Book Review: If You Were Here by Alice Peterson

Yesterday I had the pleasure to interview author Alice Peterson about her latest story, as part of the Blog Tour to celebrate her Publication Day last week. And today I am sharing my review for this stunning story, If You Were Here:

Title: If You Were Here
Author: Alice Peterson
Published: August 22nd 2019 by Simon & Schuster

Blurb: When her daughter Beth dies suddenly, Peggy Andrews is left to pick up the pieces and take care of her granddaughter Flo. But sorting through Beth’s things reveals a secret never told: Beth was sick, with the same genetic condition that claimed her father’s life, and now Peggy must decide whether to keep the secret or risk destroying her granddaughter’s world.

Five years later, Flo is engaged and moving to New York with her fiancĂ©. Peggy never told her what she discovered, but with Flo looking towards her future, Peggy realises it’s time to come clean and reveal that her granddaughter’s life might also be at risk.

As Flo struggles to decide her own path, she is faced with the same life-altering questions her mother asked herself years before: if a test could decide your future, would you take it?

An emotional, inspiring and uplifting novel, IF YOU WERE HERE will break your heart and put it back together again. The brand new novel from the acclaimed author of A Song for Tomorrow, perfect for fans of Hannah Beckerman, Dani Atkins and Jill Mansell.

Review: Since discovering Alice Peterson a few years ago, I've fallen in love with every single book she has written. Her stories always make me cry but she always manages to make me feel better about life. I absolutely loved her last book, A Song for Tomorrow, so my expectations for this one were really high. But Alice Peterson did not disappoint at all, If You Were Here is a stunning story that stole my heart. 

This story is about Flo who has lost both her mother and her grand-father but who doesn't know they both had Huntington's Disease, a hereditary disorder that results in the death of brain cells, and that her chances of also having it are 50 %. She is about to move to New York with her fiancĂ© when her grand-mother finally finds the courage to tell her. As you can imagine this changes Flo's life completely and we follow her in her journey to come to terms with this new situation and to find herself again

Flo was such a fascinating and interesting character, it was impossible not to root for her. I loved getting to know her and she really inspired me to value life more and to challenge myself. Although I really don't know what I would do in her shoes, it was a real pleasure to share this journey with her and learn more about Huntington's and how it affects people and their family and friends. I really cannot imagine how hard it must be to live with it but I do think that this book shows us a fair portrayal of it and I'm sure that it will raise awareness on this disease.

Flo was not the only special character in this story though. I had a great team hanging out with Flo's granny Peggy and thanks to her old diaries, with Flo's mum too. The friendship between Peggy and her neighbour was definitely a highlight of the story for me, such a touching relationship. And the rest of the characters were pretty great too. 

If You Were Here is truly amazing, an unforgettable story that will pull at your heart-strings. Definitely one not to miss.

Rating: 5 stars

I would like to thank the publisher for sending me a copy of this book. This is my honest opinion. 

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