Monday 23 August 2021

BLOG TOUR: Nobody's Perfect - Stephanie Butland

Does your past define your future?

When her daughter was born with cystic fibrosis, Kate Micklethwaite vowed that Daisy would never be defined by the illness. Kate is determined that her perfect little girl will be known for her love of butterflies and croissants and nothing else. Kate does all she can to be the perfect mother - whatever that means - and yet, somehow, has started seeing herself the way others see her: single parent, source of small-town scandal, drop-out, former mistress. Half a family.

When Daisy starts school, Kate meets her new teacher, the kind and charming Mr Spencer Swanson. Now, with more time on her hands Kate can start thinking about her own future. With her Open University dissertation deadline looming, Kate needs to decide what she wants next. But as she and Spencer get to know each other, Kate notices that people are whispering behind her back once more . . . 

What did I think?

I planned to read Nobody's Perfect over four days but I ended up read it in two sittings as I couldn't put it down.  It just shows that a book doesn't have to be a thriller to be gripping.  In mother and daughter pairing Kate and five-year-old Daisy, Stephanie Butland has created loveable and believable characters whose story I felt emotionally invested in.

Kate is a single parent after an affair with a married man caused tongues to wag in her home town.  Although Kate may be an outcast, the positive result of her affair is adorable Daisy and I absolutely loved her.  Daisy is so vibrant as she flutters to school wearing her butterfly wings, but beneath the surface a deadly illness looms.  Daisy has cystic fibrosis which means that any threat to her respiratory system could see her ending up in hospital.  

Kate is a brilliant mum and I love how she tries to make Daisy's life as normal as possible but has a constant eye out for anything that can be harmful.  It's very thought-provoking to think that something like the common cold might be a bit of a nuisance to you or me but to others it can have serious repercussions.  Daisy is Kate's whole life but a new teacher at the school reignites Kate's passion and she has a chance to be Kate again, rather than 100% mum.  Mr Swanson does seem perfect but as the book title tells us, Nobody's Perfect.

Stephanie Butland's writing is beautiful and her characters are so well-developed that they virtually leap out from the page.  I felt every beat of Kate's heart as her love for Daisy shone through every wonderful word and I had my fingers crossed as her relationship with Spencer blossomed.  With so much to find out about each other, it was interesting to see how they both tackled a new relationship.  Kate is very much all in with all her secrets laid bare but Spencer is clearly keeping something back and you can't help but wonder whether his intentions are honourable.

Beautiful, heartwarming and thought-provoking, Nobody's Perfect is a stunning novel and one I will never forget.  It's a wonderful contemporary romance and very highly recommended.

I received a digital ARC to read and review for the blog tour and this is my honest and unbiased opinion.

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