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Wednesday, 19 June 2019

#BookReview The Other Half of August Hope by Joanna Glen


ABOUT THE BOOK

Augusta Hope has never felt like she fits in.
At six, she’s memorising the dictionary. At seven, she’s correcting her teachers. At eight, she spins the globe and picks her favourite country on the sound of its name: Burundi.

And now that she's an adult, Augusta has no interest in the goings-on of the small town where she lives with her parents and her beloved twin sister, Julia.
When an unspeakable tragedy upends everything in Augusta's life, she's propelled headfirst into the unknown. She's determined to find where she belongs – but what if her true home, and heart, are half a world away?
published by The Borough Press
PURCHASE LINKS
Amazon UK  £8.97
hive.co.uk  £10.29
whsmith  £9.35

MY REVIEW
A book to break your heart while filling you with joy! Not an easy task to complete but this story manages it effortlessly!

It takes a lot for a book to evoke such emotions but you cannot have a character like Augusta and not fall in love with her and feel for her at every turn. She's a twin but so unlike her sister Julia - born a day apart! - and her 'quirkiness' often causes her parents not to 'get' her and blatantly prefer her sister Julia.

Augusta is a thinker - she loves words, she loves learning and she's never happy just to settle. Her parents run the local uniform shop and are part of the neighbourhood watch - they live life very simply and they don't like change, which makes them unable to understand Augusta and her outlook as she wants to explore and see new things.

We also get to hear the story of Parfait whose homeland is Burundi and he tells of his struggles day to day, and how he dreams of escaping to a better life. His story is so heartbreaking and really puts into perspective the day to day struggles we think we have a tough time dealing with. 

The 2 stories work so well alongside one another - they are fairly similar in character that they're always dreaming of better things and never feeling settled but living in very different worlds and dealing with very different obstacles.

As the years go by, Augusta and her issues of trying to fit in never go away and the internal/external struggles are so brilliantly portrayed. Dealing with new experiences like going to University, growing up and growing further apart from her family - it all brings new challenges to Augusta.

My heart broke a number of times during this book as certain events just took my breath away with how they were portrayed. It cleverly shows how fate can destroy or repair a life and how the link between people can be so profound and I just found it to be such an emotional read that I hope more people pick it up and get to love Augusta as much as I did!

★★★★★




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