- Series: Hqn
- Paperback: 320 pages
- Publisher: HQN Books (July 29, 2014)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0373779283
- ISBN-13: 978-0373779284
- Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
- Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 51 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,935,630 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Since You've Been Gone (Hqn) (English Edition) Paperback – July 29, 2014
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"A thrilling debut from an exciting young author."
"The perfect summer read: warm, sexy and addictive!" -Bestselling author Jenny Colgan
About the Author
Since securing the top prize in a widely-publicized UK writing contest, Anouska Knight has become an international sensation with her debut novel, Since You’ve Been Gone, hitting both The Bookseller and Heatseekers bestseller lists. A former bakery owner, she has gone on to wide acclaim in her native England and now writes full-time, currently on her next novel for Harlequin. Anouska lives in Staffordshire with husband Jim and their two young boys.
Top customer reviews
Holly Jefferson is a twenty-seven year old British widow who is struggling to reengage into the real world after losing her husband two years prior. Her husband Charlie was her high school sweetheart and she’s never had another boyfriend. Holly owns a cake company called, “Cake” and she throws all her energy into work, along with her partner Jesse. They’re hired to make a special cake for a very up-scale event, which involves some affluent clients. It’s there that Holly delivers the cake to billionaire Fergal Argyll who is celebrating his latest divorce and she also meets his twenty-nine year old son, Ciaran.
Yes, we know where this is going. Its chick-lit and obviously, boy has just met girl and we’re going to get into some very delicious situations. There’s a wonderful cast of sweet and not so characters surrounding Holly and Ciaran starting with Holly’s landlady, Cora Hedley, Holly’s pregnant sister, Martha, Rob and Daisy Grace. We don’t want to forget the parents, Catherine, Phil, Pattie, I mean Patricia ... and everyone's favorite dog, Dave! You may need to take notes to keep straight. I did. And there's the drama of “Cake Gate,” which almost crumbles before our eyes. Anouska Knight has a lovely way with words. Chick-lit is often considered predicable, but under her control there’s a flow to the story-telling that doesn’t seem contrived. We know there’s going to be a happy ending, but we enjoy the journey, have fun meeting all the characters, experiencing the situations and eventually … well, I’m not going to give it away.
SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE is about learning to embrace the unknown and unexpected tomorrows. It’s about learning to love again.
Anouska Knight won a writing contest on British TV and they published, SINCE YOU’VE BEEN GONE in England. It made it across the pond, July 29th, 2014. Look for her right here on Amazon, Facebook and Goodreads.
Holly and Ciaran were so lovely. I felt so bad for Holly. The hand she got dealt stunk, badly. I will gladly admit to crying when Holly shared certain moments in the past. I understood her hesitation with Ciaran. Her attraction was unexpected and she felt like the gap between them was too big to overcome.
The book is told from Holly's point of view. I guess that's why for most of the book I wasn't really sure what Ciaran was thinking or how he felt about Holly. Of course his actions spoke very loudly and while some may think they border on stalkerish, I thought they were sincere, well intended, and I liked them.
Anouska Knight really impressed me. I experienced so many emotions and when that happens, it means I connected with the characters and experienced, rather than read the book. Of course the fact that I once again lost on sleep and read this book instead also shows how much I enjoyed it. I can't wait to read her follow up book. I'm thinking of ordering copies from the UK, just to have those beautiful covers on my bookshelves and of course read A Part of Me before it comes out here. They'll look wonderful next to the copy I bought on Wednesday from my local B&N. :)
This book does tick a lot of the boxes for chick lit, though. You've got a single career woman, Holly, who runs a cake shop and lives alone with her dog. Holly attracts the attention of the wealthy Ciaran in a meet-cute scene that involves her delivering a cake in the shape of shoe-impaled testicles. (Is it weird that I would like to see that cake?) He pursues Holly, which leads to the requisite scenes featuring posh parties and glamorous people (although the consumerism is relatively light in this book). And then there's the push-pull of their romance, which of course never runs smoothly in a chick lit novel.
What gives the book its darker tone is the fact that Holly is a widow, still grieving her husband nearly two years after his death. The opening chapters are actually quite sad. They drew me in and made me root for Holly to emerge from her grief and find new love with Ciaran.
Overall, I found Since You've Been Gone to be a quick read with a likeable protagonist and a satisfying romance. Recommended for anyone who enjoys chick lit with a more serious side.
An ARC of this novel was provided by the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.