“A captivating story that takes you on a powerful journey of heartbreak, loss, and hope by a master storyteller. Have tissues at the ready.”



I gave this book five stars but this is one of those reads that you cannot rate.. It is much much above that!

Such beautiful writing that evokes so many feelings.. You laugh, cry, feel happy, sad, everything the characters in the book feel.

It is a difficult topic to read about, particularly being a parent. The book deals with the unexpected disappearance and loss of a child and I didn’t know if I could read it without feeling really depressed.

But the words that shape the story are so exquisite that this story of healing, coping with loss, learning to live again, was unputdownable and life affirming.

Rachel and James have it all, a wonderful life together on an island that’s paradise on earth, a lovely relationship and most of all, their much loved 7 yo Oscar.

And then, one morning, they wake up on their boat while on holiday and Oscar is gone.. Without a trace!

Unable to believe they will never see him again, they clutch into every miniscule straw and every hope they can think of as to his whereabouts.

While James’s practical side manages to overshadow his extreme grief, Rachel waits for news of Oscar for months.

Cocooned in her own grief, she blames herself and James for the tragedy and cannot reach out to him or open up to him or anyone. Until they realize they cannot go on like this and Rachel returns to Bristol to her parents and childhood home.

Some semblance of healing starts with the help of her parents support and friend’s love. The most comfort she feels is when reading the long letters of Ceecee, her housekeeper back home in Bermuda.

As days turn into months, separated by thousands of miles though they love each other, Rachel and James have to relearn how to go on living.

There were so many heartbreaking moments in this book, tearjerking would be a better word I suppose..

The pain of a couple who are forced to second guess every choice they have ever made, wonder what they did wrong to deserve this grief, cast their minds back to every small incident leading up to the day when everything was destroyed… It is depicted so amazingly well that you feel you are with them.

The moments when they reminisce about the child and the laughter shines through the tears before reality strikes are so relatable and precious.

And the best part is, even if you don’t agree with the actions of one or both of them, you understand why they react that way and wait for them to realize it themselves.

A very touching read, one that will stay with me for a long, long time.


Reviewed by:

Priya Prakash

Added 6th November 2018

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Priya Prakash