Some books are unputdownable. This book, Knowing Me Knowing You by Helen Bailey, was not one of them. The main character is Chantelle ‘Channy’ Allen, a teenage girl living in Kent. The story was told from her point of view, so I understand why Bailey felt the need to write as if she was a teenage girl. However, the style of writing was one of the main reasons I took a dislike to the book.
The blurb caught my interest, promising a “gorgeous French exchange student Antoine”. Disappointingly, he only appeared at the beginning of the story, and at the very end after a very brief explanation about their email exchanging. Even as a subplot, the Antoine plot was very underdeveloped, and didn’t do much for the main plot at all.
Furthermore, the issues that Chantelle faces, i.e. finding her biological father, were dealt with atrociously. I admit that I felt sympathy for her reaction, but the plot is extremely jumpy, and should have focussed on one main plot. There is no real substance in this book, which was probably to be expected.
I didn’t feel for any of the characters, nor did I care for the frequent and unnecessary Abba references (even though Chantelle’s parents are part of an Abba tribute band). Bailey could have made the story better by properly dealing with the father issue, instead of conveniently tying up all loose ends in a hurry at the very end.
My verdict? Unrealistic and superficial.