Monday 24 May 2021

Review | First Day of My Life by Lisa Williamson

Published by David Fickling Books on January 7, 2021

First Day of My Life by Lisa Williamson has been on my wishlist since the moment I heard about it. I loved the blurb and have enjoyed other books from the same author. I was lucky enough to win a signed copy of this book from the author on Twitter and the read was everything I hoped for and more - an endearing, tender tale of friendship and new beginnings.

It’s GCSE results day and the end of a chapter for best friends Frankie and Jojo. They’ve got a results day party on the horizon and bright futures to look forward to. Except Jojo is missing and Frankie is concerned, so concerned that she has to turn to her ex-boyfriend Ram for help. Jojo is not the only one missing. Local to Frankie, the news that a baby has been stolen has everyone worried and only adds to the mystery. Everything about the opening to this book had me hooked and I loved every twist and turn throughout this heartfelt story.

I won’t talk too much about the plot to avoid spoilers, but I do think this is a great book to read for any teenagers, fans of YA or really anybody who enjoys cleverly written, honest fiction. The book is told in four parts and we get to hear from the perspective of Frankie, Jojo and Ram. I enjoyed the insight into all three characters. Each of them had an individual voice and as we get to follow the story with all three of them, this really helped show their development during the course of the book. The characters definitely grew and this made for a great coming of age story.

Lisa Williamson beautifully represented teenage friendship in First Day of My Life, and this was my favourite aspect of the book. Frankie and Jojo are best friends but it doesn’t mean their friendship comes without complications. They are written very realistically and I thought they were a genuine and proper representation of a lot of teenage relationships. They fall out but they also take the time to listen to each other and talk things through. It’s evident how much they care about each other and I felt like the author perfectly navigates their imperfections and encapsulates the heightened emotions of teenagers with great honesty and sensitivity.

This book made me feel so many emotions and I found myself fully invested and genuinely caring for all three of the main characters. Warm and wonderfully written, Lisa Williamson has crafted a thought-provoking story that is so believable it is hard to see the characters as characters and not as friends. First Day of My Life was so compelling. I didn’t want to put it down. The story will stay with me for a long time.

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