Monday, July 9, 2012

Book Review: Build A Man by Talli Roland & Interview...

Hey everyone! I'm excited, because today I am going to review a book by an author I've been really looking forward to reading. Yep, that's right. Talli Roland!

A couple of weeks ago, I bought Build A Man on and after reading it, I purchased the next in the series, Construct A Couple. I can't wait to get started on that one, but I have others to get to first, sadly.

So without further ado, here is a very brief interview with Talli, followed by the review of Build A Man:

Me: This first one is a three part question: I understand this is your third book, correct? How many do you have published, total? How many more are in the works?

Talli: ‘Build A Man’ was my third book, and I’ve recently published its sequel, ‘Construct A Couple’. Next in line is ‘The Pollyanna Plan’ (Autumn 2012) and then ‘Marriage to Measure’ (2013), another in the ‘Build A Man’ series. (I can't wait for the next in the Build A Man series!)

Me: What sort of experience do you have in the plastic surgery world? Did you have to do much research?
Talli: Actually, most of my research was on the job! I worked as a receptionist for two years at a five-star spa that provided Botox and fillers, among other things. A lot of the anecdotes in ‘Build A Man’, while slightly exaggerated, are based on reality. Unfortunately! (That's kinda scary, but funny.)

Me: I know you are married and expecting. (Congratulations!) Is your husband your ideal man? Is there anything you would change about him?
Talli: Thank you. We’re pretty excited! You know, I think he is my ideal man. He doesn’t let me get away with anything, which – while frustrating at the time – is good in the long run. What would I change? I hate when he cracks his toes! *shudder* I’m also not a fan of the snoring. (I'm not a huge fan of snoring from my man either. But, he's ideal for me as well.)

Me: What inspires you to write? Do you have to have complete silence or some noise?
Talli: I’m very much of the mindset that if you wait for inspiration to strike, it’ll take ages to finish anything! For me, the most important thing is sitting down in the chair and getting out the words, regardless of the elusive inspiration. I write in silence, but I love the street noise that seeps in from outside: the roaring double-deckers, whizzing motorbikes, and shrieking police cars are my backdrop. (I'd love to have your soundtrack of background noise! And great mindset. Sometimes, I have to wait for inspiration or I wouldn't get anything written, lol!)

Me: And the last one is always for fun: What is your favorite meal?
Talli: I’m very into beige food right now, and eagerly awaiting the day I can return to coloured food. Right now, I eat a lot of rice and pasta. Boring, right? Sigh! (Nah, not boring, it's good and good for you!)
Me: Concerning the "recipe for perfect English tea", is that how it is really done? Is that your perfect recipe?
Talli: This is an ongoing debate in Britain! Everyone seems to have their own tried and true method of creating the perfect cup of tea. Dare I admit I’m not a fan? I’ve never been able to get into tea, despite many attempts. I’m a coffee girl at heart. (Hmm... I don't think I can keep this under wraps, girl. You're on your own! But, I have to agree. I am a coffee girl as well. Tea is rare, like when it's cold and I'm having a bad day. Otherwise, I prefer iced tea.)
Talli Roland writes fun, romantic fiction. Born and raised in Canada, Talli now lives in London, where she savours the great cultural life (coffee and wine). Despite training as a journalist, Talli soon found she preferred making up her own stories--complete with happy endings. Talli's debut novel The Hating Game was short-listed for Best Romantic Read at the UK's Festival of Romance, while her second, Watching Willow Watts, was selected as an Amazon Customer Favourite. Her novels have also been chosen as top books of the year by industry review websites and have been bestsellers in Britain and the United States. Construct A Couple is her latest release. To learn more about Talli, go to or follow Talli on Twitter: @talliroland. Talli blogs at
Thanks so much Talli! I can't wait to get into the next couple books in the series. I'm also going to be getting the other books as well because I love your style! Now on to the review of 'Build A Man'!

Title: Build A Man

Author: Talli Roland

Publisher: Notting Hill Press

Pages: 308 (Print), File size: 417 kb

Page Number Source ISBN: 1475081960 ASIN: B00642BCX2

Purchase: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Amazon UK

Summary from

Slave to the rich and the rude, cosmetic surgery receptionist Serenity Holland longs for the day she's a high-flying tabloid reporter. When she meets Jeremy Ritchie -- the hang-dog man determined to be Britain's Most Eligible Bachelor by making himself over from head to toe and everything in between -- Serenity knows she's got a story no editor could resist. With London's biggest tabloid on board and her very own column tracking Jeremy's progress from dud to dude, Serenity is determined to be a success. But when Jeremy's surgery goes drastically wrong and she's ordered to cover all the car-crash goriness, Serenity must decide how far she really will go for her dream job.

My thoughts:

I've been a follower of Talli's blog for awhile now. I love her wit and sunny personality and just knew her writing would have these same qualities. I was absolutely correct in assuming this! It took me awhile to get one of her books, but once I did, I read it quickly.

Now, I'm not a huge fan of romance or Chick Lit, for that matter, but this book held onto qualities I DO like of those genres. It focuses more on the characters and the relationships than the gushy, mushy feelings and gratuitous sex every other page. (Sorry, that is my opinion, can't help it...)

I love Serenity Holland. She's cute, she's quirky and she seems like a fish out of water there in the UK. Her current boyfriend, who also happens to be her boss, seems like a decent guy until Serenity is faced with a man she could really be comfortable with rather than instructed on how to dress and behave. Peter, Serenity's boss/boyfriend, is a well developed character and seems like wallpaper. He sort of hangs around. So when Jeremy walks into the clinic Peter owns and where Serenity is employed, you just have a feeling he's going to be a breath of fresh air in that sterile environment. Serenity's pals, Kirsty and Tim are wonderful, even if they do have their own issues. They all stick together and work very well together.

I am looking forward to reading more of Talli's work, simply because she's got a great writing style. She has a great flow with the story, she has well thought out characters and it's light and fun. There are serious moments, too and Talli can certainly tug at the heart strings, then make you chuckle soon after. I had several "Awww!" moments! Very sweet, charming story!

This book is a must read! I give it 5 out of 5 skull and crossbones!


Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Good for Talli!
I don't do tea either.

Talli Roland said...

Thank you so much for the interview, Mel, and for the lovely review. :) I'm so pleased you enjoyed it.

Anonymous said...

I've read The Hating Game and gave it a five star review. My first Chick Lit book and I thought it's make for a great movie. Good luck Talli on your writing and everything.

Unknown said...

Yay for Talli! Great interview :)

We won't tell about the tea thing, Talli. Cracking toes is oddly satisfying, so I can sympathise with Mr TR :)

Arlee Bird said...

Talli is a writing machine!
Hey, Talli, forget about the books for awhile and bottle that energy and put it on the market. I'll be your first customer.

Tossing It Out

Talli Roland said...

Stephen, thank you so much. :)

Jamie, noooooooo! Not another toe-cracker! Argh. It drives me crazy.

Lee, I crash in the afternoons, I must admit. I'll try to bottle my morning energy for you.

Mel Chesley said...

Thank you, Talli, for your time and sharing your great talent. I had fun and loved your book!

Leigh Covington said...

Fabulous interview and book review! I adore Talli! She was brilliant to go with self publishing thanks to her amazing talent!

Carol Kilgore said...

I loved BUILD A MAN. CONSTRUCT A COUPLE is on my Kindle now, and I can't wait!

Susan Gourley/Kelley said...

Coffee lovers everywhere agree with you. But I remember drinking lots of decaf tea when I was pregnant.
Good luck with your latest release.

Mel Chesley said...

Thanks Leigh. I also have 'Construct a Couple' on my kindle, waiting for me, Carol. I can't wait!

Thanks to all for dropping by!

Talli Roland said...

Thanks for dropping by, Leigh, Carol and Susan!

And a big thank you to Mel for hosting me. :)