I happened upon this book when I was scrolling through my twitter feed a few months ago and was fortunate enough to be sent a copy. It was so good I knew I had to put up a review in time for its publication date (next week). I’ve since lent it to one of my friends and have a list of who to lend to next!
What if you had said yes? The moments that change everything… One Day meets Sliding Doors in this outstanding debut that is causing a buzz across the publishing world
Some moments can change your life forever. Have you ever wondered, what if…?
A man is walking down a country lane. A woman, cycling towards him, swerves to avoid a dog. On that moment, their future hinges. There are three possible outcomes, three small decisions that could determine the rest of their life.
Eva and Jim are nineteen and students at Cambridge when their paths first cross in 1958. And then there is David, Eva’s then-lover, an ambitious actor who loves Eva deeply. The Versions of Us follows the three different courses their lives could take following this first meeting. Lives filled with love, betrayal, ambition but through it all is a deep connection that endures whatever fate might throw at them.
The Versions of Us explores the idea that there are moments when our lives might have turned out differently, the tiny factors or decisions that could determine our fate, and the precarious nature of the foundations upon which we build our lives. It is also a story about the nature of love and how it grows, changes and evolves as we go through the vagaries of life.
So what did I think?
I must admit I was sceptical about whether I would like this book, after seeing it was set in different timelines. I can find non-linear books confusing or worse boring as they break up the flow of the narrative. Thankfully for ‘versions of us’ this was not the case. I became so involved in Eva and Jim’s love story (and almost love stories) that I was able to follow the three versions easily.
Not wanting to give away any spoilers it is safe to say that I really rooted for Eva and Jim in whatever timeline they were in and loved their interactions with each other and the supporting characters.
The stories are beautifully written and each individual seemed realistic, regardless of how briefly they appeared.
This was another book which really made me think. The idea of what if? What if I had said yes? What if I had been brave? Done this/not done this differently… It showcases perfectly how fragile life is and how the choices we make really do mould us and the paths we take. Of course, we will never know, what if? As the choices we have made, the yeses and the nos have all brought us to here, wherever here may be.
A stunning début, I look forward to seeing what Laura writes next.
Have you read The Versions of Us? Is this something you’d be interested in?
Let me know in the comments below.