Can you fall in love for the first time twice? A recently widowed women is about to find out when she wakes up and finds herself eighteen again in this “compelling” story of second chances (Mail On Sunday).
Kate’s husband Luke – the man she loved from the moment she met him twenty-eight years ago – died suddenly. Since then she has pushed away her friends, lost her job and everything is starting to fall apart.
One day, she wakes up in the wrong room and in the wrong body. She is eighteen again but remembers everything. This is her college room in 1992. This is the first day of Freshers’ Week. And this was the day she first met Luke.
But he is not the man that she lost: he’s still a boy – the annoying nineteen-year-old English student she first met. Kate knows how he died and that he’s already ill. If they can fall in love again she might just be able to save him. She’s going to try to do everything exactly the same…
Content/Trigger Warnings: Death of a loved one, suicidial thoughts/ideation.
This was a funny and endearing read, really unexpected in the best ways. The magical time travel and the raw grief were done harmoniously and it made for this sort of book that could make you laugh and want to cry but while still remaining light-hearted enough to be a fun read.
I really thought this was a great thing to do, the time travel was done well, there’s nothing so fantastical about it that it throws you into a different element, the story continues, but just switches gears.
The first part is all about Kate’s grief and her determination not to go on without her husband, whom she has loved since 1992. But when it seems like she’s been given a miracle, a second chance, how will things play out?
The great thing about this for me was that Kate was still in her 40s mentally but in an 18-year old’s body. It was pretty funny seeing her deal with that, but what was the great part I just mentioned was that she was not the same girl that fell in love with husband. That was an eighteen-year-old, but she’s a 40 something-year-old. This means things she may have found endearing about Luke are actually not that awesome to her older self. She also discovers some things about herself and I loved that a lot.
It’s the third section that is probably my least favourite. It’s not because it’s bad it’s because it’s not exactly the sort of thing I enjoy, but I can tell you that the conclusion did make me happy.
Kate’s realization she had in the second section comes a bit full circle. You don’t really get a second chance; whether she time travelled or not, saved him or not, her Luke is gone, but she can continue on without him, and it may be okay to eventually move on, and that sometimes the person you need may have been there all along.
The third part is admittedly still a fun and funny section and very light-hearted, and the epilogue definitely gives you answers about what may have actually happened to Kate such as if she time travelled or not.
I will definitely pick up another Webb book, and I thought this was the perfect read for this time for me, it brought a smile to my face and gave me some laughs.
Thank you to NetGalley and Canongate for this eARC in exchange for my honest opinion