Daisy Does it Herself by Gracie Player – ⭐⭐⭐
This was a lovely romance with woman-power of a tech savvy heroine, and I’m be damned if I don’t already want more 😍
For a book that makes you cheer for the main character, for a love interest who’s clear but respectful, for a female character who is defined by more than the men around her, for a generally feel-good and silly story
When 26-year-old Daisy’s life in London comes crashing down around her, the only thing she can think of is getting away – far away. That’s how she found herself stumbling off a train in England’s picturesque Peak District – 150 miles from home, with no idea why she’d gone there and even less idea how she intended to get home. But as Daisy explores the gorgeous village of Upper Finlay, she glimpses the possibility of a different life. The Derbyshire Dales offer up new friends, new opportunities, and a distractingly dishy object of attraction in the form of local bookstore owner Alex (and his bumbling Great Dane.) When Daisy discovers Alex’s business is in trouble she steps in to save the day. But London’s calling – literally. The life Daisy ran away from is calling her back. Why then, is she so reluctant to heed its call? Daisy’s got a decision to make: Will she play it safe, and return to what she knew? Or is she brave enough to take a leap of faith and create a bold, new life for herself in the last place she’d ever expected?
I totally judged this book by it’s cover, and the cover suits it very well. I love the bright cheery colors, and the poised and cool woman suits Daisy’s growth throughout the book. The title is also perfect, and Daisy does indeed take control even when her whole life seems absolutely out of control.
Now, that said, this is a fairly standard plot track for a rom-com story. Nonetheless, the details of it made it a delight to read within the standard expectations. Daisy falls into a career around coding and web design, which personally is so relatable since that’s what’s happened to me as well (who knew I’d love it, eh?). I also adore the fact that she’s so good at it without being forced into usual stereotypes of IT and particularly women in IT.
That’s just one way Daisy is a well-rounded character. There was none of the usual trap of the MC being defined solely by her relationships with men, which is such a turn off in romances. She’s finding her own goals and pursuing them, and those involve her career, her friends, and so much more. She has integrity throughout, as does the love interest — he’s clear about how he feels, but also respectful of how she feels.
The downpoints here are that it was still, as mentioned, a pretty familiar story. Nothing was particularly groundbreaking, and frankly, that’s fine by me because all I wanted was a comfortable read. There are also a few plot elements where you have to suspend disbelief a little bit, because everything works out just so and it feels a bit tidier than would ever really happen.
The last issue is more mine as an American reader, but the slang and phrases used sometimes made absolutely no sense to me. Some I couldn’t even work out from context, and just moved past with a confused shrug. Daisy also has speech habits that seem very strange to me, like referring to herself as “Daisy, ol’ girl, you have to…” and so on. Do people really talk like that?? It sounded like a caricature to me, but again that’s due to my life experiences (or lack thereof).
Thanks to NetGalley and BooksGoSocial for a free copy in exchange for an honest review!