Today it’s Mandie’s turn once again and this time she has a review of The Four Of Us by Áine Toner. A big thank you to Tracy Fenton for inviting us to join the tour and to publisher Manatee Books for providing an advance copy of the book for review. Here is what it’s all about:
The Bookish Bits
Four Friends. Four Secrets.
When Lucy tells her friends they need break a from each other, Pippa, Colette and Christine are stunned – after all, Lucy is the quiet one, isn’t she?
As the four girls try to adjust to life without each other, none of them could have foreseen the consequences of mousy Lucy’s announcement that day in a swanky Belfast hotel…and as secrets start to come to light, the girls are all asking the same question: How well do you really know your friends?
Lucy, Pippa, Colette and Christine are four close friends from Northern Ireland, or at least they thought they were close until Lucy decided at their latest get together that she wanted a break from the friendship for 6 months. Lucy was always considered the quiet one of the group so her suggestion shocked the rest of them, especially Christine who always thought of Lucy as her best friend. So would the friendships survive this break, would they come back as a group closer than before or would they drift apart permanently?
Now that they don’t have each other to rely on when things get tough it means that they actually start looking at their lives and try to work out if they are happy with the way it is turning out. They also start to question the reasons they are together as a group of friends as they question what they actually have in common. Little by little, despite agreeing to go their separate ways for 6 months the odd message turns up in the group chat to the point they agree to meet up on holiday. This turns out to be the make or break holiday of their friendship as all the secrets they have hidden from each other come out in the open and truly tests what they mean to each other.
The Four of Us is a book about friendship with a difference. It makes you wonder if you really are as close to your friends as you think you are. After all most of what you know about them is what they tell you or let you see. But sometimes that’s the beauty of a friendship, that despite what you know or think you know there is something that drew you together in the first place and then it’s a case of can you accept them the way they are even if they are flawed.
Aine Toner has certainly managed to capture a true sense of the insecurities that everyone can go through as they try to keep up in their careers and their personal lives. Some of her observations will have you chuckling and I absolutely love Pippa’s twin daughters and their ability to repeat things or act out things that Pippa has said when she thought the little darlings were asleep but its Christine’s mother in law that provided me with the most fun. This is definitely a fun read that you shouldn’t miss out on.
About the Author
Award winning editor Áine Toner has been at the helm of Ireland’s Woman’s Way magazine since 2008 and is also editorial director of Irish Tatler Man magazine. A Belfast native who lives in Dublin, her previous jobs included working for BBC Northern Ireland and a host of daily and local newspapers and magazines.
She grew up in a house where books were very important and it was no surprise her academic life and career led to be constantly surrounded by words. She loves how the right phrasing can make a story come alive on a page.
Áine has significant TV and radio experience, regularly contributing as a panellist on topics such as health, fashion, beauty, books and the soaps. She can be found on Twitter at @aineltoner where she uploads musings on television, stationery, books and cake. Outside of journalism, she has been published in short story anthologies. Let’s Talk About Six is her first novel.
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