Bricking It by Nick Spalding


What they say: When siblings Dan and Hayley Daley inherit their late grandmother’s derelict Victorian farmhouse, it seems like a dream come true. All they have to do is fix the place up and sell it for a tidy profit!

Except—as anyone who has renovated an old house knows—things are never that easy.

The walls are rapidly crumbling around them, the architect is a certified lunatic, the budget is spiraling…and then there’s the disturbingly intelligent cow to worry about.

On top of all this, the renovation is being featured on a daytime reality TV show, and as soon as Great Locations presenter Gerard O’Keefe catches sight of Hayley’s first-floor balcony, he’s determined to woo her out of her ban on romance, whether she wants him to or not.

Will Dan and Hayley survive and sell up? Or will the whole thing collapse on them like a ton of bricks?

From bestselling author Nick Spalding comes a hilarious tale of life, love and dodgy plumbing.


The Review:
First off thanks so much to Netgalley for this book in return for an honest review.  I really enjoyed ‘Bricking it.’ A tell tale sign is how much I was actually looking forward to writing the review, just so I could look back over the notes on my Kindle again!

In the same way that we say”chick lit” and “women’s fiction,” I’m going to go out on a limb and call this ‘bloke lit’ or “lad lit.” I welcomed the change from what I’d usually read.

‘Bricking it’, as you will see above, is the story of a brother and sister who have been left a three bedroom, detached, Victorian farmhouse that is in need of  complete renovation. Danny works in a part time museum job that gives him no satisfaction, and Hayley is a teacher who seems to be missing something. As you would guess, the book is about the growth of them both, both learning about themselves, and figuring out what’s missing. As characters go I found Hayley a bit difficult as a person to like at first, and yet easy to read and understand. Her development was really nicely done. I liked Danny and enjoyed the various characters that passed in and out.

The pair are told, and can see, that it’s a huge job,

“Both rooms are bloody enormous, and continue the theme of peeling wallpaper, mouldy skirting boards and decades of old filth. Lovely.”

that would require a mortgage to be taken out to fund it, but the results would reward them financially and also fulfil any inner desire they may have to renovate a house that was obviously very different to the ruin it is in now.

The book was written EXACTLY as you’d want this particular book to be written. So you see renovations, put it with laddish comedy (apologies if I’m offending anyone with this terminology, I’m very aware in this day and age it’s difficult to be pc) and you get: Someone falling through floorboards, someone getting the nail from a nail gun shot into their foot(we get the thoughts before during and after the firing of the gun. Brilliant!) , an unknown animal visitor, a cow that decides it lives IN the house … the list goes on. There was a great ‘bit’ where they ask the presenter of ‘Great Locations’ whether it’s like ‘Location, Location, Location’ or ‘Grand Designs’ and he splutters his response!

Now while the comedy is brilliant, I’m afraid the romance didn’t quite grab me so much, in fact I’d nearly say the romance didn’t have to be there at all, although I enjoyed Danny’s ‘dates’. The only part I found romantic was a moment that didn’t actually involve either of the lead characters (you’ll know it when you find it!) This leads me to the ending which didn’t really hit the spot for me, I’m afraid.

There is, of course, bad language, but it is not as bad as I would have expected, although if you don’t like cursing I’d probably give this a miss. In the same vein, if you don’t like vulgarness, there were two over the top parts. What I’m trying to convey to you here, is that you will either really enjoy this book or hate it. Go to the ‘look inside’ option on Amazon and you’ll know soon enough. As for me, it was a really satisfying, enjoyable read. Happy out.

Rating 4.5/5