Across town, in a gorgeous house by the sea, successful property developer Bel Monkton lives in comparative luxury. But she has struggles of her own. Since the death of her twin sister more than a year ago, Bel has been unable to rebuild her shattered world, and the troubled past she thought was behind her haunts her ever more.
Faced with uncertainty and heartbreak, Josie and Bel find each other and a surprising friendship that will change their lives.
Kindle Edition, 544 pagesExpected publication: April 8th 2014 by Ballantine Books
Genre: Womans fiction
* I received an advanced readers copy of this book from Random House- Ballantine Books via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!*
This book needs to come with a warning label. Nowhere in the synopsis does it indicate that the story is about a terminal illness when in fact the entire story revolves around it. This is something that readers should be aware of.
The book started out just OK for me. It was a little slow and I had a hard time getting into it. The story shifted back and forth between Josie and Bel and it kind of felt like I was reading two different books at the same time. I kept wondering when their paths would cross and where the story would go. I was drawn more to Bel and to her story and found Josie a little dull. The fact that I connected with Bel was perhaps because she was a twin (as I am) and I could feel and relate to all of her thoughts and emotions when it came to her sister Talia. I had an over abundance of empathy for her character. Josie's character was dated and old fashioned and I had to keep reminding myself that she was only 42 as she came across as quite a bit older.
If I had to rate the book on the first half alone it would get a three star rating but then (finally) at 47% the two woman met and the story improved tremendously. The story really started at this point. It became a story of hope, survival, and friendship as Josie began her battle with her terminal illness and Bel battled her demons from the past. Both characters grew dramatically and I found myself equally invested in the two of them. It portrayed a very realistic view of the power of love and friendship through the most unthinkable and devastating of circumstances. Both woman's overpowering love for their families shone brightly and the bond they formed with each other was beautiful. Lewis showed that great beauty that can be found through pain and the power of love flawlessly. Her research and knowledge on the subject was very apparent.
I'd be lying if I said that I didn't shed any tears while reading this book. In fact I shed them more than once. To me, this is the sign of a good book because I wouldn't cry if I didn't care about the characters. I'm glad I made it through the first half of the book because the second half more than made up for it.
About the Author