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“A stylish and confident new voice—readers are going to love discovering Abbie Greaves.” —Louise Candlish, internationally bestselling author of Our House and Those People A poignant and thrilling love story about one woman’s decade-long search to reconnect with the love of her life who disappeared without a trace—a stirring and heartfelt page-turner from the critically acc “A stylish and confident new voice—readers are going to love discovering Abbie Greaves.” —Louise Candlish, internationally bestselling author of Our House and Those People A poignant and thrilling love story about one woman’s decade-long search to reconnect with the love of her life who disappeared without a trace—a stirring and heartfelt page-turner from the critically acclaimed author of The Silent Treatment. The straphangers of Ealing Broadway station are familiar with Mary O’Connor, the woman who appears every day to watch the droves of busy commuters. But Mary never asks anything from anyone. She only holds out a sign bearing a heartrending message: Come Home Jim. While others pass her by without a thought, Alice, a junior reporter at the Ealing Bugle, asks Mary to tell her story. Many years ago, Mary met the charming and romantic Jim Whitnell. She was certain she’d found her other half, until one day he vanished without any explanation. But Mary believes that Jim isn’t a cad, that he truly loved her and will return—especially because she’s recently received grainy phone calls from him saying he misses her. Touched but also suspicious, Alice quietly begins her own investigation into Jim’s disappearance, unraveling a decade-long story filled with desire, heartbreak, and hope. With Greaves’s signature warmth and charm, Anywhere for You is a romantic and immensely moving novel about the enduring power of love and finding happiness in unexpected places.


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“A stylish and confident new voice—readers are going to love discovering Abbie Greaves.” —Louise Candlish, internationally bestselling author of Our House and Those People A poignant and thrilling love story about one woman’s decade-long search to reconnect with the love of her life who disappeared without a trace—a stirring and heartfelt page-turner from the critically acc “A stylish and confident new voice—readers are going to love discovering Abbie Greaves.” —Louise Candlish, internationally bestselling author of Our House and Those People A poignant and thrilling love story about one woman’s decade-long search to reconnect with the love of her life who disappeared without a trace—a stirring and heartfelt page-turner from the critically acclaimed author of The Silent Treatment. The straphangers of Ealing Broadway station are familiar with Mary O’Connor, the woman who appears every day to watch the droves of busy commuters. But Mary never asks anything from anyone. She only holds out a sign bearing a heartrending message: Come Home Jim. While others pass her by without a thought, Alice, a junior reporter at the Ealing Bugle, asks Mary to tell her story. Many years ago, Mary met the charming and romantic Jim Whitnell. She was certain she’d found her other half, until one day he vanished without any explanation. But Mary believes that Jim isn’t a cad, that he truly loved her and will return—especially because she’s recently received grainy phone calls from him saying he misses her. Touched but also suspicious, Alice quietly begins her own investigation into Jim’s disappearance, unraveling a decade-long story filled with desire, heartbreak, and hope. With Greaves’s signature warmth and charm, Anywhere for You is a romantic and immensely moving novel about the enduring power of love and finding happiness in unexpected places.

30 review for Anywhere for You

  1. 5 out of 5

    Ceecee

    Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for Jim Whitney for seven years and she’ll go to the ends of the earth to find him and bring him home. The story goes backwards and forwards from 2005 to their meeting in Belfast to London, especially Ealing in 2018. This is a heartbreaking story of love, acceptance but wrapped in a mystery that evolves and unfolds well. Mary is a lovely character, you feel her love, her desperation and sadness and her need for self preservation and it tears at your heartst Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for Jim Whitney for seven years and she’ll go to the ends of the earth to find him and bring him home. The story goes backwards and forwards from 2005 to their meeting in Belfast to London, especially Ealing in 2018. This is a heartbreaking story of love, acceptance but wrapped in a mystery that evolves and unfolds well. Mary is a lovely character, you feel her love, her desperation and sadness and her need for self preservation and it tears at your heartstrings. This is a thoughtful novel that covers some relevant issues, it’s well written with a good premise and a well executed plot line. I like the friendship angle and how that can be a very powerful thing which can help give you a second chance. Through her friends, especially Alice, Mary reassesses the truth of her relationship with Jim which becomes a very positive thing. The story ends on an optimistic note which I like. Overall, this is an enjoyable read which makes you think. I definitely want to read more by Abbie Greaves. With thanks to NetGalley and Random House UK/Cornerstone for the arc for an honest review.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    Both lovely and devastating. Perfect for fans of Colleen Oakley, Rebecca Serle, and Josie Silver.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Katie B

    Searching for a long lost love is a fairly common premise so it's always neat when an author is able to come up with a somewhat unique story. I enjoyed the book and think it would be a great book club selection. Each person might take away something different from the characters and story which usually makes for a lively and opinionated discussion. Mary O'Connor met Jim Whitnell and they fell in love. One day he vanishes without an explanation. Years later, Mary hasn't gotten over Jim's disappear Searching for a long lost love is a fairly common premise so it's always neat when an author is able to come up with a somewhat unique story. I enjoyed the book and think it would be a great book club selection. Each person might take away something different from the characters and story which usually makes for a lively and opinionated discussion. Mary O'Connor met Jim Whitnell and they fell in love. One day he vanishes without an explanation. Years later, Mary hasn't gotten over Jim's disappearance. Desperate for him to return, she hangs out at Ealing Station on a regular basis. For hours at a time she holds a sign with a simple message, "Come home, Jim". A reporter named Alice believes there is a story here that might help save her job so she begins investigating what happened to Jim. The story alternates between the past featuring Mary and Jim's relationship and the present day where you see how drastically Mary's life has changed in his absence. The mystery of Jim is really what sustained my interest more so than the romance elements. Alice has a key role in the book but at times it felt like Mary was regulated to the backburner. The pacing was slow in some parts but the book was a worthwhile read. Will check out more books from this author as she has shown she is capable of taking me on an interesting reading journey. I received a free advance copy of this book as part of the LibraryThing Early Reviewers program. All thoughts expressed are my honest opinion.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Amanda

    Mary’s husband Jim disappeared seven years ago, they had a very loving and happy marriage and his disappearance has greatly affected Mary who has not given up hope that he will return. Every day for the last seven years Mary goes to Ealing Train Station and stands on the bustling platform with a sign that says “Come Home Jim” hoping he will see it! We go back to when Jim and Mary meet and had a whirlwind romance, with Mary leaving Wales to be with Jim in London, we trace her path to the present d Mary’s husband Jim disappeared seven years ago, they had a very loving and happy marriage and his disappearance has greatly affected Mary who has not given up hope that he will return. Every day for the last seven years Mary goes to Ealing Train Station and stands on the bustling platform with a sign that says “Come Home Jim” hoping he will see it! We go back to when Jim and Mary meet and had a whirlwind romance, with Mary leaving Wales to be with Jim in London, we trace her path to the present day. I really felt for Mary who never gave up hope, even when others doubted her. I loved how the past and present timelines emerge together so effortlessly. A very moving story that covers loss but also incorporates hope and friendship where you would least expect it. Thank you to Netgalley for my copy in exchange for a review.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Louise Wilson

    Mary O'Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love for the last seven years. Every morning without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway Station and sets herself up among the commuters, in her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words "Come Home Jim". Mary stands at the exit of the train station with her sign, she has done this every day for the last seven years. A chance comment has made her an internet sensation. Local Journalist, Alice is in need of a front page story attempts to fi Mary O'Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love for the last seven years. Every morning without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway Station and sets herself up among the commuters, in her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words "Come Home Jim". Mary stands at the exit of the train station with her sign, she has done this every day for the last seven years. A chance comment has made her an internet sensation. Local Journalist, Alice is in need of a front page story attempts to find out what happened to Jim. Jim had been Mary's beau. The story covers: men's mental health problems, heartbreak, friendships and a missing person. The story flips back and forth between the present day and the past. This is quite a sad story to read. It's well written with some lovely characters. This book made a nice change from the books I normally read. I would like to thank #NetGalley, #RandomHouseUK, #CornerStone and the author #AbbieGreaves for my ARC of #TheEndsOfTheEarth in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Miriam Smith (A Mother’s Musings)

    “The Ends of the Earth” is the second novel by author Abbie Greaves, after the success with her critically acclaimed debut “The Silent Treatment”. - Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love of her life for the past seven years. Every evening without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway station and sets herself up among the commuters. In her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words: ‘Come Home Jim’. When an unexpected phone call turns her world on its head, in spite of all “The Ends of the Earth” is the second novel by author Abbie Greaves, after the success with her critically acclaimed debut “The Silent Treatment”. - Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love of her life for the past seven years. Every evening without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway station and sets herself up among the commuters. In her hands Mary holds a sign which bears the words: ‘Come Home Jim’. When an unexpected phone call turns her world on its head, in spite of all her efforts, Mary can no longer find the strength to hold herself together. She must finally face what happened all those years ago, and answer the question – where on earth is Jim? “The Ends of the Earth” is both sad and uplifting, a love story and a mystery and focuses on important, heartfelt themes like grief, mental health issues, living with the fallout of a missing family member and coping with life’s difficulties. I liked Mary, my heart went out to her, keeping her nightly vigil, trying to deal emotionally with the last conversation she had before Jim left and her perseverance in believing he’ll still come home. Alice, her journalist friend thinks there’s a story there that will help save her job but since Mary doesn’t know she’s a reporter, she has to do her investigating in secret. But Alice also has her demons, her father disappeared from her life when she was young, so her efforts at seeking the missing Jim, reawaken her emotions. The story is told in the past and present, allowing the reader to see how Mary and Jim’s relationship developed and also Alice as she goes about her research, enlisting the help of Kit, a very likeable character who is dealing with some personal issues as well. What I took most from this story was the importance of community and having friends and with an ending that satisfactorily tied everything together. I enjoyed this tale of love and loss and can happily recommend it as an easy but powerful and entertaining read. 4 stars.

  7. 5 out of 5

    Jennifer

    3.5 /5 stars Anywhere For You is a story that is a bit Women's Fiction and a bit Mystery. The narrators are Mary and Alice (3rd person POVs). The story is mostly set in London. The book has a past/present timeline. The present is in 2018. And the past starts in 2005 and moves forward. In the present Mary is a 40 years old Irish woman. She works at a grocery store and volunteers at night at a hotline called Nightline. She holds up a sign in the subway that says "Come Home Jim". In the past Mary is 27. 3.5 /5 stars Anywhere For You is a story that is a bit Women's Fiction and a bit Mystery. The narrators are Mary and Alice (3rd person POVs). The story is mostly set in London. The book has a past/present timeline. The present is in 2018. And the past starts in 2005 and moves forward. In the present Mary is a 40 years old Irish woman. She works at a grocery store and volunteers at night at a hotline called Nightline. She holds up a sign in the subway that says "Come Home Jim". In the past Mary is 27. And we get to see how she met Jim. Alice (26) meets Mary in the present and tries to help her. I loved the idea of this book. I was curious to find out what Mary's sign meant. And I was curious to find out what happened to Jim. But I was hoping for more of an epic love story. I enjoyed the mystery aspect of the book. And I enjoyed both narrators. But this story was definitely not what I was expecting. Mary was a super unique character. And the fact that mental health was mentioned made the story more meaningful. But I wanted more, especially from the ending. Thanks to edelweiss and William Morrow for allowing me to read this book.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Marjorie

    I thought this was a perfect book to read on Valentine's weekend. I thought I would be moved by this story. I actually thought I might be brought to bittersweet tears by the end. But none of that happened. Instead I struggled through the book and I never could find any type of connection to the characters or the story. I think something I had read prior to choosing this book had led me to believe there was more depth to the story, more literary quality. But unfortunately, this is not a book I ca I thought this was a perfect book to read on Valentine's weekend. I thought I would be moved by this story. I actually thought I might be brought to bittersweet tears by the end. But none of that happened. Instead I struggled through the book and I never could find any type of connection to the characters or the story. I think something I had read prior to choosing this book had led me to believe there was more depth to the story, more literary quality. But unfortunately, this is not a book I can wholeheartedly recommend.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Sue

    I don’t know how to describe this book beyond the fact that I found it utterly heartbreaking. Why would Mary sit at Ealing station every day for SEVEN years, holding a sign saying ‘come home Jim’? Why did Jim just disappear one day after being in a loving, six year, relationship with Mary? How do you recover from that? Where has Jim gone? Does he want to be found. Abbie Greaves has written a heartbreaking mystery story about love, depression, missing persons, friendships and the search for the t I don’t know how to describe this book beyond the fact that I found it utterly heartbreaking. Why would Mary sit at Ealing station every day for SEVEN years, holding a sign saying ‘come home Jim’? Why did Jim just disappear one day after being in a loving, six year, relationship with Mary? How do you recover from that? Where has Jim gone? Does he want to be found. Abbie Greaves has written a heartbreaking mystery story about love, depression, missing persons, friendships and the search for the truth. Mary is supported by a group of friends who are equally well written; Ted, the manager of a helpline, Olive, one of the call handlers, Kit, a young banker and Alice, a journalist who is looking for a scoop to save her job. They pull together to try and find out the truth about Jim’s disappearance and in the process, have a journey of self discovery. A truly fabulous read - you won’t be disappointed. I will be looking out for other books by this author - she’s a new favourite! Keep the tissues handy.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Meaghan

    Anywhere for You is unlike anything I have read before. It seems like a story of love and loss initially but then unfolds to be a sort of mystery story as well--how all of these characters ended up where they are now. The story is heartbreaking but also restores your faith in people and gives you hope for second chances. Such a well done execution balancing so many emotions, characters and storylines. I'll be thinking about this book for awhile. This would make an excellent book club pick! Many t Anywhere for You is unlike anything I have read before. It seems like a story of love and loss initially but then unfolds to be a sort of mystery story as well--how all of these characters ended up where they are now. The story is heartbreaking but also restores your faith in people and gives you hope for second chances. Such a well done execution balancing so many emotions, characters and storylines. I'll be thinking about this book for awhile. This would make an excellent book club pick! Many thanks to William Morrow & Netgalley for an ARC.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Sara Oxton

    The Ends of the Earth by Abbie Greaves a slow starting three-star read. If the whole story was as good as the 2nd half then it would have been five-stars, but I have struggled with this, I have picked it up and put it down three times as I just couldn’t get stuck in, and I hate not finishing a story so I kept going, but honestly it could have easily still been waiting on me to finish it. It has a good story, but it just didn’t keep me going. I do plan on trying something else by this author, to The Ends of the Earth by Abbie Greaves a slow starting three-star read. If the whole story was as good as the 2nd half then it would have been five-stars, but I have struggled with this, I have picked it up and put it down three times as I just couldn’t get stuck in, and I hate not finishing a story so I kept going, but honestly it could have easily still been waiting on me to finish it. It has a good story, but it just didn’t keep me going. I do plan on trying something else by this author, to see if it’s just my slump that caused me to not enjoy this as much.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Katie Rush

    I’ve been dipping in and out of this book as it never had me enthralled. The storyline is enjoyable to follow and highlights the need to address mental health issues especially in men. What it lacked was anything gripping, it was all quite predictable and came together nicely. Maybe in the summer this would make a perfect summer read but I just needed something a bit more in-depth right now.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Janet

    NOTE: THE BOOK IS KNOWN AS "ANYWHERE FOR YOU " IN THE USA AND CANADA. Date reviewed/posted: November 10 2020 When life for the entire universe and planet turns on its end and like everyone else you "have nothing to do" while your place of work is once again closed and you are continuing to be in #COVID19 #socialisolation as the #secondwave is upon us, superspeed readers like me can read 300+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today. I requested and received a temporary digital NOTE: THE BOOK IS KNOWN AS "ANYWHERE FOR YOU " IN THE USA AND CANADA. Date reviewed/posted: November 10 2020 When life for the entire universe and planet turns on its end and like everyone else you "have nothing to do" while your place of work is once again closed and you are continuing to be in #COVID19 #socialisolation as the #secondwave is upon us, superspeed readers like me can read 300+ pages/hour, so yes, I have read the book … and many more today. I requested and received a temporary digital Advance Reader Copy of this book from #NetGalley, the publisher and the author in exchange for an honest review. From the publisher, as I do not repeat the contents or story of books in reviews, I let them do it as they do it better than I do 😸. Mary O’Connor has been keeping a vigil for her first love for the past seven years. Every evening without fail, Mary arrives at Ealing Broadway station and sets herself up among the commuters. In her hands, Mary holds a sign which bears the words: ‘Come Home Jim.’ Call her mad, call her a nuisance, call her a drain on society – Mary isn’t going anywhere. That is until an unexpected call turns her world on its head. In spite of all her efforts, Mary can no longer find the strength to hold herself together. She must finally face what happened all those years ago, and answer the question – where on earth is Jim? This book was not what I expected, but nonetheless, I simply loved it (I am the one at the tube station having a panic attack, BTW, as there are so many PEOPLE there: sometimes I miss my medium-sized city that I also call home!) The book is lyrical and it was like reading poetry without the heartburn The characters are lovingly crafted and the story may not be what you expect, but you will thank yourself for reading it. As always, I try to find a reason to not rate with stars as I simply adore emojis (outside of their incessant use by "🙏-ed Social Influencer Millennials/#BachelorNation survivors/Tik-Tok and YouTube Millionaires/snowflakes etc. " on Instagram and Twitter... Get a real job, people!) so let's give it (MIND THE GAP ... 🚇🚇🚇🚇🚇)

  14. 5 out of 5

    Vero Carriso

    4.5⭐ Wow, i really liked this book. I took my time to write this review, cuz I needed some time to gather my thoughts. Let's start from the beginning! Abbie Graves what a wonderful book you wrote! Earlier this week, I was looking for some romance novel when I stumbled upon this beautiful cover. This was the one. It was fate. So, I read the synopsis and found it even more interesting. Immeadiately my mind said: Heyy, this sounds like The Lake House, we definetely need to read this! And I was like: 4.5⭐ Wow, i really liked this book. I took my time to write this review, cuz I needed some time to gather my thoughts. Let's start from the beginning! Abbie Graves what a wonderful book you wrote! Earlier this week, I was looking for some romance novel when I stumbled upon this beautiful cover. This was the one. It was fate. So, I read the synopsis and found it even more interesting. Immeadiately my mind said: Heyy, this sounds like The Lake House, we definetely need to read this! And I was like: well, its settled. It was not as if I was going to argue with my mind. What I'm trying to say is that I thought it could have some magical element/plot twist and I was totally here for it. Disclaimer: it has no magic. It has a very realistic and authentic resolution of the main conflict aka Jim's disappearence. So, this leads us to Mary. What an interesting woman she is. Objectively speaking one could see her as naïve, unbalanced and as a denier. Maybe, yes but I found it quite endearing the way she loved Jim and was prepared to go through hell and beyond to stay with him. Her devotion towards him was incredible, unmatched but also sort of too much in the end. But what I'm trying to say is that Mary loved Jim deeply and fiercely, and to be loved like that is a privilage. Quite uplifting the ending, I really want the best for Mary. She deserves to be happy. Bravo, Abbie! Keep writing such beautiful and lovely stories! You are doing great! Ps: I'm thinking of reading her first book (The Silent Treatment), sounds very promising!

  15. 4 out of 5

    Jeannie Zelos

    The Ends of the Earth, Abbie Greaves Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre: General fiction . I was really intrigued by the description, and having enjoyed Abbie's novels before I really expected to love it. Maybe in a different time I would, but I'm reading this in November 20, caught in the Covid depression fugue that has many of us in its hold, and its just too drear, to somber for me. It deals with such important issues of mental health that I feel bad about saying I didn't enjoy it, but The Ends of the Earth, Abbie Greaves Review from Jeannie Zelos book reviews Genre: General fiction . I was really intrigued by the description, and having enjoyed Abbie's novels before I really expected to love it. Maybe in a different time I would, but I'm reading this in November 20, caught in the Covid depression fugue that has many of us in its hold, and its just too drear, to somber for me. It deals with such important issues of mental health that I feel bad about saying I didn't enjoy it, but I couldn't really connect properly to the story or the characters. I felt when I got to the end ( and of course not the end I wanted...) that I had more questions than answers, and I just don't get along with stories that make me feel that way. I like everything – or almost everything – wrapped up, questions answered, no missing parts, and here that didn't happen. Unless I've missed something ;-) Stars: Two, I might come back and reread one day, when times are less grim and my mind can take a book that has a lot of sadness in. Right now its just not a story for me. That's down to me, not the book, others love it and you may too. ARC supplied by Netgalley and publishers

  16. 4 out of 5

    Emily

    I absolutely loved this book. Abbie Greaves has done it again! I was a huge fan of The Silent Treatment and had high hopes for this and it definitely lives up to my hype! I couldn’t put this down - the first few chapters are a bit of a slow burn but never enough to even make me consider putting it down. I had to know what had happened between Mary and Jim. On the surface, this seems like an unrequited love story but it is so much more and explores male mental health, grief, love, and loss in Grea I absolutely loved this book. Abbie Greaves has done it again! I was a huge fan of The Silent Treatment and had high hopes for this and it definitely lives up to my hype! I couldn’t put this down - the first few chapters are a bit of a slow burn but never enough to even make me consider putting it down. I had to know what had happened between Mary and Jim. On the surface, this seems like an unrequited love story but it is so much more and explores male mental health, grief, love, and loss in Greaves own personal style. At one point I had to stop reading because it was so well written I was feeling exactly what Mary was so I needed a break - you’ll know what I mean if you read this (you should)! It took me a few days to write this review as like with The Silent Treatment, The Ends of The Earth gave me an emotional hangover. The focus on issues such as grief and male mental health from different perspectives really resonated with me and I think this is an excellent way of understanding male mental health implications without reading a non-fiction/preachy book. In case you can’t tell I would highly recommend this book.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Amanda (THE CAFFEINATED READER)

    Mary waits at the train station every day, holding a sign, “Come Home Jim”. It’s a curious sight but no one pays her any mind until she causes a bit of a ruckus and a young journalist, Alice, knows there’s a story there. What’s more is she connects with Mary on a personal level. She knows the pain of losing someone in the blink of an eye. She resolves to find Jim, to give Mary closure. The story asks the questions, how much do we really know about anyone, how long can we hang on to love, how muc Mary waits at the train station every day, holding a sign, “Come Home Jim”. It’s a curious sight but no one pays her any mind until she causes a bit of a ruckus and a young journalist, Alice, knows there’s a story there. What’s more is she connects with Mary on a personal level. She knows the pain of losing someone in the blink of an eye. She resolves to find Jim, to give Mary closure. The story asks the questions, how much do we really know about anyone, how long can we hang on to love, how much do we choose to leave out when we look at our loved ones? I suppose this is a romance, it absolutely has that aspect. But more it’s a story of self-discovery and triumph over loss. It also broaches the incredibly important topic of mental health, specifically male mental health, which I appreciate so much. It’s is an achingly beautiful book and I will read anything Abbie Greaves writes forevermore.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Jamie

    Abbie Greaves never disappoints, I loved The Silent Treatment and I loved this book! Mary sits in Ealing station for seven years holding a sign “Come Home Jim” where has Jim gone? Does he want to be found? This story is heartbreaking about love, friendship, depression and searching for the truth. Mary has a group of friends that surround and support her. Together they want to find out the truth about Jim. This is a fantastic book and I can’t wait to read what Abbie writes next! Definitely add th Abbie Greaves never disappoints, I loved The Silent Treatment and I loved this book! Mary sits in Ealing station for seven years holding a sign “Come Home Jim” where has Jim gone? Does he want to be found? This story is heartbreaking about love, friendship, depression and searching for the truth. Mary has a group of friends that surround and support her. Together they want to find out the truth about Jim. This is a fantastic book and I can’t wait to read what Abbie writes next! Definitely add this to you TBR! Thanks to Edelweiss for my advanced ebook copy!

  19. 5 out of 5

    VL

    Greaves captures the grief of a lost relationship so well.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Susan

    This was a touching book by Abbie Greaves about love, loss and friendship. It was sad at times - I just felt so bad for Mary and wanted her to move on with her life - but uplifting in the end. It was well written and I look forward to reading more by Abbie Greaves. Thanks to NetGalley for the digital ARC.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Caroline Kerdouci

    “We expect so much of love. And yet, like all of us, it can falter and it can fail.” What happens when someone you love has promised to be with you to the ends of the earth and then breaks that promise? It doesn’t take much imagination to realise that could be the cue for much heartache and introspection, self pity and denial depending upon your perspective. If like Mary, who’s lost the love of her life, you have the misguided notion that love can conquer all however many challenging obstacles ar “We expect so much of love. And yet, like all of us, it can falter and it can fail.” What happens when someone you love has promised to be with you to the ends of the earth and then breaks that promise? It doesn’t take much imagination to realise that could be the cue for much heartache and introspection, self pity and denial depending upon your perspective. If like Mary, who’s lost the love of her life, you have the misguided notion that love can conquer all however many challenging obstacles are thrown in its path then think again. Abbie Greaves dashes your fairytale hopes with a realistic and heartfelt portrayal of love, loss and longing that is simply sublime. Mary works by day at supermarket Supershop, spending a few nights a week at the crisis call centre Nightline. In between these times Mary holds a nightly vigil amongst the commuters at Ealing Broadway station; in her hands a homemade sign asking for Jim to come home. She’s been doing this for the past seven years without fail, a character engulfed by guilt and sadness, frozen in time and one that immediately tugged at my heartstrings. The ins and outs of Jim’s disappearance are slowly forthcoming as the author allows the intricacies of Mary and Jim’s relationship to unfold, tantalising you with all the joyous highs and unbearable lows of their complicated love story. Taking the reader from the Stormont Hotel in Belfast where the couple first meet to Ealing, London, and from the height of their passion to their separation, the storyline also contains a mystery element which I loved. Whilst details of Jim’s disappearance had a profound effect upon my own mood, plunging me into despair and pity for two characters that never felt fictional to me I was bouyed up immensely by the investigative part of the narrative. A few things occur within a short space of time to lift the fog from Mary’s eyes, causing her to dust off those rose tinted spectacles, beginning with an unexpected call to the crisis centre, a chance meeting with Alice, a junior reporter on the local rag and a video of Mary’s nightly vigil that goes viral. All these seemingly minor events combine to form the basis of a wonderfully engaging read. The author has plotted meticulously well, bringing a lighter tone to the narrative with Kit and Alice’s roles so there’s little chance of sinking into doom and gloom. Certainly the dynamic between these two helps offset the despondency that traps some of the characters in cages of their own making. For me they are the armbands that keep the likes of Mary afloat and their presence is crucial in injecting a tiny amount of humour into this tale. Never deviating from the path of honesty and realism, anyone who has any experience, first or second hand of the debilitating effects of a loved one’s inability to let go of the past, this is fiction that will resonate with you on every level. Abbie Greaves writes about male mental health and the fragility of the human mind in a remarkably tender, accessible way. All of her characters orbit the same circle, in which their lives are touched to varying degrees by this hidden, unvoiced problem that gets swept under the carpet. The author’s fascination for everyday people afflicted by this condition, regardless of their age, status or lifestyle shines through in her thoughtful, insightful and poignant prose so that I consider her as an author of immense talent, and one that I intend to keep coming back to. Her flair for laying bare her characters souls, forensically scrutinising their habits and behaviours with such tenderness and compassion renders her an author high up on my favourite list. I think Abbie Greaves has brought the same sense of optimism to this novel as she did with The Silent Treatment, perhaps slightly more so, guiding her characters on a journey through their darkest days to brighter ones. Handling each one of them with the utmost delicacy, using friendship, kindness support and understanding to move them a few steps forward, Abbie Greaves introduces colour into the narrative striking the perfect balance between sadness and hopefulness. By enabling her characters to slough off years worth of guilt and feelings of inferiority to smooth the way to a happier future, this is ultimately a tale of metamorphosis. Maybe in due course as Mary and her new found friends can take their first faltering steps towards acceptance and forgiveness they can believe in time as a great healer even if they realise love doesn’t always save the day. In a novel I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend, the author showcases her powers of emotional perceptiveness, reaching out to her readers in a manner that makes you feel you are not alone. This author clearly writes from the heart, creating characters who represent all us ordinary folk on the street which is why she deserves another 5 stars from a reader who isn’t isn’t always so easily impressed!! My thanks as always to the publisher and Netgalley for giving me the opportunity to read.

  22. 5 out of 5

    Sue

    “Mary O’Connor had become part of the furniture at Ealing Broadway station. Like most items abandoned on the roadside, she is overlooked and underappreciated.” So opens Abbie Greaves’ Anything for You, a gem of a psychological novel about troubled souls, love, loss, and healing. The story opens with a brief prologue set in 2018 as Mary powerwalks from her job stocking shelves at a London supermarket, enters West London’s Ealing station, unfolds her now tattered message, and hold it up for homewa “Mary O’Connor had become part of the furniture at Ealing Broadway station. Like most items abandoned on the roadside, she is overlooked and underappreciated.” So opens Abbie Greaves’ Anything for You, a gem of a psychological novel about troubled souls, love, loss, and healing. The story opens with a brief prologue set in 2018 as Mary powerwalks from her job stocking shelves at a London supermarket, enters West London’s Ealing station, unfolds her now tattered message, and hold it up for homeward-bound commuters to see. “Come home Jim” reads her poignant sign—a message she has displayed at the station for hours every evening and into the night for the past seven years. In chapter 1, Mary leaves the station for her 11 p.m. to 3 a.m. shift at NightLine, a crisis hotline where she began volunteering after seeing a notice on the supermarket community bulletin board. She hesitated for a time, recalling her mother’s words: “You can’t help anyone until you can help yourself” but eventually reasoned, “If it was only people beyond the need for help who offered it, then surely there would be nobody working for charities at all.” At Nightline, readers meet Ted, who manages the crisis line, and two other volunteers, Kit and Olive. As Mary takes her first call, a male voice on the other end of the line, unexpectedly announces, “I wanted to say that I missed you.” Sure that the man on the other end of the line is Jim, the love of her life with whom she had spent six years before his mysterious disappearance seven years ago, Mary bumbles to transfer the call to her cell phone, losing him in the process. In chapter 2, 2005, readers meet Jim as he meets Mary for the first time in Belfast. Jim, a physician, is attending a conference in a hotel where Mary is an event planner. Just after she spills scalding coq au vin down the front of her white shirt a half hour before a wedding reception is to begin and glances up to make sure no one has seen her, Jim asks from the doorway, “You alright there?” As a plum tomato drops from her left breast, he stifles a laugh. He picks up a fallen chicken thigh, eats it, and the two are immediately drawn to one another. As the novel proceeds, Greaves alternates chapters set in the present (2018) with chapters set in the past, the latter progressing chronologically from 2005 to 2011—the six years that Jim and Mary spend living together in London. To avoid confusion, each chapter is clearly marked with the year. Readers meet Mary’s family in Ireland and Jim’s parents in London as the pair spend blissful days but as Jim’s haunted past is slowly revealed. In the 2018 chapters, readers meet Alice, a young journalist about to lose her job as newspapers struggle during the years of online and TV news. Her only chance of retaining her job is to come up with an impressive story, and then she encounters Mary at Ealing station and decides to volunteer for Nightline, all the while concealing her identity as a reporter. Mysterious calls from Jim continue, and Alice determines to find the missing love of Mary’s life. With social media coming into play and a cross country manhunt, Abbie Greaves delivers a lively and touching novel about people in need of human connection. In the end, she also delivers a satisfying ending. Thanks to Book Club Girls, a Facebook book group, and to NetGalley for providing an advance reader copy.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Marianne

    4.5★s The Ends of the Earth (also titled Anywhere For You) is the second novel by British author, Abbie Greaves. For nigh on seven years, Mary O’Connor has stood, with a cardboard sign, for hours, virtually every night, at the gates of Ealing Broadway Underground, watching for one man. Mary’s not begging, not some old bag lady: she works days at the SuperShop; she volunteers at NightLine, the crisis call-centre; she’s well-groomed; and she’s beautiful. Her sign pleads “COME HOME JIM”. One day, tho 4.5★s The Ends of the Earth (also titled Anywhere For You) is the second novel by British author, Abbie Greaves. For nigh on seven years, Mary O’Connor has stood, with a cardboard sign, for hours, virtually every night, at the gates of Ealing Broadway Underground, watching for one man. Mary’s not begging, not some old bag lady: she works days at the SuperShop; she volunteers at NightLine, the crisis call-centre; she’s well-groomed; and she’s beautiful. Her sign pleads “COME HOME JIM”. One day, though, she loses her composure. She’s had a call at NightLine, and she’s sure it’s Jim. In the crush of the crowd at the station the next evening, her vocal eruption (‘WILL YOU GIVE ME SOME FECKING SPACE TO BREATHE!’) is captured on a phone and trends on Twitter. Junior investigative journalist at The Ealing Bugle, Alice Keaton witnesses Mary’s distress and offers comfort. Usually reticent about her personal life, Mary opens up a little to Alice, revealing her anguish about Jim’s unexplained departure, seven years earlier, and her pledge to be there when he decides to return. Alice wonders why anyone would leave this beautiful, caring woman? Without disclosing that she’s a reporter, Alice vows to do all she can to find Jim, both for Mary’s sake, and because a front-page story like this will quash her looming redundancy. Alice volunteers at NightLine, meets the rest of the team, and sees Mary home in the aftermath of another call from Jim. It gives her the opportunity to glean more information about the mystery man who has inspired such dedication in Mary. Alice has her own experience with a missing person, but a trek across the country all the way to the north of Scotland with NightLine volunteer Kit, chasing sightings of Jim, is the last thing she expected to be doing. The story is presented with a dual timeline: the present day (2018) follows the progress of Alice’s search for Jim; the past details the romantic start, in 2005, to a love affair that at first seems idyllic. Gradually, though, the edges fray and reveal “a picture of Jim’s life that was more complex and troubled than the image presented through the lens of Mary’s adoration.” “Mary suddenly realised that she’d been so swept away by Jim, their chemistry and the brilliance of him, that she hadn’t had the chance to assess the pedestal she’d strapped him to, the nicks and notches that made him as flawed as everyone else.” Greaves is skilled in her portrayal of those stuck in the denial stage of grief, when acceptance is too painful a next step to take. She also highlights the terrible stigma attached to mental illness and the psychological burden that the pressure from expectations of family, friends and colleagues can exert, particularly for men: “Why must the world make men so . . . guarded? It is to their detriment.” Greaves gives the reader believable characters, appealing for their very human flaws, some delightful romance, and a mix of promising and bittersweet but realistic endings. A heart-warming and thought-provoking read. This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by NetGalley and Random House UK Cornerstone.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Brooke

    Told from alternate timelines of the “past” and “present,” Anywhere For You is the story of Mary and the love of her life, Jim, who has disappeared. Every day for the last seven years, Mary has stood at Ealing Broadway Station holding a sign that says, “Come home, Jim,” in the hopes that he will see her sign and come back to her and resume the wonderful life they had together. One day, Alice comes across Mary at the station, seeing her having a breakdown, screaming, and swearing at passers-by to Told from alternate timelines of the “past” and “present,” Anywhere For You is the story of Mary and the love of her life, Jim, who has disappeared. Every day for the last seven years, Mary has stood at Ealing Broadway Station holding a sign that says, “Come home, Jim,” in the hopes that he will see her sign and come back to her and resume the wonderful life they had together. One day, Alice comes across Mary at the station, seeing her having a breakdown, screaming, and swearing at passers-by to give her some space. Alice convinces Mary to have a drink and take a break with her, and Alice listens to Mary’s story. Alice soon comes to find that she has a lot in common with Mary, as someone from her life disappeared years ago as well, and Alice vows to help Mary find the answers she deserves and needs to get on with her life. This book showcases mental illness and the lengths we go to in order to hide our deepest secrets, not only from the world around us, but from ourselves. While this book covers difficult topics, it also shows that it is okay to be yourself and to be vulnerable at times too, and that it is okay to ask for and seek help when you need it. The premise of this story is what drew me to want to read it. I blasted through the first half of this book, trying to figure out what happened to Jim, if he would come back to Mary, and if they would live happily ever after. But I soon realized that this was an extremely slow-paced story and I got burnt out quickly with the repetitiveness of Mary missing Jim, singing his high praises for how great he was, couldn’t believe he just disappeared, etc. I ended up skimming most of the second half because nothing seemed to be new information to progress the story, it was all just a reiteration of what I already knew. I also thought it was strange that the “present” timeline started off from Mary’s perspective until Alice was introduced. Then, it switched to Alice’s perspective for the rest of the story. The “past” was continuously from Mary’s perspective. I did find myself switching which timeline I was most drawn to as well. I started off really enjoying the past and learning the history between Mary and Jim until one particular event and the way the characters reacted to it. I was so turned off to the characters at that point, though I can’t say I really liked any of them to start with. From then on, I was more interested in the present timeline and trying to figure out what happened to Jim. Finally, around the 85% mark, the story started to become more interesting again. I was finally going to learn what happened to Jim, why he disappeared, and what was going to happen to Mary when she finally knew what happened, too. But I was so disappointed in the resolve of this book. The ending just didn’t make up for the slow build that I drudged my way through. It felt almost like a cop out for what could have been a great ending. Overall, I give this book 3 stars. I didn’t love it, but I think it covered some hard topics that are important to talk about. I believe the characters showed some personal growth that they recognized in themselves by the end, too, which is also important. I think the potential for this book was great, I just would have liked to see it executed a little differently.

  25. 4 out of 5

    Rachel Hall

    Mary O’Connor has just turned forty and spent the last seven years conducting a nightly vigil at Ealing Broadway station holding up a sign bearing the word ‘Come Home Jim’, signalling her intent to never give up on her first love and the six years they spent together. In the absence of the man she is ever hopeful of being reunited with, Mary’s life is one of routine as she moves between a job stacking supermarket shelves, two nights a week volunteering at local crisis helpline NightLine and her Mary O’Connor has just turned forty and spent the last seven years conducting a nightly vigil at Ealing Broadway station holding up a sign bearing the word ‘Come Home Jim’, signalling her intent to never give up on her first love and the six years they spent together. In the absence of the man she is ever hopeful of being reunited with, Mary’s life is one of routine as she moves between a job stacking supermarket shelves, two nights a week volunteering at local crisis helpline NightLine and her station vigil. When an unexpected call at NightLine leaves Mary on edge and results in a rush hour meltdown her story goes viral and is witnessed by young journalist Alice Keaton. Alice is soon to be unemployed but a human-interest story such as Mary’s could go a long way to saving her job and might also give Mary the closure and opportunity to move on that Alice’s knows plenty about given the disappearance of her father as a teenager. Befriending Mary and joining the team at NightLine with lonely manager, Ted, at the helm sees Alice befriend zany young banker, Kit, and together going all out to bring Jim, or a definitive answer, back home to Mary. Needless to say Alice keeps her identity as a reporter a secret and even when Mary directly requests her to stop trying to trace Jim it falls on deaf ears threatening to cause yet more upheaval in Mary’s life. The story takes the form of a dual narrative moving between the present day and the past, charting the whirlwind romance between Mary and Jim that begins when they meet in Belfast in 2005 through to the life in London that Jim disappears from in 2011. As the story of their relationship unfolds readers see both Mary as a confident and successful fabric artist and also Jim’s mental health woes (depression, reliance on alcohol) which are highlighted early on. Personally I could not believe that in seven years Mary had not looked back and conceded that their relationship was very up and down as Greaves certainly leaves more than enough clues for readers that there really isn’t any great mystery about Jim’s departure. In fact much of the time I felt the book was simply going through the motions until the inevitable life lessons on the stigma surrounding male mental health issues could follow. Whilst the novel is inoffensive and Greaves steers clear of preaching at her readers I found it too implausible to wholeheartedly invest in the characters or their plight, primarily because not one of them felt real to me. Overall a solid drama but the mystery surrounding Jim’s disappearance goes out with a whimper and the novel is overlong with a rather plodding narrative. Into the close and epilogue I did notice a flurry of well-intentioned sound bites on all things mental health yet for me the novel would have been far more meaningful with more realistic characters.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Angela Johnson

    Anywhere for You touches on many things that are often overlooked. Mental health, "broken" families, abandonment, depression, and the lasting effects an event can have on a person. Mary stands every day at the station holding vigil and a sign that reads "Come Home, Jim." She stands stoically, knees practically locked for hours on end just holding this pleading sign. Many people simply overlook her, pass her by while they quickly move on to their next destination. Some people pity her and try to Anywhere for You touches on many things that are often overlooked. Mental health, "broken" families, abandonment, depression, and the lasting effects an event can have on a person. Mary stands every day at the station holding vigil and a sign that reads "Come Home, Jim." She stands stoically, knees practically locked for hours on end just holding this pleading sign. Many people simply overlook her, pass her by while they quickly move on to their next destination. Some people pity her and try to slip her some cash to get by. But Mary doesn't need their money, she certainly doesn't need their pity. All she needs is for Jim to come home. When he comes home, her life can begin again instead of staying halted at this standstill. Alice sees Mary in the station. Actually, she's drawn to Mary after a burst of frustrated emotion has Mary swearing at the people around her. Alice feels compelled to ask after this fierce woman. As Alice draws closer she realizes Mary looks like she could pass out at any moment, she looks spent, exhausted. Alice insists on taking her to get a drink and a seat and hopefully hear her story. This book builds from page one. Every new chapter brings with it a new layer and a new level of anticipation. There is a stark look at the lies we tell everyone around us and the ones we tell ourselves. Often we retreat, we try to hide our hardships from anyone around us, whether our closest friends or our most detached acquaintances. But this isn't doing anyone ANY favors. Depression and mental wellness is at the heart of this story. Another key component is self-awareness, or lack thereof. Alice and Mary both grow by leaps and bounds by the end of this story. There were times where I was annoyed with Alice. Many notes were made in my copy denoting her selfish thoughts and judgements. But by the end of the story, you'll find she's realizing the ways she projects her own misgivings, flaws, and fears onto those around her. I really appreciated the realities of mental health depicted in Greaves' story. She chooses to have an anonymous hotline play a large part in the story and I love that this works toward normalizing this avenue for help. She shows how depression can affect not only the depressed but also the people in relationships with them. She demonstrates how asking for help can be the hardest thing. It can also be the most helpful and can facilitate working toward mental wellness. The harsh reality though is you have to want the help. One cannot force someone they love into taking care of themselves or getting the help they may desperately need.

  27. 5 out of 5

    SS

    This was a sad story of love, loss, perseverance, and moving-on. It’s about how one person cannot live for another, about how everyone must face the fact that not every decision can be changed. About how parental pressure and a sibling’s death cannot only change a life, but can also alter a mind. It’s about how devotion can bring happiness or attempt to atone for saying or doing something untoward. It’s how love is fragile despite seeming strong. How it can buoy you up only to shatter and drop y This was a sad story of love, loss, perseverance, and moving-on. It’s about how one person cannot live for another, about how everyone must face the fact that not every decision can be changed. About how parental pressure and a sibling’s death cannot only change a life, but can also alter a mind. It’s about how devotion can bring happiness or attempt to atone for saying or doing something untoward. It’s how love is fragile despite seeming strong. How it can buoy you up only to shatter and drop you into the darkest depths. Even when we feel alone, it’s likely there are others there for us, looking out for us, ready to help. They support you even when you feel frail and broken and help you see that you still have an incredible reserve of strength. Mary is an incredibly strong woman, even if she doesn’t believe she is. She’s kind and caring, and when she faces the greatest loss of her life, she faces it by doubling down on her devotion and reaching out to help others. She makes friends with Alice, a journalist, who takes a risk to help another in whom she sees a similarity, and kind, good-guy Kit, a caring young man. Alice and Kit work together to help discover what happened to Mary’s partner, James Whitnell, seven years after he disappeared. I enjoyed this book. It covers a dual time period and alcoholism (likely drug use, too). Despite its gloom and despair, it brings forth love, friendship, and faith, loyalty, courage, and determination. (view spoiler)[ This book is about many things, but among them is mental health—chronic depression, substance abuse, abandonment, never being good enough, and grief. (hide spoiler)] I enjoyed the book and was pleased with the happy ending, even if I had some trouble believing it. While I like Mary well enough, her seven years of penance was a bit much for me. Then, again, I see people on street corners holding signs all the time for various reason, so I guess it is believable. James was believable. He did what he felt he had to do for reasons he believed in. A good book, if dark and gloomy. I thought there were too many things that relied on coincidence, but I still enjoyed it and though it worth the time I invested in reading it. I received an advanced reader copy of this book from the publisher through Netgalley. I thank them for their generosity, but it had no effect on this review. All opinions in this review reflect my true and honest reactions to reading this book.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Kathy

    4.5 stars. Anywhere for You by Abbie Greaves is a poignant novel of friendship and healing. In 2005, Mary O’Connor is swept off her feet by ENT doctor Jim Whitnell. Their unexpected romance is initially complicated due to distance-Mary lives in Ireland and Jim in London. After a flurry of short but passionate get togethers, Jim asks Mary to move in with him. Leaving behind her family is not easy, but Mary is so in love with Jim that she eagerly agrees. Over the course of their six-year relationshi 4.5 stars. Anywhere for You by Abbie Greaves is a poignant novel of friendship and healing. In 2005, Mary O’Connor is swept off her feet by ENT doctor Jim Whitnell. Their unexpected romance is initially complicated due to distance-Mary lives in Ireland and Jim in London. After a flurry of short but passionate get togethers, Jim asks Mary to move in with him. Leaving behind her family is not easy, but Mary is so in love with Jim that she eagerly agrees. Over the course of their six-year relationship, Mary embarks on a successful career and their relationship goes through a series of highs and lows.  But their romance comes to a shocking conclusion and Mary spends the next seven years standing outside the Ealing Broadway Station with a sign that will hopefully convince Jim to return. By 2018, Mary is living a very small life where she goes to work, volunteers at a helpline two days a week and stands outside the station with her sign. One night, a video of her goes viral and investigative journalist Alice Keaton decides to try to find Jim. Alice helps Mary calm down the night she is filmed and she knows she can help her new acquaintance find some peace. She is aided by Kit Ripton who also volunteers at the helpline with Mary. Alice also has an ulterior motive for helping Mary, but she keeps this under wraps as she and Kit follow leads that will hopefully help them locate Jim. Mary is so very in love with Jim that she does not notice how little they socialize with anyone. Of course, she does not know anyone in London and she is uncomfortable with Jim’s friends and parents. Through her eyes, her six-year relationship is perfect and she never gives up hope he will return to her.  Mary is also wracked with guilt over their last interaction before he vanishes from her life. How will she react when Alice confesses what she and Kit have been doing? Anywhere for You is a captivating novel that seamlessly weaves between the present and Mary’s six-year relationship with Jim.  The various characters are beautifully developed with wonderful qualities and relatable flaws. The story arcs are well-executed and easily move between Mary’s life in the present and her years with Jim  in the past. She and the other characters undergo believable growth as they make peace with their respective emotional baggage. With a heartwarming epilogue, Abbie Greaves brings this sometimes bittersweet novel to an uplifting, satisfying conclusion. I greatly enjoyed and highly recommend this heartfelt novel.

  29. 4 out of 5

    Renee

    With a strong moral purpose and a backbone crafted on the personal strength it takes to move on, Anywhere for You is a slow burn read that tackles mental health, masculinity, and the loss of identity that occurs for the supporting and loyal others who are shadowed in the wingspan of depression. For 7 years, Mary has lived her life in a routinised haze, fundamentally believing that missing boyfriend Jim will return to her side if she waits at their station stop in Earling London every evening hol With a strong moral purpose and a backbone crafted on the personal strength it takes to move on, Anywhere for You is a slow burn read that tackles mental health, masculinity, and the loss of identity that occurs for the supporting and loyal others who are shadowed in the wingspan of depression. For 7 years, Mary has lived her life in a routinised haze, fundamentally believing that missing boyfriend Jim will return to her side if she waits at their station stop in Earling London every evening holding a sign welcoming him home. For many, Mary is the total embodiment of pathos, and every other Greek myth as she holds on to hope with the desperation of a woman who has lost the love of her life – which she is and indeed has. And unfortunately as the slow reveal happens, it appears our lovers, Mary and Jim, didn’t end on a high. And whilst normally, it would be typical to expect another woman or another career, it is the demon in Jim’s head that hold court and indeed seduce him into leaving. As her nightly vigil goes viral on the internet, new friend Alice and co-volunteer worker Kit set out on the mission of all missions – to find Jim and determine why it is he has been missing for so long. Whilst tension was evident, it lacked energy, and this was a key disappointment given the investment in Mary and Jim’s relationship and indeed made Mary appear significantly unwell herself. Character perspective needed further balance, as it wasn’t clear what was going on with Jim or indeed the severity of Jim’s mental health issues until the majority of the book was done and dusted, and even then, they weren’t wholly disclosed. Arguably this classic love-forever novel will speak the language of loss to those who have experienced the life-long trauma of abandonment, and it will certainly resonate with those who hold the daily vigil of hope that their loved one will one day return. Simultaneously, it will also challenge those who have fought to carve out their own identity beyond the supporting role they play for those who they love who have a mental illness and will likely leave them wanting Alice’s full article – as I certainly did. Overall, there were some incredibly moving moments that maintained a momentum of sorts and without doubt there was an immediate investment in figuring out what happened to Jim, enough so that it is definitely worth going on the mission with Alice and Kit so that the resolution can present a happily ever after

  30. 4 out of 5

    Eloise Smith

    Every day for the past seven years, Mary has spent her evenings at Ealing train station holding up a sign that says "Come Home Jim" waiting desperately for Jim to return. When Alice, a young journalist with her job on the line hears about this and a video of Mary goes viral, she thinks it could be a chance for her to grab a story that will keep her job secure. As the two become acquainted, Alice cannot help but want to help Mary find the answers she so desperately needs. As Alice gets more invol Every day for the past seven years, Mary has spent her evenings at Ealing train station holding up a sign that says "Come Home Jim" waiting desperately for Jim to return. When Alice, a young journalist with her job on the line hears about this and a video of Mary goes viral, she thinks it could be a chance for her to grab a story that will keep her job secure. As the two become acquainted, Alice cannot help but want to help Mary find the answers she so desperately needs. As Alice gets more involved with the investigation, it becomes clear that the two women have something in common. This book was a good read. I was intrigued from the outset what had happened to Jim and instantly felt for Mary who so desperately hoped for an old love to return. The chapters switching between past and present day really worked in this book and I enjoyed watching Mary and Jim's relationship blossom over the years alongside the present day "investigation" into his disappearance. However, Mary did irritate me and without giving away too much, I just felt pity for her to be honest - I wanted her to realise what she was doing was not healthy and after seven years... it was time to move on! Sadly Alice was not my favourite character. I found a lot of what she did or things that happened to her to be relatively unconvincing and a bit too convenient. I was also unconvinced by the romance that suddenly appeared out of nowhere after the person in question practically repulsed her a couple of days before. Whilst yes I did enjoy the premise of the book, I just wish I had connected with the characters a bit more. The discussion of men's mental health was an important topic of the book and whilst I am pleased it was mentioned, as it is not something I read about regularly, I felt it was not explained enough and I needed a little more, particularly from Jim's perspective as quite frankly I did not like him from the start. I found the relationship pretty toxic to be honest, Mary gave up her whole life to be with Jim and when he went missing, Mary had alienated her friends and family and was left pretty much alone in a place that she had not made her home as her home and life simply was Jim. Overall a good read and I did enjoy it, but admittedly it was not the epic love story that I was hoping for. Thank you to Netgalley, the publisher and the author for an advanced copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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