Wednesday 8 July 2015

The Two of Us - Andy Jones

Falling in love is the easy part. What matters most is what happens next...

Fisher and Ivy have been an item for a whole nineteen days. And they just know they are meant to be together. The fact that they know little else about each other is a minor detail. Over the course of twelve months, in which their lives will change forever, Fisher and Ivy discover that falling in love is one thing, but staying there is an entirely different story.

What did I think?

Fisher meets Ivy and before they know it, Ivy is pregnant.  Ivy told Fisher they didn’t need contraception so, although he is happy about the news, he does wonder whether Ivy intended to get pregnant.  Ivy is in her early forties so I was also wondering if she’d heard the tick tock of her biological clock.  At one point I was worried that Ivy was just using Fisher as a sperm donor.  I’ll not spoil the story but suffice to say, nothing is ever as it seems.

The characters are all excellent.  Fisher is a genuinely lovely guy and he’s still best friends with his mate, El, from school.  Fisher and El have remained close following Fisher’s personal tragedy when the pair visited the cinema when he was a teenager.  El has been diagnosed with Huntingdon’s disease and his partner, Phil, is struggling to cope so Fisher and Ivy do as much as they can to support them.  Ivy’s brother, Frank, is hilarious when he comes to stay at Ivy’s flat.  He’s perfectly described as a big hairy caveman!  Ivy has had to live with the scars of her own personal tragedies so at times, when I found her slightly cold or aloof, I had to remind myself of what she had gone through in her past.

It’s really refreshing to read a story from a male perspective once in a while.  It touches on some sensitive subjects that are told with compassion and a depth of feeling that frequently moved me to tears.  I felt incredibly emotional at the end of the book and had to sit and reflect for quite some time afterwards.  Usually I pick up my next book before the cover of the last book closes, but it’s a sign of such an amazing book when I paused to wipe my eyes and had a few moments alone with my own thoughts.

We received copies of this book from the publisher for our book club.  One lady's first impression was that it was slightly predictable when Ivy got pregnant, but she wished she hadn't spoken so soon as it is anything but predictable.

An outstanding debut novel.  I laughed and I cried - Andy Jones has found the secret recipe for a perfect book.  You’ll not need a tissue when you read this; you’ll need the whole box!

My rating:

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