Book Review: Tempting Fate by Jane Green

JANE GREEN TEMPTING FATETempting Fate by Jane Green
Publisher: Penguin
Release Date: 12th September 2013
Rating: 4/5
Buy: Paperback | Kindle
Amazon Summary:

Number one bestselling author Jane Green gives a powerful portrayal of a marriage rocked by betrayal in the stunning Tempting Fate.

When Gabby first met Elliott she knew he was the man for her. In twenty years of marriage she has never doubted her love for him – even when he refused to give her the one thing she still wants most of all. But now their two daughters are growing up Gabby feels that time and her youth are slipping away. For the first time in her life she is restless. And then she meets Matt . . .

Intoxicated by the way this young, handsome and successful man makes her feel, Gabby is momentarily blind to what she stands to lose on this dangerous path. And in one reckless moment she destroys all that she holds dear.

Consumed by regret, Gabby does everything she can to repair the home she has broken. But are some betrayals too great to forgive?

Jane Green is massive in the Chick Lit world, but she isn’t someone who I think is a must read. I attempted to read Jemima J many moons ago, but I didn’t like it at all. I don’t know why, but from then I steered clear of Jane’s books. I did try another of her novels, Second Chance, but again it didn’t blow me away. However it seems that her more recent novels have seen her go in a more mature direction, with marriages the main focus, getting into the minutaie of what it is to be married, and when I received a copy of Tempting Fate I was really interested to give it a read. A final last chance, to see if I could get on board with Jane Green the way millions of other fans have, or if she was just destined to be an author I just didn’t need to read.

I’m actually quite pleased to report that I thoroughly enjoyed Tempting Fate, and that surprised me massively as the novel is actually focused on cheating; something that if you read my reviews you will know drives me nuts. I hate it. I hate that in Chick Lit if a man cheats he’s a scoundrel but if a woman cheats it takes an entire book to justify why she did it and in the end… it’s OK. So a lot of the time a book about an affair with get a 3-star or lower rating and a hefty rant from me, but I liked that in Tempting Fate, Gabby had to live with her consequences and in so many ways, as well. Not only did her affair, her one-night stand, end her marriage, it left her with a surprising (but not entirely unwanted) pregnancy. And so, the novel takes us through Gabby’s mid-life crisis and we see if she’s able to get her life back on track or if her indiscretion was just a step too far for her (quite wonderful) husband Elliott.

I really, really enjoyed Tempting Fate. I felt Gabby getting her comeuppance and having to fight for her happiness made it a wonderfully refreshing, honest read. It’s a quieter sort of novel to the novels I normally read, the kind of books that I normally find too slow, books that aren’t generally my type of read, but this was great. For some reason, I was really interested in Gabby’s life and I found it fascinating. Despite my staunch stance that cheating is wrong, I have to admit I enjoyed the scenes building up the tension between Gabby and Matt, it was a nice peek into how Gabby felt about Matt, how him treating her like an adult and a young not middle-aged woman made her feel alive and brilliant. It was easy to be as sucked in with Matt as Gabby was and I found their email correspondence to be so compelling; so compelling I’d have read an entire novel just of their email exchanges, I thought that was Green’s writing at her best!

Tempting Fate really was an interesting novel. It has definitely made me interested in seeking out some of Jane Green’s other novels, perhaps starting with her last two from Tempting Fate. This was a mature, enjoyable novel and I really savoured every page. I thought Gabby was a fantastic character; yep, what she did was so, so wrong, but I liked seeing her dig her way back out from such a deep, deep hole. I liked that her relationship with Elliott was practically impenetrable until her transgression, proving you can have the most solid of marriages and still be led astray. I would definitely recommend you pick up the book, Jane Green seems to have matured as a writer and I liked the writing, it kept me hooked. It was a brilliant read, with some fabulous characters, Gabby in particular was a delight, do pick up Tempting Fate, it was great.

One thought on “Book Review: Tempting Fate by Jane Green

  1. I am (was?) a die hard Jane Green fan. When I first read Jemima J in my early teens, I loved it. However, on re-reads it kind of bothered me because as someone who is struggling with an eating disorder the way Jemima’s was glossed over and the lack of acknowledgement for something so serious annoyed me. Besides that I still love her earlier work. Her latest books have been “meh” for me. It isn’t the change of direction – the girl about London town to suburban wives and families that bothers me. I may be a lot younger than Green, but I am shacked up with daughters so the storylines aren’t unrelatable. I just hate her new style of writing. It’s so “American” Her older books are full of sharp observations and snappy one liners, to me very “British” whereas her more current ones are full of American lingo (yeah, I know they’re set in the US but still… Green is British) and sappy dialogue. While I pre-order in the hope of another “Bookends” or “Straight Talking” I roll my eyes a lot!

    That she is now writing two books a year doesn’t give me much hope either.

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