All of us will be touched by death at some time in our lives. How we choose cope with that death has been the subject of much debate, and psychologists far more eminent than I have explained the grieving process in fine detail. But no matter how much the philosophers theorise, no-one truly knows how they will react to the loss of a loved one, until it actually happens.
In Out of the Darkness, author, Katy Hogan explores the concept of grief and loss in a sympathetic and finely drawn story which looks at the stories of three very different women, who have each suffered a deep personal loss and whose lives are now suffering because of the way they each try to cope with the consequences of that loss. The three women, Jessica, Alexandra and Hannah, are brought together in the most unlikely of circumstances and yet, a friendship develops between them which will have lasting repercussions on all of their lives.
The story touches on the reassurances that people often glean from visiting clairvoyants who aim to contact the spirit world, so that those who have passed over can attempt to communicate with loved ones. I don't aim to speak with authority on the subject of the spirit world, but I do acknowledge that some people take comfort wherever they can find it and the author writes about this with great consideration. As the story develops, Jessica, Alex and Hannah come across as warm and compassionate women, all are very different personalities, and each are facing difficult challenges ahead, with their own unique band of bravado.
And yet, even though the premise of the book is ultimately about loss, there is no doubt that warmth and empathy shines throughout the story and it’s really not all about sadness, as there are some lovely moments of real happiness which stem from the joy of true friendship.
I found much to enjoy within this story. It’s both wise and witty, funny and sad in equal measure, and when I finished the book, I felt that, like Jessica, Alex and Hannah, I too had been on a journey of self-discovery.
All in all, a commendable debut novel and Jaffa and I look forward to seeing what this talented author will come up with next.
Best read …. With delicate cucumber sandwiches and bone china tea cups of aromatic Earl Grey
Huge thanks to the author for sharing her book with me