Thank You very much to the publisher – Tinder Press for the review copy.
Genre: Contemporary Fiction
Release date: 27 07 2017
Price*: Kindle £3.99 (GBP)/ Paperback £5.59 (GBP)
Kindle $5.50 (USD)/ Paperback $25.00 (USD) ???
Pages: ~ 197
My rating: 9/10
You can get this book here:
What I learned from this book: Most of the relationships can be very very complicated.
Description of the book: This is almost a love story.
Ellis and Michael are twelve when they first become friends, and for a long time it is just the two of them, cycling the streets of Oxford, teaching themselves how to swim, discovering poetry, and dodging the fists of overbearing fathers. And then one day this closest of friendships grows into something more.
But then we fast forward a decade or so, to find that Ellis is married to Annie, and Michael is nowhere in sight. Which leads to the question, what happened in the years between? This is almost a love story. But it’s not as simple as that.
How this book made me feel: I would like to begin by saying, that I heard so much about this novel and I didn’t expect this book to be so tiny. It is only around 197 pages, but it has a really powerful punch to throw.
This novel carries a story of two friends, Ellis and Michael. They are the main characters in this book and the whole book was told from their perspectives. I shouldn’t forget Annie as well, even though she is kind of a silent character, she plays an integral part in the essence of this novel. All the characters are exceptionally crafted and incredibly complex. The whole novel got my brain working and imagination just flew free. I loved that author allowed the reader to paint the characters themselves, she allows you to know the story, but at the same time, there are so many details missing and so many questions left unanswered. I am not really sure whether I liked those gaps or not… because everything made so much sense. I found all the characters very likable and their internal relationship very amusing.
The narrative of this book was very confusing to me, it always keeps jumping between present and past, filling this book with romantic, but at the same time heartbreaking stories. I really enjoyed all the twists which author brought in, it made this book even more deeper and unexpected. I really liked the topics Sarah Winman was highlighting in this novel, such as homosexuality, friendship, HIV, family issues, loneliness etc. HIV hasn’t been discussed in the books for a while now, and I am great full for this reminder.
This was my first encounter with Sarah Winman’s writing, but there is no doubt that her writing style is very unique and absolutely masterful. The thing is, even though I admire her writing gift and I strongly believe she should be awarded for it, I am not a very big fan of it. Too many unanswered questions and I was not very satisfied with the closure of this book. Another thing what nagged me was the length of the chapters. Even though the book is not very long, the chapters were pretty long for my liking and it kind of dragged sometimes. So, to conclude, even though there were some things which were not for me, I truly think this book is a must-read, the characters and the plot are absolutely unique and very creative, and the prose is absolutely gorgeous and mentally challenging. Get it, read it, and I hope you will enjoy it! 🙂 (I know it is a confusing review and sometimes sentences contradict themselves, but that how this book made me feel… 🙂 )
Thank you for your time 🙂
About the Author: Sarah Winman (born 1964) is a British actress and author. In 2011 her debut novel When God Was a Rabbit became an international bestseller and won Winman several awards including New Writer of the Year in the Galaxy National Book Awards.
*-the price was taken from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com at the current date. The price might change at your time of purchase. The links used in this post for book purchases are affiliates.