One Plus One by Jojo Moyes

One Plus OneOne Plus One by Jojo Moyes
Published by Pamela Dorman Books
Review copy provided by Netgalley

From the publisher:

Suppose your life sucks. A lot. Your husband has done a vanishing act, your teenage stepson is being bullied and your math whiz daughter has a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that you can’t afford to pay for. That’s Jess’s life in a nutshell—until an unexpected knight-in-shining-armor offers to rescue them. Only Jess’s knight turns out to be Geeky Ed, the obnoxious tech millionaire whose vacation home she happens to clean. But Ed has big problems of his own, and driving the dysfunctional family to the Math Olympiad feels like his first unselfish act in ages . . . maybe ever.

One Plus One is Jojo Moyes at her astounding best. You’ll laugh, you’ll weep, and when you flip the last page, you’ll want to start all over again.

This is my third time reading a Jojo Moyes novel (but I do want to read her backlist, I swear) and every time I read one of her books, I’m in awe of her remarkable talent. I literally can NOT stop reading once I’ve started one of her novels. I don’t know what her magic is, exactly, just that she creates characters and situations and dialogue and relationships that are so incredibly easy to relate to and everything just clicks for me.

One Plus One is no different. I loved Jess and I couldn’t help but admire her tenacity and positive spirit, her belief that good people eventually get good things, and that if you just work hard, it will (some day) pay off. I wished she had been a little less naive about her husband – but it did match her personality, because if he’d been a bad person, he would eventually get what’s coming to him, right? In the meantime, she focused on what she could control – and that was being good to him and keeping things together for the children.

Enter Ed – a guy with issues of his own, a selfish person who has lived most of his life thinking only of himself. But for some reason, meeting Jess inspires him to act outside of himself for once and his inner nice guy rises to the surface. I liked Ed, too, but he frustrated me a bit, as he was naive about his own problems and had a lot of trouble taking ownership for the things he created in his own life. Still, it was enjoyable to see him finding his way and growing up emotionally to face the punishment that he rightfully deserved.

The story of how this unlikely pair, along with Jess’s two kids and dog, take a crazy road trip to Scotland is one you just have to experience to understand its beauty. Moyes is just as fantastic as ever and I absolutely loved this novel. Highly, highly recommended.

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19 thoughts on “One Plus One by Jojo Moyes

  1. I just loved this. And I agree, it’s hard to say what her magic is. Because you can read a similarly plotted book by anyone else and it just doesn’t pull you in like hers!

  2. I loved everything about this book. I’d only previously read Me Before You but they were both impossible to stop reading! She has a gift.

    1. Interestingly, The Girl You Left Behind is my least favorite of the three of hers I’ve read. Although least favorite Jojo Moyes is like asking what’s my least favorite kind of ice cream – an almost impossible choice!

  3. I ordered this on audio, and it should be at my house by the time I get back from IN. She does have a way. I think she just makes her characters so real, the dialogue is real, and creates very good chemistry between her characters. I’m all over this one.

  4. I loved this one, too. Moyes’ books are all such different stories but share these great characters and believable dialogue.

  5. Like you, this was my third book by Moyes and I’d love to read the rest of her backlist. This was my favorite so far, perhaps because I found the situation and the characters particularly believable, and in general I think she has a talent for creating relatable characters.

  6. The only book I’ve read so far, is Me Before You but I did win a copy of this one so I will be reading it before the end of the year. Probably right around Christmas as that seems to be when I do my catch-up reading.

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