After writing a rave 5* review for ‘The Rumour‘ by the same author, I was so excited to get started on this book, eagerly waiting for my pre-ordered copy to arrive in the post. That day couldn’t come soon enough! ‘The Rumour‘ was my favourite read of 2019 so I had extra high hopes for this one, however, I didn’t feel the same way about it.
Recovering alcoholic Astrid was forced to return to the town of Flinstead to live with her mother to get her life back on track. She attends AA meetings, as part of her agreement to be allowed home, and things quickly fall into place for her in the way of friends, boyfriend and a job. I know a lot of non-alcoholics who struggle for most of those. Her struggle is very well detailed and you can almost feel her pain as she battles those demons during her recovery.
I felt a bit lost in the beginning, not quite understanding if she had left her ex-boyfriend Simon in London, and she thought he was stalking her OR if he was dead and she thought she was seeing his ghost. I eventually understood that he was dead… maybe I had missed something early on?
Astrid soon meets Josh and a relationship builds, but I felt that their union was rushed a bit. It all happened too quickly. Also, her character is smoking heavily, so I would assume this would be obvious when they hugged or kissed, but he doesn’t learn this fact until later on and is surprised by it, but that is just a niggly observation lol.
I think my judgement on this book is clouded by how much I loved ‘The Rumour‘. With that book, I was constantly on edge with butterflies in my tummy, trying to guess the ending at every moment. With this book though, I did feel disappointed and wonder if I would feel different had I read this book first.
The characters were very well described and developed, but the story lacked the same level of ‘omg omg omg’ which was previously experienced. In all honesty, I had to look up the plot of the book on Amazon to remind myself what happened, even though I only read it last week….
A good book, but not one of the greats.