“All I Ever Wanted” is almost what I wanted

I’ve never been so mad while reading a book by Lucy Dillon, nor have I ever cried so little. But “All I Ever Wanted” is still magical.

When I ventured into the bookstore I already knew what I wanted: Lucy Dillon. She’s my ultimate go-to when it comes to cute and calm books. If you don’t know Dillon since before, she’s a british romance writer. (Wikipedia says romance, I’d go more towards “cosy chick-lit”. Romance sounds too shallow to describe Dillon’s ever so deep novels.) Dillon’s books usually includes the same things: Dogs, the city of Longhampton, relationships and some life-turning event.

In “All I Ever Wanted,” this event is a divorce which leads to the divorcees young daughter not speaking anymore. The daughter, along with her older brother, then starts spending time with their recently widowed aunt, Eva. This gives the mother, Caitlin, some spare time to think about her life so far. What does she really want from life? And Eva, suddenly having two rowdy kids in her otherwise quiet and lonely life, also starts wondering about that same thing. This very big question fills the women’s lives, along with the constant worry for the young girl and her damaged heart.

“Lucy Dillon’s books make the world a better place.” – HEAT

Both Caitlin and Eva are loveable characters. They’re strong minded, warm women with big hearts and specific personalities. Eva lives a calm life in Longhampton with her two pugs, in a house that are big and quiet. Caitlin was a single mother for the first years of her first born’s life, before her future husband came into the picture. She used to be slightly kooky and free-spirited, loving live music and dancing. But after many years of marriage and caring for her children, she feels like she’s lost herself. My heart was fully invested in following these women and their stories throughout the book. What I wasn’t very invested in however, was Caitlin’s husband.

Patrick, as he’s called, reminds me way too much about my ex and my dad. (Don’t get me started on that connection, please.) Patrick is a workaholic, and seems to miss out on a lot of things regarding the kids, or the family as a whole. Then, he starts blaming Caitlin for things that goes wrong, even though he is the one who’s actually never around. He seems stiff, angry and selfish, with the wrong priorities and the wrong role models. I’ve never been so pissed off at a book character before. At one point, he seems to start guilt tripping Caitlin into thinking something’s her fault, and when she starts agreeing, I was close to tossing my book out the window. Manipulative guys is my ultimate trigger.

But the character of Patrick is a small flaw in an otherwise great novel. You get easily invested in the story and the characters lives, and like any good book you can’t stop reading. As any Lucy Dillon-novel, the story is new and interesting, and leaves you in a thoughtful, emotional bubble for days afterwards. Even though this isn’t my favorite of Lucy Dillon’s novels, it’s still great. It’s the perfect book for a lazy, rainy weekend in the sofa or for a quiet day in the sun in your backyard.

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