Book Review: These Days of Ours by Juliet Ashton

Book Review: These Days of Ours by Juliet AshtonThese Days of Ours by Juliet Ashton
Published by Simon and Schuster on March 1st 2016
Rating: four-half-stars
Genres: Fiction, General
Pages: 416
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A novel about love. Raw important love. Small, beautiful love. And what happens when the person you love cannot be yours… Perfect for fans of Rowan Coleman, Jane Green and David Nicholls.   Kate and Becca are cousins and best friends. They have grown up together and shared all the most important milestones in their lives: childhood birthday parties, eighteenth birthdays, and now a wedding day as they each marry their childhood sweethearts, Charlie and Julian.   Kate has always loved Charlie - they were meant to be. Then she discovers that life never turns out quite how you expect it to. And love doesn't always follow the journey it should.   But best friends are forever, and true love will find a way, won't it…?   Praise for These Days of Ours:   ‘Gloriously and irresistibly romantic, I devoured These Days of Ours in a single sitting. There's not just one compelling love story here but two; the twenty-year love story of Kate and Charlie, and also the lifelong friendship between Kate and her cousin Becca. It's like One Day with all the additional trials and tribulations of female friendship’ Hannah Beckerman   ‘Juliet Ashton dramatises the landmarks of a young woman’s life with an irresistible lightness of touch. Warm, witty and surprising’ Louise Candlish   ‘A delicious story of love and loss that had me utterly entranced. It made me laugh and it made me weep, but most of all it made me relish the warmth of the human heart’ Kate Furnivall   Praise for Juliet Ashton:   'Funny, original and wise' Katie Fforde   'Cecelia Ahern fans will love this poignant yet witty romance' Sunday Mirror   'You'll laugh and cry your way through this original and touching love story' Closer

These Days of Ours is one of those slow-burning emotional books you absolutely devour. It might not be fast-paced, but the emotion is raw and real, and I quite enjoyed how gentle of a book it was and it doesn’t half pack a punch. Everyone wonders if they had moments they let go, or people they let go, because of misunderstandings or miscommunication, and this whole novel is about the great love of Kate’s life. It was very How I Met Your Mother, in the way that Ted and Robin were clearly meant for each other, even through ten years and Barney, etc, in the same way Kate and Charlie were clearly meant for each other, but life isn’t like that. Things get in the way, times change, new relationships occur.

I loved how These Days of Our focused on specific moments in Kate’s life. We didn’t see the minutiae of her life, just the most important bits, and it was always interesting how life had moved on between each little chapter. Time had always moved on a little bit, there were new tragedies, new hopes, new fears, but the one constant thing in Kate’s life was her cousin Becca, and her friend Charlie. I had mixed feelings about Becca. I’m sure she had the best of intentions, but she came across like a puppet master with her puppets, never really thinking through the consequences (because as far as Becca was concerned there’s no such thing as a consequence). But I could see why Kate never gave up on her, because they were just too close to ever really be apart for any length of time.

I really liked Kate. And you would need to like Kate to really feel the emotions of this book, because this is Kate’s life and we see her go through so much, for so many years, it’s like an epic look into someone’s life, something you would only normally be privy to if you were a friend. It felt like everything that happened to Kate was really, truly happening, it was that real, and intense. You just wanted Kate to have the best life possible, and aside from the whole Charlie thing, she did. She was awesome! And I kind of feel like if she hadn’t gone through everything she had gone through, her relationship with Charlie might not have lasted, if they had gotten together decades ago.

These Days of Ours was such a good read. It was filled to the brim with so much emotion, so much heart, it’s like Juliet poured her entire soul into this book, and we get to reap the reward as readers. It was such a satisfying book, too. There’s nothing like finishing a story and just being so HAPPY. Like the story has done the full circle.


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