Thursday, February 20, 2014

Review: Then and Always by Dani Atkins

This novel seems to have two names/covers, possibly for different countries; it has not yet been released.  Note: I received a free ARC edition of this novel from NetGalley, and the publisher, Random House Publishing Group - Ballantine, in exchange for an honest review.

Note:  The version I read is Then and Always, but I prefer the other title and cover art much better.

For fans of One Day, What Alice Forgot, and the hit film , comes an absorbing and surprising debut novel about a young woman who, after an accident, gets a second chance at life . . . just not in one she remembers.

Rachel Wiltshire has everything she’s ever wanted: a close group of friends, a handsome boyfriend, and acceptance to the journalism program at her top-choice college. But one fateful evening, tragedy tears her world apart.

Five years later, Rachel returns home for the first time to celebrate her best friend’s wedding. Still coping with her grief, she can’t stop thinking about the bright future she almost had, if only that one night had gone differently. But when a sudden fall lands her in the hospital, Rachel wakes to find that her life has completely changed. Now she has her dream job as a writer and a stylish apartment, but the people she loves most are not the way she remembers them. Unable to trust her own recollections, Rachel tries to piece together what really happened, and not even she can predict the astonishing truth.

I am an absolute sucker for memory loss stories, and when I saw that fans of What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty would enjoy this novel, I knew it had to be next on my reading list.  Surprisingly, I liked it even more than What Alice Forgot.  

Then and Always is chick-lit at its best:  easy and light to read, with a story that hooks the reader right from the beginning.  The ending is what sets this novel apart, however.  Unlike what you'd expect from chick-lit, the final chapters reveal an unexpected, yet very profound and meaningful ending.  It's only February, but I'd be surprised if this doesn't make my top ten list for 2014.  A stunning debut novel.  Dani Atkins is one to look out for!

Expected publication date:  May 20, 2014


Post a Comment

Thanks for your comment, I appreciate it so much! Your comment guarantees a return visit from me to your blog -- I love connecting with new book lovers!