Really good, Actually

Hello lovely Readers!

It’s March and I couldn’t be happier. I’ve just spent a full week off doing things that I love the most: reading, seeing my friends and hanging out at my favourite coffee shops.

I’ve also spent a night in a reading lodge with my friend Aimee as an overnight reading retreat and it was just incredible.

I wrapped up February with another 5 books read, so I’m steaming towards my reading goal of 50 books this year, I’ve managed to read 2 so far in March so currently at 4 books ahead of schedule. I’ve received some major CHONKS so I do expect that to slow down a little as I work through those (most of my books are 250-400 pages, these bad boys are 500-700!) but all in all its been a successful reading month for February.

The last book I read in February is the one I’m going to share with you today, and it came out in my January Books that Matter Box which was quite late so I didn’t actually get the box until February otherwise I would have read this one sooner!


I think this is one of my favourite book covers, it’s bold, its striking and its really kind of joyful, if you ignore the mascara thats run as the person on the front cover cries.

If you’re thinking ‘Monica Heisey, I feel like I’ve heard that name?’ then if you’re a fan of Schitt’s Creek (as I am) you’ll probably love her writing. She was an award winning screenwriter who worked on the show for a year and this is her first novel, therefore I knew before I even picked this one up that I would probably find it pretty funny!

With 384 pages to explore, this mid January 2023 release felt like it’d be a perfectly bright comedic pick me up to battle those January blues.

The Synopsis:

“Maggie’s marriage has ended just 608 days after it started, but she’s fine – she’s doing really good, actually. Sure, she’s alone for the first time in her life, can’t afford her rent and her obscure PhD is going nowhere . . . but at the age of twenty-nine, Maggie is determined to embrace her new status as a Surprisingly Young Divorcée™.

Soon she’s taking up ‘sadness hobbies’ and getting back out there, sex-wise, oversharing in the group chat and drinking with her high-intensity new divorced friend Amy. As Maggie throws herself headlong into the chaos of her first year of divorce, she finds herself questioning everything, including: Why do we still get married? Did I fail before I even got started? How many Night Burgers until I’m happy?”

I’ve read a few books like this in the past, the story of ‘starting over’ and found them really funny and in some ways relatable! However I know those previous books (Adults by Emma Jane Unsworth for example) have been like marmite – the subject matter is rather depressing and you do have to be able to have a bit of a dark sense of humour to appreciate the subject matter blended with comedy – thats not for everyone and thats ok. Judging by other reviews I get the sense that again this type of novel is a marmite read, so before you read on, please consider that I am someone with a dark sense of humour!

Personally, by the end of the first chapter (23 pages deep), I’d laughed out loud at least 6 times, snorted at least twice and read an excerpt to my Fiancé. The novel started off super strong and witty as heck. The story is written in the 1st person and begins with Maggie’s spiralling thoughts about what might have ended her marriage (‘because I did our laundry never’ and ‘he walked in on me pooping me one time’ were particular favourites of mine).

With witty and self-deprecating humour, we live in the headspace and life of Toronto based Maggie as she tries to understand and move on with her life, even though the last thing she wants to do is create a new one. She has a bunch of great friends, but a job she finds no passion in, a crappy living situation, divorced parents and a phone filled with one (or five) too many dating apps.

Is Maggie easy to love as a character? God no – she’s difficult, has self damaging behaviour, doesn’t consider other people’s feelings, bores her friends to death with her over indulgent monologues and obsessions about ‘what went wrong’, she lives on dating apps and she’s trying every little way to ‘reinvent’ herself. Basically, she’s anyone ever who’s had an out of the blue break up and is struggling to deal with it, but really wants to look like she’s FINE (Ross from Friends style).

The book feels like those instagram accounts that share memes and gifs of dating gone wrong, they’re really fun to read and relatable, but also really quite sad. As the story goes along its journey we follow the emotional rollercoaster of Maggie as she tries to understand and navigate this ‘new life’ that she really just does not want, whilst trying to be ‘friendly’ and ‘totally chill’ about it – and failing to terribly.


Major laugh out loud moments and entirely relatable (did the marriage end because she did laundry never?), I found myself sat in public laughing, hard!

As she navigates dating, her sexuality, drunken entirely going two way bathroom ‘threesomes’ , spin classes and therapy, it’s hilarious but also in some parts really really sad. There’s a point in the book where I was genuinely moved to tears. Maggie is entirely and completely rejected, and I think its quite painful for anybody that’s ever found themselves on the receiving end of a breakup or that their love is just not reciprocated. She’s made to feel wrong (the term used was ‘batshit’) for having feelings. When really she’s just lost and confused and in a lot of pain.

If it wasnt for Heisey’s outstanding writing and humour, I’d find this topic really quite depressing, but she manages to keep the book joyful, light and the ending is really gorgeous, turning the book around from ‘healing and finding love’ to ‘healing and rejoicing friendships’.

All in all: really good, actually.

Out now, RRP £14.99


So in my Books that Matter Box I was sent a KIB individually wrapped teabag. I’ve never tried KIB before but like the simple yet bold packaging and the flavour ‘mint lemongrass moringa’ sounded refreshing.

Well, I think I’ll be buying myself a box of these! I instantly went back to my childhood when I opened the bag – the spearmint powered through and I was transported back to a time of Polos in the car with Grandma on the way to school.

The tea itself is really refreshing and rejuvenating, I love the added lemongrass it feels gorgeous for a spring drink. My only criticism is that the teabag itself does not hold the tea well. If I knew what I was doing I could have read my tea leaves.

Here’s the link, £3.99 for 15 bags (plus delivery), which I dont think is half bad!

I hope you enjoy the rest of your weekend, I’m personally SUPER excited because the FORMULA 1 IS BACK!

If you enjoyed this review please like, share, comment, or follow. You can also subscribe by email to receive an update when I load a new post (which is every couple of weeks).

You can also find me on Instagram @papyrusandpeppermint and on goodreads with the same name, so let’s connect!

Whatever youre up to, have a great one, and take some time to read!

Until the Next Chapter,

Emma X0

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