Sunday, 19 April 2015

A Place For Us by Harriet Evans

A Place For Us
By Harriet Evans
Published by Headline (15 January 2015)
ISBN: 978-1472221261

Goodreads description
The day Martha Winter decided to tear apart her family began like any other day.

When Martha, a wife and mother of three, sits down one late summer's morning to write out the invitations to her eightieth birthday celebration, she knows that what she is planning to reveal at the part could ruin the idyllic life she and her husband David have spent over fifty years building…

But she has to let her family know what she and David have sacrificed. She can't live a lie any more.

The invitation goes out far and wide, calling her three children and their families back home to Winterfold, their rambling house in the heart of the English countryside. They are Bill, the doctor; Florence, the eccentric academic; and Daisy, the child who never fit in. As the story unfolds, each character reveals the secrets, joys, and tragedies they are wrestling with through the confines of the family. What will happen when Martha finally tells the truth?

My verdict
A Place For Us was a little slow at first, and a bit too long, but overall this was an easy read. The book cover is a beautiful watercolour painting of a house that I assume depicts Winterfold, where the story is set.

Martha and David have invited their whole family to join them at Winterfold for her 80th birthday celebrations - but not everyone is able to join them. As the reunion takes place, and the story unfolds, family secrets are revealed.

Each chapter is written from the point of view of one of the characters, sometimes in the present and sometimes in the past. This format was easy to follow as it switched from person to person. The characters are all very different; some of them seemed very normal and likeable (e.g. Cat and Lucy), but others were very odd (e.g. Florence and Daisy).

A Place For Us was originally released in several parts. I won a copy of the first part of the book through a Goodreads giveaway and bought the rest of the book in its separate e-book parts. However, I then received the whole paperback from the publisher through Bookbridgr in exchange for an honest review. I am actually pleased that I didn't read the book in parts, with a gap between them, as I would probably have been very confused by all of the characters.

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