Good at Games by Jill Mansell with Excerpt and Giveaway

Good at Games by Jill Mansell with Excerpt and Giveaway

Today I’ve got a British Author, Jill Mansell on the blog. Please read on for an excerpt, and be sure to enter the giveaway where you could win one of two Jill Mansell Book Bundles from Sourcebooks.  Read on to discover more about

Good at Games:

The second I’ve read from Jill Mansell, Good At Games carries all of the fun, humor and crazy situations that I have come to expect (and appreciate) in my Brit Chick Lit writers.  I actually prefer the “across the pond” perspectives, it feels more comfortable to me, and it just seems that I don’t find that issues (multiple characters to meet, head hopping, a gentle meander into multiple plot lines) don’t seem to rankle.

So – we have Suzy as the ‘primary’ character, as all things sort of revolve around her: her ex-husband, the alcoholic in recovery former rock star Jaz and his stick-figure girlfriend Celeste, Suzy’s brother Rory who manages the real estate firm they both work at, her uptight (and wholly distasteful) sister Julia, her bff Fee, Harry the cop and his yummy brother Leo and the housekeeper/mother figure and the unknown element of Lucille.

There are a LOT of characters to get to know – but the primaries are well built and have interesting quirks that clearly speak in their voice.  It is head-hoppy with multiple POV switches happening although there is a rhythm to them: those little voices that give background and a ‘feel’ for the character that may have been lost in the sheer volume of people and events.

And events there are: flirtations, a chattering dog, cultivating real estate clients, a slow track to Rory’s unwinding, spotlights and quiet moments, a budding singer with zero songwriting skills and a rock star who can write beautiful songs but is afraid to try.  Two failed engagements, some infidelity, a hilarious couple who overheard Suzy’s heartfelt discussion with Baxter (the dog) and their ability to never forget her voice (or what she said). It’s full of positive attitudes (Suzy is confident, determined, and full of heart) and honest friendships with people who know your every quirk and near every secret- but are there anyway. It’s light and fun and if you just ‘go with” the multiple characters and their voices (interior and exterior) you will find that while Suzy is ostensibly the ‘pivot point’ in this story: all moments seem to circle back to her, but the true standout character here is friendship and love, even when life throws in a brick and a curveball.


Good at Games by Jill Mansell with Excerpt and Giveaway

Title: Good At Games
Author: Jill Mansell
Published by: Sourcebooks Landmark
ISBN: 149260450X
Published on: 5 January 2016
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Pages: 464
Rated: four-stars
Heat: One Flame

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New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Mansell captivates with a madcap tale of the games lovers play.

Who will make the next move?

How does one become accidentally engaged? That’s what Suzy Curtis thinks when she suddenly finds herself very publicly engaged to handsome Harry Fitzallan, local town hero. Harry wants famous rock star Jaz to be his best man—only he’s Suzy’s ex-husband and a recovering alcoholic. Suzy’s half sister Lucille loves getting to know the family she’d never met, but she can’t help her attraction to Jaz, nor can Suzy quash her entirely inappropriate feelings for Leo, Harry’s engaged brother!

With all these wild players at the table, mayhem is bound to ensue. As each new piece comes into play, everyone has more to lose, and the only way to win is if you’re good at the games of love...

A copy of this title was provided via Publisher via NetGalley for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.


HEADER - Excerpt IAI

                Could there possibly be anything nicer in the world than a Curly Wurly?

Alone in the office, Suzy lovingly peeled off the wrapper and admired the dappled chocolate covering. Then she bit into it, her teeth sinking through the toffee, her head twisting from side to side in order to bite off that first heavenly mouthful…oh, and they were sooo much better straight from the fridge…


Suzy’s eyes snapped open and she spun around guiltily. Damn, she’d been so carried away she hadn’t even heard the door open and close behind her.

And, double damn, it had to be Leo Fitzallan.


“Bitten off more than you can chew?” inquired Leo with a slight smile.

Suzy’s mouth was full—OK, overfull—and the toffee was welding itself to her teeth like quick-setting cement. Waving her hand apologetically, praying the melted chocolate wasn’t about to spill out and dribble attractively down her chin, she chewed and swallowed, chewed and swallowed, threw the rest of the Curly Wurly onto her desk and chewed and swallowed again.

Oh dear, not at all like the girl in the Cadbury’s Flake ad. In fact, more like Waynetta Slob guzzling a pizza.

“Sorry,” said Leo. “I obviously interrupted a special private moment.”

And swallowed again.

Hooray, didn’t even dribble!

“There.” Suzy executed a quick curtsy. “All gone. Now, how can I help you?”

He was wearing Givenchy aftershave—none of your Tommy Hilfigers or Calvin Kleins for Leo Fitzallan, thank you very much—and an expensively cut dark suit. Suzy wondered if he had chosen the bottle-green shirt and blue and amber tie himself, or whether Gabriella had picked them out for him.

Probably Gabriella. A man who drove a gray Volvo would never be that adventurous. And the dark blue in the tie exactly matched his eyes.

Definitely Gabriella.

“I thought maybe we should call a truce,” said Leo. “How does that sound to you?”

Blimey, Suzy thought, like a miracle. Quick, give the man a bottle of water and see if he can turn it into Chardonnay.

Aloud she said, “So what’s brought this on?”

“My brother’s happy with you. By Christmas you and I’ll be related. The last thing I want is a family feud. Easier all around if we bury the hatchet now,” Leo said easily. “Put the bickering behind us. What d’you say?”

He was even more attractive, Suzy realized, when he was in a good mood. During the last few days all he’d seemed to do was scowl, sneer, and generally radiate disapproval, which was sexy enough in its own way, of course, but it really was amazing the difference a few laughter lines could make.

“I agree.” Her mouth curled up at the corners. “That’s it then. From now on we’re going to be completely lovely to each other. And I’ll just have to find someone else to bicker with.”

“So long as it isn’t Harry,” said Leo.

“Harry isn’t the bickering kind.” Suzy smiled sunnily at him and perched on the edge of her desk. “This feels quite weird, actually. I’m not sure what we’re supposed to do now. If this were Friends we’d be giving each other a group hug.”

For a split second something indefinable flickered in Leo’s eyes. The next moment it had gone. He pushed his fingers through his ultra-straight dark hair, heaved a sigh and shrugged as if searching for inspiration.

Giveaway - IAI

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About Jill Mansell

With over 10 million copies sold, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Jill Mansell writes irresistible and funny, poignant and romantic tales for women in the tradition of Marian Keyes, Sophie Kinsella and Jojo Moyes. She lives with her partner and their children in Bristol, England.

2 responses to “Good at Games by Jill Mansell with Excerpt and Giveaway

  1. Renee Rousseau

    Jill Mansell is new to me! I am intrigued by her book covers and reviews. I also can slightly relate because I lived and worked in Bristol in the 80’s.

    • This is the second I’ve read from her – and while the stories are chock full of characters, the stories are fun and clever, and always have many different elements to enjoy. It is much like being in the midst of a group of friends, everyone with their own agenda and goals…
      Thanks for stopping in!