Grace Sullivan left her small Irish village to go to university in Dublin. She wanted to follow in her beloved father’s footsteps and become a doctor. While in the big city she met and fell in love with Simon Willoughby, who went on to become a well renowned plastic surgeon. Unlike his charming public persona, Simon was a very different man within the walls of his home. He abused Grace, both physically and emotionally until she could take it no longer. Over months, she planned her escape.
With her teenage children, Jack and Holly, she goes back to the coastal village where she grew up. He father has recently retired because he has been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. She will take his place in the small village surgery where the locals come to call her ‘Young Doctor Sullivan’ despite her objections and the fact that she is forty-seven years old.
The locals treat her coolly at first, thinking she has ‘notions’, and they do not know her family circumstances. Her children, used to living an affluent life in the city, have huge adjustments to make – starting over in a tiny village, and living a middle class life. They live with their grandfather now, a man whom they do not really know as their father frowned on visiting him. Their granddad, a widower, is lonely. Much to the chagrin of his grandchildren, he has none of the mod-cons the children are used to such as Wi-fi and Netflix.
Grace’s daughter Holly is adopted by a lovely border collie named Benji, and he plays a pivotal role in Holly’s acclimation to the village and to the entire Sullivan clan.
I loved this wonderful book! After reading the last page I felt bereft and wanted to return to the fictional Irish village of Killrowan again as soon as possible.
Grace’s family were wonderful people who I delighted in getting to know. I loved the theme of ‘starting over’ and how Grace entrenched herself in the village dynamic and reunited with old friends.
The story related how domestic abuse affects its victims and those who love them.
The setting was so perfect – a small Irish village on the shores of the Atlantic Ocean.
This is an uplifting and heart-warming read that is just exactly what I needed right now. A novel of familial love, warm friendships, and fresh starts.
ASIN : B086M7K4WX – 349 pages – ISBN :9798633298635
Aimee Alexander is the pen name of best selling author Denise Deegan who writes contemporary family dramas about ordinary people who become extraordinary in crisis. Her novels have been published by Penguin, Random House and Hachette.
Aimee lives in Dublin with her family where she regularly dreams of sunshine, a life without cooking and her novels being made into movies. She has a Masters in Public Relations and has been a college lecturer, nurse, china restorer, pharmaceutical sales rep, public relations executive and entrepreneur.
Follow Aimee Alexander on Twitter @aimeealexbooks