Sunday, 1 September 2019

Review | Home Truths by Susan Lewis

Published by HarperCollins on August 22, 2019

The opening chapter of Home Truths throws the reader right into the deep end knowing that at the end of chapter one everything will have changed in the lives of Angie Watts and her family. This is no slow burner - right away, I was engrossed in the devastating beginning to the novel and the aftermath of a brutal start had me eagerly turning the pages to discover what was to come next. Susan Lewis does not disappoint one bit in her latest novel which tugged at the heartstrings and delivered a current, relevant story - one that had me absorbed all the way through.

Angie and Steve are very much loved up but the stark realities of their life are getting them down and Steve is at the end of his tether when the gang their son Liam is involved in puts their youngest in danger. Determined to have it out with Liam, despite Angie begging him not to, Steve inadvertently puts his own life in danger - and Angie never sees him again.

It's been a while since I cared for a character liked I did for Angie. After the horrific death of her husband, Steve, and the circumstances surrounding his death which have led to the disappearance of her eldest son, Angie's life heads on a downward spiral of grief, debt and the overwhelming desperation of trying to keep her family afloat in such difficult times. Without feeling unrealistic, Angie and her family had absolutely everything thrown at them during the course of this book and it was so thought-provoking, I genuinely thought of nothing but these characters even when I had put the book down.

The beginning of this book is more about Angie's and her daughter Grace's struggles with money than anything else, and whilst this wasn't what I expected given the first chapter, I found it to be very sobering and important to read about. Despite how bad things were getting, Angie really struggled to open up and ask for help but without being preachy, this book helped highlight that sometimes we really do need to share our problems with those around us because though everyone is battling their own demons, some people would do anything to help. Angie shows this herself through her charity work - she's a kind, caring character despite life's hardships and this makes her easy to root her.

I love Susan Lewis's style of writing. She has such a way with words. It didn't matter what she was writing about, I was so wrapped up in every line and couldn't get enough of this book. Despite the dark topics approached in Home Truths, this did not feel like a grim read because the author could lighten things with her descriptions and the emotions she packed into her writing. The pacing of the book was just right for me and allowed myself to be drawn right in. I think a lot of readers may feel the same as there are many themes in this book which are relatable and could strike a chord. Overall I found Home Truths to be totally gripping and utterly compelling.


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