Today I would like to welcome you all on my stop of the Blog Tour for On The Up By Alice O’Keeffe and I would like to share a review, with all of you. Thank you very much to Jenny from Hodder & Stoughton for the invitation. Please do show some love to all the wonderful book bloggers on this blog tour by following and sharing their work. 🙂
Thank You very much to the publisher – Coronet for the review copy.
Genre: Women’s Fiction
Release date: 14 11 2019
Price*: Kindle £6.99 (GBP)/ Hardback £11.89 (GBP)
Kindle $9.03 (USD)/ Hardback $20.12 (USD)
Pages: ~ 336
My rating: 8/10
You can get this book here:
What I learned from this book: no matter how dissatisfied you are with your life, in the end, the things tend to sort out themselves just fine…
Description of the book: Sylvia lives in a flat on a council estate with her not-quite-husband Obe and their two young children. She dreams of buying a house on a leafy street like the one she grew up in. If she closes her eyes, she can see it all so clearly: the stripped floorboards, the wisteria growing around the door…
It’s not ideal that she’s about to be made redundant, or that Obe, a playworker, is never going to earn more than the minimum wage. As sleep deprivation sets in, and the RnB downstairs gets ever louder, Sylvia’s life starts to unravel.
But when the estate is earmarked for redevelopment, the threat to her community gives Sylvia a renewed sense of purpose. With a bit of help from her activist sister, and her film-maker friend Frankie, she’s ready to take a stand for what she believes in.
Warm, witty and brilliantly observed, On the Up is about relationships and community, finding a way through the tough times, and figuring out what’s really worth fighting for.
How this book made me feel: I really was not expecting the things I got from this book. I was expecting it to be serious, maybe a little dramatic, but what I got is very realistic and entertaining read, that very pleasantly surprised me. 🙂
The protagonist in this book is Sylvia, a woman in her thirties with a partner who loves poetry and is always quite laid back, The Toddler – full of energy and wit, and The Baby – who is the reason of Sylvia’s sleepless nights. 🙂 Sylvia is sharing her life story from a single perspective, that sounds very real, complex and incredibly funny. I liked the main character a lot, she sounds very relatable and realistic. I was wondering how much of the reality the author put in this book because Sylvia’s life has quite a few things that match with the author’s bio. I found the protagonist’s relationship with her partner Obe quite interesting. They sound like two completely different people, but yet they are together, raising children.
The narrative kept me very intrigued, I really wanted to know how Sylvia’s worries and wants will end. It wasn’t a very difficult book, but it had very interesting topics entwined together, such as life with small children, wish of a better life, struggle for money, complex family relationships, couple relationship difficulties, loss of job and many more. I really enjoyed how the author used supporting characters in this book, she picked unusual and amusing characters, that made this book even more entertaining and “colourful”. There are no many twists or plot changing turns, but this book has the quite relaxing quality to it.
I really liked the setting of this book, council flat, surrounded by different but unique neighbours. The writing style was very pleasant and easy to read, and I liked the way Alice made the whole story flow. The chapters were to the longer side (I love short chapters) but for some reason, it didn’t bore me, and if the little partitions would have been made into short chapters, I think the book would’ve been a true page-turner. I liked the ending of this book, it left me happy for Sylvia and her family, however, I want to know what was the outcome of the protest!? What happened to the buildings???
So, to conclude, I think many people can relate to Sylvia, her dreams, wishes and day to day woes. This book has interesting characters and quite amusing but relaxing plot, so if you are looking for a realistic story, this book would be a good pick. I hope you will give it a try and will enjoy it as much as I did. 🙂
Thank You for Your time! ❤
About the author: Alice O’Keeffe is a freelance writer and journalist. She was deputy editor of the Guardian’s Saturday Review section and writes book reviews, interviews and features for the Guardian, Observer and New Statesman. She has been a speechwriter at the Department for Education and literary programmer at the Brighton Festival. Alice lives in Brighton with her husband and two children.
Website:http://www.aliceokeeffe.com/ Twitter: @AliceOKeeffe
*-the price was taken from Amazon.co.uk and Amazon.com on the current date. The price might change at the time of your purchase. The links used in this post for book purchases are affiliates.