The Mountain in My Shoe – Louise Beech
The Last Word Review
From the author of the highly acclaimed How to be Brave, Louise Beech is back with her second novel The Mountain in My Shoe. Anyone who has read Louise’s first novel are going to really enjoy this one just as much.
Louise Beech is one of the new writing talents that are writing some of the most exquisite novels of recent times. How she writes her characters into her stories that make them so real and life like. When a book plays on your mind and emotions for days after you have finished reading it then you have succeeded in writing one very special book for the reader. Louise Beech has done just that with The Mountain in My Shoe you really have a strong relationship with the characters in her latest novel although only released at the end of September it is already receiving very high praise.
This is a story primarily about three people. These people are lost and damaged by circumstance. We meet Bernadette who is married and her husband keeps Bernadette under his thumb, we know the type. We meet Conor a ten-year-old boy who life is like the proverbial tennis ball being bounced around from Care home to care and then foster care. Conor has no balance in his life as he does not know what each day will bring let along where he will end up next. There are just a few things in Conors life that have any meaning to him. One of them is Muhammad Ali the reason for this is plain as you begin to understand Conors story. Bernadette is a volunteer friend through Befriend for Life scheme and has been assigned to Conor.
For Bernadette the time has come to make a decision on her husband and her loveless marriage but he does not return home from work that evening and then a telephone call tells Bernadette that Connor has gone missing and he has not arrived at his foster home after school. But that is not all. Conor’s ‘lifebook’ has also gone missing. Conor’s ‘lifebook’ make for painful and heartbreaking reading. It is his life story from care home to care home. The book is punctuated with passages from Connor’s ‘lifebook’. For young Conor as much as life has let him down he is a real character and one that you instantly warm to and there is humour within his story. The fact that her husband has not returned home, Bernadette does not show any concern, she is more concerned for Conor is there a link to both her husband and Conor’s disappearance?
The setting for Louise’s latest is around Hull and the sights and sounds come through the story just as much as the twists and turns of book that reads like a thriller. Your heart aches for a happy ending for both two souls who deserve not only stability but happiness. Then when you reach the end the story and its characters will linger deep inside you for some time after. To put this book on the bookshelf will not put the story to the back of your mind of this you can be assured.
It is beautifully written and told it is heartfelt and at time sad. But read it and see for yourself why I hold Louise Beech in such high acclaim as a writer not just for today but for tomorrow and now look forward to see what she comes up with next. Outstanding.
Thank you to Karen at Orenda Books for the advanced review copy. The Mountain in My Shoe by Louise Beech is published by Orenda Books and is available through Waterstones, Amazon and all good bookshops.
The Mountain in My Shoe – The Official Blog Tour 2016