Many thanks to Kim Nash and publisher Bookouture for my spot on this Blog Tour.
This book broke me apart, my heart felt as if it was being crushed by a giant sledgehammer. My insides felt squished as if there was nothing in me but pain and tears.
Kayla, Heather’s daughter was dying of cancer. And she decided to give her mother one last gift to help her live the best life she could. Actually, she gave two last gifts.
I read this book in bits and pieces initially knowing I would get emotional. The first few chapters told me about the surgery and the chemotherapy, and I thought I could deal with it. Then Brooke Harris’s words took my heart and squeezed it until all my emotions flowed down as tears. I couldn’t stop crying even when I tried to.
The characters, oh the characters, what do I say? The story was written from 3 POV Kayla, her mam Heather, and stepmother Charlotte. Each of them loved Kayla with a depth that only mothers have. There were minor skirmishes, but that was normal when too ex-girlfriend and the current wife lived in the same house during the treatment. But all of them banded together when the going got tough.
Aiden, Kayla’s best friend had a special bond with her. It was fun to see the two best friends banter even when one of them was dying. Their friendship went beyond the cancer. The last letter from Kayla read by him, her eulogy, just finished me off. I thought I had no tears to cry, but they flowed like a river.
The pain of Kayla’s death was like a sharp, hot knife that cleaved my insides, and Brooke’s words would remain with me in the form of emotions for a long long time.
I loved the book, I loved Brooke Harris’s writing, I loved the story. I loved every single thing about this book. I was unable to breathe after reading it. I couldn’t seem to stop crying. I wrote this review with a film of tears.
But don’t read this book if you have a child.
Go and hug your child instead. Go and spend time with them, tell your loved ones how much you love them. Do everything to live your life. Do everything to show the love in your heart. Life is fragile and temporary, but love is eternal
Quoting words from the book with slight liberties, sorry Brooke—
If living your life is going for a walk with your dog, do that.
If living your life is reading this book, do that.
And every morning when you wake up, take a big deep breath and be grateful for the air in your lungs.
Don’t be alive, live!!
Well said, Brooke. No truer words were ever spoken. I needed to hear these words; they came at the perfect moment. Thank you for writing this book and making all of us readers cry. The power of the written word was never so well felt than by your writing.
I received a free ARC from NetGalley and publisher, and this is my journey into its pages, straight from the heart!! STRICTLY HONEST AND UNBIASED.
All my reviews can be read here
USA Today bestselling author Brooke Harris is undoubtedly a bibliophile. She is proud to be someone who opens the middle pages of a book and inhales deeply.
Brooke loves all forms of art; painting, playing piano, crafting, but, her greatest love is stories. Brooke writes heart-breaking and emotionally led fiction but always with undertones of hope and positivity because Brooke firmly believes that darkness only lasts so long before light follows.
Brooke lives in county Kildare, Ireland with her husband and five young children. She is a keen supporter of mental health charities and creating a greater understanding of mental illness.
Brooke writes women’s fiction for Bookouture. She also writes psychological suspense for Lake Union as Janelle Harris.
I remember you learning to ride a bike, the first time you shot a goal with a basketball… and the first time I realised something was wrong. I look at you, my daughter, my beautiful sparky daughter. I would do anything to keep you safe.
Heather’s beloved daughter, Kayla, is her world. She is fifteen, a brilliant basketball player and a fierce friend.
Heather and Kayla have always had a special relationship. For so many years it was just the two of them, watching Friends, baking cupcakes and laughing together. But now Kayla knows her time is short, and she wants to give something back to the mother she loves more than anyone else in the world. A gift that will change Heather’s life.
With just a handful of days left, Kayla will need help from everyone around her to make this last surprise happen. Along the way, the people whose lives have been touched by Kayla’s light will be changed by her loss, and by her plan for Heather. And as Heather’s whole world threatens to fall apart, could Kayla’s forever gift be the key to piecing her life back together?
Publication Date: 5th August 2019