Book Review: Meet Me in Manhattan by Claudia Carroll

Meet Me in Manhattan by Claudia Carroll
Release Date: 5th November 2015
Publisher: Avon
Buy: Kindle | Paperback (pre-order)
5 star


In a New York minute, everything can change …

Holly Johnson is at a crossroads in her life. She wants to make it as a real journalist, and she’s dreaming of falling in love.

She’s so close to getting her break at work, and she’s met a very special guy. Well, she hasn’t actually met him … not yet. But everyone knows most relationships start online these days. And she’s on to a winner with this one. Isn’t she?

But something is not quite right with Andy McCoy – and he’s about to learn you don’t mess with Holly Johnson. She decides to fly to New York to find the truth.

Holly is about to get the shock of her life.

What she finds in Manhattan swiftly turns into a nightmare.

But maybe – just maybe – if Holly is true to herself, she can turn this nightmare into a dream come true …


Unlucky in love Holly Johnson certainly gets more than she bargained for when she tries out internet dating and ‘meets’ Captain Andy McCoy. Living in Atlanta and working as an airline pilot, widowed single Dad Andy sounds utterly dreamy and Holly feels in instant connection. However, when the pair arrange to meet and Andy constantly lets Holly down she starts to wonder if Andy could be too good to be true. It soon becomes apparent that all is not as it seems and although Holly might have told a few tiny fibs on her online dating profile (she doesn’t really like skydiving and can’t actually bake to save her life…) it seems as though ‘Captain Andy McCoy’ has taken things to a whole different level… So what’s a girl to do? Track down the lying eejit and confront him face-to-face – that’s what. As soon as Holly learns that the real person behind Andy McCoy is located in Manhattan she wastes no time in booking a flight. It’s looking like a win-win situation for Holly as this expose could be just what Holly needs to help her fledging career as a researcher AND she also gets to escape Ireland in time for Christmas. (Which incidentally she is dreading, but we don’t get to find out why…) When Holly arrives in New York to track down the mysterious ‘Andy’ it looks as though she’s certainly in for a festive season to remember – but only time will tell if it’s for all the right reasons or the wrong…

Claudia Carroll is one of those authors who never disappoints. To me, her books just seem to be getting better and better and Meet Me in Manhattan has to rank amongst my list of all-time favourites. There’s just something about Irish authors. I absolutely adore their humour, their style of writing, their use of Irish dialogue (particularly the use of the word eejit!) and I love how when I’m reading the story I seem to be doing so in an Irish accent in my head (is it just me who does that!?) When I first got into this story I had a lot of questions. Namely why was Holly dreading Christmas so much? Who was really Andy McCoy? What did this person hope to gain by taking up a false personality online? And most importantly – What exactly is a catfish!?!? My questions were soon answered (catfishing is basically when a person forms a false online identity in order to trick people into a romantic relationship) all except for the reason as to why Holly hated Christmas so much. I was desperate to find out the reasoning behind this and it gave the character an  air of mystery which really added a new dimension to the story. Pieces of the puzzle slowly start to slot together when we learn about Holly’s Mum, but it’s not until near the end that everything is fully explained. Meet Me in Manhattan comes under one of my all-time favourite categories of story and that is ‘Books To Get Lost In’ because once I dipped my toe into Holly’s world, there was no way I was venturing up for air any time soon. I was completely consumed by this story and quickly found myself fully submerged. Firstly I wanted to know what the deal was with Andy – was he real? Like my namesake, I badly wanted to believe that he was genuine. I also loved reading about Holly’s work life, especially when it looks as though her big break may be right around the corner…
Holly is an immensely likeable character. She is easy to relate to and you can’t help but warm to her. I desperately wanted her to have her longed for happy ending. My favourite thing about Meet Me in Manhattan was, of course, the setting. Now I knew this book was going to be partly set in New York (Fair enough – the clue’s in the title) but I wasn’t aware that it was going to be set in New York AT CHRISTMAS. This is quite possibly my dream setting for a novel and Claudia certainly didn’t disappoint. Her writing is vivid and descriptive, bringing the sights, sounds, smells (and snowfalls) of Manhattan to life. I wanted to be there myself so badly and through Claudia’s writing, I almost felt as though I was. Although I’d also quite like to play charades with Mike and sample Dorothy’s turkey curry. When Holly spends the festive season in Manhattan is was a sheer delight and undoubtedly my favourite part of the story. It was romantic, exciting and extremely festive. I wasn’t expecting half as much festivity as the novel provided and it left me with a big, Christmassy grin on my face. From the synopsis of Meet Me in Manhattan you would perhaps assume that this book isn’t the romantic type fairy-tale that us chick lit fans of are so fond of, however nothing could be further from the truth. This is a gorgeous story of boy-meets-girl yet in a different, more subtle way and with Claudia’s trade-mark touch of Irish humour.

This is definitely a book to accompany you on a dreary afternoon. It’ll make you smile and firmly grab your attention and hold it right until the very end. Definitely one of my favourite Claudia Carroll novels to date and the perfect feel-good festive read.

A huge thank you to Avon for approving me to read Meet Me in Manhattan on NetGalley.

Be sure to check out the other fabulous blogs taking part on the tour…


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Claudia CarrollClaudia was born in Dublin and is a graduate of UCD, the College of Music and of the Gaiety School of Acting. Since then she has worked extensively as an actress on the Irish stage, but is probably best known for her role as TV’s Nicola Prendergast in the long running Dublin soap opera, ‘Fair City.’

  Claudia Carroll   |  Website |  Twitter |  Goodreads |



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