File Size: 631 KB
Print Length: 432 pages
Publisher: Transworld Digital (30 Jan 2014)
Anna has not been back to Oxford since her last summer at university, seventeen years ago. She tries not to think about her time there, or the tightly knit group of friends she once thought would be hers forever. She has almost forgotten the fierce sting of betrayal, the heartache, the secret she carries around with her, the last night she spent with them all.
Then a chance meeting on a rainy day in London brings her past tumbling back into her present, and Anna is faced with remembering the events of that summer and the people she left behind. As Anna realises that the events of their past have shaped the people they’ve all become, hope begins to blossom for what the future could hold . . .
I enjoyed Alison Mercer’s Stop the Clock (you can read my review here) and follow her blog so when I saw that After I Left You was on Netgalley, I couldn’t resist requesting.
Anna bumps into ex, Victor Rose, in 2011. This leads on to a meeting with Meg, another person from the Uni friendship group. Straight away I had questions. What happened? Why did it end so badly? Why was Anna not safe with them at Uni?
Through alternating timelines … the present leading up to the event when they’re all together and the backstory of 1991 (building the picture of Anna settling into Uni, the friendships that were forming and her relationship with Victor), the reader knows that whatever happened changed Anna forever as she is now watchful and mistrustful of those around her.
Part three is a turning point for Anna:
“Now the past I had tried so hard to flee had somehow also become the future I was moving towards, and the only choices were to press on or to stand still.”
Not only did I enjoy the intrigue and pace of the timelines unfolding but also the sub-plot that ties together Anna’s absent father to a gift she was given by a Uni friend. Very creative and ultimately poignant.
Through Anna, Mercer fearlessly looks at what lies beneath the façade we show others to the bare bones of what is going on underneath the surface. I love this!
I loved the ending. We don’t know for sure how things will play out but there is hope and a possibility of future happiness.
After I left You will keep your attention as you get caught up with Anna’s friendships, their romances, conflict and intrigue. I have no hesitation in recommending you add to your wish list.
I would like to thank the publisher for accepting my request via Netgalley.