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Didn’t think I was going to like this book at first, but it becomes more interesting after the accident. Two families plus two others are in a van heading for some fun in the snow when a stag on the road sends them crashing down the mountain side. The driver father is badly injured. His daughter in front dies and from then on becomes a ghostly fly on the wall reporter on the aftermath. Some good and some bad choices are made. Some truth is fudged. There is guilt and self recrimination as well as bravery and we can’t help but consider what we would do in such a situation. The two marriages are severely tested and the author makes the point that - sadly - it is the people with the least amount of conscience who suffer the least, unburdened by regret. The author has made good choices in her characters and the psychic lines that tie them together. (Or which loosen.)
Other points raised: is one death better than two? What is it okay to do when your own biological instinct to survive is running you, especially if you’re a parent? How would our beloved dead prefer us to react? If you’re in loco parentis, what obligations do you have to the child who is not your own? The author tells us in an afterword that in a similar situation in her young life, her father ran to get help. The remaining father rubbed the hands and feet of his own children but not hers and her brother’s, which led to her brother losing some digits to frostbite, as in this story. An interesting and thought provoking read.
Interesting viewpoint to the storyline...taken from a fly on the wall perspective. I found this story made me think a lot about what my choices would have been if in I was in the same situation. Not necessarily a happy story, but not wholly sad either. Read it...you may get to know yourself better!
Wow, I have to admit the plot is what got me in the first place, having lived in worked in the snow. I loved this book so much. So many characters involved and each and every one of them played a role in the book. Its a book about choices and how they can impact others lives. It grabbed me from the first page which I loved and I couldnt wait to have time to read it. Its one of my favourite books from 2020. I loved the way it was narrated by a ghost, very well done. It touches all of your emotions. Its so thought provoking . I highly recommend this book and look forward to reading more of Suzannes books.
Sensitively written story about loss, love and difficult choices. I didn’t think that I was going to like a book that used a dead narrator ( I hated The Lovely Bones) but the author uses Finn in a way that is sympathetic rather than sentimental and the characters and their stories remained in my mind long after I’d finished the book. Highly recommended.
Soooooooperb is what I noted down at the end of reading this book !! And indeed it is. Granted, there isn't a lot of cheeriness involved, though neither expected if you've read the synopsis, but it is so well done and so well presented that I for one just loved it. Despite the fact I found myself snivelling and sobbing in probably half a dozen places at least !! I picked this in all honesty as my Kindle First choice this month where not one of the offerings really stood out to me so that made it an even better experience, since I wasn't expecting to get quite that invested in it. It was all over too soon, really. If I had paid fullprice for it I'd be feeling robbed that it only took me a day to read. Hehehe.......I really just couldn't put it down. There are some terrific characters, real people here. I found your mood with each of them pretty much alters as things progress. Aside from Finn there probably isn't one of them you rolled your eyes about or cheered for at differing sections......quite a clever feat. Usually I like or intensely despise a character from the word go and stick with first impressions but this bunch keep you on your toes. My favourite character is probably Mo. Though many had heroic and not-so-heroic characteristics, she shone through for me. I really liked Finn's philosophy on alcohol, too, an highly interesting observation. But the tears.....for the carrot, for Charlie, for kittens and of course for our narrator Finn. The only things I spotted I think are wrong was writing coal and not kohl and not capitalising Greek and French so altogether this is definitely going to be one of my top reads for 2020, without a doubt. Off now to look up the author's other books to add to my wishlist.
Superb. This is a new author to me and I was a little unsure whether this would be my type of book but I’m so glad I took the chance. What a beautiful story, told so sensitively, of life after a horrendous experience. Family and friends whose lives are destroyed as they come to terms with their actions on that fateful night when their van leaves the road in a terrible accident leaving them stranded in severe weather. It is told from the interesting perspective of one of the group who died and watches over loved ones as things develop in the months afterwards as everyone deals with the choices they made in terrible circumstances. Truths are revealed, lives fall apart. You think you know people, but do you? How would we react when faced with terrible choices ? A great read. Highly recommend
When I came across this as a Kindle Deal and read the blurb, at first I was going to give it a miss. Dead narrators are nothing new and it sometimes seems to me a convenient device for a lazy author. However, I read some of the reviews and decided to give it a try. When Finn dies in an accident but remains behind as an omniscient narrator, she takes the reader on a journey that reveals the truth of the other characters. Emotions are tugged in every way as through Finn we follow the other occupants of the camper van that rolled down a snowy hillside as they deal with the aftermath of the accident. There are one or two hiccups but overall Suzanne Redfearn handles her style choice well when it could easily have gone wrong. Entertaining and enjoyable from start to end.
The story moves along quickly. The writing pacy. I couldn't put it down, needing to see how the characters would deal with their respective demons. Brilliantly told. Leaves one milling about the choices I might have made. My family was subjected to a huge trauma when I was small. I wonder how much of our lives were impacted by the event, and how the choices made at the time flowed into my parents lives. Thanks for this book.
I don't do many book reviews but enjoyed this novel so much, I wanted to add my comments to the many brilliant reviews already posted. I read a lot and am often left disappointed with the ending of a book, with how the characters are developed, with how the plot is developed, etc etc. This book doesn't disappoint on any level and takes you through a whole gamut of emotions. As soon as I finished, I wanted to start over 😀. Yes, it made me cry but it also made me laugh out loud and really think about the characters and why they made their choices. A wholly super read with the benefit of having real substance that made you think and care about the people you were reading about.
There is an instant comparison to The lovely bones because it's narrated by the person who's died, but it's an unfair one because this book is more about the choices people make when they think they might die - And then having to live with those choices. It's a book that will make you question yourself in the "would i do that?" The story does round out all the main characters but for me it doesn't answer all the questions like why did the mum treat her son the way she did, why is there no other people in this families life, why don't they just talk to each other?? I guess it's be a much shorter book if they did. Well worth a read!