Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Latest 5 Star Review

A blog we love- The Book Enthusiast- has posted their 5 star review of The Back-Up List this morning, and we love it! Thank you so much, Paula. They are also having a contest, giving away 3 signed copies, which is awesome! Here is the review below. Go to their page to be entered to win!

By Paula
The Back-Up List is a bittersweet tale about loss and grief, about tragedies and the power of friendship, about healing and love and about the second chances we are given in life.
This book tells the story of Madison, a wife and mother that in one short moment loses everything. She is consumed by grief and despair, feeling guilt and pain – wishing to be dead. The portrayal of her grief is heart-wrenchingly realistic. She can’t and doesn’t want to move on at first, feeling somehow frozen in time. Despite the effort of her friends, she basically just exists but doesn’t live. She replays every thing she might have done wrong in the past, all the what ifs and has given up on herself, not knowing how to go on. That is until her wonderful circle of friends takes her to the concert of her favourite band. And that is when she meets him, Cal – a self-centred, womanising rockstar that is used to be swooned over. Their is an instant attraction and connection between those two, but Maddy – unlike any other fan – isn’t getting her panties in a knot about him. She is consumed by grief.
But Cal is intrigued and wants to win her heart – no matter how long it is going to take. After Madison beating herself up about her feelings for him, she finally is ready to give her heart to him. But will she just get it broken? Is he too set in his rockstar life?
This book left me with no finger nails and throughout all of it I was really emotional…always on the verge of tears – some of them were happy, while others were devastated and sad.
Amber Best and Miriam Brady accomplished to document realistically what a grieving person goes through – all the feelings of guilt, sadness and despair. The way it affects every single moment of every single day and how laughing or enjoying something brings feelings of guilt. My heart broke for her. The more I loved her friends for being there for her with never-ending support, loyalty and understanding. The closeness of those four women, but especially the bond between Madison and Kinley was beautiful and a friendship every person should have in their life. And as we get glimpses of how things used to be before everything changed for Maddy, we learn that the friendships have always been fun and unique. I really loved the idea of the validation or friendship cards. They don’t judge each other for their behaviour or their decisions but love each other unconditionally.
It is sweet and heart-breaking to see Maddy slowly open up to Cal, while we get to see him finally mature and grow-up, pulling his head out of his behind. Having been used to having every wish fulfilled within the blink of an eye, he now actually has to work hard for something – for Maddy’s love and trust. But don’t get me wrong, I feel for this guy. Coming into a situation like he is, on the minefield that is Maddy’s life and emotional situation, he doesn’t have an easy task. So for him to actually not giving up, shows the depth of his emotions.
The realism of this book really dumbfounded me. The fact that the healing process for Maddy continued throughout the book, had some detours and some bumps in the road and that her healing didn’t just happen with a declaration of love made the book more honest, more raw and definitely more emotional. Just as in real life you never fully get over the kind of loss that Maddy suffered from, her character also doesn’t. Even with her giving a new life a chance, the pain is not something that will ever let her go fully.
This book definitely wasn’t a happy go lucky kind of read, but it was therefore more rewarding. It made me contemplate my life, my friendships, my relationships with the people I love. That is something only a good book does.
And although the book didn’t end on a cliffhanger, the epilogue still makes me think that the authors are sadists.
5 painful, bittersweet, emotional, drowned-in-tears stars.

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