15 September 2014
Book Review: Pieces of You by Ella Harper
Something happened. Something terrible . . .
Lucy was always sure of one thing – her future with husband and soulmate Luke. But after eight long, heartbreaking years trying to have a baby, that future is crumbling before her eyes.
When a terrible accident puts Luke into a coma, Lucy is forced to reassess everything she thought she wanted.
Then a woman arrives with a shocking secret that will force Lucy to make the hardest decision of her life. "
You can pre-order Pieces of You as a paperback or buy it as an eBook now.
One debut novel I have been looking forward to reading this year is Ella Harper's first novel Pieces of You. Ella Harper is actually the pen-name for established author Sasha Wagstaff, whose books I have loved in the past, but Sasha has chosen a pen-name as this book is a bit of a change from her previous books, and I'm glad she did as this book deserves to be read by everyone, not just those who loves Sasha's previous books. There was a big marketing campaign for this book, it was really intriguing and I couldn't wait to start it, and luckily it didn't disappoint!
Lucy and Luke are soulmates and best friends as well as husband and wife. Lucy is sure that they are destined to grow old together with their children looking after them but it seems it isn't meant to be after years of trying for a baby, and many painful losses. The pair are sure that as long as they have each other, they can work through their grief. However, when Luke is in a tragic accident, Lucy worries that the future she had imagined is about to get out of her grasp. Then a strange woman arrives on the scenes with some news that is set to devastate Lucy and throw everything she thought she knew about her marriage out of the window. Will Lucy and Luke be able to work through this big secret and come out of the other side?
There was something about this book that really stuck with me, and even though it's been a few weeks since I have read it, I often think about this story and everything that happened within it. Ella's writing is brilliant, drawing you completely into the story, not just of Lucy and Luke but the family around as well, it's just wonderful and you can't help but be consumed by everything that is going on. Lucy and Luke's marriage is the thing of dreams, they are both so happy together but their longing for a baby is the one flaw between them. Lucy is desperate for a baby, and blames herself for their losses, and it's quite tragic to read in parts.
Luke's accident happened and that is when things begin to fall apart for Lucy. She goes through her own tragedy, and then has to cope with what happens to Luke, I don't know how she held it together really. But we don't just get to see the effect of Luke's accident on his wife, we also follow his mother and his sister in the book too. Ella Harper uses first person narrative for Lucy's chapters, but the others are told in third person which differentiates the chapters nicely, and makes it easy to follow for the reader. His mother Patricia is still struggling with the loss of her husband, and so when Luke is badly injured she struggles to cope, as well as struggles to connect to Lucy in her time of need. It's hard to read how it affected Patricia as a mother, and I can't imagine how it would be to be in her position.
There's also the story of Luke's sister Nell, which was an interesting one. As well as Luke's sister, she's involved in a sub-plot of her own, a quite controversial one actually but I liked the addition of it to the story, especially as it related somewhat to the main plot of the book too. It's so cleverly written, everything is woven together, and there's so many twists and turns along the way, I really didn't know how it was all going to end. Even when I had guessed how things were going, something else happened that threw me off and I was completely riveted by the whole thing. Lucy, though, was my favourite character, I felt so bad for her, you could feel her pain and her heartbreak all the way through the book, Harper's writing puts it across so brilliantly.
For me, this is an absolutely stunning novel, and has shown me a brilliant new side to Sasha Wagstaff's writing that I'm really pleased she has chosen to try something new! I absolutely fell in love with the story of Luke and Lucy, they seemed like the perfect couple in so many ways yet they are hiding a terrible heartache that they can do nothing about. As the book progresses, and we find out more about the strange woman and Luke's secret, perceptions of people are changed, and they are forced to deal with new realities. The writing around these delicate topics was utterly brilliant, you are totally absorbed into the book, and I really didn't want to put it down, I loved every page. I can't recommend this book highly enough, there's so many thought-provoking and emotional things going on here, you will not want to put it down. A stunning read.