My enormous thanks to Susan Gandar for a copy of We’ve Come to Take You Home in return for an honest review and for waiting almost a year for me to find time to read it! Previously on Linda’s Book Bag Susan told me a little about why she decided to explore difficult themes and concepts in We’ve Come To Take You Home and you can read that post here.
Published by Matador We’ve Come To Take You Home is available for purchase in e-book and paperback here.
We’ve Come To Take You Home
It is April 1916 and thousands of men have left home to fight in the war to end all wars. Jessica Brown’s father is about to be one of these men. A year later, he is still alive, but Jess has to steal to keep her family from starving. And then a telegram arrives – her father has been killed in action.
Four generations later, Sam Foster’s father is admitted to hospital with a suspected brain haemorrhage. A nurse asks if she would like to take her father’s hand. Sam refuses. All she wants is to get out of this place, stuck between the world of the living and the world of the dead, a place with no hope and no future, as quickly as possible.
As Sam’s father’s condition worsens, her dreams become more frequent – and more frightening. She realises that what she is experiencing is not a dream, but someone else’s living nightmare…
My Review of We’ve Come To Take You Home
Two young women, Jess and Sam, live a century apart and yet are joined in ways they can’t possibly imagine.
Although We’ve Come To Take You Home has been sitting on my TBR pile for about a year, I hadn’t had chance to look at it in detail so I wasn’t entirely sure what to expect. What I found was a time slip novel that had me entranced throughout. I don’t always enjoy this kind of structure but I found the overlaps, Sam’s hallucinatory visions and the echoes of the past all so well written that I thoroughly enjoyed the book.
I really enjoyed the characterisation and although I felt more empathy towards Jess, I thought both women were warm and realistic people whom I cared about.
Susan Gandar has an evocative turn of phrase so that it was easy to visualise the grand house Jess finds herself in, the hospital setting and the horrors of the First World War. I thought history was brought to life highly effectively and vividly so that We’ve Come To Take You Home would definitely appeal to lovers of historical fiction.
However, We’ve Come To Take You Home is so much more than just an historical novel. There are many layers so that there really is something for every reader through the sociological and spiritual elements, the family relationships and our perception of what is true or imagined. I found that not only was I presented with an intriguing plot, but with some challenging concepts that made me question my own views. I’m not especially spiritual but I was very entertained by those aspects in the novel and let’s just say that next time I’m at an airport I shall scrutinise the departure boards very carefully!
We’ve Come To Take You Home is a hugely satisfying read. It made me think, it entertained and educated me and it took me away from the writing I usually read. Ultimately, I found We’ve Come To Take You Home an uplifting read. Great stuff.
About Susan Gandar
Susan Gandar is the daughter of John Box, a film production designer who worked on ‘Lawrence of Arabia’, ‘Dr. Zhivago’, ‘The Great Gatsby’, ‘A Man For All Seasons’ and the musical ‘Oliver’. Her house was always filled with people, usually eccentric, always talented, invariably stroppy, discussing stories and a major chunk of her childhood was spent loitering around on film sets.
Susan worked in television as a script editor and story consultant, and was part of the creative team responsible for setting up Casualty. She became known for going after the more ‘difficult’ stories at the same time successfully racking up viewing figures from 7 to 14 million. Susan went on to develop various projects for both the BBC and the independent sector.