Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they're crazy, but it's the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy's at work in the day and she has the run of the place the rest of the time. But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly-imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven't met yet, they're about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window...
This is a charming and lovely piece of contemporary fiction from Beth O'Leary that takes an interesting premise of a one bedroom flat in London is shared by two occupants who never meet. With very a very Richard Curtis vibe (the screenwriter of all the great rom-coms including Love Actually, Notting Hill, Four Weddings and A Funeral, Bridget Jones’s Diary… the list goes on and on) The Flatshare is a quirky, feel-good read bursting with character and warmth.
The story unfolds over duelling-narrative chapters and for the first few months of their living arrangement, Tiffy and Leon communicate via Post-It notes that they leave around the flat. Think sticky notes left besides left-over mushroom stroganoff or a batch of stress-baked flapjacks. Over time, they begin to pick up on each other’s moods and quirks solely through the cues they leave around the flat: the unwashed dish left on the counter, the half-drunk cup of tea.
Tiffy has a wonderfully human quality about her and is fabulously dynamic while Leon is so quiet but filled with lots of hidden emotions. I couldn’t get enough of Tiffy and Leon as they build their relationship from strangers, to friends and finally partners.
While being an appealing, fun and entertaining read, it does touch on serious of issues of abuse and miscarriages of justice which gives the book more depth than your average romance. The smart, original writing makes for a compelling, emotionally intelligent and thoughtful book about love. It's fiction to make you feel good and I have fallen head over heels in love with Tiffy and Leon and indeed, this book.