'It's time to recognise Cecelia Ahern as one of our finest writers' John Boyne
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.
When a stranger utters these words to Allegra Bird, nicknamed Freckles, it turns her highly ordered life upside down. In her current life as a parking warden, she has left her eccentric father and unconventional childhood behind for a bold new life in the city.
But a single encounter leads her to ask the question she’s been avoiding for so long: who are the people who made her the way she is? And who are the five people who can shape and determine her future? Just as she once joined the freckles on her skin to mirror the constellations in the night sky, she must once again look for connections.
Told in Allegra’s vivid, original voice, moving from Dublin to the fierce Atlantic coast, this is an unforgettable story of human connection, of friendship, and growing into your own skin.
Five people. Five stars. Freckle to freckle. Star to star.
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Average rating from 398 members
I have love all Cecelia’s books & this was no exception. She is such a great author. Her books are emotion packed. Thanks for the opportunity to read and review this book.
Freckles is named Freckles because of the marks on her skin - her real name is Allegra Bird. Freckles begins with Allegra tracing her freckles on her body to make the shape of the constellations whilst at boarding school, initially, she uses a pen but the ink becomes soo ingrained, the pen is taken away from her and she begins to use sharp objects to trace the stars. Allegra is raised by her pops as she has never known her mother, she wants to become a member of the Irish police but fails, subsequently, she moves away from her home to seek alternative employment. Allegra ends up becoming the next best thing - a traffic warden where she strictly controls the parking in her town. She encounters the same yellow sports car every day, where the driver fails to display a ticket and this is where the story really begins to come to life. The reader learns that Allegra is keeping secrets, there is a reason for her move to the town. It's Allegra's relationship with the owner of the yellow car (Rooster) that shape her decisions. Rooster - also known as Tristan is a youtube gaming star and he tells Allegra 'you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with.' This turns Allegras life upside down and she begins to question her life and the people that she shares it with. Freckles is highly descriptive, its not the traditional love story that Ahern is known for, however Freckles is heart warming, funny and really poignant.
Absolutely beautiful from Cecelia again. Her books always make you feel and transport you. Thank you for allowing me to preview this book
Date reviewed/posted: April 3, 2021 Publication date: September 2, 2021 When life for the entire galaxy and planet has turned on its end, you are continuing to #maskup and #lockdown to be in #COVID19 #socialisolation as the #thirdwave ( #fourthwave #fifthwave?) is upon us, superspeed readers like me can read 300+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today. I requested and received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review. From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸. You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. When a stranger utters these words to Allegra Bird, nicknamed Freckles, it turns her highly ordered life upside down. In her current life as a parking warden, she has left her eccentric father and unconventional childhood behind for a bold new life in the city. But a single encounter leads her to ask the question she’s been avoiding for so long: who are the people who made her the way she is? And who are the five people who can shape and determine her future? Just as she once joined the freckles on her skin to mirror the constellations in the night sky, she must once again look for connections. Told in Allegra’s vivid, original voice, moving from Dublin to the fierce Atlantic coast, this is an unforgettable story of human connection, of friendship, and growing into your own skin. Five people. Five stars. Freckle to freckle. Star to star. The idea that one can be the "average" of the five people you spend your wife with is fascinating as during COVID isolation/lockdown I would be 20% of these: my hubby, cat one, cat two, the Amazon delivery guy and the lovely Canada Post Lady. What would you be?? That idea was in my head as I wonder what other people's five people would make them...and like all of Miss Ahern's books, this one was an engrossing page-turner. It was expertly crafted and written in a way that will appeal to all. I will recommend this book to friends, family, patrons, bookclubs and strangers on the tube who are reading: I find that once they figure out that I am a Canadian and not a Trump-loving MAGA-idiot they like to discuss books. (lol!) Take this book to the beach f it still warm enough (or your back yard, porch or balcony) and enjoy it - just wear a tonne of SPF110 as you will lose track of time as you read this. - If we are in the 5th or 6th wave/mutation of COVID19 by then, stay inside: no tan is worth dying for. As always, I try to find a reason to not rate with stars as I simply adore emojis (outside of their incessant use by "🙏-ed Social Influencer Millennials/#BachelorNation survivors/Tik-Tok and YouTube Millionaires/snowflakes / literally-like-overusers etc. " on Instagram and Twitter... Get a real job, people!) so let's give it 🏖️🏖️🏖️🏖️🏖️
A great read, thoroughly enjoyed this book, have loved all of this authors books and this one is also a fantastic read x
Freckles is a witty read about a young woman, Allegra, trying to find her community and place in the world.
Allegra Bird aka Freckles is a traffic warden. A repeat parking offender, Tristan aka Rooster tells Allegra that she is the average of the five people you spend the most time with. This is the pivotal moment in her life and she begins to question her life. I found this quite entertaining. I enjoyed getting to know Freckles. Her name comes from the freckles on her arm which she likes to join up to make constellations. It was a fun read.
Cecilia Ahern's novels never disappoint me and each one is unique, not churned out to a predictable storyline. The main tenet of the book about the five people who shape you was one which really resonated with me and was thought provoking.
As always a lovely moving read from Cecilia Ahern. Get pulled into the odd world of freckles for laughs and tears.
A great read. Freckles is the nickname of Allegra. She is a parking warden in Dublin, and a chance encounter leads her to meet serial parking offender Tristan. He is angry with her and tells her she is the average of the 5 people she spends the most time with her. When she realises that she doesn't even have 5 people she sets out to change this by reaching out to people. One of these is the mother she has never met and the reason she is in Dublin, but as everything around her seems to fall apart, who does she have to count on? I would have liked to have seen more of an epligoe to see what happened next.
This is the story of Allegra Bird, having the nickname Freckles you can see why as you get to know Allegra, she likes to join the freckles on her arms up like they are constellations in the sky. She is a parking warden and there are some very funny encounters that she has with a certain person that did make me chuckle. When someone tells her You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with she decides to leave her life and go and live in the city. As she is moving from Dublin to London, when she is speaking you can imagine her with her Irish accent, I love the way she has followed her dream and branches out on her own to give herself the best life she can. This is such a hopeful and life affirming story that will touch many a heart.
Allegra Bird is Freckles. And she does struggle with life somewhat. She is portrayed as socially awkward, a little out of step with others despite her best efforts. Life is never easy for her. However, inspired by someone who told her “you are a reflection of the five people closest to you” she begins a journey of self discovery. This book is raw and blunt but all the better for that because it is honest. Cecelia Ahern does it again!
Wow what a read!! unlike a lot of Cecelia Ahern’s female leads Allegra Bird aka Freckles is not that relatable, I like that she was a little odd, and struggled with human connections because let’s face it we are not all the same! I felt sorry for Allegra in so many different ways and wished I could become one of her five, the story itself is extraordinarily well written (as anyone who knows Cecelia Ahern's works will attest) I got drawn in, I found myself shocked in parts -and the raw emotions expressed, I cringed for her, felt sorry for her, cried for her and hoped there would be a happy ever after. It’s left me wondering who my five people are
Freckles by Cecelia Ahern a five-star read that would be worth getting freckles for. (if you are someone like me who no matter the SPF still has freckles sprot when the sun comes out) I was lucky enough to read this sat in the garden on an unusually sunny warm weekend, I started it, I finished it and then spent the rest of the weekend thinking about it, who are my five? Who would I want to be my five? Who makes up those fives around me? This is one that will stay with you, it will make you sit up and think, but most of all it will make you read. Maybe it was the freckles that made me identify with Alegra so much, she is withdrawn and its shown so well. But the little Birdy decides to fly and with flight comes something different, that’s what made me smile and shed the occasional tear.
This book is a wonderfully crafted, relatable story about identity, belonging, the community we build around ourselves and how deceiving appearances can be. I felt for Allegra on so many levels and she is such an imperfect, relatable character who you can’t help but root for. I had a little cry at the end and I’ll be thinking about the message of this book for a while.
Cecelia Ahern never disappoints me. Her books always transport be into her world and I absorb every single word. This book is no exception. It was really well written. Completely different to all her other books and you really took all the characters into your heart and wanted the best for all of them. I really loved this book.
Cecilia Ahern is truly a gifted writer, who would have thought a beautiful book such as this could have been woven from a business driven motivational quote. You are the average of the five people you spend most time with. This was spat at Allegra in rage when she issues a parking ticket and littleCecilia Ahern is truly a gifted writer, who would have thought a beautiful book such as this could have been woven from a business driven motivational quote. You are the average of the five people you spend most time with. This was spat at Allegra in rage when she issues a parking ticket and little does the antagonist know the impact his words will have. A beautiful, refreshing, heart-warming yet sometimes hard hitting read. Thank you netgalley and Harper Collins for the advance copy in exchange for an honest review. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ does the antagonist know the impact his words will have. A beautiful, refreshing, heart-warming yet sometimes hard hitting read. Thank you netgalley and Harper Collins for the advance copy in exchange for an honest review. ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
I’ve been a fan of Cecelia Ahern since PS I love you, so I knew I had to read this book. What I love most about her books is that they are all so different and different writing styles too, but all focus on relationships between the characters at the core. This was a really lovely book, a good mix of characters, some you like and some you don’t. Very mixed feeling about the lead character which changed throughout the book. It reminded me a little of Eleanor Oliphant which I also loved. The story was so uplifting and definitely made me wonder who my 5 people are.
I think this is my favourite Cecelia Ahern book to date. I got completely caught up in Allegra's world and found myself shedding a tear (or two) in the final chapter. Loved it.
Allegra has been called Freckles ever since boarding school when she used to spend her nights drawing the constellations on her arm by joining up her freckles. She has her mother's Spanish looks but her fathers Irish freckles. Now she is all grown up and living her life as a traffic warden after her application to be a garda was refused. She has based herself in the town where her mother lives hoping to one day make contact, but time is running out and she fears that soon she will be transferred to a new area. When one day on her beat she meets Rooster a famous youtuber who drives a bright yellow Ferrari, one that she has ticketed every day for the last two weeks, with his temper rising he insults Allegra by saying that she is made up of the 5 people she has around her. Allegra can't get it out of her head and sets out to figure out who her five people are and when she realises she doesn't have five people sets out to create her ideal five. I really liked this book, it made you think about your five people and I liked that at the end Allegra realises she had her five all along she just didn't know it.
I really enjoyed this book! This seemed like a completely different book for Cecelia Ahern. Allegra is lonely in her life as a traffic warden in a Dublin suburb. She interacts with people but doesn’t see anyone in her new life as a friend. After being insulted by a wealthy YouTuber, Allegra starts to reassess her life.
What a refreshing read. It was much needed at a time when missing our loved ones and our friends. I was taken back to a time when we could have adventures with our friends and meet new people also to have the courage to try something new. I loved this heartfelt warning story and the characters were charming and really connectable.
I absolutely loved this book. The story of Allegra Bird AKA freckles, who moves to Dublin in search of the mother who abandoned her at birth. When a stranger tells her “You are the average of the 5 people that you spend the most time with” This really sets Allegra on an inspired journey to find her 5, she used to know who her 5 people were but who are they now and who would they need to be in order for her to better herself. Equally heartbreaking and heartwarming this book has everything and was totally unputdownable. I would highly recommend it. Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for an advanced digital copy in exchange for an honest review.
Thank you to Netgalley for my arc in exchange for an honest review. Cecilia Ahern has always been one of my favourite authors, therefore I was over the moon to be able to provide an honest review of her newest novel. Freckles takes you on a thought provoking journey of Allegra Bird, who is starting her journey to find out who she is and where she belongs. When a stranger sets her mind running with the sentence “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with”, this begins a journey for Allegra to find out who in her life makes her who she is. I absolutely loved the relationship between Tristan and Allegra and to see how they both impacted each other’s life’s. This part of the story is what kept me hooked page after page. I was so enticed by the story and Cecilia as always pulled me In with her writing style and I felt connected to each of the characters, although there were a couple with whom I did not like. My heart went out to Allegra and at times I felt very sorry for her, which when I was not reading made me think of how different people go through life and the struggles we all undertake to find out where we belong. I found Freckles to be very entertaining, thought provoking and beautifully written. I highly recommend.
Beautiful and thought provoking story centred around slightly awkward Allegra and her journey to discover who she really is. Loved the idea of being an average of the 5 people we spend the most time with and it really made me look at the people around me a bit closer. I read really quickly but found I kept stopping to think about some of the ideas a bit more.
A wonderful read that made me feel all warm and fuzzy at times. Absolutely charming and totally different to what I would usually read.
Sometimes you read a book at it makes you feel happy. With Covid I havent seen any of my friends for ages. This book made me smile and completely distracted me from all the bad news. Its s beautiful read.
A incredible read! Freckles, real name Allegra Bird, is working as a traffic warden when she comes under the wrath of Ferrari-driving Tristan, who, with an off-the-cuff insult, makes her consider everything about her life. After he tells her she is the sum of the five people she spends the most time with - and not meaning it kindly - Freckles begins to examine her life and the people who fill it. Freckles' journey of self discovery is at times heartbreaking, cringeworthy and hilarious. Really hilarious! Freckles isn't always likeable, she gets a lot of things wrong, but she's such a great, believable character, you can't help but root for her. This novel felt much edgier than Cecelia Ahern's other novels, and I enjoyed its style. At its heart, though, it had all the trademarks of her other, much-loved novels with a loveable protagonist, richly drawn characters and a really interesting plot. I loved it!
A really well written book. It wasn't what I expected for a Cecelia Ahern novel - it's completely different to her other books. The characters were well-written and really believable. Highly recommended.
I found it a little hard to get into this book. It didn't grab me quite as much as other Cecelia Ahern . But by about chapter 3, I absolutely loved it. It's quirky. Beautifully written. Wonderful characters. The layers peel away as you get more and more into the story. Absolutely fantastic novel. I cried at the end and would read it again in a heartbeat. Wonder if Cecilia Ahern was inspired by the movie Serendipity: joining the freckles with a black felt tip pen inn one of the early chapters and the reference to Cassiopeia seemed strangely familiar! However, this book is WAY superior to Serendipity. I hope someone will make a film of Freckles: it would make a superb film.
What a lovely book, you wish you could be friends with Allegra just so she doesn’t feel so alone, A chance encounter leads to Allegra *Freckles” questioning her life and indeed the idea in the story that you are the sum of the five people you are closest too is thought invoking. Would make a fabulous film , highly recommended.
FRECKLES didn’t disappoint. 😍 Ahern always writes such interesting characters. The story follows Allegra Bird, nicknamed Freckles, who is a parking warden in the city. An encounter with a stranger one day who utters the words “you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with...” leads her on a path of self discovery and human connection. I found Allegra such a fascinating and inspiring person. I didn’t immediately warm to her to be honest, but over the course of the book, I was drawn to the way she viewed the world and I was rooting for her to find her way. Like many of Aherns previous books, it pulls on your heart strings and leaves you feeling hopeful and lifted. There are some really funny and sweet moments that shine through, particularly between Allegra and Tristan, the guy with the Ferrari who keeps getting parking tickets, and her eccentric father, Pops. I adore Aherns writing so much and she is an amazing storyteller. I love the premise of this book as it got me thinking about the people that I choose to spend most of my time with and how this shapes my life. Mainly book people to be fair so I can’t be that bad. 😂 FRECKLES is a smashing read and I definitely recommend this one if you are a Cecelia Ahern super fan like me. Shall we make some T-Shirts?! 🤣
Cecelia Aherns long-awaited #Freckles doesn’t disappoint. Tender, thought provoking, emotional, a little bit quirky with a whole lot of heart. Loved it!
Another amazing emotional story from this author with a style that is unique to her. I often find with authors their books all follow a similar type of pattern, Cecelia manages to make each one different and as special to itself as the last one was.
<i>You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with</i> <b>Freckles</b> follows Allegra Bird (affectionately known as Freckles by those closest to her) after her move to Dublin in search of her mother who had abandoned her at birth. Due to a run-in with a stranger having a bad day who told her she is the average of the five people she spends the most time with and they must be why she is a <b><i>loser</i></b>, she starts to question who she thinks of as her nearest and dearest. Told in first person with Freckles unique outlook on life it is at times heartbreaking, but overall a wonderful story of courage and bravery. I took a minute to get in to this, but that is absolutely not because of the book, and I would encourage anyone who is finding this to keep reading as it really is a lovely book with a great ending. For fans of Eleanor Oliphant and other novels with a quirky lead character just trying to find her way in life. <i>Thanks to Netgalley and the publishers for an advanced digital copy in exchange for my honest review</i>
I was really excited to get to read this book early, it was already on my own 'wish list' and it didn't disappoint! I have enjoyed all of Cecilia Ahern's books in the past and this story was as equally as charming as the stories that came before it. The story and characters were relatable; struggling to fit in and be hopeful about the future is something that every human can talk to. Cecilia always seems to shape her characters and a narrative with a personal obstacle that they must overcome, this simple premise always surprises me in how engaging it is; for a natural cynic, this story had me feeling rather emotional and moved about the journey that 'freckles' had to take to see her worth and place in the world. I would recommend this to anyone, as a pleasant, life affirming, relatable read!
Allegra is a complex woman who hasn't had an easy life but is loved by her single father. Her mother left when she was born & she has been wanting to know more about her. An interesting insight into her life & the lengths she will go to to learn more about herself & others. Another insightful read by Cecelia Ahern.
I loved this read and it is no surprise considering it is the masterful Cecilia Ahern that has written it. The book is well written, the narrative is perfect and the characters are well written, well developed and very relatable/likeable. I felt so many emotions when reading this book, just simply stunning. I wish I could give it more than 5 stars.
You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. When Allegra Bird first hears these words from someone shes not necessarily too fond of, it makes her reevaluate her carefully organised life. She sets off to find her five people in a slightly unconventional way. Her story will make you think about the important people in your life. I loved this. So heartwarming and cute. I was rooting for poor Allegra the whole way through. Cecelia Ahern has such a beautiful way of writing such eccentric and oh so loveable characters. Allegra will stay with me for a long time. I highly recommend this stunning book.
Freckles is a book that draws you in with its first person narrative with reported speech as Allegra navigates her life. Thank you to Netgalley and the publishers for letting me review this book.
You have to love a story about a traffic warden with a heart. This is a quirky and original story about Allegra, nicknamed Freckles, and a quest which takes her to Dublin, far from her rural home and eccentric father. It kept me reading all the way through as she struggles with her job, social life, and seeming lack of friends, before realising that maybe she does have the important people in her life that she needs.
Unfairly I think there is a certain amount of snobbery, here in Ireland anyway, about Cecelia Ahern books. I admit I don’t usually pick them up. Of course, like the entire world I was a massive fan of PS I Love You but I never really gave her the credit she deserves a writer until now. Freckles is an incredibly well written book. One of my top five of this year for sure. The writing actually blew me away and it really was a case of not being able to put it down. I knew nothing about the book before I started reading it and I’m glad for that, so I just give a brief synopsis. Freckles is a young girl who is at a crisis point in her life. She has moved to dublin from Kerry and is working as a traffic warden for Fingal county council in the affluent suburb of Malahide. She meets a man who starts her off on a journey of self discovery. I love Freckles and all the minor characters in the story as well. There is one flaw though, that it seems to me quite impossible for her to have made all those connections having only lived in Dublin for six months, but it didn’t take away from the story for me at all and I loved it from beginning to end. I will now always reach for a Cecelia Ahern book when I see one on the shelf.
Such a lovely story about a girl who was abandoned at birth by her mother. Allegra Bird has moved to be near her mum and try and get to know her before introducing herself as the baby she gave up. Allegra is a traffic warden and one of the serial offenders she gives parking tickets to makes a comment about how you are the average of the 5 people you spend the most time with. It makes her think about her life and who her closest friends are. She goes home to visit her dad and friends she knew at school before she went to live in Dublin and soon realises there is nothing left for her there. It was very sad in parts but by the end Allegra has 5 new people she can rely on.
What a lovely life affirming read. Alegra goes on a journey of finding the 5 people that shape her life and make her who she is. Such an inspirational read with lessons we can all learn about life. Well done Ceceila, another fantastic read!
I was so excited to read another book from Cecelia Ahern, and Freckles did not disappoint. Freckles is a complex character trying to find her place in the world, through the 5 people most important to her. A lovely heart-warming read.
I wasn’t sure about this book to begin with and the main character Aurora, or Freckles as she was known at school, seemed a bit strange. Freckles has moved away from the island she grew up in and her beloved father, Pops, to live in a suburb of Dublin. Her dream was to join the Garda but was turned down and ended up as a traffic warden, which in her eyes is the next best thing. She has managed to find a place to live in a very wealthy area, living above the garage of a high-powered couple in return for baby sitting duties besides her rent. Aurora is really on a mission to find her mother, who, she has discovered lives and works in the area. Aurora is a very dedicated traffic warden and goes the extra mile to make sure that anyone parked illegally is given a parking ticket. It is on her mission to do the right thing that she comes across Tristram, who drives a yellow Ferrari and constantly breaks parking rules. After a huge argument they strike up a sort of friendship which starts as a result of him telling her that she is the average of the five people she spends the most time with. Aurora barely has five people in her life, but takes this proclamation to heart and goes out of her way to find five people she can relate to. This leads her to writing letters to famous people she does not even know with varying degrees of success. The strange thing about Freckles is that having started out thinking she was very strange I ended up seeing something of myself in her and her desire to improve her life. She meets so many obstacles along the way but you end up just wanting her life to be the way she wants it to be. I think many readers will feel the same and overall, it is a very compelling read and I ended up reading the last one hundred pages or so in one go. Thanks to NetGalley for allowing me an ARC of this book.
Freckles is a misfit. She’s described as “strange”. At the start of her story, I didn’t much like her and I couldn’t relate to her. However, as her story unfolds, you understand why she is the way that she is and she endears herself to you. I ready this book quickly as I found myself wanting to see what happened to her and the other characters. The book is very well written and believable. I’d love to read another book with some of the other characters as I think there is scope to develop their stories too.
A splendid tear jerker. It's a lot in time since I've read a book by Cecilia Ahern, Now I'm wondering at the pause. Allegra Bird is a troubled young woman living in Dublin and searching for a relationship with her mother. Working as a traffic warden, she never manages to fulfil the dream she was hoping for. Her very ordered and regimented life gets turned on its head when disgruntled Rooster informs her that she's the sum total of the 5 people she spends time with. Emotionally charged read with more highs and lows than a bungy jump. Brilliant.
Freckles is a gem of a book. Allegra Bird is a young woman working as a traffic warden in the city. A chance encounter with an irate card driver leaves her questioning everything and everyone she holds dear to herself. “You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with” he tells her. This stays with Allegra and as she tries to figure out who her five people are, she discovers in herself a deeper understanding of who she herself is. A wonderful story, I loved this book. Thanks to #NetGalley for my #ARC of this story. 5⭐️ #Freckles
I was not sure if this would be my type of book after being given a copy by netgalley It's an uplifting story and I found myself drawn into the story of a traffic warden in Dublin on a journey of discovery which by the end will leave you wanting to cheer from the rooftop If you enjoyed PS I love this book is the one for you
I have read and enjoyed other Cecelia Ahern novels, so knew what to expect. Eccentric story, eccentric characters, and lots of love. Allegra, or Freckles of the title, is a socially awkward parking warden in a Dublin suburb. When she has a run in with a car owner about a ticket abuses her about being the average of the five people you spend most time with, Freckles reassess her life. Allegra realises she can’t even pin five people into her life, let alone them leaving their mark on her. But through this, and a side story of looking for her mother, Allegra develops and comes to realise that sometimes what you were looking for is what you have all along. Split between the Dublin suburb of Malahide and the Wild Atlantic Way on the west coast this novel left me questioning who my five were.
I enjoyed reading this book. An interesting plot that makes you think about the people around you and those who chose to have you in their lives. I would reccomend.
Freckles works as a traffic warden in Dublin. She went to boarding school and while there got her nickname as she drew between her freckles- so much so that it has left lines that can be seen even now. She lives in the garden room of a couple whom she babysits for frequently. Her real name is Allegra, named by her musician father meaning lively and bright. Written in the first person this tells of Freckles and of her being told that you are the average of the five people you spend most time with. She knows her father is a big influencer on her life but as for the other four? This is an interesting concept. Who are the five people (other than family) who we spend most time with? It made me think and wonder and smile. Allegra is finding her way in the world away from what she found familiar at home, going further afield to pursue a dream- one that didn't take quite the shape she imagined. There's something endearing about her. Maybe being the new girl and then coming up against false personas whilst trying to find herself- something most of us have been through one way and another. Trying to find her mother who hasn’t been in her life at all and hoping, just hoping that things will turn out right. Of being yourself and true to yourself. Of growth and discovery and a certain “ je ne sais quois” . Loved it. (rest of links on publication)
What an absolute delight, a really lovely read with some great charecters it was a pleasure to get to know and a really story, bit gutted it's ended
⭑⭑⭑⭑⭑ <b>5 stars</b> <blockquote><I>"You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with."</I></blockquote> Sometimes, the right book finds you at the right time. <b>This was it for me.</b> Allegra Bird, parking warden and aspiring Garda, moves to big-city Dublin to discover her roots and dip a toe into her future. After an orthodox childhood being raised by Pops on Valentia Island, Allegra, AKA Freckles, is somewhat of an unconventional protagonist. Neither hero, nor villain, Allegra is easy to simultaneously root for and frustration inducing. The novel is entirely character driven, with all speech told from the POV of Allegra, rather than distinguished character speech. Cecelia Ahern's books and I are hit and miss, I liked Lyrebird, did not like Roar, and decided to take a chance on Freckles. As you can see from the full row of stars, I'm glad I took that chance. Tristan, a friend of Allegra's, once described his game in the novel as its magic being in its simplicity. This to me is a true reflection of enigmatic Allegra's character in general: <b><I>"its simplicity is its magic."</I></b> There feels like there is no real plot, but rather an unfolding of events that either happen to Allegra, or that she inspires, with a character driven novel, it felt natural, it felt like I wasn't just watching these event occur in my mind's eye, but participating in them, too. The pacing is slow, but the ending is swollen with emotion. Have you ever gone to a fair and participated in the hammer game? You have to pick up the hammer and whack it down onto a pad, the aim is to whack it hard enough that a puck flies upwards and hits the bell. This is what the pacing of the book felt like. A bit of waiting around getting to know the feel of the hammer in hand, some adjusting, holding the hammer high above the head and <I>whack</I>, bringing it down with all the possible mustered strength in possession. <b>The ding of the bell is reserved for the last chapter specifically. </b> Thank you to HarperCollins UK and NetGalley for an ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review.
This was my first book by Cecelia Ahern, but based on this book it will definitely be the first of many. I thoroughly enjoyed the storytelling in this book, which was very well structured with some great characters and great scenes. Allegra Bird lives in Dublin, having moved there to try to find, and get to know, her mother who abandoned her as a baby. She is a traffic warden and in an argument when giving Tristan a ticket was told you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with. This sets Allegra off on a journey to find out who those five people are and to shape her list to help improve herself. She is a great character and you enjoy spending time with her as she goes on this journey, which involves laughter, embarrassment, tears and a discovery about who she is and what she wants out of life. There was a great ending to this excellent book, which I thoroughly recommend. Thanks to NetGalley, the author and the publishers for providing a copy of this book for me, for an an open and honest
Oh my, I loved this book! It was moving, thought-provoking, and well-written. I loved following Allegra's journey, it really touched me and I needed lots of tissues for the final few chapters!
To be honest, when I started this book, I struggled to begin with. I found the writing hard, no speech marks for the conversation, who knew these were so important haha! But there was something about Freckles, that made me keep on reading and boy, am I glad I did! Allegra, or Freckles as she is sometimes known as, is a girl that seems to be a square peg in a round hole. She is trying to find her way, after moving to Dublin from a remote area in Ireland. She is a parking warden and after a particularly difficult confrontation, she is told you are the average of the 5 people that you spend most of your time with. From this, Allegra realises she doesn't know who her 5 people are. This leads to a journey of self discovery and a bumpy path to try and find her 5. Freckles is an emotional read and at the start, I found it difficult to bond with the character, however, before you know it, she gets under your skin. You are willing her on to find people in her life that will treat her well. She is misunderstood by so many around her but you feel like you know the true Freckles. At the end, I sat there with tears in my eyes, wow, that's not an easy feat with me, I'm not a crier. Please give this book a go, keep on reading and find out about the true person behind the nickname. I am sat here now thinking about Allegra and that shows what an amazing book this is!
Every time I sit down to a new Cecelia Ahern I know I am in for a treat and this didn't disappoint! Can't wait to start recommending it!
Allegra Bird aka Freckles dreams of being a police officer, but when she doesn’t get in, she becomes a traffic warden. She moves to Dublin. She is diligent and routine orientated and pays great attention to details but isn’t good at reading people.. After ticketing a yellow sports car several days in a row she encounters the very angry owner Tristan. She is used to people shouting at her and being angry but Tristans words stay with her- you are the average of the five people you spend the most time with, This sends Allegra into a spin, who are her five people? This was an amazing read. I really warmed to the main character and those close to Freckles. I really felt for her and wanted everything to work out for her. The ending was so lovely and unexpected.
This fabulous book was a journey of discovery, not just of the eponymous character ,Freckles but ultimately, into my own life and the people who have shaped me. Allegra Bird, aka Freckles, has left the small island of Valentia and moved to Dublin, on a mission to seek out the mother who gave her up at birth. Brought up by her eccentric father ,she found security in the rules and regulations of boarding school. She is a character who displays many of the characteristics of someone in the autism spectrum. She sees things in black and white with no room for shades or nuances. That's why, when rejected by the Gárda she becomes a traffic warden, diligently upholding the parking laws. After repeatedly ticketing his yellow Ferrari, Tristan or Rooster as he's known to his utube followers, makes a throwaway comment in anger, which sets in motion a series of events which will transform not just the life of Freckles but those around her. This book was like an onion. In the case of Freckles, her character gradually built, layer upon layer, while in the case of the seemingly perfect people around her, their layers got peeled away one by one, exposing the emptiness and rotteness at their core. Really thought provoking and deeply moving, I found myself lying awake, deciding who were my five, who had shaped me ? This book is a little gem.
Wow, this book was so thought provoking for me. You are the average of the five people you spend the most time with (not including family) Definitely made me think, for sure and had some great conversations with friends and colleagues about this! Another absolute winner from Cecelia Ahern, laughter and tears. -loved it.
What a beautiful story. As someone that spent a lot of time in life not knowing where I fitted i could really feel this book and every emotion that she went through. Almost cried at the end but I won’t spoil the ending. Sometimes we just don’t see what is right in front of our eyes and genuinely this book really made me think. Would highly recommend reading.
This was my first experience of a book by Cecilia Ahern. I can see why she’s so popular! In this lovely book, we meet Allegra, AKA Freckles. She has been raised by her Dad, whom she adores, but she has always had a Mum-shaped hole in her life. When we meet her, Allegra is a parking attendant and ferociously good at her job. She has a run-in with serial parking abuser, Tristan, who tells her that we are all the sum of the 5 people we spend the most time with, and that her 5 people must be awful. Allegra is thrown by this and launches into a project to curate her 5. Emotional yet light-hearted, this is a lovely read that will make you value those close to you.
Freckles by Cecelia Ahern is an uplifting story a loud young woman, Allegra Bird, nicknamed Freckles. The storyline is about how she wants to change her life and when someone talks about having five people in your life, to make those changes, Allegra is on a mission. Highly recommended
Wow! What an unusual book. Being neurodiverse myself, I was really excited to read this and find out how Cecilia Ahern has understood and portrayed neurodiversity. Freckles is a completely believable character, whose limited understanding of the neurotypical world leads her to find out about people and their ideals, following the principle that you are made up of the characteristics of the five people closest to you. This is done alongside her humdrum job of being a traffic warden, to which she attaches great importance and tries to do the job to the best of her ability. I really identified with Freckles, and I loved her story. A must read for anybody who is neurodiverse and struggling with the world. Reminded me very strongly of The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Night Time.