Reviewing Stay Tuned was something of a last minute decision. I honestly hadn’t anticipated having time to do it but the more I read about Stay Tuned and Lauren Clark, the more determined I was to make time. I started Stay Tuned this week and picked it up whenever I had a spare moment – and, like with all good novels, very quickly I was making spare moments so I could read. Drinking 10 cups of tea an hour so I could sneak a few pages in while the kettle boiled, overcooking the pasta sauce by ten minutes so I could sneak another chapter or two in, that kind of thing. Well, perhaps not quite so bad but not far off.
Stay Tuned has a great central character who at one point is described as ‘a trooper’. We all know the type (and hands up if you are that type): never say no, would rather go without sleep than let someone down, put their own feelings on the backburner to keep everyone else happy. Melissa is a trooper but she’s also a talented anchor, loving wife and devoted mother who is realising that it’s time the people in her life stood up and noticed her. And not in a ‘aww, she’s so reliable and solid’ kind of way. Cue makeover, growth of a serious backbone and an admirable career growth spurt.
In the space of a few weeks Melissa takes on her workaholic husband, distant mother, demented ex-colleague and ladykiller coworker and faces up to her problems working hard to stick to the mantra ‘Believe in yourself’. Slowly but surely she begins to realise that other people do believe in her but need her to believe in herself as well.
If I had one tiny criticism (well, you know I’m picky), I think the ‘stalker’ scenario in the book could have been drawn out for another few chapters to add a level of tension or intrigue to the book. But is it a dealbreaker? Absolutely not. After all, it isn’t like Melissa and her husband Chris are lacking in drama to cope with!
Stay Tuned is an example of a feel good novel at its best. Lauren Clark’s previous experience in the news industry (see her interview and guest post) help make the details in the novel feel very real and very engaging. Melissa is a character who is easy to identify with and the result is you want to see her tackle things head on and succeed. Is it an ‘everything comes good in the end’ type tale? Is that one of the things that makes it a great read? Of course! Sometimes, especially in the dark winter nights, you need a little something with a happy ending you can see coming. Comfortably predictable is a great way to describe Stay Tuned and as such it’s just what the doctor ordered for your cheery and cozy ‘to be read’ pile.Note: this book was supplied to me in exchange for my honest review. I did not receive any additional compensation. In fact, I liked the book so much I bought a copy after all!