How Not to Die Alone by Richard Roper #bookreview #hownottodiealone

Happy Thursday all!

Excited to share with you today my review for this quirky little gem!🤩

My Thoughts

Qυιɾƙყ. Uρʅιϝƚιɳɠ. Uɳιϙυҽ.

Richard Roper has crafted a quirky and uplifting story packed with colorful characters and a unique storyline. The blurb of this book compares it to “Eleanor Oliphant”, Generally I’m not a fan of comparing books but I’d have to say this is an accurate comparison. SO if you loved Eleanor you will also love getting to know Andrew. Andrew is 42, a bit of a loner, and he works for the Ministry of Death. His job includes finding the next of kin for those who die alone, searching their home for valuable possessions that will help pay for their funeral, and then even though it’s not compulsory Andrew attends the funerals for these people who have no one in their lives to say goodbye. Andrew returns home every evening to an empty house, his model trains, and group of eclectic online friends who he met on a model train enthusiast website. However, because of an innocent slip up he made on his job interview his boss Cameron and coworkers believe he returns home every evening to a wife and two kids. When Peggy begins working with Andrew and befriends him and his boss Cameron wants the coworkers to have monthly dinner parties, Andrew is fearful that the truth will come out. Is living with this lie truly living? Will the truth set Andrew free or ruin his life?

Andrew was a lovable vulnerable character that I just wanted to give a big hug. Peggy was great a true breath of fresh air. The friendship that forms between these two was so lovely. Andrew had really got himself into quite the pickle, one white lie that snowballed into something involving spreadsheets. It really was sad to contemplate how these people died alone with seemingly nobody in their lives that cared. And then there was Andrew who had the opportunity to make some choices that would prevent him from being in the same position one day. I think Mr. Roper did an amazing job of showing us how we all have more people in our lives than we think, we just need to know where to look.

This was a feel-good story that made me smile. It’s kind of interesting that a story that features death so prominently could be so uplifting, but this book really was. Simply put this was a quirky tale bursting with heart, hope, and humor!

*** many thanks to GP Putnam’s Sons for my copy ***

About the Book

Smart, darkly funny, and life-affirming, How Not to Die Alone is the bighearted debut novel we all need, for fans of Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine, it’s a story about love, loneliness, and the importance of taking a chance when we feel we have the most to lose.
Andrew’s been feeling stuck.
For years he’s worked a thankless public health job, searching for the next of kin of those who die alone. Luckily, he goes home to a loving family every night. At least, that’s what his coworkers believe.
Then he meets Peggy.
A misunderstanding has left Andrew trapped in his own white lie and his lonely apartment. When new employee Peggy breezes into the office like a breath of fresh air, she makes Andrew feel truly alive for the first time in decades.
Could there be more to life than this?
But telling Peggy the truth could mean losing everything. For 20 years, Andrew has worked to keep his heart safe, forgetting one important thing: how to live. Maybe it’s time for him to start.

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Invisible Girl by Jill Childs @author_jill @bookouture #bookreview #invisiblegirl

Happy Thursday everyone!

Delighted to share with you today my review for this emotional thought-provoking story! Thanks so much Noelle for my invitation to the tour!🥰

My Thoughts

𝔼𝕞𝕠𝕥𝕚𝕠𝕟𝕒𝕝. ℍ𝕖𝕒𝕣𝕥𝕓𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘. 𝕋𝕙𝕠𝕦𝕘𝕙𝕥-𝕡𝕣𝕠𝕧𝕠𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘.

Jill Childs has written a beautiful emotional heartbreaking story that will make you think. Maddie is educated, an alcoholic, and homeless. Becca is a single mother with a teenage son Alex and a five-year-old daughter Rosie. One Day Becca and Rosie are out and about and run into Maddie, Rosie takes an immediate interest. Ultimately Becca with the urging of her five-year-old Rosie invites Maddie to dinner and a bond forms between Maddie and family. Sarah, Becca‘s best friend and neighbor is a little wary of Maddie and her intentions. What follows is a tale of secrets, lies, grief, and forgiveness.

Maddie was a very likable and relatable character who was really struggling. Grief had completely consumed her and drug her down into despair. This is where I had a little bit of a problem… everyone has hard times in their lives, of course some people have harder times than others, and I don’t mean to sound unsympathetic. But it is how you deal with those hard times that defines who you are. My ex-husband is an alcoholic and it has destroyed his relationship not only with me but his kids, so for very personal reasons I have very little sympathy or patience for people in that situation. Another thing I cannot imagine I would ever under any circumstances bring a homeless person home with me. I do realize people are homeless for many different reasons but I think the prominent reason in the US is mental health issues and I’m not sure I would want that around me or my kids. So while I really loved this book and I loved the kindness and big heart of Rosie and eventually Becca, I’m not sure if it was all together plausible. Sorry I went off on a bit of a tangent there.

The story was told from the perspectives of Maddie, Becca, and Sarah. I always enjoy books that are told from multiple perspectives I just think it gives you such insight to the entire story. All three of these characters were likable and sympathetic. They also all had flaws some a little more obvious than others. Becca was a good person but a little insecure and I wasn’t always thrilled with her parenting decisions when it came to her teenage son Alex. Sarah oh Sarah had some sticky fingers and maybe was a bit jealous of the merging relationship between Maddie and Becca. The little girls Rosie and Sarah‘s daughter Ella were both super adorable and of course added some levity to the book. This story was simultaneously heartwarming and heart breaking. A well told family drama full of secrets and lies. This is a book that I am still pondering, it definitely gave me a lot of food for thought. And the ending was quite lovely and simply satisfying!

*** many thanks to Bookouture for my copy of this book ***

About the Book

 A heartbreaking story of family secrets from the USA Today bestselling author of Gracie’s Secret. Perfect for fans of Jodi Picoult and Diane Chamberlain.

I know you. I know you in a way you can’t even imagine. I have been searching for you in the years since you wrote that letter – the letter that told me you were looking for me too. But now that I’ve found you, I don’t know if I can say the terrible truth of what I am. It would ruin your perfect life. It would hurt your beautiful daughter.

So, I hesitate – bide my time, for now. This morning, you’re running late and your little girl, tugged by the hand, scurries to keep up with you. She’s clean but a little scrawny. Maybe that’s because you struggle with the bills; maybe she’s just made that way. 

I know what it is to have lost a child. I pray you never learn how that feels. But I can’t wait forever… and when I finally tell you my secret, will it break you like it did me all those years ago?

About The Author

Jill has always loved writing – real and imaginary – and spent 30 years travelling the world as a journalist, living overseas and reporting wherever the news took her. She’s now made her home in London with her husband and twin girls who love stories as much as she does. Although she’s covered everything from earthquakes and floods, riots and wars, she’s found some of the most extraordinary stories right here at home – in the secrets and lies she imagines behind closed doors on ordinary streets, just like yours.

If you’ve enjoyed reading one of Jill’s books, please do leave a review.
For latest news, follow Jill on Twitter (author_jill) and Facebook (Jill Childs)


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