Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: Atlantic Books; Main edition (7 Jun. 2018)
Source: Copy for review from the publisher
Welcome to my turn on the blog tour for Love Will Tear Us Apart, available to buy in ebook and hardback. My thanks to Corvus for the copy of the book to review and to Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for the tour invitation.
| About the Book |
Sometimes a promise becomes a prison.
Fearing eternal singledom, childhood friends Kate and Paul make the age-old vow that if they don’t find love by thirty, they will marry each other.
Years later, with the deadline of their 30th birthdays approaching, the unlikely couple decide to keep their teenage promise. After all, they are such good friends. Surely that’s enough to make a marriage?
Now, on the eve of their 10th wedding anniversary, they will discover that love between men and women is more complex, and more precarious, than they could ever have imagined. As Kate struggles with a secret that reaches far into their past, will the couple’s vow become the very thing that threatens their future?
Love Will Tear Us Apart is a moving and heart-breaking exploration of modern love and friendship, from the bestselling author of Try Not to Breathe
| My Thoughts |
Kate and Paul have been best friends since childhood, first meeting when they were 8 years old. Their backgrounds were completely different – Kate had wealthy parents, went to a private school and lived in a large house whilst Paul’s home life was much more modest . He did however have one thing that Kate didn’t have – and that is parents who cared and who took an interest; Kate’s parent’s being both absent emotionally and physically much of the time.
The story of Kate and Paul goes back and forth, from the 1980’s until 2012, the 10th anniversary of their marriage. They each have had their career highlights and setbacks, love and life disappointments and at times they were not even in touch but that long held friendship between them was always there.
This is a quite a slow paced story but it needs to be because we have to get to know these two characters fully to appreciate how they came to be together. I must admit I found it hard to warm to Kate – she was very ambitious but also had a jealous and sometimes cruel nature which didn’t endear me to her, although possibly her background contributed to this. Paul was more laid back and had a more caring and thoughtful personality; he was much easier to engage with, even if at times I wanted to shake him to get him out of his inertia.
Holly Seddon has written a moving and tender story of two people, trying to deal with all the things that life throws at you – death, grief, job losses, family issues, the fluctuating friendships and enduring relationships that form our lives. Their characters were complex; despite their closeness, they often seemed to be emotionally distant from each other and there were times when I did wonder why, despite their vow, they actually got married at all, as there were times that they didn’t seem to like each other very much.
As for the ‘secret’, this was mentioned quite a lot throughout the book, I did guess at what it could be (I was wrong, by the way!) and perhaps it’s just me expecting something more dramatic here (given that the author’s previous books were psychological thrillers), but I felt a bit underwhelmed by it when it was finally revealed. It did however add an even greater insight into their marriage and their feelings. Kate and Paul may have known each other for most of their lives but does it mean that they really ‘knew’ each other?
This was a departure from the author’s previous genre and although I may have been expecting something a little different, it worked extremely well. She writes beautifully, the characters were well formed, even those on the periphery (I’m thinking of Paul’s mum Viv here especially, one of my favourite characters) and I loved the nostalgic references to the 1980’s that were scattered here and there. I enjoyed it and would recommend it.
| Author Bio |
Holly Seddon is a full time writer, living slap bang in the middle of Amsterdam with her husband James and a house full of children and pets. Holly has written for newspapers, websites and magazines since her early 20s after growing up in the English countryside, obsessed with music and books.
Her first novel TRY NOT TO BREATHE was published worldwide in 2016 and became a national and international bestseller.
Her second novel DON’T CLOSE YOUR EYES was published in July 2017.