Imagine This: Your life is normal as of now. Normal is what you like. Stable is what you find ideal. Especially since you had a son. You would do anything to keep the stability in you and your son’s lives being a single mother. Knowing how much it affected you when your parents couldn’t keep stability when you were little.
This is the story of you. Your life as a recovering alcoholic single-parent.
There was a time when your life was in shatters. A time when all you could think of was numbing your pain with a bottle of wine, then gin, then vodka, then… champagne. Because your ex knows you as his beautiful champagne girl. Your ex the bully. Your ex who ensured you never went a day without a bruise.
This is the story that tells us how you meet a grieving man. A grieving man who has taken his sister’s daughter as his own since her death. This is the story you help this kind-hearted man recover all the pieces he lost due to something you both share: an alcoholic past.
And as though all the above isn’t enough to check your life from that stability box to the ‘it’s complicated’ one, you would live in constant fear of your ex’s return, you would be feeling a strange connection with this guy you vow to be friends with––a connection you would want to put aside because you do not want to lose the solid friendship and that stability you’ve been holding on to for you and your son’s sake, and just when you even think of deciding the possibility of deserving the chance to move on… all your fears would come to past.
Polly’s dilemma summed up for devouring.
I loved, loved this book. So you can guess in my review you’d be urging me to seek therapy if I am in anyway disturbed.
There are story-lines that are not fresh, at all. There are also storylines so timeless, with an amazing presentation a writer could produce a masterpiece. This story falls into the latter category. Another book about addiction, major eyeroll. But is it in anyway different from all the other books about addiction you have picked? I can vouch for that. Amazing originality with Girl getting flashbacks of past events that shattered her life, Girl keeping everything under control in present life and just so scared of losing the reins for something that entails sparks and love. The one novel to get you asking, does everybody deserve a second chance? Do I deserve a second chance? A star to the storyline.── ★
Polly is dull. Dull in a very elegant way. A soothing point of view that carries hope for the reader as she journeys through recovery and gaining the trust of people she hurt, meanwhile keeping an eye out for the father of her son. No adrenalin-pumping main, no main full of sass and attitude providing a kicking read, just a main character seasoned to embody anyone going through a healing process with lots of calm and peace. You’d love her for this reserved poise. A star to the characterization.── ★★
We all love chick-lit that imparts lessons that are dateless in our world. Addiction, domestic abuse. You’d find yourself picking bits and pieces of our main character’s life wondering where she went wrong and how to prevent yourself (or a friend) from getting into similar situation. This book would awake your judgemental side as well as elevate your empathy towards (the main character for) moving issues brought up in this title.── ★★★
A star goes to the supporting cast who made reading this book breath-taking and entertaining at points. You would love Hugo, our main character’s partially blind brother whose story is an inspiration to lots of people visually-impaired. You would love the supportive Aunt Viv, who reminds you of that black sheep in your extended family for which your parents would be praying tirelessly you do not inherit her gene. Janey, the best friend of our lead who I think––among all the other reasons––also played a part in the exacerbation of our main’s addiction. Louis, the adorable son of Polly who isn’t hard to fall head over heels with. Neve, our main’s AA sponsor whose gone through similar trials as our lead. Stephanie, the counsellor who tries so hard to stay objective when all she wants to do is provide all the suitable decisions our main has to make on her own. There’s also Polly’s mum whose presence and tight-lipped-ness would make you snort with derision anytime in her presence. Ben, the charming uncle who is just fine being friends with Polly. And Matthew, Polly’s cowardice, shithead ex who you’d just want to strangle.── ★★★★
Suspense, and (laid-back) humour play a major part in this title. Throughout the novel, you would feel this unease that would break your every resolve to let go of this book and get a nap. You would be so glued to this title, you would need nurses from a psychiatric ward to pry you and this masterpiece apart. Lots of chuckling moments that would teeter you on the verge of tears.── ★★★★★
My rating would obviously be five/five stars. The one book whose end would make you slam a palm to your heart and sigh (because you can now go shower out of your urine-embedded sweatpants).
Alice Peterson’s moving latest, One Step Closer To You, is available on amazon.
I recommend it to anyone who wants something inspirational this festive season, anyone who wants a book that would make them rethink all life’s decisions for which caused harm to those they love. Anyone who wants something with dense, emotional themes should also pick this.
(I also love the caption on the back-cover that says, ‘Open Your Heart To Alice Peterson’. It’s just hard not to).
My work not done here. Off to post my review on Goodreads.