What I thought:
Alice lives in a cottage in a Yorkshire seaside town overlooking the beach with her three children. One rainy day she observes a man sitting on the beach all day, alone, without a coat and when she goes to speak to him she discovers he has no memory of who he is or where he has come from. Alice invites Frank (as her youngest daughter names him) to stay with her as a lodger for a while until he remembers something about himself.
Meanwhile, in London, Lily is newly married and has only been in the UK for 10 days (from the Ukraine) and still very much in the honeymoon stage so when her husband doesn’t return from work she sets about tracking him down.
The story alternates between Alice and Lily and also back to the same seaside town in 1993 where teenagers Kirsty and Gray are holidaying with their parents. On the beach they meet the handsome, enigmatic and intense Mark who befriends Kirsty before their holiday ends in a tragedy that nobody saw coming. We, the readers, are left to piece together all three strands of the book and work out how they are all linked.
The pacing was good and the momentum more than sufficient to carry me through with building curiosity and intrigue. I found the characters all believable and actually likeable in most cases, particularly the two female leads – Alice, with her chaotic life, is unapologetically human and flawed but someone I felt like I would want to know and Lily who has a fragility that made me worry for her but also a determination that made me cheer her on.
I did really enjoy this book. It was an easy and compelling read that flows well and works enough intrigue into the plot to keep a high level of interest.
Have you read this or anything else by Lisa Jewell? What are your thoughts?