Recently I picked up a copy of book I'd thought about getting late last year but as things are want to do with me at times I'd forgotten all about it, bought a copy and sat across a few days reading it.
The story is about a nine year old girl, Tilly who can scarcely believe it when her best friend and class mate, Matty, is offered the role of being a bridesmaid for she is as much a tomboy as Tilly is more girly girl and really wasn't looking forward to it.
Tilly's parents had split up and the dress is very much the focus of Tilly's longing for her parents to be reunited as she missed no longer living with Mom.
After her friend had worn it and it had been cleaned, Matty offers her the dress as she could never see herself ever wearing it again and this leads into Tilly's favourite daydream of being a bridesmaid in the must beautiful dress, walking behind the bride and after talking it through with her best friend resolves to sort this by advertising herself as a Bridesmaid for rent at the local store.
This is the dress and most beautiful it is too.
The dress leads to her meeting different people such as an older couple, a same sex couple of professional people and a family who had planned a large church wedding with five other bridesmaids, all of which enrich her life.
The one thing sadly all of this cannot do is the very thing she longs for the most -to reunite her family- so when her Mom who it transpires later on hadn't been well mentally does come to see her after Tilly appears on a tv program about weddings, her hopes are dashed .
This said there does seem to be a relationship blossoming between Miss Hope her teacher and her dad and maybe if there's to be a sequel Tilly will be the bridesmaid at that wedding!
One of things I liked about it was the exploration of the friendship between Matty and Tilly, that although being in so many ways polar opposites not just their personalities but lifestyles and that despite this they really do gel, becoming best friends. That comes over so well in how it is written showing how disagreements that for those of who remember just high emotional we were around their ages soon get minded with some tlc.
To conclude although on the face of it it's a relatively uncomplicated story about a girl and her dress it has more depth exploring the nature of friendship you can see at a more grown up level very intensely heartfelt and emotional coming over through intelligent use of subtle nuances of mood and character. It is a great joy to read.