Thank you to Anne of Random Things Tours and Simon and Schuster UK for the opportunity to read and review a digital review copy of Paige Toon’s latest novel. I read my first book by Paige Toon at the start of the year (see my review for The Minute I Saw You at https://mentoringmumof2bookreviews.home.blog/2021/01/11/the-minute-i-saw-you-by-paige-toon/) and I’m planning to read more during the summer holiday (five books are sat ready and waiting on my kindle).
So much can change in half a lifetime…
At fifteen, George is the foster brother Leah never asked for. As the angry, troubled boy struggles to come to terms with his circumstances, Leah finds herself getting drawn closer to him. Theo’s wealthy family have mysteriously pulled him out of boarding school and he’s now enrolled at the local state school with Leah and George. When their worlds collide that summer, the three teenagers form a bond they believe will be unbreakable. But life doesn’t always go to plan…
Shocking news brings Leah back to Yorkshire, baby daughter in tow. But Emilie’s father Theo isn’t with them, and George has unexpectedly returned. After half a lifetime, have they healed the scars of their pasts? Will coming back home set their hearts in a different direction?
Having read the opening chapters back in May, I was eager to find out more about Leah, Theo and George. I joined the Books and the City launch event a week before reading the book and had the suggested box of tissues ready.
This is a book full of emotion (and yes, the tissues were necessary). Leah grew up as an only child, but in a farmhouse full of foster siblings. One year, she had George living with her and Theo living in a posh house nearby, and despite a difficult start, they all became friends, before everything suddenly changed in a day. The setting is Yorkshire (my birth county) and the farm is for alpacas and rabbits.
We meet Leah a few years later at a party for her parents, before jumping forward a few more years to her dad’s funeral. Theo was at the first party and George is at the second. It takes a long time to find out what happened to separate the school friends, and tissues may/will be needed on a number of occasions.
This is a non spoiler review so I’m not going to ruin the story, which should be read whilst relaxing (and possibly hiding from the football matches as I did). Paige’s writing is beautiful, and the story unfolds as we find out what happened in the past. I had a ‘oh’ moment, when I realised that I had misunderstood something, please let me know if you have this experience too.
Someone I Used to Know is available from all good bookshops and at supermarkets including Asda – do pop a copy in your basket and head to Yorkshire to meet the alpacas and Leah’s family. I would love to see this book turned into a TV series or film too.
Sunday Times bestseller Paige Toon was born in 1975 and grew up between England, Australia and America. A philosophy graduate, she worked at teen, film and women’s magazines, before ending up at Heat magazine as Reviews Editor. Paige is married, has two small children and lives in Cambridge. She is the author of eighteen novels which have sold 1.5million copies worldwide. In 2016, The One We Fell in Love With, was selected for the WH Smith Zoella Book Club. Follow Paige at @PaigeToonAuthor and sign up to the Hidden Paige at http://www.paigetoon.com