Friday 5 July 2013

Review! By My Side by Alice Peterson

One step can change everything...
Cass Brooks loves her job, her boyfriend Sean, her life. Until, leaving home one morning, distracted and hungover, she steps into the path of a truck.

When she wakes up, she can’t walk. And suddenly all her hopes and dreams, the plans she’d made with Sean, the future she thought she’d have, seem out of her reach.

But then fate intervenes again. Cass meets Ticket, a loyal golden Labrador who refuses to leave her side. And on a flight to Colorado, she sits next to Charlie, who believes he can show her a life full of possibilities, if only she’ll let him.

Cass wants her life back the way it was. Charlie knows this cannot be. Yet a future beckons all the same...

Review: I had heard so much hype about this book and was looking for something to use my audio book credit on, so thought instead of buying the eBook; I would download the audio book. I absolutely devoured this book in the hours that it took the lovely narrator to read it to me-I loved it so much. It was a fabulous heart-warming tale. So simple, the story of someone getting their life back on track and yet, so relevant to so many readers!

I was really worried that the fact that Cass has lost the ability to walk was going to really upset me, but I actually loved the fact that we had a heroine in a wheelchair! I think it is brilliant to have someone in a wheelchair who is the star of the book. And Cass is certainly no shrinking violet. She sees what has happened to her, allows it to affect her for the appropriate amount of time, and then simply gets on with her life. She does things I might not even consider doing being an able bodied person.

The relationships that she has within the book are also fabulous. I really like the way her mum and dad feature so heavily throughout the course of the book, it really reiterates the need to keep your family on side, because she really relied on them when this life-changing event happened to her. She also has a lovely relationship with other paraplegics that she meets along the course of the story. Each one has their own story of how their disability came about. These give the story so much depth and also add new, strong characters to this already wonderful novel.

There are two very important men that I have to touch on who are a major part of Cass’s story and indeed the novel as a whole. Charlie, the love interest and Ticket, Cass’s gorgeous assistance dog. The combination of these two heroes really gets Cass’s life burning again. They mean that she can go skiing, get herself back out to work, and have a proper life like any other able-bodied person. I have to admit, I was seriously suspicious of Charlie at the beginning of this novel, I felt sure that he was going to hurt Cass, but I did really warm to him towards the end. Ticket of course, I loved the whole way through and think that there should be more awareness of assistance dogs, not just those for the deaf and the blind!

Overall I would defy anyone not to fall in love with this novel. It has all the qualities of a fabulous read no matter what the weather is doing outside. There are some wonderfully funny bits, especially where Cass and her friend decide to take on someone who has taken the last disabled space in the car park (I actually cheered at this bit). I loved having the audio book but whatever format you choose to get your copy in, you will not be disappointed. There are definitely a few weepy areas, and things get quite deep in some parts, but overall, it is a fast paced journey which will allow you to fall in love with Cass, Ticket, and their journey together. 

You can buy a copy of this wonderful novel by clicking here
You can also visit Alice Peterson's website by clicking here.
Or follow this fabulous author on Twitter  

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