Originally published at my blog Chasing Empty Pavements
The Good: There are so many things I loved about this novel. I adore the time period this novel is set in. I love the 60's era and the "Mad Men" esque type of lifestyle they led. This book does a great job of setting the scene of the 60's. Moyes did a brilliant job of creating the culture from the clothing the characters are wearing, the language they use down to the political events going on. It's like having a time machine and landing straight in 1960! I loved it! The two main characters are Jennifer Stirling and Anthony O'Hara. And I fell in love with both of them. Jennifer is strong willed, opinionated and knows true love when she sees it. Anthony is one of those male characters that you root for the entire time. He's the type of man you know so badly wants to change and when he finally meets the right woman, he will do ANYTHING for the love he feels for her. Moyes created characters I felt so strongly about that I cried, laughed and fell in love WITH them. Now, I don't want to offend anyone here and I'm not condoning cheating/infidelity of any kind, but sometimes its more complex than people think. It's not always black and white. I think this novel is a perfect example of that. I really liked that Moyes didn't take an accusatory stance against the affairs that happened in the novel and instead took the bad and showed readers that sometimes the outcome can turn out to be a beautiful thing instead, a blessing in disguise. I absolutely love the way love letters play a huge role in this novel. No one seems to write TRUE love letters anymore and it's so sad! The love letters in this novel are beyond beautiful and I would just die to get one like Jennifer does. Lastly, I LOVE endings like this one. Ambiguous endings rock, I hate endings that are tied up nicely for the reader. I want to be able to imagine how things ended on my own!
The Bad: While I loved this novel, I do have a few nit picky things to say. The first part of the book maintains this amazing time period, setting, culture, etc and then the second part of the book shifts to 2003 and we are introduced to Ellie and Rory. I think the shift kind of made the novel lose some of it's luster. But when the tangled web starts to weave together, it gets better. I enjoyed Ellie and Rory as characters but I felt they weren't as developed as Jennifer and Anthony and I didn't feel as connected to them. I wasn't invested in what happened with them as much as I was with the other two.
Overall, I really really enjoyed this novel. It was a great love story that was well written and had some really beautiful language. I give this book an A!
**I received this book free from the publisher through www.netgalley.com. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.