Pocketbooks Town House, £5.99

Emma is a 35-year-old legal secretary. Working in a small office of a large solicitors firm in London hasn't exactly prepared her for the high life, neither has marriage to Tony, her husband of seven years.

Tony left the army six years ago and has been working as a bouncer on the door of the local pub. Emma, has put on weight and hides behind unflattering skirts and baggy jumpers. Her best friend in life is a work colleague called Jeremy. Living in a cul-de-sac in a claustrophobically small house, Emma realises that when the highlight of your week is the weekly shopping trip to Tesco's - life is definitely passing you by…

An opportunity arises within her firm to go to Dublin to help set up a new branch, the only problem is she will be working closely for athletic, good-looking, successful, obnoxious Jack. She accepts the challenge, the only problem is - sooner or later she has to go home to England and to Tony.

Sparrow captures the turmoil of a thirty-something "stuck in a rut" life perfectly and portrays the married-with-no-children, hum drum existence of her subject exceptionally well.

The moral of the novel seems to be "when all's said and done life is for living". You mightn't stay up all night to finish it but it's definitely worth a read.

Charley Maine