Monday, 18 September 2017

Book Review - The Mountain In My Shoe by Louise Beech - Rachel Reads Randomly Book #69

Amazon UK
Title: The Mountain In My Shoe
Author: Louise Beech
Format reviewed: Paperback
Source: Purchaed
Publisher: Orenda Books
Publication Date: 23rd July 2016
Rating: 5 Stars

A missing boy. A missing book. A missing husband. A woman who must find them all to find herself. On the night Bernadette finally has the courage to tell her domineering husband that she’s leaving, he doesn’t come home. Neither does Conor, the little boy she’s befriended for the past five years. Also missing is his lifebook, the only thing that holds the answers. With the help of Conor’s foster mum, Bernadette must face her own past, her husband’s secrets and a future she never dared imagine in order to find them all. Exquisitely written and deeply touching, The Mountain in My Shoe is both a gripping psychological thriller and a powerful and emotive examination of the meaning of family … and just how far we’re willing to go for the people we love

I really wasn't sure what to expect from this book, which makes my enjoyment of it all the more surprising. I had been slightly apprehensive at first as I have met plenty of people that rave about this author, this publisher, this book, but yet perhaps because it didn't have the sort of cover I tend to go for, I was slightly unsure. 

Yet it didn't take long for me to realise I was reading something special. The writing is beautiful and at times the story was really emotional. At other times, the story , well OK I did predict some of the key elements, but yet there was so much story still after what I had guessed was revealed that it kept me guessing until the end. 

This is the story of Bernadette and Connor.  Bernadette is intending to leave her controlling husband, but yet the night she intends to tell him is isn't home at his routine time. Bernadette also can't find the lifebook belonging to Connor, on that same day. Then Anne, Connor's foster mum rings and suddenly there are far more important things in the world to Bernadette than leaving Richard. 

What fascinated me and drew me in initially were the entries from Connor's lifebook. It really tugged on my heartstrings, while giving a fantastic insight into Connor's early years. As well as being a useful book for Connor to have, it also gives readers vital background information as to why Connor is the way he is. 

We discover as the story progresses just what Bernadette's marriage was like, and how seeing Connor every other Saturday were the high points in her life.  There are some rather unusual friendships in this book, but they all work, and the characters all felt so real to me. 

There was always something happening to move the story forwards, and I loved the pacing of the whole novel. It went from me getting to grips with the book in 20 page stints throughout the day, to me reading the last 100 plus pages in one sitting not really caring about what else I was meant to be doing. 

The Mountain in My Shoe is beautifully written, and is completely compulsive reading. 

Thank you to everyone that voted for this book this week. It was a very close contest, but I can see why I hear nothing but good things about it - because its deserved.  So can you top it this week, I would love to know what I'll be reviewing this time next week. 

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