Genre: Contemporary, Chick-Lit
Jasmine loves two things: her sister and her work. And when her work is taken away she has no idea who she is.
Matt loves two things: his family and the booze. Without them, he hits rock bottom.
One New Year’s Eve, two people’s paths collide. Both have time on their hands; both are at a crossroads. But as the year unfolds, through moonlit nights and suburban days, an unlikely friendship slowly starts to blossom.
Sometimes you have to stop still in order to move on…
Original and poignant, The Year I Met You will make you laugh, cry and celebrate life.
I don’t know if I have ever written about my love for the author Cecilia Ahern on this blog, I probably haven’t because she is an author I have accepted as a must read and own author who I quietly love but don’t often talk about. It’s just an accepted fact in my mind that I love everything Ahern writes. Well, this review will essentially be me raving about Cecilia Ahern and her wonderful writing.
I bought The Year I Met You last weekend, I saw it was out and just knew I had to own it because Ahern has never failed me in a book. There are books of hers I like better than others, but never have I been disappointed with her writing. This book was more of the same from her. It has excellent writing, lovable characters with a variety of flaws, the lovely setting of Ireland, and thought provoking themes and ideas. I cannot claim this has been one of my favourite books of hers, but it was certainly enjoyable. I began the book Sunday and finished it Monday night. I have allowed my self a couple of days to formulate my thoughts and here they are below.
I loved the characters, sure Jasmine may not always come across as the most likable of characters from her being so career and work driven and her frequent disregard for other characters feelings, but somehow that made me like her more, because she is a very believable person. I loved her obsession with Matt, her neighbour, her watching his life unfold and how she just referred to him as ‘you’ so often, like her life revolves around the goings on in his, which in many ways it does since she lost her job. Whilst she had previously been driven by her job and developing a business she now has nothing to focus upon so I got why she began obsessing over the ins and outs of Matt’s life. Not to a stalkerish level, but it was definitely an obsession. I enjoyed watching Matt’s life unfold from Jasmine's perspective as well, it was just so interesting.
Ahern always writes such wonderful characters, I loved Jasmine and her slight insanity and ridiculous ideas. With her passion for gardening which only occurred because sometimes you cannot rely upon others to get it right for you. Matt was such an excellent character, he was flawed and needed to sort himself out, but you understand how he got there, because sometimes we all lose our way and end up getting ourselves in a mess because we lose perspective. The relationship which develops throughout the book between Matt and Jasmine was one of my favourite relationships in the book because it is unexpected. The interactions between the pair were so fun, they were funny, the banter was excellent and it was just so prefect. It was scathing without being ridiculous, the back and forth was awesome and really their relationship was the kind that everyone needs. That outsider to keep handing perspective to you in your life, because often you don’t know the mess your in until someone helps point it out to you.
I don’t know what it is about Ahern’s books, but there is something about them that makes them wonderful. I don’t know if I can even fully explain it properly to you, which is awful, because I feel like I need you to understand what I love about her books. This book is of the very real variety, that may seem like a strange thing to state about a book, but often she writes magical realism, I think that’s the term anyway. I really love those books as well, because sometimes you do feel like you need a bit of magic of the everyday variety because things are getting you down, so some of the ideas she has really brighten your day when you contemplate them being real. They’re lovely really, I sometimes think I prefer those books over her normal contemporary books, but then I read one and remember no matter what she does she writes lovely stories with real characters and with real issues within.
I would recommend this book to anyone that is feeling a bit lost in life and feeling a bit down. It’s just such a lovely uplifting read that can give you that kick up the arse to remember it’s not all doom and gloom, but only if you can be bothered to put the effort in to sort yourself out. I think it would be the perfect read for the New Year, because it is all about starting afresh, but it’s perfect for anytime really.