Title: The Adults
Author: Caroline Hulse
Published: August 23rd, 2018
Disclosure: I was sent this ARC by the publisher, reviewing it as an impartial review. This does not sway my opinion of the book. As always, my reviews are fair and unbiased.
The most hilarious debut you will read this year.
* * * * *MEET THE ADULTS.Claire and Matt are divorced but decide what’s best for their daughter Scarlett is to have a ‘normal’ family Christmas. They can’t agree on whose idea it was, or who said they should bring their new partners. But someone did – and it’s too late to pull the plug.Claire brings her new boyfriend Patrick, a seemingly eligible Iron-Man-in-Waiting. Matt brings the new love of his life Alex, funny, smart, and extremely patient. Scarlett, their daughter, brings her imaginary friend Posey. He’s a rabbit.Together the five (or six?) of them grit their teeth over Organized Fun activities, drinking a little too much after bed-time, oversharing classified secrets about their pasts and, before you know it, their holiday is a powder keg that ends – where this story starts – with a tearful, frightened, call to the police…
But what happened? They said they’d all be adults about this…
* * * * *
If you loved THE BREAK by Marian Keyes or raved about THE ROSIE PROJECT – look no further than THE ADULTS.
There’s something just super relaxing about reading a book like The Adults. I think when I read YA, I’m like this is my game face, I’m ready to read! But Adult fiction is just a lot more calming to me, no matter what the genre or plot. When I first was introduced to The Adults by the lovely team at Orion, I couldn’t say no! It sounded like a true breath of fresh air.
I would pick up any book that was for fans of The Rosie Project. I truly devoured those books and thought this little slice of fiction would be no exception! So, first and foremost, Claire and Matt are a divorced couple. They have a daughter together, Scarlett, who really is a little star among the pages. They want her to have a life as normal as possible, and in doing that, a perfect Christmas that runs along the line of normalcy. They don’t know how it happened, but soon enough, they’re all together and the awkwardness starts to appear. Despite the fact that they have new partners, it first gets off to a rocky but steady start. But then the cracks start to appear.
With Claire’s new partner Patrick and Matt’s new love Alex, with Scarlett (and her imaginary friend Posey the rabbit) they make an unlikely bunch. Doing activities together and “bonding” with organised “fun” they start to unravel. Oversharing leads to secrets, tears and a whole lot of fireworks. But what they don’t expect most is to learn something new about themselves, each other and what it really means to be an adult.
Overall, I really just couldn’t get enough of The Adults. Whilst it took me a little bit to really get into the novel, the middle and end sure made up for it. The points of view, striking and capturing my attention, were poignant and funny and just so real (is it strange I really loved Posey, the imaginary “friend”?) I never expected for The Adults to be as it was (if that makes sense) and it took me on a whole different journey (in the best way possible). If you’re looking for a novel with humour, “adulting” and mayhem that leaves you feeling like you’ve read something importantly great, you’ve found your new favourite read. Four amazing stars!
Hi Caroline! Your characters go through so much before the book even begins. Which character has been your favourite to craft personality-wise?
Hi! I should probably answer about a human character first. On that basis, it’s Patrick. I enjoyed writing his dual-edge character, showing the difference between his successful, enviable ‘outside’ and the teeming insecurities within.
Overall though, my favourite character was Posey. There’s an element of wish-fulfilment in writing a character’s imaginary friend who exists purely to support and entertain that human: who can get over physical hurdles effortlessly (logistics, gravity etc.) and who doesn’t care about anyone’s needs or feelings except those of ‘their’ human. It would be ace to go through life with a side-kick like that.
Also, Posey gets to have all the fun, all apart for having to sleep in the airing cupboard. I wouldn’t be so keen on that part.
The Adults is such a funny, yet oh-so-real book. What inspired Claire and Matt’s story?
I was trying to think of a plot for an everyday suspense, with the potential to produce tension between well-meaning people. I don’t really like to write ‘good guys’ and ‘bad guys’: in my books, people are more complicated than that.
I read an article in a weekend section about an ex-couple who went on holiday together with their shared family and new partners, and I just thought, How? Why?
I wish all my exes well, but I don’t have to see them on a day-to-day basis – and I don’t think it would be a great idea to go on holiday with them and their new partners! But people do! And those people must be way more mature than me.
You blend humour and drama together faultlessly. If you could write in any other genre, what would it be?
Firstly, that is lovely, thank you.
I read widely, mostly crime and thrillers, book club and literary stuff, and I would love to write a serious thriller one day. I just need to think of a killer, edge-of-your-seat plot, and work out how to drop the comedy that sneaks in to my writing. Leave it with me.
Finally, if The Adults was made into a movie, who would you *love* to play who?
I’m so sorry, I can’t answer this properly. The people in the book are so real in my mind, I can’t think how to suggest actors for it. It’s a good thing I’m not a casting director, and if The Adults does get produced as a movie, I’ll be fascinated to see who they choose!
Thank you so much for answering my questions, today.
No problem, and I’m so pleased you enjoyed the book.
Caroline Hulse spends most of her days writing, having fulfilled her dream of having a job she could do in pyjamas. She also works in Human Resources sometimes.
She is openly competitive and loves playing board and card games. She can often be found in casino poker rooms, and wishes other people would want to play Cluedo for money.
She lives with her husband in Manchester, UK, where the two are captive to the whims of a small, controlling dog.he Goodreads database with this name.
Have you read The Adults? Are you looking forward to it?
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