Jaffareadstoo is thrilled to be hosting today's stop on the How We Remember Blog Tour
13 September 2018
My thanks to the publishers for my copy of this book and the invitation to be part of the blog tour
When Jo returns home following her mother’s death, she is shocked to learn of an unexpected inheritance and her mother’s diary. Jo thought she could put to rest her darker past until an entry implies the messy aftermath of an uncle’s sexual advances towards her when she was fifteen. Like the diary, Jo’s memory of events is full of gaps, but one thing is certain – she will never regain what was lost. What is the full story of what happened between Jo and her uncle?
My thoughts about it..
When Jo O'Brien returns to America, from London, in the aftermath of her mother's death, not only does she find that she is the recipient of an unexpected inheritance from her mother, but also the contents of her mother's hidden diary force Jo to confront some painful truths. Jo is a troubled soul, with health worries, job security issues and a fragmented relationship, not just with her husband, Jon, but also with her father and older brother, all of which makes coming to America extremely complicated.
This is a complex story of a family who, whilst they seemed to care for each other, just couldn't live comfortably together and there are too many secrets left unshared and too many dark corners where the hurt has been left unacknowledged for far too long. Parts of the story are quite painful to read, particularly Jo’s sexual abuse by her uncle when she was an impressionable teenager, and, it would seem that in confronting this truth, a whole bunch of other memories, which Jo had kept hidden, are now opened up to scrutiny. The author writes this troubled family drama well and takes us through an emotional minefield of family secrets with considerable skill and an interesting observational style of writing.
How We Remember is a deeply unsettling story about a set of flawed and damaged people who don’t know how to reconcile the troubles of their shared past. And whilst the author does a good job of bringing this painful story to life, it would seem that sometimes the hurt runs so deep that the damage can’t always be put right, and that, in some cases, families will, regardless of the cost to their peace of mind, simply go their own way.
J.M. Monaco grew up in the northeast region of the USA where she studied English and Creative Writing at undergraduate level. She worked in a variety of areas before taking up postgraduate studies in England where she completed her PhD. She now lives in a buzzing city in the South West of England with her husband and children.
Twitter @jm_monaco2 #HowWeRemember