I Found You, by Lisa Jewell

I have never read any of Lisa Jewell’s books before, although I can see there are thirteen other novels before this one. I enjoyed her style. It is easy and chatty and she creates characters that you like and feel empathy for. I also like the way that she plotted this story, always keeping the reader guessing.

I Found You has three stories running through the book, until they all begin to come together at the end. In Ridinghouse Bay, on the Yorkshire coast of England, a stranger is sitting alone on the beach all day, where Alice watches him. Eventually, she will take him out a coat when it starts to rain, and after that will rescue him from the weather, only to find that he has completely lost his memory.

Down in the South of England, Lily is waiting for her husband of three weeks to return home from work. She is from Eastern Europe and after a whirlwind romance has relocated to England with her new husband, Carl Monrose. He texts her all the time to say how much he loves her and that he is on his way home. Today he is late for the first time.

For our third story, we flick back to 1993 and a family from Croydon who regularly go to stay at Rabbit Cottage in Ridinghouse Bay. Two teenage kids with their Mum and Dad. They sit on the beach and enjoy two weeks of holiday. Grey is 17 and his younger sister Kirsty is 15. So the stage is set for the mystery to unravel. Is the man on the beach with no memory going to turn out to be the missing Carl Monrose, or will he be someone else entirely? Alice is hoping that the stranger will recover his memory before he needs to spend much longer in her home with her dogs and children. Secretly she is worried that he will remember that he is married. Her three dogs have given him the seal of approval and so has the youngest of her children. She certainly finds him handsome, although her track record with men is not impressive. She has three children, all with different fathers.

I enjoyed this book, it is easy to read and the pace is quick. With short chapters for each of the three plots giving you new information all the time, things are always moving along quickly. Alice is a very likeable figure with her disorganised lifestyle and poor choices in men. Obviously, the more that the story progresses, the more that you hope that she and the stranger will get together, even though you are constantly worrying that he might no be the pleasant character that he seems at first.

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TITLE: I Found You
AUTHOR(S): Lisa Jewell
PUBLISHER: Penguin Random House
RRP: $37.00
ISBN: 9781780893624

Marcus Hobson Marcus was until recently a businessman but has given all that up to follow his lifelong passion to be a writer. With a varied career behind him, including a degree in Ancient and Mediaeval History (and archaeology) he has wide ranging literary tastes from popular fiction to Viking sea burials. He is currently working on his second novel, a mix of fact and fiction set in the First World War (and crossing his fingers about getting his first book published). Marcus lives near Tauranga with his wife and their daughters, and is the Literary Editor of ARTbop, a local online magazine .

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