Tuesday, 6 November 2018

Review | The Rest of Me by Katie Marsh

Published by Hodder on July 26, 2018


The Rest of Me is a relatable book that will make you want to keep your family close - a sincere reminder to live every moment of your life and not let it pass you by. True to form, Katie Marsh's fourth novel delivers an emotion-charged, heartfelt and honest story that had me wrapped up in its every word.

This is a thought provoking book from the start, with an important message weaved in throughout. At the beginning of the book, Alex is donating a kidney to her husband Sam. Whilst she gives Sam his health back, Alex struggles to get back on her feet and is faced with difficulties at work, difficulties keeping her family on track and difficulties facing the demons from her past.

Alex is really easy to identify with. She writes to-do list after to do-list and is always busy, always trying to be productive. But as she spends her time working, her family's lives are changing around her. Sam has a new lease of life after his kidney op and is realising an ambition of his. Their teenage daughter Jenna is growing up faster than her mum and dad can keep up with and is obsessing over an older boy. And their youngest Izzy is obsessing over her love of Arsenal football club, with secrets she is keeping from everybody. The family felt really authentic and all of them had traits you could relate to. As the lives of all four characters are changing, the book is full of moments that made me laugh and smile and moments that made me stop and think and feel every emotion along with Alex, Sam, Jenna and Izzy.

The book is told from the perspectives of both Alex and Izzy, written in alternating chapters interspersed with Alex's various to-do lists. Whilst Alex's life feels like it is falling apart, and her daughter Izzy is going through some tough times of her own, I loved the contrast between their chapters. Izzy was so optimistic and exited about her future, about football, that it was so easy to root for her and her dreams. Her voice was very different to Alex's and Katie Marsh excelled in writing from the perspective of both a mother and young daughter. Their are tender links between the life of Izzy and the life of her mum's when they were a similar age, and I found this to be really fascinating and touching.

I loved every moment spent reading The Rest of Me. Katie writes with sensitivity and a refreshing honesty. It was easy to become engrossed in the book as it was so believable and the characters felt so real and true to life. I was rooting for the entire family throughout and unlike a lot of other novels of a similar genre, I was never entirely sure how things would work out for them all come the end. The Rest of Me is an inspiring book that shows the value of truly living in the moment and making peace with the past.

Many thanks to Hodder for sending me a copy of The Rest of Me to review.

2 comments:

  1. Hi there! I'm Carole from Carole's Chatter. I follow your blog. I think you do really great posts about books. I wondered if you would like to join the group of bloggers who share their posts on a monthly basis via Books You Loved. I host this link up on the first Wednesday of each month. If you would like to check it out just hop on over to Carole's Chatter. We would all love to see you there. Cheers

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