Meredith Alone by Claire Alexander

Meredith Maggs hasn’t left her house in 1,214 days. But she insists she isn’t alone.

She has her cat, Fred. Her friend Sadie visits when she can. There’s her online support group, StrengthInNumbers. She has her jigsaws, favourite recipes, her beloved Emily Dickinson, the internet, the Tesco delivery man and her treacherous memories for company.

But something’s about to change.

First, new friends Tom and Celeste burst into her life. Then an estranged sister she hasn’t spoken to in years.

Suddenly her carefully curated home is no longer a safe place to hide.

Whether Meredith likes it or not, the world is coming to her door . . .

My thoughts:

Thank you to Michael Joseph Books for a digital review copy of this debut novel to read via NetGalley. I’ve seen a lot of love for this book on social media and I’m sharing a mini review today.

After testing positive for Covid a couple of weeks ago, I used the recovery time to catch up on my outstanding NetGalley books, reading them on my kindle with a larger font than usual to help my tired eyes.

It did seem ironic that as I faced a week isolating at home, I was reading about Meredith who hadn’t left home for over a thousand days. When feeling ill with Covid I couldn’t imagine wanting to leave home, but once i started feeling better, I was desperate to go out for a walk, to pop to a shop and to go back out to work.

This is a well written debut, about a young woman who is facing a challenge that more people have than you would expect. A close member of my family has been struggling to go out of their front door recently and we were surprised to discover how many people are affected in this way every year.

This is a difficult read in places due to the topics covered, but it is done sensitively and suddenly Meredith’s reasons for staying at home become understandable. Can her friends and family help her make some small steps forward?

Thank you to Claire Alexander for writing this stunning book and I look forward to reading more from you in the future.

By Karen K is reading

An avid reader from the age of 4. Love escaping into a good novel after a busy day working with students. Mum of teenagers. Adopter of dogs.

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