What if your life worked out perfectly . . . for someone else?
It’s been 18 years since Ava spent the summer on the Greek island of Corfu, but she has never forgotten what happened during those months – or who she left behind.
Now single, estranged from her family, and preparing to wave her daughter off to university, Ava’s life seems a million miles away from the one she dreamed about as a teenager – a life now being lived by her sister instead.
When Ava decides to return to Corfu for the summer, she knows she must finally face the place and the people that broke her heart. But with old resentments festering, long-buried secrets lurking, and familiar feelings resurfacing, it looks set to be a holiday that will change all their lives forever. . .
My reading experience:
Firstly I would like to thank the author, publisher and Netgalley for my free ARC.
The story begins by setting the scene of a special mother-daughter relationship, whilst making it clear the mother keeps them separate from her parents and siblings. The mother Ava is devoted, her world revolves around her daughter Rosie, but Rosie is about to turn 18 and go off to University. Tricked into a holiday in Corfu with her sister and her husband, Ava and Rosie settle in to the home in Corfu. Rosie jumps headfirst into her coming of age first love, as Ava flounders in revisiting the tragedy of her first love. This tears at the foundations of their relationship, and the stories between mothers and daughters begins.
The book is transportive, with timely flashbacks and recreated moments. I found the sisters characters to not always be likeable, often they were frustrating, self-pitying and weak and this means they were well plumped out by the author enough for me to form an opinion on them. The themes of betrayal, lost love, and coming of age weave through all of the girls stories, and if I had to identify the core, it would be the parents and their own choices. This is a female perspective story, and even though the mother-daughter trope was hugely at play, their individual experiences came through.
The Corfu of this story is beautiful. I felt as if I was there watching the story play out.
I highly recommend this story from Isabelle Broom for a summer treat.