I’m so grateful to the author, Amanda Prowse, for an advanced reader copy of The Idea of You in return for an honest review.
It’s no surprise to readers of Linda’s Book Bag that I love Amanda Prowse (not many authors are prepared to send your Mum a signed copy of a book to cheer her up) and her books. Two of her books were in my top 2016 reads (see here) and you can read my review of Another Love here and My Husband’s Wife here. I was also privileged to have an interview with Amanda that you can read here.
The Idea of You is published today, 21st March 2017, and is available for purchase available in e-book and paperback here.
The Idea of You
With her fortieth birthday approaching, Lucy Carpenter thinks she finally has it all: a wonderful new husband, Jonah, a successful career and the chance of a precious baby of her own. Life couldn’t be more perfect.
But becoming parents proves much harder to achieve than Lucy and Jonah imagined, and when Jonah’s teenage daughter Camille comes to stay with them, she becomes a constant reminder of what Lucy doesn’t have. Jonah’s love and support are unquestioning, but Lucy’s struggles with work and her own failing dreams begin to take their toll. With Camille’s presence straining the bonds of Lucy’s marriage even further, Lucy suddenly feels herself close to losing everything…
This heart-wrenchingly poignant family drama from bestselling author Amanda Prowse asks the question: in today’s hectic world, what does it mean to be a mother?
My Review of The Idea of You
Lucy is desperate for a baby, but frequent miscarriages mean she has to rethink her relationships with all those in her life and reassess what happiness can really be.
Goodness me. Those who know me also know that I am the least maternal person and I don’t even like children all that much. Therefore, it says everything about the amazing quality of Amanda Prowse’s writing that I finished reading The Idea of You in floods of tears having had my heart wrung out by the emotion of the writing.
There’s such an honesty of narrative that even the most stony-hearted readers cannot fail to be moved by this story. The plot is sensitively handled, but not sentimentalised, so that those who have experienced the same kinds of events as Lucy can take comfort from the fact that they are not alone and can be supported in realising not everything has a happy ending. I thoroughly enjoyed the style with the first person elements adding an air of mystery too making The Idea of You not just an emotional read, but an intriguing one.
Lucy herself is a flawed, human creation who isn’t always rational and sensible in her behaviour which makes her very real and believable. I frequently found myself either nodding in agreement or exclaiming aloud at her comments or thought process as she seemed to embody exactly how a woman might feel and behave.
I think what appealed to me so much is that, whilst the longing for a baby that I have never experienced is at the heart of the story, there is so much more besides so that all readers will find something to relate to. There’s sensitive exploration of what parenthood actually means at any age, as well as fabulous presentation of the realities of relationships between siblings, step-children, partners and ex-partners. Other themes include truth and deception, love and belonging so that The Idea of You is multi-layered and satisfying to read. Alongside all of this is a strong message of what it means to be a resilient woman in a world that doesn’t always conform to our desires.
It’s difficult to find the superlative to express just how good The Idea of You is, so all I’ll say is that once again Amanda Prowse has written a fantastic story and you should read it.
About Amanda Prowse
Amanda Prowse is an International Bestselling author who has published sixteen novels in dozens of languages. Her recent chart topping No.1 titles What Have I Done?, Perfect Daughter and My Husband’s Wife have sold millions of copies around the world.
Other novels by Amanda Prowse include A Mother’s Story which won the coveted Sainsbury’s eBook of the year Award and Perfect Daughter that was selected as a World Book Night title in 2016. Amanda’s book The Food of Love went straight to No.1 in Literary Fiction when it was launched in the USA and she has been described by the Daily Mail as ‘The Queen of Drama’ for her ability to make the reader feel as if they were actually in the story.
Now published by Lake Union, Amanda Prowse is the most prolific writer of contemporary fiction in the UK today; her titles also score the highest online review approval ratings for several genres.
All of Amanda Prowse’s wonderful writing is available here.