The GingerNut Lifestyle

You, Me, Everything by Catherine Isaac – Book Review

The Story

Sick of his lies, cheating, and lack of interest in fatherhood, Jessica left her boyfriend, Adam, only months after she gave birth to their son–and never looked back. Adam moved to France to follow his dream, unencumbered by a serious relationship and the child he never wanted.

Ten years later, Susan, Jess’s mother, lies in a nursing home, battling a debilitating disease. Susan forces Jess to recognize what she’s always refused to acknowledge: that William needs his father in his life.

So, Jess and ten-year-old William set off to spend the summer at Château de Roussignol, deep in the rich, sunlit hills of the Dordogne, where Adam runs a beautiful hotel. There, Jess has a mission: to make Adam fall in love with his own son.

By turns heartbreaking and hopeful, You Me Everything is a novel about one woman’s fierce determination to do the right thing by her family and finding love in the most unexpected circumstances.

The review

It’s been a while since I’ve read a gripping real-life fiction novel, but this is it. It had me right from the get-go. The opening chapter is masterfully written, giving us an insight into the nature of three pivotal characters within the book: Jess, our protagonist and young mother of William, Adam, William’s useless and selfish father, and Jess’s mother, who Jess really couldn’t do without.

She couldn’t do without her because we meet Jess in the hospital, at 23 years old, giving birth to her accidental first child, with Adam nowhere in sight. She reluctantly asks her mother to come to the hospital, to find out she has actually been in the car park for hours just waiting for the call. Of course Adam shows up eventually, but covered in another woman’s lipstick.

Fast forward 10 years and Jess is living alone with William, having separated from Adam shortly after the birth. The summer has arrived but Jess is dreading it, as she is spending 6 weeks in France, with Adam, where he has renovated an old villa into a holiday complex. She’d clearly rather stick pins in her eyes, but William needs to know his father.

At this point it may seem like a fairly ‘standard’ story, detailing the trials and tribulations of an unconventional romance. And there is all the drama one would expect from that type of story. But Isaac gives us something extra. She throws in an illness and a misunderstanding which have life-changing consequences for everybody in this story.

This book deals with some very challenging topics in such a delicate, kind and human way that it almost feels that anything is possible. This book gives you hope. For yourself, for your family, for anyone you’ve known. Human beings are incredible people who can overcome so much.

This novel is a great advert for introspection. Realising what you believe about others can help so much in difficult situations. Your true feelings are so often hidden behind habitual emotions you’ve spent so long absorbed in, you convince yourself they’re unabating.

You, Me, Everything is a celebration of self, and I loved reading it.

You, Me, Everything will be published on 18 April 2018 and is available for pre-order now.

You can contact Catherine Isaac on her website and on twitter.


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