Review: ‘Plan B’ by Emily Barr

I’ve just finished reading this book, and I really enjoyed it. Emily Barr writes fantastic, light, fast-paced novels that never fail to bring me out of a reading slump!

‘Plan B’ focuses on Emma, a young woman living in Brighton with her partner Matt and her daughter, Alice. Early in the novel, Matt decides to move the family over to France, dreaming of living the “perfect” life in an old farmhouse in the warm and sunny South of France.

Emma is gutted to leave Brighton, but she adores Matt and will do anything for him. So despite the fact that he is still going to be living and commuting in London half the week, Emma makes the move over to France with her young daughter Alice.

When Matt, Emma, and Alice get to the house in France, they soon realise it’s not the dream Matt envisaged. The house is falling to pieces and has no electricity, and the constant rain dampens the mood of their move.

With Matt gone half the week at work, Emma is left to sort out their new life, arranging the refurbishment of the house and enrolling Alice at the village school. Her and Alice soon make friends with their neighbours, such as the chic Coco, and an English couple who are filming for a documentary about moving out to France.

But despite Emma’s best efforts to create a pleasant environment for her family, a dark secret emerges that tears her whole world apart, and throws a spanner in the perfect plan she has for her life.

Emma wants to be the perfect wife and mother, and she has carefully planned out her life to avoid any surprises or unpredictability. So when her “Plan A” is called into question, she has to decide what her “Plan B” should be.

I really enjoyed this book. It’s hard to give a full synopsis, as the twists and turns are so surprising- and I don’t want to give away any spoilers! I loved how easy this book was to read, and I finished it in no time.

I also liked the different characters in ‘Plan B’ and the way they all rallied around Emma when she needed them most was very touching. I liked Coco, and the description of her stylish fashion made me think of any stereotypical French woman- sophisticated and glamorous.

While I liked the main character, Emma, I found her relatively frustrating sometimes. I think the fact that she just goes along with Matt’s plans to move abroad seem crazy to me, but she has an intense dependency on Matt, needing him in order to create this fairy-tale family she’s always wanted. All she wants is to be married and have a family with Matt. However, I could understand her viewpoint, and I loved her character growth.

Overall I really enjoyed ‘Plan B’ and it’s the perfect fast, summer read. Emily Barr always includes some travelling in her books, which makes them fantastic holiday reads. I loved the atmospheric descriptions of the south of France in this book. The French farmhouse Emma refurbishes sounds amazing, and the village life her and Alice lead is idyllic.

Did you enjoy my review of ‘Plan B’? What’s your favourite summer read? Have you read any other books by Emily Barr?

Let me know all your thoughts in the comments below 🙂

Happy reading x

Picture credits here

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