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An Offer You Can't Refuse [Paperback]

Jill Mansell
4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)

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Book Description

June 26 2008
A sweet, funny and romantic novel from the Sunday Times No. 1 bestseller. Lola has no intention of accepting when her boyfriend Dougie's snobbish mother offers her GBP10,000 to break up with him. Then she discovers a secret that makes her think again. Dougie would probably have broken up with her in the long run, and this way she can help one of the people she loves most in the world.Ten years later, though, when Lola meets Dougie again, her feelings for him are as strong as ever. But she broke Dougie's heart and he's about to discover that she was paid to do it. She can never tell him the truth, so can she get him back? Well, Lola's very attractive and very persuasive. But even she's got her work cut out this time...

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Review

'Funny and easygoing chick-lit' -- Herald, Glasgow 'There are giggles galore in this adorable romance. Recommended' -- Famous, Australia 'Pick this up at your peril: you won't get a thing done till it's finished' -- Heat 'Another slice of superior chick-lit with four stars' -- Heat 'This nimbly paced, skilfully pitched yarn is the perfect read for commutes or snug winter weekends' -- Australian Vogue

About the Author

Jill Mansell worked for many years at the Burden Neurological Hospital, Bristol, and now writes full time. She lives with her partner and their children in Bristol.

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Customer Reviews

4.0 out of 5 stars
4.0 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars A Light, Easy and Cheerful Read Dec 23 2011
By Lydia - Novel Escapes TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
This was a quick read and it definitely hooks you from the get go. I enjoyed it more at the beginning, became less interested at points, and thought it was terribly predictable (which might have been why I became indifferent at times). Suitably cheerful, it's single girl chick lit where girl looses boy and girl's friends are fun and her mother is a little odd and his mother is even worse. I laughed out loud in spots, mainly towards the end, which was a nice surprise as I hadn't until then.

I thought there were some character inconsistencies at times, especially with her friend Sally and I would have liked a bit more expansion of all the other characters as they played a large role in this novel, it was as much about them as the main character.

I don't really have much to say about it other than I didn't hate it and definitely didn't love it. It's somewhere in the middle for me, but then again, most of these types of chick lit are for me. They really aren't my favorite but if you are looking for something more light and easy to read, this would fit the bill.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Another Jill Mansell winner Aug. 30 2009
By klady
Format:Paperback
I have never been disappointed by Jill Mansell and An Offer You Can't Refuse was just as I expected. I've read all of her novels and they always pull me in from the start.
Her characters are engaging and their lives are like your own or completely different- either way wonderfully entertaining!
This story begins with Lola being offered money to leave her boyfriend- by her boyfriends mother! She takes the money to help out her stepfather but is torn as she believes that Doug is probably the love of her life.
The "supporting cast" of Lola's friends and family are all entertaining and I couldn't stop reading this book.
All in all another great hit for Jill Mansell- if you've liked her before this one will too.

[...]
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4.0 out of 5 stars Delightful Brit Chick Lit April 7 2009
By Luanne Ollivier #1 HALL OF FAME TOP 10 REVIEWER
Format:Paperback
I admit it - I LOVE chick lit - and I think British chick lit is some of the best! I am so excited that Sourcebooks is bringing Jill Mansell's titles to North America! An Offer You Can't Refuse is being released today.

Seventeen year old Lola Malone is madly in love with Dougie Tennant. But Dougie's mother Adele is less than enamoured with Lola - she wants her out of Dougie's life. She offers Lola a large sum of money to do just that. Lola is horrified, but when a family situation necessitates a large cash influx, she is reluctantly forced to accept Adele's offer.

Fast forward ten years - Lola is back in Britain and the manager of a bookstore. I loved Mansell's choice of occupation for Lola.

"She craved a proper bookshop like an addict craves a fix. There wasn't much that could beat that gorgeous new-book smell, touching the covers and turning the pages of a book whose pages had, just possibly, never been turned before."

Or the customer who wants a book about insects that might have a pig in it. (Keep guessing - I'll tell you the title at the end of this post)

When Lola suddenly meets up with Dougie again and finds she is still madly attracted to him, she hopes that maybe, just maybe....it will work this time around. But when Dougie hears about the payoff, he wants nothing to do with her. She promised to never reveal the reason she needed the money, but how is she going to win Dougie back when he thinks she is nothing but money hungry?

Lola is an absolutely endearing character - someone you wish you had as a friend. The supporting characters are just as captivating, as are their story lines. Gabe is the male neat freak best friend, who through circumstances ends up living with Dougie's sloppy sister Sally.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fun and light summer reading April 7 2009
Format:Paperback
Rating: 4.5 stars

An Offer You Can't Refuse, which is already a bestseller in the UK, has just been released in North America. It starts off telling the story of seventeen-year-old Lola, who was just offered 10,000 pounds to break up with her boyfriend Doug, from his mother because according to her, Lola doesn't fit in with the privileged life she wants for him. Lola refuses the money but upon discovering her step-father's huge gambling debts, decides to take the money to bail him out. Fast-forward a number of years later, Lola decides to move back to her hometown and through certain circumstances runs into Doug. Lola realizes that she still has feelings for him but seeing her only arouses the anger and pain he had felt when she inexplicably broke up with him in a letter and left town. Despite the challenge, Lola fights to win back Doug's affection while trying to keep the secret about the money and her reasons for accepting it to herself.

I seem to be reading less and less of traditional "chick-lit" because I find that even light books need some substance to truly be enjoyable for me. That is exactly why I was so pleased with An Offer You Can't Refuse. Although the ending is predictable and it has its share of overly sentimental parts, Jill Mansell's witty writing and interesting characters put this book in a different league. It may appear that Lola is a helpless and pathetic woman, still pining over Doug after all those years, but she is not portrayed as weak at all in the story. Actually the opposite is true given how loyal Lola is to her step-father by refusing to divulge the real reason why she needed the money. She stays true to herself and to her morals, even though it would have been a lot easier to betray her stepfather's trust and tell Doug what really happened.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.3 out of 5 stars  42 reviews
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic Brit Chick Lit July 12 2009
By Julie Peterson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
When I was in my 20s, I read so much Chick Lit -- pretty much everything I could get my hands on. I think I read these types of books because it was so not the life I was living. I met my husband when I was 20 and got married when I was 24, but I did consider myself a working girl in the city so I could somewhat relate. Then, I turned 30 and got pregnant. I still read a few of the popular, mainstream Chick Lit books but I could tell that my tastes were changing and I pretty much had nothing in common with the characters. Now, I'm rapidly approaching 40 this month (UGH!!!) and I have to say that I have more in common with the mothers of the girls in these types of books; however, I still find that I enjoy reading the occasional good Chick Lit book. AN OFFER YOU CAN'T REFUSE by Jill Mansell was just that -- an entertaining Chick Lit book and I had such a great time reading it!

AN OFFER YOU CAN'T REFUSE had all the elements of a really great Chick Lit book! A terrific main character Lola, great supporting friends, a little romance, some sexual tension, and of course lots of confusion. I really thought the premise of this story was cute. Lola, a 17 year old girl accepts a bribe from her boyfriend's mother to break up with him. Ten years later, she meets up with Dougie again and desperately wants him back.

You can't help but fall in love with Lola. When we first meet her, she's only 17 years old and still pretty naive. She is in love with Dougie and thinks he's "the one" so she's naturally appalled that Doug's mother offers her so much money to stay away from him. But like any normal teenage, she begins having a few doubts about whether their relationship will make it when he goes away to school. And when she realizes that her stepfather has his own set of problems, she decides to do what she can to help -- and that means accepting the money.

Fast forward ten years when Lola helps save Dougie's mother from an attacker. Doug learns that she accepted a bribe to break up with him and he can't even face Lola. A big part of the book is Lola's attempts to make Dougie see his true feelings for her. In the meantime, Lola becomes friends with Dougie's sister and she moves into the same apartment complex so Lola and Doug keep finding themselves thrown together. There is lots of tension between Lola and Doug, some of it even sexual. One thing's for sure, you will find yourself rooting for Lola and hoping that Doug can find it in his heart to forgive her.

Not only was the main story of Lola and Doug cute, but I also enjoyed some of the side stories. I thought the intereaction between Doug's sister and Lola's best male friend Gabe were terrific. In fact, I adored Gabe and thought he provided quite a few laughs with his new job as a papparazzi. I also appreciated a few of the other supporting stories and characters, but I don't want to give away any of the surprises! Suffice it to say, that there are a few twists and turns in this novel.

Ms. Mansell is a British writer and her books are very popular in England -- she's actually an international best-selling author. I wasn't familiar with Ms. Mansell or any of her books, but I am so glad that Sourcebooks Casablanca is reissuing them here in the States. It's terrific that American readers are now getting to know Ms. Mansell. I already have MIRANDA'S BIG MISTAKE which is coming out in June, and I can't wait to read it!
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Not my favorite by Mansell, but I still enojoyed it. April 26 2013
By Brittany Johnson - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am an avid reader of Jill Mansell's books, so naturally this was on my "To Read" list. While this one was not my favorite by her, it was still a really enjoyable chick lit book to read.

My favorite characters in the book were Gabe and Sally, not even Lola and Dougie, the main characters. I felt like the relationship between Gabe and Sally was much more developed than the relationship between Dougie and Lola. I would have liked to see Dougie and Lola actually fall for each other again, instead of things just happening. That being said, I did enjoy reading about Dougie and the way he treated Lola at times because it was comical.

I also thought Nick James was a good supporting character. When he was first introduced, I did not think he was Lola's father (not a spoiler as this is revealed early on in the book). The back story as to why he was not around was a pretty unique one, and I loved that he came back to start a relationship with Lola. I also thought the relationship between him and Blythe was interesting.

There was a lot going on in this book, which is trademark Mansell, and while it wasn't my favorite, I would still recommend it to chick lit fans and/or Mansell fans.
5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An Offer You Can't Refuse to Read on the Beach April 3 2009
By S. Agusto-Cox - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
An Offer You Can't Refuse by Jill Mansell is witty, charming, engaging, and Chicklit to the max.

For a reviewer this was a treat to find in a book, this is definitely how many of us feel about books and reading, and reading these lines instantly cemented my attention to this book.

Lola is a young girl in love with a boy, Dougie, whose family is wealthy and whose mother hates her guts. His mother makes her an offer that she can't refuse, so she takes it and says goodbye to the love of her life in a "Dear John" letter. Fast-forward to the present day and we find Lola has grown up physically, but still wears the same teenage, low-cut clothes and finds herself being mistaken for a prostitute when she walks into London bookstore after living in Majorca for about a decade. Eventually, Lola becomes more grounded and is the bookshop manager, but just as she thinks her life is stabilizing and in a good place, things get all topsy-turvy again.

This novel starts off in Lola's past, but readers may find that more background is necessary, particularly where her relationship with Dougie is concerned. The only drawback of this novel, which really isn't one, is that Lola's story is pushed to the sidelines quite a bit as the Sally's story takes center stage. However, Mansell carefully weaves the narration back to Lola and the resolution of her story. Readers may want to see more of Dougie in this novel, since much of the novel shifts in point of view between Lola, Sally, and Lola's friend Gabe.

Mansell's writing is engaging, and though some of her characters, like Lola and Dougie's sister Sally, are shallow at first, the complications in their lives force them to look beyond their own lives and come to terms with themselves, their families, and their love lives. Highly recommended for readers who love British humor, chicklit, and are in need of summer reading.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Love Jill Mansell! Jan. 29 2013
By Tina - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Although this was not my favorite book by this author, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Her stories never let me down. I don't feel I'm giving anything away by saying I'm a sucker for a happy ending, and though it may not happen the way one might expect, we do manage to get there. It is precisely because the road to the happy ending has not always been the easy and predictable route, that keeps me coming back for more when my bookshelf is bare.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Chick Lit at Its Finest! Jan. 26 2013
By Lyndsay - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
An Offer You Can't Refuse is the 7th Jill Mansell novel I've read in the past two years. Obviously, she's become one of my favorite authors especially when I'm in the mood to relax on the beach or curl up by the fire with lighthearted book. An Offer You Can't Refuse is definitely one of my favorites out of the seven that I've read.

Meet Lola Malone. At 17, Lola was deeply in love with Dougie Tennant. Nothing could tear them apart so when Dougie's mother offered Lola a bribe to break up with her son, she had no intention of taking it. However, when a family crisis came to light, Lola felt as though she has no choice but to accept the offer. Ten years later, Lola crosses paths with Doug and his mother again. Now, Doug knows Lola took the bribe, and while Lola still harbors old feelings, Doug wants nothing to do with her. Lola's determined to convince Doug she made a mistake and is truly sorry.

There are twists and turns along with Ms. Mansell's signature long cast of colorful characters, which makes An Offer You Can't Refuse a perfect read for chick lit lovers!
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