What if your roommate is your soul mate? A joyful, quirky romantic comedy, Beth O'Leary's The Flatshare is a feel-good novel about finding love in the most unexpected of ways.
Tiffy and Leon share an apartment. Tiffy and Leon have never met.
After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. But the apartments in her budget have her wondering if astonishingly colored mold on the walls counts as art.
Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare. Leon, a night shift worker, will take the apartment during the day, and Tiffy can have it nights and weekends. He’ll only ever be there when she’s at the office. In fact, they’ll never even have to meet.
Tiffy and Leon start writing each other notes – first about what day is garbage day, and politely establishing what leftovers are up for grabs, and the evergreen question of whether the toilet seat should stay up or down. Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more.
But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea…especially if you've never met.
Set in the UK, O'Leary's clever debut follows the unlikely romance between two flatmates. Assistant editor Tiffy Moore, who is trying to get over a breakup, and Leon Twomey, who works night shifts at a hospice clinic, agree to live together, though they never run into one another, as their schedules don't overlap. Instead of speaking to one another, Tiffy and Leon communicate by leaving notes about menial things whose food is whose, when trash night is, etc. In parallel plots, Tiffy tries to overcome the traumatic memories of her emotionally abusive ex-boyfriend, Justin, who strung her along for months while cheating on her. Meanwhile, Leon diligently tries to reopen his imprisoned brother's robbery case. It's only when Tiffy is running late one morning that the two meet in the shower. Suddenly more interested in each another, Tiffy and Leon find that they are able to help each other in exactly the way the other needs. Somewhat conveniently, Tiffy has just the friend to help Leon with his brother's legal troubles, and Leon is just the person to help Tiffy recover from her breakup. O'Leary's story packs plenty of laughs and gasps; fans of Bridget Jones's Diary will want to give this a look.