ARC Review: ‘This Is Not A Love Story’ by Mary Hargreaves

41ffTV4uI8L“Maggie Gardiner isn’t good enough. She had six glasses of wine at a work conference, woke up covered in curry and has accidentally ended up living with the boring guy who was supposed to be a one night stand. Something has to change.
Every other twenty-something on Instagram seems to have their sh*t together, so why doesn’t she? And so she makes a list. When she’s ticked off every item, she’ll become Maggie 2.0 – the best version of herself, and the one she wants to be. Won’t she…?” (Amazon) 

Thank you to NetGalley and the publisher for my e-copy of this book.

Review of This Is Not A Love Story by Mary Hargreaves

My rating: 3/5

Mary Hargreaves’ This Is Not A Love Story is a funny and uplifting book so needed in the current climate. With many of us struggling during the lockdown, even now when the rules are starting to ease, This Is Not A Love Story is a perfect cure for the sadness and anger we may now feel.

Maggie is a mess, an actual mess. It’s perfectly normal to feel like a mess every now and then, especially in your twenties, where there are more things you haven’t figured out yet than those you did. But at the beginning of This Is Not A Love Story, Maggie is a bigger mess than most are on a daily basis. She has no idea where her life is heading, while it seems that everyone around has it all together, except her: with the job that she hates, a boyfriend she doesn’t want to be with, and family she’s not that close to. Instagram and other social media are not helpful, always showing her perfect images of other people’s perfect lives, something we all see all the time, even if the reality is often far from that. With many awkward moments and embarrassing situations Maggie finds herself in, she is a likeable and relatable protagonist, and her story will surely put a smile on your face.

Maggie makes a list of all the things she would like to change: like changing her job and starting to exercise more. But takes her drunk outburst and losing her job to actually stop and find the way to make firstly small changes that lead to bigger changes in her life. Mary Hargreaves’ book is not a love story, but in many ways is a story about finding yourself.

While I generally enjoyed This Is Not Love Story, with its often funny and uncomfortably real moments, I felt like the resolution came too quickly, and that almost everything has been too perfect by the end of the book. But overall, This Is Not A Love Storyhas been a great escape from reality – it’s an easy and relatable read, where you can laugh at Maggie’s struggles (instead of focusing on your own problems), and yet understand what she’s going through.

Who is the book for: Anyone looking for an uplifting contemporary novel.

Mary Hargreaves’ This Is Not A Love Story is released tomorrow, and you can get your copy here.


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