I hope you’re having a relaxing weekend! Today I am over the moon to share my thoughts on Apple Of My Eye by Claire Allan. It is very special to me, and I hope you love it as much as I did!
I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. Thank you Avon UK, Sabah, and Claire Allan!
Title: Apple Of My Eye
Author: Claire Allan
Publisher: Avon Books UK
Date of publication: January 2019
Format: uncorrected bound proof
Number of pages: 400
When a mysterious note arrives for six months pregnant Dr Eliana Hughes, she begins to doubt every aspect of her life – from her mixed feelings about motherhood to her marriage to Martin, who has become distant in recent months.
As the person behind the note escalates their campaign to out Eli’s husband as a cheat, she finds herself unable to trust even her own instincts, and as pressure builds, she makes a mistake that jeopardises her entire future.
Elsewhere, someone is watching. Someone who desperately wants a baby to call their own and will go to any lengths to become a mother – and stay a mother…
Apple Of My Eye. If I am not usually a fan of such a striking green, I must say this book is as beautiful as a newborn baby. I remember squealing when I opened the book mail containing Claire Allan’s latest novel (no stork for me, hunters would probably have shot her anyway.)
Motherhood. The weight of this word and all it means is known to every woman. In Apple Of My Eye, we get to know how it affects different women, different lives, different relationships.
Heavily pregnant Eli Hughes is not having the perfect pregnancy, including the glow and happiness magazines talk about. Sickness, fatigue, stress, her first months with her baby are not pink and ribbons. But is a woman allowed to let it show? To admit that she’s struggling with something that seems to come so naturally for other women? Her feelings, enhanced with the hormones having a never-ending party in her body, are not helping her relationship with her husband. Strain shows, but Eli wants to believe things will get better.
Never would she have imagined that things would get worse. A note received at triggers a tailspin that will throw Eli into a nightmare.
Different chapters, different name. Louise. A woman who has faced too many hardships. Motherhood is supposed to come naturally, isn’t it? What do you do when a woman is deprived of her natural role in life?
Other chapters. A link between them all. Angela. Eli’s mother has raised her on her own, making her daughter the center of her life. So, when Eli’s marriage and pregnancy seem too much for her to carry, Angela steps in, ready to make sure her grandchild comes into the world unharmed and loved.
Claire Allan made the decision to tackle taboos about women and motherhood. The result is painfully raw, beautifully cathartic, and an ode to women strength. She skillfully uses the silence around difficult pregnancies to set in motion an absorbing and evil plot wrapped in love. Apple Of My Eye is a tour de force, mixing women fiction with a sharp slice of thriller. With questions galore, I turned each page wondering how far this novel would lead me. And the author never shies away, for her reader’s greatest pleasure. Who is this mysterious person sending notes to destroy Eli and Tom’s marriage? Who is Louise watching? How much tension can build before setting fire to current lives, to lives to be? I am in awe of how Claire Allan juggled daily issues, the vulnerability that comes with situations you have no control over, and details that make all the difference.
If you’re a regular of this blog, you probably know I proudly wear my badge of membership to the ‘The Husband did it’ club. Except that in this book, I didn’t know who to trust. The distressed and pregnant wife whose emotions were high, the mother who wanted to protect her daughter from a cheating husband, the anonymous notes revealing it all, the friends trying to help. Everyone had strong arguments, everyone’s feelings felt genuine and coming from the very core of their being. Each character seemed so real, that the twists hit me hard, no matter how much they made sense. I loved it!!
Who to trust? I was unsure of everything but my own name! Eli was the same. Can you trust yourself when your body doesn’t feel like yours anymore? Can you believe your instinct when it is played by crazy hormones? I must go back to the subject of motherhood, and thank Claire Allan for creating a path to their thoughts, too often kept inside in this world where everything must be Instagram-perfect. Motherhood on a pedestal can be fatal…
My eyes were scrutinizing the words in search of clues, but all I could see was love, and pain, and an undercurrent threat that made my fingers hold the book tighter than I would normally have. Tense doesn’t cover it. I could feel something ominous coming, but I had no idea where it would come from! Isn’t it one of the best feelings?
Apple Of My Eye is a compulsive, twisty, and beautifully orchestrated thriller with motherhood at its heart.
The book is available NOW! Amazon
Look at all those fab bloggers talking about Apple Of My Eye!!!
A former journalist and columnist, Claire Allan has been writing fiction since 2006.
An Irish Times bestseller, she has tackled issues from post-natal depression, infertility, and dementia through to writing a based-on-a-true-story book about a couple reunited after 50 years apart. She has now decided to unleash her dark side!
Married with two children, two cats and a mad puppy she is happiest lost in a good book. She has kissed Michael Buble.