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Living with Jo-bookcover

By: John Hughes

Living with Jo

Pages: 346 Ratings: 4.5
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Who doesn’t dream of finding the love of their life?

Lonely, quirky Oliver Birch certainly does, and he knows

who she is. He’s adored her from afar for thirty years.  

But there’s a problem.

Joanna is happily married to somebody else.  

Then, one day, out of the blue, she arrives at his apartment.

And not just to visit. She’s here to stay.  

For Oliver it’s a dream come true, provided he can keep

a handle on where two-dimensional fantasy ends

and reality begins.

Will she be his saviour … or will she gradually drive him

towards the unwelcome hands of a psychiatrist?

Living with Jo is a love story with a difference. It explores a world familiar to many who find themselves single and adrift in later life. Sometimes they come across unusual and imaginative ways to fill emotional gaps in their lives. In Oliver’s case, it’s an imaginative step too far …

John Hughes was born in Sutton Coldfield, in the English Midlands, studied music at Royal Holloway College and has lived in Surrey for most of his adult life. He has earned a living in a variety of ways - selling pianos in Harrods, playing keyboards in a tribute band, editing a magazine, recruiting IT professionals and, most recently, managing in the NHS. He has written half a dozen non-fiction books but Spitfire Spies is his first published novel.

Customer Reviews
2 reviews
2 reviews
  • Derek Northam

    I read this book on holiday recently.
    A fascinating book , well written and kept my interest throughout. A far cry from the usual romantic tale. It’s a delicate insight into mental health issues and is an eye opener to how senior management figures in office can behave in their personal lives.
    A very good read and thought provoking.

  • The Author

    I'm delighted to say that Living With Jo is getting lots of fabulous reviews, but not on this site, so here's a summary of what readers are saying elsewhere - mainly on Amazon:

    Great read - something different ...
    The book starts steadily and drew me in quickly. The treatment of mental ill health and the professionals who provide care is sensitively and empathically portrayed. I found Oliver’s story compelling and the ending is wonderful and unexpected. I could not put it down.

    I absolutely adore this book ...
    From the first page, this book had me grabbed, to the extent that I put down all other books I was reading and just concentrated on this one. The central character is very real and totally lovable, the plot, though far-fetched and bizarre, is actually strangely believable. I enjoyed this book so much that I was sorry when it ended. This year, I shall be buying it as a Christmas present for friends.
    Decidedly different and a good read ...
    The subject matter of this quirky and engaging novel is so different from anything I have read before that it’s difficult to say just how good it is. It certainly had me turning the pages, and I wanted to know how the story could possibly develop from such an apparently narrow premise. It doesn’t disappoint, and while it touches on a particular type of obsessive and delusional behaviour, it never fails to amuse, enchant and surprise. I should add that its references to Joanna Lumley herself, or at least the public side of her we know from film and television, are never less than complimentary. Her reputation and dignity are unblemished by her association with an obsessive and troubled, but mostly harmless, protagonist.
    Fascinating and unusual ...
    This is an interesting book and I would recommend it for a holiday read. It is well written and easy to follow I couldn’t guess where it was going - a real page turner. It‘s an unusual situation ( I’m guessing) and delicately gives an insight into mental health issues.
    I was constantly wondering how much of this was based on research or was just pure fantasy.
    A very good read and thought provoking.

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