The Life and Soul of the Party 3 – The End

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Paul’s funeral is a turning point for this group of friends.

It is during the funeral that he and Melissa have a conversation. She confesses to having slept with Paul the night of Laura’s party, and that is why she is so upset. She and Paul talked about the baby she never had. It was when Paul cheated on her that Melissa found out that she was pregnant, so without telling Paul she talked to her GP who referred her to a clinic where she had a termination.I imagine that Melissa now regrets her decision, especially as she feels she can’t even feel entitled to mourn Paul as the woman who loved him. She was just a friend, and the woman who deserved people’s pity and comfort is Hannah, his pregnant girlfriend.

It is during this conversation that Chris realizes he can’t hide, so he talks to Vicky and tells her about his deceit. Naturally she reacts angrily, telling him she doesn’t want to see him again. In the following months they separate, but they gradually become closer because of their child and the baby they are expecting. They are making an effort for William, but Chris wants more. Vicky confesses that she loves him, but the problem is that she doesn’t know if she can trust him again, which is logical. Even though what Chris did to Vicky is inexcusable, I have to say that it made him look more human, or he would have been too perfect in this novel. In the end it is not clear if Vicky and Chris get back together, but there is a compromise from them, and Chris swears he will wait for her however long it takes. Quite nice.

Melissa’s life changes after Paul’s death. Somehow she feels unable to be happy, and things with Billy start crumbling. The last blow is when she confesses to having slept with Paul, and they break up.  Melissa and Laura are now living together after the latter return from her year of travels. Melissa gets a letter with just the photo of a baby, who she knows is Paul’s child. She decides to go and see Hannah, and the two women, who have loved Paul, talk and realize they have a lot in common, and it is a nice conversation. They even find comfort in each other as they decide to visit Paul’s grave together for the first time after the funeral. It is this fact that made Melissa realize she needs to start living. She has been thinking about Billy a lot lately, especially as he ran into him a few weeks ago. She texted him to invite him to a party she is throwing that night, and when he doesn’t answer and triggered by her enthusiasm, she decides to drop by his flat. Yet, she is to be disappointed when she sees him with Freya, the woman who he was besotted with before they started dating. So Melissa ends up alone at the end of the book, but also more secure and confident.

As for Laura and Cooper, their break-up is for the long run. He is still seeing Nicole, but he knows that he and Laura have to talk. So they do, and Cooper realizes that even though he loved Laura too much, they are not right for each other. He now loves Nicole and this is the woman who he ends up with, someone who wants the same things as himself.

I enjoyed the book. It was refreshing and entertaining. It has a bit of everything: romance, humour, wit, and sadness.

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