Bonkers – Michelle Holman

What would happen if an Angel decided to play Devil’s Advocate?

After a head-on collision between a glamorous sports car and a serviceable but very plain little car, a kind-hearted angel does a swap in Heaven’s waiting room.

A short, feisty rugby-loving schoolteacher gets a second chance and finds herself in hospital in the body of a tall, glamorous, philandering American wife. She has a wealthy, drop-dead gorgeous husband who looks as if he’s just stepped out of a romance novel – but for some reason he can’t stand the sight of her.

She thinks she’s gone crazy, and if she tells anyone they’ll know she has . . . and lock her up. They’ll think she’s bonkers. And she can’t run away and hide: she’s got a broken leg.

Michelle Holman’s debut novel starts with a hiss and a roar as the main character, Lisa, dies in a car accident. There she meets a kooky angel, who decides that instead of sending the other woman in the accident back to life; he will send Lisa instead – into the other woman’s body, Linda’s. When Linda was alive, she was no ordinary woman. She was beautiful, dyslexic, and someone who destroyed every friendship or relationship around her.

When Lisa wakes to find herself in a new body, not only does she not remember the woman’s life, but she doesn’t know anyone around her. She cannot make contact with her own family, as they believe she is the woman who killed their beautiful daughter. She discovers that Linda’s marriage is in shatters, and tries desperately to convince Linda’s husband, Dan, that she is Lisa – not Linda.

This book shows excellent character relationship development. From two people who should, in theory, know each other since they are married. But this is no ordinary marriage, by any stretch of the imagination. Dan needs to move past his marital wounds, and Lisa discovers much more about the sexy-god-like creature pertaining to be her husband, than she ever expected.

Keenly set in New Zealand, Michelle Holman draws the reader into Auckland scenery with ease, and talent. I have never in my reading lifetime come across another writer from New Zealand who writes like this, by compounding the funny and amusing kiwi accents into a novel of a romantic comedy nature. The scene of this book is set of the North Shore of Auckland. I loved it because I used to live on the North Shore for a short period of my life, so I could relate to the exact setting of this book. Regardless of if you have lived there or not, I suspect every reader will be able to easily visualise what Auckland life is really like.

I’m going to rate this as a 3.5/5 stars. I loved this book, couldn’t really put it down, and I thought that it was an amazing effort by a fellow Kiwi writer. Michelle has really broken in the ‘Chick-Lit’ market for New Zealand writers. Thank you, Michelle, I can’t wait to read more of your work.

This is an interesting play with what happens after death.


About Leigh K. Hunt

Leigh K. Hunt considers herself a dreamer. She disappears into worlds created within her head, and every now and then she’ll re-enter the real world for a little while before delving back in again. Leigh writes for the love of writing, the creation of new worlds, and creating new characters that she eventually considers as her ‘internal friends’. Leigh has written a number of unpublished novels, and some short fiction. Leigh supports her passion for writing by working in the world of New Zealand Treaty Settlements. At home, she is based on the Kapiti Coast, in the lovely world of marriage and the motherhood of a baby girl, and a lonely oversized tomcat. For further information about Leigh, her writing, books, and writing advice - visit her website:
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2 Responses to Bonkers – Michelle Holman

  1. It is really fantastic to see more and more books based in New Zealand by NZ writers. This sounds like a lot of fun to read and I will look out for it atthe library.

  2. Definitely keep an eye out. The author informed me that the next book in this series actually came out last November, so I’m looking forward to picking it up sometime.

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