Posting my first review of Going Against Type. Reviewed by author Valentine Williams.
GOING AGAINST TYPE, by Sharon Black
This lively office rom-com is set in the murky world of journalism, and the dialogue cracks along at a fair pace, so that the reader swiftly feels part of the politics and gossip that make up the life of a female sports journalist, as well as getting a peep at the relentless pressure involved. This is a world the author knows well, and she conveys with genuine feeling the nuances of office relationships and intrigues. We enter a world of competative sport, match fixing, media scoops and misunderstandings.
But the book is more than this. The struggle between Charlotte Regan and Derry Cullinane is echoed in the fashion versus sport columns in their papers. Charlotte, mad on sport, does not play games in relationships, and yet through Derry, realises that it's possible for her to embrace the world of fashion without losing her self respect. In being attracted to Charlotte – Charlie – Derry Cullinane falls for a sportswoman and journalistic rival who is not obsessed with fashion or appearance, and so goes against type.
Derry Cullinane presents as an interesting male character; not, we are told, gay, but inhabiting a flamboyant, slightly theatrical world very different from Charlotte's, and who maybe bolsters his masculinity by his female conquests. From misunderstandings, the relationship between them grows as each reveals the truth about themselves.
The relationships between Charlotte and her sister, her flatmate and colleagues are well described and provide a variety of alternative models of relationships, cunningly played out in the dialogue, which I found witty and authentic. A very enjoyable read.