Published by Black Swan/Transworld
Available in ebook (1 July 2018) | paperback : (9 August 2018)
I very much enjoyed One Little Mistake, the debut novel from Emma Curtis and when invited to take part in the tour for When I Find You, didn’t hesitate to say yes. I’m thrilled to be starting off the blog tour today. I have my review below but firstly my thanks to Hannah at Transworld for the Netgalley widget and to Anne Cater of Random Things Tours for the tour invitation.
| About the Book |
What do you do when someone takes advantage of your greatest weakness?
When Laura wakes up after her office Christmas party and sees a man’s shirt on the floor, she is horrified. But this is no ordinary one-night-stand regret.
Laura suffers from severe face-blindness, a condition that means she is completely unable to identify and remember faces. So the man she spent all night dancing with and kissing – the man she thought she’d brought home – was ‘Pink Shirt’.
But the shirt on her floor is blue.
And now Laura must go to work every day, and face the man who took advantage of her condition. The man she has no way of recognising.
She doesn’t know who he is . . . but she’ll make him pay.
| My Thoughts |
When I Find You is one of a few new releases I have on my Kindle dealing with face-blindness, or to give it its proper name, Prosopagnosia. Although I had vaguely heard of it, until I started reading this book, I really had no concept of how difficult life is for sufferers. Imagine not being able to recognise a loved one, a friend, or even your own face.
In When I Find You, Emma Curtis has created a character in Laura that I could feel so much empathy for. Laura is face blind and works for an advertising agency as a creative director, a job which does require a lot of socialising – and which for obvious reasons she dreads. There is only one person at the agency who knows of her condition and that is her boss, Rebecca. I did initially wonder why you wouldn’t let colleagues know about your condition rather than let them think you were aloof or rude, when you appeared to ignore them but then I realised that Laura’s reasons for keeping it a secret from people in general were quite justified; for your own safety, the fewer people that know of your inability to recognise them, the better.
Laura has some coping mechanisms she finds useful – she relies on unusual facial features where possible or mannerisms, hair colour, or even clothing. For example when she attends the office Christmas party she knows that the colleague she was dancing with and kissing had a pink shirt. So why did she wake up in the morning in her flat with a man wearing a blue shirt.
It’s fair to say that Laura was quite drunk at the time however when she realised she had been tricked she felt angry, abused and humiliated. Determined to find out who had taken advantage of her, she decides by a process of elimination to try and flush out the person, however unknown to her, her methods of detection have unexpected and dangerous consequences.
Without going into spoiler territory and giving away any major plot details, Emma Curtis has created an engrossing story, highlighting a condition which is possibly relatively unknown but nonetheless is extremely debilitating and traumatic to sufferers. Laura knows that because of her condition, she is regarded as an unreliable witness and any official complaint most probably wouldn’t be taken seriously.
The story is narrated in alternating chapters by Laura, in the first person and Rebecca in the third. At first I couldn’t understand why Rebecca was given her own chapters when to be honest she wasn’t a particularly interesting character but all did become clearer later in the book when various strands are bought together.
I enjoyed reading When I Find You and using the concept of face blindness as a plot device adds that extra dimension to the suspense as in this story, the reader is as much in the dark as the protagonist. We only see events from her perspective and there were times when I wasn’t sure if she was being entirely honest in her narration. I had the impression that the author had done her research into face blindness and hadn’t just gratuitously plotted a story around it as the difficulties faced by sufferers felt authentic and sympathetic. As the main character, Laura was the one person we got to know the most and there were a few times when I was frustrated by some of her decisions and thinking ‘why did you do that’ when you just know that something is not going to end well!
When I Find You is an intriguing and suspenseful read with plenty of twists and surprises leading to a dramatic conclusion – definitely recommended.
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| Author Bio |
EMMA CURTIS was born in Brighton and brought up in London. She is a member of ‘The Prime Writers’, a collective of writers who have all had their first books published after the age of 40. Emma has two children and lives in Richmond with her husband.