Art-gallery owner and newly divorced single mum Solene Marchard expectedly finds herself escorting her daughter to see August Moon, her favourite band, in Vegas. But it’s during VIP meet and greet backstage, that Solene meets band member Hayes Campbell.
An instant attraction between the two leads to an agreement to lockup, only for Hayes and Solene to embark on a globe trotting love affair. Solene more reluctantly so, with the weight of their age gap and the lack of privacy that comes with dating someone famous, weighing heavily on her.
I remember rolling my eyes when I first read the blurb for this book. It sounded cheesy as hell and not my usual kind of read. But any preconceptions I had were soon dispelled when I found myself finishing the book in two days.
Like the novel’s protagonist, The Idea of You is a classy, sexy affair. Despite the outlandish premise of an older woman dating a famous musician and following him around the world, it all felt very believable, which is no small feat.
The sexual tension between Solene and Hayes was some of the best I’ve ever read. Its never cheesy or smutty, just adult descriptions of two people enjoying sex.
What I loved was the way the book used this relationship to explore societies double standards when it comes to an older woman dating a young man. This is held in contrast to Solene’s ex-husband’s relationship with a younger woman, one that goes unquestioned. It showed the price Solene pays an older woman, the judgements and the extremes of fandom.
The band, August Moon, reminded me of One Direction, and Hayes is a Harry Styles doppelganger, particularly his early relationship with an older woman, Caroline Flack and the abuse she received.
Undoubtedly, The Idea of You has become one of my favourite books of 2021 and one of the hottest, at that.
Spice rating 5/5