Genre: Contemporary Fiction
A compelling, heartbreaking tale that will make you laugh, cry and believe in the kindness of strangers. Perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes, Lucy Dillon and Miranda Dickinson.
Life is good for nurse Kat. That is until the man she intended to marry legs it, she’s unexpectedly promoted to a position with too much responsibility, and a patient arrives on her ward under strange circumstances.
Susan is a mystery. She refuses to speak or interact with anyone, she’s obsessed with a book of fairy tales, and the only name in her diary is that of Rhys – a plumber she barely knows.
Down-to-earth Rhys is trying to get his life back on track after the death of his beloved brother. His mum is his priority, and she needs him as much as he needs her. Or at least she did, until she starts disappearing, leaving him to find comfort in the form of his brother’s girlfriend.
Complicated is an understatement.
As the lives of these three lost strangers intertwine, will they find a way to lay ghosts past, present and future to rest? And when the chance comes to mend their broken hearts, will they be brave enough to take it?
This was an altogether different type of read than what I was expecting it to be. From the blurb/cover combination I assumed that it would be a lighthearted, chick lit type of read, but instead it was heavier, dealing with darker subject matter than I was expecting. It was a very emotional read, one that moved me and touched my heart.
There are three main players; Kat a nurse who has just been dumped by her boyfriend of several years who she saw as her future husband, Susan a new patient of Kat’s who refuses to utter a word, and Rhys a plumber who is the only connection anyone can find in Susan’s life. All three are dealing with their own heartaches, losses and loneliness and I was eager to see how their lives would intertwine.
Mansell delves into several heavy issues from suicide, adoption, loss, forgiveness, and ultimately love. I felt some sort of attachment to all three of the characters, they were all able to tug at my heartstrings. Kat is so lonely after her breakup and needs to find her way again. Rhys lost his brother and the grief is overwhelming, I wanted to hug him so many times. Susan was visibly broken and after learning why she’s so devastated I shed some tears. All of them have detached themselves from the world for different reasons and it was easy to understand why. Ultimately they lean on and learn from each other in order to begin to heal. As much as I love a tidy ending, I appreciated the way Mansell left things. There was closure, but it was messy and true to real life. While this was a highly emotional read, in the end it was inspiring and left me with a smile on my face.
Overall rating: 4/5
Thanks to Bookouture for my review copy.