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Love, Unscripted

3.70  ·  Rating details ·  100 ratings  ·  40 reviews
A film-obsessed romantic rewrites the script to understand why his "picture-perfect" love story crashed and burned in this wonderfully clever debut.

Ellie had the quizzical eyebrows of Broadcast News-era Holly Hunter and the neon-red hair of Kate Winslet in Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind. At least, that's what caught Nick's attention when he met her on th
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Paperback, 384 pages
Expected publication: February 11th 2020 by Ballantine Books (first published 2020)
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  • Love, Unscripted by Owen Nicholls
    Love, Unscripted
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    Release date: Feb 11, 2020
    Enter for a chance to win one of 50 advance copies of LOVE UNSCRIPTED by Owen Nicholls, on sale February 11!

    Ellie had the quizzical eyebrows of Broad
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    Giveaway dates: Oct 20 - Nov 14, 2019

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    Community Reviews

    Showing 1-30
    Average rating 3.70  · 
    Rating details
     ·  100 ratings  ·  40 reviews


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    Marianne
    Sep 22, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Love, Unscripted is the first novel by British author, Owen Nicholls. Thirty-year-old projectionist Nick Marcet is sort of in denial: he had a big fight with Ellie, his girlfriend of over three years, and she’s moved out. He doesn’t want this to be a final state of affairs, so he begins to analyse their relationship, trying to pinpoint what went wrong. Learning he is to be evicted focusses the process as, in the act of packing, he unpacks all their fond memories. When his small(ish), indie(ish) ...more
    Sharah McConville
    Sep 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Love, Unscripted is a witty romantic comedy about Nick and Ellie. I loved all the movie references throughout the story. Nick was a bit of a downer in parts but I still really enjoyed Owen Nicholls debut novel. I read this for Books With Heart Book Club's September pick.
    thewoollygeek (tea, cake, crochet & books)
    Brilliant book, so funny, so real, wonderful characters full of flaws. Nick at times isn’t likeable at all but I love the make perspective and the fact he has so much self doubt, makes terrible choices etc makes him likeable to me, because he is real. I really enjoyed this and thoroughly recommend this. A great debut.


    Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for a free copy for an honest opinion
    Rachel Gilbey
    Aug 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    What would you do if you had one perfect night, that was movie-esque in its specialness? Would you hope that you could live happily ever after with that new person in your life, or would you attempt to walk away knowing that nothing may ever compare to that first meeting?

    Nick meets Ellie on the night of the 2008 US Elections at a party, and is torn whether to risk his heart on more than just one night.

    He is a geeky film nerd, who is working as a projectionist in a small cinema, and that makes
    ...more
    Karen Whittard
    May 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Love isn’t anything like what the movies portray and this book sets out to show you that real love is a million times better then the ones that you see in the movies and read about in books. This book is raw, true to life and fantastic. I loved it.
    Tara
    Jul 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    A perceptive observation of love and its discontents in your 20s-going-on-30s. Without wanting to reveal too much, if Love, Unscripted had come out 10 years earlier, I could have benefited from the hindsight captured here in a "was this book written for me?" kind of way. Don't judge a book by its genre, you might just go deep while also laughing out loud. Will read whatever else Mr Nicholls produces!
    Sara Oxton
    Jul 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Love, Unscripted by Owen Nicolls a four-star read that will take you away like the movies. I had such high hopes for this one, I really loved the blurb and what I was hearing about this story, maybe that’s why I didn’t enjoy it as much as I had hoped I would, too much anticipation. The story has such good bones and it made me smile many a time, especially with the movie bits and pieces, and references, they made me chuckle more than once and they are why I gave it four stars.
    Kitty Wilson
    Jun 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    This witty, wise romantic comedy is jam-packed full of references to both film and music that make me smile in recognition and also contribute to detailed and insightful characterisation of the protagonists. The hero is honestly flawed and manages to make the reader both frustrated at his behaviour whilst willing him on to succeed in both prongs of the book, shouting him on in his quest for self-knowledge and desperate for him to win back the girl. The girl is, as the narrator believes, pretty p ...more
    LindyLouMac
    Jun 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
    Owen Nicholls debut in the world of romance is a romantic comedy with many classic film references. The latter of which were mainly lost on me although I do enjoy modern cinema. Excited to be given the opportunity to read and review the paperback edition before publication by Headline Publicity I was disappointed when it did not meet my expectations, especially with the apparent current revival and popularity in romantic comedies.
    Although the story is at times warm and funny, for me this i
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    Emer Tannam
    A poor man’s High Fidelity marred by some seriously unlikely scenes, but easy and enjoyable none the less.
    Derval Tannam
    The protagonist became increasingly irritating as the story progressed, and there were a few too many pop culture references, but it was an easy read and fairly satisfying in the end, with a solid rom-com resolution.
    Julie
    Aug 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Nick has fallen in love with Ellie, but nothing is straightforward. Nick is a projectionist in a small cinema, Ellie is a photographer with prospects. This is a lovely comedy with more than a hint of pathos. There are situations which can bear so many interpretations, and the overthinking Nick usually works through them all. As films and references to them come and go throughout, this is shown to be a complex and sophisticated romantic comedy. This is not only the story of a couple who have thei ...more
    Agi
    Nick loves movies. He's a film projectionist in a London cinema and he also loves his job that is just at the cusp of becoming unavailable to him because of the upcoming digital projection changes. When he meets Ellie at a party for the 2008 presidential election in the USA, Nick is sure that he finally found the One, love like in the movies. But is life like that? Following a narrative, always having a happy end?
    Fast forward four years and Nick faces a redundancy, his family life is falli
    ...more
    Jenn Webley
    Aug 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    https://comfychairbooks.blogspot.com/

    If only our lives were like the films that we all enjoy… if love played out like the iconic scenes we all know so well.

    For film enthusiast Nick, we read his struggles, his inner dialogue; we discover his insecurities and what he puts at risk because he cannot see a way by them.

    Love, Unscripted is a wonderful take on someone moving through his 20s into his 30s with who is a complicated, worried soul and how he perceives the relationships he has with everyone around him.

    I love how the story o
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    Rhys Thomas
    Apr 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Nick Marcet is a film projectionist in a London cinema, just at the cusp of the digital projection revolution. Like his beloved celluloid, his four year relationship with Ellie has also just been consigned to history. With redundancy looming, his family life falling apart and what could be "the one" about to move to New York, can Nick work through his insecurities and complexities to take the leap for happiness?

    All good rom coms need a meet cute and this one's takes place across the
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    Maria
    Aug 24, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    This is the perfect story to remember us that love is unexpected, risky and special, but it’s worth every minute!
    Nick’s life is a total mess right now; Ellie has just left him and he doesn’t know how to act about it; really! He hasn’t told anyone that Ellie has left, he even is planning to hang her clothes on the window just in case anyone asks if she is not living with him anymore! He has been always looking for the “perfect move love”, but I am sure that you are well aware that it doesn’
    ...more
    Ella (The Story Collector)
    When film projectionist Nick meets Ellie at a party for the 2008 presidential election, he’s sure that he has finally found a love like in the movies. But after four picture-perfect years together, Ellie has moved out and Nick is left trying to figure out where it all went wrong.

    This was a very sweet story, following the build up and break down of Nick and Ellie’s relationship. The story is told through two simultaneous time-frames, with chapters alternating between the night Nick an
    ...more
    Lauren
    Oct 14, 2019 rated it liked it
    'Love, Unscripted’ by Owen Nicholls is a uniquely laid out story about a perfect meet-cute between Nick, a projectionist, and Ellie, a free-spirited photographer, and everything that follows after it. The novel is told from Nick’s perspective, as he’s trying to suss out where his relationship with Ellie went “wrong.”

    The narrative incorporates a flashback to the night of their first meeting, and is also interspersed with "intermissions" throughout. While this format felt wholly inventive and uni
    ...more
    Erin
    Oct 18, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    The comparisons to Nick Hornby and David Nicholls in the blurb for this book are apt. Our narrator, Nick Marcet, is a London man who has spent his adult life working as a projectionist in a cinema and watching the films he loves. He's also spent the past four years in a relationship with Ellie Brown, his first real girlfriend--a relationship that has just ended as the book begins. Over the course of this hilarious, hearbreaking, beautiful novel, Nick performs a postmortem on the night they met ( ...more
    Pauline Knox
    Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Nick loves movies, believes in true love and that it should be like it is in the movies. His unambitious career as a cinema projectionist suits his ‘life led by movie quotes’ existence too. And then he finds it, that movie worthy love and, after being convinced that he wasn’t going to mess it up, he is happy and life is good...until it isn’t!
    I absolutely loved this book, the characters are great. I love Gabby and Ellie especially...and I loved Nick too, but there were times when I just wanted t
    ...more
    Amy
    I received and ARC from Netgalley for an honest review.

    I wasn't sure how I was going to feel this book, especially when Nick started to commiserate about his break up, and putting a lot of the blame on Ellie. I was pleasantly surprised that it didn't end up like that at all. There were times where I found both Ellie and Nick to be a bit pretentious, but I figured that had more to do with them being British than anything. I found their love story to be rather realistic, that if you do
    ...more
    Pauline Knox
    Aug 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Nick loves movies, believes in true love and that it should be like it is in the movies. His unambitious career as a cinema projectionist suits his ‘life led by movie quotes’ existence too. And then he finds it, that movie worthy love and, after being convinced that he wasn’t going to mess it up, he is happy and life is good...until it isn’t!
    I absolutely loved this book, the characters are great. I love Gabby and Ellie especially...and I loved Nick too, but there were times when I just wanted t
    ...more
    Michelle ♥ The Romance Vault ♥
    This was a fun read by debut author Owen Nicholls and I can see why he was picked up by a publisher off the bat or maybe it's an already established author under a new pen name, who knows! Definitely worth the read!

    Nicholls' has a way with words and is very, very insightful to people's ways and things that make them tick and it's quite funny to read the little things he notices in Love, Unscripted and uses his knowledge to bring his characters to life. This was a fun read for sure, a
    ...more
    Alison
    Sep 28, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Blurb from web:
    For film projectionist Nick, love should mirror what he sees on the big screen. And when he falls for Ellie on the eve of the 2008 presidential election, it finally does.
    For four blissful years, Nick loved Ellie as much as he loved his job splicing film reels together in the local cinema. Life seemed... picture-perfect.
    But now it's 2012, Ellie has moved out and Nick's trying to figure out where it all went wrong.
    With Ellie gone and his life far from the hap
    ...more
    lola.and.puki
    Oct 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Reading Love, Unscripted by Owen Nicholls felt like there was a 90s movie playing in my head and I loved it! I could picture Nick fumbling his way through falling in love and then trying to make sense of how it all goes wrong. The narrative alternates between a replay of the wonderful night that Nick and Ellie meet and the months that follow after their break-up, which occurs several years later. The writing is witty, quirky and entertaining and has the recognisable British romcom style that I e ...more
    Olivia L
    Oct 16, 2019 rated it liked it
    I struggled with the flow of this book. There was a lot of back and forth between the past and present day which was intertwined with differing points of view. In some respects, it seemed to exacerbate the emotional disconnect between Nick and Ellie. Rather than a reciprocal relationship based upon love and respect, the love affair appeared one-sided. Ellie came across as detached, patronizing Nick who was floundering amid the thorns of unrequited love. Neither endeared themselves to the reader ...more
    Hannah May
    Aug 29, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I liked the flitting between 2008 and 2012, filling in gaps in the story as it goes and I know that the whole book revolves around a filmophile who works at a cinema but I felt it is a little heavy on the film/music references. Without giving anything away the ending gets a thumbs up from me. I gave it an extra star because I worked with the Author at a cinema and married a projectionist he worked with- so much of what Nick spoke about reminded me of my time at Odeon and my (now) husband (then b ...more
    Christina
    Oct 16, 2019 rated it liked it
    This book was every emotionally unavailable guy that realizes he screwed up by his own undoing on the perfect girl. It reminded me of the movies Ruby Sparks and 500 Days of Summer.

    The male lead is every guy that projects a unrealistic expectation on a girl and cannot face reality. I liked that he did look back and realize that he is the problem and the only reason their relationship ended was because of him. Prime example of guys you don't want to date but overall, It was very refreshing to see
    ...more
    Cathe Olson
    Oct 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I very much enjoyed this novel about a movie-obsessed projectionist with low self esteem who meets a confident, smart woman who falls for him though I agree with her family that she is too good for him--especially as he becomes quite a jerk at times--so it's hard to sometimes get what she sees in him. But I really loved the writing and the ups and downs of the story and their relationship and I love a good a character-driven story. I'll look forward to reading more from this author.
    Danna Kleisner
    Oct 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    I really enjoyed Love, Unscripted debut novel by Owen Nicholls. It was nice to read a novel from a male POV. The love story of Ellie and Nick from Nick's POV. The time line goes from when Ellie and Nick first met to present. Nothing seems to be going Nick's way in life at the moment. After a fight with Ellie, she has moved out. Changes in his career and his parents moving to another country which leave Nick doubting his whole life's direction. A great read!
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