The Real Thing is a sparkling romantic comedy about not being quite able to let go of the past, from bestselling author of A Rural Affair and A Crowded Marriage , Catherine Alliott. Every girl's got one - that old boyfriend they never quite fell out of love with...Tessa Hamilton's thirty, with a lovely husband and home, two adorable kids, and not a care in the world. Sure her husband ogles the nanny more than she should allow. And keeping up with the Joneses is a full-time occupation. But she's settled and happy. No seven-year itch for Tessa. Except at the back of her mind is Patrick Cameron. Gorgeous, moody, rebellious, he's the boy she met when she was seventeen. The boy her vicar father told her she couldn't see and who left to go to Italy to paint. The boy she's not heard from in twelve long years. And now he's back. Questioning every choice, every decision she's made since Patrick left, Tessa is about to risk her family and everything she has become to find out whether she did the right thing first time round...Step into Alliott country with The Real Thing . Praise for Catherine Alliott: The writing is both intelligent and sparkling . (Marian Keyes). You're in for a treat . ( Daily Express ). Catherine Alliott is the author of twelve bestselling novels: A Crowded Marriage , A Married Man , Not That Kind of Girl , Going Too Far , The Old-Girl Network , Olivia's Luck , Rosie Meadows Regrets... , The Wedding Day , The Real Thing , The Secret Life of Evie Hamilton , One Day in May , and A Rural Affair . She lives with her family in Hertfordshire.