Published by Hachette UK on April 7th 2016
Genres: Fiction, General
Ethan is an exceptionally gifted young boy, obsessed with physics and astronomy.
His single mother Claire is fiercely protective of her brilliant, vulnerable son. But she can't shield him forever from learning the truth about what happened to him when he was a baby; why Mark had to leave them all those years ago.
Now age twelve, Ethan is increasingly curious about his past, especially his father's absence in his life. When he intercepts a letter to Claire from Mark, he opens a lifetime of feelings that, like gravity, will pull the three together again.
Relativity is a tender and triumphant story about unbreakable bonds, irreversible acts, and testing the limits of love and forgiveness.
Relativity was a book I wasn’t 100% sure was my cup of tea, but I was more than willing to give it a read because the publicist for the book was so insistent that it was such a good read. But, I was nervous to get started. I needn’t have been, mind because Relativity was an awesome read. It was so nuanced, so beautiful, so evocative, and as I always say with books about geniuses, especially genius kids, Ethan reminded me of a certain Sheldon Cooper, and I have The Big Bang Theory to thank for my knowledge of physics, and this book made way more sense since I do watch The Big Bang Theory.
Relativity is very much a novel about family, and what Claire does for Ethan is extraordinary, and more women should get credit for raising a kid by themselves, whether it’s someone special like Ethan or just a regular kid. Even more so with what happened to Ethan as a baby, because it’s unforgivable – isn’t it? How can you forgive something like that, get past it, let that person back in to your life? I was genuinely shocked by what happened. I was very curious to know why Ethan’s father Mark wasn’t around, what would happen when he returned, and the book didn’t disappoint. There’s no silly dramas, either, which was an absolute bonus.
There’s honestly not a lot I can say about the book. It was really, really good, but I just don’t have a lot to say, review-wise. It’s one of those understated stories that you enjoy for the pure pleasure of reading. I lost myself in the world of Claire, Ethan and Mark, because it’s such a captivating story, the kind that usually leads to reading group questions in the back. Antonia Hayes is an extraordinary writer, and this is an extraordinary book, I really, really loved it.