One Day by David Nicholls

One Day has plagued me throughout my holiday. It was released with little fanfare here in Australia (I think around Christmas time) and I didn’t take much notice of it. But when I was on holiday, it was everywhere. And I mean everywhere – every bookstore I visited (Kinokuniya, Borders, Prologue, Times, Harris, Popular, Relay…okay, so I visited them all…several times) had this book displayed prominently. I picked it up many times and put it down every time. Why? I don’t know. I was tossing up between it and Helen Dunmore’s The Betrayal and came home with The Betrayal. When I got home, I looked up this book on the internet. It appeared that it was taking the UK ‘by storm’. Reviews however, were divided. It seemed to be a love it or hate it type of book. No ebook in sight, I purchased the book.

I am so glad that I did. I really enjoyed this book. It’s light and easy to read and the pages and hours just fly by.

The premise of One Day is simple – 20 years of two characters. We visit them on St Swithin’s Day from the 1980s to the 2000s. Emma and Dexter (who will soon become Em and Dex to the reader – yes, you become that familiar with them) meet at a university graduation party. The next day, Dexter leaves for a world trip and Emma stays in Edinburgh. So what will happen over the next 20 years? Of course there’s some things you expect – love, work and family and some that I certainly didn’t.

Dexter is lazy but loveable. Emma is sensible and cautious – so why don’t either of them get what they deserve?

I found the one day every 20 years thing ingenious – the characters do talk perhaps a little unrealistically in catching the reader up over the previous year, but it’s interesting and becomes even more so as the book goes on. There’s a lot of emotion carried through this book – from sadness to hatred and love but I found it well done. It’s one of those books that had me reading late into the night.

Read it if: you enjoy light, relationship driven novels that don’t fit the chick lit mould.

9.5 out of 10.

18 thoughts on “One Day by David Nicholls

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  1. I got a mooch for it this week though I probably won’t read it for a while yet. Seems that everyone else has read it though!

  2. Glad you enjoyed it so much 🙂 I can’t count the number of times I picked this book up in the store and put it down again.It does sound like a good one but I’m still not sure whether it’s for me.

  3. Yes, this was a favorite read of mine last year. I too thought the one day a year premise was unique, and well-done and I particularly enjoyed how at various times in their lives, one was up and the other was on the way down…
    The question now is, to see the movie or not?

  4. I’ve gone back and forth about ordering this book! I actually just wrote a blog today about my Kindle book list for my upcoming trip to Europe. I’m going to see if there is a Kindle version….hmmm

    thanks for the review!

  5. I just watched the preview for the film online last night. It looks quite true to the book. I did get quite frustrated with both of the characters a lot of the time later in the novel (which isn’t necessarily a bad thing as they were both written quite well – it was more the way they behaved), but I enjoyed the book for the most part

  6. I picked up the book from the library a couple of weeks ago. The due date is coming up soon, so I’m debating whether to plunge in and read quickly or return it and check it out another time. Good to hear it’s worth reading though! I like the premise.

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