Author: Katie Flynn
Genre: Fiction, Irish, Women's Fiction
Once again I am apologising for the length of time it has taken me to write about this book. I have finished the book on 30th November and have had such a rush with Christmas and everything going on. But, I am back and I am ready to write more reviews. I am going to make a New Years Resolution to write more on my blog. I feel I have slowed down on my writing and that is not how I want this blog to go.
So I thought I would give The Runaway by Katie Flynn a try from my local library. I had enjoyed the previous Irish story I read and had high hopes that I would enjoy this story which is set pre WW2. I enjoyed the story to start with, good character descriptions and an interesting story of Dana and Caitlin trying to set up their lives in Liverpool having come across from Ireland. The description the author gives to Ireland is amazing. I loved how she talks about the beautiful countryside and what it looks like. Makes me want to return for a visit. However, both girls are escaping something from their previous lives in Ireland. They are trying not to let their past influence their future decisions and thoughts. Caitlin is the pretty one, Dana is the brains of the operation and no one seems interested in Dana as she isn't as pretty as Caitlin.
The girls are working in pre-WW2 Liverpool trying to find their way having come from a Depression hit Ireland. They start off working in a kitchen in a hotel, the head cook is a witch and the girls do not like her. They want to spread their wings and make their own fortune. Then their dream comes true. A turn of events and the girls find themselves successful and enjoying life thanks to a gentlemen friend of Caitlin's. Will this last long though or will the girls yet again find themselves working damn hard to get what they want?
The girls make a numerous amount of decisions, some good, some bad and they need to work out if they will benefit their lives or not. Following an accident and a character revealing their true colours, Caitlin finds it too hard to stay in Liverpool and disappears to find herself going back to Ireland. Leaving Dana to sweep up afterwards. For me Caitlin was a very soft character, she sailed through life on compliments and her looks and found she was able to get ahead if people thought she was pretty. Dana had to fight hard to achieve anything and to prove herself. Caitlin, in my opinion, took the easy option out. When things got really hard she abandoned Dana and didn't care what happened to her.
Dana fought to get herself back in the game and to make something of her name. She makes new friends and starts revealing things in her sleep. Who's Con? Why does Dana keep talking about him in her sleep and why doesn't she talk about him when she's awake? Dana has a number of secrets which she does not want to be revealed to anyone. She doesn't want people to know the secret she hides from her past. She keeps herself very private.
Throughout the book, Dana has to struggle to make herself known. She has setbacks and she has achievements. The author does work well with the characters and she kept me engaging during the book. Why only 5 out of 10 for a rating you ask then? Once again, another book that does not go anywhere with the ending. I have read so many books where it feels like the author has gotten as far through the story as they feel they can and they don't know how to end it. Abrupt endings are not my thing and I massively mark a book down when I feel this is what the author has done. The author takes us through a number of years in Dana's life and we want to know what happens to her. We find out information about Con, we find out about Dana's secret and then it just ends! Flynn obviously knew what she wanted to happen to Dana but couldn't find a way to express that so she rushed the ending and threw everything in at once. Not for me, thanks. It is one of my pet peeves when an author does that. Just take your time and add some more to the book to explain the ending properly, don't just rush it off so you get your book completed.
Overall, I don't think I would recommend this book. Flynn tainted it for me because of the ending. However, the characters were good and I have to give credit to the narrator, Anne Dover. Her voice was really nice to listen too and I was impressed with the variety of accents which she could do. She often changed from Irish to Scouser and back again within the same conversation. Well done Anne.
10-Word-Review: Good story but please work on the endings before publishing.
The next book which I have already started is All The Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. I saw that Poppy Loves Book Club are due to review this at the end of January. I have been a massive fan of Poppy for a while now and have been regularly following and checking on what they are reading but this is the first time when I have owned the book which they are reviewing. I am so excited to join in on the review discussion on 31st January and I look forward to it. Please let me know if you are also reading this book. I am really enjoying it.
As we have celebrated Christmas I thought I would share with you the new book I received as a gift. My boyfriend kindly bought me yet another Penguin Classic book (I absolutely love them). I have a selection of Clothbound ones as my partner wants to make our bookshelf look nice but this time he bought Bram Stoker's Dracula in Leatherbound. It is so pretty! Just look at it!
I absolutely love the colours of the cover. I love the detail and how the darker lines have been etched into the leather. So pretty! As we live very close to Whitby, the famous town which Dracula is set in I can't believe I have never read this book. Will definitely be in my TBR Jar this year.
Please continue to follow me on Goodreads to see the progress I have made. I hope you have all had a great Christmas and I wish you a very happy New Year. From mine to yours. Steph xx