Book review: Out of Practice by Penny Parkes

Published by Emma Lee-Potter in on Sunday 22nd May 2016

Penny ParkesA GPs’ surgery is a brilliant setting for a novel, especially when it’s staffed by a group of doctors who all have their own issues to deal with.

There’s newly arrived Holly Graham, who’s just moved to Larkford to make a fresh start with her philandering husband (what she sees in him I don’t know). Then there’s handsome Dan Carter, who’s trying to cope with post-traumatic stress disorder and a tricky ex-girlfriend (another doctor) and resident joker Taffy Jones, who doesn’t seem to take anything seriously.

Throw in a feisty, elderly film star, a pompous senior doctor who’s set on taking over the practice and a host of demanding patients and you end up with a treat of a novel – a book that’s wise, warm and fizzing with fun.

Out of Practice is Penny Parkes’s debut novel – and perfect for curling up with on a summer’s afternoon and reading in one fell swoop.

Best of all, the author brings her characters and the town of Larkford vividly to life – so much so that I wanted to move there myself. I don’t think most hard-pressed doctors would be as happy to drop everything and whizz round to check up on their patients at a drop of a hat (you have to wait three weeks for an appointment in my neck of the woods) but this is a charming read – one that had me rooting for Holly and her adorable twin sons every step of the way.

Out of Practice by Penny Parkes (Simon & Schuster, £2.99)

PS. The ebook is out this week and the paperback will be published on July 28.

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