Book Reviews

Love Hurts: #TheDilemma by B.A. Paris @BAParisAuthor @HQstories #BlogTour

Oh my Lord!

What do you do when a book leaves you emotionally drained? I used to drown my sorry in chocolate but I’ve stopped eating it so… So I poured my feelings in this review. And then I ate cake.

the dilemma

Title: The Dilemma
Author: B.A. Paris
Date of publication: 9 January 2020
Publisher: HQ
Format: advance copy
Number of pages: 352
Source: publisher

It’s Livia’s 40th birthday and she’s having the party of a lifetime to make up for the wedding she never had. Everyone she loves will be there except her daughter Marnie, who’s studying abroad. But although Livia loves Marnie, she’s secretly glad she won’t be at the party. She needs to tell Adam something about their daughter but she’s waiting until the party is over so they can have this last happy time together.

Adam wants everything to be perfect for Livia so he’s secretly arranged for Marnie to come home and surprise her on her birthday. During the day, he hears some terrible news. He needs to tell Livia, because how can the party go on? But she’s so happy, so excited – and the guests are about to arrive.

The Dilemma – how far would you go to give someone you love a last few hours of happiness?

One day that will change a family forever.

I am facing a huge dilemma (see what I did there?)

I want you to know exactly why The Dilemma broke me. I want you to understand why I adored it. I want you to follow my train of thoughts, walk the path I strode on with the characters. I want to discuss at length the symphony of emotions that the author triggered with her impeccable and flawless prose.


I want you to meet Livia and Adam on your own. I want your mind to be open. I want the thrill of discovering B.A. Paris’ latest book to make you shiver with trepidation. I want you to wonder where you’ve landed. I want you to be knee-deep into this family’s secrets.

So how do I review The Dilemma?

Livia is reaching 40. To celebrate, she is having the party of a lifetime. Everything is planned.

Adam wants her wife to have the perfect birthday. He knows how important this day is for her.

Everything looks lovely but the reality is much more complicated than that.

B.A. Paris took me by surprise. Never had I read a character’s thoughts and realized how much I related to them. I took an instant like to Livia, for whom the big day had finally come. Her mixed feelings reached my heart right from the beginning. Of course, I was intrigued. The opening of this novel sets the tone. You can’t escape it. I had a foreboding sense of impending doom.

Like shadows tracking the characters, secrets wrap them in a fog that is first as thin as paper, only to turn into a dangerous blizzard that prevents Livia and Adam from reaching each other. Why is Livia happy that her daughter Marnie can’t make it to the party? What is bothering Adam?

My attention never failed me – the author’s stunning narration allows the reader to get to know each family member chapter after chapter. Like a scavenger hunt, you have to pick up the hints, let the emotions come to you. As I turned the pages, I felt closer and closer to Livia and Adam, and yet they were growing apart, tormented by too much love. Too much love? Yes, you’ve read this right. The Dilemma deals with good intentions gone bad. The will to protect those you love against… well, against whatever would hurt them. Because that’s what you do when you love, isn’t it?

But when secrets grow bigger and threaten to destroy your family, how long can you keep it to yourself? The psychology behind The Dilemma is stunningly accurate, frighteningly relatable, and absolutely heart-breaking. This novel opens doors to small lies born out of love and escalates towards one of my favourite endings.

Do you want to know how much damage can lies do? Get your copy, and brace yourself because you could be any of the characters in the novel. This book is pure escapism through a reality that is so close to us that the cathartic impact it holds is multiplied by a hundred. Parents, daughter, brother, friends, we all are flawed, we deal with life the best we can, or at least, most of us try to, and yet… Yet we can’t protect each other from fate. Emotional tension is trapped in the pages of the storm that is this book.

Selfless love is at the heart of this novel. So is family. That’s why it hurts. But it also gives hope. At least, this is what I take with me after having read and reviewed this magnificent and heart-stopping book which gives the most outstanding insight into the human mind and heart.

Definitely recommended! A new favourite of mine!




If you can’t wait, you can find the ebook right away, waiting for you (and for just 99p at the time of this post)

Find the hardcover here and it shall reach you as soon as the release date allows it!

My thanks to the HQ team for allowing me to be blown away by this book thanks to an advance copy and for the invite to be part of the blog tour.


about the author.png

ba paris.jpg

B.A. Paris is the internationally bestselling author of Behind Closed Doors, The Breakdown and Bring Me Back. Having sold over one million copies in the UK alone, she is a New York Times bestseller as well as a number one bestseller on Amazon and iBooks. Her books have sold in 38 territories around the world. Having lived in France for many years, she husband recently moved back to the UK. She has five daughters.
Her fourth novel is out in 2020

Follow B A on Twitter @BAParisAuthor

21 thoughts on “Love Hurts: #TheDilemma by B.A. Paris @BAParisAuthor @HQstories #BlogTour”

      1. You’re welcome. 🙂 If I had a nickel for every time a book kept me awake at night, just thinking about it over and over again… I’d be a wealthy woman. I love when that happens!


  1. Wow, I just have to order this one like, now, after reading your review. What makes this story and characters so compelling, what made them/it break you? Damn, Sweetie, now I need to know. 😀


  2. Brilliant review, Meggy! I can see that you were so keen to share with us what happens between this family and your enthusiasm really makes me want to go and read this book now! I love books with stilted family dynamics and this one seems perfect!


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