Audrey’s family has fallen apart. Her two grown-up daughters, Jess and Lily, are estranged, and her two teenage granddaughters have never been allowed to meet. A secret that echoes back thirty years has splintered the family in two, but is also the one thing keeping them connected.
As tensions reach breaking point, the irrevocable choice that one of them made all those years ago is about to surface. After years of secrets and silence, how can one broken family find their way back to each other?
Audrey is a loving mother to two grown-up daughters. She has led a long and happy life. But now, the past and the present are in sharp resolution. Because Audrey has cancer. Her independence is slipping and her strength alongside it. With time ebbing away, she is resolute in her mission. To overcome her fear and face up to a dark part of her past, to a place she has shied away from for too long. Something terrible happened when her daughters, Lily and Jess, were young, something that split their friendship straight down the middle and forced them apart. Decades later, not a single word has breached this lasting silence and Audrey is determined to draw them back together.
Lily and Jess are the exact opposites. Lily is affluent, successful. A high-flying marketer, esteemed and revered by anyone who meets her. With a luxurious home and loving family, she has made quite the life for herself since that dreadful day so long ago. Jess couldn’t be further from her sister. She is a location scout with a home that has seen its fair share of wear and tear and a bank balance to match it. Struggling to make ends meet and put food on the table for her teenage daughter are constant worries that niggle away. But for all their differences, the sisters share one similarity: they are drawn back to that terrible part of their past, the catalyst for their estrangement.
Although this book is told predominantly through Lily and Jess’s point of views, Audrey plays a huge role. For numerous reasons, these characters jump off the page and snatch the reader up in their stories. It’s impossible to stop thinking about them on their journey.
The author’s unflinching depiction of loss and grief is so raw and honest, I think this book will bring tears to a lot of eyes but also a sense of joy, friendship and compassion. The sheer emotion in this book is incredible. The author has written a brave and touching story with buckets of tenderness and beauty. What a remarkable book!
Raw. Honest. Touching.
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About The Author
Hannah Beckerman is an author, journalist and broadcaster. She is a regular contributor to The Observer, The FT Weekend Magazine, and The Sunday Express, and was the book critic on Sara Cox’s Radio 2 Show. She chairs literary events around the UK and has been a judge on numerous book prizes including the Costa Book Awards.
Prior to becoming a full-time writer, Hannah was a TV Executive who spent fifteen years producing and commissioning documentaries about the Arts, History and Science for the BBC, Channel 4 and Discovery USA before turning her hand to writing.
Hannah lives in London with her husband and their daughter.
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