If you ve been here before you’ll know that I love all of Gillian McAllisters books (Please do ask me to pick my favourite, I just couldn’t!). In January I started to see promotions for her new book – How to Disappear. Obviously I immediately requested an Advance copy to review and continually refreshed my email in hope I was lucky. By the end of March I was beginning to lost hope but consoled myself with the knowledge that I had pre-ordered the book anyway. July 9th seemed so far away though. Then just under two weeks ago the wonderful people at Michael Joseph took on the role of fairy godmother and made my wish come true.
So. How to Disappear.
Zara is a teenager who is a little different to the usual Instagramming, TikTokers that we would think of. She like to read (so obviously we like her!), isnt into make up and beauty and spends her time helping with the support for the local homeless community. She should be inspiring others. Instead on her way home one night she saw two local football players attacking a homeless man. A man who was her friend and trying to get his life back together. She was too late to save him and now has become ‘Girl A’ who will testify anonymously.
Lauren is quite laid back as a mum, and along with her stepdad Aiden they make a well rounded family. Only it all goes horribly wrong and Zara and Lauren have to assume new identities whilst Aiden plays night in shining armour in various ways.
I must admit there were so many things I suspected that would happen that didn’t. There was one or two things that I thought I had worked out – I was right but only because it clicked at the last minute. Which is exactly how I like a book to be – When it spoils itself I get so annoyed!
Lauren and Zara have to move, and become new people. I cant imagine what it must be like to cut ties with everyone and everything you’ve every known. To start again and not even be able to talk about the past. This is a new start for Zara though – she doesnt have to be the same girl she was before, she can be different. More likeable and have more friends even if she has to lie about her old life.
Towards the end there is a curveball that I didnt expect. At the time you accept the story, and feel that thats how life it. When you finish the last chapter if you re like me you can almost feel how good it is for people to get their come-uppance and justice to find a way to prevail. I guess thats called karma.
I feel like I learnt so much in this book too. About love, family and also dogs. I like to think my dogs would miss me. And often think no matter what I would probably pay it ( even when they re nudging me to go for a walk when Im reading!) but I couldnt imagine what people do as guide dog foster families, or what you pay of you choose to keep the dog. I havent checked to see how true to life that part of the story is but I suspect its pretty realistic. Also – I couldnt help but picture the dog as Gillians dog that is often the feature in her instagrams posts.
Anyway, as I mentioned How to Disappear is out on July 9th. Its well worth a read whether we’re still in isolation or not, and you should probably preorder just to make sure its ready and waiting for you when you wake up that morning! And dont forget they re bringing forward the tax cuts on ebooks so its now tax free whether its a hard copy or electronic..