite a few other character’s whose lives we learn about. It was easy to recognise who was speaking but I think, if it was just from Julia and Toby’s point of view, it wouldn’t have been as interesting and diverse as it turned out to be.

The heartbreak which Toby feels early on made me go – HA! It served him right. I wanted him and Julia to be together from the first to the very last page and for them to have their happily ever after. When they are together, the chemistry bounces off the page and into the imagination of the reader. I absolutely LOVED reading about them together and when they were apart, I begged for them to be together again.

Despite the title and the clues which were cleverly set in place, I had a big shocking moment throughout the duration. I was quite surprised by Ruby’s actions at the end and generally, I wanted to slap some sense into her. I’ve never read such a selfish character before.

A lot does happen at once and after a while, the pace became too fast. It was a cheesy, unpredictable yet enjoyable read and I can’t wait for Helen’s second novel.

Twitter: @HelenLChandler
Website: http://helenlchandler.wordpress.com/