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Customer Review

Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 3 March 2019
A new author for me and one who has left an impression.

Ryle is definitely not my favourite character but I surprisingly finished this book with no burning sense of hatred towards him. I was ready to really despise Ryle once the first incident/event happened, but as the book progressed those damn shades of grey became more apparent. The complexity of being in such a situation, and the internal conflict one can go through was depicted so well through Lily – I couldn’t help but feel for her, even as I cringed sensing strongly that the first incident/event wouldn’t be the last.

There is a bit of a love triangle in this but not in the traditional sense so to speak and not in a way that had me thinking hell no, there’s no cheating (physical or emotional). Rather Lily finds herself making difficult decisions that align her path once again with her first love - Atlas.

Still not sure how much I believe the “There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.” But in the context of this book and the characters the author did wonderfully at highlighting those varying shades of grey that manifest in messy ways in lived reality. One of the key reasons that I always say ‘I hope I would do….’, when talking to friends and family, because you just never know what you would do if you found
yourself in such a situation.

The journal entries from Lily’s youth had me loving Atlas.

Throughout this book my emotions were engaged, and at 95% I could feel the tears emerging, stinging my eyes - Lily is one strong, brave woman.

A book that had me absorbed and one I’ll remember, and I so see myself re-reading this at some point.

However, whilst I was absorbed in this book, there are a few things that concern me a tad now I’ve had time to think a little after reading. For example, there seems to be no concern/consideration of the fact that no matter how much he doesn’t want to Ryle may hurt the next women he dates/marries – something his child, Lily’s child could witness, but there’s no sense of how he will stop himself from raising his hands/fists. Shouldn’t this be something Lily would also be concerned about?

Also, the attempted rape – I don’t know as I sit back and let what happened sink further into me, I just don’t feel like Ryle was truly confronted with the horror what he almost did – although when Lily reminds him of what he did and askes him if he would want his daughter to stay with such a man – that scene is pretty powerful.

Part of me does wish the author had made me feel a little less pity for Ryle, although whilst I was a tad sympathetic it wasn't a lot. I’m SO GLAD this book ended how it did, I sighed with relief.
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