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If Only

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3.76  ·  Rating details ·  1,266 ratings  ·  210 reviews

Erin is about to turn thirty and her life is definitely not where she thought it would be. She hates her job, she's jealous of her perfect flatmate - and she has just called off her wedding.

A trip home to Ireland to celebrate her birthday with her beloved grandmother is exactly what Erin needs, and she's spent days preparing herself to break the news about her broken engag
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Kindle Edition, 320 pages
Published June 6th 2019 by Hachette Books Ireland
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Average rating 3.76  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,266 ratings  ·  210 reviews


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Yna the Mood Reader
Jun 14, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: arc
‘Loneliness is the worst reason to go chasing more heartbreak.’
📖 Buy This Book: : Barnes and Noble Kobo 📖

Much thanks to NetGalley and Hachette Books Ireland for this complimentary copy. This review is voluntary and opinions are fully my own.

📚 Series: No.
📚 Genre: Women's Fiction
📚 POV: First person.
📚 Cliffhanger: No.

If Only is my first read from Melanie Murphy, who is a Youtuber/Online Personality I am not familiar with. I had high hopes with this book because of the cutesy
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Aoife
3.5 stars.

Erin is almost 30 years old with only a broken engagement and a boring job in a cafe to her name. Desperate and longing for change, Erin gets a chance to see what alternate lives could look like when her beloved granny gifts her a special pendant passed down through generations. As Erin looks over all her 'If Only's', will she begin to change what she needs to her in her present day life and find a form of true, meaningful happiness?

This was a really strong, witty and fun book to read
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Clara
May 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This is such a good book and I will admit I wasn't sure whether I would like it or not!

This is a story about getting older and second guessing every decision you have made and I must say that it is so real and brings so many issues into it that we all go through at some stage that I found it to be a refreshing read.

Its very well written and I absolutely love the cover!

Thanks to Netgalley and Hachette Ireland for an arc copy in exchange for an honest review.
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Ella
May 30, 2019 rated it it was ok
Thank you Hachette Books Ireland for the review copy.

This book just wasn't for me. Cute premise but lacked follow through which was really disappointing. The idea behind the necklace was interesting and original but the 'if only' parts were boring and rushed. The main character Erin has also got to be one of the frustrating characters I've read about this year and I absolutely detested her by the end of the book.
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Maria Hill AKA MH Books
It has been two decades since I have read anything approaching Chic Lit but in film (at the Movies) I am a sucker for this kind of premise.

What if you could experience how your life had turned out "If only" you had made a different decision?

Filled with troops and clichés (such as the Gay Best Friend - Jeex!), this novel is nevertheless very enjoyable and was a pleasure to spend time with.

Recommended to anyone who enjoyed Richard Curtis' About Time, who likes novels about time travel, romance a
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Nerdlander
Jul 07, 2019 rated it did not like it
As much as I am a fan of Melanie and everything she stands for, this story is not quite as good as expected. I'm sure she has an editor and everything, but it's more so the characters and mostly Erin who has no substance and feels like cardboard that could fall over at any moment, she's so transparent when you expect opaque depth.

The story itself and what it centers around isn't anything new, but that's to be expected from new writers only getting started, yet their could have been potential to
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BooksAndRae
Jun 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Thank you Netgalley and the publishers for giving me the wonderful chance to read 5his book for an honest review in return.

Have you even wondered what would happen if you'd taken a different path in life? How it would change your whole world and to see if it would have been better than how you live now?

Erin has been given this chance.

With a necklace gifted to her by her grandmother on her thirtieth birthday, she is able to discover what would have happened if she had decided to go other ways i
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Justice
Jun 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I used to read books constantly but then it became less and less, and then I got to the point where I never read anymore. There are so many reasons I could give such as being too busy, working, college, feelings. I was so excited for this book. I purchased the physical copy, ebook, and audio book. I switched between the ebook and audiobook while reading it. This book is incredible. I cannot even tell you the last time I was actually able to finish an entire book without feeling depressed or some ...more
Noelia Alonso
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: read-in-2019
ACTUAL RATING: 2.5 STARS (5.5/10)

It's pretty obvious this is a debut novel and that's okay. The story is full of clichés and it's predictable but it was overall enjoyable and I liked the message of focusing on what we have instead of what we don't.
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Kat
Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Erin has just broken up with her fiance, has a job she hates, and is jealous of her new flatmate who is basically everything she isn't. On the bright side, she has a fantastic friend in Reid, has just discovered her childhood friend Finn has moved to the same building, and is about to celebrate her thirtieth birthday with her beloved grandmother in Ireland. But her granny has a surprise for her: a special pendant that can give her the opportunity to briefly live a life she could have had that wi ...more
Christine (Queen of Books)
(Thank you to NetGalley and Hachette Ireland for a free e-arc of If Only for review!)

If Only... Who hasn't thought, "If only I'd..." or, "What if I had..." I think it's only natural for us to consider how different choices might have led to different outcomes - be they big or small. And that's what Erin (the main character) does here.

I went in without knowing anything and enjoyed that experience, so please allow me to be purposely vague: If Only focuses on Erin, her granny, and her friend group.
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Merle
Jan 31, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If Only is the first fiction novel by Melanie Murphy, but you don't notice that while reading - I knew because I follow her on her Youtube channel and have been hyped about this book since she announced she was writing something. So I was influenced by her to buy her book because I liked her as a person, but the book did not dissappoint!

I am gonna start with the negative stuff, because I gave 4/5 stars, so why take one off?
What annoyed me were the specific music titles throughout the book. I jus
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Victoria | victoriashaz
Jun 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
So, I loved this. I am a mid-twenties woman who is constantly feeling like her place is nowhere, constantly wondering if she's making the right choices, and who struggles like the rest of us.
Murphy paints a wonderful picture of what a young adult looks like nowadays as they approach and reach 30.

Erin is unhappy, just ended an engagement, in a job she hates, and feels unfulfilled. She struggles with wondering what choices are right, and then is handed the opportunity to know what would happen i
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Franziska
Jul 23, 2019 rated it liked it
I thought long and hard about my rating for this book. Altough I mostly disliked the main character and her best friend for many reasons, I'd say it was quite an enjoyable read after all. The idea behind the book is very interesting, I just think it could have been executed better as I felt the story seemed a bit rushed at times. The love interest was very charming and one of my favourite characters in the book. The many 80s music references definitely brought a smile to my face. Anyways, Melani ...more
Larissa
Jun 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebooks
This was so so good, I loved the story, the characters, the LGBT+ representation, and I really enjoyed the music references. I just really needed a good book in this genre at this moment, and this was definitely the right one! An amazing debut novel, can’t wait to see what Melanie comes up with next!
Sian
Jun 01, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Firstly I honestly loved this book so much! Thank you so much to Melanie Murphy, Hachette books Ireland and Netgalley for a review copy. It's published on June 6th.

I think this book is a great combination of a kind of 'chick lit' book (but I kind of dislike that term, so contemporary fiction maybe?) and magical realism. I really liked the premise, as someone that has definitely had moments where I've thought 'what if...' it really resonates. I generally liked Erin as a character, I think that th
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Anamaria
Jun 09, 2019 rated it did not like it
Trash...Spend your money on a real book - Kafka, Victor Hugo, Dostoyevsky, Tolkien - learn something! This is just an immature book for teenagers...
Suzanne
Sep 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Erin is about to turn thirty, when her life is turned upside down. She feels as if her life is leading nowhere, having called of her wedding and being stuck in a waitressing job in London, far away from her native Ireland. When she visits her grandmother in Ireland, she is given a pendant with magical abilities, which allows her to experience seven “If only” moments for a day. What if she had made different decisions and life choices?

I found it hard to rate this book, especially because I have
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Jade Wright
Jun 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Reasons why this book resonated with me:
1. The main character, Erin, is almost 30 and her wedding plans fall through.
2. Her life's a mess
3. She's newly single, still dealing with the after effects of her breakup
4. She's second-guessing every decision she's made in life and wondering how things would have turned out had she chosen another route.

I was quite nervous that I wasn't going to connect with this book due to the pinch of magic included... basically Erin is gifted a necklace from her grand
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Manon Nagy
Jun 17, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you loved 'About Time' you will love Melanie Murphy's 'If Only' !
We follow 30 year old Erin 'Beggy' and the many ups and downs of her life. She's just broken up her engagement and spends some time pondering on If she made the right choice. She's scared to tell her beloved granny incase it upsets her, but how her granny reacts and what she presents her with is not at all what I was expecting. All she has to do if ask 'If only....' and see where the special necklace takes her.
The idea is so pe
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nick ✦ readbyray
Jul 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If you want to hear my non-spoilery thoughts on If Only, read on 💕

First Thoughts ✨
—————————
I really enjoyed the start of this book, it had a very funny and light feeling - which is what I always want to see when starting a contemporary. I feel like we get to know Erin pretty quickly, as she’s quite open about everything - which was nice, we didn’t spend have the book soul-searching.

The Characters 🤷🏻‍♂️
—————————
I love Erin so much, she was funny and realistic - she definitely wasn’t perfect, like
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Jaimie
Jun 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
If Only follows just-turned-thirty Erin, who is filled with lots of what ifs and regrets. With the help of a mysterious family heirloom, she uncovers some chances to revisit past decisions.

This debut fiction novel from YouTuber/Author Melanie Murphy was a strong foray into the world of fiction. I listened to the audiobook version, and I think it really helped to accentuate the deep Irishness of this book. The Irish narrator really helped to bring out all of this charm that was already there but
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✣ Freya Wilkinson ✣
'today's moments would become tomorrow's memories when the sun set'

This isn't a bad book, but I was left wanting more from it especially from the fantasy element.
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Carter Skye
Jun 04, 2019 rated it it was ok
I was given a free e-book of this from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

This was a sweet slow-burn romance about second chances, "if only's", and learning about oneself. It was an easy read but I felt like the plot dragged on as well as being pretty predictable. I had some problems with the story and characters that kept me from fully enjoying it but it was by no means a bad read. I think I'm just really picky with my romances! It was also a lot more emotional than I had expected it to
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Staci
Jun 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
So full disclosure: I ADORE Melanie Murphy. I watch her YouTube channel and I watch her Instagram snaps/feed (whatever the hell they are) and I think she’s not only stunningly gorgeous but just a lovely person in general.

So there is a little bias here—I never doubted for a second I’d buy her book— but as to whether it would resonate with me? That part, I wasn’t sure of... I already figured I’d like her writing because I paged through her first book and enjoyed her writing style but this story w
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Rosie Aylard
Jul 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
Murphy’s debut novel tracks a woman reaching thirty and realising she hasn’t achieved any of her goals, a realisation prompted by her decision to call off her impending wedding. After being given a magical pendant by her grandmother, allowing the protagonist to see how different her life would been if she had made different decisions, she is able to re-evaluate where, and ultimately who, she truly wants to be. The use of magical realism in this novel prevents it from being yet another novel simp ...more
Bridget
Jun 17, 2019 rated it liked it
Enjoyed this far more than I expected! I loved the theme and the writing was very solid. I thought the main friendship between Erin and Reid was very well done, as was the complicated relationship between Erin and Dan.

I did think that Erin’s relationship with the eventual romantic lead needed more development though - you can see her feelings for him grow through the book fine, but they didn’t spend enough time actually together on the page for me to find it totally believable. I also found thi
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Sinead
My main takeaway from this book, is that I want to adopt a chubby greyhound and name him Turnip.

It's not my usual genre (romance wouldn't exactly be a preference of mine, when it comes to the books I choose) but I enjoyed the well rounded characters, and the element of magic included. It loosely reminded me of About Time, and it would have been cool to see the alternate lives and their repercussions explored more.

Erin, though harsh at times, was relatable and amusing as a protagonist. I also enj
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Sonja
“Don’t marry someone you want to throw any object but yourself at, Beggy.”

First of all, I've been a fan of Melanie's for the longest time and simply adore her realness on YouTube. Her first book Fully Functioning Human (Almost): Living in an Online/Offline World I gave honest 5 stars to because frankly, I was blown away by the writing style, raw content and applicable advice. “If Only”, her second book and first fiction novel, I'm more conflicted over, so I want to record all the positives and n
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Emily Scott
Aug 11, 2019 rated it it was ok
2.5 stars! This was a great, easy read with some witty humorous moments. However the main character tiptoed the edge of being funny and self deprecating, and completely unlikable and annoying, far too often for me. Instead of being a flawed character with depth, I just found Erin to be down right horrible and nasty sometimes. I love Melanie but it was also slightly off-putting to see so many parallels with her own life, obviously she wrote what she knows but it made it hard to be fully immersed ...more
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Melanie Murphy is an author and online content creator from Dublin.

Her debut novel "If Only", uplifting and warm magic realism featuring an unforgettable Irish grandmother and glimpses at parallel lives, was an Irish bestseller and is still reaching new audiences almost a year after publication! She is currently working on her second.

In 2017, Melanie published her first non-fiction book, "Fully F
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“There was no doubt about it: more heads turned for me in this slim, fit body. Businessmen, men with women on their arms, women in lipstick and others too beautiful to ever notice me normally: face after face examined me as they passed, and, as they gawped, I couldn't decide if I loved the attention more or less than I despised people for their predictability.” 1 likes
“I came to London to make my dreams come true - big, naive head on me at twenty-two. Going to work every day physically hurts.' I hadn't realised how strongly I felt about my lack of a career, my Groundhog Day existence, until I uttered those last two words and realised I wasn't exaggerating. A kind of agony wrapped me in its razor-edged wires every day as I cycled to the Sugar Pot, to Kenneth and to my hideaway cupboard; it was dull, like my skin was smeared with a strong numbing cream.” 1 likes
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