Delighted to be hosting a stop on the blog tour for Finding Alison today! Many thanks to Lina at Black & White Publishing for inviting me. I’ll be sharing my review but first, here is a little something about the book.
In Carniskey, a small fishing village in Ireland, the community is divided, wracked by grief and guilt; love and resentment; despair and hope.
Sean Delaney has been missing at sea for three years, and no one – least of all his grieving wife, Alison – knows what really happened to him.
Having lost her husband, her financial security, and having grown distant from her daughter, Alison feels alone and estranged from the villagers. Sean’s mother has not spoken since her house was burgled after his disappearance, and Alison’s only friend, Kathleen, harbours secrets of her own.
Isolated by their stunning, yet often cruel, surroundings, the community is forced to look inwards. But when artist and lifelong nomad William comes to town, he offers Alison a new perspective on life – and love. What she doesn’t realise is that strangers have secrets of their own, and William’s arrival threatens to unearth the mysteries of the past. A story of courage and humanity, we follow a community through their struggles and triumphs in love, loss and betrayal.
As each of the characters strives to find their own sense of belonging, they are led to the realisation that it is only through the truth that they can truly find happiness.
The opportunity to join this blog tour came about because I had “liked” the cover reveal and really, how could I not? It’s beautiful and really made me want to pack a bag and head to the seaside for a weekend. The cover is also incredibly well chosen as the sea is its very own character in this story. The author does a magnificent job in bringing it to live, giving the water traits, characteristics and a dash of attitude.
This novel starts out in the most devastating way when Alison’s husband Sean goes missing while taking out his boat on a stormy night.
Three years later, things aren’t all that much better. Alison is struggling financially, her mother-in-law is in a care home after getting a fright during a burglary at her house and Alison’s relationship with her daughter Hannah has collapsed. But then William comes to town. A nomad and an artist, he carries his own secrets and pain, and yet he offers Alison a new perspective.
The opening chapter was truly heartbreaking and Alison’s despair cut right to the bone. Being as this was my first introduction to Deirdre Eustace’s work, I was immediately blown away by the way her writing gripped me. It’s amazingly descriptive and evocative.
This is a such a beautiful novel. The atmosphere in this little unforgiving Irish seaside village really adds that little extra, which is all down to the author’s writing. We meet and get to know a few characters in the community, all with their own flaws, secrets and baggage as we follow Alison on her journey to finding herself again. There will be some you’ll warm to and some you’ll dislike but they’re all, in their own right, highly realistic and believable.
Finding Alison is a story of falling down and getting back up again. Of finding yourself when your whole world has fallen apart. Of realising you’re far stronger than you think you are. Of picking up the pieces, figuring out the way ahead, and most of all, living in the present and not the past.
Many thanks to Lina at Black and White Publishing for the advanced copy and the invitation to join the tour!
Finding Alison is available now as an ebook and paperback.
Deirdre Eustace, is a native of Bonmahon, Co Waterford. Her poetry and short stories have appeared in a variety of publications including The Waterford Review, Volumes 1, 2 and 3; Under Brigid’s Cloak; Gathering Together; Ireland’s Own; Galloping On; Syllables and the American White Star Journal. Her work has been broadcast on both local and national radio.
Deirdre’s first novel, If I Trust in You, described by the Irish Independent as ‘tense and gripping… a riveting debut’ was published in July, 2009. It remained in the top sellers list for several months and won a Publishing Ireland ‘Book of the Month’ Award. With over twenty years experience as a writer, editor and proofreader, Deirdre is a full member of the Association of Freelance Editors, Proofreaders and Indexers (AFEPI) Ireland. Finding Alison is her second novel.