Friday, 23 June 2017

I'm reviewing 'Letting Go' ...

... by Maria Thompson Corley

I had the pleasure of interviewing Maria earlier in the year and you can read the resulting post here.  As a result of that interview, Maria sent me a free copy of her story in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Letting Go is essentially a romance – which is not my usual choice of book to read.  However, I’m always open to reading outside my usual genres.  The story is primarily told from Cecile’s point of view, the female lead character.  I really liked her.  She’s driven, ambitious, and where her feelings are concerned, like most of us, confused at times.  I liked her sense of humour and humour is something that can be difficult to put across – but not in this case.  She’s a really well drawn character and I found I was able to identify with her from the outset.

Langston, the male lead character, is also fascinating.  Unfortunately, he is from the ‘wrong part of town’.  So, the well-run conflict of different class is here to be explored, and Maria pulls this off.  It’s hard to bring new life and energy to an issue that we are all familiar with, but Maria has done just that and at no time did I find myself thinking that I’d heard it all before.

During the course of the story there are other familiar issues that are explored, racism, family loyalty, personal ambitions.  All of which are handled sensitively and the points being well, and subtly made.  At no time did I feel lectured and there were moments when I did put the book down so that I could consider the issue raised.  And in my view, that’s a bonus if an author can cause you to do that with a book.

Overall, I enjoyed the story immensely.  The chemistry between the central characters is there and fair sizzles on the page!  The narrative voice is easy and carries you along throughout.  However, Maria also uses diary entries, letters and emails to tell the story.  At first, I found that this caused the pace of the novel to drop, but further into the story I had stopped noticing that – my interest in the individual points of view became much more paramount.  There are musical references throughout, which I found interesting but, when I got to the end I did wonder if it might have been a bit too much.  My only other misgiving on reaching the end, was that I thought the book was overly long. 

Despite the minor gripes above, I think this is great book, entertaining, thought-provoking and a thoroughly enjoyable read and it has certainly earned its star rating.

You can find Maria's book on Amazon

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