Book Review – The One Who’s Not the One by Keris Stainton (ARC)

All men leave eventually. Some of them even take your purse with them.

The One Who’s Not the One

Author: Keris Stainton

Publication Date: 26 Feb 2019

Genre: Adult Fiction – Romantic Comedy

Pages: 229

Publisher: Bookouture

Thank you NetGalley and Bookouture for providing me a free eARC in exchange for an honest review.


Cat’s life has hit a brick wall. Since she broke up with her ex Sam five years ago she’s quit stand-up comedy, landed in a steady but dull job, and lives in a tiny flat with roommates she knows only as The One Who Eats All My Food and The One Who Has Really Loud Sex. 

Cat, by contrast, is vividly aware that she hasn’t had sex for over two years

So when she bumps into old friend Harvey and sparks fly, Cat is surprised. The more time she spends with Harvey, the more their chemistry grows – but Cat knows she has to ignore her feelings. 

Because Harvey is Sam’s brother, and so absolutely, 100% off-limits romantically. If only Cat didn’t keep forgetting that…

My Thoughts:

Calling all romantic comedy fans! You NEED to read this book. This book was absolutely brilliant. It was hilarious, refreshing, addictive, and completely relatable. I read this book in a span of 24 hours. I just couldn’t put it down!

The book opens with Cat stopping at Starbucks to grab some breakfast and a coffee for her boss since she’s already running late for a job that she could care less about, so she might as well earn some brownie points. She sets her stuff down on a table that this gorgeous guy is sitting at while she readjusts herself. After a bit of flirtatious banter, he leaves…with Cat’s purse in tow. This scene perfectly sets the theme of this story: men in Cat’s life always leave.

Cat’s life has descended into a mundane routine. She has a flat share with Georgie, a sorry excuse of a roommate that has a complete disregard for anyone or anything that doesn’t concern her and her boyfriend. Her love life is non-existent. She has boring job as an accountant, which is nowhere near as thrilling as comedy was. Cat’s only friends are her best friend Kelly and her husband Sean. Kelly is a tough love kind of woman that refuses to put up with Cat’s wallowing and tells her what she needs to hear even when Cat tries to run away.   

Cat’s life is turned upside when she discovers that Sam has returned to London for a gig. She all but drags her best friend Kelly to the show after she finds out that his show is called ‘Cat Amongst the Pigeons’, which obviously has to be about her. Maybe she will finally get some answers as to why Sam left for Australia without asking her to come with. Following the show, Cat bumps into Harvey, Sam’s younger brother. Sparks fly, but Cat becomes fixated on the “dating a sibling’s ex” taboo. Yet, as Cat spends more time with Harvey (as friends, or so she tells herself), she is too scared to admit her feelings for him because everyone always leaves.

Cat’s character was definitely frustrating at times. Cat is so engrossed with the idea that everyone always leaves her, so she has accepted that her life is destined to be full of unhappiness in both her personal relationships and career. Despite Kelly’s constant tough love, Cat rarely stands up for herself since she is nonconfrontational and has a fear of abandonment. However, once Harvey re-enters Cat’s life, Cat is forced to question whether people actually left her or if she ran away out of fear.   

What made this an incredible read for me was how realistic/honest/relatable it was when it came to love and relationships. Most of the time, love is not this over the top fairy tale that it is painted to be.  People have baggage. People are not rational when it comes to love. Previous relationships with parents and/or exes can influence a person’s mindset for pursuing a new relationship. People can be too scared to speak up and/or shift the status quo of their everyday lives. Keris beautifully tackles all of these everyday issues while still making you laugh and think “Yeah, I’ve been there”.   

Rating: 5 stars


  1. This sounds like such a great story and I liked that the author kept it realistic too – but it was still funny and touching too. I’m a sucker for books like this one and I can’t wait to read it when I have a chance. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I really like the sound of this one, no doubt I will end up buying it when it’s released. Fab review.

    Happy to have found your blog, I’ve not that long started blogging again so it’s nice to see some other newish bloggers about.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. […] The One Who’s Not the One by Keris Stainton – 5 stars. What happens when your ex (that should have been the one) walks back into your life? You fall for his brother! This was that laugh out loud, absolutely relatable rom-com that I just couldn’t put down. Here is my review. […]


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