Thursday 13 February 2020

My One True North - Milly Johnson

Laurie and Pete should never have met.

But fate has pushed them together for a reason.

Six months ago, on the same night, Laurie and Pete both lost their partners.
Struggling to manage the grief, they join the same counselling group – and meet each other.
From their sadness, Pete and Laurie find happiness growing and they sense a fresh new beginning. 

Except, the more they talk, the more they begin to spot the strange parallels in their stories.
Then Pete discovers a truth that changes everything.

But, as surely as a compass points north, some people cannot be kept apart.

My One True North is a story of friendship and what love means, of secrets uncovered, teashops on corners and the northern lights.

What did I think?

I'm finding it very hard to believe that this is my first Milly Johnson book, but according to my records it does seem to be.  Although I may have arrived late at the Milly Johnson party, I have certainly made a grand entrance arriving with My One True North.  What an amazing, emotional and heartwarming book this is; I have never laughed and cried so much with one book, it should come with a pack of tissues attached.  I feel like I hopped aboard the crying train when I picked up My One True North, travelling through tears of sadness, pain of heartbreak, despair of misunderstandings and peals of laughter.  

What I loved most about Milly Johnson's writing is how she takes a serious subject such as grief and spins it on its head, without belittling the subject at all; from being lost in the sea of despair to soaring hope from seeing a lifeboat appearing on the horizon.  After they both lose their partners, Laurie and Pete meet at a lovely little counselling group in a teashop.  Over tea and the most amazing sounding cakes (I was actually drooling over the butterscotch cake), the newcomers are drawn to each other and find that talking to each other and learning to laugh again is the best therapy.  

I'm trying to say very little about the plot which had me gasping in shock one minute and snorting with laughter the next, so I'll just say a little bit about the two main characters who are both grieving after the sudden loss of their partners.  Pete is a firefighter and I loved reading about his work, especially rescuing local bad boy, Juice, from his various hilarious scrapes.   Laurie is a solicitor who has most of her time taken up with lawsuits against hysterically funny errors printed in the local paper.  Honestly, the newspaper excerpts had me in kinks; I was giggling and chuckling for ages after reading each one. 

My One True North is such an emotional rollercoaster; it's laugh out loud funny, heartachingly poignant and completely perfect.  I guess I could describe this book very much like life: filled with love, laughter, joy and sadness.  Who would have thought a novel predominantly about grief would have provoked so many emotions?  Like the sun coming out on a rainy day, I went from barely able to contain my tears as blow after blow struck my heart to grinning through my tears as my heart burst with hope and joy.  

An absolutely gorgeous story of love, loss and laughter with a twist of fate.  Who needs antidepressants when you've got Milly Johnson?  My One True North is guaranteed to make you smile and what a wonderful gift for Milly Johnson to give her readers.  A definite 5 stars and I can't recommend it highly enough, so much so that I plan to read it again and again to reexperience the magic!  

I chose to read an ARC and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

My rating:

Buy it from Amazon

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