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You Then, Me Now

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She’s given her daughter everything. Now it’s time to give her the truth. Becky’s father is not just absent: he’s a mystery, a gaping hole in her past. He died before she was born and for her mother, Laura, the subject is strictly off-limits. But when Laura books an unexpected trip to Greece, Becky decides to join her, determined to get closer to her mother—and to the t She’s given her daughter everything. Now it’s time to give her the truth. Becky’s father is not just absent: he’s a mystery, a gaping hole in her past. He died before she was born and for her mother, Laura, the subject is strictly off-limits. But when Laura books an unexpected trip to Greece, Becky decides to join her, determined to get closer to her mother—and to the truth.As they make their way to the beautiful island of Santorini, it becomes clear that this holiday is not as impulsive as Becky thought. Laura’s hiding something from her daughter—and she’s been hiding it for as long as Becky can remember. Laura has been here before, and that last visit holds the answers to Becky’s past.But Laura’s memories of that first trip are tinged with pain and heartbreak, secrets she’s kept buried for twenty-five years. Now, with the truth emerging into the sunlight at last, can mother and daughter lay the ghosts of their past to rest and find the happiness they’ve both been looking for?


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She’s given her daughter everything. Now it’s time to give her the truth. Becky’s father is not just absent: he’s a mystery, a gaping hole in her past. He died before she was born and for her mother, Laura, the subject is strictly off-limits. But when Laura books an unexpected trip to Greece, Becky decides to join her, determined to get closer to her mother—and to the t She’s given her daughter everything. Now it’s time to give her the truth. Becky’s father is not just absent: he’s a mystery, a gaping hole in her past. He died before she was born and for her mother, Laura, the subject is strictly off-limits. But when Laura books an unexpected trip to Greece, Becky decides to join her, determined to get closer to her mother—and to the truth.As they make their way to the beautiful island of Santorini, it becomes clear that this holiday is not as impulsive as Becky thought. Laura’s hiding something from her daughter—and she’s been hiding it for as long as Becky can remember. Laura has been here before, and that last visit holds the answers to Becky’s past.But Laura’s memories of that first trip are tinged with pain and heartbreak, secrets she’s kept buried for twenty-five years. Now, with the truth emerging into the sunlight at last, can mother and daughter lay the ghosts of their past to rest and find the happiness they’ve both been looking for?

30 review for You Then, Me Now

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

    This was a beautifully written story and one that didn’t disappoint. Transporting me across the sea to Greece, I felt fully immersed in the Santorini sunshine and could not put this down at all.  Written as a dual narrative, we learn about what happened to Laura when, as a young woman in her early twenties, had the opportunity to go to Santorini with her then “boyfriend”. In alternating chapters, the viewpoint shifts to Laura’s daughter, Rebecca, in the present who accompanies her mother back to This was a beautifully written story and one that didn’t disappoint. Transporting me across the sea to Greece, I felt fully immersed in the Santorini sunshine and could not put this down at all.  Written as a dual narrative, we learn about what happened to Laura when, as a young woman in her early twenties, had the opportunity to go to Santorini with her then “boyfriend”. In alternating chapters, the viewpoint shifts to Laura’s daughter, Rebecca, in the present who accompanies her mother back to Santorini for a holiday. The narrative of the two women was equally captivating and I loved learning how each of them created their memories, then and now, on this Greek island.  So well constructed, it was effortless to imagine the beautiful scenery that Alexander describes. The idyllic, romantic and peaceful setting was totally enticing, making this a great summer read. However, this only juxtaposes with the darkness of Laura's story; the horrors that she experiences, coupled with her naivety, made for rather tense reading. The writer takes Laura's story in an unexpected direction and as a reader, I just wanted to intervene and help out Laura. Her lack of worldliness and desperation to escape her extreme, religious Grandmother, created a vision of Conor and her Greek holiday that just didn't match the reality. Whilst we learn what really happened to Laura when she was in Santorini and how different it is to what she has related to her daughter, I found it fascinating to compare how the two women carved their identities in this beautiful location. The subtle parallels between mother and daughter signify that they are not as far apart as Rebecca believes. Certainly, the desperation to "prove oneself" and not depend on another was striking and, as Rebecca begins to discover more about her mother's past, she starts to see the reasons for Laura's ambiguous and sad behaviour. Conor was as disgusting a character as much as Leif was beautiful. The antithesis of these characters created such tension for me when reading Laura's story that, when it switched back to Rebecca's narrative, I was almost more interested to read about the past, rather than the present. I found it difficult to predict how the story would eventually conclude and I feel that Alexander does the plot justice and allows it to follow what I feel would be a natural ending. I loved this story and the escapism it provided. It was so well-written and enthralling that there is no way I can find fault with the plot! The summer sunshine, coupled with the magic of Greece, made for a plot that was a little bit different from my recent reads. This is a true gem of a read and I can assure you, this is definitely not one to be missed.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Adele Shea

    After reading Nick Alexander's The Things We Never Said, and loving every page of it, I just had to get stuck into You Then, Me Now. It is a beautiful story of, love, loss and finding yourself. After reading Nick Alexander's The Things We Never Said, and loving every page of it, I just had to get stuck into You Then, Me Now. It is a beautiful story of, love, loss and finding yourself.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    ”In that instant, I was a tiny grain of life gifted with being able to observe the inexplicable vastness of the universe, and the only thing that mattered was the excruciating beauty of being there. Of being there to experience it all. I read this on a whim as it was free on Amazon Unlimited and I wanted something on my Kindle/phone app to read alongside a physical book I received for Christmas. Well I was totally blown away! Nick Alexander definitely knows how to tell a story and with a perfect ”In that instant, I was a tiny grain of life gifted with being able to observe the inexplicable vastness of the universe, and the only thing that mattered was the excruciating beauty of being there. Of being there to experience it all. I read this on a whim as it was free on Amazon Unlimited and I wanted something on my Kindle/phone app to read alongside a physical book I received for Christmas. Well I was totally blown away! Nick Alexander definitely knows how to tell a story and with a perfect amount of description I was able to really feel like I was in Santorini. I devoured this as quickly as I could and haven’t even started my other book yet. And I’m now looking at other books by this author.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Alayne Emmett

    Loved this book which I got free from Prime first reads. It was a lovely book to lose yourself in. Some of it was quite predictable but apart from that, which didn’t spoil things at all, I throughly enjoyed it. I will hopefully read more of this author.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Ceecee

    Amazon Kindle First Read for April. To quote the football commentators cliche this was a game of two halves. The story is told via mother Laura and daughter Becky. I enjoyed Laura’s story on the whole but not so much that of Becky. I think that was partly to do with the fact that I didn’t particularly like Becky as a character as I felt she acted like a brat a lot of the time. She had a real chip on her shoulder that she grew up without a father and said on more than one occasion that she was th Amazon Kindle First Read for April. To quote the football commentators cliche this was a game of two halves. The story is told via mother Laura and daughter Becky. I enjoyed Laura’s story on the whole but not so much that of Becky. I think that was partly to do with the fact that I didn’t particularly like Becky as a character as I felt she acted like a brat a lot of the time. She had a real chip on her shoulder that she grew up without a father and said on more than one occasion that she was the only one which perhaps was true of her friendship circle but its obviously nothing unique. Then when she did meet her father her behaviour then also left a great deal to be desired. I didn’t think the male characters came across as well as the female ones. Leif was very nice and kind but Conor seemed a boorish caricature although of course that was probably partly the point. There was quite a bit of repetition of some of the story and I thought some of the dialogue was awful. Overall, not a bad read but not that amazing either.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Tania Sealey

    Too much detail This is an ok story and I selected it as my kindle first choice this month. The characters were a bit wishy washy for my taste and the amount of detail, down to everything they had to eat for every meal was so OUT and therefore boring.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tracey Brown

    I think this was a cleaver I dear and I enjoyed it from beginning to end. I will definitely look out for more books by Nick Alexander.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Alex Silivestru

    I would like to start by saying that I will definitely read more of Nick Alexander's novels. He writes in a way that easily transposed me in Santorini - which, because of this novel, I can't wait to travel to so that I can see all the shades of blue so beautifully described and to try all the seafood his characters were eating. Also, let's not forget about the most beautiful sunrise on Earth. I really liked how the two stories were written in parallel, with each of them having a chapter at a time I would like to start by saying that I will definitely read more of Nick Alexander's novels. He writes in a way that easily transposed me in Santorini - which, because of this novel, I can't wait to travel to so that I can see all the shades of blue so beautifully described and to try all the seafood his characters were eating. Also, let's not forget about the most beautiful sunrise on Earth. I really liked how the two stories were written in parallel, with each of them having a chapter at a time. I also appreciated the reality of nowadays - easily noticed there has been good research done to get everything so accurate (history, geography, culture, etc.). It's one of those novels that you want to live at some point in your life.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Lynn Halliday

    Charming read with an edgy side. I chose this book purely based on the Iocation given that I am getting married in Santorini next year. Having been to the island before I was aware of just how beautiful a place it is and the way the author describes it in this book certainly does it justice. The story had me gripped from pretty early on and I found it hard to put down (a sign of a great book). Additionally a certain character had my blood absolutely boiling to the point I felt real hatred towards Charming read with an edgy side. I chose this book purely based on the Iocation given that I am getting married in Santorini next year. Having been to the island before I was aware of just how beautiful a place it is and the way the author describes it in this book certainly does it justice. The story had me gripped from pretty early on and I found it hard to put down (a sign of a great book). Additionally a certain character had my blood absolutely boiling to the point I felt real hatred towards them, despite them being fictious (again another sign of a good book - not necessarily the hatred but just evoking that level of any emotion towards a character). I felt the story was beautifully written and I enjoyed the alternating dual narratives. I found the characters, although irritatingly naive, very engaging and realistic.

  10. 4 out of 5

    John Gilbert

    Having read and enjoyed 'Things We Never Said' by Mr Alexander, I was expecting some link with the books as they were grouped on Amazon. Nothing similar at all, and some very confronting drunken physical and sexual violence as well. All couched in a love story based on an idyllic Greek Island. Some lovely bits, some really unpleasant bits that only occasionally worked for me. Having read and enjoyed 'Things We Never Said' by Mr Alexander, I was expecting some link with the books as they were grouped on Amazon. Nothing similar at all, and some very confronting drunken physical and sexual violence as well. All couched in a love story based on an idyllic Greek Island. Some lovely bits, some really unpleasant bits that only occasionally worked for me.

  11. 5 out of 5

    jocelyn • shesalreadybooked

    I dunno, this was not executed well at ALL and I just found each circumstance to be so completely over the top and unrealistic. I didn’t connect with the characters and found them both to be annoying. I didn’t like the way the dialogue was written. This book just irked me, although I like the title and general premise.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Marina Johnson

    A page turning read about life, love and second chances and one of the loveliest romance novels that I’ve read in a long, long time. Only the second book that I’ve read from this author so I’ll definitely be looking to read more. Highly recommend.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Brianna

    Easy read I read this for a book club to read about a place you want to go. Santorini has been on my wishlist for a long time. The author’s descriptions of Santorini makes me want to go even more now.

  14. 5 out of 5

    thewoollygeek (tea, cake, crochet & books)

    A great fresh, funny and entertaining read. Fast paced, great characters and plot. Highly recommended Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for a free copy for an honest opinion

  15. 4 out of 5

    Gayle

    Loved the descriptions of Santorini - really want to visit now. Couldn't put this down... Loved the descriptions of Santorini - really want to visit now. Couldn't put this down...

  16. 5 out of 5

    Twobchelm

    A different twist to the story but enjoyable .

  17. 5 out of 5

    Emma Blanchet

    This was my first Nick Alexander novel and it won’t be my last! I felt completely immersed in Santorini and loved the storyline. Can’t wait to read more from him!

  18. 4 out of 5

    Alice Pearson

    Great love story Overall a great read with believable characters and plot. Takes you to Greece and Santorini which personally are very special to me. The place and charm of the Greek people are very well portrayed and give the book substance and beauty. The opening chapters with doubts about Connor the new boyfriend, keep the pages turning to find out what happens. Many highlights in this story and a depth of understanding of the frailties of human nature that is remarkably well expressed in an th Great love story Overall a great read with believable characters and plot. Takes you to Greece and Santorini which personally are very special to me. The place and charm of the Greek people are very well portrayed and give the book substance and beauty. The opening chapters with doubts about Connor the new boyfriend, keep the pages turning to find out what happens. Many highlights in this story and a depth of understanding of the frailties of human nature that is remarkably well expressed in an thoughtful , enjoyable way. A good read , especially in the winter, the blue skies and sea of Santorini will banish winter greys for the reader , exactly as it did for the characters , in a beautiful magical way.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Paige Eades

    I found this following some reviews on another book on Amazon, and decided to give it a shot. I was initially a little skeptical within the first few pages and wondered whether or not I would be able to get into it, but that soon changed and I fell in love with the world of Santorini. You Then, Me Now follows the story of young Laura travelling to Santorini, Greece having decided she wants a break from the strict Catholic lifestyle she lives under with her mother, and then the story of Becky; he I found this following some reviews on another book on Amazon, and decided to give it a shot. I was initially a little skeptical within the first few pages and wondered whether or not I would be able to get into it, but that soon changed and I fell in love with the world of Santorini. You Then, Me Now follows the story of young Laura travelling to Santorini, Greece having decided she wants a break from the strict Catholic lifestyle she lives under with her mother, and then the story of Becky; her daughter whom with she is returning with 25 years later. This book is multi narrative between Laura and Becky; alternating between chapters, which works well to see the time frame jump, and allows us to clearly distinguish between past and present. I grew to love the characters; and Alexander does a great job of portraying two real, likeable female characters. There are some really sweet, emotional moments but also features some more dark scenes where Alexander doesn't hold back; which I feel adds to the depth of the novel and gives it some substance. The twists are not expected, and I love the way Alexander expertly withholds the final clues until the end, but not in a way that is frustrating - clever! Would very happily read again, and plan to in the near future. I would say it's aimed at a mature YA audience, there are themes which may be inappropriate for some, but it's a read well worth it. Will definitely be downloading some more of Alexander's work.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Jennifer

    I enjoyed the book. Loved the description of Greece. Santorini seemed beautiful, especially the beaches. I mainly had a problem with Laura and Becky. Laura had horrible judgment and made AWFUL choices. I hated how she made excuses about having a sheltered life and a strict, religious mother. Laura was twenty-five, not sixteen. How is going to a foreign country with a man you just met at a rave a good decision???? No one even knew where she was !!! Then she justified every horrible thing that hap I enjoyed the book. Loved the description of Greece. Santorini seemed beautiful, especially the beaches. I mainly had a problem with Laura and Becky. Laura had horrible judgment and made AWFUL choices. I hated how she made excuses about having a sheltered life and a strict, religious mother. Laura was twenty-five, not sixteen. How is going to a foreign country with a man you just met at a rave a good decision???? No one even knew where she was !!! Then she justified every horrible thing that happened to her. Conor is paying for the whole trip so it's OK if he is crazy and abusive. What did Laura expect? She knew nothing about Conor and he turned out to be the type of person you would see on a Most Wanted Poster for some type of crime. Also I couldn't understand her reluctance to tell Becky about her father. She made everything a secret and got mad if her daughter asked any questions. Laura wouldn't even tell Becky the nationality of her father. Becky was very unlikable. She never seemed happy. She was mad about not knowing her father and then was mad when she finally found out his identity. Leif was simply wonderful and the exact person you would want to meet for a holiday romance. Plus he didn't seem like the type of person to try to kill you while you were sleeping. I enjoyed the book and recommend reading. Laura's decisions were simply scary. I just couldn't imagine going off somewhere with a stranger. I liked the story and writing style, especially how it alternated between Laura and Becky. This was the first book I read by the author and look forward to reading more. I received a complimentary copy of this book from Amazon Publishing UK through NetGalley. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Julie

    I enjoyed this book, and think that it is a lovely summer read. I really enjoyed the writing style, the suspenses scenes, and the geographical descriptions. I can definitely see a young girl making the mistake of a trip with a "charming, generous man" with whom she has just met. The intrigue of Becky's father just didn't ring true. There was no reason Becky had to live 25 years with this secret. I prefer a slightly more complex storyline, but enjoyed this book while sitting on the beach. I will re I enjoyed this book, and think that it is a lovely summer read. I really enjoyed the writing style, the suspenses scenes, and the geographical descriptions. I can definitely see a young girl making the mistake of a trip with a "charming, generous man" with whom she has just met. The intrigue of Becky's father just didn't ring true. There was no reason Becky had to live 25 years with this secret. I prefer a slightly more complex storyline, but enjoyed this book while sitting on the beach. I will read another Nick Alexander book - I hope they are as enjoyable.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Amy Shearwani

    Potential but not executed I didn't like the writing style, found it frustrating at times in not sure why. I felt the female characters were underdeveloped and two dimensioinal. The actual story was good, bit different and a nice twist but the telling of it just didn't meet expectation. Potential but not executed I didn't like the writing style, found it frustrating at times in not sure why. I felt the female characters were underdeveloped and two dimensioinal. The actual story was good, bit different and a nice twist but the telling of it just didn't meet expectation.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Georgina

    ‘Sometimes the worst things make the best things happen.’ You then... Laura is on an adventure, exploring the beautiful Greek island of Santorini and finally letting her hair down for the first time in her life. But she has no idea that heartbreak is lurking just around the corner. Me now... 25 years later, Laura and daughter Becky are at an impasse, their relationship struggling under the weight of the mystery of Becky’s unknown father. All Becky wants is the truth, but will she ever find it? A ‘Sometimes the worst things make the best things happen.’ You then... Laura is on an adventure, exploring the beautiful Greek island of Santorini and finally letting her hair down for the first time in her life. But she has no idea that heartbreak is lurking just around the corner. Me now... 25 years later, Laura and daughter Becky are at an impasse, their relationship struggling under the weight of the mystery of Becky’s unknown father. All Becky wants is the truth, but will she ever find it? A return trip to Santorini for mother and daughter may be just the opportunity they need to heal their relationship and find the truth... and maybe even a little happiness. This is honestly one of my favourite books of the year so far. I’ve never read anything by Nick Alexander before, and I don’t know how I’ve managed that - his writing is perfection, a perfect mix of realism, heartbreak and humour. The dual narrative means you get to know the characters really well, and I have to admit I did have to check is Nick Alexander was actually a non de plume - I couldn’t believe a man had constructed two such real, relatable female characters. But he did, and they are lovely; two characters that you grow to love and care for so much that you end up finishing the novel in no time at all! I won’t say too much about the plot, as there are some real unexpected moments, but I will say that while there are some truly heartbreaking moments, there are also some lovely turn of events that make it a really warm, romantic read. I honestly can’t say how happy I am with this book, and I will definitely be looking at his backlist. For now, I’ll end on a quote that I feel sums up the heart of the novel - ‘I often think nice is underrated these days... we value cleverness and intelligence and strength. Money too. But nice is incredibly special.’ Disclaimer: I was provided with a copy of this book by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This has not influenced this review, and all opinions are honest and my own.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Tina J

    Nick Alexander You Then, Me Now – 5 Stars You know when you pick up a book by Nick Alexander that you are in safe hands. As I have said time and again, his insight into women is phenomenal, he just gets us, warts and all and this story is no different. Becky has never known her father, in fact she doesn’t know anything about him, because her mother will not talk about him, all she knows is that he died before she was born. When Becky decides to book a holiday to Santorini, Laura, her mother invites Nick Alexander You Then, Me Now – 5 Stars You know when you pick up a book by Nick Alexander that you are in safe hands. As I have said time and again, his insight into women is phenomenal, he just gets us, warts and all and this story is no different. Becky has never known her father, in fact she doesn’t know anything about him, because her mother will not talk about him, all she knows is that he died before she was born. When Becky decides to book a holiday to Santorini, Laura, her mother invites herself along, which is not only unexpected but in the whole of their lives they have ever only been abroad once. What is the hold that Santorini has over her? This is not only a beautiful story of the love her mother has for her daughter, even if she doesn’t always show it, but a tale of longing, romance and missed chances and a secret that Laura has kept for 25 years. Nick’s insight into the relationship between mother and daughter is so profound, the little spats, the niggles and the arguments that were spoiling the holiday is so true of most maternal relationships. I could feel my heart tightening in anguish when they had an argument but at the same time, I could feel the love the Laura had for her daughter shining through every word Nick had written. When Becky finally finds out the truth about what happened to her mum and Santorini and her father’s name I was in floods of tears. Nick’s writes so poetically about Santorini that on a cold rainy day when I looked out of the window imagined I was gazing at the blue azure of the sea sparkling in the brilliant sunshine.

  25. 4 out of 5

    karen Storch

    Mothers, daughters and everything in between I so enjoyed this book. It had many elements in it which were interesting and quite fascinating. Having Laura's version of events and then Becky's in a following chapter was very insightful for me, being a mother myself and being familiar with the conflicting emotions and tensions that are sometimes present in this particular familial relationship. The insight of what Laura experienced in her youth, love, and how it made her blossom for that brief time a Mothers, daughters and everything in between I so enjoyed this book. It had many elements in it which were interesting and quite fascinating. Having Laura's version of events and then Becky's in a following chapter was very insightful for me, being a mother myself and being familiar with the conflicting emotions and tensions that are sometimes present in this particular familial relationship. The insight of what Laura experienced in her youth, love, and how it made her blossom for that brief time and the affect the loss of the same, love, changed her into a shadow of herself for the next 24 years. Closed, brittle and sad. Herein lies a great lesson for us all and Nick Alexander excelled at creating the setting and the expressions for demonstrating that glory of love that can happen, in the most unlikely circumstances between a man and a woman. The goodness that was present in Leif was a wonder to behold. And there ARE people like him. Few and far between but they do exist. And the horror of Conor. The contrast was like the eternal battle between good and evil. I liked how very believable this entire plot is. With all its unexpected twists and turns it is the Kind of predicament any one of us, in our youth when inexperienced, naive and gullible may have found ourselves in. But as Leif noted, if it hadn't been for Conor, he and Laura may never have met, so what was intended as evil worked out for good. The Bible too relates many stories with the same theme.I I also enjoyed the descriptions of scenery of Santorini, one of the Greek Isles which was so deliciously described. All in all - a Great read.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Marie C Warren

    I gave this 4 stars because I enjoyed it so much and reached a point where I couldn't put it down because I was desperate to find out who died and who Becky's father was. Usually books that are insightful into a woman's perspective to this degree are written by women and well done to Nick for understanding the complexities of how women end up having sex when they don't necessarily want to (and don't realise they've been raped or feel embarrassed to admit it) and the way they think and feel about I gave this 4 stars because I enjoyed it so much and reached a point where I couldn't put it down because I was desperate to find out who died and who Becky's father was. Usually books that are insightful into a woman's perspective to this degree are written by women and well done to Nick for understanding the complexities of how women end up having sex when they don't necessarily want to (and don't realise they've been raped or feel embarrassed to admit it) and the way they think and feel about relationships. The book isn't all about Santorini or the dilemma of one woman having a child with no father around though: It explores how abuse as a child can shape you as an adult and, even worse, lead to the perpetuation of abuse in future relationships or a distance between the previously abused parent and their own child(ren). Narrated by the 2 women, most of the way through, meant we got no insight into the men's perspective and (as I feel female author's often get this wrong) I would have liked a bit more insight into their motivations. For example: There was a hint or two about an abusive upbringing of an abusive character: exploring that could have added some pathos and understanding for the reader. This lack of male perspective is why I didn't give it the fifth star but I would still recommend it to a friend!

  27. 4 out of 5

    Jacqueline

    I’m a huge Nick Alexander fan and have read most, if not all, of his books (I think!). I never have to read the blurb as I know I’m going to enjoy it, and this one was no exception. He always manages to draw you into the story, and the fact he has tackled the issues of single motherhood, long lost love, domestic violence, alcoholism, and holiday romance is just reason to love his work more and more. This is the story of a mother and daughter, who take a trip of a lifetime for the mothers 50th bi I’m a huge Nick Alexander fan and have read most, if not all, of his books (I think!). I never have to read the blurb as I know I’m going to enjoy it, and this one was no exception. He always manages to draw you into the story, and the fact he has tackled the issues of single motherhood, long lost love, domestic violence, alcoholism, and holiday romance is just reason to love his work more and more. This is the story of a mother and daughter, who take a trip of a lifetime for the mothers 50th birthday. Becky is a 20-something who hasn’t really found her way yet in life; always feeling something was missing and not having had the best upbringing with her single mother, despite being well loved and looked after, she always felt her mother was hiding something. When she finds a ticket to Greece, the questions, and the journey, begin. For me, it took a little longer than I’d hoped to get my teeth into the story, but once I did I couldn’t put it down. It really grew wings, and when we meet Conor, it became a completely different story altogether. Reading the two women’s stories alongside each other was so cleverly done and really made the story what it was - moving, gripping, and completely compelling reading. I’m already onto my next Nick Alexander ARC and thank netgalley for the opportunity to review such wonderful books.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Rosalind Bryden

    This is the first of Nick Alexander's books that I have read; I chose it as a Kindle First book. I then raced through it in 24 hours, which is something I rarely do. This is really the unfolding of Laura's story, but it is told in alternating chapters by Laura and her daughter Becky, so the past and the present cleverly unfold alongside each other. It is largely set in Santorini and it was a pleasure to bask in the sunshine of this beautiful island for a few hours. Another reviewer said that the This is the first of Nick Alexander's books that I have read; I chose it as a Kindle First book. I then raced through it in 24 hours, which is something I rarely do. This is really the unfolding of Laura's story, but it is told in alternating chapters by Laura and her daughter Becky, so the past and the present cleverly unfold alongside each other. It is largely set in Santorini and it was a pleasure to bask in the sunshine of this beautiful island for a few hours. Another reviewer said that they found the story implausible, but I don't find it impossible that Laura - who had lived a very repressed childhood - would jump at the chance to break free and to go to the island of her childhood dreams, even if it was with a man she barely knew. And I certainly don't think it would be impossible for her to keep giving him just one more chance. After all, she wanted to cling onto this dream. But in the end, things go badly wrong on Laura's dream trip and she tries to put it all behind her and move on with her life. However Becky, curious to know about her own past, pushes Laura to open up, which results in large surprises for them both. This book is about relationships; holiday romances, deep lasting love, families and friends. It is about a secret kept and a secret revealed. If you want to jump off the world for a while and get engrossed I recommend it.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Lynne Spreen

    Laura is finally on her way to Santorini, 25 years after her first visit. On that first horrific trip, undertaken with a violent drunk, naïve Laura meets the love of her life, but in the craziness, she loses his address. Returning home, she discovers she's pregnant. She does her best to raise her daughter well, but life is tough. Now an adult, Becky insists on accompanying Laura to Greece, where the two of them argue over the secrets Laura has kept. Then, a shocking discovery in Santorini leads Laura is finally on her way to Santorini, 25 years after her first visit. On that first horrific trip, undertaken with a violent drunk, naïve Laura meets the love of her life, but in the craziness, she loses his address. Returning home, she discovers she's pregnant. She does her best to raise her daughter well, but life is tough. Now an adult, Becky insists on accompanying Laura to Greece, where the two of them argue over the secrets Laura has kept. Then, a shocking discovery in Santorini leads to all the answers, and a delightfully happy ending. I love Nick Alexander's writing. He tells such good stories, and his characters are varied and complex. He also sneaks in little existential tidbits that I find satisfying: ‘Oh, I try not to regret things too much,’ Mum said. ‘Unless you’re God and you know everything, including the past and the future, most of life is pretty much a question of closing your eyes and stabbing at a map. You have to try not to give yourself a hard time when things turn out to be not as good as you’d hoped.’ This is a coming of age story for Becky and, told in flashbacks, for Laura. In addition, it's a midlife awakening for Laura, who is forty-nine in the present day. I enjoyed this novel very much.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Oh my! I wasn’t expecting this... Such a different book to those I’ve read before. I’d loved those too, but this... Frankly, it’s unusual to find a man who has this amount of emotional depth and can convey it so easily. The story itself was wonderful, so beautifully created. I desperately need to go to Santorini now. For those of you looking at my review whilst considering purchasing the book, don’t think that this is just some mushy love story. It really only touches on love a tiny bit - this boo Oh my! I wasn’t expecting this... Such a different book to those I’ve read before. I’d loved those too, but this... Frankly, it’s unusual to find a man who has this amount of emotional depth and can convey it so easily. The story itself was wonderful, so beautifully created. I desperately need to go to Santorini now. For those of you looking at my review whilst considering purchasing the book, don’t think that this is just some mushy love story. It really only touches on love a tiny bit - this book is a beautifully woven adventure, thriller, suitable for both sexes to enjoy. Do it. Buy it. You truly won’t be disappointed. (And to you, Mr Alexander, I hope you continue to craft such wonderful work for us to enjoy. There was a small bit in the story - airport, suitcase - which confused me at the time, I initially thought there was a continuity error but I think I sussed it later. Self publication is wonderful but a little editing from a third party wouldn’t go amiss. Happy to read through for you in future. I also live in West Sussex, right at the top, bordering Surrey, East Sx and Kent) 😊

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