This was a story I didn’t want to end.
As I got pulled deeper and deeper into Addy’s story, drawing several parallels to some of my own struggles, I wanted to stay there with her as she dealt with those struggles, the stories her brain told her, the encounter with the woman who owned the curiosity shop, beautiful and tender-hearted Dan, her brother Nick and her ever grieving father.
Addy is so like many broken parts of me, so many broken parts of many others, but she shines brightly even as she doesn’t see it, even as she doubts everything about herself and thinks she is dying.
As always Kim Kelly brings to the fore important issues, not just of then, but of now. The fight women have to be treated with respect and not as an object for a man to drool over or take advantage of, the fight to not be afraid. She deals with past injustices of the war, both WWI and WWII, the effects felt generations on by those who come after and carry those memories in their cells. She touches on the need to hide who we are from those we love, to protect ourselves and them. How hard it was to be gay in the 80s, not that it is easier now for many, but as a society it is much more accepted.
I loved Addy’s love of beautiful dresses and her style, I wish I could own half the dresses she had in her closet. It makes me want to go hunting for beautiful dresses to wear, dresses with stories to tell.
This story is full of emotion, of damaged people, some trying to make sense of their lives, to discover who they are and some, like Addy’s father who get on with things because they must.
When quantum physics was wound into the story it made me laugh, because my mind works a bit like the way Dan described how quantum physics works, and though this is most certainly one concept I will never understand, I understand the feeling behind the concepts and I thought the author did a wonderful job of conveying this.
I loved this novel and I will read it again and possibly again after that. The writing and language is exquisite and perfect and such a pleasure to read.
Thanks to Kim Kelly for providing me with a digital copy in return for an honest review.
Add it to your Goodreads ready for February 2021