This book tells the tale of Ruth and Paul and their children Will and Josie, and of a time in their lives when everything seems to fall apart and go wrong. It details how the different characters react to these sad and stressful situations – sometimes pulling together and supporting each other, and at other times pulling apart and blaming one another and adding to the hurt. It is a very interesting, and I imagine, accurate portrayal of how worry and grief can affect different people in different ways, and of how easily it can destroy relationships. The book demonstrates how important it is to talk about feelings and to open up to people, no matter how hard this may be, otherwise the results can be heartbreaking.

The book is beautifully written and really allows you to identify with the characters – almost too much really as then I found myself despairing more and more when things went wrong. I found this quite an exhausting book to read, as it made me feel quite down and hopeless for most of the time. I was often tempted to stop reading it, but I hate not finishing a book so felt obliged to continue. However, I was glad that I persevered as good things did appear in the book and it wasn’t just one disaster after another, as it seemed during the first half. It was nice when happy and hopeful events occurred, as they were a very welcome relief, but these parts did seem a bit unbelievable. But I was glad to have something to break the bleakness, so I welcomed the positive sections wholeheartedly.

Overall however, I found the book hard-going and felt quite drained afterwards – it was rare to read a few chapters and not be filling up with tears, (which takes its toll when you are reading while having breakfast in the morning as it is difficult to approach the day ahead in a positive manner)!