Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Review: Here and Now by Santa Montefiore

Here and Now
From internationally bestselling author Santa Montefiore—a touching and bittersweet intergenerational story about family and the power of memory.

Meet Marigold and Dennis, two happily married empty-nesters in their late sixties. They should be enjoying their golden years in the idyllic English village where they live. But when their two grown daughters, Daisy and Suze, move back into the family home, both mother and father must learn how to deal with the upheaval.

Meanwhile, as Daisy and Suze soak in the familiar comforts of home, they soon discover that their mother isn’t quite the same woman she was a few years ago. Sure, she is still kind-hearted and always willing to help, but something about their mom is different, and it’s becoming harder and harder for the family to ignore. For the first time in their lives, Dennis and his daughters find themselves caring for Marigold rather than the other way around.

Here and Now is a gorgeously evocative novel brimming with characters who are so recognizable they’ll walk right off the page and into your heart. This is a novel about what it means to grow up and to grow wise, and how the new generation learns to carry family memories and hope into the future.

Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published July 9th 2020
by Simon & Schuster
4/5 stars

Santa Montefiore is a go to author for me. It’s not just the stories but her writing that draws me in. Usually there is the historical elements that I love but with Here and Now she slows down with a family drama that was authentic and emotional.

Marigold was happy with her life, marriage, children, her own shop and then she started to forget and misplace things, she forgets names and faces and promises are unintentional broken. While there were times it reminded me of Still Alice, Here and Now had the added point of view through the eyes of her daughter Daisy.  Daisy has moved back home after being away for a number of years, she sees changes that others didn’t notice or don’t want to accept. Her view rounded out the story nicely.

Hearing from Marigold as she struggles with a wide range of emotions - confusion, denial, avoidance and ignorance, the family watches with the same set of anxiety.

As someone who has experienced this with a parent I couldn't help but connect with the characters on so many levels. Whether the frustration of words on the tip of your tongue, a walk with purpose and the destination that disappears into thin air. Or from the other side sitting with your mom who doesn't know who you are. So yes this was an emotional story.

Here and Now is a well written story that releases in Canada/US in a couple of weeks.

My thanks to Simon & Schuster (via Netgalley) for a digital copy in exchange for an honest review.

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