Review: Wilde Like Me by Louise Pentland

I can't believe it took me this long to read Louise Pentland's debut novel, Wilde Like Me. Louise Pentland is the lovely lady behind the YouTube channel largely known as Sprinkle of Glitter, but this is certainly not just another "YouTuber book." It's a stunning first novel (of what I hope will be many!) with lovable but real characters, witty dialogue, and a plot line unlike any I've ever read.

I don't want to give away too much, but Wilde Like Me is the story of Robin Wilde, a single mum trying to get back into dating, figure out how to raise her daughter, and further her career as a makeup artist's assistant. Robin is relatable in how she struggles and I particularly appreciated the concept of "the Emptiness," that Louise used to talk about Robin's feelings of depression.

I also adored Lyla, Robin's six year old daughter, who always tries to cheer her mum up in the way only little kids can. I just wish that I could babysit her! I hope that she figures prominently in any future sequels to Wilde Like Me. Robin also gets a lot of help and support from her friend, Lacey, and her Aunt Kath, both of whom I loved.

I thought that Louise did particularly well at giving all the minor characters flaws, struggles, and interests of their own separate from their connection to Robin. This is something that some new writers seem to struggle with, but Louise totally avoided it.

Louise's prose itself is definitely on level with any good adult literature -- not Tolstoy perhaps, but that's why it would be a good beach read. (Although, I wasn't willing to take my copy onto the beach because I was afraid it would get hurt in some way.)

One thing that surprised me about Wilde Like Me is how Louise managed to take a plot that seems like it would be fluffy and indue it with astounding depth. Robin's struggle over her relationship with Lyla's dad, her fears about messing up her daughter's life, and her challenge of being a career woman and a mom are touching and real.

This is a novel that I think any woman would love. It has some 'adult' content and language, so it is more suited to mature readers. I think that many men would even appreciate this novel, particularly anyone who has experienced single parenthood.

In all honesty, I wish that I could live within this novel. I feel as though Robin, Lyla, Lacey, and all the others are dear friends and ones whose stories I hope to get more of. So Louise, about that sequel...?

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