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The Secrets Of Strangers By Charity Norman

The Secrets Of Strangers‘The Secrets Of Strangers’ is the latest book by Charity Norman.

A regular weekday morning veers drastically off-course for a group of strangers whose paths cross in a London café – their lives never to be the same again when an apparently crazed gunman holds them hostage. But there is more to the situation than first meets the eye and as the captives grapple with their own inner demons, the line between right and wrong starts to blur. Will the secrets they keep stop them from escaping with their lives?

Charity Norman is a new author for me and one that I enjoyed thoroughly after reading this book.

The story is seen from the different perspectives of people from all walks of life who decided to go to a particular coffee shop on a particular day when a man was feeling at his lowest.

To celebrate his birthday Neil gathers up all the change he has collected to treat himself to a cup of tea, solicitor Abi is getting ready to help a young mother in court and Mutesi has just come off a night shift to enjoy breakfast with her grandson and daughter. All four are preparing for the day ahead when a young man enters the cafe with a grudge and a gun. On the outside whilst people are fearing for their lives, negotiator Eliza is trying to get inside Sam’s head and figure out how he has got to this point in his life.

There are many things that I really liked about this book, the characters, the dialogue and the clever plot. The characters are an interesting mix of people who all have their secrets and issues, that on this particular things come to head and they find solace in each other during this surreal situation.

The characters are relatable and complex that I felt such an empathy for. Neil is homeless after unsuccessfully battling a gambling addition that has left him without his family and only Buddy a dog for company. Hardfaced Abi pretends that she the last thing she wants is a baby but that’s all she wants but biology isn’t on her side. Mutesi is such a kind and gentle character, creating a calming presence in the cafe, she speaks to Sam as though he is her grandson and not someone holding her hostage. In the background, we see the point leading up to Sam’s breakdown and it makes for hard reading as he struggles with mental health and family.

A beautifully written story about relationships, unexpected circumstances and life. Charity has explored many topics in this story, addiction, fertility and mental health in both a sensitive and informative manner. ‘The Secrets Of Strangers’ is a heartfelt and compelling story about the complexities of life and relationships that made for fascinating reading.

You can buy ‘The Secrets Of Strangers’ from Amazon and is available to buy from good bookshops.

Giveaway – Happy People Read And Drink Coffee By Agnes Martin-Lugand

Happy People Read And Drink CoffeeToday on the website, I’ve a copy of Agnes Martin-Lugand’s new book, ‘Happy People Read And Drink Coffee’ to give away to one lucky person.

What the back cover says

Diane, owner of Happy People Read and Drink Coffee, a cosy coffee shop turned library in Paris, seems to have the perfect life. But when she suddenly loses her husband and daughter in a car accident, her life is overturned and the world as she knows it disappears. Trapped by her memories, Diane closes her shop and retreats from friends and family.

One year later, she moves from Paris to a small town on the Irish coast, determined to heal by rebuilding her life alone, without anyone’s help or pity – until she meets Edward, a handsome and moody Irish photographer. Along windy shores and cobbled streets, Diane falls into a surprising and tumultuous romance. As she works to overcome her painful memories, Diane and Edward’s once-in-a-lifetime connection inspires her to love herself and the world around her with new-found inner strength and happiness.

But will it last when Diane leaves Ireland, and Edward, for good?

To be in with a chance of winning, simply answer the following question.

What is Edward’s occuptation?

Leave your answer in the comment box below by Monday 10th April? Good luck.