Monday, December 7, 2015

The Thread That Binds by Alice Hayes : A Review


BOOK TITLE: The Thread That Binds

AUTHOR: Alice Hayes

ISBN/ASIN: 978-1619334298

GENRE: Fiction

NUMBER OF PAGES: 284

FORMAT: Digital

SERIES / STANDALONE: Standalone

HOW I GOT THIS BOOK: I thank Laura Fabiani of iRead book tours for this review copy

SUMMARY:

Sherice is a new mother, a sonographer, quilter, and wife; an overworked young woman whose elderly mother is slipping away from her.

Sylvie is a newlywed and recent immigrant, unemployed and virtually penniless. Her husband’s paycheck can’t even cover prenatal care, let alone a baby, and her due date is only drawing nearer…

Joanne’s unconventional pregnancy turns her world upside down, redefining her career and relationships, and even bringing to the surface long-buried demons from her past.

Payton is seventeen, pregnant, and on the run. She flees to her uncle in Georgia with the hope of making a fresh start, but discovers making it on her own is harder than she could ever have imagined.

Gloria is trapped in an unhappy marriage; in love with someone else. Her life is falling apart. With a baby on the way, would it be selfish to flee?

Five women, once strangers, form bonds. Set in modern day Georgia, this is the story of friendship that blossoms in the land of country music, sweet tea, and secrets kept locked tight behind closed doors. Moving, funny, and at times heartbreaking, The Thread That Binds is a lesson in empathy, strength, and the beauty of love.



FIRST IMPRESSION:

The first thing I noticed in this book was, obviously, the cover. It was beautiful, fitting and of course very intriguing. The simplicity of five mugs placed in a ring actually tells a lot on what the story is about. The narrative drew me in from page one.

REVIEW:

The Thread That Binds - a common link that binds five different women from various backgrounds and natives. Is it their job, the difficulties they face in life? Or the love they give and receive to others who are so similar yet so different?

From page one, the book has the feel of a pleasant, poignant read. I started reading this when I went through a turbulent time and this book, strangely enough, comforted me. The story is about five women. They are all average, every day women, each with their own problems, families and issues. There is a fine line of sadness and insecurity about the future going on in their minds. Four of the women are pregnant and one, the main character (or at least I felt so) works with OB. They each meet in different circumstances and friendship develops.

The thing I felt was the best part of this book was the characterisation. The 'leading ladies' are not strong in the conventional way, moving aside boulders and sacrificing themselves for the nation like wonder woman. But they are each, in their own way, strong for themselves and the people who need them. Emotional strength and empathy flows in abundance. They all have secrets in their lives, secrets they would rather keep to themselves. They come together, form bonds, realise the value of friendship, companionship and most importantly, the power of love.

As mushy as this sounds, the story is not immature or childish in any way. It is not preachy or improbably poetic. These are the women you as a reader would root for. These are the women you might have known or come across somewhere. Their geographical location does not matter since the story is universal. There is one woman who is losing her mother to Alzheimers, one who is in an unhappy marriage. One woman shows us just how difficult it is to not be a citizen of US and still live in it. Yet another shows how exactly teen pregnancy can be harmful, terrifying and yet fill one with a sense of awe. Then there is the woman who plans a child birth - out of marriage. Rather than seeing them as characters of a story, the author's writing makes it possible to visualise them to be actual people.

The plot does not need twists. It keeps you hooked just simply in the way it is written. The story is simple, moves steadily and keeps you engrossed for more reasons than one. But if you are an adrenaline filled crime thriller junkie, this book will make you nod off at places. So if you are going to pick this up, make sure you like the summary. And if you do decide you like it and pick it up, it will surely be a great read and will give you a lot of things to take back with you long after the book has been finished.


WHAT I LIKED:
  • The theme of five strong women who come over adversities they face
  • The story, overall characterisation and the plot


WHAT COULD HAVE BEEN BETTER:
  • Sometimes, it gets confusing seeing the chapters of individual characters, especially since they are not necessarily placed one after another ordered by characters.
  • The descriptions are a bit long, sometimes. Though this is not a hindrance, this slows down the pace of the story in places.


VERDICT:

A story that will give you five different perspectives - about the same thing and the force of love that helps you through it.

RATING: 4.3/5


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Originally from Winchester, England, Alice’s plans to read law at a British university were disrupted when she fell deeply in love with Georgia, USA, while studying abroad. After moving all over Georgia, Alice has finally settled in Athens and has no plans to go anywhere else.

She is a single mother to a three-year-old girl and a 65 lb hound dog. She likes coffee, wine, and anything edible with the words ‘salted caramel’ in its description.

At the time of publication, Alice is a 24-year-old history student working full time in a law office, and writing fiction at every stolen moment. She hasn’t slept in approximately two years.

EDITIONS AVAILABLE: Kindle, Paperback

PRICE $6.09 for Kindle, $24.95 for Paperback

BOOK LINKS: Amazon

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