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  • Writer's pictureLilac Mills

The Ex-Factor by Eva Woods


Is it possible to freecycle love?

Modern dating is hard, especially when all you meet are liars, oddballs, men who wear Superman pants and men who live with their mums.

So why not date someone who already comes pre-approved? Just because your friend’s ex wasn’t right for her doesn’t mean that he won’t be right for you. That’s Marnie’s new plan for herself and her three best friends, perennially single Helen, recently divorced Rosa and cynical lawyer Ani.

Through bad dates and good, the four friends begin to realise that there are advantages to dating pre-screened men…but there can be some serious pitfalls to falling for your friend's ex.


Four women, so different – the soon-to-be-divorcee, the serial dater, the serial date-avoider, and the mysterious Marnie. I loved that the author delved deep into the lives of three of them, but held back until the very end when it came to Marnie, who was the instigator of the Ex Factor. Little pieces of her were tossed out, just enough to whet the appetite and get the curiosity juices flowing.

Dating your friends’ exes! What a horrible, fantastic, terrible, fascinating idea. Of course it’s all going to go smoothly and everyone finds true love with their friends’ cast-offs – NOT.

These characters were complex and compelling, each one considerably separate and distinct from the other, each one with their own well-thought-out issues, problems and circumstances – each one assuming their friends had it better than they did. Insightful in places, the novel has its fair share of cringe-worthy and funny moments. It certainly had me captivated!

About the Author

Eva Woods lives in London, where she writes and teaches creative writing. She likes wine, pop music, and holidays, and thinks online dating is like the worst board game ever invented.

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