The Book of US – Andrea Michael
Cass and Loll used to be inseparable. They met at university and they made sense, like two halves of a whole. They had planned their lives around each other, writing down their dreams in The Big Book of Our Life – the things they wanted to achieve, the places they’d go after they finished university. But then one night changed everything.
Seven years later, Loll receives a letter from her old friend. The coming year will be the year they both turn 30, but Loll might be making it to 30 alone. Cass has cancer. She wants to know if Loll still has The Big Book as her dying wish is to do everything they had planned. Little does Loll know that there is one big difference: Veronica, Cass’s six-year-old daughter, will be coming with them.
Time is ticking for Cass, who is desperate to make lasting memories for her young daughter and ensure that she’s leaving her in good hands. But how do you say goodbye to those you love most in the world?
(Synopsis from Goodreads)
My introduction to The Book of Us by Andrea Michael was actually an email from the editor, describing this book as “a beautifully written and moving story of a friendship that will change the lives of those around them forever.” The editor’s description of The Book of Us is perfect; I’m actually not sure I can put it better myself, but I’ll do my best.
“Sometimes, there is such a thing as a perfect day. You can taste it in the air, a sweetness on the breeze that tells you everything is going to go your way.” – Andrea Michael, The Book of Us
As a feminist, I always want to see more strong female characters represented in novels. This is not limited to physical strength (although that is not a bad thing by any means); what I mean is that I want to see more complex and realistic female characters that do not rely on the presence of a male character to support them. We need more female characters for people to look up to and learn from, and I think that Cass and Loll in The Book of Us fit this bill quite nicely. They are by no means perfect. In fact, they are real, they are complicated, they are flawed, and they have depth. I could not help but become enthralled in their story, because I was captivated by them as characters.
“We need more bossy women – they’re the ones who’ll be running the world” – Andrea Michael, The Book of Us
The combination of excellent characters, beautiful writing, and a captivating plot results in a stellar novel in most cases, and The Book of Us proves this point. This book will take you on an emotional journey… don’t forget to bring tissues. As a book reviewer, I find myself looking for aspects of a novel to critique and I can usually come up with at least one. My only criticism of The Book of Us is that I didn’t want it to end. I feel that I could read about these characters again and again, and although it is probably unlikely, I am hoping for a sequel. The Book of Us is an emotionally moving story about the beauty of friendship and life that will have a lasting impact on the reader. It is perfect for fans of Jojo Moyes, Rebecca Serle, and Josie Silver.
“Do things that scare you, like falling in love, or trying a job that could go wrong, or going on that rickety old roller-coaster.” – Andrea Michael, The Book of Us
I would like to thank One More Chapter, HarperCollins, and Netgalley for providing me with an advance copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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