I have followed Louise Jensen on her publication journey since The Sister (review here). I fell in love. But every story brings the shadow of a doubt. What if the magic doesn’t work this time?
Today, we are going on a date.
I would like to thank the fantastic Kim Nash at Bookouture and the gifted Louise Jensen for offering me the opportunity to read The Date and review it as part of the blog tour.
Title: The Date
Author: Louise Jensen
Date of publication: 21 June 2018
Number of pages: 315
One night can change everything.
‘I know it as soon as I wake up and open my eyes… Something is wrong.’
Her Saturday night started normally. Recently separated from her husband, Ali has been persuaded by her friends to go on a date with a new man. She is ready, she is nervous, she is excited. She is about to take a step into her new future. By Sunday morning, Ali’s life is unrecognisable. She wakes, and she knows that something is wrong. She is home, she is alone, she is hurt and she has no memory of what happened to her.
Worse still, when she looks in the mirror, Ali doesn’t recognise the face staring back at her…
From the no. 1 bestselling author of The Sister, The Gift and The Surrogate, The Date is a gripping page-turner that will keep you awake until the early hours.
Cover love at first sight. Roses have thorns, we should never forget this. Ali learns it the hardest way. I was surprised that The Date actually started AFTER the date! But I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. I felt unnerved and ill at ease from the start. Not because of the writing or anything. No. Just like the main character, I knew something was wrong.
Opening a book from Louise Jensen is like jumping into a movie. You get sucked into the action, you find yourself right there, and you actually live the story. There is no escape, you can’t avoid the magnificent narrative style which firmly but gently pushes you into another world. And from experience, you never regret it.
Ali’s confusion at the beginning of The Date was frightening but oh so intriguing! It did take me longer than usual to connect with her, but I blame it on her condition. How do you learn how to bond with a character when said character doesn’t recognize herself, doesn’t know how she feels, and most importantly, is in muddy waters that you have to help her clear to get a better picture?
Page after page, as I was going through the motions with her, I warmed to Ali. I wanted to protect her. I admired her. I was moved by this unknown and completely scary situation. We grew together, we learned together. You can feel all the efforts and care Louise Jensen has put into her story to make it resonate with her readers. Although still so unknown to most of us, face blindness took form, Louise shaped a picture, explained without info-dumping us. Instead, she makes you feel what it is like to live Ali’s life. This is the truest form of writing for me. Louise doesn’t show, she turns emotions into words, something we often struggle with! I know I do!
As if having your life changed forever by a medical condition was not enough, someone is after Ali. Imagine not recognising the people you love, your neighbours, the postman. Walking down the street and having no idea if you’ve just past someone you know. Someone who cares about you. Or someone you wants to hurt you. I was cold to the bone throughout the story, wondering how much strength it took to keep on living, to rely on details, to take care of yourself, without ever being sure of who is next to you.
On top of being surrounded by faces you don’t know, tension oozes from every turned page as you look for who was this date, this turning point in Ali’s life, getting clues that make no sense, not getting any comfort from anyone. Ali’s loneliness broke my heart in tiny pieces, but her strength and her determination, so genuine and full of doubt, so human, moved me more than words can say. I was clinging to my e-reader, barely breathing, hoping, searching, and praying the bookish gods to break Ali free from her nightmare.
Who? Has never been a more nerve-wracking question!!!
The Date masterfully combines the psychological and the thriller side of the coin with a roller-coaster of emotions and a heart-stopping ending that leaves you open-mouthed, filled with a giant bag of emotions that will take you days to put back in order!!! A brilliant piece of writing with the author’s heart at its core. It makes all the difference.
Don’t hesitate, add The Date to your reading list, you won’t regret it! On Amazon right now!
And for more fun, check the other stops on the tour!
Louise Jensen is a Global No.1 Bestselling author of psychological thrillers The Sister, The Gift & The Surrogate. To date Louise has sold approaching a million books and her novels have been sold for translation to nineteen territories, as well as being featured on the USA Today and Wall Street Journal Bestseller’s List. Louise was nominated for the Goodreads Debut Author of 2016 Award.
Louise lives with her husband, children, madcap dog and a rather naughty cat in Northamptonshire. She loves to hear from readers and writers and can be found at www.louisejensen.co.uk, where she regularly blogs flash fiction and writing tips.