The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary

The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary is one of the most refreshing, unique, and charming romances I’ve ever read.

Tiffy and Leon share an apartment. Tiffy and Leon have never met.

After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. But the apartments in her budget have her wondering if astonishingly colored mold on the walls counts as art.

Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare. Leon, a night shift worker, will take the apartment during the day, and Tiffy can have it nights and weekends. He’ll only ever be there when she’s at the office. In fact, they’ll never even have to meet.

Tiffy and Leon start writing each other notes – first about what day is garbage day, and politely establishing what leftovers are up for grabs, and the evergreen question of whether the toilet seat should stay up or down. Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more.

But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea…especially if you’ve never met.

What if your roommate is your soul mate? A joyful, quirky romantic comedy, Beth O’Leary’s The Flatshare is a feel-good novel about finding love in the most unexpected of ways.

The concept of this book is quite unlike any other. I mean, yes, the “roommate romance” is a trope we’ve all seen before. But the idea that Tiffy and Leon are roommates who’ve literally never met, and yet they share a bed (not at the same time) is so outrageous, and yet it works beautifully here.

I absolutely fell in love with these characters, and found it especially charming the way O’Leary wrote each voice so distinctively. You get a sense for Tiffy’s flare and Leon’s pragmatism even through the style of her writing for each of their voices, in addition to how their stories unfold.

I easily found myself captivated by each character and their individual dramas — but eagerly became more and more engrossed, as their stories began to intertwine and their relationship (formed via Post-It notes) blossomed into something more.

The Flatshare was just a delight from start to finish, and my only complaint is that it ended and I had to say goodbye to these wonderful characters. The Flatshare is available now in the UK, and comes out in the US on May 28th.

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