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Sharing our love for authors, and the stories they are inspired to tell.

‘This Perfect World’ by Suzanne Bugler

Heddy Partridge was never my friend because I was pretty, popular, clever and blonde and my friends were pretty, popular, clever and generally blonde, too.

Heddy Partridge was none of these things.

Heddy was dark and lumpen, with heavy eyebrows and an unfortunately large mole on her left cheek, right below her eye. Heddy wasn’t popular. In fact I couldn’t tell you who her friends were at school, but I certainly wasn’t one of them, even though she was always there in my life like a misplaced shadow, a stain, a sort of negative of myself, until we were streamed in the third year of senior school and I was put in the top stream and Heddy in the bottom, confirming her as thick and finally shutting her out of my life, to be more or less forgotten, until now.”

I think that this book is going to touch a lot of ‘hot buttons’ for me, with those first few lines giving a great taster of what I am sure is to follow.

I am not sure that it is going to be a particularly pleasant read, too many memories, but it unfortunately highlights the all too common scenario of peer pressure and downright bullying, both mental and physical, that many people still endure, in this ‘modern’, judgmental and conformist society.


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I can’t remember a time, even as a child, when I haven’t been passionate about books and reading.
I began blogging, when I realised just how many other people out there shared my passion for the written word and I have been continually amazed at the wealth of books that are available and the amount of great new friends I have made, from literally 'The Four Corners Of The World'.

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    • Hi Debnance,

      Thanks for stopping by, your comments are valued and much appreciated, it is always great to ‘meet’ new people and find some good blogs to follow.

      I haven’t been taking part in Book Beginnings for very long, although I have always posted the first few lines of my latest book in my ‘First Lines’ category, as I think that they can often be the ‘make or break’ of a good storyline. Turning over that first page is either going to be something eagerly anticipated, or done in the hope that the plot will capture my attention somewhere down the line!

      This book has all the makings of a good cringe story, as I think that we have all either crossed paths with someone like the lead character, or have been that person, at sometime in our lives….

    • Hi Laurel Rain,

      They are some quite aggressive and denigrating first words and you kind of get the storyline immediately, don’t you?

      I can always recall bullies being loud and particularly horrible when they were part of a gang, but never quite so terrible when they were on their own.

      I’m not so sure that our lead character Laura, isn’t still just the same today!!!

    • I am just getting to an interesting stage in the women’s relationship and it isn’t quite going how I thought it would, I can see fireworks ahead!!!

      I have always held out against purchasing a Kindle, but hubbie surprised me with it as a birthday present last month. I was more than a little surprised, as he spends all his time complaining about how many books I have all over the place and here he is encouraging me to buy yet more. I have decided that the only way to go, is to alternate my reading, one hardcopy, followed by one Kindle download.

      I was pleasantly surprised that I am able to share books with another user on the same account, as it means that we also split the cost of the downloads and it is quite a nice surprise when another book arrives in my archive.

      Oh no!! I think I may have almost been converted, although I will never be withour ‘real’ books totally

  • What an intriguing beginning–it holds so many possibilities for what will unfold in the story. I am hooked already.

    And I must say, the Kindle share setup with your mother-in-law sounds excellent! E-readers are becoming more and more user-friendly it seems.

    Thanks for participating in Book Beginnings!

    • Hi Katy,

      At first glance it seems like quite a superficial story, however it is becoming quite probing and disturbing as it progresses. The central group of women are very bitchy and back-biting, although it looks as if our lead lady has just a smidgen of conscience showing through.

      The Kindle seems a very intuitive piece of kit, although I haven’t really gotten into it yet. I was reading that over there in US, you can download library books to Kindle and even add annotations to them. We haven’t quite caught up with that yet here in UK, but I’m sure it won’t be long …. I wonder if we will be able to share the library books as well??

  • Very interesting. And I love the Kindle sharing – hadn’t heard of that yet. Thanks for sharing this book beginning with us. I love the use of “lumpen” instead of lumpy; good sign. 🙂

    • Hi Julia,

      Thanks for stopping by, I always love to ‘meet’ new people.

      I think that the Kindle sharing is quite a unique selling point and innovative, although I am still not entirely hooked on the whole concept of something that doesn’t have the look, feel and smell of a physical book.

      Like you, I thought that ‘lumpen’ was another word for lumpy, so I decided to look up its origins when you mentioned it. I guess that this is the context in which the author used the word, but I was totally surprised at the definitive meaning of ‘lumpen’


    • Hi Bev,

      I am at the stage where there is definitely something happening in the relationship between the two women, but I still can’t guess which way it is going to go.

    • Hi Diane,

      Suzanne Bugler is an English author and this is her first foray into adult fiction, although she has already written and had published, a couple of YA books.

    • HI Nikki,

      Not the easiest of reads, from whichever side of the fence you are standing!!

      It is bringing home to me the many ways in which we can all stereotype people and put them into ‘boxes’, then are so quick to make judgement about whether their ‘box’ is right or wrong, and whether they are to be accepted or shunned, without having a thought or care for that person’s feelings or sensitivities.

      And yes, there is plenty of bitchiness, as you would expect !!!

    • Hi Kerri,

      Thanks for stopping by. Your comments are always valued and appreciated and I just love ‘meeting’ new people.

      I think that there is something in this book, that just about all of us can relate to and it makes for pretty truthful, but painful reading!

    • Hi Kathy,

      I often think the world would be a better place if we were all a little less judgemental and kinder to one another, but I guess competition and the urge to be best at something or better liked by someone, is inbuilt into our psyche, so the change would have to be massive. There is a little bit of the bully in all of us, whether we know it or not!!

Written by Yvonne