First Love. First Loss. Last chance?
When Emma is 17, her mother passes away she throws herself into studying for her exams (well exceptions to the odd read of Cosmo!). Then Guy Duval happens, he waltzes in (quite literally, he’s actually lifting her to her feet at the time after falling over) and he sweeps her off her feet! She’s promised the world but after being left broken hearted moves on with her life and eight years later she is a fabulous English and Drama teacher, a mother to young son and has a doting boyfriend.
Guy has moved on, becoming one of the most famous footballers in Europe and signs with an English team, but behind the confident facade is a man determined to drown the horrors from his childhood with fame, success and money.
Emma’s best friend Ally is supportive but Emma still doesn’t feel confident enough to confide in her and as her life starts to fall apart she finally takes the plunge and bears her soul, but what will Ally think?
When I was given the opportunity to review this book, I jumped at the chance and knowing that it was a review for Mandy Baggot herself scared me a little. I think it scared me a little because I felt under pressure and I started to think what if I don’t enjoy it? or what if I can’t finish it? Because as we all know, there is a book of my own that needs to be finished as I have talked about but I enjoyed this welcome distraction and they do say that reading books can help with the writing of books.
Reading books can sometimes take me a while, as I don’t get many opportunities to read every day. Sometimes sneak in a half an hour in my lunch break, sometimes an half an hour in the evening so when I realised that I’d finished it in just over a week (yes I know!) I was pleasantly surprised!
I am a little bit biased as she is one of my favourite writers, but this story was beautifully written and the story felt so real. The story was extremely catching and a real ‘page turner’ although I read it on kindle so it was a ‘button pusher!’ I literally could not put it down! I love the style of her writing and love that Emma is from a small town in Wiltshire (very close to home!)
I had a Guy in my life once, I met him at a holiday camp and he was a red coat. Guy was a bit like (my) guy (see what I did there?) because all the girls loved him and he was great at football, (my) Guy sung music and played the guitar but he still had the same affect on all the girls!
Guy is a vulnerable hero, as an adult I could see women throwing their underwear at him and men looking up to him in awe but whilst reading the book I saw into his vulnerability and his love for Emma.
I can highly highly highly recommend this book and it was a lovely escapism which took me away from my boring but sunny life in a little town in Hampshire to a campsite in the Riviera with Emma and her dad and the brie baguettes. I could almost taste the stilton, grapes and Merlot and smell the fresh grass they sat on whilst enjoying the sunshine in September 2005.
Emma and Guy were meant to be together, but will all the horrors and distress get in the way? You’ll have to read it to find out, but one thing is for sure neither of them know the truth yet, but will they remember?