Monday 26 September 2016

Free to Be Tegan - Mary Grand

Tegan, aged twenty seven, is cast out of the cult, rejected by her family and from the only life she has known. She is vulnerable and naïve but she also has courage and the will to survive. She travels to Wales, to previously unknown relations in the wild Cambrian Mountains. 

This is the uplifting story of her journey from life in a cult to find herself and flourish in a world she has been taught to fear and abhor. 

Guilt and shadows from her past haunt her in flashbacks, panic attacks and a fear of the dark. However she also finds a world full of colour, love and happiness she has never known before. The wild beauty of the hills, the people she meets and the secrets slowly revealed by the cottage all provide an intriguing backdrop to Tegan’s drama. 

The novel is set in spring, a story of hope, new growth, of the discovery of self and the joy of living. 

What did I think?

I wasn't sure what to expect from this book as I was worried that it might be too much into religion or some form of it, however, I need not have worried.  It's a delightful story about a 27 year old girl who is starting to live for the very first time.  She sees the world through such innocent eyes that she completely captured my heart.

Tegan is cast out of a cult, the only home she has known.  Shunned by her parents, but with a secret parcel from her mother, she finds herself on the streets of London.  Luckily the parcel from her mother contained some money and a contact number for her sister in Wales.  Tegan finds a payphone and speaks to her Uncle Ellis who tells her how to get to Wales via train from London.  She is met at the station by her cousin, Carys, who is of a similar age.  As with all family, whether you know them or not, there is always a mysterious bond so Tegan and Carys hit it off quite quickly.  There are some hiccups though; Tegan has been taught that a lot of the modern world is evil so she refuses to go into the pub, even for a soft drink.

The whole village welcomes Tegan, although there are some secrets that are bubbling to the surface.  The longer Tegan stays in the village, the more likely the family secret will come out, so Tegan's Aunt Hannah is keen for her to leave.  All readers know that secrets don't stay buried for long.

What a lovely story.  I was so emotionally invested in the story that I felt so protective of Tegan, especially when spoilt little bitch girl, Angharad, set her up with the village lothario, James.  Mary Grand did a fantastic job of turning James from Casanova to lager lout when he showed his true colours.  Angharad's fiancé, Sam, is the love interest.  He is so lovely that words cannot describe him - Angharad certainly does not deserve him, nor does she want him, as it turns out!

Free to be Tegan is an uplifting story about new beginnings, friendship, family and trust.  Impeccably written with a strong sense of place; I could almost smell the fresh air and visualise the mist rolling over the Welsh hills.  It made me want to visit Wales; I am ashamed to say that I have never been, despite being part Welsh.  It's a quite unique storyline that I found completely captivating.

I received this e-book from the author in exchange for an honest review.

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