Book Review: 31 Dream Street…

Doesn’t that title just say chick-lit all over it? i like to indulge in some all out chick-lit once in a while. It is good for some perspective on life – really it is, at least for me.

However, i must say, this book by Lisa Jewell has more depth than i initially thought. But it’s not crack-your-head, heavy-going type of depth. The depth of this story is so well woven into the lives of the characters that you finish the book and look back with a surprised acknowledgement of what you have learnt or gained from reading it.

Leah, a woman in her mid-30s, has lived across from the eccentric house on 31 Silversmith Road for a few years now. She wants so much to get to know the weird and wonderful people who live there. i love how she names them, Old Skinny Guy, Girl with the Guitar, Young Skinny Guy, the Teenager, the Air Hostess and Sybil (a tenant who changes her image very often).

She gets her chance when one of the tenants dies in the street one morning and she runs to get the owner of house, Toby, the failed/struggling poet. She and Toby form an unlikely friendship in which she encourages him to seek out his path in life and Toby finds in her his Aunty Agony and more.

Toby’s tenants aren’t just Toby’s tenants. They are a sort of lifeline which he keeps at arm’s length but he needs them to stay rooted in this world. But with the death of one of them and an unexpected letter, he has to face the facts – he has to try to move ahead and move them out of his house and his life. Leah tries her best to help him, an almost recluse, to do just that and she learns that she might need him just as much too.

As the shape-up and move-out process goes on, we learn about the lives and back-stories of Toby’s strange tenants and what great stories they all have. Jewell does not leave any one of them in the dark. We get to know them and even like some of them in the end.

It is a story you hope as you read that there will be a happy end. There are times when it seems that the happy end is not to be… but keep reading, it does have a happy and heart-warming end which every chick-lit should have.

i read this while on our annual visit to Singapore. It is a light and good read which is satisfying and leaves you with a smile.

Have you read 31 Dream Street? Or maybe another one of Lisa Jewell’s books? What did you think of this or her other books? Let me know.


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