Aussie Book Review: The Man Plan by Elise K. Ackers

manplan The Man Plan by Elise K. Ackers


Review copy provided by publisher/ netgalley

Destiny Romance (Penguin), December 2012

Synopsis- Cora is ‘over’ being alone. She has no family, and all her friends are couples. Fed up with feeling sorry for herself, Cora hatches a plan to find a good, loving man she can call her own. Her deadline is Christmas – she doesn’t want to spend another holiday by herself.

Just as she decides her strategy, she meets Matt, her downstairs neighbor. They become unlikely friends, with Matt an amused bystander as Cora tries various methods in search of a man.

Then something strange happens. Matt, who spends his life avoiding commitment, begins to feel jealous of the men Cora is dating and his resolve to never fall in love begins to crumble. Cora finds herself increasingly attracted to Matt. But is he Good Husband material? She thinks not.

A light-hearted, contemporary romance about a young woman who goes looking for love, only to find it right under her nose.

Review- The Man Plan is a short, sweet Christmas read by Australian author, Elise K. Ackers. After enjoying Ackers’ romantic suspense novel, Small Town Storm which was one of the debut lines with Destiny Romance I immediately snapped up a copy of The Man Plan which falls into the contemporary romance spectrum.

Cora is nearing thirty and following the death of her father is desperate to find a partner and build a family and future. She’s put a lot of thought and research into finding ‘the one’ and comes up with a master strategy, the Man Plan. She throws herself into “creatable situations” like faking a car breakdown or going to the gym to meet prospective men. She doesn’t have much luck. What’s more, she’s set herself the deadline of finding a man by Christmas- only three months away.

When her neighbour, sarcastic and witty Matt Shelley turns up on her doorstep complaining of noise disruption (Cora is playing songs by Adele very loudly!) he’s instantly intrigued by her. He makes himself at home in her apartment and she inadvertently tells him about her plan. He, being a guy who has no intention to marry or settle down is quickly crossed off Cora’s list of potential men and they fall into a comfortable friendship quickly. They see each other daily; they go to the movies, cook dinner together and basically mirror a couple without any of the physical benefits!

Against his better judgement, Matt finds he really likes spending time with Cora and the interest she sparks in other men actually makes him jealous! Matt has poor role models for a healthy relationship, his parent’s have an abusive marriage and he thinks himself unworthy of Cora’s love. He fights his feelings for her, pushing her away and making himself more miserable. Cora is confused by his behaviour, but she’s even more confused by the strong feelings she is developing for her friend.

What I liked about the internal conflict that Acker’s creates for Cora; it isn’t the typical I have to find a husband dilemma which I tend to find a little cringe worthy-a man can make a woman whole. Rather, Cora desperately wanted someone to share her life with, someone to put her first and to think about her and build a future with. It wasn’t all about finding a husband, but about building a life with someone. Initially I thought Cora a little desperate, but this conflict added another layer which made me empathise with her. Even though it is a shorter novel, Ackers still manages to create believable character conflict for Matt too and so the romance that develops between them is believable and so is its resolution.

I really recommend this contemporary Christmas read by Australian author, Elise K. Ackers. The Man Plan is a pleasant holiday read which will leave you feeling warm and fuzzy by the end.

Overall Rating


“I really liked this”

The Man Plan can be purchased from Destiny Romance and other leading ebook retailers

This book was read as part of the AWW2012 challenge:


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