Seduction is the perfect lighthearted, escapist read. Although I rarely read books of this type, something about the blurb, introducing me to an out of work Australian actress who was living in London, drew me in. I'm glad it did. As it turns out, Seduction tells the story of a variety of quirky characters, all of whom are unhappy and want something more out of life. There is the leading lady, the annoying and selfish Willow Carruthers, whose marriage has just broken up and who seems to have an endless capacity to ignore reality (i.e. spending more money than she earns, refusing to admit that her son may have learning difficulties). We are then introduced to her young nanny, Kitty, who suffers from a low self-esteem and is hiding from a surprising problem of her own. From there, we discover that Willow is about to be evicted, but Kitty has a surprising solution. She is the joint owner of a large, unkempt country house so they can live there. They family arrives at the cottage at the same time as Kitty's long lost brother, the introverted Merritt. From there, numerous twists and turns begin as each character begins to rebuild his or her life.
The novel relies heavily on chance and coincidence (for example at one point, the PR agent that Willow jilted is revealed to be Merritt's ex-wife, whose current husband just happens to be the man who took Kitty's virginity and who eventually leaves her for the woman who Willow's husband had just had an affair and they all argue inside Merritt and Kitty's kitchen,) but the journey and conclusion make for fun light reading. I found myself warming to the characters more as the story went on, particularly to Willow and to Kitty's love interest, Ivo. I love the descriptions of Middlemist, but thought that more could have been done with the mystery surrounding the paintings.
A good read for a lazy summer afternoon.
Review Copy provided by Penguin Books Australia via Netgally.