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18 November 2021

Book Review: A Simple Wish by Rosie Goodwin *AD gifted

Zaffre sent me a free finished copy of A Simple Wish by Rosie Goodwin.

Well, Rosie Goodwin well and truly destroyed my heart again. The Winter Promise is the third Precious Stones book and like the rest of the books in the series is a standalone linked by a common theme. And it was beautiful.

A Simple Wish by Rosie Goodwin book cover

1885.

Ruby Carter works hard in her parents' bakery. Whilst life isn't easy, she's happy enough - her gentle mother protects young Ruby from her cruel father and loves her unconditionally. So, when her mother falls seriously ill, Ruby is heartbroken. Then, from her deathbed, her mother reveals that Ruby was adopted.

Stricken by grief and alone with the violent man she called her father, Ruby feels she has no choice but to flee. At just fifteen, homeless and alone she is relieved when a kindly stranger named Mrs Bamber takes pity on poor Ruby and welcomes her into her home.

But soon, Ruby learns Mrs Bamber is not as generous as she first seemed - she forces Ruby into a life of crime as a jewel thief in Birmingham's jewellery quarter. With nothing to her name and nowhere to go Ruby has no choice but to go along with it, despite the guilt and shame she feels. But Ruby is determined that she will atone for what she's done, and be reunited with her birth parents.

Ruby's only wish is to find her family.

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Source: Review Copy

5 Word Review: Family, desperation, betrayal, love, lies.


It was raining outside when I first picked up this book. Proper chucking it down, dark and gloomy and cold. It was a miserable day. And honestly? Rosie Goodwin books were made for miserable days. The sprawling saga stories take you on a journey where you feel every emotion and leaves you at the end feeling like a bit of a different person.

I had a blanket, a hot water bottle, a big pot of tea, a plate of custard creams. And I settled in.

From the very start, the vivid descriptions dragged me into Emerald's world. I felt her shock and her sorrow, and I felt her desperation.

For a story that slowly unfolds, the pace is amazing. I couldn't have put this book down if I wanted. So so much happens between the first page and the last, and the way the characters change felt very natural. It was almost exhilarating, and the danger in the plot really drove the tension.

Emerald is the main character, but I did warm to a few of the side characters - I wouldn't say no to reading more about them. But poor Emerald for much of the book is surrounded by people who don't want the best for her and who manipulate and use her. All she wants is family, and it was pretty heart-breaking to see her lose the one she knew, try to find her biological family, and try to piece together a found family. She goes through some very low points and seeing her get through them, seeing her resilience, filled my heart with hope.

This book isn't one to rush - usually a book of this length would take me four hours, I'd be done in a morning. But I lingered with A Simple Wish, I spent the whole day cooried up in my blanket, taking my time with Emerald's story and getting through far too much tea. It was a perfect way to spend a Sunday.

I know I've said it before, but Rose Goodwin is like the Catherine Cookson this generation. Her books are beautiful and all I really want is for them to be a lavish two part sprawling drama so I can fall into the story on screen too.

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1 comment:

  1. I love that you said these books are made for miserable days! This sounds like a good read - actually the blurb makes it sound like it’d be an excellent film x

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