I have to admit, I was reluctant to review this book – I wasn’t sure if I could find the right words to convey its brilliance. But I’ll give it a go..
Joanna and best friend Laura are on a night out, drinking and dancing in a local club, when Joanna is sexually harassed by a fellow reveller. Disconcerted, she and Laura decide to call it a night. On her route home down a deserted canal path, Joanna realises she is being followed, and what happens next changes her life forever.
From here, the book splits into two different scenarios – ‘Reveal’ and ‘Conceal’. It follows the story of the Joanna who tries to do the right thing and gets punished, and the Joanna who chooses to do the wrong thing, and ultimately punishes herself.
The two different stories are impeccably and emotionally written, and I found myself rooting for Jo in both realities, even as her lives disintegrate and she struggles to rebuild. The upheaval she experiences in both stories, and the changes she has to make to and for herself in order to cope with her lives in the aftermath, are so exquisitely crafted – you can really feel every emotion with her.
This is hands-down one of the best books I have read so far this year. I can’t wait to read more from this author.