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Torn by [Allan,  Gilli]
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Torn Kindle Edition

3.8 out of 5 stars 25 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Gilli Allan began writing novels in childhood - a hobby pursued throughout her teenage. Though she never finished anything, writing was only abandoned totally when she left home and real life took over from the fiction. Gilli did not go to Oxford or Cambridge, but instead went to Croydon Art College. She did not work on any of the broadsheets or in television, but did a variety of jobs - shop assistant, beauty-consultant, barmaid, as well as a job which involved picking up American tourists in London in order to sell them real estate in Florida. Gilli worked longest and most happily as a commercial artist - specifically as an illustrator in advertising. When Gilli stopped work to have her son she started writing again. Her first two completed novels - Just Before Dawn and Desires & Dreams - were immediately taken on by a publisher. Gilli writes honestly about modern relationships. In TORN she does not shy away from the messiness of life, or underplay the difficulties to be faced by single parents who seek to rebuild their lives.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1037 KB
  • Print Length: 462 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1783756918
  • Publisher: Accent Press (March 16, 2015)
  • Publication Date: March 16, 2015
  • Sold by: Simon and Schuster Digital Sales Inc
  • Language: English
  • Text-to-Speech: Not enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,032,510 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
TORN pulled me into the story of Jess from the very first paragraph. The book is a wonderful piece of prose from a gifted author with a unique voice. It is a romance with a twist, a slice from the life of Jessica Avery. On the one hand, TORN is about a thirty-something single mom who escapes a violently abusive relationship and the hassles of a stressful job in London, yearning for peace and stability in the country.

But on a deeper level, TORN is about the effects of abuse, the lurching starts and stops, the choices of an abused woman who in many ways is broken as she searches for a new life and a proper home for her child, stumbling along the way.

Listen to the rhythm of Ms. Allan's prose as Jess speaks:
"'Tonight marks a fresh start. A new life. And I'm determined to get it right this time.' With the words-and all the underlying unspoken implications-she felt the up-swell of elation, the utter conviction that re-making her life would be easy."

Jess's quest is more than she bargained for, however, and she falls into the arms of one man, only to fall into the arms of another.

TORN chronicles Jess's coming of age, if you will, her growth as a person, and the novel's scenes--those with her friends and with her child, Rory, who during the course of the narrative, has milestones of his own--include her romantic relationships with men in quite detailed and beautifully written prose. In fact, the sex scenes are masterfully written. A tightly-written novel, all the scenes, including those in the bedroom, have a purpose: they move the story along and illuminate the characters, especially Jess.

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Format: Kindle Edition
Jess and her young son, Rory, escape from their old life in search of something better. Jess's choice could not be more extreme. She leaves the bustle of London for the quiet of the countryside, her demanding and stressful job for a life of leisure, her abusive boyfriend for a single life.
Not a celibate one, though, as it turns out. Jess's desire to get away from it all, including romantic relationships, is thwarted by the appearance on the scene of not one, but two lovers. One is the suitable local landowner, the other is a dreamer, far younger than her, with no ambition - a hippie who hangs about with disreputable new age travellers. No contest? Well, that's just the problem.

This is an impressive book. Gilli Allan is an accomplished and fluent writer. She uses language well and, so rare these days, correctly. Her characterisation is superb. I found myself getting furious with the shallow and selfish Jess who invariably puts her own desires first, but fell a little in love with both her lovers. The plot is quite different from anything I've ever read before. Most definitely NOT chick lit. But how would you characterise it? Often the best books fail to fall neatly into genres and this is one of them. Gilli pulls no punches and makes no attempt to prettify her characters.
An unpredictable story but an all round very good read.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase

TORN came with me on my Kindle to the beach in Peurto Vallarta. It was under the palapas with the surf at my feet that I met Jess, a woman who tends to drop all plans, promises, and pledges--should an immediate pleasure knock on her door. Her son is a priority in her mind, but in reality he makes her top three list only on a few occasions when it suits her. To be her friend, you ought to have money, or time to babysit, or an eligible son...and if any of that were to change...

TORN is an interesting exploration of a typical charming psychopathic woman who has deep feelings, admirable plans and a motherly sense of obligation but whose morality has a way of dropping by the wayside the moment something fun arrive on scene.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Some see Jessica as a debauched woman. Some see her as a friend, and some fall in love with her.

Jessica is not a typical 'romance' kind of woman, trembling from head to toe as a man touches her cheek.

Well, maybe she does, but she is a sexual being..c'mon, surely you realize we women have grown up and make our own decisions about our life, our bodies?
No? Well grow up; this isn't the 50's. Some of us fought for the rights women enjoy (or disavow) now. This book is about a human being who is finding her own way and only knows some of what she really wants.
So~she had been sexually active, got accidentally pregnant (surely not the first or last woman to do that). She falls head over heels in love with her baby boy when he is born, and her aim is to bring him up with love and safety and knowledge. When safety seems to be the last thing she and the boy are experiencing, she gets out of the relationship and starts a life on her own with her child. Brave, I think.
I know what I felt about Danny, and maybe a little less about Jess because the 'modern' business woman bores me to death..they seem so smart about business, but so dumb about real life. I 'got' James right away, shook my head over Danny's brother's weird foray into being the embodiment of the old British head of family. I wanted to strangle Imogen..who in their right mind would put up with her!!
These people became very real for me.

I don't go through a (very good) book nitpicking about the 'story line' or the people I am introduced to. I settle into the story and it takes on a life of its own. 'TORN' did that.
The descriptions of the countryside, the hills, the woods, the farms..touched me deeply.
That is the sign of a very good author.

I really enjoyed this book and will read more of Gilli Allan's books, for sure.
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