Tuesday 20 September 2016

Blog Tour ~ The Day I Lost You by Fionnuala Kearney

Jaffareadstoo is delighted to be hosting a stop on 

The Day I Lost You Blog Tour

Please welcome back to the blog

~After reading The Day I Lost You I asked Fionnuala this question~

"...The major theme of The Day I lost You is about love and loss and the ways we all grieve for what we perceive to be lost. When you write about such an emotive subject - how much do you draw on your own life experiences and did you find this theme difficult to write about?..."

Love and loss are common themes in my novels, though they appear in very different guises. And in writing about relationships as I do; in wanting to peel back the layers and see what’s really going on underneath, I think the truth is the writer has to offer a little piece of themselves up.

I’ve been lucky enough never to suffer either of the primary scenarios I’ve written about so far; a devastating marital betrayal in my debut You, Me and Other People or the potential loss of an extremely loved child in my second novel The Day I Lost you - but in opting to write about such life changing topics, I have to be prepared to dig deep. I have to use the feelings I have felt during whatever losses or grief I’ve personally faced. Sometimes, the only thing that makes the right words appear on the page at the right time is your own life experience.

I think love and loss are almost inextricably linked, and find it almost impossible to write about one without the other! I want the reader to believe in my characters and their story and real life is such that it will always throw a curve ball at even the most successful long-lasting love story. Real life is such that even in the most honest relationship, there are moments where doubts arise and a little bit of something beautiful is, perhaps, chipped away, lost. In exploring the loving bonds of couples, friends, siblings, lovers its inevitable there will be a sprinkling of disappointment, jealousy, or betrayal of trust - so it’s just a matter of time before some feelings of loss and grief appear. One of life’s yin and yang certainties… 

With The Day I Lost You, Jess is not only forced to face the potential loss of her only twenty five year old daughter, Anna, and to raise her five year old grandchild, Rose, but as facts unfold, the possibility that she never really knew Anna at all. In writing the story, though I’m a mother to grown up children, I still found it difficult to write some fairly heart-breaking scenes –probably especially because I’m a mother! The book questions the unconditional love we all feel for our children and whether there is ever anything a child could do that would stop that flow of love – very emotive stuff!

I think I’ve come to the conclusion that, in my writing life, I like rooting under the bonnets of the bonds we hold precious. I like examining what happens in our loving relationships – the good and the bad. After all, we’re all flawed beings, but often, it’s our flaws as well as our strengths that make us so very human.

22 September 2016

My thoughts about the book..

The implications of loss are terrible to imagine, and for Jess, when she gets the awful news that her daughter Anna is missing in a skiing accident she knows that her life is irrevocably changed. Losing a child is every parent's worst nightmare, especially when that child is also a parent, and even though bringing up Rose, her five year old granddaughter is a mixed blessing, Jess can't help but long for the news that Anna is alive and well and will soon be returning home to the family.

The story is beautifully written and shares so generously the minutiae of Jess and Rose's daily life that we come to love them and rejoice in their small triumphs and yet, we also sink into compassionate despair as Jess reels from one bad situation to another. And if we’re truly honest, we are relieved that our life is nothing like Jess’s and yet, in a heartbeat, this scenario could easily happen to any one of us.

Loss can be a terribly destructive force and Jess whilst superbly strong on the surface, is really like the proverbial swan, calm and unruffled on top but underneath paddling like fury. It is only with the help of her family and close friend, Theo, that Jess can begin to make sense of what’s happening in her life, and yet, Theo the troubled the guardian of so many secrets, is subsequently to be found facing his own demanding demons.

I loved how the story looked at the way that families interact and also of how relationships vary and alter over time but what was also important was the understanding of just how brittle are the bonds which tie us all together, and of how easily they can be broken into millions of tiny pieces. The fragmented pieces of Jess’s life and the way she deals with the hand that fate has dealt her, forms the heart and soul of the novel and such is the emotional pull of the story that there were times when sentiment got the better of me and I struggled to read without a great big lump in my throat.

There is no doubt that this talented author has a real skill with words and in this story which is rich in emotion and filled with an abundance of well-loved characters she has, once again, excelled herself. 

Best Read with...A succulent chicken casserole and a glass of Irish coffee, smooth as silk and undeniably heavy on the alcohol..

More about the author can be found on her website click here.

Follow her on Twitter @fionnulatweets

The e-book is out now and available to buy from Amazon

The paperback is published on the 22nd September and will be available on Amazon and in all good book stores.

Huge thanks to Fionnuala for her guest post today and for sharing her book with me and also to Jaime and the team at Harper  for the invitation to be part of this blog tour

Blog Tour runs 19th - 30th September

Do visit the other stops on the tour for more exciting content


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